Health & Wellness

YMCA Mother's Day 5K Ready to Run May 11

April 18, 2014 at 12:59 PM

SUMMIT, NJ - The Summit Area YMCA will hold its 13th annual Mother’s Day 5K Race, hosted by the Berkeley Heights YMCA, the Summit YMCA, and The Learning Circle YMCA on May 11. 

All are invited to participate in the Mother’s Day Run/Walk, which will be held at Memorial Field in Berkeley Heights with the support of the Celgene Corporation, Investor’s Bank, and Overlook Medical Center as platinum sponsors. Proceeds from the race will benefit the LIVESTRONG® at the YMCA program - a free, 12-week cancer recovery program for adult cancer patients and survivors.

“We are proud to partner with our platinum sponsors to offer this meaningful and fun event,” said Paul Kieltyka, president and chief executive officer of the Summit Area YMCA. “It gives the Y an opportunity to celebrate mothers for their amazing contributions while promoting wellness and raising funds to support cancer patients and survivors in our community.”

The chip-timed race will be run on a USATF sanctioned course at Memorial Park, 205 Plainfield Avenue in Berkeley Heights.  The race start is at 9 a.m., and race day check-in is from 7:30 - 8:30 a.m.  The Mother’s Day 5K is a family-friendly event that will also include a magic show, Zumba, and music.  Additionally, there will be a 50/50 Raffle, for which tickets can be purchased on-site or in advance at the Berkeley Heights YMCA, the Summit YMCA or The Learning Circle YMCA.  

Runners and walkers are welcome to participate in the race as individuals or as teams.  Participants can run in honor of -- or in memory of -- a family member or friend whose life has been affected by cancer.  A new fundraising component enables racers to raise funds online by creating their own friend-raising page that allows racers to reach out to friends in support of this meaningful cause. 

The Mother’s Day 5K supports the Y’s efforts to continue to help cancer patients and survivors through the LIVESTRONG® at the YMCA program.  This research-based physical activity and well-being program is designed to help adult cancer survivors reclaim their total health, and is offered at no cost to members and potential members alike.  Participants work with Y staff, trained in supportive cancer care, to achieve their goals such as building muscle mass and strength; increasing flexibility and endurance; and improving confidence and self-esteem.  In addition to physical benefits, LIVESTRONG® at the YMCA focuses on the emotional well-being of survivors and their families by providing a supportive community where people affected by cancer can connect during treatment and beyond.  By focusing on the whole person and not the disease, LIVESTRONG® at the YMCA helps people move beyond cancer in spirit, mind, and body.

“Since my diagnosis of stage-3 breast cancer, I’ve had several surgeries, chemotherapy and over 30 rounds of radiation. I tried physical therapy to battle pain and fatigue but had marginal results,” commented Denice DeGregorio, a LIVESTRONG® at the YMCA participant. “Then I learned about LIVESTRONG at the YMCA.  When I joined I couldn’t lift my arms above my head, but after a few weeks I could put them over my head and clasp them behind my back.  This program is better than any kind of therapy.  I regained mobility and a sense of independence.  It transformed me by helping me become stronger and feel better about myself.”

For more information on the Mother’s Day 5K Race, contact Caitlin Jensen, 908 / 738-2179, caitlin.jensen@thesay.org.  Register online at www.theSAY.org, or in person at the Berkeley Heights YMCA, 550 Springfield Avenue, or at the Summit YMCA, 67 Maple Street.  To make a donation, visit www.theSAY.org

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