Trying not to be defeated by the heat.... making decision... not sure if wise decision

Saturday...... Max run vs Speed work 

By Friday, I was wiped out!!! I felt so tired! I wasn't sure what I was going to do Saturday morning as far as running was concerned.........

After hitting the snooze button at least a dozen times, I finally rolled out of bed! I fixed my usual morning protein smoothie..... andddddd, as I drank the smoothie, I contemplated what I was going to do..... would I attempt to run as fast as I could on the treadmill for 2 miles? Or, should I go to the track where I knew that I could really try to reach the speed that I was set to run on the training plan. Finally, I was dressed and laced up.....  and, I decided to go to the track. Then, I contemplated something else....... perform the Max run of 2 miles at around a 7:05 pace (which was on the actual plan) orrrrrrrrrr attempt speed work by running 8X400. It was HOT & HUMID!!!!!!!!! Seriously, I thought will I really run 2 miles at 7:05? And, my marathon isn't until March. At least with the 8x400, I would get a 60sec rest between. Wellllllllllll, I decided on the 8X400. I do understand that the VO Max runs overall increase running efficiency, and I should have performed the VO Max run....... but, I simply was't feeling it. I really felt that I would be able to put more into the speed work. I am not sure I did the right thing by substituting 8X400s for my VO Max run...... I have an email out to my coach and we will see what he says........ 😬 

Seriously, I was all out of sorts...... as pictured above, I didn't have my Garmin watch or my wireless ear phones charged!!!!! I never listen to music unless on treadmill or when running track. Luckily, I have charge ports in my car and a 40 minute drive to the track...... so, I had time to charge them both on the way. 

so, I ran a one mile warm up ➡️then on to the 400s (0.25 mile) which were as follows: 1:42 (6:50 pace), 1:36 (6:28), 1:38 (6:34), 1:41 (6:46), 1:39 (6:57), 1:43 (6:54), 1:42 (7:06), and 1:39 (6:39). I followed with a one mile cool down of one mile. 

Sunday (today), my friend Rhonda (pictured above) met me for our long run. On tap were 11 miles! I asked her, want a little challenge? We decided to throw in some hills (local people- yes, we are talking about Old wood valley)....... a local neighborhood allows us to throw in 1.5miles of rolling hills...... Rhonda is always a go getter and was up for it!!!!! And, we hit Old Wood Valley at around 6.5miles into our run. Anyway, the breakdown of the run is as follows: 

11 miles at an average 10:08 pace

Mile 1 - 10:37

Mile 2- 10:19

Mile 3- 10:20

Mile 4- 9:56

Mile 5 - 10:26

Mile 6- 10:06

Mile 7 - 10:02

Mile 8- 9:55

Mile 9- 10:16

Mile 10- 10:03

Mile 11- 9:33

As far as running goes, I had a pretty good week. :)

This week was my son's 8 year old well check.....on of the things that needed to be checked off the "before school to do list"....... here, school starts Thursday!!!!! UGH!!! I am so not ready! LOL!!! I mean, the school routine is always so rush, rush, rush......... oh well, summer break has to end like all good things. Anyway, I got cracked up when my son was;t to thrilled about being placed in the Princess room at the pediatrician's office. LOL! :D 

He waited patiently for the Nurse Practitioner........ made himself at home.... LOL!!! :D

We have been going to the pond each day to check on the gator that I posted about in the previous post...... I couldn't get a good pic of the gator, but here is a turtle on a island ..... wish I could have gotten a clearer picture. 

Well, time to get the nightly Sunday routine going....... where does the weekend go? Hope everyone had a great weekend. More soon! 

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Ever feel mentally wiped out? How do you motivate to go run?

Speed Work vs VO MAX run? Which do you prefer?

Do you have the same long run routine? Or do you switch it up a bit?

School starting in your neck of the woods?

 

Partying like a ROCK STAR!!..... Garmin goes crazy... and strange finds of a runner

Today was my 45th BIRTHDAY!!!! 🎂🎉

So, early this morning, I rolled out of bed for my long run...... 13 miles were on schedule.....but, with turning 45, which is basically the half way point of my life, I decided to make that 13.1... running a half marathon distance.... logical, right?!!! LOL! 

I had a GREAT run!!!!! First, I met up with a fellow runner at 5:30 a.m.... yes, bright and early! There was to be 3 of us, but one runner woke up with a severe sore throat and sinus congestion causing her to need to bail....... yes, sometimes, no matter how much we want to run, we must listen to our bodies. So, then there were 2 runners....... we ran for about 7 miles, and then I ran solo for a mile until I saw another group of runners that let me hang with them for the rest of my run. 

Managed 13.1 miles at an average 9:20 pace...... BUT, something REALLY strange occurred to during my run.... my GARMIN went haywire!!!! I CAN NOT explain what happen..... During mile 9, my Garmin vibrates and beeps showing that I am in mile 9 (which I was) but flashed up a Lap 10 at the 0.36 mile mark into mile 9 and stating the pace.................  at each mile until the end of the run, the Garmin would beep and vibrate at the 0.36 mile mark of each mile and flash up some numbered lap...... what the heck?!!!!!!!! BIZARRO!!!!!!! 

See..... Mile 13 had a Lap 14 of 0.74 which when added to the 0.36 from mile 9 accounts for a mile distance...... and the pace times added together calculate to me pace time........ WEIRD!!! SERIOUSLY WEIRD!!!! I have NO IDEA had to explain or make sense of this!!! The only thing I even remember during mile 9 was trying to push the button to check the actual time of the morning...... now, I wonder did I push something that starts counting laps? Like maybe a feature to do track work or something? I have no idea..... I admit, I probably do not utilize my Garmin to it's full potential...... which means, when stuff like this happens, I have no idea what is going on..... hmmmmm 🤔

At 5:30 a.m., it was still dark...... very dark!!! Took a quick selfie prior to warming up......

