Thursday, December 9, 2010


I am so super duper excited. Two things that are really important to me, coming together! Running + Ethiopia.

Today, I'm making it official and signing up for the Portland Marathon 2011. Next October, you'll see ME at the starting line.

Most of you know, we recently adopted our sweet little Lucy from Ethiopia. When we traveled to bring her home, our lives were changed forever. Not only in bringing Lucy home to be a part of our family, but we became permanently connected to Ethiopia. We saw the significant need  that kids in this country have. So, I am so excited about an opportunity that is coming up.

When Selene and I started talking about a BIG race, we knew we wanted to do it to benefit something important. We knew that it would give us something bigger than ourselves to work toward. I think we've found the perfect thing! Selene and her husband Derek run a non-profit called Courts for Kids. They build sports courts for communities in need all over the world. Sports courts benefit these communities in HUGE ways, giving a place for kids and community to connect and work together and build community. To give kids a chance to do something positive and stay out of trouble. To give schools a place to teach health and PE. Gives churches, orphanages, and schools a source of revenue to feed the work they are doing in their communities...the list of benefits goes on and on.

SO, our thought was to unite our passions. Hers for Courts for Kids, and mine for Ethiopia. We are working right now on communication to build a court in Ethiopia, hopefully at the orphanage in Gondar, Ethiopia where Lucy spent some time. The ball is rolling. YOU can help by joining our team for the Portland Marathon or Half Marathon in October of 2011. We'll spend Jan-October of 2011 raising money to pay for the court by getting our fans to pledge us for the marathon. I am so excited! I think my goal is to raise $100 per mile of the marathon.  A court costs roughly $12,000 to build on average, so I'd love to see our team be able to raise that cost. Then, sometime in 2012, a team will go to Ethiopia to help build the court.

You can learn more about the community in Gondar, by clicking here and reading my post about our trip there. I am so excited. When Matt and I visited this children's home in May, we were a puddle of tears the whole time we were there. We were overcome by what amazing work they are doing there. They are giving kids HOPE. They are giving kids LOVE. They are equipping kids for a FUTURE. It is truly amazing. I am so excited about the possibility of giving back to this amazing place, that loved and blessed our daughter for a time in her life that she had no one. They took her in, and helped connect her to us. We will never EVER be the same. Will you consider joining me in Portland 2011? The details of the Ethiopia project are in the works, more details to come. We'll be fundraising with all tax deductible donations going directly to Courts for Kids. You'll be responsible to pay your own entry to the Portland Marathon or Half Marathon. There is no set requirement for how much you raise, you can set your own goals. You are not required to go on the trip to Ethiopia, but it will likely be an opportunity you can take advantage of if you want to. We'll be spurring you on with encouragement and ideas for fund raising along the way. We will plan some fun runs together for those who are local in the months leading up to the race. If you have ever considered a marathon or half, NOW is a great time to join us! It is a great cause, and will greatly benefits some kids in need. Go HERE to sign up for Portland!

I can't imagine better motivation for my first marathon.

(ps, we are NOT forming an official team through Portland Marathon, because it costs extra $. We'd rather see ALL of our money go to the court fundraising, and the main benefits of forming an official team is for competitive reasons, and let's face it...we're not going to be "winning" any race awards, our "win" will be helping needy kids!)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

oh, me, oh my!

My friend FB messaged me today..."Portland Marathon?" as the title.

My heart skipped a beat.

Yes.Yes.Yes. My heart wants to GO for it! I've known since our final 12 mile training run before the half marathon, that SOMEDAY I totally wanted to do a marathon, maybe even Portland. Maybe even 2011. In fact, in mile 12 of the Girlfriends Half, we were talking about it matter of factly. Definitely seeing it in our future.

But, right as a think that, my heart sinks to my toes. It's a HUGE commitment. All the "what if's" start popping up. What if my achy hip can't handle it? What if it takes me 6 hours?

But, really and truly. I want to. I weirdly feel like I CAN. I've never felt as much "can do" before, since I've started running. It's a big ol' commitment, and not just for me. For my hubby. Long weekend runs. Weekday training. Discipline.

I really REALLY want to, and Portland seems like the perfect place to start. My own backyard practically. I'm excited about the possiblity it holds. We have daydreamed about raising support for a charity through it. Praying about that opportunity, and who might join in the fun.

I can hardly even.believe. mouth. MARATHON. Oh my.

I'm excited to hit the pavement this week with two of my friends, Wednesday with Jill, and Thursday with Heidi. IT'S TIME. Been over a week. I'm so ready!

Friday, December 3, 2010


That's me. Races are over for the year. I'm not signed up for anything currently. My mid-week running buddy is injured...and my motivation disappeared with the Hot Buttered Rum at last weeks 5K.

I'm scheduled for a 6 miler tomorrow with my long run buddy, and it's her birthday! I'm excited to celebrate with a new trail and 6 miles of conversation.

Gotta get my rear in gear, I haven't run all week!

Monday, November 22, 2010

I got the I wants. bad.

So, the weather around here has turned a bit "wintery". As you saw in my last post, it was a crisp 26 on my last run. Wowza.

I own one pair of tights, and they're alright. They keep me warm. It would super nice to have a second pair, so I don't have to wait up at night for my laundry, like I'm doing right now. Heidi and I are planning to enjoy our first snow as "runners" tomorrow morning, and my pants are in the wash.  My tights are of the Champion Target variety, but they are pretty warm...they said "stay warm" on the tag when I bought them last year (and I wore them, um, twice....yah, didn't really run much). They have a drawstring waist, which rubs on my belly.

I reeeeaaaaly want a pair of Nike Tights. The Nike Tech Capri's are my FAVORITE thing to run in. They stay where they are supposed to, no chaffing, great comfy fit. BUT, they are not so warm on snowy, high of 26 kind of days.

I also am still on the hunt for a perfect jacket. I found a North Face Geosphere, which is really light weight and seems to be pretty water resistant, but it has a lining, which just feels like it sticks to my arms. And, it's not very visible. I bought it cheap, and I'm glad I got it for other uses, but I'm not convinced it's the right running jacket.

I saw this Nike Ripstop Running Jacket at the Nike Employee store awhile ago, but they only had mens' ones when I went and I talked myself out of getting a men's cut. I really liked it, and just saw the women's version on a friend the other day, and it looks SO great! It might be "the one". It has some great reviews on the Nike site by gals in the Pacific NW who in the rain, so I'm digging that. I have a friend who has a jacket that doesn't work for her, but may work for me, so I'm holding out.

