A little over 4 years ago I decided on a career change. The idea – to study psychology and begin a career within the clinical realm. This was a great departure from my previous career in network management and was something I was greatly excited about.
Slightly earlier in the year I had silenced the thoughts of quitting climbing the half dome, by learning to run solo outdoors. This was in part thanks to RunKeeper as well as my ability to memorise the feeling underfoot.
So the week my son was born, I thought it a great idea to increase my training to the ultra distance as well as beginning college to start my new career. I managed to juggle training between feeds, work during Grayson sleeping and spending time with my son. I managed to juggle this to such success that I began competing at the ultra distance and left college with the highest grade possible.
Entering university I told myself I would continue to train and strive to attain a first. My idea of a clinical career fell to the wayside incredibly quickly, as soon as I saw artificial psychology (artificial intelligence) was a module choice, I quickly changed my choices to technology and business. This definitely worked out for the best, I love technology and I am always intrigued by the psychology of business. So with my degree tailored more twoards psychology and technology I pushed on. Multiple surgeries and training with my first guide dog took its toll on my ultra training, but I still managed to find time to compete at all distances, from 5k up to the ultra distance. The only thing missing was the marathon.
Entering my third and final year, life just wasn’t busy enough, so my wife and I had another son – Franklin. I now had two sons, the idea of a first, and training for long distance.
I worked incredibly hard in all areas of my life, and chose computational neuroscience as my dissertation and knuckled down. This involved learning a new programming language from someone sitting there and telling me the syntax, certainly not the easiest way to learn a language. Computational neuroscience is also not the most accessible topic. Therefore, I was especially pleased when I received my final mark, 4 points off the highest mark possible for my dissertation, easily securing me the first I had strived for.
With university coming to an end it was time to focus on the other areas of my life. As I work towards a return to technology. I aim to work for one of the large technology firms or a new entrant disrupting a market. However, never standing still I thought I could do a little adventuring while I work on this.
Then the idea came together, I had never run a marathon, I had a slot in the 2014 NYC marathon. NYC is tantalisingly close to Boston. Boston is the home of RunKeeper. I could run from Boston to NYC, then compete in the NYC marathon? It would only be around 260 miles it seemed perfectly achievable. As my adventure had also started at the birth of my first son, it also seemed apt that my son would run with me. Therefore, I would fly him out to run the last mile and have my youngest son run the last few metres. The idea was sorted, now I just needed to make it a reality.
I knew RunKeeper would assist me but I needed another partner, someone that could help make this a reality. I found airbnb, a fantastic company, they instantly felt like the perfect match. They have a product that is accessible through a smartphone, hosts all over the world, and they are even disruptive to a market.
Perhaps the thing that interested me the most was getting to meet lots of hosts along the way. I have always enjoyed sharing my story with others, so the idea of staying with local people from the community, whom I could share my story and they could share theres, seemed wonderful. Thankfully, airbnb agreed.
So its official, I will run from Boston to NYC, have an opportunity to stay with wonderful people and run the marathon. If you happen to live between Boston and NYC or indeed in either of the cities airbnb are looking for fun hosts. So if you would love to host me please – clic here
I will be updating at a furious pace over the next few weeks, as I begin my run on the 23rd of October and arrive in Central Park on the 31st of October. I will be live streaming a whole host of content of the run live and will have a dedicated website, so stay tuned on here and on my twitter for a whole host of updates.