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I’m not really sure I can put words to this weekend, so here are some photos that I don’t think have made it to Tumblr yet.

My race recap would be boring.  Adrenaline carried me to mile 4, pain took over at mile 5ish, I hung on for dear life until the finish.  That’s about it.  I did manage to high five a kid in a Pacers jersey.  I remember that.  Other than that, I blocked most of it out. 

Once I finished and was able to collect my thoughts enough to start scrolling through Tumblr, I was completely overwhelmed.  I have no idea why all of you are so supportive, but I’m not complaining.  So, for the final time I have to say thank you.  I’m still overwhelmed by all the love.

Indianapolis Monumental Marathon Race Recap (finally...)

There were so many thoughts and emotions going on inside my head, but all I really wanted was to drink my chocolate milk and put on my pants.  That’s when I felt it.  Like someone grabbed me by the right calf muscle and twisted until the muscle was shredded.  After letting out a high pitched shrieking noise, I fell to the ground.  That’s when the pain and emotion took over my body.  I couldn’t control the spasms in my legs or the tears that I’d been holding back for what felt like months.  I decided to just go with it.

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In reality, it had only been a few hours since I lined up on Washington St. ready to take on what, in the moment, felt like the world.  Well, ready might be the wrong term.  I had no idea if my body would hold up for the grueling 26.2 miles, but I knew I had to try.  I had worked too damn hard to quit.  This wasn’t just a race.  It was proving that if I wanted something bad enough and worked hard enough, I could get it.  It was looking at my arm sleeve and thinking about a friend that had trained just as hard as I had, yet was physically unable to run the race.  It was looking down at the words on my chest and seeing the kids of St. Jude.  Their pain, now that’s real pain.  No excuses.

The race itself was a bit of a blur.  I told myself to stay calm for the first four miles.  I even tried to calm my nerves by running with the 3:05 pace group.  As it turns out, I’m not much of a group runner.  I need to lose myself in a run, not worry about rubbing elbows with the runners around me.  To this point, the pain was very minimal and thoughts of a sub 3 hour marathon rolled around in my head.  Was this really happening?  Was the pain going to stay away?

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Nope, there it was.  At mile 5, the pain I had grown so accustomed to over the last 8 weeks was back.  It sounds stupid, but by this point I knew how to run with the pain so I didn’t really mind.  I was able to hit the 10K mark in my correct timing range.  It made me smile knowing that so many people were getting that first text update.  It wasn’t until I finished and looked at Tumblr that I knew just how many people were following along.  Side-note:  How incredible are you guys/gals?  Very.

My next checkpoint was the halfway mark.  I knew I had friends waiting there and my spirits would be lifted.  My friends didn’t disappoint.  Halfway home now and the pain was still manageable.  Splits were great and the sub 3 hour dream was still alive.  I thought about the pre-race advice from Chris.  Because of him, I knew once I hit mile 16 it was only a 10 mile tempo run from there.  I had done three of those in the past month.  This one just happened to be preceded by 16 other tempo miles.  No big deal, right?

At mile 15, the perfect song played and put me in the right mindset.  Bring on the 10 mile tempo run.  The next 5 miles went exactly to plan.  Don’t get me wrong, they hurt, but the pain was almost an afterthought.   6:49, 6:56, 6:50, 6:59, 6:55.  I was going to do this.  I wasn’t sure about sub 3, but Boston was definitely in my sights.

Mile 22, I found the wall.  It was different than last year, though.  This wasn’t a cardio issue, I felt great.  This was purely a leg issue.  I have to admit to being super pissed. I almost felt cheated.  Granted, I did it to myself.

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I knew the last few miles were going to be tough.  It’s a freaking marathon, it’s supposed to be tough.  THIS is what I had been training for all along.  Head up and Power Through.  So, that’s what I did.  3:03:50. I hit my BQ time (hoping it’s good enough), but not quite the sub 3 I was dreaming about.  That just means I have to work that much harder next time.  I’m not afraid of a little hard work.

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(How’s that for an awful “get me the hell off this course” finishing pic?)

Finally, I want to say thank you.  You guys made me feel like a damn celebrity on race day.  Scrolling through my dash was one of the most surreal moments of my life.  I still can’t get over all the love and support.  Seriously, thank you.

I can’t wait to shed this boot and do all of this again.

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Indy Monumental: Training complete.

Despite the injury, it feels very satisfying to post those words.

Thank you for all the words of encouragement and support. I’m definitely not as optimistic as I once was, but I promise I’ll give this race everything I have. That’s really all I can do. I’m ready.

Tumblr, meet my newest accessory.