I am also coming up on needing some new shoes. I randomly got my current shoes on an amazing clearance and bought them solely based on their cheapness. I think I paid $16.97 at Fred Meyers. Nike Air Citius. I really love them. BUT of course, since they were clearanced, they are no longer made. I'm nervous to change shoes, when these have worked so well for me. I want to stay injury free :) But, I've been reading Born to Run, and am totally intrigued by the concept of letting your body be strong enough to tell you how to run injury free. I'm totally interested in Nike Free's or Saucony Kinvaras.'s a leap. Am I strong enough for this kind of shoe? I'm not sure I am. I tried some Nike free's on, again, at Fred Meyer's, which is NOT the best place for shoe shopping, least of all great running shoes. But, I was kidless, and I could by milk too. They felt GREAT on.

Oh. If only I could go on a shopping spree at my local Nike store. A girl can wish. :) For now, I'll wash my cheapie tights and hope the passersby can see me :)

attention crafty runners!

Here is an amazing giveaway for a Silouette Cutting machine....I want it baaaaad, and my friend Beckie is giving one away! Totally not running related, but you could make some sweet running personalized gifts for you running pals for Christmas if you win one!! Eryn

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Feeling Hard Core...

L-R: Heidi, Me (in my cute Lululemon earwarmer that Selene gave me... her door prize from the RLAM event 2 weeks ago) and Selene...rosy cheeks and all 
This morning was my scheduled long run with my sweet friends, Selene and Heidi.

Selene was my Girlfriends Half training buddy and we did all of our long runs together. Heidi is my new mid week running buddy. The three of us have done long runs together for the past 3 Sundays, gearing up for our "Hot Buttered Run" this next Sunday.

So, we met at 7am for 8 COLD miles. At least, cold for here in the Pacific NW. But, it WAS dry, which is always a bonus in November! When I got out of my car, the thermometer was registering in at 26 degrees. We did our 8 miles on the frosty trail. After about 2 miles we were feeling warmed up (as in, not shivering). We were each in our tights, gloves, earwarmers/beanies and a few layers. I had two long sleeves and a vest on :) Around mile 3.5 I shed my gloves, and at mile 5 I shed one layer of long sleeves. it.was.COLD.

We finished our 8 miles, and when getting back to the cars, Heidi realized, she'd lost her car key somewhere on the path (probably at our halfway point, 4 miles away!) I had to scoot to make it to church by 9:30, so Selene took Heidi to the spot (by car) and thankfully, they found the key, exactly where we thought it likely fell out. When I hopped into the car, it had warmed up a whole 4 degrees, and was now a toasty 30 degrees.

I went home, and after 10 minutes in my toasty car, my bum and love handles were still cold to the touch when I got into the shower! My skin felt all itchy, like when you're hands are really cold, and you THINK it would be a good idea to warm them up under hot water. So itchy it hurts. My stomach turned dark red, almost purple! It was VERY cold.

But, I do have to say, I'd rather run in the twenty something degrees than heat :)

We had a great time, as usual, chatting and making the miles go by running with these girls! I am feeling like today, we were "real" runners. Hard core runners :)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Scatterday Saturday

My brain is scattered today. It's a rainy stay at home Saturday. Laundry up to my eyeballs now it's my kneecaps. I'm making headway.

I went for my 3 miler today and took my 6 year old on his bike. I wondered if he'd be able to keep my pace for 3, yes. He was great for my pace! Although I don't feel like it showed up on my garmin! I was running at a 9:30 pace alot of the time (GREAT time for me), but he was all over the road! On my heels, getting too far ahead, I was afraid he would hit the soccer spectators...blah blah blah. He chatted at me the whole 3 miles, and he packed a "lunch" that he insisted we stop halfway so he could eat. (It was raisins, string cheese and water). So, my average pace was slower on the clock, but I really enjoyed him coming with me, and he was SO proud of himself.

When we got home, my almost 4 year old, was totally bummed that he "didn't get to do something fun with me". So we decided to do a practice fun for the upcoming Candy Cane Run kids 1K. So we ran .6 miles together :) I love that they want to share this with me and "be like mommy" this way. Then we had a little mini race in our driveway so Daddy could watch.

In other randomness, I saw this video today on another blogger's page. It totally fit me this week, looking for excuses to stay in my bed on Thursday. I totally have these thoughts almost every time I get ready to run, and while I'm running. A cool short video.

Mind Games - directed by Casey Neistat from Nike Sportswear on Vimeo.

I should help my hubby get my kiddos ready for bed...I can hear them screaming. What a guy!

Friday, November 19, 2010

I Commit Friday

Oh my. Has it been a week already? It has. I haven't posted at all!  And I'm not real excited about my how my week went, at least in my running and meeting my goals. Otherwise, it was a great week.

So...My goals last week, here's how I did.

M-strengthen and stretch- Check.

T-4.5 miles- Met Heidi, we did 3.5 with some walking due a bum knee (Heidi's not mine)
W-35 min tempo run-check! My first tempo, and it was fun! I liked it.
TH-3 miles+ strength- Boo. It was really rainy, and I totally wimped out.
F-rest-um, check.
S-3 miles- planning on it. On my own. It's been awhile since I ran alone.
Sun-8 miles-have a plan to meet my two running buddies in the ffffrrrreeezing cold (possible snow showers!) at 7am for our 8 miler.

Do my core excercises and again, shoot for the 3 water bottles per day.- Um, totally failed on these two. Dang.

The great news is I AM A WINNER! I've been entering giveaways like crazy, and today, I won over at Keep on Keeping on. I won a $50 giftcertificate to Inspired Endurance! I'm having a hard time picking out what I want to order, but I'm thinking about something related to 13.1 :)

Ok, so THIS weeks I Commits.

It's Thanksgiving week, which is going to be a killer week, and I'll NEED to be burning some extra calories :) So, I really want to meet Heidi tuesday and wednesday. I think she'll be gone thursday, and I'm hosting thanksgiving, so I'm pretty sure I won't be getting away that day. Friday is BLACK FRIDAY, so I'll be getting up earlier than usual to go with my pal Nicole to hit up Target. We have decided to skip Old Navy, where we almost got in a fist fight in line with a drunk lady last year :)

So, I commit to three runs (T,W, and Saturday) and of course the big race on Sunday with my sister in law, Rachel on Sunday! The Hot Buttered Run 5K...It should be really fun. Rachel helped me with some of my training runs for the half marathon and it will be so fun to run together. Our kiddos are running a 1K, too, so that will be fun. And my running buddies are running the 12K! Can't wait to cheer them on :)

I am going to keep it simple and only add the water to my goals for this week. I"m keeping it real, pretty sure there won't be any core work happening this week. :)

What are your goals for the week?

I made a couple of headbands today. I've been seeing athletic stay-put headbands all over running blogs lately, and I thought I'd try my hand at making a few. They turned out good pretty good and they stay put GREAT! I think I'm going to make some glittery Christmas ones for the race Sunday.  I even took pics in my bathroom mirror for you, but I can't get them to load on hubby's laptop.

Ok, this has turned into a rambling, rather boring post. Thanks for reading it! Eryn

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I Commit Friday

My dear friend, Meredith, has been hosting I Commit Friday for the past few weeks.

