The Race I Love To Hate!

Ahhh yes…the Dave’s 10 Miler!  “The Race I Love To Hate”!  This is the third year that I’ve made the long trek across town to Delta, Ohio where they hold the annual Dave’s 10 Miler.  It’s a good 40 minute drive from our home, but for some reason, I keep returning to this one.  27164524_10213380004768256_277112797574721187_o

The first year I ran was in 2015 and OMG!!  Quite possibly the worst running conditions you could ever ask for!  Blowing and drifting snow/sleet, big swirling winds and just enough cover on the roads to keep you from strapping on Yak Trax!  That being said…I made it through the entire 10 miles (Frozen facial hair and all).  This race is always run in the mid part of January and in NW Ohio, that could mean anything for weather.

The 2017 run was a complete turn around from 2015.  We had 64 degrees and sunshine!  What the hell?!  While I enjoyed the temperatures and running in shorts, I kept thinking back to the 2015 run and was just blown away.  You really can get just about anything for weather at this time of year.

2018…the conditions looked to be pretty good going into the week prior to the event.  They were calling for a chance of rain and about 40 degrees on race day.  As it turned out, we did get 41 degrees, but also received a monster FOG!  Holy Hell!  Lining up for the race I just had to chuckle and told my wife, “every time I come out for this run I’m handed something unique!”  There was very little wind and with the temperature being basically perfect, we knew it was going to be a good run.  Both of us had been fighting the “Ohio Cruds” in the weeks building up to the race.  I was able to get out once just a week before to try to get my running legs back.  So, the idea of setting a new P.R. were tossed out the window and we both just decided to make it a training run and survive.  I paced with Karla for the first 6 miles and it was pretty wonderful.  We don’t often get to run together and sometimes that’s alright…lol!  Just kidding honey!  We clipped off the miles and enjoyed the thick haze out in the middle of no where!  I wore a High Viz Orange shirt due to the conditions.  I figured if I’m running on a country road and the speeding locals are not aware there’s a race going on, I’d like to be seen before getting run down…lol!  Most of the miles went pretty easy and my breathing was much improved from the week prior.  I did however have a small equipment problem with my shoe and sock combination.  The shoes I chose had a shift with the insert and it started to rub the side of my foot something awful.  I thought for sure there’d be a huge blister once we got home.  No blister but a bright red pinch mark.  All good now!26730829_1984847188210913_1541023208032878146_n

The end result was a 9:39 pace for the 10 miles.  Not what I’m used to but, like I said, this was a survival run.  Karla did awesome and was just a few minutes behind me.  I think she placed in her division!  She always claims to be slow but for some reason has no problem placing in her division…time and time again.  The shirt and bling were totally fun!  They hit the mark when they came out with that design!  I was planning on skipping the run this year and then the bling came out…damn you Dave’s!  All in all it was a good time.  We survived another strange weather event and finished a 10 mile training run.  Just one step closer to California and the numerous other fun runs!10155836_10201807798138634_1189736724_n

As I stated on my Run Zombie Run Facebook page, I’ve signed up for the http://www.hennepinhundred.com/.  The 50K (31 miles…32.7 for this course) is now on my list of things to do this year!  This will be my first Ultra Marathon and I just can’t wait to get it on!  I’ll be running with a guest Zombie, but I’ll reveal who that person is at a later date.  I will tell you that it’s a female and she’s been wanting to run an Ultra for a very long time.  This is her ultimate bucket list run and I’m very excited to run it with her.  I’ll also be raising funds for RA (rheumatoid Arthritis) in honor of my sister Gini Feller who suffers from this debilitating disease.  There’ll be more blogs as the year goes about my sister’s numerous struggles and how she finds ways to keep going.  She’s much tougher than I!  A career nurse, she still works full-time and manages to do so much more, even when her body tries to stop her.  I’m honored to be able to run for her!25311286_1934138480180051_6468389338526585126_o

So, the first organized run is in the books. Training needs to start cranking up and “there are miles to run before I sleep”.  I’ll continue to stay after my blog and keep everyone updated on what’s going on next!  I’ll fill you in on upcoming races, training and I’d like to do a sit down (question…answer) session with my sister Gini about her struggles and what she’d like all of us to know about RA.  Stay Tuned.

I’ll see you…on the road!

