Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The End is Here

No this is not some sort of prophetical assessment of the end of time. It's just the realization that the calendar now gets flipped to a new start and that all the things, goals, agendas and plans that were established in 2014 are now gone.

I was thinking this morning as I was running around the loop in my neighborhood that this would be the last time I would run it......this year. I finished 600 miles of running this morning contemplating how many times I began that route. Probably close to 200 times, (42 times in one day).

During my run I tried to lift my head and look around and see what I so often probably miss because my eyes are focused on the road ahead. How much am I missing? Who have I not seen? I realized this while I was running in Colorado. Such a beautiful sight, it would be a shame to run thru this country and not be aware of my surroundings. I should always be at the forefront of my attention and focus.

There are many lasts:

It was the last time I would go to 2014. 

It was the last time I would eat pizza.....this should be so true but it is so good!

It was the last time I would wake up......sounds morbid, just recognizing.

It was the last phone call, last email, last text message, last Skype, last blog post, last voicemail, the last piece of digital communication in 2014. How will I communicate in the new year?

It was the last time I would kiss my wife, hug my wife, tell her I love her, tell her I'm sorry, tell her a silly story, make her laugh, make her cry, be grumpy towards her, hurt her feelings, lay down beside her, wake up next to her, stare into her eyes and hold her hand. A painful thought if it couldn't exist in the new year. How will I do these things tomorrow......and the next.......and the next......and forever?

At the office there are many last times. Last time to drive to work, last time to sign in, last time to log in, last meeting, last phone call, last project, last invoice, last check, last bill, last time I clean my desk (okay I don't do that now), last time to doodle an idea, the last time to make a difference, last time to leave the office. What will we do different at IONIC tomorrow? And the day after? How will I feel when it really is the last time?

It will be the end of our silly doggie greeting us so energetically when we arrive home. Whether we have been gone all day or just five minutes, we get the same loving greeting.

It will be the last television show, last movie, last article to read, last scripture to recite, last broadcast to hear, last song to sing, last time to wake up to birds chirping, last time to go to sleep with fireworks blasting off (illegally) by the neighbors, last time to fall asleep before my wife making it difficult for her to sleep due to my snoring......sorry :(

It will be the end of tasting food......oh so tasty food, not cardboard but really good stuff. Why waste our palettes on things that are not really worth it? It was the end of eating out, the end of warming up leftovers, the end of counting calories, the end of taking my meds, the end of checking my insulin, the end of poking my finger, the last cookie, the last piece of candy, the last time I eat healthy, the last time I cheat on my diet and the last time I step on the bathroom scales.......the last time to be dissappointed.

It will be the end of talking with my children, the end of hearing their voice, no more reading their texts, no more hugging them, no more telling them I love them, no more picking up their babies (our grand babies). It will be the end of sharing my advise, my wisdom (is there any?), my stories, my goofiness, my seriousness, my sorrow, my encouragement, my struggles, my triumphs, my failures, my care, my concerns, my shortfalls, my wishes, my regrets.

It is the ending of picking up my clothes off the floor, the end of missing the hamper, the end of folding them and putting them away (okay, I don't do that now), the end of washing the dishes, the end of wiping off the counters, the end of sweeping the floor (okay, I don't do that now.....Rosie the Romba), the end of mowing the lawn, planting flowers, trimming the hedges, mulching the beds, fixing what is broken (okay, I don't do that now), the end of making the bed, of fluffing the pillows, of hanging up my coat, of throwing my coat on the sofa, of trying on clothes that don't fit.....too tight...too big....too old.....too ugly.....never did like it anyway.

It is the end of taking a shower, the end of brushing my teeth, the end of shaving my face, the end of combing my hair (okay I don't do that now), the end of using mouthwash, the end of splashing on colognes, the end of having to go to the bathroom room, the end of sitting on the pot without any toilet paper and having to text my wife in the other room to bring some from the other bathroom......okay, TMI.

If it was truly the end and there were no more opportunities I think it would truly be sad. Just writing some of these was sad. How often do we miss opportunities today that present themselves right in front of our faces that we don't take advantage of? How much time and opportunities do we waste? As time continues to march along in my life I have been given more opportunities to reflect on my mistakes and my misses. Age and wisdom has that effect.

Fortunately for nearly everyone of us we wake up every morning with those opportunities still in front of us. Still the ability to act and react. We use the new year as our RESET button, a time to start over, to change what we do and how we do it. In reality we shouldn't have any RESOLUTIONS. We should be doing the things we are supposed to already, only adjusting them, to do them better than before. It doesn't take a new year to hit the reset, we have one every morning if it is needed. What you did yesterday is in the past and the future is before you to make a difference.

