Rock riders cycle for a cure


Marketa Schublova

Marketa Schublova, SRU assistant professor of exercise and rehabilitate sciences, put her pedal to the metal for a 100-K charity bike ride.

Oct. 15, 2015

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. ¬- Even though her body is not what is used to be and is on the mend from knee surgery, Slippery Rock University's Marketa Schublova shows a champion's endurance.

Schublova, an assistant professor of exercise and rehabilitative sciences, overcame her own doubts and rode in last weekend's 3-2-1 Ride to End Melanoma and Pancreatic Cancer. SRU President Cheryl Norton completed the 100-K ride from Connellsville to Pittsburgh, too. The pair rode together some of the way and connected at the finish line.

Schublova, who teaches athletic training, said she rode in honor of three people affected by melanoma or pancreatic cancer, "Jane, Calvin and Hopi." She raised $500 in pledges for The Woiner Foundation, which sponsored the ride. The foundation is working to end melanoma and pancreatic cancer.

"It wasn't easy. I'm not an athlete. My body is falling apart," she said. "It was just a challenge and something I wanted to do. My thinking was life is tough, biking is easier, let's just finish the race."

Schublova said she hadn't been on her bike for months and was nervous about Sunday's event, which organizers said drew 500 riders.

"I didn't know if I could finish it," she said. "I kept thinking I have to teach classes on Monday, and I don't have a day to prepare."

She said she paced herself for the "long, long, ride," stopping here and there for hydration and cramping at mile 36.

While neither she nor anyone in her immediate family has had cancer, Schublova said SRU faculty and staff members have lost loved ones or currently have a family member dealing with melanoma or pancreatic cancer.

SRU staffers showed a caring spirit, she said, by committing a pledge after receiving an email from her asking for support.

"It was just awesome. I got an email from someone saying, "I'll give you $25,'" Schublova said.

As a professor who teaches athletic training, which helps people recovery from athletic injuries, Schublova said charity work is a natural fit. Riding is also a good workout and way to burn calories.

"As an athletic trainer I help people in emergency situations, with injuries and some illnesses but unfortunately I can't help with cancer and other diseases that some people face," she said. "Doing races like this and raising money to help with research and/or directly with any expenses is the minimum I can do," she said.

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