it bums me out that i've already heard/seen people being grumpy today. mainly at things like traditions. to be more specific....people being grumpy toward the tradition of others saying what they're thankful for on Thanksgiving. i feel like we also see these people getting grumpy when they watch someone else open a birthday gift on their birthday, or maybe when they see a couple going out on a date on their anniversary. there are certain things we do on certain days to help us remember and to celebrate.

But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 15:57 (NLT)

that's exactly what i'm remembering and celebrating today! i'm remembering the ultimate sacrifice made to save all humanity from eternal suffering and CELEBRATING the victory over death so that i can be victorious over sin by the power of Jesus Christ!



oh yeah...this is what it feels like

it's a feeling that i could do without for the rest of my life. the feeling of not being able to run and hating every bit of it. you know...the feeling i'm having currently. mid-september my running flat lined due to total chaos happening in my life. all good stuff, but running as a priority went out the window.

i literally ran about thirty miles the entire month of october and 26.2 of them were at the st louis marathon Emily and i ran (SO proud of her!). since then i haven't ran at all...until earlier this week. i finally had the energy/motivation/desire to lace up my abandoned running shoes and get out the door. and. it. hurt. not in an injury kind of way, but in a "running sucks" kind of way. i lost almost all of my endurance i had built up and can no longer go out and run several miles. i ran two and i felt like i used to feel after running closer to five. embarrassing? a little. motivating? actually, yeah...kinda. is that weird? probably.

you know i'm huge into setting goals and then CRUSHING them into little tiny crushed-goal-pieces. well, this gives me the perfect opportunity to regain my endurance. since i can barely bust out a couple miles i have my work cut out for me, but it's actually a little refreshing to know that i have to work back up to running for an hour at a time or more. although it's a drag i can no longer just hop into a half-marathon any weekend i want it's exciting to have to work back up to that level.

also...after running this last marathon (and after my first triathlon earlier this year) i've realized that my passion for running has decreased slightly and my new found passion for triathlon has skyrocketed. i've mentioned before that i will complete a full Ironman before i die. well...i'm not quite foolish enough to say that next year it'll happen, but i really hope to start focusing more on triathlon in 2013 and set goals accordingly. we shall see......


here's to being four years old

today my awesome nephew is four years old. holy crap does that make me feel old. the kid is something else and i'm extremely proud to be his uncle. he's finally getting to that age where we can REALLY start messing with his parents.

happy birthday little dude!


one week to go

well, emily and i are a week out from the marathon. to say that i'm under prepared is a vast understatement. if you know me at all you know me as a dude who likes to be prepared for things. i mean...i make lists to help me get prepared for things. i know that some people go through life without planning anything and probably do fairly well; however, i feel intense anxiety when i'm not prepared for something. literally...i actually get stomach aches if i don't feel like i'm prepared enough for something. lame, i know.

enter marathon training several weeks in. i've built up my training and mileage enough that i can comfortably run 10-15 miles on a weekend and not let it kill me. running 26.2 miles though....that involves some training and some planning ahead. so, the planning i did involved about 18 weeks of training to build up the endurance both physically and mentally. what i didn't foresee happening was my life going from "a little crazy" to "life is almost out of control crazy" and apparently the priority of running went the way of dinosaurs. now, a week away from running the marathon i feel sick when i think of how prepared i am....i mean how prepared i'm not.

if you don't happen to read the blog emily and i write together you can read a little about how my life got a bit out of control within the past several weeks by clicking here. hint: our family is growing!


back from injury?

one of the hardest things to do besides not going insane while being injured is returning to running after the injury. why, you ask? it's because you never really know if you're fully healed. how do you know if you're "fully healed," you ask? you go run and see if it hurts.

i've been off running for nine days now since i felt major right knee pain during a recovery run and without training altogether since last wednesday when i had my bike accident. it's been a long week or so to say the least, but i've been doing surprisingly okay mentally. honestly, i truly believe it's because my mind is so caught up thinking about other things nonstop so i haven't really been focusing on it too much.

