Tab List

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Simplify

 Say what you wish, but the Church responds to people’s needs.  These needs often go well beyond material or survival needs; though those are what stands at the front of the line.  Our church just finished an entire month focusing on mental illness.  Society as a whole has been working to educate one another about the issue in response to the mass shootings that have tragically become all too common.

 In this week’s church bulletin, I noticed a new class starting in January based on the book Simplify by Bill Hybels.  The subtitle of the book is “Ten Practices to Unclutter Your Soul.”  He did a sermon series on the topic some time ago which I listened to on my commute around that time.  I enjoyed the sermons and am sure the book and my church’s program are great.

But…

I cannot bring myself to sign up.  It lasts four weeks and the designated class time is 6:30-8:00 PM one night per week.  Can you see the irony in this?  They are asking me to add another task to my agenda to free me from a task plagued agenda.  I guess I need to get worse before I get better?

No. Seriously, I get it.  Sometimes we need to go around the block to get to our desired destination.  Short term pain for long term gain.  I am familiar with the concept.

Yet, I am overwhelmed and overbooked already.  Commitments to work, training, church, bible study, and being a husband, father, handyman (ok, that’s a scretch) along with a dozen other things have taken me to capacity.  Do I need to simplify my life and cut out some of the peripheral garbage?  Heck YES I do.  The problem lies in identifying the garbage or clutter that stands between me and God, me and contentment, or me and just feeling rested.

It all just seems so important to me that cutting out any of them or portions of each is unacceptable.  What if I complicated my life for four weeks only to learn that I am just destined to live with a full agenda.  All the time.  That relief comes at a cost I am unwilling or unable to bear.

I say No Thank You.  It would be good for you though.  Well, I do hope that a lot of people sign up.  Sometimes you just know something is going to be good.  Like the new Star Wars movie.  Someone tell me I’m wrong here.

So that’s it.  I’ve officially tossed the bulletin in the trash.  There is some freedom in that.  I seems as though I have just released some of the internal pressure.  Saying NO in some ways is saying YES to a simpler life.

Run in Peace, Rest in Grace

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Going on an Adventure

Sometimes getting there is exciting, and other times it is not.

I needed to fetch my bib number and race t-shirt today for the Dallas Half.  Rather than drive the familiar route as I normally would, I chose an unlikely source of transport.  Public Transporation!  Yes, just like Bilbo Baggins, I went on an adventure!

I spent entirely too much time downloading iPhone Apps, Maps, and Schedules.  Following my morning routine, I opened my App and bought a Day Pass for $5.  It was off to the station after packing a few essentials.

Light rail is a cool concept.  A concept cool for others since I’m the only sap who hadn't used it yet.  I would like to note that while I might be sap, I know the rules of mass transit in a party of one.  Earbuds are a must.  Music piped through the earbuds is discouraged so that you can be aware of things around you.  You should also never make eye contact.  Even if the train is nearly empty, you do not want anyone to talk to you.  Finally, look angry with an edge like you might just go off on someone if they sit too close.


I boarded my train as scheduled and abided by the rules above.  I chose this free time to journal.  Mass transit is so friggin' awesome.  Thirty-nine minutes of down time.  Part of me wanted it to take a few hours once I settled in.  Since when do I get this kind of unhindered time?

About halfway from suburbia to downtown, a different element started boarding the train.  Folks were angrier looking than me and might not have showered in a few days.  Everyone just sat and starred out the window without incident until the cat across the aisle from me took a phone call.  This guy wrote the book on swear words.  It was colossal.  Oh, colossal and LOUD.  He even woke a sleeping homeless guy a few seats away.

Near Parkland Hospital, a nurse got on the train.  Not just any nurse.  Yes, she was wearing scrubs, but she had two one dollar bills pinned underneath her nametag.  What the heck?  She was showing a bit of cleavage, not that I look for that kind of thing, so maybe she was one of those strip-o-gram nurses.  You know, the ones people send to the hospital when people are sick to cheer them up.  I’m sure she’s real popular with the nursing staff.

I had to change trains at the West End.  Well, I could have walked six blocks, but I was on an adventure remember.  I  should have walked.  There were a lot more people at this station.  I had only 5 minutes until my next train, but I didn't want to mingle so walked over and stood with my back to a building.  It was just about then that a pigeon crapped on my head.  No kidding.  I saw something hit the ground first and then a plop on my noggin.  You don’t get this treat riding in your car.  There was nothing to do other than laugh at the situation and use my handkerchief to pick bird crap out of my hair.

