Friday, December 14, 2012
Originally posted to my personal blog at http://warrior4health.com
December 9th, 2012
This weekend didnít quite start the way Iíd planned my 2nd marathon, I was thrown a curve ball as I call it, but thatís ok. Thursday, December 6th, 2012 I had an issue at work and was awake and working for 27 hours or so, that just flat drained my body. The adrenaline I had running through my veins kept me moving though. I managed to sleep off and on all day Friday, but just kept getting sicker, beat down, but thatís ok. I was excited for the marathon and nothing was going to get in the way!
Saturday Morning the 8th, I went to Expressions Chiropractic for a tune up as I call it. These guys take great care of me and Iím grateful for the work they did over the last two months of training. I had weekly adjustments as well as active release which really helped. After my appointment, Emily and I went to the Expo to get my packet and see what trouble we could get into. We tried nearly all the samples they were giving (except Gatorade) got some free stuff and I even got a new hat from RockTape. This was funny actually. I showed them that I was already taped with RockTape and he offered me a hat saying, ďthatís not just any hat, thatís a truckers hatĒÖ.and he was right. Lol
We walked and talked to vendors for several hours, then headed to the house.
My wife made a killer homemade pasta sauce and angel hair pasta for dinner Saturday night, which is tradition before I run anything over a 10K. We were watching Facing the Giants as we had dinner, what a GREAT movie! Then I watched part of a UFC fight in which a friend of ours is the trainer, that was fun.
I slept like a ROCK! Something I donít normally do before races. I think I was the exhausting from the end of the week. My brother Nicholas had arrived at the house after I went to bed so I had the pleasure of seeing him and waking him up at 4am on marathon day!
4am, Marathon day, wide awake and ready to roll. Put the dogs out, woke Nicholas and took a quick shower. Out the door by 4:45 to go pick up Lynette and Derrek. Iíve never been to Lynetteís house and well, itís sort of in the sticks and in the dark, Iím thankful I had my phone to map it! After picking up the rest of the group, we were off to Downtown Dallas and found a great parking lot to park in. This is a new venue for the race and parking was set to be an issue, thankfully we were downtown by 5:30 and beat most of the rush. Temperatures were in the low 60s and felt great. We made our way into the convention center to chill and relax. Nicholas pointed out that all the Ďhappy full of energyí runners were all wearing the half marathon bib, the full marathoners were more somber. Lol
Hanging out before race
The starting corrals were about 3 blocks north of us literally on the Main Street in downtown Dallas. We started that way to find our places, etc. They were very strict about who could enter each corral, your bib didnít say Corral A or B, you didnít get it, period. Police Academy cadets everywhere checking bibs. Lynette and I were in Corral A while Nicholas was in B, Derrek had ran off and left us behind at this point. After entering the Corrals we went to find a bathroom, uh that was a mistake. The line was way too long. Making our way toward the back of the corral we ran into a group of runners who also ran the Capital to Coast. They were from Rockwall and it was fun to talk with them. There was music blasting, people dancing, etc. Lynette and I had decided to run together and I told her to leave me behind when she needed to make her move so to speak. We took this picture just before we took off.
After the national anthem, the race started. It took us nearly 5 minutes to get to the actual startline. Music blasting, ticker tape floating in the air(all little shapes of Texas) and we were off! Heading west out of downtown Dallas right past the grassy null where JFK was killed. Four months of training, over 400 miles all for THIS MOMENT!
The course ran straight under interstate 35 into west Dallas and through areaís Iíve not seen before I donít think. Somewhere between mile 3 and 4 we crossed the new Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge. This was pretty cool to run across and honestly itís part of the reason they changed the venue for the race.
Between miles 4 and 5 we ran right past Texas Scottish Rite Hospital, which is where my family was. TSRH is the beneficiary of the marathon so it was special to get to run past the hospital and see so many faces that I knew from being around the hospital so much. My wife and daughters were there to cheer me (and every other runner) on. My wife snapped this photo:
I was having technical difficulties at this point with my runmeter, so I stopped it, turned my phone off and started again. This was going on just past the hospital, while standing in line at the port a pots! WHEW, just in time cause both of us had to go! Off and running again we are only about 6 miles in at this point, the half marathon runners had not yet split off.
Around mile 9, I began to experience major pain in my right knee, actually just above the knee. I believe it was my IT Band. I had to slow up a little and told Lynette to run on without me, I didnít want to hold her back. She asked if I was OK and I told her yes, I knew I was in trouble though. I slowed to about a 10:30 per mile average at this point. Much slower than I am capable of, but best I could do at the time. Around mile 11, I ran into Mimi and Karen and it was good to see them, Karen snapped a few pictures.
I was already hurting at this point and their encouragement was nice to hear.
