Category Archives: Uncategorized

National Nonprofit Trance4mation Nation Launches Thank You Challenge to Benefit Veterans’ Quality of Life

National Nonprofit Trance4mation Nation Launches Thank You Challenge to Benefit Veterans’ Quality of Life

Kickoff event at Coca Cola 600 NASCAR race is first step to million messages of appreciation campaign

New York, NY (May 20, 2015) – The first of what organizers hope will be a million messages of gratitude to veterans and military service members will be recorded on Sunday, May 24 at the NASCAR Coca-Cola 600, held at the Charlotte Motor Speedway, in North Carolina. There, Trance4mation Nation, a national nonprofit organization that provides opportunities for healing, connection and quality of life to veterans and military service members and their families will launch the Thank You Challenge, its nationwide call to action for all Americans to show their appreciation to those who have served our nation.

“Since World War II, 22 million people have served in the United States military; that’s just shy of three percent of our country’s population,” said the organization’s president and founder Leslie Robinson. “The Thank You Challenge is an opportunity for the other 97 percent of us to prove that we appreciate those who have so courageously secured our freedom, safety, liberty and security.”

The Thank You Challenge is a grassroots initiative that encourages people to post short videos personally thanking current and past members of the US military to social media using the hashtag #ThankYouChallenge. Videos may include a personal shout out to a relative, involve a group of people, or pledge support or a random act of kindness and include the promise “It’s my turn to be your hero now.”

“It’s about making a difference for veterans,” said Ron Sukenick, creator of the Thank you Challenge and chief relationship officer for Trance4mation Nation.  “It is an honor to support those who have served our nation; we know we can never thank them enough, but that doesn’t mean we should ever stop trying.”

In addition to spreading waves of gratitude and positive energy, the Thank You Challenge also helps raise awareness for fundraising and in-kind donations to help veterans heal, celebrate and strengthen bonds with their families ranging from impactful resources and stress-reducing therapies to exciting recreational opportunities. In fact, 50 of the nation’s heroes will enjoy the race on behalf of Coca-Cola and Trance4mation Nation.

Other items donated for veterans’ include week-long resort packages, gift cards, tickets to concerts and major sporting events, copies of Warrior Spirit/Mission Homefront interactive card decks that help service members reconnect to friends and family and combat PTSD, isolation and depression, and Our Legacy Series tribute videos to WW2 and Korean War veterans to help them express their personal life and military experience to their families.

To get involved with the movement, take the Thank You Challenge and consider supporting Trance4mation Nation by becoming an ambassador, through corporate sponsorship/underwriting, by donating in-kind items to distribute to veterans and service members or making a donation. Every gift, no matter its size, will be used to promote healing, quality of life, peace, and well-being to those who have sacrificed their lives for ours.

To learn more, visit thankyouchallenge.org; facebook.com/tychallenge; @tychallenge on Twitter; YouTube; and Google+.

About Trance4mation Nation

Trance4mation Nation is a national nonprofit organization that provides healing, connection and quality of life to veterans and military service members and their families. Every donation received provides goes directly to a service member to improve his or her quality of life. The organizations is supported by an active and engaged board and volunteers, and is led by president and founder Leslie Robinson, Leslie is a psychotherapist who has worked with returning military service members and their families for many years, helping with reintegration, communication and leadership in creative ways, including through her Warrior Spirit/Mission Homefront interactive tabletop card decks;  and Ron Sukenick, a US military veteran, professional speaker and published author who is passionate about connecting returned service members with resources and support that not only inspires healing, but also offers opportunities for fun and an enhanced quality of life.

Media Contact:

Leslie Robinson:

917-302-5086

leslie@missionhomefront.com

Ron Sukenick:

317-696-1367

rs@ronsukenick.com

Thank You Challenge

I’m so proud to be affiliated with this organization! The Thank You Challenge is a great organization that is helping Veterans. From the website:

Trance4mation Nation is on a mission to bring healing, connection and quality of life to our Service Members and their families, past and present. We, as an organization, are dedicated to helping our service members and their families to feel they are truly appreciated here on the home front, in tangible ways. What makes us unique as an organization is that we offer multiple ways to heal, celebrate and to strengthen the bonds of military families.

