Back At It.

So the next 6-12 months will be very demanding, with numerous endurance events on my calendar.  I’m giving myself 60-90 days to prepare for race season….and then the fireworks begin.

In early August, the first marathon on my comeback trail will be Camarillo on August 8th.  That’s only 8 weeks away, so I will most definitely NOT be in strong enough shape to put forth an “A” effort.  This one will be treated like a long training run: no pressure – just finish.

September has another marathon on tap, with Surf City.  It’s an out & back course with a mostly flat elevation profile.  I’ll have approximately 12 weeks of training under my belt, so I expect myself to hold a slightly faster pace and perform more in line with what I’ve historically accomplished (which isn’t much – I’ve always been slow).  The goal here is to see some progress in the finishing time and pace per mile as compared to Camarillo.

October is where things begin to heat up a bit.  Long Beach Marathon on the 10th, followed by the Rock n Roll San Diego Marathon on the 24th.  I’m looking for an increase in performance with regard to finishing time and pace as compared to Surf City…and I want my time in San Diego to beat my finishing time in Long Beach by a minimum of five minutes.  If all goes as planned, these two races drive me into my “A” races in November.

November 7th.  New York Freakin’ City.  26.2 miles running through the greatest city on Earth.  I’m running with the New York Road Runners Team for Kids – a charity that I’ve been involved with as an athlete and a mentor for the better part of a decade.  ( Here’s my athlete page, in case you may be interested in making a donation ).  If I do this right, I’m gunning for a PR at this event.  I want 4:50.

14 days later – on November 21st – I compete in Ironman Arizona.  Swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles, run 26.2 miles, and cross the finish line before the clock hits midnight.  This is a VERY big deal to me.  This is the one I want.  The goal here is to just finish – because just finishing is a big frackin’ deal.  I’m running as part of the Ironman Foundation, and I’ll provide a link in the coming couple of weeks.   This is going to be the way I’m planning to celebrate my 51st birthday: by sweating my copious ass off in the Arizona desert.

The following week – November 27th – will be my first ultra as a California resident: the Napa 50k.  If I’m going to exceed the marathon distance, there better be some damn wine around.

December may have a triathlon in the cards – but November is a huge month, so I’m not 100% sure yet. 

Rolling into January 2022, I’m planning on running the Carlsbad Marathon on the 16th.  In February, I’m targeting the Ventura Marathon, and then April 2nd: Ironman 70.3 Oceanside.

January 2, 2021

Today I completed the virtual WDW half marathon, by covering 13.1 miles, all the while listening to some fun podcasts.

I know it wasn’t fast – but I did the best I could under the circumstances, as my knee seems to be determined to make me cranky already this month. Here’s hoping that I can rest it and heal up quickly, as tomorrow is the longest run of the lot scheduled!

Like I mentioned yesterday, I’m doing this to honor my close friends and his family, and to raise donation for the Doug Flutie Jr. Foundation for Autism. If you’d like to learn more about the Foundation and their fantastic efforts, or if you’d like to make a donation, I’ve provided a link right below here.

Please consider a donation to this worthy cause!

Tomorrow, I’ll roll the dice and see how far this knee will let me go. I plan to do interval running, not worrying about pace or final time. I’ll head out right as the sun comes up, starting at the San Clemente Pier and waddling north to the Laguna Beach Lighthouse. Then I’ll turn around and waddle back. If I do this right, my finish line will be on a beach path just south of Dana Point. We shall see…..we….shall…..see…..

Big morning, tomorrow. Going to turn in early and get some rest. My planned water stops will be at gas stations along the way, whenever I feel like I need it. Maybe scoring a taco at Taco Loco in Laguna too!!!

January 1, 2021

Happy New Year! This morning, I drove to Tustin to put in 5k, and score myself some much-needed new running shoes. I’ve been training in Hokas – and my legs have been paying the price for it. It’s changed the way my foot lands on the pavement…and by the time I completed the morning run, my right knee was VERY sore.

After hitting Dicks Sporting Goods for a new pair of Brooks……

…I went back home and took care of my knee. I gave myself a couple of hours to heal up, and then I went back out and covered 10k. Let’s face it: I didn’t have much in the tank. I went out too fast this morning, beat up my knee (that was DUMB), and the afternoon was a slow slog. BUUUUT….the views did not suck at all.

Like I mentioned yesterday, I’m doing this to honor my close friends and his family, and to raise donation for the Doug Flutie Jr. Foundation for Autism. If you’d like to learn more about the Foundation and their fantastic efforts, or if you’d like to make a donation, I’ve provided a link right below here.

Now I need to heal up and get ready for 13.1 miles tomorrow….

December 31, 2020

My friend, Espo, has been one of my “Brothers from Another Mother” for almost 45 years. We grew up across the street from each other in our little neighborhood in the Bronx, and his Dad was a father figure to me. He’s worked his ass of for almost 30 years for the City of New York, is a devoted husband, a fantastic friend…and an amazing father.

Espo turned 50 years young in June, and I wasn’t able to visit the east coast in order to celebrate with him…COVID threw a real monkey wrench into my plans. I wanted to do something to make up for missing out on his big day…and an opportunity presented itself a couple of months ago. Let me give you a little background…

I began competing in endurance events in 2004, when I toed the line at the 2004 Boston Half Marathon. That crisp October morning, I ran for a charity called Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy (now known as Cure SMA). I was motivated to do it because my two brothers passed away from Type 1 SMA in the 1970’s. So since I began running 16 years ago, my endurance efforts have meant a lot to me because I liked to tie them to assisting meaningful charities. Over the years, I’ve run in races with the New York Road Runners Team for Kids, the American Cancer Society, and Team in Training. So running races for charity is – for me – a very personal and meaningful endeavor. It’s one that I take VERY seriously.

After running my first full marathon in November 2005, I caught the running bug in a big way…so I immediately signed up for the 2006 Walt Disney World Marathon, held that January. It was a fantastic experience – so much so that I began making a trip down to Orlando in January an annual fixture on my calendar. This year, however, COVID made Disney convert their marathon weekend series of races to a virtual platform. While this fact is disappointing, the decision was a very wise one, indeed.

One of the charities that normally has entries into the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend is the Doug Flutie Jr. Foundation for Autism. Well….I wanted to to do something meaningful to honor my friend….so I called the foundation up and asked if they had any entries left for this year’s events. Luckily for me, they DID!


To honor my close friend and his fantastic family, I’m going to virtually run the 2021 Walt Disney World Dopey Challenge in order to raise awareness and donations to the Flutie Foundation. I’ve attached a link right below here, in case you are interested in finding out more about the foundation and possibly making a donation to their meaningful efforts.

The Dopey Challenge is a series of races held over a 4 day period. It begins with a 5k on Thursday and a 10k on Friday, a Half Marathon on Saturday and a full Marathon on Sunday. 48.6 miles.

Tomorrow morning, January 1st, I’ll waddle through a 5k (3.1 mile) run, stop for a few minutes to snack on some chocolate chip cookies – or some Oreos (if I can find a store open at that early hour), and then start up again for 6.2 miles. I’ll try to take it really easy, in order to save my legs for the weekend.

Saturday and Sunday will be longer efforts, so I plan to run some routes near the water. I’ll share some pics from each of the runs on here over the coming three days!

Last but certainly not least: to all of you reading this, please have a most wonderful, healthy, safe, happy and successful NEW YEAR!!!