Monday, January 31, 2011

Finding the Time to Workout

One of the biggest reasons people don't workout is "I don't have time." Moms especially have this challenge... and I can say that as a mom of two. It's HARD to find the time for myself. There are "Mommy-Guilt" issues added to that, and it just gets harder and harder to justify... and that's a whole different blog post.

The point is: EVERYONE has time challenges (some more than others).

How do you find the time?

Well, the first question you need to ask is this: "How bad do you want it?"

Do you want it bad enough to go without sleep? That's a tough one...

Right now, I *do*. I tweaked my knee on Wednesday (after the most awesome run... I managed to injure myself STRETCHING. Irony.) So, I went several days without working out. It was TOUGH! I am addicted. I was grumpy... I was weepy... I was just not myself.

I heard a Buddhist monk recently talk about happiness. He said being happy is NOT selfish- in fact, we should all strive to be happy, because happy people usually don't hurt others. I thought of this on day 3 of no-workouts... and realized I need to take care of myself so I can be a better mom, a better wife, a better friend, a better librarian... just a better person.

The point I'm trying to make is this: You have to realize the importance of working out, and make it a priority. Without that, you'll be lost when the first obstacle appears.

We've recently had a schedule change that makes it so I can't use my lunch time to workout on Mondays and Wednesdays. When I get home, it's run-run-run with the kids until bedtime, so I have found that I don't like to plan my workouts for after work (because, honestly, they don't get done).

My solution: The only way for me to workout on those days is if I wake up at 3:45 am.

So, this morning, my alarm went off at 3:45 am. I woke up and thought, "This is ridiculous. It's the middle of the night. What am I doing?" After sitting there and thinking about it for about 10 minutes (and wasting time) I got up.

Fast forward to after my workout (which was Turbofire): "Woohoo! I feel great! I'm so glad I did that!"

I'm counting on that feeling to get me out of bed tomorrow at 3:45.

Now, I'm not saying everyone has to get up in the middle of the night to workout, and it certainly isn't ideal (I don't think I'll try running at that time of day..), but I'm making it work for me. As a (relatively new) mom of 2, with a full-time job and a side business, I am proud that I'm making it happen. If I didn't have those circumstances, I would do something different.

So, let me ask you again: How bad do you want it?

I hope this helps. What are some ways you fit in your workouts?

Happy Monday,


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Monday morning blog hop? Well, yeah... to help us get going...

I started off this Monday morning with a Blog Hop (I think I went a whole day without blog hopping yesterday...)

This one is fun, because it has a question of the day (see below):


Are you planning on going on vacation in 2011? Are you saving up already?

Well, I am planning on making a trip to Dallas in December for the White Rock Marathon, and yes- I'm saving up for it!

Have a great Monday!


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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Cooking and Me- A Love Story

Just a few short years ago, if I were asked to cook something, I would have probably stomped my foot and refused. My idea of cooking was heating up a Stouffer's Lasagna in the oven. I kept my silverware in the refrigerator because there was so much space.

I'm not exactly sure what changed, but I can think of some possibilities. I know that, before I had kids, my husband cooked. If there was cooking happening, it was by him. I cleaned the kitchen after. I hated cleaning up the kitchen, so I started occasionally doing the cooking.

Another issue was that when my son was born, I tried to put us on some sort of schedule. Before he was around, we just kind of ate "whenever". I wanted to insure that we ate by a certain time each night, so I cooked (reluctantly).

Somewhere along the way I started to enjoy it.

Now, I do my best to plan our meals weekly, and on the rare occasion when it's 5:00 and I have no idea what's for dinner, it drives me insane. (I usually have a shake, give my son a sandwich and some applesauce, and tell my husband to find something for himself..).

Anyway, I've discovered that I actually enjoy cooking, and have started moving away from recipes and "improvising" (a concept that was impossible for me a few years ago).

Here's what we ate last night:

It's Beef Broccoli Stir Fry. I started with a recipe, but it turned out, I didn't have a lot of the required items...

We had some leftover beef from the night before, so I needed to use it. I got 3 bags of frozen broccoli (could have probably done with 2), made some whole wheat spaghetti (which I always try to have on hand), and sauteed some onions and garlic. I cooked the broccoli in the microwave (!!!), added it to the stir fry with the beef (cut into pieces), and added some soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, and salt.

