Thursday, December 15, 2011


It's been a few days of recovering from some minor surgery. Hopefully with this surgery it will make getting meds/IV's and having blood collected easier. No more being poked a dozen times or having blood drawn from my leg. So I have another week before I am able to resume cardio workouts. Thankfully I am still able to walk the kids to and from the bus, alittle bit of exercise while I heal. I can't believe how fast Christmas is approaching up us. My kids counting down the days is stressing me !! I am no where near done my shopping and I'm dreading if I have to go to a mall this weekend!!! Our fundraising bracelets were shipped yesterday so I'm expecting them before Christmas...wooohooo!!! I am so excited about their arrival!!! So for those of you that pre-ordered I will contact you as soon as they arrive. They will make a great stocking stuffer and support a great cause! :-) They will be available from all the team members and a few supporters helping us out in the Crowsnest Pass, Pincher Creek, Calgary/Okotoks, Red Deer and Ft.McMurray! It looks like we have another team member and her registration is just being processed by the office. So we will have her bio and fundraising page up on the website before too long. It's a busy time of year and she has 4 kids so I will have to keep you in suspense for a bit longer. :-) So we have a team of 5 and $34,000 to fundraise. It would be really cool to have an even number and have a team of 6...anybody??? Tammy my fave cuz are you!!! :-P

Thursday, December 8, 2011

YAY!!! She's on the team!!

Well it's official, Heather Skupinska is registered and ready to go. I am super excited that she has joined the arth-kickers. Heather and I did Athens last year and were room mates. Lots of memories from that trip. You can read Heather's bio on our website. Our team is growing that is exciting. Our coordinator emailed me to today and said the arth-kickers are popular that means people are looking at our website. :-) I can't believe its really only 10 months away ... eeekkk! Our team has $30,000 to raise and we need your help. Even if it's just $5.00 or $10.00 it is all appreciated! :-)

Friday, December 2, 2011

Visit the Website

Please visit our website to read my post from today. Some exciting news. I am going to keep this blog for now but most of my posting will be on the website blog, so please check us out over there where you can see what everyone on the team is upto. We just announced a fundraiser on the website and we have a new team member that we will be announcing shortly. I am so excited about the website and I hope you continue to follow my journey over there!! :-)

Thursday, November 24, 2011

This and That . . .

Today I attended an information session for "Patient Matters". It's an organization that is engaging patients as collaborators to improve osteoarthritis care in Alberta. It's an initiative that is going to train patients to do research and report our findings. It's about a 2 year process and I'm excited to be a part of it. They are looking for other individuals to join the panel; so if you're interested in becoming a part of this innovative initiative that is going to change the Patient Care within Alberta's Healthcare system, you can contact Dr. Svetlana Shklarov at The project is hoping to get underway in the new year and I am excited to be a part of it. Well the Arth-Kickers are super excited about our website that we are creating. It will be a place where all the members will be able to share their experiences for the next year. I am super pumped about the things we are going to be doing. We could potentially have 6 team mates registered and that is an incredible feeling that so many people want to be part of an amazing experience and give back to a cause that means so much to me. You can check out the website it's only in the first stages and will be a work in progress but we would love for you to check it out as we develop it. Lots of places for you to leave comments. :-) It's going to be a warm weekend, good for some walking outdoors. :-)

Monday, November 21, 2011

We have a team name...

Well it was a fun weekend of brainstorming and coming up with a new team name. After a million texts being sent around between family and friends of "what do you think of this name" ... We had some great names (and not so great suggested and it was definietly a team effort, from both people on the team and supporters! We have a winner and it's kinda funny how it happened actually. I had finally sent out a text saying the we would be the A-Kickers .. (Cause "A" could stand for a lot of things and it was kinda like the A-Team but So just when I thought we had a name, one of the friends I sent it to said "sounds good .. how about arth-kickers". I think he may have be joking ..kinda sort of!! And it hit me, I was like I love it !! Isn't that how some of the best things are created, by accident!! So thanks Chris for the great name. So everyone says they like it and I hope they do (maybe not as much as I but it's our name cause it's unique and catches your attention!! So today another friend took the new team name and the joints in motion/Arthritis society logos and made it all one for me. I love it even more now!!! :-) Thanks Allyson !! The slogan part of the name "our fight for the right to move it" my sister came up with at the begining of the weekend and that too was an immediate "I love it" moment, we have to use it!! So I think the 2 go perfectly together!! :-) We have some great fundraising ideas we are throwing around and I can't wait to share them. How do you feel about a pair of work out/yoga pants with "Arth-Kickers" silk screened on the butt?!?!? :-) We are also looking for a company that would like to be a part of our team name,("company name" Arth-kickers) so if you work for or know of a company that would like to donate to an amazing cause and be a part of our team name with exposure through fundraising, training jerseys and online blogs and websites, let us know, we would appreciate the support. :-) We are also hoping to add a couple more team members to Arth-kickers, I a have a couple of people deep in thought about it, just gotta put pen to paper ... you know who you !!! And if I haven't been harassing you to join just surprise me with an email that says "I'm in" ..LOL !!! Thanks again to everyone who was involved in our team naming weekend .. it was fun!!! Stay tuned for more exciting things ....

