half marathon

Who Doesn’t Love a Fresh Start?

Happy January 2nd everyone! A January 2nd post is way less cliche than a January 1st, New Year’s post, right? Probably not so much, but we are going with it anyway.

I have always loved the start to a new year. Who doesn’t love a fresh start? Sure, it isn’t like all of your problems dissipated into thin air once the ball dropped, but there is something about the calendar starting over that makes people think that things can be new again.

I am one who is extremely susceptible to the romanticism that is the new year and a fresh start, but there is something about 2015 that has me especially excited. I had a great 2014, but I have big hopes and plans for this year, and am feeling refreshed and ready to get back to the things I love; particularly running and writing, and possibly even tackle a few new passions and challenges.

For starters, my poor blog needs to stop being ignored, and I need to be more diligent about following all of the amazing people I have connected with through WordPress. You all inspire me so much whether it be with your running, writing, or creativity. Just exposing myself to all of this more will help fuel my writing again.

As far as my running goes, I am already signed up for two half marathons this spring. The Illinois Half Marathon on April 25th, and the Indianapolis Mini Marathon on May 2nd. This should set me up for a fall marathon (fingers crossed) come the fall. I might even add the Chicago Triathlon in August to my list.

How about you guys? What are your goals and hopes for the new year?

I have plenty of personal and professional goals as well, but I am still hashing those out. I think there is always room to be a better person , and I am sure 2015 will award me plenty of opportunities for growth.

Happy New Year everyone. Let’s have an amazing 2015.


P.S. A little MSU, Big Ten Cheer for everyone out there. Probably the best football game I have ever seen in my life!

photo (2)


30 Days of New: Day 29

Today, I signed up for a half marathon that I have never run before: the Dexter-Ann Arbor on June 2nd.  

I am very familiar with the course and the area, which is BEAUTIFUL,  but it is supposed to be a hilly course.  I, whether it be to my benefit or detriment, don’t generally check out race courses before I sign up or run a race. I don’t check elevation, water stations, restrooms, etc.  I just lace up, show up, and follow the pack.  So we will see how this one goes.

I can’t believe that tomorrow is my last day of this.  I am excited for May to start.  I like the idea of a new month, getting back to work without George weighing me down, an actual change in the seasons.  It kind of feels like a fresh start.

What are you hopes for May? 

30 Days of New: Day 21

Sunday was such an amazing day!

It started right off with a new event: I was going to cheer friends on in the Lansing Half Marathon!  I have never been on this side of things before, and I have to say that I loved it!  Not that I am going to be making a full-time deal of it.  I would still much rather be running, but Paul didn’t think that was a smart idea 2 days before surgery (damn his practical ways!).

So, Max and I headed out to the 1st mile marker bright and early to give my friends a send-off.  Max was less than impressed during the wait and could not understand what we were doing on the side of the road so early in the morning.  He is really not an early morning creature:

photo (9)


He got into it once the runners approached us, and was even sweet enough to cheer for them (any husky owners will understand what I am talking about… they are a very talkative breed).  But once our friends passed, as if on queue, he turned his back to the street and laid down.  If that isn’t motivation I don’t know what is…

We then picked up Paul and raced across town to cheer between mile nine and mile ten, and then rushed off to see them at the finish line… well, Paul and Max headed to the finish line, I headed to mile 12 to run the last leg of the race with a very good friend of mine.  It was so much fun standing there and high-fiving strangers, seeing people you didn’t even know were running, cheering for the girl whose birthday it was, and just seeing the whole experience from this angle.

photo (10)


And then being able to help one of your best friends make it to the finish line.  It. Was. Awesome.

She had run such a hard race and just to be there to help her finish was such an honor.  Even though I am terrible because I had no idea what to tell her other than, “just make it to the corner and then you are at the finish”, “you got this”, “keep going”.  Should you be conversational?  Tell her more about George?  Talk about what a crappy course set up this was?  I did my best, and she rocked it to the finish line.



