Lisa Krause is glad to be back in the gym.
Because of COVID, the IFBB pro bodybuilder spent most of her time preparing for competition at home.
The pandemic kept her from lifting at her usual gym and pushed back her annual gynecological screening by four months.
And when she finally got it, "it hit me like a ton of bricks," she said.
Doctors found a benign tumor on one of her ovaries. Krause ended up getting a hysterectomy.
"I was lucky, but I think that had I not gotten it out, Dr. Thomas said that potentially it could've turned to cancer," Krause said.
Krause's surgeon, Dr. Bijoy Thomas, says nationwide doctors are seeing a spike in cancer diagnoses due to pandemic delays. He says locally the numbers aren't as dramatic because screenings, while fewer, were still a priority.
"You cannot delay cancer screening because the sooner we catch cancer, there is a higher chance we can, God willing, potentially cure people of cancer," Thomas said.
Krause says even though she's in the best shape of her life, the surgery rocked her world.
But she wasn't about to let it slow her down. 12 days later she was back in a bikini posing for the judges.
Krause says she hopes others, no matter what their fitness level, will learn and live because of her experience.
"I know that some people are a little bit afraid because they feel as though oh I don't know if there's something wrong with me maybe I don't wanna know. But you do want to know and you need to face that fear," Krause said.