So I had the great opportunity to get away this Memorial Day weekend. Two sets of my husband's family members were vacationing and we went to visit both. One set was in Rhinebeck, NY and other set was in the Berkshire Mountains in Lee, MA. There is 73 miles between the places. I decided in an effort to train, I would cycle the distance. And so I did.
I have not cycled that far, especially solo, in a long time. Truth to tell, I was nervous, especially the first 10 miles, as I asked myself... "Can I do this? Am I crazy?" Yes and no, were my replies.
The day was a little overcast. Note to self, always carry a rain jacket and a plastic bag for my cell phone. I got caught in a down pour at mile 50. I am happy to report the cell phone survived and so did I. But I was quite chilled and never warmed up for the duration of the ride.
It was by far some of the most beautiful landscape I have seen in a long time. There is something meditative about country roads, alone, with only the sound of the gears. I had a ball.
I averaged about 15 mph and because of my husband's daudling, I actually beat him to the 2nd destination.
Cycling is my strong sport for sure. Now if I could get my swim and run that secure, I'd be unstoppable. Next stop, OHIO next weekend. Hope everyone had a safe and happy holiday weekend.
As an ovarian cancer survivor, I will race in 50 triathlons in all 50 states by 50-years-old to raise $100,000 for ovarian cancer research. This campaign is self inspired, self orchestrated and 100% self funded. In addition, all in-kind donations are turned into cash donations by me in the same name of the person who donates. I race for women who have lost their battle, women undergoing treatment and women yet to be diagnosed.
Please help with even a $10 donation!
Please help with even a $10 donation!
Monday, May 31, 2010
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
The Today Show featured some great news about early detection and ovarian cancer. Click here to see the video. I am so excited... I have goose bumps. This means that the fundraising and the effort is working. We are closer than ever to locking in a method of early detection for this disease. Please continue to help out and please ask your friends to donate $5 to this campaign. Remember I am 100% self funded so all of your donations go to OCRF and the cause. WOO HOO! What a great story and what great news.
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
I got featured in the blog listed below. This woman, Sara Cox Landolt, contacted me about my cause. She is a triathlon coach and thought her blog would be a good vehicle to educate women (and men) about ovarian cancer. We did an interview and she put together the story. I think she did a good job and has also posted it on Facebook. Thanks to Sara... someone's life might get saved.
Sunday, May 16, 2010
Whew! 2 states in 1 weekend... New Jersey yesterday. Placed 1st in age, 11th overall. It was an all women's race so that sounds better than it is but still pretty cool. Yesterday's goal - I wanted to push it and see how much I would have left over for today. Next day Maryland with a completely different goal. Today I wanted to race my race but remain injury free. I did well. REALLY tough course. People were throwing up at the finish line, it was so brutal. My chip had a malfunction but I think I would have taken 4th in age and perhaps top 25% overall. Thanks to mom who helped me with the endless driving, the finances (remember this mission is self supporting)and general all around support and to all the wonderful people I met along the way. We are getting the word out about ovarian cancer and the signs and symptoms and the need for early detection. It feels so good to be doing this! 12 states down, 38 to go. If you can, please, please donate $5 to ovarian cancer research. Thanks. 3 weeks off and then on to OHIO.
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Frigid temps this season and especially this week means that water temps may not even reach 60 degrees. I am racing in TWO states this weekend. NJ on Saturday and MD on Sunday. I have never done two states before and although skies will be clear and air temperature warm, the water will be freezing. The MD race is in a lake so I am not too concerned with Sunday but Saturday's race is at the Jersey Shore and the ocean will take my breath away. Double caps, earplugs and a full wetsuit are highly recommended. More to the point is racing twice in one weekend... I am a little nervous about how my body will respond.
But even more to the point is why I race. My friend Patti just completed her rounds of chemo and I am so happy for her. This weekend is for her and her triumph. I will carry her with me all weekend.
This is why I race.
