DON’T FORGET TO REGISTER!!!

We officially have one month left to register for the Guts and Glory 2014 Virtual Run! Proceeds benefit the CCFA – Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America Cost is only $25 and you get this awesome medal. Just complete a run/walk anywhere in the world for any amount of miles. We are also raffling off some amazing prizes such as bondi band, box sox, Road ID, ghost pepper bowl, bodybuilding.com and sports authority to name a few!

Every participant is registered into the raffle BUT if you share this post and/or a friend registers I will give you more entries. (1 for sharing and 1 per friend that registers) but YOU must be registered to get these additional entries. (https://crushcrohns.wordpress.com/)

Advertisements

Guts & Glory Raffle Prizes!

The raffle prizes just keep rolling in!!!! Here is what we have so far to give away:

– 3 Bondi Band Sweat Bands

Although Bondi Band began with only headbands, it has expanded to a full line of headwear, compression products and accessories in comfortable, colorful options to fit every lifestyle and personality for active women, men and children.

Bondi Band’s philosophy is to make great products at a great price and deliver superior customer service.

Along with offering functional unisex, high quality, American Made products, Bondi Band donates 10% of all profits to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, Massachusetts.

photo 1 (8)

3 Pairs of Box Sox

Socks without words are boring and unloved so we unleashed the Sox Box and racked up lotsa neat sayings for our first line! After searching far and wide for the best quality socks, we found our friends and take pride in them being made in the USA. The words and colors of our socks take many forms that, we hope, will bring oodles of joy to your legs and their admirers. For every person there is a sock and for every sock a person… we trust that we may be able to match you with that special pair to fulfill your most rudimentary need.

Fighter_600x900_fc1aa7c5-90ea-4edb-b91b-4611fe1233aa_1024x1024 Left_Not_Left_600x900_82b9ce03-4ce1-4e0c-8b0b-77518b3bf943_1024x1024 2_Legit_2_Quit_667x1000_7d0a4bd3-2875-4490-af92-11ac52f10eed_1024x1024

Bodybuilding.com gift pack

The World’s #1 Online Bodybuilding Website & Supplement Store! For anyone that is into fitness (lifting weights, running etc), we all know that finding good deal on supplements and information can be challenging.   I will PERSONALLY say that bodybuilding.com has been my #1 resource. I am currently doing a 12 week weight lifting plan, I buy my supplements from here (amazing prices) and I find that the articles are very interesting.  This prize pack will be split into 2 prize packs. Supplement (shaker, protein powder, BCAA and vitamins) and workout stuff (gym bag, bracelet, water and water bottle).

photo 2 (8)  photo 4 (1) photo 3 (2)photo 5 (1)     photo 1 (9)

Bruce G Ghost Pepper Set

Bruce’s Ghost Pepperz offers the highest quality of genuine Ghost Pepper (Bhut Jolokia) seeds and plants, as well as a nice variety of artisanal Ghost Pepper products—including our flavorful HOT blend of Bruce’s Ghost Pepper Sauce. We also have gift packages, perfect for holidays or other special occasions. All our hot and spicy products are from warm South Florida, with the perfect ultra-humid growing conditions for the hottest peppers! And we only grow Ghost Peppers, so we guarantee that our supplies are 100% pure!

photo 2 (7) 

Starbucks Coffee & Green Tea

Who doesn’t love Coffee and/or Tea! 4 Winners will receive either a lb of Starbucks Coffee or tin of their favorite tea. Selection will vary during the time of the season

…….more still to come!

Motivation Monday – Abby Walker

I’d like you to meet Abby Walker, a fellow crohnie that I met via social media during my fundraising for CCFA this past June. Abby found my posts on Instagram and we began chatting. Come to find out that she was living in Kona at the time and would be there during my first half marathon for CCFA, which was June 22, 2014.  Unfortunately due to conflicting schedules we were unable to meet but since then have kept in constant contact.  I’d like to take a moment to share Abby’s story with you and give you another reason why I am proud to run the Vegas Rock n Roll this November in her honor.

 

Abby Walker

Abby2

Abby Walker is 29 years old from Indiana.  She primarily works in ministry and missions. Currently she is working with a band and guard getting ready for the start of the season. She was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease September 2013.

