The Number Means Nothing


During stressful times, like a break-up, some people lose weight.  Not me.  I gain.

In 2007 after my ex-douchebag-boyfriend got another girl pregnant behind my back, I fell into a spiral of drinking way too much, smoking way too much and working out not at all.  Ultimately, it was this break-up that was the catalyst for getting into running and triathlon.  It had been a few years since I had been to the gym; my work-outs consisted mostly of out-drinking my friends and eating as much as I wanted.  I was always athletic and had a high metabolism so even though I ate, drank and didn’t work out, I also rarely gained weight.  Until this time.  During the course of my unhealthy relationship and the subsequent break-up, I had put on quite a few pounds.

Fast forward to last year.

I once again put on weight during the over-the-top-drawn-out-for-too-long-dramatic breakup with R2.  The difference between 2007 and 2012 is that although I had let myself go between the broken foot and broken heart, was that I luckily had not lost all my fitness.  Oddly enough, when I decided to get my butt back in gear this past December, I weighed the same amount as I did when I started my journey in 2007.   The same exact weight.


                                                                                           2007                                                                      2012

Although I hate both of these photos, I posted so you can see how in both of these photos that I am heavier, but it is also noticeable that even just looking at my face, that I look fitter in 2012.  The scale read the same number but you can easily see how different I looked.  And that is just judging on my face.  (Trust me, it was hard enough to post these photos…no full body shots!)

Now, I am going to post a photo of me currently.  I have been working my tail off since December to get back in shape.  I have been on a nutrition plan and in addition to running and swimming, I have been taking barre and ballet classes.  I knew that I wanted to lose weight and get fit before Mexico, so I really buckled down.


In this photo, taken only a few weeks ago, I am only six pounds less than in both of those photos above.

All my hard work and I have lost only six pounds.  But look at the difference in my face. (I really tried to pick three photos with the same head tilt.)  I am clearly more fit in this current photo.  And that is great, but the biggest difference of all?  In the two photos above,  I was not happy.  In the recent photo, I am.   That is a happy girl.  I am two sizes smaller than 2007 and a size smaller than just 3 months ago.  So while the number on the scale doesn’t reflect necessarily where I want to be weight wise, I know the number doesn’t matter.  When I look in the mirror, I see muscle.  I see toned abs.  I see a body that is being worked hard for.  I see confidence.  I see all the things a scale cannot show me.


More important than all the superficial aspects, is that the scale does not measure my health.  The number tells me little to nothing about what is going on with my relationship with food or my digestive health.  The scale is also no indication of my recovery from activity, my stress level or my sleeping patterns.  If I don’t get enough sleep, it is not reflected on the scale but rather, I know by the way I feel.  These are the factors that impact my health far more directly than my body weight.   Individual weight is personalized and unique.  There is not a one sized fits all number that people should weigh.

With all that said, I will admit, I still weigh myself.  Currently, once a week and only on my own scale.  I do not weigh myself on any other scale, ever.  At the doctor, I get weighed backward.  By weighing only on my own scale, I do not have to question or obsess.  My scale is consistent to what I know my weight to be.  And sometimes, the number does frustrate me.  I am still a work in progress.  There will be confident days and not confident days.  Of course, there will be days I look at myself and say “you go girl!” and days where I think “what am I doing wrong?” but it will be based on how I feel when I look in the mirror, not based on how I feel when I step on the scale.  I will not let the number on the scale determine whether I have a good day or  bad day.  I will continue to weigh myself as a way to monitor my weight in general.  Not as a way to determine my worth.

Do you weigh yourself? 

Do you hyper-focus on the number or are you able to see past it?

Finding Time, Making Decisions & Staying Motivated

If there is one question I get asked more than any other, it is, “how do you have/find time for everything?”


The truth is, I don’t have time.  Honestly, I really don’t have the time. And I certainly don’t find time! (If you ever find a way to “find time” please let me know!) So what is my secret?  Sounds crazy, but like most of us that make health and fitness a part of our daily lives,  I make time.  (And I don’t even have kids! It amazes me how working moms/dads keep up with everything…but I know it really is just the same as me.  You make the time!)

So what does making time look like?  For me, it means sometimes having to give up the opportunity to go out with friends, watch a TV program I like or sleep in on a weekend morning.  I know what needs to be done and I do it.   That doesn’t leave me with much time, especially on the days/nights I work both jobs.  In fact, on those days/nights, I get up at 5am and work straight through (with exception of my commute) to anywhere between 9-11pm.  Since that leaves no time to work out and barely time to shower and sleep, I have to fit my workouts in on days and nights I don’t work.

Rest days?  I’m sorry…what are those?

I don’t think it would be possible for me to hold a schedule like I do if I didn’t want what I get out of it.  I want to be healthy and fit.  I want to look good in a bikini.  I want to get a PR on race day.  It doesn’t mean I love every work-out.  I just really like the results.  That is what makes it worth it.

Being dedicated to something takes motivation.  Motivating myself is not always easy.  In fact, it is rarely easy.  I know that the decisions I have to make every day.  I know these decisions will serve to assist or hinder my  long-term goals.  On days when I really don’t want to work-out, get to the gym or even get out of bed, I remind myself that it is so worth it when it is over.  I am faced with choices and challenges every day.  I am only accountable to myself.  I know the only person I am letting down if I skip a workout, is myself.  One of the ways I keep myself motivated from day-to-day is to have a schedule.  I know what days I have to work, which nights I take ballet and barre and what days I have to run.  For me, it helps to know what each day is going to bring.  I keep a schedule on my calendar at work and on my fridge at home.  More importantly for me, I think about my schedule for the next day each night before I go to bed.  This helps me both get ready mentally for what is ahead and serves as way to remember my goals on a nightly basis.

