Inspiration & The Secret to Running: Lazy Girl Trains Half Marathon (Week 13)

Two big discoveries this week: one I made (about running), and one some brilliant scientists made (about curing cancer!).

Inspiration & The Secret to Running: Lazy Girl Trains For a Half Marathon (Week 13 of 22)

Two big discoveries this week: one I made (about running), and one some brilliant scientists made (about curing cancer!).

-April Daniels Hussar


I signed up with Team in Training to train for the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in San Francisco on October 16, 2011. That means I need to be able to both run 13.1 miles in a row (ack!!)  AND raise at least $3,200 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). Read my last training update here.

After a major slump, I’m excited to report that this has been a great training week! And I found the secret. It’s not going to be groundbreaking news, but for me it’s a revelation. Are you ready? Two little words:



I know. Right?

Who knew? I mean, I guess a lot of people knew this already, but I finally caught on to the fact that, though I’m not able to to self-motivate enough to get up at the crack of dawn and go running, I am able to keep a commitment I make to a friend to get up at the crack and go running with her.


I do not know. I probably could explore this in therapy, but for now I’m just happy that I was able to make it out three — count them! — THREE times this week (so far). Each time my alarm went off IN THE DARK (horror!) my brain launched into its usual stream of, Oh no it’s too early / I don’t want to get up / I’ll just go back to sleep for a few minutes / actually how about a lunchtime run …. but then, for some reason, each morning, I stopped myself, got out of bed, put my contacts in my protesting eyes in and actually made it downstairs, coffee drunk, in time to meet my friend.


I do not understand it myself. I’m sure my friend wouldn’t be mad if I cancelled, so it’s not that. I don’t know. It’s just like the one little extra ooomph I need to make it out.

PLUS … it’s much less tedious to run with a buddy. Even though this particular buddy of mine is in way better shape than I am so mostly she chats while I wheeze and pant and take walk-breaks (during which she cheerfully completes a short extra loop and catches up with me so we can run again). Just be being with her, I am motivated to push a little harder. And who knows — perhaps I motivate her because she probably feels like an Olympian compared to me. Everyone wins!

So there you have it, people. The secret. Get a buddy. Like, really.

Now, this is all well and great but I’m still totally daunted at the prospect of making it beyond five miles. I have eight weeks to get up to 13.1 and I just … I don’t know. It’s going to be really hard.

BUT … even more inspiration came this week in the form of some great news on the cancer front.

As you may know, I’m training for this run through Team In Training (TNT), which raises funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Since its inception, TNT has raised nearly $600 million for research and patient aid, and I am really proud to be a part of it. This week, some really exciting news just came out about a MAJOR breakthrough — they are calling it the “Holy Grail” of cancer treatments.

From an article in Medical News Today: “In a small trial of advanced chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) patients, genetically modified versions of their own T cells behaved like ‘serial killers’ and hunted down and obliterated tumors, resulting in sustained remissions of up to a year. The breakthrough gene therapy treatment has been 20 years in the making, and provides a roadmap for other cancers.”

… and what is super cool is this little blurb at the bottom of the article:

Funds from the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and the Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy, founded by Penn graduates Barbara and Edward Netter, helped pay for the study.”

I’m so excited to be raising money and supporting the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society — and news like that shows me that the money I’m raising DIRECTLY helps in the search for a cure.


April Daniels Hussar is BettyConfidential’s executive editor. If you’d like to see her gasping and wheezing some more, visit her at — and, of course you can make a tax deductible donation to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society via her Team in Training runner’s page here:

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