2018 Chicago Marathon Race Report

Pre-race at the tent
Yes, those are plastic bags on my shoes

2018 Chicago Marathon

This year I had high hopes for my marathon.  In previous years, my goal was to finish the race.  This year, I wanted to see what I was truly capable of and run the race I knew I could run.  I read in a book that if you want to get better at something, go hire someone to help you reach your goal.  It seemed like such a simple concept, so I went looking for a coach.  I found Heather at McKirdy Trained and we were a perfect fit.  Over the past 6 months she has squeezed every ounce of potential out of my running by giving me workouts I had never done before. I will go over our training in another post, but one of the biggest takeaways is that you do not run over 2 hours and 30 minutes for ANY long run during training for a marathon.  For me, that is time enough for me to run a half marathon.  That’s right, I did not go over 13.1 miles in any run during my training.  Seems crazy, right? But is it crazy enough to work?


The forecast going into race day was 60° with 10-15mph winds coming from the northeast.  Also there was going to be scattered showers throughout the first 3-4 hours.  Although I was a little concerned about the rain, the cooler weather excited me because my last three marathons were a little too warm for me!  We ended up staying at the Sheraton Grand Chicago on Columbus. It ended up being about a mile walk to the RMHC charity tent where there was food, music, and most importantly fellow Team RMHC runners who were all running for such an important organization.  I ended up biking to the tent in the morning because I wanted to stay off my feet as much as possible before the race.  But what I did not take into consideration was that I had never biked in downtown Chicago, with 40,000 pedestrians walking around at 6 in the morning.  It was a little stressful! And to add to that, it had rained pretty good the night before so all of the streets were wet, meaning now my shoes and socks were wet even before I started the race! Not ideal!  Luckily there were some heaters in the tent to help warm me up.

Starting Corral

I arrived at corral H around 7:30am.  I tied plastic bags around my feet to try to keep them dry as long as possible.  I love being in this corral because I get to see runners just like me who felt compelled to raise money for a charity and used the marathon as the vehicle to help them.   I found a curb to sit on right as I entered the corral because I did not want to be standing for almost an hour waiting to start the race.  At around 8am, a little but of rain showed up and I quickly threw on my disposable poncho we bought online.  I knew I wasn’t going to wear it the whole time, but I needed to stay dry at least while I was waiting for the beginning of the race.

The Race

A week or so before the race, my coach shared the race plan with me.  I never had a race plan in previous marathons, but after a 15K PR at the Bay to Breakers earlier in the year, I was very excited to see what a race plan would do for my marathon time.  Here is what the plan was:

Marathon Race Plan

Miles 1-9

For the first 6 miles I made sure I did not get caught up in the excitement of the race.  I stayed on the slow end of my pace range clocking in 12min/mi.  Of course I cried while running past the Ronald McDonald House during the first mile, and the rain started to pick up a little more towards mile 5.  I wore my Nike Flyknit Epic Reacts for the beginning of the race, and they do not protect you from any kind of moisture.  Since rain was in the forecast I had already planned for my wife’s cousins to meet me at the halfway point to swap out shoes.  But in the meantime I was going to have slosh around in these shoes.  The winds started to blow around while heading north.  I knew Diana was planning to see me around mile 8 so I just had to get to her for my first checkpoint.  I had told her I would be there maybe around 10am.  During miles 7-9 I wanted to stretch the legs out a little bit, so I picked up the pace a bit.  I ended up averaging under 11:30 for that 3 mile stretch and that included a quick stop to the port-a-potty.  Turns out, I was a little faster than the 10am expectation I told Diana and I could not find her. It was the first time I had actually missed someone who I expected to be there.  Although I was a little disappointed, I knew in the end it was up to me to do well in this race, whether or not I see my friends.  Good thing I was able to become self-reliant because that ended up being a theme for the first half of the race.