~Zombie~

2018…The Year We Turn Everything Around

Well, I know it’s been a little while since I’ve sat down and knocked out a Blog entry.  I never expected to go into the new year with a serious case of the Ohio Cruds!  I can almost always roll right through a cold and not miss a beat, but this one was a WOW!  I’m just now starting to feel like myself again and I know I’m improving because I’ve become stir crazy and focused on getting back out on the road again.   My very first run of 2018 was just a few days ago and only about 4.5 miles, but damn it felt good.

Let’s take inventory on what I’ve signed up for so far and some of the highlights to start out the 2018 running calendar.

The first organized run of 2018 will be the “Race I love to hate”!  The Dave’s 10 Miler out in Delta.  January 21st at 2 p.m. is the start time.  This race has been celebrated for numerous years now and is known for giving you a full on Ohio Blizzard (2015) or as we got to enjoy last year, 64 degrees and sunny!  The insanity of it all!  In 2015, this race almost broke me with the terrible conditions.  It seemed that at every turn the wind was blowing directly in your face and there was a combination of snow/sleet coming down.  I did a blog entry shortly after the 10 Miler that year…titled “Digging Deep.”IMG_20150322_080725328_HDR

The second race that I’ve not signed up for yet, but totally plan to is the Great Scott 25K. (February 18th) This is a double loop road run done on property of Oak Openings Metro Park.  This is a Toledo RoadRunner only event and once again, can be a serious challenge.  I’m always a little rusty during the first couple winter months and throwing a 25K or just over 15 miles into the training schedule is usually cause for laying in my recliner for the remainder of the day…lol!  It’s a nice event and a good tune up for the races ahead in the spring.  Besides, it’s an excuse to run at a cool park and grab an Awesome sweatshirt for signing up!  Love my Swag!

March 17th will bring the Black Swamp Festival of Races.  I dig this run mostly because of the “Memory  Mile”.  The last mile of the race is covered with signs that have the names of loved ones that have left our world.  It takes everything to get through this mile when you’re reading all the names and just feeling all the love these runners have for their family and friends.  I struggle with my breathing and usually have tears during this stretch.  I fell apart the first year I ran this after the passing of my Mother.  Seeing her name brought such a rush of emotions.  Believe me, these are all good things and I love that they do this each year.  I’ve asked that both my Mother and Father’s names be posted on a sign for this years run.  Love you Mom and Dad!  I just know they’ll be looking over me as I come across the finish line.

Alright, onto April.  April has a double whammy!  First is the Glass City Half Marathon on April 22nd.  This is the 10th Anniversary of this event and it’s the Home Town, so that makes it a must run!  The course is super scenic and the finish is inside of the Glass Bowl at UT (University of Toledo).  This race will be a training run for our big trip to the West Side of the Country!  April 29 The Big Sur International Marathon…for which we will be running the 21 miler this year!  (We wanted a different medal to add to our collection) They call this “Running the Ragged Edge Of The Western World”.  Every step of this course is just breathtaking!  I fell in love with California last year and feel the desire to go back and try my best to tame the course.

May 20th brings the Ann Arbor Half Marathon!  I’ve run this for the past few years and really enjoy the course.  It’s an Ass-Kicker!  Lots of hill challenges and one big mother of a Hill at just the right time to make you scream!  My sister complains each and every year about signing up, but she keeps right on going back with me…lol!  It’s a love/hate thing!  This year will be a touch different because they’ve changed the month from March to May.  While it’ll be much warmer running weather for us, it could prove to be more taxing on the system if we get some serious heat.  Time will tell!  Stay tuned!

June 17th I’ll be running the Towpath 10 miler. This race will be in the greater Cleveland, OH area and will be my first go at this one.  The H.R. direct at my workplace told me about it because his wife is the organizer of the Trilogy of race in the area.  I thought, Cleveland, Summer heat, 10 miles…WTF…I’m in!  I always get excited about trying out new destination runs even if they’re just a short hop down the Turnpike to get to!

I don’t want to jinx anything, but the next big event that a group of wild and crazy runners are working to organize for Mid-September is….wait for it…. Going On A RAGNAR RUN!!  Ragnar NH for the 20th Anniversary!  https://www.runragnar.com/event-detail/relay/reachthebeach Two Vans, 12 runners, running some 200ISH miles NON-STOP!  I went absolutely crazy after our first Ragnar and told everyone that it’s a life changer.  That’s for real!  Nothing but fun and raw emotions throughout the entire trip!  I highly recommend that anyone reading this consider doing one in your lifetime.  It’s a bucket list thang!  I’ll keep you up to date as more details become available on this run.

