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Reflections 10.8.10

Friday, October 08, 2010

My friends - this is not about me, but about paying forward.

On my kitchen table is a medal from a race I recently ran. It will be mailed to a friend, who have done something unique, and be part of what this person is doing for and with others. Since this person is a Sparker, I will leave it at that.

However, there are many reasons why we are on the Spark journey, and there are many reasons why we do events. Some of the events gives you medals when you have completed the event. Some of these events are very meaningful to you (me) as the participant. Some of them are a medal you get for your accomplishment.

I have quite a few medals, and they all have a story which includes the preparation and the actual event. However, there are people in my life who cannot do what I did for all kinds of reasons, so that gives me an opportunity to pay forward. These individuals are part of my life and have give meaning to me - the run where I got the medal is part of my life and meaningful at some level ... so I give my medal away to a person who I think is deserving it.

Recently a friend ran race for the cure - I gave her a suggestion ... she has a coworker who was recently diagnosed with cancer, and she used her as inspiration. I told her - write why she inspire you on the back of the race number, and tell her thank you.

Making your runs, bikerides, and triathlons meaningful - share it with someone who cannot ....

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JENN26POINT2 11/9/2010 12:52PM

    On Sunday (11/7) I ran 10 miles that I dedicated to a little boy with a terrible disease can causes fevers and seizures. He's 5, has hypertension, cysts on the brain, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis and a myriad of other ailments. He's seen by the National Institute of Health every 3 months and between these appointments he goes to the University of Iowa Children's Hospital and the Mayo Clinic. His mom can't work because she's spending so much time caring for him and going to appointments with him that she had to leave her job. His dad is the only one who works. This little boy's prescription costs, after insurance, is $700 a month!! I chose to run 10 miles to bring awareness to this little man and generate some funding for the family either for Christmas use or for travel use. I got $220 in cash donations, plus some donations to the charity of the family's choice. THAT run was meaningful! And the family was very appreciative!

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DEBBIEDAY 10/16/2010 11:09AM

    AWESOME post - Thanks Jan!

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HEALTHYCHIC 10/11/2010 9:48AM

    this is so true and very awesome. every distance race i run, i write a dedication for each mile on the back of my bib..there's always a mile deicated to "those who can't".

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DDOORN 10/8/2010 10:51PM

    Yes, it deepens the experience all the more and shares our terrific experiences with others who truly need a boost in their lives. How does that expression go: Shared joy is doubled...? So true!

Great, great suggestion Jan!


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SYNCHRODAD 10/8/2010 10:23PM

    Giving away a medal made me think of this. The "attitude of gratitude" extends among the fully healthy as well. In 1994, my daughter swept the World Aquatic Championships in Rome and won 3 gold medals; the best in the world in her sport. In an expression of pure love and thanks, she gave one of her medals to her coach. A simple thanks to the person who had poured her life into my daughter. They had spent thousands of hours together for 14 years. We called her coach her "other mother." They are still close today although they live on two different oceans.

The attitude of gratitude has aliases. Thankfulness, appreciation, and even interpersonal wonder and awe are among them. Those are what you have shown and given, Mr. Frandsen.

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NANCYLAPEACH 10/8/2010 9:58PM

    Wow, are inspiring. I was recently diagnosed with lymphoma and I started exercising ...I just want to be as healthy as I can be. I'll cycle for all the people who can't. I am going to keep my eye on you and look for my inspiration. Thanks for your blog.

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1MEGMEG 10/8/2010 9:09PM

    Wonderful blog, thank you! You are an incredibly inspiring person, Jan. I work in oncology clinical research un a large cancer facility. Just over two years ago, shortly before I began my running "career", I was walking through one of our oncologist's office & sw a picture of a former patient in the wall. He was crossing the finish line of the Goofy challenge & had written - to dr. ----- & staff, 39.3 couldn't gave done it without you. I don't know that patient but I think about him all the time. I am so grateful & never take for granted the simple ability to be able to out one foot in front of the other. So many people have motivated and inspired me, I try to pay it forward & do for others as often as possible. Happy trails & fleet feet. :)

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MARYMARY611 10/8/2010 8:00PM

    Well spoken, sir.

