Thursday, November 25, 2010

Give Thanks Every Day

I'm trying to figure out what has happened over the years....the years between childhood and adulthood. The holiday season, these wonderful months between Halloween and New Years, has changed for me over the past 20-some years, but I'm sure it's not just me.

As I was growing up I remember Thanksgiving and Christmas were supposed to be days when you spent time with family and friends....period. Work was something that stopped on these days. Gas stations, restaurants, and stores would be closed. CLOSED. The only people who would be working were police, fire and rescue personnel, and we were thankful for them being there.

But over the years I have become frustrated with the commercialism of the holidays. The non-stop attitude of business. Black Friday. Stores open 24 hours or opening really early for some "great" deals. I certainly realize that we have become a 24/7 world. And Thanksgiving Day is an American holiday, so the rest of the world doesn't stop on Turkey Day.

Unfortunately I occasionally fall into the trappings of holiday work. I have customers that can only perform work during holiday shutdowns.

Today was one of those days. Now before you throw out a saying like "you poor thing" or "that sucks" hear me out. I signed up for this job knowing this would be part of my work. I've known about this for a couple of months. There was no way around it. It's my job.

So save the pity party.....that's not what I am looking for.

But I do want to share some of the thoughts I have had today as I flew to North Carolina and then drove to Virginia.

Thankful thoughts. Things I sometimes take for granted on a daily basis. Just a few that really popped in my brain today.

I have a job. I'm thankful that I have a job. There are so many people who are struggling due to the economic downturn....I'm glad to have a job. One that allows me to live comfortably, challenge me with projects, meet many people, help businesses run successfully, provide for my family, support my endeavors in athletics (triathlon, running, cycling, etc), travel around and possibly soon outside the USA. So I don't mind needing to work the occasional holiday.

Friends. Simple things like a quick phone call, short text message, an e-mail, blog comment or message on Facebook. Simple actions that help a person feel a sense of belonging and connection with those around us.

How are you? We haven't talked in a while. Let's go for a run.

It doesn't take much but it makes me thankful for the friends that I have.

Family. Everyone in my family understands my job and what it involves. We miss each other but also know it's not a permanent thing we have to deal with. My parents have always been highly supportive for everyone in the family. And during my 43 years of life their support has never diminished. Andrew and Amanda have made me proud as they continue to grow and develop into wonderful adults. I'm thankful for the choices they have made and how well they are doing now.

Most of all I am thankful for Aimee. She has been a solid foundation upon which I have continued to build my life. Each time I leave for a trip I know she will be there waiting for me at home. I'm thankful for the strength she has provided me during my struggles through work, triathlon, raising two great kids and just life in general.

So you see. I'm a little bummed about working on Thanksgiving. But I know what I am thankful for because of it.

Game On my friends.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Worlds apart....kind of

One of my excuses for not blogging, or not feeling like blogging, is that I have been traveling quite a bit for work. It's part of my job and I don't travel that often but sometimes when I do it's all piled up at once.

August was Philadelphia and Joliet, IL.
September was Chicago after the Rev3 race.
October was Detroit and Atlanta
November so far has been California and Detroit.

Currently I am in Southern Virginia. Danville. Go ahead, look it up. Despite being close to no where it is still a nice city.

So this morning Aimee and I got together with TriSaraTops for one hour of trail running. It was a little on the cool side with some drizzle. The temp was hovering around 50 degrees. We still managed to pull off a good run in t-shirt and shorts.

Aimee and I got home so I could shower before heading to the airport. My bags were packed the night before so I was good to go. So after an hour of being home I drove to the airport to catch my flight to Raleigh.

I arrived in Danville late afternoon and knew I still had some daylight to hit the Danville Riverwalk Trail. I had run this trail before and today would be my only opportunity to run during daylight hours.

At the hotel I noticed a flyer for the Bright Leaf Brew Fest on November 13th. Yep, just missed it. Where I was staying was also the host hotel.

Then as I was running on the trail I noticed signs for the Danville Half Marathon and 8K on November 13th. Yep, just missed that one also.

