Thursday, June 27, 2013

Boston, Chicago, Hockey, Shoelaces, and Zambia, Africa...


It's been a tough couple of weeks in terms of my running/working out.  Let's just say I've probably had as many good solid run workouts than I've had blog posts.  I've been tired.  I have two reasons for why I think this is the case:

1. HEAT! (not the Miami Heat, although that probably didn't help)  Summer has come in full force.  The last few runs have been in the high 70s - 80s.  I'm just not used to it yet.

2. I started training on something new at work this week.  For all but two hours out of my day I'm sitting in a class room listening to a trainer.  She's a great trainer, very energetic.  But there's only so many ways you can keep insurance interesting.  Sitting down and learning all day wears me out more than doing my actual job.

The heat could easily be helped if I actually woke up with my alarm clock and motivated myself to get out of the door.  Another part is maybe I'm just trying to do it all on my own.  It's hard to lose focus on why we do the things we do.


Onto the title of this post.  Pretty random, but not really.

Next year I will be going to Zambia, Africa with members of my High Mill family and my awesome pal Daren, and his equally awesome wife Danielle, from Active:Water!  So the step of obedience to run for Active:Water is now turning into going to another continent to see the results of everyone who has raised money.  I will be there to help, learn, and spread the love of Christ.  Excitement on high!!

Also, I was asked to come on as a youth leader at my church.  Which is awesome.  For a couple years I had felt a call to mentor other guys.  Not because I think that I am a great role model.  I just want to be there for people.  I know what it was like being a teenager and I didn't particularly enjoy it lol.  I'm there to serve and be there for others.  I'm guessing I will learn a lot along the way.


Over the past week I've also found myself sucked into the Stanley Cup (which is the championship series in professional hockey).  It pitted the Chicago Blackhawks against the Boston Bruins.  I was pulling for the Bruins, although I'm a fan of both teams.  Since Cleveland has no big pro team I find that I can enjoy the sport more.  I don't have a horse in the race. Anyway, while watching the final game of the series I thought about running...

On a brief side note.  The end of the 6th game was friggen crazy.  CRAZY!  If you don't know what I'm talking about please just google it.  The talking heads in sports called it the best 90 seconds in sports all year and on the list of best of all time.

In a way running has a very close connection to both cities (especially for myself).  Chicago has one of the best marathons in the world, and it was the grounds of the first marathon I have run/completed.  I don't have to mention the connection Boston has to running.  That'd be just silly.  You could see fans wearing Boston Strong shirts.  They also had it on the boards around the ice.  It's easy to forget the feelings of that April 15th marathon day.  This doesn't mean we forget the ones who passed or were injured.  We just don't feel as strong of a connection as we may have had on that specific day.  Especially now that it's been over two months.

I'd like to do a little Boston giveaway.  I didn't want to do it right around the time of the event.  It felt like I would just be trying to pick up momentum for my blog, which is definitely not the reason this blog was started.

So, what am I giving away?

Shoe laces!

I have 4 pairs of Boston shoe laces. They say "We will run and we will remember 4-15-13".  

You don't have to share my blog page, follow me on Twitter, or friend me on Facebook.  I'd just like to give them away to anyone who would like to do something small to remember those ravaged by the senseless acts of violence on that day.

Just email me at  Provide your address.  Then I'll send them.

That was easy.

Thanks for reading.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Marathon training begins/Vacation recap

Hello kind sir or ma'am!

It has been quite a while since I've blogged, but for good reason.  I was on vacation!  With my wife!  Without the kids!!!

As nice as it was, we did miss the little buggers.  The week was spent in Outer Banks, NC (aka OBX).  Which, if you live in Ohio and have looked at bumper stickers, is the only place people around here go to on vacation.  We now know why!  It was great.  Temps in the mid 70s all week.  Waves crashing on the beach (Cold waves though.  The ocean was not very warm yet).  We did the touristy stuff like a dolphin tour, mini golf (I won), and some light shopping.  We also found a triathlon store called Outer Banks Tri Sports.  I bought some compression calf sleeves.  The woman running the store was super nice (like most people in the south). We also had donuts from Duck Donuts.  A made to order bakery shop.  Freshly made every time.  They were amazing.  To the point where I have not had a donut since we got home on Saturday, which says a lot.  We also met some friends who live in Virginia.  Turns out seeing people in person is much better than liking their stuff on Facebook.  Who knew!?

