Sunday, February 14, 2010

First Team Training

Yesterday was our first training run/walk of the season. After running in 14 degree weather, San Diego sure sounds wonderful! Although it was cold, it was very exciting to get out with the Team again and meet some of out other teammates. Kristen from the LLS office said this is the largest team she has trained with yet- GO TEAM!

All three of us successfully made it around Lake Calhoun, which is 3 miles. Not bad for our first outing of the season! I am feeling it in my legs a little today, but I can't wait to get out running again.

I had a chance to talk to my mentor and another teammate after the run, both of whom have some very personal stories with cancer. My mentor, Bonnie, is the mother of one of our honored teammates, Brenden. Brenden is 6 years old and was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in October 2006. This young boy's story is truly an inspiration. He had his last spinal tap in December, and he is scheduled to take his last chemo pill this month! Brenden likes to play outside with his trucks and four-wheelers and ride his bike. He likes to go swimming and fishing, and he is also a Cub Scout. Thanks to much research funded by LLS, Brenden is still able to enjoy these activities and just be a kid.

I had a very nice conversation with a teammate named Heidi. We had met briefly last year when I ran with the duathlon team one week with my friend, Mindy, and Heidi's husband was also on the Twin Cities Marathon team with me. We chatted a bit about our past events, and then she asked me how I got involved with TNT. I told her about our Andy's Angels team in memory of my grandpa, and then asked her how she got involved. A few years ago, she herself had cancer. Her husband saw an info sheet at the hospital for TNT and decided to join. Since then, he has participated in seven TNT events, and Heidi decided to join as well a couple years ago. She now works for LLS, and she is cancer-free!

The more time I spend with TNT, the more people I meet who have been so closely affected by cancer. It is so wonderful to hear success stories like Brenden and Heidi, but there are still so many cancer patients who are not this fortunate. All of these stories give me so much more motivation to keep running and raising funds to fight these cancers and improve the quality of life for those who have to experience them. I am so proud and honored to be a part of a team that is "saving lives, one mile at a time"!


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