anyway...meanwhile back at the ranch...i went out today to see if my knee was doing better. oh, and i also had major back, hip, and left knee pain since my bike accident so i had to feel that out, too. it really seemed like my legs were out to get me! i went out for a sloooow one mile run and besides the fact that i was extremely bored...i felt NO pain. trust me...i learned years ago not to get my hopes up, but it's still a good sign!

of course i had to ask the "old wise runner" (aka my dad) what i should do next and he gave me some good advice, so we'll see how it feels tomorrow and i'll take it one step at a time. baby steps, of course.


injuries and pessimism

well...i'm injured. *long melodramatic sigh* i honestly have no idea how it happened. actually, i have a few ideas but that's just me overthinking things like always. i haven't been injured in a long time...and it SUCKS! to not be able to do something you love is one of the hardest my opinion.

i had a sixteen mile long run this past weekend and it went alright. my pace was what i wanted it to be and i recovered fine. then came monday's recovery run: bad. it was a slow four miler and i felt a sharp pain in my right knee for almost three miles of it. (flashback warning) a few years ago i was diagnosed with patellar tendinitis and ended up going to physical therapy for it. it kept me from running for months! of the hardest few months ever.

-should i stop eating so much?
-will i get fat now?
-does this mean i can just sit around and watch tv?
-what's on tv these days? i have a tv?
-how much could i sell my running shoes for?
-i totally forgot i had a bike! i'm gonna go pedal for hours...
-is it okay to ride a bike?
-should i stay in bed all day to speed up recovery?
-will i ever run again?
-should i ice my knee?
-should i put heat on my knee?
-what did i do wrong?
-is this because i don't run barefoot?
-(while looking at training plan) i followed this thing to a 'T', didn't i?
-i guess i didn't stretch enough?
-did i stretch too much?
-why do i run?

i guess the point i'm trying to make from the questions above is this: do we ever really know why stuff happens? well...yeah, we do (sometimes). some stuff we bring on ourselves, BIG BUT, some stuff we don't. like this injury per se...i really don't feel that i did anything intentionally to bring this on, but it happened and NOW is the time to deal with it. the tony several years ago freaked and complained the whole time about not running when he was injured, but the tony now...i'm okay. not great (yet!). just okay...but i'll take that! it's an improvement and i'm dealing with it.

i'm taking it easy and not wishing unpleasant things upon runners that i pass while driving. that's a good thing! honestly...there was a point during my last injury that i couldn't even talk about running, see anyone running, and you didn't even want to ask me about running. it would've turned into a total emo-self-pity-fix-my-knee-right-now-running story.

i'm finally to a point in life that i can thank God for times like this. times that i cannot stand, but times that literally slow my life down without my consent! times that i want to often skip. times that i wish weren't happening...but what does that say to God? it basically says, "umm...hey...i totally know You had this all planned out...but it sucks...change it. i know better than You and i want to be running and moving on with stuff." well, it doesn't work that way and i've finally learned that! now if only i could learn that you're not supposed to end sentences with the word 'that'...maybe someday.

until then....keep your head up. who knows what you'll learn during this "slow" times...

UPDATED (9/14/12)

so...i had to come back and update this post because since i posted it wednesday evening i had something interesting happen and felt the need to share.

about an hour or so after i published the above post i went out for a bike ride to see how the knee felt. i didn't feel any pain while pedaling so i at least felt good that i'd be able to incorporate cycling into my time off of running. i was pretty confident that swimming wouldn't bother it, so i had to test the waters on my bike.

then something unfortunate happened: i was cruising around 20-25mph on the edge of town and a car rolled through a stop sign without even seeing me. i had to slam on my brakes and ended up hitting gravel and crashing. the driver did stop; however, he failed to apologize but at least asked me if i was ok. i fought back the urge to yell at him for driving like crap and am proud of myself now as i look back.

so, now with a bum right knee i have some decent road rash on my left leg and a messed up back. thursday morning getting out of bed was about as hard as sending the first man to the moon. i've been popping pain killers and trying to rest as much as possible, but it's difficult when you have a physical job. so instead of this weekend including an exciting 18 mile long run i get the excitement of resting my aching body.