Here are some of my additional tips for motivating oneself:

  • Set small goals that lead towards bigger goals.  I find that if all I am focused on is the big goal, I get lost and lose patience.  One way I do this is by focusing on the day-to-day and week to week workouts.  I allow myself to get through one run before I think about the next run.  Same with my swims and most recently my barre and ballet classes.
  • I keep in mind that I train for reasons other than just the end result.  For me,  training also builds my confidence.   There is a direct relationship between how fit I am and how good I feel.  When I don’t want to workout, I remind myself of how good I feel when I am done.  When I am exercising on a regular basis, I don’t feel guilty about dessert with dinner or worry about the extra glass of wine.  When I don’t want to work out, I don’t allow myself to talk myself out of it.  Same with racing.  Even when I feel like I am not at my best or when I have anxiety over a race and I am questioning my ability.  I remember that if I’ve trained well, I’ll do well.  I know I can do the distance, so even on a bad day, it’s just a matter of doing nothing more than keeping myself moving forward for a given period of time.
  • I keep it fresh.  I do a variety of work-outs.  I run, use the elliptical, lift weights, swim, take spin classes, dance ballet and take barre classes.  I also do a variety of each workout.  I take different instructors for barre classes and spin classes.  I have my favorite instructors, but they all have something to offer and mixing it up keeps it fun.  While I prefer to free swim, I will also take in my fins or kick-board just for a change of pace in the pool.  I change locations for my runs and do different workouts.  Sometimes I run alone and sometimes with others.  Sometimes with music and sometimes not.  There are days I lift with heavier weights and do less reps and other days where I lift with lighter weights and do more reps.  Whatever it take to keep it from feeling boring.  Different is good!
  • I look in the mirror more than I look at the scale.  I won’t elaborate too much because I am working on a separate post that goes into more detail, but I will say that this was probably the smartest thing I have done when it comes to staying fit.  I force myself to look at myself.  While the number on the scale might not change, I know by the fit of my clothes and I can tell just by looking in the mirror that my body is changing for the better.
  • I just do it.  I don’t skip scheduled workouts (except in case of emergencies or if I am sick) and I put aside distractions.

What it ultimately comes down to is this:  I know I need to make better decisions more often than I make not-so-good ones.  (Skipping my barre class because of a bachelorette party the night before was perfectly acceptable to me.  Using being tired as an excuse to not work out on a regular basis is not acceptable.)  Making good decisions is what will lead to success.  I mean, it is simple.  We begin learning this lesson as babies.  Keep trying until you get it right.  Don’t quit.  Fight for what you want.  Work hard and see results.

I find that the more you put in the effort and hard work, the more easily you will choose wisely when it comes to making decisions.


How do you make time for you?  How do you motivate yourself?

Marathon- Almost There!

Two more sleeps.  Or should I say, one more sleep and one try to sleep!

Honestly, I am having a hard time putting my thoughts together.  I cannot believe this weekend is finally here.  I know I have prepared- it hasn’t been the most ideal training cycle, but it was my training cycle.  The long runs are done, taper is in full force…now, all I have to do is get to Sunday.  In 48 hours from now I will have already started my marathon. 

A lot of people have asked me what my goals are…what my plan is…how my race looks when I visualize it.  I do have goals, but they are simple.  I definitely have a plan but it’s mostly logistics so that I can see my family and friends.   And I have been visualizing this run for weeks now every night before I go to bed, and sometimes randomly throughout the day.   Yet, I still find it tough to verbalize how I am feeling when it comes to all of this.

But, I’ll do my best.

The pre-race plan: My routine every night this week has been to eat a good dinner, take an Epsom salt bath, elevate/ice legs while drinking tea and try to sleep as well as possible.  I still haven’t managed enough hours a night, but I have gotten in more than usual and have slept great all week.  Tonight, I am hoping for 10 hours.   Tomorrow morning my parents will meet up with R2 and I at my house and after a good breakfast we will head into Philly.  After we park at the hotel, we will all head on down to the expo.  It’ll be kind of fun to see my dad and R2 at the expo since neither have ever been to one.  After what is likely to be an obscene amount of photos, I’ll pick up my bib and make it officially official!  We will head back to the hotel to relax (and watch Notre Dame for R2) and then have some dinner.  There is a pizza/pasta place around the corner from the hotel which is great- my parents and R2 can have whatever they want and I can be content with my pre-race pasta!  My hope is to be in bed early- which I don’t anticipate sleeping much, I at least want to be resting.

Race-Day Plan– The more I think about having gotten this hotel room, the better I feel about it.  I am less than a mile from the start.  I can stay in the comfort of my room, stay warm (high of 62 [!!!] but it’ll still be a chilly morning) and best of all, I will have my own toilet.  This makes me happy in way only athletes can understand!!!!  Before I know it, it’s going to be start time.  My plan is very simple: start out slow…stay on pace as best as possible, make sure to look for family/friends at planned check points and finish.  One foot in front of the other for 26.2 miles.

