San Antonio Finish Line

San Antonio Finish Line
Jeremy, Jen and I rocked it!

Fraternity Centennial Celebration

Fraternity Centennial Celebration

Monday, December 27, 2010

2010 What a Year!!

Hello Readers!!

Looking back on 2010 all I can say is what a year!!! So many amazing things happened this year for me. In trying to recap the year I want to look at it from three phases; philanthropies, personal accomplishments and my running.

The first part of 2010 that I take the most pride in is related to philanthropies. 2010 was a very important year for me. I had the great pleasure in taking part and helping raise a great deal of money for the American Cancer Society by being on a couple Relay for Life teams. The feeling of helping such an important organization by raising money is great. Not only did I help raise money for this cause but I participated and walked through the night with my team. The experience was truly priceless. The amount of survivors walking and the spirit that everyone celebrates with is aw-inspiring. This was not the only organization that I had the pleasure of participating and helping. I spent a day helping with Special Olympics, another great experience. Watching the children participate and pure joy they experience can't help but make you smile and feel good. I also had the pleasure of working at Harvesters Food Bank with my co-workers on three separate occasions around the holiday season here. Lastly I helped organize and plan two volleyball tournaments, the first for Relay for Life the second for Childrens Hospital of Boston. Both tournaments were extremely successful and everyone had a great time for great causes.

The second phase of 2010 which was very special for me were major life accomplishments. In 2010 I graduated from Boston University with my Masters in Banking and Financial Services Management. This was a huge life goal for me. It is important to better ourselves and continue to educate ourselves as life is always changing. A second huge life accomplishment was purchasing and moving into my first house. For many years I had talked about making this huge decision and having finished my schooling I thought this was the opportune time. I have loved the feeling of being in my own place the satisfaction it brings is hard to describe.

The last phase of 2010 that was so special has been my running. The list of accomplishments in my running is so great this year. The year started with quickly with the "Love to Run" four mile run, I was at a consistent level with my running at that point but had not started to raise it to the next level. In late May or early June my running would begin the phase of reaching a new level. This was the point I decided to devote myself 100% to running and committed to doing the marathon. The marathon itself is a difficult and amazing feat but the preparation and training leading up too it are what allowed me to reach the next level. I completed in several races in preparation and continued to see my times improve. With each new week a new milestone was reached. September came along and competed in the Patriots Run, where I did an 18 mile run. By reaching this mile mark I noticed my times on others distances really coming down. I did the Kansas City half marathon in 2:05 which was a personal best by over 15 minutes. I have now recorded my first official 5K in under 30 minutes when I finished in 28:20. Last but certainly not least saw the completion of the marathon which most of you already know. This is still one of the most defining moments in my life. Most people say I am a different person since, I don't think I am truly different I am just supremely confident now in everything in my life.

Looking back 2010 was one of the best years in my life. I have met so many exceptional people in the last year and am proud to have each of these people in my life. To every single person that was in my life this year I thank you. You inspire me onward and I can't wait for what 2011 has to offer. Everyone have an amazing New Year celebrate safely and remember "Life is short live it hard"!!


Sunday, December 5, 2010

Tis the Season, goodbye 200's and 40's!

Hello Readers!

This week marks the start of the holiday season. This is one of my favorite seasons as it is the season of giving. I am asking for support this week for my friend Jen. I have never fully explained Jen and my history. Two years ago Jen came to me at US Central where I work and told me she wanted to start running. We started running between 3-5 miles three days a week over lunch and developed a great friendship. She has now become one of my best friends. She has been there to support me through tough times, she has been there for me in my finest moments as well. She attended my Aha moment filming, she pushed me to new heights in my running and she willed me to the finish line in my marathon. I am blessed to have her in my life and want to pay it forward and help Jen in an incredible cause.

Jen and another friend of mine Jeremy will be running the Boston Marathon in April. In order to run Boston Jen is raising money for the Children's Hospital of Boston. She will have a specific child that she will be supporting. In the spirit of the holiday season I am going to pledge $50 toward her webpage. I will also donate an extra dollar for each person who reads this blog and donates toward her cause no matter how large or small the amount. Anyone who reads this and donates please let me know so I can follow through on my promise. You can reply to the blog, reply on Facebook, or reach me via email at or The following is a link to her page this tells her story and about her family.

With the holiday season upon us I want to share some very positive news in my own weight loss quest. I have now gone under the 200 pound mark. I am sitting at a solid 195 pounds. This is the first time since I was a junior in high school I have been at this point. I also bought and comfortably wear size 38 jeans. This quest is not over, 200 pounds was a number I originally had targeted, but I will tell everyone I have more to lose. My next target number is 175 pounds and 36 jeans. I know this next 25 pounds will be the toughest to lose as I don't have nearly as much to shed. This will make me push myself even more. This last week was the first time since the marathon I fully pushed myself physically as I wanted to give my body a slight rest. I swam over 5500 yards and ran about 12 miles. I know it is important to get right back at it as during this season I am sure I will enjoy a bit to much holiday cheer and a little to much amazing food.

In the spirit of the season and paying it forward, people who read this and have a specific goal running, or training wise and need assistance reaching that goal get in touch with me and I will do anything possible to push you to that level. Happy Holidays! In my next blog I will review year 2010 an incredible year for me personally.


Sunday, November 28, 2010

Pride, Accomplishment, and Relief what's next?

Hello Readers!

It has been two weeks since I completed my marathon. I have had a lot of people ask me to try and put into words the emotions felt during and upon completion of the marathon. After reflecting and remembering that moment, I can tell you the PRIDE is the first emotion that went through my mind. This was a moment I had been preparing for, for over six months of my life. So much effort went into getting to the finish line that my sense of pride was at an all time high. To know that mentally when I set my mind to doing something and being able to deliver brings an amazing sense of pride. I remember immediately after crossing the line my friend Jen hugged me and said she was so proud of me. At that moment it truly hit me that others felt the same sense of pride in me that I did.

ACCOMPLISHMENT is the second emotion that I immediately felt. This was a huge goal in my life, I had always told my friends, family and other very important people in my life that I really wanted to do a marathon in my lifetime. This is something that is a huge accomplishment for anyone to complete in their lifetimes. In the actual moment and as I was coming to the finish line a tingling feeling came over my body, I was probably a bit overwhelmed at the actual moment because of the mental anguish experience when it is you, the road and your thoughts for five straight hours. I mentioned earlier that Jen hugged me and said she was so proud, this actually caused me to break down for a minute. My brother and Jessica both called about 10 minutes after to congratulate me and say how proud they were this also again the overwhelming feeling of the moment caused me to break down.

The last emotion that I felt was RELIEF. This may sound silly but those who know me best know the amount of pressure I always put on myself to be successful. I had let so many people know that I was doing this that when the moment arrived I didn't want to disappoint everyone or myself. When I reached mile 25 relief kicked in as I knew at that point there was absolutely no way that I would not be finishing that race. That is when all the feelings started to take over and when I actually started feeling all of the emotions mentioned above.

My trainers and friends have all asked what is next, what will I strive to push myself to next. I did mention that I will do another marathon. I think trying to complete one a year is a legitimate goal, this will allow me to stay in very good physical and mental shape. The thing is I am always looking for something new and bigger to achieve. I have said that next year I am going to get into triathlons as I am a good swimmer as well. My next goal will be to do an Olympic sized triathlon. This is around a mile swim, 30 mile bike ride and 10K run (6.2 miles). If things go well with training and performance maybe a half iron man could be in the future. It is my belief that one must always set high goals to get the most out of their life.

This is Thanksgiving week, I hope everyone had an incredible holiday but it is important for me to thank everyone for all the congrats received in the past two weeks. To achieve these lofty goals one has to have a strong support team backing them. You as readers continually keep me motivated and on my toes. If you are reading this on Facebook take a look at the pictures titled before and after. You can see what the hard work and effort put forth really do. There is a picture of me at my best friend Jay's wedding and then me on Thanksgiving doing a 5K with him and his daughter. It is very possible you may not recognize the person in the before photo. It still shocks the heck out of me. Thank you all for pushing me and making me the best I can be.

