Run Find Your Happy Pace

finding my happy pace in running and life

2012 What a Year It’s Been, Looking Forward to 2013

Wow 2012 has been HUGE for myself and RunFHYP.  What started off as kind of whim and self motivation for myself has really become an important part of my fitness journey.  Here are a few highlights for RunFYHP in 2012 along with some thanks and shoutouts.

I am thankful:

  • That God has given me the ability to run and the motivation to go
  • for Cupcakes  FYI: still looking for a great cupcake sponsor 🙂
  • That so many peeps have joined me in finding our happy pace in running and life
  • For a supportive (and faster) husband than me.  He gives me support to keep going and motivation to get there faster 😉
  • For my running friends both old and new.
  • To be a part of the FitApproach family as Sweat Pink Ambassador
  • To be part of the Girls Gone Sporty  family as a GGS Ambassador
  • To be a proud member of Moms Run This Town
  • To have discovered how great Jillian Michaels really is…better late than never 😉   She has really motivated me.
  • To have found a happy balance between eating food for fun and fuel.

Shout out to all my favorite Buddies I have met/collaborated with in 2012 please drop by and tell the RunFYHP set you!

My bucket List Accomplishments Completed 2012:

  • Run another Half Marathon – check….ok 5 more 🙂
  • Do a Destination Race…check …did 2  Disney Princess, and Diva Half Marathons.  Which were also my first two weekend away without kids in 12 years!
  • Participate in a 4 person relay ..check. Go “Freedom Mommas”  Freedom Half Marathon Relay
  • Increase my “happy pace” and get faster…check. Hard work and hills are paying off
  • Motivate myself and run alone….check.  Although running with friends will always be great its nice to depend on myself.
  • Make Fitness a Lifestyle…check.  Fitness has become part of who I am, not a chore.

And Lastly a REALLY BIG THANK YOU to everyone who generously allowed me to share their pages and products thru giveaways in 2012.  

Thanks for believing in Run Find your Happy pace!!

PLEASE visit them and let them know RunFYHP sent you!!!

Runner Decals – mini peace runner girls
Road ID – free id bracelet
Gone for a Run – gift card to their website
Lucky Number Tutu – Wonder Woman Tank
Handana – the awesome Handana
Running Happy – Non-slip Happy Band Headbands
Gypsy Runner – pink glitter arm sleeves
My Happy Pace Gear – t-shirt of the winners choice
Bell Plantation PB2 – a sample box of PB2 & more!
Active Bands – headbands
York Sign Shop  – Find Your Happy Pace Bling Holder

Run the Race LLC – t-shirt


A Very Special Surf N Santa 10 miler for Me

A few weekends ago I ran the Surf n Santa 10 miler in Virginia Beach.  This is the second year I have done this race.  Always a good time people dress up in holiday themed costumes and enjoy running on and around the boardwalk at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.   This race is run by J&A Racing who in my opinion is top-notch when it comes to organization and SWAG!  Pre-race we received Santa Hats, jingle bells a sweet long sleeve tech half zip shirt.  The after party included Bling, post race snacks, Sam Adams beer, chicken tortilla soup along with music and a santa, of course.  J&A likes to do a surprise finishers item too.  This year it was a pint glass.  Told you J&A rocks 😉

J&A produces quite a few races in Virginia Beach and if you are ever in these parts I would HIGHLY suggest doing one.  Check them out on Facebook here J&A Racing.

Weather: The day started out foggy with a 30% chance of rain. However the morning ended having great racing conditions, not too hot and definitely not to cold!  And as a bounus….no rain 🙂

How did I do?  As far as my finishing time goes I could not be more pleased.  After forgetting my Garmin by mistake (oopsie) I ran the race by “feel”  and ended up beating last years time by  7 minutes and 40 seconds!!  Considering I thought I might be running a little too slow, wow was I happy 🙂 .  After the disastrous heat of the Rock n Roll Half in September I was very pleased to see my summer / fall speed work and cross training pay off in a longer race.

But the real reason I was so happy was these guys

(the PR was just frosting on the cupcake )….

s n santa 2012

This was the VERY FIRST TIME EVER that my entire family had come to see me race.  My husband had just returned from a 7 month deployment the morning before, but got up and got the kids down to see me finish.  Between my husbands schedule or when we both race it just never seems to work out.  I was so, so , so  happy to see them all at the finish line!!