Goals– I would be lying if I said I didn’t have a time goal.  Of course I do.  I have a pace group I plan to stay with for as long as possible and I definitely know when I want to cross the line.  However- and I am dead serious- time goals come last to everything else.  The first goal is to finish.  Second to that is the finish happy and knowing that I did the best I could, no matter how long it takes me to do so.  Therefore, if in the end, I don’t make my time goals…that will be okay.  It doesn’t take away from the fact that I will have become a marathoner.  And at the end of the day, it is an automatic PR 🙂

When it comes to visualizing the race, I always picture myself happy and running.  If the stars align and I can just feel good at the start, and throughout the race, I will be happy.   I am not worried about the first half- I have done seven of those.  I know to take it slower and pace myself and I a ready for that- it’s the whole pass-the-finish-line-at-the-half-mark that makes me most nervous.  I have never had to go left to Mile 14!  I have my mom and R2 stationed to see me about half way through mile 14- it will give me incentive to breeze through the half mark like I own it!  I visualize the second half being a lot slower, with walking…but I still picture myself as happy.  I know there will be pain- pain like I have never felt- I know I am in for some hurting.  But I am committed to being focused on the positive.  I am committed to saying “I can” when I want to say “I can’t” and I am committed to saying “Keep going” when my body says “stop” because I know it is temporary.  I am know I am stronger than I ever imagined.  I just want to take the whole race in- take note of the spectators, thank the police staff and volunteers and smile a lot!  And finish.  And when I picture the finish line, I always see myself crossing it- happy.  And crying.  I have a feeling there will be tears!  And photos.  Tears and photos galore!

Let’s do this!!!!!


Thoughts On The Marathon- One Week Till Go Time

Here I am, one week away from marathon day.  This time next week, I will be recovering with the biggest margarita ever and a lot of ice cream! Maybe at the same time, who knows 🙂

And now for my favorite kind of post- list post!  Here are some of my thoughts with one week to go:

  • Taper sucks! I never felt this way with half-marathon or triathlon training, but I feel it now.  I am going out of my mind!  For one, everything hurts.  Bones and muscles I didnt even know I had are hurting.  I am having nightmares of the most ridiculous nature; showing up naked being the most popular, I constantly think I am sick if I so much as sneeze and all I want to do is eat and sleep!!!  I am totally over taper!
  • My 20 mile run was easier than my last long run yesterday.  I was completely beat before I even started the run and I struggled through the whole thing.  I was downright exhilarated when the run was over!
  • I am so excited for this week- I know it is going to crawl by but I don’t even care.  I am just happy to only be working two nights.  I have plenty of time to rest, elevate my legs and sleep, sleep and sleep!
  • I have officially become obsessed with the weather.  I check it one or two or ten times a day.  Yesterday it said 57 and raining and I was angry.  Today, it says cloudy and 54 and I am all about it.  I know God is busy with things like the Superbowl, NBA lockout and the Oscars, but if he is listening, I would like it to be in the low 40’s at the start with it getting no higher than mid-50’s by the finish.  And if I can be really picky, partly sunny.  Whatever the weather, please please please NO RAIN, please!
  • I have three outfits picked out.  I will probably pack a weeks worth of stuff for one night.  Possibly more.  And I bet you, I will still forget something.
  • I am staying overnight in a hotel.  I live less than 20 minutes from the start line. I don’t care.  I know I will feel so much better if I am there when I wake up.  Not only will I not have to leave until 15 minutes before the start but I will have my own toilet to poop in; there really is no better reason!
  • I am starting to get very emotional when I think about the race.  Anxious, nervous and emotional. I’ll probably cry like a baby when I cross that line.
  • When I start to feel worried about race day, I go back and read past race reports.  Especially, Philly half from last year.  It helps immensely.
  • I am looking insanely forward to my massage this week. Ridiculously. Like, I cannot describe.  I am looking even more forward to my post marathon massage.
  • I have worn Brooks Adrenalines since 2007.  I hated the new ones that came out and needed new shoes.  I have officially been running in Saucony’s for the last 5 weeks.  Still, there is a part of me that wants to run in my Brooks on race day.  I am sure they have 26.2 miles left in them 🙂   Let’s face it, I’ll probably pack both!
  • So many people are so excited for me, that I am getting so excited.  I know that no matter when I cross that line, my family and friends will make me feel like a winner.  And I am, because I have them in my life.
  • I have taken more Airborne and more vitamins in the last 8 weeks than ever before.  Next to getting injured, getting sick has been fear #2…I have 6 days to go, so lets hope my body stays with me on this one!!!
  • I have gained weight and quite a bit of it.  Gaining weight while marathon training…of could I would! 
  • This is hands down the hardest thing I have ever done.  I can honestly say, without a doubt, this has never been fun.  I have been thrown so many curve balls- having first planned for run a marathon two years ago.  When I am training for half-marathons and tris, I actually have fun.  But these last 15 weeks have tested in me in many ways.  I have sacrificed a lot to get here- and I have worked so hard.  I didn’t always get my work outs in, and I went three weeks in a boot hardly working out at all…a lot of people told me I should bag the race…but I kept at it.  I decided as long as I had my doctors blessing, I was only going to listen to myself.  I worked hard to get healed and picked back up my training.  I trained in rain, I trained on boring courses without music, I did long runs on the treadmill (seriously, there is nothing fun about 16 miles on a treadmill!!!) and I trained alone most of the time.  I did all of this while working a full time job and a part time job.  I did this while changing full time jobs.  I did this with some personal stuff happening.  I did this with still maintaining a social life as much as possible.  But it should be noted, I could not have done this without the unending support I have received from my parents, R2, my friends and my amazing support group here.  My parents and R2 have definitely felt the hit of my training personally- my time with them is much more limited, they deal with my nerves, self-doubt and anxiety and they have changed their schedules to work around my long runs when needed.  No, marathon training has not been fun for me…but it has taught me so much and I know that all the hard work will pay off when I cross that finish line.  And I cannot wait!!!
  • And last but not least…the most important thing I must always remember…my mantra for race day…

What has been your greatest lesson while training for an important event?  What is your favorite mantra during tough parts of the race?

