Tuesday, March 27, 2012


Who doesn't love getting gifts? I know I love them. So when I got 2 gifts in one week, I felt like the luckiest person alive. I started running with a running club thanks to one of the nurse's I work with at work. I really admire her, and because I don't have her permission to use her name, I won't. Anyway, she had her first half marathon almost a week ago. Anyway, being an athlete in high school, I really appreciated the support that my fellow soccer players gave me with the decorating of my locker and everything. So, for her first half, I just made her a little locker sign to let her know that she had support, and hopefully to give her some encouragement in case she needed it. I did it because it is because of her that I run with my running club (some who I hope I am becoming friends with).  It is because of her that I fell in love with running.  Anyway, the other day, she gave me something, and I was flattered. She gave me a gift for support her. I wasn't even expecting it.
I don't even know what it is about this magnet, but I love it so! I was trying to win one on facebook by just going to a website, but instead I won one because I am friends with this said person. To me, that is a bigger win! Then, when I came home from work, I had a package waiting for me. It had a Colorado address, so I was intrigued to see who it was from. Inside it where these awesome things...

I have never heard of this ointment before, but let me just tell you, it took the sting right out of my chafing. I am going to use the samples up, and then really look into using this as an antichafe barrier.

I have never had Larabar before, so I was intrigued by these little things. Well, there were 3 when I got them, but I jumped right at the chance to try Cherry Pie. It wasn't screaming Cherry Pie when I ate it, but it was great! I can't wait to try these other bars!

The odd thing about this gift, is during my run, the day before I got this package, is that I was wondering if there were special socks I should look into wearing.. low and behold these were in it...

I think the coolest thing about these socks is that they are speciality made for a right and left foot! No more it doesn't matter what foot you wear it on. I am planning on wearing them on my run today, I will let you know how it goes. (The sock wearing and the run too!)

It also came with this little note...

So, you are probably wondering who sent me this mystery package. As you may or may not remember, I won a chance to run a race with a superstar athlete. Her name is Sarah Stanley, and you can visit her website here.  I entered to win her 12x12 contest, where she is running 12 races with 12 people to help them finish. Of course, I chose my half marathon, I figured all the help I can get to finish it will mean a lot to me.  I know she is busy getting ready for her own personal races, and even an upcoming race for a fellow 12x12er this weekend, that I never expected to get anything. Now that I did, it has helped recharge me for the training, and getting me even more excited about my upcoming half marathon.

And because my blog is not complete without pictures of my wee one...

Happy Tuesday!
 What are you doing to stay inspired? What have you done to help others cross that finish line?

Saturday, March 24, 2012


With the weeks until my half coming down to being able to fit on one hand, I thought it would be better to start trying out things while running. Just like running in skirts, I don't want running while hydrating to wait until race day. So, I ran to Walmart on Friday before my 7 miler to see if they had a hand-held water bottle. They did, so I bought it. While I did not have time to fill it half way and freeze it before the run, I did fill it half full with ice cubes and then water. (I will get to my review here shortly, I promise) Anyway, since I don't take pictures while I run, here is a picture of me before 7 miles...
Anyway, I used the water bottle, and it was surprisingly easy for me to adapt. It wasn't added weight, and while it just took some time for me to figure out a way to comfortably hold it, I was glad I had it. I am glad that I am trying to figure the whole drinking while running thing out, my stomach got queasy a couple times and I am thinking that I drank too much water at one time. I also have to figure out how to ration my water, because even though I know there will be water stops along the race, my training runs do not so while training rationing is a necessity. I also need to figure out how to drink so that my stomach doesn't get queasy. So, back to my run...my water bottle only lasted for the first 3.5 miles, that explains why my first 3.5 miles were much faster than my second half. Needless to say, I have no idea what took me so long to bring water along. Well, actually I do know. I started running in September where it wasn't the dead of heat, and then that took me to winter. I guess now that I have water, I also have 5 weeks to get used to running with it, I also have 5 weeks to learn to hydrate while running so that 1- it lasts for long runs and 2- I don't get that queasy feeling anymore. VERDICT- I am glad that I asked about hydrating to all my running friends. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU! Here is a picture of me after 7 miles...

Why am I not smiling...here...let me show you...

And because I can't end my blog post with ugly pictures of a must needed pedicured feet...


