It’s almost here! I’ve put in a lot of miles in getting ready for my first Tour DaVita. I’m not convinced that the rolling hills of Raleigh, North Carolina have prepared me for the mountains of Washington . . . but I have done all I can do. The best part of this trip of a lifetime is that I’m not going alone. There are four Wake Forest Warriors participating! One of my patients, Carl, will be going on his first tour. He regularly rides his bike and happens to be a talented photographer. The dietitian, Adrienne, is rolling along as well. She has borrowed a bike and purchased shoes so she can have a more authentic training experience. A technician, Kristie, who is our ring leader, is preparing for her second tour. She also has upgraded her bike and has spent a lot of time telling us about her awesome experience last year. Me? Well I’m Kathy, a nurse as well as our clinical coordinator. Ten years ago I rode in events like this regularly. I was a triathlete and rode approximately 100-150 miles a week. Now I’m 10-ish pounds overweight and working full time, leaving less hours to be on my bike. In my mind, I’m ready but the reality is that It will probably be a challenge to complete the course. (I keep thinking of the five mile long hill. FIVE MILES???)
Each of us has prepared for this ride in our own way but we have looked to each other for advice. Fingerless or full gloves, and clip in shoes versus standard pedals. Where to go for a bike tune up? Every day we check in with each other to see how it’s going and discuss our latest concerns. The four of us are a great team because each of us brings something to the group. Carl reminds us of why we ride. Everything we do is for our patients. The fact that he is a dedicated rider reminds us that ESRD (End Stage Renal Disease) has not kept him from doing something he loves. Adrienne helps motivate me because she is able to exercise almost every day. I find it hard to get out on the bike after a long stressful day, but she makes it look so easy. Somehow, I find the energy after talking to her. Kristie has helped us prepare for the actual event. She has stressed the importance of having a rolling bag and handy tips on how to make the tour more enjoyable. I feel like I’ve been able to provide some basic bike riding tips and training suggestions. Because there are four of us going, it feels like our whole unit is a part of this experience. All of the patients are aware that the tour exists, and many have helped us countdown to our special trip. I’m proud of our little team and look forward to flying to Washington to do something I love with teammates from across the country.