Tag Archives: half marathon

The body doesn’t forget

23 Apr

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Yesterday was my first half marathon since running NY in November. I’ve been down and out, unsure of myself.  I’ve tried to redirect myself, make a new plan. I’ve thought about quitting running all together. I was seriously going to cancel my trip.  I didn’t feel worthy of coming up to NJ to run. The whole week was doubt. I couldn’t picture each mile.  I felt like I couldn’t plan one thing. I was tired. I couldn’t sleep. 13.1 seemed impossible. And on top of that my legs and feet were cramping. And you know everyone says “But Donna, you’ve run a marathon, 13.1 is cake!”  Not when you’ve changed your routine. Not when you are full of self doubt. Not when you’ve been injured and you feel mind fucked by that injury.

So the I packed with no order. Prayed I remembered everything and did my best not to think about it. I was a wreck the day before I left. To say I lost my sassy was an understatement. Thankfully the flight then next day grounded me a bit. The trip to the hotel…a little more peace. A walk on the boardwalk…even more.  But still…I can’t picture the miles and I can ALWAYS picture them. I’m not ready… damn it. I’m not ready.

The morning was Florida cold, and rainy. And I panicked because I didn’t have my lined shirt. I didn’t bring a throwaway and I left my warm hat at the hotel.  The rain drops started big and I couldn’t get a mental of picture the finish line. There was just no good feeling about it. But I made a decision to fake it. To make myself believe it was possible. I was going to “kick today right in the dick…”  I just decided to get engrossed in the energy, feed off of everyone’s vibe.

And ready, set, go…  It was a step by step effort. But then the rain down even more and that’s when everything connected. I love the rain. I love running in the rain. Each drop more cleansing than the last, each step more clear…  I actually forgot I was running at mile 3. And I was chatting wth a 60 year old lady who was doing a half marathon in 50’states by the time she hits 70. Wanna talk inspirational??? She’s still intending to be running half marathons at 70.  I could surely run this 13.1 right?

But then at mile 9. I felt my toes tighten and everything sucked from that moment on. But I was pushing. I needed this race and I needed my win. So every time a muscle tightened…I’d cuss like a sailor, take a deep breath and keep going.  This is what the texts look like… (thank goodness I can talk into my watch like a secret agent and it spits out words…also, thank goodness I can say Fuck…and it will actually spell it out!)

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And just like that there was only 5k left. It was a 5k full of tears and cussing. It was 3.1 miles of knowing I could do it, and then the finish line came in to view. I picked up my pace, and was almost there when everything locked up. Excruciating pain, nothing but sobs… and cheering. There was cheering from people I didn’t know. There were people pushing me to get there. There’s the magic…right there. It wasn’t in my 13.1 mile journey. It was the spirit when I had none left, when my own will couldn’t move my limbs. The people around me   Just made it ok. They picked me up, they showed me I had it left…shockingly I got past that line. Still sobbing, still locked up, but still moving.  And then I knew, running is not something I can quit. It’s part of me now. I suck at it, but it’s part of me. I’m getting better every day, but nothing beats the spirit in the race. Nothing. Because my body remembers, even when my mind doesn’t. It’s right there in my ticker.

So, those of you who doubt yourself, keep moving. Feed off the spirit of the positive people around you. There’s no giving up… because your heart remembers. It knows… you just need to give yourself a chance to see it. Take a deep breath, I promise…you’re body will remember. And if you doubt me, hit me up. Because I gotchooooooooo!

❤️ #noregrets

DP Babbles

Putting the “Hyp” in Hypocrite

20 Mar

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I’m going to let you in on a secret.  I’m a total hypocrite.  I realized this during my seven mile run today.  My run time is the time where my wheels turn.  My thinking time. Time to think of the dumb things I’ve said and done. Time to think about whatever has been bugging me.  Time to think about my insecurities and my not so insecurities.  I have a race in one month and it’s my first long distance race since November’s full marathon.  So what have I been a hypocrite about?  I feel like sometimes I talk about strength and body confidence and overcoming obstacles but there are times I’m saying this stuff, and I don’t believe it when it comes to myself. I know my insecurities show in my blog, but hopefully there’s some bad ass to counteract that too.  Three steps back to go ten steps forward, right?

