Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Excuse #3: “I Can’t Run. I Have No Motivation”


This post is part of my series about tackling the excuses people make for not running. See Part #1 (“I’m too busy!) HERE and Part #2 (“The weather sucks) HERE.

Part #3 of this series is for those people who don’t have the motivation to run. It cracks me up how some think motivation is going to fall from the sky like acid rain and suddenly bless them with motivation. You cannot wait for motivation to descend on you. It likely won’t happen. I have found that most of the time with running, the feeling follows the action. That basically means just shut up and get busy.

I get asked a lot: “How do you get motivated to run?” My answer is always the same. It’s kind of like sex experts say, “It’s only hard if you make it hard.”

Our brain has a story about everything. When we don’t feel like running, our monkey mind chatter has excuse-related stories: It’s too hot. It’s too cold. I’m too tired. I’m too busy. I’m too constipated. If we follow the story and let it run our world, we sabotage ourselves.

Excuse #49: I’d like to run, but my tights are giving me a wedgie.

If you are truly struggling to get out the door, try one or all of the following:

  1. Shut Up and Run. Did you think I’d start this list anywhere else? Stop being a baby. Provided you are not vomiting, wheezing, injured, or about to become injured, ditch the excuses for why you aren’t running and go do it. The longer you give your brain time to talk your body out of going for a run, the better the chances are you won’t do it. Don’t over-think things. Lace up your shoes and go.
  2. Take a Trip Down Memory Lane. Think of the last time you didn’t want to run but went anyway. Remember how you felt after the run. 99 out of 100 people say they feel better after a run and never regret having done it. Those are pretty good odds. The leftover person who did not feel better doesn’t count because they were probably lying.
  3. Make Contact. Call or text a friend or family member and tell them you are going running and you’ll let them know when you are done. Be specific. “I am going to run at 2:00 a.m. after last call at the bar and I will  be done by 2:30 a.m.” This tactic is a good one when being accountable to just yourself is not enough.
  4. Plan a Meet Up. This is so obvious and overused it is boring. But, the reason I include it is that it works. Plan to meet someone or a group for your runs. This is one time when being the victim of peer pressure is very effective. People will hate you if you don’t show up and you’ll hate yourself.
  5. Spice It Up. There is nothing wrong with giving yourself a couple of incentives to get out there. Let’s face it, even if you really love to do something, you can have off days. That’s why there are books like “Adding Spice in the Bedroom.” So – add some spice to your run. Put a few new tunes on your iPod. Plan a small reward for yourself once you finish the run (Cinnamon Dolce Latte perhaps?). Wear a new piece of running clothing.
  6. Change Your Attitude. Listen you whiner, you get to run. There are many people who can’t even walk. There are some people, like babies, who can’t even crawl. Take a look around: half the blogging world is injured. Be grateful you can get out there and stop your bitching. Not that I would know anything about being injured.
  7. Find Inspiration. When you are in a slump, quickly pick up a book/magazine or pull up a blog that motivates you. Some of my favorites are Matt Long’s book “The Long Run” and the blog, “Marc and Angel Hack Life.”
  8. Take 10. If all else fails, give yourself permission to head out for ten minutes and to turn around if you cannot take another step because you are just that unmotivated. Something physiologically and mentally happens when you start to run. This transformation is so powerful and immediate that you usually want to keep running. Odds are you will not turn for home after ten minutes, but if you do, at least know you tried. Then email me and I will berate you for a half hour. Pussy! (JK).


Got any tips to add to the list?

What blogs, books, magazines, websites do you find most inspiring? Please share because I think most people will find them inspiring too.


Sunday, April 26, 2015

You Know It’s a Small Race When…(Ft. Collins Trail Half Marathon Report)

You know you are running a small race when the only bathrooms are in the church (where the race tents are set up) and the pastor of the church comes over and tells you that runners can use the bathroom in his house next door. This poor pastor did not know what he was in for when he invited a bunch of runners into his bathroom. I am pretty sure we will not be asked back.


Have I told you how much I love small races? Even more than that I love small TRAIL races.

They are very chill. You stand at the start with 150 other half marathoners and they say “go.” No corrals, no gun shots, no loud speakers. There are burgers and beer at the end and no lines (except for the pastor’s bathroom). If you place in your age group (groups are 10 years, not 5) you get to pick from a bunch of stuff (hats, headlamps, socks).


