It's pretty fantastic to watch your childhood friends grow up and follow their dreams. This particular dream sprouted less than 200 yards from my house, from a young man it somehow took me 18 years to befriend. Yet, in the time since then, I have found a kindred soul for a fit an active lifestyle.
Brandon is a masters student at Cortland University majoring in exercise science and bio-mechanics. He's a lab instructor, a prior strong-man competitor, and volunteer counselor at Double H Ranch.
Brandon, whether he knows it or not, was a strong contributor to my reassurance that you can accomplish anything you set your mind to if you make an agreement with yourself to never give up. Born with hemophelia, a rare blood condition which prevents proper clotting, Brandon is one of only 20,000 people in the U. S. with this condition. Yet, despite the inherent danger that sports and recreational fitness can cause, he has dedicated his life to physical research and defiance towards the fact that you can be held to preconceived expectations.
Over the years we've spent a decent amount of hours convincing the other person to get on board with our own fitness preferences. For me, that meant dragging him through 5-7 hilly miles, rough intervals of HIIT, or - on occasion - some yoga. Through him I was introduced to the world of "dead lifts", TRX, whatever people are trying to accomplish when they flip around logs and tires, and a whole host of other strength building routines that were previously missing from my exercise repertoire.
Today we both continue separate but very unique fitness journeys. In every bit as much as thehappyrunnerdiaries is my heart project, a new podcast called Hops of Life is his. I took my first listen a few weeks ago, and I can't wait for the next one.
Check it out!