Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Gentle Yoga Stretching available at Challenge Walk Overnight!

After a long day of walking, your body might need some extra TLC.  Catch your breath and enjoy simple stretches to release stiffness from your first day of walking and renew your energy for day two!  Certified yoga instructor Laura Starling will be guiding all interested participants through gentle yoga stretches at two different times during Saturday evening: 5-5:30 p.m. and 5:30-6 p.m.  Special thanks to Laura for her generous support of Capital Challenge Walk MS by donating her time and talent! Namaste. 

Laura Starling is a Certified Yoga Therapist through Duke Integrative Medicine and a Yoga Alliance Registered Yoga Teacher.  

Thursday, September 9, 2010

By Invititation Only: A Research Update Conference Call

We would like to invite all registered Capital Challenge Walk MS participants to join a national conference call about Vitamin D and Other Risk Factors in MS and MS Progression on Tuesday, September 14 from 3-4 p.m.

Would you like to know what the latest research says about MS risk and Vitamin D levels? Are you curious about whether smoking or exposure to Epstein-Barr virus contribute to MS susceptibility or disease progression? How does the hormone estrogen relate to MS risk?

We will address the questions above, as well as many others in a 60-minute interview with Dr. Alberto Ascherio, Dr. Colleen Hayes and Dr. Nicholas LaRocca. Dr. LaRocca will serve as interviewer during this call and will moderate the lively discussion, which is sure to raise questions that you will have the opportunity to have answered by any of the experts during two Q&A segments.


Alberto Ascherio, MD, DrPH is a Professor of Nutrition and Epidemiology at Harvard School of Public Health and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Ascherio is an internationally recognized expert in the epidemiology of neurodegenerative diseases and his findings have provided new insight into the role of Epstein-Barr virus, vitamin D levels and smoking in MS risk. Building upon his past work, Dr. Ascherio currently has a Society-recommended research grant that will explore MS risk and progression in a group of 1600 individuals.

Dr. Colleen Hayes, PhD is Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She and her collaborators have laid the foundation for much research into the role of Vitamin D and risk for developing MS. Dr. Hayes is the lead author of a forthcoming book chapter entitled "Vitamin D and Multiple Sclerosis." In a research grant recently recommended for funding by the Society, she and her team will further explore the role of Vitamin D levels and their interaction with the sex hormone estrogen in risk for developing MS.

Dr. Nicholas LaRocca is the National MS Society's Vice President of Health Care Delivery and Policy Research. He served on the Scientific Planning Committee for an International Workshop on MS Risk Factors and Frequency held in February 2010.

You can join the call by dialing 877.860.4996 and entering conference ID 98069074. No advance registration is necessary.

Pledge Parties: Get your funds in for the awards deadline

We at the National MS Society love two things: our wonderful Challenge Walkers, and a good after-work snack in one of our favorite local restaurants. In an effort to bring two of our favorite things together, we will be hosting a pledge drop-off for our Challenge Walk participants in Maryland and Northern Virginia. Since it’s also the awards deadline, we encourage you to turn in those final awards pledges in person. Any pledges turned in that night will be counted to help you reach these fantastic awards levels! Drop by after work with any final pledges and come hang out with us as we enjoy delicious food in great restaurants! Here’s what you need to know:

What: Pledge Parties

When: Wednesday, September 15th, 2010, from 4:30 - 6:30 p.m.

◦In Maryland: Urban BBQ, 2007 Chapman Ave., Rockville, MD 20852
◦In Virginia: Hard Times Cafe, 4069 Chain Bridge Road, Fairfax, VA, 22030

Why: To drop off those last few pledges before the Awards Deadline!

It will be a great time and we certainly hope to see you there!

Training Walk sponsored by Metro Run & Walk

Mark Russell, owner of Springfield's Metro Run & Walk, will be leading a 9.0 mile, fully-supported training walk through gorgeous suburban roads and into Lake Accotink state park. After a scenic lap around the lake, you'll return to the store and be invited to use your Challenge Walker-exclusive $10 coupon on anything in the store! Email Erouse@MSandYOU.org for your coupon. Here's what you need to know:

Where: Metro Run & Walk is located at 7261 Commerce Street in Springfield, VA. It's one minute off of 95 at the intersection of 495 and 395, or you can catch a Fairfax Connector bus 321/322  to their store from the Franconia-Springfield metro stop.

When: On Sunday, September 12th, Metro Run & Walk has generously offered to provide breakfast for our participants from 8 a.m. to 8:30 a.m., at which point he'll lead the way onto the route. The walk should take about 2.5 to three hours.

What: After the walk, Metro Run & Walk's expert employees will be on hand to answer any questions you have, from what kind of socks to bring with you to how your ankles are affecting your stride. Even better: the store doesn't open until noon, so you'll have their full attention after the walk!

Throughout the walk, there will be access to facilities, as well as water and sports drink supplied by Metro Run & Walk. Please RSVP to Mark and let him know whether you'd like to walk the full 9.0 miles, or modify the walk to be shorter (no lap around the lake) or longer (2 laps around the lake).

This is an amazing opportunity, and an incredible way to get in your daily training with fellow Challenge Walkers and walk enthusiasts!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Announcing the Capital Challenge Walk MS 2010 Welcome Night and Packet Pickup!!!

We are very excited to announce that the Capital Challenge Walk MS 2010 Welcome Night and Packet Pickup will be held at Hard Times Cafe in Fairfax, Virginia!  Located just around the corner from the George Mason University campus (and the start of the Challenge Walk), Hard Times Cafe has been a D.C. metropolitan area staple for 30 years.  Bring your teammates, family, and friends out for an awesome night of hanging out and grabbing a bite with all your fellow Challenge Walkers—all the while having 20% of your food bill donated back to the National Capital Chapter!  Here are the details:

  • What: Capital Challenge Walk MS 2010 Welcome Night and Packet Pickup
  • When: Friday, September 24th from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.
  • Where: Hard Times Cafe, 4069 Chain Bridge Road, Fairfax, VA, 22030.  Parking is abundant and easy!  Check out Hard Times’ website for more info.
  • Why: To get your weekend participant packet, meet or reunite with fellow Challenge Walkers, and support the National Capital Chapter by having 20% of your food bill donated.
While this event is by no means mandatory, it is SUPER FUN and we hope to see you there!