The pain today was freaking me out, so I figured I should at least go get examined and make sure nothing was broken. It isn’t.

It turns out I just have tendinitis and severe shin splints on the inside of my leg. I was told that I should not run, but since the doctor is a triathlete he understands that I am going to run. I am not going to do any further damage. It’s all about how much pain I can handle at this point.

Walking boot until the race. Walking boot for 3 weeks after the race. If the pain persists, I will need an MRI at that point. He did say it could take up to 8 weeks to fully heal.

Chris and I should look pretty funny hobbling around the expo tomorrow, eh?

2 days to go.

Edit: I should add this: Listen to your body. If you’re in pain, stop. I could have managed this had I just taken some time off. It’s not the plan’s fault, it’s my fault.

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Last of the race spam, I promise.  

Most of these are from the second half of the race as you can tell by my pain face.  

The last photo is my favorite because I had just given the kid in the Pacers jersey a high five and showed him my tattoo.  He was super excited. 

Official time: 3:03:50.  (7:00 pace)

Coffee Date...

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  • Christmas cups already?  It’s not even Halloween.  Get your shit together, Au Bon Pain.
  • Several of you have checked in with me over the last couple of days due to my lack of posting.  Your support and concern is very much appreciated.
  • To be honest, I am a little dinged up.  I’ve been fighting ankle issues since September.  I tend to not post about injuries that much because I feel like we are all fighting something.  
  • The pain has been tolerable up to this point, so I didn’t feel like any time off was necessary.  Right on schedule, the pain became a lot harder to manage Friday of last week.  You might have noticed my posts got a lot less chatty as of that day.
  • I skipped my first run in the last 17 weeks on Monday.  I beat myself up over it quite a bit. 
  • Yesterday was a rest day.  
  • This afternoon I plan on taping up and getting a feel for where the ankle is on the pain scale.
  • Tomorrow will be another rest day.  I will be picking up some British dude from the airport, though.  Maybe he’ll let me borrow his crutches.
  • I’m not using this as an excuse.  I’m not changing my goals.  I still want to BQ.  I just wanted to be honest with everyone.  The motto I always share with people is, “Head Up and Power Through.”  I’ll be taking my own advice on Saturday morning.  
  • I’ve put in the work, it’s time to see what I’m made of.
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Indy Monumental: Week 12, Day 5 - Easy 10


Some of you will remember my “Run, fatty, run” story from a month or so ago.  Since I shared that story, I might as share what happened this morning at that same intersection.  I should note that there is a bus stop bench on this corner and I run past these people on most of my morning runs, but I’m typically wearing headphones.

Man: “Here comes that fucking Super Runner Man again.”

Woman: “”And he’s got some new shoes!”

Note: I obviously wear some seriously obnoxious shoes.

Me: “Good morning.” (waves)

Woman: “Umm, I don’t think he was wearing headphones”

Note: This is towards the end of my loop so I turn around and run past these people again about 5 or 6 minutes later.

Me: “Nope.  No headphones.  Have a good day!”

Woman: (stands up and yells) “You win that race!!”

So, Tumblr…that is that.  I must win this race.

Happy Friday everybody!!

Indy Monumental: Week 7, Day 7 - Easy 6 + Upper body/abs

Woke up, ran, ate breakfast (egg, cheese, avocado and spinach on WW toast) and lifted at the gym to Boy Hits Car.

That’s 52ish miles on the week. Speed work tomorrow! Mile repeats at 6:10 pace, yuck.

I suppose I can’t hide from the fact that I turned 30 today. I might as well embrace it. Thank you for the posts and messages. You guys/gals are great.

Indianapolis Monumental Marathon Recap

I want to start by saying thank you again to everyone for the support.  I can’t believe how many people told me they were tracking my time.  I also want to say thank you to Becky, Carolyn and her husband Michael.  They spectated the entire race under weather conditions that were less than ideal.  I’m very happy to call them friends.

Here are my splits so you can reference them as you read and I can use them to try and remember the race.  I’m horrible about remembering details. 

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I got into my corral about 15 minutes before the start of the race.  I had the usual jitters, but I was warm and wasn’t having any stomach issues.  The plan was to beat my goal of 3:20 and to have fun doing it.

The race started and per usual it was a bit chaotic.  After a couple of minutes I noticed the 3:15 pace group and decided as long as I kept them in sight I’d be fine.  My Garmin hit the mile mark well before we hit the first mile marker.  As you can see from the total above, it was off the entire race.  

