In a Matter of Three Months

I haven’t posted anything in quite a while; that part is pretty obvious. Many posts were started and edited; however, I failed to publish them. The last was published on February 29th, before I volunteered to work as a bus captain for the Skyway 10K. A lot happened during that run, some good, some bad. It was a beautiful day for most but a tragic day for some. I wrote about Justin Doyle, the 48-year-old who lost his life during the final mile of the run. He was a husband, stepfather, brother, and the founder of a local charity organization that helps those diagnosed with cancer. Sadly, it never got posted. It will.

Who could’ve ever predicted this drastic change in our global society? A pandemic. Nearly 4.58 million people have contracted COVID-19 globally, and 309,000 have died; 1.45 million confirmed infected and 87,697 deaths in the United States (as of this writing). This horrible virus spread quickly and changed lives in unimaginable ways. As days go by, there becomes more of a chance that you will know someone impacted. A former colleague’s mom died from this disease, and a current colleague’s former classmate also succumbed to it. State and local governments enacted stay/safer at home orders, required non-essential businesses to close, and events to be canceled, including every race that I planned on running this year. All within three months!

As a county employee, part of my assigned duties is to serve as the Deputy Planning Section Chief for the Emergency Operation Center (EOC). This position requires coordination among agencies, data collection, setup of testing sites, and donations coordination. My team and I have been busy trying to do our part to keep the virus at bay. Fortunately, it has helped. Unfortunately, we are not out of the woods just yet. As the State of Florida begins phases to opening up, the uncertainty of whether revenge from the virus will be sought causes increased anxiety. When should we consider the loss of life acceptable? When should be take the risk to avoid a complete collapse of our economy? I’m not an expert, and I don’t know the answer; however, I do know that people need to do there part to protect themselves and others. Wear a mask, wash your hands, cough, and sneeze into your elbow, stay at least 6-feet away from others, and avoid getting together in groups. These are easy and effective ways to prevent the spread.


I’ll be writing more on this topic and others in the coming weeks. For now, take care of yourself and do your part to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Our lives depend upon it.

We are one day closer to this being over! Stay strong!

If I can do it, so can you…uh, not so fast.

Recently, I noticed a few stories on Facebook regarding the common questions a runner receives. They cover the gamut who, what, why, how, when-questions. Each article is on the mark; however, it took running a marathon for me to become the subject of the questions.

The first question with good reason is always “you ran a marathon?” with the follow-up, “how many miles is that, 5 miles?”, and finally the self-deprecating, “I could never run 26.2 miles.” If ever faced with such a comment, you could respond one of two ways: nodding lightly without evidence of confirmation, or making a statement to diminish their self-deprecation: “if I can do it, so can you.” Now, hold on just a minute. I don’t think so!

Before you stop reading and decide to chastise me in the comments, hear me out. I’m not saying that they CAN’T run 26.2 miles. I would never say that. Indeed, anyone could. However, it takes a particular type of person to go through the rigorous training regimen to complete a marathon. The statement, “if it were easy, everyone would do it,” is true. Less than 1% of the population of the planet has attempted to run a marathon. There is a reason. Running a marathon is hard. Training for a marathon is even harder. A marathon is just the celebration after the 16 weeks of grueling tempo runs, Fartleks (yes, a real word), long runs, and recovery runs. It is the realization that you’ve conquered sprains, shin splints, plantar fasciitis, and hairline fractures (I know something about that). The preparation to run a marathon is like putting together a puzzle in a calendar. You can’t take shortcuts, and you can’t rush. You have to change your nutrition intake, change your habits, adjust your schedule, and re-prioritize your life. It is NOT easy!

Anyone can technically run a marathon if they have the determination. Yes, even new runners can beat my PB of 4:53:03; however, they’d need to work hard, train, make sacrifices, and show up at the starting line to do it. The moment you cross the finish line, I will welcome you to the fold.