Music For My Ears

I have roughly 4 half-written marathon type posts.  If I wasn’t so busy eating, running, working, icing, running, sleeping, working, running, rolling, working, eating, sleeping, rolling, running and eating, I might have time to finish them!  Seriousy, how do you people do it?????  I feel like all I do is eat and sleep whenever I am not working or running!

One of the things I have really concentrated on during training, is my mental health.  I know how important it is to stay physically healthy through the training but for me, I know come race day, I am going to need to be mentally with the program!  I have been posting photos to my facebook as daily motivations, I have photos on my mirror at home and desk at work and I spend time visualizing the marathon almost every night.  But the one thing I am doing that I think will help me the most is also the craziest- I have done every single long run without music.  Every single one.  I used to refuse running more than two miles unless I had my IPOD and now I am running almost 20 miles, music-less. 

To be honest, I like being without the music.  It forces me to focus on my body; how I am feeling, what I am feeling and moreover, my thoughts.  When you are out there that long, going as slow as I do, self-reflection is unavoidable.  I would be remiss if I did not say that this training has taught me more about myself and what I am capable of, then I ever thought possible. 

And yet, the notion that I am going to complete 26.2 miles in less than five week, blows my mind completely.  It leaves me wondering if I am ever going to be able to wrap my head around it until I actually do it. 

I know that come race day there will be ups…and downs…and ups.  I know I will be challenged in crazy ways.  I am trying to be preapred…so even though I am not training with music, you better believe I am going to run with it!

That said, here is my playlist thus far. 

Bachman Turner Overdrive You aint seen nothing yet
Black Eyed Peas Pump It
Black Eyed Peas I got a feeling
Bon Jovi Who says you cant go home
Bon Jovi It’s my life
Bruce Springsteen Born to Run
Bruce Springsteen Hungry Heart
Bruce Springsteen Glory Days
Chris Brown w/Lil Wayne Transform Ya
Christina A. Fighter
Dierks Bently Free and Easy
Don Henley Boys of Summer
Drake Forever
Eminem Lose Yourself
Eminem/Lil Wayne No love
Estelle American Boy
Fleetwood Mac Go your own way
Garbage Only happy when it rains
Jay Sean Down
Jay-Z Run this town
Jets Crush on you
Journey Don’t stop believing
Justin Timberlake Sexyback
Katy Perry Waking up in vegas
Kayne West Stronger
Kayne West Jesus Walks
Kenny Chesney Big Star
Kesha Tik tok
Killers Mr. Brightside
Lil Kim The jump off
Lil Wayne Mr. Carter
Lil Wayne with Jay-Z Mr. Carter
Lil Wayne/Chris Brown Look at me now
Michael Jackson Don’t stop till you get enough
Michael Jackson Man in the mirror
Michael Jackson The way you make me feel
Midnight Oil Beds are burning
Miley Cirus Party in the USA
Miley Cirus The Climb
Natasha Bedingfield Unwritten
Nikki Minaj Super Bass
No doubt Spiderwebs
No doubt Just a girl
Pink  Raise your glass
Pink  Just like a pill
Pink  So What
Queen/David Bowie Under Pressure
Rick Ross Boss
Rick Springfield Jesse’s girl
Rob Base It takes two
Rob Base Joy and Pain
Rolling Stones Start me up
Rusted Root Send me on my way
Sheryl Crow Soak up the sun
Sugarland Settlin
Taylor Swift Love Story
Tina Turner Proud Mary
Tom Petty Running down a dream
Tom Petty I Won’t back down
U2 Beautiful Day
Van Halen Running with the devil
Young the Giant My Body

 With very few exceptions, most of this music is geared towards the paces I feel like I will be running throughout the marathon.  And when I say running, I should note: running/jogging/walking. 

What are you favorite songs to run/jog/walk to?  I am looking to add another 30 songs…I like pretty much all music, so let me know what you recommend!!!!!


Updates, Updates, Updates…I’m BACK!!!!!!

Anyone still here…anyone?? Anyone??

It has been almost a full month since I have written!  So much to get caught up on!

Unless you are on my Facebook (and if you aren’t, why not?) you might have thought I died. Or was kidnapped. Or that I hate blogging.  Don’t believe the rumors- none of the above are true.  The truth is, I was so overwhelmingly busy that I could not sit long enough to finish a post.  But now things are calmed down a little and I am ready to give you the updates.  And there are some major updates!

  1. I turned 30- That’s right folks, I am officially in the 30 club!  And honestly, I feel great!  I am so happy to be out of my 20’s I cannot even tell you!  Plus, turning 30 has been so much fun…I had a surprise party back in May and then over my birthday weekend I went to Boilermaker to celebrate with 9.3 miles with two of my closest friends.  Last weekend topped off the birthday festivities with a trip to Baltimore with R2.  We stayed Friday-Sunday and had so much fun.  Yeah…hello 30, I think I love you!
  2. I GOT A NEW JOB!!!!- I did it!  I finally left my old school and got a new job!  This is the best news and best thing to happen to me in a long time.  I feel emotionally more stable and so much less stressed out.  I have been sleeping through the night again, not freaking out over dumb stuff and can enjoy my weekends more because I am not thinking about work.  I feel like my prayers have been answered!  I start in two weeks and I cannot wait!!!!!!
  3. I am still racing- Since I last wrote I raced the Boilermaker, Splash and Dash and NJ State Triathlon.  See below for race reports- they were all good ones!
  4. R2 and I are still amazing- I am not the mushy mushy type and I certainly dont talk much about my relationship publicly, but seriously…how lucky am I to have such a great guy.  R2 has been there for me every step of the way while I searched for a new job and is ridiculously supportive of my racing.  We have so much fun, we are almost always laughing and we genuinely like each other so much.  It has been a great six months!
  5. Marathon Training is underway- That’s right…the official training has begun.  I don’t want to rush summer or wish time away,  but I will be glad when the race itself is finally here.  This training is daunting!!!  I have to be honest, I don’t see myself ever doing a second marathon!