The first seven miles or so were spent alongside the half marathoners.  I was surrounded by a lot of upbeat runners.  The spectators were great.  I was giving high fives to as many kids as possible.  Also, and you’ll see this in a couple of pictures, my go to move is the Fonzie.  Two thumbs up, always.  I think my thumbs might be just as sore as my legs today.

I was on the lookout for Becky and Carolyn.  I missed Carolyn during the marathon in April and didn’t want that to happen again.  It was also nice because it gave me something else to concentrate on besides the long road ahead.  Right around mile 9 I heard my name and saw my good buddy Drew.  He’s a two-time Ironman finisher and all-around bad ass.  He was trying to get my picture, but was struggling so he decided to come run next to me and take the pic.  I felt bad because I knew he had a bad knee from his last race, but my legs were not stopping at that point.  Here is the blurry result of this encounter.

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Again, the thumbs. Also, he had this sign.

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It wasn’t even a minute later that I saw Carolyn and Michael alongside the road.  I knew because of the huge “Do Epic Shit” sign that she was holding proudly.  I gave them high fives, said “thank you” and kept on moving.  I felt great at this point, but I knew I was going way too fast.  I was caught up in the excitement, what can I say?

I must also mention a buddy I went to high school with.  He was out spectating the race for several runners, but I saw him at least six times.  He was a ninja spectator.  Each time I saw him he gave me words of encouragement and that really, really helped.  People are awesome.

I was still feeling really great as we hit the half-way mark.  I smiled as we crossed the mats because I knew a lot of you were getting updates.  I won’t lie, that was great motivation.

Miles 14-18 were pretty steady.  I should mention that I was taking a Gu every 5 miles.  I normally stick to water at the water stations, but I got boxed out at the one around mile 15 and ended up with Gatorade.  My stomach was not a fan of the Gu/Gatorade mixture.  

I saw these beautiful people at mile 18.  I remember running over to them with high fives and saying, “I’m dying.”  I’m not sure if they made out what I said, but that was it.  

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Then, it happened.  At mile 19 I started to hit the wall.  My left calf started cramping and all I could do was cuss at myself for starting out too fast.  Looking at my splits my pace wasn’t affected until mile 21, but trust me it was a struggle.  I started walking at the water stops and from miles 21-23 I was walking every half mile for about 15-30 seconds.  

On the 23rd mile I had quit.  My calf was killing me, I had witnessed people puking on the side of the road, it was now raining pretty hard and all I wanted to do was stop.  I felt disappointed in myself.  I had spent so many weeks training and it was going to end like this.  I was so angry for not following my race plan of going out slow and finishing strong.  Also, the 3:15 pace group was gone.  I kept them in sight for this long, but not anymore.

As I’m walking down the road I saw what appeared to be a homeless woman waving me along shouting, “C’mon man, c’mon.”  You had to hear this lady’s voice to fully understand how funny it was.  As depressed as I was, it kind of lifted my spirits.  I started running again and as I passed she said, “Got damn boy, you’re fast.”  That’s not a typo, that’s what she said.  I will never forget that as long as I live.  It was just too damn funny. I decided at that point, pain be damned, that I would only walk the water stations and I would finish as strong as possible.

I was able to run sub 8 for the 24th and 25th miles while still walking the water stations.  One mile to go.  You guys know that feeling.  We had met back up with the half-marathoners around mile 25 so I was weaving in and out of them for the last mile. Most of them were walking and they were very encouraging as I ran past.  I saw my co-worker/friend with about a half mile to go.  He told me I was doing great and took this picture.  Again, the damn thumbs.

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I ran past supportive Becky one more time all that was left to do was finish.  I crossed the finish line and it was a blur after that.  My buddy Davey was there and being the awesome, supportive friend that he is.  Becky found us and then I officially met Carolyn and Michael.  Sadly, I tend to be a complete mess after these things so I’m sure they were underwhelmed with our meeting.  I remember being angry at my body for trying to break down, but mainly I was just in pain.  I had never felt anything like this and wasn’t able to enjoy the accomplishment quite yet.  

Now, I’m proud.  I started running to lose weight for someone else.  I started racing because I wasn’t good enough for that someone else.  I finished my first marathon to prove my worth.  This one I did for me.  I planned it, I did the training and dammit I finished it.  I remember after the first marathon I said, “Worthless people don’t run 26.2 miles.”  That’s damn true.  You know who runs multiples marathons?  Strong people.  I am a strong person.

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Indianapolis Monumental Marathon: 3:18:11

Place 277/2,865

Indy Monumental: Week 2/18 - 44 miles

I found some inspiration on my run today so I thought I’d share:

I did not want to run today. My body hurts, my mind hurts, my life hurts. Luckily, I did it anyway.