I maintained about 10:30 pace through half way, then I really started having doubts. Self doubt was getting the best of me and I texted my wife that I was hurt and I wasnít happy. I had to finish, thatís all that mattered. Somewhere along here I ran into our friend Derrek who has having trouble also. When I saw him I naturally stopped to check on him, heís a 17 year old kid and I felt like I needed to check. The humidity was unusually high for this time of the year and his asthma was getting the best of him. He and I ran off and on together for quite a while, even got a few photo ops together.
If Iím being perfectly honest, by mile 16 or so, I really didnít want to go on. My knee hurt so bad at this point every step hurt. Iím not a quitter and wasnít about to let that happen. I ran as much as I could and was up to about a 12:00min per mile pace. By now my right calf muscle was cramping as well as the knee and I quite frankly was a mess! I took the opportunity to visit with other runners. There were many runners around me having issues with cramps. I visited with one man who like me was having IT Band issues and was going to quit. This was around mile 18, I encouraged him along to do what he could. At mile 19, I took a little break to rest the legs a little, I actually sat down for a few minutes. This is a great stop along the race because they have a new Ďstartí line and everything to boost ya to the end. I took some oranges, gel shots(which I didnít use) and water and started out again. I was chewing on gel shots about every two miles the entire race so I was good to go there. I was taking orange slices at every stop sucking out every bit of juice I could as well. Then came mile 19.5, a beer stop. Yes, a group was passing out beer, and I took one, lol. I had nothing to lose, I took a cup and took two sips out of it and threw it away, eww, I donít like beer much anyway. LOL! The next kid I met was a young man running his first marathon who trained partly in the high mountains of Colorado; he said the humidity was seriously getting to him. He also told me that he was having more trouble today then he did when running at high altitude. He also shared that heíd lost about 25 pounds during his training. Of course I passed along congratulations, shook his hand and off he went, I couldnít keep up with him at that point. This was on the part of the course called the Dolly Parton hills, what does that tell ya. Then came the men dressed a women passing out jello shots, no I didnít take one. LOL. I did admire the older gentleman in front of me announcing he was single though, too funny!
Somewhere around mile 22 I ran into my friend Paul. Paul also has a great weight loss story who runs marathons now. He told me he was also struggling with cramps and offered me a salt tablet which I accepted gladly. He and I ran together off and off until mile 24 or so. Heíd leave me, then Iíd pass him, then we would run together etc. It was nice to have the support of a familiar face. There were people all along the route calling out our names encouraging all the runners along. There were even people in the street offering words of encouragement that it was all downhill from that point, HA. Sure it was. lol Miles 18-22 were my slowest miles of the race. I think the tablet that Paul gave me helped as I was able to run under 12:30 miles from that point on. At mile 24, I saw a gentlemen wearing a shirt that said something about learning the meaning of life. I ran up next to him and said ďSir, youíve had 24 miles, have you found the meaning of life?Ē This man looked at me, smiled and said ĎI haveí. I told him how awesome that was and congratulated him. He went on to share that he has run 31 Dallas marathons (White Rock marathons) in a row. 31 annual marathons in a row!! WOW. He also said he wanted to make 50 in a row, but the heat and humidity that day were getting the best of him. I congratulated him again and ran on ahead of him. By this time we were coming back into the downtown area so there were more and more people cheering.
As we came down Young street less than one mile from the finish line, there was a man down, right in the middle of the street. There were police and fire officials attending to this man, who looked like he was one big cramp to me. Making the turn onto Griffin Street toward the finish was an awesome feeling. Then I hear Mimi and Karen yelling my name, love these gals. Photog Karen always gets great pics of me and here is another example.
After crossing the finish line, one of the greeters walked with me for a while because I was a little off, I mean more than normal. Lol. I told him why I ran, that I was celebrating 2 years of maintenance with every step, every step that hurt! He walked with me to the water, then I told him I was ok. I had my photo taken and walked on to find the food. That was the longest walk of my life I think, not to mention I had to walk up two flights of stairs, ugh. I found my family even before I found the food and hugged each of them. Hearing them say they were proud of me was reward enough for me. My family was there for me to hold me up and I needed it! We sat and talked a while before they headed to the house to finish dinner.
My official time was 5:01:22 chip time.
This was not the race I wanted to run, not the race I trained for, but thatís OK! I know I did exactly what I was supposed to do by encouraging others along the way. I mentioned a few stories here, but here were many more I didnít share. I learned to share stories and help others out from Nicholas. Inspiring others, helping with a kind word or two is important. This is exactly what Nicholas was doing today during the last 9 or so miles, helping a fellow runner out. (besides, this was only a training run for NicholasÖdude is a beast, so impressed)
After we finished, we started to the car, Lynette, Nicholas and I that is. In the end we were all satisfied with our runs and what the day had brought us. The temperature had dropped several degrees since we started and was quite chillyÖ.but not too chilly for ONE LAST photo op!
