Air Force Marathon Blog

I am very excited to say that I was asked to write a blog for the United States Air Force Marathon. This is the first time I have been asked to write a guest blog. Please follow this link to see it and of course please come back here for more.



13.1 Unusual Side Affects of Running

  1. You strangely discover that this “free” activity has an ever growing impact on your budget as you burn through shoes, socks, clothes at an water fountainever increasing rate.
  2. Water becomes your constant companion. You chose it over coffee, soft drinks, everything and you are proud that you know where all of the water fountains are in town.
  3.  Drives to the store, work, church or on errands start to double as reconnaissance missions for new places to run. You feel it’s completely normal to stop and look at the condition of road shoulders, sidewalks or check out

    gas station bathrooms as you pass by.

  4. Following said drives you pour over google maps of the areas to determine if that path you saw was an actual trail or someones back yard. Where is the best parking, the best routes and how steep the hills truly are.
  5. Shower time starts to be more wow, how did I manage to chaff there time…Okay, enough said about this one!
  6. Listening to a new dance song followed by a 40 year old country song followed by metal seems completely normal during a run as long as the beat is the same. (And as strange as it might sound some Cash or Statler Brothers holds it’s own with Selena Gomez.)
  7. You start to say stranger and stranger things to people when you are training for a half or full marathon. Things like “I only ran 7 miles today” or “Does anyone want to run 16 miles on Saturday?”
  8. You dream about running and in your dreams you actually look and feel graceful!logo_1 (1)
  9. When you do a long run you ache but when you have to skip a long run you ache even more.
  10. During the winter wearing spandex tights starts to feel normal… At least when they are hidden under other layers.old shoes
  11. You own more worn out running shoes than every other type of foot wear combined. Hey, if you pay 120 bucks for a pair you can’t throw them away just because the rubber is gone, the toes are gone or they are falling apart can you?
  12. Your daily attire includes at least one of the following: old race shirt, old race socks, old race hat.
  13.  About three quarters of the way through a race, when you realize you might actually finish it, it all becomes worth it!

Continue reading 13.1 Unusual Side Affects of Running

North Boundary Greenway

Last Sunday afternoon it was time to stretch my legs and increase my mileage. Once again I turned my eyes towards the Northwest of Knoxville and hopefully drove to a place on a map that looked like it might provide a good run. When I arrived a small sign next told me the small dirt parking lot was indeed my destination: North Boundary – 95 Entrance.


I was dubious at first, the uneven parking area with only one car in it (mine) ended at a metal gate that blocked vehicles from a gravel road. I started up the road which was fairly level and straight and wondered what I was getting myself into this time. After cresting the first hill I was greeted with a nice straightaway and I was delighted to see that the road was bordered by thick evergreens to both sides. The first mile went by in solitude as the short but steep hills swept by. I was actually shocked when I encountered a biker, pedaling hard and moving fast towards me.

NBG map
The NBG entrances are marked by the green pins. The area to the west is the Black Oak Ridge Greenway.

Even though the surface was gravel it seemed very firm for running, not the lose and deep type but the well packed, shallow variety that you get a good push off of. A couple of other surprises I encountered were the number of side roads and trails along the way and the fact that each intersection was clearly marked with actual road signs. If only I had bothered to really look at the trail map before I started I could have probably come up with a good variety of turns and climbs. As I had not it seemed smarter to stay to the road I had started on since I was in unfamiliar terrain on a cold late afternoon.


Speaking of terrain, it is very beautiful and very hilly. I went 4.1 miles before turning and heading back and was rewarded with a small lake, a huge open field and small stream. According to my Garmin and phone app I had a total of 1300 feet of climb over the 8.2 miles. To put that in perspective, the Guest River Gorge has about 1500 feet over it’s length with all of it coming in the 5.6 mile return. So while the climbing was more spread out, it was none the less very challenging.

The intersecting tracks appeared to be mostly of the same quality as the one I was on with well maintained gravel roads but a few were more of the dirt, single track variety. While I will still have to explore more of these to know the overall quality of the whole greenway, my first impression is that the North Boundary is another quality place to get some real training miles in. In all I have only been on about 1/3 of the trails so it is easy to see getting a full 26.2 marathon training run or more in without leaving the North Boundary Greenway and the neighboring Black Oak Greenway awaits exploration also.

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It seems when things appear the worst the people around you are at their best. My last post, Sadness, was a reflection of my frustration with my current health issue and was perhaps my darkest post. Many of my friends rushed to offer encouragement with post, comments, calls and text and for that I am truly thankful. I am constantly amazed by how wonderful my friends and family are. Continue reading Angels

Boom Boom Skip

The first couple of days after my cardiac cath became an exercise in shear boredom. Sitting or laying around for a few days is not my idea of relaxation and I was very happy to get my car back and go for a few short walks. It was very surprising to me that the after effects of the procedure lasted as long as they did. Even though I was just sitting around there were periods of the arrhythmia, Boom Boom Skip Boom Skip Boom… Continue reading Boom Boom Skip

Three Months

Everyone, I just wanted to take a second and thank you all for your support. Three months ago this evening I started my website to try and reach more people and the only publicity has been by way of post and shares on Facebook and Twitter. As of now the site has had over 3800 unique visitors and while the majority of those have been local it has been viewed in 69 different countries.


Hundreds of people have learned about Lilyan and been inspired by her and her courage. I am trying to continue to share her story, mine and others as we go through this fitness journey. One thing that I have learned is it does not matter if you run, walk like my friend Bea, do cross fit like Shane, bike like Jay, yoga like Eric or something else, movement on a regular basis is a key to a healthier you.

This week Dr. Jeff Booher joined the site to provide suggestions and help on wellness and health. Hopefully a couple of other experts will also be added in the near future. The event calendar is finally up and running so if anyone has events they want added just let me know. You can also subscribe to the calendar to add it’s events to your personal one.

Thank you again for all of your support and please feel free to leave your comments or to share and post any of our pages or blogs.

The Journey Begins

I am late to this running game and I took a long strange trip to get here. Cutting to the chase, I found myself in my early 40’s, morbidly obese and in danger of not being able to perform my duties as a paramedic. My once 5’10” frame had compressed by an inch. I weighed 370 pounds and my waist was 56 inches. Something had to give or I was in serious danger of not only losing a job I loved but also of losing my life. Continue reading The Journey Begins