Three Race Reports!

     Splash and Dash- Splash and Dash is a local swim/run race held in memory of a local boy who was killed in a car accident.  It is held at night and super fun.  I had a pretty good swim and used the run as a training run so it was so-so.  I was happy with it overall and can’t wait to do this race again!

     Boilermaker 15K- Hello automatic PR 🙂  This race totally lives up to its hype.  While I wanted to kill myself up the first 3.5 miles of hill that seemed endless (hi, I train in SJ!!) I love love loved all the course support.  I am not even kidding, there was support every single step of the race!  People everywhere- more music than anything 1/2 marathon I ever raced and water/aid stations everywhere!  I went into this race with some shin pain and random back pain so I wasn’t sure what to expect out of myself; in the end, I was really happy with my time.  15K- 1:48:23.  Slow, steady and recovered well from it- stuck with the plan and it worked!

     NJ State- This race was last weekend…you know, in the 92387 degree heat.  Which honestly, was still better than last years weather.  This was my first full tri this year- up to this point I had been doing only relays.  I went in thinking I would see how I felt and take it from there.  Listen- I KILLED the swim.  As in…20th out of 103 in my age group and 375th out of 1362 overall.  KILLED THE SWIM.  I felt like superwoman coming out of the water and was rearing to go!  I zoomed in and out of transition and started the bike.  Ugh…the bike.  My disdain for the bike runs deep and my goal was to do the same or better than last year, although my lack of bike training had me thinking I might not make it.  However, I did…beat my time last year by a few seconds 🙂  Hey, I’ll take it!  Once again, I zoomed in and out of transition and was ready to run.  I should clairfy…I was ready…my legs, notsomuch!  Took me a solid mile to get my legs back, but I knew I was doing so well overall that I kept pushing and smiling.  I crossed the line with a THREE MINUTE PR.  And I couldn’t have been happier!!!

What’s next?

Racing- This weekend I have Belmar tri, one of my favorites.  After that, my concentration is really on running.  Getting through this marathon training without injury and feeling good and confident.  I have a few 5k’s in August where I hope to work on my speed and then the WildWood half-marathon at the end of the month.  The WildWood half is going to be a good indicator of where I stand in my training.  They will have pacers and I plan to use one; my hope is I can keep the pace for 13.1 and reach a solid PR, which will give me confidence for the full marathon.  In September, I am running the Jersey-Liberty Half Marathon.  This is purely a training run with no PR expectations.  In Oct, I am running the LBI 18-miler (falls right into my schedule perfectly) and then November is the marathon!!!!

Life- I have a little over a week of in between jobs ending and beginning and then I start the new school year.  I am not the least bit sad to leave my current job (although I will miss most of the people, most families and the students) but I am scared/nervous/excited for the new job!  In September I will be heading downtheshore for my yearly, much anticipated, vacation.  Other than that, I am just feeling really blessed right now in my life.  Lucky, and blessed.


You know I wouldn’t leave you without photos!!!  Here’s a hodgepodge of race photos from the S&D and NJ State…

PS-It goes without saying that my Reader was out of control, so I deleted everything and I am starting over today.  Please update me on anything awesome I may have missed!

A Real Post- With Updates & Everything!

I have been a little MIA but really, just my usual busy self.

Today we have a snow day.  It is completely unnecessary.  A few weeks ago, after a blizzard, we had school.  Every single other school in the county was closed.  Today, we have a few inches. All schools had a two-hour delay. We are closed.  We can never just be like everyone else.  The upside is, since I had off yesterday for Presidents Day and today for snow, I only have to work 2.5 days this week.  I am taking a half-day Friday to head to Florida!

Speaking of Florida.  This time last year, I was on my way home from Florida.  I had spent the weekend with Morgan in Orlando and Jacksonville.  Looking back to that time, I see truly how much has changed in my life.  I had a blast in Florida, but that was not a good time in my life in general.  I had just lost my grandfather, I was unhappy at work, living at home with my parents, feeling lonely much of the time and only days away from a major injury.  These days, while I am still unhappy at my day job, I have so much good in my life.  It really is amazing how when you allow yourself to live a good life, life becomes good.  It isn’t that bad things aren’t happening or that I don’t have bad days, it’s more like I am choosing to focus on the good.  Life is so much easier this way and I only wish I had begun living like this a lot earlier!

February is flying as fast as January did; when I get back from Florida it will be March already!  February started off with a Hip Hop Thrown Back Party that my friends Victoria and Jason threw- it was a blast!  I haven’t partied liked that in years but it was so worth it!  I have been dating someone since late January (first mention of it in this blog, right now) and things with us are going really well.  Last weekend was my Tri Teams winter party which was also super fun.  Of course, it is always a good time with my teammates.  And of course, this weekend is Florida.  We take off Friday night around 6pm and we are there until Tuesday afternoon.  I cannot wait!  We really don’t have much planned, which is the idea- all we really want to do is bask in the 80* weather, spend time on the beach and hit up the bars for some dancing at night!  Our hotel is right on the beach and I cannot wait to run down A1A and swim in the ocean!