The symptoms began around 2005. Abby was experiencing variety of intestinal pain and discomfort, frequenting the restroom, blood loss, lack of proper nutrition, loss of appetite, face pain, night sweats, eye swelling, joint pain, fatigue, dizziness, heartburn, and side effects caused from medications.  In September 2013 she was hospitalized for 4 days due to inflammation and ulcers, and found that she had formed scar tissue that resulted in a bowel obstruction, causing severe abdominal pain, vomiting, weight loss, and dehydration. The doctors have put Abby on various medications such as Humira, Budesonide 9 mg, Omeprazole, Zoloft, vitamin D, Vitamin C, Probiotic, Multi-Vitamin, and iron supplements as needed

Abby hospital 

Crohn’s has effected Abby in various ways. She was bed ridden for about 4 months, due to severe fatigue, and various other symptoms.  She had to re-learn how to eat, what to eat, and when to eat it, had to learn to manage stress as well as I could and was unable to work for a period of time. The diagnosis and ongoing symptoms has also caused periodic struggles with depression. Abby’s pain tolerance is higher than it was, because most pain meds would irritate her stomach or make her ill. She knows that she will have good days and bad days.  On days when I feel good, I dance, challenge the group with exercise routines, laugh, and enjoy the little things.  Recently though, she’s been flaring for a few weeks, she hasn’t been able to be as physically involved in practices with the group, but that won’t stop her.  She is still there everyday directing and giving instructions to the team.

Abby n Mom

Abby now has more hope for the future, and she appreciate so many more little things than she did before, even though she won’t ever have a “normal” health, and eating whatever she choose.  She has struggled with feeling isolated, because of the illness and has even gone down a pants size, but it fluctuates from time to time now. Because of her meds, her immune system is much weaker, therefore causing her to get sick from other things more often, or it takes longer to get rid of a cold, etc.

Advice she gives to fellow and newly diagnosed people with Crohn’s or Colitis is first, find a doctor that specializes, studies, and researches Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis. Get as many opinions and advice from friends and support groups formed of people who have IBD and know what you’re going through. Don’t let Crohn’s or Colitis win. Use the adversity as a chance to inspire people and to hope for better things to come. Appreciate and celebrate the little things.Don’t let yourself be consumed with the negatives. Don’t forget to laugh and live life. Find ways to focus on others. We might be facing a relentless illness that will come and go as it pleases, but that doesn’t mean that we are ‘victims’.  She also recommends using the GI buddy app. It’s a great place to document and monitor symptoms as well as a great resource to so much IBD related stuff.

Abby

She sees this struggle as an opportunity to grow stronger, keep the hope, celebrate the little things in life, and to be thankful. She also want her compassion for others who face chronic illnesses to be a place of encouragement that none of us are alone as we go through this. Keep living, and keep loving life.

Stay strong and Crohnie on!!!

#crohniesaretoughies (her fave hashtag)

Follow Abby on Instragram and her blog. (DearAbby789 on Instagram, dearabby789.wordpress.com)

If you would like to make a donation in honor of Abby Walker please click DONATE HERE! Donations made thru September 9th will be matched by CCFA.

Motivation Monday – Sam & Spencer

Below are 2 short biographies on the honored heroes for the Winter 2014 Season of Team Challenge Denver. These are just 2 reasons why I run!

Meet Sam

Sam 2014 

I am 14 years old and am looking forward to being a freshman at Machebeuf.  I play basketball and like to run.  My favorite activity in the whole world is to play games.  In the Moore household, I am the resident champion of Risk, Monopoly, Texas Hold ’em, and about any video game around. 

I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease when I was 9 years old.  Prior to being diagnosed I had never swallowed a pill and got really scared when I had to get a shot.  Over the last five years I’ve taken thousands of pills, had nearly a thousand shots, and have had more doctor visits than I can count.  We’ve had trouble finding a medicine that helps much.  

I enjoy school but have trouble getting there on a regular basis.  I missed about 20% of the school days this past year.  I missed over half of 5th grade due to a rare reaction of one of the medicines I was taking. 

I have walked in the Take Steps walk every year since I was diagnosed.  To date, my team has raised nearly $40,000 for the CCFA to help with research and camp for other kids like me.  I have enjoyed going to camp for the last four years and am looking forward to going again this summer.  It has been great to meet other kids that are going through the same things.  My oldest sister was a volunteer camp counselor for the last two years.  I was one of the honored heroes for the 2012 Napa/Kona Team and the 2013 Las Vegas Team.  My dad, my sister, and a few of my cousins are planning to run along with me in Las Vegas.

Meet Spencer

Spencer 2014

Hello! My name is Spencer Narowetz, I’m 15 and I have Crohn’s disease.  

I am in the 10th grade where I am involved with many extracurricular activities. I am on my school’s rock climbing team, Key Club, and am the Student Council treasurer of my class. Outside of school I like being outdoors, whether it be biking, hiking, backpacking, running, photography, camping, or paddling. I also love Starbucks and hanging out with my friends!

