Marathon Training update
Sep 29, 2011 by Anne Kabaitan
When I signed up for the Nike Women's Marathon, I knew that training would take some hard work and effort. Running 26.2 miles is no small feat for the average athlete. Since I'm more of a weekend-warrior type rather than a natural athlete, marathon training has been in a word - horrific.
I signed up for a Fall marathon thinking the weather conditions woud be perfect for me and my asthma. What I did not factor was that running a fall marathon means summer training. I'm glad I started training at the end of April because I have had a heck of the time running in the hot, humid weather. My training schedule has been readjusted twice to accomodate my issues. There have been long runs that have left me nauseous and dizzy. While other runs, I've had to cut short because I just couldn't breathe. Worse still, there are many runs that have ended with tears of frustration. I've been disappointed in myself because I haven't been able to run as fast as I do in colder weather. I've felt horrible because I'm consistently the last to finish my run during Team in Training Group Runs. There have been a few times when coaches have been out on the trail searching for me concerned that something might have happened because I was taking so long. God Bless, Coaches Bob, Michelle, and Diane. I don't know what I would have done without them. I have been in double-digit runs since the end of July. At my running pace, this means I'm out running for 3+ hours. Massage rollers and Ice Baths are my new best friends. Clearly, I'm a masochist.
Yet, I'm glad that I decided to do this. What keeps me moving and going on is that I know that all of this is to help fight Blood Cancers. This drives me to continue. I'm reminded that I am a fighter. When I think I have nothing left, I can still dig a little deeper for more. I may be slow, but at least I'm still moving. Now, if I can make through my last 20-mile run, I'll be good to go.
Not a natural
Jul 29, 2011 by Anne Kabaitan
I love to run. I love the feel of the pavement under my feet. I revel in the sense of accomplishment when I run farther or faster than I have before. Seeing the world by foot has been exhilarating.
Now, if only running loved me as much as I loved it. Just because I love to run does not mean I'm particularly fast. I am what is commonly known as a middle-of-the-pack runner. I'm not fast, but I'm not bringing up the rear either. I signed up for a marathon because I wanted to prove to myself that even a non-elite runner with the right attitude and training can run/walk 26.2 miles.
I am halfway through my marathon training. I'm not going to lie. The last couple of weeks have been rough. I've done a few double-digit runs on the weekends (10+ miles). The weather here in Virginia has been very hot and humid. I have asthma. The heat and humidity are triggers for my asthma attacks. This had made training a bit of a challenge for me, but I refuse to let it stop me. I'm up before the sunrise (read 5AM) to get out and run. As the temperature rises, each step I take is a battle to continue. What keeps me moving is that I'm remember that I'm doing this for a good cause. My coaches and group training runs have also been a Godsend. Having that support makes the runs go that much faster and smoother.
No matter how hard training is, losing a loved one to a blood cancer or facing treatment for a blood cancer is worse. I know that my best friend Cicely would have rather run a marathon than watch Leukemia take her father. So, I suck it up and keep moving.
I'm hoping the weather lets up soon. Until then, I'll be up before the sun.
In Memory of Bill
May 18, 2011 by Anne Kabaitan
I met William "Bill" R. Walker and his lovely wife Evelyn in the fall of 2001. They are my best friend Cicely's parents. Meeting them was like meeting the real-life cross of the Huxtables and the Cleavers. I was instantly envious that Cicely had such great parents. They had come to Virginia Beach to visit Cicely and me in our rented condo, the condo which we now refer to as the "Argo Ct. Experience". Bill and Evelyn were warm and effusive. They instantly whisked us off for shopping and dinner. I remember that first dinner distinctly. It was a wonderful evening - the first of many unforgettable times spent with the Walker family. It goes without saying that Bill and Evelyn became like second parents to me.
Bill worked in North Carolina after having spent a few years in Kuwait. Evelyn split her time between NC and Nashville, TN where she was caring for Cicely's grandmother. Cicely and I would frequently visit Bill in NC to keep him company. Truth be told, we would go to get mini-escapes from college work and our jobs as waitresses. It was serene and peaceful. I nicknamed their home the "Fortress of Solitude and Naps." As a bonus, we were able to do our laundry, too. As college students who hated laundromats, this was the epitome of luxury. We once arrived while Bill was at work, loaded up our laundry, and fell asleep. Bill woke us proclaiming that he thought he'd been burglarized, but burglars don't do laundry.
