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Meet Tom Hulsey

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tom Hulsey.

Tom, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. What did you do during the pandemic?
I authored a book! THE WINNING MINDSET THAT SAVED MY LIFE Second Edition is a compelling and inspiring story that can help those battling any disease or facing a major life challenge. It is full of helpful health information, inspiring stories, and motivating quotes. The second edition, endorsed by highly respected medical professionals, builds on the original. BEST OF ALL, 100% of the net proceeds benefit cardiovascular disease and cancer research. The book is rated 5 out of 5 stars on Amazon. In the book, I describe how I went I’ve gone from the shock of finding out I had cancer and severe heart disease to the glory of beating them and the book describes how goal setting, commitment and tenacity helped me overcome these dreaded diseases. I apply the skills and mindset required to compete in an IRONMAN® to life’s struggles. The IRONMAN® is a 2.4 mile swim, followed by 112 mile bike, followed by a 26.2 marathon – all in one day! The IRONMAN® is a metaphor for life. It is a long day and there are many ups and downs. How you handle adversity is what defines you, be it the IRONMAN® or in life.

What are you doing today?
Being a survivor has given me a wonderful perspective on life. Cancer and heart disease humbled and changed me. My journey has created a passion in me to help others battling adversity. As a patient and advocate, I am passionate about utilizing my experiences to fuel positive changes and impact the health of our world. Today I serve as a Board Member at ZERO Cancer, Peer Reviewer & Mentor for the DoD’s (Department of Defense) Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP), and serve on the Board at the North Texas Prostate Cancer Coalition and mentor cancer patients. I also served on the boards at Mary Crowley Cancer Research and Cancer University. Pre-pandemic, I was a volunteer (fitness instructor) at the Baylor Scott & White Cancer Health & Wellness Center.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
No! Over the course of six years, I’ve faced three life-threatening disease; cancer, severe coronary atherosclerosis and severe carotid artery stenosis. With each diagnosis, I had to maintain my winning mindset, to decide to live and subsequently inspire others in their life challenges. I never intended to take this journey, but through cancer and heart disease, I found a sense of higher meaning in my plight by switching from nursing my own personal sense of tragedy to encouraging empathy for others. I’ve transformed myself into a men’s health champion, advocating for research funding, creating awareness, educating and providing hope and inspiration to those dealing with challenges in their lives. After completing my long-term cancer recovery goals, the IRONMAN® World Championship and walking my daughter down the aisle in 2016, I dedicated my life to helping others through philanthropy. I was the recipient of the 2019 Lauren Beam Philanthropy Award at the NYU School of Professional Studies and the Preston Robert Tisch Institute for Global Sport for my “dedication and contributions toward philanthropic efforts that resulted in significant, positive effects on the world of sports and beyond.”

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
The natural reaction to any health challenge is fear and anxiety. Overcoming fear is one of the principles of my winning mindset. Overcoming any obstacle starts with mindset, which drives the choices you make. Discipline determines whether you continue and make those choices a habit.

Quotes I live by: Vince Lombardi, “The good Lord gave you a body that can stand most anything. It’s your mind you have to convince.”

Jackie Robinson, “A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.”

Dr. Ken Cooper, “Exercise is a journey, not a destination. It must be continued for the rest of your life. We do not stop exercising because we grow old – we grow old because we stop exercising.”

Can you tell us more about what you were like prior to your health challenges?
After growing up in Madison, Wisconsin, I earned my Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration with a minor in finance from the University of Tennessee. My professional career spanned decades in technology; creating business solutions by leveraging technology to make the world a safer place. I’m a graduate of the FBI Citizens’ Academy, DPS Citizens’ Academy and Plano CERT member. I was a professional hockey instructor for the Dallas Stars, nine -time IRONMAN® triathlon finisher (personally sponsored by Subaru) and six-tine finisher of the Mountainman Winter Triathlon (personally sponsored by NordicTrack).

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Image Credits

  • With Kenneth H. Cooper, MD, MPH – “Father of Aerobics”
  • With Lauren – supporting the cause, ZERO Cancer
  • Running with Texas shorts – courtesy of IRONMAN®
  • New York University – @Sorel courtesy of NYU Photo Bureau
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