So there’s a look into Run Zombie Run 2018!  I’m running again this year to continue to help .  I have plans to get a new Run Zombie Run 2018 shirt together…not just for my races, but for you all to purchase and enjoy!  I’ve asked my favorite Tattoo Artist (Sailor Woody) at http://www.iatattoo.com/  to draw up a Zombie Dog for the front of the shirt.  Once we get that together, I’ll go to the fine folks over at https://www.jupmode.com/ to get the printing and such underway!  More details on this will be coming very soon.15823162_10208205482236738_934814482490240172_n

So, you know the drill from here!  Keep moving, go run, walk, pump weights, but do something!  We were meant to be moving!  The human body demands that we exercise to keep it happy!  Go rescue a dog and walk it at the park!  I just happen to know numerous fuzzy critters that would love to have a forever home…lol!  Seriously…look up blackjack and enjoy the sweet pups!  I’ve been out for a bit, so please like my Facebook page RunZombieRun and share it with all your pals!  I want to build things back up so that we can raise awareness of all the pets that needs love and homes as well as find new and exciting ways to stay in shape.  I’ll hit you up in the coming days with another entry…probably just before and/or right after the Dave’s 10 miler run.  I’m sure I’ll have something to say about that one…lol!  Take care of yourself and be good to one another!

I’ll see you on the Road!

~Zombie~

 

What the heck…it’s Spring!

So we’ve managed to knock out the Great Scott 25K in the month of February.  For those keeping score it was a no snow kind of month and I loved it!  We’re now in March and have picked off the PI run (3.14 miles…lol!), the Great Black Swamp Festival of races happened on Saturday 3/18 (25K) and that was followed by a 5K at Maumee Bay State Park on 3/19.  Busy week and this next weekend looks to be much the same.  I’ll be heading out to Gibsonburg to take on the Golden Bear 10K…back home for a quick shower and heading up north for packet pick up to do the Ann Arbor Half Marathon on Sunday morning.  The weather looks on the damp side for both races (my least favorite) but it’ll get done!

For some odd reason I really enjoy the Ann Arbor Half.  It’s a tough course and feels mostly like an incline, the streets are a bit rough (it is Michigan…lol!) but the things to look at throughout the run keep me entertained.  Cool homes, nice parks and if you’re a fan of Michigan sports…it starts right next to the Big House!  All of this craziness are in preparation for the Big Sur Full Marathon coming later in April!  The training has been kind of fun and nothing on my body has snapped just yet.  So cross your fingers that I can keep things in order and on schedule!

So as promised when I started…I’ve managed a 10 mile race or more each month so far!

January- The Dave’s 10 miler

February-The Great Scott 25K

March- The Great Black Swamp 25K…and The Ann Arbor Half Marathon will be going down!

April will be mostly training miles and the build up to both the Glass City Half Marathon…just one week prior to our trip out to the West Coast!  The Big Sur is for sure my biggest hit on the bucket list!  I plan on taking pictures and just messing around during the race.  The goal is to just finish and not be swept up by the sag wagon…lol!  There’s 6 hour cut off and I have no worries we’ll make it in before that.  This run is all about the fun and taking in the beauty that is California!

I’ll get another blog together very soon.  I know that I’ve been behind but will work hard to keep you all informed.  New glowing Run Zombie Run shirts will be going to print this week so that I can be seen better on the race course.  This was a request by my Aunt and she’s been my number one fan so I’ll get it done!

Still focusing on our friends at BlackJack Animal Rescue!  They’ve been busy re-homing numerous dogs and helping many through some very hard times.  Heartworms have been tough on the Catahoula dogs down south.  It’s painful for them to be cured and the expense is always a challenge for those trying to save them.  So please help out if and when you can!  http://blackjackrescue.org/ is the place to go and they have a paypal button right on the page.  All funds go to help these beautiful creatures.  Tax deductible as well!  So it’s a double bonus!  Be sure to tell Sharon that Zombie sent you!  She’s a great lady doing a huge job with all her volunteers.

I still have plans on getting a virtual 5K together later this year.  I’ll be talking with the people at Jupmode to see about having them do all the shirts and making them available on their website to make things go smoother and easier.  All funds raised from the shirts will then go to Black Jack Rescue!  Stay tuned on this one.