And theÖ.weíre back to the car photo
TO all my friends who comments to me during the race, THANK YOU, you have NO idea how much that helped me get through!!
Monday, December 10, 2012
Today is December 10th, 2010
Today marks two years since I hit the 100 pounds lost mark and I have maintained that within my 7 pound allowance either way.
I continue to care about the foods that go in my body.
I continue to challenge myself physically.
I continue to challenge others to take their life back!
To those who struggle, I say, YOU CAN DO IT! One meal at a time, one BITE at a time if that's what it requires. Is it difficult, yes, but it's worth every tiny little struggle we go through on this journey. NOTHING is more important than your health.
This has been an amazing two year maintenance journey to say the least. Have I been perfect, NOPE. I screw up all the time with my nutrition. The difference is that I now know how to curb those moments and get back on track. It's a learning process, right. What are your triggers that push you to food, we all have them, we just need to learn to deal with them. There is NO short cut to a healthy lifestyle, there's not. You achieve a healthy lifestyle by working hard at it, learning from your failures and moving forward, not giving up. What do we learn from giving up, nothing, that's what.
The one thing that is constant in my life is fitness. I workout alot, I run alot because I LOVE that way it makes me feel. Are there mornings I have to 'talk' myself into getting out of bed and run, yep. Do I always feel GREAT after that run, YEP, THAT is why i keep doing it. :-)
It's been a fun journey, an educational journey and an inspired journey.
I can't wait to see what the next year will bring, I have faith there are big things in the future!
Sunday, November 25, 2012
Yesterday(11.24.2012) I posted a video blog that contains my thoughts on societyís acceptance of the Ďholiday 10 pounds.í That video can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xXmfX_Fl0Y
I still say that is NOT acceptable and completely UNNECESSARY, period. I want to take this challenge one step further. How am I going to take this one step further you ask, well, Iím glad you did.
I believe that there are two important steps that we can ALL take for the next 36 days that will help form healthy habits for a very long time.
Two very simple steps to the 10 Minutes a day challenge:
Step 1. 10 minutes of fitness a day!
So many people use the excuse of, Ďbut I donít have timeí, oh bull is my response to that! Sure, you may not have time for a 120 minute workout, but you can make 10 minutes a day and get a short workout done. ďI donít have timeĒ is an excuse, not matter how we look at it and itís time that you figure out how to remove that excuse. Need a few ideas of short workouts to do, simply ask, there are so many things that you can do for 10 minutes that will do a body good!
Step 2. Put your fork down between bites.
So many of us eat entirely too fast because we are in a hurry(this starts with school lunch programs, but thatís a different challenge). Putting your fork down will help train us to eat slower, which in turn will allow our body to tell the brain that we do not need more food, therefore we donít over eat.(run on sentence big time, but you get the point)
I have created a FaceBook group called 10 Minute Challenge Group, this is an open group, and anybody can join and take part. I donít care what walk of life you come from, where you are at with your fitness level, if you are fit or fat, join this group and letís all help each other. I feel like this is an amazing way to show support for each other, help each other, hold each other accountable, etc. Post to the group daily how you are doing with the challenge.
Itís 36 days.
36 days that can help propel you into 2013
36 days toward a healthier life style
36 days toward a healthier family
10 minutes a day can and will make a HUGE difference in your life. Join me in this challenge and letís make a difference in our own lives as well as others.
Saturday, November 24, 2012
This was originally posted on my YouTube Channel and I plan to do more of this thru the end of the year.
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
October 17th, 2012
AllState 13.1 Marathon Series
Iíd heard a lot about this race and it got great reviews from last year here in Dallas. I had it on the calendar forever, just wasnít sure I really wanted to do it, THEN I saw that part of this course is the same at the Dallas Marathon course so I signed up! Iím so glad I did too.
Temperatures dropping and Iím in a panic as to how to dress. Do I wear tights, shorts, long sleeves, no sleeves and arm warmers, so many decisions and I was at a loss! The night before the race was a very long night. Iím not sure if it was due to the fact that my family was out of town, I was in a panic as to how to dress, or the fact that I was after a personal record for this half marathon. Whatever it was, I didnít sleep well at all. I was up and down all night checking the clock, checking the temperature etc.
Alarm went off at 3:45am, FINALLY. Dressed and ready for my ride to pick me up(David was driving) around 4:30am to make the drive to downtown Dallas. I had my race bag already pack with my Ďstuffí so I didnít have much to do. This race started at 7am, which Iím happy about, and Iím an EARLY arriver to races. I do not like to sit in traffic so we were in the parking garage plenty early. David and I just chilled in the heated garage for a while, then made a trip upstairs to the great outdoors. BRRRR Ė Iím glad I decided to wear my tights and arm warmers, it was chilly, high 30ís I think. Iím also glad Iíd brought a trash bag to wear to start the race in!