Friday, November 18, 2011

"Team Jordan" is expanding ...

Well it's a very chilly morning, walking the kids to the bus was enough outside exercise for me, so indoors on the treadmill it will be!! Thank goodness it's Southern Alberta and a chinook will eventually make its way here!! So some exciting news for our Joints in Motion team ... we have a new team mate. Tracy Barthel has decided to join "Team Jordan". Tracy and I went to school and graduated together and she has since been diagnosed with Rhumetoid arthritis. So not only has she decided to be a support for me and keep me motivated as part of "Team Jordan" but this journey is a personal one for her. Being someone personally affected with arthritis this journey takes on a whole new meaning. So as a team we will raise money for the arthritis society,an organization that we are passionate about. Individually we are required to raise $6800 so our team goal right now is $20,400. I've posted a team fundraising thermometer here so you can watch as we reach our goal. So when I started this journey, it was me and gathering a support system that would be there for me and get me across the finish line,so "Team Jordan" seemed appropriate. Now that I have a team mate that also has arthritis it's not just about me anymore, it's about Tracy too and supporting her through challenges she may experience while training. So I'd like to come up with a new team name that represents everyone on team. So post any suggestions you might have, we would love to hear them. So help us reach our goal, any contribution is greatly appreciated. Maybe you work for a company that would be interested in donating to an amazing cause that affects our team personally. And if you want to be a part of this amazing experience with us, we'd love to have you as part of the team as well. The more awareness and inpiration we can provide to other people the better. :-) A huge thank you to my teammates DeAnna and Tracy for being a part of this journey that means so much to me!!! Stay warm and stay tuned for upcoming fundraising events ... Thank you for your continued support!! :-)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

On the Right Track ....

Well I think it's safe to say I'm on the mend. The new medication I started 10 days ago seems to be helping and no reactions... YAY!!! I will now be doing self injections every 2 weeks and my next one is this week. So after 3 months of struggling with a huge flare up I'm starting to feel like myself again. Unfortanetly the meds don't really help the osteo arthritis in my hips but for some reason I can handle that pain alot better than the one that hits from the Anklyosing Spondalitis and the Psoriatic arthritis flare up. At least now I'm feeling like I can actually walk 10km again !! This past week I've also started a little challenge with a couple of friends to help with the weight loss part of this journey. So it was a fun week as we texted back and forth to keep each other track. We went to a movie on Friday and were so proud that we just had snack packs of popcorn and opted for water instead of pop. :-) So I'm happy to say that I'm down 1.5lbs at this mornings weigh in!!! I'll take that !!!! A friend this weekend told me I was relentless and I will take that as a compliment !! I have been trying to get her to sign up for Joints in Motion and be a part of "Team Jordan"! I am so passionate about this journey that I want everyone to do it with me ... I have a couple of people still sitting on the fence about joining so I guess I will kick my relentlessness (is that a word into high gear!!! LOL !!! So if you're interested I'd love to have you on my team!! We are going to start planning some fundraising events so stay tuned for those!! You can also donate by clicking on one the links to the left of this post!! Your support is greatly appreciated !! Stay tuned for lots of exciting news ....

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Video on Facebook

For those who don't belong to my facebook group "Jody's Journey to fight Arthritis" I wanted to share with you a response I received. I posted the video from the forum onto the group and received many supportive comments which was great because I was scared to death to post the video. There was one comment however that made me smile, sit back in my chair and reminded me exactly why I am on this journey. This was her comment
I am so very humbled after listening to you! I have been feeling sorry for myself because of my RA, but after listening to you talk I have a complete different outlook. Thank you!!!!!!
At first it was a bit of mixed emotions reading it as it is a girl I went to school with and graduated with. Someone that was there that very day I experienced my first symptoms and here we are 21 years later and she is diagnosed with Rhumatoid Arthritis. I was sad at first knowing the challenges she maybe experiencing but as I read on I felt a sense of excitement that she was thanking me because so much of my journey is be an inspiration to people and today that has happened and for that, I am happy. So after chatting a bit more with this person I am so excited of the possible outcome from this one comment!!! BUT ... It's a surprise for now ... After my own challenges the past couple of months it is just the boost I needed to remind me why I am on this journey to fight arthritis and to continue on this road ! If I had any doubts about doing this again, they are all gone now because of one comment. So it's my turn to say "Thank you"!!!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

One Year Anniversary!!!

