• Matthew Glaetzer crowned sprint world champion in 2018 (AAP)Source: AAP
With the tape still visible on his neck following surgery for thyroid cancer last week, Matthew Glaetzer says he hopes to be back on the track as early as December on the way to Tokyo 2020 as he also used the news to promote men's health.
Cycling Central

Cycling Australia
11 Nov 2019 - 8:19 AM  UPDATED 11 Nov 2019 - 8:20 AM

The South Australian noticed something was wrong when he felt a pain his neck after a block of heavy strength training sessions early last month. 

But the soreness persisted through October and an alert Cycling Australia high performance medical team insisted he seek further testing in Adelaide, an MRI and ultrasound later revealing nodules on his thyroid.

The following day he resumed his training schedule and wind tunnel testing in Melbourne but got the phone call wtih the confirmed diagnosis on his way back home again to Adelaide. 

“You never want to hear that you’ve got cancer," he said in a Cycling Australia press release on Sunday. "It’s got such an ominous connotation to it, and it’s pretty heavy.

"And I’m there with some taxi driver next to me, and I’ve just been notified that I’ve got cancer and you need to take a moment and be ok.

“But I anticipated this throughout the process, I was preparing myself for the worst-case scenario. I figured there's nothing I can do about it, at this point worrying about it wasn’t going to make it better."

The deeply committed Christian has leant on his faith and remains focused on getting back on track for the Olympics Games in Tokyo next year. 

“I drew on my faith in God, I knew that he had it under control. I am thankful for the type of cancer that I do have and that it is treatable. I am grateful for the fact that my medical team caught it when they did.

“I’m not going to stop chasing the Olympics and trying to be the best in the world, it’s what I love to do. 

“It puts everything into perspective, but I’m not going to let this stop me. If I’m able to, and it's safe to, I'm not going to let this have power over what I want to do."

Glaetzer can resume training once the wound heals and his heart rate and blood pressure following the surgery are under control. 

“I’m planning to go to the Cambridge and Brisbane World Cups to continue my preparation for the Tokyo Olympic Games. Then after the World Cups is when the next part of my treatment happens and that might knock me around for a bit."

The dual world champion has also used the news and his early diagnosis to urge other men not to ignore anything amiss in their general health. 

“Going through everything that I have, it has just highlighted that if there is anything unusual or if there’s something that’s not normal to you, then you need to go and get it checked.

“In my case, I’m grateful that I had a sore neck and that I went through the super detailed process of checking it.

“So many guys have the ‘yeah that’ll be right, it’ll get better’ mentality, but you don't know what it could be, or how it could impact you and your family in the future.

“So I just recommend to blokes that if there's anything unusual, just go and find out what's going on.”