Thursday, July 30, 2009

cancer angels part 4

I know that cancer angels will continue to cross my path and I will continue to write about them. I will also attempt to recognize all of the cancer angels who have contributed to the Livestrong Challenge ( one way or another in the near future. This one is going to go out to the people who have helped me through all of this, who became priceless in these past few months. I am grateful for each of you being a part of my life, I thank you abundantly from the bottom of my heart! The cancer thing may resurface later on, but I want those of you to know how much I have appreciated each of you!

I am going to start off with recognizing Tammy and her unwavering support. Though we cannot take vows, she has stuck through, for better and for worse. Even hopping on a bike as I rode toward my 45 mile Livestrong Challenge goal and she went to each fundraiser. She has been amazing, knowing when to hold my hand, go roller skating, kick me in the butt, hand me a tissue, take me out for retail therapy and on and on. And probably watched more movies in the first months than she has watched her whole life. I have felt so blessed to have her in my life through all of this, that my appreciation is unmeasurable!

For Jime, Suzie and Steve, through your years of courage and bravery. I knew that through all each of you have been through so many times, that I would be able to make it through this. You have each taken it with stride and moved onward, seemingly to not skip a beat. Each of you are all amazing!

Mom, Dad, Suzie and Sara, who have watched your parents fight cancer. To worry about how your children will respond when they cannot call their grandparents when reports cards come out, for the ballet recital, baseball games or track meets. To worry about their needs before your own in many cases.

Dad, Mom and Suzie who sat with parents as they talked about angels and loved ones coming to visit. Trying to gather up more memories before you cannot anymore and being strong in the face of fear.

For Jessee and the mind distracting games of chess, listening and know when to a hug was in need.

Val, I had no clue about the anger phase! Thank you for listening and for all of the advice and knowledge, even though it hit close to home for you. Not to mention all of the lunches at McAlister's because it was the only thing that was not upsetting my stomach. If you never ate there again I would not blame you.

Jamison and Alexander, two wonderful practitioners that helped my body not crash while I was on an icy slope.

Carolyn, the Amethyst bio-mat felt so good when my head was spinning out of control.

The Reiki Practice crew, Carolyn and Wanda, that really helped to sooth the ache and anxiety.

For the Craven Crew who went to many movies and sat in the back, because they know the front makes me nervous. For the hugs and prayers and always checking in.

Richard, who even in battling your own cancer, asked about my Dad's cancer and checked in on how I am doing.

Lisa, for "Dot" so I can do the Livestrong Challenge on a road bike and for "Tweetzie" when "Dot" (bicycle names) broke her wheel. Because riding kept me sane.

For everyone that we ride with. It has helped putting in the miles so much nicer.

I thank the many others of you for your hugs, support, donations, listening, prayers and so many other ways!!! I cannot begin to express how much this has meant to me. I am hopeful I will not need to call on you for the same reason again, but for now I thank you for all that you have done!!! If you feel left out, it might be that my tears of gratitude clouded my memory, know that you crossed my mind, but not my fingers as I typed.

With love,


I have to say that my life has been all out of sorts for the past several months. I am just now feeling like I am resurfacing, though I thought I was doing pretty good, I can tell now that I have not been myself. It also helps that Tammy and Jessee have both commented that it is nice to have me back.

I have to tell you, my hat goes off to all of the people who have fought and fighting cancer!!
I have to tell you, my hat goes off to all of the people who have had a loved one fight cancer!!
I have to tell you, my hat goes off to all of the people who are caretakers to people with cancer!!
It is ROUGH!!!

I have grown up always knowing cancer in one way or another, since many relatives and friends have lived and died with cancer. When it was my Dad, one of the two people who have been with me my whole life, it was hard to hear. Hard to grasp. Hard all around. Then all of the other stuff in between!

A few weeks ago I wrote a post titled "The Ride", that was pretty much how I have felt. Even after my Dad stated that there were no more tumors, it took a few weeks for it to register. You are kind of on edge, waiting to make sure the information was right, making sure they have the right person, just making sure, because things became so uncertain once you have heard them say, "I've got cancer!".

