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Cancer battle inspires marathon dreams

Hanley said she first got interested in Team in Training after several family members involved in the program had asked her if she would like to train with them. After having Hunter in her class, she decided that this year was as good as any to join the program.

Hanley had a choice between two marathons to run, or run-walk as she said she will be doing -- one in Phoenix, Ariz., and another at Walt Disney World in Florida.

"When I heard I could run through Cinderella's castle, I knew which one I wanted to do," she said.

In order to be a participant in the race, Hanley must raise at least $3,800, as the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society does cover the costs of runners' air fare and hotel expenses. If participants do not raise $3,800 they are required to pay the difference.

So far, Hanley said, she has earned $959.

Aside from financially preparing for the race, Hanley has begun an intensive training program, along with other Team in Training participants throughout the area.

"There's actually a group of us," she said. "We run every Saturday morning at the Niskayuna bike path."

Hanley said there are approximately 60 people in the group that get together to train for their respective marathons.

"They break it down " every week you do your long run on Saturday and [three times per week] you do a short run," she said.

The short run, she said, is 3 miles long, and the longest run the trainees will complete before the race is 20 miles long, which Hanley said she will be run-walking, a combination of intervals where she runs and then walks.

"There are people that run, and there are people that just walk," she said.

While Hanley will be running in honor of Hunter, she said, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society asks that in addition, participants in the marathon run in honor of a patient who is currently undergoing treatment. Hanley will also be running for a 7-year-old named Jake who is undergoing leukemia treatment.

To help sponsor Hanley, checks may be made out to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and mailed to Hanley at 97 Beebe Road, Berne, NY 12023.

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