Run Find Your Happy Pace

finding my happy pace in running and life

Motivational Monday Sept 29, 2014 – I’m Ready

There are times when I fail.  When I get so wrapped up in me that I forget about Him.  I forget that He should be the center of my thinking, the reason behind what I do and the one who should lead me.  Sometimes I need to take a step back, regroup and say I’m ready now.  Because He is always waiting for me, always by my side.  It’s I who forget that.

The following words are by the artist Plumb.



Thank You Media (sarcastically) and Nobody is Perfect ~ Rantings of a Fed Up Female, Wife and Mother

This is so NOT going to be about running…at all.  What it is about is a ticked off Female/Wife/and Mother that needs to vent.  So keep reading if your fed up too or take a hike, quite honestly I don’t care.


Since WHEN did it become ok to pick on someone for their looks, their disability, or their social status?  Who the hell made that ok? I think the new age of media has had A LOT to do with it.  Our country is seriously lacking in good Christian, heck good human, social skills.  Are we really so busy trying to be the best, the fastest, the most beautiful, and have the latest whatever that we are forgetting the basics of good humanity or teaching it to our children?

When is the last time you thought about or talked to your child(ren) about, oh I don’t know, things like:

  • Empathy – the ability to understand (or at least try!) and share the feelings of another
  • Humility – is variously seen as the act or posture of lowering oneself in relation to others, or conversely, having a clear perspective, and therefore respect, for one’s place in context.
  • Sympathy – is the perception, understanding, and reaction to the distress or need of another human being.
  • Compassion – feeling or showing sympathy and concern for others.

To name a few?  How about its ok not to be “the best” as long as you are doing “YOUR best.”  Since when did that become not good enough?

Maybe what we need is a lot LESS media and social pressure about being “perfect” and A LOT MORE time spent being caring human beings!  I mean a kid is beat up on video for being “different”?  A young girl feels she needs to shave her legs so she won’t be made fun of at school?  (we are talking elementary school here!!!)  Or how about a child made fun of because they have what some consider a disability or they aren’t “normal”.  Or a mother that is made to feel bad for her tiger stripes (for those that don’t know they are stretch marks) Another woman has poor self-esteem because she doesn’t possess the ideal body/face that media portrays.  And let’s not leave out the guys….A young man who isn’t superior in athletics isn’t “cool”?  Or a man that isn’t 6ft and built like a rock isn’t a real man? Really?  For goodness sake what in the world?!  And these are just a few examples….sad.

It seems to me the fake “reality” of perfect bodies, perfect homes, having the “best of the best” and people hiding behind social media has made people lose their freakin’ minds!  Do you agree?   It’s really so very sad.

I am a HUGE fan of the following, how about you?

  • “If you wouldn’t say it to someones face, don’t say it on social media.”
  • “Treat others the way you would want to be treated”
  • “Think before you speak” (or type)
  • “If you don’t have anything nice or helpful to say, don’t say anything.”
  • “Respect your elders”
  • Say SORRY when you mess up!
  • “People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.”  In other words NOBODY is perfect.
  • Etc, Etc.

This isn’t rocket science people, this is basic human principles last time I checked.  Ughh.  I want to instill the above real values in my kids and remind them (and myself) everyday that its OK not to be perfect. I am special because God made me exactly how he wanted me to be.  I am no better than the person living on the street or the person with a disability.  If you haven’t walked a mile in their shoes…don’t judge.  Others feelings count!  It’s my job to be the best me I can be, and to treat people with respect and to teach my kids to do the same.  I don’t have to like everyone but I do need to treat others as I would want to be treated.

Are you with me?

~Rant over


Motivational Monday Sept 22, 2014 – Falling

Never mistake Falling for Failing!

MM 1022


Humbling Training, a 10K and Miles for Memories Challenge Update

I am two weeks out from my next half marathon.  For all you “regular basis” half marathon runners that would be no biggie.  But the thing is I haven’t run a half marathon since November of last year! EEEK!   I took most of 2014 off from half marathon training and races.  My family schedule just didn’t allow it.