I am not sure life will ever be the same after all of that. I cannot imagine the struggle people living with cancer have. To know there is this foreign thing in their body, slowly killing them unless they go through treatments that make them feel like they are dieing or pretty darned bad. Cancer almost makes you paranoid and on alert at all times so that you are ready, but you are never ready.

Even with a friend talking me through the phases and warning me that when the anger phase hits it is without warning. I thought, well I am pretty intuitive, I'll be ready. With tears streaming down my face weeks later, no I was not ready. It comes out of no where and not even the warning it was going to happen helped, until afterward. Nothing prepares you for all of the stages of anger, denial, fear, and in some cases loss. It is good to know though, because you know you are not losing your mind and you are not the only one feeling lost in the middle of the woods without a compass.

My biggest advice I have for you, if you or a loved one or a friend is diagnosed with cancer, these are my most valuable tips!
1. Get a support network!!! Do not think you can do this alone!!!
2. Get more support network!!! You still cannot do this alone!!!
3. Believe in something higher than yourself!!! Even if it is that the grass is green and the sky is blue, have some kind of anchor to hold on to.
4. Do not get caught up in the story, because you can get lost.
5. Did I mention a support network?
6. Play! Always make sure you have fun things to do (if you have cancer as you are able). It helps to keep your spirit young and recognize joy in your life, because it does get tough to see.
7. Stay strong! Know you are not alone.
8. Eat well and drink water!
9. Love often!
10. Keep a journal, do not get caught with the same reel rolling through your head, let it go.

Taking a breath!

Monday, July 27, 2009


One of our on going semi-joking (cause there is some truth to it) comments is, "Self perception is everything.". Which is true on so many levels, but in this instance we're going to be talking about bicycling.
Yesterday, we joined another crew to go cycling with. It was nice to see other people and their techniques and riding styles. Then I also realized Tammy and I have not been riding not as fast as we can be and we can do more than we thought.

Here is a funny story:

So we were going to ride to Greenhill Park, for those of you not familiar it is just on the otherside of Salem in Roanoke County. If you'll recall, Tammy and rode our bikes there to the kit festival in April. That is the location of the obsession to sun screen occured. I apply often now! It took us one way 57 minutes and some change, the return trip was rough. We were dehydrated from the sun burn and lack of water consumption and that was a long ride for us then. :o)

Fast foreward three months, it took us 36 minutes and some change to get there and we were able to keep on riding. We did what our "New Riding Crew" called; "The Extendo"! It sounded serious, with such a name. Haha! We started out with what we thought was going to be an easy out and back 22ish miles, turned into a 32ish mile adventure. If we did not have other obligations we would have kept going.

So here is the perception part. Casey, Tammy & I shared with one another how certain rides use to be a big deal. Then we talked about, how now, we glide past that previous goals and keep going.

Years ago, Tammy and I got all kinds of excited, high-fives and all when we rode 12 miles one morning. We thought we had gone a long way and we celebrated too! It was a long way then. Now it is funny how our perception has changed, at 12 miles, we are practically warming up now. Tammy is great, she has those great long distance muscles and she is trimming up quite well, so even at 30 miles, she's just getting ready to go. I remember watching her zig-zag up what we now call a slight incline.

Last evening we were so proud of our accomplishment and chattered on about the ride with Jessee (from our regular crew), we took her out to show her the route. We talked about the new people, what we talked about and the experience of being shoved out of our comfort zone. For example, my legs stopped moving on one hill, they literally would not push or pull any further. I uncipped and had to walk, because I was afraid I would topple over without any forward movement. I hopped back on and we continued, that felt good.

So perception is everything and forever changing. Don't get caught in the story or get caught in your comfort zone. You might just see what you're made of and I am here to tell you, it feels darn good!

Look forward to seeng you out there!

What are you made of?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

ending cancer

The Livestrong Challenge ride is on August, Saturday will mark the 30 day point. I am excited. I would really like to have a Livestrong Challenge weekend here in Roanoke, VA. It is a big deal! Cancer is a big deal to me, it has greatly impacted my life on many levels.