As for my training, that is also going really well.  It seems I have settled into somewhat of a schedule- consistently hitting workouts four days a week and pulling at least one two-a-day a week.  I am running, biking, lifting and doing a little P90X.  I have been sticking to the 10% rule like a psycho- I refuse to get injured again this year!  So while my mileage is still quite low, my runs are all quality and I feel great!  I have also been riding my trainer a few days a week and I can feel my bike skills getting better.  I am actually looking forward to getting my bike on the road again!  And the best part of my winter training has been my strength- I have been lifting solidly since the beginning of the year and it is showing.  I not only feel strong but I am looking stronger.  I don’t think I have been this lean in a long time- I am really feeling good about the way I look!  I still have a lot I want to work on, but by summer, I plan to rock my bikini’s!

Starting in March, I will be back in the water swimming a few mornings a week.  I always look most forward to the water as I truly love to swim.  On March 2nd, I will (along with many others) be trying to get a spot in the B.A.A 5k!  I want to run that race so bad- I am going to cross my fingers and toes and hope for the best!  March is also Shamrock time- I am still bummed out about missing out of the half-marathon but I think it was for the best.  I would have had to push my training more than I would have wanted so if probably worked out the way it should have.  The weekend is sure to be a blast- I am heading down with my friend Nicole and we have a house on the beach to stay the weekend and we are running the 8K.  I am still looking forward to catching a tan on the boardwalk while watching the big races on Sunday 🙂  I’ll begin my half-marathon training plan when I get back from VA; I am still going to train as if I am doing Frederick in May, although I still have not made a final decision.  I am pretty sure March is going to fly by as fast as January and February, which I am totally okay with because then Spring will be here 🙂

I’ll leave you all with some photos from the Hip Hop Party-

How was your February?

2011 Race Schedule

Just because I have decided to take the pressure off when it comes to training and keep my goals more personal, doesn’t mean I don’t have a race schedule planned.  And here it is!

Shamrock 8K; Virginia Beach, VA- My first race of 2011.  My friend Nicole and I planned to do the half-marathon but did not sign up in time unfortunately.  Since we had already found a placed to stay, taken the time off work and planned the trip we decided to at least do the 8k and then just spectate the half and full.  I really wanted to run this race since I had to bag it last year after my injury, but I guess it is just not meant to be for me.  At the very least, I will enjoy 4 days in VA Beach 🙂 

B.A.A Boston 5k; Boston, MA- This is obviously assuming I get in on the day registration opens.  I know it is going to be a crapshoot since 27402378 are trying to sign up but hopefully I will get in.  Either way, I will still be in Boston for the marathon and I am way ridiculously beyond excited to reconnect with and meet new bloggers 🙂  It is going to be a super fabulous weekend.

Frederick 1/2 Marathon; Frederick, MD- I actually just decided on this the last week.  I wanted a May 1/2 marathon and this one fits best into my schedule.  Plus, since I deferred Baltimore to this year, I will get the Double Medal 🙂

Black Bear Olympic Relay; Poconos, PA- Despite the freezing cold, rain and getting sick in the water, I loved this race.  I was the swimmer last year with my friends Kurt and Brian and I am the swimmer this year with my friends Shauna and Lisa.  Hopefully we get better weather and I can get some revenge on that swim course!

Boilermaker 15K; Utica, NY- This race takes place the day after my 30th birthday so a few of my friends and I are heading up to race and party it up!  We are spending the weekend, including my actual birthday there and then running is specially made shirts!  Other than Boston, I am most excited for this race.

NJ State Sprint; Mercer, NJ- This is my “A” race for 2011…this is my favorite course by far and as anyone who reads my blog knows, run by my favorite RD’s, CGI.  I am not even kidding…this race is great!  Even in 100 degree weather last year it was enjoyable.  If you are looking for a mid-July tri, I cannot recommend anything more than this race!

Belmar Sprint; Belmar, NJ- This race is pretty simple but still one of my favorites.  I love the ocean swim, the simplicity of the looped bike course and the run along the beach.  This will be my third consecutive year racing this course and I look forward to getting even better this year than last year.

Timberman Sprint; Lake Winnipesaukee, NH- This is the only race on this schedule that I am still back and forth on; the entry fee is ridiculous and hard to justify but a lot of my teammates will be there and it will make for a fun weekend.  Plus…Chrissie Wellington.  Yeah, her.

Wildwood 1/2 Marathon- Wildwood, NJ- This is the newest 1/2 marathon in the CGI half-marathon series and I am very excited about this race.  Not only does it take place the same time I am on vacation in Wildwood, but so many of my teammates are racing this and with the entry fee you get a ticket into Morey’s Pier and water park.  So after the race we will be hanging out on the boardwalk and beach AND then back at my place to hang out.  It will be a most excellent way to end summer!

Baltimore 1/2 Marathon- Baltimore, MD- I deferred this race last year to this year and as much as I loved this race in 2009, Baltimore does not make it easy to stay overnight there.  The hotels in the area do not accommodate even though they are “race supporting” hotels.  I found it all to be very frustrating and if I run into issues again this year, I probably won’t bother with the race anymore.  Which would be a shame since I really do like it and they give out the coolest medals!

Philadelphia Marathon- Philadelphia, NJ- Yup. Giving it another go. I am unsure if I will ever attempt a second, so the first has to be Philly.  The half distance has my little racing heart and I cannot think of any other full that I would want to be my first.

I put a lot less on my plate this year than last but as you can see, I am also going to give the marathon another try.  My first attempt was a bust but I feel like this year could be my year.  Especially because I have full intentions of going into every race the way I did the Philly half this year.  And of course, at the end of the day, all I want to do is finish.

I am sure there will be some 5k’s and 10k’s dispersed in there but for the most part, I want to keep it more simple for 2011.  I am still toying with Steelman again if I can get a relay together but I don’t think I’ll be adding in any more big races.  I am excited for all the traveling I get to do with my racing this year and picked my races bases in large part based on that.  I figure, I got nothing holding me back right now…midas well get all the traveling I can get it while I can.