Of course I met up with our group of friends before the race and catch up with them. Iíve know some of them on FB for a while, but never met in person until that morning, that was pretty awesome!
Group photo Ė Who knows why Uncle Mike is pointing at his head like that?
I typically take a self-pic pre-race, cause Iím a dork like that:
The setup was super cool. Huge stage right by the start/finish line and we started while lined up between the vendors on either side of the street.
SO here I stand with the 2hour pace group and I realize, I donít have any gum in my mouth! WAITÖI need gum. Thankfully, I asked the lady infront of me who was just chomping away and she shared a piece with me. Whew, the day was saved by a stranger. Before too long we are off and running. WOO HOO, beautiful day for a run!
Iím at .25 miles and I realize I didnít turn on my runmeter to post to facebook. Grrr, the decision was made to stop my run meter, turn ON facebook and restart runmeter again, all while running. I did this so that my wife(specifically) could post comments during my run and they would be read to me as I ran. I do this for every run I do and the comments REALLY help me get through. Thanks to my wife who was in Colorado, but got up early so she could follow along and support me run via facebook. Thanks to the many friends who also posted as I ran this race.
I was fairly focused on actually Ďracingí this run. I donít race too many, but I was set on getting a PR out of this half marathon. I started out fairly slow to get the legs warmed up. Seeing things I hadnít seen before was fun so I was busy checking out the view. The course ran through the Uptown area of Dallas which I have never spent much time in so that was really cool. I saw a friend Paul go flying by me, so I sped up to run with him for a little bit. We did a fist bump, chatted a little and he left me in his dust! It was fun to run with him for a little while though.
I knew the first 7 miles or so of the run were mostly uphill so I planned accordingly. I admit I do obese about the course most of the time. Even if Iím not really Ďracingí I know the course pretty well most of the time.
Miles 1 Ė 3 are as follows, 9:08, 8:47 and 8:23
Miles 4 Ė 6 were 8:35, 8:49 and 8:49
Miles 7 Ė 9 were 8:50, 8:32 and 8:30
Miles 10- 13 were 8:37, 8:19, 8:20 and 8:29 while the remaining .23 of a mile was 7:19
Once I hit mile 7 I kicked it up a notch since I knew I had a large downhill stretch on the Katy Trail heading toward the American Airlines Center. There were several of us basically running in a pack at this point, which was fun. Iíve really grown to enjoy a group run. The difference really was that they didnít walk through water stops like I do. Every race I run, I stop and get water, not that Gatorade stuff, and walk a few steps while I get a drink. I learned that I canít drink and run at the same time without wearing most of the water. LOL
We came down off the Katy Trail and headed back into downtown Dallas. This was pretty cool for me because part of this route was a route I walked a lot when I was in my weight loss phase. Pretty cool memories along this section thinking that Iíd come along way baby.
Then we made a left turn into Ross Avenue and headed east toward the finish line. Oh crap was the thought in my head, a significant hill at the finish, so not funny! They did have a Ďking of the hillí contest to see who could sprint up the hill at the end the fastest. I was NOT part of that race, lol. I remember a comment from my wife at this point of the race that made me laugh out loud. She said something about, ďyou are going to blow your PR awayĒ When my runmeter read that to me, it said Ďyou are going to blow your Puerto Rico awayí. That made me laugh as I fought my way up that hill.
After coming up the hill and rounding the corner, the finish line was within sight infront of the Performing Arts Center. I could see my friends cheering me on as I kicked it up another notch to finish stronger than I started! Karen got a couple really good pictures, here is one of them.
I bought a few professional pictures take at this race, which I donít always do.
This of course is my finisher photo:
And this is my favorite photo I think Iíve ever had taken during a race:
What you canít see in this picture is that I am pointing at the clock. I love this picture! I was pointing at the clock because I had run a personal record race and I felt absolutely amazing. My official time was 1:53:45 chip time. My previous PR was 1:58:59. I was 84th out of 176 in my age group and I was the 407th man to cross the finish line and the 554th person to cross the line. Speaking of finish line, I got a really cool medal:
One of the friends Iíd met before the race was Uncle Mike. Not really my uncle, but I call him that anyway. Mike and I met on facebook after learning of his own successful weight loss journey. Between the two of us we have lost 235 pounds, thatís pretty cool. Uncle Mike ran a PR for this race as did Kevin.
I thought the elevation chart off my garmin was pretty cool so Iíve added it below:
I was also fairly impressed with my heart rate, however Iím sure some will say I could have ran harder and honestly, they are probably right.
Get An Email Alert Each Time JMERLAU Posts