How did I get the name theBrainrunner?

Well it's a long story but I'll keep it breif. On November 3rd, 2008 I was getting ready for work and passed out in the shower. Luckily, my wife was home at the time and ran upstairs to find me and after having trouble reviving me she then called the paramedics. After an ambulance ride, followed by a CT scan, then a helicopter ride to another hospital I ended up having surgery to repair a ruptured Brain Aneurysm. 5 months later I had two more aneurysms clipped. I was thankful to be alive, as 40% of ruptures are fatal, and 66% suffer from some permanent neurological deficit. I use to be a runner in High School, and after I had recovered from the surgeries I wanted to be healthier than I had been at that time so my wife and I started running again. Every time I run I'm thankful to be alive and able to be outside doing what I love. Thus, theBrainrunner was born.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Hospitals love us Insurance hates us

I can't believe it's been almost a year since my last blog post. What a year it's been! I haven't been just hanging out there has been some significant stuff going on.

First of all shortly after or right before my last post my wife was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. Crappy yes! Terrible, no. Her cancer was young stage 1/2. She opted for a double mastectomy, and you can read more about her journey from her here. During that process she was subsequently diagnosed with Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS). Without the Breast cancer diagnosis the MDS could have gone undiagnosed for a long time, so in a way it was a blessing.

What the heck is that? Yea that is what I said too. So this is what the MDS Foundation says about it:
Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) are a group of diverse bone marrow disorders in which the bone marrow does not produce enough healthy blood cells. MDS is often referred to as a “bone marrow failure disorder”. MDS is primarily a disease of the elderly (most patients are older than age 65), but MDS can affect younger patients as well. To help you better understand MDS, it might be helpful to first consider some basics about bone marrow and blood. The bone marrow functions as a factory that manufactures three kinds of blood cells: red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Healthy bone marrow produces immature blood cells — called stem cells, progenitor cells, or blasts — that normally develop into mature, fully functional red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. In MDS, these stem cells may not mature and may accumulate in the bone marrow or they may have a shortened life span, resulting in fewer than normal mature blood cells in the circulation.

So she finished her Breast cancer treatment, skipping Chemotherapy but having radiation, and then reconstruction. Once she was cleared from that she began treatment for the MDS. That basically entails high doses of Chemotherapy to kill your immune system and bone marrow, bringing the patient to the point that without new cells they would die from the high doses of Chemo. Then grafting in new stem cells through the blood that eventually take over and start producing new blood cells the proper way.  Sounds easy enough, but as she lays here in the hospital bed waiting for these new stem cells to start working I can say it's much more difficult then it sounds. That being said her MDS was caught early, she's young, and was in good shape, it has been a difficult journey for her so for those whose diagnosis comes later in life, or detection, and are in poor shape I can't imagine their journey. 

Needless to say this is where my focus has been, rightly so, for the past year. I've run but it's been sporadic, I had a minor injury that was the result of genetics, and that's about all on the running front. 

On a side note: Special thanks to the 25 year old guy, who is O+ and lives somewhere in the Mountain Time Zone. This is where Tammy got her new stem cells from, We're not allowed to know his name for at least a year, then only if he agrees. She was lucky, her Dr. had 15 matches to choose from, but others aren't so lucky. For the donor the procedure isn't painful like it once was, it's just like giving blood now, thanks to advanced technology. So, I encourage everyone to go to BeTheMatch and register as a donor.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Carmel Marathon 2014

So this winter has been horrid! There enough said!!!

Thankfully it seems to be getting close to normal. It's April 18th as I'm writing and it hasn't snowed since the 14th. The Carmel Marathon is in the books, and while it wasn't even close to a full training cycle I'm counting this as a win. It was rough at 16 or so and my longest training run just happened to be around 17 I think... But let's look at the wins:
I was able to meet up with Mike H. (A Hendricks County Runner) At the start line. He ran a nicely paced half.
I also got a chance to talk to Harry (another Hendricks County Runner) who was helping set up the finish line. 
I had the best support crew a husband and father could have!
I hung with the 4 hour pace group easily up until somewhere between mile 15-16 that's when it started to get tough.
Even though it was physically tough I was able to push through mentally, and persevere!

I don't remeber the mile marker but some lady in a white Urban Assault Vehicle was mad that traffic was stopped. So she started laying on her horn. The entire group started laughing and it kept things light and fun. You could hear the horn for over a quarter mile away, I'm sure she eventually got to where she was going.

At mile 24ish I stopped at a med tent, to get checked out. A first for me but the lady was supper nice. My hands were going numb and I could only feel the tingles. I figured it was low blood sugar, which it was, glucose taken feeling better, Ironically I run high when my blood pressure is taken but surprisingly after 24 miles my blood pressure was great. (I guess I should run to my doctors office from now on)

Headed toward the finish! 
Overall a great event and a fun time! 
Want to see some funny splits? Of course you do!
8:54, 9:02, 9:01, 8:44, 9:09, 9:13, 8:46, 8:48, 9:02, 8:58, 9:14, 8:52, 9:12, 8:56, 8:50. Looks good right? Well, hang on:
Mile 16; 9:41, 10:40, 10:59, 11:31, 10:48, 12:09, 13:08, 13:33, 13:52, 13:23, 11:27.
Yep there was some walking going on there.

Next race, THE BIG ONE! Ultra 45 miles,
I better get training!

How do you push through those tough runs?

Monday, January 20, 2014

Change of Plans

So, January 12 was my birthday. The plan was to run 40 miles however, I had to work. No problem, I had the next weekend off and planned to do it then. Did it happen? 
No! Here's why: 
1: I didn't want to run 40 miles in 2-3 inches of snow that would be on the ground at the start of Saturday.
2: We were supposed to get an extra 3-5 inches on Saturday during my run.
3: This is probably the most important, I didn't feel it was safe to share the roads with vehicles trying to drive in snow. (I'm not into getting hit by cars)

So here's the plan now. I'll not be running 40 miles for my birthday because I need to start focusing on my marathon training and can't delay it anylonger. 
I will however plan on running a 45 mile Ultra on June 14th to commemorate my birthday.
Let the marathon training begin!