Riding Life’s Roller Coaster

It’s been an interesting few weeks. On November 3rd, I crossed the Verrazano Narrows bridge with 50,000 of my closest acquaintances on my way to finishing my 4th NYC marathon. It would have and should have been NYC number 5 but Hurricane Sandy had other thoughts last year. In a nice display of class, those runners who were registered last year, and ran this year were presented their 2012 finisher medal. Well done NY.

nyI had a great weekend with Ethan Zohn and crew as we once again raced for his charity Grassroot Soccer. The pre event dinner was nice and I had the chance to connect with some old Grassroot Soccer buddies, including those who made the trip to South Africa with me in March. The race itself was – ok. I got out of it what I put into it. I ran a fair front half and relaxed the second half, taking in all of the sights, sounds, and smells that this epic event has to offer. I was lucky enough to spot my wife and family and took the time for hugs and smiles. I also connected with long time GRS teammate Nicole Delma at mile 24 and we commiserated our way to the finish together.

I recovered pretty quickly made my way back up to NYC the following weekend to celebrate Ethan’s birthday and then on November 11th, found myself back in the chemo chair for my second round (of this current wave) of the monoclonal antibody Rituxan to treat a few of my leukemia symptoms that have resurfaced. There is no cause for alarm. I typically handle this drug pretty well and it is very effective. I did hit a few speed bumps during treatment this time around. I got pretty nauseated half way through and had to challenge the drugs and the disease to a little mental dueling.

ethanI was fighting off waves of feeling like I was going to get sick so at first I imagined it was a staring contest between me and the disease. Who was going to blink first? When that game got a little old, I applied the multisport concept and pretended I was grinding up a steep hill on my bike, breathing through it and telling myself that the crest was just around the bend. Happily, with the help of a little ginger ale, I crested the hill, and the leukemia blinked first. So, I won, or in the words of the Grinch…. “I’m SMARTER!” We will do a couple more of these sessions over the coming months and then hopefully be done – for a while!  Thanks to my family for being the true supporters that they are through this stuff…. both on the race course and in the chemo suite.

So next up is the Philadelphia Marathon this weekend (or half marathon for me). I love this race and am looking forward to another great weekend. On Saturday morning I will be manning the Team in Training booth at the race expo from 10:00 AM – 1:00PM. Stop by and say hi if you are in the area. I am also giving the TNT inspirational talk Saturday night. Then before you know it… it’s race day again! MG and her sister will always be walking the half marathon. This is becoming quite a tradition for them as well!

As always,

Train safe, race smart, and thank the volunteers.

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