Life is short, live it hard!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Destination Marathon Achieved!

Hello Readers!

This weeks blog brings me great pride. On Sunday I completed my first marathon in San Antonio, Texas. The day was a perfect day for running, the temperature was about 55 degrees and cloudy. There was an anxious crowd on hand of approximately 30,000 runners. With this many runners they start you in stables of 1,000 runners. My stable was 24, each stable starts approximately 2 minutes apart. That meant it took me roughly 45 minutes to make it to the starting line, which meant my anticipation continually built. Finally the moment came and it was my opportunity to start. I took off like I was shot out of a cannon which was probably not the best way to begin a 26 mile journey but I couldn't be contained. People had told me the key is to run the first two miles the slowest and get into the race, but in my excitement I completely ignored all advice and forged ahead. The race took me all over San Antonio, I briefly saw the Alamo, I saw several historic Spanish missions but I was focused in on the destination so many of the sites were missed.

Everyone hears stories about people hitting the wall in marathons this is definitely true. About 17 miles in I was mentally prepared for GU packets which are basically pure energy packets and didn't receive them at that mile mark, the course took me on a long one mile uphill which beat me up mentally and physically. The key is to remain strong in your belief, I did walk for about half a mile in this stretch before giving myself a tongue lashing and forging on. At mile 23 I began cramping up a bit which was a new experience for me, I had been taking an average of two waters and two cytomax (gatorade substance) at every station after 8 miles into the race, but it apparently wasn't enough. So at the last three stations I took on three of each which carried me through.

Mile 25 finally rolled through and I knew I was almost done, the last mile was lined with tons of people cheering you on which was very important to helping complete the course. At mile 26 the course took a turn at the Alamodome and went straight up a giant hill. My friend Jen who had run the half earlier came back to the end to watch me finish. This is when the greatest and funniest part of my marathon experience began. Jen saw me turning for home and getting ready to climb this final mountain. She jumped the fence, ran toward me and started yelling at me to get up that hill, not to quit on the race at that point. She yelled "you make this hill turn for home and have 100 yard left, smile damn it!! This is your marathon this is your finish" I had my own Jillian Michaels on the course motivating me to drag my tired woosy legs across the finish line. There it was, it was over just like that. I was so excited and so overcome with emotion that I didn't want to take my finisher medal. I told Jen that is not my medal, mine is Red like my race bib. She just laughed and said "No that is your medal, as she forced me to take it and look at it. After taking some water I realized she was correct and it clearly said Marathon Finisher on it. Thanks friend!

Next week I will talk about the emotions and the feelings that one experiences when running 26.2 miles, it is truly an amazing feeling. I wanted to send a special thanks to Jen, Jeremy and Troy for making the journey down and being a part of the experience. I wanted to thank all my friends and family who have been a part of my marathon journey, who received the text updates on how I was doing, who have continually pushed me to stretch my goals in life. You are all so special to me and this glorious moment in my life would not have been possible without all of you. I leave you this week with my favorite quote, life is short live it hard. Take each day and truly make the most of it.


Friday, November 12, 2010

Anticipation is almost over!

Hello Readers!

It has been a few weeks since my last update. Marathon week is finally upon me! There has been a lot of build up for this moment. I leave for San Antonio on Saturday morning at 7:55 and get there around 1:30 in the afternoon thanks to a relatively long layover in Denver, Colorado. This is a week I wasn't sure would come soon enough. The training has been very long and very grueling, but well worth it from a fitness standpoint. I have had to tighten the belt another notch as again I am starting a trophy to showcase where the journey started. My new pants bought back in March now are too big and sagging on me, and I feel like a million dollars right now. This week I have been in full taper so as not to drain my legs, I still exercised well with boot camp on Monday, a 5 mile run on Tuesday, a 4-5 mile walk of the dog and Bosu/Weights class Thursday at the "Y". This may sound like a lot but this was a light week for me. I don't want anyone to think that I am slacking, as I give myself no real rest I am signed up for a 5K the following Sunday in KC and then another 5K on Thanksgiving with my best friend Jay.

As exciting and as much as I am ready for the moment to arrive, the moment where I test my endurance, my mental fortitude and just about everything I have in me. I am just as excited about the trip. I have never been to San Antonio and Jen, Jeremy, Troy and I all have a very exciting weekend lined up. When we arrive we are going to the expo to pick up our packets in final preparation for the race, but then we are going to experience some of the great history and fun that San Antonio has to offer. We plan on hitting up one of the boat cruises through the famed river walk area, we plan making the most of the day. We have a dinner lined up that night a highly recommended Italian place to complete the carb loading for the next day. Once the race is complete we have plans to paint the town red that day by catching the Chiefs/Broncos game somewhere and indulging in some Margarita's on the river walk at Casa Rio. I don't want everyone to worry, I certainly plan on rehydrating before partaking in the adult beverage section.

In a random switch, I wanted to pass along that I am finally in my new place. The move went very well thanks to JJ, Jessica, Jay, Brad, Uncle Tony and my mom. I got moved in last Saturday and have enjoyed everything so far. When people get the opportunity to see the place I am very proud of my stadium (living room) I call it the stadium as it my personal version. I have a a picture of Farout Field (Mizzou Football Stadium) that was painted hanging above my big screen, along with my autographed picture of Sean Witherspoon and Tony Gonzalez so it feels like a total man cave. I still need to add my George Brett Autographed Jersey to this room but people will love the sports stadium feel. No worries, I will have a room at some point that has a little less bachelor pad feel, that just takes a little time. I am very excited to host people at any point so don't be afraid to let me know if you are in town and need a place to crash. My addresss is 4200 Booth Street, Kansas City, KS 66103. I live in an awesome area of Kansas City approximately half a mile from KU Med Center, one mile from Westport and one mile from the Plaza.

Have a great weekend all, I will update you with race results early next week and try to describe all the feelings and emotions of completing this part of my journey known as life.

Life is short, Live it Hard!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

In the Home Stretch

Hello Readers!

The last couple of weeks have been very busy but extremely important for my from a personal standpoint and a physical standpoint. I am in the home stretch for my marathon. The official date is November 14th which is less than a month away. I am extremely excited for the event to finally get here. I have purchased the hotel room, booked my flights and started asking for great places to visit while in San Antonio. Readers please feel free to comment or reply on FaceBook of places you recommend in San Antonio I will do my best to try as many as possible. I have some friends who are coming along and want to send a shout out to them for taking times out of their busy lives to support me in my goal. Jen and Jeremy thank you both for how much you have contributed to keeping me on track and inspiring me through this process. Chip you never allow me to slack in class or when you train me I do hope you are able to make the trip down. Stay tuned later for the final results from San Antonio!

It is too early to be handing out too many thanks as I have not completed the journey yet. In the past couple of weeks I have pushed myself to the limit though. I have done my longest run ever of 22 miles which has me feeling like nothing can stop me. This previous Saturday I competed in the Kansas City half marathon. I ran the same half two years ago the improvement in my time was over 13 minutes. I finished in 2:05 which is an average mile of 9:37 absolutely incredible for me. I have never broken 10 minute miles in any race. Once again my Jen and Jeremy were there with me for the day. They both did incredible and finished in 1:48 way to go both of you. When I mentioned earlier I have been pushing it to the limit, I have probably averaged around 2:30 of gym time a day. My body is in the best physical condition it has ever been in which helps keep me inspired daily to continue this journey. Hopefully you as readers are seeing great results as well, if you ever need inspiration or someone to help you reach your goals don't hesitate to ask as I love being a part of others success as well.

