Friday, June 24, 2011

T- 1 day till the Event

     Another year of preparations has been completed.  We have upgraded to course (due to construction) and have gone to a new shirt design.  The shirt is designed by our race namesake Haley so it is cool.  The amount of runners is always a crap shoot but we are hoping for a good turnout.  in the four previous years participation has grown steadily.  This year should not be any different. 

     All of the work that goes into an event is for a great cause, to help find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis.  For most of us a deep breath is an easy feat, for some it is like you are constricted.  Our goal is to help the research teams in their pursuit of a cure for this disease. 

    The race will start at 8 PM from the McClellan Medical Park in Anniston , Alabama.  The course takes you through scenic areas of the former Fort McClellan and also attempts to keep you cool  by running at night during these hot days. 

     We hope to see every one come out with their blinkies on and shoes tied up to run our Fifth annual race. 

Until Next Time  Happy Running

Monday, June 6, 2011

Navy Ten Nautical Miler

The train up was the most I ever have done.  I trained for over two months for a 11.5 mile race.  I had my points plotted in my head what marks I wanted to hit and where.  I knew which water stations I would stop at ( they had them at every Nautical mile). 

I decided to do something I also never do before a race and that is to eat pasta.  We sat and at the pre-race meal and thought nothing of it.  We went back to the Holiday Inn Express and got some sleep for the early start of the race.  0630 will come fast so after watching Percy Jackson lightning thief I fell asleep.  Sleep was usual with about two to three hours of good sleep followed by tossing around trying to get the last minutes of sleep for the night. 

The morning was my normal procedures, take care of my hygiene to include showering and shaving then eat a Banana and drive to the race site.  On arrival the air was thick with humidity.  The gun went off and we started running.  I was in the lead pack  and having a great time up there.  Then the pre-race pasta coupled with the 105 heat index hit me and crushed my PR dreams.  I had to stop and gather my self for a couple miles then go back at it.  The heat was intense but I kept pushing now stopping at every drink stop to get cold water and drinking my HEED which I carried with me throughout the run.  As I headed to the finish and the Team Fisher House leaders were cheering me on , I finally felt better and cruised into the finish.  My time was disappointing but I can grow from it.  I completed the run in 1:48, 152 of 618 runners and 19th in my age group out of 40. 

The biggest thrill was running back and pushing my young soldier to keep going and finish, then running the last mile with my best friend, my wife Gwen, she has overcome her dislike of running to power through three 10 plus mile races in the last 6 months.  Great work to all. 

Next Hurdle is putting together a successful 5th annual Haley's Team Twilight 5k for 25 June. 

Friday, June 3, 2011

One Day till my first major event of 2011

After training since March for this race I think I am ready.  I started the training in Afghanistan at 3,000 plus feet above sea level.  That along with other conditions were awesome to train under.  Now the last few weeks of training have been at home in TN.  The runs have been good and I feel great.  On Sunday I will represent team Fisher house in the Navy Ten Nautical Miler in Millington, TN with my wife at my side.  This will truly be a great day for us. 

I hope everyone running this weekend has swift feet and clear paths.  Happy Running all!!!

What is your definition of Patriotism

I am biased in my opinion of this subject.  I serve with pride for my country and do it voluntarily.  There are many thousands just like me who wake up each day and put their uniform and boots on to perform our duties.  Does this make us Patriots?  Not this alone, so no. 

A Patriot is someone who will stand up for their country no matter what is going on in politics or in the military.  On 9-11-01 I was deployed in support of operations in the middle east.  I saw first hand the patriotism in Soldiers with me swell beyond belief when they found out our country was kicked in the ass by a coward.  We all noticed when we got home how our hometowns had become patriotic with flags everywhere.  It was amazing to see that much pride showing.  Then about two years later those same patriotic towns did not even have a flag up and if they did they were dirty and shredded.  It was a bit embarrassing but it was not unexpected.  It does not take a scholar or a nightly news hack to see that our country is based on the flavor of the week and most times that flavor is what ever that nightly news hack is feeding. 

When Hurricane Katrina destroyed the gulf states the outpouring of support to the region was great, the outpouring of criticism to a sitting President was horrible.  The way people complained was as if they thought he could control the weather and purposely directed the hurricane into New Orleans.  This was not the case however the problem sat with the bureaucrats in almost every department in government.  The outpouring of support was awesome, it was not patriotic however,  it was human nature. 

These are just two recent historical issues that showed Americans at their best and worst. 

Back to my original question of myself.  Does being a Soldier make us Patriots?  Definitely not alone.  You have to still serve with pride and spread our values around the world.  Let people know you are proud to be an American each day you wake up.  This is even when you wake up and the weight of the world is on your shoulders.  By international means we are still a young country however we have advanced a long way in the short time we have been around.  These advances have led to us having people hate us.  We do not need to hate ourselves. 

So when you travel or you meet travelers here, let them know you are American and you are proud.  Cockiness is ok in this instance. 

Be patriotic all year not just when it is commercially convenient.