And what better way to celebrate than with a cupcake…or two!


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National Blogging Day of Remembrance and Silence in Honor of Sandy Hook Elementary


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Sunday’s “Inspiration for Your Perspiration” and Run The Race T-shirt Giveaway

I am deeply saddened by the tragedy in CT. However

I am not prepared to blog on my feelings about it yet. Sunday’s Inspiration for your Perspiration was written and scheduled to appear prior to the incident. Still praying for all those babies and adults.

Just a note before today’s post:

Normally I don’t link my Sunday posts with a giveaway but this one just works.


Now please let me introduce…

Run the Race, LLC

Their mission?

“Our mission is to offer a running company/retail store that brings honor and glory to God in all that we say and do” 


You can’t argue with that!

 Remember a few weeks back on “Inspiration for Your Perspiration” I had talked about sharing your faith with people and that it didn’t have to be a grand production?  Well, Run The Race has offered to giveaway one of their t-shirts to help do just that.  As a runner this is a simple and effective way of showing and sharing your faith all without saying a spoken word.

How wonderfully easy, yet effective!

It’s sure to give all the runners behind you lots of “Inspiration for their Perspiration!” 😉

But Run The Race is about much more than t-shirts they also offer the following…..

  • Run The Race Relay Program (Giving Back)…contact them if you are interested in Run The Race helping with a fundraising event, sponsorship or donations toward a worthy cause.
  • Are you a runner in Minnesota?  Click here to visit Run The Race Running club on Facebook to find out more
  • Run the Race is also a proud sponsor of:  Fellowship Of Christian Athletes

 The winner will get this great t-shirt (in their choice of size and women’s or mens style)

compliments of Run The Race

It’s our hope that you will wear it proudly and help bring glory to God thru running.

Ladies Run The Race T-2

with this beautiful verse from Hebrews 12:1 (a runner’s favorite)

“Therefore since we are 

surrounded by such a great cloud

of witnesses, let us throw

off everything that hinders and

the sin that so easily entangles,

And let us run with

perseverance the race

marked out for us”

Run The Race Logo Black SS-1

 click on the Rafflecopter link on the upper right of my page to enter for your chance to win.

To find out more about Run the Race 

or to visit their on-line store, click on the links below:

Facebook – Run The Race

 On-line at Run The Race

on Twitter @RunTheRaceLLC

on Instagram @runtherace

Have a wonderful week everyone!


Healthy Surprise Box Review

I received a box of healthy snacks from Healthy Surprise to review.  I WAS NOT financially compensated and the views and opinions expressed are my own.

Visit Healthy Surprise for more info:

Healthy Surprise Website

Healthy Surprise on Facebook

Twitter @HealthySurprise

OK with that being said let me give you a little information about what Healthy Surprise and what they are all about .

(taken direct from their Facebook page)

“Healthy Surprise is a monthly service that delivers packages of vegan, gluten-free, all natural snacks directly to customers’ doors. Each month the boxes boast a different assortment of large and small, sweet and savory snacks – introducing customers to a variety of new products and brands. Products are thoroughly vetted to ensure their ingredients and business practices demonstrates a dedication to health, quality, and sustainability.”

First off lets talk about the actual box.  It’s 100% recyclable, just throw it in your bin.  Cool, we at RunFYHP household are big into recycling.  And my oldest son (aka: the trash man) is probably the only one to complain about that. 😉

But let me just show you the generous amount of snacks in their December box.  This is my first box ever so I was pleasantly surprised at the amount included.  The boxes are come in different sizes starting at $33/month (plus shipping)  for a 16-20 serving box, like mine and according to the website contents change monthly.  And yes they do deliver to Canada (additional shipping applies)

My Healthy Surprise Box - Dec 2012

My Healthy Surprise Box – December 2012

Here is a list of what I received and some nutrition info:

I am going to use these abbreviations to make things easier

R=raw  GF= Gluten free  DF=dairy free  LG = low glycemic 

O=organic  V=Vegan  NF = Nut Free SF=soyfree

K=Kosher  LF=lactose free  NGMO= No GMO’s

(and *** was a Runfyhp favorite!)