Will I be seeing any of you at any of the above races???

An Open Letter To 2010

Dear 2010,

To say you kept me on my toes this year, would be an understatement.

You started off awesome; January was going fabulously! I was seriously at the top of my game with training.  Hitting the gym on target, getting in all of my miles and feeling good and strong about my race schedule.  I had big and busy plans for this year- I had seven half-marathons planned, four tri’s and a handful of smaller road races and relay tri’s.  Yeah, I was excited to say the least.  Even having to move back home with my parents for a few months didn’t have me down.  I had good feeling about 2010.  Until February came and killed them.

With February came big-time highs and low-lows.  Good thing for medication or I may have become bi-polar.  In the beginning of the month I was still flying high off January, but then a tweak in my hip left me run’less; I had to heal up in time for my Florida getaway to race the Donna 13.1 with Morgan!  Unfortunately, the same day I was leaving for Florida, my grandfather passed away after a long battle post-stroke the year before.  My family convinced me to head to Florida anyway and that everything would take place upon my return.  So off to Florida I went for four jam-packed days of fun and running 🙂  I also got to meet one of the BEST bloggers out there, Robin.  Together, Morgan and I ran the 13.1 and we had a blast in our homemade tu-tu’s!  Check out the race report here.  Everytime I re-read it, I smile!  My welcome back to NJ greeted me with a snow storm, my mom breaking her foot and my grandfathers viewing.  Oh, and a very unhappy hip.

About three days into March I learned a very valuable lesson; if your hip hurts, don’t run.  If you run when your hip hurts, you could end up with a torn hip flexor.  Torn hip flexors are no fun at all!  March landed me in the orthopedics office, on crutches and then at PT for six weeks.  Oh, and it would NOT STOP snowing!!!  I had to bag my half-marathon in Virginia Beach but that did not keep me from going.  I was off the crutches and back to light working out and off to cheer my friends on at the Shamrock Half-Marathon.  On race day I still dressed in my running gear and even ran into the finish with my friends.  It hurt to pass on the race but I knew it was the right thing to do.  Little did I know then how slow my recovery would be and that this would not be the only race I would have to miss out on.

April would prove to be another tough month!  I was healed enough to work out but not enough to actually run.  In addition to that, stress at work was at an all time high; Governor Chris Christie piece of shit asshole was elected and cut our budgets and I was at risk for losing my job.  I was only weeks away from graduating PT but had to bag yet another race, the Rutgers Unite race.  That was supposed to be my A-race and I had to watch as all my friends ran and I couldn’t.  Depression from not running was kicking in big time and I was seriously hating on 2010.

Finally, May came along and started looking up for OneLittleTriGirl!  The weather was better, I graduated from PT and I was RUNNING AGAIN!!!  It was a slow start and I ended up having to re-neg another race- no Broad Street Run for me 😦  It was disheartening and I tried to rationalize to myself that I could run it…but there was really no way.  So I sold my bib and showed up to yet again cheer at another race I was supposed to be running.  But I focused on the good things that were happening in May and looked forward to my 5k that was fast approaching.  I was officially back on the race scene on May 16…exactly 2 years from my very first 5k ever.  I ran a very slow 35 minutes but was happier than a pig in shit (pigs in shit are happy right??) crossing that finish line.  I had zero pain and felt like I was finally on my way!!!  I ended the month with a relay tri at Black Bear…a dismal swim for me, but being out there just felt amazing!

June was another up and down month.  Just as 2010 and I were starting to get along and my hip was getting back to normal, my calves and shin decided they would hate on me and started KILLING with every run.  I started seeing my chiropractor for ART and Graston to loosen up all the scar tissue.  It hurt like hell but made such a huge difference.  I tested it all out at the Scott Coffee 8k, one of my favorite races, and did great!  I was still favoring my hip so I did not push it but I did better than I had anticipated and finished at 55 minutes.  This race was all about eating some humble pie and remembering that I had come a long way and that a slow time really meant nothing…I was just lucky and grateful to be running again!  My training was going well, I was in good spirits and I got to attend two amazing weddings wherein I danced my ass off.  Sorry, no video of such things…

July proved to me that 2010 was not one giant bird shitting on me because July was the most awesome month ever!  First and foremost, I came clean to all you bloggies with my Full Disclosure post, to which you all responded with the most amazing comments ever!  Having that out in the open made me feel so much better and after killing it with a PR at the Philly Women’s Duathlon, I was so ready to attack at NJ State.  And that is exactly what I did with another PR in the books!  Between the great racing and my birthday weekend, I had a fabulous July and was on the upswing big time going into August.

And August was no let down; the PR’s kept coming…first at the Belmar Sprint and then again with my swim in the Steelman relay.  The Wildwood Tri was a challenge, but in a good way and I ended the fabulous month with a trip downtheshore to my favorite place on Earth, Wildwood Crest.  Oh, and I was finally moved out of my parents house and back on my own.  Well, kind of my own.  Having a roommate has proven its own set of difficulties.  It has been nicer to be closer to work and out of my bedroom at my parents, but in retrospect, I wish I had done this alone.

Heading into September, I could feel myself wearing down.  I had raced almost every weekend of the summer and while I was doing great, I was burning out.  After running the Tim Kerr 7-miler in Avalon and really struggling with my calves/shins, I decided it was in my best interest to re-think my fall racing schedule.  The last thing I wanted to do was re-injure myself and I just wasn’t trained enough to run a half-marathon.  So there went the Philly R&R…the fourth bagged raced of 2010.

