Dear VO friends,
A few weeks ago I decided to participate in a long distance bike race in Baja to raise funds for our scholarship program. We currently sponsor about 20 students, in grades ranging from Middle School to College. We help them pay for school fees, buy uniforms, school supplies and provide funds for transportation. Helping at risk kids stay in school is one of our main programs and also one of my personal passions.
The race was 60 KM along the Baja coast starting in Rosarito and into the Guadalupe Valley. I had never done a long-distance bike race so I had zero expectations going in and my goal was to just finish for our students. As race day neared everything started to fall into place, my sister-in-law lent me her legit road bike (because I don’t own one) and I trained a few times in our town’s dirt roads on my cheap mountain bike. The longest I trained for was an hour and fifteen minutes and I got so bored after that amount of time that my training plan became counting on adrenaline to take care of the additional 3 hours on race day. As usual time flew and the day before the race was upon me.
It so happened that we had a few friends from Seattle visiting that weekend. This was great for my spirits but it also meant that, in my desire to show them our lovely Baja, I stayed out too late and ate a good amount of fried food the night before my race. I truly believe the difference between people like me and real athletes is that they have the willpower to go to bed at 8pm on the eve of race day and somehow carb up in a healthy way.
As Michael drove me to the start line the morning of the race I told him I felt quite unprepared for the physical aspect of the race. Like a good husband he assured me I would do just fine, to which I nervously added “fake it til you make it, right?” He smiled and nodded and then I thought out loud: “wait, can you fake endurance?” and we both laughed at the hilarity yet seriousness of such a question. And just like that “Can you fake endurance?” became my unofficial race motto. Luckily it turns out you CAN fake endurance! With a mix of perseverance and adrenaline I not only finished but also quite enjoyed the race. I felt super accomplished at the finish line not just because this was a huge physical challenge but because I knew I was helping kids stay in school. I finished in 4hrs and 10 minutes which was well under my goal of “not being the last person to get to the finish line.”
I am so thankful to those of you who sponsored me! Thank you for continuing to help our students and for believing in me. My sponsorship goal was $50 per kilometer and I received sponsorships for 48 of the 60 kilometers! That is enough to sponsor 4 college and 7 High School students. If you would like to help me reach my goal, you still can! Trust me I suffered enough on the mostly uphill course, I deserve it and so do our students! 🙂 Here are a couple of photos from race day. Again, thank you for your sponsorship. Becky