Once at Dallas Convention Center I headed for the Expo.  No reason to give details on the Expo because if you’ve been to one recently it was just like that one.  If you haven’t been to one, I’ll save the tremendous excitement for you.  Wouldn’t want to ruin the experience.  Besides, I didn’t spend a lot of time there.  I wanted to get back on that train and experience life.

Reversing course was easy.  Yes, I spent way too much time researching this stuff in advance.  At this point I’m an old pro at the public transit thing.

The trains were significantly more crowded as midday approached.  We didn’t have to share the two seater benches, but most had at least one occupant.  It was fascinating.  People from all walks of life in a single train car.  There was a guy across from me talking.  He had a single earpiece in so I assumed he was talking on the phone.  NOPE.  This cat was just plain nuts.  He was talking to nobody.  I saw the plug end of the earpiece hanging out of his jacket.  He kept looking at me and I kept looking away as though I wasn’t looking at him.  Why do we do that anyway?  Why do we think if we look away real fast that it didn’t even happen.  “Who me?  I wasn’t looking at you.  I was moving my eyes from other here to over there and you just happened to be in the middle.  I apologize for the misunderstanding.”  Yes, that is total B.S. and we all know it.  

Even though I broke the “don’t make eye contact” rule, I survived the rest of the ride.  It was a wonderful adventure and will be a method of transportation I use in the future.  It was crazy easy to use and provides countless perks.  Not the least of which is people watching.  The kind of people watching that does not require eye contact.

Run in Peace, Rest in Grace


Thursday, October 22, 2015

2015 U.S. Open Sprint Triathlon


Rockwell, Texas - These race reports can get out of hand in length so I’ll attempt to be brief.  There is only one thing I need to report.  I completed my first event with an open water swim!  It was only 750 meters in Lake Ray Hubbard, but it was in a lake nonetheless.

This is an excellent race for a first timer in open water.  PlayTri conducted a swim clinic on Saturday that concluded with an opportunity to swim the course.  They supplied a few lifeguards in kayaks and said “have at it.”  I did exactly that.  This allowed me to practice sighting turn buoys and gain some confidence along the way.  This practice run made Sunday’s race so much less stressful.  

The other beginner friendly feature was the Swim Stream Start.  Rather than a mass of people all starting at the exact same time, they had us line up in order of skill level and sent us across the timing mat one by one.  It was similar to a pool based swim other than not inserting a 5-10 second delay between participants.  It was still tight quarters at times, but you could generally maneuver into an open spot.  The only time I encountered chaos was in the last 100 meters or so.  The tail end of Olympic distance swimmers were still in the water so the quicker Sprint racers had to pick their way through these slow Olympians.  Had I been fast it would have impacted my race much more than it did.  

In retrospect this was a good development.  The direction of the finish area after the second turn had us looking directly into the early morning sun.  There was zero chance of seeing the buoys intended to guide us in.  Rather, I looked up and saw a wide field of swim caps and swinging arms.  I soon gave up looking for the finish and just made sure I was moving toward the middle of the scum up ahead.  It is a cool sight and my visualization brings a smile to my face.

Having people around you has another benefit that I hadn’t thought of until the race clinic.  You can use other participants to help you sight.  Rather than raise your head out of the water every few strokes in an attempt to spot the turn buoy, you just swim along with the others.  If everyone is sighting occasionally, it is unlikely you are all swimming too far off track.  There was a stretch in the middle of the race that I felt alone.  I panicked briefly, but some extra time looking for the next buoy reassured me that I was on course.  I went pretty wide coming out of the first turn so I must have gone outside the direct route.  However, my GPS shows a fairly straight line between the two buoys.  This was not the case in practice on Saturday.

I’m always amazed at how gassed I am at the end of the swim.  After the first several events, I have gotten comfortable and relaxed in the swim.  I try to go easy since a hard effort would only yield a minuscule reduction in overall race time.  Yet, trying to get out of the pool up the ladder is no small task.  I assume it is a mix of adrenaline and high heart rate that diminish simple motor skills.  This event had stairs you walked up to get out of the lake.  The problem was that the clarity of the water prevented me from seeing the stairs so one had to guess where a step might be.  I must have banged my shin or something because as I was finally getting up the stairs a volunteer asked me if I was ok.  So, I either looked in bad shape or she saw an expression on my face during the exit that triggered her response.  It didn’t cross my mind again.