I ran this race last year. It was an 11.5 mile half marathon then. Yesterday it was 12.56. We are getting closer to the actual distance, so next year should be 13.1 (hopefully not longer).

The course is an out and back that starts on a gigantic hill that goes up for a mile. You are pretty much ready to quit by then (see said hill behind me).


 I am sticking out my chest to give the impression my boobs are larger than they are.

You then head down a single track through a beautiful canyon to a river and head up again for what seemed like a very long time. There are a few places on the route that are impossible to run (at least for me) because they are so steep.  There was very little talking amongst runners and more just a lot of heavy breathing and grunting. I love a good challenge, and with 1,600 feet of climbing along with some mud and 8 water crossings, this fit the bill.


My strategy for the race was to push myself, but to also remain steady. If I felt my heart rate was getting too high I’d remind myself that I had a long way to go and I needed to conserve. I walked the really steep parts and tried to cruise the declines – I was careful about falling, though, because I had a pretty bad fall on the trail last week that kind of shook me up (almost slammed my head into a tree).

Last year I didn’t bring my own water. This year I did because there are no aid stations between mile 4.5 and mile 8.5.  There is a lot of uphill in this section, so I was glad I had hydration. I forgot my own gels, so I took one from the aid statin at mile 4.5 (about 45 minutes in). It was a new-to-me gel:


I slammed that baby down without noting the “chia” on the package. The consistency was so f’n bizarre -  kind of like tapioca. I gagged (although the taste was good, could not deal with texture) and might have spit some on my shirt.

I only eat hot dogs at baseball games and at the end of races (okay, and sometimes when I camp). Not sure why. Just don’t like wieners that much I suppose (TWSS).


I always consider it a a good race when my stomach behaves I do not almost crap my pants (you think I’m kidding, I’m not). Thank you pastor for helping me use a helpful preventive shitting strategy before my race.

At the end of the day (<<<ha!), I was 2nd/21 in the 40-49 age group. Time: 2:12.


My friend, Ed, also took 2nd in his AG:


I’ve said it before: so happy to grow old(er) with Ken and to share these adventure with him. 20 years of marriage in June, baby!


The moral of the story:

Do a trail race. Experiment with chia gu before you put it in your mouth. Thank your pastor. Find something you and your significant other love to do together. Run hills to get stronger.  Eat a hot dog at least once per year. Challenge yourself. Stick your chest out if you have small breasts.

Ever do a trail race? Yes, I think this is my fifth.

Do you prefer small or large races? Small.

Strangest place you’ve ever pooped? Inside the hollow of a tree.


PS: Thanks to The Endurance Race Series for the entry! I’ll be back.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

7 Random Things for Hump Day

I don’t know why I love random shit so much. I suppose because it is all the small minutia of our lives that makes for one big hilarious party.

1. I hate the term “hump.” I realize in the context of the phrase “hump day” it simply means climbing over the proverbial mountain/middle of your week and getting closer to the weekend.  But, “hump” always makes me think of dogs frantically mounting stuffed animals or other dogs and going to town. It seems a bit desperate. Other terms/phrases I hate:

  • Moist
  • Phone tag
  • LOL (even though I use it, sometimes it just fits)
  • “At the end of the day…”
  • Irregardless (because, people, this is not really a word! Use regardless!!)
  • Panties
  • Hubby
  • Methinks (although I rarely hear this one in real life)
  • Discharge
  • Amazeballs
  • Lovemaking (better than “humping,” I suppose)

2. I am running a trail half marathon this weekend with Ken (the Ft. Collins Trail Half). I did this race last year for the first time (see race report HERE) and it quickly became one of my favorite races of all time even though it kicked my ass. I especially liked how it was a half marathon, but ended up being only 11.5 miles.  Here’s a pic from last year (yes we do run up that hill in the background and 400 other hills):


3. My dad. If you have ever wondered where I get some of my crazy, you just have to look at this man. We had our typical family dinner on Sunday and decided to play the whipped cream game (no, this does not have anything to do with “hump” – that would just be weird). We did the thing where you spray whipped cream in your palm facing up, hit your wrist, the whipped cream flies into the air and then you catch it in your mouth. Only it hardly ever lands in your mouth. I caught my dad on slo-mo (not sure why he sounds like a cow, he does not usually sound that way). It’s only 17 secs. Just watch it HERE.