Miles 10-21

The next set of miles required a little more speed as there were surges at the beginning of every mile.  I had done similar surges in training, and I liked them, so coach put them in my race plan.  There was something to knowing that at the beginning of every mile I would pick up the pace.  Oddly enough, I looked forward to those surges.  I knew early into this segment of the race that I just needed to get to the halfway point.  Ria and Erika would meet me to give me my change of shoes.  My brother Tony and the Tumang family would also be there cheering me on.  Getting back into the loop really is a big confidence and adrenaline boost.  The crowds get louder again after tapering off a little bit, but the change of the course to run under the L was pretty awesome.  I told Ria and Erika I was planning on being at the halfway point around 10:30 or so.  But once again I underestimated myself and I was there a couple minutes before that time, and I missed them.  I also missed the Tumang family around the same section.  By some grace of God, my brother Tony who JUST stepped off the subway saw me and got my attention closer to mile 14.  He was able to give me a fresh shirt and unlike any other marathon I had run, I changed and took off without much conversation.  We only talked about how I missed everyone.  I didn’t realize it at that point but I was only a couple minutes off of my PR for the half marathon distance during a race at 2:36:02 (PR – 2:34:56).

Changing that shirt was huge for me.  I felt like a brand new runner.  The raining had pretty much stopped and was nowhere near what it was during the first 1/3 of the race.  The winds were still a bit of a factor, it would occasionally gust and take my breathe away and I would have to cough it out.  But my God, I was actually enjoying myself.  As much as I love the Bulls, the mile and some change to the United Center has always been a breaking point for me.  But with my race plan, it was much easier to chunk it into smaller pieces.  My feet were starting to hurt after I had seen Tony so I popped in my AirPods and called Erick.  I told him that I NEEDED those shoes.  I know it must have been hard for him to hear me while I was running, but he got the message.

Before the race I noticed a small whitehead that was on my stomach.  I really did not think much of it, until about mile 15.  Since I had my AirPods in I started to listen to some music to make the time go by a little quicker.  Of course, I listened to the Hamilton soundtrack on Spotify.  At some point I looked down at my feet to make sure they were pointing forward and not inward or outward and then I saw it.  On my white Team RMHC singlet from last year was a deep red mark spreading down to my shorts.  I honestly freaked out for a hot second.  I was just jamming to “My Shot” and it looked like I had been shot.  I quickly lifted up my shirt to find that whitehead had been chaffed raw and was not dripping blood.  OK cool. That hasn’t happened before, but with all the rain, it was not a surprise.  I went to the next Aid tent at Mile 15.  I knew I was going to lose time, but I didn’t want this to get any worse.  They patched me up and I lost about 3 1/2 minutes.  I knew stops like that, and the stop to get new shoes would decrease my chances of hitting my goal time.  I did not get to hung up on that.  I knew I was doing well, and I would continue to do well, and maybe those stops will somehow reinvigorate me.

I got to mile 17 with faded blood now on my singlet and there was my brother Tony, the Tumangs, and my sweet, sweet dry socks and shoes.  I spent several minutes there, trying to change as fast as I could.  I was ready to go pretty quickly, but then I forgot that I needed some aquaphor on my feet before I started off again.  I had to take off the shoes and socks, apply the aquaphor, and then put everything back on again.  I lost closer to 6 minutes on this interaction.  Abby asked if I had wanted strawberries, and they sounded really good at the moment.  But I did not want to break the “nothing new on race day” rule, so I sadly declined.  This race was the fourth time they had seen me run a marathon, and all around the same spots.  They had seen me at very difficult times in previous races, but here I was at mile 17, still looking good.  For the first time they were saying I was going “too fast”.  I gotta say, that really picked up my spirits.  With my fresh shoes on I took off back on the course, and they said they would meet me again at around mile 21.

Mile 17 - Switching Shoes
Fresh Socks and Shoes!

It is around this time in the race that I tend to space out a bit.  Not necessarily hitting a wall, but more just not being able to focus as much as I want.  Although I now had dry shoes on, they are the ones I trained in all summer that had over 300 miles on them.  They are the Hoka One One Bondi 5s which have a ton of support.  But all I kept thinking about was that they had too many miles on them to race in.  In comparison to the Reacts I was wearing during the first 17 miles, they were a lot bulkier.  It is funny how your mind tries to create these roadblocks.  What was I scared of? That the shoes were literally going to just break apart at the seams? I was going to finish this race even if I was still in the wet Nikes.  Because of this internal argument, my pace slowed a bit over miles 18-20 to 12:13/mi.

