Today, August 2nd, is my 5 year ‘Runniversary’.
Back in 2010 I set out on my journey with a ‘Couch to 5K’ program not knowing whether I would succeed in even completing the program. I set foot into the work gym and started a 9 week program. That was, to me, quite a commitment and something that I had tried countless times before. We’ve all said, “One day I’m going to…” or “This time I’m going to…” but I never stuck with anything.
I guess 5 years shows that I am pretty committed. It wasn’t just trying something out and seeing if I could do it. I finally reached a point where I knew I had to do something and it was more than just a program, it was a lifestyle change.
It took a lot to go back after the first day. I hurt. Bad. I could barely walk down the stairs that first week. Shin splints really hurt. On top of that I couldn’t get through the program easily. I ended up repeating a couple of weeks and my 9 week program ended up being 11 weeks. I tried my first outdoor run in September that year mid way through the program and struggled…badly. It got better. I didn’t quit. I went out and bought a pair of shoes from a proper running store. Never in my life had I ever paid that much for a pair of shoes. I don’t think anything of it now (although I’m always looking for a sale or a discount!!!)
About 3 weeks into the program I knew that running alone wasn’t going to be the answer and so I started a weight loss program. I wrote everything down/recorded it all on my iPhone app. To this date I am still recording my daily food intake using the same iPhone app. I’m almost at 5 years with that too. It’s more than a commitment, it’s a lifestyle choice.
In the first year I suffered from a knee injury, I worked through physical therapy and became a better runner. I try my best not to over train (although it’s tough as I get antsy sitting still for too long). I get regular checkups with a chiropractor and an annual physical. I can see the positive change it has done for my health. That more than anything else is its own reward.
So where am I now?
55 pounds lost. 12 Full Marathons with two more in the next few months. 16 Half Marathons with one more in the next few months. 3 Duathlons and (almost) 1 triathlon (with another this month). Countless 5Ks and 10Ks. 1 ultra distance run and 3 years of runDisney Challenges. 7,277 miles recorded. Countless pairs of shoes worn.
Along the way I’ve put my miles to good use. I’ve run many times for ‘Autism Speaks‘ and ‘Give Kids The World‘ and raised over $13,500 in the process.
The statistics are meaningless against the satisfaction that somehow I am doing the best for my health and for my family’s well-being. Don’t get me wrong, the achievements have taken hard work but have been some of the most fun times I’ve ever had picking up great friends along the way (shout out to my Mickey Milers). You cannot do all this alone.
I’m in a good place. I’m trying to stay healthy enough to do this as long as I can and trying to set a good example for my boys. I have been fortunate enough to have been joined by my dear wife who will be reaching her 5 year ‘Runniversary’ next February.
Life is good.
Here’s to more years of good health and happiness. It’s a good place to be.
Thank you for reading and coming along on this journey with me.