i'd say "at least i can still swim" but now i'm nervous to get in the water. 2/3 of my sports are not liking me lately...


you know you're a runner if...

lately i've been seeing a TON of "you know you're a runner if..." statements. honestly...most of them are hilarious. it got me thinking though...there are a LOT of runners out there. i'll say it now and i'll say it again: if you go out and run around the are a runner! it doesn't take race experience, a PR, a medal, running stories, a marathon, a 1/2 marathon, or even running injuries to "make" you a runner. you are a runner if you get out the door on a semi-regular basis and RUN!

sure...some are more obsessive than others. i willingly admit that i am a bit of an obsessive runner. i think about it all the time. i have dreams about running. i follow professional runners online as if they're my friends. my wife would also admit...i may be over the top at times and think about races and running faster way too much, but that doesn't make me more of a runner than someone who goes out once or twice a week and rocks out a few miles. no, doesn't!

you know you're a runner run! just NOT call it jogging!


speaking of running....a few weekends ago emily and i had the awesome opportunity of running in a color run with our good friends matt and claire! it was one of the coolest running experiences i've had yet!
it wasn't for time.
it wasn't to "qualify for boston".
it wasn't to show your skills and how hard you've trained.
it wasn't to medal.
it was to have one of the best times running you'll ever have!
...and that's exactly what we did!







we all got first place and qualified for boston by the way! see you there...


i finally gave it a tri

i completed my first triathlon this past saturday and it was amazing! it was everything i hoped it'd be plus, literally...i actually got a medal! i placed 3rd in my age group. God really gave me the strength/determination to push myself hard and it felt amazing to check this goal off of my list. now i can't wait to do my next one!

i let myself get SO nervous before this race. more nervous than my fist race ever, or my even my first marathon. it was comical really...well, now it is anyway. all last week leading up to the race i was nauseous, full of anxiety, easily agitated, and i was training way too hard. thank God (literally) i didn't end up injuring myself last week while i was pedalling twenty miles, running a few miles and then running a few more later that same day. what was i thinking? oh yeah....i was thinking that i was going to drown at the swim start, wreck on the bike if i somehow made it that far, and cramp up on the run if i made it that far. see how i can let my mind work some times? ridiculousness.

so race day came and i woke up feeling great. no nerves, no anxiety, no stress. just ready to race. it was a great reminder of how God is in control and if i would just give my "stuff" over to Him sooner i could've felt that sense of calm days before...but i'm human and have to learn things the hard way every now and then.

the swim start was about as crappy as i thought it'd be. one cool thing: i didn't get kicked in the face at the start! that didn't happen until about half way through the swim. HA! it was uber crowded at the very beginning so it took a good 100-200 yards before i could even get into a good rhythm but once i did i felt really good in the water. it felt even better running OUT of the water and heading into the transition area. what a rush! people lined both sides of a narrow path where all the athletes were running through cheering us all on. i was really excited about transitioning between sports since i have been reading tips/tricks on how to transition quick for the past several months. it seemed it paid off since i was out pretty quick on the bike. i averaged a little over 20mph on the bike for the 24 mile course and felt really great....oh, except around mile 18 when my chain came off. what the cuss!?! i freaked a little i won't lie...but i calmed myself down, hopped off my bike and fixed it quick. rolling back into the transition area was awesome. again, people lining the roads cheering us on. i even cruised by some of my fans (my sister, brother-in-law, and nephew!) and got to yell hello to them! as i quickly transitioned into the run it almost went so quick i felt like i was forgetting something, but i wasn't so i got moving....on my jello legs! it was brutal at first as my legs got used to doing something different. it took me a good quarter mile or so before i found my groove and then i just kept moving. i LOVED looking at all the other athletes faces while i was running the 5k course. the look of determination, the strength in their legs, just the complete look of success was amazing. it really helped me push it hard to the finish. oh and by the way...the finish was great! tons of people lined the narrow road as i ran toward the finish line and completed my first triathlon. of course, since i'm a total sentimental loser, i teared up a little as a finished ready to blame it on "sweat getting in my eye" if anyone asked. as all of my family came over to tell me how proud they were i realized something: i was actually proud of myself! i realized i was giving myself credit for something that i did. i trained hard, set a goal, and crushed it! praise the Lord!