I arrived at mile 21 tired but still ready to finish the race.  In previous marathons, this is where I looked my absolute worst,.  Defeated.  I remember one year I said I was going to quit.  This year, I knew I was still in good shape to PR and that drove me,  But, I still needed something more.  My support crew was there ready with my last singlet change – the white Team RMHC singlet from this year.  It was a little more snug than last years but was gleaming white from only being worn once in training.  At least I could take the gun shot evidence singlet off now and I could look good in the remaining race photos! Abby again offered me strawberries.  I was absolutely done with the gels I was taking.  I knew I needed them, so that is why I took them, but I could not stomach one more of those.  This time, I broke the law and had a strawberry.  A sweet, sweet strawberry.  It tasted SO good! I had the rest that was in her container.  She then had some dried cranberries and wow it was like tasting sugar for the first time.  It was what I needed.  Another extra minutes logged at the stop, but this was what I needed.  Erick said, “You are going to KILL YOUR PR”, and he was right.  Even if I slowed down to 15min/mi, I would still PR by a ton.  After that boost, I was ready to finish this race.  Just like years past, they told me they would try to catch me at mile 25.  But this year I had a plan of my own.

Bloody Singlet
Bloody Singlet
“Food is good”

Miles 22-26.2

It is interesting being in the latter half of the race finishers. You see all kinds of people going all kinds of paces.  Some are just trying to survive the last few miles.  Others are still moving pretty well, but you know they are mentally willing themselves to take each step.  And finally there are people who are completely zoned in and determined to finish.  I had been in the first two groups of runners at the end of the race.  I always wished to be in that last group.  And this year, I finally was able to put myself in that zoned-in group.  It was a simple equation in the end: (1 mile + 1 minute surge) x 5 times = Chicago Marathon Finish Line.  After the fruit goodies, I clocked a 11:57 on mile 23.  I enjoyed that victory because I had never gotten anything near a 12min/mi at mile 23 of any other marathon. As long as I stayed around that pace and not longer than 13/min/mi, this would be easy.  Mile 24: 12:52 – ugh, too close to 13 minutes, speed it up! Mile 25: 12:34, that’s more like it! I hear the familiar yell of “Go Joey” from my support crew.  This time I do not stop.  I simply stick my right hand out and don’t slow down.  I hear my brother say “Oh! This is it? That’s it?” And then more cheering.  There was only a handful of them there, but they meant so much to me in this race.  I wanted them to know, that I got this.  I FINALLY GOT THIS.

That second to last turn onto Roosevelt is one of the most exciting turns in the race.  There is still about a 1/2 mile left, but there is nothing but fatigue, adrenaline, and excitement fueling your legs. You earned every inch of pain you feel in that moment, but you know in a couple of minutes you are going to be incredibly happy.  But first, you have to get over that damn bridge.  The excitement fades away for a bit, and grit comes and takes over.  I am literally clenching my jaw to get over the bridge and control my breathing as much as possible.  I did not come this far to pass out just short of the finish line.  Not only is the biggest incline of the race at the end of the race, but it also happens to be where the most race photographers are. That does not seem like coincidence.  They want to see that pain in our faces and they definitely saw it in mine.

The last left onto Columbus. I look at my watch, yeah I am going to destroy my PR.  It was not the time I was hoping for, but I will absolutely take it.  I feel like I am sprinting, but I realize that it is closer to a power walk than anything else, which is fine with me because I don’t want to run into anyone at the finish line.  I raise my hands up in the air as I cross over the last timing mat.

5:36:24 – 63 minute PR!

I sent a kiss up to Heaven to all the angels who were with me: my Dad, Tita Imelda, Uncle Rudy, Mason Vigan, Baby Gray, Tony Ocampo, and so many more who I thought of throughout training and throughout the race.  Finally, I enjoyed a marathon! Finally, I smiled at the finish line! Finally, I did my best!

The Finish Line
Celebrating a HUGE PR!