I took the new Hokas for a long run....... I have ran a couple shorter runs with them to break them in..... but, today was my first day running long in these new kicks!!!! I have to say, I am sold on Hokas!!!! Crazy, no plantar fasciitis feeling post run.... and no left achilles tightness!!!! Happy feet are the most important thing to a runner....... Also, these Zensah compression socks keep the legs feeling good too!!!!!! Love them!!! 

Below, are the fabulous ladies who I ran into on the second part of my run....... these ladies helped me get through the last few miles of my run!!!!!! The sun was coming up by this time.... but, I still don't like running solo......so, I was very happy that they let me hang with them!!!!! :)

So, yeah....... today was my 45th birthday!!! It is so weird saying that I am 45!!! Seriously, it really seems like I was 29 just the other day!!!!!!! I just don't feel like a 45 year old...... not that there is a certain way to feel........ but, reality hits me when I have to pull out my reading glasses (pictured below) to read texts, Facebook posts, emails, etc on my phone...... LOL! :D

How do you like my fashionable reading glasses?...... these are the finest at Target.....LOL!!!! Trust me, I have  a pair in my purse, on bedside table, in the car, pretty much every where I would sit down........ these things are like hair ties..... have several, but can't seem to find them when I need them..... therefore, logical solution is to have some everywhere!!!! HA! HA! :D

Due to great friends and family, I had a great birthday celebration!!! The celebration started the day prior at work when I arrive and saw small cake cupcakes on my desk!!!! :) Pure happiness! 

Lemon is probably my favorite.... well, carrot cake too (actually had a home made piece of carrot cake at work.... the wife of my boss made it.... it was amazing!). Oh, and I love the chocolate cupcakes too! And, the red velvet!!!! Ok, yeah, guess you can say that they are all my favorite..... well, except those covered in coconut.... not a fan of those!!! 

Had this cake pop delivered too along with starbucks!!!! 

Sinus congestion and allergies are a daily battle here in South Georgia!!!! My friend bought me this diffuser..... she swears by it!! Even said that it helps her husband from snoring...... SOLD!!! Gonna definitely try it out and see if it helps my hubby....... (don't tell him I said that)...he! he!

Then, another of friend gave me wine, chocolate, and a gift certificate to eat out..... all around great gift.... I mean, come on...... the next BEST thing to running is FOOD!!! Yep, this was an A+ present to receive!!! :) 

So, what did I do for my 45th birthday? Well, I went for a long run as noted above. Came home... ate breakfast with the hubster and kiddo, took a shower, stretched and foam rolled, and then took a nap....... yep, I took a LONGGGKGGG and much needed nap!!!! Then, pittled around the house, and my fellas took me to the Texas Roadhouse to eat........ oh yes, salmon + sweet potato + broccoli = BEST MEAL ON PLANET!!!! YUM!! 

Yep! I spent my birthday partying like a ROCK STAR!!!!! HA! HAHAHAHAHA! HA! :D

So, I am trying to clean up diet further and looking for a variety of foods to snack on.... trying these RXBARs out!!! So far, I have tried two different ones..... blueberry my favorite...... still have others to try. These are a great option for stashing in purse for a healthy snack option when on the run!!!! Of course, I haven't tried but 2 so far. Chocolate is not a favorite.... I know, shocking, right? But, blueberry is very yummy! Best part....... these are real food!!!! Each bar has a list of the ingredients and last thing noted "No B.S."...... lol.... gotta love it! 

Okay, I honestly find the most interesting things .......you know, like "things that make you go hmmmmmmmm"........ when I am running....... just like these jeans hanging on the track fence.... nope, can't even come up for an explanation of this........

Remember the soap suds in the University fountain...... yes, another find that I had a couple weeks ago........

Or...... how about that time, when I found the hair weave in the road?!!!! Yes, interesting finds for sure!!!! 

Ok, well, this birthday girl needs to get to bed...... short run in morning..... and off to work by noon!!!!! It has been a great day! 

UNTIL LATER!!!!!! XOXO

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What kind of cake/cupcakes is your favorite? 

Strange finds on runs? Do share!! Would love to hear!!!!! 

Age...... just a number? or, do you feel your age? 

"Don't Run with Scissors 5K".... Long run, Sunday relaxation, & delicious recipe.. bunch of randomness

This past Saturday was the 8th annual "Don't Run with Scissors Race"..... it includes a 1 mile fun run & a 5K run that benefits the Visual Arts Program at Sallas Mahone Elementary School. 

The weather was perfect!!!! I had really wanted to be under 23 minutes, but I feared the hill at the end..... see, the last 0.3 miles of the run is all up hill!!!! Literally!!! Andddddd, I am not a great hill climber!! Major weakness! Anyway, I was, overall, happy with my run. I tried to keep a consistent pace, and my mile splits were as follows: 7:19, 7:24, 7:31.... I ended up with an official posted time of 23:05. My garmin said 23:06. Although I didn't get my goal time for the day, I did PR the course! So, win! I will take the PR. I also managed to snag 1st in age group!! Andddddd, the awards were awesome!!! The awards were framed art work of 4th graders at the school!!! How cool is that!!! One mom placed in her age group and was able to select her own child's art work!!! How awesome is that?!!!!! 

Part of the running tribe :)

Part of the running tribe :)

Of course, the best part of any 5K, or any run for that matter, is seeing running friends!!!!

Above, my friend Lisa is back!!! Finally recovered from a running injury!!! Was so good to have her back!!!!! 