I jumped in, needing the accountability.

Last week, I committed  to follow my training plan.
I committed to drinking 3 water bottles per day.
I committed to working on my core.

I did pretty good...I got all of my workouts in but yesterday's 3 miler. I drank about 2 water bottles per day (an improvement). I did more core work than the week prior, but still not great.

What are YOU committing too this week?

My goal for this next week is to follow the training plan:
M-strengthen and stretch
T-4.5 miles
W-35 min tempo run
TH-3 miles+ strength
S-3 miles
Sun-8 miles

Do my core excercises and again, shoot for the 3 water bottles per day.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Well, Hello 10.'s a size. A size that I haven't worn since I was 17.

My skinny sister in law, Stephanie, who has literally worked her behind off at "boot camp" shrinking out of her pants. So, she brought them over to my moms house. Just in case they might fit someone there. In need of pants...I said, "well, I'll give it a try" but not getting my hopes up. I tried them on, and guess what...They fit! She said they get bigger as you wear them, so I though maybe they were a fluke pair of 10's that were really more like my actual size, 12. But...when I came out wearing them, she said, "I have another pair of jeans I'll give you, too". They are also 10's. And THEY fit, too! I couldn't believe it. It was nice. Reeeeaaaalllly nice.

Ironically, my rear, and legs, are the part of my body I am the least concerned about. Yet...that is where I lose weight first. Since I started running in June, I've lost about 15 lbs, and around 11 inches from various body parts. (I haven't measured in a while). So, that was fun.

This week, I feel like I'm actually meeting my running mileage goals for the week for the first time in a long time! With my man's crazy school schedule and our families needs, I was finding it near impossible to get out during day light to run in our neighborhood.  A few weeks ago, my friend Heidi and I decided to meet up to do our speedwork at the same track at 5:15am, for safety reasons. There are not many lit tracks in our town, so we decided to pick the most visible one and go at the same time. I realized that I really didn't mind getting up that early. After mulling it over, I decided to ask Heidi, if I could tag along for her other early morning runs in her neighborhood. Our neighborhood is dark and I would not feel safe running it alone in the dark. I think I'm an official AM running convert. Today,  a shorter track workout, I was home around 6am. I had an hour before I had to get the kids moving towards school. I drank my coffee, I did a little Bible study, and got to see  my hubby for a few minutes before he left. I think I'm sold! I felt like I got alot done in that one hour. And, I did't even mind getting up at 4:45. My hubby goes to bed early anyhow, so we're actually getting more on the same schedule, which is really nice to say goodnight and good morning together.

My goals for this week, are to stick to the training plan, exactly.
That would be 19 miles this week logged.
I also want to drink 3 water bottles of water each day.
NO soda. Starting now.

I've been doing a little blog hopping and there are some fun giveaways out there!
There is THIS one over at Mere's blog for a great Endurance Band headband
THIS one over at Running Diva Mom for Chobani yogurt (yum!)
THIS one for a Moving Comfort Sports Bra!
THIS one for a Headsweats Hat!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

keep on keepin on.

I need to.

I'm finding that since the half marathon, and without a deadline looming, my consistency in getting in regular runs is getting lazy. I've only gotten in about 2 runs per week in the last two weeks.

The family fall schedule is feeling a bit out of control, and with the daylight hours's getting trickier to get in my afternoon runs. I have a feeling I'm going to have to resort to early morning runs in order to keep in consistent. While I'm not real crazy about that idea, I DO want to keep at it. I have been feeling a little crazy and cranky. I realized this week, maybe it's because I've accidentally cut back on my running by half as many days per week. I NEED to run more. I've gotten the look from my family of "mommy's about to FREAK out" a few too many times this week.
I really want this shirt from

The truth is, running has changed me. And, ironically, physical change is at the bottom of the list of the benefits for me (but, most definitely a benefit!). When I started out running (for sanity) back in June, I just wanted to We had recently returned home from Ethiopia with our newest addition. We were staying home, giving our family time to adjust. Our social worker called it "cocooning". And, there were just some days, this butterfly needed to GET OUT of the cocoon. Running, gave me a chance to get out of the house, get some fresh air in my lungs, and enjoy some peace and quiet away from my 3 precious angel babies.

When one of my best friends and now my running buddy, Selene, threw out the invite to train with her for Girlfriends, I was intrigued. I had no idea the ways it would change me. Last weekend, we traveled to my brother in law and sister in law's home in Renton, to spend our traditional halloween weekend together. Rachel and got 3 WONDERFUL hours alone, and while we were out, we were chatting about how great it feel to see your body change. Not just for the physical benefits, but how it changes how we see ourselves. I had pretty much accepted the fact that my body was what it was. And, it was not great. I just thought my body type is what it is. But running, has changed that. It's not only changed my body, but it's given me the ability to push myself towards a goal. It's given me the ability to believe in myself and that I'm capable of accomplishing something big and hard. It's given me confidence that I didn't even know was missing, until my husband pointed out to me that I am "just different". That he can see that I feel good about me, in a way that I never have since we've been together, and he thinks it's hot :) I had believed my athletic days were long gone and didn't think I'd ever be again, but NOW I feel more athletic than I did even back in my best "athletic" days.

I don't want to loose that. I don't want to loose the pride my kids have in me and my running. I also don't want to loose the sanity I've gained. I don't want to loose the confidence I've gained, and the belief in myself. I don't want to find the inches I have lost or the pounds I've shed.

This week, I'm committing to getting out there more, drinking more water, and making good choices. No more trick or treats. It's time to get back to it, get after it like I did during my training. To enjoy the accomplishments of completing "the plan".

ps...did you see this fun sleeve giveaway? Check it out over at ww-p java bloggers!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Race Report :) I like saying that.

Where do I begin? It was such a great experience and I truly can't wait to do it again!
Official Results:

L-Me, R- Selene....our shirts say "she runs a mother mile (play on words...another mile, get it?) with arrows pointing at eachother :)
So at 8 am, Selene picked me up. I made us these little shirts that matched. It was kind of cheesy, but I we'd done almost all of our long runs together and we planned to run together during the race. I felt like we were a little mini mom team, and teams need shirts, right? So, I figured out how to DIY screen printed shirts and gave it a go. (Gotta love Target clearance...I got our "victory green" shirts for $2.48 each!)
We headed to the race, where we met up with Heidi, in the loooong porto line. They did this girly warm up with an aerobics type thing...but we were rebellious, and figured that we'd save our calories and energy for the run. We stretched a bit and then lined up with the other 2300 women. The mayor of Vancouver welcomed us and made some strange comment about getting his friend to rub down ladies legs to warm them up. It sounded weird coming from the Mayor. It WAS cold. I heard it was 37 when the race started, but it was crisp and beautiful.

not sure why we look more like power walkers here, but we were happy :)
We were off and running through downtown Vancouver, through the farmers market, trying to find our pace and get away from the jam packed crowd. Finally, we started to warm up once we got into the sun. About Mile 1 we saw our first cheerleaders, Alli and Rosemary...and about mile 2 or so, we saw my family :) I was impressed they got out of the house and to the point they'd see us that early in the race!  We saw several awesome cheerleaders throughout this area, my friend Jill, (who's getting ready for her first half  this weekend!), Curtis and Meleea (Meleea is a new runner too!), Wendy (just ran her second Marathon!), Mere's family...down a bit further, near Marine Park we saw Heidi's hubby and kids, who were rockin' signs and cheering for all the runners. It was awesome!

