Home for Spring Break

Today is the first full day that I’ve been home (I got back late last night). After a leisurely morning I went on a 25 mile bike ride along the Bay Trail. Bay Trail means all flat–but it was to get out and enjoy the sunshine! Then I went to REI, to make sure that I estimated my size correctly for the wonderful Osprey back that Osprey generously donated to the climb! The good news, it fits perfectly and it’s REALLY comfortable. Tomorrow I am going on a hike with a friend and not only will it be great to see her; but, I can A) try out the new pack and B) I get continue to train!

In case you are wondering why I’m climbing:

My motivation to climb is both personal and directly linked to my academic passions.

One in eight women is diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. That’s a lot of people! As of 2006, more than 2.5 million U.S. women were living with a breast cancer diagnosis. When I first told people that I was interested in climbing Mt. Shasta to support the Breast Cancer Fund, almost everyone responded with “my aunt, my mom, my friend, my neighbor, etc. has or had breast cancer.”

The issue is near and dear to my heart. My mom’s family has a history of breast cancer–my mom’s mom died of ovarian cancer when my mom was about my age. My mom has undergone two surgeries to counteract her genetic predisposition to the disease. And her sister, my aunt, has stage 4 breast cancer. My aunt is one of the strongest and most optimistic people I know. I am climbing in honor of her strength and courage and in memory of the grandmother I never met.

After my mom climbed Mt. Shasta in 2012 with the Breast Cancer Fund, I joined the Breast Cancer Fund as an intern. This experience taught me a tremendous amount about the many environmental causes of breast cancer, and gave me a chance to be a part of an organization working to prevent the disease. Their work exposed the horror that is bisphenol A (BPA), a now-known carcinogen and endocrine disruptor, commonly found in plastics and canned food linings. The Breast Cancer Fund is doing incredible work and I am excited to be climbing with them and raising money so their work can continue and breast cancer can be prevented. Interning at the Breast Cancer Fund has been a wonderful experience and has been a great way for me to combine two of my passions––environmental and social justice. So the Breast Cancer Fund allows me to combine my passions with a group of people doing great work!

Between now and June, I’m training to climb 14,179-foot Mt. Shasta in Northern California. At the same time, I’m fundraising in support of the Breast Cancer Fund’s groundbreaking work to prevent breast cancer by eliminating our exposure to toxic chemicals and radiation linked to the disease.

I am asking you to support my climb with a tax-deductible donation. All donations go toward supporting the Breast Cancer Fund?s mission “to expose and eliminate the environmental causes of breast cancer.” No donation is too small and every donation will put me one step closer to my goal of $6,000.

With each donation of $100 or more, I will carry a prayer flag with me to fly on the top of Mt. Shasta in honor or in memory of a loved one. In the Tibetan tradition, prayer flags fly from the housetops, trees, and in mountain passes–wherever the wind can catch and carry their message of hope throughout the world.

To donate click the image on the right hand corner with the Breast Cancer Fund’s logo. You will be redirected to my fundraising page.

Thank you for your support.


I’m Going to Feel this Tomorrow!

I am doing online Pilates ab workouts and I’m sure going to feel this tomorrow. I felt bad that I didn’t make it to the gym today because I’ve been in a midterm induced hibernation so online workout videos seemed like a decent compromise.  15 minutes of intense core workouts all from the comforts of my room–pretty excellent.

A Quick Bay Area Jaunt

Last week my Grandpa Ev died. I came home for the weekend for the memorial and wound up going on a hike with my mom on Saturday. The weather was so incredibly beautiful and it was SO nice to get OUT and HIKE! Most of my work outs are in the gym which is fine; but, fresh air and sunshine’s WAY better than stuffy (and smelly) gym work outs. We hiked to Wildcat Peak and then back via the Inspiration paved trail and then the Seaview trail.

The Numbers:

We hiked 7 miles in 2 hours and I carried a 25-30 pound pack. Not too shabby! It was a great hike!

And some photos…


The view… there was so much sun that the picture can’t possibly express how beautiful it was out

I think my grandpa would be really proud and excited about the climb. He loved the outdoors and took his kids and grandkids on all sorts of outdoor adventures. I wish I’d been able to share that experience with him–but in a way we did. We both love the outdoors and strongly believe in its preservation.  IMG_3680 IMG_3681

If you haven’t already, please consider donating to my climb–http://goo.gl/umOUy. It’s a great cause and I’m excited to be a part of it!

Oh my… It’s been a while

I have still been training! I took about a week off to rest my knee which had been bothering. I still went to the gym but I rode the recumbent bike at level 0 (did you know that there was a level 0? I did not). But, it’s great because it books ZERO stress on your knee. Step aerobics is considerably less fun now that I can’t/don’t hop around . In my time off from strenuous weight bearing exercise I also focused more on my core… Man, core workouts are intense!

Skiing and the Gym

So cross country skiing was AWESOME! It was so much fun and I was surprisingly sore afterwards. I was terrified of falling but managed to only fall maybe ten times, not so bad for a little over 6km. The rest of the week has been spent going to the gym where I ran a 1.5 miles (on a treadmill) [more miles at faster speeds] which was super exciting. My knee was really sore last night which could be from either the running or the cold or some weird combination of the two but with a little ice it feels so much better. I’m taking the day off and will pick up with something with less impact just in case.

Some photos of my ski adventure: it was a beautiful day!

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More blogging…

Well, it seems that I am in quite a mood to blog…

Week one of classes are complete and I am excited to say that I managed to go to the gym everyday. Plus this weekend I’m going cross country skiing which promises to be AWESOME! But in addition to keeping people informed on my training, I also wanted to thank everyone who has donated to my climb and who has supported me throughout this process. I’m so excited to climb!!

Training + School

So classes have started which means not only do I have to do things… but I have to balance cooking, and school but also training. I enrolled in beginning aerobic conditioning with absolutely no idea what it would entail and jogging with the hopes that between the two I would be further motivated to go to the gym. aerobic conditioning is basically step aerobics. In 50 minutes I learned two things: 1) that I am HORRIBLY uncoordinated 2) step aerobics is only bad once you add in the hands [see #1]. So, as insane and stupid as I feel doing step aerobics, it’s hard to argue with the fact that it is good cardio… I am staying in the class. I also went to the gym yesterday (along with my 50 minutes of looking like a moron trying to coordinate hand and feet movements without drawing attention to myself) where I went on the elliptical for 30 minutes. Today I am sore enough so that I know that i exerted myself but not so sore that I can’t function… I would count yesterday as a win!  Today is the day I find out if I can train, cook and be a functioning student. I am fairly confident that I will be able to accomplish it all! Getting excited to climb!