I probably won't win my own show on The Food Network, but it was pretty good.

Oh, and I cut up some carrots (of which we have an abundance) and cooked those in salt and olive oil.

Did I mention my primary goal is to make it easy?

So, I'll try to post recipes as I come up with them (although, it's hard for me to keep track of exact measurements as I go..).

Are any of you recovering cooking-phobics like me? Do you enjoy it, or is it just something you HAVE to do?

Until next time...


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Saturday, January 29, 2011

My Amazing, Wonderful, Miraculous Trip to the Grocery Store with a 3 Year Old..


No, really.

Today, I made the big grocery list for the week. I asked my husband to watch the baby and took my son with me to the store.

I made a big deal about how just my son and I were going to the store together. "Mommy and R Day!"

We got one of those carts where the kids can sit in and pretend to drive a car. He made race car sounds and I sped up and slowed down and pretended he was driving a race car.

I admit that I had to bribe him. I asked him what kind of treat he would like before we went. He said chocolate. I told him throughout the experience that he was being really good, and if he kept being good he would get a treat!

There were a couple of moments when he got a little crazy. I just pulled over, bent down to his level, and reminded him that he wanted to be a good boy to get his treat. And then it was fine...

Why was this trip so much better than most of the others? I think the planning helped, and of course the bribery, but I think overall it was my mindset.

I went into this thinking, "We are going to have so much fun!" And we did.

So many times when I go to the store with my son, I expect it to go badly. I expect to be stressed out. And, that's usually what happens.

But this time, we both had a great time. And, he got some m and m's....

I think there's a lesson there (for me at least).

Those of you with kids, do you have any experiences that are similar?

Have a great weekend,

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Friday, January 28, 2011

One More Friday Blog Hop!

I'm getting a little addicted! It's so fun!


21 Days to New Habits

Did you know that it takes 21 days to make a habit?

What kind of habits would you like to build?

Well, I'm hosting a Facebook Event called the "21 Day Challenge". Basically, you commit to some kind of physical activity for 21 days (even if it's 10 minutes of stretching).

The goal is to be in the habit of exercising, just like taking a shower or brushing your teeth, by the end of the challenge.

So, if you'd like to participate, come on over to our group and sign up! It starts Tuesday, February 1!

21 Day Challenge

To your health!

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It's a Social Parade on Friday!

Welcome new followers! Post a comment and I'll follow back!

Smart and Trendy Moms

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Facebook Fan Friday!

It's a Facebook Fan Friday! Click the link for details!

WHAT did I do to my knee?

I am quite proud of the ability to laugh at myself.

Sometimes, I do stupid things. Like yesterday...

I went to the track to run (remember, I'm still suffering from a bit of PTSD due to being bitten by an aggressive beagle this weekend). I had a great 3 mile run (in 30:11, which is a good speed for me). I shook my booty a little and sang along with my playlist while running, and was feeling pretty awesome.

After the run, I went over to the stretching area. I was listening to Shakira's "Waka Waka" and, still, feeling pretty awesome. I did my runner's lunge, put my knee down, and enjoyed a lovely quadricep/hip flexor stretch. I went into pigeon. I was feeling so cool, I thought I would try the splits. So I did, and I felt great. I was bopping along to Shakira feeling like the coolest person at the track...

I went to the other leg. Everything was great until I tried the splits (you know, to be even). As I pressed my knee into the floor, I felt something give. It actually knocked me over. (Suddenly, I didn't feel as cool anymore).

I figured I could walk it off, but then I tried going down the stairs. Imagine my shock and horror when, immediately after finishing an amazing 3 mile run, I could barely walk down the stairs.

Here are the symptoms:
- Putting weight on it bent hurts. I can stand on the leg as long as the knee isn't bent.
- Walking is challenging but not impossible.
- Sitting down is hard, again while putting weight on it bent.
- There's kind of a popping, like something popped out of place.
- If I twist my foot (in a normal way), it kind of hurts.

I have never had knee problems before, so this is new to me. I did decide to put a brace on, because it feels unstable. Otherwise, I'm really REALLY hoping it gets better soon so I can run again. I mean, really.

