Let’s make some MAGIC!!



As part of training for my half marathon/fundraising I have been wanting to highlight why people fight so hard to end cancer.  Today I received a fundraising e-mail from one of my AMAZING PMC riding friends.  Thank you for letting me share this I hope you all enjoy and think about giving to this great cause!

Hello Friends!

With exactly 3 weeks until the 2013 PMC, I am 55% of the way to my $4,300 fundraising minimum! Great progress to be sure, but I still need your help to reach the finish line!

Now I understand that as a prospective PMC contributor, you might be wondering what difference your hard-earned donation dollars make in the war on cancer.

Well I’m glad you asked! As you may have heard, Les and I were recruited to a PMC riding team this year! (#1 draft picks, of course). In 3 weeks, we will be riding the 200 miles of the Pan-Mass Challenge with Team Lenny, which means that every dollar we raise this year will be specifically earmarked for the Zakim Center – a branch of Dana Farber that compliments traditional cancer treatments with holistic and alternative therapies.


Too much jargon? Let’s make this personal (like everything else about the PMC). I ride the Pan-Mass Challenge in memory of my Grandma Murray and my dad – two people who were incredibly important to me but who could not have had more divergent views on medicine and health. As a self-proclaimed witch, my grandma never shied away from the non-traditional; she used voodoo dolls to influence skating competitions, frequently donned a witch’s hat when the moon was full, and would tape high-powered magnets to her ailing body parts, convinced the invisible magnetic fields would correct any internal misalignments – a practice she swore did work.

Like magic, she would say.

My dad, on the other hand, was a man of science. As a practicing neurologist until the very end, he was committed to traditional medicine, to the logical, the explainable. But as his illness became more resistant to traditional attacks, my dad slowly became more open to alternative approaches.

I’ll never forget sitting with my dad at his chemo sessions in those final months, watching as the holistic nurse performed reiki over his body – an ancient Buddhist technique that transfers healing power from the palms of a practitioner to the body of a patient. As the chemo entered his body through an IV, the nurse hovered her hands over his body, never making actual contact. And as she did, after weeks of restless nights and incessant pain, I watched as my dad finally fell asleep; a look of calm on his face that I hadn’t seen in far too long.

Medicine? Yes. Magic? Maybe. To someone with cancer, and to their family, there’s often very little difference between the two because in the fight against this awful disease, we need all the weapons we can get.

So how about it – ready to make a little magic? http://www2.pmc.org/profile/pfp.asp?profileid=DC0271


I am a runner…


I am a runner…I am a runner from Boston.  My first race of my running season was Sunday, hosted by the amazing BAA.   This was my boyfriend’s first race ever.  He was nervous and excited and I remembered being nervous and excited for mine.  He ran the entire thing in an amazing time.  We had to pleasure of crossing the Boston Marathon finish line as our finish line.  I can’t even tell you how amazing that felt unless you have crossed it as a marathoner yourself.  🙂 I believe you know where this is heading…

Marathon weekend in Boston is beyond amazing.  The weather is finally nice and the city feels like it is breathing new life.  Someone or someones thought they could destroy that for us, and destroy that for the multiple countries, cultures, religions…etc…that ran and watched the race.  SOMEONE was wrong! 

After receiving no less than 6 emails from my company saying they offer counseling I wanted to share my counseling with the world.  I run.  I run when I am angry, sad, happy, lost, in pain, in the rain and snow.  I cried while I ran my first half marathon because I was remembering my grandfather and my tears fueled me and pushed me to finish because I had run that race and raised that money for him.  The next time I run I might cry…I will be thinking of the beautiful people who died or were gravely injured to cheer on people they had never even met, and the people who had the finish line in sight but would never feel it under their feet and then I will remember the BAA volunteers who rushed forward with the Police to reach the injured and the runners who ran from Kenmore Square straight to MGH to give blood.  I will remember there are always heroes and that we runners and our fans are strong and loving.  I will run!!



Just Breath

Welcome back to another running season!

I should start by saying I am not a professional, I am not fast, I am not a marathoner but I do love to run and love to read about it and train for it.  So here is my CYA anything I write in here is stuff that I have figured out that work for me (and some links to articles that I have found useful).  Make sure to listen to your own body and consult a doctor if you are just starting out.

So today I took a pole “what would you like to see me write about?” I got some good responses but decided to start out with Breathing.  I personally thought this was a good one because I have never had problems with my breathing so when two people mentioned it I wanted to see what I am doing that works and why so I could share it with others.

Here is your scenario, you are tired your legs are burning your arms feel heavy.  The best thing for your muscles at a time like this (aside from an amazing massage) is air, lots of it and controlled.  Take long deep breaths, pace your breathing like you pace your running.  If you find yourself gasping take a deep breath in.  This is what I always found worked for me so i did a search online for why.  Here is a great article.  “How to Breath When Running”  I have found for my that running is as much a mental exercise as it is a physical one.  While I run I am constantly adjusting how I breath and move.  When I have reached a comfort zone my mind checks out and I reach the zen part of my run.  This is my favorite part of my run as my body and breathing are in perfect sync and there is not a care in the world that enters my mind.  Please comment with any topics that you are interested in seeing me write about!

