Rick's Fundraising Page
Apr 27, 2011 by Rick Welch
Welcome to my TNT web page. I feel strongly that good fortune will be bestowed upon you because of your presence here. You see, I've just (9-16-10) had my 1 year, post radiation, oncology check-up and have been declared "a perfectly healthy human being". My doctor is so optimistic about my prognosis he decided against the typically prescribed PET Scan and released me for another 6 months! In other words, I am the luckiest man standing, and (since this much luck can't help but rub off), you are more fortunate by association...congratulations.
Unfortunately, it takes a lot more than luck to successfully battle blood cancer, which is why I'm going to take my 6 month free pass and try to raise some money. Cancer treatment and research is insanely expensive and no progress gets made without money. Currently there are 900,000 Americans fighting blood cancers, many of them kids (and I'm sorry but enduring radiation and chemotherapy treatments while fighting for your life is no way to spend your childhood...I'm just saying).
I have, again, started training with the Leukemia Lymphoma Society's Team-In-Training to prepare for my most difficult endurance challenge to date. Team-in-training is the largest endurance sports training program in the world and has raised over $1 billion to help stop Leukemia, Lymphoma and Meyloma from taking more lives. Our team is training for the Wildflower Triathlon to be held in Northern California on April 30, 2011 (the day before my 46th birthday). The race is a half-ironman distance consisting of a 1.2 mile swim (in a cool mountain lake), a 56 mile bike (up and down some very steep mountains) and a 13 mile run (60% off-road). It currently takes me about a week of workouts to cover this much distance so the next 30 weeks should be interesting (invest in Ibuprofen).
My fundraising committment for this event is $5,000, which is where you (hopefully) come in. I've got goggles, shoes and a bike, what I need now are donations. I am living proof that your donation to the LLS will make a very real impact on the lives of those 900,000 people (not to mention their families). I'm well aware that times are tough and money is tight but unfortunately cancer does not care. ANYTHING you can give will greatly help.
Thank you, thank you, thank you in advance. The bottom line is, CANCER SUCKS...and CANCER TREATMENT SUCKS. Neither I nor any of the other 900,000 people battling blood cancer chose to be on this 'journey'. Working together, we will find a cure!
I hope you will visit my web site often as I intend to post updates. Please, feel free to contact me here, or at 222-8340, or at the Inlet, or stop me on the side of the road (that's where I'll be spending a bunch of my time). Helping fight cancer 'one mile at a time',
UPDATE: 10/28/10 - first month of training coming to an end. The team won't start for another month or so but I've got some catching up to do. Averaging 4000M of swimming, 15 miles of running and 60 miles of biking per week. Will step up first of the month, body willing.
11-10-10 Forty miles on the bike...longest consecutive ride yet. I'm thinking these bike shorts aren't padded enough.
11-13--biking north, pre-dawn, on A1A on the hill at corners offers a perfect view of the Jupiter lightouse, lighted and turning...for a minute there I forgot about the pain.
11-14 Met most of the Team at an informal ride this morning. Some (19 so far) great folks doing some great work!
11-19 36 mile bike ride takes me to 101 for the week...first time over 100, small accomplishments. Will start my letter writing campaign tonight which is the most difficult part of this whole journey.
11-25 TURKEY DAY. Started the day with a 45 mile bike ride followed by a 5k run with visiting sons Rick II and Tim. While riding across the Jupiter Inlet bridge I passed a group (8-10) of senior bike riders heading up. They were all smiling and most tried to wave as I did all I could to just make it over the hump. I want what they've got.
12-1 first 50 mile bike ride. Against the wind going out but fun coming home.
12-2 first 10 mile run. Ran the first 8 with shoes and the last couple without. I am trying to run more without in an attempt to keep the IT Band from flaring. We will see. Donation checks starting to come in from the first mailing which is very inspiring. I know from experience just how much good it will do.
2-10 Biked 30 miles and 'bricked' it with a 7 mile run. I've just got to double that and add a swim and I'm there.
12-13 and14 Too cold to work out, sat in the sun and rested.