Let’s hope that March is as kind to us as February was.  I like running in more moderate temperatures for sure!  Go out and walk and if you’re doing that, put the ResQwalk app on your phone and place Black Jack Animal rescue in as your preferred pet rescue.  Each time you go walking this app will track your miles.  For each mile you walk, money is then donated to the rescue!  How easy is that?!  So let’s get out there and raise some funds, walk the neighborhoods and save some pups!  Thank again for following along and I look forward to sharing more fun pictures soon!

See you on the road!

~Zombie~

Stay Strong and Move Forward

daves10formike The first official race has been run!  The Dave’s 10 Miler turned out to be an absolutely perfect day!  Late January in NW Ohio and 60 degrees at race time?  Are you kidding me?  Karla and I both wore shorts and I had on a short sleeve shirt…Wow!  The 10 Miler is billed as the race that can give you anything from our 60 degree sun filled day to a full on blizzard!

When I ran this one in 2015…it was the only race that I seriously considered giving up on.  My mindset was that I was out there running with a purpose and I needed to stay strong and move forward – telling myself to never give up and never stop!  I won’t lie…it was the longest 10 miles of my life but the satisfaction of crossing the finish line washed all the negative away.  There will always be obstacles in our lives…we just need to roll through them because the finish will be sweet!

The next run up will be the Great Scott 25K.  It’s a Toledo Road Runner club event and can also be a challenge due to it being run in late February.  March is when things will get really busy!  I’m laying out a couple of 5K runs to go along with a couple of bigger runs!  We’ll have both the Black Swamp Festival of races (25K) and the Ann Arbor Half marathon (13.1).  Trying to keep the legs moving and focused on the big prize in April!  The Big Sur Full Marathon!  Just for kicks…we’ll be running the Glass City Half Marathon the week before the Big Sur Full!  Crazy you say?  I’m going with absolutely on that!  LOL!

Training has been going well and both Karla and I remain focused.  I’ve been getting my much-needed lifting days in each week which is helping a bunch.  I’m still carrying around my food journal and writing down what I eat each day.  I do allow myself one full day off of strict eating and usually enjoy a pizza after my long run then.  Something to look forward to after all the miles are run!

My sister Patti and I have been changing up our running routes to see different parts of Toledo – or at least parts that we haven’t run in quite some time.  I threw in both the High Level bridge and the Martin Luther King bridge on a couple of long runs.  Back in my old stomping grounds of the East side!  The High Level bridge seems so much smaller than I remember it…lol!  Maybe after running the Ravenel bridge in South Carolina a few times I’ve learned how big a bridge can really be!  That one is a monster!  I’ve been keeping away from too many “junk miles” so that I can keep myself healthy.  I have a regular issue with my right foot and want to keep it from acting up yet again this year.

The purpose this year is of course for BlackJack Animal Rescue!  I love my dogs and especially Catahoula Leopard Dogs!  Blackjack has had their hands full with the storms in the south, poor animal shelters and just people’s lack of care for animals.  If we can get funds to them and save more of the precious pups…the world just might be a better place!  Sharon Bryant and her band of warriors are always on the lookout for dogs to rescue.  They share these faces in their network and find foster care, get them fully vetted and ready for their forever homes!  It’s truly an awesome job they do and I’m honored to put my race shirt on and show the name BlackJack Animal Rescue on my back!  Please like and follow them on Facebook. To offer a donation just go to Blackjackrescue.org.  You can make a one time donation or set up a recurring monthly amount.  All donations are tax deductible as well…so double bonus!mikesraceshirt

Stay with me…we have much more to come!  I’ll update you on training and such during February.  March we’ll be “Bringing it”!  Getting ready for the final push before we roll into April…so stay tuned!

You know what I’m going to tell you now.  Stay active!  Go walk, run, bike, lift weights…whatever you want – just move!  The human body was built and designed for motion!  Drop one bad habit in your eating or set yourself a challenge to walk a 5K by a certain date.  Be proud of yourself and keep going!  I’m always around if you need a kick in the pants…lol!  Until then…

I’ll see you on the ROAD!

~Zombie~

Find a way…or Make one!

It just feels, as life moves forward, that there’s less and less time to get things done.  I was sitting down to go over races that I’ve signed up for and others that I’ve expressed interest in for the 2017 running season.  Fitting a large mileage race in each month of the year has proved to be challenging.  Take into consideration my all over the place work schedule (that can change at any moment) along with general life scheduling…it gets tough.  There’s marathon training to fit inside all of this and the hopes that I can stay healthy!  The mind set is…”Find a way…or Make one”!