Exactly one month ago, I completely changed up my routine.   You know how I preach patience?  Well, I double suck at it.  I thought a month later I would be seeing some amazing things.   Little did I know that maybe “seeing” them won’t happen first.  “Keep holding on”, I keep saying.  “No giving up” I encourage.  But although I’m not ready to throw in the towel, I thought I would see a difference in the mirror.  Maybe there is and I don’t see it.  Then today as I finished my seventh mile stronger than my first, dummy me realized something.  Maybe…just maybe  I would feel the difference before I see the difference.  Maybe it was the consistency of my splits or the slightly improved pace.  Maybe it was the fact that I felt no foot or knee pain today.  Maybe I missed the forest for the trees on this one.  The fact is, I ran my longest run since November, and did I die?  Hells to the no.  In fact I’m feeling amazing…like I wanted to keep going.

So I’ve made changes to my diet again and I trudge along further.  This isn’t just a me lesson…it’s a life lesson.

The truth is that we can’t be confident all the time. The person who is appearing the most confident.  The one toting their  Instagram perfect asses around (I’m not gonna lie, I check out that stuff. I like to look at nice asses, don’t judge me!)  The one dissing the “fat person”…those people clearly have more insecurities than I do.  We all have insecurities. Admitting anything less than that is false advertising.   I’m not going to list all my “ass”ets here.  I have nothing  to prove to anyone who is reading this.  I have to be cool enough for me, even though sometimes I know I’m not. If you think I’m a cool, fun chickaroo, why thank you, my dear!  The thing is that those who only see that probably don’t get to see the messy me.  The messy me isn’t so fun.  She’s insecure and gets easily offended at times, emotional, an overthinker.  The people who are closer to me know that.  They have felt the wrath and trust me when I tell you I’m not so proud of it.  I’m impatient, sometimes needy, and I pop off at the mouth without thinking.  I don’t  always think of others.  Sounds like an asshole, right?  Guess what…we all are assholes sometimes.  Yep, even you, hot shot.  You know the trick here is simple, don’t you?  It’s  being real enough to know that you are being messy and admitting it.  I hate having to admit that I’m a total jerk right now and I’m being that way because I’m feeling insecure.  I’m a pusher.  I push away not because I am full of myself, but because I think you as a husband, friend, family member…deserve more than my messy.  It’s kind of dumb when I say that out loud. If you look at it, that’s truly not who I really am,  but insecurity and lack of confidence will do some ridiculous stuff to your mojo. I hope the people in life who have to experience my messy remember the fun chick.  I don’t need a lecture about how I act. I beat myself up more than any friend or family member can.  I promise you that.

But in reality aren’t we all a little insecure. Even the hottest of dudes who have the ladies falling all over them, aren’t they even a little insecure? (I don’ know shit about hot dudes nowadays so I’m grasping.)  The ladies who can walk around in their bikinis without a towel wrapped around them…aren’t they all insecure sometimes, or is it just me.

Let me tell you I don’t feel like a weeping hot mess afraid of her own shadow most of the time.  There are definitely sometimes when I feel like I could pass for a total hot piece of ass. Ha! Or at least whatever that equates to for a 39 year old mother of two with this ass of mine. I love that girl in me.  She’s the person I am.  She’s the fun girl without a give a damn in what people think.

But then the hypocrite in me shows up.  How do I sit here and preach what I do to all of you and “pretend” to be positive.  The answer is simple.  Because I want to believe it too. And I know that everything I’m saying is true, I just don’t feel it sometimes and maybe if I say it to you, it may click.  Do you feel it clicking?  The truth is that if I look back to where I started.  I believe every ounce of this shit I shovel out.  And it’s proven that I have felt it enough to turn my beliefs into reality. I’m good at succeeding when I believe.  You can be too!!!

So let’s all agree that sometimes we have to shovel out positivity even if we aren’t feeling it. You absolutely hear everything you say to yourself and what you say matters.  When you tell yourself you’re nobody…you exude that.  People feel your vibes.  So turn it around. Be kind to yourself.  Say nice things to yourself.  And so maybe you don’t believe them right away…I promise you will.   Look for the good in yourself, and in others.  Match their effort and do kind deeds.  You won’t be sorry.

