Friday, March 18, 2011

It's Supposed to Be Hard

"It's supposed to be hard.
If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it.
The hard... is what makes it great."

I am inspired by this quote. (IMDB tells me it is a quote from A League of Their Own.) It is something I found on the cover of the 60-mile men's Underground Guide to Breast Cancer Walks. If you've thought about walking, I highly recommend this guide. It is incredibly entertaining -- I laughed out loud reading parts of it -- and it has a ton of useful information in it.

I came across it because I was looking the guide up to send to my newest team mate! Today I am very excited to welcome a High School friend of mine, Nancy, onto my team for this year's walk.

I remember when I was thinking about doing this walk for the first time last year. The $2,300 fundraising requirement was my biggest obstacle to signing up. In talking with my friend, Andy, who had done the walk the previous year, she said, "If the thought of raising that much money is the only thing stopping you, you should definitely sign up." The fundraising is doable. The fundraising is more than doable. My friends and family were so generous that I never really had to worry about the fundraising. In fact, they donated enough that I almost could have done two walks last year.

Not everyone has it easy as I did with fundraising. Some people really struggle to raise the money. Some people wait until the last minute to try to raise it. But they get creative and they do it. Or they pay part of it themselves. Because this is important.

Some people struggle more with the walking. It's hard to find the time to do the training walks. It's hard to find the right terrain to prepare you for what the route will actually be like (unless you happen to live near the route, which I don't). Injuries can happen. Life can get in the way. But we train. We find the time to get the gear that works for us. We figure out what problems we will have when walking. And when the time comes, we walk as much of the 60-miles as we possibly can.

Nothing about this is easy. It is an event that is supposed to be daunting when you are thinking about doing it. But it's nothing like what those who face breast cancer and their families and friends go through. It is a way that those of us who feel helpless in the face of this disease can say, I'm not just going to sit by and do nothing. This event is big and bold and amazing and scary and ... well, hard.

Fundraising: $120; Total: $620

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Why am I Walking?

I will be walking another 60 miles this year!

Why am I walking? And why in the world would I walk 60 miles in just 3 days?

*Because my mom is a breast cancer survivor and I cannot begin to express how much it means to me that she beat this disease and is still with us to enjoy her grandkids.

*Because 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer in their lifetime.
*Because every 69 seconds, someone, somewhere in the world, dies of breast cancer.
*Because the two biggest predictors of whether a particular person will get breast cancer are being female and aging.
*Because men do get breast cancer too!
*Because I want to spare the families and friends of all those women and men the tough road of having a loved one with breast cancer.
*Because my mom is more likely to face breast cancer again because she has already had it.
*Because my own risk of getting breast cancer is greater because my mom has had it.

*Because I want to live in a world where my daughter and my son do not have to worry about getting breast cancer or watching people they love struggle with breast cancer.

But I cannot get there, I cannot walk, and we cannot find a cure for this disease without your help.

Please take a moment today to donate to my walk, to help find a cure and to save lives.

Do it now, while you're thinking about it!

Thank you! Your support is greatly appreciated!
Margie Dowens
You can donate by going to and clicking on the bright pink "Donate to Margie in 2011" button on the left side of the screen and donate using a credit or debit card.

If you prefer to write a check you can download my donation form and the instructions for sending in a check at

Fundraising: $145 Total: $500

Training: 5.9 miles in 2 hours 1 minute
Total miles walked this year: 47.2

Monday, March 7, 2011

An Out of the Ordinary "Training Walk"

So I'm happy to report that except for the waking up at 5 am part of yesterday, my participation in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, Los Angeles was a fun way to spend my Sunday morning. They told us there were over 8,000 walkers/runners there that day and that they expected that the event had raised over $1 million for the L.A. affiliate. Most of those funds stay right here in Los Angeles.

It was one of the fastest 3 miles I've walked in a while, and it felt good. It's nice to have a change of pace for my training walk! I want to get my more regular walking routine back in place and I'm almost ready to dive headlong into fundraising again. I hope the beginning of your year is going smoothly and I hope you will consider supporting my walk this year!

Training: 3.1 miles in 50 minutes at the L.A. Komen Race for the Cure
Total miles walked this year: 49.9

Training: 5.5 miles in 1 hour 42 minutes
Total miles walked this year: 46.8

Training: 5.2 miles in 1 hour 40 minutes
Total miles walked this year: 41.3