I mentioned above I have been very busy from a personal standpoint as well. A couple weeks back I mentioned that I was in the process of purchasing a house. I wanted to let everyone know that I should be closing on the house next week!! This is very exciting for me. I can't wait to open up my home to many of you whether it be for a party, to watch games, or to stay with me when you are in town. I will plan on posting some pictures once I am in and the furniture is moved in.

Happy Exercising,

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Hello Readers!

I am sitting at home right now watching The Biggest Loser on TV, the show is always inspirational and tonights episode is no exception. The show brings back scary memories for me. Tonight is like a flashback. Several years ago these contestants were me. I was that person who could not even think of finishing a workout without feeling total exhaustion. The great thing about the show is watching the contestants realize what the weight was doing in their life. This was no different for me. I went through many of the same emotions the contestants are going through right now. I had the low confidence, I had the feelings that I was not worthy of others but like the contestants times change and confidence is sprung. For those who follow and struggle with their weight as well, remember maintain your confidence if you put in the effort the results will come as will personal happiness.

Continuing on the flashback theme, the past couple weeks have brought back memories of grade school and high school. My work held a kickball tournament. I truly forgot how much fun playing kickball is. All rules remained in tact, I am now known as the hitman at work as I got a throwout and managed to knock the lady in the mud with my throw. The moment was great as I was then tackled by one of her teammates in the mud. The moment is still being talked about at work and people are still laughing at the incident. The day was a true blast and all involved in the tournament had a blast.

My high school flashback moment being relived it the dreaded two-a-days. Those who played any high school sport remember these grueling workouts. I have recently been putting in two efforts a day no matter what I have done. I have been meeting Chip a personal trainer at the YMCA in the morning for sessions, then make sure I continue to make class or do my runs at night. This last Saturday I put in a 16 mile run then went and played a full three sets of tennis. This Saturday will be my biggest test of the year, I am going to run 20 miles in the morning then I have my friend Jen's volleyball tournament where I am guaranteed at least 5 volleyball matches. I will let everyone know next week if I am still standing!

Lastly I don't have a flashback moment but want to give everyone an update I am six weeks out of the marathon, training is fully on course and I will be set to finish. Thank you to everyone who continues to push me and make sure I stay on course for this. I am in the process of getting the hotel booked, the goal is on the famed Riverwalk. This will be my first experience in San Antonio and I have heard everything about the city is incredible. I am pumped for the trip as this is one of my largest goals in life to complete this, thanks to those committed to making the trip to share this special experience with me. You are some of the main reasons I am where I am today.

Have a great week!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Status Updates

Hello Readers!

It has been a while since my last post as I have been extremely busy here the last couple weeks between travelling for fun and getting in my running. A couple weeks ago I mentioned a run I was competing in the Patriots Run. I actually competed in this run last weekend and hit my target amount of 18 miles. Everyone will be pleased to know I completed this faster than expected. I recorded a time of 3:23:01 which was a very good clip for me. This was one of those days I have mentioned where everything felt very good. I was done with my first three miles in 28:30, my first 6 miles in 59:00 and my half marathon in 2:14:30 all which are personal bests for me. This race is extremely inspiring which might have been what caused me to hit these personal records, or it may just be that my training has me more prepared than ever.

I need to post some new pictures soon as this running is showing up in how I look. I had a few things happen last week that shocked me and let me know the effort is paying off. My friend and follower Josh was in from Orlando, I met him and his family for a Royals game. Josh had my ticket and I was meeting them at the stadium, I showed up at the gate to pick up my ticket and he didn't recognize me. This was a great personal feeling, someone who knows me so well and had seen me as recently as two years ago wasn't able to recognize me. A second great moment was Jessica my sister in law bought me a size large Mizzou Dri Fit polo shirt for my graduation. I informed her that I don't wear a size large, she said have confidence. Jessica was right I wore the shirt to the Mizzou/Illinois game and it fit very nicely. This should let everyone stick with your regiment and the results will come!

I wanted to update people on a few more things, last week my training hit a 40 mile week. I mentioned the 18 on Saturday, I also completed 15 on that Monday and two four - five mile runs in the mid week. I also wanted to let everyone know who hadn't seen on Facebook I have purchased a house. I am in the process of finishing up on the financing and submitting my bids, but everything appears on pace to close on November 2nd. This will pain many of my friends and followers but I will be living in the state of Kansas. I didn't think I would ever say that in my lifetime, but when you like a specific house you make certain sacrifices. There is no worry as I will never become unfaithful or unloyal to my beloved Missouri. I will fly my Tiger flag with great pride. Until next week, Happy Exercising and continue to live life to its fullest!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Joys and Pains of Running

Hello Readers!

This past weekend I ran a 5K here in KC with my friend Kerri, this experience brought out the reasons why I have so much fun with running now. Running and exercise provides you with an awesome opportunity to catch up with great people and get to know so many more. Kerri and I were old college friends, she is married to another great friend of mine from Drury Mike. I am unlike many runners I love to chat while I am on the course, I find it takes my mind off the actual running. On Saturday I had a blast talking to Kerri during the race and hearing that she used to dislike running but that she has found that recently she really enjoys it and looks forward to running more races to come. I think we may have even convinced Mike to join us on my favorite race every year the St. Patty's Day 4 miler. The true joy though was seeing the excitement on Kerri, Mike, and their children Audrey and Mike's faces when Kerri crossed the line and set her new personal record that morning. Congrats Kerri you made that a very fun race for me! I can't wait for the next one.

A second joy with running is the fact that every race has a post race celebration. This race was especially fun as it was Mizzou versus the dreaded Jayhawks. In the post race celebration the glorious news was announced that to no surprise more Mizzou fans showed up and raced. The post race also provided fun as the bar sponsoring the race provided me with two complimentary Bloody Mary's, that is a fun treat for putting in the miles. The post race celebrations always provide an opportunity to talk to other competitors and swap stories on how the race went for them, many times these can be very interesting or inspirational stories which are great to hear.

The name of this post was the joys and the pains, so there was a second part to this weeks blog "pain". Pain can refer to many things, for me this week it meant exhaustion. This was my craziest and most intense week of training yet, and for some unknown reason I forgot my iPod so it was just me, my mind and the open road. Just to give an idea of the week I put in Monday I ran 4.5 miles and did my boot camp class, Tuesday night I put in a ten miler, Wednesday I got up early and spun, Thursday and Friday I took some well needed rest, Saturday I competed in the 5K in the morning but felt guilty as that is normally my long run day so I put in a 1700 meter swim that afternoon just to get the guilt off of my conscious, and finally Sunday I did a 14 mile run. I am actually exhausted just writing about that. In the end when the destination is reached the joy and the pain will all be worth it.

Have a great week, live life hard it is short!

Monday, August 23, 2010

No Turning Back Now!

Hello Readers!

Last Thursday I reached the point of no return. I am now officially signed up for the San Antonio Rock and Roll Marathon. This was a giant step! I have been saying all along I was going to do this, I have been logging the training and preparing but until you actually pay the money and enter the race there is still time to back out. This is no longer the case. Training wise I am in very good shape, for the most part I have been very diligent in my training. I did have a minor setback this weekend as I went out of town and didn't get my long run in, but do not fear I plan to absolutely crush it this week.

This weekend marks an exciting day. My friend from college Kerri will be running a local 5K here in KC with me. She is new to the running world so hopefully this is a great experience for her and just the first of many runs yet to come. We are running the rivalry run which will be a ton of fun, this run is Mizzou fans versus Kansas fans. The good news is currently more Mizzou fans are signed up for this run, lets hope it remains that way. I am hoping that maybe this will be the 5K where I break the 30 minute mark.

I have already put this out on facebook, but for you who are not using facebook a couple weeks back I mentioned that I did a interview for an Aha moment for Mutual of Omaha. I received the link and I am very happy with it. For those who do not know me about 8 years ago I reached a peak weight and size, since I have lost almost 160 pounds and 14 pant sizes you will see a photo in the link where I am almost unrecognizable. Personally I keep this photo with me at all times to remind me of the transformation accomplished in my lifetime. Here is the link to my video hopefully this will show that hard work pays off and inspire others to reach all their goals as well. hopefully everyone enjoys.