About a half mile into my six, I came across an all too familiar scene. A man, I’d say in his 50’s, finishing his run. I could tell he had already been on quite the adventure by the broken stride, the hydration pack, the heavy breathing, the look of complete joy/agony as he slowed to a walk and stopped his watch.

As I ran by I said, “Hey man, hell of a job.

He simply smiled and said, “Thanks, fifteen.”

Me - “Fucking fifteen?!?!” I curse when I get excited.

"Fucking FIFTEEN!!!," as he fist pumped in the air.

Sometimes I forget running isn’t just about PR’s, medals and finishing places. It’s about believing in yourself. Even if no one else does and sometimes even you can’t quite find the faith in yourself. Just keep trying. The battle is what makes the accomplishment so great.

Indy Monumental: Week 2, Day 6 - Easy 8

I got almost 10 hours of sleep last night. That’s more than the previous two nights combined. I like Saturdays.

Some lady yelled “Run, Fatty!” at me this morning. Instead of feeling guilty over the bag of gummy worms I ate last night or the more likely scenario of telling her to go **** herself, I gave her the double thumbs and ran on. People can be really stupid, that’s the lesson from this little story.

Six miles and a lift tomorrow and Week 2 will be complete.

Enjoy your Saturday!

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Indy Monumental: Week 15, Day 3 - Tempo 10 (Marathon pace, 6:55 - 6:59 pace)

The plan for today was control. I tried to run the first 8 around 7:00 pace and then picked up it for the last two. Coincidentally, it was also all I had left in the tank. I have no idea how I’m going to add SIXTEEN additional miles at this pace, but damn it I’m going to try.

Warm-up - 9:02

  1. 7:00
  2. 6:59
  3. 6:58
  4. 6:58
  5. 7:00
  6. 6:58
  7. 6:58
  8. 7:00
  9. 6:53
  10. 6:49

Cool Down: 8:35

Total - 10 miles at 6:57 pace.

Now, I’m off to go see the niece and nephew and possibly pass out. Thanks to my buddy/co-worker George for the picture. I’m signifying 10 for the tempo miles. I’m so cool, right? I’m also rocking two ankle wraps these days. Stupid ankles.

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Indy Monumental: Week 6 - 47.5 miles

Now 1/3 of the way through training. Such a loooong way to go.

Lots of driving, flying, running, food (cake) and a wedding.

I’m ready for bed. Which can’t happen for several more miles, a flight, a train ride and a long walk.

Can’t be too grumpy when you have the prettiest date at the wedding, though.

Training is complete...

So happy to type that title.

Went to the expo after work yesterday and picked up my race packet.  I also talked to a lady from St. Jude about fundraising for my spring marathon.  Sounds like a great idea.

I got up this morning and ran my last two miles so I could simulate the weather conditions for tomorrow.  I’m still not sure how to dress, but I’ll figure it out.  I’m sure I’ll post a “Flat Pump” picture and possibly a couple of freak out posts later.

All of the miles are done. 21 weeks.  614 miles. 7:32 pace.

As I was writing this, I received a gift from Carolyn.  I can’t wait to finally meet her and her husband tomorrow.  Thank you!!

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Now, I sit here trying not to eat ALL the cookies while drinking coffee out of my new mug and making a playlist.

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Thank you to everyone that has wished me luck over the last few days.  All of you are amazing.

Also, good luck to all the NYC runners.  Everyone is thinking about you guys!

Indy Monumental: Week 14, Day 4 - Easy 6

Thoughts:

  • That was the hardest damn “easy 6” I have ever ran.  I kind of wanted to chop my legs off after only a few steps.  Stupid tempo run last night.
  • Less than a month until race day.
  • I know I’m supposed to be positive and all that jazz, but I’m also going to be realistic.  BQ’ing might not be in the cards this race. 
  • I ran a 3:18 last year.  I’m aiming for 3:03 this year.  Crazy, right?
  • If it happens….. wonderful.  If it doesn’t……I’ll try again.
  • Here’s what I do know.  I have been and will continue to give this race everything I have.  I feel like I can’t disappoint anyone (including myself) if I’ve done that.
  • Yes, I’m worried about disappointing people.  I realize that I shouldn’t be, but I think that comes with the territory of getting so much support.
  • I have wonderful friends who have already told me not to worry about others and to just enjoy the race.  They are smart ladies.
  • After all, it’s just a race.  There are much bigger things to worry about.
  • I shouldn’t have made this post with such tired/painful legs.  It’s made me cranky.
  • I have lots more thoughts, but that’s enough for this morning.  I’m going to get another cup of coffee.