At age 46, world-class triathlete, dietitian, and mother, Karen Newman, was on her knees, begging for her life to end. But just when her eating disorders had once again warped her life into a shame-filled nightmare of secrets, a diagnosis of advanced breast cancer ignited a fire of courage and deepened her faith.
This gripping story reveals the incredible power words have—to shatter or empower us—and the astonishing potential that love has to heal. Karen inspired thousands as she continued training and competing in triathlons throughout her grueling cancer treatments, and was featured on the NBC Today show twice because of her remarkable change of heart and rousing message of hope.
Told with candid truth and humor, Karen’s touching memoir weaves the agonies of anorexia, bulimia, and cancer, with the thrill of young love, miraculous wins on the race course, and victory over disease. With the wisdom forged in the valleys of despair and on the peaks of triumph, Just Three Words captures the indomitable spirit of one brave woman who—against all odds—survives, triumphs and finds the purpose in it all.
Karen Newman is an inspirational speaker, world record-breaking triathlete and survivor of two life-threatening diseases. Karen has been featured in numerous publications and shows, and has lectured all over the country. She has also received many awards, such as the Connecticut Sportswriter’s Association’s “Courage Award,” and American Cancer Society’s “Determination Champion” for her tireless charitable efforts.
Karen is a seven-time All-American triathlete and was the 2012 Silver Medalist and top American finisher at the Age Group Triathlon World Championships in Auckland, NZ. She followed in 2013 as a gold medalist for the United States in both triathlon and the 5k road race at the National Senior Games in Cleveland, OH, and then repeated with golds in both events at the Huntsman World Senior Games, while breaking the world record in the women’s triathlon there.
As a triathlon coach and Registered Dietitian with a Master’s Degree in Clinical Nutrition, Karen has had a long career educating and encouraging people in health and nutrition, as well as on the track. A University of Vermont alumnae, she married her college sweetheart, Peter, and together they have three amazing boys—Stetson, Chase, and Trent—who inspired her to survive and thrive.
The most powerful Olympic stories are those of athletes who have faced genuine adversity in their lives and not only persevered but somehow thrived. Karen Newman's journey is as inspiring and compelling as any Olympic athlete I've ever seen. She is grace and grit personified and whether you're a world class athlete, a weekend warrior or just want to be moved, you'll want to read her story. ~ Jim Bell: Executive Producer, NBC Olympics
Karen Newman’s life, as described in this compelling book, serves as an inspiration for families and patients but also for the doctors and researchers working to overcome cancer. Just Three Words demonstrates healing on multiple levels, and Karen as a heroic participant. ~ Dr. Clifford Hudis, MD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center: Chief of the Breast Medicine Service, past President of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.
Just Three Words by Karen Newman is an uncommonly honest, heartfelt and beautiful true story of forgiveness, hope and healing that inspires and touches the reader's heart in a powerful, life-changing way. Just three words: Buy this book! ~ Kathryn Slattery: Contributing Editor, Guideposts, and Author, If I Could Ask God Anything, and My Friend Jesus
Karen's story is a gold medal win for the eating disorder community! What a gift to find an athlete whose transparency and vulnerability will, no doubt, impact anyone struggling with the demons of anorexia, bulimia and body dysmorphia. Just Three Words encourages readers to break the bondage of shame in a relatable and approachable fashion. Readers will find that Karen's life truly exemplifies the Biblical command to 'run with endurance.' ~ Alice H. Churnock, MA: Certified Eating Disorder Specialist, ReVive Program
Just Three Words takes readers on a shocking, courageous and personal journey with riveting details, buckets of tears and a champion’s willpower. Karen Newman eloquently describes how she overcame insurmountable challenges to become a sought-after inspirational speaker and one of the world’s top-ranked triathletes. Readers will come away inspired to fight their own battles with God’s grace and an indomitable spirit. A treasure to read cover to cover. ~ Tom Renner: Senior Writer, Daily Voice
Karen’s is a journey of triumph in the fullest sense of the word. She has a unique story and sense of purpose, and has already been an inspiration to many. Just Three Words will take it to the masses who need to be encouraged by this extraordinary tale of hope. ~ Yonni Wattenmaker: Executive Director, Breast Cancer Alliance
Just Three Words demonstrates Karen Newman's spirit and resiliency through stories that will make readers laugh and cry. Karen's testimony provides hope to those who are looking for a true beacon of light to get through the dark times. Her strong faith, personal reflections, and a commitment to persevere over despair, give others an insightful roadmap for taking control of their lives. ~ Tim Yount: Chief Operating Officer, USA Triathlon
Just three words: Can’t. Stop. Reading.
