Tuesday, November 29, 2016

#GivingTuesday 261 Fearless Boston Marathon Charity Team

Hi Everyone! 
I have the BEST news EVER!!! My dream is finally coming true....I'M RUNNING THE BOSTON MARATHON!! I know you are probably wondering how in the world did that happen since I have not ever ran a BQ (and probably will never BQ because of my daily battle with chronic Lyme Disease).

I have even more Awesomesauce news!! I was selected to run on the 261 Fearless Boston Marathon charity team 2017! This awesome non-profit was created by Kathrine Switzer, who was the first woman to run the Boston Marathon! Her bib number was 261 and she registered as a male! During the Boston marathon, the race director figured out she was a woman and physically tried to remove her from the course! She refused to stop running and went on to run 26.2 miles and cross the Boston Marathon finish line...Kathrine Switzer is the first woman to accomplish this incredible feat because she lives her life fearlessly! 

Photo credit

2017 marks the 50th year of Kathrine Switzer's amazing accomplishment, so of course, she is running the Boston Marathon 2017 with the 261 Fearless charity team! I'm so excited to run with an icon and one of my running mentor's! I'm also excited to raise money for the 261 Fearless charity! However, in order for me to run with the 261 Fearless Boston Marathon charity team, I have to successfully meet a GIGANTIC fundraising goal!!!

How much do I need to raise??

    My fundraising goal I must meet in order to run the Boston Marathon: 


Click on this secure link to Donate! 

*Currently the 261 Fearless Charity Team is in 4th place for the charity who has raised the most money on Giving Tuesday! This amount is the combined fundraising efforts for all (60) 261 Fearless Charity Teammates!

I have made the first donation of $261 but otherwise, my fundraising page is super quiet! 
I know what you are thinking...What is 261 Fearless going to do with my donation? That is a GREAT question!! And in my own words, I will describe more about the great things 261 Fearless charity is doing with the funds they raise! 

261 Fearless is a GLOBAL non-profit organization, touching all corners of the world, and giving hope to women and girls to dream big and live their life fearlessly through running! Team 261 works closely with such organizations like Girls On The Run and organizes workshops and training sessions and group runs in local comminities. Kathrine is changing lives with her organization! I will never forgot that feeling of "I Can Do Anything!" after crossing my first marathon finish line in 2010! Kathrine is inspiring women/girls all over the world, to live a healthy life through running while reaching for the stars and living fearlessly! 

Sometimes all it takes is one person to believe in you in order for you to be fearless and chase your dreams!

Today is a very special day! It's Giving Tuesday, or AKA, a day of GIVING back!! Cyber Monday was yesterday, and if you are like me, I was online shopping until after the midnight hour, trying to knock off the gift list. But today is all about giving back to the community! 

My crowdrise fundraising page is connected to the Crowdrise 261 Fearless team fundraising page. We are reaching for the stars with our fundraising goal and I'm hoping you can please support our team TODAY, right now, at this moment and please donate! No amount is too small! I really appreciate your help and all of your support! Please reach out if you would like more information about the 261 Fearless nonprofit organization or check out the 261 Fearless website to learn about the amazing GOOD, POSITIVE things they are doing in local communities around the world! 

Please fearlessly share, like, tweet, social media the heck out of this post! I WOULD BE SO APPRECIATIVE!! And please, make a donation! THANK YOU SO MUCH!! 
Wishing you a wonderful Giving Tuesday! 

Peace, Love and Happy Running,


Sunday, September 18, 2016

Sweet Sixteen

The problem with grief is that over time it fades into the distance, and then, out of nowhere, it slam dunks you. 
I was running an amazing DC Ragnar Relay race this weekend with my incredible teammates. Such an amazing running weekend, that it distracted me from a significant Anniversary. Not the happy kind but the kind that swallows you up, as you are running your hardest leg and then, slams you to the ground. Literally, I fell onto the ground, letting my tears act as a cover up, over my sweaty face.
My sweet Joshua, passed away in utero at 27 weeks, on September 17, 2000.
You can do the math.....

