When the blood of a much younger man coursed through my veins, I had little use for endurance sports. I did for a time, however, run daily when I was a young police officer. I never enjoyed it. In the time it took to bang out a five-mile run, I would be obsessed with the thought that I could have gotten something more important done in that time that would put me closer to my goals. I liked sprints and hills and the weight room of course, but that mindless pavement-pounding felt like self-abuse and a pointless waste of time.

But change is part of growing, experiencing more in life, and getting better. I dabbled in running short distanced 3 or 4 years ago and actually enjoyed it but there were aches and pains and a lack of urgency to run again once they went away.

I’m 60 now and I have three toddlers that will need me around for the next couple of decades or more so I am very focussed on my health and well-being. I have the running bug again and this time I am looking forward to a few minutes of thoughtless activity while enjoying nature and it’s awesome splendor. It beats hiding in the bathroom when the batteries in my patience filter are running low and a very healthy way to process stress.

And so it was that Ana and Elaine and Crystal and I were training at LVAC when I asked Crystal to do a walk/run on the indoor track with me. That is the best way to start when you haven’t been running for a long time. I walk until I feel loose and warm then I run until my breathing gets harder then I walk until my heart rate comes back down and I am breathing easy again. We repeated that cycle a few times and run number one was in the books.

Crystal is Jesse’s (our former foster son) biological mom, and the stress of making the massive changes to her lifestyle in the past two years resulted in her gaining over 50lbs. She is pre-diabetic and she is ready to make some changes so we have her around for years to come. This run was for both of us and it was our very first together. I plan on there being many more and I told her I wanted to do a 5k race with her in late summer just so we have a goal. She started the process of beating her cigarette habit and is making good headway on that, and her nutrition plan will be the next challenge.

Making changes in my fitness regimen makes it all exciting again but having someone to mentor and coach along the way, that gives it a much greater purpose.

I will be posting about our progress here periodically. I coached elite and professional athletes for over 35 years so I plan on sharing the valuable parts of the process in hopes that someone else finds a useful nugget or two along the way.