here's a breakdown of each part of the race:

500m Swim: 12:29.8
Transition 1 (T1): 1:46.8
40k Bike: 1:13:07.8
Transition 2 (T2): 1:14.5
5k Run: 24:39.0

Total Time: 1:53:17.9

so who's up for doing a triathlon with me!?!


when your focus shifts

i love it when i feel something change in me. especially when it's a mental change. a shift in my thought process that makes me feel like i've changed for the better....and it's been happening more and more lately.

this causes two thoughts:
1.) praise God that He is stretching me to grow more and learn to show Jesus to more and more people
2.) man i feel dumb when i learn some stuff. like when i learn something i feel like i should've learned years ago. has that ever happened to you?

i just finished reading Beautiful Outlaw by John Eldridge which was recommended by a friend. it was a really great read. lately i've been becoming obsessed with the idea of pushing away all of  the "religious" junk the world loves to rave about and focusing on loving Jesus, showing Jesus, and trying to be more like Jesus. books like Beautiful Outlaw have been helping me move towards these goals.

as you may or may not know, my first triathlon is just NINE days out. luckily, i've been able to finally get in some open water swim sessions and feel a little more comfortable with the swim start. i haven't been able to get in the mileage i'd like to be getting on the bike, but i still feel comfortable with the 24 mile distance i'll need to cover. although i'm pretty worry-free about the run i'm still a little anxious to be doing the 5k after the swim and bike.

...and that's where my latest mental change comes in: the idea of allowing God to be a part of 100% of my life. literally....100%. not just a part of my job, my Church, my friends and family, my bad days and what i read. this is a big struggle i have been facing. it's easy for me to give God control of certain things in my life, but when it comes to things i feel like i may have better control over....or just don't trust anyone else's mine and i'm in control. i keep reserving God's involvement for more "religious" moments, days when i'm in need, or when i need to help someone. the problem with that way of thinking is i'm leaving God out of big areas of my day to day life; such as training or my fitness in general. i'm leaving God out and it's just setting me up to fail. the irony here is that i don't like to fail. in fact...i despise failing. i don't even like to watch others fail! so why would i go about doing things that are just setting me up to fail!?!

one of my favorite Bible verses is Philippians 4:13 which says this, "I can do everything through him who gives me strength." i feel like Paul was a runner. the endurance he possessed as he lived his life for God in EVERY way is inspiring. mainly because of the turnaround he had in his life (from saul to paul) and the fact he was just a regular dude living as much like Jesus as possible. what i learned/realized recently is that verse does not say "I can do 'a lot of things' through Him who gives me strength." it says 'EVERYTHING' and that to me is motivating and encouraging! that verse takes on a whole new meaning to me now that i am reading/comprehending it correctly. with that kind of strength available to me why would i chose to leave God out of any area of life?

here's an excerpt from Beautiful Outlaw:
    "By the way, this is the point of encountering those things in your life you cannot handle -- you are forced to turn to Christ. Did you really think you could be kind for the rest of your life without the inner help of Jesus? One day of kindness is a miracle. What about forgiving? Generous? Honest? Did you really think you could overcome your lifelong strongholds without some sort of Lazarus-like breakthrough? It simply isn't going to happen -- not without the life of Jesus in you.
    This realization was an epiphany for me.
    I have spent most of my adult years trying to find those keys that would enable people to become whole. Like an archaeologist raking for buried treasure, I've combed through the province of counseling, spiritual discipline, inner healing, deliverance, addiction recovery -- anything that would help me get others get better. Like Schliemann when his shovel struck the buried ruins of Troy, the epiphany I have come to is this:
    Jesus has no intention of letting you become whole apart from his moment-to-moment presence and life within you.
    Your brokenness and your sin are not something you overcome so that you can walk with God. They are the occasions for you to cry out for the life of God in you to rescue you. Not God outside you, up in the sky somewhere. Christ in you, your only hope of glory."