The real question is........will you?

My friends, do not waste the chances you have been given. Do not forget about all the little things we take for granted...........and I will see you in the morning.

ET This I Believe
Eugene Thompson

Run Eugene Run
A clean slate to run again in 2015. All that I did in 2014 doesn't matter, it is what I do tomorrow that counts.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The Collapse of Christmas Morning

It isn't really the downfall of an entire empire just the evolution of how Santa and Mrs Claus wakes up on Christmas Day. The kids have all grown up and some have moved away. Each one now has their own Christmas traditions and things they do as their own little families. That is exciting that we taught them to make the event memorable by creating something special together. However it leaves my wife and I a little bit lost.

As our kids grew up we created several of our traditions we would partipate in during the holidays. Some of them were our own creation and others were traditional ones that we adopted as well. They were all fun but now time has passed and it doesn't seem like those Christmas events will fade away. Here is a list of some of those:

1) Cookies and Milk for Santa
We no longer leave out goodies by th the fireplace for Santa. This is for several reasons. First there are no kids to leave them out on Christmas Eve before bedtime. Second, I think one time we did it and the dog kept eating them. Mavrick would surely help himself. And lastly, "Santa" is a diabetic now and trying to keep the weight off. Carrots and almond milk just don't cut it.

2) Mountains of Presents
There were times when we used to have mountains of gifts under the tree. With little kids we could always get more gifts because many of them didn't cost much. Little kids ar like that. Big kids are a differnt story. Their toys cost a lot more these days. Santa and Mrs Claus is on a budget. Bigger presents might actually mean fewer presents. Also we have no clue what to get our kids and their cards. A little bit boring but at least we didn't get them something that will thrown in the back of the closet. Note: Grandchildren might resurrect this tradition!

3) Using the Number System
When our kids were....well kids.....they were pretty smart. They would eventually guess what was in their presents under the tree. So we needed to devise a method that kept them from guessing as easily. All the presents "from Santa" had numbers instead of names. No names at all. So you might guess the box had Legos in it......but you wouldn't know if you were getting the Legos or someone else. With kids in different part of the country now and schedules of visiting other family this tradition might very well disappear. We still did it some this this year but it wasn't quite the same.

4) Stocking Pins
I can't remember even why we started this tradition. I had made custom labeled stockings for each of the kids and then added a pin to the stocking. In the beginning it was just a pin. Later it began tying in to the theme of each Christmas as we tried to match things up more. Alas, as more kids spending their own Christmas' at their homes, we may see this one fade away too. We had to decide that if you didn't come home for the holidays then you didn't get a pin. It was just too much to make all the pins for so many. Rules are rules. This one was fun though.

5) Stars for the Tree
The last few years it has been a struggle to complete the new star for the tree. We have made a new star for the tree every year for as long as I can remember. A new star was partly a task by one of the kids. They would make up an idea for their construction and put it together. Here recently the star has also played a part in the theme that was established. Now, I have to come up with the idea, make the star, get it finished and put it up. Not always accomplished as quickly as desired. I think it was put up the last few days before Christmas for the last three years. Sadly, this one might disappear as well.

Well, it looks like Santa and Mrs Claus will need to revamp and evolve to keep up the Christmas spirit. No bah-humbugs here......just facing the changes.

Merry Christmas
Eugene Thompson
ET This I Believe.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014


Just a quick update on all the things involving my own personal fight with diabetes. As most all of you are aware, I have finished up six marathons this year's plus a slew of other races all adding up to 600 miles in 2014. All of this in hopes of helping control my blood sugars just a little better.

So the last time I went in to my endocrinologist in August I was dissappointed with my A1C results of 8.2 because I thought I had really been doing good with my exercise and watching what I ate. Mind you I often cheated but only moderately. I didn't think would hurt too much. But it was preventing me from loosing more weight. I was consistently weighing in around 212.

So this visit I had hoped for better results. My blood sugars had been pretty good and I was now down to around 208......and I had done so much more running!

Disappointment again. A1C was still at 8.2 but everything else was excellent. The doctor didn't see how the numbers related to because it was all looking good. Another medicine added that would use my insulin more effectively was the determination. I was giving several samples to try out along with instructions to reduce my dosage of insulin since the new medicine would work better.

The results after only a few days: My blood sugar in the morning have been really really great. Typically I'm high but over the last few days I have been in the 90s and yesterday after my run I was only 80....that rarely ever once every two years sort of thing. So I think I might be on the right track and obviously this proves that I cannot just run and expect the blood sugar to be better. I need to truly watch my weight which means STOP CHEATING ON SNACKS!

