Monday, June 5, 2017

Be Happy, Be healthy

For many who read my blog.  They never knew Steve at 340 pounds.  Many also don't even know what its truthfully like to deal with obesity.  Sadly, I wasn't born being skinny.  And people who don't who have the genetic code of obesity don't really understand what its like. (Disclaimer: I am not judging people who aren't fat or work hard to not be fat).

For some of us.  We have to fight it every single day.  Its not easy.  And I am struggling myself.  Am I where I was when I first began this journey? No.  But am I at the lowest weight I have ever been? No.  
Sometimes when you finally hit your goal (Weight Watchers lifetime weight, Marathon PR, Pant Size, Image Happiness, or whatever) its very tough to maintain.  You have worked so hard for so long and then what are you supposed to do.  Are you supposed to act like skinny people and do all the fun stuff?  Are you supposed to starve yourself?  How to you find an equilibrium of staying healthy and maintaining.  

On top of that, life sometimes gets in the way.  For me it was a few things:

Injuries have been plaguing me for the past fourteen months.  During Shamrock 2016 season, I only missed one run during the sixteen week cycle.  I also ran my body to nothing.  I ran too hard, too fast and didn't think about the consequences.  My glute/hip has been bothering me for the longest time.  I hurt my foot last fall.  What people forget is that training for a marathon is very difficult for a full-time employed Dad of two kids.  Not everyone can take off work, go get messages, dry needling, tissue repair, or just not do the regular things that parents and adults have to do.  Waking up at 3:30 every morning to run means you aren't sleeping.  Which means your not letting your body recover.  Running 40-50 miles a week while being a dad and working is a lot.  So how do you find the middle ground?  

So I have been spending my time since March not running and concentrating on getting stronger and healthier.  I have also been seeing a physical therapist helping me fix my probably from destroying my body.  

Life always seems to get in the way of the important things.  When I moved 8 years ago to North Carolina.  I didn't know a soul down here.  It was tough.  People don't know what it is like moving to a different region, different culture, and not know anyone.  Once I met my wife, we had our little group of friends but I was always missing out on my group of friends like I had in Michigan.  

As your life changes, so do your friends.  In Michigan, I had friends from different places.  I met my best friend Chuck while working at Applebees.  He was working a second job to save up for his wedding and I was a bartender.  We hit it off shit talking like no other.  Now we both have families, houses, and careers.  My other friends I met through college.  And through college you meet others.  

Here, I did not have that.  I am 700 miles away from my high school and colleges.  So when I met people, I am always looking for "real" friends.  The ones who call or text you when you need it.  The ones who you bounce ideas off of.  The ones who give as much as you do in a relationship.  Sadly, there aren't that many people out there like that.  Most people use others for their own benefit.  Sometimes I get sucked up into all that and waste time instead of using my time for the people who matter.  

The one thing I have learned is that even if you meet someone who isn't worth your time, through those moments you will meet people who are.  

I kept beating myself up all the time.  I kept telling myself I needed to be something for everyone.  But I need to remind myself I didn't go on this journey to please anyone else.  I did it for me and my family.  I did it to be healthy.  And being healthy and surrounding yourself with healthy people is what I am working on.

My goal for 2017 was Run Happy, Run Healthy.  But I am changing that to be Happy, Be Healthy.  Because its more than just running.  Its life.  And sometimes life is a struggle.  But if you surround yourself with the right people, you will be healthy and happy.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Thank You!

Surround yourself with good people and good things happen.  And that I have.  Not only am I lucky enough to be running the New York Marathon with three awesome ladies, I am also surrounded by an amazing group of friends and a wonderful community.

Last Saturday I was lucky enough to be surrounded by good people.  My first Slow Ride of 2017 went great thanks to my awesome friends and our wonderful community.

When I first started doing Slow Ride, I did it for fun.  I did it for the community.  Out of it, we have helped raise thousands of dollars for fundraisers including the Roc Solid Foundation and Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

I can't thank all the local businesses enough.  But I really appreciate all the donations, time, and gifts you all donated to our raffles and event.

We were lucky enough to raise over $2,000 for our Cancer Better Run.  Which put us over the $11,000 as a group and also let our leader, Karen, hit her personal mark of $3,500.

Being able to combine a Slow Ride and raise funds for a good cause can't get any better.

So again.  Thank you to everyone who attended, donated, and helped in every fashion!

Monday, January 30, 2017

Cancer Better Run: New York Marathon

2016 was a year of personal records. I kept thinking about what is next this past fall.  I didn't really have a clue what my next goals were.  What I wanted to do or race.  I sort of plateaued with my running and was pretty burnt out on it after two hard grueling marathon cycles.

Fall training came around and I started doing my Tempo runs with Karen.  And one day, she couldn't keep up.  She knew something wasn't right.  The next day she went to the doctors and found out she had cancer.  Long story short, she instantly went into Chemo and fought throughout the fall.  To watch someone fight so hard and honorable during such a  crazy time was admirable.  Karen isn't just my running partner.  We have become friends.  And most importantly, she was a mom, a daughter and wife.

During the chemo we would run.  Maybe not as fast but definitely more memorable.  During these runs we talked about doing something bigger than ourselves.  And what do runners talk about?  Well, races of course.  So, Karen, myself, Karen (Fancy Fonts) and Kristy came up with a brilliant plan. Let's run for a charity.  Lets run for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Team in Training.  LETS RUN THE NEW YORK MARATHON.

Then the "Oh Shit" moment happened.  We actually signed up.  Its funny because sometimes you talk other people into it and tell them to not worry about that than next thing you know you are freaking out about the same damn thing.  And next thing you know, I am signed up.

Even though when I race, I race for my team and pace group, it usually is a selfish sport.  I raced for myself.  I ran Detroit for myself.  I ran Shamrock for myself.

I decided I needed to do something bigger than for myself.  Even though my friend, Karen, fought this Cancer.  I am not running for her.  I AM RUNNING WITH HER.  I am running with her to prove to this world that there is some good.  That Cancer will not defeat her or anyone else if they don't let it.  I am running so that maybe, just maybe, I can help someone else fight and defeat cancer.

I am completely scared shitless thinking about raising funds.  But screw it.  As Jess (The Fit Petite) once told me, if you aren't nervous or scared, than you aren't passionate about it.  So here I am. Scared and completely nervous.  But I am thankful that I am doing this with three (hopefully four) awesome friends.

So today, I am here to apologize now.  I will be annoying the hell out of you for ten months for fundraising.  Get used to it because until we reach our goal, I can't stop.

PS- It is going to be fun running a whole marathon with a friend or in this case friends.  It's going to be a crazy fun day.

Also, feel free to donate to US.  Follow the link: Cancer Better Run