Sunday, July 17, 2011

Backtracking a bit - Setting the background

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times.

So I have always been a little chunky. Not morbidly obese. At my heaviest in 2000 I was about 260 lbs ... which is pretty heavy for 5'10".

I guess I am athletic. I played baseball and basketball in high school. I am a rockclimber, snowboarder, mountain biker and backpacker. It has always seemed like I am the "biggest" one of all my active friends. It often shocks people that I am able to keep up or lead outings. Even at my biggest I was still capable of churning out fairly fast 5K times. In fact, I do have several trophies from age group victories in 5K races. If you need or want more information about my background feel free to send me an email.

Fast forward the story to January 1, 2011. At 223 lbs. I decided that I was tired of being called "big guy" or "big boy" when I was out in athletic or outdoor pursuits. After a New Year's Day ride with the Los Freeloaders cycling team I came home and looked through for racing events that were coming to the Scottsdale and Phoenix area. I found and signed up for the Desert Classic Duathlon on February 11th.

I trained quite a bit for that race. Most of my training was on the bike or in spin class because I was confident in my running abilities. On race day I was down to about 215 lbs. I had mostly been eating chicken, rice, beans and veggies (lots of Chipotle Burrito Bowls and Baja Fresh Bare Burritos). I competed in the Clydesdale division (200 lb +) at that race and took first place. The run shocked me. I did not train enough or in the right conditions. It was a fairly steep trail run. I also battled a hamstring pull and some intestinal issues after the transition from the bike to the run.

On February 12th, I vowed to myself and my friends that this would be my last "Clydesdale" event. I thought I was in search of something new. It turns out that the something I was searching for was deep in the recesses of my memories.

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