I hope that you do not wait until you have a loved one in your life fighting cancer to make changes in your own life or to donate or begin the ending of cancer. To me ending cancer is important, make that VERY important. It is horrible and I hope that you are never to experience such a horrible disease directly in your life or even close to it. I am doing everything I can to end cancer in and surrounding my life. I do not want any more of my loved ones deciding what to do with their life, now that they have a cancer diagnosis.

If you do not want to support The Lance Armstrong Foundation( then look for other organizations who are working to end the affects and effects cancer has on our lives as a whole. Keep reading on another organization.

Every 13 minutes a woman dies of breast cancer and 1 in 8 of all women will get cancer in their life time. Those odds, are not ones I want to waiger my life on.

Learn More about your risks!

You can learn more about genetic testing and your hereditary risks to breast and ovarian cancer on Thursday, August 6, 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. at Women's Health University, yes guys you can attend, but you seem to be out numbered so that you know ahead of time. Cause guys you are at risk too for breast cancer! It is brought to you by Carilion Clinic (, with speaker Kara Bui, M.S., CGC, the cost is only $15 and they feed you. Call Carilion Direct to register or for more information, 540-266-6000 or 1800-422-8482.

THEN YOU CAN SIGN UP FOR A Susan G. Komen For The Cure race April 10, 2010. You have plenty of time to get in shape and be able to participate. Get a pink team together and train together! Here is a link for more informaion Yes I have already contacted them, so I will be there and look forward to seeing you, however you choose to participate. Please take time to make a difference and end cancer in all our lives!


Throwing in the Towel

"Energy and persistance conquer all things."
~Benjamin Franklin

Have you ever wanted something and did not seem to be reaching your goal fast enough? Or encounter a road block so tough you almost sabotaged your end result?

I have and did this past week. Many spiritual scholars state that only through suffering are we truely able to reach enlightenment, Nirvana, true forgiveness in God's eyes and so on. Whatever belief you follow you know what the term or phrase is, this isn't a spiritual discussion. It is though "More Than A Ride". I cannot say one way or the other for sure, but I know the past several weeks and the most recent days has brought me to a new place, within myself.

To say the least. This past Friday I decided I was not gettng back on a bicycle. Ever! Plagued by a reoccuring/constant injury (the exact reason is speculated, but unknown). The injury was affecting my personal and professional life and was a constant hurt. I reached a point of frustration that I for whatever reason was unable to shake. I think for most of us we do not have iron clad determination (and well darned goo VO2Max) like Lance Armstrong, but we have exactly what we need when we need it.

I even went through all the reasons to keep going and nothing would move the feeling of defeat along. I was preparing my bike to sell and wrapping up all loose ends for the Livestrong Challenge. I just did not feel I had what it took to keep going. I even thought about the people fighting cancer. I wondered if they ever reach the same point of frustration. Of not understanding why the equation is not changing.

Tammy kept saying she wasn't accepting my decision, because "you're not a quitter", she would say. I was quitting, cause I'm not a quitter. Like many of us when we reach our limit, we begin to go back through all the times we did not achieve what we had hoped. I felt like "the fat kid on the playground" (no offense to any fat kids on he playground-keep playing by the way), the kid so uncoordnated and unable to do what the other kids are doing and get hurt, because their body is not as flexible or fast. Kids hurt usually bad enough to need a bag of ice or a trip to the school nurse. I know this, cause I was that kid struggling to make it and "hang" with the rest of the crowd. So Friday I had finally (or so I thought) reached my limit and tearfully gave up.

The tears should have told me I still believed in myself. It was a series of events that pushed me out of the hole I dug. Here is what I did, if you should ever reach a point of giving up on yourself.

1. Tell a friend you trust and had confided in your goals.
2. If you already do not have one seek out a support group. Riding (or walking or running or whatever, fill in blank) with a group helps to hold you accountable.
3. Believe in yourself. You're worth it. Even if you do not believe it right at this moment or any point in the future, remember that I believe in you right now.
4. Stop looking at your goal. Don't lose sight of it, but don't focus on it. Life is nothing but a journey to help us to grow. It is not about where we are going, but where we are right now. Enjoy, what you have, not what you don't have.
5. Keep a journal of what you are doing. You will find that you are doing better than you originally thought, once you reflect back.

