Tooting my own horn

I’m just proud of myself – the big girls and I ran the Colin Cancer Coalition’s Get Your Rear in Gear 5K this morning. 


And I actually managed to jog the whole thing! I finished in a little over 39 minutes, which isn’t too damn bad considering I was pushing a double stroller with nearly 80 lbs of kid. 

(For reference, my first post-Itty Bitty 5K on February 12 was about 31 minutes.) 

Everyone was super supportive and cheered when they saw us coming, which was so nice. 

I am working on updates for all of the kids and the garden and the brewing – or lack thereof- but it’s a slow process. Stay tuned! 

Taking a stand against Lung Cancer

We did it! Despite rain that could best be described as torrential at times, the Littlest Brewster and I took a stand against lung cancer today.

We were joined by Kristen, one of my bestest friends in the whole wide world, two of her adorable boys, and an awful lot of very wet people. Seriously – the turn out was amazing, despite the weather. I tried to include some pictures of the crowd so you can see the incredible people who came today to join in the fight against lung cancer.

I had some of my patients and coworkers fill out “In Memory Of” and “In Honor Of” placards to hang on the stroller in addition to the one for my mom. The stroller was pretty awesome, even if the signs turned into runny, pulpy messes within a few minutes. I carried them all in my heart, paper or no.

On a totally inspirational note, there was a woman in a teal survivor’s shirt who had to be 70 if she was a day – and she kicked our asses. Ran the whole way. It was incredible to see how many teal survivor shirts were there. And with your support, every year there can be more.

And one day, we will kick lung cancer’s ass and we will ALL be free to breathe.

Tomorrow’s the day!

The day of the LUNGe Forward 5K for Lung Cancer Awareness!!!!

There is still time to donate and support this incredibly worthy cause. (You can actually donate up until the end of the year, but seize the day! Stomp the monster!)

I’ve included a handy dandy fact sheet from the Lung Cancer Initiative (link to original here) so you can share some information on this devastating disease and correct some misapprehensions. For instance, did you know that nearly 20% of all new lung cancer cases are diagnosed in people who NEVER smoked? That’s right; lung cancer isn’t something that people “brought on themselves” or “deserve.” No one deserves cancer. NO ONE.

So please, please please, donate to lung cancer research, share the facts about lung cancer, and help us find a cure!

fact sheet-page-001And stay tuned tomorrow for pics of me at the run! 🙂 I can’t wait!!!

Lung Cancer Awareness Month

It’s that time of year again! Time for my annual appeal on behalf of lung cancer awareness, in memory of my mom and all of the other hundreds of thousands of people who are battling this under-funded, under-publicized, overly deadly disease.

The last picture

The last picture

For those of you who did not know or need a refresher, here are some true and honest facts about lung cancer:

  • Each year in the US, approximately 228,000 people are diagnosed with lung cancer and nearly 160,000 die of the disease.¹
  • 1 in 14 people will be diagnosed with lung cancer.¹
  • Smoking is the leading cause of lung cancer, but approximately 60%-65% of all new lung cancer diagnoses are among people who have never smoked or have already quit smoking. About 50% are former smokers and 10%-15% have never smoked:5
  • Lung cancer takes more lives than breast, prostate and colon cancers combined; it accounts for 27% of all cancer deaths.¹
  • African American males have the highest incidence of lung cancer and the highest death rate.
  • Men’s incidence rates began declining more than 20 years ago, while women’s rates just recently began to decline slightly, after rising for many years.
Lung Cancer in North Carolina
  • In North Carolina, around 8,559 people are diagnosed with lung cancer, and more than 6,186 are expected to die this year.

Did you know?

  • Over the last 30 years, substantial investment has resulted in significant increases in survival of many diseases. For example:
~Breast Cancer
  • US Government research funding: $750 million/year²
  • Results: significant increase in 5-year survival rates:4
    • Early 1970s – 75%
    • Today – 90%
 ~HIV/AIDS
  • US Government research funding: $3 billion/year²
  • Results:
    • AIDS was once a near-immediate death sentence
    • Today – with anti-retroviral drug therapy, the 3-year survival rate is 90%.
 ~Lung Cancer
  • US Government research funding: Only $267 million/year ²³
  • Results: very little change in 5-year survival rates:4
    • Early 1970s – 12%
    • Today – 17%
But there is hope!!!
Over the last five years, there has been an explosion in the scientific understanding of the biology of lung cancer. This information is beginning to be translated into new treatments for the disease, but we can only continue to make progress by funding more research, awareness, education and access programs.
So please, if you are able, support lung cancer awareness in some way during November. One very good organization, particularly for those of us in NC, is the Lung Cancer Initiative of NC. Not only do they support research into lung cancer, they also strive to raise awareness of and provide education regarding lung cancer prevention, screening, and treatment.
If you are interested, you can donate to my personal fundraising page for the Lung Cancer Initiative here.
Because like I say on my LCI page – no one should lose a loved one to lung cancer.
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References
1. American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts and Figures 2013. Atlanta: American Cancer Society; 2013.
2. American Cancer Society, Breast Cancer Facts & Figures 2009-2010. Atlanta: American Cancer Society; 2010
3. Kohler, B, et al. Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1975-2007, Featuring Tumors of the Brain & Other Nervous System. JNCI, 2011. doi:10.1093/jnci/djr077
4. Fast Stats: An interactive tool for access to SEER cancer statistics. Surveillance Research Program, National Cancer Institute. (Accessed on 4-22-2011)
5. Burns DM. Primary Prevention, smoking, and smoking cessation: Implications for future trends in lung cancer prevention. Cancer, 2000. 89:2506-2509. Thun, MJ, et al. Lung Cancer Occurrence in Never-Smokers: An Analysis of 13 Cohorts and 22 Cancer Registry Studies. PLOS Medicine, 2008. 5(9): e185. Doi: 10.1371/journal/pmed.0050185. Satcher, D, Thompson, TG and Kaplan, JP. Women and smoking: a report of the Surgeon General. Nicotine Tob Res, 2002. 4(1): 7-20.? Park et al. 2012: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/cncr.26545/abstract.
6. SEER Stat Fact Sheets. Surveillance Research Program, National Cancer Institute.

Here we go again – C25K, take two

It is slightly galling to me that I’ve gone from running 5K races (and placing!) every few weeks to needing to start the Couch-to-5K program again.

No, scratch that. It is extremely galling to me.

Yes, I had a baby between then and now. Yes, two kids leave a lot less time for running. Yes, I should be glad that I manage to get out for a run jog intermittent shuffle as often as I do.

But I want to be a runner again. I miss being able to get out there and go. I know how much happier I am when I do that for myself.

So I’ve started the C25K app – again – and have my eyes set on the Commitment Day 5K on 1/1/16. I’ve made a page where I can report on my progress (or lack thereof) and anyone who’s interested can keep an eye on me.

And I’ll be sure to post pics in January, as I (hopefully) jubilantly cross the finish line.

Because I know I can do this.