From the half marathon, Paul and I headed down to Novi to attend the Veg Fest Expo, a vegan/vegetarian event.  My driving motivation to go to this was to hear ultra-marathoner, Scott Jurek, speak.  He is one of my idols, if that is the proper term to use.  He is a vegan, an amazing athlete, a writer, and probably one of the nicest people on the planet.  If you have never read his book, “Eat and Run”, I highly recommend it.

I decided to bring one of my race bibs for him to sign, and even though he was technically out of time for his meet-and-greet session, he went all the way through the line signing items and taking pictures for everyone that was there.  He looked at my bib and said, “Hey! Congrats on the race!”, as he proceeded to sign and write something on the bib. “I am not going to tell you to dig deep because you clearly already know how, but I am going to put it on here anyway.”  Just completely down to earth and kind.

photo (11)

Yup, I was pretty much in love with this Sunday.

30 Days of New: Day 13

Holy schniekies! I survived!  Not only did I survived the half marathon this morning, but I ran the whole thing!  Don’t get me wrong, it was slow… really slow, but I kept it moving.

this just speaks volumes to me about the power of the human body and mind.  The longest run I have done this year without walking is 5 miles, and that was about a month ago.  I was really happy to have found a do-able pace and a good breathing pattern early on in the race.

It was actually really cool to run through my home town too.  I ended up parking right across the street from the house my mom grew up in:



And the race started in one of my favorite spots in Dearborn, a park I used to go to all of the time in high school that also is home to the sledding hill from my childhood.  

The race took me past the church where both my grandparents and my parents were married, down streets where I took my driver’s test, by the Dearborn Country Club, which my grandpa helped found, and past the neighborhood where both my aunt and middle school/high school best friend lived.  It was actually pretty cool. 

And, I got this awesome medal (cause let’s face it, one of the major reasons to run is for the medals):



So, that is my accomplishment for today.  I didn’t think I was going to make it, but I did.  I actually didn’t even think I was going to run when I woke up this morning.  My alarm went off and all I could think was, “why do I do this?!”.  Half way down to Dearborn, falling asleep in the car, I thought to myself, “maybe I will just pick up my bib and t-shirt”.  I then did the math and realized that between registration fees and gas, that would t-shirt would have cost me about $110.  I am very glad I made the decision to do it. 

I hope that you all are having a productive, or at least enjoyable Saturday!


30 Days of New: Day 11 and 12

I am cheating again, but I may or may not have made cranberry vodka cocktails last night and fell asleep on the couch at 8 pm. Don’t hate me because it was fabulous 🙂

Yesterday was another fun first with my friends at the radiology department at McLaren Greenlawn.  I got ultra-sounded and probed!  I have never had a run of the mill ultra-sound before, and Paul and I got to see baby cyst, George (disappointingly, he is not much to look at).

Paul, the sweet, amazing man that he is, went with me just in case something catastrophic happened.  So there we were, in a dimly lit room, with a nurse handing me a wand to insert into myself.  I winked at Paul, it just seemed like the right thing to do (I am so inappropriate… and the more foreign the situation, the more inappropriate I get).

Turns out, George is bigger than we had originally thought and is clinging to not only my bladder and uterus, but both ovaries as well.  Now, I am not a small person by any means (I’m 5’9 and not rail thin), but that is a decent chunk of real estate in my lady bits that he is taking up!  I was telling Paul that I have to imagine I will have an instant 5 pound weight loss and probably be a bit smarter when he is gone… there must be a lot of blood flowing down to him that my brain could benefit from.

So, the  next step is for George to be evaluated by a specialist in about a week, and then we will decide on surgery.  

On a serious note, I hope this solves some problems for me.  I have been chronically fatigued for a while now (we are talking over a year).  I could fall asleep at any time of the day and sleep for a good four hours.  I also can’t keep weight off.  What most people do to drop weight, I have to do to struggle to maintain my weight.  Maybe George has thrown off my hormones and just thrown my whole body out of whack.  So I am hoping after his delivery I will be a whole new woman.