Until next week have a great week of exercise!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Awesome Opportunities for Charity and Exercise

Hello Readers!

I am very excited as I post my blog this week. This previous week my intensity level continued to increase with my marathon preparation. I put in close to 30 miles. My longest run was 11 miles on Saturday that was sandwiched with 2 four milers and and a 6.5 miler. I mixed in some standard cross training of walking, boot camp, weightlifing and finally swimming. The effort is starting to show in my stamina and according to others in my looks. I have had several people ask this week if I have lost weight, thank you to those people as that is always motivational and inspirational for me to continue this effort. I want to share a couple of great opportunities coming up that will allow you to exercise and help out with great charities.

One of my biggest inspirations in running is my friend Jen, you see me mention her name often as she continues to push me along with my brother and sister-in-law to reach these lofty goals. Jen is running the Boston marathon next April which is the most prestigious marathon one can run. She is raising money for a great charity which is the Miles for Miracles. This charity raises money for the Childrens Hopital in Boston. One of her prime fundraisers is the Dig for Kids Charity Volleyball tournament on October 2nd at Volleyball Beach. You have heard me pimp Beach Volleyball and the incredible workout it provides recently. This in an opportunity for it not to be ridiculously hot and get out to support a great cause. The following is a link to the site for this tournament please get out and support it: There will be some great raffles, a silent auction, and many other opportunities to win prizes and have a ton of fun.

The second event I am going to mention is the Patriot Run in Olathe. This run goes from noon to 9:11 PM and is run on September 11th every year. This cause is definitely near and dear to most peoples hearts as this is for our soldiers. What makes this event so special is that the soldiers in Afghanistan are actually taking part at the same time as the runners here in Olathe. I will be particpating in this event with my co-workers at USC. This will be the part in my marathon training where it gets really difficult as my schedule has be due to complete 17-18 miles on that day. I will be out there an running my set amount. These distance runs require an insane amount of phyical exertion so I would love for followers to make it out that day and run a few laps with me. The course is one mile in length. This will probably take me around 3 1/2 hours to run. Again I challenge you to make it out, support the cause and help push me to my limits that day. You can sign up for the event at

Readers I look forward to seeing or hearing from you on your adventures. Please support these great events and causes and happy exercising this week!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Special Moment

Hello Readers!

Last Friday I was given an opportunity to share my story with Ah-ha moments, this is sponsored by Mutual of Omaha. This is a traveling Winnebago where people share when the moment was in their life that caused them to change in a positive direction. I was very touched that this blog was being followed and they wanted me to share with so many people. I will publish my link in about three weeks after they send it to me for everyone to see. This blog is exciting for me as I enjoy sharing tidbits I have learned along the way and trying to inspire others to reach any goals in their life as well. FYI this link will have pictures of a couple props I took one was my pants when I was a size 54 inch waist and the photo of me at my peak weight, I think many of you will not even recognize me in the photo and be shocked at the pants.

This upcoming week will mark me getting fully back to the grind. I did a very good job of exercising last week and incorporating some fun new things into it. I competed in a Sand Volleyball Tournament for charity which was a true blast. I don't think people realize how exhausting this is, I woke up a little sore and very tired the day following. This is highly recommended for those who do not enjoy running. I will be joining league during the week at night as I had so much fun. A point I always try to make is exercising should be fun. When it becomes routine and no fun then the benefits and the great feeling starts to fade.

Not to fear everyone, I did not let my running slip as I still got all the necessary training runs in. Getting back into the grind means it is time to ramp up the mileage. So far my longest training run has been 10 miles, but this week I will begin extending this out. I will begin increasing some of my shorter runs from 4 to 6 miles as well. I have new set of running shoes just itching to push my body and mind to the next level. For those of you that are new to the running scene you want to make sure you get new shoes every 500-600 miles you put on them otherwise you will risk injury.

Everyone have a great week!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Mental Challenges

Hello Readers!

This week I wanted to touch on the mental challenge incorporated with losing weight, running and just about everything involving sports. Last week I mentioned that I would be running the Rock the Crossroads run, I did complete this run. This day defined why running is so mentally challenging. The temperature outside was 95 with about 80% humidity a typical Kansas City summer day. The run was located in the middle of downtown which meant with the concrete surroundings the temperature felt about 105 degrees. I have been training for a long time and generally have no troubles completing a 5K without walking but the elements of this day caused me to be mentally weak. I walked in three separate sections of the course. My physical conditioning was not the problem, I was not mentally in the game that night. I had convinced myself ahead of time that it was too hot to run.

This is a mistake I will not make in November when it is time for the Marathon. People who have run marathons tell you that the most difficult part is the mental games you must play when running. Having run several half marathons I can attest you must show up in the right frame of mind. In running you are given several different conditions and they can change during the course of the race, it is imperative that you have prepared yourself ahead of time for the challenges that could and will be faced.

Mental games are not just associated with running they play a very important part in the entire weight loss process. Losing weight is just as much mental as physical. By this I mean that in order to lose weight and sustain your weight loss you must be in the right frame of mind. True weight loss is a change of life style, you can lose 10 pounds in a week but in order to keep that 10 pounds off you have to commit to maintaining the exercise regiment or dieting scheme used to lose the initial weight. This is something I struggled with in earlier years of my life but have since learned. This is the reason why I continue to see results and will continue to see the positive results in my life. Have a great week readers and fellow runners!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Spirit of Competition

Hello Readers!

It has been a few weeks since I last posted. I have been extremely busy with some celebrating. I was celebrating my official passing of my last class and graduation from Boston University. Thanks to all the readers who made it out to celebrate with me! I am excited for the coming weekend as I am running my first race since Februrary. The spirit of competition is very important in keeping my training fresh. Even though I have not been blogging, I still have been very dilligent in my training. I am up to 10.5 miles as my longest run right now. I will be pushing this out to 12 miles over the weekend as I do need to be upping the mileage on long runs.

I mentioned above that the spirit of competition is important. Running is a very lonely sport when you train. This is nice at times as you are able to reflect on a great deal, it allows you to clear your mind and provides a great deal of solitude, but training can't get you that sense of competition that most of us truly desire. I am one of the most competitive people on the earth and many of you have witnessed this first hand and can attest to it, but if you have not witnessed it I hate losing. Many times I do not react well to losing. When it comes to running races I have already conceded to the fact that I am not the best, but that doesn't mean my competitive spirit accepts the defeat. The fun part about racing is seeing the continued time improvements as many times for me it is me versus the clock not necessarily me versus runners. The second great part about the race is seeing many of the same faces out and talking to other runners before and after racing.

The run I am running is the Rock the Crossroads 5K, this is in downtown Kansas City and is followed by a concert at Grinders which should be a blast. I will be running with my good running friend Jen. If anyone reading this is looking for a good time sign up it is on Saturday night at 7:00. This will be my first night race and I am a bit concerned as the weather forecast is for 92 degree heat at race time, but the run must go on. Hopefully I will see of few of you out there.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Intensity is picking up in Summer Months

Hello Readers!

A couple weeks back I mentioned that I have decided to run my first marathon. I wanted to fill everyone in on some of the intense training I have begun. The real intensity will pick up in September and October as the runs will begin hitting the upper teens and then twenty mile marks, but I have started my own intense conditioning in preparation for this. Here is a look at the intene week put in last week.

Monday - 4 mile run followed by boot camp
Tuesday - 4 mile walk with Coco my dog and 4 mile walk with my friend Amie.
Wednesday - 4.5 mile run followed by spin class
Thursday - Off day I needed some rest
Friday - 1500 meter swim, and spin class in the morning.
Saturday - 4 mile walk with my friend Amie, 3 mile walk with Coco
Sunday - 5 mile walk with Coco, 3 mile run, Softball, 3 mile walk with Amie.