Nicci and Tamara (taken by my hubby)
Between Marine Park and Wintler Park, was the most beautiful stretch (well, that I noticed!) The fall colors were SO fantastic! At this point, we started seeing the leaders for the race coming back from the out and back, too, so we started looking for friends. Right as Selene said to me, I wonder if we'll see Nicci....Nicci and Tamara blew by yelling in our face, "Girls!"
If she hadn't waved we would have missed her. Then we saw Meredith, all smiles! 
I was SO happy to see her! We saw Amy, rocking it, and made the turnaround.
On our way back, we were looking for sweet Heidi. We knew that she was worried about her knee holding up, so we were hoping hoping hoping that it would and that she was having as much fun as we were. We saw her...all smiles! Yay!

We saw Heidi's family again...and were dad, 3 kids, two locations! Shortly after, we saw Selene's family. That was so fun! Channing, Selene's little 4 year old was fist pumping, saying "Go, Mama,Go!" so sweet and gave us a nice little boost.

We ran back through seeing all the cheerleaders again, which was AWESOME! So nice to see so many friendly uplifting faces! Around Mile 8-9, we saw my mom, and my hubby again with my kiddos, which was fantastic! They were ringing little bells and cheering loud! Again, impressed with my man, getting around! Shortly after, we saw Alli and Rosemary again, with Nicci's brother Brandon added, who were doing the wave for us! It made us giggle and we appreciated the spirit! We saw some other families, and AGAIN Heidi's little family. Colin, Heidi's hubby got the MVP cheerleader award, we saw them 4 times!!
This was another out and back, sort of, and so we saw many of our friends, again! It was so fun to see our girls killing it at the front of the pack! (Nicci, Tamara, and Mere---going for sub-2). After we rounded the Fred Meyer complex I think Mile 9-10, we got a fun little surprise, my friend Lisa was there on the sidelines, cheering for us! I was SO HAPPY to see her, i had to give her a drive by hug. She's been on a long vacation, and I hadn't seen her for a few weeks, SUCH a treat! We looped around, and ran through the Fort Vancouver park, which was really beautiful. Alot of this mile was uphill, but not as bad as we'd been told, we didnt' think. We were expecting this horrendous hill...but it was doable. We knew that at the top of it, we had just one more mile. During that stretch we saw Alli and Rosemary again, and they told us how easy we made it look...we truly were still enjoying ourselves, and I think we may have even been chatting at this point about running a full marathon :). Looking at my watch, I knew we were right at the time Mere should be crossing if she made sub-2 (which I KNEW she would). Getting up that hill, was work, but we knew we were getting close to finishing. Once we hit Officer's Row, we picked up our pace. Our game plan was to keep it at our consistent 10:30 pace (which was nearly hard to hold back!) We bounced around 10-10:15 much of the race. Our uphill pace was around 10:40. Once we hit Officer's Row, we knew we could let all go and run our fannies off. So, we did. 9:50, 9:40, 9:30...our pace kept getting quicker. Selene was telling me," you got this, you got this!" and I was saying back, "WE got this!" It felt good to just haul a** and hold nothing back. The last time I looked at my Garmin, about 12.75 miles, we were hittting 8:40 pace.  My Garmin said my best pace was 7:50. Once we saw the 13th mile marker, just around the corner from the finish, the line of runner's was single file in a tight area. Selene was ahead of me and I was just off her shoulder. We passed several runners, which felt so great (sorry, runners! iknow it's not fun to be the one being passed!). Selene was on FIRE.
Selene, hauling it in to the finish!
Once she saw that last corner, it was like her shoes were on fire...she pulled ahead of me and blasted toward the finish. I was chasing her and going at 110%...I knew I was giving it all I had left to give. My legs were going at max speed...I literally couldn't make them go any faster.
Me, flying towards the finish--I like that neither of my feet are touching the ground in this pic
PUSHING it to the finish.

I felt like Selene got a block ahead of me, but in reality, she crossed the finish line 10 seconds ahead of me, and only one runner was in between us. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw my mom cheering, and Meleea again, and I was glad I'd looked up from the ground. I pushed one foot in front of the other, and felt SO relieved to see those blue mats in front of me! Selene turned around as soon as she crossed, and I came in just behind her....we hugged and cried. We held on tight, and I thanked her for inviting me on this crazy journey.
Finish time 2:14:50--average 10:18 pace

oops, some of these gals are probably annoyed that we were right on the mats, but we were having a moment!

When we let go, Meredith was right there on the sidelines...calling me over for the hug I'd been waiting for! We hugged sweaty and tight, and I asked, "did you do it??" And she said yes...1:56. We told each other how proud we were of each was one of my favorite moments of the day. I found my family, and hugged them, and we went back to watch for Heidi.
The fam at the finish
Heidi, coming across the finish line!
That was another one of my favorite moments...seeing her cross the finish. She was in a great body in front of her, so I had a great view of her coming in! I snapped a photo of her crossing the line, and waited to hug her....She finished with a huge smile and a fantastic time!! She'd run the whole thing, and her knees were doing great! I was teary as I hugged her, telling her how proud I was of her HUGE accomplishment!

It was a fantastic day. We grabbed our bagels and soup...said goodbye to our families and we sat on the curb eating. I cried some more, telling Selene how much us sharing this had meant to me. I told her how much this experience, not just the race, but the training for the race, had TRULY changed me. Changed my life. We hugged again. We ate...we went and got our free massages and chocolate. It was such a fun race to be a part of!
Me, Heidi, and Selene at the massage headquarters- GREAT perk of Girlfriends!
I think I'll have some more thoughts, about the future, about the race experience, and how it changed me...but this post has taken FOREVER to type up, so I'm off to bed :)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Gearing Up

I'm getting so excited for Sunday's half marathon. I can't even believe I'm really saying that. I never EVER imagined that I'd even consider running that far, let along look forward to it.

The past 3 months of training have been so good for me. TRULY, changed me.  I feel good about myself in a way I haven't since my high school athlete days. I weigh now less than what I did before I got pregnant with Hayden (my first babe)...and I know I'm in better shape now than I was then.

