Trading an addiction for a lifestyle

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Conroe-area man aims to run a marathon a day to stay sober. His aim? To change the view of alcoholics for all of us

Every good run, no matter how long, starts with a single step. Dustin Weaver's first step of his mind numbing journey likely started a decade and a half ago when he started drinking.

"I lost a lot of time," Weaver told us recently in The Woodlands. "There's about 14 years of my life I don't remember. Most people that are alcoholics or addicts they find a way to get it and find a way to do it - it's knowing when to say when and I never knew when."

Weaver, 36, is now almost a year sober and aiming to run a full marathon, 26.2 miles, every day for a full year. Injuries have slowed him some, but Dustin has already completed nearly 50 marathons and many more runs just under the full distance.

Weaver usually runs alone. "It's lonely. This isn't the Forest Gump story where he has followers. Most of my runs I'd say three hours of the day are spent by myself. Out there, there's a lot of time to think."

Weaver is raising money.

See that link here.

He is hoping to raise $50,000 for the Boston-based Herren Recovery & Sobriety project.

That link is here.

Just as importantly helping himself.

"I haven't traded one addiction for another addition. I traded one addiction for a lifestyle." On any given day you can find Weaver running in The Woodlands or near Conroe. Usually alone and lost in thought, "I don't know if I know what it is yet, but I feel like I am giving something like maybe I am taking the load off some people who are struggling. Maybe I am saying give me that, let me carry on my back while I am out there running."

Four months in, his body is suffering, "Let me give back to you through my story, my emotions and my actions. - breathes deeply - My right knee is shot, this knee is all swollen." Kidney pain forced him to pull out of a 100 mile race Saturday after running 30 miles.

Despite all that, he says the mental pain is tougher, "It's mentally, physically and emotionally very hard. I wish that somebody could step inside my body and feel what I feel - not just physically but emotionally going through the whole process. It's not what I expected. I expected something, but I didn't expect it to be this hard."

Dustin hopes to finish in February at the Boston Marathon. But that is so far ahead. So many more marathons, so many more days of sobriety and neither are guaranteed.

"I'm not counting the days. I'm counting today. I am sober today. That's what I am going for to be sober today and sober tomorrow and sober the next day, but I am living for now. Just get through this day, sleep, recover and worry about the next day when I put my first step on the ground."

You can get updates and much more info on Dustin at his Facebook page.

Follow that page here.
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