Friday, March 26, 2010

Why Do We Walk

I was talking with a mom who I volunteer with in my son's class. She asked me about the lanyard I've taken to wearing around my neck on a regular basis and I mentioned that I'd signed up to do a 60-mile walk in 3 days in November to raise funds and awareness for breast cancer. "You're crazy!" was her response. I smiled a big smile. "Yes, you're right," I replied. It is a bit crazy, but it's such a good kind of crazy. Normal people do not pledge to raise at least $2,300 to have the privilege of walking 60 miles in 3 days. Normal people do not want to walk 60 miles in 3 days. But we all know that 3-day walkers are not quite normal. I am proud to say that I am not quite normal and just a little crazy --- in what I think is a very good kind of way.

I was also recently talking with a friend of mine who is on the verge of signing up to walk with me in November (she's just a bit of the right kind of crazy too). She was asking me what her "story" should be as she's concerned that fundraising won't go well because she is lucky enough to have NO ONE in her inner circle of family and friends who have yet been touched by breast cancer. Not that she doesn't know a few folks who have faced it, just that she can't immediately point to "the" person who she is walking for.

My advice to her was to just dig deep and look at why she is signing up and be honest about why she is doing this. Why is she choosing this instead of some other walk/run/event? I know in talking with her a big part of her motivation is to get herself in shape. That's part of my motivation too. Both of us are not so good at taking care of ourselves just for our own sake. It helps to have an external motivator to get you moving on a regular basis when that is not something you're in the habit of doing. I can't tell you how many weekend mornings I've woken up and NOT wanted to go on my walk, but made myself get out there and do it anyway. I have yet to regret making myself do it. The walks almost always make me feel good. I have more energy since I started walking on a regular basis and I certainly can walk farther than I did when I first signed up.

She likes the idea of the challenge of it. She likes that it's doing something bigger than herself. She likes the idea that she won't have to do this journey alone, since I'm already signed up. She LOVES the color pink and can't wait to deck herself and her house out in more pink in the name of the cause. She does know people who have faced this monster. She undoubtedly has many more reasons in her head why she is signing up to walk that I haven't heard yet. I really hope that she takes the plunge soon.

As I was walking this morning I was moved to tears thinking about what my mom and other breast cancer survivors have been through. When you're out walking so often, you do a lot of thinking. I can't help but think about the fact that I may have to face it myself some day. I don't want to. I desperately don't want my daughter to ever have to face it. I don't want any of my girlfriends, Aunts, cousins, my husband, male-friends, brothers, Uncles, my kids' friends, my acquaintances or people I don't even know facing this. No one. I don't want anyone to have to face this. Ultimately, that is why *I* walk. I have a feeling I will sign up to do this again next year! (and the year after that, and the year after that...)

Every person has their own story. Every person has their own motivation and there are not any bad reasons for deciding to do something this big and crazy and full of hope. To quote one of my favorite children's authors: "Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not." -The Lorax

Fundraising: Total: $2,725.00
Training: 3.9 miles in 1 hour 15 minutes
Total miles to date: 151.5

Progress Update

Fundraising: Total: $2,725.00
Training: 5.9 in 2 hour 20 min
Total miles to date: 147.6

Fundraising: Total: $2,725.00
Training: 1 hour Tap Class
Total miles to date: 141.7

Fundraising: Total: $2,725.00
Training: 4.1 miles in 1 hours 35 minutes
Total miles to date: 141.7

Fundraising: Total: $2,725.00
Training: 7.5 miles in 2 hours 44 minutes
Total miles to date: 137.6

Fundraising: Total: $2,725.00
Training: 3.7 miles in 1 hour 17 minutes
Total miles to date: 130.1

Cross Training, 1 hour of yard work

Fundraising: Total: $2,725.00
Training: 2.3 miles in 46 minutes
Total miles to date: 126.4

Fundraising: $50.00 Total: $2,725.00
Training: Sick Day Off
Total miles to date: 126.4

Friday, March 12, 2010

A Surprise

I guess my post about down time was somewhat prophetic. I seem to have come down with a mild cold, but enough that I don't have any extra energy for working out yesterday or today. My daughter kindly shared her cold with me.