On the running front yesterday I went for a ten mile run and ended up hitting a full 13. A great run before work. It was my fastest 13 mile pace all year with the exception of the race I ran down in the OBX in May. Not bad for a work out! The accomplishment makes you feel amazing in the morning.

Keep at it my friends. If you have any questions about your own battles with diabetes or just want to chat, feel free to write me. I'm no doctor, just a regular guy trying to figure a way to overcome all of this myself. Be sure to check with your doctor before starting up an exercise routine or changing anything. BTW, I told my doctor I was planning on running 14 marathons this year and although she though she thinks I'm crazy, she is encouraging me!

Happy holidays my friends......Who's planning on a run on Christmas morning before presents?

ET's This I Believe

Monday, December 22, 2014

2015 Race Schedule

Here is what I have planned for 2015. It begins quickly in Orlando with a big one. These are my goals but the schedule may change (adding or altering) due to travel/work and my health. I haven't added in some of the various shorter races that I always enjoy running and supporting. Once I know those dates I will update my schedule.

I appreciate everyone's support of RUN EUGENE RUN. Please share my link with others and always look back here for updates and news regarding my success. Always success......never failures.


10 January   Disney 1/2 Marathon - Orlando Florida SIGNED UP
11 January   Disney Marathon - Orlando Florida SIGNED UP
25 January   Rock n Roll Marathon - New Orleans LA SIGNED UP
15 March     Newport News One Marathon - Newport News VA
21 March     Shamrock 8K - VA Beach VA SIGNED UP
22 March     Shamrock Marathon - VA Beach VA SIGNED UP
11 April        Swamp Stomp 1/2 Marathon - Chesapeake VA
12 April        Rock n Roll Marathon - Raleigh NC
18 April        Flying Pirate 5K - OBX NC SIGNED UP
19 April        Flying Pirate 1/2 Marathon - OBX NC SIGNED UP
25 April        Rock n Roll Marathon - Nashville TN
3 May           Kalamazoo Marathon - Kalamazoo MI
31 May         Rock n Roll Marathon - San Diego CA
6 Sept           Rock n Roll 1/2 Marathon - VA Beach VA
3 Oct            Wineglass 5K - Corning NY
4 Oct            Wineglass Marathon - Corning NY
18 Oct          Rock n Roll Marathon - Denver CO
31 Oct          Wicked 10K - VA Beach VA
7 Nov           Rock n Roll Marathon - Savannah GA
14 Nov         Anthem Marathon - Richmond VA
6 Dec           Rock n Roll Maration - San Antonio TX

If anyone knows any races that I should consider please send the information and link to me. Thanks again for all the encouragement!

Eugene Thompson

ET This I Believe

Christmas Theme

It isn't any secret what my goals and motivation has been in 2014. Run. Run. Run. And then run some more. There can be a lot healing, motivation, reflection, self-understanding as well as the health benefits. So it comes as no surprise that our Christmas theme has those elements woven into it. Last night we spoke with our son in Texas and he figured something about our decorations was going to be reflected in our gifts to them. (On a side note, grown up kids are hard to buy for!) 

Our son s worried that I was going to buy running shoes for everyone this year. I told him he should really worry that I signed them all up for a marathon. there's an idea!

I didn't but I did share our full theme with him. 

Life is short and precious. Never let a day go by without letting your loved know how much they mean to you. (LOVE)  Feel good about yourself by feeling strong. (EXERCISE) Take time to smell the roses and to appreciate the taste of life. (EAT RIGHT)  And never forget the most fun you had as a kid should still happen everyday as an adult. (PLAY)

That is all the hints my kids get before they open their gifts this year. But with that said, why don't we all remember some of the best sayings from those stories we heard as a child.

A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

Dr Seuss, Horton Hears a Who

Aesop, The Lion and the Mouse

A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

Roald Dahl, The Twits

Dr. Seuss, Oh the Places You’ll Go

Shel Silverstein, A Light in the Attic

Antoine de Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince

L. Frank Braum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

E.B. White, Charlotte’s Web

J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

Shel Silverstein

Roald Dahl, The Minpins

Dr. Seuss, The Lorax

P.L. Travers, Mary Poppins

Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

There many times in our lives......while living our lives......that we forget about our life. Never forget my friends. Always remember to live your life.

Have a happy holidays with your loved ones my friend, and remember to hug them tight.

ET This I Believe
Eugene Thompson

PS. I know why my wife loves Winnie the Pooh so much.