So, in my last post, I mentioned that I was feeling oddly nervous about the Team in Training informational meeting that I had signed up to go to today. Even this morning, I was thinking about whether or not I should go to the meeting. Since Thursday evening, I’d been depressed because of some money woes (I won’t bore you with the details). I wasn’t feeling very good about myself, but I told myself that I would look like a fool in front of all of you who read this blog, after I asked for support and got such amazing comments and encouragement from all of you, and then didn’t go to the meeting.
I decided to boost my spirits by listening to the Biggest Loser Theme Song, Proud. As I mentioned before, there is just something about that song that inspires and motivates me. After I was finished listening, I was pumped and ready to head to the meeting.
As I drove to the meeting, I was still a bit nervous about what it was going to be like. But once I walked in, and everyone was so warm and welcoming, I knew my fears were silly.
The meeting began with a powerpoint presentation about the components of signing up to do an endurance event: training, fundraising, and purpose.
The great thing about signing up to do an event with Team in Training is that they automatically pair you with a group of people who will be training with you. Not only do you get the opportunity to meet a bunch of new friends, but you also get coaches who are there to make sure you achieve your personal best. They set up a schedule for you to follow that is challenging, but completely doable. They ask that you workout 6 days a week. Some days are more strenuous than others, but each day helps you work toward the goal.
Team in Training makes it clear from the start that besides the great thing you’re doing for yourself and your fitness by signing up for an event, you’re also doing it to raise money for research and patient services costs for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. They set you up with a personalized website that allows people to see your progress towards both your fitness and fundraising goals. They also offer lots of suggestions about ways to raise money beyond the obvious email blasts and letter writing campaign. I can’t wait to hear about the ideas they have. (They mentioned that one lady told all of her friends with children that she’d babysit the kids at her house for a night so the moms could have a girls’ night out, all for a simple donation. I loved that idea!)
The main purpose, of course, is to help find a cure for blood cancers of all sorts. When I first decided to go to the info meeting, I hadn’t really thought about the way that blood cancers have affected my life personally. As they were presenting today, I realized that my favorite uncle (who has since passed away due to other causes) was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Disease when he was 19. Thanks to the care he received at Stanford University, he was cured. Another cousin of mine currently has non-Hodgkins lymphoma, and although he’s doing well, his life has changed dramatically since his diagnosis. Even if I didn’t have these two personal connection to this cause, I know that I would feel it was important because of the hundreds of thousands of children and adults who are diagnosed with this disease every year in this country. The numbers are sobering.
So after all of this information, they broke us up into groups, based on the type of endurance events we were interested in. I joined the Walk Group, and found it funny that I was the youngest person in the room by at least 20 years. Which is fine. I know myself, and I am not in any kind of shape to join a Run Group. That will be the next one!
After looking at all of the spring events being offered, I decided on the San Diego Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon happening May 31st, Memorial Day Weekend. If you go to the website, you’ll see that they don’t discuss a half marathon option. Team in Training made a special arrangement with the event planners to allow TNT participants to sign up for the half marathon.
I simply can’t wait! I have a little of 3 months to train to walk in this 13.1 mile walk/race. I have pledged to raise $2900, and I know I can do it. Both my parents ($100) and my sister ($75) have donated. I know that I have tons of friends who would be able to donate something, because even $10 gets me that much closer to my goal. I can’t wait to receive the website so I can start emailing friends, family, and colleagues to get their donations. I hope I have no problem raising donations, but you never know in this economy. I’m hoping people will realize what a great cause this is, and open their hearts and wallets. Shameless request: If any of you are so inclined, please contact me, and I’ll send you the link to my TNT page.
A small portion of the $2900 goes towards my accommodations – airfare to San Diego and a hotel room. The cool thing is, Team in Training handles all of the travel arrangements for me. I haven’t been to San Diego since I was about 8 years old, and I can’t wait to see this gorgeous city again. As I was telling my mom about all of this on the phone today, she said she loves San Diego. I asked her if she and my dad would think about going down to San Diego to cheer my on, and she said they would! How fun will that be?
One of the best parts about all of this is that it’s such a personal challenge for myself. Walking in a race is definitely not my strong suit, so this is going to push me in ways I cannot even imagine. I know my fitness level is going to increase tremendously, and I can’t wait to see how much better I’m going to feel. Not to mention the weight this training schedule is going to help me lose!
The entire experience today lifted my spirits, and I know that I’m about to do something that is going to be a life-changing experience for so many reasons.
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