Let's review:
Friday night, I post that I want to run the Dallas White Rock Marathon on December 4. I get excited. It feels real. I feel committed. I put the training plan on my calendar.

Saturday morning, I am bitten by an aggressive beagle while running.

Wednesday afternoon, I mess up my knee.

You know, I'm still determined to go ahead with my plan. I will run the Country Music Half Marathon on April 30. I will run the White Rock Marathon on December 4. I refuse to see this as any kind of "sign"- if anything, my commitment is being tested. A phrase comes to mind:

The greater the obstacles, the sweeter the victory.

Dude, December 4th is going to be EXTRA sweet.


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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Songs to Run To 1/26/2011

I listen to a podcast called "Two Gomers Run a Marathon", and in every episode they have a section called "Songs to Run To". I love it, and I'm stealing it.

Today, I had a pretty good run, and it seemed like every song that came on my shuffle was perfect for that moment. I had a goofy smile on my face, and may have been shaking my booty the whole time...

So, here's today's list:

Katy Perry- "Teenage Dream"
Shakira- "Waka Waka"
Pink- "Raise Your Glass"
Flo-Rida- "The Club Can't Handle Me Right Now"
Glee Cast- "My Life Would Suck Without You"

These were all pretty perfect and helped me make it through a 3 mile indoor run on the track today!

(P.S. I realize I totally ended that title with a preposition. This is going to be a regular feature, so hopefully, you can get used to it...)

Turbofire Review Series: Fire 45

The following is part of series. For an introduction to the series as a whole, please see this post.
Turbofire Logo
Fire 45 Description:
This is quickly turning into one of my favorite and most used Turbofire workouts. It contains 3 Fire Drills: One is kind of early on, and then the last two are back to back repeats of the same one.
Some of the memorable songs include: Boom, I got your boyfriend!(which seems to be everyone’s favorite with this one), Wiggle It (Just a Little Bit) and Proud Mary (Tina Turner version) in the second and third Fire Drill.
Honestly, I wasn’t familiar with any of the other tunes in this workout, but I did enjoy the music quite a bit. Once again, the music and moves go together really well.
This workout is really not too hard to learn. The choreography is pretty simple, in my opinion.
Intensity (from 1: laying on the couch to 10: I’m about to puke in a bucket):
I have been doing my Turbofire workouts low impact most of the time, since I alternate them with running and feel like I need a little rest. I found that this one is kind of hard to keep intense while still keeping it low impact. There are a lot of jacks, air jacks, and ski/runs. It’s hard to keep the intensity up on ski/runs while just marching. So, I feel like I get a pretty strong, solid, workout, but I don’t feel like it’s as intense. So, I’ll say for low impact modifications, it’s about a 5 -7, and those who go full out can probably edge close to 10 during the Fire Drills.
Other thoughts:
My favorite part (as I’m sure it is for most people) is the Boom I got your boyfriend section. The music and moves go perfectly together, and I find myself singing along. (I do these workouts most of the time with my baby daughter in her exer-saucer in front of me, so I tend to ham it up to keep her entertained!)
Stay tuned for more reviews, and if you have done any of these workouts, please add your thoughts..
To your health,
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(Originally published 1/25/2011)

The Elusive 4-miler!

I know I am capable of running 4 miles. I really am. But, I have had a 4 mile run on my calendar for weeks, and have yet to accomplish it. Let’s review:

Saturday, January 8: It snowed and was very windy. I don’t have any of those fancy winter underwear things, so I was hesitant to run outside. I tried to run on the treadmill, and had a terrible run that only lasted about .5 miles before I gave up.

Saturday, January 15: After a week off due to snow, ice, and coughing, I skipped the run this day because I was still feeling yucky.

Saturday, January 22: I am bitten by a dog after 1.5 miles.

Today I had wanted to do a 4 miler at the track, but I had a hard time. I am tired, my leg is still sore, and I’m generally just not at the top of my game. Plus, I could barely stand the track today…

[Going off track - get it?-here to complain about the track:

I am all for people going to the gym and getting healthy. I love this. Please, go to the gym and do something for yourself. But learn the rules of the track first. 1. Everyone goes in the SAME DIRECTION! 2. Do not walk slowly side by side! 3. The outside lane is for running! 4. When you pass someone, please don't try to cut them off.