For those who follow me regularly you know that didn’t mean I just stopped working out.  Au contraire mon freer.  Although my running has consisted of mostly HIIT training, I also did Body Beast, Les Mills Pump and a bunch of other wonderfully sweaty stuff.  🙂  It wasn’t about falling off the healthy wagon, it was about changing things up a bit and finding my happy pace in this season of life.

Then about 11 weeks ago I decided to raise funds for the Alzheimer’s Association for the Walk to End Alzheimer’s.  As many of you may know my Mom was diagnosed with early onset about 4 years ago and has taken a big downward turn the past 6 months.  I thought about different ways to get others interested in supporting me.  I felt like I could do more than just the walk itself.  Low and behold I found out that just a week before my local Walk, there’s a half marathon I had been eyeing the past few years.  Perfect timing.  And from there was born my walk/run challenge.  Which I have affectionately named as Miles for Memories.

Miles for Memories

This time around I have been using a new training plan for my half.  (and I’ll admit it’s not the most popular one on the block.)  I decided to train by heart rate rather than pace.  SAY WHAT?!


Now remember peeps I am coming back to 13.1 from focusing on  strength and HIIT training and very little running and zero distance running.  I really, really needed to work on my aerobic base.  Heart Rate based training seemed like the best option for me.  More on that coming soon in a future blog.   Let’s just say that this kind of training can be very humbling.  Most people tend to train in their anaerobic zone rather than their aerobic zone.  This plan builds you from your aerobic base up.  Again can you say humbling and I now refer to it as “Ego-Check Training”  😉

I have completed 8 of my 11 weeks of training based on heart rate.  It’s going well and I am starting to reap the true benefits (sadly no it’s not a fast process)  My long runs (in fact most runs) are run at a very “easy” aerobic zone pace which has sometimes equated to  frustration and self doubt.  With my self confidence waining, Thursday I decided to sign up for a local 10k which was on Saturday.

Screen Shot 2014-09-21 at 2.29.21 PM

I needed to run a race with the goal of running at my own comfortable pace.  My current HAPPY PACE, not my last half marathon happy pace, not my training pace, not my PR pace but whatever felt right for me that day.

I am proud to say I was able to do just that.  I ran comfortably for the full 10K.  In fact I didn’t look at my heart rate once even though I did wear my monitor.  (The whole idea is that eventually you should be able to run by feel and know what zone you are in, I believe I did that.)  Could I have given a bit more on the second half of the race….probably but at least now I feel way more mentally prepared for the half.  In fact I got a wonderful complement during mile 5 from a woman (she and I had been pacing each other for about a mile or so prior)  She said to me that my running form made me look like I run on air!  That was the best compliment I could have heard that day, and probably ever, from another runner.  I thanked her and cranked it up for the last half mile or so.  She has no idea how much that meant to me.  It reassured me that I was running in my zone, at my pace and everything was just how it should have been……HAPPY.

So now I am just short of two weeks out from the Half I choose to honor my Mom.  I have my ego in check, my zone in check and I can’t wait to make her proud.

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Motivational Monday Sept 15 2014 – Attitude

It’s so important to realize small steps are so much more than “small”.  Everyday you choose to do something to improve your life, health or faith its a step in the right direction.  And when we fail we need to learn from it, failure is just another chance to grow.  It’s all about attitude and attitude starts with you!


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Pretty Muddy! Rewind. Good Luck to the VA runners

Last year I participated in Pretty Muddy in Richmond VA.  Here is my post race write up.  Good Luck to those of you running it this year!  Have fun and get PRETTY MUDDY! 

This past Saturday I got to participate in Pretty Muddy Women’s Mud Run in Richmond, VA.  This was my very first mud run and I was so excited.  Special thanks Pretty Muddy Women’s Mud Run for the opportunity!

I was also lucky to have my Sweat Pink sister and good friend Cara from Running In Sanity join me, because getting muddy with a friend is how to do it…or so my kids tell me. 🙂  Cara and I headed out to Chesterfield, just outside Richmond, (about and hour and a half ride from Virginia Beach) at 6:45 AM.  Not too early for a race, no Disney 2 am wake up call here ;).  The weather was already nice, not too hot or cold and temps in the low 60’s.   Our wave was expected to leave at 10 AM.