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
I'm reading this hysterical book called Trizophrenia. It's written by a triathlete, comic, artist, writer guy who (I swear) has me blowing in his ear. His sentiments and take on the sport of triathlon is so accurate, I find myself chuckling out loud as I read it. My husband bought me the book for Christmas and I have been saving it for the race "season". I had no idea I would enjoy it so much.
Last night, the author posed a serious question. Do I train to race or do I race to train? Without a race, isn't it just exercise? I found myself questioning my efforts as I drifted off to sleep.
This morning the answer is clear. I train and I race to find a method of early detection for ovarian cancer. I don't have to think any further.
Someone asked me the other day, "What will you do when you finish all 50 states?" "Probably sleep a lot", I told her. Seriously, I am not sure what I will do or if it will include this sport. But honestly, can I cross that bridge when it gets a little closer?
Friday, May 7, 2010
While I was undergoing chemotherapy, I lost my hair. I really didn't mind. I actually liked being bald; it was very free-ing. Women (and some men) spend too much time and too much money on their hair. I wore a cap for warmth and can count on one hand how many times I wore a wig. This is one of the only photos of me right after chemo. My hair was long before I got sick and I cut it in anticipation of losing it and then had my husband shave my head just as it started falling out. I remember having to catch my breath for a moment when the hair "buzzer" turned on but then I felt like Demi Moore in G.I.Jane.
I have kept it short since it has grown back. It was fun to have a different look. There are so many perks to short hair; the best one being not wearing a swim cap. Well about 2 months ago, I decided it was time for a change and I am growing my hair again. For anyone who has ever had short hair and decided to grow it, it is torture and I am in the "awkward" stages. So be it. There might actually be the hint of a ponytail by the end of the summer... at least that's the goal. But in the meantime, it is long enough in the pool to be getting in the way of my goggles. I guess it's a good problem to have. It means it is actually growing. So now I need to buy a swim cap. I haven't owned one for over 3 years.
Not sure why this feels like a big deal to me. I can only guess it is another level of being "well" and putting my cancer behind me. Look at me... giving all this energy and time to my hair. Wasn't I just complaining about that?
Monday, May 3, 2010
What an exciting day! QVC, you know... the home shopping network?.... came and shot me today for an upcoming segment for Super Saturday. It will air in July and I will make sure everyone knows the date. They wanted a survivor and a face for ovarian cancer that has "beat" it and is living a full life. Well they came to the right place. Full life is an understatement and they got a taste of it today.
It was totally cool and I want to thank Mike and the guys for all their hard work today. They came from PA and sat in rain and traffic for about 4 hours to come to my home. They shot for about 6 hours, only to turn around in rush hour traffic to do it all over again. They rock!
The best part was this tricked out camera that was attached to the back of the truck The cameraman was actually strapped in (I asked) and he was able to film me while riding my bike. I got a sneak peek at the footage and it looks awesome. My little streets of Freeport look like the open road and I look like I am going 50 mph. I can't wait to see the finished product.
The viewing audience for Super Saturday and QVC is pretty huge. If everyone who watches donates $1, I will reach my goal in no time. I hope that message gets across. But I also hope that I provided a message to women who are fighting this battle and women who have yet to be diagnosed.
Thanks guys for a great day and a great start to my season.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Today is the Long Island Half and Full Marathon and I have at least 8 girlfriends running in it, not to mention countless members of my training team. I hosted a pre-race dinner last night for them and it made me feel "part of" the race, even though I chose not to race it. With my aggressive race schedule this season, I didn't think it was necessary to add a half marathon... even though it is one of my favorite events. Call it being cautious, call it wimpy, I change my mind depending on the day. But alas the day of the event is here and I ran an 8 miler this morning in honor of the event. But solo, not with 20,000 others. So hats off to Joanne, Pamm, Cyndi, Glo, Cath, Regina, Kim and Ali for participating in today's race.