For the Love of Running

Why do runner’s love to run so much? 756cdc45d7e218676f4f969eb5918191It’s a question all runners are asked from time to time by their non-running friends and family and no matter how hard we many try to explain it …no one will ever understand until they become a runner themselves.

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day and all of the love that is being shared today, this week’s Tuesdays on the Run link poses the question “What do you love about running?” For many of us, even though the journey which brought us to running may all be different, we all fell in love with it for many of the same reasons. That is what makes the running community like none other and is a great place to kick off my list! Continue reading

2016: Mission Accomplished

With the hustle and bustle of the Christmas holiday behind us and the excitement and curiosity of a new year right before us, it is natural to find ourselves reflecting back on the year. Was it everything we had hoped it would be when we were in this same place last year? Did we accomplish the goals we set for ourselves? Did we gain strength, both physically and mentally? Continue reading

Bucket List Races

Considering the fact that I’m doing good to be able to run a mere three miles these days; my dream races most likely won’t be getting crossed off my “bucket list” anytime soon. But hey, I’m only 49.75 years old…there’s plenty of time!

I love reading other runners dream races because it gives one a little glimpse of who they are, what motivates and excites them. I’m not really that into big races; I enjoy the energy of them but not the chaos of trying to navigate all that they entail just to get to the starting line. I do love to travel; however, I do not want every trip to be centered around a race. Therefore, my husband and I make a point to get a run in everywhere we travel believing that there is no better way to see a city, town or countryside better than on foot (or bike). We’ve run the historic streets of Charleston and Boston, covered just about every inch of Central Park, hiked the mountains of the Grand Tetons and explored every nook and cranny of Key West on bicycles. With that being said, there are a few races that are on my bucket list and one day will get crossed off!

1. Napa to Sonoma Half Marathon

Anyone who knows me even in the slightest, knows that I am a self-proclaimed wine connoisseur and I can’t think of a better way to spend 2 1/2 hours covering 13.1 miles!

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Isn’t this just absolutely beautiful? And of course, the bling is fabulous as well ….both beautiful and functional!dt-common-streams-streamserver

2. New York City Half Marathon

Okay, I know this sounds crazy to all of you marathoners out there who dream of running THE New York City marathon. What runner wouldn’t love to be a participant in, what I believe to be, the greatest marathon in the USA! However, I must be realistic …I will never run a full marathon and I’m perfectly okay with that. Therefore, I set my sights on things a little more feasible. While the hubs and I have travelled to NYC many times and run the streets of Central Park numerous times, we absolutely love the energy of the Big Apple and I imagine the route of this race (Central Park to Times Square and ending at Battery Park) would be filled with an energy as only New York City can deliver!NYC_Half_Marathon_-_Aug_'06.jpg

3. Grand Teton National Park Half Marathon

To be honest, it wasn’t until last year that I even knew this race existed. While planning our summer trip to Wyoming, I stumbled upon this race series and found it interesting, at the very least. However, it wasn’t until after our incredible trip to the Grand Tetons that I decided to add this one to the bucket list of races! In case you missed my vacation recapΒ (check it out), I’ll let you in on a little secret ….I absolutely fell in love with this part of the country and secretly want to sell everything we own, pack up the necessities and move to Jackson Hole!13782222_1422419297775671_661722321431275343_n13508841_1395292297155038_1607150375752667134_n

I’m absolutely in love with this medal! Actually, the entire series of National Park races are just beautiful and would be a wonderful goal for some of you “series junkies” out there. Each finisher’s medal represents the NPS emblem for that specific park.

Now that my insatiable desire for travel has been stirred, I must go and begin researching and planning next summer’s vacation. It’s never too early!

I’m linking up withΒ Marcia,Β PattyΒ andΒ ErikaΒ for Tuesdays on the Run! Today’s topic is, obviously, bucket list races and destinations. Go on over and check out these ladies and some of the many others who have linked up …you never know which race you will be inspired to run!Tuesdays-on-the-Run-2

What races are on your bucket list?

Have you ever participated in any of these three races? If so, send me the link to your race recap …I’d love to read it!

xoxo,

Finding “Fabulous” at Fifty, one bucket list item at a time!

Today’s Running Challenge

The question posed in this week’sΒ Tuesday’s on the Run link-upΒ is this ..”The most challenging aspect of running right now is _______” If you’ve been a runner for any length of time at all, you could fill in that blank with a myriad of “issues”! If you had asked me that question a week ago, I probably would have said “HEAT and humidity” with multiple emphatic exclamation points. However, if you’ve read myΒ weekly recap post, you know that today, the blank holds a special place for “my ankle”.

I almost didn’t participate in this link for fear of sounding like I’m still have a little pity party for myself over a running injury. I mean, every runner has dealt with them at one time or another, right? Heck, I myself, have had more than I care to even recall. I am not one of those “natural-born” runners. Having scoliosis and terribly flat feet are just not conducive to running long distances without some sort of issues. I’ve learned over the years that nagging little injuries will always be part of the running process for me and while it is very frustrating at times; I’m mindful to be thankful that I can do what I do. There’s always someone out there dealing with much worse. I may have a crooked spine, weak ankles and flat feet…but I still have two legs and two arms, my sight and my health. So, then, what am I complaining about today?

The more I thought about this question posed, the more I realized that my challenge is not the injury itself …as I said, I really am accustomed to them. The challenge for me right now is mental strength. As runners, we all know about “mental toughness” and it’s driving force behind what we do. We’ve all heard the saying “It’s physical strength that gets you to the starting line, but mental toughness that gets you across the finish line” and one of my personal favorites…81bbc36950d641b0b4f7f1cd649c325e-1

…..I can’t count the number of times I’ve had that argument in my head! No one can argue that if you have ever crossed the finish line of any marathon or half marathon, you are mentally tough! However, there’s another place for this “mental strength” we talk about and it is while on the sidelines, injured, watching others do that which you love to do, not knowing when you will be back out there. It’s frustrating knowing that you have the mental strength and the lung power to run those miles and cross those finish lines, yet your body just isn’t cooperating at the moment. There’s a battle raging in one’s mind while injured …the battle between knowing that you’ve pushed through pain before, both physical and mental pain, to reach your goals and knowing that this time, you need to listen to your body and give in to the pain so that it can heal. Yes, a great deal of mental strength is needed to win that battle!

AsΒ HoHoRunsΒ says …”I can do hard things” and being sidelined is hard! Mental toughness has gotten me through childbirth (3 times) and is still getting me through those 3 boys’ teenage years, a nasty divorce (is there any other kind) and my husband being deployed for a year in a combat zone! That same mental toughness is helping me navigate this crazy thing called ‘menopause’ and I have no doubt that it will get me through yet another running injury. I can do hard things. You can do hard things. We can do hard things. We just have to put our minds to it!

As I mentioned earlier, I’m linking us withΒ Marcia,Β PattyΒ andΒ ErikaΒ for their Tuesdays on the Run link up. Stop by these ladies blogs and see what “challenges” they’re facing these days. You never know how you can encourage others and find encouragement, inspiration and motivation along the way!tuesdays

xoxo,

Finding “Fabulous” at Fifty