Category Archives: Seminole

Dirty Kanza Half Pint- First Event On The Calender

dirtyKanThe first big event for me this year is going to be The Half Pint at Dirty Kanza. This is a new kind of riding for me. Just getting ready to delve into it. It will be 100 miles on gravel/dirt roads. I understand that it is also a pretty hilly ride too, that will give my old man legs a good workout. preparing for this should help me with my second big event of the year too, TBA as soon as I get registration paid.  So the training begins.

I guess the first thing you might ask is “why do a gravel/dirt road event”? Fair enough. I think the biggest draw for me is just the fact that I grew up in small town Oklahoma and we spent many a day and night out in the country on those old red dirt roads. I have a lot of really great fond memories on the roads of Seminole County growing up. Memories that go back to early childhood; riding in the pickup with my grandfather checking the oilwells that he pumped in and around Wewoka and Ada. I can’t think of a time that I could have ever been more at peace and happy. Then as I grew older and into high school we spent many a night out on the edges of town drinking good cold beer and maybe a few other recreational choices just enjoying life! Still to this day if I am out away from home making sales calls on customers out of town, there are times I will choose to just take those old red dirt roads back to the city as far as I can just to get some space and clear my mind a little. Maybe roll down the window with some good tunes or maybe just enjoy the silence and have one of those talks with God.  So the dirt roads are a huge part of life for me.

Having said that, this is going to be a new type of riding. So if you are a big boy who still like his toys, you know there isn’t anything like a new bike for a guy like me. Looks like I will be springing for the new wheels sometime this week. There are two bikes that I am looking kind of set on: one is the Cannondale SuperX CRX1 and the other is the Specialized Crux Expert. Both of them would be great bikes. I should know in the next couple of days which bike I will be getting. Either one will be a great addition to the  stable!


The big thing for me has been finding the motivation to get this year jump started. I think this week I finally found it. It was probably a combination of several things that pushed me on to the point of getting going again; watching my wife at the Houston Marathon, fond memories of the fitness level I enjoyed last year,  and the the big tipping point was that I could just barely get my dress shirt to button to wear a tie the other night. I just thought “come on Mark, off your ass… enough already, lets go!”

So this is a part of what I am looking to do this year. There will be two big events before July, Dirty Kanza and XXXXX , then after a recovery week in Atlanta at a conference I will remeasure and decide what to shoot towards for the last half of the year. At any rate, I am getting excited again. So here we go!!!

What better tune than this one from Brooks and Dunn !


Filed under Ada, Brooks and Dunn, Cannondale, Cycling, Dirt Roads, Dirty Kanza, Endurance Sport, Gratitude, Gravel Grinder, Seminole, Seminole County, Specialized, Wewoka

Gratitude For The Challenging Road Ahead


Time, Time, Time, Priority, Priority, Priority, Lifestyle, Lifestyle, Lifestyle, Adjustment, Adjustment, Adjustment, Commitment, Commitment, Commitment….To me that sums up what The Road To Galveston has made me continually re-evaluate. So how do I feel about where I am in this journey? Just as positive, challenged, and invigorated as I was the night after Redman when I clicked on the link to enter the Lonestar 70.3. To me it is the most amazing journey that I have ever been on. To say that it has been cathartic, would be an absolute understatement. While it might look like a physical feat on the outside, I swear that is just the tip of the iceberg. It is so much more than the physical. While I have found a coach to help me with some of the technical-physical parts of the challenge, I suspect the mental/emotional/spiritual will eventually play just as big a part of the journey. In many ways, I feel like Dean Karnazes getting up off the bar stool and running for 30 miles on the eve of his 30th birthday, except I waited 20 years longer than he and could only get to the end of the block! So there are changes and adjustments that will have to be made, but what an abundance of life this gives me.

I was reading a blog by Chrissie Wellington about her retirement this last year and she said “My passion for the sport hasn’t waned, but my passion for new experiences and new challenges is what is now burning the most brightly.” New challenges and new frontiers, that’s where I have always found life! The focus and excitement of a new frontier, that’s good stuff. Good stuff, but not without challenges. This is pushing me in ways I never would have dreamed. Physically, I don’t see my limiter as any one part. My limiter is my overall fitness, but the cool thing about such a ‘base’ limiter is that as my general fitness rises, so will my performance in all three sports!

I am blessed in my life, I have had the chance to meet some of the most incredibly inspirational people. I have named a few in the last several weeks, some were realtives, some were mentors, and some were people that I have met on this journey. This week while at my swim lesson, my inspiration to keep working came from a high school classmate in Seminole named Greg Powers. Greg was a guy that to me had a work ethic and determination to succeed that was just a step beyond what others had. He was a guy that fell in love with playing tennis and probably worked harder than any of our school mates to excel. He was a guy that had athletic ability, but he wasn’t the ‘most’ athletic. The thing about Greg was he had a determination and work ethic that pushed him to be his best. I suspect that Greg probably was closer to achieving his maximum ability than anyone else at our school. When I was struggling with the swim exercise I thought of the example that Greg was, to bad I didn’t learn those lessons from him 35 years ago!

So this will probably be my last post this year. I look forward to a new start  with my new coach, Amanda Stevens. I love her attitude and the energy that she has brought to our swim lessons and can’t wait to get started with her next week in all of the disciplines. We set a start date of December 27th; which, as I mentioned last week, is special date in my life. It is a date of change, no doubt! This year I can’t wait to see where this journey is going to take me, already it has been awesome! I am so grateful for the life I have today.

So I wish you all a Happy Holiday season!

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Filed under Abundance, Attitude, bad coffee, Bruce Springsteen, Buddhism, Christianity, Cycling, Determination, Dreams, Edmond, Fitness, Gratitude, Greg Powers, Life, Lonestar 70.3, Meditation, Memorial Hermann 70.3 Texas, Now, Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, Running, Seminole, Swimming