4. Socks Confusion. I don’t understand my running socks that have an L and an R on them for left and right foot. They fit the same even when I wear them on the “wrong” feet like today.


5. Consistency is Key. Did you know that the more consistent of a runner you are (meaning you don’t take huge breaks from running, you keep consistent mileage, etc), the better your overall performance will be? Knock on wood, I have been injury free for at least two years. This has allowed me to be consistent. Since August of last year (9 months ago!) I have been without fail running 30-35 miles per week. At times I throw in speed work, but not always. I have absolutely noticed that my running has not only gotten easier but I have gotten faster without even trying.

6. Caramel. If you have been reading this blog for awhile, you know the love affair I have with Stinger Waffles. They have gotten me through two Ironmans (Ironmen? Mice? Mices?) and countless other races. I am overjoyed that this new flavor is out (which I have yet to try).


7. I really want to re-do this blog. As in, make it into a more professional website on Wordpress like you guys do (keeping the Shut Up and Run name of course). There have been 2 barriers to this for me. First, I don’t know who I should have do it and secondly, cost. If you have any thoughts, let me know. Please. Methinks that at the end of the day this would be a good idea irregardless of the cost. <see what I did there??

Tell me one random thing about your week.

Least favorite word/phrase?

When’s your next race? Favorite race?


Monday, April 20, 2015

How I Gained 30 Pounds This Weekend

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve gotten more spoiled. I like nice hotel rooms with pillow-top beds and Starbucks coffee. I notice when sheets have a higher thread count. I enjoy hot baths with lots of lavender scented Epsom salts and a glass of wine on the side.

These are things I didn’t care as much about when I was younger (well, I’ve always cared about the wine part). In fact, I’ve slept in some interesting youth hostels throughout Europe – you know the kind where you share a room with 25 other strangers…)

This weekend I chose to forgo these luxuries. My two dear friends, Julie and Erika, and I schlepped on our 30ish pound back packs and hiked up to 11,300 feet in the Rocky Mountains outside of Breckenridge. Here in Colorado we have a bunch of huts that you can hike to. I’ve only lived here 21 years and I’ve never done it. Now was the time.


Just a little snow. NBD.


Did I mention the huts don’t have heat? Or water? (you use snow and boil it – yellow snow is not advisable). You also use compost toilets and carry out all your trash. Feminine hygiene products included. SWEET. Oh, and no phone/internet service < for some that’s harder to deal with than no heat.

We didn’t start out until 5:30 p.m. on Friday. A sizable snowstorm had moved through and there was about a foot of the fresh stuff.


It was only a 2.1 mile trek up to the hut, but it was also 1,800 feet of climbing. If that doesn’t mean much to you, just know that is f’n steep. Plus, oxygen is in kind of short supply.


So, just guess how long it took us to trudge up 2.1 miles? 1 hour, 45 minutes. I am proud of that 50 minute mile. We earned every step. When we got to the hut (Francie’s Cabin) it was dark. And, I could not feel my hands. Like I said, no heat, so we gathered around the fire. I put on 45 layers.


If your inquiring minds want to know why our packs were so heavy it was because we had to carry the essentials (bottles of wine, Bailey’s, Fireball, bacon, pancake mix, Gouda, Triscuits, trail mix, pretzels, fajita makings and chocolate). No matter what, I don’t go anywhere without a book. Even if I have to carry it up a mountain. No, I did not read one page.


Our space was small, but cozy.


We even had some friends (ewww):


We were in the hut master’s quarters, and upstairs there was another section that slept 20 people. Party. This is the sexiest I have ever looked.


We spent a fair amount of time in this place (the sauna):


There might have been enough wine consumption that I thought my empty (small) bottle of wine was a flashlight. I was so pissed it didn’t work. But, the wine was good.

If you visit Colorado, you have to make a hut trip. You can do it in the summertime too (July to September). Just book way ahead of time. And try to plan around you period (I have such great words of wisdom).IMG_3569[1]

More info on the huts and booking online HERE.

Would you rather camp in a beautiful spot in the mountains or stay in a luxury hotel?

