By Dr. Michael Wald
Some people have told me that running a marathon is just plain stupid. If I were to listen to them and think back to the infamous saying, “stupid is as stupid does”, a quote from the movie Forest Gump, I would have to believe them!
I’ve done lots of silly things in my life, but I’m quite sure that running the New York City Marathon is not one of them. There was a time years ago that I thought about running a marathon (for a bout 5 seconds), but then quickly dismissed the idea because “it was just too hard”. What’s strange is that I have always been a runner on and off, and have even completed several triathlons, but still I dismissed even the thought of running for such a long time.
As I have gotten older I have come to believe that “hard” does not mean, “don’t do it”. Now, hard means “do it” and do it the very best that I can. What helps me complete projects and tasks in my life that I perceive as difficult is to “link” these tasks to something greater than myself…and quite honestly, letting people know about it. Once I was asked to do a radio show on a topic I barely knew, but I said yes immediately and by the time the radio show aired I had become an expert on the topic, eventually wrote a book about it, and taught the topic across the United States and Canada – all within a single year. Setting oneself up for success by announcing it to the world, from my perspective, involves putting oneself at risk of embarrassment or even failure. To quote Alexander the Great, “there is nothing impossible to him who will try”. So, I’m going to give it my best shot, not just for me but also for the Tourette’s Syndrome Association (TSA). This is the last “trick” – doing something for someone or something else greater than you.
At the end of the day, meaning at the end of the marathon, everyone will just go home. In my experience of running last year’s NY Marathon, I was so exhausted I could barely move my feet. Three separate EMT’s (emergency medical technicians) stopped me to ask if I needed an ambulance. I always considered myself extremely fit, but not knowing what I was getting myself into last year, and running it as hard as I could, really took a toll on me. My brother had to physically take my clothes off, lift me, put me in a bath and feed me a health bar and fluids. For two days I walked as if someone had beaten my legs with a stick! By the third day I was walking fairly normally, but if you pushed me with a few fingers I probably would have toppled over.
I think that I’m a lot more conditioned now that I’ve spent a good amount of time studying how to run marathons. I probably still won’t be able to walk after another marathon, but I’m running for myself and for the Tourette’s Syndrome Association and I think this will allow me to get passed “the wall” and overall aches and pains much more effectively. I could take this one lightly, slow down, and get across the finish line as if it was literally “a walk in the park”, but that’s not how I do things. I plan to run this race at a full 30 minutes faster than last year. This will completely trash my body temporarily, but this is a personal goal that I have.
Lots of people plan how these things are going to go to the last detail, so there is a good chance that things won’t turn out the way that I plan. No matter what happens I will have done this race, done something for the Tourette’s Syndrome Association, and hopefully make my family and friends proud!
– Dr. Michael Wald, aka The Blood Detective, is the director of nutritional services at Integrated Medicine of Mount Kisco, located in Westchester New York. He has appeared on ABC World News Tonight with Diane Sawyer, Channel 11 PIX, Channel 12 News, CNN, The Food Network and other media outlets. Dr. Wald earned the name Blood Detective for his reputation to find problems that are often missed by other doctors. He earned an MD degree, is a doctor of chiropractic and a certified dietician-nutritionist. He is also double-board certified in nutrition. He has published over a dozen books with three additional titles due for release late 2013 including: Frankenfoods – Genetically Modified Foods: Controversies, Lies & Your Health and Gluten-A-Holic: How to Live Gluten Free and the Blood Detective’s Longevity Secrets. Dr. Wald can be reached at: www.intmedny.com or www.blooddetective.com or by calling: 914-242-8844.