I relished these short visits. They were mostly spent relaxing, enjoying meals and having movie marathons with Bill. He'd regale us with stories from his work overseas and embarrass Cicely with stories from her childhood. Because Bill was also a photo enthusiast, we would "talk shop" about photography while Cicely read. We would make plans to go on photo safaris. Bill was very athletic and we'd trade adventure stories. Even in his 60s, Bill was still an avid cyclist and tennis player.
During one of our visits, Bill was considerably less energetic. He dismissed it and stated his doctor diagnosed him as being anemic. In March 2002, Bill was headed back to the doctor because he was feeling worse. That visit brought the worst possible news. Bill had Leukemia. It was a shock. How could someone so healthy and vibrant get so sick? Bill immediately began chemotherapy. We were all hopeful he'd pull through. Bill was a fighter. He had been a helicopter pilot during the Vietnam War and followed that up with government work in many of the world's hotspots like Panama and Kuwait. If anyone could fight Leukemia, it was Bill.
I was wrong. Leukemia had gotten a head start with Bill. Even with the chemotherapy and other treatments, Bill deteriorated quickly. By the summer, Bill was physically half the man he used to be. He was frail and thin. It was heartbreaking. All the while, he was very upbeat and determined. The months and treatments passed quickly.
Before we knew it, it was Thanksgiving. Because I knew I knew Bill loved pie, I had found a local pie maker and brought an extravaganza of pies. I bought 6 different pies - all his favorites. He cried when he saw all the pies. I told him that pies are not supposed to bring tears and that they must be terrible pies if they made him cry. He laughed. We had a pie party. By then, Cicely had moved back home to spend more time with her dad. At Thanksgiving dinner, I announced that I was moving to California. Bill and Evelyn were both very encouraging. They told me it was time for me to have my big adventure. It was the last time I saw Bill.
Between the holiday rush and packing up to move, I didn't get another opportunity to visit Cicely, Evelyn and Bill in NC. In January 2003, I arrived in Southern California. Shortly after that, Bill passed away surrounded by his family. I was unable to attend his funeral.
I knew then as I know now that Bill's positive influence in my life cannot fully be measured. At the time, I was estranged from my father and had broken up with an emotionally abusive boyfriend. I was on the road to being what one might call a ball-busting man-hater. I'm not kidding. Bill doted on Cicely and was the kind of father I always wished I'd had. Bill and Evelyn frequently teased one another and "drove each other crazy", but you could still feel the love after 40+ years of marriage. He actively volunteered and was an upstanding member of his community. Bill reminded me that there are good and amazing men in the world. If that wasn't enough, he treated me as well as his own daughter. Bill's time in my life was brief, but it left an indelible mark on my heart.
Because I was unable to attend his funeral, I wanted to find some other way to honor Bill. nitially, I thought I'd participate in the MS 100, which was an event that Bill regularly participated in. I quickly scrapped that idea when I discovered that I was in no way shape or form a cyclist. In 2006, I was all set to train for the Nike Women's Marathon with Team In Training. Then, life got in the way. I had a career that took all of my time. I stopped being active and put on weight. Years passed. I got married. I got divorced. I moved back to Virginia.
After 8 years, I think it's time I finally honor a man who meant a lot to me. I'm raising money to find a cure for the very disease that took him far too soon. I don't think any family should go through what the Walkers went through.
Welcome to my Fundraising Page
May 18, 2011
Hi! Please call me Anne.
Welcome to my Team In Training home page.
After a year of running, I've decided to participate in the Nike Women's Marathon 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 all individuals who are battling blood cancers, but especially in memory of my best friend's dad, William R. Walker. These people are the real heroes on our team, and we need your support to cross the ultimate finish line - a cure!
Please make a donation to support my participation in Team In Training and help advance LLS's mission.
I hope you will visit my web site often. Be sure to check back frequently to see my progress. Thanks for your support!