Ajahn "AJ" McGraw

Racing Red Team


Hey, I'm AJ McGraw. I am a Freshman at Ivy Tech Community College working towards a Carpentry Technical Certification. I am an easy and outgoing person. 40% of the time, I'm funny all the time, Mathematically that makes sense. I am motivated, competitive and surprisingly agile in dodgeball. I'm in this to win it. After the program,  I plan on returning as alumni for season 11 to help the contestants towards the goal FWSW helped me achieve. 

Follow My Blogging Journey


Wow, I finally made it to the final week, and didn't die or quit! There were times when both were a possibility, thanks to my families ( blood & FWSW Familly) I made it to the end. I still can't believe it.  I mean the race, turning in my application crying, sweating, bleeding, hurting, struggling, fighting, failing, pushing, relaxing, hoping, praying, and so much more. I literally don't have enough time to express the feeling emotions, people, and actions that not only helped me get to this point. but made me the stronger, better, and the healthier person I am today. Thanks so very much to you all!! ( Mom you are implied)


 Joy mentioned that her sister's newborn was in intensive care this morning, and that really struck a cord with me. Not many people know this, but there several serious complications when I was born and I can honestly say that had it not been for the hand of God, I would have died before birth at my Grandparents' house. Here id the whole story.

The Story:

My mom was roughly 38 weeks pregnant, she started having serious contractions made her go to the hospital, thinking she was in labor.The doctors told her she was wrong and sent her and my grandmother home. Twice more that day they returned only to be sent home both time. The fourth time my the tried to send my mother home. She prayed long and hard knowing my life was at stake and if she got sent home again, I would die. To this day I thank my grandmother is who she is because she had a "talk" with the doctor the scared him so bad he put my mom in the hospital for 3 days.  As they ran the test I don't want to think about they checked on me. They found That my heart had stopped this was a huge problem and immediately did their best to rectify the situation. I don't know how they did it but, somehow they got my little heart pumping again. In light of this, they decided it would be best to induce labor, all went well until they saw I was upside down and feet first. I 'm not going to get into the details of this one, but long story short, the fixed the problem and delivered me and nearly broke my mother's back in the process. Kepp in mind this was nearly 20 years ago and technology wasn't as good, so the fact that I am alright is a real surprise. F.Y.I, it gets worse. After I was a few hours old, they ran some more test and discovered I had scarlet fever. This was a severe case and the were somewhat confident I wouldn't make it. My temperature peaked around 107 degrees Fahrenheit. To put that in pers[ective, the bodies cells start to die at around 109 degrees Fahrenheit. As by body temperature started to reside, my hard stopped for a second time. They took immediate action with a mini defibrillator to get my heart started again. The most harrowing 5 minutes of my mother's life she said. After several attempts, my heart started again. And My family couldn't be happier.


Understandably I was very pale after this whole ordeal, and my mother was very tired. So imagine her feeling when they came into the room and told her that I was nowhere to be found.  So my mother had to get out of bed to find me in the nursery. The reason they had trouble finding me was that my parents were the only black couple at the hospital, so naturally, the nursing staff was looking for a black baby. However, I was so pale the only I identifying mark was that I have I had a full blown baby 'fro when I was born. No lie, I have pictures. But my Grandma ha knit a hat for me that my mom put on my head before going to the nursery. So my mom easily pointed me out and nature went over, removed my hat and sure enough, Poof! My 'fro comes out.  

That is why my name is Ajahn, It has the Hebrew shortened form of God's name, Jehovah, in the middle, Jah, to forever remind me that God is always with me and I owe him my life four times over.


So this is why Joy's story brought me to tears, and I will definitely keep her and the family in my prayers, and I ask that anyone who reads this does the same and Not lose hope because Miracles can happen at any time. We just have to never lose love faith and hope

I Corinthians 13:13, " And now there remain faith, hope, love—these three."



 Oh dear, this is what a have feared most. I tried to fight it as much as possible but the power of the light was too strong. I have a confession to make. I, Ajahn McGraw, enjoyed every last second of my 10 miles yesterday. I would never have guessed it, but I enjoy running. I n fact I felt more energized at the end, as though I could go on to do another 5 just for fun.tongue-out I'm stepping into uncharted territory here, and I am scared. Two sentences ago I LITTERALY used the word fun referring to running. yell I  don't  even recognize myself anymore [shivers]. But maybe that not a bad thing at all. undecided


So I didn't get a chance last week to stay with my family at my grandparent's house up in Michigan. However, from what heard I had the better half. I had the whole house to myself, whereas my whole family had to share a 4 bedroom house. This coupled with other things that are now being omitted.frown My week wasn't all that bad. I was able to make it back in time on Thursday for the funeral service. came home after, stayed til Saturday which was pretty cool, I think we did 8 miles that day, and I averaged just under 15 min miles which I think is super awesome considering my timed mile from a mere 12 weeks ago was 15 min 46 sec. I can't believe the progress I have made so far. Not to toot my own horn but, *toot toot*.  I'm can't be thankful enough, I mean I knew it was possible, I just didn't truly think I could do it. I just did my best to keep fighting, and success followed.


