Thursday, September 11, 2008

First Interview Invite!

A pleasant surprise arrived in my inbox yesterday. Here's a paraphrase for those interested:

Dear Kyle,

Congratulations. You have been selected for an interview at Southern College of Optometry...

The interview day includes an academic counseling session, a meeting with financial aid counselors, a student-led tour of the College, a housing session and your individual interview...

We look forward to meet to meeting you soon. If we can do anything to make your trip to Memphis more enjoyable, don't hesitate to let us know.

Michael N. Robertson
Director of Admissions & Enrollment Services
Southern College of Optometry

In short I will be having a mini-vacation to Memphis Tennessee on the weekend of October 3rd and I am both scared and excited at the same time.

For those of you who don't know, I also applied to 3 other optometry schools and expect to make three more mini-vacations this semester to Columbus, OH, Los Angeles, CA, and Big Rapids, MI.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Half Marathon Results

Well, I did it!!! On August 29th after 1hr and 50 minutes, I developed asthma for the first time in my entire life! Go me. Better yet, I finished my first half marathon. I received an official email with my stats:

"Congratulations on finishing the Hobble Creek Half Marathon 2008 on August 23, 2008. For your records, the weather that day was warm and sunny. There were 30 finishers in the 19 to 24 age group and 1038 finishers in the race. Your overall finish place was 378 and your age group finish place was 12. Your overall finish percentile was 36 while your age group percentile was 40. Your time of 1:50:12.9 gave you a 8:25 pace per mile. Complete Results can be found online at If you did not receive your award, they will be available at Runners Corner in Orem for the next week, as well as any lost clothing items.We hope to see you again next year."

Here I am .05 miles away from the finish line (Mom took these pics).

Apparently I smile when I'm exhausted. Who knew?

What a sweet feeling it was to earn the title of "finisher". I couldn't have earned it without my awesome sister-in-law! She invited me to do the run in the first place, then kept me motivated all through our training program. Thanks Stace!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

My Poor Heart

I've always told people about "my poor heart"... most likely clogged with years of chocolate-covered cinnamon bears and ice cream. On top of poor diet, my heart has NEVER been consistently "athletic" for more than a school semester. (The day class ended, there was no more need to exercise). To this day my worst grade I've ever received was in P.E. class in 9th grade. Well, that's all changing...

Most of you know that I'm training to run a half marathon (13.1 miles) on August 23rd, 2008. I've learned that a goal is much easier to give up on if I'm the only person who knows about it, which is why I'm posting my progress for the world to see.

If you know me really well, you'll know that I like order, which makes me a huge fan of Microsoft Excel Spreadsheets. Here's a screen-shot of the file that I have deemed "Half Marathon Progress Report":
As you can see I'm in my 5th week of training and in my 2nd week of creating the actual spreadsheet. Just know that for the 3-mile days, I was running at about a 9 min/mile pace, and I'm very proud to be in the 7's now (see the 7.9 min/mile pace on July 14th)! The crazy thing is that now I can run a mile as if it were nothing, and that used to KILL me (in 2002 I ran a 1.5 min/mile in 18 minutes :(. I'm also excited that I ran 8 miles on Saturday... the longest distance I've ever run in my entire life. If you had asked me to do that 2 months ago I would have said you were crazy.

I do have to publicly thank Stacey, my sister-in-law, who is running the 1/2 marathon with me. I would have never joined the race if she had not invited me.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Eye Moles

Random eye-fact of the day: People can have moles in the back of their eyes!!
Don't believe me? I SAW a giant mole in a patient's right eye today. It was about 4 times as large as his optic nerve (see diagram to the left for general back-of-eye anatomy). Not only did I SEE it, I took a PICTURE of it for the optometrist I work for.

In the picture at the right (known as a central fundus photo -- or in other words, the patient is looking directly into the camera), you'll notice a dark spot right by the optic nerve. This is a nevus (fancy word for mole). Now imagine a perfectly round mole twice the diameter of the optic nerve in the extreme upper portion of the picture and you'll see what I saw. It was really cool! We had to have the patient look up and at an angle so we could get a look at it.

I love my job. I take pictures like these on most of the patients that come in. When they see the backs of their eyes, I usually crack a joke like "Awww! You didn't smile!" Or "I barely recognize you!". It's fun... especially with the really little kids, or the really old people. :)