Coco-Roons Brownies 6 oz bag (8 ct) from Wonderfully Raw  GF, DF, LG, O

*** Kale Krunch Southwest Ranch Flavor 2.2oz from Alive & Radiant Foods R,GF, V, O (yummy with a great kick to them!)

Lemon Super Cookies 3 oz from Go Raw GF, WF, NF, O, R

*** Crunchy Cinnamon Apple Chips 1.69oz from barre fruit  GF All Natural No added Sugar or preservatives  (one of my youngest favorites from the box, see pic)

Thumbs up!

Thumbs up!

*** Dried Pitaya (Dragonfruit) 1.5oz from pitayaPLUS No Preservatives or additives, O (I had never had Dragonfruit before…they were yummy!)

Gone Nuts Sesame Teriyaki Cashew & Almonds 3oz. from Living Intentions R, V, GF

Happy Hemp powder 2oz from Happy Hemp V, GF, R, O

Almond Cookie Pow Wow Bar from Thunderbird energetica SF, GF, R, LG, V All-natural (and it comes in a compostable wrapper!)

Carmel Corn 1oz from Cocomocorn  O, LG, GF, O

*** Cheesy Almonds 1.5oz from Sun ibiotics O, R, GF, DF, SF, V , NGMO  (Almonds are some of my favorite snacks, these are probiotic enhanced….interesting)

Coconut Bar Mango Bar from Oskri GF, K, V, LF

Peach Oat bar 3oz from Bobo’s Oat Bars GF, V

Apple & Mango Bar 1.2oz from That’s it Nutrition GF, K, V all natural

Orange Rosemary Pecans .88oz from Hail Merry R, V, GF

*** Chocolate Chip Brownie Bar .78oz from L’A’RABAR GF, K, NGMO  (already a fan of L’A’RABAR  one of the few bars I would choose in a pinch)

*** Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies .95 oz from Home Free NF,WG, GF, No GMO’s, DF, Tree Nut Free, egg free (yummy and a big hit with everyone at RunFYHP)

*** Apple and Apricot Bar 1.2oz from That’s it Nutrition GF, K, V (Ingredients Apples and Apricots, that’s it! Would be great for grab and go if you don’t have fresh on hand)

And a cute Healthy Surprise Sticker 😉

I have to say I am pleased at the amount and variety included.  There are some items I have tried before and a bunch I had not.

So what happens if you aren’t satisfied or don’t like the snacks you get?

per Healthy Surprise “No worries! We think you’re going to love eating healthy. If you don’t like the snacks, just contact us and we’ll make it right or refund 110% of your money.”

And you can cancel at anytime so there is no long-term commitment at sign up!  That’s a good deal.

So what’s my verdict?

All in all I enjoyed the variety I received in the box.  Normally I myself snack a little more bland, lol.  (Plain raw nuts and yogurt are some of my favorite snack things.)  However I would say if you are on the lookout for help with the following:

  • healthy snacks ideas for 2013
  • Gluten Free  / Vegan / All Natural Snacks
  • looking to try something new
  • or just have no idea where to start when snacking healthy
  • no long-term commitment
  • 110% money back guarantee

than Healthy Surprise may be for you!

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York Sign Shop Bling Holder WINNER!!!!

Thanks to everyone who entered the giveaway for the 


“Find Your Happy Pace”

Bling Holder from York Sign Shop!


And the winner is………


Lindsay Barnes!!!  Congrats.  Please email your address to

and I will get it right out to you!

Visit York Sign Shop on Etsy and tell them Runfyhp sent you!



40+ Fit and Fabulous Woman #6

This is #6 in a series of posts I am doing on women who are 40+ Fit and Fabulous!

Say hello to:

Phyllis from galfriday4hire


you can find her at her website galfriday4Hire

and on Twitter @galfriday4hire

Runfyhp:  What got you into “fitness”? 

     Phyllis: I started running because I was worried that I was getting seriously ill with an autoimmune disease so I wanted to get as healthy as possible.

RunFYHP:  How old were you when you started?

     Phyllis: 50

RunFYHP:  What are you most proud of (achievement / moment)? 

     Phyllis:  I am so proud that as the health issue resolved, I kept up with the exercise and running and love it.  I have become a health advocate.

RunFYHP: Name a good thing about being an “older” active woman? 