Just Three Words tells a compelling tale of strength and survival from both youthful and adult perspectives, weaving a relatable account of self-forgiveness and self-compassion, which are much needed today. We all struggle with inner demons—both past and present—but with grace and humor, Karen Newman helps us see them in a new light; a light of hope and healing. Poignant and precious, Just Three Words, contains a message of inspiration that spans generations—so buy one for yourself and one for your teenager. ~ Paula Prentis, LMSW: Author, Speaker, Co-founder of YourSelfSeries.com
As a breast cancer survivor, I am moved and inspired by Just Three Words. Karen Newman's remarkable journey, courageously facing multiple challenges all at once, speaks volumes to all who are overwhelmed and exhausted in their own lives. On every page, Karen's growing faith, positive attitude, and resilience is present in overcoming the unspeakable. Just Three Words gives the reader a personal glimpse into the life of a deeply genuine mentor, doer, and believer. ~ Ann Louden: Ten year chair, TCU Frogs for the Cure in partnership with Susan G. Komen
Karen's personal story is intimate and riveting. Over the last decade, I competed with Karen at triathlons as her story was unfolding. I witnessed her grace as she exalted in “just finishing,” in races where she had excelled in the past. She has exhibited a joyful demeanor and patience through the years which has led to her victorious outcome. Just Three Words is her amazing story to share with the world.
~Donna Smyers: Physical Therapist and six-time Iron Man Triathlon Age-Group World Champion
Karen's profound story will inspire you to live boldly, love fiercely, and walk humbly with God through all of life's valleys and mountaintops. Contagious hope is woven throughout each page. ~ Jeannie Cunnion: Author of Parenting the Wholehearted Child.
Having personally witnessed the power of Karen's unvarnished faith in the face of her very worst fears and struggles, I can assure you that what you read in these pages is authentic, genuine and saccharine-free. Her unflinching honesty about her trials and weaknesses only serves to magnify her remarkable courage, confidence and sheer determination to rise to the highest levels in athletics and in life. Just Three Words is a shining example of how God’s power has worked through one humble woman to accomplish the nearly-impossible. Many have looked to Karen for encouragement in their own struggles—as well they should—and this book will serve to uplift thousands or millions more. ~ The Rev’d Hillary R. Bercovici, Ph.D: Episcopal Priest & Senior Fellow, Trinity Institute for Spiritual Formation, Greenwich, CT
Just Three Words is a book you will not be able to put down until you, too, cross the finish line with the author. ~ John Stetson, MD: Orthopedic Surgeon
Karen's infectious enthusiasm, energy and resolve have not only driven her to compete and produce results, but have provided her with something much more durable and influential—a voice. Her unique blend of compassion and veracity are both refreshing and gripping. This dynamic story is sure to inspire. ~ Adam Avery: pastor, Church of the Well; Burlington, VT
Just Three Words is a magnificent story of how God ultimately uses everything for good. (Romans 8:28) With unfiltered transparency, Karen Newman courageously pours out her life’s triumphs and travails, then takes us on a sweeping journey of upliftment. You will find hope and healing as God feeds your soul in Just Three Words. ~ Susan Stuart: Westport CBS Teaching Director
Karen's story holds out the gift of true friendship to any of us who have struggled with the hiddenness of God in our pain or the agony of watching a loved one suffer. It is also an inspiring testimony to the love and healing of the one who promises never to leave us or forsake us. ~ Reverend Drew Williams Senior Pastor Trinity Church
Karen Newman's truly amazing journey of perseverance and inspiration to others, along with her athletic skills, earned her recognition by the National Senior Games Association as one of our 2014 "Personal Best" athletes. The program seeks to use real life examples to motivate everyone to pursue active, healthy lifestyles. Karen is always encouraging others and is a great ambassador for the senior games movement. We look forward to having her compete in our games for many years to come. ~ Marc T. Riker, CEO, National Senior Games Association
Karen Newman is a champion in every sense of the word. With sheer will and determination, she has overcome. More than overcome, she has thrived. We could all take a page out of her book and be better off for it. ~ Kyle M. Case: Huntsman World Senior Games, CEO
I have known Karen for 20 years as a devoted mother and friend. Her strength and ability to overcome any obstacle, especially the race of her life, is remarkable. She is truly an inspiration to all, and the world is a better place because of her.~ Margaret C. Cianci, Executive Director, Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy
- - Beaufort Books