Yikes. It’s been almost four years since I’ve been on here! It’s amazing how you can forget something exists, yet there it is, still plugging along.
Let’s see, the last post was about me running the Marathon. Yep, been there, done that. I ran the Prairie Fire Marathon in 2011 with a time of 4:02:23. Was shooting for four hours, and learned the hard way that when it comes down to the wire, there just isn’t anything left in the tank! I couldn’t have run that last mile faster than I did. Still, very satisfying and something I consider a life achievement.
What’s going on now?
Well, my family is fostering a dog who was pregnant for a local animal rescue. Within 24 hours of arriving at our house, I helped to deliver 11 puppies. Yes, 11 puppies.
Due to my middle son having some bullying issues, my boys and me have become involved in Mixed Martial Arts or MMA. We’re learning out at Martial Arts Wichita, where I’m helping out by designing a website to help spread the word about their outstanding MMA and Judo training. Great group of people providing great training at a great price. Highly recommended if you’re interested in martial arts.
Who knew? Just five weeks into my marathon training I’m feeling better than ever. This last weekend I went to Fall River Lake with my family and set out to do my scheduled 8 mile run, which is farther than I’ve undertaken in many years.
My wife was kind enough to drop me 8 miles away from the campsite and I was paying close attention to the drastic hills and valleys on the way to the drop-off point. The highlights of the run were:
- A small herd of cows (25-30) decided they would pace me up and down a big hill (they put me to shame)
- A scenic few miles through the woods with deer, rabbits and other wildlife.
- A mile-long dam taking me across the lake to my campsite
- A strategically placed bottle of water at the 4 mile point to refill the bottle I was carrying.
Overall, it was perfect. My 10k time was stellar for me, and the rest of the run proceeded without a hitch. I strolled in at about 1:10, twenty minutes before my wife was slated to come search for me at the side of the road. The next day, I went to the gym and swam for my cross training piece, another mile in the pool.
Just five weeks in and I’m doing things I hadn’t thought I would be able to acheive, so I’m looking forward to the race with a little more confidence than before. I’ve been shaving time off my 3 mile runs over the last week and a half, getting down to 22:21 this morning. If you had told me a month ago I’d be running under 7:30 miles for 3 miles, I would have thought you were joking.
Business is going well at Proper Technology Solutions, my Wichita IT support company. We’re picking up a few new customers and providing the outstanding service we knew that we could. Every time I’m working on a customer’s network, I can feel the energy that the increased fitness level is providing.
All in all, even if you don’t think you can run a marathon, try giving the training a try, you might just find that you are capable and stronger than you gave yourself credit for.
Proper Technology Solutions is the name of my IT support company in Wichita. Though we’re a new player in the market, we’re making some headway and picking up customers. Most of our new customers have let us know about their issues with their previous providers, which only helps us to make them happier. The number one complaint is responsiveness. Some clients have even informed us that their IT support company takes 2-3 days to get back with them once they’ve called in. We’re trying to change all that. For example, I had a new customer call me the other day around Noon. That customer received an on-site visit and was repaired and running again by 1PM. We can’t always provide service that quickly, but that is definitely the goal.
As I said in a previous post, I’ve decided to run the marathon this year in Wichita on 10/9. I’m three full weeks into a 20 week training program that takes me right up to the date of the event. With three midweek runs and a long run on Saturday, the plan is keeping me plugging away at that 26.2 mile goal. Throw in two rest days and a cross-training day and it’s a pretty well-rounded fitness program. I know it’s only been three weeks, but I’m feeling my confidence building already. For my cross-training yesterday, I planned to swim 20 laps. I ended up pushing myself harder and harder and swimming 35, which is equal to 1 mile. Quite a record for me!
Class starts again this week. I’m teaching two classes, one at the Bachelor’s level and one at the Associate’s level. I’m looking forward to the Cisco class especially. I’ve always taught the advanced Cisco class, and am now teaching the first course (It’s book 2 in the official Cisco cirriculum). It will be a great opportunity for me to teach the technology from the ground up and hopefully give them a good base for advancing their skills in the networking arena.
I’m attending a family reunion this upcoming weekend out at Fall River Lake in Kansas. We’ll just be out for two days but it will be a nice break. No break from the running though. I have an 8 mile run on my schedule for Saturday and I don’t plan on missing it. Running in a different environment will be a pleasure, though.
Something’s been on my ‘bucket list’ for years. Running a marathon before my 40th birthday. Time is running out and the race is finally on the calendar for October 9th, 2011, just 5 days short of the due date. I’m finishing up my third week of a 20 week training program and am eyeing the daunting task ahead of me. My 7 mile run last Saturday was the longest distance I’ve covered in years, and there’s a half-marathon in my near future.
I will say I’m glad that I started early enough to follow a training routine I found online for novice marathon runners. It schedules three runs midweek with a nice long run on Saturday after a rest on Friday. As well as the training, I’m gearing up the right way as well. New shoes today, which will probably be worn out and have to be replaced again before the race! New shirts. Replacing cotton tees with something more form fitting.
This is a personal goal, just like starting my own IT support company in Wichita was a few months back. While still a work in progress, I think my customers are starting to see the value. Even just three weeks in, I’m seeing the results of a strict exercise regimen. I’m holding at what I consider my ideal weight, which I finally dropped to at the beginning of the year. I’m also feeling my energy level increase, which seems counter-intuitive with the amount of excercise I’m doing. Seems like the more I excercise, the more I want to get out there and do some more.
I’ll make some notes here as I go about my progress. I’m dedicated and nothing but injury is going to stop me, though I’m doing everything I can to avoid that through good practices.
Oh, yeah, if you’re looking for great business IT support in Wichita, call me at Proper Technology Solutions at (316) 337-5628.
