Mid-week Musings

If you follow me on Facebook then you’ve seen a few posts of things that have caught my interest. In the rare instances I have a few spare minutes, I like to scour the internet for current events, interesting stories, random ramblings.

And here are few things I’ve come across–

Oprah Bashing

My buddy Sara@Running On Healthy wrote a very interesting post (all her posts are interesting) about an article she read on how Oprah ruined the marathon. This guy wrote how Oprah caused a surge in interest in people to run a marathon.

So what, you ask?

Well, the author basically says that because of Oprah, the marathon is no longer competitive and American marathon times have plummeted because regular Joes think they can run it and are running it but according to him, in absurdly slow times.

Wait, what??? People are interested in running? People want to challenge themselves and do something different? People want to do something…..good for them??

And this is bad???

I never understand people who get upset at those wanting to better themselves. I get being concerned they do things the right way, the healthy way, but to blame people for the “demise of the marathon” just because they’re not fast? That is what’s absurd.

This ties in to something else I came across.

Excuses??

I’m a pop culture kinda gal and like to be in the know all things celebs, so every now and again I check out People.com. There was an article about a woman the other day who posted this photo on her Instagram account.

The mom got so. much. backlash.

And if I’m going to be completely honest with you, I don’t feel a whole lot sorry for her. While I do not think women should be criticized for their commitment to staying fit, there’s something about the “no excuse” mantra trend that’s been going around that kind of bugs me.

Kids are not an excuse. I know that many women want to work out but because of life, they’re just not able to. It’s. not. an. excuse.

People always tell me how much they admire my commitment to running considering I have a full-time job, two kids, and a husband who enjoys my company. It’s definitely tough balancing everything and yeah, I find time to make it all work, but I’m not going to sit here and say that it’s easy and that anyone can do it. That everyone else who is not working out is making an excuse. I would never want to make other moms feel guilty–I have no idea what they’re going through. What I do know is how difficult it is finding time and a way to prioritize yourself (no matter how important you know it is).

I think had this mom used a different slogan, catch phrase, caption, words of advice, something a little more encouraging, inspirational—beside the “no excuse” thing, I’d be more apt to defend her. I admire any woman who commits themselves to fitness, mom or not. It’s what motivates me to keep at it.

The photo is motivating. The words are not.

Ultra Crazy?

Finally, I found this article on msn.com about this guy from San Francisco who ran 7 marathons, in 7 continents, in 7 days.

Yes, you read that correctly.

At first, I was like, “Coooool!” Then, I was like, “Oooooouch!”

It’s called the World Marathon Challenge and 11 other people made the attempt.

At one point, Durbin, the American runner, ran 3 marathons on less than 9 hours of sleep! Could you imagine??? He said that he started feeling the effects of the running and travel before his 5th race in Morocco. Lactic Acid anyone? The first race in Antarctica did a number on his body — because of the extreme temperatures — and the last one in Australia. Talk about extremes.

Isn’t that insane?

I’m exhausted just reading about it.

——————————————

So, those were a few things that caught my eye this past week. What are your thoughts them?

–Did Oprah ruin the marathon? (She’s motivated the hell outta me; I’m still gunning for her time!)

–Was it poor word choice on @SuperAbs mom?

–Would you consider a World Marathon Challenge? (And we thought Dopey was tough!) (Wait, I still do!)

The year that was two thousand unFOURgettable teen

And it’s here!!! The last day of 2014!!

This has been an incredible year for me personally and in my running life. I honestly don’t think I’ll ever have such an amazing year as this and I don’t even want to try. This year will be its own very special year in which I accomplished so much and did so much…

Here’s a look back at the year that was 😀

1. January My first sub 2 hour half marathon 1:58:11

This was such a special race because my husband and I trained so hard for this. It was also 6 months post partum and to have met my goal so soon after giving birth made me feel like a total badass

yay!

yay!

2. March: My FIRST marathon

Oh. Em. Gee. This was such an epic day. It was so hard and so amazing at the same time. Crossing that finish line was one of the proudest moments of my life–it made me a marathoner!

Crossing that finish line=best feeling ever

Crossing that finish line=best feeling ever

Yep, I'm a finisher!

Yep, I’m a finisher!

Seriously, how beautiful is this medal??

Seriously, how beautiful is this medal??

3. March: I froze my butt off and got a 5k PR in Ohio

This was a special race because it was the first race my brother, sister, and I ran ever ran together. My 6’2, 300lb brother crossed the finished line at a veerrry respectable 33 something! And I placed second in my age group with my shiny new PR of 24:18 🙂

My brother on the run

My brother on the run

Our after pic :)

Our after pic 🙂

My Shwings and my AG award :)

My Shwings and AG award 🙂

4. April: I have a 2 year old!

My favorite girl in the world growing up so fast ❤

2

2

10169276_10103538363283511_1640954374_n

Party time!

 

5. April: Um, I ran a race in MADRID, SPAIN!!!

Okay, first, I never thought I’d ever visit Europe. Second, I neeever thought I’d run a race in Europe! But, the opportunity presented itself this year and my husband and I found ourselves running a 1/2 marathon through the streets of Spain

Screen Shot 2014-05-05 at 10.25.47 PM

Screen Shot 2014-05-05 at 10.26.05 PM

10269626_696967707034200_4637288540286636799_n

It was absolutely incredible and something I will never, ever forget.

6. May: I crossed the Grand Canyon…TWICE

Okay, so I never thought I’d go to Europe and I did. But if someone told me I’d hike the Grand Canyon twice I woulda told them they were crazy. Yet, I was the crazy one who actually did it!

