Guest Post: Getting to the Bottom of the Undy 5000

Guest Post: Getting to the Bottom of the Undy 5000

09.14.12 | By Kaelan Hollon

Today, we've got a great guest blog post from Crawford Clay, a cancer survivor and Patient Advocacy Coordinator with the Colon Cancer Alliance, who is talking about a fun new project to raise awareness of colon cancer in communities across the US.

When I was diagnosed with colon cancer, I didn't know a lot about the disease and frankly, I was a bit embarrassed to talk about it. But over the years I've learned that talking about this disease can make a huge difference and it can save lives in the process.

So, how do you get people to talk about colon cancer? Ask the Colon Cancer Alliance (CCA)!


Each year, more than 142,000 Americans are diagnosed with the disease. Unfortunately, people were too embarrassed to talk about it. So in 2008, the Undy 5000 5K - A Brief Run to Fight Colon Cancer - was launched by the CCA in cities throughout the U.S.

It's working! The Undy is not only getting people to talk about colon cancer, it's creating goodwill, laughter and awareness of colon cancer in each of the cities it visits. And the best part? Proceeds from each event are left behind to assist local residents and communities with their screening, awareness, education and patient support programs.

The Undy 5000 5K is a run with a twist --and a serious message.

The twist? Instead of race day t-shirts, participants get boxers. And, although many runners show up in their everyday running attire, most participants will form teams, carry signs, and create wild outfits out of decorated underwear to draw attention to a part of their body that isn't easy to talk about.

The serious message? Undy participants raise funds to increase awareness of the disease, form teams, show support for loved ones they may have lost to the disease or boost the spirits of friends and family who have survived or are fighting the disease.

Each participant, regardless of their reason for running, can't help but leave an Undy feeling better informed about colon cancer and inspired to make a difference and possibly save a life by TALKING to their family and friends about screening.

After all, colon cancer is a disease that can be prevented through screening. It's the second leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. but people are afraid to talk about this disease and, as a result, many don't get screened in time. By making colon cancer a subject that's okay to talk about, the Undy 5000 saves lives.

I encourage anyone interested in making a difference to find an Undy 5000 near them. Organize a team, decorate some boxers, and raise funds for a great event and a great cause. The Undy 5000 is a family-friendly 5K run/walk that is raising eyebrows and awareness throughout the country for colon cancer.

As a colon cancer survivor, all I can say is that being better informed about the disease and understanding the importance of being screened by age 50 or earlier if you have a family history, will increase your chances of survival. And knowing the Undy 5000 may help bring an end to colon cancer by raising awareness is inspiring to me and to thousands of individuals who have been touched by this disease.

You can help by spreading the word, forming a team, becoming a sponsor/exhibitor, or offering to volunteer at one of the Undy 5000 events. Our upcoming locations include:

2012
Piedmont Triad, NC - September 22
Washington, DC - September 29
Cincinnati, OH - October 13
Nashville, TN - October 20
Peoria, IL - October 20
Dallas, TX - October 27
Atlanta, GA - November 3
Phoenix, AZ - November 17

2013
South Florida - February 2
Tampa, FL - February 9
Sacramento, CA - March 2
San Diego, CA - March 9
Buffalo, NY - April 27

Find a race near you at www.undy5000.org and take $5 off your registration fee with discount code PHRMA

For questions or to learn more about how you can support the Undy 5000, email us at undy5000@ccalliance.org.

About the Colon Cancer Alliance

The Colon Cancer Alliance (CCA) is a community that provides hope and support to patients and their families, while saving lives through screening, access, awareness, advocacy and research. Learn more at www.ccalliance.org.

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