Yes, it was his SWEET SIXTEEN birthday.
All I could do was be still for a moment and try to remember to breathe, as my mind flash backed to delivering him stillborn and looking at his sweet, beautiful face, as I cradled him in my arms.
I didn't want to be in this special, unique, sad club but now I had officially declared a 2nd time membership, with a 7 week miscarriage, two years earlier.
I pushed through nine miles of monster hills, dedicating the run to Joshua Michael Fitzgerald, guardian angel to my (3) Earth babies.
I told no one on my team about my emotional breakdown during my running leg. But I was in a bad place when I finished. One of my team members picked up on that something wasn't quite right but I wasn't about to spill the beans and ruin the fun for everyone.
I thought I could shake it off, as the day progressed, but my pain was raw and deep. I wanted to find a corner and cry, inside our crowded passenger van but I smiled instead.
Losing a child, no matter what age, is a shocking life experience that changes you and numbs you forever. The world is a little less loving and you begin to realize that each day should be appreciated and not assumed that you will be given the time you never thought twice about.
My baby boy, had Fifths Disease, a very rare condition in pregnancy. The statics read that 1 out of 10,000 pregnant women will be infected with the virus. And all my friends call me their luckiest friend!!

Oh, the irony!

The doctors explained that because I never went to daycare growing up, I was never exposed to Fifths Disease. Hence, I never developed the antibodies for it.
Of course, I was exposed when I was pregnant and the virus crossed the placenta wall, attacking Joshua's red blood cells. My sweet baby boy never had a chance.
I remember the doctor telling me how he couldn't find a heartbeat and wanting to scream "how can this be happening AGAIN?"
I remember wanting to deliver the baby and wanting to wake up from the nightmare and forget about him as soon as possible. 
But it was my wise doctor who began a path of healing for me. He gently counseled me to hold the baby and name the baby and celebrate Joshua at a Memorial Service and bury him at a special place for angel babies. He was suggesting the unimaginable. I wasn't sure I was that strong.
Just like yesterday, when I was on the side of the road, knowing I needed to run but my mind was in a completely different place.

Angel babies,
In disguise.

Appreciate each day,
Loving gently,
Showing kindness, 
These are the virtues you taught me.

I will never be as strong as you, 
As you fought for each breathe in utero.
I pray you are in a joyful, loving place.

Protecting my Earth babies. 
Guardian Angel.
Sweet baby boy, 
Happy Sweet Sixteen.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Runner's World Cover Search Contest! Last day to VOTE!

It's been so long since I've written. Life has been a whirlwind. There are good things, great things, that are happening in my life. And then there are the difficult obstacles one must face. 
I'm far up North right now. I'm in a cabin that I'm sharing with my parents and three kids. We don't have a TV and limited internet access. To drive into town is about 30 minutes. I have been enjoying long afternoon runs surrounded by nature and solitude. The kids love splashing in the lake when I can successfully detach them from their phones. 

