A few months back, Dudley and I entered the lottery for the New York Marathon. Knowing that this is the hardest marathon (other than Boston) to gain access to, I didn't have a lot of hope that we would get in - especially after both of us got into the Peachtree Road Race, the Chicago Marathon and the Marine Corps Marathon last year. The chances of us getting into NYC this year had to be pretty slim. And they were. For me.
I was excited on lottery day at first because I could tell that one of us had made it into the race. The big clue? Our bank account had been charged a registration fee...but just one. The question remained as to who because neither Dudley or I had received any official notification from the actual race yet. Then about mid-day, I remembered that I could log into the NYC marathon website and check my race status. And, as you should have already guessed, Dudley got the golden ticket.
However, I was not deterred in any way about not getting in. I had already decided that if this happened, I would try for a charity bib into the race. I ran as a charity bib as part of Team in Training for the Leukemia & Lymphoma society a few years ago at the Nike Women's Half Marathon in DC, and it's been one of the highlights of my running career. I had no hesitation in signing up and running for LLS again.
Why LLS? Because cancer sucks. I have had friends and family lose children, parents, spouses and other family members to leukemia and lymphoma. We all have. And it sucks. My mother currently struggles with a blood disorder that is in the leukemia family and takes daily medication to fight it. Since I'm not a doctor or researcher who knows how to find a cure for these diseases, the best I can do is raise money to help fund those doctors and researchers who DO know how.
What's also wonderful about the LLS is that the research they do for leukemia and lymphoma benefits patients suffering from other kinds of cancer. In fact, and this comes directly from the LLS website, "nearly half of all cancer drugs newly approved by the FDA since 2000 were first developed for blood cancer patients." Y'all - in the past two weeks, I've lost a friend to colon cancer and another one announced a diagnosis of neck cancer. My own father was diagnosed with prostate cancer last year (he is doing well currently). All three of those types of cancers, among with many others, have benefitted from the work of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
So, over the next few weeks, I'll be bugging all of you to help me raise money for Team in Training as I train for the New York Marathon. I've committed to raising $3,500, but I'd like to hit $5,000. Go big or go home, right? Please know that none of my funds raised will go to my travel or hotel. I'm funding that on my own. My fundraising allows me to run the race - that's it. I would really appreciate your support. Please click here to donate: