Monday, August 30, 2010

On Fundraising Minimums…and meeting them

Some of you have probably heard me mention "fundraising minimum" a few times and have wondered what I meant by it.  It is really just exactly what it sounds like - the minimum amount I needed to raise to be able to be a part of the team in San Francisco.

Of the money I raise, 75% goes to the research and patient service programs that Team in Training is famous for.   The remaining 25% is to cover the administrative costs associated with running the program and supporting the athletes.   For a participant from Calgary to participate in Nike Women's Marathon - they need to raise a minimum of $4500.  25% of that pays for our flights, entrance fees to the event, hotel, and other transportation expenses for the event weekend - plus paying for the support people who help us along the way.   It is this breakdown that has helped Team in Training raise over $1 BILLION DOLLARS since it's inception in 1988!   That is over $45 MILLION dollars a year on average!

Once the fundraising minimum is met - ALMOST EVERY PENNY RAISED goes towards the research and patient services.  So, of the $5000 that I have raised, the first $4500 was my minimum ($1125 to cover my expenses and admin fees and $3375 to the research and patient services), but the $500+ I have raised since is going straight to the programs that will one day find a cure for these cancers!  Pretty incredible!   And since I would like to raise $6500 before I go..that will mean that together we have raised over $5300 and will provide the researchers and care givers with the resources to do what they need to do to find that cure…or the drug that controls the cancers (drugs like Gleevec - for leukemia - were developed from Team in Training dollars)…and the support that patients need to beat these cancers.  

What happens to those who don't meet their fundraising minimum?   Team in Training has a set number of dates throughout our training.  One of these is called the Recommittment Date.  It is about 2 months before the event.   Basically it is where you make the decision on whether you will continue or not.   If you have not met your minimum by this date and you want to continue, you need to sign a form and provide your own credit card number - stating that if you have not met the minimum by the Credit Card Charge date (about 2 weeks before the event) then you are agreeing to pay the remaining amount yourself (you do have up until one month after the event to keep fundraising and can put in for a reimbursement of the money if you happen to make enough donations to cover what was charged to your card).  

Amazingly, my team for Nike Women's this year had a 95% recommitment rate!  That was the best that our TNT office had ever seen!   Not everyone is at their goals yet, but with the support of the office, their team mates, and their loved ones - most will likely earn at least their minimums before it becomes necessary for a credit card to be charged.   This is why you will occasionally see me posting events for my team mates on Facebook.   You never know when they are doing something that someone might be interested in :)

That is the same reason I have tried to vary my fundraising - to appeal to as many people as I can.   The thought of donating to a cause you have no interest in may keep you from supporting me, but through my other fundraisers - the jeans days, the tupperware, the magazines, the pub night, the weight loss challenge, the art auction - I've found a way to reach many of you who may not have wanted to help otherwise.  And I appreciate every ounce of that support!  

So, for those of you who are tired of my tireless pleas for donations…please know that I am doing it for the people who are suffering through living with a blood cancer.  The patients, their families and their futures. 

Sunday, August 29, 2010

August Update

August was a very busy month as the twins were really finding their stride with the whole walking thing…and I was running longer and longer distances :)   Just this weekend, I ran 16K with our team.  

I ran another 10K race in Edmonton on the 21st - coming in with a time of 1:07!  A new personal best.  But perhaps the best part of that entire race was that I ran it with my friends Anna and April.   It was Anna's first race since her diagnosis and she did so fantastic - 1:13!   I was just far enough ahead that I got to be there to cheer her across the finish line!  A very emotional moment for us all!  And thanks to our wonderful race photographers, we have the whole thing really well documented!  I posted some of the photos over on my website at

As of yesterday, I have raised over $5000 (thanks to a generous neighbour who really REALLY wanted to see me with purple hair).  My amazing hairdresser, Brandi, has offered to donate the colouring!  So, I will be having the hair done up in a lovely shade of purple in the next week or two.  I will be sure to post photos on my running website!

At about mid-month, I had all of my fundraiser events and stores wrap up and so I have been working at putting together some new fundraisers. I am officially past the minimum I needed to raise, but I'm not stopping there.  I want to raise as much as I possibly can so we can kick cancer to the curb!   Please donate if you can…and check out my fundraising events to see if there is anything you might be interested in (below).

Gimme 5 Challenge
This is a one week challenge (Aug 28-Sept 3)  issued by our Team in Training office to all team members!  Our goal is to raise as much money as possible in one week on just $5 donations!   So, if you haven't donated yet because you are short on cash - here's your chance to make a difference with a small donation!

1) Gimme 5 minutes of your time - Check out my website and read what I am doing

2) Gimme $5 - just donate online: five dollars for a great cause

3) Gimme 5 friends - send this to 5 friends to help spread the word! Advocate for me!

4) Gimme 5 more minutes of your time - every 5 minutes someone new is diagnosed with a blood cancer - money for research is needed!

5) Gimme 5 hours (or more/less) to complete the half marathon (well, I am aiming more at 2.5 hours for the half...but the theme is fives here)

For everyone who donates $5 to me in the next week via my donation website, I will enter your name into a draw for the prize that I have a chance to win.  I have no idea what it is but they say it is a "TNT Prize Pack".  I'll have Cam draw the winner if it is confirmed that I win the challenge!  I will find out after Sept 7.

