Run Find Your Happy Pace

finding my happy pace in running and life

Happy Holidays! Enjoy this Guest Post from Breath Deeply and Smile!

on December 30, 2012
My name is Lauren, and I am the owner of the blog Breathe Deeply and Smile at  Breathe Deeply and Smile is a blog about learning to balance healthy living with enjoying life in a stress-free way.  I’m a runner and health nut who is also a Sweat Pink Ambassador and is also involved in various healthy living blogger online communities including currently the Elf 4 Health  holiday challenge and Tina’s Best Body Bootcamp. The main purpose of my blog is to help me find balance in my life. I have a lot of self-doubt and anxiety and always try to take on too many things. I’m trying to always live a more clean and healthy life, while also learning to not sweat the small stuff and enjoy treats in moderation. Remember to breathe and smile because today is a beautiful day!
firsthalfRocky 2012
My biggest fitness accomplishment of 2012 is when I ran my first half marathon this past September at the Philly Rock and Roll Half Marathon. It was my “aha” moment of running.  I have the common story of being an athlete in high school and never worrying about my weight/health but then gained the freshman fifteen due to lack of exercise, poor food choices, and alcohol.  Summer of 2011 I decided to get on a treadmill to get back in shape.  That afternoon I could barely finish a mile which stunned me. I signed up for a local 5K in October to keep myself motivated. After that first race, I fell in love with running.  However even though I got involved with it as a hobby with my fancy sneakers, GU gels, training plans, and compression socks I never thought of myself as a runner because I wasn’t good enough or winning races. It was just for fun, stress relief, and exercise for me. 
For the half marathon my only goal was to finish in under 2 hours. I made a shirt that said “I’m the fast girl your mother warned you about” (my new unofficial slogan now) and was so excited when the weather was great. I was so nervous and around mile 8 my legs started to feel it but I pushed it out and felt on top of the world when I crossed the finish line in front of the Philadelphia Art Museum in 1:48:24! I was so elated afterwards and downed about 3 water bottles and some snacks when I finally met up with my boyfriend. He was so excited I met my sub-2 goal (not that he doubted me!). He was hugging me and telling me how proud he was of me when I started crying instantly.  This fit of sobbing just came on out of nowhere. I don’t know what triggered it but can assume it was an emotional release of happiness, stress, and pride.  At this moment it hit me how important running was in my life, and that I was indeed, a runner.  I wasn’t the fastest runner, but I was emotionally invested and dedicated. I enjoyed the struggles and the runner’s highs. What standards or qualifications had I been holding myself to that would deem me truly a runner?
Now after spending months reading health blogs, I’ve decided that I could start my own and see how it goes. If other people’s blogs inspire me, maybe I could pass it on to someone else! I dabble in all sorts of exercise along with running including lifting at the gym, spin classes, yoga, and even tried zumba a couple times (hate it!).  I have a HUGE sweet tooth and always enjoy some pizza, beer, and cupcakes in moderation but try to eat pretty healthy.Since it’s the end of the year, and everybody is reflecting on time passed, I’ll share with you my goals for 2013.
2013 Goals
1. My number one goal for 2013 is to run a full marathon in the fall. This terrifies me, but it’s something I want to do.
2. I joined this group on Facebook called “13 in 2013″ and have vowed to run 13 races in 2013.
3. Push myself and see how strong I can become.  I sometimes get stuck in my comfort zones because it is, well, comfortable.  I want to push myself and see how much stronger I can become in my running and with my body in general.
4. Let go of fear. This is probably the biggest goal in my life in general.  It’ll probably take more than a year, but I want to keep working on living my life without fear of failure and on quieting that voice inside me telling me “I can’t do it”. I can and will make 2013 even better.
Twitter: @LSerks, @BreatheBlog
Instagram: @LSerks1

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