How to Tell Your Story – A Guest Post by Coach Susan

Susan Wynne, the Participant Support Coach for the Atlanta 3-Day, joins us today to talk about the importance that your story has in your fundraising efforts. susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog 60 miles how to tell your story fundraising coach susan

 

“Tales told from the heart reach the heart.” – Steve Sanfield

Who doesn’t love a good story? A really great story can draw people in, transport them to new and different places and move them to act. Stories are what connect us to each other.

Your story is an important way for you to share your message with potential donors. Your story is what will help you achieve the goal that you set out to reach, which is to help create a world without breast cancer.

When participants register for the Komen 3-Day, one of the first things that we as coaches suggest they do is customize their personal 3-Day® webpage. This is the place where you will tell potential donors YOUR story. What brought you to the 3-Day? What made you decide to walk 60 miles and raise $2,300? What will your friends’ and family members’ donations mean to you and to the fight?susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog 60 miles how to tell your story fundraising

Below I’ve outlined a few tips to help you tell your story:

  1. Make your story authentic. The people who are going to be supporting you will be drawn in because they know you, they want to support you, and they can empathize with your story. Don’t tell someone else’s story. Use your voice. Jot down a few thoughts about what you want to share: what made you decide to participate? Why is this cause important to you? Why did you choose the 3-Day? This will become the outline for your story.
  2. Speak from the heart. For most of us, making the decision to participate in the 3-Day was emotional. Maybe you were driven to participate because you were diagnosed, maybe because you lost a loved one, maybe you might not have a personal connection, but were drawn to participate because you want to do something to make the world better. Whatever the reason, it must have been powerful to make you decide to do something that many other people wouldn’t do. Share your reason with your donors. It is the stories, not statistics, that will help connect people to your cause.
  3. Remember that your story is powerful; share it with everyone! As the 3-Day gets closer, we have many participants who reach out to the coaches because they need some last-minute fundraising advice. As a coach, the first thing I do is go online and visit their personal fundraising page. I’m surprised by how often I discover that they had not personalized their page yet; they had not told their story. Many walkers make the mistake of thinking their story isn’t important, or thinking it won’t make an impact, so they don’t share it. But they couldn’t be more wrong! My first suggestion is to get that personal page updated, then share it with the world. It’s amazing the success that people have when they take this very important step.
  4. Make sure to include your donors in your story. Your donors are helping you achieve your goal by supporting you. Their generosity goes so far beyond the monetary gifts they give, because together with you, they have helped make a difference in the fight to end breast cancer. Share how their donations are helping, and thank them publicly early and often.

Sometimes getting started is the hardest step, so if you need a little help with getting your story out there, call your 3-Day coach at 800-996-3DAY.

4 Secrets to Successful Stretching

Jon L. is the Crew/Volunteer Coordinator for the Seattle 3-Day, but when he’s not working to support Seattle crew members, he’s also a long-distance runner with years of experience hitting the pavement. Jon agreed to be our guest blogger this week, to talk about the importance of stretching.

susan g. komen 3-day breast cancer 60 mile walk blog training stretching

Coach Jon

You can safely assume that walking for three days, let alone three days that carry you 60 miles, will take a toll on one’s body. While it may seem like “just walking” to some, those who have done the 3-Day can certainly tell you it’s much more. There is a lot of time spent on your feet, which the majority of the general population is not used to. The pounding you get from walking on mostly hard surfaces, like sidewalks, can be tough on your muscles and joints. Throw in a couple of hills, and it could be a recipe for leg soreness. One of the most elegant and efficient ways to combat this stress on your body is by stretching.susan g. komen 3-day breast cancer 60 mile walk blog training stretching

Here are some basic tips to help you get the most out of your next batch of stretching:

  • Ease into your stretching routine – One of the biggest mistakes in developing a stretching routine for yourself, especially early on, is stretching too much, too soon. Your muscles have a baseline level of flexibility, which is determined based on how much the muscles are used and how much they have been cared for. If you overstretch—by stretching for too long or by pulling your muscles beyond their capacity—you can end up doing more harm than good.
  • No BOUNCING! – When stretching any muscle, you want to make sure you make unrushed, smooth and deliberate transitions. This allows your muscles to adapt slowly to the new sensation of being stretched. If you bounce, it adds quick and intense stress to your muscles, which could lead to pulls and strains. Remember, we’re trying to help your muscles, not add to their misery.
  • Find your breath – An important but often overlooked aspect of stretching is breathing. One of the best ways to help your muscles recover is by getting them nice clean oxygen. So make sure you remember to breathe, slowly and deeply, while you stretch to keep the fresh oxygen flowing.
  • Focus – Pay attention to the muscle that you are trying to stretch. This will help prevent overstretching, while allowing you to focus on helping that specific muscle to feel a little less sore. It also gives you time to remember that all-important breathing.susan g. komen 3-day breast cancer 60 mile walk blog training stretching

