-Make friends with pain and you'll never be alone.- Ken Chlouber- Founder of the Leadville 100

It’s 3:31 am on Sunday morning and I still don’t have a blog written… This is pretty unusual for me, as this is one of the only things I actually look forward to doing during the week. I have nothing earth shattering, profound or interesting to say… For as long winded as I am, I know that’s shocking. 🙂

This last six weeks has been challenging for sure. I’ve been thrown off my plan, eaten awful, over eaten, my food hurts, missed training runs, haven’t cross fitted, have had to completely change my cross training routine, and because of all of this, I wasn’t feeling too great about Silver Rush this week… So my writing time this week was spend with my running buddies revamping my plan and they have eased me through some tough thoughts. I know, excuses are worthless and we all have the same 24 hours in the day, but ultimately, my 50 is my biggest goal of the year and it needed some extra attention.

My revamped plan for Silver Rush-

Screw it! I love to run. I run for fun. I run for the trails. I run for sunrises. I run to be with others. I run to burn off all this energy so I don’t bounce off the walls all day. I have a tendency to over do things. My mind is more powerful than my body and sometimes I don’t slow down when I should. So for the next 5 weeks, running is no longer in my “training” schedule. I will run for fun. I will run to watch sunrises and be with my friends. That’s it. If my body doesn’t feel good, I will cross train. We might go out for a 5 mile sunrise trail run before work or for 20 miles on the trails on the weekends, but I no longer have any mileage expectations for the month. When I wake up on July 1, I might have 50 miles, 122 miles or 200. It doesn’t matter.

Unlimited swimming! I love to swim. I “run” in the pool several times a week any way, but this will now be my go to cross training. I can swim for days, fatigue my body, use my energy and train my tail off without hurting my feet and knees once so ever. So that’s what I’m going to do. Monday through Friday I will be in the pool running for at least 20 minutes. This equates to about 3 to 4 miles. Some days I will do twice a day and some I will just do longer sessions depending on my schedule. I trust in this. When I was hurt after my 1st 26.2 last year, I training in the pool for 10-15 days while I couldn’t run. 33 days after I finished my first marathon and then recovered properly, I finished my 31 birthday miles in the Snowy Range with no issues.

While swimming will be primary, I will also be rowing at least 5,000 meters 5 times a week. This has great cardio and is a full body exercise. I know a lot of people hate the rower, but I enjoy my 20 minutes a day on it. To me, it sure beats the elliptical. Stretching and walking will also be big for me. I can’t lose the flexibility I have gained over the last 8 months. I can feel the effects of not cross fitting, but at this point I have made a plan and will stick to it. After I finish in July I will figure out what my running and cross training schedule will be from there.

Eating… As I’m sure you can imagine with my past, eating is my biggest weakness. Add the fact that my eating is now public for the month of June and it kinda has me a wreck… I have gone back to food journaling since my most recent marathon to see if I can regain control of my weaknesses and so far, it hasn’t gone well over the past 2-3 weeks.

I have come to find out that I would have never lost all my weight if I would have had people following my journey the whole time. I know I’m not perfect. I know other people know I’m not perfect. But for some reason I’m nervous about food. Think of how you felt about the opposite sex at the junior high dance- that’s how I feel talking about food. But, just like anything else, the more we make our weakness our strength the better we become. For this I will put my successes and failures “out there” so people can hopefully gain some knowledge and maybe even a little inspiration that we don’t have to be “perfect” to make positive changes in our lives.

So that’s my plan. Eat better, train hard in the gym and do what I love to do- RUN!

Depending on when you are reading this, I have exactly 5 weeks 2 hours and 3 minutes before I cross the starting line in Leadville.

I’m: Scared, nervous, excited, anxious, fearful, and not exactly sure how it’s going to go. I do know this- I have put months of training and preparation into training for this race. It may not be pretty when I’m done, but the only way I’m not crossing that finish line is if they drag me off the course. I refuse to quit. I refuse to give up and I refuse to let my emotions and fears get the best of me. I may not be able to run the 235 miles I had planned for the month, but I will be ready for Leadville. I will be at the starting line and I will give it everything I have and when I’ve given it everything I have, I will dig deep and find more to give. I’m sure I’ll laugh, cry, take pictures and wonder what the hell I’m doing and what the fuck I was thinking, but when I come down that last hill and get to pick up the boys to cross the finish line, it will be worth every ounce of blood seat and tears that I’ve poured into this.

I keep hoping that if I don’t quit, maybe someone who is watching won’t either. If that happens, it was all worth it. Run Epic my Friends!

By the way- A big group of us are ordering t-shirts. If you’d like one they will be $15/piece if you pre-order plus shipping in the US. I want to have the order placed on June 10th so email me at gary@outrunyourexcuses.com if you’re interested! 🙂



Published by Gary Stotler

Gary Stotler is a father, running, fitness, weight loss and personal development addict. Formally 400 pounds, Gary has naturally lost 200 pounds, created a coaching & speaking business and has become a 100 mile ultra-runner. Holding a degree in Psychology & Sociology, certifications from the National Academy of Sports Medicine as a personal trainer, mindset & behavioral modification coaching, a certification in DISC personality assessment coaching and he is a certified speaker, coach & mentor with the John Maxwell Team. Gary firmly believes, if we take One Step at a Time, nothing is impossible. He is determined to let his actions show people what is possible and hopes to help you shake up your thoughts, change your actions and create your future.

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1 Comment

  1. Good post, Gary. It has to be tough for you but it’s so great that you are always reevaluating your plan. I do know that regrouping is so necessary, because it uncovers any part of the plan that may have been unrealistic to sustain. Looks like your approach to running for fun will be good because since you love running so much, you will likely cover a lot of ground. Keep it up! I know you will meet your goal at Silver Rush!


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