AIDS/LifeCycle Ride 2015, a 7-day bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles, is well underway. Let’s support this year’s participants as they exert their blood, sweat and tears, all for a life-saving cause. One of this year’s cyclists is CSOFT’s Client Services Manager Nate Denny and today we will be sharing part two of his Q&A session, where he shares his biggest life lesson and offers advice to people looking to do similar things. We will be posting daily updates so you can follow Nate’s progress on our Twitter page.
Q: What is the biggest life lesson you learned from your volunteer work?
A: I have come to embrace differences in people. At the end of the day, we are all the same – no one is “better” and no one is “worse.” We are all just different.
Q: When did you first find out about AIDS LifeCycle?
A: About 3-4 years ago. My dear friend Anthony has been flying out from NYC to do it every year for the past 3 years so I have been able to hear about his experiences firsthand.
Q: Were you immediately interested in participating in the AIDS/LifeCycle Ride 2015?
A: No way! I commended Anthony for all his efforts, but the ride and the fundraising requirements seemed way too big for me. It was only after moving to the Bay and getting involved in SFAF that I realized “Hey, I can do this too!”
Q: What was your training like for the AIDS/LifeCycle Ride 2015?
A: Since the New Year, my priorities have been to eat healthier, drink less, hit the gym 3x a week, and get out on my bike as often as possible – especially for longer training rides on the weekends. It has definitely been tough at times, especially having to sacrifice most of my free time to train, but it has been exciting to grow and develop along the way.
Q: What sort of fundraising did you do for the ride?
A: I have done a mix of efforts including regular posts on my Instagram account, casual conversations with friends and family, occasional emails to my personal contacts, fundraising nights at local SF bars, and asking my company CSOFT to participate by matching donations I garner from friends and family.
Q: How have your friends and family reacted to your participation?
A: I have been overwhelmed by the level of support by friends and family. I was worried that the fundraising effort would be a huge task, but once people understand the purpose behind the ride, they are generally very supportive and wanting to join the cause!
Q: What do you find most challenging about the AIDS/LifeCycle Ride 2015?
A: The training has already pushed me into territory that I never thought possible. There are moments when I am completely drained physically and my legs yell out “We are done!” yet I have to counter that with mental willpower that says “Keep going!” until I reach the finish. It has definitely been a huge mind-over-matter challenge.
Q: If your best friend were to call you tomorrow and tell you that they were going to participate in the AIDS LifeCycle Ride, what advice would you give them?
A: 1. Start eating well, today. 2. Get moving and keep moving. 3. Start talking to your friends and family! You may be surprised by who ends up being your biggest supporters on this endeavor.