The Thank You team, built of seasoned professionals (please see LinkedIn profiles under Leadership) has gathered together to launch this effort, with you – the citizens of the United States of America. We see, hear and feel the need in our bones, and have answered the call. We are profoundly honored to serve those who have served our nation.

Since 2001, more than 2.5 million U.S. service members have been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, with longer and more frequent deployments than in previous conflicts. The Army found that spending more time deployed in combat and less time at home causes repeated disruptions to the social fabric of service members and their families. This then impedes community readjustment and family reintegration. This isolation can lead to greater risk for major depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as self-harm. As the only organization dedicated specifically to improving communication, connection and healing to military families – and with an estimated 22 military member suicides a day, our mission is indeed urgent.

As the Afghanistan war draws down, let us promise never to forget. Together, we are in a unique position to work collectively to bridge the gaping military civilian divide. Let us commit ourselves to keeping our Service Members in our hearts and on our minds by saying THANK YOU… THANK YOU… THANK YOU, because we know that we can never thank them enough!! Our ability to give is made possible by your generosity. Let us be their Heroes now.

Trance4mation Nation is a 501(c)(3) – All donations are tax-deductible.

Busy in Germany

As you all probably remember, I was picked up to go to Germany for a few months to do some Army work. I’m still here and having a blast! I’m going to create a page for my military stories and photos in case you would like to read them, and continue to follow my journey here.

I haven’t been able to ride as much, but I’ve done some on a mountain bike I bought for $100.00. It’s not my nice bike, but it has wheels and pedals!

During my visit, I’ve traveled to places such as Munich, Dresden and Weiden. I even took a little shopping trip to Czech Republic. Photos and such to follow via my Flikr page!

Bye for now ~

Christina

 

Detours of life

It seems that some of my cycling plans for this year may be shifted a tad. I found out late last week that I am headed to Europe for a few months for an Army public affairs mission. Since I don’t know exactly what it will be like, I’m excited but sort of afraid I won’t have time to ride my bike! Since I like to be optimistic and always hope for the best, I’m going to assume that I’ll have a chance to ride.

Map My RideNow that we’ve settled that matter, I have looked around where I will be and it looks like I’ll have some fabulous places to explore!

MapMyRide has tons of routes posted by other users that I can use. I hope to see beautiful countryside, mountains and old castles. I don’t know how far I’ll be able to go or what sort of traveling I’ll be doing, but I look forward to this adventure. I will pick up my Ride2Recovery, Warrior Ride and Operation Shifting Gears work when I return at the end of autumn.

Until then, I need to get my hands on a bicycle while in Germany that I can use and maybe sell before I return home. Anyone know of a good 48 cm road bike I could use?

Ride 2 Recovery Memorial Challenge Wrap Up

Okay, so I was trying to write about my adventures each night, but I got too tired! The adventures kept coming and they wore me out in the best possible way.

Me and my big mouth
Wednesday’s ride from Fredericksburg, Virginia to Glen Allen, Virginia with my friend U.S. Marine vet Sylvie. We were in a shaka kind of mood! Photo by Tiffini M. Skuce / Ride 2 Recovery — at Memorial Challenge.

On Thursday, we rode from Glen Allen, Virginia to Williamsburg, Virginia which was 62 miles. The air was cool and it was drizzly most of the morning, but cleared up later in the afternoon. One of my personal goals was to complete my first Century Ride – 100 miles in one day. Since the opportunity came up that afternoon, I went for it.