Tonight, Paul and I are renting “Lincoln”, so that is my lame new event for today.  I feel like the past 2 days were excitement enough to have a low-key event tonight.  And tomorrow is a pretty big new as well: Half marathon!  I have run half marathons before, but never this one.

Oh, I did wear one of my mom’s scarves that I have never worn before today:


Yay, vintage!

Happy Friday, everyone!  I will report back after my half marathon tomorrow.  It is not going to be pretty, I will tell you that much.

30 Days of New: Day 3

Ok, so I hate “selfies” with a passion, but today requires one:



New glasses!!!  I wasn’t going to just post a picture of the specs themselves.  What good would that do? 

I don’t wear them everyday, and don’t wear contacts, but they are good for night driving, watching movies, and reading the computer screen.  Again, not an earth shattering “new”, but a new none the less 🙂  Always celebrate an update!

Last night, my wonderful friend Beth and I went for a 3 mile run, and it was awful!  I am still just struggling with my asthma!  It feels like I am running underwater or something and just cannot get my breath.  I have been running for nearly 9 years and yet lately I have felt like this is the first time I have laced up sneakers to hit the pavement.  I have a half marathon in 2 weeks that I am just going to work my way through.  Not planning on any PRs this time.

It was great to just have girl time though.  Beth is one of the greatest people I will probably ever meet in my life.  Smart, beautiful, will always tell it to you straight, but so kind and insightful.  She is the kind of person I feel that I could take any problem to and get great advice, comfort, criticism if needed, but still leave feeling loved, supported, and encouraged.

Beth is actually one of my boyfriend’s best friends.  When we first started dating, he talked about his two best friends, Paul and Beth, who are married, all of the time.  I finally was able to meet them about 2 months after we started dating, and I couldn’t have imagined 2 better people.  Down to earth, welcoming, fun, kind, I loved them instantly.  I have always said that you can tell a lot about a person by their friends, and that night I think was when I fell officially in love with Paul (my Paul, not his best friend Paul). With best friends like that, what could be wrong with the guy?

Seeing him interact with these people who are basically his family (and their adorable 3 year-old son), made me see him in a different light and appreciate him on a deeper level, and now, I consider them like my family too.

I am so blessed to have the people around me that I do.  I don’t know what I have done to deserve them, but I hope it always stays that way 🙂

Happy Hump Day!  Hump responsibly…. 

Day one did not go so well…

I ended up attempting my 3 miles on a treadmill on Monday night… Now let me just say that I have no doubt that I can do 3 miles no problem outside, but for some reason I HATE running on treadmills.  I am sure at this point it is all in my head, but I just hate it.  One mile seems like 5, two miles seems like 20, and three miles is an ultra marathon as far as I’m concerned.  But, it being January and Mid-Michigan, I know that I have a few more treadmill runs in my future if icy conditions occur.

The moral of the story is, I did it, and training has officially kicked off. AND, today I registered for my first race of the season: The Martian Half-Marathon in Dearborn 🙂 http://martian.runningfitsites.com/

To follow will be the Indy 500 Mini-Marathon and the Cleveland Marathon.

Monday was also a very very sad day because I had to sign up for a new gym and leave State of Fitness :(.  State of Fitness is hands down the best gym in Mid-Michigan, if not the entire state. The training is second to none, led by head trainer and co-owner, Justin Grinnell.  His blog is a great one to follow if you are into lifting or training at all. http://grinnelltraining.com/.  But the most heart breaking part, was that after working there for 2 years, I got to know all of the members, and my co-workers became family.  It was home there (not to mention a kick-ass facility that is clean and has EVERY piece of equipment you could ask for). 

But, I have to save money, and I have to pay off debt, and Paul and I have to plan for our future…being a certified personal trainer and having all of the knowledge that I learned at SoF, I am capable of working out by myself, but still… I do very poorly with change… especially this one. 

On the plus side, I have someplace closer to home that I can go to with Paul, and we can save money at the same time.  But,  I will still up most of the night with my mind running about what equipment I forgot to ask for at the new gym, why didn’t they have, was there really enough room for functional training…. any fitblr should understand the anxiety.

