Wednesday, April 17, 2013

RAAM: A story of Power, Pedals and Ponytails...

The cool thing about being in a large town that seems to have an obsession with running and triathlon is that you run into all sorts of amazing people.  I am surrounded by more inspiring triathlete types than I could shake a stick at (whatever that means...).  The funny thing too is that I seem to have two degrees of separation with a lot of people in the sport around here.  It is crazy how we all kind of run in the same circles, friends of friends and all that.

Case in point Kacie Darden.  I think I first bumped into her through social media.  I can't remember how exactly but I ran into her blog online. At the time she was training for a DOUBLE ironman.  Digest that for a moment.  Not 140.6 miles but 281.2 (did I do the math right on that? I am not even sure there is a car sticker for that one...).  Anyhow, 4.8 miles of swimming, 224 miles on the bike and a 52.4 mile run.  WOW.

I finally got to meet her at a fundraiser she did a few months back for Race Across America (RAAM).  Race Across America is a transcontinental bicycle race starting on the west coast (Oceanside California) and finishing on the east coast (Annapolis, MD). The race covers 3000 miles across the Rockies, the heartland of America, and finally the Appalachians. It continues to stands as one the toughest events in the world and a tribute to human endurance.  RAAM can be completed as an eight man team, a four man team, a two (wo)man team and solo. 

Kacie is participating in the race as part of a two person team with Dani Grabol (who she met while competing in the Double Ironman).  The race is hard enough with a large team but imagine doing it with only one other person.    Just amazing!  It isn't enough just to want to complete the race but they are planning on setting a record for time.  They plan to bike from Oceanside CA to Annapolis MD in less than 8 days, 18 hours and 57 minutes.   Amazing, no?  Just when you think you can't log another mile all you have to do is check twitter and you'll see a tweet from Kacie about some million mile ride she is doing and suddenly your workout seems like nothing :)

What’s even more amazing is that these ladies have chosen to make this journey about something more than just two women biking across the country - they are raising funds through their racing and training for Race Across America for Camp Twin Lakes.  Camp Twin Lakes is a network of camps providing life-changing camp experiences to thousands of Georgia's children with serious illnesses, disabilities and other challenges each year. Camp Twin Lakes collaborates with over 50 different organizations, each serving a different population, to create customized programs that teach campers to overcome obstacles and grow in their confidence and capabilities. Camp Twin Lakes is thrilled to provide programs at various state-of-the-art locations throughout the state of Georgia, including camps in Rutledge, Winder, Warm Springs, children's hospitals, and more.  

Kacie and Dani are truly an inspiration and I am so excited to see them complete this goal!  If you would like to help them out (and in turn help out Camp Twin Lakes), you can do it a couple of ways.  

1.  You can visiting the fundraising page and possibly making a donation on behalf of Kacie and Dani to Camp Twin Lakes.  You can visit the site by clicking on this link.

All donations, big and small are greatly appreciated AND they are all tax deductible!


2.  They are selling these awesome kits online through April 25th.  Who can't use a cute pink bike jersey and shorts?  For more information on the kits, click HERE for their website. 

To learn more about Kacie and Dani, and to follow their journey, please visit their blog, Power Pedals and Ponytails at

To learn more about Camp Twin Lakes, please visit their site:

To learn more about Race Across America, please visit

1 comment:

Jenn ( said...

I've followed them for a the story and the jerseys! What an inspiration!!