Ever done a hut trip?

Are you a winter sport person? (skiing, snowshoeing, etc)? Not really. Even though I live in Colorado, I don’t ski. I had an accident once and was carried down the mountain on one of those stretchers of shame. Kind of scarred me. Plus, I like to be warm.


Friday, April 17, 2015

Excuse #2: “I Can’t Run, the Weather Sucks”

This is the second part in my 5 part series of why there should be NO excuses to not run. See my first post HERE – all about people who don’t run because they are too busy. Yeah, right.

The second installment of this fascinating series focuses on those types who say they can’t run because it is too hot, cold, windy, etc. Living in Colorado, I run in all kinds of weather. All year ‘round. In fact, today it is 35 degrees and snowing. The perfect day for a wet and moist run (who else loves the word “moist” ? – raise your hand).


Do not be jealous of my jowls. You will have them one day too. I promise.

I got rid of my gym membership (too poor), which means no treadmill. Consequently, I actually did 100% of my training outside this year (well, 3x when it was super icy I paid an entry fee to the rec center to use the ‘mill). I’m not going to lie. I don’t always love to run outside when it’s colder than a witch’s tit, or windier than a sack full of farts or hotter than Hades. But, here’s why I do it:

Training in adverse conditions makes you stronger. Wind provides resistance training. Hot gives you a chance to practice hydrating and slowing your pace so your exertion stays even. Cold, well cold just gives you icicle butt and stops your circulation (if you have Reynauds like me). Not much good about that except that it makes you tougher and you feel like a bad ass.


10 degrees. Snow. 15 miles.

Ice, however – well, that is a different story. Don’t do it. Nothing can help you on ice, not even Yak Trax. It’s not worth the risk.

Bottom line is:  If you are someone who says they can’t run because of the weather, that’s a just another excuse to avoid getting out there. Sometimes, on days like today when it is pouring snow, I don’t see any other runners out there. I like to fantasize that the people in their cars think I’m cool for going out in those conditions. In actuality I’m sure that 1) they don’t care or 2) they just think I’m crazy and stupid.

But, the point is that I am proud of myself for doing it. Why? Because it takes a lot of discipline go get out there when it’s not a calm day with perfect temps. Fair weather running is lovely, but it’s also for pussies (can I get a bumper sticker that says that?)

Tips for Running in Shitty Weather:

Wind (the worst of all running weather evils, IMHO):

  • Try to lean into the wind, but keep your body relaxed.
  • If you are doing an out and back, run into the wind on your way out and with the wind at your back on the way home. This will hopefully give you a negative split for the run and will teach you to run with quick turnover on tired legs.
  • Surrender. Wind will slow you down if you have a headwind. Accept that fact and trudge forward. Don’t judge yourself for that. Lastly, don’t attempt tempo or speed work in the wind. You’ll just get frustrated.
  • Wear sunglasses. On windy days, dust blows around and may cause your eyes to sting or water. Wearing sunglasses will protect your eyes from debris.
  • Pay attention to the temperature. If it’s cold, note the wind chill and dress for that. In the heat, run out with the wind at your back and home with a headwind to cool you off.


  • First and foremost, dress appropriately, but not so that you will be too hot. If the snow is really coming down with some wind, be sure to cover your face.
  • Wear trail running shoes or Yak Trax for good traction.
  • As is the case with running in the wind, your pace while running in snow will be slower. Go with it.
  • Wear sunglasses to cut down on the glare and to keep flakes out of your eyes and your eyeballs from freezing.
  • Expect your muscles to be sore. When running in snow you use different muscles because you have to stabilize yourself.

Extreme Heat:

  • Avoid high intensity workouts in the heat of the day. Duh.
  • Accept that your pace will be slower. Ideal running temperatures range from 50º-55º. For every five degrees above that, your performance can degrade 2%.  This means that if you are running in 75º  heat, your pace could slow up to 10%! Humidity might make it even worse. Don’t expect you can or will perform the same in the heat (from a study done at Team Oregon).
  • Wear the least amount of clothing possible (that won’t get you arrested)
  • Try to pick a shady route.
  • Drink often and early. Try to take in at least 6 ounces of liquid (not including Bud Light) for every 15 minutes of running. Plan your routes where you can replenish your water, or hide it along the way.
  • Take salt tabs if you will be out there for awhile. I like Salt Stick.
  • Try to go early morning or later evening.
  • Avoid excess protein intake before and during the run. Protein metabolism produces extra heat (source).


