Saturday, November 28, 2009

10K With the Spring Team

I am not training for an event with the Spring Team (yet), but had an opportunity this morning to put out a water stop, do a mission moment, and train with the team. They were doing 3, 4, and 6 miles, and I decided to try for six miles - 6.5 actually. I probably should have stuck with 4, since I have not done more than 5 miles since doing the Country Music Half Marathon seven months ago. And I have trained very little during those seven months.

But I did the six mile route, running mostly with Nicki and Mindi. Nicki is a seasoned TNT veteran, and will be running the Mardi Gras Marathon in New Orleans on the weekend that is the 13th anniversary of the bone marrow transplant that saved her life. Mindi is new to TNT, and to long distance running. She ran her first half marathon a couple of weeks ago in Richmond, and will also be running the marathon in New Orleans in February. Mindi's pink hair stands out, and I told her that she should switch to purple for the season, or better yet, half of her head purple and the other half green. She did not seem convinced.

It felt good to run. I ran at least 4, maybe even 5, of the 6.5 miles. I know it was a little too much, because I don't think I've run more than 2 miles at any given workout since my race. So I might be sore tomorrow. But for now, I am just glad that I still have enough of a level of fitness to go that far, mostly running. That represents about a quarter of a marathon. Back at the park, Nicki, Mindi, and I exchanged high-fives with the three coaches that waited for us. Everyone else, save for one really fast coach who was long gone, did 3 or 4 miles - so they were long gone, too.

In my mission moment, I talked about surviving cancer seven years ago, and some of the ephiphanies I experienced during treatment. One of these was the realization on my first day of chemo that as I walked into this pretty full oncology room, feeling kind of scared, that this was one oncology room in one city on one day. Imagine how many people all over the world were doing the same thing. Another ephiphany was how difficult some people had it. I talked to a woman that first day who was in her 80's and she was on her 12th year of dealing with non-Hodgkin lymphoma. That is a long time to deal with cancer, and she told me how tired she was of it.

Another ephiphany occurred on my last day of chemo, the 25th of November, 2002. The man next to me nearly died from a very small amount of a new chemo they tried on him, since the previous treatments were not working. He passed out and 4 nurses and a doctor worked on him and brought him back. They told him and his daughter that this treatment would not work, and that they were out of realistic options. How difficult would that be to hear, just a few days before Thanksgiving, or any time for that matter? It brought home how difficult some cancers still are to treat, and it tells me now that this is why those of us doing Team in Training must keep on doing it.

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