My family at the RMHC Tent
Erika and Ria gave my shoes to the Tumangs!
Tony and I have run in 6 marathons between the two of us in the last 9 years
Yes, honey. That is all daddy gets for running for 5 1/2 hours
Medal and Beer
Marathon Hardware

Balance Training for the Marathon

It has been a month and two days since my third Chicago Marathon.  The last time I completed a marathon was in 2011, back when it was just me and Jaz and we could really just do anything we wanted anytime we wanted.  That was two years before Justine came along and completely changed how I viewed life.  This year I wanted to tackle this accomplishment again, now knowing I had a little more behind me – the experience of being a parent.

This year, to add more motivation to stick with the training, I fundraised for the Ronald McDonald House.  They helped Jazmine and I so much while Justine was in the NICU at Lurie Children’s Hospital.   It was a very different experience fundraising for them compared to other charities I have fundraised for in the past.  We have a Facebook group where all of the current and past runners for RMHC come to share experiences both on the course and off.    I cried reading some of those stories, sometimes because it sounded so much like us and sometimes because they were not as fortunate as us.  I knew that this group was what I needed to keep me going through training.

In my previous marathons, I did not have to coordinate times around a child’s sleep schedule.  As Justine gets older, her sleep habits have not been consistent.  Some nights she sleeps 10 hours, some night only 6 hours.  She may or may not take a nap in the middle of the day.  And the worst of it was that this summer we were weaning her off of one medication, so she would wake up screaming when she would finally sleep.  We are convinced she was going through some kind of withdrawal.  For about 4 months she was not a happy camper so that led to very early runs for me, running at lunch time, or right after work to make sure I was home as soon as possible to relieve Jaz of her Stay at Home Mom duties.  Occasionally Justine required much more attention so I had to skip a few scheduled runs.  I admit, early on I was irritated when I would miss a run.  If you are a runner you know how missing a run can really mess with your head.  I came to the realization that my situation was not like others and that everyone has to deal with their own obstacles to get their training in.  Life is far from perfect, but that should not stop you from doing the things you want to do.

I am not a fast runner.  Some may call it jogging, or quick walking.  My goal this entire season was to just finish the marathon.  Because of this, I take a longer time finishing training runs than most people training for a marathon.  It was ok early on.  But when the mileage built up to 6-7 mile runs during the week and then up to 16-20 miles over the weekend, that is a lot of time away from the family.  In previous years after those long run Saturdays, I would just crash in my bed and fall asleep for hours.  Now, having a family, I did not want to miss out on our weekend together so I always made it a point to go out with Jaz and Justine right after I got back from my long run.  As much as I needed the long run for my training, I needed the family time with Jaz and Justine for balance.  I never wanted to appear selfish about taking too much time away from my family while training for the race.

I was satisfied with how I trained this year.  I trained smart, backing off when I felt like I needed to and pushing when I knew I had more in the tank.  My biggest worry through the entire season was making sure I was still a good father and husband to my family.  All of the hours I ran, or thought about running, or getting ready to run, or going somewhere to run was time away from my family that I knew was necessary for training.  I wanted to be healthy enough to finish the marathon as well as be functional and not too sore to hang out with my family.  That was the hardest and most rewarding part of training, balancing running with my life.  And in the end, I hope that I am a better father and husband for it.

6 weeks down, 12 weeks to go

Hard Work This year is going to be different
Last year I admit, I did not know what I was getting myself into
I thought then, “I’ve run for two years now, I can take on a marathon
I coasted through training, only getting sometimes one run in during the week
I knew it would be difficult, but I knew I would at least finish it
October 10, 2010
90 degrees
Pains, cramps, dehydration
…I finished it…before it finished me
6 hours, 49 minutes, and 51 seconds
Now I am putting in the work
I am finding inspirations from all directions
I am finding a strength within myself that I never knew existed
Every decision I make up until the race can effect me
I don’t allow myself to slack
Get ready Chicago Marathon 2011

I’m back…and this time I’ll be ready

Starting over…


So what reasons do I have to run the marathon this year? I went through it over and over and over again in my head.  As happy as I was to finish last year, I just did not think I did my best.  I know that finishing a marathon is quite an accomplishment, and I absolutely admire anyone who has enough within themselves to go year after year training for one sometimes multiple marathons in a year.  I don’t know what kind of marathon runner I will be, but I did not want to be a one and done kind of runner.  The moment I crossed the finish line last year at an agonizing 6 hours and 49 minutes, I knew the race got the best of me.  Let’s admit it, I knew halfway through that it beat me to a submission and step after step, I cursed the idea of running 26.2 miles.  I kept thinking “I can’t wait to be done with the $%*# race!”