I am lucky. I had Tammy who refused to allow me to give in. Jesse who kept asking if was riding and kept checking in. Joyce who reminded me, that I was not hurting ayone else, but myself. And Me because through riding I have begun to love myself and appreciate what I have been able to achieve, in many ways. I am not the first one up the mountians or hills, I have trouble sustaining a fast speeds, my endurance is not with everyone else I ride with, but I realize where I am right now is where I need to be.

Just have to keep going and keep turning the pedals, because accepting defeat is more memorable than working through the struggle. Don't give up, you're worth it!

Keep on turning,

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Saddle wisdom Part 3

"The sound of a car door opening in front of you is similar to the sound of a gun being cocked."
~Amy Webster

The quote is oh so true! Think about it, a lot of our riding is on streets with on street parking. We may now notice everything out there, but we try to keep our eyes on the road all the time.

This being said, it is hard to avoid broken glass, pot holes, lose gravel and whatevr else there might be on the road. So if you can, could you maybe peak before you fling open your door? We very much appreciate it.

The car door flying open is a common object of injury to a cyclist. Think about it, you have no extra protection around you and your being thrown at whatever speed of travel into an unmovable object.


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

why I bike

I wrote this for the Roanoke Outside Blog I hope that you take a minute to write your own story!

Why I bike…
By Rhonda Chattin

Why I bike is part obvious and part spiritual. The obvious part is that I started training for a 45 mile Livetrong Callenge to be held in Philadelphia in August. Though I have been on a bike off and on for most of my life, the true love for the bicycle did not really fully return until half way through training for the Livestrong Challenge. I realized once the regular riding began that one of the best ways to improve my odds against a cancer diagnosis is by staying on the bike on a very regular basis. But it became more and the experiences grew.

Bicycling became an addiction one Saturday a weeks after successfully climbing Mill Mountain all the way to the star for the first time, when our crew ventured out on the Parkway for a cruise. It was a tough trek traveling to the Parkway from our Old South West home by bicycle. After 50 minutes mostly up hill, we were there. Let me put it this way, it was a well earned coast once we turned left onto the Parkway! While on that ride the freedom of a child on two rubber tires returned. Even with a helmet on my head, I felt the air rushing past my face, through my hair (what little that stuck out of my helmet), and blowing my jersey. I wanted to throw my hands out and shout look “no hands!”, but traveling at that speed I refrained.

Though in that moment, you cannot help but shout out a woo-hoooooooo, as you glide down the Parkway with all of nature surrounding you. Not trapped inside a steel petrol propelled vehicle, you are immersed as in a pool of scenery. You are using your own body as fuel and moving yourself forward feeling as free as a bird.

The sounds all around you, mixed in with your on breath, absorbing all the sounds of life. There is so much to experience while on a bicycle, that you do not in a car. The rustling of the leaves and trees, birds off in the distance or the hollow woodpecker making a new home. You get up close and personal sightings of owls, chipmunks, bunnies, snakes, deer, squirrels, turkeys and so much more if you are paying attention. You make friends and achieve things you never thought you would or could. The bicycle is not only a piece of machinery that moves you from one point to another it is a source of great experience.

Why I ride is simple, it is all captured in those silent moments when you really know you are alive and grateful for what you are able to get out and do. In those moments when no cars are zipping by and nobody is saying a word and you are there almost paused in time, with the rays of light peaking through the trees that God breezes a whisper in your ear…

just do it

After the concluding statement of the last blog post titled "4 hours, 27 minutes & 12 seconds", I wanted to share this new commercial. If you did not read it, then hop back and read it. It's a care and share personal story from our first ride in 2003! :o)

New Nike commercial. Though it is so much more. Why not do it? You know if it is in reason. See how you can change your life, how you think, how you react, how you live toward others and how you can just do it!!!

Nike says it best...

Just do it!


