Apr 4 2012

Bike MS

This ride, it isn’t about me. It isn’t about being able to ride my bike 150 miles. It isn’t about my training or how sore my butt is. This ride is about everyone living with multiple sclerosis. Every day. It’s for their families and their friends. My friends.

This year my goal is to raise $1,000. There’s a button on the right where you can help me reach that goal.

Why We Fight MS

Having multiple sclerosis means that you may suddenly have blurry vision. Or that your memory will fail you for no apparent reason. Or that you may not always be able to walk, let alone ride a bike. The symptoms of MS are different, and devastating, for everyone – the only certainty is that it will affect yet another person every hour of every day.

Why I Ride

I’ve registered for the Bike MS: Escape to the Lake (Erie) event because I want to do something for the people who have been diagnosed – and because I want to do everything to prevent more people from learning what it means to live with this disease. Today, there is no cure for multiple sclerosis, and with diagnosis occurring most frequently between the ages of 20 and 50, many individuals face a lifetime filled with unpredictability.

Why You Should Sponsor Me

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society will use funds collected from the Bike MS: Escape to the Lake (Erie) event to not only support research for a cure tomorrow, but also to provide programs which address the needs of people living with MS today. Because we can fight this disease by simply riding a bike, because we have chosen to help thousands of people through a contribution to the MS Bike Tour, we are now getting closer to the hour when no one will have to hear the words, “You have MS.”

Training Ride #1

Goal: 25 miles with hills

Training Ride #1 StatsTraining Ride #1 Map

Result: I didn’t die! I even look happy!

Mar 19 2012

Healthy Eating

I want to eat better and healthier. I don’t feel the need to cross over into the fad diet realm. I started a food diary just to see what my eating habits are right now. After a week the results are: I eat poorly. I snack a lot, too much. On things that are tasty but definitely not doing me favors. I’m snacking on things that don’t leave me feeling full. I’m taking in way more carbs that my activity requires. I’m also not drinking enough water. As in, none.

This past week I’ve tracked my calories and exercise, as well as protein, carbs, etc. I know very well that these numbers are guidelines. I’m not interested in starving myself, taking food away as punishment, nor using food as reward. That just reinforces the wrong ideas. Instead I want to be healthy and like myself naked again.

I do not care what the numbers on the scale or in my jeans say. I do care that the number on the scale jumped up quite a bit over a short period of time. My doctor listened to my concern and we decided on some blood tests. I’m not comfortable sharing all the details here.

My plan is to pay more attention to what I’m eating, continue running and biking, and learning how to cook healthier meals.

My goal is to have fun and look damn good doing it.

Mar 15 2012

This is My Body!

I don’t usually like to do this here. I’m not really interested in starting a political discussion/argument/whatever. I don’t feel the need to defend my beliefs to every web troll out there. But I’m too angry right now not to say anything.

This morning I read these: Talkingpointsmemo.com and Thinkprogress.org

In response I wrote an email to Governor Tom Corbett of PA. I thought I’d post it here.

RE: HB 1077 – Women’s Right to Know Act

Dear Governor Corbett,

I wholeheartedly hate this bill. How dare you force anyone to undergo a procedure like this! Do you not think that women who enter into this decision have not thought long and hard about this? Do you not think it is a hard decision to even consider, let alone make, and then live with for the rest of our lives? I guess the real question is; Do you not think? I firmly believe the mother is the ONLY person who can speak for her unborn child. She is the only person able to make the judgement call on the quality of life for her child. She may include whomever else she likes in the decision process; spouse/partner, friends, family, a priest or other member of her church, and so on. How dare you require that the state also be involved! How dare you!

I am also astounded by your response. “I don’t know how you make anybody watch,” Corbett said. “You just have to close your eyes.”

Close my eyes! While my body is being, for all intents and purposes, violated. You want me to just close my eyes. As if this makes the whole thing a non-issue! How soon will it be before our society is telling rape victims to simply close their eyes?

In trying to reverse these gender roles I cannot come up with an example that adequately compares for men. The closest I can figure is Viagra. It is readily available and covered by many insurance companies, whereas you’d like to remove my access to birth control. No matter the medical reason I am taking it. I may be taking it in order to balance my hormone levels so that I am able to conceive. I may be taking it because, without it each month I lose two days of productivity on my job, thus costing my company time and money. I may be taking it because right now I realize that I cannot support and care for a child without relying on an already over-burdened welfare program.

Before you tell me that I shouldn’t be engaging in sex if I don’t feel I can support a child, remember that you are providing Viagra to men so they can have sex and I highly doubt the statistics show men using Viagra are attempting to conceive.

This is my body. It is the only one that I get. I have the right and responsibility to the opportunities to educate myself and make informed decisions.

Thank you for your time and consideration in reading this.

Elizabeth Albert

I have turned comments off for this post. I will likely not respond nor engage in much conversation around this topic. It’s heated enough and people on both sides have valid points. If you feel strongly about this, in either direction, I urge you to write to your representatives.

There is a petition to stop Pennsylvania’s Mandatory Ultrasound Bill: http://signon.org/sign/stop-pennsylvanias-mandatory?source=s.em.cp&r_by=2735384