Fundraising Is Hard Work
Jul 19, 2011 by Liz Chandler
When I attended the informational session about Team In Training, I had just completed my first ever half marathon and my biggest concern about signing up for another one was that I wouldn't have time for the training. Work had interfered significantly with my training for the event I'd done in May and I had a hunch that a busy summer and continued work pressure weren't going to make training easy for me.
That part is true. Even though group training runs are at 7 a.m. on Saturday mornings, it can be tough to leave home at 6:30 because my family is already awake and there is already a full agenda for the day and there are things the kids want to do first thing. Or we've got company from out of town or we're out of town or there's an appointment of some sort. I've only been to group training twice so far and getting runs in during the week continues to be a challenge.
But I feel confident that I can finish another half marathon. I might have to walk it instead of run it- but I'm also confident that I'd still be able to run good chunks of it and walk as needed.
So my concerns about the training fitting into my schedule aren't as much of an issue as I'd feared.
However, the fundraising is harder than I'd expected. I had kind of thought that because I have a lot of connections to people, it would be easy to just ask everyone I know to donate $5 and I'd quickly reach my goal. Wrong!
It's a hard time to be asking people for money. So many of my friends are struggling to make ends meet... struggling to pay bills, rent, buy food. It's hard to keep asking people that I know can't afford to donate to give money so I can run a half marathon. It's hard to ask keep asking my friends and family and connections to donate to an important cause.
So I've turned to fundraisers in an effort to give something to those who are giving to me.
Christy and I have been partnering up when we can and our first official partnering was a fundraising dinner at my church where we offered a pasta and salad bar. It was hard work but we raised a nice little chunk of change and we've gotten great feedback from members of my church who appreciated the healthy offerings.
Saturday night, I attended my first Bucket Shake. A large group of us wore Team In Training gear and hit the streets of Broad Ripple- a party area known for the bars, restaurants, and clubs. We carried purple buckets and asked passersby to donate spare change or small bills to help fund cancer research, to help pay for someone's treatment. It was hard work and a great learning experience.
Sunday July 24, Christy and I will be bucket shaking once again. This time, it's just the 2 of us for 8 hours outside of the Sam's Club in Fishers, IN.
July 26 (Tuesday) is another planned fundraiser. We've teamed up with TGI Friday's at Keystone at the Crossing and they will be donating 10% of all sales (excluding alcohol purchases) that day (and you have to have a flyer for us to get credit). Christy and I plan to be there for as much of that day as we can to thank our supporters, to enjoy some food, and to spread the word about Team In Training and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. We've even got some giveaways planned!
I've been a lot more focused on the fundraising lately than on the training. I have a hunch that getting to my fundraising goal will help motivate me to spark up my training plans. Afterall, once I hit my goal, I would hate to disappoint those who have donated.
Please consider donating directly or by attending an upcoming fundraiser!
Finding My Mojo
Jun 28, 2011 by Liz Chandler
When I started running in February of 2010, I had a goal. Run a 5K. I selected a specific event. There is a festival in my town every summer and there is a 5K that runs through my neighborhood the Saturday morning of the festival each year. I chose it to be my first 5K because it wasn't going to be competitive or overwhelming.
It did end up being far more emotional than I'd expected. I had the Big Ugly Cry working as I crossed the finish line. My family was there to support me, I had friends at the line cheering me on.
And then it was over and I didn't want to run anymore. I had burn out.
It took a few months to really get back into the swing of things. I took about 2 weeks off from running altogether. Then I started back in slowly. I used my down time to learn more and more about running and form and equipment. I read "Run Like A Mother" and "Chi Running" and back issues of Runner's World. I kept up with my workouts- just didn't want to go for a run.
But it came back and I did another 5K and another and realized I still liked it enough to set a bigger goal- Half Marathon. 13.1 miles.
I trained for months and months and accomplished the goal in May of this year. And then burn out hit again. After running double digits in cumulative miles each week, I was down to maybe running 2 miles once a week. Maybe. Or maybe just doing interval work on the treadmill. But I had no interest in actually going out and running just to run.
And my Run-iversary was approaching. The 1 year mark since that first 5K that started this entire journey. This past Saturday, with hardly any training leading up to the event, I ran that 5K in my neighborhood and I took 3 minutes off of last year's time. Had I trained, I know I could have done even better. But I have no regrets. Every step of that run was great because every step of that run built something inside of me.
I'm getting my mojo back.
I want to go out and run today. I'm hoping I actually get to take a lunch hour so I can get out there and run.
I actually enjoyed the run on Saturday. For the past 2 months, running has been a chore and I've found every excuse to walk or bike instead of run. Now, I'm starting to get excited about running again!
