Monday, September 15, 2014
Today is Day 155 of my 10 or more fitness minutes streak. Best wishes to anyone else out there streaking with me! Before writing this blog this morning, I challenged myself to get to 10 minutes here in my hotel room and did: 1 minute jogging in place; 2 minutes pushups; 2 minutes lunges; 8 minutes stretching.
Iím in Cincinnati for a short trip to meet with most of the SparkPeople team at our main headquarters. We spread the spark yesterday at a Susan Komen Race for the Cure event. It was great to see many of our team at the event and meet some new people. I even saw a longtime friend from high school (Hi Missy!).
After that event, I went back to my hotel and started watching the Bengals vs. Falcons NFL game. But, since my hotel was close to the stadium, I couldnít resist checking stubhub.com for tickets. I ended up getting a great seat cheap at the end of the first quarter and then ran about 15 minutes to the stadium and got there exactly midway through the second quarter.
One of the best parts of the game is the feel-good story mentioned in the title (feel-good, but sad). A Bengals defensive player named Devon Still is going through a very challenging time because his 4-year-old daughter has a rare form of pediatric cancer. As a result, his focus wasnít entirely on football during training camp this year. His daughter recently moved to Cincinnati to receive care at Cincinnati Childrenís Hospital Ė one of the top hospitals in the country (Iím friends with a former Chairman of the Board of the hospital; he is an amazing person).
Largely because of the focus issues, Still was cut by the Bengals at the end of training camp. But, the team signed him to their 10-person practice squad in part so Still would continue to have health benefits for his daughterís care. This meant that he wouldnít be on the active roster playing games, but would practice with the team.
The Bengals then decided to donate all proceeds from sales of Devon Stillís jersey to Cincinnati Childrenís Hospital for pediatric cancer research. Stillís jersey then set an all-time record for the most jersey sales in a single day by a Bengals player.
Then, after a short time period during this transition, the Bengals coaches called Still up and asked him if he was ready to play football. He responded YES and then said he made it to the stadium in about 5 minutes so they didnít change their mind.
After an injury yesterday, Still was brought into the game for the first time this season. After a play finished, the announcer called out that the tackle was made by Devon Still. The crowd erupted and gave Still a standing ovation that time and then 2 other times after tackles.
With the negative headlines in the news, itís great to see a story like this.
Then, after the game, Still returned to his locker and found this poster in his locker that a young Bengals fan asked the team management to give Still:
Hereís a great video on ESPN if you are interested in learning more about this story:
This gets a giant WooHoo and weíll be sending thoughts and prayers to the Still family from the SparkPeople family!