GLEN COVE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) -- A Long Island woman is embarking on a grueling journey that will help in the battle against cancer.
Glen Cove resident Eva Casale, 49, is an ultramarathoner who plans to run seven marathons in seven consecutive days, spanning 183.4 miles starting Monday afternoon.
"It gives me time to think and be alone," Casale told CBS 2's Don Champion. "When I run I think about those who I run for, those who can't get out of bed, those who are sick.
"The support has been overwhelming in the running community, also from my friends, family and people I don't even know who have reached out to me to wish me well and luck with this week and the endeavor that I'm taking on," Casale added.
The 26.2-mile courses will be in Hauppauge, Sayville, Farmingdale, Babylon, Long Beach, Massapequa and Glen Cove.
"Each run is dedicated to a different type of blood cancer," Casale told WCBS 880. "Saturday I'm running for all cancers."
Casale has been running for decades. She's completed 51 full marathons and 32 ultramarathons, ranging from 31 to 126.2 miles. She called the week-long mission one of her most difficult yet.
"One, because of the weather; two, it's really important that I hydrate and refuel every day because the next day is another marathon. So, it's important that I treat each day like the next day is a marathon," she said.
Casale is a coach and volunteer with Team in Training, which raises money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. She joined it in 2007 after donating a kidney to a stranger in need.
"I do feel really passionate about this organization," Casale said. "The money does go to research and you do see what comes out of it and how people are sustaining a better quality of life from the medications that the research has provided."
Sara Lipsky, the executive director of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, told Champion the timing makes the money all the more important.
"The research is really fast and furious. I feel like every single day there's something else that comes out -- a new study, a new leap in a clinical trial," Lipsky said.
Casale's goal is to raise $49,000 ($7,000 per day). Donations can be made at www.goteameva.org.
"As a runner I feel like this is the least I can do," Casale said.
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