"Will you try to change things with the power that you have....the power of a million new ideas" Chicago
Mar 14, 2011 by Bill Dudjoc
Art and I after the Tahoe Ride 2010
Climbing the switchbacks at Emerald Bay at Tahoe 2010
Alfredo and I at the start of the Ragnar relay 2010
Janet and I at the end of the Bloomin' Metric 100 km ride 2010
Janet & her daughter Kim at Light the Nights, Brooklyn Bridge, 2008
Ride for my "Three Amigos" !!!
Apr 24, 2011
"The Year to Step it UP"
Welcome to my Team In Training home page.
A year has come and gone and once again I'm training to participate in Americas Most Beautiful Bike Ride, a 100 mile bicycle ride in Lake Tahoe as a member of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's (LLS) Team In Training. All of us on Team In Training are raising funds to help stop leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma and myeloma from taking more lives. I am completing this event in honor of my "Three Amigos": Janet Malik, my friend and cousin. Art Riihimaki, my friend and team mate. Alfredo Axtmayer, my friend and hero.
It has been a year since I attended my first Team in Training information meeting. Since that time I have cycled over 4,000 miles, ridden in two century rides with Team in Training, found a new family, helped raise over $ 6,000,000 to fight blood cancers, and had my life changed.
I will be riding the 100 miles around Lake Tahoe in honor of three good friends and heroes. This 100 ride can’t even compare to what my friends have gone through
Janet Malik, my dear friend and cousin who through the grace of God and help from the Leukemia Lymphoma Society is still in remission (4 years !!!) from Non Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. There is no one person in this world is more of an inspiration to me and whom I love so dearly.
Art Riihimaki, my friend, mentor, team mate, and hero. Art is a double survivor of Non Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and Leukemia. I have had the honor of riding by his side in two century rides. Art has done century rides, marathons, and triathlons all with Team in Training.
Alfredo Axtmayer, my friend and hero.
In November of 2008 Alfie was diagnosed with Stage IV-B Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. He had a tumor the size of a football in his chest
After completing the first grueling chemotherapy treatment, he thought he was in the clear. But the cancer lingered. Doctors decided to treat the remaining cancer with an even heavier chemo. The cancer remained stubborn. Amazingly, it took a third and fourth even more powerful chemo regimen to bring Alfredo near remission. But he still wasn’t done. Thanks to huge medical advancements in cancer research and treatments made possible by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Alfie was able to get a stem cell transplant. In October of 2009, nearly one full year after diagnosis, he was in complete remission.
In May of 2010 Alfie and 11 friends and family members formed Team Remission and ran in the Ragnar relay from New Haven, CT to Boston, MA. I was honored to be at their send-off in New Haven.
Still wanting to give back more, in November of 2010 Alfie and his friend Manu ran and finished the New York City with Team in Training. 4:11 !!!!
How can you come to know and love people like this and not be changed?
I am a mentor for the Tahoe ride so I will be helping others to fundraise this year. My fundraising minimum is $ 2,925. To quote my friend Alfie "Let's dominate this amount....I will raise $ 10,000"
Every 4 minutes someone new is diagnosed with leukemia/lymphoma, every 10 minutes, someone loses their battle with this disease, nearly 146 people each day. Leukemia causes more deaths than any other cancer among children under the age of 20. These are very sobering statistics.
I know times have been tough for a lot of us. Many of you have been quite generous to this cause since 2006. If you can afford to give, please do. If you can’t, I do understand
Please click on the link and make your tax deductible donation today. For those not comfortable donating on line, make your checks payable to LLS and mail to : Bill Dudjoc
180 Wooster Street, New Britain, CT 06052
Don't forget that many of your employers will match your donations as well
I will be sending out updates on a regular basis…..so stay tuned !!
Bless you all and tailwinds…………………GO TEAM !!!!!!
P.S.: To hit this goal $ 10,000, I have to ask you all a special favor. Please pass this page on to those who you feel can help this cause. This is the only way we can hit this goal.
April 23, 2011
This is quite painful for me to write. I will not be doing Americas Most Beautiful Bike Ride in Lake Tahoe this year with Team in Training.