Another thing that is really helping me get eager about running is each of the donations I have received. I've been pleasantly surprised by some of the people I'm connected to that have donated to support the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. A week ago, I felt guilty that people were making donations and I wasn't even really sure that I wanted to continue on this running journey.
But now I'm getting my mojo back.
I want to run and I want to get those donations.
My mojo is BACK!
My First Training Run
Jun 11, 2011 by Liz Chandler
A quick run down of my first training run with Team In Training!
- Eagle Creek is a beautiful place to run!
- I made some new connections. I am terrible with names but I remember Susan and my friend Nicki.
- I made a new friend- Minerva. I wish I'd gotten her e-mail address before leaving. She's on the central team and I'm on the north team. I think I might go to some central meet ups for the sake of seeing her again!
- Didn't have a chance this time to really connect with the coach or the mentors.
- Minerva and I ran the entire time together. She really helped push me along at time. We also saw 7 deer! I think she's the Deer Whisperer.
- The morning air was cool but heavy and my asthma had me struggling with breathing. My inhaler didn't really help at all. Had more walk breaks than I would have liked but still felt good about getting out there for 2.5 miles!
My Fundraising Letter
Jun 09, 2011 by Liz Chandler
This coming October, I am going to run my second half marathon. In February of 2010, I set a goal to complete a 5K. Using a training program called Couch to 5K and going at my own slow pace, I accomplished that goal. And I haven’t stopped! Since my first event, I’ve gone on to complete several more 5K runs, a 10K, a 15K, a 10 mile, and completed my first half marathon this past May. I went from being a true couch potato to someone who makes healthy living a part of my everyday choices.
I recently learned about Team In Training and realized that it is time for my efforts to go beyond my own personal goals. I’ve been running for me- for my health, for my distance goals. I could say that I’ve done it so that I have more energy to play with my kids or to be a better wife. Those are really the side benefits more than anything. I admit that I’ve primarily been selfish in my goals thus far- it’s been all about me and what I can do.
With Team In Training, it’s not about me at all. It’s about the people who are fighting for their lives as they battle any variety of blood cancers. Team In Training is a fundraising organization that benefits the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). LLS is an organization that I am honored to stand with because the funds raised do amazing things.
A donation of $25 provides booklets and educational information on blood cancers to patients who have recently been diagnosed. A donation of $50 funds a support group for patients and family members. A donation of $100 provides necessary supplies and materials for research labs. A donation of $500 can provide paid for treatment to a patient with blood cancer.
I want you to be part of my team. I am asking you to please consider making a donation to support my efforts as I train for the Indianapolis Half Marathon on Oct 15. With each mile that I run as I train for this event, with each mile that I complete during my event, I will be moving forward for my sponsors as well as for those who aren’t able to complete those miles.
To sponsor me in this endeavor:
- Donate by cash or check through me. Make checks payable to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. You can mail donations to my home address: (contact me by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org please)
- Donate by credit card on my fundraising website: http://pages.teamintraining.org/in/CHNIndi11/lchandlgry
All donations are tax deductible. I’d also encourage you to check with your employer for matching donation opportunities to possibly double your donation!
Thank you for taking the time to read this letter and I do hope you will sponsor me in this venture!
"We Will Kick Off, We Will Kick Off!"
May 27, 2011 by Liz Chandler
20 points to anyone who can name that reference!
Last night was the Kick Off Party for this Team In Training season. It was held at The Rathskeller and my running partner, Christy, and I were more than happy to go early to get a beer and appetizer.
I think the Kick Off meeting is kind of a way of seeing what's ahead of you. When I signed up for Team In Training, my worries were the fundraising and the time for training. But the Kick Off is a great demonstration of what this commitment really is all about- the people.
We got to meet our coach, our mentors, and some of our teammates. We got to meet some honored heroes. I was very moved by one of the speakers. A mom who shared her experience in dealing with her daughter's cancer. Her daughter spoke at the informational meeting attended. Her daughter has Down's Syndrome and also fought Leukemia- she truly is a hero. I also think her mom is a hero. As a mom myself, cancer is a very scary word and hearing what this mom went through with her daughter really touched me.
I have to admit that I don't have very personal experiences with blood cancers. I've certainly followed stories of families through the internet with a child fighting leukemia- sometimes winning, all too often losing that fight. I've known people in more casual relationships, within my community but haven't been especially close to those people or families.
I keep hearing one theme throughout my Team in Training experiences so far- "It will change your life." I'm kind of excited and kind of nervous about what exactly that means.
I'm hoping you'll join me on this journey. I'm hoping you'll support me with a donation. I'm hoping you're along for the ride to be part of this life changing experience.
(And the subject line reference is Bill Cosby and a stand up bit he did on kids playing football when he was growing up.)