Saturday, October 1, 2011
Happy Livestrong Day!
In 31 minutes, Livestrong Day officially starts. It also happens to be my sister's birthday, so happy birthday, #1!
While I celebrate my cancerversary (the date I was diagnosed with cancer) each year, Lance Armstrong has taken it to a whole different level. He has an entire country celebrating the day as not only the day he became a survivor, but also as a day of awareness, remembrance, and honor for those who have been affected by cancer.
I'm a long-time fan of the Lance Armstrong Foundation's resources and awareness campaigns. They've also made an effort to support the young adult community through their partnership with the Ulman Cancer Fund (which supports young adults). They also produced notebooks and binders that made it possible for cancer survivors to create a detailed record of their treatment history. However, I am more than excited about the newest LAF initiative that's arrived locally. It's called Livestrong at the Y.
I heard about it for the first time at the triathlon. There was a table with information about it, so I went over to see what the deal was. The representative explained to me that they were starting a small group exercise/wellness program for cancer survivors that would meet at the Y a few times a week.
My first reaction: Awesome...But about four years too late.
I was seriously looking for this program when I finished treatment in September 2007. Unfortunately, it didn't exist then, but thankfully, it does now. Since I've returned to the gym after the tri, there has been a table set up in the entryway of the YMCA advertising the program, and I spoke to the coordinator last week. She let me know that the next session begins (the first to be offered on evenings and weekends) and put my name on her list of participants. I can't wait to start!
In the meantime, this LAF and YMCA partnership is bringing together two of my favorite things...the gym and all things Livestrong. When I went to the gym today, I found a paper chain of encouraging statements to cancer survivors strung along the main hallway. beyond the Livestrong table in the entryway, the gym featured Livestrong banners with inspirational statements, and on each of the kiosks on the strength circuit machines was a tiny sign that reminded patrons to wear yellow if they visited the gym tomorrow, on Livestrong Day.
The whole thing feels kind of like a party honoring cancer survivors...and what could be better than a party at one of my favorite places- the gym! On my way out, I signed up to come back tomorrow and bike for an hour, and you can bet I'll be wearing a bright yellow shirt...maybe even with my bright yellow shorts. I also took a minute to write on one of the narrow slips of yellow paper that were being used to extend the chain. I wrote one of my favorite statements, which comes from this 1 minute Nike video from the 2008 Olympics (Click).
I hope you'll wear yellow on Sunday, October 2nd in honor of Livestrong Day...because it's not just Lance's cancerversary, it's honoring all cancer survivors who keep on living strong.
Hope, Love, Run,