Do you run in all kinds of weather?


Do you use weather as an excuse to not run?

What’s the worst weather related running disaster you’ve had? Probably this time when the weather changed suddenly and drastically and we were not prepared.


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Could This Be a Trick to Running Faster?

On my run today I nearly threw my iPod in a ditch. I kept getting tangled in the wires and I hated every song that came on. Then I said to myself, “Self! Why are you even listening to music? It’s a gorgeous spring morning. You could be listening to the birds. And, your own heavy breathing.”  <-which is  a total turn on by the way.


This has been happening more and more to me lately. While I’ve historically been a music-slut on my runs, I’ve been taking my iPod with me less often. Hell yes, there are times that music is what I want and need to distract me on super long runs or to give me a boost during races. Yet, using music on my every day runs feels like I’m shutting out the world.

I don’t know why I’ve changed. It’s been gradual. Perhaps it was the fact that during Ironman races you can’t have music (dude  if you are me, that is like 12-13 hours of intense exercise with no tunes). I think I learned to train without it most of the time.

Or, maybe it’s because life has felt so hectic lately that it’s nice to not worry about bringing one more thing on my runs.


I don’t know and I guess it doesn’t matter. We should all just do whatever the hell we want to do. I don’t think music is a “crutch” or makes anyone less of a runner because they love their music. For years,  have depended on it. It’s just personal preference.

I do think it’s interesting, however, that a bunch of research has shown that listening to music can potentially make you run faster and even increase energy levels. 

A article reported, “In a study of Australian triathletes, researchers found that listening to music tracks by the likes of Queen, Madonna and the Red Hot Chili Peppers increased the athletes’ energy efficiency by 1 percent to 3 percent, enabling them to do more with the same amount of oxygen.” Apparently listening to tunes can reduce the perception of effort significantly and increase endurance by as much as 15 percent!!

A report published (2014)  in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research stated that when runners listened to music during 5Ks they ran faster than without it. I’m guessing it depends on the tempo of the music used. Enya and AC/DC aren't quite the same (I’m a genius).

The question probably boils down to whether you are an internal runner or an external runner. Do you seek your motivation from outside sources like music, talking to people in groups, taking in the scenery, etc.? Or, are you the type who goes deep into yourself and your thoughts and wants no external distractions? I’m a bit of both – and it sort of depends on my mood and the type of running I’m doing. Speed or treadmill workouts? Bring on the tunes.

Do you listen to music while you run? Why or why not?

Do you think music improves your performance and/or makes you faster? In shorter races, yes.


Saturday, April 11, 2015

You Say You Don’t Have Time to Run? I Say,“Bullsh*t!”

When I first came up for the concept of this blog a few years ago, I named it Shut Up and Run because I kept hearing people bitch and whine about how much they wanted to run but there just wasn’t enough time. Or, they just couldn't get motivated. Or, running was hard (no shit).  Or, they didn’t have the right “runner’s body.” Or, they were too old. Or, they peed/pooped themselves when they ran.

All of this complaining had to go. It seemed to me that people were making this all way harder than it had to be. Couldn’t we all just shut off our brains for a second and just start to run? I am believer in the premise that if it is important to us, we will find a way to make it happen.

Here begins a 5 part series on how you can just toss the excuses in the toilet and RUN. Unless you are sick, disabled or on the verge of injury, there really is no reason why it can’t happen for you. That is, if you want it to. Running is not for everyone. If you don’t want to run then stop talking about how you do and go buy some knitting needles or golf clubs.

So, let’s start with Excuse #1.

Please say this in your most whiny voice: “But, I just don’t have the time to run!”

Let’s break it down. That’s bullshit. What you mean is: “But, I just don’t make time to run,” or “I don’t really want to run, I just want to complain about not running.”

Because the truth is (and we’ve all heard this one):

Now, it’s time to problem solve. If you really don’t think you have time to run, get busy implementing these tips.