So I'm going to take my own advice and take the down time. I may catch up on some reading I've been wanting to do, or if I'm lucky, sleeping!

I got a wonderful surprise yesterday that the daughter of one of the people who has donated to my walk saw the thank you note and business card that I sent to her mother and was inspired to donate to my walk as well. That's so amazing to me. It also makes me think that I should ask for folks to pass my page on to people they know as part of my fundraising strategy. You just never know who is going to be willing to support this amazing cause!

Fundraising: Total: $2,675.00
Training: Sick Day Off
Total miles to date: 126.4
Fundraising: $85.00 Total: $2,675.00
Training: Sick Day Off
Total miles to date: 126.4

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Down Time (03/10/10)

Everyone needs down time. The last couple weeks were exceptionally busy for me and had some rough emotional moments. I had days I didn't want to work out, but I did that anyway. I didn't want to think about fundraising and I didn't. The nice thing about having until November to reach my goal, is I can take some time off to recharge and work my energy back up and then tackle it again refreshed and renewed.

Breaks are important. No one sets off in the morning on the 3-day walk and just walks all the way through. There are rest stops (I hear) about every 3 miles, where you can get snacks, refill your drinks, take a quick break, stretch and refresh yourself before continuing on. There's a lunch stop along the way. Very few of us could walk 20 miles in a single day at one go. Three miles is not as far as you might think and broken in to 3 mile legs, I know this walk it totally doable. My own experience has shown that even a 5 minute break makes a huge difference in how far I can go. When you take the time to stop, rest and refresh, you can do more, go farther and make a bigger difference.

So here's to breaks! Be kind to yourself and give yourself permission to take down time. It will ultimately get you further than you could otherwise.

Fundraising: Total: $2,590.00
Training: 4.0 miles in 1 hour 32 min
Total miles to date: 126.4
Fundraising: $150.00 Total: $2,590.00
Training: 2 miles in 45 min., 1 hour tap class
Total miles to date: 122.4
Fundraising: Total: $2,440.00
Training: Cross-training, Ellipitical, 0.8 miles in 30 minutes
Total miles to date: 120.4

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Not the Best of Moods (03/07/10)

I haven't been in the best of moods since attending the funeral yesterday for one of my high school buddies. She passed from sleep apnea at far too young an age. Today I've felt lackluster and have had a tough time getting myself motivated to do much. I did get out for a walk (a shorter one than I would normally do on a weekend), and that actually improved my mood a bit. I'm thankful for that.

I know that I need to just do what I need to do to take care of myself and I will find a better mood in a day or two.

Fundraising: Total: $2,440.00
Training: 3.6 miles in 1 hour 20 min
Total miles to date: 119.6

Fundraising: Total: $2,440.00
Training: 6.6 miles in 2 hour 20 min
Total miles to date: 116.0

Friday, March 5, 2010

Life is Fragile (03/05/10)

I found out today that a friend of mine passed away at the beginning of this week. She was my age and I knew her from High School. We'd lost touch over the years and in the last year found each other again on Facebook. It was a joy to catch up with her. I don't have the details on what happened or what she died from yet, but it certainly came as a shock and a blow and I am planning to attend her funeral tomorrow. During my walk today, I spent a good deal of time remembering her, wiping tears away and sending positive thoughts and prayers to her family and friends.

The years that we spent apart did not diminish my love for Angelissa. She had a kind and giving spirit and we both shared a passion for music. I fondly remember listening to her play the piano at school or at my house when we were teens. I remember her singing and her beautiful smile. I know that her spirit is still making music somewhere.

Life is fragile. She died far too young. Give someone you love and care about a big hug, a kind word and a kind deed. We never know how long we have.

Fundraising: Total: $2,440.00
Training: 3.8 miles in 1 hour 30 min
Total miles to date: 109.4

Progress Update

Fundraising: Total: $2,440.00
Training: 0.8 miles on the elliptical in 30 min
Total miles to date: 105.6

Fundraising: Total: $2,440.00
Training: 3.8 miles in 1 hour 30 min
Total miles to date: 104.8

Fundraising: Total: $2,440.00
Training: Cross-training: 1 hour of tap class
Total miles to date: 101.0

Fundraising: Total: $2,440.00
Training: 5.3 miles in 2 hours
Total miles to date: 101.0