After arriving at Pocahontas State Park we headed to check in.  I was glad we were able to race day check in so we didn’t need to head up to Richmond 2 days in a row.   There was a hay ride (picture tractor/hay bails) from the parking lot out to the check in area.  We were happy to meet up with Anna, another of our Sweat Pink Sisters from Virginia just before boarding.  Cara and I had the pleasure of meeting Anna at Nike DC as she had also participated in Team in Training Virginia.  Check in was fast, we picked up our pins and numbers and headed off to gear check.  The first waves had started earlier that morning and we got to view some of the happy, muddy girls finishing up the course.  Now I was really excited.  Mud, real mud!  I mean how often does a Mom get to get muddy on purpose!  We hit gear check and the port-o-potties and got a pre-race pic together thanks to Anna before she checked her bag.  I had left my phone in the car because I had no way to keep it clean and mud free 😉

Cara, Anna and Myself pre-mud
Cara, Anna and Myself pre-mud

The start/finish area consisted of a DJ, a photographer, Pretty Muddy merchandise tent and a few food vendors with items for sale.  We headed to the start line while the DJ pumped up the corrals with music and a short impromptu pre-run stretch.  Countdown on let the fun begin!

The terrain heading into the first obstacle was grassy and very uneven, we were all very careful.  In my mind I was concerned the entire course might be this way, thankfully it wasn’t.  The first “obstacle” was a fun bubble type tunnel, it was a tad windy so I think some of the bubbles were getting carried away, but still fun.  The second one was all about slipping /sliding muddy fun…yeah!  We climbed up the backside of a giant slide and down the wet side directly into a mud pit!!!  I was able to keep the mud from the knees down, however Anna lost her shoe in the mud pit and I had to help pull her out, hehe.  Note to self and everyone else…lock laces not the best choice for Anna, however my double tied #sweatpink laces held up like a charm 🙂

The rest of the course terrain was mostly well beaten dirt trails and grass which was much more of what I am used to not to mention much safer.  I love trail running and this did not disappoint Pocahontas State Park was just beautiful.  I remarked to my buddies that God had done good because the weather and the views were so pretty.  There were a total of 10 obstacles for this 5k.  Some muddy, some not.  We climbed nets and walls, through tunnels, carried wood and got to crawl through mud a few more times.  The runner landscape consisted of beginners, birthday girls, experienced runners to tutus and good spirited fun.  All the runners at this race were respectful and encouraging.  Good, clean…well muddy girl fun!

My only wish was that there had been photographers at each obstacles.  Most people did not carry phones/cameras because of the nature of the mud.  I would love to have had the opportunity to look for and purchase pictures from all the obstacles, especially this being my first mud run.   According to one of the volunteers we asked there were photographers but they were roaming between different parts of the course.

Post race you were given your Pretty Muddy 5k medal, a Propel and a protein bar.  We also stopped for a post run muddy picture, you must have one of those!  The DJ was still pumping the music as waves continued to leave.  There was also a live band in the finisher area.  Just past the finish area was a rinse station with hoses set up to clean off and de-mudify.  Next to it was a large privacy tent for changing into some clean and dry clothing for our long ride home.

All in all I would say Pretty Muddy is a fun, muddy experience for women.  I had a great time with my Sweat Pink sisters.  I loved the number of groups we saw running together along with women who braved the course alone for various personal reasons.   There were bucket listers, birthday girls and more!   Everyone seemed to have a good time and the volunteers where encouraging and informative.  The course was well-marked.  Pretty Muddy also has family waves that were set to take off later in the morning.  Female participants were welcome and encouraged to run the course again with their families.

The medal we got was a nice bonus and a great memento.  Personally I didn’t find the course as challenging as I would have wanted, however with that being said I think it was the most fun I have ever had getting muddy 🙂  If your thinking of a first or a fun all female mud run Pretty Muddy Women’s Mud Run would be a great one for you!  I would do it again with girlfriends if given the opportunity.

Pretty Muddy Bling
Pretty Muddy Bling

So what’s next?  Tough Mudder maybe 🙂  Ha,ha…I think I have fallen in love with mud.

pretty muddy

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Motivational Monday Sept 8 2014



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Motivational Monday – September 1, 2014

Sometimes even the best laid plans don’t go as planned.  Trust in God, adjust your sails and keep moving forward.


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