     Phyllis:  It has made me so much more ALIVE and taught me that my body  can do so much more than I ever thought possible.

Runfyhp: Give a great piece of advice that you have learned that younger women can benefit from.

     Phyllis: You should always schedule time for yourself, it’s so important. I wish I had done more of that.

Runfyhp: What has been your favorite race and why?

     Phyllis: My favorite face so far was the Philadelphia Rock and Roll Half marathon.  It was a very fun course and the bands along the race really kept me moving.  I loved getting the medal and I loved the feeling of I just can’t believe I did it that lasted for a week.

Runfyhp: What is one fitness related goal you have for 2013?

     Phyllis: My fitness goal for 2013 is to become a stronger runner.  I learned that I have to be more constant on my workouts so that I can run my races in shorter times and have better recoveries.  I have joined team in training for a race in April for the Nike women’s Half in Washington DC.  Their program includes cross training and speed work outs.  I did not do that consistently when I trained last year.

Runfyhp: Do you have a race on your bucket list that you have yet to conquer?

     Phyllis:  The race that would be on my bucket list if I ever thought I was ready for a full marathon it would be Paris.  I would love to run in Paris.  I think that would be the ultimate race destination.  I have read that after the race they give you cheese and a bottle of wine.  How cool is that ?   Runfyhp…very cool!

On my bucket list for this year is the Seawheeze Half Marathon in Vancouver CA.  It’s with Lululemon and its a weekend of yoga, bands and a half marathon along the seawall overlooking the Pacific ocean.  I am definitely trying to make that happen this year.   I am 52 and I need to move this list along 🙂  Runfyhp: 🙂

half  picturerecap1

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Sunday’s “Inspiration for Your Perspiration” Homecomings ….and the other side of happy

Please note this post is in NO WAY meant to be offensive to those military families that will be alone this Christmas (been there) or that have lost a loved one in the past year.  Our homecoming just happens to fall right before Christmas and we are very grateful for that!  This post is about dealing with the stresses of military life with prayer. ~ Darlena, Runfyhp

He’s almost here!!!  The hubby will be back in just a few short days.   Actually by the time this posts he should be back.  (at least he better be, lol)

Am I happy…you better believe it.  I have really missed my partner, my love.

It’s been 7 loooong months.  I am not usually one to complain about deployments.  I believe in the “suck it up “attitude for deployments but this one has been a doozy.

So why “the other side of happy”?  Well as much as all military families want their deployed ones back (and don’t get me wrong we truly can’t wait! ) the excitement and anticipation can also lead to stress and a lot of questions.  So I was really glad to talk to a few other military wives and find out I am not alone.  We worry about a lot of the same things like “Will he think I did a good job while he was away?” to “Is the house clean enough?” and everything in between.

I think about some of the changes my kids and I have gone through and wonder “How hard will homecoming be on my hubby when he sees all our changes in person?”

  To help you understand what I’m saying, let’s stop for a minute.  

I’m going to ask you to think about your own life in the past 7 months….

What has changed with you?  How about your kids?  Quite a bit I would guess.

At our house its gone something like this:

Our oldest:

  • has grown at least 3 inches and has hit puberty.  I call him stash, due to his new upper lip shadow  (Don’t worry he doesn’t mind. He says “hey, don’t pick on it I’ve been working on it for twelve years, lol.”  Love that kid.)
  • He also now wears a bigger shoe than I do
  • His voice is starting to change.

Our middle child “Mini-me” (love her too!)

  • Had oral surgery
  • gotten  braces
  • and has become quite Ms. Independent

Our youngest Mr. Cutsie Face  Love him too 🙂

  • Is now out of preschool and in kindergarten
  • He is also at the age of questioning why deployments happen, and has a love/hate relationship with the Navy
  • Is starting to read

As for me:

  • I started a new company (Running Happy)
  • I completed JM 90 day body revolution and 6 1/2 weeks of Insanity
  • I trained for and completed multiple races
  • I lost 10 lbs,
  • I cut my hair
  • I now volunteer weekly at my church
  • I have grown Runfyhp blog and Facebook page into something I am really proud of.  I even figured out  Twitter and Instagram, lol
  • I committed myself to this weekly “Inspiration for your Perspiration”

What will the hubby think of us?  Will he be proud of us or think we have all gone completely crazy?

