Running for Health and for a Great Cause

As most of you know, I became a distance runner (for the first time in my life) after my cancer diagnosis.  I loved it!  It was mentally cathartic to have that time alone in thought, I achieved a “runners high” and there are a number of studies showing the beneficial effects of significant physical exercise after a CRC diagnosis including in Stage 3 patients (my original diagnosis) for example here and here.  I simply loved the running and I felt the most physically fit of my entire life.  My goal was to successfully run a half-marathon length without break, which I achieved on the exact same day the first signs of my Stage IV recurrence occurred.

Since my return to Stage IV treatments last Fall, unfortunately my running has largely fallen by the wayside, including when I began weekly Erbitux infusions.  Compared to standard chemo, at least for me, Erbitux has been a wonder drug in terms of side effects.  Yes I have to deal with the main side effect rash but it is fully tolerable especially since it is “The Perfect Rash” and since my tumors are responding to the treatment!  There are other potential side effects of Erbitux however and the other one which has hit me pretty hard are foot sores.  Open foot wounds and running really don’t work well together!  So my running languished…But this weekend I came to a decision.  I missed the benefits of my running, my sores are small enough that I decided to suck it up, put on some Band-Aids and Neosporin, it was time to get back into the game.

Running for Health and For a Great Cause_keep-calm-and-put-a-band-aid-on

Today I ran 5 miles without losing my breath – not bad for a guy with Erbitux foot sores and a lung surgery a week ago! Especially considering that the first time I ran (since college) in June 2013, I was completely out of breath and had to take a break within the first mile! My how things have changed for the better in the past 2 years!

Running for Health and For a Great Cause_Running Photo

As I was running today, I decided that my return to running would be a great opportunity to raise money for my non-profit charity of choice “The Colon Club” which I discussed at length here and with more brevity here.  I see it as a win-win-win situation: My running would improve my emotional & physical health and the fundraiser would help incentivize me to do it even if my feet were sore; My running as a “currently incurable” Stage IV patient under active weekly treatment may inspire others (patients or otherwise) to exercise or run as well; My running could serve as a mechanism to raise funds for The Colon Club, an organization I feel strongly about!  I also have to thank our corporate sponsor #Nike for their support!

Here’s how the fundraiser will work:

  • I ask you to please consider sponsoring me via a “₵/mile-or-$/mile” pledge. For budgeting purposes, I can’t tell the future but my current “goal” is to run a 10k twice a week (~12-13 miles) while under active treatment
  • This fundraiser will run from July 1 through Sept. 30 (3 months)
  • Please add your pledges in the blog comments below. You can use your full name; First name with last initial; or “Anonymous” (in which case please email/text me directly who you are for my files)
  • At the end of the fundraiser I will contact all donors with both a paypal link and directions for written checks to allow 2 different ways to pay the pledge. The Colon Club is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit colon cancer association/charity so these donations are tax deductible. They also may be eligible for an employer match, doubling your impact!

Update July 6. 2015 : This morning I received a VERY generous pledge match offer: ALL RUNNING PLEDGES WILL BE DOLLAR-MATCHED up to a $2500 cap! WOW! So a quick & easy way to double-your pledge impact & the impact of your blog link shares to others!


On behalf of myself, my 11 2016-Colondar 2.0 sisters and brothers and on behalf of the millions of living Americans either diagnosed with CRC or who have CRC which remains unfortunately undiagnosed for now.  Thank you!

32 Comments on “Running for Health and for a Great Cause

  1. Pingback: Pledge Match Update: Running for Health and for a Great Cause | AdventuresInLivingTerminallyOptimistic

  2. So happy to support you and a great cause Tom! How about $2 a mile…I know that you are a huge over achiever so I have to watch out 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much for the pledge Kristy et al! With the new pledge match – your pledge will have its impact doubled! Don’t worry, I won’t sneak in a marathon in August to mess up your family budget 🙂


  3. Hi Tom, I haven’t met you, but I work for Save the Redwoods League and am an endurance runner, and stumbled on your blog after you emailed me. As a runner and redwood lover I am very inspired by your blog and particularly your running goals! I am happy to pledge $1 a mile. Let me know when to pay up 😉
    Thank you, and happy miles.
    Georgia Young

    Liked by 1 person

    • On behalf of myself & other CRC patients, thank you for the pledge Georgia! You and I share similar interests indeed!


  4. Tom, count me in for $2/mile. I love that you’ve challenged yourself (and your friends) with per mile pledges. Steve Prefontaine said, “I don’t just go out there and run. I like to give people watching something exciting.” – John Kibiloski

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Bocephus!! 5000 miles, hmm that is really holding me back but I think you’re safe on that one LOL 😉


    • Thank you Maryam! I do one of the biweekly 5 mile runs up at work, maybe you can join me for a Torrey Pines run to speed up my pace 🙂


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  6. Dear brother Tom! I’m so sorry I’m delinquent on this – I’ve been meaning to get around to this. Please put me down for $2 per mile. Much love, Julia

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Marie – it is for a great cause! And since an anonymous donor is dollar matching, your gift will have twice the impact!


    • Thank you Celine & Patrick! It is for a great cause, aiming to prevent CRC & supporting those of us with it – including with Colon Talk!


  7. P—put me in for $2.00/mile and also please start counting me from Day One as well– I have been meaning to donate for weeks and now that I am on vaca I have time to catch up on stuff!!! Ordering a Team Tom shirt next!!!

    Go Tom Goooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Connie! Along with the donor match, your generation donation will make a big difference to Colon Club – thanks!!


  8. Pingback: Trying to Keep Lung Tumors at Bay, the Mad Scientist Way | AdventuresInLivingTerminallyOptimistic

  9. Ok, I know that this is really late, but I would like to pledge $1 a mile retroactively to the beginning as well. Better late than never, right? I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – you truly are an inspiration! God bless you!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Just catching up…although I never really catch up to you Tom. Count me in for $2/mile. I will look for you running around the ‘hoods – both chemistry hood and neighborhood 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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