Thursday, December 22, 2011

Second Chances

      The year of 2011 in review this may have been one of the best and one of the worst years in my life. Friendships have blossomed to irreplaceable relationships, my bucket list got shorter with a finish of the Boston marathon. I faced a tragedy that shook me to my soul and discovered how rich I am with loving friends, cancer reared its ugly head again in my family; faith in God conquers many things. The lesson I learned this year is second chances are few if you have one grab it with both hands.
      Running has grown into a very significant part of my life so I will start there, first it brought so many amazing people into my life. Many are close friends that I love as family, some I have never met all are amazing people that share a love for running and fitness. I set very high goals, accomplished some and achieved many personal best and awards striving to achieve those goals. The highlights are in the spring finishing the Boston marathon, in  the fall taking my first elite start with a third place age group finish in the Air Force marathon. I ran all my races with everything I had to give because you never get a second chance to run a race. The hard lesson of doing your best does not always win but always makes you stronger. Personal  best this year 1mile = 5:20.7           5k =  17:44.3 10k = 38:27.9 Half marathon = 1:23:53 Marathon = 3:02:07 very proud of these accomplishments and planning better for 2012.
      Easter Sunday changed my life forever celebrated the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, lost my sister, brother in law and two nephews that evening. I had so many friends come to my side to hold me as I cried, give me words of support and keep my faith in God and his plan. There are no second chances to tell your family and friends that you love them. Take everyday as if it is your last give all that you have to give because you never know who's life it may change. I know my family is in heaven I have felt there strength so many times as they inspire me to make a difference. 
      A battle with cancer faced my wife Debbie this summer where my roll as support person I was not alone. Again my friends were there encouraging us to keep our faith, helping with meals and being there for Debbie. A race was organized to cover the medical expenses but the greater effect was all the love and support that October morning. Standing in the middle of one hundred thirty four runners and walkers and their families supporting my family was humbling. I pay forward and share my love never expecting to receive what I did that morning.
      I finished out this year with getting my coaching certification from USA Track and Field Association to have an opportunity to teach youth. I hope to pass on the lessons of running and athletics making our future leaders and champions. I have seen how running has transformed people from ordinary to athletes who strive for there best. I do not know where this road is going to lead me but I do know that every hill or curve is an opportunity I will not pass up because there may be no second chance. I am sure 2012 may bring challenges that will make us stronger may it also bring God's blessings that make us better. Thank you to all my friends I hope that are paths cross many times I am a better person because of you all. Carpe diem is a strong phrase to live by, as I will from this year forward.