just a little update

remember the good ol' days when i blogged regularly? turns out i still kinda do. in case you missed the headline on cbs news several months ago, emily and i have a blog over here and i tend to blog there a little more than here these days.

fortunately for you....i'm in the mood to give y'all an update on me and to rant about being an endurance athlete. first, i admittedly find it awkward calling myself an "endurance athlete." mainly because when i think of endurance athletes i think of crazy dudes/dudettes like dean karnazes, craig (crowie) alexander, and chrissie wellington to name a few. although i am quite certain my name will never come up if you were to google "endurance athlete," i'm still technically classified as one. a cool definition i once read of endurance athlete was to have the ability to continue with an unpleasant or difficult situation or activity. in that sense...i know a lot of endurance athletes. how many people do you know that can't stand their day jobs? ;)

i'm exactly thirty days out from my first triathlon. big deal. yeah right! i'm freakin' out. have you heard the horror stories of the infamous swim start (see video below)? it's not like i just conquered a fear of water or anything. like a boss!

so i continue to log the miles...swimming, cycling, and running. the trifecta of funtivity (activities that are fun!). i'm honestly a little bummed i wasn't the first one to use that term. the gnarliest part of logging so many miles and training so hard is just feeling the strength that God is providing me to do the things i want to do and reach the goals i am setting. after finishing so many training sessions i am literally thanking/praising the Lord that i made it through because i am certain it was not by my own strength that i completed it.


and so it begins...

a couple saturdays ago i completed my first race of the year. it was a half marathon that i admittedly did not train very much for. i was hoping that since i had run a marathon last year, and kept my miles up after that, i could just hop into a half marathon without a lot of training. believe it or not, i was right! yay for being one of those guys for the first time in my life. besides my normal weekly runs, i ran a ten miler a few weeks before the race and called it good.

about a year and a half ago, emily and i were in a local running store looking at shoes when we met one of those guys. we brought up the fact that we'd be running our first half marathon in less than a few weeks. i'll never forget what the associate working said after he heard us talking about that half. he asked us, "so what half are you two running?" we told him and he said, "oh wow...that's not too far away. that sounds great. i think i might do that one, too." my thoughts, " think you might run 13.1 miles in less than a few weeks? just like that!?! don't you need to train?!" i literally remember being aggravated with this dude because he could "hop into" a half marathon apparently at any point.

this recent half marathon was really cool because i had the opportunity to help a friend run a sub 2:00 race. he had never run one before and that was his goal. i loved it! i'd say for the average rec runner a sub 2:00 is a high goal to naturally i was inspired by his aggressive goal setting.

the race went great and we paced well. we chatted while we ran to distract ourselves and made some jokes here and there. honestly, i don't get to run with someone too often so it was pretty refreshing to be able to race next to someone. i'll admit it though...i felt a ton of pressure to get that dude sub 2:00, but we managed to finish in 1:53:37.

onto the next race of the season. my first triathlon in 62 days 15 hours 32 minutes and 44 seconds. YIKES!


typical saturday morning?

saturdays are my hard training days. especially now since i'm exactly three weeks out from my race season and kicking it off with a half-marathon! on saturdays i go to a gym in a nearby town and get an overly-brutal swim workout with the local tri-club, then i normally find energy somewhere to get a nice run in and call it a day. i hadn't been able to swim with the tri-club in a couple weeks due to work or just wanting to be lazy and sleep in, so i was thinking today was going to be extra hard. turns out it was extra hard! at one point i actually thought i was going to yell for the lifeguard to save me. judging by the bored to death look on the sixteen year old dude's face while he was chatting with someone...i doubt it would've helped.

after my swim session i knew i didn't want to run the track since twelve laps equal a mile. after twenty laps i feel a little insane. the most i've ever been able to do around that track is a five miler and i'm pretty sure i travelled time. i also knew that i wouldn't feel like getting a run in when i got home. it's about a ten minute drive home...that's enough time for laziness to kick in. so, naturally i decided to just run home from the gym. i mean come on, that's how people used to get around way back in the day. you got a message to give to jimmy? i'll run it over to the next town and give it to him, no problem! so i threw my bag in my car, kept my keys and my cell phone and took off for home. turns out it's a little over eight and a half miles, so it was a little more than the six miler i had planned on doing but who's counting. wait a second...