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SEEHOLZ 10/8/2010 1:47PM


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BILLALEX70 10/8/2010 9:24AM

    Great idea!

See you in a week to earn another medal!

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FUNFROG79 10/8/2010 8:20AM

    Great blog, thanks for sharing! You are very thoughtful! emoticon

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CHERYLD02 10/8/2010 8:04AM

    Jan, you are such an insparation to us all! I appreciate all the motivation you give not only me, but all of us. Thank you.

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    Once again Jan - you are emoticon. You are so selfless - You are always thinking of others. I wish I could be like you - I will strive to become that way. I have heard about the group that gives medals to individuals who have cancer and are going through treatment. I think this is FANTASTIC.

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IRISHLASS117 10/8/2010 6:43AM

    Thank you Warrior. Today is another change given to us so we can pay it forward. I'm always thankful when I wake up on the right side of the dirt!

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DREMARGRL 10/8/2010 6:27AM

    What a marvelous thing to do, Jan. You know that I'm one of your biggest fans and I am cheering you on. Your journeys are helping so many by inspiring them to be and do better. Your journeys are part of you and made you who you are.....A strong, gentle giant! Keep up the good work, my dear friend, and don't ever stop just being who you were meant to be! Continued success.....and most of all....continued good health.
LIVE STRONG!!!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Reflections 10.4.10

Monday, October 04, 2010

It happened again. I spoke with a friend yesterday who developed an issue while running. Earlier this year - someone else had a running injury which actually required surgery. Unfortunately my friend yesterday has an upcoming event.

It is difficult situation to be in. What do you do as a friend? First, you want to be supportive. Second, you take this very serious - no matter what event is ahead of you, and get it looked at by a professional so it can be addressed appropriately.

A couple of years ago I sprained my ankle running - a week before a 100 mile bike ride. I was in the ER, and I talked with an orthopedic surgeon. (This orthopedic (foot) surgeon is also part of an NFL team). I was told I could do it by the surgeon I would be OK, and what should trigger me to stop. (I did the ride).

The advise was appropriate because it was a professional with experience in the type of injury I sustained.

Now, way too often I see people on this site say 'you can do it'. That MAY be OK in many cases, but we don't know. Please use caution when you tell a person they can do it if there is an underlying medical issue, because you may not be doing your sparkfriend a favor - encourage them to get a professional to look at it. Your friend may not like it - but in order to win on Wall street - you have to invest, or - doing the right thing from the beginning - is the right investment.

Happy sparking

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEBBIEDAY 10/5/2010 8:18AM

    As always, Great advise Jan!
Thanks for sharing!!!

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B-N-ME 10/4/2010 8:42PM

    Great advice again, keep it going Jan!

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ANGIEBILL 10/4/2010 7:52PM

    Jan, once again great advice. No one should risk injurying themselves further without consulting a qualified physician. I hope that everyone remembers this if something should ever happen to them.

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LAURIE5658 10/4/2010 6:20PM

    As time goes on I am becoming an ultra conservative runner because I know just how fragile our body CAN be if we overtrain OR run through pain. Its just not worth it folks!! Don't do it! Thank you, Jan!

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LILPAT3 10/4/2010 10:17AM

    I wish I would have had coaches in high school that followed the principle that it is NOT okay to play when you have pain unless the doctor tells you it is. I might still be running if that were the case.

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ETTEZEUS 10/4/2010 10:05AM

    Now that is a good piece of advice!
Thank you!

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    You are so right Jan - I have found myself more often now - telling people to rest and ice and see how it feels in a couple of day - if the pain is still there - go see a doctor, because reality - the cost may be expensive, but peace of mind is priceless and if there is real issues - you are better off know it.

I will always thank you for your insistence that I go see a doctor in December of last year. You definitely saved my running life.

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FUNFROG79 10/4/2010 9:57AM

    I hear ya~ emoticon

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DDOORN 10/4/2010 7:43AM

    NO injury is worth the risk of added insult!