This place called Ely, MN, is a sanctuary of beauty. It takes your breathe away. It is also the place that brought healing to my broken body, 21 summers ago.
It's hard to believe that Lyme disease invaded my body, a lifetime away. A disease that was ignored by Doctors and eventually misdiagnosised as Fibromyalgia. 
I woke up paralyzed that Spring morning at the young age of 24. I felt like as I was dying as each day passed. Inflammation overtook my body. My hips and back felt like I was 85 years old. My eye flared up with iritis. The light was not my friend so I sat in the dark, in my room. I couldn't turn my neck. My inflamed body made driving impossible. And the Doctors said it was in my head. I felt like I was dying.
But at the end of the summer, I found healing in this magical place. With breathtaking views from the cabin, hot sauna's in the evening, and fresh air to breathe. I left Ely, MN, that summer only using my crutches in the morning and at night, instead of relying on them, all day, for mobility. It was fifteen years later, when I was correctly diagnosed with Lyme disease and then two years later, with chronic Lyme disease.
And now I find myself here again, sitting on the dock, soaking up the sun, and fighting fatigue, and a re-occurring Lyme disease infection.
I recently encountered a doctor who was quick to dismiss Lyme disease and painted a picture of someone who complains, and never gets better, advocating for years of antibiotics. I wanted to have a sensible conversation and ask where he got his information from but I had to stay quiet per the request of someone I highly respect. It was not my place to tell the doctor he was misinformed. He actually told me to check my sources when I explained that the Lyme disease blood test has a 50% false negative rate or how late term, undiagnosed Lyme symptoms can cause cognitive problems. But he refused to listen. There is still so much educating and awareness we must do. 
And this is why for the last THREE years, I have entered the Runner's World Cover Seatch Contest. My platform has always been about Lyme disease and how running, my "sweat therapy" has brought healing into my life. I'm not a fast runner but I have trained my body to handle the endurance of running up to 100 miles in under 30 hours. An accomplishment I achieved at Umstead 100 miler 2015 in Raleigh, NC.
I'm a Warrior. I have perservered. And I'll continue to do so each day that I'm given the gift to be able to run.
But I can't fight this battle alone and united, as a community of Lyme Warriors, our voice can be heard! Our stories can be told. My goal is to bring hope and healing to those suffering from Lyme disease. I have entered this contest to be your voice! I want to bring more awareness and education of Lyme disease!
Last year, and this year, I've had the honor to be chosen as a Top 100 semifinalist (out of 1,000 enteries). Today, 8/15, is the last day to vote for me. Copy and past this link to vote. When I can get wifi connected, I'll enter the direct link. 
This will be the last year I can enter this contest as a I have achieved a personal career goal that will make me ineligible next year to enter the Runner's World Cover Search Contest. Going back to those great things that have been happening in my life...in the last year, I've worked dillentigilly to achieve the goal of becoming invited to join the SAG-AFTRA actors union! I'm waiting on my invitation, as I've earned enough SAG vouchers to join, as of August 2016! I'm excited to take my acting career to the next level but sad to leave behind this contest for 2017. 
It would be so amazing if I made it to the Top Ten finalists for the RW Cover Search Contest 2016! But I need your support and your votes, more than ever! Please vote TODAY 8/15 and share this blog post. Your support is so appreciated! Thank You! Keep fighting, Never Give Up and Always Dream Big!

Friday, July 15, 2016

Ragnar Relay 101 is going to be Fabulously Fun!

Hi Everyone!

I'm excited to announce I'm hosting my very first DC Ragnar Relay 101 on SATURDAY, 7/16, from 10am to 12pm, at Road Runner Sports in Sterling, VA! Check out the flyer below for the address! 

Do you want to be a Ragnarian? Come see me on Saturday morning to learn what all the Ragnar buzz is about! 

The Ragnar Relay 101 is going to be a Fabulously Fun event with Ragnar gear raffle prizes given away every 30 minutes and the grand prize is a pair of FREE running shoes, compliments of Road Runner Sports! 

Plus RRS will be offering a shopping discount and be serving food and drinks! I'll be there to answer any of your Ragnar Relay questions! 

Kids are welcomed and you don't need to stay for the entire event. 

I hope to see you there! Please share this blog post with your family and friends! Thank You!

The deadline is August 5th to sign up for the DC Ragnar Relay which is being held Sept 16-17! Here is the link: Sign Up for DC Ragnar Relay

Happy Running!

Friday, May 20, 2016

Enter to WIN a free ZOOMA race entry!

Have you heard about the exciting ZOOMA race that is coming near you? If you love awesome swag, a fabulously fun, super organized race, in a destination location, then you need to check out the ZOOMA race series!

ZOOMA has a race for everyone with distance varying from a 5K, 10K or a Half Marathon! Rally your friends and make it a girls weekend! The ZOOMA race series is coming soon near you! The first ZOOMA race in Annapolis is coming up soon on June 4th! This will be my third time running the ZOOMA Half marathon in Annapolis and I look forward to the challenge of conquering the Annapolis hills and admiring the scenic course!

ZOOMA Annapolis 
Saturday, June 4, 2016 
Location: Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium 
Start Time: 7:00 a.m. 
*SIGN UP TODAY before the price increase on Saturday, May 21st

ZOOMA Cape Cod
Saturday, September 24, 2016 
Location: Sea Crest Beach Hotel, North Falmouth, MA 
Start time: 7:30 a.m.

ZOOMA Florida
Saturday, October 22, 2016 
Location: The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island 

You can WIN a FREE race registration to the ZOOMA destination race of your choice by entering this ZOOMA Contest! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The contest begins May 26th and ends May 28th! Good luck! Please share this contest/blog post with your BRFF's ~ Best Running Friends and Family! 

There is also a 10% race registration discount code you can use when you register with your friends! 

I'm signed up to run the Annapolis Half Marathon and hope to see you there! 

Happy Running!