So this is one of those weeks that no amount of perspiration could prepare you for. I mean this was a tiring, stressful, nostalgic, tearful, loving, hateful, fun filled week. So, in other words, I spent a lot of time around family. Usually, this would have been a happy occasion, but this time around, not so much. First of my Great Uncle Donald Potts passed away at 83. He was a good man he was a priest for 57 years. I remember going to the barber shop with him; telling him how I was doing in the program and see his joy his favorite restaurant for breakfast. He died peacefully in his sleep so at least he didn't suffer.  So for the funeral, we had my Uncle Ted, Aunt Carmen & Uncle Dwaine and their 4 kids, Uncle Rafe, Aunt Bobby, Papa, Grandma, My parents, and 3 siblings, and Uncle Fred, this was so much fun with no problems what so ever. I will give several updates this next week to fully explain the story.


So this week I lost 4 lbs so I've lost 35 lbs. Not much to really report this week. Just mentally trying to hang in there. At this point, I'm keeping sticky notes in business so I don't forget anything.


So just a recap of this week. So far I have lost 31 lbs to date, with the help of my second biggest weigh in yet of 6.8 lbs. I also used my new shoes on a 7 mile run this Saturday Morning, my time was roughly 1hr 45 min. and I did both my 150 stair climbs in under 55 min. 50 for one 48 for the other.



Theme: Elated, Jubilant, Flabergasted and more

Sorry to keep you guys in the dark so long. I jus wanted to make make a grand entrance, with the news that I lost 4.2 lbs this week. That brings my grand total to nearly 25 lbs.  I love this program and I feel like I am finally starting to get my second wind. I want this so much and I know I can do it. I can already see the benefits. My willpower has increased, and I passed my swim test to become a lifeguard. I had to freestyle 100yards, then breaststroke 100 yards. Then I had to tread water for two minutes with my arms out of the water, Which is a lot harder than it seems. Finally, I retrieved a 10lbs brick from 12.5 ft of water. That was the hardest part because instead of just diving head first, which I would have killedwink, I had to tread over it then release all air in my lungs pushing myself down feet first to get the brick. Don't worry, it's much more complicated than it soundstongue-out. I failed the first two times but retrieved it on my last chance. I just flipped to grab it too early. The Manager said I would need improvement, but I did well and.....(Special shout out to Mr. & Mrs. Walters, for everything they helped me accomplished so far, and Cece's "motivation" that will forever scare me from ever quitting anything, all trainers, nutritionists, doctors, photographers, and most of all God!), since I am losing weight and training for a half marathon, He has little doubt I will be able to improve . So in short, I'm in woooooooooooooohhooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ima be a lifeguard!  Ima be a lifeguard!  Ima be a lifeguard!  money-mouth

P.S. I literally shoveled tons of dirt this week so I'm expecting goo numbers tomorrow.laughing


Think of the example of the widow that put in 2 small coins of very little value in the collection. 

"Jesus said, 'Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. 44 They all gave out of their wealth, but she ... put in everything'."

As a percent this lowly widow put in here life savings, research says it was roughly a few hours wages. Yet she literally gave 100% in faith that God would not leave His faithful servant. 

Do you have and/or value such faith & wisdom?

My goal for this week was to do my best no matter what, and I confident that I did.  I also get new shoes today so that will definitely help. They are lower stability shoes to ease the pain from the max stability ones I used to have. I will post my total weight loss tomorrow.


A wise man once said, "Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad."

I always that thought that was funny but, today got me thinking. KNOWLEDGE is not power.  it is the use of acquired knowledge or wisdom that makes us powerful. So if we KNOW  that we are going through a challenge that seems insurmountable or maybe it's just getting up 3:30 am (shot out to an Alum that wakes up at 3:30 am because he knows he won't get out of bed til 4 something), or even a donut or an apple #decisonsundecided. Know where you want to be, assess the situation, use your wisdom and do something about it. We all have our reasons, excuses, etc, But should we let these become inhibitors from being the best we can be and doing the same?


We must do our utmost in any adversity that befalls us so that we may be stronger, manifest the KNOWLEDGE we gain, and wisely use it to benefit ourselves and others. 


KNOWLEDGE is knowing we have a plethora of support, facilities, and equipment at or disposal. WISDOM is making the proper use of it.

Lasting thought:

You have made it through 100% of your bad days.laughing


I swam a whole mile yesterday, and I fell so amazing it was trying but the feeling of accomplishment was way worth it.


So this week was better than last week at least, as far as weigh in goes, I lost a total of 4.4lbs. So for those of you doing the math, that is 15lbs in just 3 week which in all is below my goal but if I average 5 lbs a week, I would lose 75lbsafter this program making me roughly 250lbs. My minimum goal weight for this year is 200 lbs. This will probably be a good jumpstart to that goal so I will keep you guys posted.  



Woo hoo! Two weeks down and I am feeling much better I was sicksealed for a few days, so missed the main workouts. But I'm feeling much better and I made sure to kick it so that hopefully I lost more than two pounds this week. ( If you lose less than 2 lbs no one claps and it gets kinda awkward.yell) Oh yeah, I forgot to say but I lost 9 yes 9 pounds last week woo woo. My goal is to stay between  8 lbs, also known as a snowman, and 12 lbs each week. It's gonna be hard, but I know I can do it.


So after that first weigh in and Nutrition meeting, I learned two things. One, peanut butter is no longer on my meal plan. Seriously, check the calories on that stuff.sealed  Also, I  let myself go, but it's cool, not really but no lie, I'm gonna look good in 15 weeks.  I going to hit the skate parks, pools and beaches.