On April 2nd, our team was doing the dreaded 219 ride, the first major climb of the year. As we started up I noticed the climb was harder than it should have been. I looked at my heart monitor and my heart rate had spiked and then dropped. All the steam left my legs. I had nothing left. Coach Jim and I talked and I was sagged in. I wrote this off on the cold medication I took that morning.
The next week, no medication, a couple of spin classes, and a couple of good hill rides. All seemed fine. On Saturday we started our 50 mile ride in Fairfield. 10 miles into it the palpitations started. At mile 28 I was sagged in again.
So up to date, two EKG’s are normal, all blood work fine, an Echo-Cardiogram yesterday and a stress test scheduled for May 11th.
With all this up in the air and the ride on June 5th, there is no way I could be sure of going to Tahoe and completing the ride.
The good news is once this is fixed, I plan doing the El Tour de Tuscon race in November as a Mentor for Team in Training. All my fund raising will be carried over to that event so you will be getting your moneys worth. I will be posting a new page for Tuscon very soon and sending you all the new link.
Peace and tailwinds,
April 6, 2011
Well we may get a break in the weather this week. 40 to 50's with wind, sleet, and drizzle is not a lot of fun. Last Saturday was the teams first real climb up route 219. Both the upstate and downstate teams were brought together.
The team did great. I would like to say I enjoyed the climb with them but I had to be sagged in at mile 17. A word of advice: A headcold, Dayquil, and climbing do not mix!! I will be making the ride up tomorrow.
It was my honor to to do the Mission Moment before the ride. I was able to remind the team of the LLS mission and honor all of my heroes. To that list I added Dominique Soucy, our honored teammate who was there with us. Dominique is in remission form CML today. She thanked all of us for the help she received from LLS. Without us, her treatment would have cost her family $ 75,000. She refered to us an "Amazing" group of people. I don't think there was a dry eye on the team.....at least mine weren't.
Down to Fairfield this Saturday to maybe a warmer day :-).....GO TEAM !!!!!!
March 2, 2011
I can't give you one good reason for riding 100 miles........but I can give you 26:
Bill Dudjoc Sr.
These are folks I have known in my life who have/had cancer. Most are in remission or cured. A few were not so lucky. You can help change this.
February 22, 2011
"Will you try to change things with the power that you have....the power of a million new ideas" Chicago
23 years ago a group of folks got the idea to run the NYC marathon to raise money to cure blood cancers. They called themselves "The Team in Training". Today that "idea" has raised over one billion dollars to help in the treatment and cure of blood cancers.
I have been lucky enough over the past several years to meet and friend hundreds of people who are changing things: one step at a time, one mile at a time, one day at a time. I have four close friends whose lives have been saved as a direct result of our actions and your generous donations.
A cure is in sight.....Together........"We can make it happen"
Please click on the link and donate today
February 1, 2011
Enough snow Mother Nature !!!
This has been a great winter for the skiers but it is a bit of a challenge to get miles in with five feet of snow on the ground, narrow roads, salt and sand. I had a major overhaul done on my bike last week and she looks beautiful. The only thing I will need to do before Tahoe is a new chain and cassette. It shifts and rides great...........on my trainer in the basement. They are not fun miles but necessary ones when you can't get out. The first outside ride should be March 5th. Yes we will go out in the snow as long as the roads are safe and the teperature is above 28 degrees.
This Saturday is the season kick-off !! There should be about 200+ of us ready to get out and give out all to fight blood cancers. The Tahoe Team is up to 22 riders right now. Our goal is to be over 40 strong and to raise over $ 150,000 for the Connecticut chapter.For that we need your help.
I need about $ 1,500 to be at 50% of my goal by kick-off....I am sure I can count on some of you to get me there. Remember that many of you companies offer matching gifts as well.....my sister-in-law's gives 2:1 !!!
To all of you who have donated "Thank You" . To all who have donated twice, please, do not donate a third time.....You have done enough already:-)
January 8, 2011
How has cancer touched your life?
I was on Facebook the other day and saw someone from high school I had not talked to in years (about 40). Karen “Spero” Albers was a year ahead of me in school. We were never close friends…Just enough to say hi in the hall. The one thing I did remember about her was she always smiled and had such positive energy. I wanted to steal some of that Karma.