  1. Believe It’s Possible. First, you need to re-train your brain. Get out of the negative that says, “I don’t have time to run,” and create a positive statement that you believe such as, “It is possible to make time to run but I also need to make some lifestyle changes.”
  2. Get Organized. Every week I make a to-do list (the old fashioned kind with a pencil and a piece of paper). I put absolutely everything on that list from running errands to work deadlines to appointments to my workouts. I’d put pooping on there but I’m just not the regular. Yes, I schedule in my workouts much like I schedule in a OB/GYN appointment. It has to happen and it’s not getting interrupted. Sure, this takes some balancing. Maybe it means I can’t sleep as much as I’d like or I forgo a happy hour (not likely). The point is, make your runs a priority.
  3. Be Realistic. If you are really that busy, then maybe is not the time to train for a marathon. Take on a simpler and more achievable goal like running for 30 minutes 4 or 5 times per week. If you keep it basic and manageable you are more likely to do it. Period.
  4. Find a Group or a Friend. Find someone or some ones who are even busier than you are. Notice how they make running fit into their lives. Plan routine runs with them. You’ll be less likely to skip your run if you know they are waiting on you. Hang out with people who push you, who make you better, who motivate you.
  5. Make it a priority. This kind of goes with #1. If you want to run regularly, some other stuff might have to go from your life. Do you really need to watch that extra hour of reality TV? Could you say “no” to someone who asks you to do the millionth thing at your children’s school? Do you have to make every meal from total scratch? (or, you could be like me and start using a grocery delivery service for when you are crazy busy. It’s only a #5 delivery fee).

So, you see, if you want it to happen, it will happen. It doesn’t mean that it will be easy or you won’t have to move out of your comfort zone and make some changes. 6 years ago I did not run and I hardly exercised. I made changes. These changes did not happen overnight, but they did happen. Trust me they will happen for you too. You’ve just got to want it.

Sound a bit bossy? Maybe. It’s not like I have all the answers, but these are some tricks that have worked for me.

{Like anything, there are exceptions. This post is meant to target people who use being busy as an excuse – when deep down they know they could fit running in if they wanted to. There are those people who desperately want to run, but simply CANNOT fit it in (i.e., brand new moms, etc.)}.

Any other tips for how to find time to run?

What changes have you made in your life to fit in running?


Thursday, April 9, 2015

Our California Tour (in numbers)

I’m fresh off the plane and ready to tell you about Spring Break 2015 in the best way I know how.

  • Number of runs taken: 3 (San Diego, Westlake Village <- near L.A.)
  • Average miles per run: 5
  • Favorite run: San Diego Harbor


  • Number of nights our family of four shared a hotel room: 3


  • Number of times we got in arguments about the bathroom, what to watch on TV or when to turn out the lights: 49
  • Number of times I hated California traffic: 49+


  • Number of colleges visited: 5 (UCSD, San Diego State, USC, UCLA, UC Santa Barbara. Sam liked USC the best).
  • Number of really good tour guides: 1
  • Number of friends I visited in LA who I went to high school with in Greece 30 years ago: 1


  • Number of times I have seen her in the past 30 years: none
  • On a scale from 1 to 10 how awkward it was to show up with our family of four when she was only expecting two of us: 11
  • Number of times I ordered fish tacos: 3 (wish it was 90)


  • Number of times I counted down the seconds until the seatbelt sign went off on the flight so I could poop: 1 (sorry, no picture. Some things are not meant to be photographed).
  • Number of times I looked like a drunk college student: 1


  • Number of times I looked at my babies and thought how big and beautiful they are: 35


  • Number of mom points I got because we got to walk around Warner Bros studies (including the set for Pretty Little Liars) because my friend’s brother is a big time producer: infinite (for a moment my kids thought I was cool. It passed).


  • Number of times we took a family picture of the 4 of us on this trip: 2 (including an airport selfie)


  • Number of the coolest two blogger friend ever I met for coffee in San Diego: 2 (Teresa and Kate – love these girls. Teresa and I went to Jerusalem together. I have been following Kate’s blog for years and was so excited to finally meet her in person. She is as beautiful and dynamic as she is on her blog, btw).


