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Half Marathon Training Journey: Joel’s Comeback Continues

Half-Marathon Training Journey Overcoming Obstacles

Welcome back, Joel! Joel is training for his first half marathon in several years, the Go! St. Louis Half Marathon. Joel ran through high school and college but stopped for several years when he opted for cycling instead. This year, his son has decided to join him and train. We have been following his half-marathon training journey which is coming to an end soon.

Their half-marathon is right around the corner on October 22. His running revival has been one that has seen him defying age and a long hiatus. You can read the whys behind Joel’s journey and how he triumphed over illness and injury to reach this point.

How Is Training Going For You?

When We Last Spoke, You Had Taken A Heavy Bike Crash and Dealt With Kidney Stones

This training cycle has been one thing after another. After all of that, I actually got COVID, but honestly, training is going okay. Due to how rest and cross-training days fell, I actually only missed one run because of COVID. I’ve had to hold back and watch my effort during runs to ensure I wasn’t stressing myself. I finally had my first negative test, followed by another negative a few days later, so I think I should be good to go. I am lucky I didn’t have a more serious case. 

I also got yet another injury: something in the shin, and it hasn’t responded to ice, massage, compression, etc. Luckily, my son has been here to keep me on track and lead me through the workouts. My shin issue came about while walking around one day. I don’t know what it is; maybe a shin splint. I’ve tried all the usual things to make it better, and while it has slowly become less painful, it’s still there.

What Has Been Your Longest Run?

Actually, my son and I ran a half marathon together as a last long run. Our training plan said to run 12, but I like to run the distance before the race, so we thought, why not?

Sadly, my son hit the wall around mile 9 and told me to pick it up and that he would meet me at our finish line. The last two miles of the run were my fastest. It was a great confidence booster because the weather was not great (it was hot/humid), but we survived, so I know we will survive the half marathon. We also did 2X11 milers, which helped build a lot of confidence after the last couple of months of illness and injuries. This has not been the most ideal training cycle. But I’ve gotten it done, and now I get to head into taper.

What Kind Of Fuel Are You Using For The Half-Marathon?

My son and I really like Untapped because it’s a natural product that sat well in our stomachs.

How Is Work Going?

I had a work trip to the Nike Campus in Portland, Oregon. Running in Portland is interesting. There are lots of pretty places to go but also lots and lots of stoplights to deal with. I had a great time at the Nike Campus, and in general, work hasn’t been too stressful the last couple of months. My stressors have really come from the never-ending illnesses and injuries.

The Race Is Getting So Close: Are You In Taper Mode Now?

Yes, thankfully. Our longest run is 4 miles, and I’m nervous but excited. I can’t believe the race is almost here. 

We look forward to following Joel through his taper and seeing how his and his son’s race turn out. It hasn’t been the ideal half-marathon training journey for Joel due to a string of illness and injuries, but he has overcome adversity this training cycle to be here.



Hollie is a runner, hiker, swimmer, residing in California. She has worked in run specialty for nearly 8 years and has fit hundreds of people for shoes. Outside of the running world, she enjoys the general aviation world, her two cats, and spending time with her spouse.