This was absolutely not the way I wanted to remember my first marathon.  I felt like I cheated myself from such a wonderful experience that everyone always talks about when they talk about finishing a marathon.  Experienced runners that I spoke to always told me that the first marathon is mainly about finishing, and that’s all I thought of when I was in so much pain that I had to walk through parts of Chinatown.  And the second I crossed the finish line, I immediately thought to myself, “Alright, FIRST one is now done.”  I flip-flopped for months about signing up for another one, but the fact is that I am competitive.  Sure, I may not ever be able to truly compete for any awards or age rankings, but sometimes your biggest motivation is your past.  And I want to beat my 2010 self, and I have a score to settle with the Chicago Marathon.

You got me good the first time around, and I know not to take you lightly.  I will truly be ready for you this year, friend.  Can’t wait to see you in October!


I felt like I was actually a pretty productive trip to Birmingham this time around.  The last couple of times I went down here it felt like it was literally so I could be seen and that is all.  I would kid with co-workers who asked me why I was in Birmingham that I just wanted to show my face so it would be harder to lay me off since they have seen my face, haha.  OK, so I was partially kidding, partially serious.  In the past it felt like I didn’t really make any good connection with anyone.  This time I spoke a good amount with my boss and in fact when on a 5 mile run with him.  He is normally an 8min/mile kind of runner, but he had just done the Disney Marathon a couple weeks back so it was about time for a recovery run.  So yet again running creates a new relationship, this time it is a professional one.  I was able to talk to him about some of the struggles of working in Elgin while pretty much our whole team resides in Birmingham.  He stated he wants to get me more “plugged in” on some more projects that involve our team which obviously made me happy.  He’s already got me involved in a couple of projects so I am thinking this is going to be a good work year for me!  I do want to take a couple steps forward on becoming a senior level admin, hopefully it will happen next year. 

I gotta say, the people I have run into in Birmingham have been quite nice.  Now maybe it is because I am just a visitor and I lack the Southern twang and personality, but I have yet to run into someone who is less than pleasant.  Anyone in the hotels or restaurants we have visited are just so polite.  I will admit, there are times that I cannot understand exactly what they are saying to me because of their accent (SOIT TAYE).  But there is definitely one thing that divides this land, college football!  They are extremely passionate to their allegiance to either Alabama or Auburn.  And it’s not like a dislike, it is pretty much always genuine hatred.  Now my old boss used to play for Auburn, and it seems that the majority of our Birmingham office is an Alabama fan, so of course I choose to be an Auburn fan, because I have to be THAT guy.  I may not spread it around too much in the office, but there are a couple of people who know I prefer Auburn over Alabama.  And look, they won the BCS championship this year, I guess I chose correctly!  But of course, above all else, I am a Chicago Bulls fan!

And speaking of the Bulls…How ’bout dem Bulls?! Luckily last night the Bulls/Mavs game was on TNT and I was able to watch the end of it.  It’s really nice to have Derrick Rose on the team because he just flat out will put the team on his back and take them to the promise land.  Once other players see that, they feed off of it and want to perform better also.  I just wish Deng would do better in teh late quarters.  He still has the tendency to start off strong and then quickly fade away later in the game.  So frustrating!