If I don't get enough donations to take the big prize - I will draw instead for a Team in Training mouse pad that I have here :)  I will either deliver in person (local) or mail the prize to the winner

Norwex Catalogue Party
My friend, Heather, is a Norwex representative and she has generously offered to donate 30% of her commissions on the party toward my fundraising efforts.  Norwex products are fantastic.  Cam and I switched over to chemical-free cleaning a couple of years ago and it was the best thing we ever did.  We are healthier for it and we never have to worry about the girls o the dogs getting into any harmful products…because they don't exist in our house anymore!   If you are local, I can get you a catalogue - just email me.  For those out of town - here is an online copy of the catalogue.

and there are new products at this site:

You can order through me so just let me know what you'd like :)

For out of town orders, there is a $4.95 shipping charge per order. These orders will be sent directly to your house.

For local orders, Heather can send the order in all together and the shipping will only be $2 per order and I will deliver the orders when they arrive. If you would rather have it shipped - it will be the $4.95.

And the shipping is super speedy! When I attended one of her parties on a Saturday - the order was in by Wednesday. The one time I had one shipped right to me - it was expresspost and it came about as fast.

Empties to End Blood Cancer
BOTTLE DRIVE!!!!   This one is for the locals only (though the out of towers are welcome to participate - just take in your bottles and donate the proceeds).  If you would like to donate your empties to my cause - let me know and I will make arrangements with you to pick them up during the month of September.

Thank you so much to everyone for all of your support!  I will continue to raise money until the race on October 17!   I hope to raise as much money as possible so that one day money will no longer need to be raised and we can celebrate a cure!

Until next month..
Cori :)

Please consider supporting me in my run for a cure

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The hair is going PURPLE!!!

When my very generous neighbour, Joe, found out how close I was to $5000 - he pledged the rest of the money to get me there!   And my wonderful hairdresser, Brandi, at Xhale Salon & Spa has offered to donate the colouring so as soon as we can get me booked in - I will be turning these locks purple!

Thank you so much to everyone who has gotten me this far with my fundraising efforts!   I am still going to be raising money until the race so it is definitely not too late to donate.  No amount is too small - in fact, I have a $5 donation challenge going on as we speak!   Please be a part of the cure we hope to celebrate one day!!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Take THAT, Cancer! The Edmonton Marathon 10K - August 21, 2010

 And so, my last 10K of the summer is done :)   Last night, I ran the Edmonton Marathon 10K.   It was my first race where I actually participated with friends - Anna and April came up to Edmonton to run it as well.

It was my first evening race.  When I registered, I didn't realize it was on the Saturday night until I got the confirmation email.   That was a bit scary because it could have meant a really HOT run if the weather decided to be that way.  In the week leading up to it, the smoke from the BC fires had settled in Alberta and as we drove north on Thursday night, the smoke kept getting thicker and thicker.  Not ideal running conditions.   By friday, some overnight rains had dampened it somewhat but it was still smoky.   and then Saturday dawned cool and wet and considerably less smoky.  Things were looking up!

Cam and I attended the race expo on the Friday afternoon so I could get my race package and hit the BondiBand booth for some shiny new headbands (a girlie can never have too many!)

On the Saturday afternoon, we came into the city a bit early so we could hang out with the girls for a while before the race.  We met up at Anna's hotel and then headed over to the starting area as a group.   The day hadn't gotten too hot so we were looking forward to a cooler run…and the overcast sky meant no glaring sun in our eyes!  Yay!

Cam, Vanessa and Sanni took lots of  pictures of us before we lined up and then Cam headed off to work his way down the course to take some "during" shots as we passed him each way!

The 3 of us lined up in the 1:10 pace group.  I wanted to come in ahead of my 1:10 time from my last race, but I wasn't too stuck on it.  This was going to be my long run for the week no matter how fast I came in.   When the horn went off to start the race, I stayed with Anna and April for the first 5 mins or so, but I was seriously stepping on the heels of those in front of me so I took that as my cue to pull ahead and stretch my legs to find where I could comfortably run.   As it turned out, I ended up tucking myself in just behind the 1:05 pace group and I played leapfrog for most of the race with that group.  In the last 2K, I was trying super hard to just beat this race walker (I didn't :(  But I tried - I think if my hips weren't connected to the rest of my body, like hers, I would have had no problem lol)

The course was very nice.  It left Northlands park and headed south to ADA Blvd and then ran along the ridge of the river valley - a nice flat course (if you don't count the fact that every crosswalk was a speedbump! LOL).  It was well planned out as well - there were 2 water stations, but they were placed in such a way that for the 10K you hit a water stop 4 times! Better than any of the other races I've been in this year.

I crossed the finish line at 1:07:05 and nearly knocked the guy over who was to put the finishers medal over my head.  Guess I kicked it a little hard to the finish line after the announce called my name out on the approach.  

I'm really happy with my finish time.  A new personal best.  But most of all - I am so proud of Anna!  Not only has she kicked her cancer to the curb…but she has picked herself up and gotten back to doing something she truly loves.  It was very emotional to watch her cross the finish line and, for that, I am glad I ran ahead of them.  I wouldn't have wanted to miss that for the world! 

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Recommitment Time!

The recommitment deadline is on Monday (Aug 16).  Basically, recommitment is where you register for the race, hotel, flights etc...and commit yourself to paying any outstanding required fundraising if you fail to meet the minimum by the cut-off in early Oct.   I do have my fundraising minimum met on paper - I am just waiting for a couple of cheques from fundraising companies for the magazines and tupperware and once that is submitted - I am all good.   So my credit card won't be charged when the time comes.   Now I can just concentrate on my training and in trying to meet my overall goal of $6500 that I set for myself!

It is very exciting to be sending this paperwork in to Team in Training.  With less than 70 days until the race - it is starting to feel VERY close.   I have booked the flights for Cam and I, and have booked our hotel for the one night we want to stay in Silicon Valley being geeks before everyone else arrives.   The hotel we are staying in in San Fran is walking distance from the Starting Line and is close to all of the race weekend excitement!  I truly can't wait!