Friday, March 23, 2012

Running In Skirts

I promised a review on my run in a skirt, so here it is. So, I bought this skirt
to run in my half marathon. I bought it at Marshall's because it was on the affordable side, and I figured I wanted to try one out anyway. I don't know anything about the brand...
So I figured why not. Today, the temperature was perfect, so I wanted to give it a whirl. Just like learning to hydrate with running, I don't think race day would have been a good day to try it out.
 So, here are my opinions..
1- The skirt was awesome! My legs kept cool enough, and the skirt looked "cute" even on me
2- The shorts underneath kept working upward, and I was deathly afraid I was going to end up getting chafed because I do not have the privilege of my legs not rubbing together
3-The skirt was a little on the big side, but it was comfortable enough that I didn't have to fuss with it, the shirt, now that was a different story.
4- I liked the fabric and the color, both worked well on a day like today (it was beautiful out, what can I say)
5- It felt very freeing to have legs that weren't overheating (it felt like summer running)
Overall, I think I loved running in a skirt. I really think that I will buy some more, but maybe different styles and brands until I find that one that has shorts that don't ride up. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to share it.

This picture is me ready for 4.5 miles. Clearly I was excited and looking forward to running in a skirt...

This is me after 4.5 miles. Hot, sweaty, kinda glad it is over...

This is the only casuality of the run. Glad that it isn't chafing between my legs...no, its on the inner aspect of my upper right arm from the armband for my ipod.
I stopped at mile 2.25 to stretch and when I saw this I switched it to the other arm. Guess I need to put body glide where that arm band sits.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Stretch it out..

I spent 30 minutes today at the gym focusing on stretching. Yes, 30 minutes. My hamstrings and quadriceps have been really tight, and I knew that I needed to start working them out. Well, I fell in love with some of the equipment I worked with at the gym. For example, I used a foam roller like this one, found at http://www.gaiam.com/product/muscle+therapy+foam+roller.do. I was told by the Exercise Physiologist at the gym that it would hurt, and it does hurt. I was told by some friends that it hurts until you get used to it and then it feels heavenily. I don't know about it feeling heavenily, but maybe if I use them I will get used to it.   The other thing that I used was similiar to this found here, http://www.amazon.com/OPTP-Stretch-Strap-Instructional-Booklet/dp/B000QM625E/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1332369430&sr=8-3.
I knew I was tight, but when the exercise physiologist told me to straighten my leg, and I honestly thought it was, I KNEW I was tight.  I am interested in seeing how that 30 minutes of stretching will affect my running tomorrow.  I am thinking that maybe this week I will get a massage, (since my insurance covers half of it), maybe that will help some more. Also thinking that I need a pedicure because my feet are rough, from being on them all the time because of work and now with running, I should probably baby my feet as much as possible.
I also decided that I am going to start getting up at the same time every day. I used to, but now I didn't and that doesn't really help my exercise cause.  I am going to start tomorrow, get up about an hour before my daughter. That will give me time to do the ab workout I have saved on Netflix, and time for myself. Don't get me wrong, I love being a mom, I couldn't imagine my life right now without being a mom, but between running, work, school, housework, I often neglect me. Yes, I know that running is for me, but my mind doesn't get quiet enough with running, and therefore I get lost in all the "To-Dos" and not enough of the moment. 
I was talking with one of my friends today and I have decided to back off of worrying about running for a certain time. I am going to go back to what I liked originally, running itself. My runs are now going to get longer, but if I don't enjoy it, I won't keep at it. So, I need to go back to just running for the love and not for the time. Yes, I do want to improve my time, but that will come with time. I want to love it again so that I can cherish every moment up to and including my first half marathon, which, by the way is in 39 days! OMG! I better get back to doing school work. Have a great leap day. Hope you have a great day, the weather tomorrow is supposed to be even better.
Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Happy Spring!