From there it was on to transition, a ten mile bike loop, transition, and a 5k run.  Both the bike and run courses were hilly.  I found the bike course particularly challenging with some sharp downhill turns that are always a touch hairy for a new cyclist like me.  The course was also spectator friendly with the small 1.55 mile run loops.  These events can be pretty lonely, but the crowds were quite healthy.

This is a wonderful event that I will have circled on my calendar in 2016.

Run in Peace, Rest in Grace

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Writing Time

My plan was to make my fingers bleed while away on vacation.  I even brought along every possible tool I’d need to get in the zone and stay in the zone.  With this mentality, I should have drafted four blog posts, roughed out two short stories, and written an epic novel by the time I got home.

I returned with no more than a handful of pathetic journal entries scribbled into my craving Moleskin.

It is hard to explain.  I think I just got lazy and opted to sit on the porch and stare out into the wilderness.  Other times I opted to go fish just a little more.  None of this was a conscious decision.  I never thought I should be back at the cabin writing.  I just did the next thing that stumbled in my path.

I suppose thats why writing has been and will remain just a casual hobby for me.  I regret that it doesn’t pop into my mind when I have a few free moments.  It takes effort for me to get in the proper mindset.  Everything I’ve ever read about being  writer suggests, rather insists that one must write every day to hone the skills it takes to actual become a decent writer.

So I will once again try to be more regular.  To be more consistent.  Wait, I think I’ve posted this type of rant before.  Perhaps after another unexcused absence?

Well shucks.  Never mind.


Run in Peace, Rest in Grace

Saturday, June 6, 2015

When They Leave

I arrived to a smile and a room with only one bed.  Jim welcomed me in and as I moved toward my usual piece of real estate for our weekly visit, I looked over and saw that his roommate was gone.  I mean GONE gone.  His bed and possessions seemed to have vanished.

“What happened to your roommate?” I asked.

“Gone.”

“Well, that’s too bad.  Did he…”

“I mean Gone gone.” Jim interrupted.

Jim’s roommate passes away just a few days earlier.  He was only there a few weeks.  Neither of us had any idea whether he had dementia or not.  He never spoke and was seemingly comatose the last time I was here.

I asked Jim about his former roommate, Raymond, who was still living across the hall.

“He’s in the hospital.”

“What’s wrong?”

“They are a little lacking in the details around this place.” Jim reminded me.

“Well, I hope he gets better.”

“Yes, so do I.  But, I’ll probably never see him again.  Usually, when they leave, they leave for good…you know, die.”

And off we go on another weekly visit with Jim.  Some weeks are a lot like this one.  Generally negative.  I am supposed to be the light of Christ coming to let a little sunshine into the man’s life, but it is hard to ignore the outright darkness sometimes.  Jim didn’t seem sad.  No, Jim just seemed like Jim.

The sadness was mostly mine.  I try not to dwell on this place.  It can be hard not to do so.  I’ve learned to treat it like the staff.  Find humor in certain things and accept what you see and experience as just part of the job.   But occasionally I find myself inside as an invisible resident.  Because that is what they are.  With most having advanced dementia or Alzheimers, they don’t make friends.  They likely don’t remember the staff.  They just exist….until they leave.

That is why Jim being here can seem so tragic.  He’s not an invisible resident.  The staff love him because he can love back.  For all the hours they spend escorting residents to their rooms because they forgot where it is (which is most of them), they have brief moments with Jim.  

I suppose I am just realizing that this place is not unique.  Whether the facility is for those with dementia or advanced stages of life, they sit in their rooms and wait.  They wait until it is their time to leave.  Longing for family to visit, but “understanding” that everyone is so busy these days.

Well, they’re right.  We are all too busy.  


Run in Peace, Rest in Grace

Saturday, April 11, 2015

2015 Fort Worth Cowtown Marathon Report

Fort Worth, Texas - I woke at 4:00 AM to check my phone for the cancellation e-mail from race officials.  It wasn’t there.  Surprised?  Yes.  Prepared?  No.

