Running toward a cure

Danielle Barone darts across the quad behind Sheldon Hall. She moves so fast that it’s almost possible to miss her. She’s dressed head to toe in Under Armour. A hat, gloves and iPod complete the running outfit. As she pounds the pavement, she gets a few puzzled looks from students, bundled up in heavy winter clothing, walking for shelter from the elements as fast as they can.

As she turns a corner, the full force of the wind pushes against her. She pushes back and keeps going. Barone runs because she has to stick to her schedule. Saturday she will have to be ready to run 15 miles in good time. It’s all part of a fundraiser through an organization called Team In Training. They provide training, support, certified coaches and a personal fundraising website.

In exchange for the help training for the endurance event, in Barone’s case a full marathon, each participant must raise a certain amount of money to help support The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Roughly 74 cents of every dollar raised is used for cancer programs and funding research. On June 5, Barone will join 40,000 other runners for the San Diego Rock-N-Roll Marathon.

The Fighting Irish

Although Barone is training on her own here in Oswego, she won’t be alone come race time. She and her sister, Alexandra, a teacher in Albany, are fundraising for the same Team In Training team, The Fighting Irish. The pair decided on the name because they are Irish and even though they sometimes fight amongst each other, they still love each other.

The pair started training in January, but signed on for the fundraising much later, which means they still have quite a way to go to reach their fundraising goal. Each sister had to commit to raising $2,900, for a combined total of $5,800. Right now they are at $3,100. Barone said that although it’s difficult to juggle school, training and fundraising she thinks they will meet their goal in time. If they don’t, the money will come out of their pockets. The program requires each participant to commit to a certain amount and then follow through on it. Each person provides a credit card number to be used if they don’t reach their goal.

For now, the sisters are sticking to their plan and slowly chipping away at their fundraising goal. Barone has been selling handmade bracelets, while her sister organized a charity dodgeball tournament. Most donations have come from family members, but others have donated as well. Barone said some people donate because they have been affected in some way by leukemia. Her sister struck up a conversation on a train with someone she didn’t know. When the train stopped, that person also made a donation.

Barone said she always wanted to run a marathon and thought a good cause would give her extra motivation. But beyond the training and the fundraising, Barone said, it gives her a chance to do something special with a sister she doesn’t get to see often.


Training for a full marathon isn’t an easy task, but add in the fact that for the most part Barone is training alone and it becomes much harder. The Syracuse native ran cross-country and track throughout high school and has continued running, but this is her first marathon.

During the week Barone trains in the morning or evening, depending on when she can squeeze it in. On Tuesdays and Thursdays she runs about six miles. On Mondays and Wednesdays she cross trains with weights. Fridays are a day of rest. Every Saturday she travels to Syracuse to train with the CNY chapter of Team In Training. This Saturday she will run 15 miles. In two weeks it will be 16. Two weeks after that will be 17, and so on until the marathon. The rule of thumb, Barone said, is that if you can run 15 miles in good time, then you’re in good enough shape to run a marathon.

For Barone, a lot of training is mental. She has to get her mind into it. Training alone also means that if she’s only two miles into a workout, it’s easier to stop there instead of pushing. As the weather has become warmer, Barone has been moving more of her workouts outside. She also gave up alcohol during her training because it’s counter productive and eats up too much time, Barone said.

How to donate

If you’d like to help Danielle Barone toward her fundraising goal to support leukemia and lymphoma research, you can visit her team webpage, "The Fighting Irish." They accept checks and credit cards.

Or you can contact her with questions:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *