First off I want to thank ALL of you for your words of encouragement, I really needed it lately. You guys/gals really rock, I owe you. Yesterday I did some automotive work, and was feeling tired, so I went to bed early. I got up this morning around 2:00am and was running by 2:30am. I went for a long run, and when I finally got to Chads house, I had logged 13.2 miles. I was to meet him at his house around 5:30 so we could go for a trail run at the White Tanks regional park. Once we got there we did a 7 mile trail run (very slow for me). I had logged just over 20 miles for the day. My first half marathon pace was a nice 11:27 per mile. I had my head phones on and was singing all the way. The trail run was a little different, for starters I had rested about 1 hour and the muscles were tight. I ended up walking some and had to take a couple rest stops. My average pace for the 7 miles was 14:23. The last time I ran that trail was on March 15th and I had an average pace of 12:38. So with that said I was just under one minute slower per mile today after running a half marathon. I am proud of what I accomplished today all before 8am. I am not too sore, more tired than sore, but I did read an interesting article in the paper that I thought I would share with all of you, since Ironman AZ is this weekend.
Ironman dad driven by gift of son's life
The father looks into his son's eyes and sees himself.
They're the same eyes Lamar Sepulveda looked into 24 years ago. Brave. Strong. And 3 years old.
Eyes Sepulveda at one time thought he'd never see again.
Sepulveda's son, Nick, was diagnosed with leukemia.
So, the two walked into the cancer institute at Children's Hospital of Orange County in Orange, Calif., without enough money for treatment. Thanks to donations and the hospital's fundraising, Nick was able to get the care he needed.
Now, he stands before his father at 27. Healthy. Productive. Cured.
Lamar Sepulveda, who is from West Covina, Calif., but has family roots in Fort Huachuca near Tucson, always wanted to give back but didn't know how.
He figured out how a year ago. He created the Pay It Forward Challenge.
From Saturday to Wednesday, the 50-year-old endurance athlete embarked on a 428.6-mile solo triathlon from Venice Beach, Calif., to Tempe.
He started with a 3.2-mile swim from the Venice Beach Pier to the Santa Monica Pier, then cycled 373 miles from there to his brother's home in Litchfield Park, arriving Tuesday night. The next morning, he ran a double marathon - a 52.4-mile jaunt from Litchfield Park to downtown Phoenix before running what would be the P.F. Chang's Rock 'n' Roll Marathon course to Tempe. By the time he reached downtown, he was eight hours ahead of schedule.
"We were flying," Sepulveda said on Wednesday as he sat in a makeshift ice tub in the middle of Carnegie Library Park wearing nothing but bike shorts and a grin.
Oh, by the way, he also is competing in this Sunday's 140.6-mile Ford Ironman Arizona triathlon.
Sepulveda is pushing himself through this grueling challenge to raise money for the Orange County cancer institute, the only health center in the Southwest to receive the prestigious Phase 1 clinical-trial designation from the Children's Oncology Group.
He has raised $7,500 of the targeted $59,620 so far, with 100 percent of the donations going to the cancer institute.
"I'm just so amazed at what's he's done," said Sepulveda's sister-in-law, Esther Lumm of Litchfield Park. "My husband (Randolph Lumm) can't even talk about it without tears coming into his eyes. The thing about it is that hospital doesn't just serve California, they serve the whole Southwest."
Light post to light post
The middle child of 10, Sepulveda dismisses the severe toll this journey can take on his body.
When his legs burn, his lungs gasp and his resolve wavers, he realizes it's nothing compared with the suffering experienced by his own child years ago.
So, he just goes forward. His goal is to go from light post to light post. Count the burned-out cars by Interstate 10 as he speeds past them. Remind himself to get into the bungee-cord business after seeing so many on the side of the road.
Anything to keep his mind from breaking down.
"You want to quit all the time. All the time," Sepulveda said. "But you have to get past that."
"It's not about glory," said his cousin Russell Sepulveda of Phoenix, who is also a triathlete. "Completing an Ironman is already an unbelievable goal. It's amazing to me how people find the time and dedication to do them, and for Lamar to go through this right before an Ironman, I don't think it's human."
He is nearing the end of this challenge, the completion of an objective that seemed so far away just days ago.
What has been the most satisfying part? "Of course, it's the sight of my son," Sepulveda said, his eyes starting to well, his voice beginning to crack. "To pay back the Children's Hospital. To help somebody else. It's a lot of years later, but it's something I never forgot about."
So, he keeps on going, running to the next light post and the next until he reaches his destination. Until he reaches his goal. So that maybe another father can look into the eyes he thought he would never see again.
by Odeen Domingo - Apr. 11, 2008 12:00 AM The Arizona Republic