At least no one tried to bite me though... okay, back to the post...]

What is the block I have? Why can’t I just run 4 miles? It’s not that long… Good grief…..

So, today I did about 2.5 miles. I decided to save the 4 miler for later in the week. But, it will happen before the end of this month! Preferably outside. Without blood.

And when it happens, you’ll hear it here first. There will be great rejoicing!

To your health,


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(Originally published 1/24/2011)

The Day a Dog Tried to Derail My Marathon Plans!

Last night, I pretty much made the decision to run the White Rock Marathon in December.

Given my history, I was expecting challenges. I was ready.

I went out today for 4 mile run. It was cold. I had a rough start, but kept going. I planned to go slow to get the distance in.

I had planned to go all the way down the street and back twice- each way was a little over a mile, so the whole thing would be a little over 4 miles. By about 10 minutes in, I felt good. I was proud of what I would accomplish.

So, after turning around I’m running downhill, feeling good, when this little, harmless looking beagle comes out from between some houses. The dog went into another yard, and I thought that may even have been it’s home, so I kept going.

Suddenly, the dog started running after me. I just thought I would run faster, but it caught me and took a big chunk out of my leg. I yelled obscenities starting with “What” and “the”.

For a brief moment, I considered shaking it off. I had to turn and scream at the dog to get it to leave me alone. I looked down and there was blood and a little skin. I figured I’d better limp home.

I called my husband (thank goodness I always have my phone since it’s my music player) and told him what happened and that I was on my way home. He met me at the door and took a picture (I won’t share it- pretty bloody), cleaned it off, and then we loaded the kids in the car and went to look for the dog before going to the ER.

Here’s a pic I took in the waiting room:

Anyway, after a long day in the ER, I finally made it home (thanks to the help of some good friends), got a tetanus shot, some antibiotics, and we’re putting off the rabies shots until they observe the poor beagle.

We did find the dog’s “home”, and the people there claimed it was a stray they were just feeding. The way they acted towards the dog, it was obvious they didn’t care about it. They even said they were going to take it to the pound to get put down.

It’s a sad situation. I don’t want to be the cause of a dog’s death, but at the same time, what if that had been one of my kids? I don’t want that dog terrorizing our neighborhood.

I thought for a minute it was another obstacle in my running career, and I was highly irritated I didn’t get my 4 miles in today, but I talked myself out of that kind of thinking quickly. I think if I rest for a few days, I can pick back up with the running. And, I’ll probably have to carry some pepper spray….

Here’s the last shot I’ll make you look at. It could have been worse :-)

A Full Marathon in 2011?

A few days ago, I posted about all the obstacles that have “postponed” my endurance running dreams, and my plan for this year.
One of the activities I listed was that I wanted to run the Dallas White Rock Marathon (FULL) in December.
I realized, though, that right now, it’s just a concept. The Country Music Half Marathon, which is April 30, is a definite. I’m training for that. I’m doing it. No problem. But, I am not sure if I’ve committed to White Rock all together.
It’s a little less than 11 months from now. I think I can train for 26.2 in that time. I’ll do the half in April, then there’s another half in September (Nashville Women’s Half) and October (The Middle Half) and even November (The Nashville Half Marathon)… but there’s not another full marathon until Country Music 2012.
All these other races don’t require much travel, just a short commute. But going to Dallas would mean flying in and spending at least one night there, away from my kids, but with family (since it’s home to me). That’s a big commitment.
So, right now, I’m leaning towards planning for it. I tell myself with 11 months to prepare, I can make it happen.
Plus, as I said before, I’ve wanted to do this race for years. It would definitely be a big accomplishment.
So, I’m asking everyone- should I do it? Should I go for it?
I would love feedback…
To your health!
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Parenting: A Love Letter to My Children

Today I want to talk a little about being a parent.

Before I had kids, I dreamed of having them for many years. I certified in prenatal yoga and fitness, so I felt totally ready to be pregnant. Whenever I saw a baby, my uterus hurt. I wondered for a few years if I had missed my chance, since I had waited until my 30s.