When I started running, out of desperation for sanity, back in June, I really just wanted to get up to 3 miles. When my buddy Selene, casually tossed it out there, that she needed  a partner to train with for the Girlfriends mind instantly said yes. My body...I hadn't even worked all the way up to 3 miles yet. So, I committed to get to 3 miles, and run it consistently for a few weeks before starting the half training. And, I did. My first "long" run of 5 miles, seemed HUGE to me.  But, shockingly, it was doable. And it felt so good to know I accomplished something I'd never thougth possible. And that continued as the mileage increased. With each mile, my self esteem also went up. My inches started going down, along with some pounds. My husband started commenting on how I was different. Not just physically, but there was something there that wasn't before. Others started noticing, too.

I just sat tonight, and wrote a little note to my BRB (best running buddy) Selene, and thanked her for inviting me on this journey that has changed me. It's given me something to feel good about in my life. (not that there aren't other things). Something that is just for me. Something that is GOOD for me.

I can't even believe that 13.1 MILES is in my reach. 12 miles was actually FUN. I felt great, I felt accomplished. I can't believe that I already know that I want to do it again. I can't believe that I'm already wondering, "Can I push towards a marathon?" I know I want to. I know that someday, I will. Maybe before 2011 is over.  Selene and I are daydreaming a way to make it worth our while...

I am so thankful for this experience...I had truly begun to believe that I would never be "fit". It just wasn't something I thought I'd ever be. I still have a long ways to go...but I've lost 14.9 lbs and 10 inches from various body parts in the past 3.5 months. I am feeling so thankful that I have been given the chance to believe in myself, and be thankful for the healthy body God gave me. I'm excited to see how my body will respond to staying on this path.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

For the girls...

My amazing friends, Julie and Ashley ran the Portland Marathon this weekend. My other amazing friends and running buddies, Meredith and Heidi and I went to cheer. And cry cheer we did. Ok, we cried. ALOT.

I have never gone to spectate at a marathon before...I had no idea how emotional and moving it would be. We arrived at our first viewing point just minutes before the first runner came through. I think all 3 of us cried when we saw him come flying through. So awesome! To be the first runner in a pack that big for a marathon?? Must feel crazy good. Then, a few runners later, the first woman came through, and I got all teary again. Girl power at it's best!

We went to the FitRight NW store in NW Portland...they had an awesome DJ (who's playlist I'd REALLY love to have for was awesome! I was grooving to it a little too much, and made my sweet baby girl hurl her milk. Not good.) They had some pop up canopies to shelter cheerleaders from the rain, although we didn't mind at all getting all drippy wet to cheer for our favorite runners! FitRight is such a fantastic shop with amazing customer service...I wish I had more opportunities to shop there!

Anyhow, we waited in the rain, and we saw pacers start coming through. 3:00, 3:15, and 3:30...we knew they were getting close! 3:40 came and we had our eyes peeled for Ashley, we knew she'd be the first of our friends to come through. We were searching the crowd for her orange tank, and soon enough, there she was!! She was looking fantastic at 11.5 miles!  Happy smile and a typical Ashley grace as she booked it through. It was a HUGE deal for Ashley to be doing this marathon. Her first didn't go as she'd hoped, and after 25 miles, she didn't get to cross the finish. THIS marathon, we knew she was going to prove herself a marathoner!! We all cried after she was out of sight.

We waited for just a few minutes, and Julie was right behind. Julie had an injured leg, and didn't even know if she'd get to the start line in Portland. When earlier in the week, she sent a quick note on facebook telling us about her new pain that she couldn't run on, we all felt a punch to the gut, only imagining what she must be feeling. 4 months of not run, just days before the big race? But...Julie is the toughest runner I know. She is fun, lovely, and stubborn and sassy. She showed up on Sunday, ready to give it all she had. And she did. When we saw her at that 11.5 mile mark, she was ROCKING!! We knew what pace group she hoped to be in, but weren't sure if she'd be able to keep it up on her bad leg....but she DID!! We saw her coming, and we were all cheering out of our minds. (I'm sure the spectators around us appreciated us screaming in thier ears!)...But, our Julie was rocking it!! We didn't care.  Julie and Ashley are BFF' much in common yet so different. I laughed between tears at the way Ashley graciously went by, telling us we were making her cry, and Julie, who whooped it up, blowing us kisses and giving that glowing Julie smile! We all cried, because even at that point in the race our strong, dedicated friends, had already had victories. They were RUNNING!

There were a few more gals who we were hunting for, Wendy and Janae, and of course, SBS from Run Like A Mother. That felt a little like our tribe mama going by, and it was a proud moment! All of those gals were doing so great too. We cheered for lots of people we didn't know, soggy runners pushing through the puddles for victory. SO much fun!

We dashed into FitRight, picked up some odds and ends, and then we booked it downtown towards the finish line. We got such an amazing little spot, on the final bend of the race. Literally, around the corner, maybe 200 yards from the finish line. It was so much fun to see runners faces as they saw the finish line in their sights. We saw the pacers again, and we looked for our friends. While we waited we saw some amazing finishers...One guy who raced himself in a handpropelled race wheelchair, and another girl doing the same. The were cooking! It was so inspiring. A husband and wife, each pushing a jogger.  An adorable couple, wearing wedding outfits and signs on their backs that said "Just Married". A dad pushing a middle school age looking special needs son in a jogger...all so inspiring and brought us to tears. (We were a blubbering mess of spectators!)

We stood on our tiptoes, leaning out as far as we could, trying to get a glimpse of Ashley. Straining to see that orange shirt. Finally, we saw her. Of course, we cried. She had already won it, to us. She had MADE IT to the finish. This was a huge freaking deal!! And, her pace was AMAZING! We saw her, and made ourselves look like idiots cheering for her!  She grinned and glowed. She knew she had done it too. She not only finished, but Boston Qualified!!! Take THAT 25 mile marathon. Of course, we cried again.

Then we saw Sarah, SBS, and she was hauling! She too, had the glow of woman with victory in her sights. It was so incredible! Sarah also BQ'd....GO RLAM Mama!!

We knew Julie wanted be close behind. We waited and worried when we didn't see her. After 10 minutes, our hearts began to ache.  After 20 minutes we prayed that she was still running and not in the medic tent. We prayed and cried, hoping her leg would carry her to the finish. Finally, we got a phone call from a fellow spectator that said she was on her way to us!! We were freaking out. SHE DID IT!! She was finishing the race! The race she didn't even know if she could start. We leaned out, searching for the blue shirt. We yelled her we were screaming. I could see her turning, looking around for who was calling her. Finally, she saw us. We knew, that she knew, that we knew, what a big freaking deal this was. She made it. Not the finish she'd trained her fanny off for, but it was a FINISH!! And a great one at that. She looked emotional...and of course, that one really got us blubbering. We were all SO PROUD and amazed, and inspired, that she was so stinking tough and finished strong, smile intact.

These ladies and all the runners, helped me find my motivation again. I can't imagine a better way to spend 3 hours in the pouring down rain.

