Wayne Joseph’s Blog

Running with the Big Dog

Big Island Marathon – Race Director Going Strong despite battling Stage IV Glioblastoma

The following article was published in the Hawaii Tribune-Herald on March 18, 2012

Race director still running strong

 By KEVIN JAKAHI                             Tribune-Herald sports writer

Wayne “Big Dog” Joseph is always running — whether it’s his five-mile daily morning jog or scrambling to tie up a loose end for the Big Island International Marathon.

Judging by the numbers, the three-pronged event — 26.2-mile marathon, half-marathon and 3.1-mile run/walk — is as popular as ever. The half-marathon, introduced two years ago, is a big hit among participants.

“Everybody wants to do the half-marathon,” said Joseph, the race director. “I’d like to keep it at 300, but we oversold it at 338. It’s not the full marathon and you don’t have to put in as much training, and you get to see the beauty of the race, which, to me, is the first eight to 10 miles.

“For the entire race, we’ve almost the same as last year. We’ve got 909. It’s in the same ballpark.”

In his Running with the Big Dog column on Feb. 20, the 64-year-old Joseph wrote that he had surgery for a malignant brain tumor, and credited his quick recovery — he was slowly up and moving the day following surgery — to being healthy and fit, his life’s motto and the message in almost every column.

“I’m doing well. It’s a rare brain disease (glioblastoma),” he said. “I feel good. I’m trying to be as normal as can be. I’m still managing to run. I jog five miles every morning, something I take pride in doing. Every afternoon, I go on a two or three mile walk. I love people, love doing things and try to keep life normal as possible.”

According to a rundown on wikipedia.org, the prognosis for stage IV glioblastoma is pretty grim. The survival rate for ages 50 and over is less than 50 percent, with numbers shrinking to single-digits after three years.

“Stage IV is gloomy, but I’m not buying into that kind of stuff,” Joseph said. “To me, they caught it early, took it out early and I’m getting treatment early. I’ve got no choice but to stay optimistic. I bought a book and a guy with the same disease lived for 16 years later.

“Laughter helps and the outpouring of the Hilo community after I wrote that story was incredible. I can’t tell you how many people emailed me out of the blue, giving me positive advice. I was truly overwhelmed. Hilo is a very supportive place. It’s a wonderful place. And there are a lot of wonderful people who make me feel good.”

He started chemotherapy and radiation sessions on March 12. He said he has no nausea, noting it’s “mind over matter.”

“The radiation is easy. There’s nothing to radiation,” he said. “You lie on a table and they blast you with radioactive beams. Hopefully, they kill the little critters.”

He’s taking steroids to deal with the swelling in his brain. The side effect is he’s eating more than ever and gain

ed 14 pounds. The steroids also affect his sleep, but not his disposition.

His mood remained on an enthusiastic wavelength at all times, while talking about his health and especially the work of the BIIM volunteers.

“The volunteers make me look good. I just coordinate,” he said. “We get 300 to 400 people to make the Hilo marathon look good. We don’t advertise it. It’s the beauty of the marathon and it sells itself. It’s a really beautiful marathon with the people here. When people come here to race, they’re overwhelmed.”

Then Joseph talked about the popularity of the half-marathon, which, symbolically will be a tie-in to his longevity.

“If we let it go, the half-marathon could easily go to 500. But I believe in being environmentally sensitive and meeting the needs of the quiet community,” he said. “As long as I’m around, it’s going to small. We’ll keep it around 300. And I plan on being around for a while.”

Related Link:  https://waynejoseph.wordpress.com/2012/02/20/staying-healthy-and-fit-helps-in-times-of-adversity-brain-tumor-removal/

March 18, 2012 Posted by | Running on the Big Island | , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Big Island Marathon geering up for Packet Pickup and Race Day Events

ALOHA Runners/Walkers and family members:

Just some reminders about what is happening as we approach the Big Day.

Packet pickup will be on Saturday, March 17, from noon to 6 pm at the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel.

When you get to the hotel make your way downstairs to the Moku Ola room.

Do not arrive before noon as no one will be able to accommodate early arrivals and you will be asked to remain outside.

In the Moku Ola room we will have a small EXPO where you can purchase running shoes, and a variety of running related needs.

There will also be a souvenir table with a limited supply of Big Island International Marathon items such as shirts, caps and other items with the BIIM logo on it.

We are a small race and we will have a small EXPO, so if you are used to the large races such as Honolulu and the like be prepared for small.

Small is the way we like it and small is the way it will remain.  

All our available slots for the Marathon and Half Marathon have been sold – we will not allow any runners into either of those races, regardless of excuses.

Both the marathon and half marathon have been oversold as we expect a 10 percent no show.

