Insane Running Logo

Some dictionaries define the word insane with the following statements:

“a state of mind that prevents normal perception, behavior or social interactions”
“extremely foolish; irrational or illogical”

Definitions from Oxford Languages
Carlos Candelaria, Umstead 100

Either way, I really like running. So much some of my closest friends have called me insane for it several times. But the reality is that I am just like the average Joe that one day decided to give running a serious go. A few years ago, in very late 2011, I came to the realization that I needed to do something different, something wild, and try something different from the usual. Something that (at that time) was not necessarily the usual perception of me when you see me at work or with friends.

I have a few other hobbies like many people do, woodworking, photography, online gaming (serious online gaming for a while), guitar playing, and others. But when I 1st got into those hobbies, I spend a fair time researching, trying different things, and spending time learning as much as possible. So when in 2011 I decided to give running a good effort and to complete some unfinished business from my list of accomplishments, I put the time and energy like many other things in my life.

Hopefully, here you will be able to find some useful information, one or two golden nuggets, or at a minimum a few things you can relate to. I am no expert, I just really like running. This is me, 45+ years old individual that is insane about running. I know, I know, you have not heard my name before in the newspapers, magazines, news and perhaps not even see me crossing the finish line first, second or tenth or I think even in the top 20 in any big, medium, small race. But hey, that is not what makes me insane, with the additional little extra challenge of managing my diabetes while I train and run, I am just trying to get better at what I do for fun. This space offers me a way to continue to reflect on the learning and experiences to continue to grow as a runner. Here I can share a little bit about my running adventures, how do I deal with the different issues runners faces during training and events, including dealing with some of the extra challenges in dealing with diabetes.

Since early childhood, we all play around with our friends, neighbors, relatives, and brothers/sisters. We remain active for quite some time until due to other things we might call “life”, we start to make decisions that somehow make us stop doing some of the things we enjoyed about life and life happens. My life is not much different from the many others reading this now and perhaps the others not aware of these writings. But it is always about choice, the choices we make.

I always tell my friends when I offer a piece of advice,

or opinion or when sharing some anecdote and ideas,

take what you like and toss the rest.

I won’t be offended.

Sharron Candelaria and Carlos Candelaria

I am well in my 50s, but since my early years, I have always been very competitive, against others and even with my personal goals. During my early childhood, there were lots of playing & running around. With my cousins playing cops and robbers, riding the big wheel, the Greenmachine, and our bikes up and down the streets, always working really hard to be the 1st to finish or being able to perform the best stunt. Always very competitive, that is me at heart.

During my teens, I took upon running as a hobby. At home running with my uncle, where we started running a few times a week, sometimes 1/2 mile out and back. Then add some extra distance by finding a 1.5-mile loop we could do. Adding a few turns and some stairs will get us 2.5 miles. Adding another small loop got us to the 3 miles, very close to a 5 kilometers loop. We knew this because, as many of us runners have done, we will get in the car and drive the route to measure the covered distance.

In high school, my physical education teacher wanted to form a team of students for cross country running. He asked a few of us to stay after school to practice and get better at running. For me was the 1st time doing running drills, although today I have to admit that at that time I was not aware of the reasons or the need for those drills. To me running was simple, putting one step in front of the other as fast you could for as long as you could. But I went along, I remember doing hill drills, short quick sprints, and some “long” runs. The target was a High School cross country event in which we were going to compete and I was very excited and ready for it.

Carlos Candelaria and Bianca Candelaria at Virtual Minion 5k

“The truth is you don’t know what is going to happen tomorrow. Life is a crazy ride, and nothing is guaranteed.”


All the excitement came quickly to a halt when I was affected by an unusual eye accident that put me off the race and out from running for a couple of months. After a couple of months off, when I returned to running, my speed and endurance were gone. This became obvious when I went out for a 3-mile run, the usual, but what used to be fun, turned this time into a nightmare, it was too much effort. Mile one was miserable, followed by an even more miserable second mile. By the time I started the third mile I was done. I did not want it to continue, I just want it to get home. It was very frustrating, I could not comprehend what was going on. All that training, time, and effort gone, vanished in the air.

Carlos Candelaria Umstead 100

After that, I ran very sparingly. Once in a while during college at the track and later in college after being diagnosed with Type-one diabetes things got a little bit challenging for a while. After graduating and joining the workforce it was less and less time for exercise and/or running. First focusing a little bit more on trying to understand the medical condition, although still somewhat active with other hobbies but not running. Still have no regrets and am very happy with the choices I made.

Fast forward a few moons and I want it to cross off that little item in the list that was put on hold because of the eye accident: To run in an event. So now in my early 50s, I started to give running a fair try.

I am very aware that there are plenty of places, blogs, magazines, and sites that cover information about running. I hope this does not just turn into one more of the bunch but something useful and practical. There are going to be many occasions in which comments, observations, and approaches might not be logical or even contain a grain of sanity. But here is where I start to pick up the story after a very long-running recess. Here you will find my and other runners’ stories, some of the adventures, excerpts of my learning, and hopefully some useful information.

Thanks for stopping by!