The time and mileage is starting to build, I am now getting prepared to make Saturday my long run day which will begin this week with a 7 mile jaunt and increase steadily. People probably look at this and think I am an idiot! There are times I feel this way too, but I refuse to let myself fail in my goals.

Right now I am in a full out cardio build phase, the results are showing as my pants are once again loose. I am having to keep my belt tightened to keep some of my shorts on which is an excellent feeling. As the weather gets hotter and the miles get longer I expect to see a great improvement in my conditioning and the continual improvement of the overall appearance of my body. Single women who follow this watch out! I am gaining more and more confidence each day. I am following my slogan of "Life is short, Live it Hard". My attitude on life is get the most out of everyday and I make sure that this is fulfilled. On a personal note I am very excited to say the next time the blog is published I will have completed my Masters Program at BU. This is my final this week and my final paper, the past two years have been busy and difficult, but I have learned a great deal and look forward to applying this in life!

Monday, June 14, 2010

True Inspiration: Relay for Life

Hello Readers!

Today I wanted to touch on Relay for Life again. Friday night was the actual Relay for Life. This is one of the most inspirational events that someone can take place in, I would recommend to everyone that at some point in their lifetimes they walk a night on a team. My experience started with Kristen Luder taking me as the new member of their team to the Survivors dinner, she shared with me the experience she had with dealing with cancer, everything she mentioned makes me understand what a fighter she is and everyone else who battles cancer. At the dinner there were probably 200 other survivors at least each with an inspirtational story to share.

The second phase of the evening was the opening ceremony where you see the survivors walk the first lap of the relay, the second lap is then the caregivers (parents, spouses, siblings) walking with their survivor. At this moment there are no dry eyes in the house, the emotion you experience will be overwhelming. Then begins the long walk for everyone. The goal is to have at least one team member on the track at all times. For me being into fitness I was on the track quite a bit probably walking around eight miles total. In this time I was speaking to various survivors and learning about their fights, I spoke with people whos loved ones lost the battle as well the stories they provide made the entire evening worthwhile.

The last bit of inspiration on this night was seeing the amount of people who participate and the amount of money they donate to the cause. Our event had several booths, each selling various items or raffling off various items. These booths are packed the entire night with people wanting to donate to everyone's team. There is also a silent auction which provided so many great items for people to bid on. I can promise anyone reading this, if you ever truly want to experience great emotion and you need a source of inspiration attend Relay for Life, you will understand what great people there are in this world.

Lastly I do want to thank both of my relay teams for the various great experiences, from the fundraising events in Columbia to the actual Relay night in Kansas City. Thank you for letting me be a part of such a great experience. I look forward to continuing to support this night and this organization. One last thanks goes out to all those who donated to my teams. Your money will help end this terrible disease at some point in our lifetimes.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Big Decision!!

Hello Readers!

This week I came to a big decision on a new direction to take in my weight loss efforts. I know I had mentioned in the past that it was time for me to begin preparing for a half marathon. The half I had decided upon was San Antonio on November 14th. When talking to my brother JJ and his wife Jessica they are both planning on making the trip and running the full marathon. My good friend Jen just completed her first marathon in San Diego over the weekend, with all these people stepping up their game I have decided it is time for me to do the same. Running a full marathon has been a goal of mine since I first began running and completed my first half marathon. People know I am always looking for a challenge and this is the exact opportunity I have been looking for. Thank you to JJ, Jessica and Jen for making me realize this is something I can do and need to do.

Training for a full marathon will require a great deal of time, I will occasionally share how much running is involved in each week hopefully to inspire others to take on this great challenge. Time is something I will actually have more of, for me the past two years have been consumed by graduate school. I have been working on my Masters from Boston University. I will be officially finishing my last class on June 27th so this will provide me with extra time on the weekends to get in the long training runs associated with running a full marathon.

This big decision has me extremely excited!! I don't want my "Y" friends to worry, I will not be cutting out my classes as cross training is still required. I don't want all the people I hang out with on an normal basis to worry, this will not change my desire to still have fun. I will have to pick and choose my nights a little more, but I pledge to still be the same person you all know and have fun with. This opportunity should be what pushes me over my goal to finally be less than 200 pounds! Watch out world, when this man has a goal he will not stop until it is completed.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Enjoy Life, but always make up for it!

Hello Readers!

This past weekend I experienced life to its fullest. This was the annual alumni float trip for me and my fraternity brothers. What a crazy weekend!! I got into Springfield on Friday afternoon and it was my friend Ryan Fraser's thirty fifth birthday so we had a keg to celebrate. After a ruckus night of partying with the group we got up and headed to the Niangua for a float. Let's just say this day got purely crazy. The float began with the crew hitting almost every sandbar where we partied like we were in college again. This included yours truly taking shots of Soco at everystop and joining a few SMS students in a shotgunning contest and beer bongs, with everything being topped off with some jello shots. This made the last sand bar an opportunity for yours truly to sleep off some of the fun had. The night continued with washers and some great carne asada tacos made by Ray Turner, kudos Ray! You may wonder what this has to do with a weight loss blog, here is how this ties in. Sometimes we still have to cut loose in order to stay fully motivated for our cause.

This week knowing that I splurged and went hog wild last weekend I have worked out with a new and excited vigor. I found myself hitting the gym at an earlier time and working with much more energy. I spent Tuesday by pounding my abs to try and flatten my still round stomach, then running 4 miles outside in the 92 degree heat. This was topped with 15 minutes in the sauna. Lets just say I was a struggling unit that night. Wednesday I got in early for some abs, followed by a two mile run, then my full spin class, topped with the 15 minute sauna experience. Yesterday brought no rest for the weary, I played some basketball, then my bosu weight lifting class, a sauna, topped with a doubles match of tennis with my brother JJ. This weekend I look to continue with a great workout plan with some walking, swimming, and hopefully more tennis.

In the summer months with the weather heating up in the Midwest it is important for us not to stop out workouts. The summer months offer us a great amount of temptations, I am not saying resit it as I believe life is short so live it hard! I would say to take opportunities to do activities which can be refreshing as well like swimming. I can tell everyone I am now down to rough 212 pounds, as I get ever closer to the elusive 200 pound barrier I will keep everyone informed. Everyone have a great week and I will return next week with my last relay for life update.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Dive 2 Survive Charity Event

Hello Readers!

I have been very diligent in keeping everyone up to date on my Relay for Life Team, Team TJ. Here is the scoop, the team has had all three of its key fundraisers and we did very well with the first two, I have not heard the results of the washers tournament from the team captain but I believe it probably went over very well as the weather was perfect that day for people to be outside drinking beer and playing washers. As a team I am sure we have hit our goal. Loyal followers, friends and family have helped me raise over $300 for the team and I thank everyone who assisted greatly. The actual event is still two weeks away so if you haven't and want to donate still I have included my personal link: this is a great team of people and the money goes to an incredible cause.

A second Relay for Life team has asked for me to participate with them as well Team NightCrawlers. This is a team based out of my home base Kansas City. Many of my exceptional co-workers are on this team. Sandy Berry is the captain and I want to mention that American Cancer Society is an incredible part in her life, her daughter Kristen Luder was diagnosed with a very rare type of cancer, with the help of many great doctors she was able to survive this disease, other teammates on the team have survived breast cancer so I am very happy to lend my support to all of them. I am an avid supporter of this charity and believe that we will see cancer end in our lifetimes. One of the teams key fundraisers is coming up and I am going to mention it below.