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Dryhome's Loudoun Lyme 5k/10k/1k Fun Run and virtual run on May15, 2016

Are you registered for the Loudoun Lyme race at the Brambleton Town Center (22855 Brambleton Plaza, Ashburn, VA 20148) on Sunday, May 15th? You can't miss this amazing race! 

There are many distance options for you to run or walk - 5k/10k or a 1k Fun Run! There is a race for everyone! If you are unable to make it to the race, there is also an option to sign up for a virtual race. The 6th annual Loudoun Lyme race mission is to fight Lyme Disease and to benefit the National Capital Lyme Disease Association!

Click here to REGISTER TODAY! 

*Online registration closes at 1pm on Wednesday, May 11th*

*After May 11th, race registration is available at packet pick up (DryHome Roofing & Siding
45921 Maries Road, #100, Sterling, VA 20166) on Friday, 12-7pm, Saturday, 8am-12pm or on race day from 6am to 7:45am but you are not guaranteed a t-shirt*

Before the race, there will be a warm up at 7:40am and several speakers, including local politicians and an elite Master's runner! 

We are excited to announce that elite, globe trotting, ultra runner, Mike Wardian will be running the 10k and offering words of inspiration prior to the race! I will be speaking briefly about my Lyme disease battle, as a fellow Lyme Warrior and ultrarunner! We hope to see you on May 15th!

The Race Day Activities include: 
  • 6am - Race day packet pick up
  • 7am - Vendor/Information Fair
  • 7:40pm - Warm up/Speakers
  • 8am - 10k starts
  • 8:10am - 5k starts
  • 9:30am - 1k fun run starts
  • 9:45am (or immediately following the 1 k Fun Run) - Awards Ceremony with Team and Age Group Awards

There will be beer at the finish line for race participants, one FREE root beer or beer, provided by Lost Rhino Brewing Company! Show your race bib and ID for proof of age (21 for alcoholic beverages) to get your free beverage!

THANK YOU for your support and for helping to take a bite out of Lyme Disease! 

Monday, May 9, 2016

My interview on PBS NewsHour is TONIGHT (5/9)

This morning I had an awesome opportunity to be interviewed by PBS Correspondent John Yang. We met at a local coffee shop, Cafein, located in Chantilly and chatted about the upcoming general election.

I was asked several questions about my thoughts on the candidates and who I might vote for. You will have to tune in TONIGHT (5/9) to hear the interview! It will air at the beginning of PBS NewsHour on your local PBS station. 

For local folks in the DMV area, it will air at 7pm on the WETA channel.

The upcoming Presidential election is unlike any other election that I have had the opportunity to vote in! Please watch PBS NewsHour tonight! Thank you for your support!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

The Lyme Disease Challenge with RockStars and Congressman Connolly!

In honor of Cinco de Mayo (tis' the day to sip on a drink with a lime garnish) and Lyme disease awareness month (May), as well as,TBT (throw back Thursday), I decided to walk down memory lane and post my Lyme disease challenge photo's taken from last summer (2015)! It was an amazing experience to educate musicians and a politician about how debilitating Lyme disease can be and share my story, as well as, educate what needs to be done in the legislative arena.

What is the Lyme Disease Challenge?

I want to say Thank You to everyone who participated in the Lyme disease challenge with me and for taking a bite out of Lyme Disease!

One of my favorite photo's! My good friend, Sean Hurwitz, guitarist for Enrique Iglesias and SmashMouth, taking the Lyme disease challenge post concert! Sean is so awesome for sharing the photo on his social media accounts to help spread awareness about Lyme disease. Check out my interview with Sean Hurwitz. Sean is currently globe trotting the world, playing guitar at concerts or at home in LA, writing songs or recording!

Tonic band members, Emerson Hart and Dan Lavery were eager to take the Lyme disease challenge with me post concert at Tally Ho theatre. I had to walk to a neighboring Italian restaurant in Leesburg to fetch the limes! Tonic is currently recording the acoustic version of one of their favorite albums, "Lemon Parade."

Later that night, Mike Eisenstein, guitarist for Tonic, and I got to chatting and he rocked the Lyme disease challenge with me! Mike is currently working on writing and recording new songs with band members from Letters to Cleo, a band he played with in the 1990's.

