Archive | May, 2010

Race for the Cure 2010!

29 May

Only 1 week away from the 17th Annual Komen Connecticut Race for the Cure! Last year I volunteered for Race Day and it was an unbelievable experience. I can’t wait for next Saturday and to be sharing photos on Facebook and tweeting for Komen from the event! I’ll also be running the 5k (my first barefoot race!!) so I apologize in advance for the blurry photos I’ll be posting and the mis-spelled tweets!

Check out this awesome video made by my friend Helder from Rabbit Ears Media. The pictures are from the 2009 Race for the Cure and the song is “Pink Warrior” by Candy Coburn.

WalkCT

25 May

I was at my local library today  and I saw this little flier for something called WalkCT. Has anyone heard of this before? It’s an organization started by the CT Forest & Park Association and the website is all about finding parks and walking trails in Connecticut. Super cool! They do all sorts of stuff with guided activities and family outings, you should check them out if you live in Connecticut! They’re also on Facebook.

Connecticut has such a variety of parks and places to check out for training. Sometimes walking in the same neighborhoods and on pavement can be a little boring. Plus, with my new Vibrams that I’ve been training in, I want to take them for a spin on something other than flat road!

A beautiful place to walk if you’re in the Hartford area is Cedar Hill Cemetery. You’ll see them come up a lot on the WalkCT website because they hold a ton of walking events where they tell you the history of some of the famous Connecticut residents that are buried there including Samuel Colt, Isabella Beecher Hooker, Joseph Twichell (Mark Twain’s best friend) and Katharine Hepburn. If you’ve never been, you should definitely check it out.

What are your favorite trails in Connecticut? And no, the Wine Trail doesn’t count unless you’re walking it!

The First Walk!

20 May

Paul and I took our dog Lily (over there on the right, isn’t she pretty?) for a walk tonight, like we always do, but this time I went in my Vibram Five Fingers. I’ve ben slowly testing them out this week so tonight was my first substantial walk in them. We walked just under a mile and my feet felt great during! There were some places on my feet I could feel twinging a little bit as they were getting used to not having any support so I made sure to stretch them out when I got home. I’m preparing for them to ache a bit tomorrow, but excited to build up the muscles!

I can honestly say that walking in the Five Fingers makes me a feel a little lighter… no more heavy pounding of the sneakers. I felt it the most as we were walking down this steep little hill near our house. Usually I have to take my time and go slow because I’ll feel a little pain in my knee walking downhill (if it’s a big hill I have to walk backwards!) but this time there was nothing! No pain and I could walk normally the whole way down without a problem.

So my goal for the next few weeks is to be walking and doing some very, very light jogging in them. Hopefully by mid-June I’ll try jogging a mile or so and see how it feels!

My other goal is to make sure I’m posting on Daily Mile! I always forget to post when I get home but it’s such an easy way to keep track of my training. Is anyone else on Daily Mile? If so, let’s be friends!

Impact Connecticut!

19 May

Sometimes I forget that Susan G. Komen for the Cure started with one woman. That fact is always in my head, somewhere, but sometimes when I’m watching commercials for Komen or hearing something on the radio, I forget. And then I get in a room with the Komen Connecticut staff, and like tonight, in a room with the Team Captains for the 2010 Race for the Cure and I remember that Susan G. Komen for the Cure was started by one woman. With all of them women (and men) in the room it reminds you that it started with just one. But it’s when that one woman connects with another, and those two connect with others that it starts to grow and that a one-woman organization can grow to become the largest grassroots organization in the country. Komen for the Cure is now a GLOBAL organization.

We have about 30 of our Team Captains in the room tonight and they represent the 273 teams we currently have signed up for this year’s Race for the Cure. Judy Caturano, the Team Captain Chair shared with us that those 273 have raised over $117,000 of the current $177,000 raised so far for this year’s race. How amazing is that?! One person can start a team, and that team can go on to raise $10,000 or more. We’re just one little state and yet for this cause we can come together and raise money to support their fellow CT residents. 75% of all money raised at the Race for the Cure will STAY IN CONNECTICUT and help CT residents pay for mammograms, treatment and support. The other 25% will go to research to find the cure for breast cancer.

A huge THANK YOU to everyone who is participating in this year’s Race for the Cure! If you’ve never been, it’s an absolutely amazing day in Bushnell Park in Hartford and the energy is unbelievable. People are excited to be there; honoring someone or remembering someone. People are happy, and sad. Laughing and crying. It’s really amazing. If you’d like to register, go to the Komen Connecticut website! And if you’d like to join a team, feel free to join mine! I’ll be walking around all day Facebooking and Tweeting  for KomenCT and running the 5k race! Join my team, Nutmeggers for Komen!