Only the 5K will accept late entries on packet pick up day.  

If you are injured and cannot do the marathon or half marathon you may down grade to the 5K ONLY!

Anyone running in the race without a visible running number pinned to the front will be asked by police to get off the course. Aid stations are asked not to provide aid to anyone without a running number.

Those in the marathon who turnaround at the Half Marathon turn will be disqualified.

Our shirts are for FINISHERS only and you must finish the distance that your running number indicates or you will be disqualified.

Food and drinks will be provided at the finish line for RUNNERS only.

Beer can also be found for adults completing the full marathon course.

Marathon and Half Marathon start at 6 am and the 5K starts at 6:30 am.

More information will be provided in your packets and via email as we get closer.

ALOHA,   Wayne ‘Big Dog’ Joseph, Executive Director, Big Island International Marathon

Related links:  https://waynejoseph.wordpress.com/2012/02/28/shuttle-bus-information-for-marathon-and-half-marathon-runners/


March 6, 2012 Posted by | Marathon Running | , , | 3 Comments

Big Island International Marathon & Half Marathon is SOLD our for 2012

The 15th annual Big Island International Marathon and Half Marathon has sold out of all its available slots.

Both races have oversold by 10 percent to account for people dropping out of the race at the last minute.

The only available races is the BIIM 5K and interested people wanting to sign up for the 3.1 miler may do so by going to www.hilomarathon.org and sign up on line.

Anyone mailing in entries to the marathon or half marathon scheduled for March 18, 2012 will have their entries returned if sent in after Jan 21 for the Half and after Jan 31 for the full marathon.

No excetpions, no waiting list.  Anyone switching races will be disqualified and banned from future races.

Anyone doing the races as Bandits (without running numbers) will be pulled from the race by Police Officers.

The BIIM follows the rules set by the National Organization, Road Runners Clubs of America.

The application for the 2013 race is posted on their web site, so please be sure to sign up early to avoid being left out as that race is expected to sell out long before race date.

February 2, 2012 Posted by | Running on the Big Island | , , | 7 Comments

Big Island Half Marathon SOLD OUT for second year in a row

For the second year in a row the Big Island International Marathon has sold out of all its Half Marathon slots.

The on line credit card sign up has been closed and applications received by mail, with a postmark later than January 20, 2012 will be returned.

Runners from all over the world have taken advantage of viewing one of the most scenic Half Marathons in the world.

The marathon is also 90 percent full and should sell out within the next three or four weeks.

The 5K run/walk will continue to take entries until a week or so before the March 18 race.

No one will be allowed to switch races and there is no waiting list as the BIIM over sold the Half Marathon by 10 percent.

The 2013 race application will be posted on the www.hilomarathon.org web site soon and people disappointed at missing the 2012 race are encouraged to sign up early for 2013.

January 14, 2012 Posted by | Running on the Big Island | , | 8 Comments


keep your running number in the front stomach area

What is a bandit?  A person who runs in a race without paying an entry fee and without a running number. 

Bandits are like shoplifters, they take from the race without really knowing they are doing anything wrong.  There are a few people that will walk through a supermarket and snack on the grapes in the produce department of take a cup of coffee and drink it while shopping, never paying for what they have consumed.

The Hilo Marathon spends thousands of dollars getting road closure permits, paying for off duty police officers, providing for aid stations, and more.  Those bandits that did not pay for any of these services stole from the race.

Further, when we are at capacity and sell out in the marathon and half marathon that means that we only have enough room on the buses to take people to the starting line that are actually in the race. 

It also means that supplies at aid station can only accommodate a certain number of runners.  If we allow bandits to run then those that paid to be in the race will be short changed.

Road Runners Clubs of America, the governing body for many certified and insured races such as the Hilo Marathon, suggest that bandits, when caught, should be banned from all RRCA events for one year the first time and banned for life the second time they are caught.

BIIM will strictly enforce the NO BANDIT Rule in its races and those caught will be banned from any and all future races.

That is why it is extremely important to wear your running number in the front, chest to stomach level, while participating in the BIIM (Hilo Marathon).  Those without running numbers prominently in the front will be consider BANDITS     Your running number is proof that you belong in the race.

Also, switching or wearing someone else’s running number is prohibited.  Both (the owner of the number and the one wearing the number) will be disqualified.

Police have been advised to not stop traffic along the course for anyone without a running number in the chest to  stomach area.   Aid stations have been advised to not give out water, Gatorade or any other supplies to people without running numbers.

Related link:  https://waynejoseph.wordpress.com/2011/12/24/should-ipods-be-banned-from-organized-racing-are-runners-at-risk/

December 29, 2011 Posted by | Marathon Running | , , , | 3 Comments