In the Heart of the Beast They Will Lay

Less than two months out from my half marathon I am starting to compile my don’t stop running play list.  So today’s run was a test drive that was really inspired by my sister.  A few months ago I lent her one of my favorite bands Murder By Death.  Now busy as she is she FINALLY got around to listening to it and we had a nice little conversation about how sexy his voice is and how every time I listen to it I can picture myself playing it every second of it on my violin.  (Honestly after I write this my violin is coming out of it’s case)  After the conversation I of course put it on and listened to it all day and decided why stop now let’s run and see how this goes.  BEST RUN OF MY LIFE!  No pausing no cramps no pain just pure focused happiness.  Some people listen to books…some people listen to rap…why me.  I listen to this


And for those of you wondering…yes I am a classically trained violinist…and yes I love playing in a band that does music like this.


So my last post was really the final push for me to find my motivation.  After writing that and speaking with my trainer I got myself off my sofa and ran a great 3 miles!  But what really helped me re-find why I run I saw pictures of my friends riding in the Pan Mass Challenge.  The photos of them signing the vow to end cancer and putting photos and names of people they loved on their shirts for their two day ride across Massachusetts reminded me that my sofa isn’t going to help.  But my motivation can.  Here is beautiful story of people who found an unlikely way to touch those being treated for cancer, and finding a way they could help.


“A little in abundance is a lot”

the ominous WALL

Well…two months to go and I have hit two mental walls…One in my fundraising and one in my running…sadly I am less worried about the fundraising.

One month ago you read I was sitting pretty at 6 miles…well there is where I have stayed.  Sort of like traveling coach class sure it will get you there but LORD does it suck.  Admittedly a lot has happened in the last month I had two deadlines at work, moved, and went on a much needed vacation to the hot hot south and there is NO RUNNING in Alabama let me tell you.  I would attribute running in Alabama to something along the lines of sunbathing on the actual sun.  But I am not sure even the sun is as humid as Alabama.

Lets describe what happens during training when you hit a mental wall.  Motivation rapidly drops to zero, beer becomes the most appealing thing on the face of the earth, and not to mention breathing on a sofa seems more important than even putting running shoes on.

So how do I overcome this?  As of right now the jury is out.  I have a meeting with my personal trainer tomorrow where I will tell him I need to do something besides run that will keep my endurance up and well once again NOT BE RUNNING.

Which brings me to the Olympics which you think would inspire me but after seeing a Citi Bank Commercial about how the Olympians did nothing but train it got even more depressing.  I posted the humorous version that I am leaning towards.  I mean seriously if you haven’t read a book in a while…I don’t even know what to say to that.  Guess I won’t be winning gold but hopefully this week I will be back to running.

What I Really Do

So here we are…I am 3 months away from my half marathon and past my halfway point for fundraising! Last week I ran in the 3.5 corporate chase…and to be honest it was the worst running experience of my LIFE. Envision a massive car wreck up ahead and 12,000 cars having to merge into one lane. That is the best way to describe the experience. Normally when you line up for a race you line up by pace. This ensures that the slower people don’t hold up the fast people. Now I am not a fast runner. I typically line up between the 9 min and 10 min pacers because I run at about 9:10-9:40 for the longer races. I arrived 5 min before start time and seeing the mass or people all standing in the 7-8 min pace section I realized that literally everyone had just tried to get as close to the start line as possible. Once the race began I stepped over the start pad and WALKED for the first min of my run!! There was such a cluster of people that no one could break away. That being said I spent the first two miles sprinting in zig zags to get around people. The walkers were everywhere. I really appreciate the people who come out to be in a race for even if they are walking. It is healthy and for a great cause. But there is a walking etiquette to follow. If you need to stop to walk pull to the side (much like a car on the highway). I ended up pairing up with a man who was yelling at everyone to get by them that seemed to work much better.

So this brings me to caption my image. I really did feel like I was running like a champ bobbing and weaving high stepping over curbs…but then it hit me, I was about 2 seconds away from hitting a pole. And having done that before I don’t recommend it! 🙂 I ended up running my first two miles at about a 8:00 pace. Which I knew that if I had kept that up I would have been violently ill at the end (which did happen to a friend of mine who was running at a 6:00 pace to get around people and threw up for about 30 min after the race was over)

But there is always a light at the end of the running tunnel. Afterwards I headed to one of my favorite bars with one of my favorite people and had a few nummy beers and Brie Grilled Cheese Sandwiches!

What I was running to:

What 11,400 people were running to: