March, I’m ready for you

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Here I sit with only 57 minutes left in February and I realized that I’ve been absent from blogging here lately. I wanted to catch you all up on what happened with my friend Scott and while I have a post sitting in my drafts – I just haven’t had it in me to re-edit and publish it. The short version is – he’s alive, well and recovering at home from the surgery. So thank you all for your love and prayers. Eventually… I will get around to posting the whole thing.

So I realized today that it was the last day of February. My how time has flown in 2014 and I look back at the last few weeks and am pretty darn proud of my progress

  • I’ve maintained a Paleo lifestyle (using the 80/20 rule) and have been fairly consistent with my workouts minus a few unexpected hiccups along the way.
  • I’ve progressed from week 1 of Couch to 5k where I could barely run for 60 second intervals at a time to now running for 25+ minutes without walking or stopping.
  • I’ve dropped 26 pounds from my heaviest in December.
  • My clothes are actually fitting better
  • Several people have asked me if I’ve lost weight

What’s next on the agenda you should ask? Well, I have two 5k races this month and I *should* be able to get on the bike sometime this month should the weather ever decide to break (granted, the forecast for the next few days doesn’t give me any hope of that happening any time soon).

I’ve also got a few other surprises up my sleeve but if you want to know about them – you’ll have to follow me on Twitter. They’ll eventually make it to the blog for the rest of you non-Twitter people. 🙂

That’s it folks – BodPod assessment is on Monday morning (providing they’re open with the crazy weather) and I’ll be posting the updated results.

Goodnight!
John

My First Big Milestone!

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FitBit Badge45 days ago I set out to do one of the most challenging things I’ve ever done – to get healthy. It’s hard work (and requires a ton of dedication). I took up running to eventually use as a form of cross training for cycling and to complete some personal goals around running races. I decided that I would once again adopt the Paleo diet and this time not abandon it after 30 days. I committed to myself to be working out between 3-6 days per week. I committed to reduce my eating out and when I do to make smarter choices. There have been times where this whole “getting healthy” thing feels like a second job.

While measurements like inches lost is motivating and my clothes are starting to fit better – I’m still very tied to the scale. People don’t typically ask you the circumference of your waist when talking about your physical appearance – they ask about your weight. I’m also hyper sensitive to my eating and how it can change my weight so quickly for good or bad.

I’m happy to report – my 45 days of hard work have paid off and I’m down 20 pounds from my heaviest in December at 228. To put this into even more perspective – I now weigh less than I did at my lightest last year (Pelotonia 2013). So I’ve reached my first milestone – get under 230!

Next milestone? Get to 219. It’s a small goal but I haven’t been under 220 for at least 6 years!

Thank you all for the outpouring of support – it really does help and I couldn’t have done this alone. I’ve appreciated the pushes to encourage me to get to the gym and the great words of encouragement that everyone has offered me.

Have a great Saturday!
John

 

I lost a piece of me in you

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Katy and MeYou would have been 35 today.

I have a lot of fond memories celebrating your “birthday month”. I was thinking the other day back to your 30th birthday party. All the craziness and the games and the dancing and the laughing. Things were so different back then.

Tonight as I was running all I could was think about you.
About how I’m working out at the same gym you used to work out at.
About how you’re not here to celebrate in my successes with me getting healthy.
About how I can’t call you anymore to share with you how my day went.
About how you’re still in my address book.
About what your life would have been like today.
About how I may be different if you were still here.
About how you’re gone.

You would think that after three years that this would get easier. I guess in many ways it has but other times it hurts as bad as the day we lost you. That day that you left us – I remember like it was yesterday.

I remember walking down the hall from your room after you passed.
I remember leaning against that wall feeling lost.
I remember sinking to my knees in grief.
I remember the tears I shed.
I remember feeling like I lost a piece of me.

I miss you so much. The bookmark from your memorial sits prominently on my desk held by my Pelotonia paperweight – the one I got in 2011 for riding 180 miles in your honor.

The worst part about all this is you would be the one I would turn to when I would feel this way – you would always have the right words to say but I guess I can’t do that anymore, can I? You introduced me to Blue October when we first met. We always liked this song and both related to it well. Now that I’m here and you’re gone – this song means more to me now than ever.

So happy birthday to you, Katy. You were one of the greatest people I ever had the privilege of knowing and I miss you more than words can express.

Love ya,
– John

 

If not us, then who? If not now, then when?

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Lately music seems to really speak to me. This has been a reoccurring theme throughout my life but it seems like it’s been ages since I’ve heard so much music that just speaks to me. I was running on the treadmill listening to my Rdio Shazam playlist today and heard a song that I clearly wanted to save for later – Do Something by Matthew West. Here are some lyrics that caught my attention as I ran:

So, I shook my fist at Heaven
Said, “God, why don’t You do something?”

I thought about how I felt shortly after Katy’s death, after I hear of another life lost to cancer, when I hear about my friends going through painful treatments to fight this disease, when I hear of another diagnosis.

He said, “I did, I created you

That hit me square between the eyes. God’s placed me on this earth and that line couldn’t be more true! I need to be doing everything within my power to make a change, a difference… I need to be doing something!

If not us, then who
If not me and you
Right now, it’s time for us to do something
If not now, then when
Will we see an end
To all this pain
It’s not enough to do nothing
It’s time for us to do something

Chills.
I continued to repeat the song and just listen. That chorus still grabs my attention each time I play the song and really made me think about my life.

Tomorrow (or today if you’re reading this on February 4, 2014) is World Cancer Day. Three years ago I entered the fight to end cancer. I may not be personally working to cure a cancer in a lab somewhere but I’m doing what I can to fight the fight. I’ve committed to riding in Pelotonia until they find a cure. I decided that it was time to do something.

So today on World Cancer Day I’m not asking you to ride 180 miles or raise $2200.00 (though you’re welcome!). What I’m asking is that you just do something. If you want to help me fight the fight then I’d encourage you to donate to my ride over at www.pelotonia.org/massie.

Need some more motivation – take a second and watch this:

Maybe someday, together, we will find a cure for this horrible disease once and for all.

It’s time for us to do something!
Massie

The Old Apartment

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The Old Apartment

“End of an era”
“Close chapter, open future”
“Thought of this immediately – Barenaked Ladies: The Old Apartment”

All quotes from my friends on my last Foursquare check-in at home.

Yesterday I handed over the keys and garage door opener to the place that I called home for the last two years (also affectionately known on Foursquare as Classy Massie’s Abode). As I did my walk through yesterday morning I thought of all the memories that were made there. It made me think about the last two years and how much life has changed for me.

As I closed the door on my way out I realized that I was also closing the door on a chapter in my life. This year brought about many changes, not only in my living situation but also in my health, social, spiritual and finances.

So I’m off to embark on a new journey. I decided to reduce my expenses and rent a room to help accelerate achieving my financial goals. God’s blessed me a with a great place to live and with some great roommates – something that I’m so very thankful for.

As far as my fitness is concerned – I’m still running and last night did my first strength training routine. I am down 13 pounds from January 1 and 17 pounds from the end of December (my heaviest in 2013). The encouragement and support has been wonderful! It has been really great to hear/see people have faith in me when sometimes I doubt if I’ll ever be able to achieve my fitness goals. I now understand the importance of a “support system” like many articles and books reference.

So now it’s February 1 and I’m looking forward to seeing what this month brings! I’ll leave you with the song that has been stuck in my head for the last couple of weeks:

 

Later,
John