We had just had several days of school cancellations and a city on virtual shutdown due to snow and ice.  The Saturday races were all cancelled.  I thought the afternoon Race Expo & Packet Pick-up were only open so they could salvage a few sales for the vendors.  The roads to and from the race site weren’t unpassable.  But streets through downtown were icy and piled snow lined the curbs.  With temperatures below freezing overnight and most of race day, I just didn’t think they would risk it.  Heck, the parking lot was more easily traversed in skates than Nikes.

I rose in slow motion, ate my semi-standard breakfast and began my pre-race routine.  The night before I had so little confidence that I didn’t pack anything or even lay out my intended race gear.  The whole morning was just off center.  When I arrived at the race site, I realized that I had forgotten my “go to” race fuel (Clif Shot Blocks).  Rather than stress about it as I would have on a normal race day, I just tossed it aside and decided I’d drink the sports drink du jour.  It was only a half marathon.

Rather than give a standard race report, I’ll hit the highlights and move on.

Roads and walkways had cleared more than I expected.  There were still danger spots, but the course was indeed good enough to prevent cancellation.  They did cancel the full & ultra marathons since much of their routes travel through tree covered parks and clearing the paths was impossible.

A smooth start and the racers thrilled to finally be out of the house, finished with training, and running at last.  The pace was off and there were times when things would yo-yo as we approached pools of water or snow banks.  When traversing a bridge one could only run in the ice free ruts carved by vehicle traffic the day before.

The weather was overcast and just below freezing.  The volunteers showed up as promised.  These are the heroes of the race.  It would have been quite easy to pretend they cancelled the race and stay in bed.

I had trained hard enough, fast enough, and long enough to flirt with my PR.  Yet, this day was not going to allow for my best effort.  It wasn’t as though I just tossed in the towel and jogged.  I thought my effort level was fairly high.  I simply wasn’t hitting my splits.  This was partially due to the street conditions, but the body and legs just were not delivering.  By mile 9, I was a few minutes slow and decided that I didn’t have enough real estate left to make a try at sub-1:56 to approach a PR.

What I had left in the waning was more than most.  As is normal for me after the Fort Worth hills, I was passing people at a steady pace.  It is always fun to see someone glance over as you pass by, pick up their pace staying just off your back shoulder, and then fade hard after less than a minute.  I’ve been there.  They are using you for motivation.  “I can hang with that guy.  Come On.”  Then, Mr. Wimpy whispers to them, “Let him go.  You’re not going to prove anything by suffering like this.”  And…Mr. Wimpy wins the battle.

My finish time was 1:58.29.  Respectable in Age Group 45-49, among Men, heck, among all 6,571 runners (I was 1,708).  Yet, a PR attempt is likely going to have to wait until next fall.

Nice medals, great volunteers throughout, wonderful (and more than ample) post race vittles, and a steady supply of Miller 64.  I’ve concluded that this is safe beer for them to serve at these events.  It will not make you drunk, but helps with hydration given the ultra low alcohol content.

Cowtown remains my favorite race even though they had an off year.  They can’t all be perfect.  I will be back next year.


Run in Peace, Rest in Grace.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Last Time

As we released from a hug, I innocently said "Congratulations on making cheerleader."  My daughter grinned and said "Thanks Dad.”  It was then that it hit me.  

"Have a nice day at school" squirmed out of my mouth and I turned to walk away choking back a few tears.  My daughter had made another cheer team.  Both our girls made dozens of teams before.   This one was different.  It was the last time I would ever utter those words of congratulations to one of them again.

Our last child.  One year of high school left.  This was the first of many "last times."

It should have come to mind before now.  My wife called the previous afternoon and said some of the moms were getting together for a drink while the girls were at tryouts.  It was a tradition and she wanted to go "because this is going to be the last time for us to do this."  Yet, it didn't register.  Was I listening?  I remember the conversation.  I recall the precise words.  I guess I didn't recognize the finality in her voice.

This is what happens when one gets too focused on doing the next thing.  We narrow our vision and fail to slow down and embrace or curse the moment.  I don't want to mislead anyone.  Slowing down and observing is likely to reveal things that are not all that pleasant.  Yet, I'll take a dozen of those for just one gem.

My hope is that I will slow down.  Stop multitasking and use all my senses.  I want to discover the essential and see how many "last times" I can find.  It is a good thing I always carry a handkerchief.  Blotting a lot of tears means that I am paying attention for once.