Above, Valdosta Family Medicine was representing at the 5K!!!! Go VFM!!!!! 

Yeah, when the Chick-Fil-A cow is at the 5k, you must get a photo, right?!! LOL! :D

Top Sponsors were knowledge on these AWESOME painted boards!!! Pretty neat!!! Can't imagine the time it took to make these!!!! 

Sunday -LONG RUN

Today's long run went by SUPER fast.... I ran with my friend Brandy. We chatted and the time flew!!! Break down of the run is as follows: 

Goal target pace was to be between 9:30-9:55

12.01 miles at an average pace of 9:41

Mile 1- 11:02 (warm up mile)

Mile 2- 9:31

Mile 3- 9:12

Mile 4- 9:25

Mile 5- 9:12

Mile 6- 9:06 (yeah, I know-- too fast, but honestly, you get to talking and not paying attention to garmin... oops!)

Mile 7- 10:00 (made up for being too fast in previous miles...LOL)

Mile 8- 9:38

Mile 9- 9:44

Mile 10- 9:58

Mile 11- 9:46

Mile 12- 9:31

**Then, it was time for grocery shopping and to tackle the never ending laundry!!!!  Not so fun ! Waaaaaaaaa! 

Relaxing Sunday Afternoon

My son and hubster went fishing in the pond...... well, they tried to fish in the pond.... the fish were not biting today. My hubby kicked back as my son worked hard on paddling the boat!!! LOL! Can't be unfair child labor if the child loves it, right?!!! HA! HA! :D

Beavers are amazing

I think beavers are the most amazing creatures!!! They build can build a dam like this one pictured in no time!!!!! And, just how do they even build against running water? It truly baffles me! We have to constantly knock these out, otherwise, it floods the surrounding land. Crazy, right? 

Anddddd, the branches are so neatly and placed in an exact manner.... seriously, isn't this mind boggling? 

Let's Talk Food

I found this SUPER EASY and ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS recipe for chicken salad on Pinterest!!! Doesn't it look amazing? You can too make this "Light Chicken Salad" by clicking on link (HERE) It is a recipe from joyfulhealthyeats.com

Ok, gotta run.... the nightly "get ready for work and school" routine is in full gear now..... hope everyone had a great weekend!!!!! 

UNTIL LATER........................

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Ever receive an unusual, but super cool race award? 

How was running this weekend? Training runs? Racing? Do share! Love to hear.......

Recipes? Tried any great ones lately.... please share.......

Donna Half Marathon Recap: All Pinked out for a GREAT cause......

 

PINK EVERYWHERE!

So, exactly one year ago, my friend Wendy that is pictured below in the middle, decided that she wanted to run a half marathon........ she decided on Donna Half Marathon that takes place in Jacksonville each year.

At the EXPO, there was a station that was set up with all kinds of dress up items from hats, to wigs, to boas, to wings, and much more! And, best thing?!!! It was FREEeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!! So, of course, my friends and I couldn't pass up the opportunity to dress up and take a pic!!! (Pictured below: Myself, Wendy, and Brandy) 

Below are pictures of the Expo..... I placed in a gallery that should switch between pictures every few seconds...... you might be thinking..... man, the expo doesn't look crowded..... was it a small race? Well, let me explain...... My friends and I probably didn't prepare ahead for the weekend..... NONE of us, and I mean, Not one of us read any of the emails that preceded race weekend.........anddddd, consequently, we all assumed that the expo was at the conference area at the host hotel. WRONG!!!!!! The expo was literally 30 minutes from the hotel!!!! ANDddddd, we didn't head for the expo until 3pm.... so, we had to jump in the car in a hurry because the expo ended at 5pm. 

I felt like a "get away driver"..... see, as we were waiting for an elevator in the hotel, we were informed where the expo was being held. My friends Wendy and Brandy decided to go up in the elevator to inquire about directions to the Expo while I ran back to room to get my car. Then, the plan was for me to drive to the front of the hotel and pick them up. However, they had started to walk toward to street.... so, I stopped the car and let them in..... and, I was on a mission to get us to the expo..... so much so that my friend brandy still had one leg hanging out of the car with the door opened when I took off..... oops!!! This let me know that I should never get in trouble while with Brandy because there would be no fast get a-way..... I mean, really? The girl can smoke a 5K but can't jump into a car fast?!!!!! Gonna have to work on that with her!!!! LOL! :D

EXPO

The expo had many different type of vendors present........ from merchandise, to cosmetic surgeons, to physical therapist, to sunscreen, etc. It was pretty neat. Only wish we would have had more time to spend there..... the expo went until 5pm, and we arrived at 4pm.....an hour would have been fine, but most of the vendors started to pack up at 4:30pm. Oh well. I did get business cards so I could look up the different vendors on-line. 

CELEBRITY SPOTTING

At the Expo, we spotted Jeff Galloway!!!!!!! And, he was kind enough to take a picture with us!!!!

Then, who would have thought, when we boarded our bus at 6am on Sunday morning, that Jeff Galloway would be boarding on our bus too!!! YEP!!!!! He was right there sitting amongst us women!!!! Wendy wanted me to snap a pic of her with Galloway in the back ground on the bus, but, I just couldn't. I really felt like it would creep him out.... HA! HA! But, when we got of the bus, Wendy and I ran him down and requested for him to take a picture..... so, yeah, not sure that was much better...... just call us stalkers! LOL! :D

THE RACE

When we lined up in the corrals, I was not expecting the emotions that I began to feel. See, let me explain...... this was Wendy's first half marathon. It was really ALL about Wendy...... Brandy and I were going to hang with Wendy and be her personal pacers!!!!! There was no stress like I usually have prior to a half where I am trying to PR. Literally, the run ahead was going to be like a Sunday long run! But... then, as we were lining up at the start into our corrals, I started to see thousands of people decked out in PINK! There were men as well as women. The men were rockin' PINK and even some with tutus!!! It was great!!!! And, then there were many that had bibs attached to there backs or had words written on the back of their shirts that explained who they were running for...... a family member, friend, mother, aunt, grandmother, etc that had been diagnosed or passed away from breast cancer. I could feel my eyes watering up and the emotion overwhelming me..... the run, at that point, became much more than just helping a friend achieve a personal goal. Yes, I was running for those that couldn't!!!! 