I have attended the CCFA’s Camp Oasis for three years and am going this year. It had been a wonderful and eye-opening experience seeing how many kids are truly affected by this disease. I have also meet many good friends there including Sam Moore, this season’s other Team Challenge Honored Hero. 

I was diagnosed in 2009 when I was nine years old. After many months of being sick, not being able to eat much, and being constantly lethargic, I was referred to Children’s Hospital where I went through many procedures and blood draws. I was put on medication and finally felt better. To this day I still suffer ups and down with my disease, but thanks to the CCFA and their fundraising, we may have a cure very soon!

 

Please join me on this journey to help improve the lives of millions of people around the world by fundraising for a cure! 

DONATE HERE!

Testimony Tuesday

 

I’ve never considered myself a runner. Always told myself that I would just walk. Then my good friend convinced me to join team challenge. I learned more about her challenges with living with Crohn’s. I knew I could make a difference and walk 13.1 miles. I met my first goal, of raising the funds. This was a group effort for sure with the help of TC! They are there with great ideas and cheering you on. I felt so grateful for TC support but to see my friends and family join with me! Seeing the donations come in really made me feel loved. This also helped with the trainings. Days when I wouldn’t want to walk, I would because I knew I was doing this for my friend and all those who were supporting me. Then race weekend came. I was nervous and didn’t know what to expect. Race morning I felt the nerves for sure. I started to run to help with my overall time. Not only did I run, not walk, but I ran more than I ever thought I could! Not only can you do this – raise funds and RUN, but it was easier than I thought possible. Now I can’t wait to run my next race … Never thought those words would come out of my mouth!!
 
– Sara Colorosa, Kona 2014 (on the right)

10406874_10154523053235287_7558848787956315234_n

Testimony Tuesday

My friends had been trying to get me to run a half marathon with them for about a year. I kept saying “No. That’s not for me. Too far for these legs to go”. I try to run when I can for exercise but my racing days are over. Or so I thought.

One day, I received an email at work asking me to run a half-marathon for Crohn’s and Colitis. My best friend in high school had been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. Without even thinking I signed up that day.

I had never run more than a 5k and honestly never wanted to run more than that….ever. I was content with the occasional run and did it just to get a little exercise.

I started training and with a busy schedule, I just never felt like I was as prepared as I wanted to be. As the race day grew nearer I became nervous. I had nightmares that they were taking down the finish line before I came across, and all the fans were gone and the celebration was over.

The race was held in Napa Valley and I worried even as I packed my bags. When I flew to California and saw the hills in person, it felt even worse. What did I get myself into? This is for real runners. I am nothing like them.

At the pasta dinner pre-party the night before, I met some of the people I was running to help and heard their stories. At first, I kept thinking, what if I raise this money and they find no cure for them? What if what I am doing does not help?

As the evening went on, I realized that most of the comments were about this race and the program that was helping them with support. The Crohns and Colitis Foundation provided them with connections to people who have been going through what they are going through. Like the 16 year old who had been the youngest person ever to be diagnosed with the disease when she was a baby only a few months old. She was now a top student in her class, involved with the community and is an amazing young woman with a bright future ahead of her. She was brought together with another child that is diagnosed at an even younger age and is spending time with the family. How lucky is this mom who now can see what a beautiful life can still be ahead for her own child. It’s not an end, it’s a beginning. To know the challenges that lie ahead. And also the gifts that are waiting.

Maybe my money won’t save someone’s life, but it will help them live with what they have been given. Maybe it will help them cope, help them fight, or just help them know that they are not alone.

When my legs turned into rubber on the eighth mile, when I got a leg cramp at mile 11, when I crossed the finish line not sure if I could keep them going without falling down – I knew why I ran and never gave up. I never ran for me.

I never wanted to run a half marathon. I never even considered it. I took myself out of my comfort zone and did something that, to be honest, scared me. That 2 hours and 36 minutes was for them. I did it for a friend, for hope, and for a cause. I was able to walk away with a great new group of friends and a whole new appreciation for a digestive system that functions normally.

Kay Rudzinski, Delta Corporate Teammate in Napa 2014

This is why I Run!

Received this note from my friends son that has Crohn’s Disease, he is only 16.

