Lilyans Run-Final Thoughts

The time for Lilyan’s Run has come and gone. Here are some thoughts on the event and the experience.

First things first, my running buddy Lilyan. She has not been doing the best but took the time to send me a very sweet video of encouragement. This whole thing was for her, to give everyone a glimpse of her accomplishments and story and to increase awareness about Cerebral Palsy. There was one time, during the third day, that I sat at the car and honestly thought I was done. The camber of the road following the days of hills was playing havoc with my ankles, knees and hips. Then I started thinking about her, all she has gone through and the fact that she can’t just stop when life gets tough… Lilyan and her family are such an inspiration to me and I hope to all of you as well.

The response from everyone was unreal. From the first time I told people of the idea until the actual event, everyone was nothing but supportive. Thanks to the help of Barry from KFD the media turned out for the start and really gave a boost to both the donations and the exposure as the combination of Facebook post and blog views hit 9,673 over the span of a few days.

Speaking of donations… when we thought of this we had no idea how to put on an event like this or how to raise any money. There were a lot of starts and stops and bumps along the way and the ball only really started rolling on that front at the very end. I told several of you that if it was a flop I would try to do something else next year but if it raised over $500.00 then I would do it again. Well, just like the start of this, I opened my big mouth and am committed now. Thanks to all of you Lilyan’s Run has raised almost $1,500 dollars so far and I am hopeful that more will come in.

Those of you that helped. There is of course no way I could have done any of this without my wonderful wife Ladonna and the kids. From the time I first broached the idea up through the actual event they were behind every step I took. I dragged them around the Southeast to different events and they slept on cots, in a camper, in vehicles and in hotels to help me train for this. Then during the event Dad and Ladonna drove the support vehicles, moving ahead a couple of miles at a time to alert others and care for me. Trey chipped in supplies, Celena, Guinness, Hibbs and Daniel ran sections with me. So many called, texted, posted and gave… I would have never made it without all of you.

Then there is the beauty that’s all around us. Driving as much as we do, we tend to forget how lucky we are to live where we do. Moving through at a slightly slower speed than I drive allowed me to really soak it in. Each hill was unique in it’s own way, every turn different. While every season is special in it’s own way, I absolutely love Fall and Fall in the mountains and valleys of this region are so colorful and vibrant. Thank you to Jackie for pointing out I needed to take pictures along the way.

This past year I have ran in places around the Southeast: Georgia, Middle Tennessee and Alabama and locally here in SW Virginia and NE Tennessee logging over 1,000 miles. From the rushing rapids of the Guest River Gorge to the gentle water of Fort Loudoun and Melton Lakes through the steep climbs of High Knob and Black Oak to the gentle roll of the Greenbelts and Greenways to the flatness of Melton’s Mile. Along the way we encountered hundreds of others. The insights from those that were far more experienced were instrumental in me being able to do this. Without the time spent with them I would still be somewhere in the middle of Hawkins County.

Oh… and the pictures along the way…

Checking supplies at the start
Interview with Times-News





TV Interview
The Green Belt





It Starts





















Lilyan’s Run By The Numbers

By the numbers:

4 days

23 hours 6 minutes of motion.

105.1 miles traveled

$10.00 a mile donated (so far)

4.5 miles an hour moving average

1 motorist helped with a flat

35.2 miles – most ran in one day

13.2 miles – least traveled in one day (last day)

1 random offer for a ride

115 Times-News shares

9673 Blog and Facebook views

3 Foot long Subway Cold Cut Sandwiches eaten.

11 Twenty ounce Power-Aids drank.

6 Fig Bars demolished

17 Half liter waters

3 other pedestrians passed on 11W

1 Dead sprint to get off a shoulderless bridge before a car got to me

2 offers of a drink

1200 mg ibuprofen

46 Saltstick Capsules

11 Bandaids

1 Box Red Velvet Oreos

4 Runners to keep me company (3 human, 1 dog)

2 times I almost had to jump out of the way.