Regardless is was a great day for a two-fer. A very nice run with Aimee and one of my favorite chicks, then traveling 500 miles for run number two under blue skies and temperatures about 20 degrees warmer.

It's easy to get discouraged by the travel. It sucks being away from Aimee and family and friends and the normalcy of home. But I try to make the best of my travel situations.

I have run trails in the Kennesaw National Battlefield Park (Georgia), Chino Hills State Park (California), and the Danville Riverwalk Trail (Virginia) all in the span of three weeks.

Maybe it's not so bad after all.

Game On my friends.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

I'm so excited, and I just can't hide it.

Four days. Have you ever kept awesome news quiet for four days? It's not easy. Especially if it's something that no one would ever expect. I've been quietly wondering when to spill the beans.

I mean it was a personal choice. I thought about it for a very long time. Like four years long time.

The decision would be permanent.'s not anything like LeBron's "Decision". I've made other permanent decisions in much less time. But this one needed to be just right. Many options went through my head. I would think about it, then set it aside to be brought up at a later date.

Wow this was hard. When I did make up my mind I wasn't sure about sharing it. I kept remembering that it was a personal thing. Do I need to share it with everyone? Would people really care? I looked around at my friends and thought...yeah...they would want to know. And I'm a pretty open type of guy. I don't hold much back if people ask. I threw one little hint out there and no one picked up on it.

Now that I have given you the run around. Now that I have teased you enough.....

.....maybe I do sound like LeBron.....without the hour long show........

just keep scrolling down

and down.............

and down.........................

I am so fucking excited.....................

TA DA..................

Yeah...I know. You're jealous. As my Crossfit Coach says, "I have ink envy."

Don't hate me because it's awesome. Hate me because I did it first.......AND it's awesome.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Same old sh!t

Well the title of this post could mean many different things.

I could spew forth the typical reasons for why I have not been blogging very much but it would be the same old shit.

I could go back in time and write a race report for the Chicago Urbanathlon. But it would be the same old shit of me posting a race report waaaayyyyy after the fact.

I could spend my time on You Tube until I find that magical video that will inspire and motivate you. Yeah...same old shit.

I just need to hunker down and spew forth some ideas that are rattling around in my head. Like you haven't heard that same old shit before.

Let's see what I can some up with............

Friday, November 05, 2010

Family and Friends Friday - Joe and Anne

It's time again for Family and Friends Friday. MY original post about a trio of friends has to be postponed until next week because of a more urgent matter.

I have actually introduced you to Joe and Anne before about 18 months ago here. Their daughter Carina had passed from an unrecoverable birth defect. Well Joe has been battling cancer for several years now. He's been through surgery and the associated treatments. He has always been in good spirits and has never stopped living life. In fact he was out West on a hunting trip last month.

Unfortunately Joe is not doing well. I received word through a friend that he will be going down to Ohio State University for some tests to see what the next steps are for his cancer treatment. CAT scans have shown that this fucker (cancer) has spread to multiple areas of his body.

Can't this guy be left alone? He's been through enough. He's done his fair share of suffering with his previous cancer and the loss of Carina.

And I can't imagine what Anne is going through. I do know her support system consists of many family and friends. Aimee and I will be there for her also.

So despite the negative news I know my blog and Facebook friends, who are loaded with positive energy will help me send that energy and supportive thoughts towards Joe and Anne as they face this renewed battle.

Game On Joe. Beat this fucker down.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010


The first frost of the year settled over Northern Ohio last night. We woke up with the thermometer reading 25 degrees. I ran over to Coca Crossfit for my morning workout. Kate has been fighting with the gas company and still didn't have any heat for the box. With the inside temp. at 48 degrees I kept my hat and gloves on for the WOD. By the fifth and final round I did take them off.

After I got ready for work I was heating up the car and saw an opportunity to take some pictures.

Our rose bushes still had flowers and were kissed with frost.

Our Bird's Nest Spruce sports the frosty look very well.

Unfortunately the mums won't last much longer with the cold weather and frost.