Monday, March 22, 2010

Day Seventy-Eight

Well, the used book sale was a HUGE success! I raised $343 which pushed my overall money raised to $1,001! I could not be more happy with how things went. I feel so much more confident about being able to make my fundraising goal of $2,300 than ever before. I'm planning a combo used book/garage sale for Saturday, May 8th and now that I've been through the whole swap meet deal, I know that everything will go even smoother next time - if that's even possible because things went great this time around too. Several of our friends and family stopped by to support us by visiting for a bit and of course buying some books. There were even quite a few folks that gave tips by saying "keep the change" to further support the cause and my efforts. I would say there are a few key points that made this such a huge success...

1. Lots of books to choose from. I received so many donations (really without much effort) that provided a wide variety of books and authors that seemed to be very appealing to the buyers.

2. Location, location, location. Purchasing a spot from Denio's for $22 (paid for by my first book sale - my hardback Harry Potter series for $40) gave me a huge audience of people already looking for treasures.
3. Signage. I purchased a 3' x 6' sign from eBay saying "100% of proceed will be donated to Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure!" People couldn't help but noticed this sign and feel compelled to give a little (or a lot!).

I cannot thank my family and friends enough for their overwhelming support. So many books were donated, well-wishers stopped by to cheer me on, and my husband and mom got up at 3:30 am to load up and head to the swap meet - then stayed ALL DAY!

The only things I will do differently next time are:
1. Bring pink baloons. I want to make my site much easier to spot and locate.
2. More water. I was dying of thirst so I will be bringing much more cold water to keep me in good spirits.

There's really nothing else I would change. I COULD NOT have asked for a better first-time fundraising event!

As far as getting healthier goes, I decided to bite the bullet and join Weight Watchers. I really need some help getting on track with my weight loss. The extra pounds are definitely having a negative impact on my training. Not because I can't do it but because my taxed joints and feet are feeling the pain afterwards. I'm starting to notice this arthritic type ache the day after that is none to appealing and something I greatly desire to end. I'm also noticing that my jeans are actually feeling tighter instead of looser. Something that has me pretty concerned. I'm realizing now that I have been focusing WAY too much on fundraising instead of getting healthy. A balance in this area is critical because no amount of money is going to get me through the 60-miles if I weight 300lbs! And, on the other side, no amount of weight loss is going to get me to the event without my $2,300.

The good news is that I know I'll get there. I'm struggling daily with my weight but feel better about the steps I'm taking to change my thoughts and my habits than I EVER have before.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Day Seventy-Three

Whew - what a great couple of weeks it's been! I have definitely found a better balance between fundraising and training. What a relief that is! I was feeling a little dizzy and stretched thin moving around from task to task without a good plan in place.
As it stands, I've raised $658 to date. YAY! All of this money has been raised solely by donations from my co-workers, friends, and family. I am also gearing up for my first actual fundraiser. I have received what seems like hundreds of donated books from co-workers, friends, family, strangers (through Craig's listing ads), and a large portion from a small local used bookstore owner. I had a tough time finding stores and property managers that would allow me to sell on their property, so I found out that our local Farmer's Market/Swap Meet charges only $22 for a space. I figure I'll give that a try and see how well I do. The good thing about this market is that I will have tons of foot traffic comprised of people already looking to buy something - so why not my books? The bad thing is that there is a fairly large space that is already dedicated to selling used books. Those books are priced at used book store type prices though - so I should be competitive. Only time will tell...
As far as training goes, I'm feeling pretty good about what I'm doing. I was really bouncing all over the place as far as how long I would walk each evening. I found that was actually doing the opposite of what a training program should. I think my body was confused about what I was doing. So - I found some great training plans on the Susan G. Komen website. One spans 12 weeks that will get me walking 3 miles a day. Then a second that lasts for 24 weeks - easing right up to the 3-Day walk that will get me walking in excess of 20 miles a week. This is a nice slow training program to get my body used to walking long distances with a focus on stretching and cross training - to stay flexible and build up my endurance. So far so good! My walking speed is slowing increasing. I was averaging about a 22 minute mile in the beginning and am now averaging about 20 minutes. I probably need to be at about an 18 minute mile if I don't want to spend 9 hours on the road during the 3-day walking event! :)
Anyway, I'm feeling great. My muscles are talking to me - but in a good way. I feel very positive about meeting my fundraising goal considering I'm already 30% of the way about 45 days in.
Wish me luck this Saturday everyone!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Day Sixty-One

Well, it would seem that I'm not too good at focusing on weight loss. You really would think that being uncomfortable everyday would be enough but it just isn't. Guess I'm used to it... However, I have found a renewed sense of motivation in preparing for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure event. I am excited about my training and am even excited about my fundraising! I've raised $613 dollars to date - approximately one month from my initial registration. Yay! I have been a bit distracted and less focused on my training for last two weeks. First by weather - CANNOT stand walking on the treadmill; Second by work; thirdly by my fundraising efforts. So - yesterday I went on a field trip with my son's fourth grade class to Marshall Gold Discovery State Park - the original gold discovery site spawning the 1849 California Gold Rush. Not only was this a fun event but it was also an excellent opportunity to get some exercise in. Me and the six students I was watching (including my son) were at the park from about 10:30am to 2:00pm. We WALKED around the entire time and I REALLY wish I would have brought my pedometer! In addition to walking all day, we also went on a 1/2 mile hike up this mini mountain to see the James Marshall monument at the top. Whew! Did that ever get my heart pumping! Then of course, there was the 1/2 mile back down. Tonight, a friend of mine is coming over to walk with me around my neighborhood. The next time, I plan to go walk in her neighborhood so I can get a change of scenery. I also think it's time that I join up with the teams other teams that are training in my neighborhood. Walking by myself is really nice but I think it's important I have LOTS of options so I don't get bogged down by the minutia. Plus, I saw a post from a Susan G. Komen 3-Day Ambassador who suggested pre-mapping routes of varying lengths so you can shake up your training day-to-day without a lot of effort - she called it building a route library. I think that's a great idea and something I'm looking forward to doing tonight. So - that's my plan for getting refocused on my training! As for my fundraising... I have been getting ready for my first fundraising event - a used book sale. I have been collecting book donations from my friends and family - which has gone great! But, I've also been asking for used books stores and strangers - which has gone surprisingly well. One bookstore owner in Roseville gave me three bags of books last Sunday and told me stop by every Sunday morning for more! A second bookstore owner in Orangevale has promised by a minimum of ten bags for me to pick up this weekend! How freakin' great is this! PLUS - I got five bags of books from a woman in West Sacramento and nine boxes of books form a couple in Woodland - both of whom responded to a wanted ad I placed on Craig's list! My used book fundraising event is scheduled for Saturday, March 20th. I still have yet to decide on an official location. I'm thinking that holding it outside of a grocery store would work better than having it at my house. I mean grocery stores have a ton of foot traffic but then there's the choice of which store. So, that's my plan for this weekend. 1) Pick up more books and 2) Find and set the location. Wish me luck!!