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RTCC Challenges 2011

January 12, 2012

When I was told, yes everyone can do this Ride but yes there are hills along the way, I did get out and train hard. I discovered that, hey, Abbotsford wasn’t so far away after all and ever so slowly, a body that I only vaguely remembered started to reappear and it felt good.

I rode in rain and cold, alone and then with experienced and fit cyclists who kindly accepted me into their groups. They taught me some of the tricks of good cycling and the back road routes to avoid traffic. There is a wonderful community of cyclists out there so, if you don’t have a group to ride with, search one out because it makes a huge difference to your conditioning and it is a lot more fun. There is such camaraderie among cyclists, ranging from a friendly tip of the head as you pass by to a shout ‘are you okay?’ when you are stopped by the side of the road.

There are two parts to the Ride to Conquer Cancer, the training, and the other major challenge, the fundraising. I am happy to say my teammate and I exceeded our minimum by a significant amount due to the extraordinary generosity of our friends and family, and a few complete strangers mixed in.  I don’t usually like fundraising but this was easy for me to talk about as everyone has been touched by cancer – a family member, a friend, a co-worker – and everyone knows the devastation of this disease. Our passion was increased by the thoughts of our own friends and family who have battled with the disease. Our donations came in small bits and big chunks, each one appreciated as much as the other. My approach was – ask them for a donation. All they can say is no.

The days flew by, first months, then weeks and only days to the Ride. I became nervous. How tough would it be, how long would it take? Would my son be able to keep up to me (that was a joke for his benefit).

To be continued Thursday.

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