Running Before Crawling

This is a story about marathons, babies, the NICU, and more. To skip ahead, please consider making a donation to Hand to Hold, a charity that provides support to parents of NICU babies.

The start of most of my training runs.
The start of most of my training runs.

I like to run. While my frame doesn’t scream out the running type, I seemingly do pretty well at longer runs. I’m too stubborn to stop. Before this season, I’ve ran two Austin Half-Marathons, one full marathon, and a fair number of < 10k events, plus the training for those events. I haven’t ran with any true purpose. I know I should exercise, but running, in and of itself, isn’t great for weight loss or strength building.

Continue reading Running Before Crawling

Are We Promiscuous Drinkers?

Boston Magazine’s recent article on the Boston Beer Company and their Sam Adams brand’s standing—or lack thereof—in the craft beer world is making the rounds.

Particular of note is the article’s notion that the latest generation of beer lovers are brand-agnostic. We, so the article states to Jim Koch’s ire, care more about the new and shiny without regarding to any loyalty to any particular brand.

Jim Koch, the founder of Boston Beer (Sam Adams)

This new breed of millennial craves beer that is organic, local, small-batch, authentic, cool, and new.

Source: Wasted: How the Craft-Beer Movement Abandoned Jim Koch

There has been plenty of great response pieces to this article that are worth reading. In particular, Grower Fills response is great. As I was pondering on my response, I read his piece which says much of what I wanted to say better than I would have said it.

I am as much into the new and shiny as anyone on the beer scene. I dream about Sierra Nevada’s limited release Harvest Wild Hop IPA using a never-nationally-used variety of hops—the neomexicanus. Reading through Twitter is a long list of speciality beers that I would buy or events that I would be in a second if I had the available income and bandwidth. Texas is an exciting time with a relatively new option for breweries to both distribute and sell on site, meaning beer is all kinds of hotness for entrepreneurs. Continue reading Are We Promiscuous Drinkers?

2015 3M Half-Marathon

3M’s annual half-marathon took place in Austin today. Of the five Austin Distance Challenge events so far, it felt like the most attended event.

While there were some logistical suggestions I’d make, it was a good race. The weather was great and the crowds along the course really came out in full force to support the runners.

The run was hard. I haven’t restarted a regular running schedule since having the twins two months ago, so it was 13.1 miles cold.

The final event of the season, the Austin Marathon and Half-Marathon is in three weeks so there is still a little time to get back in rhythm. Originally, I had signed up for the full marathon, but earlier this month, realized that while I can pull off 13.1 without training, 26.2 was just stupid :-).

As a reminder, since going through the NICU experience with the twins in December and another hospital stay in January, I’m dedicating this season to support the Hand to Hold nonprofit that helps parents of premature babies and others who are in the NICU.

The full story.

Donation Page.

Congrats Bishop-Elect Danny Garcia! – Austin CNM


Fr. Danny Garcia, the vicar general of the Diocese of Austin and the former longtime pastor of St. Vincent de Paul Parish in north Austin has been named by Pope Francis as the first auxiliary bishop of Austin!

Source: Congrats Bishop-Elect Danny Garcia! – Austin CNM

Sierra Nevada Harvest Wild Hop IPA – Neomexicanus (2014) | 365 Brew

Both Fischer and Kraft tried Sierra Nevada’s fifth and final installment of the 2014 Harvest series and are sharing their thoughts in this conversational post. This brew is getting a good amount of buzz because it is the first nationally-available beer using the newest hop variety on the scene: neomexicanus.

Source: Sierra Nevada Harvest Wild Hop IPA – Neomexicanus (2014) | 365 Brew

2015 Goals

Happy New Year! With the changing of the calendar, instead of resolutions, as such, going to try to hit the following goals for 2015:

  1. Complete a marathon.
  2. Attend a spiritual retreat.
  3. Post 100 blog posts between various properties.
  4. Redesign brandonkraft.com to better showcase other properties (or roll them up, etc).
  5. Reach 500 unique beers per Untappd.
  6. Present at 3 conferences.
  7. Take a disconnected weekend trip with Vanessa.
  8. Every other month “Daddy Date” with each girl.
  9. Increase bike usage via 50% or more of intraneighborhood trips.

I’m tracking these on a new Goals page and will be providing updates here. I’ve never declared personal annual goals before and, I admit, the process this year wasn’t far from throwing a handful of darts at the board. I tried to hit a mix of professional, personal, and family-related goals that address my physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional well-being.

Goals are meant to be hard and while I hope to hit 100% in 2015, if I do complete them all, that only tells me that I was too easy on myself.

Do you have a regular process of personal goal setting? How do you keep yourself accountable?

Note to my subscribers: So far, I’ve only had “actual” blog posts sent via e-mail… not my comments on links, asides, photoblog, etc. As I see this site turning more into a hub, I’m going to re-enable subscriptions for all posts. No ill feelings if you unsubscribe… In fact, I’ve set unsubscription notices to go straight to the trash and don’t monitor the list on the account, so please, if my content isn’t helpful to you, save yourself the mental energy of ignoring it and unsubscribe!