Sunday, October 27, 2013

Game Changer.

Today was a game changer.

Today I witnessed my first ultra-marathon and trail marathon.  My brother ran the Run with Scissors Double marathon and marathon in Hinckley, Ohio.

Today was quite an experience.  I was just in awe for the 4 or so hours I was a spectator at this race.  It seems crazy to think, I've been pretty obsessed with the ultra-marathoning community for a couple of years now, but I never have witnessed one, and I still have yet to run one.

Everyone at this event, the runners, the race director, the volunteers and spectators were amazing.   Everyone was just in the moment and seemed to be loving every second.  This is quite a community, and a community I MUST become more involved with.  Happiness is the best word to describe the attitude today, even the runners who were 39 miles into the race were smiling.

I think today is a game changer, and I think things are going to change.

It's time for me to start seriously thinking about running an ultra-marathon soon.  I've been thinking about it for a long time, (I started a blog for crying our loud) but I've never really gotten the push I needed.  I think today was a game changer!

My brother is truly an amazing runner.  Tim by far is my biggest running inspiration.  Tim had never run a trail race, much less a trail marathon, he went into today with pretty tired legs, with our Pan5Can project going on, and some Achilles problems as well.  So he goes out, and comes in 2nd overall, simply amazing. Tim is so humble about it too, he doesn't realize how much of an inspiration he is to me, and today was a game changer!

I'm going to try very hard to take running seriously from now on, I've messed around long enough with it, I've put in a few thousand miles the last few years, but it's time to see what I can do.  I'm 28 years old, it's time to see what's possible.

I want to get serious about this blog as well, I want this to become a source for the normal guy to find out what it takes to become a marathoner and ultra-marathoner.  Like I've said in past posts, there is nothing special about me at all, I work in restoration all day, and try to run as much as I can, I didn't run in high school or college, and I'm not really that fast.  BUT i want to see what I can do, and where running can take me.  It's time! Let's do this!
Tim crossing the line today in 2nd overall. He's incredible. 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Frank Medrano -This Man Does Not Eat Meat....

enough said.

I. Am. A. Normal. Person.

I want to explain a few things before I start really getting into this blog.

I am not some super athlete, super vegan chef, or anything like that.

I am just a normal guy who tries to run as much as he can, and eat healthy.

I have a normal job, I work in construction/restoration. (I shower after work, not before.)

I do eat a vegetarian diet, and am trying to transition into a vegan diet, but I don't have all the answers, however, as this blog evolves I hope to have at least a good amount of answers.

I really didn't start running at all until college.  I ran a couple times a week on a treadmill my sophomore year of college just to keep in shape.

I didn't run a race of any length until I was 22 years old, which was a 5k that I ran in 24 minutes.

 I played soccer, basketball, and baseball in high school, and as cliche as it is, running was my sports punishment.  I didn't like to run, I played goalie on the soccer team.

I started to begin to enjoy running in 2009.  I began to run more for fun and a way to stay in shape, rather than solely as torture to keep my weight down.

I ran my first marathon in 2010, the Walt Disney World Marathon in a time of 5:56:00, that's not a mis-print, it really took me that long. I ran it with my buddy Chris Miller.  I hadn't been running much for the months before the race, but was signed up, so I had to do it.

I became a vegetarian in February of 2010.  The reason I gave up meat was for a few reasons.  I wanted to try and give meat up for Lent, so the night before Ash Wednesday, I ate a chipotle chicken burrito, and 2 Chick-fil-a chicken sandwiches.  I also wanted to try and give up meat because for my whole life I had trouble eating meat.  I would choke quite often, not bad, but things would get stuck in my throat.  Two times I had the heimlich done on me, and that was enough.

I lost 20 pounds in 40 days on my vegetarian diet, and decided that I would keep it up.  Haven't looked back since.

I ran my second marathon in May of 2010 in a time of 4:48:00, a much better time than my first marathon, but nothing special at all.

I think that May of 2010 is what really changed my running life.

I've done quite a few runs since then, 5 marathons, 5 half-marathons, and a bunch of 5ks, and other races.

I'll tell you much more about myself and the things I've done as I get more involved in this blog, I just wanted to give a quick overview of who I am.

My work life. 

My running life. 

Sunday, October 20, 2013

"Enjoy Your Youth and Health."

The last few weeks, especially this past week have been tough for the Kelly household.  Elissa, my wife has been watching her grandmother in hospice slip away.  Her grandmother was a very special person to her, and I could always see this.  Elissa spent a lot of time with her grandma, and I feel as though she was a second mom to her, she was very important to her. Last night at around 2 am, Grandma Jones slipped away and went to heaven, peacefully, on her own terms, the way she seemed to live her life.

Last Saturday, when Elissa's grandmother seemed to be slipping a little more, said something very profound to Elissa, who relayed it to me.  Grandma said, "Enjoy your youth and health."  This really hit me hard, as it is so true.  Here is a woman, 86 years old who has seem lives ups and downs.  She has seem good times and bad times, she was someone who grew up during WW2 and married a soldier.  What I find amazing, and it almost seems across the board, that people in their last few days don't talk about how much money they had, how big their house was, or how much they paid for their car.  When live is close to ending, the real things in life are what is important to them, and what they want to relay to their loved ones.  I have never heard someone say, "Boy I wish I could have made more money and bought that huge house."  It's always almost the opposite.  "Boy I wish I wouldn't have spent so much time working, I wish I could have been to my kids games, etc."

As a young person it's hard to grasp the subject of "enjoying your youth and health."  It's so easy to get into the "american way" of just putting your head down and grinding your way through life so you can say you have more money than your friends, or whatever.  When it really comes down to it, life should be more about enjoying your family and friends.  They are priceless. Don't get me wrong, money is important, but not nearly as important as the intangible things in life.

Elissa says that her grandma loved beautiful things, like sitting by a fireplace at Christmas time, or sitting on the front porch on a warm summer day.  THESE are the real things in life, THESE are the things that are important.  We find it so easy to brush these things aside because we "don't have time."  Well that's the thing, MAKE TIME.  Elissa's grandma did not have an extra hour a day that a normal person doesn't have.  She had the same time as we did.

Grandma Jones knew what was important in life, and really put things in to perspective with me when she said these words to her granddaughter, my wife Elissa.  "ENJOY YOUR YOUTH AND HEALTH."  Words to live by, and never forget.  Rest in peace Grandma Jones, you'll never be forgotten.

L to R. Elissa (my wife) My mother in-law, GRANDMA JONES, Kristen (sister-in-law) and Liz (sister-in-law).


Friday, October 18, 2013

So even though I've had this blog for over a year now, I've never written anything. I wanted to start this blog to show what I am doing with my running, and eating.  I am a vegetarian, and also a marathon runner who is trying to get to the ultramarathon level. I've been pretty busy lately.  I just ran the Akron Marathon on September 28, the Rock and Roll Cleveland half marathon on October 6, and the Northern Ohio Marathon on October 13.  This weekend, I am running the Columbus Marathon, as you can see I have been busy.  I want to start blogging about what I do, how I do it, and what it's like.  I'm just a normal guy, nothing special, not skinny, I'm a bigger guy.  I want to show you that seriously, anything is possible.