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Luke & I just came in from a test ride of the Greenspeed Magnum to make sure it’s properly adjusted for the marathon. This time tomorrow I’ll be pedaling through the boroughs of New York City, the greatest city in the world!

My hope is that anybody who might be enabled to cycle–again, or for the first time–by the adaptive/alternative three-wheeled goodness of a recumbent trike will see me participating in the race and know that they, too, can pedal. Whether around the neighborhood for a family ride, rehabilitation from injury or illness, or competing in athletic events.

There are so many people like me out there–no longer able to run or ride a bike–who are unaware that recumbent trikes even exist. Perhaps they’re vaguely aware of trikes but don’t realize the full import, haven’t connected the dots to figuring out that three wheels might be what gets them riding again, allows them to be active, facilitates an entire universe of independence, freedom, vitality and adventure. Having a recumbent trike, being gifted with a way to cycle again, being uber-blessed with the privilege of being a part of Team Leary Firefighters Foundation and participating in the most prestigious marathon the world-over has transformed my life in countless ways. To name a few:

I feel healthier and stronger, instead of sick and weak.

I see myself as capable and empowered, rather than broken and useless.

Instead of being the one who always needs assistance, who has to be in the position of asking for help–I’m now someone who helps others, who makes a difference with every day I get out there and train, with every dollar I raise for Leary Firefighters Foundation to provide much-needed training and equipment for firefighters.

Disability, the pain and fatigue of disease, can lead one to passivity, to overwhelming feelings of powerlessness, helplessness. Through riding a recumbent trike and being a contributing agent of difference-making and advocacy, I’ve transformed the way I view my place in the world, the way I live each and every day. I want everyone to have that same opportunity, to feel that same awakening and inspiration and confidence.

Please pass on this post, talk to your friends and coworkers, share via social media–any way you can think of to spread the word. The “word” is actually 2 things: recumbent trikes and Leary Firefighters Foundation. Both are change-makers. Both are solution-bringers. Both are making a difference in the lives of others who truly need it.

Thank you, Greenspeed, for allowing me to ride the as-yet-unreleased Magnum. A new trike model that isn’t even available to the public; the first Magnums for sale should roll off the production line and into the eager hands of waiting customers in early February. Trust me, you’re going to want one!

All marathoners who race as part of a charity team have to raise a minimum amount of money. I’m barely over the half-way mark to my $3000 minimum donation, the difference of which I’ll have to write a check for myself after the race. Not only am I teacher, right now I’m an unemployed teacher. So, please, I’m beggin’ y’all, donate whatever you can, if you can. Even the cost of a cup of Joe or a glass of zinfandel would be mucho appreciated!

Thanks for all of your encouragement and cheering-on; it means a great deal to me. Your support, along with the motivation of those firefighters desperately in need of the equipment and supplies to do their life-saving jobs, gets me moving and keeps me pedaling on the days when I don’t think the fatigue and pain are conquerable.

You can’t really see her in this photo–she’s just a light-infused smeary figure in the background–but that’s Lady Liberty behind me in the sunset. From the Staten Island Ferry last night, I watched her indomitable, unwavering glow as we crossed the waterway. I couldn’t help believing that my service dog Luke and the ability to cycle again via recumbent trike, those are my upheld symbols of autonomy. Of pure liberty. In all it’s glory and grace ~~~

PLEASE SUPPORT MY EFFORTS IN THE 2011 NEW YORK CITY MARATHON WITH TEAM LEARY FIREFIGHTERS FOUNDATION

I only have two weeks left to reach my fundraising goal and I really, really need your help!

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