Spring has sprung. What did you do today? Me, I ran 4.66 miles. It was supposed to be 4.5 miles, but once I got going, it just ended up being 4.66 miles. And let me just tell you, it was not quite spring out there for the run. It felt more like summer. I also realized I need to find other options for running, and it might just mean I have to drive to a destination (bike path, down by the canal). Running around where I live gets old quick. But, what a beautiful day! I couldn't have asked for anything better. Don't forget, today as the first day of spring you can go to Rita's and get your free Rita's. I myself might just go there and get one. I think I deserve one. Besides, who can say no to Rita's? Doesn't Rita's go hand in hand with springtime/summer? I know that at the end of my half marathon, there are 2 things I asked for. An Auntie Anne's gourmet pretzel in Almond, and a Rita's gelati. Anyway, here are some more pictures from the trip to Pittsburgh.

Happy Spring!

Monday, March 19, 2012


So, back to the grind. Well, except for work, that comes tomorrow, which is better since it is a Tuesday. This weather has been amazing. Can I tell you, how excited I am to be out of winter. Anyway, the problem with having off of work is that it leads to baking. Good if you like to bake (I do) bad if you are trying to lose weight (I am). So, I compromised. I made these cookies. Remember, I made these before for my house warming party. Anyway, since I need to get back to the health kick, I also made myself some protein bars. I got the recipe here and since I didn't have enough PB, I made half a recipe. Hopefully it will turn out well. I am always up to trying new things, and they are healthy and supposedly taste like fudge...I will let you know. Other than that, I ran today 2.76 miles, which is my Wednesday work out, but my friend Steph has asked me to help prepare her for her first 5K so when we have a day off together I work my workouts around her schedule. Speaking of running, my long runs are no shorter than 7 miles. Can you believe that in 6 weeks I will be running my first half. Now, I am trying to figure out hydration, if beans, gus or gels work best for me. I have time, I am just going to try a little at a time now, so nothing new on race day. I have also begun to silence the voices in my head, or well not listen to them anyway. I have a lot to be proud of, that I have lost 54# since May, began running in Sept and 7 months later I am running my first half marathon. I am also flattered that people I work with, friends actually, are asking me to help get them running. Who knows, maybe next year I will be running a full marathon. Anyway, since I know you come here to see pics of my daughter, here is a picture from our trip to Fairview Park today. I really miss these things when I go back to work tomorrow. But, without further ado...
Hope you had a great Monday...hopefully I will be able to blog more frequently. The more I blog the more stress that is lifted. Here's to more blogposts!

Friday, March 9, 2012


If you are reading this, then we have made it to Friday.  We all have our struggles. Sometimes, more things cause us struggles than we would like to admit. I don't easily talk about these things because I have found that running helps me work them out. But, what do you do when running is the thing that you feel like you are struggling with. Why now? Why when I am almost halfway into your 1/2 marathon training am I now starting to doubt myself more than ever. Why did I let it affect my running. I couldn't have complained about the weather on Thursday. The first thing I did when I woke up was turn off our heat and open the windows. Nothing like fresh air to get you moving. Met up with my dad at Louise Moore Park, so he and Makayla could enjoy the weather as I ran. We did it on Tuesday, and it worked out great! Hopefully as the weather continues to warm up, this will happen every Tuesday and Thursday. But, back to my run. I didn't really know how to dress, up to this day, I was use to running in cold weather, so I did what I thought was correct, pants and a t-shirt with my normal tank top underneath. Started off my run as normal and was really enjoying the weather. I didn't really focus on my time, and just did my 1/2 mile loop as a warm-up before I hit the big loop (which I run 3 times on a normal day, and then my 1/2 mile loop to finish it off). Anyway, as I hit the loop it felt good. My quads felt a little tight, but usually they are the first mile (guess I need to stretch more). Anyway, this is where my struggles began. I did the loop, and then started the second loop. At mile 1.75, I started telling myself "who do you think you are fooling, in 4 weeks you have to be able to run 10 miles without stopping" I tried to ignore it, but I couldn't so I stopped running. It was at that moment that I was going to just quit. But I knew I came to far to just let it all go away. I took 30 seconds to compose myself and then I continued on. I finished the second loop and then started the 3. I knew I only had this loop left, but again I started doubting myself. Not about mileage this time, I had told myself to just enjoy the weather and the run and not to worry about my time. I guess I was telling myself that it was too hot, too uncomfortable,too this or too that. So I called it a day. My Garmin told me that I was officially 1.4 miles away from my goal, and I was more mad at myself for letting my mind get the best of me. I know that it is OK to have bad days, and next weekend I will be in Pittsburgh and running there (I will be trying to make up for the 1.4 miles lost, but I don't think it is possible to get that back)I just don't want the bad days to take the joys out of running. The best thing that came out of this is now I get to go shopping for warm weather gear (Target, Ross, TJ Maxx) just to name a few. If anyone has suggestions for affordable warm weather gear, please let me know. So, as I finish writing this, my sweet babes is napping. I am going to allow myself a little break and try to read The Hunger Games and enjoy some of the nice weather. Here's hoping we have an early spring.