Hello X Ambassadors! The band members, Sam Harris, Casey Harris, Adam Levine, and Noah Feldshuh, had a Lyme disease story of their own they shared with me and graciously took the Lyme disease challenge. They were so awesome to meet! Photo taken post concert at the 9:30 Club in DC. Check out their upcoming tour dates! I'm looking forward to seeing them at Echostage on May 12th!

Andy Grammer wasn't sure what to think when I asked him to take the Lyme disease challenge prior to his Fresh FM concert at Tysons Corner! He went along with it and was super nice to say hello to! After the concert, Andy mingled with his fans and is a humble, gracious rockstar! His bandmates are super cool too! Check out the Andy Grammer upcoming tour dates! I hope to see him at Merriweather post pavilion on August 20th!

After another Fresh FM concert, I chatted with Chet from the Legwarmers and he agreed to to take the Lyme disease challenge! Chet and his band were super fun to meet and I was dancing queen at their concert! If you haven't seen one of The Legwarmers shows, then you need to attend one of their shows this summer!

Congressman Connolly was a special guest for the evening prior to the Fresh FM Legwarmers concert. I shared my story with him about how I've been living with this debilitating disease for 21 years! We spoke about treatment for Lyme disease and and how the CDC guidelines do not recognize chronic Lyme. I also spoke to Congressman Connolly about setting up educational/advocacy meetings in the community. Check out Congressman Gerry Connolly website for legislative updates on Lyme legislation or contact him if you would like to help draft Lyme legislation. Congressman Connolly is a fantastic advocate for the Lyme disease community!

I look forward to continuing to spread awareness and education about Lyme disease! Lyme disease is an epidemic! My hope is that a cure will be found to heal the 300,000 plus of Americans battling Lyme disease (and every Lyme Warrior worldwide)! We have to continue the conversation in our communities to change the way we think about Lyme disease, how we diagnose and treat Lyme disease, and make it a priority to find a cure.


Monday, March 14, 2016

Watch Deadly Demands Premiere 3/14 on the ID Channel at 10pm

Hi everyone!

Happy Monday! I have some exciting news to share! I'm on TV again, with a small speaking role, as part of the SWAT team! Please watch me TONIGHT (3/14), on the premiere of Deadly Demands, a new show on the ID Channel at 10pm! 

Of course, as an actor, you never know what will end up on the screen vs the cutting room floor but the SWAT team was instrumental in this show! Me and my fellow actor friends had a fantastic day of filming! I can share photo's once the episode airs! 

Hope you will tune in TONIGHT to Deadly Demands on the ID Channel at 10pm! 

As always, I'm super appreciative of your support! 


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Athleta (Reston Town Center) Shop For A Cause - NAT CAP LYME

Hi Everyone!
If you live in Northern VA or know someone who lives in NoVA, please read this blog post! 

The Athleta "Shop For A Cause" is coinciding with their Friends and Family Event at the Reston Town Center! EVERYTHING in the store is 25% off with your discount shopping card! This awesome shopping event starts Thursday through Monday (3/10-3/14)! 

*Make sure you call Athleta at the Reston Town Center ASAP to get your 25% discount card (703-668-0256). PLEASE mention that you are my guest and you are supporting NAT CAP LYME! As of Thursday morning (3/10), there are discount shopping cards still available! 

Athleta Reston will also take phone orders for store merchandise, applying your 25% discount and a percentage of your sale will be donated to NAT CAP LYME, per your request! This is not an extra donation on top of your purchase.

Please help take a bite out of Lyme disease while updating your Spring wardrobe! Please share this blog post with your family and friends.

Call the Reston Athleta store ASAP 703-668-0256 to reserve your discounted shopping pass and support an amazing organization, the National Capital Lyme Disease Association... "Nat Cap Lyme"

Thank You! 💚😀
Amy Fitzgerald

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

I'm a co-star on the show, Evil Stepmothers! Watch Tonight, 3/2!


It's been awhile since I've published a blog post! Life has been good and very, very busy! There is so much to share but for now, this will be short & sweet!

This past Fall, I dove into the acting world and landed a co-star role on the show, Evil Stepmother's on the ID Channel!

Make sure you watch TONIGHT at 10pm and you will see me! It's an exciting moment in my acting career! 

Photo credit: http://www.sidereel.com

I promise to write more soon and update you on all my acting and running adventures!