Wednesday, June 23, 2010

blog roll

If you haven't noticed, my blog list (on the left side of my page) contains some recent additions. Please let me know if you have a blog you'd like me to add.  One blog that I added combines my new love, biking, with the whole reason my blog started, cancer. The Fat Cyclist blogs about his love of biking and also raises a ton of money for cancer through his blog. His writing is very entertaining and humorous and he is one of the top followed biking blogs in the states. I have pasted an article about him below and just want to add a disclaimer that his wife's story did not have a happy ending. Fatty continues to blog, raise money for cancer, and get out and ride his bike and enjoy life.

Susan Nelson lives strong while Fat Cyclist husband raises money for Lance Armstrong Foundation

Susan Nelson lives strong while Fat Cyclist husband raises money for Lance Armstrong Foundation

July 14, 1:18 PMMichigan Mountain Biking ExaminerDiane Ursu
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In May 2008, Elden found this photo of Lance Armstrong in his email.
It started out as a simple blog about a "fat" mountain biker and progressed to a powerhouse for raising money for the fight against cancer.  Elden Nelson is a witty mountain biker who thousands of Internet surfers consider to be a friend.  They read his blog every day to enjoy his funny stories and unique viewpoint. They also keep coming back to see how his wife, Susan, is doing.
Win Susan!
"Win Susan!" is a phrase that is found throughout pages and pages of comments on the Fat Cyclist blog. Elden's readers have joined together to offer whatever support they can, whether it be spiritually or financially. 
Susan first found a breast lump around Christmas of 2003. She underwent a mastectomy and chemotherapy. She got well and began working out to gain strength until she started experiencing hip pain. After treating it like a sports injury, she went to the doctor to find that her cancer had metastasized throughout her body. In 2008, tumors were found in Susan's brain after she had lost her ability to fall asleep.
Fat Cyclist readers have journeyed with Elden and Susan during her chemotherapy and radiation treatments. They eagerly read with hope and pray for strength for the couple. Kleenex boxes sit by computers worldwide as readers share in the joy and sadness of the Nelsons' life.  They are also awestruck by the strength and courage of Susan.
While Susan's prognosis is undesirable, she continues to live life to the fullest extent that her body will allow. When she is able, she draws with her children and writes. She enjoys making jewelry, an art she can no longer practice on a regular basis, and created some pieces for a fundraiser for the fight against cancer.

Elden Nelson, aka "Fatty."
Be strong, Elden
What is particularly amazing about Susan's story is that it is told by her husband, Elden, who is affectionately known as "Fatty" by his readers. Elden's purpose has been to do everything he possibly can to make life better for Susan. This is his struggle.
When Susan was first diagnosed, Elden searched for a new job with better benefits so they could better afford treatment. After moving several times, they bought a home in a Utah neighborhood so Susan could be closer to friends and family. As Susan's cancer progressed, Elden made changes to the home so she could move around easier. It became a constant fight for Elden to accommodate his wife. He simply wanted to make things better for her.
Elden couldn't do it alone, though. He expressed his frustration on his blog, and his readers responded with prayers and advice. One of the greatest pieces of advice that was echoed throughout the comments was to keep riding. In order for Elden to take care of Susan, he had to take care of himself. He did not want to take away from his time with her, but mountain biking was therapy, and he knew he had to do it.
Fatty's fight against cancer
Fat Cyclist readers are quite acquainted with the "Win" Special Edition Fat Cyclist jersey, a jersey made by Twin Six with all proceeds going to the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Many of Fatty's lucky readers get to sport the fabulous jersey, and they wear it with pride. 
Twin Six has been quite supportive of Elden and Susan and has made a lot of Fat Cyclist gear. In the fall of 2008, Twin Six went beyond the standard jersey to provide long sleeve winter jerseys, bib shorts, and arm warmers. Twin Six's generosity went way beyond providing fundraising product for Fatty, though. In November of 2008, for one week, Twin Six donated half of the purchase price for every Twin Six jersey sold to assist with Elden and Susan's medical costs.
Livestrong Challenge
In January 2009, Elden took on a big project – one that may be much more successful than he had anticipated. He rallied the Fat Cyclist troops to form Team Fatty with members from all over the country. Team Fatty set out to win the Livestrong Challenge.
Tour of California. Fatty decided that Team Fatty just was not enough. In February, he live blogged during the Tour of California and had the fantastic idea of having Bob Roll, former pro cyclist and Versus cycling commentator, shave his head if $5,000 could be raised by the end of the Tour. Over $8,500 had been raised and Bob was clipped on television. Lance Armstrong was even present for the moment of truth. 
Team Fatty. Team Fatty continues to raise money for the Livestrong Challenge. Team Fatty raised the most money for both the Seattle and San Jose Livestrong Challenges. The Philly Livestrong Challenge will take place on August 23, 2009, and the Austin Livestrong Challenge will be held October 24-25, 2009.
As of July 14, 2009, Fatty's web site reports that $411,178 has been raised by Team Fatty. It is simply incredible how so many people came together to fight against cancer.

Elden and Susan celebrated their 20th anniversary on
August 13, 2008.  Elden posted this picture with a single
:  "With the right woman, 20 years doesn't feel like very
long at all."
A story of love and dedication
Elden and Susan celebrated their 20th anniversary on August 13, 2008. Twenty years is remarkable in and of itself, but it is even more amazing when faced with the challenges Elden and Susan have had to endure.
They are remarkable people. They have brought thousands of people together to fight a great cause. They bring joy and humor to the lives of Fat Cyclist readers. They also bring hope that love is real, and that is evidenced by Elden's devotion to Susan in her struggle with cancer.
They are like anyone else, however. They are raising four children – two sons and identical twin girls. He works to provide for his family. She is writing a novel. He rides bikes. What sets them apart is that they allowed themselves to rise above their challenge in life, and they inspire many others to do the same.
 For more info:  Fat Cyclist

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