12-15 Biked the a race distance, 56 miles. Longest ride to date, could not have run a half-marathon afterwards, and it's flat here. I still have a long way to go. Baby steps.
12-18 Ran 12 and felt pretty good, next day biked 40 and still ok.
12-20 Ran 3 and suffered my first injury. A calf/achilles thing in my left leg...hope it heels quickly.
12-29 Still no running. but itt does feel like it is healing. Can still bike and swim...43 on the bike yesterday and swam the intracoastal today till I got an ice-cream headache. Four months to go, time to step it up.
1-5 Happy New Year. Between the cold weather and seasonal events, keeping on track with training is tough. Got a couple of short, slow runs in but ended up straining the calf again while running Larry (our dog). Back to hobbleing, try again in a few days. The biking and swimming are still on track.
1-11 An attempt to run; 3 miles at a very slow pace but no re-injury. I am feeling optimistic about the calf. Biking and swimming continue to go well.
1-13 A cold and very windy 55 mile bike ride. It took me forever to get to the end of Gomez Rd. but I flew home. I should be able to feel my toes again by weekend. 'Thank You' (again) to all my donors!!!!
1-15 First group run with the team this morning. We have some great athletes. I moved along at a painfully slow pace but was able to complete the 8 mile run/jog. I am happy for the healing progress of the calf. At this pace I should be back up to speed in a couple of weeks. I finished this week with 5500 meters of swimming and 125 miles of biking.
1-25 Busy week. Comparable numbers to last week but with more running. Ran 8 again on Sat. but quicker than last week. I am happy with the calfs healing. Spoke Sat. morning to the Spring T-N-T teams. Was stoked to see so many people giving of themselves to help find a cure. Just realized that come Friday I will have been in remission for a year! That will make you run, bike and swim faster!
1-28 ONE YEAR! No workout today, but going long tomorrow.
1-29 Went long (10 mile run) and felt good. Held an 8:15 pace with no calf pain. Everything else hurt though. Did a swim time trial to get a baseline for training. Swam 1,000 yards in 16:40 (so-so). Plenty of room for improvement.
2-3 My first 60 mile bike...took all morning. Threw in 8 trips up the 'water tower hill' in Hobe Sound (quad burner). Finished strong but bonked shortly thereafter. I don't think I took in enough calories during the ride.
2-5 Another good week: swim=5700/bike=110 m./run=21m. A good balance, only slightly fatigued (progress).
2-10 'Bonked' hard today. Rode 55 miles (the final 25 upwind), felt so good I followed it up with a 5 mile run. I was still in good shape til mile 4, and then fell apart. It was 83 degrees and I suffered heat exaustion. Heart rate stayed at 120 for an hour afterward. Otherwise a good workout.
2-12 Wrapped up another strong week. Good milage. Still healthy.
2-17 8 mile run yesterday and a 40 mile bike today. Last workouts before heading to Gainesville to run a half marathon with my son Rick. Two days to rest and stretch and then my longest run to date.
2-20 Race went well although my son beat me by two minutes. I'll give him that one. Course was hilly which will help me in the long run. i finished in 1 hour forty-five which is about an 8 minute pace. I'll take it. now I know I can go the distance in the swim, bike and run. I've got 2 months to put them together!
2-24 60 miler on the bike. Felt great going out, thought I was strong until I turned around and realized I had a tail wind. A very hard ride home! 30 miles into a 10 knot wind. It will pay off in the mountains.
3-6 Busy week. Got consistent milage but had to fit it around life. 32 mile bike with the group yesterday (windy), felt strong but am slow in picking up the finer points of group riding. Luckily won't need that skill for the race. Ran the Spring Training 10k this morning (47:09) Not as fast as last year but I was still feeling yesterdays ride and it was pretty warm. Only seven weeks of training left. Still waiting for that next gear to kick in. It's coming down to the wire.
3-10 Finding it difficult to increase milage with the time I have available. Hoping the time change helps.
3-11 Finished the week with 108 on the bike and nearly 30 on foot. Feeling good.
