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My first virtual race director experience

Short version: I loved it!

I «directed» my first virtual race in April – This Chick Loves To Run (for a cure) – to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
With the support of all participants we raised over $1,000 for LLS! In my books that’s pretty awesome.

My goals were:

  • To raise funds for LLS
  • To create a supportive community via Facebook and G+
  • To ensure all participants enjoy the experience
  • To have an awesome medal for all runners

I won’t lie. It was hard work. I was trying to create inspiring posts in the communities most days, reading every post, responding to every post.
But I also don’t lie when I say it was one of the most rewarding months I had this year!

I loved the creative process of coming up with a medal design with my friend Arek. I loved it when participants posted in the communities. I loved it when people told me how much they liked the medal.

I don’t know if everyone who participated had a great experience or loved the medal, but I do hope so. And the feedback that I have received was as overwhelmingly positive.

Thank you all, who joined in to make this such a rewarding experience for me and for the cause!
You made this experience ridiculously amazing for me!!

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The medals are in!

I am sooo excited!!
The medals for my virtual race – This Chick Loves To Run – arrived today!

The UPS guy knocked on my door. I saw the box. I picked it up. I waited.
I was scared! Very scared!
I looked at the closed box for an hour. In my mind I was playing over and over again the question “What if the medal is horrible?”

Well, I shouldn’t have doubted the ability of my friend Arek who designed the medal and Crown for executing the order perfectly!

The medal is adorable!
I know I am biased, but this is the cutest medal ever!

See for yourself:

This is the front:

And this is the back:

So, if you haven’t yet signed up, but want one of these, you can still sign up:
This Chick Loves To Run Virtual Race

All profits go to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society!

Happy running!

 

 

(original post: http://www.noheelsjustsneakers.com/2014/04/the-medals-are-in.html)


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I run!

Someone declared that today is National Running Day. Somehow this is the first I ever heard of it, but, hey, I’ll jump on this wagon anytime.

It’s easy to declare my passion for running.

I run…

… to cure cancer!

i-run-for-cancerI have been running for many years (even though I don’t feel like it after I broke my foot in January, but foot is healing) and also for many years I have been with Team in Training raising funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma . Recently I lost another friend to cancer and I do what I can do best: I run to raise funds to cure cancer again. I am raising $2500 for LLS and will be running (or maybe just walking depends on what foot says) the NIKE Women’s Half Marathon in San Francisco in October.

Yes, I run!


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Pink Elephant on Parade Virtual 5k

My friend Liz organized a virtual 5k as part of her fundraising for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. It was called “Pink Elephant on Parade“. I thought that was a cool name and deserved that I brought something pink with me on this 5k.

IMG_0075I am still not able to run (due to broken foot in January), but I am able to walk, so off I went last Saturday with my pink bottle of water in sunny California.

This is the path that I took for my 5k. I actually ended up walking 4.4 miles, which is the longest walk since I broke my foot. I enjoyed being out and moving about. It was – of course – a sunny California day and I realized this was my first ‘race’ in my new home State.

So I looked out for all signs Californian: palm trees, mountains, sun, wildflowers. Even the new 49er stadium was on my route. Walking is actually great fun. I was able to see much more than when I am running. I am going to look into some fun walks to do until I can run properly again.


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One mile at a time…

I am back!

It’s been a great trip to California with lots of mixed emotions. And I can’t do all my emotions and adventures justice in one post, so I am going to post about all my adventures in chunks over the next few days.

Let me start today with why I went to San Diego.

Cancer is so limited…

I have been running with Team in Training for over 4 years and participated in 5 seasons as a fundraiser. This year I raised over $2,500. The reason why I come back year after year – even now that my team is in Texas and I am in London – is the people who are Team in Training and the cause.

When I started my first season with Team in Training in 2009, I didn’t know anybody who was affected by leukemia or lymphoma. But I was captivated by the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society whose mission is to cure cancer and improve the lives of patients and their families. 75% of their funds go to patient care and research. That’s a lot more than many charities do.