Run in Peace, Rest in Grace

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Later is Lethal

I recently learned that my most influential mentor is fading fast with dementia.  His son and I were visiting about some business and he asked if I had talked to his dad, Frank.  I told him that we had not visited since early December.  Doug told me I might want to make another call soon because he wouldn't be taking calls much longer.  That his mom is now having to help his dad dress and he just wanders the house in a daze.

When we spoke in December, the conversation was cordial though brief.  Nothing like I had hoped or planned.  He seemed distant or indifferent.  I suppose I assumed that Frank had little time for me since I had little time for him over the past decade.

Frank purchased a business park early in my career and kept me on as the leasing agent to work with Doug.  Little did I know such a simple assignment would change my professional life forever.  He taught me more about commercial real estate in a month than I had learned in the prior three years.  It was rare exposure to someone exceedingly successful that didn't walk the ethical or moral tightrope.  Frank was honest and caring while still being firm and sure.  I would not be the man or professional I am today without him.

We stayed in touch for several years after I left his tutelage to join the company I work for now.  My regret is not that I stopped working for Frank.  No, that has worked out well beyond great.  My regret is that I quit calling and writing him about a decade ago.  I guess I got busy or too self important.  Once some time had passed, I convinced myself that he didn't need me hanging on.  He had better things to do and more important people to talk to.  I didn’t want to interfere with the blessing he was likely being to another youngster in the business.

Only after I became a mentor to a young real estate professional this past fall did I realize that I had screwed up.  In no way would I want this guy I was working with to feel I had better things to do.  Not now, next week, or next year.  I care about him and his family.  I hope to hear about his successes for years to come.

With this newfound understanding, I muscled up the courage to call Frank.  I wanted to catch up, but tell him that I am sorry for not calling all this time.  I wanted to tell him what I fool I had been and that I missed him.  When he abruptly ended the conversation I just assumed he had indeed moved on and didn't want me crawling back into his life.  I mean, who could blame him?  What did I have to offer?

Still determined to say my peace, I penned a note that said all I had planned to say on the phone.  The letter came back as undeliverable.  Had they moved?  Couldn't have.  I am sure I had that correct.

At that point I decided to give up.  If nothing else it was a sign to let it go.  I had missed my opportunity to prolong the friendship.

Then, I talked to Doug.  My heart sank.  I was too late.  Too late to rekindle the old banter.  How could I have let that happen?

I am sad for the reminder that some things cannot wait.  Tomorrow may not get here.  Tomorrow may not be soon enough.  Later can and may often be too late.  Some lessons only come the hard way.


Run in Peace, Rest in Grace

Saturday, January 31, 2015

A Visit with Jim

It never fails to surprise me that when I'm ready to quit, our visit shoots a bolt of inspirational lightning through me.  

Like most Wednesday afternoons these past several months, I swing by Oak Hollow for a visit with Jim.  I was asked to spend a little time with him through Stephen Ministry (SM) and to be honest the visits have been quite puzzling at times.  Jim’s situation seems impossible.  He lives in a dementia and memory care facility, yet does not have any true memory problems.  He is there because his wife lives there.  A wife of over 60 years who sadly has little idea who he is 99% of the time.  They don’t share a room so I seldom see her, but Jim knows that’s why I there.  There to help him deal with a wife who sees him as a complete stranger.

Jim’s faith is as strong as anyone I’ve ever met.  This was intimidating at first.  I just wasn’t sure what help I could be to this man who loves and trusts God.  Often times when people are going through one of life’s cruel twists, they get angry with God.  Before knowing Jim all that well, I assumed he must have some of that going on inside.  It would only be natural.  Yet, when I asked him, he said “NO” with conviction.

That was it. I knew he was being honest and I also realized I had no idea what I would do next.  During the training to be a SM, I don’t recall them telling me how helpless we might feel.  It was clear that I was completely unprepared for this type of assignment.  Someone who trusted God more than me?

The situation became frustrating.  Jim didn’t want to talk about his wife or how his situation was making him feel.  He wanted to talk about me.  How did I become a SM?  When did I find the Lord?  Jim was the one doing the counseling.  The only one using properly formatted open ended questions was Jim.

Just before Christmas, I was there for a visit and as we reached the end of my time I asked him if we could pray before I left.  He said “sure”, took my hand, and before I could get started Jim began praying for me, my family, and our friendship.  I had never had anyone pray so intensely for me…directly to me in the presence of God.  It was as if Jim knew I needed encouragement and wanted me to know that he was benefiting from our visits even when I thought I was blowing it.

