A Passion for Running

Welcome to the home of Mark aka The Running Blogfather – a 40 year-old dad, husband and marathon runner who's beaten injury and is on the comeback trail!

about me

passion for running category: running,running room on Tuesday, April 20 2004

I grew up on a farm southwest of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada but am 100% city slicker now. My wife Lori and I are proud parents of an eight year old girl princess and almost five year old boy monkey.

I currently work as a business/policy analyst with the Government of Alberta. It’s a job where I enjoy doing a a whack of research, writing and project management. Previously, I enjoyed a career as a freelance wedding/portrait photographer. I’m still passionate about photography – especially when taking pictures of family, friends and runners! I’m also very interested in most other things related to graphic imagery and design. My other big interest is in researching my family history/genealogy.

Like my Complete Running partner Aaron, I began running around 1992. Thinking back, the reason was mostly financial since it was the only activity I could afford after graduating from the U of A and finding myself unemployed! Back then, a “long” run was anything beyond 15 minutes.

Around 1998 (for some reason I can’t remember) I stopped running and quickly found myself thirty pounds overweight and suffering from terrible back problems. About a year after that, the back pain subsided just long enough for me to begin running again and I’ve never looked “back” (groan). That year, I also suffered a personal loss that made me want to be around new people, so I joined the Running Room Run Club. It was a decision that changed my life in extremely positive ways.

I started running with the Wednesday evening club which then led me to try the Sunday morning club. At that point in time, if someone told me I’d be waking at 7:30 on a Sunday morning to RUN, I would have told them they were crazy. Nonetheless, I became a regular with the club and made some really great friends. Many of them were training to run a half-marathon so it seemed pretty natural to follow along and sign up for a 1/2 Marathon Learn to Run Clinic and guess who was teaching? Yup, it was my now best bud and partner Aaron.

I was inspired after that first half-marathon and craved more, so some of my friends and I set our sights on completing a full-marathon. Not long after, Aaron invited me on a run and we’ve trained together ever since.

Like many people, my first marathon was life changing. I will never forget the agony of the final 10 kilometers (6 miles for you metric haters!) and the amazing feeling of accomplishment at the finish line. It only took moments for me to decide I wanted to do another. As of today, I’ve completed six marathons and made some truly terrific friends.

Running highlights? The first is definitely the marathon Aaron and I ran together in 39 degree Celsius heat! A lot of people gave up or even collapsed on that day but we managed to persevere. Second is the finish time from my fifth marathon in October, 2003 where I set a 17 minute personal record that was three minutes faster than my goal time (Aaron finished 14 seconds ahead with his own five minute PR).

Thanks for visiting my home on the web – please come back soon!

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