If anyone has followed me for awhile this may be a bit of a repeat post for you all.
You see its that time again. Every year, this time of year, I try to take a deep breath, enjoy the Oxygen flowing in my body, and thank God that I am able to do so.
You see there are many people out there who have difficulty or discomfort breathing in. And that’s why I dedicate each Saturday in July to raise money for the American Lung Association through running in our local “Fight For Air” Stairclimb, taking place this year taking place on Saturday July 26th.
Yes, a ‘sensible’ person might opt to stay in bed on hot Saturday mornings, but that adjective has always eluded me somehow. So this Saturday, and every Saturday I hang out at our local Coliseum, where our stairclimb takes place at and run up and down some stairs to get ready for this event. Sound like fun? Take a look:
Its not always easy at first but the Saturday practices slowly get my legs in stairclimbing shape. And true to its name, this event really effects your lungs, compared to other 5K or marathon races. You really get a new appreciation for the need and the work that your lungs do after running some 1500 stairs! Oh there is a monster 5000 stair climb event, but I am not that crazy!
And, even at my old age, and a bout with cancer, I am still in this to win it! I run hard on those stairs on Saturdays.
I am watching my weight so these old legs don’t have so much weight to lug up and down those stairs; meaning no more of this:
I even have taken to riding my bike to work to help with my goals.
…..and I am doing all this for you….and your money.
(you knew it was coming didn’t you?)
Yes, I am trying to raise money for Lung Health. I am busting my butt so you might feel sorry for my cause, feel I am committed, and hence, cough over a dollar or two to help those unfortunate young and old people that are tragically affected with poor lung health.
I will spare you the details or the facts you have seen every year. If you are interested in them you could click here.
Lung Cancer kills thousands each year. It is not the same uninvasive Cancer (it’s a word I just made up) I had.
This cancer is for real!
And did you know Asthma is the number one reason for children missing school? It is.
So these are just but a few reasons I am dedicated to raising money for improved Lung Health each year. I appreciate what my lungs have done for me over the years and I hope other young kids get the same opportunity to enjoy running and biking like I did.
In fact, part of the money raised at this Stairclimb goes to a week-long camp, Camp Puff-n-Stuff, for kids that teach kids how to deal with their asthma. Rebecca Balitsaris, the Area Director for the American Lung Association told me this good story on the success of this camp:
Rebecca told me, “I do have a good story from this year’s camp. A school nurse shared with us that one particular child used to visit her room 2 or 3 times a week due to his asthma the year before he attended camp. The child attended camp last summer, and he only visited the nursing room 2 to 3 times the whole year last year!”
So the money you and I donate actually does visible results each year. And I think that is part of the great intrinsic feeling of running climbing in this event each year: It actually helps real people and deserving kids. And, hey breathing with asthma Ain’t easy!
How many people with asthma do you know?
If you are interested in donating a few dollars or would like more info on our stairclimb please click here.
So instead of doing this, this Saturday and the next….
Picture Compliments of the incomparable Steve Jordan
I am going to make my lungs burn so that others can breathe easier.
And if you can help (please, please, please), or participate in other charitable causes to help others, give yourself a high five!
Imagine…..for a second…that where you work….there is an endless supply of…..snacks!
That’s my job currently. I order and manage product locally for a global snack leader. It’s a curse. If I ever get hungry there are literally hundreds of different products to try. All kinds of snacks too. Try? You open a bag and then eat it. The whole bag! I’m such a pig. Plus, I feel it is sort of my corporate duty to try these products as it is a new job and I should become more familiar with its products. Right? Or so I tell myself as I dig for another handful.
A few years ago our local American Lung Association (ALA) held a 5k run downtown. It was a bit small but lots of fun. As I walked to my car to get a check for the drive a nice young lady picked me up in her car and asked if I needed a ride? (can never get enough of that).
It turns out she was one of the directors for the local ALA. We chatted a bit and she introduced me to some of the other leaders in the organization. I was so impressed with these ladies I volunteered to write a race summary for our local running club in hopes I could drive some interest for the following year’s 5k.
Some call it a 5K run, some call it a 5K walk
The following year they contacted me to be on their Leadership Board for a new event to our area, their inaugural Fight For Air Stairclimb to help get it off the ground, so to speak. I was thrilled.
Have you ever done a stairclimb or run some stairs? The first year I ran the stairclimb I thought I was in shape. My 5k times that year were as good as they had ever been. I ran up and down those stairs and I have to tell you, when I was done, my lungs were hurting! My lungs now, not my legs or my calves, my lungs. Can you imagine going through life that way? I thought what a great cause to support, trying to get the world healthier lungs, as I was bent over catching my breath. And a great way to do it too! I think any fitness fanatic can agree, if you don’t have fresh air in your lungs, or healthy, efficient lungs, you are not going to get fit. So that is what the ALA tries to do, fight for lung health, cleaner air, as well as lung diseases like asthma.
Had to run to the bathroom...
I know there are several of you reading this that are runners or other healthy, fit, wellness individuals. There are many types, ages, and fitness levels all working to improve their health, kill some kalories, or fit into last year’s clothes. You know what? What a great hobby and passion!
Great hobby because you not only have the ability, drive, and stamina to make yourself a healthier human being but you have the ability to help others get healthier too. Your gifts, skills, talent and hard work can help less healthy people improve their standard of living by doing what you love (?) to do, running. All these fun events raise money for great causes. Whether you choose to benefit healthier lungs, breast cancer, or a long list of other great charities, you can take your talents, raise some money (shamelessly via your blog) and help others. And, to me, that is as good of a feeling as the great things I we do for ourselves. Isn’t it?
I’ve said it before, have some fun with your fitness, join some races. Then think about other causes, other people you would like to benefit and join those races and events as well. They’re fun!
You may meet some people you know that you had no idea were runners too.
You can start by joining me in our Fight For Air Stairclimb. Join my (WordPress) team, or sponsor me from afar instead (it is tax deductible here in the states). I can reimburse your kindness with a very cool Stairclimb t-shirt, tub of ice cream or sorbet, used toddlers clothing and toys, or even a guest post. Sound too good to be true? Check out my homepage.
You can join my team, one way or the other, or please have fun with your fitness in your own hometown. Join a race, help some less fortunate ones, and celebrate your great health that you have worked so hard on (you really have, haven’t you?). You can help less fortunate ones get healthier, in addition to your own rockin’ self. And run off all those snacks from work too.