Dive 2 Survive is a charity volleyball tournament for Team NightCrawlers. This is an extremely fun event and plays along with my excercise blog perfectly! Dive 2 Survive is on July 31st this year. There are three divisions, division A is extremely competitive, division B is for very competitive, and division C is for those of us who want to drink and have fun and get some great exercise. FYI this is the division I compete in as my volleyball skills are like my dancing skills not the best in the world. I am putting the events website out here, it explains the details better, but basically the teams are 4-6 players that have to be co-ed. The teams must have equal number of women as men or more women then men. The site shows pictures of last year, by the way I am the one with the backwards Mizzou cap on if you don't know me. That picture was me 35 pounds ago. Sand Volleyball is an extremely tiring and difficult workout which really burns the calves if you have never played before. Please check this site out and sign up a team, it is one of the most fun events I have attended. The site is

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Handling Adversity Positively and Negatively

Hello Readers!

Adversity is something that comes at us all in life. I have learned through trials and tribulations there are positive and negative ways to handle adversity. Adversity plays a pivotal part in how we feel about ourselves and how we shape ourselves.

In my younger years in life adversity was a nightmare for me in my struggles with weight. I began my way to being overweight early in life, when I was seven I lost a parent which was my first real dealing with adversity. This instance would be tough on anyone, from an emotional standpoint it helped shape me into the person I am today. From a weight perspective this was the beginning of me being fat. I chose to handle this adversity by eating. I decided that instead of eating normal size portions that I would eat as an adult. This bad habit continued through my college years except that I added beer into the mix. If I struggled with a class, if I was rejected by ladies (which happened often) my best recourse was to drink heavily and eat a fourth meal at college favorites Taco Bell or Burger King. This trend continued until the moments mentioned in former posts of shear embarrassment. This is where self control took over.

More recently when adversity strikes I have learned to handle myself in a much better manner. This is something I want to put out there for those of you who are going through weight loss struggles of your own. Do NOT let adversity take you off course, it is something we will deal with more often than not in our lives. For me adversity is still not welcomed, but when it strikes it is much easier for me to deal with. I dealt with some severe adversity last week at work, without getting into details of the situation I will explain how I was able to deal with it in a positive manner, EXERCISE! Exercise is very important in dealing with adversity, it allows you to take your frustrations out on sports equipment whether that be a bike in spin class or a punching bag in a boxing class exercise is extremely therapeutic. Running or Biking allow one to think and assess the situation. For me I was able to look at what happened, ask myself questions about it and vent all of my hurt and anger in a positive manner. My spin and boot camp instructors mentioned how focused I was and how hard I worked, all it took was some serious adversity.

In an extremely positive note, I have been wearing my size 40 pants and feel very good. I have had about 25 people including my sister-in-law Jessica (which I should drop the in-law as she is truly a sister to me) mention how good I am looking. It is truly amazing what wearing clothes that fit does for a person and their confidence.

I am going to leave everyone with slogan on life: Life is hard, Live it strong!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Self Realization

Hello Readers!

I have been asked several times what caused me to go on the weight loss journey. I have mentioned who inspires me, but beginning a weight loss journey all begins with self realization. The next few comments are things only select people know, but in order to truly inspire others everyone should hear the story. Three distinct moments led to my self realization that my life needed to change: first, I went to an amusement park with my brother, and two best friends I had reached such a size the ride operator made me get off the ride in front of everyone. The embarrassment in that moment cannot be imagined. Secondly, my brother and I were skiing in Aspen which is one of my favorite places in Colorado, I could not ski one full run without being winded and having to take a break. Those who know me realize that this crushed me as skiing is one of my favorite activities. Again the embarrassment was unimaginable. Lastly, one night I was laying on my couch and suddenly had issues breathing, my chest hurt I have never been as scared as in that moment, I felt like I had a heart attack. Luckily it was just a panic attack. These three life altering moments are what started this journey. I tell people this in the hopes they will look at their lives and come to a realization without having to experience the embarrassment and fear I was forced to experience.

On a lighter note hear self realization is something that should never end for any of us. This last weekend I was at a club in Columbia with several friends and my girlfriend Dana. Those of you reading this know I like to dance, back in college I was a dancing fool. If you have seen me dance you realize I look like the gopher in Caddyshack! It is funny but has no rhythm. Picture someone not moving their feet and just shaking their butt and arms, this is me. This night I was a dancing fool as well, working my gopher move to the extreme. The self realization moment came when people were trying to critique my moves on the dance floor. This has inspired me to now take Zumba class. For those not familiar with Zumba, it is a dancing class offered at your local gyms. Basically it is a workout that teaches you to dance. I will say I felt like a fool when I attended, I hang out in the corner by myself so as few people see me as possible, but this will improve my skills on the dance floor for future more enjoyable experiences. To all you men out there who think you have rhythm and probably don't you might consider this class. For all you women who do have rhythm I still recommend the class as you burn a ton of calories and lets face it we all could use to brush up on our moves.

The last bit of self realization for me today is that I cannot go a week without going to my classes at the YMCA. Last week I was not able to attend do to work conflict, my exercise was limited to walking my dog Coco in the mornings, this did not make me my same happy go luck self last week. I found myself slightly snippy with people, I am sorry for this. Exercise makes me happy, I was once told that sunshine and exercise release something in your body which makes you happy, well I fully believe this now as this week getting back and hitting the gym again has brought back my normal cheerful attitude.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Milestone Achievement

Hello Readers,

This week brings a very happy post for me. This week I went shopping, those of you who know me know how much I hate shopping for myself. For so many years shopping was no fun as I spent my time in the big and tall section. Dana, my mother and several co-workers continually pressured me to find some pants that fit. Apparently the baggy look is not in for 35 year old men. Monday, Dana went with me to go shopping, the surprise that awaited me at the store was incredible. I am down to a size 40 waist. When the journey began I wore a size 54 waist. That is over a foot that has been lost from my waist.This week marked me no longer shopping in the big and tall. I walked to my normal section looking for jeans and Dana informed me I will not need to look in that section anymore. I didn't believe her until I tried on the size 40's and they actually fit. This is an incredible feeling. I walked with a new swagger today at work.

I was questioned while on the shopping trip, why I hated shopping so much, I always used the excuse of I don't like spending money on myself. This was me hiding behind the embarassment of shopping in big and tall sections. This also was me hiding behind the comfort of wearing clothes that didn't fit. This was me having fear of relapse. For me I truly enjoy food and beer, these are things that are things that could lead to relapse so it was me being overly cautious. Thanks to all the people who pushed me to overcome my fear and gain the confidence in myself to enjoy this transformation. I will promise the readers right now I do not intend to relapse, if you see me faltering in my conviction please let me know.

I had a request from a reader to mention more about nutrition in my posts. I am going to discuss what helped me from a nutrition standpoint, but honestly I am not the best person for this. I still eat everything you are not supposed to. I eat pizza, Mexican, Italian and I drink beer. What has been the real strong points for me is not drinking soda. I gave up soda 5 years ago and have stuck to my guns with this. I eat French Fries twice a month as a treat for myself, and most importantly I have cut back on my portions. Meals for me used to be about scarfing down a ridiculously large portion, I probably ate enough for two maybe three people, now I truly do eat a one person portion. I will try to research and give people better tips on nutrition, but in reality do what works for you. I don't believe in fad diets, for me it is more about self control.

Lastly this week I will shout out to they followed through on their promise and donated to my Relay for Life team. The relay is now about a month away so please visit Team TJ's site and donate as this is a great cause. Help us remeber Twila O'Loughlin and others who have lost their lives to cancer. Please contact me at or and I will provide you a link.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Hello Readers!

I wanted to let everyone know I am reporting in for the first time since the original weight goal was hit. I think I originally let it get to my head, I quickly gained 5 pounds of that back as I hit a complacent level. Good news all that complacency is over! I have burned that 5 pounds back off and am motivated again! When weight loss is a continual process we will go through swings where out motivation lacks, find things that are important to you and the motivation will come back quickly.