around five and a half miles in my phone rings and i look to see who is calling me. it's emily so i decide to answer. now here i am running home from the gym on a whim, in between towns, on a semi-busy road (sorry Mom) talking on my cell phone to my wife. classy, right!? what'd she want, you ask? she needed to know what our six mile route is because she can't remember. this happens to other couples on saturday, right? i let her know that i was running home and since i hadn't planned on doing that i could tell she was rather confused. finally she just said, "ok be safe and i love you." since i knew the route she'd be taking when i got closer to town i veered off my unplanned course to pass her and give her a high five. no, seriously...that was why.

now here i sit typing this up laughing because i feel like emily and i live a rather odd life. or do we? maybe this type of day happens to everyone.


running in Africa

first's been like at least 23231211 years since i've blogged, right? that's what i was thinkin'.

the past several weeks since we've been back from north africa have been like a whirlwind for me. not like in an artistic way either. more like in a, " life is pretty close to out of control" type of way! does that make sense? i'm finding it hard to keep up with life. i'm behind on emails, returning phone calls, work stuff, you name it...i'm behind on it! this is not me!! i'm on a country music kick and digging taylor swift...i can even tolerate kanye west...WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME!?!

maybe this title should be 'running AWAY in Africa!" while emily and i were there i barely thought about "stuff" back home. to be honest with y'all it happened maybe twice. i think one time i thought, "man...the weather is not this nice back home" and then another time i thought, "dude...people (including me) back home are way too obsessed with schedules and dates!" well...both of these statements/thoughts are true!

i met a boy while we were there who was into running. he was into running like i am into running. that's what he thinks about. from the first day we were there he was asking me when we'd go running together. i heard from his parents he wants to be an olympic runner. an olympic runner! how's that for a life goal!?! it was so awesome to hear! the first time we tried to go running together was after we had been there just a few days. well...turns out, i got really sick. mainly from the neck up...but i couldn't really talk and could barely think straight because of the african drugs i was taking (proscribed by a nurse, of course)! i felt so terrible that i had to back out on him, but i let him know that we would
definitely run before i left. then came saturday...our last day at the children's home. i told him to meet me outside at 6:30am and we'd go out and run a bit. so, me being me, i was early outside and guess was he! we ended up going out for about a mile and a half run and he kept a great pace! i kept telling him he was doing awesome and for some reason i felt like he was taking it easy one me! HA!

although the photos shown above aren't from africa....i still love them. to be honest with you, i think during this run when these shots were taken i still had red dirt from africa on my shoes! i almost wanted to retire my shoes because african dirt was on them! now unfortunately, the red dirt has faded and i'm back to running on illinois land, but...i still love running! why? because it's worldwide! no matter what country you're from, what you believe, what color you are, why you do it...running is running!!!!


my BEST friend

who is my BEST friend? like, absolute, no doubt about it, who is always there for me, best friend? well, my answer is Jesus. yeah, yeah...whatever...sunday school answer, i know. yet, it's true! how is He not?

besides Him? my wife. she is the most amazing person i have ever met! i'm so confident that she is the most amazing person i'll ever meet that i'd bet my life savings on it! why? because. (yeah, i went there!)

here's why, dude!

-no matter what...she supports me!
-she can ALWAYS make me laugh
-she is so freaking beautiful!
-no matter what she's brilliant! (trust me, i'm not biased)
-she's independent (in a good way)
-she takes initiative...she knows what she wants and she gets it
-her heart for others
-she is constantly thinking of ways to help everyone else. seriously...i think once a day she comes at me with a new idea on how to help someone.
-umm....have you seen her smile!?! uh-may-zing!
-she's 5'5"...that's the world's most perfect human height....i'm not gonna lie...i made that one up
-she is a runner (and soon to be cyclist and swimmer) ;)
-she's a night owl (opposite's attract!)
-she can make a MEAN bowl of chilli...honestly (sorry Mom)...the best i've ever had!
-she loves that not the win-all!?!? what woman puts up with me 24-7!?!?!