I had absolutely no idea what it would be like to be a parent.

In January 2007 I found out I was pregnant. I was surprised in a way, because I’d almost given up. In April, I found out I was having a boy, and suddenly it became real. And scary. I had no idea how to be a mom of a boy.

But then, I fell in love with him. And, as he grew, and went through the stages, and really did turn into a crazy boy (he’s 3 now), I loved him more every day, even when he drove me insane. I look at this child sometimes and feel my heart breaking because I love him so much (and I realize that may sound strange).

I had the urge to have more kids, and I wondered if it would happen Again, I thought I may have waited too long. But, at age 35, I found out baby number 2 was on the way. Oh, and this one had all that “Advanced Maternal Age” stigma attached to it. I worried and worried, but had another problem free pregnancy… I found out a girl was on her way, and felt like my dreams had come true.

So here I am, the mother of 2 children, and I feel incredibly blessed, but also incredibly responsible. Some days, I think, “What on earth am I doing with 2 kids? Who decided I deserved that kind of responsibility?”

But (and here’s where I come back to fitness), I am determined to teach them. As a child, I was terrified of exercise. Both my parents smoked, and as a musician, my “sport” was practicing piano. I remember the issues I had as a young girl… self-esteem, eating disorders, body image… and I am determined to do what I have to to keep my children from feeling that way. Well, I know I can’t protect them from everything, but I can give them the tools and the confidence to deal with it.

One of my favorite days so far was when I took my son with me to the Borodash on Thanksgiving 2010. Our family friend was there to watch him while I did the race, and he was at the finish line saying, “Go Mommy!” He still talks about “Mommy, you took me to a race!”. I want both of them to watch Mommy set goals, and achieve them, and know that they are truly capable of anything.

So, I admit that I do these things selfishly. I love races. I love working out. I love losing weight and looking good. But, really, in my heart of hearts, I hope that what I’m doing is teaching my children to strive for more.

So, I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing.

Kids, Mommy loves you!

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(Originally published 1/20/2011)

Reasons Why I Have Not Completed a Marathon Since 2004... and Why This Time It's Different!

In 2003, I was recently married, teaching a million aerobics classes a week (and yoga, so I wouldn’t completely die), and decided I needed a goal. I was working as a group exercise coordinator at a University Gym, and someone brought in a brochure for “Team in Training”.

I looked over the brochure and thought, “You know, I do all these dances, and choreography, and I have goals like ‘lose 10 pounds’ or ‘look a certain way’… but I need a real GOAL.” So, I decided to sign up.

Before training started, I worked up to running about 30 minutes at a time… on a treadmill (I was unaware of the treadmill vs. road controversy at that point). I had never been a strong runner. Growing up, I had asthma, and my asthma manifested itself in loud, honking wheezes, so whenever we ran in school, I honked, wheezed and came in last… while the other kids made honking sounds to mock me… (whoa, and that still hurts 30 years later… I have some issues…)

Let’s just say, I started running, but the marathon training was just going too fast for me. I decided to try to walk/run, and eventually I decided I could just do the half. By the time the Oklahoma City Marathon was coming up in April 2004, I was down to just walking. I hated running.

Well, my friend and I decided the day before the marathon that, since we were going to walk anyway, we might as well do it for 26.2 miles instead of 13.1. I mean, I felt like I could walk forever. So we changed our registration.

I did it. I walked 26.2 miles. Then walked back to the car for at least a mile (WTH?), then rode in the car for 2 hours.

Holy Guacomole, my legs hurt after that!

So, I took some time off from running. Actually, I took some time off from *moving* after the race, I was in so much pain. In the summer of 2004 I was just building back up to my 30 minute runs, when on September 1, I ran over myself with my own car.

And, there began my long line of obstacles.

Late fall 2004, my mom got sick. Spring 2005, she went into hospice and died. I wasn’t interested in much of anything for a few months.

Fall 2005, I started teaching aerobics again and started doing a few short run/walks at the gym before and after classes. I was having fun.

Spring 2006, I decided to go back to school for my library degree. I started running on the treadmill at the school gym. It was going well. I wouldn’t say I was a terribly strong runner at that point, but I was getting better.

