Tonight I am flying back from San Diego wrapping up my 103rd day (out of 243 days) on the road this year. I am not complaining, I have met a lot of great people working to solve some really hard problems. But traveling that much makes it hard to really explore where you live.
It is easy to get swept up in being new places and thinking about all of the places I still want to go and all of the events I want to do. I kept a browser tab open for weeks following the dots who raced across the United States during the Trans Am Bike Race. The same with the Tour Divide and Trans North Georgia Adventure. I have spent many late evenings in a hotel room researching what it would take to do a Rim-to-Rim-to-Rim or the Tour du Mont Blanc. There are so many articles that keep drawing to new and exciting places in far off and distant places.
In reality, there are a ton of things close that I can be doing but am over looking BECAUSE they are close to home. I can do an overnight bikepacking trip through Montgomery County without having to load my gear into a car. Within an hour I can be at the start of a the Virginia Mountain Bike Trail and kick off a 10-day bikepacking trip through Shenandoah. There trails all over that I can run any length on any surface type I could want. For whitewater, I could be at Great Falls in 45 minutes and paddle in a wide variety of conditions.
But I am not.
I know the term ‘local’ is subjective as well. I still think of New Jersey and Pennsylvania as local, and I have a list of things I want to do up there. Run the AT across NJ. My all-time favorite creek, the Tohickon. Running the Batona Trail. Paddling the Savage or the Yough. And on, and on, and on…
But I am not…
As I am setting goals for next year, this thought has me thinking a lot about what and where I am going to play. Not saying trips to far off places are off the table, but I think I am going to look a little closer to home.
I can’t believe it is the end of June already. This year has not been going as planned – travel, chronic injuries, and general craziness has impact my training this year and is forcing me to take a step back, take an inventory of where things stand and try to salvage the remainder of this year.
Travel has been a lot since the beginning of the year, 83 days out of 176. That has caused a lot of issues in trying to keep a healthy diet and keeping a regular training schedule has fallen out the window. So I have postponed doing the IronMan Maryland until 2019 and haven’t registered for any fall halfs. The only things I have scheduled are the Marine Corps Marathon again (have to run my hometown race) and then head down to Asheville in February to run the Mount Mitchell Challenge. Other than that just have a number of things percolating in my head that I want to do, including picking up writing here. I feel like I did a lot in prep for last year’s IronMan, but everything slipped after that.
It has been a few weeks since Lake Placid and I have been thinking about how to summarize everything that happened during that event and have not been able to find the words to describe it. Exciting. Exhausting. Inspiring. All are things that come to mind when I think about the days that lead up to the IronMan as well as the event itself.
To start, I did the event as a fund raiser for the Multiple Myeloma Research foundation. I wanted a little bit of extra incentive to help push myself and force me to commit to being prepared for this event. I am proud to say, that I reached my $5,000 fund raising goal and as a team we raised over $300,000.
I am really glad that I did my first IronMan as part of this MMRF Team, the help and support they gave definitely reduced the stress in getting things lined up and knowing my family that came up to watch would be well taken care of while I was on the course racing.
We were lucky and got into town a few days before the race. We were staying right in Lake Placid, so it made it very easy to get accustomed to the Lake and the “cable”. It took me a couple of swims to get comfortable with the cable. Getting close to it at first really freaked me out. But after getting to swim the course for a couple of days it actually became quite comforting and I didn’t have to sight much at all.
The race itself was the well oiled machine that is IronMan. Checking in was a piece of cake.
I can’t believe it – only four weeks to go! Had a breakthrough swim last night, I swam almost 2.7 miles (that is 188 laps in a 25 yard pool) in under 1 hour and 15 minutes. The race swim is 2.4 miles and the cut off time is 2 hours and 20 minutes. That swim cleared a big mental hurdle for me!
I still have a little ways to go with the fund raising, but thanks to the good folks at Amazon, I will be raffling off an Amazon Echo to help reach my fundraising goal. Any donation above $30 between now and July 8th will help the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation achieve their mission and provide you a chance to win some great technology for your home or office!
The following is the breakdown on how to get chances to win:
$30 – One Chance
$50 – Two Chances
$100 – Five Chances
$250+ – Fifteen Chances
Please make your donations through my MMRF donation page. The drawing will be held on July 8th. I will email you after receiving your donation confirming the number of raffle chances. Thanks in advance and good luck in the raffle!
Training has been a lot recently, many long hours swimming, riding, and running, last week I spent more than 16 hours either swimming, riding or running. It is funny, I have never been the guy the people in a gym knew by first name, now I am. My wife has been poking fun at me, I am eating everything in the house and none of my none of my clothes fit me any longer. But it became more even more real this week when the race kits arrived on Thursday. This shit is really getting close!
To circle back to Father’s Day, I can’t believe that it has been 14 years since my father lost his battle with Bladder & Brain Cancer.
I remember how hard it was to go through that process and how difficult it was on our family. I want to do everything in my power to help others from having to go through that process. I would like to say thank you to everyone that has helped me get closer to my fund raising goal of $5,000. I am a little over $3,000 and could use some more help over the next few weeks in reaching my goal to help other families not have to go through that ordeal. If you have donated, I sincerely THANK YOU, but please share the link to my donation page with your friends and family. If you haven’t donated, please consider donating whatever you can.