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.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Chicago Marathon 2011 My First - Part 1

We arrived in Chicago Saturday October 8th and took the subway to the marathon expo. Let me just say, WOW! This was the largest expo I'd ever been to, it had everything a runner could want. All the big names were there but I was really excited to get to the Newton booth. My wife and I went to the packet pick up and got my bib number and headed into the main expo room where they smartly made you walk the entire length of the expo to pick up your tech shirt. On the way I saw the Newton booth and got even more excited. We picked up my shirt and made our way back through the expo. I eventually went to the Newton booth and after having a lengthy conversation with one of the representatives there I bought some cool Newton stuff.We met up with a friend and finished walking the rest of the expo, where I also bought another shirt. Then I took him back to the Newton booth and talked to him about the shoes and natural running etc, etc.

We had dinner that evening with some additional friends who live in the area and got to catch up on everything that had been going on in with each of our lives. It was a great time to sit and relax before the big day. After dinner we headed back to the hotel and I checked all of my gear again to make sure it was all ready for the morning. We went to bed and as is mostly the case I didn't have much problem going to sleep. Although, I did wake up a few times anxious that the 4 alarms I had set wouldn't go off and I would over sleep. (I usually have this happen when I have a big event the next day.)

Four fifteen came fairly early and it was Race Day! I got ready and we headed out of the hotel where we met up with our friend Matt who would hang out with my wife while I ran. We drove to the train station where we boarded the train heading for downtown. It was about a half hour ride or so, and at almost every stop someone else got on the train who was headed to the race. I must say it's a very surreal experience to see so many like minded individuals who all spent so much time and effort training for one event gathering and making a trek to one destination.

Once we arrived downtown and walked toward Grant Park it was time to say my goodbye's to my wife who's been so supportive of this goal of mine. I finished my preparations, gave her a hug and kiss and told her I would see her at about mile 7 where she would meet me for the first time. I crossed inside the gated portion of the starting areas and began immediately looking for a port-o-potty, because I needed to go REALLY BAD. The lines were excruciatingly long everywhere I looked, and a little bit of panic started to set in. Then I noticed something very odd, that I'd heard about but never thought it would be so blatantly obvious. I saw many a runner near a single tree standing extremely close to the said tree. It dawned on me then what they were doing. Now, myself growing up in the country had done this thing many times but generally without an audience. But, hey I had to go and it was getting urgent. So, I went.

Then I headed over to the D corral where I found that my pace group was actually in the open corral. So I moved back a little bit and found the four hour group with their signs where I settled in for the wait. It was an amazing sight, every direction I looked was a sea of runners. As the start approached, the announcer began to introduce the elite athletes and there wasn't much of a reaction until Ryan Hall's name was announced, then the crowd had an obvious reaction to his introduction. I must admit I had goosebumps.

As the horn sounded the crowd began to surge forward and before I knew it I was crossing the starting line. I was on my journey to completing my first Marathon.

To Be Continued...

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