3-15 Ran 5.5 to pool, swam 1500, ran to 3.75 to work, worked and surfed, ran 4.5 home. I'm sleepy.
3-17 Just finished a 60+ bike ride. What makes a group (3) of teenage boys think it is OK to randomly curse (loudly) a cyclist while passing in their truck? And what makes them think there won't be some kind of retrobution if they happen to catch a red light and said cyclist catches up? Windows were rolled up and doors were locked and an old man on a bike got the last laugh.
3-26 Only 5 weeks to go. At times it doesn't seem like enough. Another good week with average numbers (although I did hit 30 running miles). At this point I'm glad when I finish a week healthy. Two days ago I biked 40 and ran 3, yesterday I biked 35 and this morning ran a half marathon (13). I substituted a pile of kale and seaweed for the steak I was craving and it seems to have done the trick. Legs are sore but my head is still in the game. Tomorrow morning a tough ride with the team. Hit the half way point on my fundraising!!! Feeling better about that.
3-30 Had a really tough ride with the team a couple of days ago but walked away OK. Rode this morning and timed an 8 mile stretch at 22.5 minutes. That's 22 miles per hour for 8 miles, am really happy with the progress. The lid of my fundraising was completely blown off by my team mate Barb and her brother. A $1,000 donation completely and instantly removed all the anxiety I was experiencing. Now it's just about staying healthy and showing up ready!
4-1 30 mile bike straight into a 3 mile run, then off to the oncologist. He says everything looks good but wants me to get another PET scan (booooooo). It has been 1.5 years since my last one and he wants to make sure. All part of the game, but I'm waiting till after the race to get it done.
4-7 'Hill' work on Sun. left me with a sore back and numb left leg. Twenty trips over and back of the Donald Ross bridge....a good workout but definately tweaked something. Have been taking it easier since. I have this strange feelilng I may have peaked about a month ago. I sometimes feeel as though I am crawling to the starting line. Two more tough weeks and a nice taper should do the trick. Currently shopping for a wetsuit, hoping I haven't waited too long.
4-14 a busy, busy week. The back is almost normal, put is some good mileage. On sunday we biked 30 miles hard and ran 7 equally as hard. Felt pretty good but the heat got to me a little bit. I'm feeling as though I can recover pretty quickly as long as I don't push too hard. Steady and slow will be my mantra in California (at least for the bike)..Speaking of which, it was put into a box for shipping today. No more rides on it till the race. Got a loaner wetsuit from Coach, tried it yesterday at the Inlet and it seems to work pretty well. It is certainly warm but I'm not to happy with the resistance in the shoulders. I guess you can't have everything. It does make me float really well so I won't be doing any kicking out there. 2 weeks till departure.
4-16 Here's a good one: bike 13 miles, dismount and run 2.5 miles, then repeat, and repeat again in 85 degree heat. Man am I thirsty and I lost 8 pounds. Swam with the wetsuit a bit again today. Am getting more used to it.
4-23 The final week. Already questioning whether or not I'm ready. At this point it really doesn't matter...starting my taper. The trick now is to go in rested. Had a pretty low milage week but there was some quality in there. Been starting to get my camping gear together, debating whether or not to buy a inflatable mat, I hear the ground is really hard out there. Something else to haul cross country and back. The great news is that I will hit my fundraising goal!!!!! Thanks to you all. I'm just waiting for a donation of cashed in vacation hours to make it thru channels and that will take me over the $5,000 mark.
Am hearing that the water temp is expected to be between 65 and 68 degrees. That, for me, is very cold. At least I don't have to worry about inflamation. Air temps should be low 40's at night and low 70's during the day. That, I think, is just about perfect. Wow, can I feel the anxiety already. They say it is good to be nervous going into an event...I've got that going for me.
4-27 Packing and heading to Lauderdale within the hour. Hardly any working out this week, should be well rested. Historically, I do not travel well and this trip is no exception. Nervous beyond belief. I really can't see myself sleeping much over the next few nights. Not much else to do but get there and do my best. Am really stoked so much money was raised for blood cancer research...one step closer to a cure, and that's what this whole thing is all about.......Off I go.