59 year old Jim Grafton is the Director of Public Works and the City Administrator for the city of Silvis, but that’s not it.
On Saturday Grafton will run in his 36th BIX 7 race.
“I made the decision to run this the day before yesterday.”
Grafton started running nearly 30 years ago and was hooked ever since.
“This race was the second race I ever participated in back in 1983 and it kind of got me hooked on running,” Grafton said.
Racking up a lot of mileage.
“I’m pushing about 78,000 miles so far and my goal is 100,000, so I’ll put another seven on tomorrow morning and just get closer to that goal,” said Grafton.
Just four months ago, Grafton’s life changed in the blink of an eye.
“I had some heart issues and resulted in a triple bypass about 17 weeks ago so I wasn’t sure if I would be conditioned enough to be able to run,” Grafton said.
Potentially putting his goal of running 100,000 miles on the back burner.
“I’m conscious of what happened but I’m confident that I’ve got the experience and the training to be able to move on,” said Grafton. “I feel much better than I did three months ago,” he said.
However he didn’t stop, in fact he hit the ground running just days after he was released from the hospital.
“Honestly not being able to run; which has been a hobby for many years it would’ve been a big change for me,” Grafton said.
Although heart problems were the last thing on his mind, Grafton said he credits his wife who also happens to be a nurse.
“The lesson I learned is just paying attention to what your body is telling you and get a check up,” he said.
As for Grafton’s goal of running 100,000 miles, he’s well on his way.
“I’ll keep running for as long as I’m physically able to,” Grafton said.
Grafton passed his physical therapy test last Wednesday and is ready to go.
He is currently training for the Quad City marathon in September.
The BIX race kicks off Saturday morning at 8 AM.