February 22, 2009

A Big Year in 2009: A Physical Challenge

So I am setting myself up for a big year. I am finalizing a transition to a new job and getting myself organized around the goals that I have set out for myself in 2009. On the personal side I am seeking to find balance in my spiritual, mental, social, and physical components of my life. While, I have some specific things in each of the four areas, in this post I want to share my goals for my focus on the physical component. I am looking to improve my health as a key step to improving my overall quality of life, mental clarity, and attitude.

For me it is important to set goals that I can see and obtain. The goal that I am focused on this year is to participate in the 2010 Disney Marathon next January. This will be my second marathon. I completed the first marathon in 2006, also at Disney. I was so excited about just finishing the race, it was incredible. However, being goal oriented, I decided that this year I want to step it up in a big way and will focus on competing the Goofy Challenge. This consists of completing a half marathon on Saturday morning and then a full marathon on Sunday morning of the same weekend. The additional miles will mean that I have to really step up my ability to get in long runs and recover quickly. I have set some key milestones for myself and hope that I can build the necessary strength and endurance necessary to finish.

The focus for me will be on endurance (heart rate), body tone (strength), and monitoring my knees that ofter give me trouble. The technology support that I am using includes the GPS through my iPhone. I have started using an app called RunKeeper. It keeps my location, times, and min/miles data as I run. I am currently using the free edition, but will most likely upgrade when am convinved it is realiable enough to use for the entire training program. One great feature is that it uploads the data to the web immediately following a run and provides me access to it. Any great benefit of running with a GPS-enabled device is the ability to just take off in any direction and log know who far you have run.

I am also looking into purchasing a heart monitor. This is going to be critical for me to build the endurance that I will need for strength and recovery. I haven't really made up my mind, but I know that I want a device with an audible alert to let me know when I am out of my key range.

Finally, something that I haven't structured at all is body toning. I don't know why, you think it would be easy to do push-ups and set-ups each day or lift weights, but I can't seem to get myself into the pattern. I will focus on getting it into my schedule so that I can hold myself accountable.

In the end I hope that it is helpful to others beyond what I know it will do for me. I hope to organize a fund raiser around the event and bring in some money for the WVU Children's Hospital Pediatric Cardiology Department.

I hope to share more throughout the year about my adventures and goals, there will be many highs and lows I am sure. If you are a big time runner you won't be impressed with my ability, but if you are someone who is interested in setting goals, improving your health, and trying to improve all aspects of your life through improved physical conditioning then you might be interested in following along.

Here's to 2009 and setting big goals!


  1. You're my hero Lee. I don't know where you get the energy to do all you do.

  2. stay hard Dr. Kraus. big fan of people that put out. get some.