1 Time a SCEMS ambulance passed without waving

27 Times various EMS and Law Enforcement waved or flashed lights (that I saw)

3 Vehicles used as support vehicle

1 Time I almost quit

2 times people I didn’t know told me they had read about me and encouraged me

5 times a random friend called while I was running and I answered

3 pairs of shoes worm while running

2 days it rained

2 days it didn’t rain

1 Box Nutrigrain Bars

1 Time I realized to late I could’ve had Pop Tarts instead! ­čÖü

5 pieces of pizza I ate after day three

1 night I iced my knees

3 total people that rode in support vehicles

4 Counties run through

11 Cities and Towns

7 road kill skunks

1 live skunk

3 dogs that gave chase

0 dogs that caught me

21(ish) “emergency roadside stops” (the more you drink, the more you stop)

1 car molding randomly flying off and whizzing by



Lilyan’s Run Days 3 & 4

Just a couple of quick notes about the last half of Lilyan’s Run. As promised, I will detail more in the next couple of days.

  1. The donations keep coming in! At last check we had raised over $1,400 for United Cerebral Palsy. Thank you all so much. Yes, the donation page will stay open for a while so it’s not to late to drop in a few dollars.
  2. The response thanks to the media coverage continues to amaze. When Ladonna told me that EMS1 had picked up the story, it’s very humbling to know. Friday evening after having gone twenty some miles I passed a man walking who told me he had read about it and not to stop. I’m pretty sure that law enforcement and EMS along the way were aware as they all waved, flashed their lights or bumped their sirens as they passed.
  3. Thank you all for the kind words. Just knowing that you were with me in spirit… I can not tell you how much that helped.
  4. Grainger County meant a decided change in the hills. They smoothed out and became long, gradual climbs. Unfortunately the 4 lane highway with it’s wide shoulder disappeared and was replaced by a very narrow and very angled (cambered) shoulder. My ankles and knees took a beating because of the difficult angle. At a couple of bridges there was no room whatsoever besides on the roadway. ┬áStill, the driver’s were mainly very courteous and I was really ready to find some flatter land.
  5. Knox County. Three great things came with Knox. While there were some larger hills there was once again a nice, wide shoulder. Daniel had come out to end Friday with me and joined me on and off for the last day. Just having him there was such a boost. The last thing was the end which meant a beautiful downhill through the Sequoyah Hills Greenway to the finish.
  6. My support crew AKA my dad and my wonderful wife. They mirrored me the whole time I was on 11-W, moving ahead 2-3 miles at a time. They warned others I was ahead, had food and drinks at the ready and attended to everything I needed. Without them this would have never happened.

Lilyan’s Run Days 1 &2

I can’t believe that Lilyan’s Run is finally here! After all the planning, all the training it’s finally here!! A few thoughts about the first couple days before I pass out and get after it again tomorrow. I will post more later about the experience as a whole. Everyone please remember that this whole thing is about a very special girl and her family.

#1) What a great last few days of donations. The donation amount has reached over $800.00 so far! It would be awesome to push it up to $1,000 if everyone could share with all your friends and co-workers.

#2) The media coverage has been awesome. The Kingsport Times News ran the story on the front page, WJHL put it on the evening news and WCQR was talking about it on the radio. All of that has lead to people that I don’t even know honking and waving as they pass by. A Hawkins County Deputy even stopped to offer me a drink and shake my hand.

#3) The support of my friends and family. As overwhelming as it is for people I don’t know to show support, that is nothing compared to how overwhelming the response has been from those I do know. It is very humbling to read the posts and know how many of you are behind me. During breaks reading your posts and texts really give me the boost I need to keep going.

#4) Adios Hawkins County! After starting the run on the Sullivan County side of Kingsport it was on to 11-W and Hawkins County. One can think that they are ready for a challenge but until one experiences it they have no way to know what it really is. I was not ready for the constant hills that Hawkins County brought and it kicked my butt royally. Still 35.2 miles the first day and 27.2 miles the second leave 42.4 miles to the finish. My thought was to get some serious miles in the 2-3 days and be able to do shorter distance later on and so far so good. Now let’s see what Grainger County has in store for us…

Good night and thank everyone for helping to make this a reality!