Over the past few years, I have gotten to know that many of my friends were affected directly and indirectly by leukemia and lymphoma and other cancers. So, there is no reason to stop fundraising now.

My jersey on San Diego showed 13 names.

Ruben – we were Team Ruben. Ruben passed away last fall. He was a dear friend of my Team in Training coach, Stephanie. Stephanie created Team Ruben to honor her friend and raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in his name. Our team raised close to $200,000 and LLS is naming a grant in honor of Ruben.

Jay – a friend and fellow Team in Training buddy, who was just diagnosed with lung cancer.

Rachel – a fellow Team in Training buddy, who was a member of our 2010 San Diego team and who has just learned about the relapse of her leukemia.

Peggy – a friend and Team in Training buddy, who is a breast cancer survivor.

Lisa – a friend, who is a breast cancer survivor.

Derek – a friend and Team in Training buddy, who is a lymphoma survivor.

Denis – my friend Chantal’s dad, who is fighting cancer.

Pierre – my friend Annabelle’s dad, who passed away this March fighting leukemia.

Antoine – a 7-year old boy, friends with Annabelle’s family, who passed away earlier this year fighting blood cancer.

Normand – my friend Alexandra’s dad, who passed away 3 years ago.

Darron – a friend, who passed away last summer fighting a brain tumor.

Andrea – my high school friend, a cancer survivor.

Julie – Sandi’s (flamidwyfe) friend, who passed away 7 years ago fighting CML.

I missed a few names on my jersey, but I will tell you about these awesome people as well.

Rose – fellow blogger happyhippierose, who is a lymphoma survivor.

Jackie – Peggy’s sister, who is a fighter. She was diagnosed with CML 7 years ago and with breast cancer 4 years ago. She keeps fighting and is an inspiration to all of us.

Cariann – a fellow Team in Training member. Cariann was part of our 2010 San Diego season. She was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer at the beginning of last year. The cancer was diagnosed late and the aggressive treatment was affecting her. Peggy and my friend Rob kept in touch with her when she moved back to San Diego to be with her family during her treatment. They invited Cariann to our Team in Training inspiration dinner in San Diego this past weekend. Cariann joined us and was thrilled to be there and share the evening with us. Very sad news reached me though on Friday as Cariann lost her fight against cancer and passed away.

There are many other people who deserve to be mentioned and I am sorry that I am missing some. Cancer is a horrible disease and we need to keep searching for a cure!

I will be back fundraising next year to honor survivors and to run in memory of those who lost the fight. We need to find a cure for cancer.

One mile at a time.


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Today is Jay's Day!

Our teammate and former coach, Jay Taylor, is beginning the next phase of his journey to full recovery today at MD Anderson in Houston, TX. He was recently diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.

 I have known Jay for over 4 years and he has been a running buddy for my very first half marathon and a few subsequent races. We most recently ran a race together in Anchorage, Alaska, last summer. He has been relentlessly running and fundraising for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society for many years.

I’m donating $10 in his honor to LLS through my fundraising page.

http://pages.teamintraining.org/sctx/rnr12/tkudla

Will you please join me?


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In need of miracles

This week is not only a week of smiles.

Last week, a friend of mine was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. I have known him for over 4 years and he has been a running buddy for my very first half marathon and a few subsequent races. He has been relentlessly running and fundraising for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society for many years and we are Team in Training buddies. We were supposed to meet up in San Diego. His name will be on my San Diego jersey. He will find out about his treatment options at MD Anderson in Houston hopefully this week.

Today, I received news that another Team in Training teammate has been diagnosed with a relapse of her leukemia. When I met her and her mother in 2010, she just finished her treatment and was in remission. They both ran the San Diego Half Marathon with our team that year. She graduated from High School in 2010 ans started university that same fall. She is now waiting for a bone marrow transplant but hasn’t found a match yet.

So, as you all go out running today and this weekend, please send a few prayers or thoughts to all those suffering from cancer and other ailments and in need of miracles.

Quietly running today.