I support my buddies by encouraging them to follow drs. orders because I KNOW they would have a much more difficult time being sidelined long-term than to miss a single event or two.


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GROEDER 10/4/2010 6:36AM

    I know from experience that your advice is right on the money!!! Qualified professionals are far more objective and not governed by emotion.
I hope everyone reads your blog and follows your suggestions.
Thanks for writing it.

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PVG 10.2.10

Sunday, October 03, 2010

PVG (Ponte-vino-giro) or tour of the wine country and covered bridges is an annual event in NE Ohio. It is put on by a local bike store and is a two day event.

Arrival straight from work on Friday got my package and met my colleague and her husband for dinner. It was a great time with them. Early to bed. The weather forecast was a bit iffy - however, we started out with an absolutely glorious sunrise which included a rainbow over lake Erie.

Got underway and it started to drizzle... then rain. Well made it to the first rest stop. A mile down the road it was time to decide 34 or 67 miles. I decided on the 67 :-) and down the road I went.

About 5 miles after the split I met a guy I had rode with before, so we essentially rode the rest of the ride together. Weather rain off and on, and we were soaked when we got home. Pasta party last night ... yes. Will prefer not to make any additional comments.

Spent some time with a couple from Cinci and had great - early to bed - decided not to ride today (ran 7 miles instead)....

Just a quick race report ..

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEBBIEDAY 10/5/2010 8:21AM

    I bet that was a beautiful ride this time of year! Have Fall colors arrived? Here in Georgia Fall 'sneaks in' and only some color in the north Georgia mountain areas.....this transplanted yankee missed New England in the Fall and yes-even winter!

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AMCG2002 10/4/2010 4:07PM

    That sounds like so much fun! That would be the riding, not the rain (boo hiss!). Some year I would love to do that ride and make it a getaway weekend for Dennis and me. I'm guessing it's always going to be 2 weeks before the Columbus Marathon, though, huh?

Only 7 miles... LOL ;)

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BILLALEX70 10/4/2010 11:31AM

    The ever amazing Jan!

2 weeks out from a marathon and the guy is riding 67 miles. WooHoo!

See you in two weeks.

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BOBBYD31 10/3/2010 11:31PM

    sorry the rain spoiled things but great job on the 67

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GRACE612 10/3/2010 9:29PM

    Pasta is a staple in our house!!! lol!!! Sounds like a fabulous weekend!

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DDOORN 10/3/2010 9:17PM

    Sorry to hear about the rain...! But awesome distance! I've slogged out soaker rides and if it's just a drizzle I can manage but flatout downpours? Just did one of those and wouldn't want to repeat it if I can help!


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L3DESIGNS 10/3/2010 7:05PM

    Sounds like a great long ride! Great job...

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DJS-DEBBIE 10/3/2010 5:35PM

    I cannot imagine 67 miles - you are absolutely amazing!

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TTLEELEE 10/3/2010 4:05PM

    Just reading about your runs and rides makes my muscles ache a bit Jan. The stuff you do is GREAT. Thanks for sharing! emoticon

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ANGIEBILL 10/3/2010 4:01PM

    Sounds like a fun weekend!

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LAURIE5658 10/3/2010 3:50PM

    After suffering through a very hot summer, this coller weather raocks! It sounds like you had a great time! Here's to more to come!

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IRISHLASS117 10/3/2010 3:25PM

    You rock Warrior!

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LIVE2RUN4LIFE 10/3/2010 3:08PM

    Brrrr! But sounds like a great race. My husband likes long bike rides on the road. I suspect they are probably in my future down the road, but I have resisted so far. Partly because I have a mountain bike and find the idea of trail riding much more appealing. And running even more appealing.

Have a good week. Is this a taper?

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Reflections 10.1.10

Friday, October 01, 2010

Tomorrow is October 2nd. It is Livestrong day. LIVE STRONG Day marks the day of cancer survivor celebration ... I encourage you to celebrate cancer survivorship by wearing yellow tomorrow 10/2.