On the other hand though, remember that it’s impossible to be perfect.  Sometimes the hypocrite comes out.  The one that tries to be everyone’s cheerleader but may not believe it so much for herself (or himself).  The messy creeps in and lashes out.  And life doesn’t feel so great. That’s why it’s life. We can’t always be neat, sometimes messy is just ok.  Bring me your messy…bring me your  worst and know that I’ll sit through it.  Let me be your hand when you need one.  Because quite honestly…I am blessed to have that person who sometimes can’t take much more from me…but somehow does and shows me there is a way to the surface.  God Bless him….seriously. I also have the most amazing friends.  Some ignore my moments and silently forgive and move on.  I have listeners and rainbow throwers (those are the ones that always see the pot of gold even when I can’t).  And I’ve got friends  who call me on my shit.  I need and appreciate all those people in my life.  You have them if you look…I betcha!

I’m mostly pleasant and positive…mostly.  But damn that insecure gal, I truly hope to be seeing less of that as I keep groovin’ forward, but she will always be inside. Damn her !!!!! lol

If you are feeling less than perfect, a little messy today, give yourself a break.  But put those fancy pants on tomorrow and climb up to the top.   There is so much waiting for you just beyond the surface.

No regrets…

Until Next Time,

DP Babbles

Because You’re Only Cheating Yourself

22 Feb

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So originally I was going to make you all piss your pants laughing about my first visit to Orange Theory.  And I promise you that one is coming soon.  I’m promising some laughing.  By next week I’ll have more material to laugh at…and by more material I mean the things that I think in Orange Theory, Bootcamp and kickboxing. I’ll also be out of this funk and will be happy to make jokes about myself for your pants pissing pleasure.  But today I learned something that made me super angry.  (Yes, super angry…cause regular angry isn’t angry enough).

This weekend was the Fort Lauderdale A1A Half and Full Marathon.   This was supposed to be my first half back after running New York.   But due to my foot injury, I’ve been unable to work up to running it without wiping out the possibility of running my favorite half in April. Sunday was a rough day for me. Not only was my momma in the hospital but not being able to participate in something that I love threw me out of whack.  I think that if you heard from me Sunday and I was odd, please know that was why. (I’m sorry).  I spent the morning blubbering a bit. Because although the race doesn’t define me, the feelings associated with the race are something I crave.  So, today, when I found out the  2nd place finisher cheated, I was infuriated.   It wasn’t as simple as her cutting the course, which she did without much thought apparently.  It was the thought she put into biking the course in the afternoon at the pace she should have been running in the morning so she could prove her time.  Who puts that much effort into cheating a 13 mile race?  Apparently that chick.

So why am I seeing red today?  Let me tell you why….

In February of 2013, I sat in a hospital room, at a whopping 250 lbs, unable to breathe.  I had pneumonia, asthma, and couldn’t run to save my life. My pulmonary function was 70%. This…this was my rock bottom.  I may be struggling a bit now.  But that was where I knew things had to change.  That I could NEVER go back. That this person was not me.  This was me hiding from…well…you. All of you. I was hiding from life and not putting myself out there.  I was closet eating pints of chocolate chocolate chip ice cream and tons of pasta.  I was known as “the pudgy pal”.  If you were a dude and you wanted to talk about screwing a chick…I was the girl that listened.    My absolute rock bottom.  The next week I started my journey into paleo and becoming some kind of runner.  Yes, I’m going to tell you that the 250 lb. me could run, and even slower than my slow now.  But there was no giving up because I signed up for my first half marathon.  I was going to do it.  So I lost 30 lbs or so and ran my first half.  Seven half marathons and one full marathon and more than 50 pounds gone later, my pulmonary function on a bad day is now 95% and on the best days over 100%.  And although I’ve been injured and in my own mind not on the cool list,  I am so far from that girl I was 3 years ago.

That’s why I’m seeing red.  I’m seeing red for every person like me who ever struggled, thin or chunky.  For every person who saw mile 9 and said “Are you fucking kidding me?”  For anyone who wanted to turn around at mile 6 but didn’t because succeeding was worth more than the pain.  For every person who ever ever heard these phrases:

“Running is bad for your knees.”

“It would be easier if you were thinner.”

“Fat people shouldn’t run.”

“You can’t!”

You won’t!”

“I don’t support you.”

“I don’t understand why this is important to you.”

“You’re not fast enough.”

“You aren’t a real runner.”