Wow, I can't believe it's been a year already!!! On this day one year ago I was walking around in flipflops with bandaged toes recooperating from walking the Athens Marathon!!! I can't help but sit here today and wonder how that was possible based on the condition I am in right now!!! I need to draw from the experience now because I'm really struggling with how in the world am I going to do this again. My mind is saying "get busy, people are watching you and waiting to see how you finsih this" but my body is in react mode and not cooperating at all. The last month has been trying to get my strength back from the life threatening reaction I had to the medication and waiting to see what the next step will be in putting this flare up in remission. But today at this very moment I am remembering the amazing people I met in Athens, all the people that were doing the Marathon to support loved ones that have some form of Arthritis. The friends that were made and ones that continue to follow and support me in my journey to fight Arthrtis are truly a gift. Family and friends that supported me back at home while I was away, the messages, the donations and the hours some spent training and walking with me, it was what got me through 8 hours of walking by myself. So today as the Anniversary of that amazing experience I prepare to do it again because if one person benefits from my hard work and realizes they too can fight this fight, I have accomplished what I want to do "Inspire" !! I think now is a good time for me to pick myself up and push harder through this challenging time and remember why I have chosen to take this journey. There are so many people that are crippled by this disease and aren't able to walk a block, so today I walk that block for them. As hard is it is right now, I will do it! So today I ask for at least one person to read this entry and remember what I accomplished one year ago and donate to the Arthritis Society as I continue my journey and the many challenges ahead. Make the donation in support of someone you know or love that lives with Arthritis!!! The links to "team jordan" are on the left side, your support is appreciated and you can make a difference! :-) Have a great day and I'm off to walk to do the 2km walk to the school to see my kids for lunch! Thank you for your support and generosity to an amazing cause, you help me take the steps I might not have taken this far in my journey!

Calgary Forum Online

The Arthritis Society has published the taping from the Calgary Forum . There is alot of information from the medical professionals so please feel free to pass it along to friends and love ones that might have questions that have been answered in the video.

Arthritis Community Education Forum from The Arthritis Society on Vimeo.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Well I hoping to be blogging about all the walking I'm doing and the weightloss that is supposed to be happening but I'm not. It's with great frustration I continue to struggle with this flare up and the medication changes. I have spend the last 4 weeks in alot of discomfort and counting the days until my remicade infusion yesterday, believing I would get some relief. Well that wasn't the case, instead I experienced a severe life threatening reaction 15 minutes into the infusion. I reacted at the last infusion but not as serverely so the Dr and the nurses decided to premedicate with cortisone and benadryl to avoid such a reaction again. That of course didn't help and it is obvious that I am clearly allergic to the medication. So after being on oxygen, observed and monitored for 4 hours I left the clinic and came home. I called my rhumetologist just to find out that I can't get into see her until Oct 27 to evaluate the situation and decide on which medication I will try next. So here I am waiting in discomfort until the end of Oct to try and get some answers. I want to be walking walking walking ... I know it's a year away but I also know how quickly that comes. I have a long way to go with losing the weight that I gained plus the extra I still had to lose before the last marathon. It's been over 6 years since I experienced a full blown flare up and it sucks. So this is my day that I feel like crap and don't want to do a thing, both from the after effects of the reaction and the pain from the flareup. But this is my journey to be an inspiration and so thankfully I have my supporters, family and friends who are helping me cope and continue on. These are the times I rely on all these people to help me over a hump that's blocking my view. To remind me that I can do this no matter. I'm not feeling it today but I also know I don't want to disappoint anyone so "cheers to a better day tomorrow". I think I can... I think I can ... I think I can....

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

First Donation!

It is such an overwhelming feeling when the very first donation towards my fundraising comes in. It's an exciting feeling to know that people believe in me and the cause I am raising money for. I remember very clearly the person who contributed last year towards Athens and she is a friend who believed in me and gave me that first burst of adrenalin to continue my journey. The person who made the first donation towards this leg of my journey is someone that was an inspiration to me a year ago in Athens, Greece. She was there with her neice who has arthritis and together they finished the marathon. I started out walking with them during the marathon and they were able to finsih before me but they were there when I crossed the finsih line. They were there to share the emotion of completing something that meant so much to me. So I am humbled to have her has my first contributor towards my fundraising goal towards Switzerland. Words can't explain the feelings of gratitude and appreciation I feel when people believe in me and support my journey. Every donation that comes in to the Arthritis Society through my fundraising is an emotional one because I know the person behind that contribution understands my need to continue my journey and make a difference. Yes I want to be that inspirational story people talk about and I want my supporters to be a part of that story. So thank you again to everyone that follows my journey and offers words of encouragement. You're contributions towards my fundraising are a very emotional part of this journey for me and I can't wait to share more.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

This and That ....