Currently there are 28 million cancer survivors, but the stats are scary - the prediction is one out of two men and one out of three women will be diagnosed with cancer. It is scary.

What can we do to avoid being a statistic - we can make efforts to prevent it from happening. One of them you have already done - you are here and making strides to eat and live healthier. If you smoke - stop - and stop all tobacco products - wear sunscreen when you are out (even on days where it is cloudy), breast exams, mammograms, colonoscopy, testicular exams etc - make sure you have an annual physical ... yes, I know it was in a reflections just a few days ago.

and tomorrow - wear yellow to celebrate survivorship

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

B-N-ME 10/2/2010 8:51PM

    Everybody knows somebody....and that is TOO many people!

Thank you Jan for all you do, in the fight to stop it!

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ANGIEBILL 10/1/2010 8:54PM

    I will be wearing my yello tomorrow! Thanks for the reminder!

Comment edited on: 10/1/2010 8:55:02 PM

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LILPAT3 10/1/2010 3:05PM


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TRACKMOM64 10/1/2010 6:40AM

    Congratulations to all survivors.

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Reflections 9.28.10

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

First of all - thank you for reading my blogs. Second, thank you so very much for all the compliments. I have to be honest and say I am pretty overwhelmed by the outpour of support.

This past weekend I got an email from a friend. His wife had a mammogram on Friday, and you know what may be up with her. Depending on the result - she may have a stereotactic biopsy.

When I browse spark website and all the postings about what people are doing to maintain their health - there is something I am really missing. So I will come with a gentle reminder by listing a few things. Monthly breast exam (men as well), PAP smear and the male equivalent - exam of the prostate (don't forget to teach the younger boys to examine the testicles ... remember the Lance Armstrong story and the Scott Hamilton story?), colonoscopy, and physical. I am sure you are getting the point. And yes, I had my colonoscopy when I was 50, and I am having an annual physical (next one is next month and I got my flushot this week), got my teeth cleaned last week.

In addition to the prevention/early detection of disease - having an annual physical will also help you harvest the fruit of your labor - as in share your success with your health care provider (MD, DO, NP) ... lower weight, blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol etc

The other thing you may want to consider to measure wellness - make a list with two columns - one being then (when you embarked on your spark journey) and now (today). Here is couple of things you may want to compare. ... add what ever you feel - this is your list
- quality of life
- quality of sleep
- mood
- anxiety
- self confidence
- level of energy
- relationship with your family

Keep the list and do it every 4 - 6 months - look at the progress or use it to help you set goals. Goals may not always be measured in lbs (kg), inches, or miles run or walked.

Now make it a healthier day!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DREMARGRL 9/29/2010 7:02AM

    This is such a fine blog to remind people to take good care of themselves....and their all around mental health as well. Mind and body definitely intermingle.....and I want to be in harmony. Thanks for the reminder, Jan. You're the emoticon!!!
emoticonMuaaah! Have a glorious day and a fine time on Saturday. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CALIDREAMER76 9/28/2010 10:35PM

    Thanks - for the wellness check reminder - I'm good about getting checked what needs to be checked - but not so good at looking at the other measures!

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IRISHLASS117 9/28/2010 1:39PM

    I suck at this! I'm great at taking care of everyone else though!

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LAURIE5658 9/28/2010 12:15PM

    It is my strong determination to be proactive with my health given that Mom had breast cancer and ultimately passed. I just finished my yearly rounds of all testing including bloodwork, colonoscopy, mammogram and pap. It feels awesome to have everything checked off for another year!

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LILPAT3 9/28/2010 11:38AM

    Great reminders. Stereotactic biopsies are not the worst types of biopsies...sore for about a week, but they definitely help doctors pinpoint, plan, etc.

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CHANGE_4_LIFE 9/28/2010 9:26AM

    Excellent blog Jan -- you just reminded me of a couple of things that I've been putting off. Thanks for the reminder!! :-)

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    Thanks Jan for the reminder

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GROEDER 9/28/2010 6:42AM

    Those are great reminders for all of us. Thanks for keeping them fresh in my mind.

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