Day 1: South Kaibab to North Kaibab. Day 2: North Kaibab to Bright Angel.

Day 1: South Kaibab to North Kaibab. Day 2: North Kaibab to Bright Angel.

 

20140518_155652

Looking back at the miles

 

at the finish line of the Canyon :)

and at the finish line of the Canyon 🙂

7. June: My first trail race (and first at night!)

The newb trail runner in me came out this race as I had NO idea what I had signed up for lol! This was hella hard!!!

Started with the 10 mile loop followed by the 10k loop (see mountain).

Started with the 10 mile loop (bottom pic) followed by the 10k loop (top pic).

Pre-race pic at Adrenaline 27k

Pre-race pic at Adrenaline 27k–still smiling having no clue….lol

Adrenaline 27k

Soooo happy to be done!

8. July: My little guy turned ONE!!!!

12 months=1 year in case you didn't know :D

12 months=1 year in case you didn’t know 😀

9. August: I went back to work

This was a hard decision for me but one I am very glad I made. I felt like I wasn’t ready to let go of teaching after taking a year off and I really missed it.

My bib board makes my classroom complete :) (don't mind my soda collection lol!)

My bib board makes my classroom complete 🙂
(don’t mind my soda collection lol!)

10. September: I completed 100 Days of NO Soda!!!

IMG_20140909_090715

Those who know me know what a big deal this was. It hard, it was tough, but I honestly think it has made a lasting impression on me as I definitely have seen a change in my drinking habits.

11: October: My dream race!!!

Holy cow, I ran the Marine Corps Marathon!!! I still can’t believe I was able to do it. It was everything I’d hoped it’d be and MORE–because I also got to meet my BRF and Sole Sister, Salt!

20141026_134948

Cheesin' real hard

Cheesin’ real hard at packet pick up

Best. Medal. Ever.

Best. Medal. Ever.

12. November: A humbling race

I ran the Gilbert 1/2 Marathon at 2:00:16 baaareely missing what would’ve been my second sub 2 of the year. It was a poorly run race on my part but a HUGE learning experience.

IMG_20141122_102118

Oh man, that’s always tough to look at.

13. December: To then run the race of my life!!

The Fiesta Bowl 1/2 Marathon proved to me that I can do hard things. It was seriously a tale of two races as the first half of the half, I struggled and was about to throw in the towel on trying to get my second sub 2 race of the year. But then a light switched on at mile 7 and I ran the rest of the race a different person finishing with a brand new, incredible, half marathon PR

PhotoGrid_1418609313518

Best!

14. Last, but not least…1000 miles!

On the dot!

On the dot!

Such an incredible year for me. I’ve been having a blast blogging and while sometimes life gets busy and I can’t do it as much as I’d like, I appreciate all of you who have shared this journey with me. So looking forward to 2015!!!

P.S. I turned 30 this year! 😀

–How would you describe your 2014 in ONE word? (me? Un-Four-gettable)

–What are you looking forward to in 2015?

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Be safe out there

❤ helly

 

 

 

 

 

Back on the Marathon Train-ing!!

I know, I know. I just ran a marathon.

Lemme ‘splain.

When I put my name in the Marine Corps Marathon Lottery, I really had NO idea I’d get picked the first time I tried. So I signed up for Phoenix Marathon (Feb. 28) thinking I’d at least have that marathon to train for if I didn’t get in. Yeah, you know what happened..lol

I took an entire full week off post Marine Corps. No running, no cross training, no nothing except for indulging in all things food and soda (and surprising, I didn’t drink that much!). Then the following week I started to ease back in.

But this week starts the first week of official Phoenix Marathon Training!
Screen Shot 2014-11-11 at 7.38.56 AMI’ve decided to go back to Hal on this one and do a modified Higdon plan. I still need to recap Run Less, Run Faster and really stress how my experience with it really shouldn’t be taken with much confidence as I was pretty terrible at following it 😦 but more on that later.

For Phoenix, I’m on a mission. I’m going to lay it out there.

I want a sub 4:30.

I really, really do. Last year, I finished at 4:44 and I really think I got it in me to nail a big PR like that. I was 7 months post pregnancy when I did my first marathon, I have a lot more training under my belt, and I simply have more some okay, two marathons of experience. Plus, this race is in my hometown, so no traveling (I think that’s a big point there) and I can’t neglect to mention the elevation course: Screen Shot 2014-11-11 at 8.08.56 AMWhich leads me to this: I was talking to a girl about how I wanted to get a sub 4:30 and when I said I was hoping to do it at Phoenix she scoffed and said, “Yeah, that’s all downhill so you’re lucky. Should be easy to get it.”

Ummm, I didn’t get it when I ran the marathon the first time, missy (it sure as hell wasn’t easy either!) And neither did thousands of people who ran it that day. Huumpf!!!

I just don’t get how runners can be so negative to other runners. Runners are known for being such nice people and it’s those handful out there, like the girl I was talking to, who are blemishing our reputation. So if I do get my sub 4:30 do I have to put a little asterisk saying I did it at Phoenix, a course known for being fast?? If someone BQs do they have to add a disclaimer that it was done on a downhill course? I mean, really?

Get off my marathon train-ing. Guh-bye!

–What do you guys think? Does someone need to explain their PR or BQ?

I hope you all have a good week! To those in the U.S., Happy Veteran’s Day!!–make sure to tip your hat to those who served 🙂