Below, you can tell how excited Wendy was..... this was around mile 5 and she was giving the thumbs up on how she was feeling!!!

In one of the neighborhoods that we ran through, someone had this sign that they were letting people stop and take pictures...... there was a small line for this! 

Not sure what mile the picture below was taken at, but I know is was in the first half of the half marathon...... I have been known to take selfies during races..... not all the time, but hey... I write a blog... I need pics!!!!! Maybe, if my blog ever takes off, then I can pay someone to be along the course to take pics.... until then, I have to depend on my selfies!! LOL! :D

Motivating Signs

Along the course, there were several motivating signs!!!! Below, I believe, was the best sign on the course..... however, there were many signs that I didn't get a chance to read because there were so many!!! It was awesome!!!! There were spectators all along the course!!!! The community was AWESOME!!!!!

Another sign.........

Andddddddd, this little guy held a sign that if you touched it, it gave you power...... and, let me tell you, it really worked!!!!! I felt like super woman after touching it!!! LOL!!!!! But seriously, there was no way to pass up this cutie without touching the sign.... and, there were many other children along the way giving High-fives!!! IT WAS TOTALLY COOL! 

You never knew what you might see along the course........ never a dull moment.....

Elvis was even on the course!!!! This guy had a belt holding a radio that was playing Elvis music.... he was doing the Galloway method of the walk/run technique and belting out Elvis songs!! It was GREAT! Oh, and of course, she was decked out in PINK too!!!! I wondered.... when he made it to the end of the course, when the runners cross the mat that allows the announcers know who is crossing.... did the announcer say, "ELVIS HAS LEFT THE COURSE!!!" ........ just wondering. 

Below, was a guy that I saw.... wanted to snap a pic, but then again, I didn't want to seem creepy..... well, I was able to get a pic anyway when I saw this picture on Instagram!!!! :)

Below are pictures from he course..... these are only a few.... literally, all the neighborhoods decorated for the half marathon!!! I am telling you.... this event had crazy community support!!! It was truly AWESOME!!!!! Cars in driveways were decorated.... streamers hanging..... balloons everywhere..... 

To read the recap on the event's web page, follow the LINK HERE!!!

Well, I need to run..... I have a 7 year old wanting to go outside before it gets too dark....... sorry for any typos or grammar errors..... no proof reading on this post......... UNTIL LATER!!!!!!

P.S. THIS HAS TO BE ONE OF MY MOST FUN HALF MARATHONS!!!! WILL DEFINITELY CONSIDER IN THE FUTURE!!!! 

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Ever have a race cause emotions you weren't expecting?

Were you at the Donna Marathon weekend? Do tell? Share pics if you like...... you can email them to me

Best race sign you have ever read?

 

More about Tallahassee Half marathon

Race Prediction

So, predicting my race times prior to a race has started to be a family tradition........Below, are the predicted time from my son, husband, and myself. Andddddddd, the winner is my son!!!!! He guessed 1:48:00 which was the closest without going over....... my official race time turned out to be 1:48:59!!!!!

I was only exactly one minute off from my final time!!! My husband CLEARLY has a WHOLE lot of faith in me....... I am not sure that I will ever be able to see 1:46 on the clock!! LOL! :D 

The Expo

Of course, I had to take advantage of the photo op against the race back drop at the expo............

Below is my friend Arlene........ she was brave enough to tackle the hills of Tallahassee with me again this year!!! :)

One cool thing was the "Kid Marathon" that took place the day of the expo...... Arlene and I (without even knowing) ended up with front row seats to watch the Kid marathon from the deck of an Italian restaurant that we ate lunch at.....

Below are two videos of the kid marathon...... I so need to bring my son next year!!! He will have a blast..... the kid marathon is just over a mile.......... Love the one video where you can hear "Eye of the Tiger" playing in the background...... the fraternity house right next to the restaurant was playing music and cheering on the runners!!!

Definitely a "kid friendly" event...... there were bounce houses at the expo.......

Tents at the expo.......

Hills EVERYWHERE

I had to take the picture below..... seriously, Tallahassee is hilly course..... actually, I really think the hills could be classified as MOUNTAINS!!!! I mean, check out this photo.... the hill is so steep that it appears to be a cliff!!!!! :()

This past weekend was AWESOME!!!!! I am still blown away from my PR (personal record)!! I can not believe that I pulled out 1:48:59!!  I don't know where the legs that showed up to the starting line came from, but I am sure happy they did!!!!! I have been taking my training really seriously..... trying to adhere to the training plan and not doing what I think is best............ 

Well, gotta help my son with homework.... UNTIL LATER!!!!!! 

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What do you look forward to at expos? Merchandise? Massages? Food? Do tell........

Do you have kids that participate in kid events?

What is your favorite half marathon or full marathon? 

Tallahassee Half Marathon recap: Hill, after hill, after hill, after hill.....

Ahhhhhhhhhhhh, Tallahassee!!!!!!!!!! You never disappoint!!!!