By Summer of 2006, I was ready to commit to a half marathon. I registered for the Dallas White Rock Lake Half Marathon, which was in December (I’ve always wanted to do this race). But, almost immediately after registering, I started having pain in my achilles tendon, and eventually had to stop running for a while. I decided to try for the next year.

In January of 2007, I found out I was pregnant with my son. Well, so maybe this wasn’t my year for endurance running.

After my son was born, and I struggled to lose the MASSIVE amount of weight I gained from doing nothing and eating constantly, I started the Couch to 5K program in January 2008. It was going really well. I was running 30-40 minutes at a time, losing the weight (slowly) and doing pretty well.

Then we moved to another state (Summer 2008).

Here we go again: Start new job, get back to running. Run a lot.

I registered for the April 2009 Country Music Half Marathon. Almost immediately after registering, my knee started hurting.

I decided to keep running, but do shorter distances.

Fall 2009, I was a running maniac. I was doing races, and I was awesome. I had an amazing 4 mile run on Christmas day, and then I knew I was ready: I registered for the 2010 Country Music Marathon.

January 2010: What? I’m pregnant AGAIN? (A wonderful surprise, but still, a surprise…)

By this time, I’m tired of obstacles. I’m thinking, “Why can’t a 5 month pregnant woman do a half marathon?”

I ran up until about the 5th month, when it just got to be too much.

I had my daughter in September 2010, and started running about 4 weeks later. This time I’m serious.

I have not yet registered for the Country Music Half Marathon (I was afraid to jinx myself) but that is the plan. Then, I am planning to fly back to Dallas in December to do the White Rock Marathon (all 26.2 miles).

Feel free to wish me luck/cheer for me/encourage me/ or laugh at my bad luck below…

To your health,


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(Originally published 1/19/2011)

Remember the Time I Ran Over Myself with My Own Car?

Or, “Me against the 1995 Pontiac Bonneville.”
I’m writing this story for a couple reasons:
1. I think it’s important to be able to laugh at one’s self and not take yourself too seriously.
2. I am going to refer to this story in a later post when I talk about the obstacles I’ve had in running the past 6 years.
3. Luckily, there was no permanent damage, so I kind of think the story is hilarious…
So, September 1, 2004. I was 30 years old, and had completed the Oklahoma City Marathon a few months earlier. I had started out training for the marathon, then injury after injury convinced me I should do the half instead, so I trained for the half… then during the expo, my friend and I decided to switch to the full marathon and just walk. I walked it in 6:45. Yes, I completed 26.2 miles, but have been told my many runners that “it doesn’t count”.
I was building the running back up ALMOST from the beginning and determined to do it right this time. I had recently quit my full time job as a group fitness coordinator to work on my Ph. D. full time. I was 30 and didn’t have any kids, so I could do things like that back then..
I was teaching aerobics and yoga all over town, and running in addition to my classes, so I was in really great shape. My husband and I had recently started taking Kenpo Karate together, and on that day, I was scheduled to test for my first belt (yellow).
I had an appointment that afternoon, but I went out to start my car, and it wouldn’t start, so I called and cancelled. Since I had my test later that night, I decided I would take a nap. I wanted to be nice and fresh :-)
Well, apparently while I was sleeping, my husband decided to try to jump my car. So, he had rolled it out into the center of the street in our apartment complex. He came in and woke me up frantically, saying he needed me to help him move the car. Well, I was groggy, but he was convincing in his urgency, so I followed him outside.
We rolled the car back up to the parking space. He said, “Okay, you got it?” I said “Yes.”… thinking I had correctly put the parking brake on. He turned around and started to walk away. However, I noticed the car was rolling. Well, the first thing that came to mind for me was that I had to get the foot brake down, so I leaned into the car and tried holding it down with my hand. Guess what: That does not work. [Keep this in mind if you ever find yourself in a similar situation].
So, at some point, my husband noticed the car was rolling (I may have yelled for him, I really don’t remember) and came over to try to help. But, there was a point where I saw the car about to roll over my legs, and knew there was nothing I could do to stop it, and everything moved to slow motion. I am told I screamed, but it was mainly in anticipation for how much it was going to hurt to be run over by a car. But, you know, I remember thinking it didn’t hurt nearly as much as I thought it would.
So, once we got the car secured, my husband took me inside. We washed the tire tracks off my legs (!!!) and he sat me down at my computer, told me to put my feet up, and gave me a glass of wine. I figured I was set while he went to Karate (and I also think I had a pretty valid excuse for not testing that night).
Well, as the time went on, my legs started to hurt more and more. They swelled up. I called my mom, and she freaked out. “Go to the hospital!!! What is wrong with you?” So, when my husband got home, I told him I thought I should go to the hospital.
In the meantime, my mom calls my dad and leaves a message that only says, “Sarah got run over by a car and is going to the hospital!” Geez. There were about 50 missed calls on my phone when we got home.
They did some X-rays and found there were no broken bones, but my knees and ankles were sprained. There were also some pretty wicked bruises developing. They gave me something for the pain right there, and gave me a prescription for vicodin, and told me to go see my regular doctor the next day (at the University Health Clinic).
I think I was pretty lucky. I used crutches for a few weeks, but I was able to walk pretty quickly. I did really easy workouts for the next few months, like Leslie Sansone. The next Spring, my mom got really sick, and eventually went into hospice and died, so it was even longer before I was able to start running again (and by the time I got really good at it again… I was pregnant..)
So, friends, here’s the tip of the day: EMERGENCY BRAKE. And, if not, pushing the floor brake down with your hand DOESN’T work. Finally, if you’re going to get run over by a car, do a lot of yoga, because it apparently helps you heal faster.
To your health (and safety),
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The Secret to Success is...