It is on to a new chapter, and a new race season.

Happy Hump Day kids!  Be sure to hump a friend. 

hurry up!

Let’s talk lame duck and workouts, shall we?

So here we are, staying late at the office, all thanks to lame duck. 

I don’t mind, I really don’t, because it is exciting, and stressful, and frustrating, and unpredictable.  I just really enjoy it.  I am sure I would feel very differently if I was one of my legislative coordinators down there at the Capitol, but it can be pretty cool from where I sit.

To deal with all of this stress, I have been very good about my workouts. I had a great strength/lifting session yesterday, a killer metabolic conditioning session today, and am about to initiate my training plan for my first half-marathon next year (Martian Half-Marathon in Dearborn, MI).

So, on we move, with workouts and the unpredictability of lame duck… right now, craziness and soreness is being soothed by a nice beer.

Gotta love it 🙂


I have been a terrible tumblr friend!

As most of you who read my blog regularly should know, I just started a new job 2 weeks ago.  And let me tell you what: It has Owned. My. Life.

But in a good way.

A work my brain, can’t wait to get to bed at night, exhausting myself, type of way.  But again, it has been great.  I work with an amazing group of people, I am learning a lot, and there is so much room for growth.  It is really very exciting.

With that being said, I have almost completely  taken September off…from everything.  I have only run a handful of times, I have only been to the gym once or twice, and since I was offered my new job and started panicking, I have been eating my feelings (terrible, I know).  But then, I just took eating and losing weight off of my list of stressors.  I just stopped restricting myself and ate whatever I wanted.

It has felt great!

I haven’t let myself go completely, but I just haven’t worried about Paul and me ordering pizza for dinner and then eating dessert, or me having fries with dinner.  Today while I was shaving my legs in the shower, I noticed that I have a stomach roll that wasn’t there about a month ago… but I didn’t freak out.

Tomorrow starts a new month, and now that I am into my routine with work I can head back to the gym, and my play time is over.  My body deserves to go back to the great food I was feeding it before and start treating myself better.  October is going to be “processed free food” month, as well as goal setting time (eg. next marathon, half marathon, tri, crossfit competition). Oh, and no weigh ins allowed.

Again, it is not like I have completely let myself go, it was just a stress free month on that front.  It was also a little bit of a mental check, and it was good to realize that I can still love myself after gaining a few pounds (note that I haven’t actually stepped on the scale, but it is probably 5 or so)… but at the end of the day, I still love myself, and I haven’t lost any worth.  

And that is a big step for me.

Hope you are all doing well, and happy October!

Let’s talk about trail running…

And the nightmare of a half marathon that I just endured this morning.

OH.MY.GOSH…  It was hell.  This race was 85% up hill, and I don’t even know how that works seeing as we finished right where we started, but these weren’t just normal hills, these were all but walls of dirt where you had to start using your hands to climb.  Just insane inclines.

And HOT!  There were long stretches through fields with no shade what-so-ever.  It wasn’t supposed to be over 80 before noon, but it was 93 when I crossed the finish line at 11.  With the humidity, it was like running through water (really fun with asthma).

I am pretty much a walking disaster on any given day, so this trail run with roots sticking out all over the place had me thinking “hello shattered ankle, I can’t wait to meet you later”.  I even started the day by forgetting a glass of water on top of the car and watching it roll of the side of my car and shatter on the street at the first stop sign.  I am hazardous when left to my own devices, much less trying to run over roots and stumps.  BUT, I made it with only getting slightly tripped up about a dozen times and not actually falling (winner me!). 

I met some really cool people along the way, though.  This was unlike any race I had ever run in the effect.  I paced a man for the first half who told me he had open heart surgery a year ago, and this was his ultimate goal.  For the second half, I paced 2 girls from Kalamazoo that were just nothing but fun!  It was such a pleasure just joking and chatting with these strangers that you are basically going through hell with.

I have never been so happy to have a race over with, and even though it was a nightmare, and I feel like I got insanely drunk and then threw myself down a hill, it is over, and I have that experience to learn and grow from.