One Day at a Time: How Gene Stays Sober and How He Improves as a Runner

Today I’m going a few easy miles with Gene, who has overcome much bigger challenges than 26.2 miles.

Gene Mid Tri
In his own words, Gene came into running later in life, and he definitely enjoys it.

Like many folks that have been on the show, Gene’s favorite distance to race is 13.1. One of his goals is to always be half marathon fit, which is a good place to be.

Gene’s Path to Running

Before Gene started running, his health wasn’t in a good place.

He was drinking a bottle of liquor a day. He was smoking a pack of cigarettes a day. And he was overweight.

And the reason? He was ready to make another improvement in his life.

18 months after he stopped drinking, and he’s been sober since 2008, he gave up smoking. 18 months later, he was done with the cigarettes.

18 months after that, he felt like it was time to improve his health.

So he started to exercise. Push ups. Sit ups. And walking. 

Everyday, Gene was doing something with the goal of being healthier. 

And before long, Gene began to notice the changes.

He stuck with it, and eventually he started to run a little bit.

As his fitness improved, he went a little more. And a little more. And he basically hasn’t stopped since.

Incremental Progress is Still Progress

Gene impressed me with his dedication to the process. To the fact that incremental progress is still progress, and each day getting a little better is the goal.

Kind of like his journey of sobriety. 

Every day. Step by step. Inch by inch. 

So often these days, we get frustrated that we aren’t progressing fast enough.

And in doing so, we lose sight of the fact that we are still making progress.

Today’s Episode is Sponsored by Health IQ

Health IQ

Half Ironman?

Gene recently completed his first triathlon, and he really enjoyed it.

Enough so that he’s thinking about the idea of potentially doing a half ironman in the future.

Gene’s biggest hold up is the fact that his knees don’t like the biking, but he’s definitely open to doing some more tris in the future.

A Link Between Sobriety and Running?

The last bit of the show, we talked about Gene’s journey through sobriety and the relationship between being a runner and being sober.

When I talked to Charlie Engle, also an alcoholic in recovery, he talked about the impression that some people have that he simply traded one addiction for another. In his case, alcohol for running.

I asked Gene if he ever gets asked a similar question, and he couldn’t think of anything in particular but he understands the thought behind the question.

I also asked Gene if/how his journey of sobriety has helped him with his journey into running. 

His answer? Wow. I’m not even going to spoil it here, but if you listen you will not be disappointed.

Sobriety is not complicated, but it's also not easy all the time. ~@dr24hours Share on X

If you’d like to connect with Gene, you can reach out to him via his website or say hi to him on Twitter.

As Always, I’d Love to Know What Stood Out to You From this Episode! Let Me Know Your Takeaway in the Comments Below!

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2 replies
    • Denny
      Denny says:

      Thank you Gene! I’m glad you did it, and I’m already getting some great feedback on your honesty about sharing your story. I know it’s going to help people, so thank you my friend!


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