What is this blog about? Well, it is kind of complicated, and I am still trying to figure it out. It is somewhat about running, fitness, getting older, and trying to live a life with meaning, vigor, and integrity. Running has played a central part of that process, and it has certainly helped me to lose well over a hundred pounds, and keep the weight off for better than two years.
I started out at 276 lbs diagnosed as morbidly obese, I was a type two diabetic, suffering from sleep apnea, and I was a smoker. I began to walk because that was about the only thing I could do. Then I started to jog a little. When I started to run I could not run an eighth of a mile. Two years later I won my first 5k with a lumbering time of over 38 minutes. A lot of people finished in front of me, almost all of them, but I won it anyway, because I was even there. I was there because I was willing to run ugly. You have to be willing to start ugly if you want to do anything of any significance.
While this was all happening I began to write a book about it focusing on the running part of my experience. In time I figured out that the book was not really going to be about running, but that running was only a metaphor. Running was a vehicle, a venue, to something rather than an end to itself. Running ugly is a metaphor for having the courage to persevere with extraordinary everyday courage and persistence. It is the celebration that things worth having are earned and nurtured over time, and that meaning is found in the journey rather than arriving. It is the understanding that first efforts are almost always awkward, meddling, painful, slow, and often failures. Running ugly is about the business of putting one foot in front of the other, and heading out the door when everybody, including yourself, wonders if you will have the heart to persist.