Sunday, May 19, 2013

First Training

Because I was in North Carolina last weekend, I missed our first team training get-together.  So yesterday was my first training with the new group.  I'll start out as a walker and see if I can run later, based on progress with my sore knee.  But I have to give it some thought, because if I do switch to "runwalker" mode, I'll be by myself, as everyone else there seems to either be a runner or a walker.

The team is smaller than I hoped for.  I thought with Ed Stone's passing, we would have a couple dozen out just to do the Crawlin' Crab in his memory.  But I think only 5-6 of us are signed up for that event.  The biggest group is for the Richmond Marathon / Half Marathon, which would have a lower fundraising minimum because it is a local event.  Fundraising has been really tough for people in the last few years.  First, there is the economy, and second, TNT as the pioneer of fundraising for endurance events is no longer alone by any means.  I think people get besieged with requests for donations and donations as a whole are down.

One of the people on my team is Nancy.  She did Team in Training three years ago, and I was her mentor.  She has CLL (chronic lymphocytic leukemia) and was diagnosed 3.5 years ago.  Her counts are going up, and she has enlarged lymph nodes all over, but they are not treating her yet.  That will come in time, but treatments for CLL are not very good.  It is a very hard disease to cure.  That is one reason I keep doing this - so someday, people like this young woman can get a reliable and safe cure for cancers that are virtually incurable right now.  I admire her grit, to be out there training to walk a half marathon as someone who has cancer right now.

It rained pretty steadily for the first part of training, and I didn't bother with photos.  At the end, wearing only shorts and a tee for protection, I was soaked and chilled.  But we only walked 4 miles, since we are just starting out.  And at the end, even though cold, I stayed and did my stretching!  I was the last to leave by a long shot because of that.  And since I had not taken photos, I decided to take a photo of Christopher Columbus, who watches over the park where we start our training from.  Note the purple and green at the base of his statue.  You can see that Chris is a Team in Training fan, just as is God!

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