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My Fitness Journey

During a dinner conversation in spring of 2015, our 13 year old son made a statement to my wife and I that we don’t understand how difficult his life was. My wife and I did not react at all to the statement at that time other than telling him that we understand.  Our conversation on this topic continued and we thought may be he is right, growing up our social pressure was different compared to the pressure the kids have these days.  We decided it would be good to do something that seems extremely difficult and be an example for him to understand that perseverance, focus and determination can take us anywhere.  I used to work for Bank Of America during that time and one of the perk my then employer provided was a guaranteed entry into the Chicago Marathon. I saw this on the internal portal and went ahead, signed up for it.  It was literally a couch to a marathon for me as all I did before was run a few times on the treadmill at home and never did anything related to running outside.  I did not even know what Marathon distance was.  My first run prior to any training was when my wife took me for a 5K in May 2015. 

Having signed up for a marathon with just about 20+ weeks left, the first thing I did was google on how to train for a marathon, the first thing everyone stated was for me to have a good pair of running shoes. I went to a local store Run For Your Life to buy a pair of running shoes to start training and taking my commitment to running a little seriously and which is where I learnt about my amazing running group which is called Run For Your Life - Run Far Program (also are referred to as Piper Glen Speed Demons). I started running with this group in early June last year. My running family (PG Speed Demons) has been instrumental and motivated me, provided me with plans and helped execute my goal of finishing my first marathon in Chicago in October of 2015.  The actual marathon was fantastic until around mile 18 where I twisted my ankle pretty bad and started dragging myself from that point on through the end. It was a LOOONG walk and had a lot of time to think/distract me from the pain. I thought to myself if I had an ability to be on tired feet for much longer, I probably wouldn’t have twisted my ankle. Came up with a 3 year plan and called it my AAA Plan, a 3 year running plan where each of the A indicated my goal for the year. 

The initial 3 years of the plan.
2015 - Year of Acquaintance  
2016 - Year of Accomplishment  (19 Half and 3 full marathons)
2017 - Year of Acceleration. (Significantly improved my pace until an injury)

As time progressed this journey was very enjoyable. To keep the momentum going, migrated to a rolling 3 year plan. Here are the goals for the next 3 years

2018 - Year of Adaptation  (Ran a Barefoot Marathon!)
2019 - Year of Augmentation (Learnt Swimming)
2020 - Year of Affirmation (Running 6 marathons in 6 months)  I am running in sandals and five toe shoes as I train for this!

My wife has been my backbone of support through this journey and she has done several half marathons with me.  I am ecstatic with this journey  as it not only allowed my wife and I to be an example to our child but also allowed us to learn to enjoy the sport. It has provided me to connect with the community much better.