Thursday, October 20, 2011

Final Thoughts

I remember my first 3-day walk three years ago, I had nerves, anxiety and apprehension  of the 60 miles that were ahead of me. Here we are, three years later and the nerves, anxiety and apprehension I once had are replaced by excitement. Susan G. Komen for the Cure had become part of who I am, and I wouldn't change a thing.

If this is your first 3-Day, try to put any nerves or anxiety behind you and know that the 3 days and 60 miles ahead of you will be life changing. You will not be alone at any point over the next 3 days. Don't be afraid to talk to other walkers and share stories.  A great place to chat with others is while you are in line at the port-a-potties. Change your socks often and have your friends and family at cheering stations. Don't worry if they can't make it to every stop, because there will be others cheering you on and giving you words of encouragement.  There is no such thing as a stranger. If you forgot something, don't be afraid to ask someone. Be sure you have tissues, because you'll need them. There is no shame in taking a ride on the sweep van! After, 3-days you will be tired, sore, you may have blisters, your feet and legs might ache, but remember, all of those aches and pains are just temporary and could never compare to the treatment a cancer patient has to endure. Take it all in and enjoy the in closing ceremonies with your supporters by your side!
I have enjoyed every second of this blog! A big thanks to my friends and 3-Day alumni.  especially, Amy and Erin for jumping in and helping me out. Thank you to my followers for taking the time to read my blog!

Here we go Atlanta, its that time!

Monday, October 17, 2011

After the Walk

This week as you are packing and getting ready for the walk, start thinking about the Sunday and Monday after the walk! In previous walks, when I get home Sunday night, the first thing I always want to do is to take a long bath. This weekend I made sure I was ready with Epsom salts for a long soak! In addition, I am stocked up on a few of my favorite snacks and easy meals to prepare for the following week. Hopefully, my house will stay clean which will help me relax next week.

If you haven't already, and are able, plan to take Monday after the work off. Sleep in, relax and make a massage appointment for yourself! 

I am so ready for the Atlanta 3-Day!

Saturday, October 15, 2011


You thought I was packed didn't you? Have you checked the Atlanta weather? Tights or shorts, capri pants, gloves, heavy jacket? Pink has taken over my guest room! At this point I'm not sure what I will be wearing, which calls for a shopping trip to Target and REI. Don't worry husband, I left the tags on everything, and I am almost positive that half of it will be going back. I'm just trying to avoid a last minute frantic shopping trip Thursday night! Happy Packing everyone!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

3-Day Packing, pt. 2

Have you started to thinking about packing and what you are going to wear for the Atlanta 3-Day yet?  (Be sure to check the complete pack list) The one challenge that the Atlanta walk has is that October weather can be very unpredictable. We have trained all spring and summer in shorts and tanks, and now it looks like we will be trading them in for tights and under armor! Keep an eye on the forecast this week, so we can all be better prepared and avoid last minute frantic shopping trips!

A few tips on what and how to pack your bag!
Even though, we are not camping outdoors, I still plan to use the traditional 3-Day ziplock method! Ziplock method is simply putting everything in ziplock bags to protect your shoes, clothing, sleeping bag, etc. from getting wet from camping. Hopefully, we won't be worrying about gear getting wet, but using the ziplocks are a quick and easy way to find exactly what you need! I pack my clothes by day and label each bag.  Right now in each bag, I have tights, shorts, under armour, t-shirt, 3 pairs of socks (1 to put on and 2 new pairs for the pack) gloves, hot hands and an optional jacket and hat in another bag! My second pair of shoes go in a bag, so I can swap out my shoes and put the old ones in the bag after the switch. This helps, because if they are dirty or wet they won't harm the rest of my gear.
I also have found this method is useful in helping to make your trip to the shower truck easier! On Friday when you arrive at camp, you will pick up your bag, put your tent together, and then you will be ready for a shower. Grab you PJ bag, toiletry bag and shower shoes, throw them in your shower back pack, head to towel pick up and the shower truck! Then dirty clothes into the PJ bag and back to your tent!
One type of item that you should avoid packing is a hair dryer/flat iron/curlers! We may be camping "indoors", but this doesn't mean unlimited outlets! You also don't want to be that person blow drying your hair while others need to brush their teeth so they can get to bed. I know this sounds gross, but I don't wash my hair during the event. I have long thick hair, that takes 20+ minutes with a hair dryer, and I'm not one to air dry my hair. My hair goes in a bun and I wear a hat or the seamless wrap. After all, we're not walking to show off our hair styles!

Be sure you are prepared with a couple under armour shirts. Layers are key! Typically, I will wear a tank, under armor, t-shirt, shorts and gloves with a hot hand. If its really cold (45 degrees or below) you'll see me in tights with a jacket too! As the day goes on and temperatures climb I will take the under armor and/or tights off and throw it in my pack and tie my jacket to my pack. I've also been known to hand off layers to the husband or my parents if I see them at a cheering station to keep my pack light! Hopefully, we won't need this many layers and this won't be an issue! Previous years, we have walked past tons of shops we could make a quick stop and buy whatever we needed. With the new route, we might not have this option.

Even though, we are camping indoors, I'm still bringing my air mattress, sleeping bag and head lamp.  Don't forget to work on your tent decorations too! Erin wrote a great post about camp details!


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

3-Day Packing, pt. 1

Meet my 3-Day bag. This is an old piece of luggage that I've had for at least 10 years. I won't care if it gets damaged, wet, the zipper breaks, or if the wheels finally fall off.
 You can use a nice piece of luggage, but I warn you, accidents and damage may happen, such as, a broken zipper or the fabric splitting. Did I mention that  the pink bag below was a borrowed piece of luggage? Imagine giving that back to your friend!
You may not be able to see it too well, but the bag ripped at its seams before we even left the hotel and had our luggage loaded. We ended up duct taping the bag so nothing would fall out.

Like I said before, when packing for the 3-Day, the number one thing you want is a bag on wheels. The duffel bags on wheels seem to work the best. You have extra pockets to stay organized and can fit more than you could with a regular suit case. You will want the mobility of the wheels. Your bag may seem light when you drop it off, but I can promise you that after walking 20 miles, it won't be so light!

Next thing, make sure your bag is identified with your name, contact information and walker id. Luggage tags are a great way to do this and will help you identify your bag as well. These are our team luggage tags from last year. We printed them on regular paper and laminated them at one of the office supply stores. The heavy duty laminate is almost indestructible and it worked perfectly! 
Another tip, take a picture of your luggage tag as one of your first photos on your camera. If you lose your camera during the route, this provides an easy way for the 3-Day crew to find you. I have heard many stories of walkers being reunited with their camera during and after the walk!

When you first arrive at Stone Mountain, you will see several trucks lined up for you to drop your luggage off. You will know which truck, since it's printed on your credentials, which is normally based on tent location. It may look like mass early morning chaos, but it's really not! The crew are pros and you will be surprised at how easy you will find your bag after you complete day 1!
Next up, what you put in the bag!