Oh wait..I’m supposed to be talking about Birmingham, right?  Moving on…

One thing that Birmingham is VERY good at is FOOD! Of course you can find BBQ all over the place!  This time around we went our staples: La Paz and Cocina Superior for our fish taco fix.  You can blame Potter for those cravings.  For BBQ we hit up Dreamland BBQ and Sweet Bones Alabama.  Sweet Bones Alabama have some amazing smoked chicken wings off of their appetizer menu.  I don’t think I ever had smoked chicken wings, but I will definitely be comparing all wings to that place for a while.  We also hit up Michael’s which is the restaurant we stayed at (Aloft Soho).  You can get a free appetizer if you go into the lobby of the Aloft and find the electronix touchscreen marquee and send it to your cell phone via text message.  Their food is good and apparently when you order a dish with fries they give you a TON of fries! But the winner of Michael’s is their cheesecake pound cake.  They give such a big slice and it much more moist than you think pound cake should be.  We went their twice since it was so convenient, and let’s be honest, cheesecake pound cake sounds pretty awesome, right?

Overall I enjoyed our trip to Birmingham and I believe my 2011 career will lead to much better things than last year.  There is a lot of work to be done and I believe that my boss knows now how much more involved I want to be with the team.  It looks like I may be coming here more often than previous years. They say they have it in the budget to send us to Birmingham once a quarter, which I won’t mind in Chicago’s colder months, but it’s going to be HOT in the summer months. 

As great as it was to get to come down to Birmingham, I think it is time for me to go home to the cold I love in Chicago…err, Buffalo Grove.

Down but not out!

I went to the doctor today to find out that I have some tendonitis in my ankle/achilles area. It really isn’t that bad but the doctor suggested that I take it easy for two weeks. That means no high-impact activities, sadly that includes basketball and of course running! After the two weeks, I can ease back into my normal workout regimen. He did say I can participate in lower impact activities like walking, biking, and swimming. I am sooo going to be doing those things these next two weeks! One thing that COMPLETELY bums me out is that due to these new restrictions, I won’t be able to participate in the Soldier Field 10 Mile race at the end of this month. I was so excited to go out and finish my first long distance run! This will be the second time I will have to bow out of a race because of health issues (Hot Chocolate 15K ’09 – H1N1). I keep telling myself that this year is about the marathon. I am not training all hard to get up to a 10 mile race. I want the entire 26.2! And if I want it, then I have to know when to take a step back and let my body heal itself. Apparently, this is one of those times. I know it will be worth it in the end. And besides, I don’t have to wait much longer for another shot at a long distance race. I am registered for the North Shore 1/2 Marathon in mid-June. First thing is first. Get healthy enough and back in running shape after these two weeks, then get ready for that run.

Thank you for all the support on Twitter and DailyMile about my injury. There really is strength in numbers 🙂

In better news, chicagonow.com’s “Marathon Miss Fit” has allowed me to adverstise my fundraising efforts on her blog! Thank you so much Connie for getting my story out about my dad! Here is the link: Running Feet, Helping Hands

Patience Joey…Patience

Each week for the past 2 months I have been increasing my workouts, or the shots I take on the court, or the miles I log on the road.  In that time I’ve logged 138 miles of running that consists of interval runs, easy runs, long runs, and one race (Shamrock Shuffle).  This past Sunday, I hit my high mileage in one run for Mother’s Day – 12 miles.  The most I had run up to Sunday was 10 miles (which I had run twice).  I felt like I was ready for the 12 miles.  I had my carbs the night before and slept a full 8 hours.  I wanted to approach it like it was a race.  I woke up on time, had a banana and bagel, and let it all digest for an hour.  And then off I went.


First mile was horrific as usual.  Second mile was a little better.  Then something odd happened.  I had this very sudden wave of confidence.  Like I could push it a little bit.  Mile 3 was fast (for me) at around 10:40.  I still felt good after that, then I logged another sub 11-minute mile.  I stopped and walked because I know I needed it even though I wasn’t tired.  Mile after mile I was hitting 11 minute (or less) miles.  I was loving it! Then I finished mile 10, with two left going toward home.  Oh dear. The proverbial wall! The legs started to cramp slightly and I felt like stopping.  I was able to put my head down and push through this wall.  I realized I was tense so I kept telling myself to relax my muscles.  I was good to go.  11th mile done in 11 minutes, and the 12th done once again under 11 minutes.  My final time – 2:17…I was ecstatic!