In the meantime I think I need to sit back, take a deep breath and pray.  I believe that God never gives us more than we can handle, but it’s up to us to figure out the best way to do that.  And that includes praying, lots and lots of praying.  Prayers for my family, prayers for “normalcy” to return, prayers for love and peace.

I started reading Rick Warren’s “The Purpose Driven Life” again.  And I love it.  Chapter 5 discusses how our life here on earth is a test, a trust and an assignment.  How well, or not so well, we handle things is up to us.  Each season of life, each deployment, each assignment is another chance to learn, to grow, to get things right.

Have I passed all the “tests” this past 7 months with flying colors…absolutely NOT.  Have I faltered in my words and deeds and felt far away from my heavenly father, yes sadly I have.  A few weeks back I was talking to a good friend of mine about how I was feeling far from God and hadn’t  been taking time for Him each day.  She sarcastically said  “And how’s that working for you?”  And you know what, it wasn’t really working at all.  So I took a look at my myself and  my heart.  I was getting so wrapped up in life that I forget to turn to Him each day.   I needed to be reminded that He will help me get up, pull up my big girls pants and move on. And I know he will help us find our “Happy” as a complete family again too.  And that makes me (and all of us) very blessed!

Please take a minute to pray for a military family this week, especially those not lucky enough to have their loved one home for Christmas this year.  Have a great week everyone.


I’m Running 13 in 2013. How about you?

Here’s a great way to “Commit to Fit” in 2013.  Join myself and lots of people taking the challenge to do 13 races in 2013.

The brainchildren behind the year-long challenge are Jill Conyers (Jill Conyers Fitness Health and Happiness) and Jen Schomaker (Marathon Mom)

You can commit to any distance from 5k’s to marathons even trail running.  And races both “live” and Virtual both count toward your goal too!  FYI:  I’m pretty sure there is going to be another virtual cupcake race in 2013 🙂

Jen and Jill have also added a muli-distance catagory which works out great for me, so this is the one I chose.


I am very excited to do this.  So who’s with us?

Click here to visit the group 13 in 2013 on Facebook.

 If you sign up let me know!  Lets all celebrate 2013 together!




My Running Bucket List and More for 2013 and Beyond

Since I talked about setting goals for 2013 the other day I thought I would share some of my  goals with you.

RunFYHP Goals for 2013 and beyond……I may not get to them all, but I can try!

  • Ragnar relay
  • Duathlon
  • Triathalon Relay Team  (I am NOT a strong swimmer so I figure someone else can do that part)
  • Running a Half Marathon back in CT (my home state)
  • Continue to improve my happy pace
  • Smash my Half Marathon PR
  • Run a 5k in under 30 min
  • Run for TNT  (already signed up for Nike Women’s Half in April, wohoo)
  • A Destination Race with the hubby….even though we would never finish together, lol
  • Continue spreading the love of Jesus thru running and blogging.  “Inspiration for Your Perspiration” etc.
  • create the worlds first healthy zero calorie cupcake

1st healthy cc

Earlier this week on Facebook I asked what some of your goals were for 2013.  Here are a few of the things I heard.  (sorry I couldn’t share everyone’s but I did read them all!)

Jennifer H:  13(.1) miles in 2013! My first one!

Jenni G: A sub-2 Half Marathon.

Lori G:  My personal fitness goals for 2013 are run at least ONE 26.2, become a turbo kick certified instructor, start a MRTT chapter (that’s in the works), run a Ragnar relay, run as many 13.1 I can, do a tough mudder and NOT to fall into the exercise rut I did in 2012.

Ute B:   To finish my first half….

Robin R:  To continue to run faster ( my fast isn’t really fast just fast for me), run a full mary, and half ironman!

Carrie D:  Continue to run and improve my PR every time. Lose 50 more pounds

Shannon B:  Just started running this year in April. Currently registered for 6 1/2 marathons for 2013 and aiming for a full marathon in the fall. A friend of mine and I are trying to do a race every month next year (mostly 1/2 marathons). I think I can, I think I can

Debbie C:  Hoping to do my first ultra, a 50 miler

Awesome ladies!!!  Thanks for sharing.

So what’s on YOUR Bucket List for 2013?  Please share!

you can