Of course, On the way home, the rain stopped, the sun came out and it was a beautiful afternoon. I met up with my best running buddy, Selene for our final long run before our half marathon this Sunday. I think it was one of my favorites. Knowing we were ready. Feeling strong and good. Feeling so inspired by my friends who ran 26.2 freaking miles.  It was a really, really great day!

My sweet boys keep asking me, how many more days to the "big race". I love that they are excited with me!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Cool Lululemon giveaway on shut up and run!

Check out this awesome Lululemon giveaway on Shut Up and Run's Blog!

I'm off to cheer on my amazing friends at Portland Marathon tomorrow and run my last long run before the half! 12 miles, baby!!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Where did my motivation go??

Somehow, the rush of new fall activities, my running mojo has gone a little soft. I am still loving my runs, but finding it much harder to get in all of my training runs each week, when NOW is when it really counts. I just am not feeling the dying need to get out there and pound the pavement. My right knee (which has been my whiney knee for a few years, even pre-running) that has been contributing to my lack luster motivation.

I'm about to sign up for two fun holiday runs, the Hot Buttered Run, and the Jingle Bell run. Hoping the fun wrapped up in those will help keep me moving into the rainy weeks ahead.

On a happy note, I 'm gearing up to go see two of my fabulous inspiring girlfriends, Julie and Ashley, run the Portland Marathon on Sunday. AND I get to cheer with another one of my most favorite people, Meredith...also a knock out runner. She and I will both be running the Girlfriend's Half in Vancouver next weekend (If you see her there, wait about 1/2 an hour or so, and then you'll see me huffing and puffing my way into the finish). I really can't believe it's just a week away!! Holy moly.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

The run that wasn't.

I went out of town with my mom for a few days, to the little ol' town of Moses Lake. I'd planned to do a 5 miler while there on Friday...As I drove around town that morning, I even looked around for a great spot to run. There was a beautiful path next to the Lake that looked perfect.

I spent the morning packing up some of my Aunt's apartment, and somewhere in the tape and cardboard, I lost my enthusiasm for my run. I was trying to think up excuses...I would be more productive to stay and keep working...I forgot my socks, I ate too many milkduds. I finally dug out some of my aunts cotton socks, and decided to shut up and go run. I took my pile of workout clothes to the bathroom, and realized I'd left my one and only sports bra, my beloved Fiona, in the washing machine, at home, in Vancouver. Let's just say, my "girls" don't run without Fiona. Excuses run.

Up next? Tomorrow, 9 miles with my best running buddy :) Bring it!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Brain vs. Body

So, today is my "scheduled" run day. I usually don't run on Sundays, but obviously I did yesterday (race day).  I wasn't sure if it was a good idea to run today, but I did. I felt great all day, even though I pushed it yesterday in the race. I am still riding the wave of feeling good about my finish time, and feeling a little run happy.

So, I ran 4 miles. Now that I've seen my times down well under 10 min/mi, I really want it to stay there. I KNOW that I can't keep that pace for long distances (at least for now), and that I shouldn't push my pace like that for every run. But, BUT, it's so stinking hard to reel myself in! I knew I should just be running an easy run today, but dang if I didn't hate seeing my pace pop over 10 minutes. Even though it was just a few short weeks ago that EVERY run was above 10. I was thrilled to finally see my times GET under 10:30! Now, I really want to see them under 10 every run. Dang...this is so addicting, and bringing back my inner 16 year old competitive self. Wanting to "win". Against who, you might ask? Just me. Just myself. I want to beat myself. Bad.

So, I tried to be good. My legs felt pretty good, but my right knee was reminding me today to take it a little easy on her.

Wednesday, I'm back to 5 milers for Wed/Fri and a longer 9 miler on Sunday. What do you do to recover from a race? Does a 5K count? I have no idea. I'm a total rookie. A run happy rookie.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

My first Race!

just before I started the 5K race
Today, I raced. Since I first participated in the Race for the Cure in 2007, I have had the goal to run the next one that came around. For the past 2 years, I've wanted to race in the 5K run, and not done it. Even though I'm in week 8 of my half marathon training, and completed a 10 mile run on Friday, this race was a huge goal met for me, even though the mileage wasn't as high as what I've been running in my weekly training runs. But this 3 miles was a big deal for me.

The crowd waiting to start the 5K walk
After a night of POURING down Pacific NW weather, this morning was perfect for a run! Dry, even a few peaks of sun. THOUSANDS of people racing to celebrate, remember, and support one cause.

Portland's Race for the Cure (breast cancer research fundraiser) is the 3rd largest in the world, and the largest per capita Race for the Cure...I heard there were over 30,000 in attendance! just crazy.

my new garmin! (yay!)
I ran the chip timed 5K, which was my first "official" race ever. Outloud I said I wanted to finish in under 30 minutes. In my head, I fantasized about finishing in 27 minutes, which would be 9 minute miles (never run that). I finished at 27:39! I was very happy with that average of 9:10 per mile.

My splits were:
1-8:56 (YAHOO! Loved seeing my time start with an 8!)
(plus....the little bonus .02 miles, 6.something seconds)

One of my weaknesses that I'm trying to reign in is starting out too fast. I told myself I wanted to pace myself between 9:25 and 9:45...and of course out of the chute, I was pacing around 8:40). The energy of the crowd was so enthusiastic...I just couldn't hold myself back! I did slow down, knowing I couldn't keep an 8something pace for the whole race.My typical pattern followed, first mile fastest, gradually slowing with each mile.  I settled in in mile one behind a lady in a survivor shirt who was keeping a steady pace that I felt good about. So, I chased her for most of the race. I was greeted by my mom at the finish, telling me how proud she was of me, which was the perfect finish! Thanks, mom!
Mom and I

My eyes were brimming with tears off and on, as I read the names, and saw the photos on the backs of racers. When I finished, I stood to the side watching for some friends to finish, and cried some more as I watched Survivors come through the pink survivor lane finish. Women who looked way to young to be wearing those pink bibs and survivor tshirts. Mom's my age, walking with thier kiddos, my kiddos ages, sporting bald heads proudly. I just cried watching the looks of joy, pride, and fight as they crossed the line in victory. I watched women cross the line holding hands, celebrating life, and remembering loved ones lost.
survivors lane (runner unknown)
friends celebrating together as they cross finish (unknown runners)

I raced to honor my sweet friend Christy's mom, Carol King, who lost her battle to breast cancer several years ago. I also raced to celebrate my mom, Denise, and our dear friend Jackie, who fought and won battles with cancer, even thought it wasn't breast cancer. I ran to honor  a few gals from church, Rosemary and Carol, who've fought and won the battle with Breast Cancer. It was an emotional day.

