Over three days this November, I will be walking 60 miles in the Arizona Breast Cancer 3-Day. This walk will be much more than “just a walk” – it will be raising money to support Susan G. Komen for the Cure and the National Philanthropic Trust Breast Cancer Fund.

Over the next several months, I will be spending many, many, many hours in training (By the time the walk starts, I will have logged enough miles to take me from Phoenix to my hometown of Houston!

I have committed to raising $2,200 to participate in this walk. Please consider making a fully tax-deductible donation to help me achieve this goal. I’ll be doing all the walking...all you need to do is follow this link to my fundraising headquarters to submit your contribution.

You may know someone who has been affected by breast cancer and I would be proud to walk in her honor as well. Please feel free to send me an email or leave a comment with their name. I will create a ribbon just for them and attach it to my backpack.

Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death for all women, and the leading cause of death in women between the ages of 40 and 55. Both its cause and the means for its cure remain undiscovered. I’m taking on this challenge to do something big that will help raise awareness and help in finding a cure.

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. I hope that you’ll share in this incredible adventure with me. Please leave comments or email me (txaggie02@hotmail.com) if you have any questions.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

What to Pack?

I still have a while before I have to pack for the 3 Day but I found this fabulous 3 Day Packing Slide Show and I don't want to lose the link. I need to remember to review the list after I pack to make sure I don't forget anything. In addition to the slide show items I also want to bring:

towels (hand towels, wash clothes, shammy)
cell phone

and other items that I think of over time.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Tick Tick Tick

I finally got around to updating my mileage ticker. Now I've finished 374 miles. I think this is about the distance from Phoenix to Los Angeles. I need to keep this updated. It is very motivating to see how far I've gone. I have raised over 62% of the fundraising goal. I love logging on to my 3 Day fundraising page and watching the thermometer climb. That is also very motivating.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

A Walk in the Park

I met up with Sarah this morning for a training walk. Sarah is walking the in the Seattle 3 Day with her mom. I believe the Seattle 3 Day is in September. It is interesting to hear about other 3 Day walks. Sarah said the Seattle 3 Day has a lot more hills. She also has to prepare for colder weather and a much higher chance of rain. It rarely rains in Arizona so I am not really worried about it. We walked about five miles around the city park. The weather was really nice this morning. We finished up just before it started to get too hot. I came home and made a fabulous fruit smoothie with strawberries, mango, papaya, and pineapple. It was the perfect treat after a nice walk.

Swing Batter Batter

After the volleyball tournament I went to the Diamondbacks game with Sandy. It was Chris Young bobble head night. The Diamondbacks played the Detroit Tigers. They ended up losing 2-3 but it was a good game. After the game we stayed for the Trace Adkins concert. I was surprised to see so many country music fans in Arizona. It was a great concert. We had a blast! I am going to count this as my training walk for the day because we parked a mile away from the stadium plus we walked around the stadium to get to our seats. So I got in at least a 3 mile walk on Saturday in addition to playing 7 volleyball games. I am exhausted.

Volleyball for a Cure

The volleyball tournament was a big success. We had 19 players and 6 teams. Plus we had 15 or so spectators. The tournament was set up with a round robin and double elimination so all teams were guaranteed to play at least 4 games. My team went 1-1 in our round robin. The first round of the tournament we had a bye. Then we played the team that ended up winning the tournament and we lost. We won our second tournament game. We lost our next game to the team that came in second place. It was still a lot of fun. The food was fabulous and the weather was hot. Thanks again to Steve for organizing this event. We raised over $376 so far for Susan G. Komen (some people said they want to give more too).

Fit Flops

I heard about the new FitFlop fad and I had to jump onboard. Even if the claims aren't true I thought it was worth it to give it a try. If you haven't heard of the FitFlop it is a special flip flop that works your butt, leg, and thigh muscles while you wear them. Here are some of the claims from the website:

  1. FitFlop midsoles incorporate patent-pending micro-wobbleboardTM technology, to give you a workout while you walk. Developed by Darren James and Dr David Cook at LSBU, the FitFlop's unique safely -tapered midsole places varying densities of EVA under your feet each time you step, to challenge the support and balance muscles of the foot and leg.
  2. They challenge hard to reach muscles more. FitFlops are engineered with a multi-density midsole that stimulates your muscles more while you're wearing them. In independent University testing, FitFlops have been shown to trigger increase gluteal muscle response, increased hamstring response, increase rectus femoris (thigh) response and increased calf muscle response .
  3. Every step you take in your FitFlops helps tone and trim your legs: Studies at Salford University by Dr. Philip Graham-Smith and Richard Jones have shown that the FitFlop midsole extends the amount of time that the slow twitch* muscles are engaged during each step (by approximately 10-12%). So just by wearing a pair of FitFlops you'll get more exercise while doing just exactly what you're normally doing. (*slow twitch muscles produce energy by converting fats into energy aerobically)
  4. FitFlops work your bum muscles more. FitFlops have been clinically proven to increase the amount of time that the gluteus maximus muscle is 'activated' during every single step.
  5. FitFlops have been shown to have a significant effect on the toning muscles of your thighs: The rectus femoris muscle (one of the large muscles in the group of muscles in your thigh) is activated for a longer period of time while walking in FitFlops than while normally shod or barefoot .
  6. Walking in FitFlops is like walking barefoot, but a little bit better. According to a study done at the University of Salford in Manchester, UK, the FitFlop wearer's gait is very similar to that of a barefoot walker, but the added cushion provided by the EVA midsole helps reduce joint strain and absorb shock. In fact, several FitFlop wearers have already reported relief from back pain after a few days of wearing them.
  7. FitFlops make it easier to stay in shape. Just throw them on while you're running errands, walking to work, or working around your house. Most first-time FitFlop wearers report feeling their muscles working more, while 'fitter' wearers feedback has been more toward great comfort and cushion. One woman reported feeling like she'd had a 'bum-blasting' workout after a half an hour of FitFlop-shod walking.
I actually bought a knock-off called FitFoam by Adidas. They were only $14 on sale and with a Kohl's coupon. It definitely beats the $60+ price tag of the real FitFlop. Anything I can do to get toned up for my 3 Day walk is worth it. Plus they are really cute and comfortable.

Friday, May 16, 2008

T-1 Day to the Volleyball Tournament

We've been planning the volleyball tournament since late March. I can't believe it is already here. I have a few last minute things to do today but otherwise I think we're ready. I keep thinking that I'm forgetting something or wondering if we have everything covered but I think we will be ok. I can't wait!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Over Half Way There

I have an accomplishment to brag about today. I am over half way to my fundraising minimum through donations posted to my website. Woohoo! I have raised over $1100 so far. I am super excited! As of tomorrow there will be exactly 6 months until the walk. It sounds like a long time but I know it will go by fast. It seems like only yesterday when I attended the kickoff meeting and signed up for the walk but two months have passed since.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

I'm Lovin' It

The original plan was to do another mountain hike this weekend but Chase wimped out. He didn't want to do any walking today but I talked him into waking up this morning, walking to McDonald's, getting some breakfast, and walking home. I don't think he realized how far the McDonald's was. I looked it up on Google and found out it is 3.7 miles each way. But I didn't tell him. It is only a few minutes by car but it took us about 1 hr 15 minutes each way to walk. It is a very nice and refreshing walk through quiet neighborhoods. There were sidewalks the entire way and we only had to cross one busy street. The breakfast hit the spot. I was starving since it was almost lunch time when we got there. We made the 10:30 am breakfast cutoff only by a minute. Immediately after we ordered they switched the menu board to the lunch menu. I had a deluxe breakfast and blue Powerade and Chase had an Egg McMuffin and ice coffee. We rested for a little while before heading back home. I think this is going to be our new Bill Clinton workout.

This is the first weekend that I've been sore. The blister on my right foot is getting bigger and my butt and thigh muscles are aching a little. No pain no gain I guess.

You Got to Know When to Hold 'Em...

Know When to Fold 'Em...

Saturday night was the poker tournament. It was a BLAST! We played Texas Hold 'Em. It started out with two tables and 50 chips per person. Bets were placed, cards were dealt, and winners were made. CHAP sponsored the event and provided food and prizes. There was a $10 donation per person in order to play. All the donations went to Susan G. Komen for my 3 Day Walk. I was able to add $210 to my 3 Day goal from this event. 1st place received a $30 Best Buy gift card, 2nd place received $20 Best Buy gift card, and 3rd place received a $10 Best Buy gift card. The first person to lose all their chips received a consolation prize. The consolation prize was Cortaid, which was regifted from Craig's Price Is Right debut. I was extremely close to being the first loser and getting the consolation prize but I went all in came out with a 10, J, Q, K, A straight. It was beautiful! Several times I almost lost out but I ended up tying for 4th place. Not bad for a newbie.

After the tournament was over we played some WII and old Nintendo games in Craig's new game room.

Thanks again to Patricia for organizing this event and to Craig to hosting it as his house.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Leaps & Bounds

We are already over 1 week into May. Do you know what that means? It's time to announce the June fundraisers.