This week has been tough to get the miles that I keep hoping for due mostly to a lack of sleep.  I’ve never been much of a sleeper and when I do get to sleep, I seem to be getting only a few hours…Stella decides I need to be awake and walk her around Oregon.  I never get mad at her because it’s her release and she just wants to stretch her legs and be with me.  Yet there’s still the part of me that says “how the hell am I going to get through the day on a few hours of sleep”!  We’re working on that…Stella and I!  (Note: Stella is my 2 year old Catahoula Leopard Dog)stellaDogs…once again I realized this week why I started this adventure.  Texting back and forth with Sharon Bryant (who runs BlackJack Animal Rescue), I was expressing my sadness when looking through some of the links that I’ve been introduced to through social media to different animal shelters in southern states.  I have to tell you all…it’s an eye opening problem down there!  Most of these shelters are nothing more than killing machines!  Corruption and money grabbing that leaves so many animals to die.  Sharon has been fighting this battle for some time and with the help of her small army, they do everything they can to save as many dogs as possible.  Texas, Louisiana, North Carolina and Tennessee all have high percentage kill shelters!  In Sharon’s words “The Catahoula Leopard dog is considered a dime a dozen in several states”.  Backyard breeders sell what they can of litters and then just dump the remaining puppies at a shelter, knowing full well they’ll likely be killed.  This has got to stop!  Sharon is very organized and, as I said, has a small army of very dedicated people that want the shelters to become “NO KILL”!  It can be done and they have the volunteers to make it happen.  The hurdle of politicians is the uphill battle.  I will continue to work to bring attention to BlackJack Animal Rescue and would love for everyone who reads this to “like” their Facebook page, follow along and share when they are in need!  Donations are a must and very appreciated!  This rescue relies on good people to keep up their efforts to save more animals and get them to good homes.  If we are to spend money, why not do it to make the world a better place?  Dogs and cats can absolutely change your life and make a home complete.  If you can’t adopt, volunteer to help transport animals from one state to the next!  Become part of a network that saves these beautiful animals!  Donate on a monthly basis or give a nice donation so that this fight can continue!  I’ll be working on getting more things together as the year progresses.  A virtual 5K is in the works (more on that later).  T-shirts are currently available on Blackjackrescue.org and all monies go to save animals.  I’ll also be looking into doing some kind of t-shirt or magnets for the Run Zombie Run part in this!  Help where you can and make me proud!

15977693_10208297764623740_4723280493295590567_nSunday is the Dave’s 10 Miler!  It starts at 2 p.m. and looks to be pretty good weather this year for what can be a very crazy event weather-wise!  I’ll be putting on my new Run Zombie Run racing shirt for the very first time Sunday and will represent BlackJack Animal Rescue with honor!  https://runsignup.com/Race/OH/Delta/Daves10Miler?remMeAttempt=  Feel free to come on out and ring some cow bells!  Runners love Cow Bells!!  LOL!!
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I’ll keep working on my training and finding a way to get everything done!  Forge ahead…progress!  Keep tuned in and please, take a look at BlackJack Animal Rescue on Facebook!  We’re almost to 5,000 likes…so get on there…Like and share!  Then go outside and play!!

I’ll see you on the road!

~Zombie~

Keep the Focus!

We’re working through the second week of training and thus far I feel pretty good!  I’m staying focused on keeping my miles where they need to be and getting to the gym 2-3 times each week to maintain my strength.  Doing the core work and eating better will help I’m sure.  I really hate carrying the extra weight but know that in time that’ll be corrected. I always feel better when I’m a bit lighter and my speed will improve as well.  On Task!

I’ve signed up for group of runs that’ll be done here locally. http://runtoledo.com/runthe419/ I’ve run a couple of them in the past years but there are some that have been brought back from my past.  The Channel 11 River Run was one that I remember running in the wayyyyy back!  I like the idea of running the streets of Toledo and reliving memories of yesteryear.  Brings a smile to my face just thinking about it.  For those of you that are here in town…you need to come out to these and cheer!  If you have the time…volunteer!  I’ve never known a race director to turn away free help!