Side note: my wife is great!  She has tons of beautiful, endearing, qualities.  So many that I cannot share them all in a single blog post.  One of them is forgiveness.  Because I may or may not have lost my wedding ring on vacation...  I didn't even lose it swimming in the ocean or running dramatically on the beach.  I more than likely lost it sitting on the beach reading a book.  Since I've lost a lot of weight this year, my ring is quite loose on my finger.  Now I know what you're thinking "Why don't you get it re-sized?"  Well smarty britches.  I can't.  It's made of a substance from outer space called "tungsten".  It cannot be re-sized.  So there!

Another great thing about my wife, which I have mentioned before, is her flare for photography.  So I will shut my mouth about the vacation and let you soak in some sights from our trip:

Our place was directly across the street from the ocean.  Not half bad!

waiting to see some dolphins on our boat trip

THERE THEY ARE!!!!  We ended up seeing 40-50 dolphins.


My beautiful one legged wife!!

Maybe change my blog to: Modelling for h2o?  Eh?

OK.. maybe not..

I got behind the camera too.  Easy to take good pics when your wife is this gorgeous!

I love this woman so much.  Do you notice the two birds above us?  Symbolism?  Aimee says no.  Just birds..
The night before we left we went to a nice restaurant to celebrate our five year anniversary.  We had two days of food money to spend since we left a day early (storms were coming in).  The two of us don't drink much alcohol but we ended up spending 100 smackers on dinner without it on the bill (tip included).  Best steak/crab/shrimp combo I've ever had.  If you ever go to OBX, and want to go all out, go to the Colington Cafe.  You won't be dissapointed!

----------------------------------------TRAINING UPDATE----------------------------------------

I managed to run and bike a couple times on vacation.  Only bad thing about running/biking down there is how flat it was.  Where I live in Ohio we have some good hills.  Running on purely flat ground was weird, and frankly kinda boring.  Biking was even worse because I was in the same gear practically the whole time. YAWWWWNNNN.  I like conquering hills.  What can I say?  I'm crazy.  The last work out was a 10 mile bike straight into a run brick workout.  OBX is known for it's mileposts.  Every store or restaurant advertises their location by telling you the milepost.  I only intended on running 2 miles but one of the mileposts was missing.  The 2 miles turned to 4.  Luckily I was wearing my new compression calf sleeves.  They weren't sore a single bit after the workout.  I highly recommend them!

Tuesday was the official start to Akron marathon training for Active:Water.  I had a painful start...

I start by putting one foot in front of the other.  Once I transitioned from my walk to my run my knee starting hurting.  Badly.  I don't say this with pride but I was using some language I probably shouldn't have used.  It felt like a knife cutting down the middle of my knee cap.  Stopped me right in my tracks.  I ended up going a quarter mile or more of walking to attempting to run and back to walking before I could keep a good cadence up.  While it didn't hurt for the remaining 4.5 miles I could feel something was up.

In August I'm also doing my first olympic (intermediate) distance triathlon.  1500 meter swim, 24 mile bike, and 10k run (6.2ish miles).  So Wednesday I was in the pool.  Today I went out for another run.  I started up again to have close to the same amount of pain I had the last time.  This time I didn't stop, or use my potty mouth.  Once again things sorted out and I was able to run 4 good miles.

A part of me was nervous when I felt that pain.  Nervous about the future and not being able to run this upcoming race.  I honestly feel that I'm not injured.  It doesn't hurt while I'm sitting/walking/swimming or anything else.  Only when I run.  When people are doing something for the Kingdom there always seem to be things getting in the way.  Mental and physical distractions.  My thinking is someone wants me to get afraid, and it ain't God.  I'm going to pray this pain goes away and for the Lord's strength through these next few months.  I hope you can join me!

Also, the main reason this marathon is happening is to raise awareness for the world water crisis and funds for Active:Water.  Through this fund-raising people in Zambia, Africa will have access to clean drinking water, hygiene sources, and employment in keeping these wells up to standard.  Along with that also spreading the gospel and the love of Christ.  If you want more information visit  If you'd like to donate visit my page here.

Thanks for reading this War and Peace length post!