Pampered Chef Catalog and Internet Show - Orders can be placed now through the first week of June. Email me for more information. We are approaching wedding season and Pampered Chef products make perfect wedding gifts. Do you know anyone having a birthday? Did you forget Mother's Day? Have you purchased a Father's Day gift yet? Do you want to get a head start on your Christmas shopping? This is a perfect time! 10%-15% of the sales will go towards my 3 Day Walk benefiting Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

Leap's Frozen Custard & Coffee - Leap's will donate 25% of sales when you bring in a flier on June 13, 14, and 15. Send me an email and I will send you the flier.

Tastings Wine Bar - Wine Tasting Event (date TBD)

It should be a fun month!

Lunch Photos

As promised, here are some pictures of the desserts from the benefit luncheon this week. I made a 2 tier cake, cupcakes, and a cherry crisp. Erin made brownies and we also had cookies.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Lunch Bunch

Today I had a benefit luncheon at work and it went really well. I sold lunch tickets for $10 per person and had 30 people sign up. My plan was to donate the money left over after I paid for food but my co-worker Chris volunteered to buy all the food anyway so I am able to donate the total $300. I got one 6' sub ($29.99) and one 4' sub ($19.99) from a local grocery store. I also bought chips, potato salad, pasta salad, broccoli salad, watermelon, drinks and cookies. I had some people volunteer to bring homemade desserts too. Total cost for food was only $100 and that fed 30 people with tons of leftovers. My co-workers loved it and some asked when I was having the next one. The best part was that this event helped get the word out that I was walking and raising money so in addition to the lunch ticket sales I also received $400 more in online donations. I would like to thank Stephanie and Shana for their help in organizing the event and Erin for helping to get the word out. After the $300 is applied to my fundraising account I will have over $900 towards my $2200 goal.

It's been a long day and I am exhausted so I will post some photos later.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Fundraising Update

I have completed 20% of my fundraising. WooHoo! But there is still a LONG way to go. Right now I have 3 big events planned for May. On Wednesday is the benefit luncheon. There are about 30 people signed up. After the food is paid for I should be able to add about $200 to my fundraising account. I ordered the sandwiches today and bought soda, chips, and watermelon. I will get the sides and make desserts tomorrow and pick up the sandwiches on Wednesday right before lunch.

Last Friday I solicited more donations for the volleyball tournament from local businesses. Thank you to the following businesses that donated so far:

Johnny Rockets
TGI Fridays
Nik & D's Chicago Style
Pick Up Sticks
Wings & Rings
Green Chili's
Emerald City Smoothie
Hungry Howies

A few more business also said they would donate too. I will update and post the final list soon.

The poker tournament is this weekend. This is sure to be a fun time. Patricia is currently planning all the details.

The first May bake sale also went well. I made chocolate chip cookies which seem to be a hit.

It seems like all the May events are coming together nicely. Thank you to everyone who is helping me plan events, all the donors, and all the participants.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Mountain Climbing

Saturday morning Chase and I got up early to hike the White Tank Mountains. We've done several hikes in the White Tanks but this was the first time we've been down Ford Canyon Trail. The full loop is long and strenuous with lots of hazards. We decided to take the trail to the abandoned dam and turn around. It is about 4.2 miles to the dam (8.4 miles for our total hike). We started at 7:30 am and finished just before noon. The first two miles were a nice, easy stroll. The last two before the dam were tough. I am starting to realize that the hiking trails in Arizona are a different level then what I was used to. Even on some trails I thought were strenuous there weren't any warning signs. When you see a warning sign you know it will be challenging. We continued anyway. There were some pretty difficult rock walls to climb and some steep trails. We finally made it to the dam and it was a total let down. The river bed was dry but we passed some pools of nasty standing water. We also saw lots and lots of lizards. It felt really good to finish such a challenging hike. We stopped for some pizza on the way home. Chase took a nap for the rest of the day and I went to work. We are planning to hike another trail next weekend.

Who Says It's Only A Game?

I have lots to catch up on from last week. On Monday the Astros were in town so I took a break from the training to watch the game. I ended up walking about the same number of miles anyway since I walked around the stadium several times before the game and half way through the game. It was a nice change of scenery. The treadmill can get monotonous.

My hometown Houston Astros lost to the Arizona Diamondbacks. It was a good game though. I realized that I've been away from Houston too long. I only recognized a few players from the Astros. One of them was a former Diamondback. I still proudly wore my Astros shirt.

Bake Sale #5

This week I made brownies and brought them into work. They went over really well. I'm glad I bought several boxes of brownie mix. Brownies and chocolate chip cookies definitely seem to be favorites among my co-workers.