I have my sights set on a couple of my Winter favorites.  The Great Scott 25K was big fun the last time through and I absolutely must run it again. February 19th at Oak Openings Metro park.  The next favorite is the Great Black Swamp Festival of Races! FALLEN TIMBERS MIDDLE SCHOOL, 6119 Finzel Rd, Whitehouse, OH 43571.  For those of you who have followed Run Zombie Run you may remember that I love this race because of the “Memory Mile” at the end of the race.  Signs posted everywhere of special people that we’ve loved and lost.  I find myself fighting tears and emotion during this final mile.  All the names just make you realize how precious and short life really is.  It’s a must to come out to this one!

I’m keeping with the challenge to run at least a 10 mile (OR More) during each month of 2017!  I’ll run some of the super fun 5K’s as well but want to keep at the Big Runs!  The idea is to maintain big mileage but stay healthy to make it through the entire 2017 race season.

The Race shirt for this year is a dark Gray Nike DriFit.  We have white letters for the Run Zombie Run and an Orange Zombie!  New this year is an Orange Zombie Dog!  This year’s focus is on Blackjack Animal Rescue.  blackjackrescue.org  I want people to know the kind of work that’s going on in the world out there so that we can keep hope.  Sharon Bryant and so many others that she’s networked with do hard work for the love of these animals.  They want nothing in return but to know that they’ve made a difference and saved one of God’s creatures.  How can you not want to help a group like that?  I’ll talk about them more in future blogs and continue to find ways to raise funds to help their operation.  Feel free at anytime to get on their website and make a donation!  Tell them that Zombie sent you in the comments…it’ll make Sharon smile!

I hate to get too much ahead of myself but I will tell you that I’m looking into a possible Virtual 5K again this year!  My Tattoo artist told me today that he’d be happy to do artwork for shirts and you know…we just might have to do that because it sure was fun the last time!  I’ll look into getting a sponsor or two to cover the cost of the shirts and printing so that every dollar can be sent to Blackjack Animal Rescue!  If there’s interest…I may look into doing regular (soft) T-shirts that mimic my Run Zombie Run Race shirt!  Reach out and let me know if it’s something I need to look into.

I always like to close by telling you all that I appreciate you following me on these journeys in my life.  I love that people become inspired and want to do good for others as well as themselves.  Remember the human body was meant to be in motion!  Go out and enjoy the winter…don’t just hide from it.  There’s a certain peace in walking on a crisp Winter day!  Download the ResQwalk App on your phone and turn that on while walking as well!  If you put Blackjack Animal Rescue in as your chosen rescue…every mile you walk they’ll donate funds to the rescue!  How cool is that?  So get out and go!

I’ll see you on the road!

~Zombie~

2017…Running To Make A Difference

I pretty much stepped away from organized running for the 2016 year and I have to tell you, it sucked!  2016 left me with such an empty space inside after everything that went on in 2015.  Raising money to help Mobile Meals of Toledo was a blessing for me.  I had such purpose and enjoyed every moment I was out running races!  So to make things right…I needed to get back out on the road and make a difference.

This 2017 year I’ve teamed up with BlackJack Animal Rescue.  They’re a Tennessee based animal rescue that helps not only Catahoula Leopard dogs (my Stella) but many others as well.  They may be based out of Tennessee but their heart-strings venture out across the country!  They’ve devised a wonderful network of people who Foster, transport and just get out and save these beautiful creatures from a sure death.  I can think of no better way to spend 2017 than by raising funds and awareness for this rescue and I hope you’ll all join in and help along the way!

The shirts!  Run Zombie Run racing shirts will be put together in the very near future.  I’ve reached out to Matt at Second Sole 4130 Levis Commons Blvd, Perrysburg, Ohio to supply me with the shirts.  I’ve also reached out to Jon & Mike over at Jupmode to do the printing of my race shirts.  The front will remain pretty much unchanged from prior years but the back will have All proceeds to benefit Blackjack Animal Rescue!  Working on either a pup face or paw prints on there as well!  Hoping to go with Black this year but will be happy with a dark gray as well.  I do have some ideas for T-shirts for sale to help raise more money for Blackjack.  We’ll get that moving in February or March.  I’ll be working on the big build up to our Big Sur Full Marathon out in California!  Stay tuned!

