Fundraising for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

Jun 07, 2012 by Gary Moad

That word aptly describes the wild ride I’d promised Gabe. 100 miles through the mountains of two states; completed in...wait for it...SIX HOURS! Our pace-line of five riders completed the first fifty miles in 2:20:00. Our time to the 70 mile mark; 3:30:00. The remaining time was spent painfully cranking up the slope of Spooner Peak at a wicked pace of 8mph. We finished the race in the fastest 10% of the field of 3,500 total riders (top 350).

In other outstanding news, our cycling team was 17 people strong. We raised a total of $70,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. More than 1,300 riders from across the nation were there in support of LLS, collectively raising $5 MILLION!!!

The weekend was fully awesome!

But this is not the end for me as I’ve been asked to become a cycling coach for the Team - sweet! I’ll be training future riders to complete centuries all over the country. This will keep me involved with the cause between times I’m participating (which is to say raising funds to help cure cancer).

I hope you’ll consider taking on cancer, mano a mano, by joining up to participate in this outstanding program. You won’t regret it.

Storms will rage...
May 18, 2012 by Gary Moad

This past weekend was absolutely awesome.

We rode 70 miles in Naperville. On the way to the start I passed through an hour long torrential downpour. That amount of time is more than enough to fully contemplate a start in weather that would make riding, feel like swimming. Fortunately I emerged from my car into warmish, overcast conditions.

There were announcements and then first pace-line hit the road, which were still wet from the passing rain. So much so that the rear wheels of the forward riders were spewing enough water into one’s face that it was possible to hydrate without actually removing one’s bottle from it’s cage. Possible, but very nasty. I don’t recommend actually drinking nasty wheel water : ) Regardless, the standing joke was the forward rider calling back to the ranks, “Have a drink!" followed by barely audible, though unmistakable, good natured snickering.

Jokes, muddy water, and road grit aside, the ride was spectacular. The first pace-line had many strong riders who were pummeled by increasing winds. By the last 15 miles, it slowed everyone to a humble pace of 12mph (down from 20-24mph). One doesn’t get better (or faster) in the absence of a little suffering.

The wind didn’t faze us too much - Camaraderie; explicit, or unspoken, is a good energy source. First pace-line finished the entire 70 miles in 4 hours 20 minutes of ride time. Sweet!

We now turn our sights to our last training ride. A distance of 80 miles, in the Barrington Wind-hill Fields. Fall Team will be riding with us for a bit. The anticipation of a 30 rider strong peloton is nearly unbearable.

Burr Ridge; Anatomy of a Training Ride...
May 06, 2012 by Gary Moad

If you've ever wondered what a TNT training ride is like, I assure you it's not a bunch of haughty athletes showing up at the start, competitively ribbing each other, hitting the road and challenging each other to avoid being dropped, one by one, until a single rider remains to cross the finish. No, while we are athletes, we're decidedly not haughty.

Anyway, a typical ride begins with pre-ride announcements about the route, safety reminders, and training tips. Time is planned at pre-ride announcements for Team member's to share their connection to the Cause. These are often happy and uplifting stories.

Today's was solemn. A family, who many on the Team personally know, lost their mother to cancer this past week. We could only stand in silence as an open letter from the young daughter, to her mother, was read aloud.

All of the self-inflicted pain (in the form of leg-burn) from our entire team can't supplant the ache of that kind of loss. But it can help prevent such loss by raising funds for research to make cancer treatments better. That’s why I do this, that’s why we do this.

We're a ragtag fleet of cyclists, no?

Training to be the motor of one’s vehicle is a challenge - sometimes it hurts, often it doesn't. Over these distances, for these durations, cycling is an allegory for the struggle of life. The odd thing is that the training (with all of it’s challenges) isn’t the hardest part. That would be convincing friends, family, and strangers to actually contribute to the cause. I’m in no way bitter about this. I’m merely conveying some of the challenges of this “game”. I see this challenge simply as “another hill to crest”, or “two more hours riding into the wind”.

See that “funds thermometer” to the right? I’m two-thirds of the way to the goal. Two-thirds! Help me reach my goal. Help the Team reach it’s goal. Help those afflicted with cancer beat the disease. Please pledge your support and “DONATE NOW”.

