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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!

Monday, February 27, 2012

A Little Help From Friends

About six years ago, I was shopping for a bike and chatting it up with someone at the store.  A gentlemen asked me, "Who do you play with?"  I had never heard the question phrased quite like that and remember it, clear as day.  I answered that I was a solo athlete, didn't have time to connect with people, had an irratic schedule and as I recall, gave him several other excuses.  He said how unfortunate that was and suggested I might like a training group called Team Total Training.  If you've followed my blog at all, you've heard me post about the group before.  I will be forever grateful for that meeting in the bike store.  I am a proud member of TTT and have been for six years.
Yesterday was the team's winter party.  About a quarter of the team was in attendance but the spirit of the group was alive and well.  One of the interesting things about a team of this size is there are so many folks I don't know.  If you train in a different county or at a different time of day, you rarely meet other teammates.  I am a Nassau County, Wednesday morning swimmer so that means I swim with (pretty much) the same people week after week.  So this team venue yesterday was a great chance to share stories with others.
I want to recognize my two coaches, Steve and Natalie, for training me but also for their unending support of my 50x50x100 campaign.   Steve endorsed my effort in a speech last night that almost made me cry.  It was heartfelt and meaningful.  Especially noted was the fact that I donate any money saved (with comp entries, comp swim lessons etc) back to the cause.   Sure, getting something comped is great but it doesn't help the campaign.  That's why I decided to donate what I save back to OCRF.  To date, I don't know of any other campaign working in that way.  Steve echoed that and told the other members, if given a choice of who to support, they should support me.  I walked out of yesterday's party with donations!  Moreover, I got to spread the message of early detection and signs and symptoms to many people.  Team spirit and the support of others is a vital part of my training.  The guy in the bike store was right; it's much more fun training with friends.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A Southwest Friend

As a result of this campaign, I am meeting amazing people.  One such person is my dear friend Kari or KK for short.  She works for Southwest Airlines.  At Southwest they have a program called "Share the Spirit" and encourage their staff to volunteer time to non-profit organizations.   If a staff member volunteers 40 hours to a particular charity, that charity gets a free airline ticket in the US.  KK did this for me and I got the ticket.  I am happy to announce that my $498 ticket to the race in Oklahoma is courtesy of KK and Southwest.  This is an incredibly helpful thing... since my campaign is 100% self funded.  Remote states like Oklahoma are expensive to travel to and a free ride really helps the bottom line.  I've also racked up some serious mileage on Delta so my ticket to Michigan was booked with frequent flyer points.  With 11 states to add to this season, two free airline tickets is cause for celebration and worthy of a post.
Many thanks to KK for helping me with the Public Relations of my campaign, for working at Southwest and for turning into such a great friend.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Worth The Effort

This is not a photo of me in Crow pose.  But for about 20 seconds in yoga tonight, it could have been.  I have been consistently practicing yoga for almost 2 years.  My husband and I started doing it together in an effort to create a "date night".  It has far exceeded our expectations and we are both hooked.  In fact, he credits his 30 point cholesterol decrease to yoga alone.  I haven't noticed such dramatic effects but I have to admit I am a stronger athlete for it. 
Being humble is part of the yoga spirit and I want to honor that.  You are always "practicing"  yoga and will never, ever be done. For those of us who long for a sense of  completion, this yoga concept is tough to swallow.  Not to mention, it is just really hard to do.  There are some poses that my body doesn't like and others that I am afraid to attempt.  Crow has always been one of poses I struggle with.  But tonight, for about 20 seconds, the heavens parted and I got into the pose... almost effortlessly.  And the best part.....I stayed in the pose until the instructor moved us on to the next pose.  For the first time, I didn't fall out of it.  I almost giggled with excitement but of course, that's not the point.  Is it?  Remaining humble is what I'll do but between you, me and the lamp post, I am totally stoaked.  For tonight anyway, I was able to do Crow.  It has been worth the effort. 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Follow Your Sport With Passion

Whatever your sport of choice is, enjoy it with passion.  On this, the day of the Superbowl, most folks know where my loyalty lies.  I am a Patriots fan.  Originally born in the Bronx, I should be a Giants fan.  My dad was and I grew up one.  In fact, my mother even asked me who I was cheering for today.  Really?  Having spent the better part of my adult life in the Boston area, my sports and my allegiance is with Boston. 
This post isn't really about football though.  It's about being in the moment and enjoying whatever it is that truly makes you happy.  For many today, it will be about football.  Come spring time, it'll be baseball.  Come April 1st, it'll be triathlon for me.  The point is to immerse yourself in the sport or activity that brings you happiness.  Life is unpredictable.  Your inbox will never be empty.  There is always more time to work.  There is never enough time for family and the things that feed your soul.  
Be safe today.  And may the best team win.