Thursday, February 9, 2012

Why I run for Team Fox

I’ve written some about why I’m using my running to raise money for Parkinson’s disease research. My father’s experience put me on this track, and the more I find out about my family and Parkinson’s, the more interesting the connections between what I’m doing and the effects of Parkinson’s become. Here I am celebrating my mobility, an athleticism that I have cultivated all my life, to raise money to support research into curing a disease which so radically diminishes mobility. The split is a central theme of this blog and project.
Feeling pretty clobbered at
the Harbison 50K finish line.
There are many worthy organizations supporting Parkinson’s disease research: my parents appreciate the National Parkinson’s Foundation because of the free classes they offer. But I’m running for Team Fox and the Michael J. Fox Foundation for a number of reasons, starting with the ease of their process for donating.
I have my own page with Team Fox that allows you to donate to the Foundation in my name. I set a goal of raising $10,000 by the time I run the Ice Age 50, my goal race, in May 2013. There is no known cure for Parkinson’s, and the medications my father takes only mask the symptoms while the disease progresses. The money I raise will fund cutting-edge research into therapies for those with Parkinson’s, but also research into the genetics of the disease, and treatments that may cure and prevent it. 
I found out about Team Fox reading about Sam Fox and his attempt at a speed record for completing the 2650-mile Pacific Crest Trail. Though not completing clear on the timeline, I think I had already thought of raising money for Parkinson’s research by this point. What struck me, though, was the Team Fox idea. 
I ran a marathon raising money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in 2001. Our Smoky Mountain Relay team raised money for globalbike, an organization that provides bicycles for health care workers in developing countries, based here in Spartanburg and founded by a bunch of my friends. I believe in putting my rather selfish habit to good use when possible. The Team Fox website is easy to use, and secure. Donations are tax‐deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Just click on the Team Fox logo on the left to go directly to my Team Fox fundraising page. 
Because I plan to ask for some corporate donations, I’m also asking that you become a follower of this blog. I intend to ask for donations from companies that support running and ultra-running, and whose products I use, and to pass on product information and reviews to readers. The more readers I have, the better for that particular ask, I reckon.


  1. A fantastic goal and I appreciate what you are doing. I was diagnosed wit PD in 2011 and I will be doing my 2nd marathon on 2/19 in Austin. I look forward to your posts.

  2. Thanks, Bob. I'll add that what you are doing impresses me most (after my parents, I reckon). Keep me posted about your progress.


  3. Fantastic Austin Marathon! I count it privilege to be sore the day after. I beat my time by 52 minutes over last year. As a few fine motor skills has left, running in pace groups have helped greatlyfore me to maintain gross motor skills, particularly core strength. I also participate in a spinning class each week in which I have to keep up with the pace. Finally, while spinning, the coach has me to do intervals where I have to stand up in the bike without hands while peddling.

    I look forward to your blogs!


  4. 52 minutes better? That's amazing! Feels great to do that, doesn't it. I'm hoping to better my time at the Terrapin 50k, which is the toughest race I've run, and also the fastest--go figure. I think it's because I really train for it.

    Thanks for the update, and for the follow.