The challenge!  I’m setting a start goal of getting at least a 10 mile (or further) race for each month of 2017!  I’m going to do my best to find as many Half Marathons as possible as that is my distance of choice!  We’ve committed to run the following right now:

The Dave’s 10 Miler-this is on January 22nd and can be anything from a crazy 60 degree day to a fricking blizzard!  I ran it in 2015 and holy cats was it a tough, windy and cold run!  That one almost broke me.  If you look back through my blog postings you’ll find an entry on how I struggled to finish this one.  Had to dig deep!

The Ann Arbor Half Marathon-this is on March 26th and is a scenic but tough race!  It has a serious mother of a hill at right about mile 11!  Most of the race is on an incline and of course…shitty Michigan roads…lol!  It starts out right next to the Big House so if you’re a Michigan fan…it’s pretty damn cool!

The Glass City Half Marathon-this one is on April 23rd and is a week prior to the Big Sur Full Marathon!  I thought about skipping it this year but hey…the bling is cool and Karla gave it a green light!  I may regret it the following weekend but I’ll worry about that when the time comes.  Love running in my home town!

The Big Sur Full Marathon-this is on April 30th and is considered to be one of/if not the most scenic Marathon in the country!  Getting into this is done on a lottery system and I’ve been trying for a few years now to get into it.  I’ve always said that if I did…I’d run the Full Marathon…well…now it’s time to get it done!  My Brother in law who has run Marathons in every state has said time and time again that the Big Sur is one of his favorites.  That speaks to me as he’s seen some of the most beautiful spots in the country.  I’m all in for this one!

Training… I’ve decided to take my own approach on the training for the Full Marathon.  I’ll be doing a build up by adding a mile to each week on my long run.  This should have me right where I need to be come race time.  During the week I’ll do smaller runs and maybe a mid mileage run to keep moving.  I have to think of keeping healthy so I need to keep it simple and allow myself rest time as well.  I’ve already started my strength training to re-condition my body for the beating that it’ll be going through during the coming months.  I’m adding the stair climber back into the mix to get ready for elevation issues in California!  There might be a few hills in that race…lol!

Diet will be cleaned up and I’m going with the 6 clean days and 1 off day.  The off day will be on my long run day as I’m sure Carbs will have to be my friend!  I used this program a few times over the years and love how I feel when I’m eating clean most of the week.  The one off day keeps your head in the game and gives you something to look forward to when you want to eat something “bad”!

The Rescue!  Blackjack is a very small and humble organization.  They’re a 501c3 non-profit and are doing their work because it’s a calling!  How can you not fight for people who do that?!  I love my dogs and when I lost my Silver…my heart was absolutely broken.  I reached out to Blackjack and found a whole new world of animals that are not only unique…but absolutely wonderful!  The Catahoula Leopard Dog (mostly known as the Cata-What??) when you tell someone what kind of dog you have are very energetic, loving and beautiful dogs.  They’re the Louisiana state dog and you’ll find most of them in the southern states such as Tennessee, Georgia, Texas and of course Louisiana.  Blackjack watches for dogs that are on death row, being mistreated, strays or just pups turned over to them to find good homes.  Sharon Bryant runs the show there and can I just say…she needs to receive some kind of award for the work she’s doing!

So fellow Zombies…time to focus!  Tune in again and I hope you’ll stay on for the entire stretch!  There are good things to come in 2017!  If you haven’t got on Facebook and like/shared Blackjack Animal Rescue…please do so!  Look on their web page:

http://www.blackjackrescue.org/

If you need a dog or can foster…even better!  They have a paypal set up for one time donations or monthly donations.  You can also help by using :

https://smile.amazon.com/  Just put Blackjack Animal Rescue in as your choice of charity and they’ll get a portion of your dollars spent on Amazon!

Also…break out your smartphones…go to the App store and get the ResQwalk App.  put Blackjack Animal Rescue in as your choice of charity and just turn it on and go out and walk!  Blackjack will get money just for you moving your butt!  lol!!  It’s a fun App and you can look through all the people out there walking and posting pictures of their pups!

You all know I’m about moving and working on keeping healthy.  So lets all make the pledge to do that in 2017.  Help make a difference in the lives of these beautiful creatures that depend on us humans to have a good life.  They deserve that.  I’ll get back to more regular blogs…I promise!  Stay Tuned for more info as it becomes available!  Keep following me on 30races.com and also on my Run Zombie Run Facebook page!  I’ll post pictures of the shirts as soon as they’re done!  Woo Hoo!!  Let’s do this!

See you on the road!

~Zombie~