Today was quite a day for reaching milestones. For a start, it’s the 25th anniversary of when my mother and I returned to the States; my brother Kevin stayed in New Zealand for another year to finish his first year of university, and my father wasn’t in the picture at that point. It’s still hard for me to get used to the idea that I’ve now spent over two thirds of my life here. Those childhood years really seem to count a little more than years in adulthood that just fly by.

The second milestone is that I just finished my first “caloric half-marathon.” I hate running and will never do a true half-marathon, so I figured out what the equivalent number of calories would be for my weight and did that number (actually a few more) on my stairclimber instead. According to my calculations, I passed the half-marathon mark in just under 81 minutes including hydration breaks. That’s not a stellar time, but it’s certainly respectable – especially for someone who has never done anything quite comparable before.

The third milestone is not unrelated to the second. After I got off the machine, I weighed in at 174 pounds. As best I can remember, that’s the lowest since about 1991 and represents a great improvement over my high of 210 less than a year ago. I actually care more about cardiovascular improvement than weight, but I’ll admit that it’s nice to have visible signs of my progress. I definitely like the thought that I might very well be in better shape at 40 (a year plus a week from now, in case you were wondering) than I was at 20.