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Chicago Triathlete Is Losing His Vision, But Not His Focus

Athlete with vision loss writes Eye Envy, a book about sight. This is the time of the year when runners are training for races, but a former Chicago-area Ironman triathlete with a progressive vision loss is now facing a challenge every day. Ten-time Ironman triathlete Michael Stone has a blinding retina…

Athlete with vision loss writes Eye Envy, a book about sight.

This is the time of the year when runners are training for races, but a former Chicago-area Ironman triathlete with a progressive vision loss is now facing a challenge every day.

Ten-time Ironman triathlete Michael Stone has a blinding retina degenerative disease called cone-rod.

“It wasn’t until probably 2005 that I started to do something about it when I realized that this was a more serious problem. When I received my diagnosis, they just gave it a name. They didn’t say that is was going to lead to blindness,” said Stone.

“I realized that there was something I was going to have to do, and I told my parents this is something a lot more serious than what we thought it was,” he said.

At one time, Michael Stone was intimidated by sports, but after his diagnosis, he found his calling.

“I discovered rock climbing and martial arts, which eventually led me to move to Colorado because I wanted to be closer to the mountains. And when rock climbing became more challenging due to vision-related issues, although I didn’t know why, I thought it was just color blindness, I got into running. And then, running led to triathlon, and triathlon took on a life of its own,” Stone said.

Read More: ABC Local