“You need to lose weight first and then run.”

You know what I have to say to the girl who cheated, and for anyone who has ever muttered any of these phrases?  Screw you!  Seriously, if you want to do it better, then lace up your damn running shoes and work hard next to me and everyone else who is working like the dickens to give their rock bottom a middle finger and farewell.    I’ve heard some of these, as early as recently. You need not go past my ass to see that running is a feat for me.  It’s not just my lungs or the size of my rockin’ ass, or my currently bum foot.  It’s the 250lb girl that still lives deep inside that doesn’t think she’s good enough.  Rest assured to anyone who thinks otherwise…I am good enough.  What she did this weekend was take the easy way out.  Those people who have hit you with the above phrases, but sit on the couch while they criticize you, should hold no merit in what you do.  But if you are anything like me, you hear them…you hear their voices mid run.  You hear them in the middle of you’re hardest moment.  You hear them at mile 25 when you’re not so sure there’s anything left.  You will always hear them.

That chick that cheated this weekend…I may not have been there, but I see her.  She disrespected elite runners, the middle packs, and the back of the packs like me.  She disrespected everyone who sweat in the middle of a race with a heat advisory where people got all their mileage in, or bowed out gracefully.  I will see her and people like her in my hardest sprint, in my last .1 of my 13.1.

Know that if you have ever had anything to say to me or anyone like me…  If you passed comments about the medals on my wall or decided that you know what a true runner is.  Or if you are the person who has told any of those lies above to anyone struggling inside, we hear you in our daily struggle.  Because of you…we can.  Because of the chick who shortchanged herself and let herself be called a winner…we can. Because of the rock bottom moment…I assure you, I will.  All of you struggling will.  All of you ready to run your first 13.1 will do it honorably for yourselves, and you will still hear those voices but they will only drive you to that finish line.  You’re only cheating yourself if you don’t.

The fat girl will live inside of me forever.  She is the reason I am where I am.  While I’m still not finished. She is the unworthy feeling that creeps out of me.  She is the person that gives me needy moments.  She is what drives me.  I was having  a moment the other day when a friend said the following to me.

“Question: Why does the cool chick always have to do with weight loss and exercise? You’re a cool chick no matter what. And you’re damn hot too (I love her…just love her for that one!) Stop being so damn hard on yourself. Look at a picture from 8 years ago.  Look  where you came from.  Look how hard you worked to get there.”

And she’s right.  The cool chick or dude is there no matter what…in all of us.  I am a cool chick, and I don’t have to cut a course by a couple of miles to look like a cool chick.  I don’t have to be everyone’s cup of tea to be the cool chick.  Neither do you.  Take your rock bottom and all those negative nelly comments and stick them into your most difficult moments.  Hear them, feel how they made you feel….and then let them go.  Let them take you. Fuel yourself with them. Let them be you’re drive. You can…I can. Watch me. Watch us.

I realize this…  If you have ever told me any of the above.   If you’ve ever been negative and not supported me…watch this. Watch me.  I’m not cutting corners to get to where I’m going. And chances are, if I or anyone else has felt that kind of negativity, we aren’t going to need you hanging around in a few pounds.  None of us will.  Because no one needs that kind of negativity in life.  Us rock bottom-ers, we’ve got us…if you can’t see us for the cool peeps we are, peace, out.  There is no skipping ahead to win the race, cause the race is inside of us.

So half marathon cheater, thank you, thank you for fueling my success.  I may not have been there, but my friends were and you will be fueling them too.

Until next time…

DP Babbles

 

It Finally Happened

5 Dec

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I’ve been sitting around waiting for it. I braced myself after a year of living the future 26.2 miles and I just waited.  I tried to plan so it wouldn’t happen.  I have been fighting this freaking foot injury.  I’ve barely been able to run, but I’ve been in my garage making friends with my weights and kettle bells.  They were going to save me from every tear I never intended to cry. I tried to make goals and kick my own ass…nope.  Wednesday evening I went to work just like normal me…came home Thursday and woke up feeling all kinds of empty.  I found myself biting back the tears. Here it was, the Marathon let down.  It all came crashing down.  I even held my shit together out the door on the way to work. Not sure if the hubs noticed but I texted him later just to prep him for a few deep breaths.  I cried my way to work like a baby.  Pulled my shit together for a second to get into to work, but they knew.

