A Call to Action – Run and raise support for TCA’s Band on the Run 2018 LA Marathon
Once again it’s time for Teen Cancer America’s Band on the Run to join together as we run the LA Big 5K, LA Marathon, and the Charity Challenge!
Friends, runners, teammates and cheerleaders, once again it’s time for Teen Cancer America’s Band on the Run to take to the road for training for this year’s LA Marathon event. Whether you are running in the Charity Challenge, 5k or full marathon, the advice for a race is the same: “the first third is run with your mind, the middle third is with your body, and the final third is run with your heart.”
Our minds will plan our training strategies for the race, and our bodies will respond to our workouts. It’s what is in my heart when I run for TCA that I wanted to share with you here.
In 2013 I learned about TCA at a Who concert. The idea of tailoring advocacy and specializing cancer care and survivorship support for adolescents and young adults immediately resonated. As I heard more about the journeys of teens with cancer from my wife, a cancer surgeon, I learned of young women who sacrificed any chance at having children just to have a fighting chance at graduating high school; of brave young souls who, short of breath from disease could still speak of hope in an emergency department, and of fiercely spirited adolescents who smiled in the face of fear and isolation in a chemo unit filled with people nothing like them. I found myself asking, what drives them when they’re afraid? When it hurts, how do they keep going? When they’re tired, where do they find the strength? When they feel alone, how do they find hope? Whatever the answer is for them it’s in their hearts, and just a fraction of that fuel keeps my heart beating and carries me when I’m not sure I’ll make it to the finish line.
And so, my teammates, I encourage you to ask yourselves, how do you run in the face of pain? When you’re tired, where do you find the strength? And if you find yourself feeling alone in the race, remember that TCA’s Band on the Run is here for you too, in solidarity for our cause and for each other. I have been so inspired by Geraldine, the best cheerleader in LA, and Simon, who has gone from cheerleader to accomplished runner. Their leadership has helped TCA’s Band on the Run grow from one guy with a TCA T-shirt in 2013 to a merry band of runners and hand-cyclists whose tremendous performance raised about $50,000 in the 2017 LA Marathon. Each of you inspires me, and it is an honor to run with you.
This will be the fourth running of TCA’s Band on the Run, which has now grown into a sports advocacy program that is really making a difference in the lives of adolescent and young adult cancer patients. Thank you to those of you who have run or cycled the marathon, 5k or charity relay, and for all of the spirited patients, families, survivors and volunteers who cheer on the team. I hope to see all of you again in LA. And if you are still contemplating the commitment, I invite you to join us. If you are uncertain you can do it, I can promise you this: our “love will open the door” to your heart in the final leg of the race.
As the Who have sung in tribute to teens and young adults with cancer, “give (us) a heart to hang onto”, and let’s run our races true! See you in LA.