We had the last of our fundraisers for the 2009, Philly Livestrong Challenge. I would like to thank Haverty's Valley View, Tammy, Val, Darla, Jessee, Sidney and Lindsey for all of your fabulous help!!! Could not have done any part of it without you! Though we got rained out, we were able to raise $50. I am still raisng money by selling the yellow Livestrong wristbands and on the fundraising webpage and still accepting any other donations though not in a formal fundraiser.

All donations are not showing on the tally board yet, but our total is just over $1000. Way to go and thank you for your contribution(s)!!! I am not going to hold any more fundraisers, instead our focus is on us being able to pay for our trip up there and back. I would like to thank all contributions all ready made and those that are yet to come. All the donations are greatly appreciated!!! Please go check out the "Honor Roll" on the right hand side, many people have honored their loved ones.

Interesting thing at the car wash, there were a lot of survivors that wanted their car washed and were excited to say how long they had been since their battle. I was able to pause and listen to a few. Many others walked past with statements like: "to busy", "not enough time", "in a hurry" or just a polite "no thanks"-without eye contact. I thanked them, knowing life gets crazy sometimes, and hoped they were never touched by cancer. Though, I do not know how, with 28 million people affected with it globally!

In 2010, cancer will globally be the leading cause of death!!! Although something like 40% of all cancers are treatable, not everyone responds to treatment as favorably as others. While many forms of cancer are preventable with diet and exercise.

Take a second to look at and learn more about cancer, the treatments and how you can prevent them. Or talk to your family physician (PCP), if you do not have one, find one. Getting regular check-ups helps to keep your PCP to know what is going on with you and recognize when things are not working as they were before. In Roanoke, you can call Carilion Direct at 540-266-6000 and find a physician.

Know your risks, know your body and know how to prevent cancer in your life!

Let's change the odds!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

4 hours 27 minutes & 12 seconds

4:27:12 is how long it took us to ride 53.69 miles today. We picked up Casey & Jessee and headed out for an adventure. Paused for lunch, cause it was lunch time and we were hungry. Tammy, Jesse and I dropped Casey off at 42.75 miles and we rode onward. Jessee was dropped off at 50 miles. With the distance to and from home, Tammy and I were able to ride further than we've ever been able to safely ride on our bicycles. To say we are proud of ourselves is an understatement. Well right now we're a little more tired with our proud though.

Today we were able to ride our bikes a long distance, with a respectable average speed of 12 mph. However this has not always been the case and if you think you cannot go out and ride, read on, but see your physician first. :o)

On a sunny, June Sunday morning in 2003 Tammy & I woke up, with the hair-brained idea to purchase a bicycle. We went to the only place open to purchase our bikes, CMT Sporting Goods (which has since closed). We hopped on and tried out a few different bikes, opting for a mountain bike, because we were quite chunky (me = close to 300 pounds) and thought those sinny road tires would in no way be able to support our weight.

We bought spiffy red and white Specialized Hotrock's, one red helmet (Tammy) and one black helmet (me). We squeezed them into the back of our Toyota Celica, cause appareantly we had not thought far enough to think about bringing them home.

Once home we re-attached the tire and headed out for our first spin! :o) We live in Old South West so we were able to connect quickly to the beginnings of what is now a wonderful greenway system (the same one we went 53.69 miles on today).

Tammy started shouting to stop, less than half a mile into the ride at the first low water bridge, then there was a myserious problem with her bike before the second bridge, we walked up the hill at the end, just before turning left onto Wiley. Where we went to the bleachers to rest. This is 2 hours into it and no water cages (an oversight on our part and lost sales on their part.) so we found a water fountain.

After we rested a few, we headed back out. This is when Tammy turned really red and we discovered she does not like it when my inner cheerleader/coach comes out to help. We have another name for it, you'll have to ask next time you see me, it would take this blog out of the PG rating. We got off on (what is now) a slight incline, but seemed like a hill then, so we could walk up. Then a slight down hill and walking over the Walnut street bridge and a downhill, with some flat and another walking section. You get the point? We arrived home over four hours later, guzzled a lot of water and hopped in the car. We had to go drive the distance cause well an odometer did not exist then either.

Thinking we had gone at least ten miles, we were disappointed to find out it was four and some change. Though we did not stop! We invested in some gel seat covers, cause we were thinking bicycle shorts did not come in a size that would stretch across a VW Bug. We later found out they do. So we got a couple a pair, Tammy's a size smaller than me of course, these crazy hips of mine. We also strapped an old military canteen on, so we could take water and took frequent stop breaks.

We kept at it and every day we would go out on what became our "Regular Ride". By the end of the summer it was under an hour, now we can ride it in approximately 15 minutes. It is a fun memory to have.

I think about those days whenever we ride past someone, visibly struggling. I want to encourage them and offer any suggestions, but concerned they would not receive it as it would be intended. I do mention as we pass "have a nice ride", so that we do not just glide by. We had all sorts of people fly past us in those days, leaving us panting in their dust.

It is tough to keep going out there when it is that much of a struggle and I am glad we did. My tips for you if you want to give it a go are as follows. After talking to your physician, find a friend that will ride with you. Set out and see what you can comfortably do and it is ok to walk the hills. Or even zig-zag up hills, that takes away some steepness. Do what you can and ride that as often as you can to build up your strength, then try another ride, sightly longer (that's another funny story right there) and do that on a day you can take the next day off. Ask and read whenever possible, there are tons of books, magazines and people out there to get advice from.

Be like Nike and "Just Do It"!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Car Wash!

July 11
11 - 3
Haverty's Valley View
$3 per car
$1 per bicycle

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Ride

by Rhonda Chattin

I gotta tell you about this ride. Consider this a heads up, but I don't think it is one you can ever fully prepare for.

It starts off with an unforgettable descent, so fast that things blur by unfocused. You see nothing more than streams of color, no images register. You are denying that you even got on in the first place.

Then you realize more than ever before you have to keep flexible, cause now you're on these immediate turns. They are so fast, quick and blinding you have no clue what your going to be up against around each corner. You make one turn and you're almost certain you've some how turned around as it feels as though you are traversing the same terrain you just crossed. You start to want to shout for help, while looking ahead, hoping to find forgiveness in your path.

All of your senses are on alert, you start an ascent that is ruthless. This all just when your blood is coursing through your veins and you don't think you have any more to give. You know without a doubt, this climb will either make you or break you. Water is streaming down your face by now. This climb is steep, tough, hidden turns, and is vein popping and lung expanding. You're already on it and you feel there is no turning back.

You've made it this far. Right?

Followed up with some more unexpected twists and turns, just to see what you're made of. Keeping you on your toes, your reflexes already dulled, you're exhausted, breathe heavy and realizing you've got to be ready for anything now.

Then it all changes, you spin along this section of rolling ups and downs. At this point wondering if there is an end in sight, you hurt like you've never hurt before. You feel or know some how by now you really don't reach the end of this ride.

It is a ride that stays with you, you become a part of it. Or does it become a part of you? So that you know, if you should ever cross the path of this ride, it is called, "sweetie, I've got cancer...".

Sunday, July 5, 2009

youth cancer

The Lance Armstrong Foundation even reaches out to the youth living with cancer.

This is more of why I picked the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Because everyone is affected by cancer. With 1 in 3 people being diagnosed with cancer, we are all affected by cancer. Right now look at the people around you; Can you figure out which one is going to be the one with a cancer diagnosis? Nope, because cancer knows no boundries, it can attack anyone at any time in their life. We have all the power to stop cancer, to help those with cancer and to eliminate the word cancer from our vocabulary.

Donate today:
or join us at the car wash! July 11, 11-3 at Haverty's Valley View.

Change the odds!

Why The Lance Armstrong Foundation?

I know I have mentioned this before, but want to mention it again.

I have been asked by many people why I picked the Lance Armstrong Foundation ( or, because of the services they offer and their visibility and well, read on. This is why:

The Manifesto of the Lance Armstrong Foundation

We believe in life.
Your life.
We believe in living every minute of it with every ounce of your being.
And that you must not let cancer take control of it.
We believe in energy: channeled and fierce.
We believe in focus: getting smart and living strong.
Unity is strength. Knowledge is power. Attitude is everything.
This is the Lance Armstrong Foundation.

