Friday, May 30, 2008

Running/Training Update

Many of you have asked how my running and training is working out so I thought I'd write a brief update.

My hip feels a lot better although it's not totally pain free. I don't know that the pain will completely heal until I turn in my running shoes, and since I'm not quite ready to do that, I have to deal with a little inconvenience.

Here's what I'm doing to manage the issue:

1) I got a new pair of running shoes. To my dismay, the Nike shoe that houses the Nike Plus gadget didn't work well with my foot-type (did you know that you have a foot-type?), so I am in another pair of Saucony's. They seem to work well with my foot and they feel great.

2) I went to the Physical Therapist 4 times and he taught me some pilates exercises to strengthen my hip and my core. He also did something called phonophoresis. Basically they apply a topical medicinal cream and use an ultrasound machine to push it into my muscle.

3) I started using my Mannatech supplements much more rigorously--specifically using the product FIRM. It is a cream that is used topically. I have been massaging that into my sore hip.

4) Before I run, I use IB relief cream on my hip. It gives me a "shot" of ibuprofen locally to the sore spot. This has alleviated a lot of the pain I feel while running.

5) Team in Training has proved very helpful in training for this marathon! I learned some great stretches for my hip, and with their encouragement, they are helping me keep my spirits up and confident that I can complete this race! They have also taught me the importance of high turn-over. This strategy teaches you to run with quick steps vs. a long stride. This is very helpful when you have a sore hip.

So I am well on my way! I look forward to running everyday. When I see other people running around town I always want to be running as well. I guess that's good since I will be logging some serious mileage between now and October 19!

I am running a 10K on June 7 here in Wheaton. I think that will be a fun run! I am also considering running the Chicago Distance Classic Half Marathon in August as part of my training. But, since I am running for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, another race means more funds to raise. The money raised goes to a great cause and is tax-deductible, so if you haven't already made a contribution to my running efforts, please take a moment to do so! Look on the sidebar to the right for a link to my donation page.

Thanks so much for your support!

Box Tops for Education

I have taken on the role as the Coordinator for the collection of Box Tops at the kid's school. It will be my job to make the school aware of the program, encourage participation, collect the box tops that get turned in to the school and turn them into General Mills.

I would like to ask for your help! If you are not currently saving your Box Tops, would you consider saving them and sending them to me every few months? Each coupon is worth $.10 and this adds up to thousands of dollars each school year! You can go to the Box Tops for Education website to view a list of participating products. Lots of packaging now has the box top symbol--they aren't just on box tops anymore! Also, while on the website, you can sign up for an email newsletter which will give you additional opportunities to earn box tops! Our school is Wheaton Christian Grammar School in Wheaton, Illinois.

Thanks for your help! I KNOW we will be able to exceed our goals with your participation!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Sister's Weekend!

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I have 4 sisters--all different and unique and yet the same in many ways--Andrea, who lives in Dallas but will be moving to Houston this summer, Amber who lives in Dallas, Janda, who lives in The Dalles, Oregon, and Autumn who lives in L.A. Because we are spread all over the country, we don't get to spend much time together. We hatched a plan to meet up somewhere for a weekend and landed in San Diego! We had a great time!

The most important thing that we accomplished was re-connecting and spending time together. This was done mostly lying by the pool, but we did do a little shopping, a lot of eating, and Janda encouraged us all to go to Balboa Park--San Diego's art district. We wandered around the beautiful gardens and soaked up the sunshine.

It was a wonderful, relaxing, fun weekend, and I couldn't have asked for better company! I hope this becomes an annual event. What a joy to have FOUR sisters!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

I'm Running a Marathon!

I'm going to do it. I'm going to run a marathon. But it's not all about me. It's about raising funds to help stop leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma and myeloma from taking more lives. You see, my sister's boyfriend, Ryan (click on his name to read his story), was diagnosed in January with Hodgkin's lymphoma. I've been toying with running a marathon, and when I found out that I could raise money for cancer research and support Ryan at the same time, well, it pushed me off the fence!

And to make this endeavor even SWEETER, I will have the privilege of RUNNING FOR RYAN with two of my sisters, Janda and Autumn! Janda lives in Oregon, and Autumn lives in California, and here I am in Illinois! You may wonder how we are going to train and run together? Well, TNT makes it easy! They help us train, raise funds, and give us the encouragement that it will take to help us to complete our race! I figure that the pain I will experience from logging hundreds of miles it won't even come close to what Ryan has endured these past few months! And I can't wait to grow closer and experience this with my sisters!

We will run the Nike Women's Marathon in San Francisco on October 19, 2008! Between the three of us, we need to raise close to $15,000! We need YOUR help to reach this goal! Please click on the links below to make a TAX DEDUCTIBLE donation to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in support of TEAM RHEA to help fund the research that will ultimately lead to a cure! Thanks so much, and make sure to check back often to track our progress! (And pray my hip agrees with all the running!)

GO TEAM RHEA!!!!!!!!!

Make a Donation to TEAM RHEA for Jennifer

Make a Donation to TEAM RHEA for Autumn

Make a Donation to TEAM RHEA for Janda