The Tallahassee half marathon is one of my all time FAVORITES... see, ever since I started running the Tallahassee half, I have PR'D every single time!!!!! (for non-runners "pr" means "personal record")

Above...... my race bib, medal, and t-shirt (love the color).

Half Marathon Breakdown

Okayyyyyyy, let's get to business..... the run breakdown!!! 

To begin with.... I needed to warm up, therefore, I performed a one mile warm up prior to the race (pace 12:14 pace). I hit the roads of downtown Tallahassee at around 6:30. It was a stop and go kind of warm up with needing to stop almost every block for traffic.... was kinda neat to scope out the starting line and see people gathering already.

*****Half marathon break down: Again, per garmin and not official time.... 13.11 miles at 1:49:02 with average pace 8:19

Mile 1- 8:08

Mile 2- 8:01

Mile 3- 7:55

Mile 4- 8:01

Mile 5- 8:09

Mile 6- 8:17

Mile 7- 7:53

Mile 8- 8:26

Mile 9- 8:20

Mile 10- 8:37 ( there is a hill that is so steep that I actually walked a bit.... A steep hill!!! I had heard that part of the course had been re-routed..... was REALLY, REALLY, REALLY hoping that the re-route went around this hill!!!! This is a hill that stayed in my memory from last year!)

Mile 11- 9:24 ( mile 11 with elevation/hill-- legs were spent from mile 10 hill. I did check with other runners and Mile 11 was their slowest)

Mile 12- 8:06

Mile 13 8:55 (mostly an up hill finish!!! I swung my arms and pushed, but amazing felt pretty good. Last 0.15  was steep down hill- thank goodness)

ALL SMILES and RELIEVED to be D-O-N-E

Here I am after completing the half marathon..... NOTHING like stopping some random stranger to take a picture!!! HA! HA! But, I NEEDED a picture prior to getting a shower!!! LOL!!! Had to document this half for sure! :D

Tattooing to stay on track

At the Expo, the event organizers were giving out these goal time tattoos.... I snatched up one. Just the day prior, a friend of mine sent me a text picture of a timing tattoo that she found in one of her old race bags...... so, when I saw these at the expo, I decided to pick one up! The fact that they were free was even better!!!!! I wasn't 100% sure that I was going to use one, but the morning of race, I said.... "What the heck?!" I mean, at least I would have it available in case I wanted to check. I actually really liked this!!! I think I might have looked at it about 4 different times "to see" how I was doing........ See, my half goal for some time has been to sub 1:50:00; however, today, I was really focusing on getting a pr for course only..........but, when first 4 miles went well, I knew I had to "seize the day." 

Always good to have friends there

Below, my friends Arlene and Angel...and Angel's boyfriend too!!! Always so fun to have familiar faces at an event!!!! Something about sharing with people you know! Arlene (on left) PR'd the heck out of this race by like 16-20 minutes!!!! This was Angel's first half and she did AMAZING!!!! And, with it being her first, she PR'D too!!! :)

Below...... Arlene and I...... I had to make a quick change to get sweaty wet clothes off!!! It was some what chilly, and getting out of those clothes as soon as possible was a must!!

Secret to a GREAT RACE DAY

Below is a ring that my 7-year-old son gave me a couple days ago.... he actually found it on the ground....LOL.... he told me that if I wore it during my race that I would do "GREAT!" It looked to be one of those rings that are handed out at a birthday party as a party saver gift.... lol.... nothing fancy... the back of the ring wasn't even solid. But, as I was packing, my son reminded me to make sure I wore the ring!!! LOL!!! And, when your son does such a sweet gesture, you must wear! I honestly didn't know if I'd be able to wear it the entire time.... heck, I didn't even think that the ring would even stay on!!! LOL!! But, you know what?!!! The ring stayed on like a champ, and I hardly was aware that it was there!!!!! And, I think it brought me enough luck and magic to achieve a pr!!!! No, of course it isn't magical, but each time I looked at it during the race, thoughts of my son motivated me!!! 

Well, I have had a long day...... still need to unpack and get ready for the week. Tomorrow is my long day with walk in clinic until 7pm; therefore, I need to sign off.... will try hard to get another post up this week talking more about the Tallahassee Marathon weekend. I have videos that I want to share too! So, more soon!!!!! BUT, BEFORE I GO, THANK YOU TO ALL THOSE WHO SUPPORT ME ON MY JOURNEY!!! Whether you follow my instagram, Facebook page, email subscribe to my blog, text me positive vibes, email me encouraging words, or message me on Facebook......... I CAN NOT THANK YOU ENOUGH!!!! Seriously, throughout the entire 13 miles today, I thought of you all!!! You guys ROCK!!!!

Ok, so UNTIL LATER.......... 

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Were you at the Tallahassee half/marathon this weekend? Or race else where?

Any new PRs? 

Ever had something special given to you that gave you that extra little motivation that you needed to "push" toward goals? I adore this ring... no, it isn't expensive or great quality, but I will always keep it! And, most likely wear it from now on!!!! :)

Back to Blogging, and Let's Talk Tapering..... gaining focus

A LONG BREAK

Hellooooooooooooooooo............ OH MY GOODNESS, has it really been since December 4th since my last blog post?!!!!!!! I took some time off from blogging mainly to see if I really wanted to even continue blogging. I mean, I enjoy it..... I actually LOVE writing, but then I was wondering if the time it takes to write posts was justifiable. I mean, I already have a busy, hectic life with working full time, being a wife/mother, keeping up with training and getting runs in, etc. A blog post takes about 1 hour from start to finish ....... obtaining pics to download is probably the hardest part! Seriously, you have to make sure to capture things in the day or during a run/race that you will later want to write about. If this blog were just words, without pics to kinda back up the words, how dull would that be?!!!!!!! So, yes, although it may seem like I am a selfie queen or a craze picture person, I have justifiable reason---HA!HA!HA! Well, at least that is what I am claiming!!..... 

