Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Team Julie Survived the Breast Cancer 3-Day

We’re back from our wonderful 3-Day weekend. I want to thank you all for your tremendous support during our training and fundraising. I managed to complete all 60 miles with zero blisters or injuries. I feel very lucky as I was one of the few on day three who was walking without the aid of an ace bandage, ice pack, or blister dressing. The other half of Team Julie flew through the 60 miles with nothing more than a slightly sore ankle!


Day one began with a beautiful sunrise on Clearwater beach. Opening ceremonies were emotional and invigorating, setting the tone for our phenomenal weekend.

We were on the road shortly after 8:00 am. It was slow going at first, with 1,700+ walkers trying to make it down one sidewalk. We were entertained by gracious passersby who greeted us with horn honks, waves, thumbs up, and shouts of support and encouragement. This road-side support continued for all 60 miles!

Walking 60 miles in three days is made much easier by the many pit-stops along the way. Every 2 to 3 miles you can stop to “Refuel, Relieve and Rehydrate!” There were several slogans repeated all weekend to make sure the walkers took care of themselves. We heard the phrase “Drink and Pee, no IV” many, many times.

The 3-Day would not be the amazing event it is without the fabulous staff and volunteer crew. If you ever want to participate in a 3-Day but don’t think you can walk 60 miles, consider volunteering to be a crew member.

Day two took us back to the beautiful gulf beaches. The weather was prefect – not too hot and not too cold. The highs topped out in the mid-80s and the overnight lows in the mid-60s. We couldn’t have asked for better weather.

Part of the 3-Day experience is camping out with your fellow walkers and crew. I am not a camper, but the 3-Day camp was a blast! One side of camp housed the sleeping tents, port-a-potties, mobile showers and mobile sinks. The other side of camp held all of the social activities, such as our meals, the evening entertainment, the 3-Day gear shop, the foot massage tent, etc.

On the course each day we were amazed by the tremendous community support. They don’t call this walk the 60 mile buffet for nothing! You cannot walk a quarter mile without being offered cookies, popsicles, candy, fruit, etc. by cheering supporters. Girl Scout troops handed out Girl Scout cookies. One man was even handing out free beers to walkers while holding a sign that read “Beers for Boobies.” Fortunately, no flashing was required.

Closing ceremonies in St. Petersburg wrapped up our prefect 3-Day weekend. The Tampa Bay walkers alone raised over $4.6 million for breast cancer research. Near the end of closing ceremonies every walker removed a shoe in honor of the breast cancer survivors who participated in the walk. It was an amazing sight.

Thank you again for your support. I know I will walk in another Breast Cancer 3-Day and I encourage everybody, women and men, to walk or volunteer to be a crew member in a 3-Day near you. They have already announced the 2007 dates, which you can find online at www.the3day.org. I guarantee it will be a wonderful experience you will never forget!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

See you on the flip side!

Tonight is my last night at home before I leave for the 3-Day. I’m pretty much all packed. I miraculously fit all of the following into a 25 inch long duffel bag.

twin air mattress with pump (takes 4 D batteries)
sleeping bag
pillow (normal size)
8 by 10 tarp
3 days clothing – including 8 pairs of socks (2 each day & 2 spares)
one pair runners
one pair tevas
gallon zip-loc bag full of medical supplies
toiletry case
disposable camera
5 luna bars
journal & pen
2 rain ponchos
mylar emergency blanket
flash light & extra batteries
alarm clock
spool of twine
peppermint tea
tent flag (so I can find my tent in a sea of 2,000 tents)
extra plastic bags

Hopefully the zipper doesn’t burst.

My nerves are just barely acting up. I would say I’m more anxious than nervous. I know it will be an amazing experience. I’ve just been building up to this weekend for so many months that I’m not quite sure what to do with myself now!

Wish me luck!

Monday, October 09, 2006

It's almost here!

The Tampa Bay Breast Cancer 3-Day will begin with Opening Ceremonies at Sand Key Park in Clearwater, FL on October 13th at 7:30 am and conclude with Closing Ceremonies at Spa Beach Park in St. Petersburg on October 15th at 5:30 pm.

The journey will highlight the most picturesque areas that Pinellas County and the state of Florida have to offer. Day One begins at Sand Key Park in Clearwater. Walkers will enjoy award-winning views of miles of Florida coastline beaches and will be energized by the warm Gulf breeze.

Day Two will include more of the same breath-taking views. Walkers will stroll down world-class beaches and intercoastal waterways. Local neighborhood beach shops will be featured as well as some of the most beautiful homes located between the water and cobblestone streets.

Day Three highlights historic St. Petersburg neighborhoods that line the Tampa Bay waterfront. Finally, we will celebrate at our closing site Spa Beach Park (close to The Pier in downtown St. Petersburg). This park provides a view and an experience you will not want to miss.

Julie and I are heading down on Thursday & spending Thursday night at the Sheraton Sand Key resort in Clearwater. Thursday will be spent swimming in the ocean and lounging by the pool with a good book. Friday morning the fun begins!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

I'm back...quick update

Sorry I haven't posted for a loooong time. I had a great 1st half of the month & then came down with the flu. I was at 90 miles by the 16th...on track to reach 180 miles for the month. Then I had to travel to Seattle for 2 weeks for business and caught the flu on the flight to Seattle. I was SICK...I had every symptom in the book (nose, chest, stomach, fever, etc.). I was down for nearly 2 weeks, which totally derailed my mileage goal. I managed to squeeze in an additional 27 miles while sick with the flu, but that's it. Oh well, I'm feeling better now and I'm doing 15 miles in the morning with my walking buddy.

The event is quickly approaching! October 13th is right around the corner. I need to start getting my stuff togther so I can figure out what I need to buy.