Saturday, April 24, 2010

Socially Working Out

I've joined SocialWorkout.com recently, and I'm taking part in the Million Minute Month. I'm enjoying the sense of community, the positive feedback on workout posts both short and long, and the immediate goals that the MMM challenge presents. If you are looking for motivation, I'd recommend you join, too.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

HDSA Hoop-A-Thon

When I was younger, my family and I would participate every year in a fundraising event for the Huntington's Disease Society of American Ohio Valley Chapter. We would collect pledges from friends and family, help setup tables, cones, balloons, etc., and shoot free throws until we dropped (or for 10 minutes, whichever came first).

I am no longer in Ohio, and therefore cannot participate in this event, but I just thought I would share with all of my friends a bit about it. It is taking place this year at the Mercy Healthplex on Saturday, April 17th. So, if you are in Cincinnati, and you'd like to stop by and show some support, it would be greatly appreciated.

I would also like to share with you this letter that I received from my uncle, Den Martin, who is participating in the event this year, like every year. He has been a great support to my family in our time of need (the brother he Tim he mentions in his letter is my dad), and I'm wishing him the great luck in shooting his heart out during his 10 minutes at this year's event.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Dear Friend,

As you are probably aware, I have worked for many years to support the search for a cure or treatment for Huntington's Disease, an hereditary disease that affects my family. One of the ways that I have done this is by working each spring as one of the co-chairs of the Huntington Disease Association, Ohio Valley Chapter Hoop-a-thon. The Hoop-a-thon is a free throw shooting fund raiser in which shooters gather pledges from donors for the free throws that they make. In addition to organizing the Hoop-a-thon, I have participated in the Hoop-a-thon as a shooter.

Recently, the need for additional progress in finding the cure for HD has become dramatically more personal. In my immediate family, I have experienced the passing of my younger brother Rick from HD. I have also seen my two brothers, Tim and Steve, and my sister, Mary, diagnosed with HD and begin the physical and mental deterioration that is inevitable with this incurable disease.

Through the years I have seen my father and 3 of his sisters pass on as a result of HD. In addition more than a few cousins have succumbed to HD. Some of you who are family know these stories all too well. For those of you not familiar with HD the path for an HD patient involves a long, slow process of loss of physical control and a deterioration of mental faculties as brain cells deteriorate and die. Physically this process starts with an unsteady gait and lack of fine muscle control. Eventually the process ends with an almost complete loss of muscle control, including the loss of the ability to speak. The patient ends up bedridden and loses even the coordination necessary to swallow when eating. Mentally the HD patient at first notices difficulty in concentrating, but the end stage of HD presents itself in dementia.

Researchers are making progress. They tell HD families that some treatment or cure may be "out there, but it is many years away." My brothers and sister and their sons and daughters need results sooner than that. This can only happen if more and more researchers join the quest for a cure. And this can only happen with financial backing for these researchers.

This is where you come in.

I am asking you to help me in this year's Hoop-a-thon by pledging to support me as I shoot free throws on April 17 at the Hoop-a-thon. I have attached a pledge form for you to use if you think that you can help. Simply fill out your pledge and mail it to me.

You can also help by joining with me on April 17 as a shooter. Men and women of all ages 6 to 65 participate. Gather your own pledges and come to the Mercy Healthplex at 3050 Mack Road in Fairfield on April 17. Perhaps you could bring a group of shooters with you. You can use the attached brochure to gather your own pledges.

Thank you ahead of time for whatever you can do. Even a few kind thoughts and prayers are appreciated.

Sincerely,

Dennis Martin
HDSA, Ohio Valley Chapter
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I would like to reiterate that positive thoughts are very much appreciated as my father goes through a hard time, healing from a very bad fall.

If you would like to learn more about the event happening this coming Saturday, or how you can help out the HDSA in it's efforts, please contact Dan Leugers at dan.leugers@morgankeegan.com or visit http://hdsaohiovalley.org.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Alarms Clocks- Overrated?

I woke up to an alarm today for the first time in a few weeks. Now, I really do enjoy being a grad student with a flexible schedule, and I have a 2-year-old nephew as an alarm 2 days a week, but I am almost appalled by this fact. I used to plan on arriving at school by 9am most days to get some work done, or I would try to wake up early enough to go to the gym before getting to school at a reasonable hour. Maybe I would snooze the alarm (a lot!) before waking up, but I appreciated my attempt. The fact that I've given up trying is alarming (pun intended, people).

It's time to start phase 1 of Motivation Control 2010: Taking Control of My Motivation. And I could use your help! What gets you up in the morning? Any tips on how to not hit the snooze button for an hour? And if you really want to help me- give me a call! Yes, I am requesting early morning phone calls to get my butt out of bed. I don't talk on the phone much, so chances are that I haven't talked to you in a while. Let's take this opportunity to catch up- at 7 or 8am! Otherwise, I might just have to start drinking coffee, after 29 years of being coffee free. Keep in mind, coffee is only a last resort.

I'm hoping that any improvement in my early morning wake-up routine will expand to motivation in other things- like exercise, homework, and leaving the house just to be outside in this beautiful weather. I've been able to rest a lot during Spring Break, so it's time to get back in the game.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Viva la karaoke!

Karaoke at the Fat Black Pussycat has become a big part of my life in the last year. I never would have thought that I'd be a karaoke fan, except on the rare occasion when someone got me drunk enough to get up and sing in a group of people. But I started going in January of 2009 with a coworker, Will, and his friend, Justine, (who is now my friend!) who got me drunk and made me sing on my own. Over the course of a couple of months, I drank less and less alcohol each time I went. The end result is that now I can sing a karaoke song completely sober.

From time to time, variations like change in venue or other people that I know joining in on the fun, can make me a bit nervous. I sang karaoke in Ohio last July when I went home for my high school reunion, and I was definitely a little shaky on Oh! Darling. And I must say, when this guy I'm seeing finally comes to the FBPC, I will probably throw down a few drinks before I sing my first song.

Recently, the need for karaoke has apparently reverted to a weekly one. When I started singing with Will and Justine, we went to the Moroccan Lounge about once a week. That tapered off over time, and because of school and work we were recently going about once every six weeks. In the last month, however, we've gone every week, I believe. This is probably due, on Justine's part, to her school being close to the Village and her desire to show off her new boyfriend. On my part, I think the stress of school, babysitting and this new dating experience simply requires that I get together with these friends more frequently to talk about things- since I really don't like talking on the phone. Plus, I like to get my drink on when I'm stressed!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Hello, again.

It's been two years since I've posted something to this blog. Shame on me.

I don't have the time to go into any detail right now, so I just thought I'd post a comment about not having posted. Very post-modern (pun intended!).