With this new enthusiasm, I returned the following week ready to dig deeper.  We just had a breakthrough and now we were going to do some healing!  Let’s just say we had our most generic “how was your week?” visits ever.  It was as if the previous visit never happened.  Maybe Jim had dementia after all and thought I was someone else.

So, the weeks crawled along with little more than nice discussions about our faith or something we learned while studying the God’s word.  I began dropping hints that maybe it was time for me to move along to someone in greater need of my time.  This was  selfish.  I was quitting.  Throwing in the towel.  I was not going to see Jim have a breakthrough and he didn’t need me.

Then, somehow, this past week we nailed it again.  This time it wasn’t just the closing prayer, but the visit itself.  I asked some of the harder questions.  He answered them in that same way he always does.  We talked about stuff.  Then, at some point i became inspired.  I prayed before our visit that God would take over and He did.  Jim enjoys hearing about how I live out my faith.  How friends or co-workers approach me about what they should believe.  At one point he said “you are on fire young man.”  And maybe I was.

When I finished praying at the end of the visit, Jim held tight and said “thank you.”  He continued, “I am so thankful for you coming into my life.  You are a good man Brian, a good man.”

Now Jim doesn’t know my endless list of flaws.  But he knows enough of them to know that I struggle.  I think what he knows best is when someone needs encouragement.  At 84, he can still sense the needs of others.  I needed that on so many levels I can’t begin to explain it.


And so, I am not sure I’m helping Jim or how long we’ll be doing these formal visits.  I do know that when our formal visits are over, I’ll head over to Oak Hollow every so often for some encouragement.  Encouragement from a man who I was sent to encourage.  God works wonderful ways.

Run in Peace, Rest in Grace

Monday, January 26, 2015

10-20

It has been more than month since I ran The Dallas Half Marathon, but I wanted to do a brief entry to document a mini-milestone.

I have now completed 10 Marathons & 20 Half Marathons in my 23+ years of running.  That sounds a little misleading as I ran all 20 Half Marathons in the past 7 years.  The full Marathons span a longer period with the first White Rock all the way back in 1997 when I was 29 years old.  Man…I’m old.

There is no real reason to celebrate any of this since I plan to add to the totals far into the future.  I just wanted to take a moment to reflect on the longevity and totals.  The percentage of people doing more than one of either other these is miniscule.  I’m just crazy enough to not know when to quit I guess.  If I weren’t so cheap I would have run well over 40 half marathons.  I just hate to spend the money and do not need ANY more t-shirts or medals.

The one thing I will admit is that this is my singular hobby.  Others, playing the guitar, model trains, wine or beer making, and countless others seem to come and go and come back again.  Running just can’t seem to shake me.  Sure, I’ve spent many years in worse shape than I am now, but the running gear never gathers dust.  I often tell people I run because that is the only place where I know I can find God.  And even when I’m in my darkest of places, God knows he can find me there too.

So, raise a glass to 10-20.  It has been a blessing to me.

The Dallas Half Marathon

Rather than do a full race report, I’ll give some details about this mini-milestone event.  I ran my second fastest time with a 1:55.51.  The temperature was little warm and with all the turns it measured almost a quarter mile long.  Given these detractors, the effort was one of my best.  I ran a completely different race than normal.  When I arrived at my starting corral, I discovered that the “A” group loaded from the starting line banner rather than from the rear.  I could have started right next to the Kenyans if I wanted.  That would have been a bad idea and so I walked through the elite runners to reach the back of the corral.

 Even from the back of the A corral, I started out faster than planned.  Being in the first wave made for a thinner group of runners than later groups so I was not slowed by traffic.  I was quite nervous about the pace.  By mile 4, I thought I would no doubt crumble near the end.  I was wet with sweat due to humidity and for being the early stage of the race this was a bad sign.  My plan is always conservative.  Too conservative in hindsight.  I like to run a negative split and I was in serious jeopardy of failing at that big time.  Yet, I reached mile 11 feeling tired, but excited.  I was able to pick up the pace and grind it out with some quick final miles.

I learned something about myself.  I may be getting older, but I don’t have to hold back all the time.  Rarely do I take chances.  I have taken the race out of racing.  Maybe I can push it once in awhile and try to remember the good old days.  Forget about overdoing it.  There may just be more to me than I know.  Next race in 5 weeks.  I can’t wait to see how I do.


Run in Peace, Rest in Grace