The Reason I am Doing It.

It was my brother's idea at first, he told me he had looked into doing a sponsored bike ride in England. The idea was to raise money for leukemia research because our mother had been diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia in 2005. Since I enjoy cycling, raising money for leukemia research while bike riding sounded perfect. An evening of "Googling" later, I had found Team In Training, a group that fund-raise with endurance sports for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I initially registered for the 2007 Lake Tahoe event, but had to drop out when it became aparent that Mum was losing her battle with leukemia. This year I am back and intent on raising $5000 for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. The event I am training for is a 100-mile bike ride around Lake Tahoe on June 1st 2008. Because of the altitude (6,225ft.) and the distance, training is important. So, every Saturday for 5 months I will be getting up at 6:00 a.m. to join my team for training rides. There will be a lot of hills to climb!

So when the training gets tough, I look down at the top tube of my bike where I carry 2 names that inspire me to push on. The names are, my Mum – Ruth Davies, and my Aunt Meg, both of whom lost their lives to blood diseases. My Mum, as many of you already know, passed away last year from Leukemia (AML). I thank God for the 14 months of remission she had and the last vacation we spent together in February 2006. At the end of 2006, the leukemia returned and this time there was no stopping it. After wasting away, my mother died in April of 2007. Similarly, my Aunt Meg passed away in February of 1993 after an 11-year battle against Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. What these two women endured is infinitely more than any discomfort I feel during my training.

To make a donation to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, go to: TNT Donate

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Week 5 - March 8, 2008 - Distance 33.22 Miles

Midweek training: I managed to log 35 mins on the trainer on Tuesday and ride to work and back (24 miles) on Thursday, my time was a tad slower than last week though.

Group Ride: The sun is out this week, and sunscreen is the order of the day. We started our ride from the Rosebowl in Pasadena at a later time of 8:30. This was to allow us to ride over to Pasedena Cyclery for a bike maintenance clinic.
I was assigned to a slower group for this short ride and missed riding with the faster guys.

The bike maintenance clinic took longer than anticipated and we didn't leave for our real ride till 11:00. I think a few miles were trimmed from the ride in the interest of getting back sooner, hence why we did less miles this week than last. Jose, my mentor and the leader of the fast group, asks if I like the pace of the slower group. I tell him it is a little slow and would still like to ride with him.

Riding with the faster group again was enjoyable yet it challenges me. All in all, it is a good thing. I find I am slower on the hills than the rest of the group. I am realising that it is not strength that I lack but it seems to be more of a cardiovascular limitation. I must try to work on that especially since the Tahoe ride is at high elevation (less oxygen). However, I seem to catch them up OK on the flat. Our ride is somewhat uneventful, except as a traffic light changed Tim very nearly collided with Becky. She had decided to stop, he had decided he was going through. It was close!

Last weeks nutrition clinic paid off because I had plenty of snacks to sustain me for the ride, especially since we got such a late start.

Fund-raising update: Thanks to all of you who have contributed so far. My progress towards my goal of $5000 is good. There are a substantial number of donations that are being matched by corporations. However, I still have a way to go. Family and friends in England and around the world will be on board this week as my mail went out and my e-mail will go out tomorrow. Thanks again for all your help, we can reach this goal together!

To make a donation to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, or to learn more go to TNT Donate