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Who I am

I am a runner.

I am a husband to a wonderful woman and a father to the three most beautiful monsters you will ever meet.

I started this blog because I was inspired by a friend's blog. I always wanted to be able to express myself or tell my story and this seemed to be the perfect outlet. I am not a writer. However, I do feel that I have a few interesting thoughts that I can share. I do hope that I can inspire people in some way, much like those that have inspired me. If you have found me through following your blog it is because I found yours to be inspiring and interesting.

I am not a professional runner. Looking at my race list compared to others I have seen tells me that I really don't run alot of races. I work at night and run and workout in the mornings. My evenings are filled with chasing the three monsters. I usually find time to write on my lunch break at work. I really need a laptop because I am usually not near my home or work computer when I have a great idea for a post.

 I started running in 2007. My work had a weight loss competition that I really wasn't interested in joining. I was 260 pounds. All fat, no muscle. I was content with where I was. I didn't do much as far as exercise or socially. I had pretty much the same routine: eat as much as I want, play sports when I can and not really worry about adding any new friends to the small group that I hung out with. I thought about joining the competition but the deadline passed and I didn't sign up. The next week I found out that they moved the deadline back a week. So that friday morning, the last day to sign up, I did it. I thought "what the hell, if I lose 5-10 pounds that would be cool." Plus there was a chance to be in raffles for free stuff and the chance to win money. I like money so I did it. Two guys that work for me signed up also so there was a serious but unspoken competition between me and one of the guys.

I went home and told my wife that I had signed up for it and I wanted her to help me do well. She agreed and off we went. We had already started walking and eating a little healthier. I started running outside one mile. After about a week and a half I started getting shin splints. I thought I wouldn't be able to run. I remembered that we had a treadmill in the house and my wife suggested I use it because it would be easier on my body. It worked! After about a week running a mile on the treadmill I moved up to two miles. Everyday I "ran". I started at 4.0 speed. Most people walk that fast. Eventually I was up to 5.0 speed and 5 miles a day and we would usually walk a mile in the evening.

In the almost six months of the competition I probably took off four or five days from running. I was eating healthy and doing other exercises. I was surprised how fast the weight came off. It was a total commitment to losing weight and getting healthy. 182.5 pounds was my final weigh-in. I lost 77.5 pounds and won the competition. I don't remember how much money I won but the feeling of accomplishment was amazing! Running became more than just something I "had" to do. It became a way of life. I was trying to undo 28 years of bad eating and exercise habits.

Once the competition was over I was feeling good about myself. However, I felt weak. I was never very stong to begin with but all this time all I was doing was running, crunches and a few other exercises I remembered from P.E.

We joined the YMCA in January 2008. There I started lifting weights and kept up my running. I went with the same midset that worked for my weight loss. It wasn't always fun but I just had to commit and stick with it.

I have always been shy when meeting new people but when people talk to me first I can usually get comfortable pretty easy. The people at the Y really seemed to be nice. It makes things easier when people encourage you and lend their support. I have met some amazing people at the Y. Too many to name here.

One person really helped me take my running to the next level. Alli Hopkins was a woman that I would see running outside every day. Rain, snow, hot or cold she was always running. Sometimes she had other people running with her, but usually she was by herself. I finally got up the courage (remember I am shy when it comes to meeting new people) to talk to her. She became my unofficial running coach. At the time she was actually working on becoming a running coach so I was her guinea pig. Through her I learned alot about running. I started taking yoga and pilates classes and met alot more amazing people.

At this point I weigh more than I should. But I still run and workout pretty much everyday. If I miss a day it is because I have something to do with my family or my nighttime work/morning workout schedule (that I do on very little sleep) has caught up with me.

I love my favorite sports teams and my music so I won't just blog about running. I love sports and music but was never good at either one. I just enjoy them. I really wish I knew I was a natural runner when I was younger but maybe I would not have gotten as much out of it as I do now. Hopefully through this blog I will find out even more about myself and so will the people that think they know me.

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