In October, we lost a great friend in the blog world, Rick.  I found out the same day as my Warrior Dash which made starting, and finishing, that race so much more meaningful.  Warrior Dash was something Rick loved and had planned on running again; it was poignant for me to run that while I knew he could not again.  I had decided over the summer to defer my Baltimore half-marathon to 2011, so another race off the schedule!  This turned out to be the best decision ever because I went and got myself a second job that would prove to keep me even busier than I could have imagined! While it wasn’t a great month for racing it was a fabulous month for training.  With the Philly 1/2 marathon fast approaching, I was staying as on top of my training as possible.  I was exhausted but nothing was going to keep me from running the Philly Half…even if I was planning to run “just for fun” given my lack of mileage.

In the blink of an eye it was November.  Other than being completely exhausted with work, November was one of the best months of 2010 for me.  I first traveled off to Colorado and then North Carolina.  And within no time the Philly half-marathon was here 🙂  I had planned to run it for fun and just enjoy the race, but in the end, I killed that race!  My first half-marathon PR in a year and a half!

And then it was December.  I was in major burnout mode coming off of the Philly half and basically my training fell apart.  I have been working way more than I should be in an effort to pay off some of my debt and really just could never find the energy to work out.  December has been a hard month for me, personally.  I have been spending a lot of time thinking about my plans for 2011 and my thoughts about life in general.  I feel pretty stagnant and need to make some kind of change…just haven’t figured out what that is yet.  I am finding myself confused and not quite myself.  Honestly, it was all I could do to write this post and have it finished before tonight.  And no, I still haven’t caught up on my reader.  I have been on vacation from my day job but working almost every night.  When I am home, I have so much to do, I am simply overwhelmed.  I have been through this before so I know it passes…I just want it to pass already!  So good-bye 2010 and your up-down-up-down ways.  I am really looking forward to 2011!



I wish you all a happy, safe and most of all healthy New Year in 2011 ♥

I had intended to link all my races within this post, but time just ran out.  If you are a new reader, or you just want to re-visit some of the older posts, you can find all the races and reports in the category to the right.  You know you all want to go see Morgan and I in our tu-tus again!!!!

I Run! Off Season, 2011 (Already!?!?) & Randomness

I promise- I still run.  And bike and swim.  You know, the basics…like, what this blog is all about. 🙂

The thing is, this blog is also about my life and the last few months have been a busy life (which you know, because I mention every other post.  Sigh…redundancy!) and my posts have been mostly about non-running.

Well, today.  It is all about tri’s/running:  this weeks workouts, the upcoming Philly Half-Marathon, my off-season plan and next year’s (so-far) plans 🙂

What I did this week:

  • I ran Wednesday morning; I used the gym in my development which I was excited to use but then immediately annoyed by because when I got there, one of the guys working out informed me that “we have a group rotation” and proceeding to explain what times were “open” for me to come to the PUBLIC COMMUNITY gym.  What the hell?!?!?  Back to my regular gym it is!  I did end up getting 3 good miles in so I was happy.  This weekend while I am away I will be doing a long run of an undetermined amount of miles.  Yeah, I am just full of suspense!  Meanwhile, I haven’t been in a pool or in a bike in forever!
  • I have decided that my waitressing counts as working out!  This week was a pretty easy week since I was away last weekend and I am going away this weekend; I only worked three shifts so the hours weren’t too bad, although I did close two nights in a row which meant being there pretty late both Wednesday and last night.

Philly Half-Marathon

Let me be real with you all here.  MY TRAINING SUCKS.  Ok…now that I have that out of the way!  Here’s the thing.  Actually there are two things.

  • I refuse to bag another race.
  • I do not want to re-injure myself

Given I am presented with a half-marathon in 2 weeks on very little training…and I don’t want to bag it and I don’t want to injure myself, I had to make a plan.  Here’s the plan: have a fun run and finish 13.1 miles 🙂  Seriously- no time goals, no pressure…just running for fun.  I just want to know that I still have it in me- but because my weekly mileage has been low and my runs are only between 3-10 miles for the last month, I don’t want to go out with guns blazing and end up back on crutches.  Therefore the name of the Philly marathon is FUN FUN FUN!  And I fully expect Mike to be there with a medal for me at the end!

Off Season

I have a plan for the offseason.  And the good news is, I think it will work.  It involves running, spinning (FINALLY got my trainer set up in the condo) and P90X (yeah yeah, I jumped on the wagon!) plus Pilates when I am able.  I figure that since my night job will officially be on a 3-4 night/week schedule once I get back from N.C., I can start making somewhat of a plan.

For the last 6 days and for the next two weeks, I have cut out bread, pasta and wine from my meals.  There are two exceptions to this rule- I will be drinking wine this Saturday and I will have bread on Thanksgiving.  But other than that, I am going without.  I need to jump start a weight loss- I don’t do no-carb because personally, I just don’t agree with that; I cut out the heavy carbs (I eat a ridiculous amount of bread and pasta) just to get my system back in order.  When I did this two years ago, I was very happy with the results.  Fingers crossed that it works again this time!

2011 Plans

I cannot even believe I have been putting so much thought into 2011 already!  How did we get here…wasn’t I just planning 2010?  The things is…in order to get low prices and make sure you have entry to big races, you have no choice but to sign up early.  So far, I am signed up for two triathlons and three road races.  I am tentatively planning on four triathlons and six road races.  I am trying not to pack in as much as I did last year and really focus on a few races to be better than next year.

As you are all reading this, I should be about two hours into my drive to North Carolina.  I am heading down to the Beach to Battleship race with my friend Victoria to watch our friend Kate in her first Ironman!  Woo-hoo.  Oh yeah, you know there will be photos!