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Saturday, July 20, 2013

A Week to Remember

This week will be one to remember in the world of childhood cancer awareness. There have been joys and heart break in this battle, but we are still here are we will keep moving forward. Today as I reflect on the events of this week I can't help but think of the progress that has been made by so many people speaking with one voice and how awareness is becoming something of an Epic Charge in this great battle.


Last week was the beginning of my 50 day challenge to run 50 consecutive days in virtually every state in this nation with at least on person representing these states and children smiling for our miles to keep us inspired. I started the first day with a 10k race here in Oregon with a local children's foundation that has been supporting our family. See http://www.4him2day.org/ I chose the longer run because I had never been on the trails in the park we ran and I wanted to see what my race time would be in a 10k. I finished 8th overall just ahead of the 1st place woman with a time of 46:06.

Day 2 of my run was just as exciting as day 1. I found out about a 5k race that just so happened to be right across the street from my brother's house where I was going to for my niece's birthday party. The "Run like a Rockstar" race hosted by http://www.theronanthompsonfoundation.com/
was just the race I needed to keep motivated in the first few days of my virtual run for the White House. The race around Lake Sacajawea was what I had been training for and after taking off early I finished 4th over all and 2nd in men's. I didn't really think about prizes, but they gave me a t-shirt for 2nd place and as I went to get it, they saw my "Follow Me" shirt and asked if I would like to talk about the Run for the White House in front of everyone there! Later I asked Maya Thompson how many people were there and we donated over 500 miles to the Run for the White House.

After two days of back to back races I took a 1 mile run but with the added challenge of waking up at 5am to beat the heat. My plan for the rest of the week would be the same each morning and I picked up a few more miles the next day before work. A few hours into Tuesday I got the message that another child passed away from cancer. Normally I feel the pain as most of the community does, but this time it was different. When any child dies from anything, there is great sorrow, even when it is expected, but when Talia Joy Castellano earned her wings, we all knew a Great Champion had fallen in battle. As one of the most recognized faces in the world of childhood cancer, at an age where she could express herself to the world through her You Tube blogs, Talia brought us together to cheer her on as she fought for over six year. We will never forget and we will never surrender in this fight as we continue to honor the fallen warriors who now stand on heavens golden streets where cancer will never prevail.

The rest of the week was a struggle, but I still got my miles in Wednesday which was the first 5 days of running. I have been creating maps of the states where people are running with me and Washington, Oregon, California, Idaho and Arizona were the first 5. Thursday was also a quick 1 mile at about 6:30, and Friday I took the last of my energy for the week and made a new personal record of my 5k with a time of 21:21, the first time my pace was under 7!

The first 7 days of the first of 7 weeks ended with a bang and this morning I waited for just the right time to do a virtual run in Maryland with some friends I have been following since February. Today at noon eastern time Landon Cooper, Ryan Priest and John McKay finished their run across the country with 3187 miles and $100,000 donated to sarcoma cancer research. These guys have truly fulfilled my dream that began early this year, but then our dreams collided as my running event took a virtual tour and they began to donate their miles to our kids fighting cancer too. I want to give these guys the Epic Awareness/Extra Mile award for this year in running and hope to see what happens next with Miles2Give in 2014.

Finally I have opened up "Follow Me" running shirts to the general public to help me to continue to raise a few extra dollars that will go a long way in this awareness event this year and in years to come. For $25 I will send you a shirt like the one in this picture, in hopes that I can reach every state and have as many people as possible with me when I arrive at the White House on September 1st. All I will need you to do is send me a friend request on facebook and a private message or email me at ricksson33@yahoo.com with your sizes in men's or women's and your shipping address. I can take checks or use Pay pal. I am open to take donations of any size, and if you have officially JOINED the event, I will take donations for the shirts starting at $18. Join here https://www.facebook.com/events/129786293855902/
 Follow me and my miles on my blog page @ https://www.facebook.com/briansphirstblog

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