As I was mourning the death of my aunt in March of 2014, I had a deep desire to help and fight against breast cancer. I suddenly had an idea, my dad is a motorcycle marshal for each of the Tour de Pink rides and I thought, “It’s my time, I need to ride." I quickly registered for the one-day Tour de Pink event in Atlanta. During this event, my dad, wife and I climbed the hills of Atlanta, helped other riders who got into trouble and raised money for a great organization. I finally felt as if I had helped.
The one-day event in Atlanta was awesome, but I truly did not understand the impact of 200 miles and where it could take me. Of course, when YSC announced the inaugural Tour de Pink South Ride, I jumped at the opportunity without any reservation. I registered on the very first day and never looked back. I thank my dad and his reputation for the reason I was invited to join a team called Under the Big Top. Joining a team and this team in particular, exponentially enhanced my Tour de Pink experience. The friendship, the bonding, the sharing of stories and experiences led to some great experiences before I even left for Florida!
When I arrived in Florida, the fun began immediately. Meeting all of dad’s friends from around the country and hearing the stories of how he helped them started the weekend out perfectly. Being able to finally put faces with names from Facebook was awesome. By the time I got through registration, I was SURE I was part of something bigger than a bike ride. The next morning, the real fun began. Riding down the road with 150 people all in the same jersey all riding for the same cause is truly incredible. Random people cheer you on from the side of the road and send you smiles, encouraging you all the way. It was inspirational to see all the smiling faces.
The next three days held all kinds of enjoyable experiences from being with my dad, the wildlife, and to helping my friend finish her fastest ride ever. Keeping our group together in the wind - our group made up of friends old and new - all working together to ride into the finish, was so joyful. There are too many aspects that I experienced with my FAMILY that weekend. It was truly the indoctrination into a group much bigger... the Tour de Pink Family!
I've ridden probably 50 centuries for any number of great causes, but I've never felt as good as after a Tour de Pink! If you're riding South or East this year - I'd love to meet you! Let's ride!