I saw eyes on me opened wide.  I’m usually pretty perky and I dance and giggle through most of my shift so these moments are unusual. “So you know my usual Tuesday after Half Marathon Sunday? It came late this time…” I barely squeaked out before silent tears rolled down my face.  It was instant surrounding of love.  I’m so lucky they all get me.  I truly love my work family as they have been such cheerleaders when I was nervous, down or didn’t think I could.  It was like a group hug. I mostly felt better but I’ve been weepy on and off for days.

I was so nervous about the foot doctor.  What if he told me I couldn’t run. What if it was worse than I thought.  And it wasn’t mostly.  But I have the patience of a gnat and this grand plan in my head.  I’m a do-er. I have to see this plan through. I’m my own f*cking crown of thorns.  I’m hard on myself and need to learn to be flexible with my plan.

Then, today it hit me during a chat with my coach.  She said injuries are lessons.  This isn’t just a lesson in my limits and how far was too much (apparently running for 8 hours can injure you! Who the hell knew! ). It was a lesson in patience and flexibility.  I suck at change.  This…this shitty foot injury is going to teach me how to get more fit and accomplish my goals other ways.  I’ll run again soon, but I have to do other things.  I have to try harder and get better at other things too.  My foot doc called me an athlete. I better put my pretty girly athletic panties on and act like one.

So swimming it is and I’m going to rock that shit too…even if I stink at it. I’m going to swim my ass off. (hopefully literally)

So, it’s been a ton of deep breaths and sometimes a tear or two sneaks in but I really feel I’ve held it together.

I’ve even been trying to purposefully not shut myself off like I normally would.  I’ve forced myself not to be sad.  I always preach that sometimes you just have to feel the feels…I don’t want to.  I want to plan and move on and kick some ass.  I want to ignore the feels. I don’t want anyone feeling sorry for what happens when its all said and done.  It was worth all of this.  Running 26.2 miles was worth ever tear currently running down my damn face.

I was standing outside tonight talking to my daughter when I got a text from out of the blue.  A friend, who I’ve been lucky to have since the day I timidly walked into Volleyball tryouts my first day of high school.  Facebook has reconnected us and I couldn’t be happier about that.  She was our fearless leader…she is a fearless leader… that has never changed.

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You know, God puts everyone in our lives for a reason. God knew I needed her today.  And I am grateful.  Some tears snuck out before I responded.

I did forget something.  I forgot what happened almost a month ago.  I forgot the months of blood, sweat and tears.  She even reminded me that there was a time not so long ago that I was sick and not breathing well but I came back from that fighting like a soldier and hit a half marathon PR.  I needed to be reminded that I have fought and I have fight left. And I am going to fight…I am a finisher.

We all have situations that set us back.  And it suuuuucccckkkks…with a big fat capital S!   There is a lesson in every set back.  It may not make much sense at the time.  But it will. It will make sense when God, or the universe or whatever you happen to believe allows you to see it.  And maybe, just maybe you’ll allow yourself see the greatness in you too.  If you doubt it, I’ve already told you I’m here…just ask me to kick your ass and give you a reminder.  I’m good people like that.

I haven’t been good people lately.  I’ve been terrible company and I’ve been a less than fun. But what goes up must come down, right?  So I came down…but I’m evening out and movin’ on.  Who would have thought that running would teach such life lessons.

So never forget that even when your not feeling so great, there are people who think you are…like me!!!!  That pull back on your sling shot…it’s only meant to catapult you to the next level.  So get groovin’ peeps…you got this!

#noregrets

Until Next Time…

DP Babbles

Follow up: Dear Sweet Baby Jesus of Running (warning: expect some laughing and some tears)

17 Nov
"That's 5! Enough for a hand job!!"

“That’s 5! Enough for a hand job!!”

See that little blonde holding the sign...she's one of the reasons why I run. ❤️

See that little blonde holding the sign…she’s one of the reasons why I run. ❤️

Whoever said “If you dream it, you can do it” probably meant you actually have to fall asleep and dream it. Saturday night went like any pre-race prep for me with the exception of sleep (like not one bit of it). The wheels turned. My heart raced. The nerves wouldn’t settle. And then the alarm went off. So off I went.