I know summer is coming upon us quickly here and many of us get busy with activities and BBQ's and other fun things, but summer is the most important time to stay motivated. This should be the time of year we are most active as we have more daylight to use. Most of us will find ourselves drinking more beverages, eating more food so it is very important to hit your workouts extremely hard. I know this is the case for me. Find an activity you truly enjoy, for me I play tennis and swim in the summers. Both activities will be hitting their heights. The pools are almost open and many of us are self concience, the more active you are the easier it is too wear that swimsuit.

I mentioned the American Cancer Society last week in my post, I am happy to announce our trivia fundraiser went incredibly well as we raised $346. Thanks go out to Dana and Michelle for the hard work put in on organizing the event. Something else very cool happened with my post from last week, contacted me about a charity program they do. By helping spread the word about their company and their charity program they will donate to Dana's Relay for Life team. After reading about the company and their causes this is a great company. They basically combine the largest hotel sites and find their customers the cheapest rates on travel. They then link you directly with the site to book the travel. The organization contributes to several charitable causes. Please check out the link below:

Thank you to hotelscombined for the donation, my team and I thank you greatly you are helping to defeat a terrible disease.

Check back next week for further updates on my weight loss and a look at some workouts you can do to start pushing your next goals.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Important Months for Relay for Life

Hello Followers!

Today I am writing to everyone to promote a couple of very important events for the Relay for Life. Relay for Life is a charity event for American Cancer Society. I belong to Team TJ, this team is captained by my girlfriend Dana. This is a very dear cause to her as her mother was lost to cancer. Cancer will affect all of us at some point in our lifetime, whether through ourselves, a loved one, or friends and co-workers it is very important to attempt and stop this disease. I have mentioned the relay in other posts, I wanted to point out a couple of fundraisers that our team is having that will be a blast.

This Friday which is short notice we will be hosting a Trivia event at Hawgs and Dawgs in Columbia Missouri. The event runs from 7:00-10:00 and will cost $5 dollars upfront and will be organized Trivia with an opportunity to win a $25 bar tab. Really this is an opportunity to get out have a few beverages and fun with many people and support a great cause.

The second event I want to bring to everyone's attention is a Washer's Tournament on May 22nd at the Duece Pub and Pit in Columbia Missouri. The event will start at 1:00 in the afternoon, this is actually a perfect opportunity for people from Kansas City and St. Louis to attend. With the early start time people will have to opportunity to make a day trip of it. Teams will consist of two players and the the tournament is double elimination. The event costs $30 per team and you will receive t-shirts. For most of us this is an opportunity to relive College. Everyone should remember the sunny afternoons of playing washers and drinking cold beers! This will allow you to bring back great memories and support a cause that is extremely important.

I will be back to posting on my weight loss initiatives in my next installment, but really felt this cause is too important not to bring to everyone's attention. If attending the events is out of question for some please contact me via email and I can send you information about donating to the team as everything helps. I am putting my contact information below, if you are interested in the tournament or donating please email me at or
call me at 816-255-7165. I have fliers and entry forms I can provide you. I look forward to seeing some of you at the tournament!


Monday, March 29, 2010

First Target Achieved, but the process is ongoing!

Hello Readers! I have been delinquent in posting, but I post with good news. My target date to have lost the initial 25 pounds was on March 15th. I was on a ski vacation with Dana at that point in time so that is why I am slow to post. I am very pleased to mention that I did hit my inital goal of 25 pounds by March 15th.

I have mentioned before though that this is a never ending journey for me. While in Colorado skiing my friend Andy Moore laid out a further challenge. He asked me how much more I truly wanted to lose. I am not afraid to share my weight with the world. I am down to 217 pounds now, compared to mind boggling 350 pounds I was once at this is a miracle. My next level that I really want to reach is the under 200 barrier with an ultimate goal of 185 pounds that would put me at a very healthy number. My friend Andy who is in very good shape wants to join in this quest so we have a bottle of a fine liquor on the line. This will keep the inspiration up.

I think an important point to make since I said I was on vacation is that working out or physical activity does not have to stop. Each of us owns a pair of running shoes, pack your shoes in with your luggage and do something while on vacation. For me the trip was skiing, and I think Dana will attest to this skiing is a very physical activity. Most people probably think going down a mountain is very easy, but you get an incredible leg workout in as well as a very good cardio workout in.

I look forward to keeping everyone up to date on my next goal. To everyone find your inspiration and use it to help you achieve all that you can. That was my motivational phrase of the day.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Destination is so close!

When I began the blog, my goal was to reach 25 pounds by March 15th, I am very close to this first goal. I am at 20 pounds with two weeks to go. The last five will be tough as I am going on vacation on March 11th. I am headed to Colorado for a ski trip. I am heading out there with Dana, we will be meeting Andy Moore his wife Leslie and their two and half year old Sydney. Nathan Hill (Opie) will be joining us as well. I am hoping the physical demands of skiing will offset the fun that will be had.

With the goal in sight, don't worry all this is not my end goal. This was just a nice starting point. I have two goals in sight. I will be competing in a Triathlon in Columbia in May and will need to be in top shape for this competition, then my YMCA buddy Andre has pushed me to join him in the Chicago Half Marathon in September. My ultimate goal is to get another 30 pounds off before it is all said and done. I want to finish my quest at about 190 pounds.

As promised last week, I am putting the link to my team and my profile page below for Relay for Life. Again this is a great cause, it will go toward ending the disease that is cancer. I am not great at asking for money, but if you have the ability I would ask that you contribute to this cause. When you read my story with cancer and especially Dana's hopefully it will inspire you to donate to the cause. If nothing else, join a team of your own and participate, you will find fitness wise you will gain much out of the adventure and the sense you will get from being on a team will be incredible.

Team link above,

My personal link below:

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Heavy Activity in Weeks 6 & 7

All, week 6 & 7 saw me very busy and posting time at a minimal as I was on the road for a good deal of the time. I will need to check the scale tomorrow for a complete update and will post further later this week as I have something very important to include on this blog. In June I will be a team member on a Relay for Life team in Columbia, Missouri. The Relay for Life is an extremely important cause, this is a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. Cancer has touched all of our lives in some way. I will post a link to the team I am on and hope that followers will read the special stories of my team captain Dana O'Loughlin, and then read other team members stories. If you are inspired by the stories, I recommend either donating or finding a local team to join and help fight the cause.

In week 6 I saw some of my best workouts done, I had to opportunity to work out twice a day in that time frame as I was able to run 4-5 miles everyday before work then I was able to attend my standard classes at night.

Valentine's Day saw me compete with my girlfriend in a four mile race here in KC at the downtown airport. The race was a success, I completed my run in 41 minutes roughly. Dana completed hers in a great time of 49 minutes, this was her first competitive race so congrats go out to her on the incredible effort. Races are very important for people as this gives you an opportunity put your training efforts to the test. Races are often a good motivating tool to push yourselft to new extremes.

Week 7 saw me push hard again early on. On Monday I cranked out three workouts as it was a holiday and I knew later in the week my efforts would not be as good. Tuesday I got in a nice 5 mile run before work, then did some heavy lifting post work that night. Thanks to Dana I was even pretty good on vacation as instead of doing nothing and just watching TV and enjoying adult beverages we walked around the campus at Mizzou and some neighborhoods so I walked roughly four miles each day which was nice.

This is something I always try to share with people, even though you are on vacation that is not an excuse to do nothing, as long as you have a pair of tennis shoes you should be able to get some sort of workout in. This is a real key in anyone's quest to lose weight, do not take your vacation or travel time off, find something active to do. That will help you make up for the eating and drinking you will probably over indulge in while on vacation.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Week 4&5 Combined

First of all sorry to those who follow, I have been swamped the last couple of weeks so I am combining week 4 and 5. I want to throw out a plug for the Greater Kansas City YMCA and my Vivion Road Branch of the YMCA who have added my blog to their websites so that more people will have the opportunity to follow.