I walked home pounding my chest knowing I had achieved something I had never done before.  I got home ready all ready to do my stretching.  Jaz made me eggs so I scarfed those down with some chocolate milk.  Started stretching and hurting in spots I didn’t know existed.  But one spot hurt a tad more than the rest.  The tendon behind my right ankle up to my calf felt like it was spasming.  It wasn’t super sharp pain, but very uncomfortable and unnerving.


I instantly went to the experts.  My running friends on Twitter! Probably the best explanation was from @MarathonBrian: “…you probably hurt your Achilles; a common injury for runners, especially when you increase your workload (pace, distance) in a short period of time before your body is used to it.” DAMN! I knew I was going to fast! (I normally average a 12min/mi pace).  I continued on with Mother’s Day walking VERY slowly everywhere I went.  My victory run was over-shadowed by this new injury.  Part of me was devastated because I felt like I was on such a roll, but part of me feels blessed.  Let’s be honest, I could have gotten hurt much worse!  Hopefully something like this with proper rest will pass.


I should have displayed more patience on my last run.  Now that I know I CAN get under an 11 minute mile, I don’t need to hit that again.  Not anytime soon.  So the next couple days, I will just rest and relax.  Let my body heal itself, drink lots of water, and just wait it out.  Now that I can’t run, I just want to run.  My ankle and achilles don’t feel right.  Maybe I need to see a doctor, but I will have to be patient with whatever I do.


Patience, Joey.  Just breathe and rest…

Where have I been?

Been trying to figure out the best way to show some good pictures from our NY trip. Haven’t found a good way to do that yet. So check out my Shutterfly Album.

Running my legs off…
Trying to figure out how to create some Ebay apps for my other site…
More updates coming, I promise!

Friday night/Saturday Morning Thoughts

Forgive me…I have a bunch of things flying through my head, and I just wanted to write them down. This may end up being the most incoherent blog post ever.

Bulls: what the hell!? Lose to the NETS? In DOUBLE OVERTIME? Granted there were some crap calls (and no-calls) in the game, but how are you going to be the team that the 12-win Nets have TWO wins over this season? Sad. Of course I hope you make it to the playoffs to see some more basketball from my team, but at least make an effort and look like you want it! You can’t tell me that the Nets really cause THAT much of a match-up problem for you! You were lucky to even have squeaked by the 2011 Cavs (aka ‘sans Lebron’). Yet again, another lost opportunity to make up some ground, or even lead in the 8th spot of the Eastern conference. You’re better than that!

Fantasy Leagues: Won my NBA Fantasy League (C’MON SON!) with Jaz’s cousins and friends from California.


That’s right, I won by ONE MINUTE in the Minutes category. I’m glad I picked up some players (Ryan Gomes, Kyle Lowry, Anthony Morrow, and Vince Carter..yeah, that’s right!) to give me more stats on that last Sunday!

Joined a baseball fantasy league representing my site HobbyKings.com in the Clash of the Trading Forums league. I honestly don’t know what I am doing, but I am enjoying it, and enjoying baseball a little more.


Remember I won my Fantasy Football league too with my co-workers this past season. Could it be a clean sweep?

Running: If I run tomorrow (later today) I will have run 5 times this week Sun-Sat with 2 long runs (8mi on Sun, 9mi on Sat). I think I’ll be ready to run today, it just amazes me that I can actually run this much now. Even if I move my long run to Sunday, just to know I can run multiple miles multiple times a week is such a huge accomplishment! I hung out with my nephews tonight and Eli was talking to me about how he wants to run a 5K now because he saw his dad do it. I really want him to do it, because he says he feels happy or “pumped” when he runs. That’s how I feel too, buddy!
Twitter: I’m pretty sure I’m addicted now. I have come across many interesting people on twitter who help motivate me through my marathon training. It is actually a cool “little” (it’s not little at all) Chicago running community on Twitter. Many of them inspire me to become a better runner or at the very least, prepared for the marathon. Over 3000 tweets later, and I am finally admitting that I have a problem.

OK, I think my mind has been emptied out, and now I can sleep. Busy weekend and then where are we off to next weekend? Tell ’em Jay-Z, Alicia, and apparently Lil Mama