On March 2nd, I will turn 50 years old this year. I can remember when I turned 29, and became quite depressed because I was getting so old. Now I find it hard to consider someone an adult if they aren’t at least 30. I may be getting older, but I’m not about to take my place in the recliner and just deteriorate. My body is strong, and I will continue to make it stronger. Therefore, in honor of my 50th year, since I am now over the hill, I am going up the hill.
Right next to where I live is one of the most scenic bypasses in the area. Rich Mountain is the 2nd highest hill (I can’t hardly consider it a mountain as some may call it) in Arkansas. Each spring there is a half-marathon (13.1) miles up that hill (2,683 ft.). This year the run is scheduled of April 11th, and I have started training for it. I’m still debating if I will take on the whole 13.1 miles or just run the first half and relay the second with another runner. But even running the first half, as shown in the above chart, it is about the same elevation as the final point of the race. So what my readers think?
This isn’t my only goal though. Two weeks later, on April 25th, I’m going to go to Fort Smith for an obstacle run through the mud. This will be challenging because there is a certain younger woman that I humiliated by beating her as we crossed the finish line in a 5K race last year. I know she will want to use this run through the mud to redeem herself, so I must not let that happen.
A week after that is the color run 5K. I have one goal for that race, which seems completely impossible at this point. My goal is to finish that 5K averaging less than 7 minute miles. I’ve done a lot of running in my lifetime, but I have always been slow. Even when I was in the Marines, I rarely ran under 7 minute miles. But that is my goal for my 50th year.
To many, these goals may not seem ambitious at all, but they will be a challenge for me, and I am going to push myself very hard for the next 13 weeks to reach these goals. Naturally, if I achieve my goals, I will want to celebrate. The week after the color run, is my anniversary (May 5th). Paula and I will have been married 25 years (half my life). We don’t have much money, but I’m wondering what I should do.
There is another news breaker this year too. My 50th year will bring my first grandchild. If all goes well, she will be born around May 9th. So it’s going to be an exciting 50th year. I’m hoping for my 5oth year that I will be in the best shape of my life. However, arthritis has already set in on my shoulder joints which has put me at a standstill on what I can bench press. I also seem to have peaked on the amount of pull-ups and sit-ups I can do. I used to be able to max out on pull-ups and sit-ups part of the Marine Corps Physical fitness test. To get a max score I had to do 20 pull ups, and 80 sit-ups in two minutes. Now the Marines have changed the sit-ups to crunches and have upped the number to 100. These are not what most people consider crunches. A person has to cross his arms in front of him and rise up enough for his elbows to touch his thighs. Flipping up and down like that really kills my back. I still have long way to go. Still, I don’t think I’m doing too bad for an old man.