Week 4 and 5 saw positive results for me, I lost a combined 4 pounds which I am very happy with, the effort was very intense. I put in a couple of hard workouts every weekday during this stretch. Right now I am concentrating on picking up my running intensity, I want to start building miles in anticipation of competing in a half marathon here very soon. In this stretch I did have a night in Columbia where I was overserved by some local establishments but this did not deter from my efforts.

I am looking forward to week six as next Sunday is my first run of the new year. I will be competing in the Valentine's Love to Run run at the downtown airport. This is a four mile run which is about my favorite distance to run as you will see with my workouts. I need to throw my shout out to Dana as well who is joining me on this run! Keep up your great work Dana!

Here is a list of this weeks workouts to try and motivate others:

Monday: Used the stair stepper for 1 hour and 10 minutes followed by Crystal's boot camp. Crystal was in a very fiesty mood this week and really picked up the intensity. Followed by the sauna.

Tuesday: I was only able to get one workout in that night as I had a late meeting. I ran 4 miles and lifted weights.

Wednesday: Again I only had one workout, it was intense as there was a going away happy hour for my friend Jay from US Central. I ran 6 miles after work.

Thursday: Heavy effort day, I put in 1 hour and 10 minutes on the stair stepper again as cross training then did Crystal's bosu boot camp which was heavy on legs. We did more squats and squat kicks than I would prefer to ever do, but her classes are so effective. For new people to the site if you belong to Vivion "Y" take any Crystal class you have the opportunity to.

Friday: Today is a 6 mile run after work.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Week 3 Results

Week 3 saw me have an off week, I had a no gain but a no loss week. This sounds disappointing but it was a very tough week. I continued with my standard steady workouts but the self discipline side of me had a rough week. I did not maintain my great portion control and I overindulged in my eating and drinking.

These weeks will happen, not every week is going to be the perfect week where the weight melts away. I still enjoy having my vices which are pizza and beer. Every once in a while I still like to have a very big meal. It is important to realize these moments will happen to anyone who is on a journey like this, it is all a matter of how you react and comeback from the slip.

Part of this blog it to hold myself accountable for weeks like week three when I slipped or over indulged in my vices. I want you to know when I have done this and hopefully if you see me you will push me not to overindulge.

Last week I was approached by the Greater Kansas City YMCA, they had been reading my blog and would like to use it by putting a link on their website. Hopefully soon you will see my site on their website as I actually felt very honored that they asked me.

When I started this blog, I mentioned my goal was to pass my inspiration on, I feel that this is happening as I have seen many people respond very positively. I have heard many people saying they have started a more active lifestyle just by reading this and realizing that if an average person like myself can do this they can. I am going to mention two people below who I am happy to have helped inspire or motivate.

I mentioned Dana in my first post as someone who inspired me to be a better person, I feel very proud to say that Dana will be running a four mile run with me in Kansas City in February. I am glad I could pay it forward a bit and help inspire her. I was very happy to work with her and help develop a plan to help her reach her goal for this race. Dana I look forward to seeing your smile when you succeed that day and complete the race in the time you wish.

I want to mention my friend Jen Russell as well, Jen is my friend who I used to work with. Jen and I started running together about a year and a half ago. When we first started running Jen struggled and disliked running, I continued to push her and she is now in training for a marathon. I was at lunch with Jen the other day and mentioned she needed to show people what marathon training is like, Jen has created a blog now that I will support. I encourage those of you who want to be inspired and see the training involved in preparing for a marathon to follow Jen's trials and tribulations.

Here is the link to Jen's blog:

Thanks to both of the people mentioned above for continuing to push me, hopefully I can continue to push both of you as well. Next week I will be back to posting my workouts for everyone as this has been a great push week.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Week 2: Goal is still on track

Week 2 saw me working a different shift at work so the duration of my workouts and the amount of my workouts was down. Week 2 also marked the start of winter semester at school so I had to dedicate some of my time toward coursework. I am now in the final stretch of school, three classes remain until completion in June. That being said I still had a very productive week of work and saw an additional 6 pounds melt off putting me at an even 230 pounds. Below is the workouts used to achieve this:

Monday: 50 situps, 25 push ups, boot camp with Crystal at the YMCA, a 15 minute sweat in the sauna, completed with 3 sets of tennis at the club that evening.

Tuesday: Weight Training focusing on chest and arms, Cross Training class at the YMCA, finished off with a 15 minute sauna.

Wednesday: Spin Class with John at the YMCA, followed by bosu (abs class) at the YMCA, topped off with the sauna.

Thursday: Weight Training and Upper Body work bosu class at the YMCA.

Friday: 100 situps, 30 push ups and a 4 1/2 mile run before work.

Saturday and Sunday were somewhat off days, I took the family dog Coco for a four mile walk each day. Saturday evening at dinner I may have decided on the half marathon that I will be running. The GO St. Louis half is the weekend of April 11th which should give me plenty of prep time to have myself in peak physical condition. I was discussing with Chip today at the gym and there is still a large contingent planning on competing in a Triathlon in Columbia in May so this will be one of my goals for the year.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Week One Results

Week One saw me push my body, after the Christmas Break it was time to shock my body and push it to the limits! I started the week at 242 pounds. Here were the workouts I used in week one:

Monday: 100 crunches followed by a 4 Mile Run followed by Boot Camp at the YMCA led by Chip last week, topped off with 15 minutes of relaxation in the sauna!

Tuesday: X-Training Day, I did 50 sit ups, 25 push ups, then an hour and ten minutes on the stair step machine for my cardio topped off with 15 minutes in the sauna.

Wednesday was the ultimate push day, I did 100 sit ups, 50 push ups, a 5 mile run at a medium pace of 55 minutes, an hour spin class with Crystal, topped off with the 15 minute sauna.

Thursday: X-Training Day number two, 50 sit ups, an hour an five minutes on the stair step machine, then Crystals Bosu Boot Camp which was primarily arms and chest lifting, finished off with 15 minutes in the sauna.

Friday: Biceps, 100 sit ups, and then 4.5 mile run.

Saturday: was rest day, I did splurge a bit packing on quite a few calories from beer, pizza, and wings.

Sunday: I sweat out some of the toxins put in my body on Saturday by sitting in the sauna for 20 minutes.

Even with the splurge on Saturday week one was a successful week I saw 6 pounds come off and am now sitting at 236 pounds.

The key to me sticking to my guns and staying with this are the people who inspired me, and setting target goals to hit. It is my intention to run a half marathon by either the end of March or early in April. I have also committed to completing a triathlon in Columbia, Missouri in May. My recommendations for those looking for motivation is to pick targets, set goals and hold yourself accountable to reach these goals. If you are lacking the motivation find a friend or pick a person to help push you, never be afraid to ask your friends for help!!!! I have found all the people who have inspired me will push me and are always willing to help me achieve the goals.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Diary of Ryan's Weight Loss Journey


This week I started a journey to continue my weight loss, I had taken a short break over the holiday season but have been inspired to pick up my journey again. Many people have led me to start my journey again and I want to thank each.

First my family who has stuck by me no matter what size I have been and all my trials and tribulations. JJ, Jessica and Mom who always inspire me to be a better person.

Second my friends, they have seen a once huge human being lose a great deal of weight and now steady out. I made a committment to everyone to continue this journey and reach weights nobody thought possible.

Third, Dana. Dana has recently come in my life and has treated me with great respect and care no matter my size, she has inspired me to live a better life and has inspired me to become a better man. For that I want to look great for her, and will make myself into a person she will desire.

Fourth, the trainers at the Clay/Platte YMCA. Chip Diggs and Crystal Powell have committed to helping me achieve all my goals, they continually push me every day and inspire me to push myself further than possible.

Lastly, Chasity Jones who has put the challenge before me to lose 25 pounds in the next 2 1/2 months. I will win this bet, thank you for last bit of inspiration needed.

Future posts will be a diary of the workouts I use to achieve this goal and hopefully will help inspire others challenge themselves to become better people whether through weight loss or any aspect of their lives.