Cyclists ride 62 miles from Fredericksburg to Richmond, Va., during the 2014 Ride 2 Recovery Memorial Challenge. As a 501(c)(3) organization, R2R helps injured active duty service members and veterans improve their health and wellness through individual and group cycling. Photo by Tiffini M. Skuce / Ride 2 Recovery — at Memorial Challenge.
Cyclists ride 62 miles from Fredericksburg to Richmond, Va., during the 2014 Ride 2 Recovery Memorial Challenge. As a 501(c)(3) organization, R2R helps injured active duty service members and veterans improve their health and wellness through individual and group cycling. Photo by Tiffini M. Skuce / Ride 2 Recovery — at Memorial Challenge.

I typically ride somewhere between 15-16 miles per hour in a pace line, but this was lead by a high-speed, low-drag rider named Bruce. We did this at an 18 mph pace and there were some hills to contend with. I had to dig down deep in order to get through this ride.

As the miles started picking up, and I got closer to my 100 m101.58 milesiles, my resolve was that much deeper that I was going to finish this ride if it killed me. And, I am proud to say that I did.

Finishing my first century was just one of the highlights, though. Through each town we passed there were school kids who greeted us with flags, hi-fives and cheers. We took one of our breaks at the New Kent Elementary School. There we were greeted by school children enjoying lunch. They let us use their parking lot and opened their school so we could warm up, use

Kids of New Kent Elementary School in New Kent, Virginia pose with us outside their school during our lunch stop. I am on the far left front in gray.
Kids of New Kent Elementary School in New Kent, Virginia pose with us outside their school during our lunch stop. I am on the far left front in gray.

the rest rooms and walk past hundreds of kids saying “Thank You” and wanting hi-fives like we were celebrities. I can’t explain the joy these kids brought us. We were thankful for all the support we were receiving – both as veterans and as cyclists.

Pro Cyclist Kirk Bausch and his wife U.S. Olympic  Cycling Team Silver Medalist Dotsie Bausch spent the week with us riding and coaching. They are awesome!!
Pro Cyclist Kirk Bausch and his wife U.S. Olympic Cycling Team Silver Medalist Dotsie Bausch spent the week with us riding and coaching. They are awesome!!

Not only that, but we were lucky to have Pro Cyclist and U.S. Olympian Cyclist Dotsie Bausch and her husband Pro Cyclist Kirk Bausch with us for the week. They coached us, chatted with us and rode the entire challenge. They were simply amazing. I can say that I was coached by an olympian and my water bottle was retrieved by a pro cyclist! I kind of dropped my water bottle while we were riding one day when it was rainy. Kirk shortly after rode up and handed the water bottle back to me. Too cool!

There is so much more to say, but there are other posts to come. I met some amaziLadies groupng people this week and I’ll never forget this experience. Nor will I forget how lucky I am. Please check out this video and remember that we really have no excuses.

Me riding
Photo by Tiffini M. Skuce / Ride 2 Recovery — at Memorial Challenge.

The week ended with a concert at Patriot Week at Virginia Beach with The Band Perry and we were VIP guests of the USO. I am proud of my accomplishments. I am thankful for the new friendships. And most of all, I am grateful for all of the support we’ve gotten and continue to get.

I hope to join these great men and women again in the fall for the Minuteman Challenge from Massachusetts to New Jersey!

Video: USO/Ride 2 Recovery Memorial Day Challenge Rides into Virginia Beach

Here we are at the final stop on the Ride 2 Recovery Memorial Challenge!

The Official USO Blog

The USO/Ride 2 Recovery Memorial Day Challenge wrapped up Friday afternoon in Virginia Beach, Va. The USO’s Sandi Moynihan was there to chronicle the event. Congratulations to all the wounded, ill and injured troops who made the five-day trek from Washington, D.C.

View original post

R2R Memorial Ride Day 3

Riders of Ride 2 Recovery move through the final miles of the 62 mile trek from Fredericksburg, Virginia to Glen Allen, Virginia.
Riders of Ride 2 Recovery move through the final miles of the 62 mile trek from Fredericksburg, Virginia to Glen Allen, Virginia.

Sixty-two miles, 90 degree heat, numerous towns and amazing people are elements of today’s ride. I am finding it so difficult to really put my feelings into words.

