From numerous firsts (first time to run a 5k, first time to run a marathon, etc.) to new personal records, and even recovery from injury, it seems like I’ve done it all now.
However, with each new first, I also see new possibilities!
It was a big change.
To me, it’s amazing I’ve been an athlete for almost a decade, after more than 20 years of sedentary weight gain.
Other than a few attempts at team sports like basketball, baseball, and soccer, I was always a swimmer from grade school through high school, so being a runner and cyclist as a middle-aged adult is quite a change of pace for me!
In adulthood, heading toward middle age, I finally got my bell rung as grandparents repeatedly died of chronic illness. It was time to finally take control of my health and fitness, once and for all.
I got diet help and cut fat. Now I eat better than ever before. In fact, when I eat out, I often order 2 entrees, just so I can have protein, carbs AND vegetables! Sometimes I’m amazed by a waiter who mentions how well I eat.
How it began.
Over a decade ago, I took up triathlon training — which meant I’d have to become a runner — and 3 years later was able to run a 5k (I did not train much in the winters then, and I took time off whenever I experienced shin splints, which was often in my early days of running). Thanks to a free entry from Jack and Adams Bicycles (now Bicycle World), I did my first 5k at the end of a triathlon!
A couple weeks later, I ran my first 5k, and almost immediately, my girlfriend asked me if I wanted to train with her. Just 6 months later, I was toeing the line, ready to run a marathon.
Since then, I’ve completed numerous other running and obstacle course races, and several more triathlons, in distances including sprint, olympic, and half Ironman.
Athletic Schedule and History
Here’s a brief history of my notable athletic achievements since I began my journey into middle-aged athleticism.
It ends with my next planned athletic events.
I got diet help and cut fat. Now I eat better. I also took up triathlon training.
Theme: After just a few months of riding my bike for health and fitness, I knew I would die young and overweight if that was all there was to it. I resolved to compete in a triathlon, which meant I’d need to become a runner: I began run training.
Theme: Rode my bike and continued run training near my house at Lake Pflugerville.
Theme: Rode my bike in various cycling events around Central Texas and continued run training.
Theme: Beginning Competition
- First Sprint Triathlon: Jack’s Generic — Age Group 3rd Place Swim
- First 5k: 5k for Clay — Age Group 4th Place
- Avia Austin Triathlon — Age Group 4th Place Swim
- First Splash n Dash: Pure Austin
- First 10 Mile race: Run For The Water
- First Half Marathon, on a trail — Age Group 3rd Place
Theme: Going Longer in Competition
- First Half Marathon, on a road (3M Half Marathon)
- First Marathon: Austin Marathon (it was horrible)
- P Five 55 Series Triathlon:
- Age Group 2nd Place Swim
- Age Group 5th Place
- Jack’s Generic Triathlon: Age Group 2nd Place Swim
- First Olympic Triathlon: Capitol of Texas Triathlon
Theme: More and Longer
- First 30k: Rogue Distance Festival
- Second Marathon: Austin Marathon (like a nice, easy, long run)
- First OCR: Spartan Sprint
- First hilly half marathon: Decker Challenge
Theme: Professional Coaching and More Volume
- First Marathon training with Rogue Running (time improves 21 minutes)
- First 8k: Run Free Texas 80s 8k — Top 14% Overall
- Completed Spartan Trifecta
Theme: Reaching the Age Group Podium
- 3M Half Marathon: Top 9% Overall
- 2nd Marathon with Rogue Running: time improved 19 minutes. current personal record 3:44.59
- Silicon Labs Sunshine Run
- 2nd Place, Age Group
- Top 20 Overall
- Top 9% Men
- Statesman Capitol 10k, Top 7% Age Group
Spent the latter half of the year struggling with over-training symptoms including frequent nagging injuries and illnesses, repetitive ankle rolls and twists.
First Houston Marathon. I was badly undertrained. What was supposed to be an “easy” marathon running Lori to her own PR had me walking by mile 14 and literally re-learning to run in order to finish the marathon. While I was not able to run with her as intended, Lori DID achieve her PR, thanks to the help of Natasha and other Rogue Running teammates.
First Half Ironman; Austin 70.3. Again, I was badly undertrained.
- Swim canceled: zero visibility on the water due to fog that morning, wreaked havoc on many athletes’ nutrition plans.
- I cramped going uphill a few miles from the bike course finish, had to dismount the bike to recover.
- Walked the majority of the run course.
Theme: Injury Recovery and Strength Training
Spent the year recovering from severe ankle sprain December 2016. Trained foot, ankle, glutei, core strength and stability pretty much the entire year.
Theme: Surgery Recovery and Aerobic Training
After a brief attempt to return to full-time training, spent the year recovering from hernia surgery and walking, training Maffetone 180 – HR Method.
Theme: Return to Performance
- Lake Pflugerville Triathlon, 1st place, Age Group Swim
- Jack’s Generic Triathlon, 1st place, Age Group Swim
- October Color Run 5k
- October Run For The Water
For a more complete athletic schedule, including some of my not so great results, see Athlinks