Friday, November 15, 2013

ICU to Marathon - Preface

"ICU to Marathon - Diaries of a Nearly Dead Man" is the magic bullet you’ve been waiting for! To solve all of your health issues, create domestic tranquility and get your whites whiter.

Maybe not.

This running book is not about running, it’s not another fad diet, it’s not a weight loss book, and it’s not a fitness system or a pyramid scheme. I am not another guru with a new "clinically-proven scientific breakthrough" to seduce you with. Yours truly is not an expert, but if I had the chance, I would play one on TV. I hope you’ll find my book inspiring, or, at the very least, as entertaining as a cat might find a mouse stricken with arthritis to be or a teenager with a SmartPhone.

This is the story of a fat guy who became deathly ill in April of 2011 and nearly bought the farm. Despite some negative "expert" opinions from medical experts, that guy decided to make the most of his life, and eventually beat the odds.

That guy was — and is — me; however, I think in reading this book, you’ll find that in many ways, it is a book about you, too.

The two years prior to writing "ICU to Marathon" have been a unique part of life’s journey. Educating myself about health, fitness and nutrition has been a process, through which, I have actually learned more about my faith in God than why flavonoids are good for you. There has been a lot of error and trial as I focused on correcting unhealthy habits. Of course the road to running a marathon, even for a healthy person, is challenging; and for me, many would have argued, impossible.

Like so many others, I have often said, “If I had only known.”

We all seem to have twenty-twenty hindsight, do we not? This book represents a lot of time sifting through the myths, the mystery, the unbelievable claims, the science and the practical day-to-day habits that make solid personal fitness possible. For instance, doctors say that each piece of bacon you eat takes a minute off your life. Based on that data, I should have died in 1886. Sometimes health is matter of common sense, other times it is knowledge, and occasionally, it involves luck. Here is an example; one day I ate a large can of cashews and it cured my IBS symptoms.

From the day I left the Framingham Heart Center, I stubbornly desired to be healthy.

On many of my treks around town today, my route passes by the hospital where I had been in the ICU. In my mind’s eye I would see the monitors, tubes, and wires, hear the beeping machines and the incessant echo of the intercom speakers in the hallways and the condescending words of the doctors who tended to yet another pathetic fifty-something couch-potato that landed in their midst, and then as I pass by, I declare my health and wellbeing. My inner-voice crying out, “never again!”

It’s an honor to be selected to take a spot in the magazine rack in your bathroom. (If you are reading an eBook by the way, for $5.00 more you could have had a printed copy to leave on top of the tank and not have to balance your Nook on your hairy knees.)

I hope you'll learn from my mistakes, enjoy reading about the convoluted road that got me into trouble in the first place and the road that brought me back, nearly, from the dead. I hope you find a laugh here and there — maybe even a laugh about yourself, if you're honest. But most importantly, I hope you find inspiration here; whether you choose to follow me to the starting line one day, or to just start making some smart, healthy choices in life. Sometimes it just helps to know that you're not the only one.