In 2013 I was diagnosed with sarcoidosis, an autoimmune disorder that chewed a hole in my cerebellum, atrophied various muscles, impaired my vision, balance, coordination and consequently stole my confidence and my ability to run. I have dedicated the summer of 2018 to regaining my strength, coordination, balance, and relearning how to run. I am participating in a 5k run on September 23rd in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This is my training journal.
This is my attempt to grow physically and mentally strong again.
Write on. Fight on.
*Today I trained in Madison, Alabama.
7:40 am – 8:26 am
No hurry. No pause.
Jogging/walking intervals- 46 minutes including 6 jogging hill shuttles.
Quote I’m Thinking About Today:
“There was a purpose to my pain…Those who are going through that right now, there is hope on the other side of this.” ~ Brain Dawkins from his Hall of Fame
Powerful speech. #PFHOF18
📺: NFL Network pic.twitter.com/E0kcOlV369
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) August 5, 2018
Today marks my 50th training session. A milestone for someone who, not too long ago, believed he was fated to a limited life. A life governed by medication and excuses.
The two most common questions I have been asked in recent months are:
- What finally made you give up meat and dairy?
- Why did you decide to start training to run a 5k?
The answer for both questions is the same: I got tired.
Tired of relying on medication to magically cure me.
Tired of waiting for doctors to tell me what to do.
Tired of complacency.
Tired of excuses.
Tired of feeling like shit.
Tired of being apprehensive about the future.
Tired of feeling like a prisoner to my illness.
Tired of saying “I can’t…”
Tired of feeling uninspired.
Tired of lowering my personal expectations.
Tired of feeling weak and hopeless and ungrateful for the life I’ve been blessed with.
I just grew tired. So I decided to change. Not everyone understands or even supports why I changed. But that’s fine. It’s my choice.
It’s the story I want to write for myself. It’s the story I want to share with you.
Nothing can change the pain my illness caused. Just like you can’t change your past, but 50 training sessions have taught me that if you begin to change your present– you can begin transforming your future.
From The Previous Training Session: Taking the first step ( August 2)
Today I trained in the driving Florida rain. At first, standing in the doorway, watching the rain fall I entertained excuses:
It’s raining too hard to go outside. I don’t want to get wet. How will I dry my sneakers?
49 days of training and most mornings I entertain excuses. In fact, the first step out the front door is always the hardest.
The first step requires more mental stamina and more introspection then all other steps:
Do I have the guts to seize control of my own life? Do I have the courage to push myself in spite of doubts and fears? What if it hurts? Do I have the capacity to endure? Do I trust myself?
I plugged in my headphones, took a deep breath, and stepped out into the rain.
But it wasn’t easy. First steps never are.