As I’ve stated in an earlier post, as a veteran I do not expect any of this, but my heart is so very thankful that I have been blessed with these experiences.

Today I was able to join an awesome group of veterans ride, that for many is a personal record for a single-ride distance, as well as ride with a silver medal U.S. Olympic cyclist! That’s right … I got to ride with Dotsie Bausch of the 2012 Women’s

Riders of Ride 2 Recovery move through the final miles of the 62 mile trek from Fredericksburg, Virginia to Glen Allen, Virginia.
Riders of Ride 2 Recovery move through the final miles of the 62 mile trek from Fredericksburg, Virginia to Glen Allen, Virginia.

Olympic Cycling Team.  If that wasn’t cool enough, at the end of the long ride, we did a racing clinic with her. All I can think right now is “OMG”!!!

The adventure started in Fredericksburg, Virginia, and we rode through small towns on small side roads, passing horses, farming fields, families watching and waving, school children and teachers and other passersby. With the brightly shining sun, we rode through 90 degree heat, drinking loads of electrolytes and water as well as enjoyed another lunch provided by the USO.

Riders of Ride 2 Recovery move through the the 62 mile trek from Fredericksburg, Virginia to Glen Allen, Virginia.
Riders of Ride 2 Recovery move through the the 62 mile trek from Fredericksburg, Virginia to Glen Allen, Virginia.

Although yesterday I rode with D group, the least experienced riders, today I joined C group. Although the pace was a little faster, it was fun to chat and laugh through the 4 hour ride. We may be riding, but we are still socializing and having a blast. I’m debating a B group ride Friday. We’ll see how I feel come Friday!

So, the 62 miles I rode today were not the most I’ve done in a day, adding the  6 miles on with the race clinic pushed me 2 miles further than my single-day distance record.

Me!
Me!

Tomorrow we will ride from Glen Allen to Williamsburg, Virginia where I get a double present. My parents live nearby and I’ll get to see them! I am also looking at maybe doing my first century ride. Again, I’ll make that determination tomorrow based on how I feel.

For today, you can see many more photos on Facebook at Ride 2 Recovery. Like the page and enjoy the ride!

#R2RMemorialChallenge

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ride 2 Recover Memorial Ride

As I sit here physically exhausted, I reflect on the day I’ve had. It started early this morning with prepping my bicycle and gear and lead to the ride brief. Although I ride quite a bit at home, this wasn’t like the others. I wasn’t in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Instead, I was with Ride 2 Recovery in Manassas, Virginia. This was day two for them, but my first day. Day one involved a visit to Vice President Joe Biden’s house. How cool is that!

Scott Thuman @ABC7Scott Now THAT's a #selfie! @JoeBiden takes his own group photo w/ @Ride_2_Recovery. I ride-along tonight on @ABC7News
Photo Courtesy of Scott Thuman @ABC7Scott
via Twitter: Now THAT’s a #selfie! @JoeBiden takes his own group photo w/ @Ride_2_Recovery. I ride-along tonight on @ABC7News

So, for day two, the entire 51.6-mile ride to Fredericksburg, Virginia was beautiful. We were also escorted by police. They did a fantastic job stopping traffic so we could get through intersections and make turns on the route. At miles 13 and 32 were stops for snacks and lunch, fully supported by sponsors such as the USO.

Now, logistics with any ride take planning, but with these challenges, it’s not just one route on one day. It’s a week-long adventure that starts in Washington, D.C. and ends in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

The riders, some using hand cycles or others on recumbent bicycles while the rest ride traditional bicycles, rode proudly.  Many of these wounded warriors ride with scars visible and invisible.  Their injuries don’t matter here, though. We are a group, a team, just as we were during our time in service. Whether in the most competitive A group or the more beginner D group, we stick together. Here everyone is outside, pedaling to the next mile under the bright sunny sky.

We saw school children and gave hi-fives as we rode through the school parking lot, a well as passed families in their yards.

