Friday, January 5, 2018

Takin' A Look Back At 2017

     2017 was a long stress filled year with A LOT of changes in my life.  I received a promotion at work the led to relocating to a new city.  With that came the stress of finding a place to rent that would accept 3 dogs, selling the house, barely seeing my wife and moving all of our shit to our temporary home.  On top of that putting in long hours at shop, sometimes being there till one in the morning, all while training for and running three marathons.  The hardest part for me really was my eating habits.  There were days and weeks where fast food was my only nutrition choices and despite training for three marathons, my weight has crept up almost 20 fucking pounds and I am not happy about it. 

     The first marathon was the MercyHealth Glass City Marathon that was my first full marathon after my hip surgery, so I had no agenda and just went out and ran it for the fun of it.  That also led me to be interviewed by Matt Fitzgerld for a book he is working on.  

     The second marathon was my return to the Columbus Marathon which was the first marathon I ever ran.  While training, I cut across the yard at our apartment complex and managed to find a rut and twist my ankle with just about a month till race day.  I put myself on crutches for a few days, iced it and even drove two and a half hours to Toledo to have my physical therapist take a look.  Race day I had a plan of what I wanted do that I threw out the window after going out way too fast in the first mile.  I felt like I could do a sub 4 hour marathon again even though I really wasn't ready prepared for it and managed to blow myself up around mile 18.  I did a ton of walking with some running mixed in to grind it out through it to a 4:23:33 finish.  I totally learned a lesson, the hard way, on race nutrition and pacing.

     The third was the Savannah Rock n Roll Marathon while I was visiting my parents.  This time I followed my nutrition and pacing plan, which led to a 4:23:40 finish.  Despite finishing seven seconds slower, I felt great throughout the entire race only to be slowed way down in the last two miles because of the scorching sun and heat I had to deal with.  Don't get me wrong, I was tired, but because I paced properly I was able to walk the mile and a half to the car and run the 5K and 1 mile remix challenge races the next day.

     The minute I got back from Savannah, Mandy and I closed on our new home, and began the stress filled process of working 6 days a week while trying to move from our townhouse to the new house.  Add to the mix that we offered to host Christmas for my family a month later, so we had to paint, move in, organize everything, decorate, clean the townhouse and prep for what turned out to be a wonderful family Christmas.  all while we both work full time jobs.  We managed to get it done and had a wonderful time with my family for Christmas.

     The casualty in all this since I got back from Georgia was my running and strength training.  When people say they don't have time to workout, it usually is a bullshit excuse, I know I used to say it myself when I was 300 pounds, however this time it was true.  All that moving and long hours my body just wasn't having it and what little free time I had was used to rest my sore body.  November 5th was the last day I ran until I hopped on the treadmill December 9th.  Since then it has been like pulling teeth to get me to go running, and that has me worried considering my spring marathon training started this week.

     During all this time I was blogging less and less, which I am sure any of my long time readers noticed.  As you read earlier, I really just didn't have the time, however I was also feeling like my posts were getting redundant and boring, so I decided to just take a break from it.

     Now that my time has started to loosen up some I decided I wanted to try getting back into it, but I felt I really needed a change and what better way than a little re-branding.  I wanted a title that was much shorter and that was still running related, but wasn't completely about weight loss.  Don't get me wrong I will still continue to write about my struggles with my weight, but I wanted something that fit more of me and my personality.  I came up with a few ideas, but most of them were garbage or were already taken in one of the social media venues, and after a couple of weeks it finally hit me The Tatted Runner.  I mean I love to run and I love getting and looking at tattoos so the name seemed to just fit.  I know their are other runners out there currently with more tattoos, and I don't claim to be the guy with "the most tattoos" or even the "coolest" tattoos, but tattoos have been a love of mine since I was in grade school drawing on myself with permanent markers.  So with this change I feel like I don't have to concentrate on just running and weight loss, even though I will continue to write about both.

     That was my quick year in review and I look forward to a great 2018 in a lot of areas of my life.  I turn the BIG 40 this year and I have something I am working on that I personally think will be a fun challenge and great way to celebrate 40 years on this planet!

Thanks for reading!   

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Last Days for Early Bird Pricing

     You only have today and tomorrow to save some serious coin if you want to run one of the MercyHealth Glass City Marathon weekend events.  Choose from the Glass City 5K, the 10th anniversary Owens Corning Half Marathon, the Yark Subaru 5 Person Marathon Relay, or join me and run the MercyHealth Glass City Marathon.  This race weekend is a blast and caters to the first timer all the way to the Boston qualifiers and everyone in between.  This will be my 6th straight year participating in one of the events and I keep coming back because of the big city race feel with a small hometown feel.  

Let me know if you are going to participate and which event you are signing up for! 

