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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!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

On Air in New Hampshire

Live from WSMN in Nashua, New Hampshire... Click here for a live link to my broadcast and podcast from Tuesday, May 29.  Sponsored by Melissa and Dawn of Relaunch Career Associates, these ladies not only paid for my entry to the Nashua Triathlon but had me on their weekly radio show.  It was a fun experience packed with information for the local women of Nashua, all in an effort to save a life.  We chose to not script the interview and be casual and organic and it came out better than any other interview I've done.  Thanks to Melissa and Dawn for the financial and promotional support of my 50x50x100 campaign.  See you at the finish line!  But first... Oklahoma this weekend.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Cross Training

Have you ever done a ropes/zip line course?  High in the tree tops of Catamount Mountain in upstate New York, I participated in a three hour test of fitness this past weekend.  Previously terrified of zip lines, I am happy to report I conquered my fears.  It wasn't about the height really; more about the stepping off.  Truth to tell, it was about being "out of control" but given the (perceived) cushioning of the trees and plush underground, it somehow felt less dangerous.  The zip line became the easy part with the bulk of the challenge being the physical strength, balance, coordination and endurance to traverse wires, ladders and ropes 50 feet off the ground.  Especially as the day went on, the fatigue took its toll, sometimes rendering my muscles useless, quivering and barely able to hang on.  Yes, we were strapped in at all times and clipped on to platforms, guide wires and elements at every station.  I was fortunate enough to go with 12 of my friends and family members and what made it particularly exciting was being able to look out into the forest and see a familiar face in a neighboring tree.  Like we were a family of monkeys, we chattered and waved to each other as if to say, "look at me".  This morning my body has bumps and bruises and cuts and scrapes to remind me of the weekend's events and I can honestly say, I can't wait to do it again.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Another Country Heard From

OCRF from Australia
Ovarian Cancer is not a United States problem.  It is global.  In fact, in Australia three women are diagnosed every day.  I mention Australia because in my research, I stumbled on another OCRF.  Not the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund that you often see me write about but the Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation.  And this "down-under" OCRF, celebrated yesterday with a White Shirt Day.  Here's an excerpt from their website.
The Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation (OCRF) is proud to present, for the second year, OCRF White Shirt Day. On May 19, Australians are invited to show their commitment to fighting ovarian cancer and supporting the thousands of Australian women and their families who are affected by this insidious disease.  The OCRF White Shirt Day is an OCRF initiative to garner collective support for this important cause.
It warms my heart to know there are "sister" organizations around the world doing exactly what we are doing here in the US.  But wouldn't it be even better if these organizations could be put out of business?  That's the real goal. 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

A First on the 34th

State #34 complete... South Carolina.  A big thanks to my cousin John who found and rented me a bike, picked me up at the airport, drove 12 hours in 2 days carting me around, across state lines, all in an effort to support me and make my life easier.  Another thanks to my hosts Larry, Shirley, Emily and Shasta for putting us up during our southern stay.
Now for the first... bike issues. The hills of Clemson were very technical.  Many altitude changes in the Smokey Mountains with technical turns makes for lots of shifting.  As this wasn't my regular "sled", I have to blame it on operator error.  But I dropped a chain.  Bummer!  So for the first time I had to pull over and watch many of the folks I already passed, pass me by while I fixed it.  I caught a few of them again but my podium finish went by the wayside.  Overall a solid race.  Killer swim and average run..wound up with 5th.  Strong triathlon community down there; lots of elites showed up to race.  Always fun to be toe to toe with the best of the best.  That's one of things I love about this sport.
Next stop... Oklahoma. 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

A Shift In Perspective

Up until this very race, this very state, people have asked me, "How many states have you completed?"  For some reason, there's been a shift.  Now I am asked, "How many states do you have left?"  Isn't that the most exciting turn of the English language???!!!!
I know it sounds kinda silly but counting UP has taken several years and was psychologically harder.  Counting DOWN seems like more fun and will certainly go faster.  So with South Carolina on the horizon for this weekend, there will be 16 states left upon completion.  Out of curiousity (since I was obsessing about numbers) I decided to count how many triathlons I have done in TOTAL.  South Carolina will be #52.  Now that's a big number.  So I've decided I want to meet 52 people this weekend to spread the message about ovarian cancer and early detection.  Why not?

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Help Takes Many Forms

Enter Shelley August Designs.  Through a friend, I met Shelley virtually.  When she learned of my campaign, she contacted me and asked how she could help.  Having lost her mother to ovarian cancer, the subject is near to her heart.  As a jewelry designer she suggested making a TEAL item and donating it so the proceeds would benefit my 50x50x100 campaign. To date, I don't have a raffle for my campaign so I didn't know how that would work.  OCRF saw an opportunity and suggested she create a line of jewelry to be carried on their website, with 20% of the proceeds benefitting my campaign.  Other non-teal specific items bring in 10% for the cause.
This is a win-win situation and shows me that help does not have to come in the form of direct donations.  Thinking outside the "charity box', I am finding that my campaign can benefit in many other ways.  If you like shopping, if you like jewelry, if your mom might like one of these items for Mother's Day, please consider supporting me through Shelley August Designs. I've already bought a pair of earrings.  So I guess, I helped myself.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Best of Luck to my Friends

This upcoming Sunday, May 6, is the Long Island Marathon and I have several friends participating.  Although I am not a marathon-er, I can only imagine how brutal the event is.  It is not known to be the prettiest route, nor the most spectator friendly. In fact there are strips of it where there isn't another soul to be seen.  Coupled with un-tree lined parkways and sunshine baking down midday; it makes for a tough event. 
I wish my running buddies the very best.  May your feet be swift and the winds be at your back. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

May Day

This is a photo of Dagny and today is her birthday.  Although she is gone and has been for three years, she is still very much part of me, my life and my memory.   She was with me for 17 years and for a dog, that's a really long time.  Part shepherd, she was loyal.  Part terrier, she was willful.  One of my dearest friends gave me a rose bush when she passed.  Today I sang "Happy Birthday" to the rose bush.  My neighbors probably thought I was crazy but then again, they are used to seeing me running at 4 am so, crazy is as crazy does. Or something like that.   Anyway... happy birthday dear one.  I  hope you are enjoying a soft serve vanilla ice cream today.