I didn't think my hubby and kids would make it, since we were expecting dumping buckets of rain, but my hubby surprised me by bringing all 3 kids and met us at the finish. Nothing like your kids telling you "good job, mommy!" to make your day :)
Mom, Me and Jackie

On a fun side note, I scored a used Garmin yesterday on craigslist! I am feeling really blessed by my sweet husband and his support of my running. I found this Garmin, in excellent condition, for $75! I was feeling a little guilty for even wanting it, I rarely spend that kind of money on anything for myself. I am a clearance, sale, thrift store, craigslist shopper. Even though $75 was a great deal, it's still just a chunk of change to splurge on myself. But the night before, my hubby was giving me some sweet supportive compliments about running and the good he sees in me from it. After that, I felt like it was worth the investment. Thanks, Honey, for supporting me and loving me. You are the best!

Friday, September 17, 2010


Long run today with Selene...
Week 8 of training...
It was a hard week for me, running wise.

My sucktastic run on Tuesday, followed by no more runs before today (just two strength/cardio sessions)= a tough run today. I'm not sure it it's because I didn't get much "mileage" in this week , or if it's just a hard week. I think I am going to start my period tomorrow...maybe that plays into my tiredness. (it certainly explains why I've cried so much this week!) Selene is much more disciplined than me, but it felt hard to her too, hopefully I wasn't just dragging her down!

I love having her to run makes the time go so much faster, and we get to catch up on life. She's a more experienced runner, so she gives me little tips as we go (like focusing on keeping my arms moving when going up a hill instead of keeping my heavy feet going) and telling me when to hit my split button as we hit the mile markers, and reminding me when to take my shot blox. She is the best. Today, mile 7 & 8 were hardest for me...but Selene does great her last two miles, so, after she reminded me to take my blox, the last two miles seemed better and she was going strong to the finish, it kept me going too.

I added strength training to my off days this week, with a Turbo Jam dvd. It actually really helped loosen up my stiffness, and I felt great knowing I was doing something to help improve my running and start toning more than my legs. My whole life,  I have lean legs and a flat bum (as in no shape). So of course running toned up my legs quickly, but my midsection and arms are the areas I'd really like to see some improvement. And, they have lost a little bit of inches, but I have a long way to go before I hit "toned". :)

I'm looking forward to resting tomorrow, maybe a little yoga, and my first timed race Sunday (Race for the Cure 5K!)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Today's workout: I have not really been doing much in the cross training/strength training area, but my good friend Beth kept telling me how much she liked working out to Turbo Jam for strength training on her non-running days. How much it helped her runs. So I bought it off ebay and today, I broke it out, knowing I wouldn't get another run in before my 10 miles on friday (one day early so I can do it with Selene).

I have to say, i loved it! I was sweating like a crazy's kind of weird, I didn't use to sweat much when I ran, but as my miles have crept up, I have been more of a sweater. Today, I literally had sweat dripping down my face into my felt really good.  It felt great to work some other muscles in my body, and made me excited to see what changes will happen with it. I'd really like to see some more inches come off, I seem to be at a standstill in my weight and inches melting away right now.

Last night, as we layed in bed, my sweet hubby told me something I don't think I'll soon forget. He said there's obviously been physical benfits to my running, pounds and inches, but that he really sees something different in me. In how I feel about myself, how I carry myself. That he can't stop thinking about it. I smiled. It means more coming from him than anyone else. He sees all of me. Physically, emotionally, spiritually. He sees the good, bad, and ugly. I was so glad that he could see it too, because I feel like I've found part of myself. I feel like running has given me a gift...something I can feel really good about. Something I can accomplish. A challenge I can work hard towards and see a concrete result. (not like working hard all day at home, and then still having kids who have bad manners, messy rooms, and dirty laundry). It has brought some balance to my heart and mind. It was so good for my soul to hear it from him. Babe, you keep my fire burning with those sweet compliments! I love you.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


That was today's run.

I had a full day yesterday, with a photo shoot in the evening. My hubby got home just in time to do the kidlet hand off. There was no daylight left when I got home, so no run for me.

So, I planned to do a good run to day, and a short run tomorrow, rest thursday, and long run friday (10 miles). For some reason, my legs just didn't seem to have the get -up- and- go they did last week.

After our 9 miler on Saturday I felt good. The run felt just right, it didn't seem overly difficult, it was nice and smooth, we kept a good pace the whole time, and even at the end I didn't feel totally wasted and ready to stop. I could've kept going, I think. I stretched, I hydrated, I drank chocolate milk (love that tip! good excuse to drink the good ol lowfat choc milk). I even felt fine the rest of the day Saturday. Sunday I was a little sore, more than I have been on any run for a long time. Monday, still sore, so I was ok with not getting to run that day. I felt my legs could use another rest day.

But today, while the soreness has faded, my legs felt like concrete. I felt great my first mile...I decided to run a different way to my usual route. Turns out, school had just released and there were teenagers all over the sidewalks and road where I needed to be. SO, I ran fast, unintentionally, but I was just trying to get by the crowded neighborhood. At one point I checked my pace and it was 8:40...which I knew I couldn't keep up with. So, I slowed it down and my pace for that first mile was 9:20. I was excited to see that, but knew I'd probably pay the price in mile 3/4, especially since I was feeling concretish anyhow. Mile 2 was when I started feeling super slow. Heavy. I actually walked for a minute or two...which felt horrible to me. I haven't done that in months! I felt lousy. I wanted to go the short route home, giving me a mere 3 miles today. At my midway point (where there happened to be a potty stop) I really had to go. #2...which was just weird. Who wants to stop for that on such a short run? Lame. Got going, and decided even if I had to slow down and even walk a bit, I would finish my planned 4miles. I chose a route I knew I had to finish the whole mile, because there is no way out of the trail til the end. I was glad I did, the trail dipped down into a wooded area, where it was much cooler and fresh....quiet and beautiful. Once I got past 3, I was feeling better and finished feeling alright.  20 more seconds of walking after a hill...I just felt like CRAP. The last mile, I kept trying to focus on being tough, in my head. I'd been beating myself up for mile 2/3. Feeling like a failure. But, I told myself to buck up  and finish slow if I had to, but FINISH. So, I did at least do my 4, so at least  there's that. I haven't had such a lousy feeling run in quite a while. What the heck? was it because I pushed myself towards a little bit faster pace last week, followed by a 9 miler? Was it just too much for my legs? I don't know. I'm a little worried about 10 miles...just because I just don't have time to get the mileage this week I'd hoped for. But, I am adding more cross/strength training this week, so hopefully that will help. I felt so wiped today, that I cracked open my VitaCoco coconut water I picked up for my friday long run. I've never tried it, but really, about 5 minutes after drinking a 1/2 cup, I felt a lot better! I drank another 1/2 cup and felt even more refreshed. I'm sold. I think it really helped replenish me...but now I need another for Friday!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Maybe it's the new pants...