Remember, stretching is not a cure-all for muscle soreness. It is just one stepping stone in injury prevention. It does not replace consistent training and recovery, it simply allows you to get back to training with muscles that are looser and more responsive. If you feel like you are injured, or that you are developing an injury, please see you doctor right away.

http://www.the3day.org/site/PageServer?pagename=register

 

PLEASE NOTE: THE HEALTH, SAFETY AND TRAINING INFORMATION PROVIDED TO YOU IN CONNECTION WITH YOUR PARTICIPATION IN THE SUSAN G. KOMEN 3-DAY IS NOT INTENDED TO REPLACE OR BE CONSTRUED AS MEDICAL ADVICE AND ANY SUCH INFORMATION IS NOT A SUBSTITUTE FOR SEEKING MEDICAL ADVICE OR TREATMENT FROM YOUR MEDICAL PROVIDER. BEFORE STARTING ANY EXERCISE PROGRAM OR FOLLOWING ANY RECOMMENDATIONS, ADVICE OR OTHER INSTRUCTIONS REGARDING

Fundraising Strategy: Mark Your Calendars!

Susan G. Komen 3-Day® coach Eileen is our guest blogger today, and she’s here to share some great ideas about how to use the year’s calendar to inspire and invigorate your Komen 3-Day fundraising!

susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog 60 miles coach eileen fundraising

Coach Eileen

Every good 3-Day® fundraising plan has a start date and a goal date. Once you’ve got those two big dates marked on your calendar, highlight the best times to ask for donations.

Your birthday is a perfect day to reach out to your friends and family to request donations (who’s going to say no to you on your birthday?). You can ask for a donation in lieu of presents or use your birthday to launch a fun Facebook challenge: see how many of your Facebook Friends will become your “Birthday Buddy” by donating to your fundraising. If you’re feeling brave, share your age and ask for donations in that amount, because a donation request is more effective when you ask for a specific amount.

One great day to focus your fundraising around is April 15th. This is a date that many of us reorganize our finances and do some preliminary tax planning for the upcoming year. What better time to ask for a donation than right before the tax deadline, when tax returns are still fresh on the minds of your donors? Remind them that their donations to the 3-Day are 100% tax deductible.

May is another good month for a fundraising push. Is there a better way to honor and remember our moms than with a donation to support breast cancer research on Mother’s Day? Remind donors that each donation helps bring us closer to a cure and to a world without breast cancer. Doesn’t that beat another house plant?susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog 60 miles calendar fundraising

One of the best times of the year to ask for donations is from mid-November through December. There are a number of reasons for this. First, it is the time of year when we feel most generous as we contemplate our personal blessings. The holiday season inspires us to help those less fortunate than us. And of course, there’s that tax thing; December 31st is the biggest donation day of the year, and it is also the last day a donation can be made for a tax deduction. Coincidence? I think not. Although we’ve just passed this season a few months ago, keep this in mind for next year’s 3-Day fundraising.

There are ample fundraising opportunities to be found in each and every month. Use your calendar to look ahead to upcoming holidays/events and use those to help plan a fundraiser.

For example:

  • January – Super Bowl Party (ok- technically this is in February, but you will need to start planning in January)
  • February – Valentine’s Day gift basket sales
  • March – March Madness Brackets
  • April – Easter egg hunt
  • May – Kentucky Derby party
  • June – Car wash
  • July – Fourth of July BBQ
  • August – Back to school garage sale
  • September – Chili cook off
  • October- Halloween/costume party
  • November – Turkey Trot
  • December – Christmas center piece sales

As you can see, your calendar can be a helpful fundraising tool. Choosing a date to start your fundraising, and setting smaller goals along the way, then setting in motion the plans needed to execute your strategy will help ensure that you are successful.

Equally important is choosing a fundraising completion date. This will give you a goal to strive for and will help keep your fundraising front and central. Coach’s tip: choose a fundraising goal date six to eight weeks before your event. This will allow for a little extra time should you need it (no reason for undue stress!).

Of course, if you would like some advice with your fundraising or need an assist setting up a fundraising plan, be sure to give your coach a call at 800-996-3DAY. We’ve been in your shoes before, fundraising for the 3-Day as walkers or crew members, and we’re always happy to help!

Thanks, Eileen! And remember, the Participant Center on the 3-Day website is chock full of fundraising tools and resources, too!

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