I'm counting down the days until my next Remicade infusion, it's 2 weeks away. This flare up is trying to get the best of me but I won't let it. I can barely move my wrists without terrible cramping pain in them, in fact typing this post is proving to be a bit of a challenge. So it's a good think I have 13 months to prepare for this marathon because it's already proving to be an even bigger challenge then the last one. I'm hoping that after we get the dosages figured out for the Remicade I will be well on my way to preparing sooner rather than later. This is why having people as part of "Team Jordan" is so important, just in case I need everyone else to complete the marathon on my behalf. Now that being said I'm pretty sure I am going to have to be in pretty bad shape and ALOT of pain to not participate. But for now it's one day at a time. On that note I do have a couple more people that are considering joining the team, so that is awesome news. A friend in Ontario is even considering, so it doesn't matter where you live and which Province you are teamed up with, you can still be a part of "Team Jordan" for the big day!! I have been able to walk and pick my kids up for school so that's 2km there and back. I also mapped out the distance around our acreage and it's about a quarter of a km, so I plan to do alot of laps along the fence line. :-) I'm sure the neighbors will wonder what the new girl on the block is doing and think that I flipped my lid ... but that's okay !! :-) Here are a few pictures from the Arthritis forum I spoke at. I'm still waiting for the youtube video to come out so I can post that. I was trying to post a copy of the notes I wrote for the forum but I'm not sure how to attach them to a post...hmmm see if I can figure it out.
Me at the Podium during my presentation.
Another group photo of all the presenters
Me again!

Monday, September 26, 2011

What's been happening ....

Wow, I'm not even sure where to start. Hind sight I should have just kept blogging cause it's been a crazy 11 months since my marathon. So this could be a long entry. :-) I wish I could say it's been an easy last 11 months but it hasn't. My arthritis has be challenging to deal with. After my marathon I went for a followup appointment with my Rhumetologist and found out that I now have Osteoarthritis in my right hip as well and that my left hip is now considered severe. I've since had another injection in my hip to help with the pain but these days I constantly sound like a twig on a tree branch as my hip snaps each time I take a step or go from sitting to standing. Early in the year I experienced an episode of iritis, which is kinda like a flare up of arthritis of the eye. I had temporary vision loss for almost 2 months before they could get it under control. Since then my Rhumetologist and my opthamologist felt it would be helpful for me to change some of my meds. So I don't do the weekly Enbrel injections anymore, instead I have Remicade infusions every 6 weeks. I just started them this summer and with the transition of coming off the other meds, I've had to deal with some flareups. Most of the pain and swelling is in my hands and wrists and there are days I can barely move my arms away from my body. I kinda forgot what the pain was like since it's been a few years since I've experienced a flare up of the psoriatic arthritis. I did do a local half marathon in April, it was no personal best but it was still a great feeling to be able to finish. With flareups and transition of meds my exercise program has been modified which means my challenge with weight loss and even maintaining my weight has been just that ... a challenge. This is why it's important for me to have people join "Team Jordan" for the next leg of this journey because if I thought doing the first marathon in Athens was a challenge, this one is going to be even more of a challenge. I will need all the support I can get. :-) Last week it was an honor to be asked by the Arthritis Society to be a guest speaker at their Arthritis Forum and tell my story. I was nervous about getting up there in front of all those people but it was also a great feeling to be able to share my accomplishments. The support I received from family and friends that day was amazing and that is something I will always appreciate. Once the presentation is posted on youtube I will share the link on the blog. If you or someone you love suffers from Arthritis I recommend you visit the website, there is so much new information available via web seminars, open houses and the online community forum. There is a link on the left side of my blog. :-) I hope that everyone will continue to follow this next leg of my journey and support the "Joints in Motion" and "Team Jordan". There are links to the left that will get you to team members' fundraising pages. Every donation matters whether it be big or small, so please help support the Arthritis Soceity and the fight against Arthritis.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Continuing my Journey

It's official. I am continuing my journey and I have registered for to complete my second full marathon in Lausanne Switzerland in October 2012. I have so much to catch up on over the last year but I just wanted to share this exciting news. The best part of this continued journey is my sister has decided to join me and share in this exciting experience. Her support means the world to me and so the journey is "Team Jordan". I would love to have others as part of my own personal support team and I have a couple of other people on my radar that are considering it. :-) So if you'd like to be a part of this journey drop me a line. :-) My fundraising page will be up shortly so if you'd like to donate to "Joints in Motion" in support of the Arthritis Society, your support will be greatly appreciated. Again I look forward to sharing this journey with all my readers, supporters, friends and family. Cheers