Moving Mountains in the Fight Against Cancer

What if we were given this mountain to show others it can be moved? "Mountains are reminders that things can be moved. Don't just say mountains can move, believe they can and start pushing." - Bianca Olthoff

Meet Alex Herbig, a “mountain mover” senior nursing student at UT Austin from Fredericksburg, Texas. Whileshadowing nurses at Dell Children’s Hospital, teaching kids to swim, leading church youth group projects, pursuing a nurse practitioner profession, Alex discovered her passion for serving others. As if her schedule wasn’t full enough, she and seventy nine other UT students competitively signed up for the Texas 4000, an 18 month leadership program, culminating in a 70-day bike ride from Austin, Texas to Anchorage, Alaska. 

Prior to the bike ride, Alex had to raise $4,500, cycle 2,000 training miles with her team, volunteer more than 50 hours in the community, and play an active role in planning every aspect of the ride to Alaska by attending weekly meetings and taking leadership positions within the team.

Alex and her team are split into three different cycling routes, the Rockies, Ozarks and Sierra. Alex, as of this publication, is in her 18th day cycling the Rockies route, giving presentations to communities about cancer and how it can be prevented.

Alex possess what Angela Duckworth defines as “grit”. Grit “entails working strenuously toward challenges, maintaining effort and interest over years despite failure, adversity, and plateaus in progress. The gritty individual approaches achievement as a marathon; his or her advantage is stamina. Whereas disappointment or boredom signals to others that it is time to change trajectory and cut losses, the gritty individual stays the course.”

You can follow and support Alex and her “gritty” team of mountain movers cycling through the Rickies on their way to Anchorage, Alaska at Their summer fundraising goal is $875,000, your tax-deductible donation will go to grants for MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, research at UT Austin and UT Southwestern, and support groups like First Descents, Young Adult Cancer Canada, and Brent’s Place.