From Adam:  I wanted to say thank you to everyone who is on Team Adam. From those who sent me jeans when I lost so much weight, to those who sent me cards, to those who came to the hospital and stayed by my side thru many treatments and tests and even surgery, to those who ran in the races for the cure, those who wear Team Adam patches, to those who shared my video, and to all those who couldn’t be here in person for me, but supported my parents and I with hundreds of loving comments from September 2013 when I was first diagnosed to this day. Its been a long fight and I still fight but Im getting better everyday and I thank you for being here for not only me, but also my family. Its not easy having your whole life ahead of you and your dreams of becoming a marine taken away from you. I was 15 years old when doctors walked into my hospital room and told me I had a disease there was no known cure for. Im not sure many kids my age could handle that, let alone grown adults. I was really upset and couldn’t understand why I had done so much good to get told something so bad. Like, what did I ever do to deserve this sentence and why couldn’t it happen to somebody bad instead. But I dealt with it. Sometimes not so good either. But most times I just kept hoping somebody was going to balance the tables back out for me cuz maybe somebody somewhere didnt think it was fair either. But that thinking didnt last long. I remember one night laying in the hospital. I was in so much pain. I couldn’t take it anymore and I looked at my momma and said “please just let me die…cuz I cant take this anymore.” I knew I had hurt her and I knew she couldn’t feel what I was feeling inside. I thought maybe if her and my dad Cyber wasnt paying so much for me, then maybe my brothers and sisters wouldn’t have to give up things they wanted to try and get me better. That maybe I could also be free of the pain too cuz nothing the doctors were saying was making sense and nothing they were doing was helping even though they promised “this time this is gonna help.” I was over it. This drug. That one. Shooting myself in the gut. Taking oral chemo. Chemo. Thats a real scary word for most, especially a teen. I wanted it all to stop. The promises. The hope. The all night throwing up. The needles. The constant hospital stays. And the faces I could see were trying to be brave for me so I told my momma all this and she said “fight son…you keep fighting you hear me because we’re gonna beat this one day and these doctors don’t know everything…and when you feel like giving up on them…give up on them, not you…use your voice and tell them what you want…and whatever you decide Im gonna stand with you…I promise you that son.” My momma never once decided for me. I was a major part of every decision. There were times I went against her advice on the drugs and refused to do anything natural because even if it was only temporary relief from the pain, at least the doctors could shoot morphine in my veins and make it stop. I could breathe again. Think again. Even sleep again for a minute. You may not know what its like to have crohns disease. There’s different forms of it. I had it in my terminal ileum, my colon, my intestines, and my stomach walls. I had it so bad it bent my appendix. I threw up blood often. I went from 160 pounds to 98 pounds in less than two months. I wasnt able to go to school my entire freshman year for risk of infection having a compromised immune system. In fact, I barely had one at all so most couldn’t even visit me. But I promised my momma and myself I would fight. I allowed the doctors to make me sicker on a newer drug after the others failed in hopes I would get a stem cell transplant. My mom was scared. Heck I was scared. We read everything. We knew it could cause lymphoma, heart failure, and even death. My mom was furious and even though she didnt want me on it, I had to try it. Anything to make it easier. It made me sick. Really sick. I couldn’t walk some days. Sometimes I woke up and couldn’t even see. And my joints hurt right along with headaches so bad nothing took them away. Vomiting everyday. I remember it got so bad that I was scared to even drink water. But it was my choice to keep going. And then that failed too. I wasnt gonna get the transplant. Do you know what its like to go thru all of that for almost two months daily on that drug and have a room full of doctors look at you, now I was 16 then, a kid who believed doctors were there to help you, and be told “unless you’re on your death bed, that’s the only way we’re giving it to you because we’ll have nothing to lose anyways if you die.” I am 16 years old. I got angry. More angry than I’d ever felt and I said “let me outta here cuz now Im done with all of you. You aint sticking no feeding tube in me and that is that!” I remember them telling my momma I shouldn’t be allowed to choose this. And I remember my momma standing up in that room with tears in her eyes after hearing that this drug failed too and the shock they looked at me and said this to me and she pointed to the door to all of them standing there and said “Get out of this room and if you come back in here for any reason other than to hand me his discharge papers, you’re gonna need security!” And we left after she had them write on the paperwork the humira failed. We talked for hours the next day. We looked at many experimental treatments, research studies coming up, and even out of country places to get help. She never gave up on me. Y’all never gave up on me. And to that person who said “try this”….thank you. Its working. How long? I don’t know. No one knows. But I know this. Im going back to school this fall. I run everyday. Im now back up to my pre-diagnosis weight again. And I haven’t been in that type of pain for months now. My mom? Yeah, she freaks if I cough. Lol. But that’s my momma and she’s my queen in all of this for never leaving my side. Not once. Not one day. Not one minute. And all of you too I wanted to say thank you to in my own words. I canceled my own benefit. Not because it wasnt very thoughtful of everyone, but I was taught to never take anything you don’t need. And right now I don’t need it. If this method fails and I don’t stay in remission and need it in the future, then I know I can count on all of you to be here again. And P.S…Im getting back on my motorcycle again next weekend. That was a promise I made to me.

http://online.ccfa.org/rachelbabcock