14 May 2012

It's My Birthday and I'll Sweat If I Want To

The date is 14 May 1985. After an excruciating labor and emergency cesarean section, the doctor finally hands my mother the baby, the man-cub Andrew Jones. Her first reaction? "This baby is going to be a sexy beast one day." Her second reaction? "Did my baby really just ask for a White Russian and a Cuban cigar?"

Okay, well it didn't quite go down like that. I actually asked for a Gin and Tonic, but that's not the point. The real reason I write this evening is to call attention to the fact that today I turned 27 years old. I would also like to inform you that my trainer, Thomas, helped me celebrate by smoking me like a hookah at a hippie convention.

It's hard to believe it's been an entire month since I started this journey. Time really does have a tendency to speed up and catch you off guard. And it would have been much more fun to write this evening and tell you that I rolled in my 27th year with style, with cake and ice cream and a feast dinner at some swanky restaurant that serves French things, like baguettes and escargot, and fries (get it? French Fries?). But I didn't. Because that's not who I am anymore. Let me explain.

Have you ever met a person or group of people that you really liked but weren't really "in" with them yet? Like the trendy dudes that hang out at Urban Nirvana and Starbucks or the chicks that shop at EarthFare and smell like ginger and hemp deodorant (not to be too specific or anything). Okay, next question. Have you ever been rejected or dissed by those people, but like a chump, kept wanting to be a part of the club or begin a friendship with them? Putting yourself down because you weren't a part of the club?

Well, that's the way I feel about runners. No offense, runner-readers out there. It's not you, it's me. I just never have really fit in. Call it a self-confidence issue or low self-esteem. Call it an excuse not to try harder. Call it whatever you want, I just never fit the bill, in my opinion.

But my birthday today reminded me of something. Each year that goes by without taking the opportunity to become what you want to be is a big FATTY fail. And I am done settling for failure. I'm becoming a runner if it kills me. And it may, because my neighborhood is kind of sketch and I'm afraid I might be shot if I start running around too much. I digress.

I'm making a 10 month commitment to train for the Cooper River Bridge Run 2013. Not to just beat my Dad (because, um, yes, that will be happening Pops); I am training for this thing because it's who I want to be. I was built (different than created, studs like me get built, like a tractor or factory or something, way more macho-sounding) with a insatiable competitive streak in me. I also have an ego, which helps. Anybody know where I could get a tattoo of myself on myself?

But the thing that I really do believe I was born 27 years ago to do, was to inspire others to be more than what they are, to challenge them to become who they were meant to be, who they are called to be. For me, part of it is a runner, a health freak, a hippie. For you, it may be a cyclist, or a swimmer, or even an honorary member of Billy Idol's band (what? don't hate). What I am telling you today, all joke's aside, is that you really should go for it! Be that guy who is so dedicated to his craft or desire that it makes others sick. Then while you're holding their hair as they puke, encourage THEM to do the same thing. Get motivated until it pains you to sit still.

Choose sweat over sweets on your birthday. Be radical and go out and get it! I know I will, and if I see you on the sideline as I pass by next April during the bridge run, you better hope you have sneakers on, cause you're running the rest of the way with me.

P.S. If you can't run the rest of the way with me, feel free to locate the golf cart I've reserved for my father. Ya know, the one I'll be picking him up in after I finish?

I think I might try for the flock of seagulls haircut...thoughts?


  1. I meant to respond when I first read this... I run the bridge every Thursday (except today...) so just let me know when you want to run it with me! :)

  2. I'll be there soon. Currently having some feet issues (probably need new shoes, probably have bad form, probably haven't run in forever). But as soon as I can sort that out, I'm down. Though, I'm sure you would be eating me for breakfast at the moment, pace-wise.

    How's about you and me leading a workout early Saturday morning at the worship team retreat?