there you have it! my best friend: a CRAZY woman! call her crazy, but my wife is the most amazing person on the planet! the end. no seriously...there is no debate.


nutrition overhaul

most people who know me know me as somewhat of a "health nut". i used to think this was a lame title, and some people currently do, but either way you look at's potentially a healthy way of life. i say potentially because being a health nut can really go two ways (in my opinion):

health nut #1: obsessive compulsive about what foods are or aren't consumed and it's on their mind every minute of the day.

health nut #2: aware of what foods are or aren't being consumed and base this solely on the fact that either the food is healthy or is not healthy.

i'd love to sit here and type out reasons why/how i am health nut #2...unfortunately, i'm not. i mean...i am now, but i wasn't before very recently.

emily and i have a friend who is a registered dietitian and she knows a lot about nutrition. she knows a lot about sports nutrition and more importantly...she is actually interested in it. there's nothing worse than talking to someone that knows a lot about something, but doesn't have any passion for it, so when they share the information it comes out robotic. does that make sense?

recently i've been realizing that i really need to recommit to my nutritional needs so i start getting the full benefit out of my workouts. for the past couple years i've been caught in a "restricted eating" mindset that all started when i lost all of the weight. this way of thinking has kept me pretty stagnant in my training for races and other goals i've set. most recently, my first full marathon experience when i was so concerned about not taking in too many calories that i wasn't properly fueled to run the marathon i wanted. result = totally bummed out.

so last week i was able to meet with our friend who is now my "sports nutritionist" and she's helping me understand my nutritional needs. my first need? eat more food. i found out last week that i should be eating about 1,000 calories MORE per day than i do now. whaahuh!?! the night before meeting with her, emily asked, "so...what will you do if she tells you to do something you don't agree with?" i proudly responded, "i'll do it. i've been trying it my way for a couple years now and it's obviously not working. she's smarter than me, so whatever she says i'll try." for some reason it was harder to commit to that way of thinking when my friend told me i needed to eat 1,000 calories more in a day. i think i almost said, "you're out of your mind!" but i resisted. fortunately, she's having me baby step up to my new goal and starting with just adding a couple hundred calories per day this first week.

to most people understanding how important nutrition is in endurance sports isn't that complex, but applying it to my daily life is for some reason. somehow in the transition of being an obese, lazy, non-endurance athlete into becoming an endurance athlete i'm just now realizing how important sports nutrition is in reaching new levels. i'm really excited to see what my sports nutritionist will offer. of course i'll be tracking all of the numbers cause i'm a nerd like that and it's no shocker that i will of course update my blog on all of my new achievements. no matter what least it sounds cool when i tell people i have a sports nutritionist. next up...sponsorship!! is that free, too!?


hey, look...i'm a fish

i've done some growing this week. i've really been challenging myself to become a swimmer. by that i mean i want to be able to beat michael phelps and his seventy-nine inch wingspan. although it's leading to frustration and swallowing gallons of pool water...i'm sticking to it and determined! i've actually been to the pool three times this week. THREE! oh, and i'll be going tomorrow morning for my swim lessons with the local triathlon club. who am i becoming? (a speedy swimmer is the correct answer there)

tomorrow is going to be a good day. i'm going to get a nice brick workout in before 10:00 or so and then have my first ever (thanks to my wife) one hour sports massage. honestly...i think that might hurt worse than my workouts. we'll see...

oh...and i have a confession. here's the real reason i want to get comfortable in water:


dude...i'm giving it a tri

a couple saturday's ago i did something i sorta thought i'd never do. i got into a pool...and swam laps. i know to most people this is not a big deal, but to me it's pretty much awesomeness. i have a minor fear of water. mainly larger bodies of water where it's too deep to stand. this came about because i finally became a member of a local triathlon club. the cost only being twenty bucks a year was pretty much the selling point.
besides just sounding cool because i'm now a member of a "tri club" the twenty bucks gets me discounts to local shops, opportunities to group run with other members (and group bike rides), and even swim lessons from a swimming coach. yes, i am taking swim lessons. a few minutes in to being in the pool last weekend i literally thought, "man...i feel like a fish out of water here." then i thought, "wait a second...i mean, i feel like a human who doesn't like water in water?" (it was a lot funnier in my a lot of things i am sure)

the good news: i actually really enjoyed swimming (and learning how) and my coach told me i'll have no problem getting it down as long as i focus on my breathing. it's true...i panic a little when it comes to learning how to breath properly while swimming. so, at this point in time i'm a guppie in the water but i'm waiting patiently for the day i'll be a shark in the water.