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Change Is Coming

Running in the Fat Lane is now
The Tatted Runner

     I have thought long and hard (#) about this and I have come to the conclusion that my time as Running in the Fat Lane, has come to an end.  It is a bitter sweet feeling because it has been such a big part of my life the last 2-3 years, but I have decided to close this chapter of my life and look towards the future.  I was looking for a new moniker that easily expressed who I am in as few words as possible.  I have tattoos, I plan on getting quite a lot more and I run, so it was a no brainier.  To be honest, I was really surprised that The Tatted Runner was available in all social media aspects.

     I am not sure yet what or how this blog will change, I may get more active then I've been or I might just post as I feel like it, but either way, it has been a great sharing my weight loss struggles and triumphs with you all.

Thanks for reading! 

Monday, May 15, 2017

Week 3 Update

     I am two weeks in with my journey back to 173 pounds and I am doing pretty well so far.  I have managed to stay on track for 12 of the first 14 days.  Thursday I a day trip to Indianapolis for a work meeting where they provided lunch, and I dug in a little more than I should have.  They served chicken, roast beef, red skin mashed potatoes and steamed veggies.  I left the steam veggies off the plate and went back for seconds on the rest.

     Yesterday for Mother's Day, Mandy and I ended up at the Melt Bar & Grill, which originated in Cleveland, Ohio and has spread like wild fire around the state.  Basically they are known for making some tasty huge grilled cheese sandwiches with all kinds of cheese and various other ingredients.  I ended up getting the Parma, Italy which was a fried chicken parmesan with marinara, garlic texas toast, mozzarella and parmesan cheese sprinkled on top.  I was a bit of a good boy, I only got a half a sandwich, but it still was a calorie filled lunch.  

     Later in the evening when dinner time rolled around, I made things even worse when we made homemade tacos and nachos.  I could have been a good boy and had one or two tacos and that was it, but I ended up having two plates of nachos and two tacos.  I basically killed almost a whole bag of shredded cheese on my own.  Sad I know!

As a reminder here is my starting point
     Here is my weeks one and two weigh in photos.  To be honest I was a little shocked and how much change happened in these two weeks, but I am not going to complain one bit.  I just hope its body fat that is leaving and no muscle mass.

     Well today is a new day and I am back on the horse.  Long run pace is on tap for today with an estimated distance of 8 to 10 miles.  I'll let how I am feeling determine that once I get out there.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Movin' To The 614

     I know I keep saying I am going to write more then I don't do anything about it.  Well this time I had a pretty damn good excuse.  Just over two months ago I received a promotion at work that required me to relocate to Columbus, Ohio.  While the move is only a little more than two hours from my previous location, the last couple months have been crazy trying to get the house ready to sell, find an apartment, move stuff down and start my new job.

     First the job, as I have stated before in my blog, I work for a Harley-Davidson dealership and the people I work for have added a third dealership to their group and promoted me to manage the entire store and run the day to day operations.  It was something I have been working towards for a long time and Mandy and I were psyched when we got the news that it was in Columbus.  There is a ton to do there and I already know a couple people that live down there, so it made the decision pretty easy.

     Once we had an idea this was going to happen we kicked things into high gear to get the house ready to sell.  Painting, cleaning, fixing some minor things and finding a realtor.  Then I had to drive around Columbus looking for a place to live.  This was no easy feet, as Mandy and I are not ready to buy another house and trying to find a apartment complex that will allow 3 dogs proved to be a challenge.  Thanks to one of my good friends that lives in Columbus, he new someone that manages a complex that bent the rules for us.  For at least the next year our home will be a two bedroom town house that we got with a garage so we had room for storage.  It was pretty damn hard to fit a three bedroom 1.5 bathroom house and a three car garage worth of stuff that has accumulated over 14 years into a 2 bedroom 1.5 bath townhouse with a tiny single car garage.  We did have to get a pretty good sized roll away dumpster and clear out a lot of shit, but in the end we managed to do it.

     The biggest challenge for us now is not having a fenced in back yard for the dogs.  We have to harness them up every time they need to go outside.  What use to take us just a couple minutes to let them out on their own, now requires a solid 10-15 minutes.

     Once we get a our house sold, we can concentrate on finding or new home, but until then we are making due with what we got. 

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Reverse Course

     I have had plenty change in my life lately, but one of which I am not to happy with at all.  I have been avoiding the scale mostly because I couldn't face to see how far I had fallen in recent months.  It has been easier and easier for me to give into temptation, combined with the lack of any continuity in my daily routine and not having any portion control.  While most if not all would look at me in my current state and not see a fat person, inside that is what I feel like.  I just don't feel comfortable in my body right now and after seeing my group photo with all my co-ambassadors for the Mercy Health Glass City Marathon I realized I just wasn't happy with myself anymore.

     With the thought that no matter what it is going to say I have to do something and reverse my course.  As you can see below I have allowed a little over 14 pounds of my history to creep back into my life.  So how do I fix it?  Go with what you know works.  I looked back at my food journal from a couple years ago and made changes to my current grocery list and I've refocused my efforts to measure out and log everything I put in my mouth.  Goal weight of 173 here we come! 