I “friended” her, and the next morning there was a donation on my page. My jaw dropped and I started to cry. When I thanked her for her generosity, this was her response:
“Although not directly, leukemia and lymphoma has affected me. My 17 yr old niece was diagnosed with leukemia (CML) when she was 12. She is in remission only because of the drug Sprycel and it scares me. She originally was on Gleevec but then her body built immunity to it. I hit my knees for her every day!
I lost a close friend to leukemia (AML). He was diagnosed on Valentine's day, and died early July. His son was born in Oct.
And my former classmate John McGrane is in remission from NHL.
After reconnecting with you & seeing that inspiring Team Leukemia page of yours, I couldn't resist! You are a noble man, fighting a very noble cause, and you are both a blessing and an inspiration. You exemplify the Quaker spirit and remind me why I value my years at FA and my classmates.
I will continue to promote your link periodically on FB & in messages to friends.
God bless you & your family! And keep in touch!”
I looked back and saw that friends from my high school accounted for more than 34% of my donations. These are folks I have not seen in almost 40 years. I guess I never knew how many friends I had back then,……Thank you Friends Academy.
The point this brought out to me is how many of us affected by cancer? A friend, relative, co-worker, mother, father, niece or nephew. This disease knows no boundaries. It hits us all.
My new family rides, runs, swims, walks, and hikes to find a cure. Many of them are survivors themselves. All looking to get that one step, stroke, stride, or mile closer to a cure. You can help.
Please click on the link and give from the heart.
December 25, 2010
One year ago I was sitting at my computer at 5 AM waiting for Cindy to wake up. Deja-Vu!!! What has happened over the last year?
I find myself out of work, but knowing that things will work out.
My cousin Janet is still in remission :-)
I met and came to love the most most selfless group of people in the world.
I rode over 4,100 miles.
I helped raise over $ 6,000,000 to fight blood cancer.
I found myself crying as I climbed the switchbacks at Emerald Bay as I rode with a woman who's son Tyler was in remission for three months.
I am lucky enough to be married to my best friend for 28 years.
Other than the day I married Cindy, the best day of my life was June 6, 2010 in Stateline, Nevada when I crossed the finish line with my team mates after riding 100 miles.
Tahoe 2011 is only a little over 5 months away. My Christmas wish is to be at 50% of my goal by year end. In a world with so much gone wrong doing something right can feel pretty good.
Merry Christmas to all !!
December 13, 2010
"The road to remission starts with the first step"
I just got off the phone today my cousin Janet. She had just gotten back from the Oncologist. She had a chest X-Ray, not a PET scan. The Dr. said "Stay away from me for a year...." 4 years and still in remission !!!!!!!! I needed a good cry this morning. Thank you for my early Christmas present Janet :-)
This is why we get up at 4 AM to go to the gym, to cycle 20 miles, to go to spin class....to get ready to climb 4,000 feet at high altitide and ride 100 miles....Not because it's fun because what we are doing matters. We are helping to find a cure
I want the day to come where Janet does not have to be a nervous wreck the week before her appointment. I want the words from the Dr. to be "I don't ever want to see you again.... EVER........you are cured !". I want my final ride around Tahoe to be the celebration of a cure.
December 4, 2010
“Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever.” Lance Armstrong
Today is the kick-off meeting for the spring seaon. Over 100 of us will meet in Orange, CT to begin our training for the new year. A year of hope, a year of remissions, a year of cures. This is not about us......it is about our heros, our friends, our family members who still fight cancer everyday.
When I am in the middle of a climb and my heart is pounding through my ears and my legs scream "STOP" this is nothing compared to what my heros have gone through in treatment. Quiting was not in their vocabulary. It can't be in mine either.
December 2, 2010
Great news in the last couple of days. I just found out that my cousin Steve in NJ just signed up to ride in Lake Tahoe with the New Jersey chapter of Team in Training. Also my friend Keith from New Britain. A fantastic way to start off the holiday season.
November 20, 2010
I found out yesterday that I was out of a job along with 27 other people. At least I was in good company. The first thing that popped into my mind was now I have a little time to train and work on my fund raising.
With Thanksgiving a little less than a week away I started to feel grateful: For my friends, for my family, and for my health. That I could train and ride 100 miles at high altitude to help find a cure. That I have close friends who are in remission. That I can help friends who are not in remission.........That I can try and make a difference
That is all any of us can do....Thanks for trying folks :-)