Maybe it's my fantastic new Nike running capri's. Maybe it's because I amped up my playlist to include some faster tempo songs. Whatever the reason, today's run was fantastic! I pushed myself harder than usual. My times:
Mile 1-9:56 (with a big ol' hill which I usually avoid at all costs... I actually shouted YES! when I looked at my watch at the one mile some weird looks from passing bikers. It was the first mile UNDER 10 min for me!)
Mile 2-9:31 HELLO my best time EVER!!
Mile 3-10:02
Mile 4-9:46
Mile 5- 10:11 (another smaller hill, but I was feeling the burn, big time!)
Felt great to see 3 of my miles under the 10 minute mark!

I am starting to feel motivated by lots of things, and finding running inspiration all around me. As I sit here, still sweating from my run, I'm going to reflect, so excuse me for a moment...Oh wait. First my times per mile

My inspiration...
  • finally seeing some improvement on my time per mile and endurance to keep a pace for longer time.
  • friends...seriously, I have amazing, encouraging, friends. Friends who are running 5Ks, Marathons, and 1/2 Marathons, Hood to Coast...the list goes on. They are beautiful strong inspiring women. Friends who are fighting back from injuries to hit the pavement again, despite their physical pain. Friends who are running miles and miles for those who can't. 
  • when I hear a good song, I think "That would help me run faster...what is this song?" (like," I Gotta Feeling" by Black Eyed Peas, for example). I dug through my itunes and amped up the ol' tired playlist. For 5 miles, I needed a few more pumped up songs to get me through.
  • My kiddos. The other day, they were running around my folks front yard, yelling "We are running, like Mommy and Auntie Rachel!" Nearly brought a tear to my eye. A few short months ago, they could've said the same thing about sitting on the couch or in front of the computer. One of my BIG motivators is them, I want us to be an active, healthy family. I want to be around a long time to enjoy it together. Blood Pressure runs high in my family...and I want to keep that at bay.
  • Run Like a Mother, blog, book, and other running blogs. It's feeding me a nice Mommy Girl Power Vibe, that really is inspiring me and helping me believe that my body CAN reach my goal. 
  • Figuring out how to time my splits, I love seeing how I'm doing each mile. 
  • Togetherness. I am a big fan of community. Relationships. I really love the new bond with some old friends (and new) brought about by running.  It's so inspiring to see friends reach hard goals.
  • Aloneness. Not gonna lie, here. After the day I had with my kiddos yesterday, I wanted a one way ticket to anywhere. Running really lets me "burn the stink off" as my grandma used to say.  It's much better for all of us, if my "stink" is left on the pavement, and not in my living room, if you know what I'm saying. It's really amazing to me, how much stress and tension is relieved after a run. 
  • A little retail therapy. ( I LOVE me some retail therapy, but it's usually spent at the clearance racks of Target, Kohl's or the Goodwill. I'm cheap.) I splurged this week on a new pair of running capri's at the Nike Employee store (friend hookup) and a hydration/fuel belt. After reaching the 8 mile mark, I felt like I had shown myself that I was committed and capable, and worth spending a few bucks on. 
OK, I'm off to celebrate my boys 6th birthday at The Bird (Red Robin). Good thing I got in those 5 miles! 

Monday, September 6, 2010

10 minute mile.

It's something I've wanted to see on my stopwatch since I started running, almost 3 months ago. When I ran my first 3 consecutive miles, I was at about 11:30-11:40 per mile. Today, I averaged 10:21 over 5 miles, with my personal record for a mile at 10:00! I finally am seeing some seconds shave off my time. Feels SO good. I really REALLY would like to get down under 10, if I'm shooting for the stars I'd like to get to a 9 minute mile someday.

Today I used my own watch and tried to keep track of my splits (which I just recently figured out what that even meant!) against my nike+ sensor. My mileage seems to be accurate on the Nike sensor, but the time seems a tad slow compared to my Timex Ironman watch. I finally figured out how to work the split timer and how to view it...which if kind of fun. My nike sensor only tells me my average, not the time for each mile, so I liked being able to see which miles I ran at what pace. My first mile was the fastest, but the rest were pretty consistent between 10:10 and 10:20 per mile. Still, my best run yet, I think.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Here I go.

Pretty much as soon as we landed home from Ethiopia, and our jet lagged wore off, the reality of parenting 3 kiddos under 6 hit me square in the face. With two, we were man to man defense. Now...we had to go to a zone defense. I. was. tired. We love each one of our little loves to pieces, but mama quickly realized, she need The work and stress of adoption and all it's leftover emotions, well, I just needed to run.

My story goes a little like this. I used to be an athlete. I played volleyball and basketball in middle school and high school, with passion. I loved loved loved it. Then, I changed schools and was too chicken to try out in a "big" school. Never played again. At one point in my freshman year, I ran the dreaded "mile" in PE in just over 6min 30 sec. I was competitive then, and badly wanted to be the first girl to finish the timed mile. I think I may have come in second once or twice. I never, EVER ran more than one mile.

Fast forward to my post baby years. After our first child was born, I of course wanted to loose my baby poundage. I walked alot, ate healthy-ish, and got back to my pre baby weight fairly quickly (but still not where I wanted to be).  Fast forward two more years and another baby, and I really wanted to get in shape. I started couch to 5K, and it lasted about one run. Hated it. Felt fat and heavy and bummed out that I couldn't even run for 2 minutes without feeling like I would puke or pass out. A year later, I tried again, and loved it. I made it up to two miles and injured my foot. My doctor told me to stop running for awhile. And, I did. For two and half years.

When  we came home in June with our third kiddo, Lucy, who's adopted from Ethiopia, I realized that for my sanity and fitness, I HAD to get some excercise. We were fairly tied to home at that point, bonding with our little one, but my hubby also happened to be home from school for the summer. So, started couch to 5K again. It was easier than I remembered, and I really wanted to run. So, I did. I jumped ahead a few weeks on the training schedule, and started running longer. I worked my way up to 3 miles in about a month, running every other day. Around that time, one of my sweet dear friends, put it out there that she needed a new running partner for training for a half marathon. The timing was right, I had time to follow the training schedule and loved the idea of getting to spend weekly time with one of my favorite friends. So, here I am. I have worked my way up to 8.3 miles and am loving almost every minute of it. I am feeling so good. It feels fantastic to say, "I ran 6 miles today!". My body is changing slowly, but I'm feeling like I'm in better shape than I have ever been in my adult life. I never EVER dreamed that I would WANT to run a half marathon. Running has been a great way for me to get some much needed alone time, with no small children touching me or saying "mom, mom, mom" for the 10,999th time that day. I am finding more patience, more energy, and more thankfulness in my life. I am thankful that I am ABLE to run, when so many are not.

I have no idea how this half marathon will go, but I have a feeling I will be hooked. I am already scouring the web, trying to find what my next race will be.

This will be my space for keeping track of my runs, my progress, my goals, my thoughts. It feels weird to say, but running is really just about me. Something I do to take care of me. I haven't honestly taken good care of my body for years, and it's beginning to feel pretty good.