Seriously, it is hard sometimes to take a selfie if you don't have a runner friend or anyone to snap a shot..... see below!!! I am telling you, the struggle is REAL! 

Why to keep blogging????...... the emails that I receive from people who have said that my blog has either motivated them to start running, get back to running, or keep running gives good reason to keep on blogging........ the amazing thing is that these emails are usually not from people I know...... NO!!! I am no expert or a real seasoned runner.... heck, I started just 4 years ago at the age of 40!!!!! But, if there is one thing for certain............ If I can do this, ANYONE surely can!!!!!! Ok, let's move on!!!! :D

No Blogging, but have been running

My current training plan has been focusing on a half marathon in March....... focus was on running a sub 1:50:00 half marathon. However, as with best made plans, things can change. I am registered to run the Tallahassee Half Marathon this next Sunday!!!! I have ran this race for the last 2 years. It is one of my favorite races even with the fact that the course was changed last year to a hill after hill course. Each year, this course has set a half marathon PR for me with last year's time 1:56:42. I have since pr'd in October for a half at the Zooma half in Florida at 1:54:24. About a week ago, I decided that I DID NOT want to use Tallahassee for just a regular long run. I expressed this to the coach and decision was made to start taper mode. YES, perhaps this is NOT a course that I will be able to pull out a sub 1:50:00, but if I could simply PR from my last year's time, I'd be good with that!!!! And, YES, perhaps I am sacrificing a great race at Albany in March........but, if the stars align this next Sunday, as they did last year....... I AM GOING FOR IT!!!!! I have decided that I will know within the first 3-5 miles whether I will have a good chance at a PR........ if things don't feel or look good, I will back off and slow.....then cruise to the finish. Then, focus will be on to Albany in March. If things do go well, and I do race the entire half marathon....... then, the following week after the half marathon, I will be in recovery mode and will consult with the coach that designs my plan on how to get back to training for Albany which may simply be a training type run. I plan to be smart about things.... no time for injury!!! I NEEEEEEEEEED running in my life. I do not want to compromise being able to run! Seriously, I run about 35-36 miles a week for good reason...... reduce stress and to stay sane!!!! Otherwise, I'd be more uptight than I already am...... Ha! hahahahahaha! HA! :D

BELOW, are pics from me coming in last year at the Tallahassee Half Marathon.... I could NOT believe that I had sub 2:00:00 a half marathon..... that had been my goal that day.... a goal that was set at the beginning of the race.... one that probably should have been made weeks prior.... I was in the middle of full marathon training, and I was suppose to run this half that day at around 2:15:00...... oops... oh well......  

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Taper Mode

Ahhhhhhhhhh, taper mode! Should be an exciting and relaxing time, right? I mean, mileage is decreased by 20%...........less running should bring feelings of relief, right? First of all, TAPER mode, as every runner knows, is extremely important!!! Last year, I DID NOT DO THIS!!! I was in the middle of training for a full marathon that I was to run the following month. Tallahassee was to be "just a regular long run." I was NOT to race it!!!! Wellllllll, that was until the morning of the race and I felt great, the weather was perfect, my legs showed up race day, there were fellow runners from my home town there......... yes, it was a "seize the day" kind of day!!!!! NOT SMART! I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS!!!!!!! This year I was avoiding this by starting taper for "just in case." 

Taper is kinda big deal!! A must!!!!! This is when tissue damage is repaired and glycogen stores are restored. Mileage in training basically causes a continued fatigue state....... a state not to be raced in!!! Therefore, you taper to rest and get ready to race! If you have trained properly, you have DONE ALL THE WORK you needed to do........ your deposit to the bank (so to speak) has been made! There is nothing in the 2 weeks preceding the race that you can do to make any difference!! Your mileage decreases by about 20% and your training should now be focused on resting up!!! That includes running easy, eating well, getting enough sleep, and getting your mind right for race day!!!!!!!! 

Taper can bring doubt!!! You must fight doubt off!!!! Your mind will play tricks on you by second guessing your training: Did i make the most of my training runs, did I do enough, should I have performed more strength training, should I have performed more speed work/tempo runs, is it realistic that I can meet my goal time, will my legs show up race day............... YOU MUST KEEP THE MIND STRONG!!!! IGNORE these thoughts! (As I write this, I am reminding my own self about this)........ the mind is a powerful thing, and it is the main reason either one succeeds or fails! If you must, distract yourself from these thoughts by doing other things...... for instance, I cleaned today!! LOL!!! My house suffers due to my running.... but, bring on taper, and the house gets cleaned!!! HA! HA! Well, and the fact that I am back to blogging!! The blog suffered too! LOL!!! But, seriously, you can read, make a craft, etc........ Just know, the work has been done!!!! 

Well, I will try to update blog at least 3 times a week..... that is my goal, if not, I will catch up on weekend. But, I will try to do better...... that is unless life gets too crazy!!! I appreciate you all!!! Have a great rest of the weekend! 

UNTIL LATER!!! XOXOXO

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Are you training for a race coming up? Do tell!!!!

Fellow bloggers, tips on getting the perfect photos? How do you do it? The selfie stick was a fail for me! Broke 2 and I hardly remember to bring it anywhere! 

Taper mode...... how do you cope? 

