The following is a description of Marica Rizzo's experience before, during and after the Ride to Conquer Cancer this year. Marica Rizzo is YWiB's marketing director and for all of those who know her, this was a very moving and powerful moment in her life. We're glad she was willing to share, thanks Marica! :)
240km to go...
Last year I bought a bike because I thought it would be great exercise. I could go around the seawall, maybe bike out to my parent’s house 13km away if I was feeling up to a challenge. Little did I know, only a year later I’d be riding 240km down to Seattle…
When a friend asked me to join the team he has been the Captain of for the past 3 years, it was hard to say no. This, I felt, was a way I could make an impact and contribute to finding a cure and supporting other families facing a challenge that affects everyone at one point or another.
I thought it would be a challenge to raise the minimum $2500 in donations to participate. But as I started to share my new challenge with friends and family – on Facebook or otherwise, donations started to come in. I am so grateful for every donation and for everyone who gave what they could. The supportive notes, emails and messages gave me motivation through the rain, up the hills, and throughout the ride.
Together, the event raised over $11.2 million for the BC Cancer Society and made this year’s ride the single largest fundraising event in BC. Thank you so much!
On the day of the ride, it was truly the energy and support of the volunteers, supporters and, of course, the other riders that really kept me going.
“Thank you Riders!” – said the signs held by the supporters cheering us on along the route on a rainy Saturday morning, warming my heart. It brought tears to my eyes to be reminded why I was pushing my way 120km to a soggy campsite. Only to get up and do it again on Sunday!
“Keep pushing, only 10km to the showers!” another rider called out as he passed by – sharing his energy with me, like so many other riders had all day. The buzz and energy at camp was incredible. Even though our feet were soaked from the constant downpour, and our muscles were exhausted – we were energetically sharing our stories from the day with each other. And then we were in bed by 7pm.
Sunday was beautiful. The rain held off, and the sun even came out just as we were approaching the 10km-to-go mark! I felt more energy than ever in the last 10km when we rode to the finish line as a team. It was amazing to cross the line with such an inspiring group of people – and to get hugs and high-fives as we congratulated each other….
…and then we signed up for 2013.