  • Number of seals that wondered what the eff I was doing: 13


  • Number of times I remembered how much I miss the ocean (I grew up in Maryland and Greece, so there you have it): 24


  • Number of random things Ken secretly packed in my suitcase: 3 (ugly swim cap, sleep number bed remote ((it doesn’t work just anywhere, btw)), pack of Las Vegas slutty girl cards)


    Number of Grim Reapers who sat next to me on the flight: 1


  • Number of family selfies we took: 1


  • Number of times our family of four laughed our asses off together at random shit and it felt SO good: At least 75.

So…you may be wondering what the verdict is for Sam regarding schools. First of all, we didn’t get a killer vibe from UC San Diego. Sam really liked San Diego State. USC came in first, closely followed by UCLA. He liked UC Santa Barbara, but didn’t seem as interested as some of the other schools….so time will tell.

Did you go on Spring Break this year? Where to?

If you could only choose one, would you rather live near the beach or the mountains? This is a tough one. For day to day lifestyle I like the mountains. But I LOVE a good trip to the beach.

Where do you kids go to college?



Friday, April 3, 2015

Virtual Cocktail Hour – Confessions

If we were going out for a glass of wine tonight there are things I would tell you. I would tell you these things because I already feel that many of you are my friends. My virtual friends. So…

If we had a glass of wine tonight on a lovely patio overlooking the Rocky Mountains, I would tell you that tomorrow we are heading to San Diego and L.A. to look at colleges for my 17 year old son, Sam (UC San Diego, San Diego State, USC, UCLA, UC Santa Barbara). If you have been reading this blog since it was conceived (in a mad fit of love and running), then you have “known” Sam since he was 11 years old. He is now a junior heading into his senior year in high school.




            Then                                                                                                 Now

I would tell you that I cannot believe my first born is leaving the nest. I would tell you that California seems like an amazing place for a young man to party his ass off go to college, but I will desperately miss his company. His wit (I’m not just saying this cause I’m his mom. Dude is stinking hilarious). The way he leaves all of his dishes from the week on the pool table downstairs. How he calls our dog “beautiful.” How he never fails to tell me he loves me before he goes to bed.

If we had a glass of wine tonight I would tell you that today’s six mile run was the first decent run I have had since before leaving for Israel. I would tell you that my first two runs this week were fraught with cramps and fatigue and the desperate need to crap myself. So much so that I found myself praying to the running gods, as I clenched and turtled, to just let me get home and not soil myself. I would tell you that I hid from my neighbor because I knew I could not stop to talk to her without an epic accident. You would hopefully tell me you have done this once or twice too. Or, you would just laugh at me.

If we had a glass of wine tonight, I would tell you that I think yoga contributes to me getting injured as a runner. I know this sounds ridiculous, but for years I did yoga and ran. And for years I struggled with hamstring issues and butt issues. Once I stopped yoga, these problems have stopped. Coincidence? Maybe. I do love yoga, but I love not being injured more.

If we had a glass of wine, I would tell you that I have read a few really good books lately that you need to read.

If we had a glass of wine I would tell you that I hate the impact social media has on teens. This is a huge and complex issue, but it’s been on my mind. I hate how it perpetuates a lack of self confidence, jealousy, feeling left out, FOMO (fear of missing out). I hate how it consumes kids. I hate how many have traded real life interactions for screen time. Just my two cents.

If we had a glass of wine tonight I would tell you that Ken and I just signed up to do our first ULTRA relay in September in the Colorado Rockies. 5 runners. 165 miles. 16,000 feet of climbing (if you do the math, that’s about 33 miles each). I could not be more excited. I eat new challenges for breakfast, you know?


If we had a glass of wine, I would tell you that I hate thongs. I have tried but never gotten used to things creeping up there.

If we had a glass of wine I would tell you that I could not be more excited that I get to meet two of my favorite bloggers/friends in San Diego for a run and have coffee. Teresa and Kate. I’ve never met Kate in “real life” but sometimes you just know you will click with someone (no pressure, Kate).


Me with Theresa – Jerusalem Marathon expo

If we had a glass of wine I would tell you that as spring approaches, our family is crawling out of a few hard months – jobs, school, relationships. I see the light ahead. Life is never easy, but hardships are temporary and for that I am grateful.


What would you tell me if we had a glass of wine tonight?

Ever done an ultra relay? Nope

Best book you’ve read lately? Secret Wisdom of the Earth

Where did you go to college? Would you recommend? I went to James Madison in Virginia. Would highly highly recommend!