To Blog, Or Not to Blog........ when one isn't running

Blog? Yes? No? Maybe

So, it has been forever and a day since my last blog posting........ really don't have a great reason except that sometimes life throws curve balls. Over the last several days, I have thought about writing, but then...... I haven't even ran in the last week!!!! Yes, it has been an ENTIRE week since I last ran!!!! Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! I have become that runner that gets so VERY jealous seeing other runners running when I pass by in my car or when looking at all the run photos on Instagram!!!!! Yes, I am having my own pity party at the moment!!!!!! Trying to be positive, but with each day of not running, I am becoming a little down. Just being honest.... and yes, I know that there are worse things in the world, and that this is not a "big" deal, but I neeeeeeeed running for life balance! So, "It's my (pity) party and, I will cry if I want to!" Waaaaaaaaaaaaa!

So, why no running? Well, last Sunday, I became so fatigued! Just worn out! My husband and I had did some major cleaning out clutter in the house and moved heavy furniture! I thought I was worn out from that... but then, things became clearer...... scratchy sore throat, head congestion, and fatigue........ yep, appeared I was getting a head cold! The week went by and symptoms worsened! Thursday, I threw in the towel and decided to get checked out. Received a steroid shot on Thursday and prescription for antibiotic to start if didn't improve. Well, Yesterday, Saturday, I gave in and started antibiotics since now the infection is in my chest! UGH!!! I am the worse patient ever! Anyway, I don't have any fun running stuff, but will blog about some happenings going on..................

Thanksgiving 5K

The annual Thanksgiving 5K took place on Thanksgiving day (of course)....... Last 5K that I ran.. It was a great day! Weather was actually pretty nice. I felt good. Thought I was on point with my Thanksgiving knee high socks (see below), but then there was the guy above in a FULL on Turkey suit!!!!!!! Hands down, he was the one on point that day!!! LOVED IT! :) 

THANKSGIVING & OVERALL PR

Great weather or maybe the socks above put a little more pep in my step that led to a PR (personal record) ......... Yes, I PR'd at 23:42 (official time)- my garmin time was 23:43. I will take it!!!!! Slowly, but surely, I am chipping off the seconds!!! Running is definitely a sport that EVERY second counts!!!! 

THANKSGIVING FUN

All week long, my son had it planned out that he was going to bring his basketball and football to his grandma's house in order to play with his uncles! Below, Uncle Mark was a trooper throwing the football...... my son was so excited that he kept the basketball in one hand and was catching the football with the other hand!!! LOL! :D 

My husband was especially grateful..... usually, it is my son and him one on one with playing football and basketball.....which leaves my husband exhausted! LOL!!! Seriously, our son has two modes: ON and OFF! HA!HA! I would't want it any other way either! :)

Then,,,,,,, there was an INTENSE game of Jenga at our house.... Not to brag, but I am the Jenga Master currently..... yes, mommy has skills!! :D

My son was studying my husband's every move!! LOL!! 

Second of 3 skin cancers Removed

Wednesday, November 30TH, I had the 2nd  of the 3 skin cancers that I am having removed. Remember, I was feeling ill..... would have cancelled appointment, but there is a charge if you cancel within 24 hours of appt time...... but, my mother pulled through and drove me to my appointment. The dermatologist is located an hour and half from where I live, so, not a quick drive. 

These are the initial pics of the excision site on my back..... looks pretty awful, but it is amazing how the skin heals over a short time and the scars fade...... The body is an amazing piece of work....

Yes, my mom pulled through and drove me to my appointment...... the lobby was pretty full when we arrived. My mother said that she would simply wait in the car for me........ and, this is how I found her..... SOUND TO SLEEP!!!! Seriously, who does this except my mother? And, who has a pillow and blanket in the car? LOL! She is a nut! 

Oops!!!! Mommy forgot the Big Arrival!!! 

So, every December 1st, Elvis the Elf comes to visit our house..... with being under the weather, the last thing on my mind was the ELF!!! And, I did forget all about it until my son woke up on Thursday morning searching for the Elf...... luckily, Elvis did eventually arrive and had a hand written note apologizing for being late.... whew..... disaster fixed! 

Below, is my husband...... the next day, my son was having "Breakfast with Santa" and I needed to practice my camera skills.....lol... I have a really nice camera, but I always seem to only snap pictures with my phone camera. However, I decided to brush the dust off the fancy camera and take some practice shots..... my son was asleep, therefore, my husband had to be the model! LOL!!! He rarely smiles for pictures, but I think my goofiness cracked  him up.... he actually is smiling in the photo!!! HA! 

Breakfast with Santa

Santa and Ben had a serious conversation...... Guitar is high on the wish list this year.... and wish list only consists of 2 things! 

There was fun activities as well.... like getting a fake tattoos :)

Showing off his Awesome Christmas tree tattoo

My son and a buddy from school made some yummy Reindeer Food!!!!!! 

When going home, we drove through the downtown area..... It is always decorated for Christmas! My son jumped into the Santa Sleigh! 

Below, my son and I took a selfie in the sleigh..... Make up is a wonderful thing.... I almost don't look sick...... but, believe me, I was feeling under the weather. Had to powder my nose prior to this picture, otherwise, I would look like Rudolph the Red nose Reindeer!!! Blowing my nose excessive has led to a red nose in deed! The morning festivities on Saturday wore me out, and I was in bed for most of the rest of the day.... ugh! But, no way was I going to miss Breakfast with Santa!!! NOPE! 

Here is a pretty amazing decorated tree in the downtown area!!! We will definitely have to drive through one night when it is dark and the Christmas lights on!!!

So, probably not one of my most interesting or informative blog postings................ hopefully, I can get back to feeling better, and I will have more running adventures or stories to tell :) Hope everyone had a great weekend!!!!! Thanks to those that take time to support this little blogging adventure of mine. Thinking that by the first of the year, I need to vamp up my blog..... but, I am not the most tech savvy and will have to do some research! 

UNTIL LATER! 