Prepped and ready to go and totally feeling like donkey shit(I assume donkey shit doesn’t feel great…I don’t know this for a fact), I laced up and headed to the starting line. These are my thoughts and experiences:

Mile one was a warm up, and the run through the tunnel with the crowd felt amazing. I can feel the energy. But why the hell is my mouth so dry.

Mile two: It’s a little breezy. Why does my whole entire body feel like its got the prickles. I think I may puke. Look…there’s  the three hour pacer. I’ll stick with her.

Mile 3: I’m totally going to hurl. I’m dizzy. WTF? Why am I dizzy at mile 3. Am I dying. God!!!! Am I going to die at mile 3 behind pace. What a douche…who the hell dies at mile 3?  Pull your shit together! (I laugh at this now) I may not finish. How the hell will I pull off the New York City Marathon if I can’t get past mile 3…or if I die first.

Halfway between three and four…I had an enlightening moment because I saw her. My little girl. My amazing friends and my daughter were standing on the street jumping up and down and cheering. . She was holding a sign and looking proud. She is the reason I started running. The reason why I got healthy.  I need her to know she can do anything if she tries.  I can only show her because words are just words.  How the hell do I give up on that? I don’t…I just keep going.

So I stood a little straighter, gave them all kisses and off I go. That’s when things got a little more amusing to me.

Miles 4 and 5: Am I running in an effing Hurricane?  I am not aerodynamically shaped enough for this shit. This wind isn’t lifting me and my ass certainly isn’t flying. My hat is getting ready to go.  God, why can’t I just be a Kenyan today.

10K split:1:32:19. Dammit!!!!! I am way off where I need to be. Way off than my best. Fuck this wind already. I have screwed my goal. ( I really did drop the F bomb and I’m not sugar coating it.)

Then just over the bridge, I see the wheelchair competitors and I feel like such a dip shit and whiner. They endure struggles every day far worse than my measly 13.1 mile struggle and here I am feeling sorry for myself. So I put my big girl panties on and muddle through. (And no I didn’t physically put them on because like a good portion of runners, panties don’t work for me.)

Then goes the tough run down the beach. The wind was even more brutal but I like all of the others fought for the finish. At the ten mile mark an amazing man went in for the high five and my calf totally seized up. I have never experienced anything like that pain while racing. So I hobbled, stretched, walked a bit and knew I could run slower but that I couldn’t speed up or I was done. The medal is a bottle opener. I can’t fail and not get a bottle opener for crying out loud!

A mile before the finish line I get the magic text. Siri reads it to me and I cry like a baby. “Don’t be discouraged. You can still finish and we are all here at the finish line for you.” and then another “Lady, you got this-we believe in you.” Tears pouring, salt and sand on my face, that was what I needed to get me the next half mile.

A half mile before the finish I see an angel, well sort of ! My running coach’s amazing friend is there waiting to run me in.  He talks me through the last half mile pointing out every positive.  Our scenery, how brutal the wind was for  everyone, how amazing I was doing…that the finish line was coming. I was almost there.

And just like that I got through the finish line.  And yes as embarrassing as it is I did dry heave.   My family and friends were there. My bottle opener medal was waiting for me. And in that instant, I realized that my goal was the journey.  That for my next half marathon, I don’t want to think about my pace…I want to enjoy the race.  I want to enjoy the people, the signs, the cowbell, the scenery, the hurricane force winds. The more I concentrate on the time, the less I enjoy it.  And why the hell would I ever run 13.1 if I didn’t get to enjoy parts of it. By the way, I still want to be a Kenyan for the day…but only if I can look good in those runner speedos.

I would truly like to thank everyone who encouraged me. Siri read your texts to me unless you said the “F” word…she refused to read those. I got them all and they mattered. Special thanks to my cheering squad and family, my coach, and that “Crazy Ever After” blogger (http://crazyeverafter.com) who talked me though a rough spot on Las Olas.  My favorite after half marathon quote from her “Congratulations! That’s 5!! Enough for a hand job!!!” (Now you know why we’re friends, right?)  She is my first and forever half marathon partner in crime. Check out her blog. She rocks.

 

Quotes of the weekend:

“Not all races are PR performances, but they are all learning experiences and will ultimately make you a better runner.” LD

“Always have goals, both big and small, without them you are a rudderless ship in life, not just running.” LD

Peace out for now…