Today I’ll Be A Marathoner

I’ve been running for a only few years now and have 8 half-marathons under my belt. I got the running bug when I came to the Outer Banks four years ago to cheer on Iain Gray in the Outer Banks Marathon. Earlier this year, I committed to running my first marathon. My training has gone well. Today is game day.

One of my co-workers ran the Chicago marathon a few weeks ago. She made a bracelet that had friends and family members names on it for each mile. I’m going to do something similar. Instead of a bracelet, I’ve made a list of friends and family. It’s not in order of importance, but something I’m doing for inspiration.

City of Oaks half marathon

City of Oaks half marathon

Thanks for all the encouragement and support. I’ll run each mile of the marathon inspired by the following people:

  1. For all the OBX Marathon runners–good luck
  2. For all my friends in Raleighwood
  3. For my Red Hat family
  4. The Brand team at Red Hat
  5. For all my friends on the OBX
  6. Tony and Melissa, who I hope to see at mile 6
  7. Brad and Deborah, who I also hope to see at mile 6
  8. Jeff and Rachel–I miss you guys
  9. Jeff and Diane Fischer, thanks for volunteering at the race
  10. Todd and Rachel Fischer, Hurricane chasing support squad
  11. Kevin and Allison Fischer, great fun at Fourth of July’s past and future
  12. David Huff–Lake Johnson running buddy
  13. My neighbors and community in Raleigh–half way is where the fun starts
  14. Lance and Anissa–good luck on your first half (glad it’s on the OBX)
  15. Iain Gray–for getting me into this running thing
  16. Matt Mattox–thanks for pushing me
  17. Jason Shaeffer–thanks for all the tips (Go Giants!)
  18. Chris and Jess Van Hoof, wish you were here
  19. Eli and Peyton (I’ll explain later)
  20. The extended Hibbets family, thanks for the Facebook updates
  21. The extended Blackwell family, thanks for your continued support
  22. Jim and Beth Blackwell–great in-laws
  23. My sister, Katie, and her family
  24. My Mom
  25. My son, Zander–I want you to be proud of Dad
  26. And for the last 1.2 miles, my wife, Merri Beth, who helps me get through the toughest, craziest, and best times in my life–I couldn’t do this without your love and support

Getting Ready

I looked up a bunch of training schedules online. I picked one that I thought would work and modified it to fit my running. The first long run was 15.5 miles in South West Raleigh. Then I started training on the American Tobacco Trail (ATT). My Sunday runs started at 18 miles. My schedule then took me on 20, 22, 20, and 15 mile runs. I saw improvement on each run. Last week, I killed the City of Oaks Half Marathon with a new personal record (PR) of 1 hour and 46 minutes.


When I run races, I usually have a few goals. For my first marathon, I have three goals:

  • Finish the marathon
  • Run the entire race
  • Finish in under 4 hours and 20 minutes–stretch goal: 3 hours and 59 minutes

Remembering My Half-marathons

  • 2007 City of Oaks – 1:54
  • 2008 Raleigh Rocks – 1:55
  • 2008 City of Oaks – 1:50
  • 2009 Raleigh Rocks – 1:55
  • 2009 City of Oaks – 1:50
  • 2010 Tobacco Road – 1:53
  • 2010 Flying Pirate – 1:49
  • 2010 City of Oaks – 1:46

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