Three hours in. Three, wind and hill filled, 16 mile loops down. One to go. Yes, I’m still smiling. Of course this image was taken before I ran over the only staple on the whole road, which flattened my tire - that’s some precision riding right there :)

Incidentally, I was still smiling even after changing the flat tire “in the field”. Either my enjoyment of my own suffering knows no bounds, or i’m unfazed by flat tires.

If you ask me...
Apr 30, 2012 by Gary Moad

I’d say that once afflicted with cancer, always afflicted. Ok, not entirely accurate, but the sentiment rings true - cancer changes you, and those changes are permanent. Having battled cancer and survived, I find myself adopting behaviors that promote wellness and survival. Such instincts are “strong” in me - as they are in most individuals.

Often, once my affliction is discovered either through conversation, or an outright statement made by me, many questions are loosed by the un-afflicted. People are curious after all:

Q: How did you find out?

A: I had a visible lump that didn’t go away in a reasonable amount of time.

Q: Were you surprised when you were diagnosed?

A: No, by that time I knew the diagnosis would not be favorable - one can sense bad things in one’s body.

Q: How did you do it, “beat” the disease?

A: Various proportions of suffering, life-style changes, survival instinct, skepticism, philosophical outlook, will, family support, and technology.

Every survivor’s “formula” is different. Except when it comes to technology, in the form of treatments. In my mind, technology should not be the deciding factor for who survives cancer, and who does not.

Had I been afflicted just five years prior to when I was, my spleen would likely be gone, I would've been irradiated enough to be a hazard to infants (and myself as radiation can cause other forms of cancer), and I would've had a 75% probability of survival. Ten years prior and survivability would've been a mere 60-65%. Today, with current treatments, survivability of these types of cancer is 80%.

That 80% is a result of research that’s made possible by the efforts, and generous contributions of people like you and me.Here's where your contribution goes.

A little effort means a lot. A little effort does a lot.

The Barrington Wind-Hill Fields...
Apr 12, 2012 by Gary Moad

Last weeks outdoor ride was awesome! Sunny and mild - an excellent combo for cycling.

Add to the weather, the slight breeze and the awesome hills and you've got a recipe for an outstanding workout that's an excellent simulation of the conditions at Tahoe. Of course Tahoe will be at altitude so the air will be thin (which is difficult to simulate at the elevation that I train at).

Endurance cycling is all about managing exertion versus time in the saddle. This last ride was 45 miles which I completed in just over three hours. Certainly on track to hit my goal of a six hour finish on race day, but not strictly fast enough. What better way to decrease my margin than riding EXTRA MILES - YEAH!

After the 45 miles, I joined one of the coaches for the "sweep" - where we ride the course backwards to catch any slower riders, just to turn around and ride with them back to the finish. In the case of this ride, we rode 10 miles before we caught the riders resulting in 20 additional miles - Sweet! When all was said and done; 65 total miles, over the same hills and through increasing winds, four times.

Fundraising has picked up a bit. I'm hoping for the same performance from that. Technology and money should not determine who survives, and who does not. Spread the word to your friends, and point them to this URL. Every bit helps.

Thank you!

Older posts

Supporter Comments

    "Gary, my mother, Eleanor Buxenbaum was a victim of CMMl. Thank you for including her name on your list when you ride. And thank you for riding! Go, go, go! -- Sally "

    Sally Draht

    Sat Mar 10 03:15:21 EST 2012

My Fundraising Total

Raised: $2,955.00 | Goal: $4,000.00
74 %

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In Memory of

Gabriel Fox Donovan

My Thanks To

Gary Moad $500.00
Roger & Glenda $250.00
Brent Harris $100.00
Juan D. Tellez $100.00
Carli Kane $100.00
Jacquelyn Krones $100.00
Deborah Englade $100.00
Dominic Carbonari $100.00
john burcher $100.00
Natalie Massaro $100.00
Daniel Massaro $100.00
Robert Lewis $100.00
Dan Sumita $50.00
James Barrios $50.00
Sally Draht $50.00
Cyrus Sadigh $50.00
Patty Moad $50.00
Lawrence Pittman $50.00
Neil Thomas $40.00
Melissa Sheahan $35.00
Joy Campbell $30.00
Kevin Gamboa $25.00
Danny Perez $25.00
Lacy $25.00
Brent Hardgrave $25.00
Nik Verzivolli