Tag Archives: connecticut

The Fight is Far From Over

5 Dec

Last week the Governor announced that they would be burying a a 375th anniversary time capsule filled with items that tell the story of Hartford and Connecticut in 2010. Among the items is a 2010 Race for the Cure t-shirt and the question, “Have you found a cure for cancer yet?” for those who unearth it at the 400th anniversary. Who doesn’t want to see the cure found within their lifetime? At 25 years old, there’s a good chance it could happen during mine.

But then, sometimes something happens and I take a step back and wonder exactly how far we’ve come. A few weeks ago I was working the Komen table at a school fair where teachers were coming to get their flu shot and could also pick up information for teacher credit unions and that sort of thing. All afternoon I chatted with people and heard their personal stories of breast cancer in their family and sympathized over the loss of a loved one or celebrated a survival. Not many men stopped by the table, but there also weren’t many men attending the fair. Towards the end of the day, two men wandered in and stopped at a couple of tables and then stopped in front of mine. One of them started picking up a brochure while saying “For my wife…” somewhat sheepishly. I quietly directed him to the pamphlet entitled “Men Can Get Breast Cancer Too” and reminded him (or so I thought I was doing) that he should pick it up for himself, since men can also get breast cancer. He paused, looking confused, and said, “Really? I didn’t know men could get breast cancer.” This is something I have to constantly remind myself is not common knowledge. For so many years breast cancer was considered a woman’s cancer, why would this man have any reason to think otherwise if breast cancer had never touched his life before? So while I was happy to have given him that knowledge, and hopefully he took that home and remembered it, I have to remember that there are so many people out there, women and men, who haven’t been educated on the facts of breast cancer.

So our work is far from over. That shouldn’t surprise anyone, and yet sometimes I have to remind myself of it. The energy at a 3-Day Closing Ceremony when they tell us we’ve raised $5.5 million sometimes makes me feel as though we must be so close. And maybe we are. But we can’t stop pushing and walking and fund raising and educating with 110% of what we have until the cures are found.

Join Team Twitter ATL in October 2011 for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure!

Donate to my 2011 Atlanta 3-Day walk.

First Race in Vibrams… Check

5 Jun

Today was the 2010 Komen Connecticut Race for the Cure. I’ve been looking forward to it for pretty much an entire year, since last year’s race. I volunteered for my first Race in 2009 and was hooked. This year I ran in the 5k which was great; allowed me to combine a new favorite thing of mine (running) with a favorite, favorite thing of mine (Komen). Not only was this race awesome because it was a Komen race, but because it was my first race in my Vibrams! I’ve had them for about a month and have been taking short runs and longer walks in them but today was my first actual race. So here’s how it went: I ran the first mile in 8 minutes, that’s a record for me in a huge way. I’m usually a 10 minute miler and was shocked to cross mile 1 at 8 minutes. I’ve thought about it and decided there are probably a couple of reasons that I ran it so quickly; probably didn’t hurt that I started at the front of the pack rather than at the back of it like usual, and I also just think it felt good to run in the Vibrams! I felt lighter and more balanced. After mile one, however, there was a hill. My calves were already burning from my new running style and the hill didn’t help much with that. The last two miles were pretty painful in the really good, burning, sore, muscle building kind of way. And other than my calves, everything else felt great. My feet didn’t hurt (though that might change tomorrow) and my knees didn’t hurt at all, which I was waiting for the whole time, especially on the downhill. I’m excited to continue my running and my 3-day training in the Vibrams.

I got a lot of questions and comments about my Vibrams from people who had seen them before and wanted to know what they were like. I did see two other Vibram runners after the race and stopped to chat with them about their experiences and see if they had any tips. I was told that to help build up calf strength to do some short sprints interspersed with longer runs, and that seems to make sense.

So overall it was a really good run! It didn’t hurt to have the amazing energy from the other runners and the spectators. We were all there for an amazing cause and that kind of good energy helps to push you along. There were 2117 runners and I came in 1491 with a time of 36:46.

Komen Connecticut is still fund raising to reach their 2010 Race for the Cure goal, please feel free to donate to this amazing cause!

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!

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!

Nutmeggers for Komen

16 Apr

Hey all you Connecticutians! …Connecticutites?! …Connecticuters!!? NUTMEGGERS!

I’ve formed a team for the 2010 Race for the Cure in Bushnell Park on June 5th and I want YOU to be on it! All you have to do is go here and sign up! I’d love to have you all join and support Komen Connecticut in it’s fight against breast cancer. We can do a team fundraiser if people are interested and make/buy t-shirts to show our support for Komen!75% of everything we raise will stay right here in Connecticut to help those who are being tested or treated for breast cancer. IMPACT your community! Join a team!

If you’ve never participated in a Race for the Cure or a Komen event before, this is the perfect time for you to start! I’m happy to help you fund raise or answer any questions you have. Join the team and get involved!

Welcome back sun!

18 Mar

It’s been such beautiful weather out for the past couple of days I thought TODAY would be the perfect day to get started on training for the 3-day (and the 9k I’m running in May) so I went for a run after work. It was freeing and wonderful and painful! It felt great to be out there again but I know I’m a long way away from the shape I was in pre-winter. Having been born in Florida, I’ve always hated winter and craved the sun and warm weather. Yes Mom, I know that I only lived in Florida for 6 months and no, I don’t remember living there at all BUT that stuff sticks with you, right? It’s in my blood. The infant me came out of the hospital into the sunlight and said ahhhh.

But anyway, so training has officially begun. The goal is to run or walk at least 3 times a week for the next month or two, then kick it up a few notches after the 9k at the end of May before the 3-day in July. I’m a little nervous of walking 60 miles in Boston (not so many trees) in late July. Someone remind me to pack a gallon of sunscreen! I got a decent sunburn at the walk last year in DC… and that was in October, and one of the days it was rainy.

I’m looking forward to training walks in Bristol. Moving there in a couple of weeks into a nice neighborhood and will be able to take walks with Paul (boyfriend) and Lily (adorable dog). It will be fun to explore a new place and not have to stop every block for the WALK signal to change 🙂

Fingers crossed the sun hangs out for a while!