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This Ride Is Not About Winning

The first of two Tour de Pink rides happening this weekend starts tomorrow, and I can't tell if I am nervous that it will be too hard, excited for the challenge or anxious to have this behind me ... probably a combination of all three.

I have to be honest, the thought of "what in the heck did I get myself into?" has crossed my mind a few times during the past month. Long gone are the days when a quick one-hour ride was something to look forward to — now I feel that if I am going to be on the bike, I need to be riding 50 miles, which, at my speed, pretty much eats up the entire day.

The East Coast Tour de Pink ride starts at the Philadelphia Art Museum tomorrow (Friday, September 28) morning. There will be 72 survivors riding, which is incredible!!! That means that out of the 249 people riding, 29% have been diagnosed with breast cancer and are now strong enough to ride 200 miles!

This ride is not about winning, it is about being part of a young woman’s journey to create her “new normal.” So many of these women have faced challenges greater then a huge hill on a bike, yet that huge hill takes the same strength and determination to conquer that breast cancer did.

Recently I have been thinking a lot about last year’s Tour de Pink ride, which I watched as an observer. I remember thinking “there is no way I could ever do that” as I watched the survivors climb onto their bikes day after day. I remember feeling amazed by the net of support that the community of riders makes around every survivor. I remember a longing to be strong again and to live without pain.

It feels like everywhere you turn these days someone is riding, walking or running for a cause. And to every one of you who donated to Tour de Pink in some way, thank you from the bottom of my heart! YSC expects to raise over $750,000 this weekend! Thanks to you, YSC is able to continue supporting all young women affected by breast cancer and ensure that no young woman facing breast cancer ever has to feel alone.

For those of you who live between Philly and D.C. – or know people who do – please come and cheer on our survivors and riders!!!  For the first time, YSC is setting up cheering stations – so come out and join us!!!