So generally speaking, I’m a computer tech. Sometimes called Network Engineer or network administrator, sometimes computer consultant or IT support provider. I run a Wichita IT company called Proper Technology Solutions. I’m also an educator, teaching network security at a local college, something I’ve come to enjoy immensely.
The last thing I anticipated when re-firing this blog was that my most popular entry driving the majority of the traffic to this site would be a cake I designed for my son’s birthday over three years ago. The web is a fickle thing, and it goes to show you that nothing ever dies on the Internet.
Years ago, inspired by Duff from Ace of Cakes, I started designing cakes for my kids’ birthday parties and other events. It was a great creative outlet and I ended up posting a picture of one of the cakes I was most proud of, the Lego Cake. Shortly thereafter, another cake designer at another blog linked to my creation.
I ended up killing the original blog on this site because I wasn’t using it and it lay dormant for a couple of years. When I restarted the blog earlier this year, I received normal traffic from searches on my name (I’m not the famous Cricketer, by the way). Then I noticed lots of 404 (page not found) messages from browsers asking for my old ‘Lego Cake’ entry. I laughed it off, until a few days later it started being the number one request at my site.
Long story short, I recreated the original blog entry and dated it the same in WordPress so it would match the link on the other blog (which has either become more popular or an odd Lego cake craze has started). The traffic continues to come in, proving that on the web, nothing is ever forgotten.
See the Lego Cake Entry
We just picked up a new customer last week over at Proper Technology Solutions, my Wichita IT Company. A little digging found that they located us thanks to our solid positioning on the web for relevant searches. As an IT consultant and freelance Search Engine Optimization fanatic, it was great to see some results come from the work that goes into solid ranking. I will keep plugging away, trying to rise above some of the older and more established companies in the marketplace. It just goes to show you that a great web presence can help build a customer base.
Proper is growing and things seem to be going the right way, especially in the realm of customer service. One of our first clients has already referred another client to us, just in the short time we’ve been around. We have some great ideas for helping small business make more out of their IT budget, the least of which are the low rates for service, just $70 per hour. We’ve also helped by eliminating the industry-standard two hour minimum service charge, saving our clients significant money already. We’ve moved several companies to freeware or open source alternatives to their paid software without any loss of feature or productivity.
Are you looking for Solid IT Support? Visit our site and give us a call. From network consulting to computer repair and service, we can help.
Proper Technology Solutions, LLC
It’s been a busy week or so and I haven’t been diligent in posting. The IT support business has become a little hectic. I attended an education and technology round table event in Lawrence last week, hosted by the Software and Information Technology Association of Kansas (SITAKS). We discussed what employers expect of graduates in the field. It was an interesting event, to be sure and I think I gained some insights from both sides of the coin.
Business is starting to pick up over at Proper Technology Solutions, my Wichita IT support company. We’re developing an Executive IT Support program that I think will gain some traction with busy professionals, aiming at helping them with their home IT infrastructure. I’ll post more details on that as it develops. I’m also seeing more interest in managed services like online backup and network monitoring.
Starting a business is rough going, but also highly rewarding. The three months I’ve spent so far have been some of the happiest (and most stressful) of my working career. I know that sounds like a disconnect, but the two can go together nicely. It’s a comfort to know that you are doing things the way you envision them and that the rewards of your efforts will be your own. I want to try to be the type of employer that can retain solid talent by offering realistic rewards. By keeping overhead low, I hope to be able to retain my ability to offer low prices to my customers while still rewarding my employees, giving them a larger share of the fruits of their labor.
Proper Technology Solutions, my Wichita-based IT company, is now offering Executive IT support. The goal is to provide business owners and executives with support for their home machines as well as office machines.
As a technical instructor and support technician, I feel I can provide these individuals with a high level of service at a lower price than most consulting firms, while maintaining a standard of excellence in regards to the talent, appearance and reliability of the service provider. Rather than take sensitive equipment to an offsite repair facility, our clients will be able to enjoy having a technician onsite for the cost of the same offsite repair.
If you know anyone who fits the bill and is looking for that ‘go-to’ person to support their home or small business equipment, feel free to have them give me a call at Proper Technology Solutions (316) 337-5628.
It’s been a long week in Wichita. Several Chamber of Commerce events, an event for the Wichita Business Journal and the free Lunch and Learn class at my own office have made for a stressful week. Add to that two nights of teaching at the college and trying to manage some semblance of a home life. Welcome to being an entrepreneur in the 21st century!
My thanks to all those that have been supporting me as strive to build my business, Proper Technology Solutions in Wichita. I still have a long way to go, but the light is starting to shine at the end of the tunnel!
My classes at the college are going well, despite a dead router Wednesday night. Hopefully it will be fixed by next week. The students did a great job of offering troubleshooting suggestions, but it appears that the router just finally gave up the ghost and doesn’t seem to be reading the flash card and won’t offer a console session without spouting Wingdings!
Drop me a line. Are you balancing a large number of responsibilities?
My company, Proper Technology Solutions, is offering a free training event on Thursday, April 21st from Noon-2pm.
This informal class will be covering the basics of Microsoft Office applications to help users get more out of their application investment. (flyer)
As an IT support professional, I have always felt that part of my job was to train my customers to perform some of the tasks that they would otherwise call on me to resolve. By giving them the tools to resolve their own issues, I can help reduce the IT support costs they incur.
If you’re in the Wichita KS area and can stop by for the class, please don’t hesitate to call and reserve a seat as space will be limited (316) 337-5628.
On the home front, it’s Tax Day. My horrific taxes are in at last. I long for the old days of the 1040EZ, just not the days of the income that it required! The final tally of my TurboTax return for Federal and State were close to 100 pages after business, rentals and adoption paperwork were calculated. Anyone running on a platform to reduce the complexity of tax laws will have my vote.