May 7, 2014

Posted by Jo W. in , | 5/07/2014
I am kind of in denial that it is already a week into May, and my cross country ride will begin in less than four weeks. I will be setting off across the country from Baltimore with a team of 29 young adults. For 70 days, we will be riding and spreading awareness for young adults with cancer, visiting cancer communities and providing our support and optimism. For 70 days, we will be blogging about and sharing our cause and stories to anyone who meets us. For 70 days, we will be helped by strangers, friends, and family who will give us food to fuel our ride, a roof over our heads, and a floor to sleep on. At the end of our 70 day journey, we will arrive in Portland, Oregon to be reunited with our family members and celebrate our incredible feat. After 70 days, we will all be changed by this profound experience, enriched by the bonds we made as a team and the connections we made all over the country.

So how am I preparing for the journey of a lifetime? It will no doubt be physically strenuous and something I've never attempted before. The first step is to be in good physical condition. Since I have been training for running races one after the other since May 2012, I feel like I am currently in the best shape of my life. I started cycling at the end of May in 2013 and I have come a long ass way from being a complete noob on a road bike. I didn't even know how gear shifting worked (I used to exclusively mountain bike)! Group riding is also something that I picked up in the past year. My first real group ride was actually my first century ride in September 2013. That wasn't the smartest thing to learn during a century, but I learned pretty damn fast. Since then, I've been riding with various clubs to work on my group riding skills.

This spring season, I have put in a lot of hours training for my first duathlon, PRing in the 10K, and racing my first cycling road race. I've been trying to do longer rides on the weekends to get comfortable in the saddle for hours on end and build my endurance. I've done high intensity training sessions to increase my VO2 max. I have the peace of mind that I have done everything I could to physically prepare for this trip. I think my body is as ready as it ever will be.

Preparing my body is one thing, but mentally, I'm not so sure. I am still worrying about a bunch of little things. Like getting all my bike gear that I will need. And how I will keep blogging from the road, and getting the lease signed for my Boston apartment, preparing all the paperwork for dental school in August, figuring out how to raise $2000 more to meet the fundraising minimum. I get stressed and overwhelmed thinking about these things, and feeling the time crunch. I just need to breathe and just get this shit done. I will be prepared by the end of this month. I will have time to deal with dental school stuff on the road.

Just breathe. 

More posts about 4K for Cancer:
From Baltimore to Portland: The Route I'm Riding


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