First a little background information about me. I joined the U.S. Army at age 18 in Airborne Infantry. Little did I know that my Army career would be short lived. In an unfortunate accident, I wound up with fractured vertebrae in Lumbar region. Given the choice of staying in the Army and reclassifying to a different job or separating from the Army, I let my pride get the best of me and said Infantry or nothing. SO at age 19 I was discharged as a disabled veteran. I do not want any recognition for that status because I never really had the opportunity to serve in a combat situation and there are many who did and came back far worse off than I ever could have. This experience did solidify my patriotism and instilled a great pride in me for the Army. I proudly fly the Army flag outside of my house and have 2 sons currently serving. This brings me to the whole reason for this blog.
For years I used my bad back as a reason to be lazy and not do anything. This lead to me gaining weight up to a maximum weight of 240 pounds. For my 5’10” frame, that was large. When my youngest son graduated basic training, I did not even want pictures taken of me because I was ashamed. TO make matters worse I still had a 7 year old daughter that played softball and I didn’t even have the energy to play with her. So January 1 2015 I decided I was not going to lose weight, I was going to start a journey to get into good shape.
My journey began by walking laps in the warehouse at lunch everyday instead of eating. By march I had decided to WALK a 5k race. After walking the 5k, I began to wonder if I could work my way up to running a 5k so I downloaded the Couch to 5K app. Using this simple app I began seeing weight come off rapidly and saw my endurance level rise tremendously.
Once I was into the Couch to 5k program, the opportunity came up for me to purchase a Road Bike. I figured what would be the harm, if I didn’t like it I could always resell it. Well guess what? Turns out I absolutely loved the bicycle and began to prefer it over running.
Then one day looking at the Active.com website I saw an event called the “Try a Tri” and thought I am already biking and running, why not swim too. As it turns out, this started me on a crazy journey. I struggled through the Try a Tri and took notes on my failures. Then I decided that I was going to try and complete an Olympic Triathlon prior to my Birthday.
I put together the best training plan that I possibly could with my limited knowledge. It pretty much consisted of riding and running as much and often as I could. This did take a toll on my body mainly my hamstrings, but at the time I didn’t realize what I was doing. I wound up completing the race in 2:58:xx. This was amazing for me since my goal was 4 hours.
The aftermath of that race was devastating because I was not prepared for what it was going to do to my body. I was dehydrated, sick to my stomach, and had the worst body cramps I have ever had. It was so bad that I did not even want to look at my bicycle or running shoes for 2 whole weeks.
With that lesson behind me, I have made my mind up to complete an Ironman 70.3 within the next year and a Full Distance within the next 2. I have no idea how to best prepare myself for this so I have now started talking with a cycling coach to help guide me in my training and keep me from doing myself any further harm.
So I have created this blog to track my progress as I go from an overweight couch potato to an IRONMAN. I will be doing all of this with the assistance of Pav Bryan Cycle Coach. I am so excited to get started on this and I hope to have people follow along through the ups and downs of it all.