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Exciting weekend? Any Holiday traditions? DO tell....love to hear!!!

ELF? Have one? This is my 3rd year running...... first year was so much fun and I had so many creative ideas... this year... I may be turning to Pinterest for ideas! :D

Ever been bummed about running? Ever taken an entire week off? Did it take forever to bounce back after a hiatus? 

Suggestions for this blog...... I really need to vamp it up.... open to ideas! 

Expectations: Sometimes things don't go as you thought..... in a good way

Better LATE than NEVER, Right?!

My, oh my, oh my!!!!!! I started this blog post a few weeks ago and TOTALLY forgot to post!!!!!  oops!!!!! That just goes to show how busy and crazy life has been..... crazy in a good way!!! So, this is late..... 

Pictured above are some FABULOUS running friends!!! This was at a 5k that is put on each year by my son's school.....but, I had to sit this one out. I had a skin cancer from the side of my head removed 2 days prior, and I didn't feel that  pushing and sweating that close out from the procedure was a great idea..... Hence the full on make up in the picture above!!! HA! HA! HA! :D 

None-the-less, it was GREAT fun!!!!! I got to do something that I never get to do.... and, that was to cheer on the runners as they came into the finish line!!!! Man, it is exciting to see the runners come in!!!! You can't help but cheer loudly for them!!! I had just as much fun cheering on the incoming runners as I do when I run!!!! And, to make it that much more exciting, most of my running friends had PRs!!!!!!! How cool is that?!?! 

ONE MILE FUN RUN!

Below, is my son toeing up at the start line of the 1 mile run..... can you tell by his face how excited he was?!!!! LOL!!!!! Well, let me tell you.... this face is not only screaming excitement, but a face that was eager to take on that 1 mile like none other!!! Oh yeah, inside that 7 year old head was a mission to run fast all the way to the finish line!!!!! Wish he had kinda let me in on that plan..... see..... NO! I was not going to let him run the 1 mile by himself...... yes, it may not be a long distance, but it is ran through neighborhoods with some turns.... and, YES, I am a helicopter mom.... I tend to hoover..... I mean, come on.... what if he got lost? What if he tripped and got injured? What if he went out too fast and then couldn't catch his breath? Yes... I can come up with a million things that could happen.... don't all moms? women? We are the over-thinkers, right?! Just our nature!!!!  

I should have known by his stance, that this was going to be a tough mile for me..... but, I honestly thought he would take out fast and then end up walking to where I could catch him..... I was planning on doing the sprint/walk, sprint/walk, sprint/walk all the way to the finish..... I didn't even warm up because I though I could run at a comfortable pace and he would walk to point I would catch him....... well, that did not happen!! NOPE!!!!!! About a quarter mile into the race, I could tell that he was going to run the entire thing!!! He was a good distance ahead of me and I knew that I had to increase pace to catch him!!!! Oh goodness, I kept thinking, her I go.... going to feel this tomorrow since I didn't warm up.... oh no, please don't let me injure myself....oh goodness, why oh why did I not warm up even a little?!!!! UGH!!! And, I took off!!!! Seriously, I was running at a pace that I NEVER do unless performing speed work!!!!!!!!! I couldn't catch the little guy!!!! I was literally chasing after my son!!!!! I saw a water station and for a brief moment just knew I would get a break because surely he would take advantage of the water station on course...... oh no!!! What was I thinking!!!!! He blew right by that water station..... people that I knew cheered me on saying, "GO MOM!!!" I said, "I am only trying to catch my son!!!" And, I could hear their laughter! ***SIGH***....... I did catch him........ and, I ran the last 0.3 mile along side of him..... I never got my garmin started at the beginning until half way through the mile run.... I only knew the pace we were running at the present time..... I was incredibly SHOCKED when on the time clock was 7:11 as my son crossed! HOLY CRAP!!!!! I had no idea he was capable of sustaining that pace for a mile!!! I guess soccer is making him one heck of a runner!!!! His 2 friends were right behind him too!!! Fast little kids!!!!! 

My son ended up being the 3rd runner to cross the line..... I knew he placed in his age group....but, he had no idea!!!! When they called his name, he said, "why did I get a medal, I was 3rd!" Then, I had to explain that he was first in his age group! He didn't really get that either..... but, then I said, "you were the 1st 7 year old to cross, and for that you got a medal!" He was like, "Oh!" ......... he was proud to have gotten a medal :):)

Following the run, there is always a carnival that takes place.... and, there is always have a rock wall that my son spends hours on!!!!! HIs goal is to make it all the way to the top! This year, he made it about 23 feet up and was 2 ft from the top.... he told me that he was sure that next year would be the year he makes it to the top!! LOL! 

These bubble things pictured below look like a BLAST!!! But, for a mom, these bubble things are simply a great deal of anxiety!!!! The kids bump each other and they roll all over the place.... sounds fun, right? NOT!!!! These are clearly made for bigger kids because my son and his friends kept falling out..... they would be upside down on their heads and other kids would continue to run and bump them..... All I could see was a disaster about to happen!!! A horrible injury sending a kid crying....the harness just simply did not fit kids of their size like the bigger kids..... this fun was short lived!!! Any longer and mommy was gonna need a drink!!! LOL! Just kidding!!! 

Yes, my son thought the bubble things were great!! UGH!! 

Again, sorry for the late posting of this blog!!! I really thought I had finished it and posted..... my bad!!! I will try better to be a little more current.... and, perhaps, post a bit more!!!! 

UNTIL LATER!!!

Happy Sunday folks!!!!! 

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Anyone with kids that run local race? Ever just blown away by how they performed? 

ny fun activates at your children's school? Do tell... our school is always open to fun events! I may steal an idea! :)