Photo Courtesy of Katie Martyn Delco Ride 2 Recovery rolling through Bristow on the way out of Manassas May 27.
Photo Courtesy of Katie Martyn Delco
Ride 2 Recovery rolling through Bristow on the way out of Manassas May 27.

As I’ve said in my previous posts, I feel so incredibly honored to ride among these people. Today was incredible. The route wasn’t especially difficult, but the camaraderie was unmatched.

Photo Courtesy of Katie Martyn Delco Ride 2 Recovery rolling through Bristow on the way out of Manassas May 27.
Photo Courtesy of Katie Martyn Delco Ride 2 Recovery rolling through Bristow on the way out of Manassas May 27.
Photo Courtesy of Katie Martyn Delco
Ride 2 Recovery rolling through Bristow on the way out of Manassas May 27.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can find more photos using the hashtag #R2Rmemorialchallenge. I will post more through the week.

For today, keep pedaling.

Cycling tid-bits for those starting out

I am so thankful for my readers’ support and the stories of people who are beginning their cycling endeavors. I thought I’d add some tips I’ve learned to help make the sport even more fun.

The handle bars, drop positioning and seat have all been adjusted for my specific fit.
The handle bars, drop positioning and seat have all been adjusted for my specific fit.

First, whether you have a bike from a local retail store or you’ve invested in a higher-end quality bicycle, get fitted. The benefits can be the difference between enjoying or hating the sport all together. I found a blog with in-depth information on just this subject.

This riser was added to my handlebar to bring them higher and closer to me.
This riser was added to my handlebar to bring them higher and closer to me.

I can tell you from personal experience, that I had to raise my handlebars because my hands were going numb about 5 miles into my ride and didn’t let up until I was done. Since I like riding 30+ miles, that wasn’t going to work. I also had to raise my seat and it’s set as far forward as it can go. I am short, so my 48 cm bicycle is meant for my frame, but since my legs are longer in proportion to my torso and arms, I needed to be closer to my handlebars. Numb hands are a big issue for riders. Make sure you wear gloves with padding for the ulnar nerve as well as for protection for you hands in case you fall.  If you are new to cycling, I promise you will fall eventually.

I had to move my seat all the way forward for my fit to be perfect.
I had to move my seat all the way forward for my fit to be perfect.

I also found a Bicycling Beginners Guide which I wish I would have found when I started my cycling journey a year ago. It really outlines what to look at, questions to ask and “how to” for picking a bike, as well as more information on that all too important fitting.

There are a ton of resources available online.

If you are trying to use cycling for weight loss, general fitness or recreation, make sure you are eating for the amount of calories you’ll burn. I have found nothing that burns calories like cycling and you’ll feel it halfway through your ride if you haven’t fueled yourself properly. Also, stay hydrated! There are a ton of nutrition resources and Velo News is a great resource.

This post is really meant to help steer my readers in the right direction. We’ll focus on some more cycling tips another day.

For now, enjoy the weather, breathe deep and see the world from the seat of a bicycle. There is simply nothing else like it.

Make sure you ride safe. Keep a tube replacement kit with you in case you get a flat. Your local bike mechanic will gladly teach you how to do this.
Make sure you ride safe. Keep a tube replacement kit with you in case you get a flat. Your local bike mechanic will gladly teach you how to do this.

Pay it forward

One of the many things I’ve learned since I started cycling is the act of paying it forward. This isn’t necessarily a monetary thing, but time and patience.

Some of the riders in my local cycling club, Kernersville Cycling Club, are new riders and don’t ride far or fast. We’ve had trouble getting people to lead rides for them, and we are not catering to a lot of our members.

Now, after all I’ve written about with my veteran cycling groups, it’s my turn to do something. I decided to lead the slow/training rides for riders who are not comfortable going faster or who simply can’t. This ought to be fun. Hopefully our club membership will flourish and I will get to give back to my community and cycling club.

Friday is that ride. Hopefully I’ll have photos to follow!