A story from tonight’s Team Captains Reception: One of the walkers, Patty Fox of TEAM PATTY was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 38. THIRTY. EIGHT. With the new “guidelines” out there that say screening should start at age 50, I say NO WAY. Susan G. Komen for the Cure says you should get your baseline mammogram at age 35 and start getting yearly at age 40. Anyway, so Patty went to her doctor and was diagnosed with melanoma on her arm. At some point she or they found a lump in her breast and she went for a mammogram. Because she’s young, her mammogram came up clean. Her doctor told her she shouldn’t worry because of her age and that it was most likely benign. But they went ahead and got the ultrasound and there they found something. Still, her doctor said she was most likely fine, it would be benign. When she went further, she found she had Stage 2 Invasive Ductal Carcinoma. She went through aggressive chemo and radiation and is currently is post-treatment. She still doesn’t call herself a survivor, not yet.

Stories like hers, when you see breast cancer affecting a real person with a family and a life, and it makes you want to get involved. Get involved! Impact your community!

Love at First Sight

18 May

I’ve owned a pair of Vibram Five Fingers for one day and I’m already in love! I’m taking the advice that I’ve gotten so far and taking it slowly… when I got home yesterday I went for a short walk, only a few hundred feet and an even shorter jog. It felt great! As I was driving home from the store I was thinking about how they would change my running style. I’ve just finished BORN TO RUN and he talks a lot about what the proper way to run is. Short strides, knees bent, straight back, and how you should land on the pads of your feet rather than the heel. I’ve always run like I walk – heel, toe, heel, toe. So I wondered how I would figure out how to run properly. I thought maybe I’d go on YouTube, see if I could find any videos that would show me how. But first, I’d try it out and just see what happened. As soon as I started jogging in my normal way, heel-toe, I immediately realized that that wasn’t comfortable and popped right up onto the pads of my feet. It was amazing, like I’d been doing it for years.

I’m excited to train with them, and to build up my foot strength. I know I need to take the time to build slowly so I don’t strain myself and hurt my feet. Derek from the Trailblazer store in New Haven was extremely helpful in giving tips for breaking into them and was really excited when I told him that I planned to train for the 3-day barefoot! He encouraged me to buy SuperFeet as well so I can work on walking and running properly so I can be a normal pronator.

I have until July to train so I think I should be ready for 60 miles in my Vibrams by then! But for now, I’m going to go jog a few hundred feet, and then walk  back. Slow and steady!

An update with pictures! John wanted to know what the Vibram Five Fingers looked like on the bottom so I took a few pictures.

Here are the bottom of the Vibrams. It’s a rubber skin, and like I was telling John in the comments below… it allows me to go over gravel and rocks without feeling the sharp edges but being able to feel each rock.

Here’s a side picture, they’re pretty thin and mold to my feet really well.

And then with the toes, the rubber comes up and around the toes so as you run the tips of my toes won’t chafe.

Going the 3-day barefoot?

16 May

Let me start off by saying that I don’t know if the 3-day would allow anyone to walk barefoot. I’m going to venture a guess and say no; I’m sure it’s in the handbook somewhere. But what about walking with barefoot shoes? Barefoot shoes are just lightweight covers for your foot, so your foot can still feel the ground beneath you but you’re mildly protected from the elements. I’ve gotten really interested in the barefoot idea recently for both running and walking.

Ever since last year’s 3-day I’ve had some knee problems that spark up after walking a few miles or running any distance. I became interested in barefoot running when I heard that it actually helps to realign your body properly and may help with knee problems. I’ve read that when running with shoes on your body actually absorbs about four times the amount of shock as you would running barefoot.

But then it got me thinking… if my knee problems started because of the 3-day last year… would walking barefoot help this year? I think I would at least be inclined to try it and see what happens. I’ll be picking up a pair of barefoot shoes in the next couple of weeks, particularly the Vibram Five Fingers and I’m excited to see what happens over the next few months.

Are there any other barefooters out there?

To read more on barefoot running and walking, visit the Born to Run official site, the Barefoot Walking Lifestyle blog, and this article called “10 Things I Learned from Barefoot Ted”.

Susan G. Komen for the Cure as a Brand

10 May

If you’re like me, you’re more apt to buy a product if a portion of the proceeds benefits Komen. I know that if I’m looking for tissues, and I see the Komen logo on the box, I’m going to buy that box of Tissues. It doesn’t matter what brand it is or if they’re not the softest, I’m buying them. I laughed at myself the other day as I was in the store in the toilet paper aisle and I was looking for the brand I always buy, but was sidetracked when I saw Komen. I immediately dropped any idea that I would buy any other brand and picked up the one that benefits Komen. Now, I know this about myself, but I hadn’t really admitted to myself that I do this. So I had to laugh as grabbed the toilet paper of the shelf, feeling good about myself for buying it for Komen. If Komen started producing their own products rather than working with existing products, you know my house would be filled with Komen everything.

Does this happen to anyone else? I mean, I’ve bought flashlights, hair ties, pens, pencils, notebooks, paper, binders, Sharpies… all because of Komen. I’m not the only one, right?