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Some Background

So it’s finals season here at the law school. This means two things: (1) I should be studying and (2) I will find pretty much any reason to avoid doing so. Since a post could kill some time, I thought I would give a little background about what got me to both law school and to an ironman.

I am in my second year of law school. I didn’t think I would ever go to law school, although it was something I had considered a few times throughout undergrad. I was out of school for four years between undergrad and law school, spending most of that time in Amman, Jordan and Guyuan, China. After moving back from China for a family illness, I decided to apply. I only applied to one school, the one closest to my family, was accepted, and here I am. I do enjoy it even though that first year was a bear. I work during the day (I’m an evening/part time student), so life can be horribly hectic and certain points of the semester.

My first year of law school was rough in many ways, one of which was my personal health. After the death of my grandpa (the reason for coming home), I just didn’t feel like working out and running as arduously as I once had. Once school started that desire was further diminished. I just wasn’t aware of the time demand that is law school.

At the end of my first year, I had gained at least 30 pounds, but the reality is that I was probably a good 50 pounds overweight. Last summer I was in Oxford, England, taking summer classes, and realized that I was tired of being overweight and out of shape. I tried to run a few times, but was winded and hurting after barely a mile.

I got home from Oxford and decided things had to change. First was the diet. I was eating out way too much last year. I lived in the law school library and there was a Chick-Fil-A across the street, so that became a staple. I love Chipotle, so I ate there a couple times a week. I figured that, after having been away from the US for a month, what better time to change those habits? It has been an up and down battle, but I am on the E2 diet, which is essentially vegan. I’m not dogmatic about it, but I try to keep it as much as I can. That alone helped me lose some weight, and I felt more energized and healthy.

Second was working out again. This became two parts, resistance workouts and running workouts. I had several times tried to start the P90X program, but always faltered after a week or so. I finally buckled down and started, and am now done with the second phase. Once I finish I am going to try the Insanity workout. I really enjoy these workouts because they are not just a simple weight or running program, which I had tried before and had only mixed results.

As for running, I couldn’t figure out why I kept having horrible shin splints and knee/hip problems. After talking to a buddy of mine about barefoot running and doing some research, I decided to buy a pair of vibram five fingers and try running without shoes. I LOVE IT! I have run several 5Ks, a couple of 10Ks, a Turkey Trot, and plenty of individual runs, and I can confidently say I’ve never loved running more, never felt better while I’m running, and I’ll never go back to running shoes. I am running constantly now, and find that I want to run even when I’m not. I will say that reading “Born to Run” helped spur me on. I would highly recommend it if you haven’t read it.

So that bring me to now. I’ve lost about 30 pounds since August. I have been running farther and keep signing up for races to keep me running (I like having goals to shoot for). I’m running a half marathon a week from Sunday and am planning on one a month for the next four months. I realized that I wanted something more than just a run, and began looking into Ironmans. I know I’m nowhere near running one yet, but I want to. I’m going to.

I’ll graduate from law school in a year and a half. I’ll take the bar in July of 2011. I’ll turn 30 in September (a weird thought). I am aiming for the Arizona Ironman in November of 2011. This depends on where I sit for the bar and where I’ll be working. An alternative is the Lake Placid Ironman, but I don’t know about running an Ironman and then trying to sit for the bar. Who knows though?

Well that’s a lot more than I intended on writing. If you read all that, wow. Well done. This is all subject to change (at least minor changes), but I’m putting it out there because I want to be held accountable for completing these goals I have set.

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