Thursday, April 27, 2017

Glass City Marathon Race Recap

     As I headed out the door for the 41st running of the Mercy Health Glass City Marathon I was both nervous and excited that race day was finally here.  I was excited because it was finally time to start, run and finish the 26.2 miles of this race.  I was nervous because I was going into it with minimal amounts of training and another round of IT Band issues, which was the reason I had to back out of this race the first time.  I knew the pain would set in, I just wasn't sure when, and what I was going to do when it did.

     The weather was picture perfect, and other than being just a little to chilly while waiting in the corrals for the gun to go off, almost no wind and clear skies as the sun came up made for a beautiful start.  I told myself over and over as I made my way across the starting line to run my own race and don't let others control my pace.  I knew that if I went out to fast I was going to be in big trouble so I treated this like it was just another long run, I picked a pace and stuck to it no matter what was going on around me.

     Things were going pretty darn well up through mile thirteen until I got greedy.  I was feeling really good at that point with my pace sitting right around a 10:00 mile average.  I started to let thoughts of speeding up and letting my potential finishing time cloud my judgment.  BIG MISTAKE.  I started to push the pace by almost a minute and it took no more than a mile to aggravate my IT Band.  It was at that time I had to come back to reality and slow things back down.  This is also when the walk breaks entered the conversation as well.  Walking usually calms the pain down in my knee so once the pain subsided I returned to a 10-10:30 avg pace.  I was able to grind out a mile or so before I would have to walk it out for a couple of minutes, and this strategy got me through the next few miles.

     Right around mile 19 I had caught up to my fellow race ambassador, Brian, who was taking a walk break just as I needed to take one as well.  Brian is a firefighter in Sandusky, Ohio who runs almost every race in full firefighter gear.  He originally started competing in endurance events because he was 50 pounds overweight and at risk for heart disease.  He found performing the basic fire ground operations became exhausting and difficult, so he knew he had to make a change.  Did you know that 40%-50% of all In-The-Line-Duty deaths on the fire ground are related to heart attacks and strokes, I never would have thought that with all the other dangers they encounter.  Brian is now in the best shape of his life and runs almost every race in full gear to bring awareness to firefighter health and to raise money for the Fireman Rob Foundation .  I hung with Brian for the next couple of miles as we both would push each other to run just a little more.  It was just what we both needed to get us through and finish at our own pace.  

     So at mile 22 I pushed on at a 11 minute mile pace trying to finish this race without walking anymore, unfortunately that was a pipe dream.  By the time I started mile 26 I had only taken a couple of short walk breaks and was getting pretty tired, but I was so close I could taste it.  I switched up my playlist to a group of songs that would get the adrenaline flowing and push me to the end.  The unfortunate byproduct is I always end up cranking up the pace as well and with just over a half mile to the finish my IT band let me know just who was boss at that point.  Walking wasn't even an option I needed to just stop because it felt like I couldn't even bend my knee it was so tight.  I tried a couple of stretches to loosen things up, but wasn't much help.  About another minute went by when a gentleman I had passed earlier came up and stopped his race to check on me.  I was leaned over trying to massage my IT band and all he said was "come on, lets go get our medals".  I looked up at him, smiled and we started to jog it out together.  

     The last 50 yards was amazing.  Running down the finishers shoot lined with people cheering for people they don't even know like they have known me for years is a incredible feeling and a humbling experience.  I crossed the finish line where the race director, who I've known for years and years, was there congratulating all the finishers gave me a hug and a high five.  I ended up with a finishing time of 4:43:40, which is right about what I was thinking before the race began.  After I received my medal I almost wanted to think that all of the shit I've gone through that kept me from this race until now was because this year's medal was so f-ing badass compared to years past.  The medal was huge and featured some great Toledo imagery showing inside the overall shape of the state of Ohio. 

     Once I felt like I had my feet under me again my parents and I headed down to the after party to get my free commemorative beer mug and a little post race chow.  The live entertainment on stage was a band that is fronted by one of my long time friends from high school who I was also in a band with.  Between songs he started picking a few notes from one of our old original songs then he asked if I wanted to hop on stage for old time sake and hit the skins.  It was a blast to get back behind a drum kit again even if I was tired from running a marathon. lol :)

     In the end, I would have to say other than a few minor little things I would change about the race, you would be hard pressed to find a fault with this race.  The race director, the race board that makes all the decisions, the Toledo Roadrunners club, the police and fire and the hundreds and hundreds of volunteers did an amazing job.  The Mercy Health Glass City Marathon may be just a small hometown event compared to a Columbus, Chicago or Detroit, but man this crew treats it like it is one of the marathon majors.  Every year they seem to make it bigger and better without losing that hometown intimate feel.  Oh and if you are looking for a great race to qualify for Boston, this is it.  A little over 22% of this year's finishers qualified and so could you.