IRONMAN Boulder 2014

IRONMAN Boulder 2014
IRONMAN Boulder 2014 - Photo Courtesy of Nils Nilsen @N2PhotoServices
former professional couch potato and dorito eater with no fitness background to 4 x IRONMAN triathlete. blogging so you can be inspired to be active in your life! there's no 'can't' - just think of when you will take that first step!

Monday, October 3, 2011

the start of daRevoluCHIN!

i did a quick google search for "darevoluchin nike blog" and it actually found this post about how i went from the couch to running in 2007:

don't want to click & read? no problem! i've copied & pasted it here:


The Start of daRevoluCHIN!

August 27, 2009

It started in February of 2007 on an icy Chicago day. The temperature was an aggressively mean negative twenty wind chill. In our loop condo, I suited up to go for a run in cotton socks, a cotton shirt, a cotton hoodie, sweat pants, long johns, the outer layer of a winter coat, a hat, huge mittens, a scarf, and shoes that weren’t meant for running.

Why would I do such a thing? Why didn’t I wait until Spring? Why would I subject myself to that?!?

The answer is simple…

Ever since 1998, I watched the Chicago Marathon and was always envious of the swarms of runners of all shapes and sizes. As I watched, I thought to myself, “I’m going to do that next year!” Now, keep in mind, I was thinking this while I was becoming more dehydrated from the coffee I was sipping after the previous night’s revelries. So, could I really do it? Could I actually stay in on Friday nights because of the following morning’s long run? Could this big kid, whose most active sport to date was starting tackle freshman year of high school, REALLY do it?

Well, it seemed like I really couldn’t at the time. That scene actually repeated itself for about eight years before I took action. Perhaps, it was because I was finally done with school and settled into a regular working schedule. Nevertheless, I finally just went for it.

I was tired of being a professional couch potato that starved for several brands of chips. Those types of bicep curls didn’t necessarily cut it if you want to be in shape!

So, I just did it…

My goal was to get from our downtown home to the Starbucks in Old Town three miles away using the Chicago lakefront path. I braved the icy, desolate, and dark route trudging along while thinking to myself, “What the HELL am I doing?!?” and “Why does this SUCK so bad?!?”

But, I made it! When I walked into that Starbucks, my glasses fogged up and my face started to sweat profusely. I distinctly remember a gentleman looking at me and he asked, “Are you really sweating after coming in from out there?” I answered with pride and out of breath, “Yeah…I…just…ran…” I have no idea what he said or what happened next except that I had a hot chocolate in my hand and was shortly on the train back home.

How would I possibly do this again? Well, I did a few times. But, I started to feel like I may quit because it was so hard to go three miles especially in all that clothing. It was getting VERY cumbersome and I just didn’t want to deal with it. So, what was going to keep me going?


I went to a well-known Chicago running store’s fun run one evening. I felt REALLY awkward because I was SUCH a rookie! I was embarrassed to ask questions. I even hid and pretended I was shopping even though I was there to participate in the run. I hoped to find others running the same “pace.” But, what was that “pace?” I only knew it to be slow and hoped others would speak up or maybe ask ME what I was going to run. I think a couple gentleladies actually did speak up and then I quickly latched on.

From that point, I had a couple new friends. I remember one of them being Jillian. We kept each other going week to week at the fun run until we, unfortunately, lost touch somehow. But, I did find out more about the store’s racing team that was for all levels. And, I must say, after I joined that group, my running experiences multiplied to levels I NEVER thought possible. And, I soon found myself in a training program for that year’s Chicago Marathon (2007)!

Because of that team, I was able to get into Nike’s Northside/Southside Challenge for the Marathon. There were about 50 on the Northside and 50 on the Southside. It was a friendly rivalry and the team with the most Nike+ miles and fastest average pace on race day won a donation to a charity (Boys and Girls Club for the Northside team and the Chicago White Sox charities for the Southside team).

I ended up the team captain for the Southside. No, we didn’t win—sorry White Sox charities! Nevertheless, through that role, I got to meet runners of all shapes, sizes, experience, elite, non-elite, etc. I found myself in a naturally motivating capacity using a googlegroup to send email blasts to my team to hype them up for events, on the stage at Niketown and on the news. Isn’t this type of role reserved for some type of famous and fast runner? Or, at least somebody with lots of running experience and not in his or her first year of running? Apparently not and, I wasn’t complaining. I actually felt very lucky and fortunate.

Can I get myself out the door to get my run in solo? I’ll admit to you, as long as you promise not to tell, that the answer is usually no. I enjoy the new friends that have come out of my Nike Northside/Southside experience. That’s why I have done my best to keep as many of them from that time, along with new ones we’ve picked up along the way, together as a core group. It’s purely selfish too because the group is my motivation to get out and do my run. They keep me accountable even if there isn’t somebody running my exact pace that day. We meet and end in the same spot and cheer each other on no matter what. It’s funny that I basically play the role of motivating others in order to keep myself motivated and accountable but we all seem to benefit and I now have the closest and best-est friends ever!

I’ve continued to run because of those friends. I am VERY lucky to have them in my life and enjoy every moment I get to spend with them. And, what’s even better is that the group continues to grow as I share my story and encourage newbies to start their own story.

Even though I’ve done three marathons, including New York and Chicago back in 2008, I honestly could probably do without the actual running part of these friendships. However, if it comes with the territory, I’m all for it. I’ll run to keep this network alive!

That’s how daRevoluCHIN started and I look forward to bringing more newbies in—locally and virtually!

No comments:

Post a Comment