We kick in the moment you’re diagnosed.
We help you accept the tears. Acknowledge the rage.
We believe in your right to live without pain.
We believe in information. Not pity.
And in straight, open talk about cancer.
With husbands, wives and partners. With kids, friends and neighbors. And the people you live with, work with, cry and laugh with.
This is no time to pull punches.
You’re in the fight of your life.

We’re about the hard stuff.
Like finding the nerve to ask for a second opinion.
And a third, or a fourth, if that’s what it takes.
We’re about getting smart about clinical trials.
And if it comes to it, being in control of how your life ends.
It’s your life. You will have it your way.

We’re about the practical stuff.
Planning for surviving. Banking your sperm. Preserving your fertility. Organizing your finances. Dealing with hospitals, specialists, insurance companies and employers.
It’s knowing your rights.
It’s your life.
Take no prisoners.

We’re about the fight.
We’re your champion on Capitol Hill. Your advocate with the healthcare system. Your sponsor in the research labs.
And we know the fight never ends.
Cancer may leave your body, but it never leaves your life.
This is the Lance Armstrong Foundation.
Founded and inspired by one of the toughest cancer survivors on the planet.


Thank you for donating!

Changing the world one revolution at a time!

never give up

Life is short when we are looking down the barrel of a gun or at the end of an IV tube.
Life is short when we are laying in the hospital fighting for our life.
Life is short when we are looking at the face of a loved one in a fight for their life.
Life is short when we are looking at dreams that are not fulfilled.

In short we think we have all the time in the world, we can do it tomorrow, we can take care of it later or just wait until we have to. We have to make the best out of our life, because it is short. Though sadly many of us have to have a serious illness, have a loved one diagnosed with a serious illness or have to put our affairs in order long before we think we should.

Why wait? Why give up on yourself? Why?

Car Wash - Wash Away Cancer
July 11, 11-3
Haverty's Valley View Mall

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The governor

Today I had a unique experience on multiple levels. Some of the experiences more experienced cyclist might take for granted, others are more unique.

Today I was able to participate in a ride with the VA Governor (picture on the blog homepage). I went up to talk with him, told him I am doing a 45 Mile Livestrong Challenge in Philladelphia in August and I started a blog. I would appreciate it if he would pose for a picture with me so I can post it. I was excited to see he had on a LIVESTRONG wristband. :o) He was not there to talk about cancer research or other cancer funding, but was there to talk about the Greenway systems and developing old rails into trails ( It was a very nice experience and learned a lot. Keep reading for the rest. Thank you Governor Kaine for the pause for a picture with me, I appreciate your time.

Now to the other stuff I learned. Starting out with a group of cyclists is an exciting thing. One you have to really be on your brakes and ready for anything. There was something I had never heard in such volume and it is a really neat sound, though I am sure more experienced cyclists may not feel the same. Seeing as how I am pretty new to the clipless peddle thing and mostly new to serious cycling. I was more of a "weekend warrior" before. The sound of everyone clipping in as we took off, was a neat sound that I wish I would have recorded to post on the blog.

I was able to meet several different people. Pam who rode a fixed gear 1953 Schwinn (Hokie colors and with a bobble Hokie bird-ready for tailgating) who has spoke of many friends with breast cancer. I also spoke with Sue who helped with my photo op, I returned the favor. Sue and I talked about our riding experiences, she's done a few tri's (I still want to really bad), and rides with some of the local groups. So I was able to learn about some of the local group rides. It is important to learn how to ride in packs. I talked with a few other people. One lady wants to start a 3/4 club, then tickled herself when she said that it was for those 3/4 of the way through a century. It was a fun experience to meet all the different types of riders and learn why they ride. They in turn heard about my quest to help end cancer.

Overall it was a very neat experience, I feel honored to have participated with the group and to have learned what I did. Most of all, on our bicycles we were one, a rainbow of colors and on all sorts of bikes, clicking along with a unique experience to ride with our Commonwealths Governor.

Clicking along,