why? because some day i'm going to be an Ironman. for real. that's a life goal of mine. "it's on my bucket list" as some might say.

must have 3 of the following statements checked to become a triathlete:
X  i am a runner
X  i am a cyclist
    i am a swimmer

the plan: become a swimmer and complete a sprint triathlon in july!

1 in 1,000?

this post is a little late. sixteen days to be exact, i guess.

do y'all remember my goal last year being to run 1,000 miles in 2011? well...i achieved it and the crowds went, really...they did (don't worry...those empty seats filled up quick)!

emily's family and a couple friends threw a nice celebration ceremony for my achievement. i was even offered a gold medal, a gold shoe, and even a finisher's certificate to prove that i officially ran 1,000 miles in a year (oh, yeah...and flowers).

i was even inspired to give a speech and was sure to thank my mom and God.

to top off all of the loot i received for achieving my goal...i got a one hour sports massage to a local shop. my appointment is scheduled for this saturday (after a brick workout of course)!

this is why people achieve goals! TO GET STUFF!!


"so this is the new year...and i don't feel any different"

who knows that death cab for cutie song, 'the new year'? (see the video below if you haven't) i have tried to make it a tradition to play that song every new year's eve for the past several years. why? because i feel like making "next year" a new year is all up to us. if i simply say "2012 is gonna rock and great things will happen," but i don't actually go and do anything...ummm nothing will happen. it seems like common sense, but then does not walking in the middle of the parking lot at walmart yet people still do it.

so, this year, the year 2012 (pronounced twenty-twelve btw) why don't we all do the things in life that we want to do and stop making excuses. i'm not making any resolutions for 2012. in my opinion, resolutions have a negative connotation. maybe it's because for so many years i was making "new year's resolutions" that failed? it doesn't really matter. fortunately, i don't have the power to go back in time and change anything that's happened. yes, i meant to say fortunately. although i'm pretty sure i would go back in time and NOT break my pinky playing basketball that one day (thanks Carp...terrible hard feelings)!

goals are much better than resolutions. it's not that resolutions cannot be achieved and don't offer us the feeling of success, but i just think goals are smarter (why do you think they created S.M.A.R.T. goals). goals take motivation, determination, ambition, drive, will-power, and self-confidence (to name a few), and i feel like making a resolution just takes words. sure i could say, "my resolution is to be the best dancer in 2012" (done), and if i just say it but don't take the steps to do's meaningless. doesn't it seem like people don't take new year's resolutions serious anyway? i see it every year: workout equipment and gym memberships are advertised EVERYWHERE and what happens by late january and february? well, if you're in the market for a good deal and a barely used treadmill just go to craig's list and find out for yourself. it takes making obtainable goals first. 'baby steps' for all you 'what about bob' fans out there. check this link out if you want to run a 5k in a month (trust me, it works!) it happens in the green industry, too. people say, "i'm totally going green in 2012!" for about two weeks they go green and realize it costs more and then don't bother finding ways to make it more affordable/manageable (here's an easy way to get started).

i'm not intentionally trying to slam resolutions. and maybe the words goal and resolution are synonymous with each other and i'm just typing circles here. either way...i think goals just sit better with me. i feel like i commit more to a goal and am more laid back when it comes to a resolution. honestly, if you make new year's resolutions every year and love doing all means, keep doing it! good luck at keeping them, too! if you're more like me and have made plenty of resolutions but let them fizzle out by february...try making some goals. start small and work your way up to changing the world. seriously.

good luck and i wish you a happy, goal-crushing 2012!