Thursday, March 8, 2012


Those that know me, know that I work 3-11. There are many things about it that are worth it, I get the morning with Makayla, I get $0.75 shift differential.  However, things like family dinners, bedtime, snuggle time, Makayla night time stuff that I miss. So, when the job gave me an opportunity to have the day off, without hesitation, I said yes, it gave me the time to enjoy the awesome weather with Makayla, and then she went to day care so that I could go to the gym.  Lately, I have been feeling like I am stuck where I am with my weight loss so I know I need to embrace every chance I can get to move.  I also want to make sure that with the weather being so beautiful, I wanted to make sure that there would still be time to get outside and enjoy it, hopefully as a family. So, I jumped at the opportunity to make dinner and even dessert.  I was feeling like I wanted meatloaf, so when I found this recipe, I was excited to be able to try it out. I also made mixed vegetables, and mashed potatoes. All things, that I can't wait for Makayla to try. And for dessert, I found this recipe for cake mix cookies and let me just tell you, I CANNOT wait to taste them! I will let you know how they turn out...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


So it seems that all my hard work is paying off. Yesterday, on my training run, I ran all 4 miles under 10 minutes. Yes, I know that to some that is really slow, but to me, it seems like a huge milestone. I have only be running since September and I never thought that I would be here. When I started running, my goal was to finish a race, now I want to own the race. I want to actually feel like a runner, not just feel I am pretending to be one.  I know that I will never be able to run sub 7 minute miles, I am not built like that, but to actually be running a race where my pace is in the single digits. So, while my weight loss is stuck at 54# right now, I am trying to kick it up a notch.  So, while this isn't what I ate today, it is a healthy breakfast none the less. I also know that I need to make sure that I am eating enough, so it is just as important that while I am watching what I am eating, that I am eating. For Lent, I gave up being so hard on myself, and cutting myself some slack, but it is still important that I don't let it all go. So, here is my Tuesday morning breakfast.

And because my blog is not complete without pictures of my daughter

Have a great hump day! Try to get outside and enjoy the weather, I hear it is supposed to be beautiful today and tomorrow.  I know we are going to try to enjoy every minute of it.

Saturday, March 3, 2012


My life seems to be on fast forward lately. I don't know about you, but when I was in high school, I thought time went to slowly. In college I thought it went at the right speed. Now, since my daughter came along, I feel like it is in fast forward. Who hit the warp speed button, and how can I get them to depress it? I can't believe that I have been training for my half marathon almost a full month now?! I can't believe that I have less than 2 months until I run it. There is a lot I can't believe, I am just glad that I am healthy enough to enjoy every minute. I just got back from my 5 mile run. Tomorrow was supposed to be my long run day, but I did it today so that I could run with my running friends. I remember when I was training for my 10K and 5 miles was my max I ran, and now this will be the shortest long run until after the half. I am so humbled by the complements I got today. My pace felt great, I just have to now work on pushing myself harder. I need to get all of my miles closer to 10 even, not even want to, I feel like I NEED too. Don't get me wrong, this is definitely a much faster pace than when I first started running, but I am actually starting to feel like a runner, and I don't want to stay in my comfort zone. I want to push myself, and know that I left it all out there.
Now that running is finished for now, I can relax and enjoy the day. I am going to try some new recipes today that I got from my "friend" Courtney. I can't wait, it is fresh fruit salsa and some healthified cookies. Who doesn't like cookies, but no one like me loves them more when they are made healthier!
Tomorrow I am cross training and will be swimming. I CANNOT wait to stretch out in the water. Then, tomorrow evening, I am running/walking with my friend Stef to continue supporting her with her running for a 5k. Running with her humbles me, since I know where she is coming from, and for the sheer fact that she asked me to run with her to get her in shape. Never in my wildest dreams did I expect someone to ask me to help them get into shape.