EUREKA! I’ve discovered the secret to success! I think it can be applied to almost any situation. Do you want to know what it is?

“Do it, even when you don’t feel like doing it.”


You know how, in the days leading up to New Year’s, you make resolutions? You plan how this next year is going to be your best ever, and you can’t wait to get started.

I know I have done this. I’ve also lost interest when it got hard or inconvenient to do. I admit it.

I looked forward to running today for a week. I have been sick, but I knew that today, my kids would be at school and I would have the day off to run. I was very excited about this… last night.

However, this morning, I really had no desire to run at all. What I really wanted to do was get the kids off to school and go back to bed. I even tried to convince myself I didn’t need to run today…

But, luckily, reason prevailed, and I remembered no one ever reached a goal by just doing what they felt like. I got dressed, ate some ezekiel bread and peanut butter, brushed my teeth (Gomer running rule) and went out to run.

I talked myself into running a few minutes at a time. At first, I told myself I could stop at 20 minutes. Then 25. Then 30. I stopped a little past 30. I didn’t want to go more than that since I hadn’t run in over a week and a half (but the cool thing is, I felt like I *could* do more).

Of course, I was so glad I did it.

There are other, non-fitness related examples. I wanted to blow off working my business tonight and just go to bed. But, I told myself that successful people don’t just do it when they feel like it… and I did it.

My undergraduate major in college was in music performance. As a pianist, I had to practice. A LOT. A LOT A LOT A LOT. It was lonely. It was boring. I was often really tired. But I did it… even when I didn’t feel like it.

So, kids, there you have it: the secret to success.

What are some of your goals, and how can you move a little closer to reaching them today?

To your health,


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(Originally published 1/17/2011)

Being a Hero

You know the phrase, “Don’t be a hero?” As I understand it, it means something like “Don’t take an extreme risk that could result in injury to yourself just to look cool..” (I’m sure there are lots of other interpretations as well…).Basically, it’s about self-preservation, right?

Well, today I decided not to be a hero.

I had planned to run today, after over a week away from it due to injury, snow, and sickness. But my cough still lingered. If it was just a little cough and runny nose, I think I would be fine, but this still feels, well, “chesty.”

Ar first, I thought I would skip the run and do cardio inside. But, as I thought about it, I realized my energy was still low, I was still achy (and not in a good way) and decided that just doing the housework and childcare I had planned today would take enough energy.

So, today I told myself: “Don’t be a hero.”

It was rough. I wonder if I’ll ever run again. I feel off, not having worked out since Wednesday. But, I realized it sounds a little ridiculous to use up all my energy on a workout and then be too weak to do anything else today.

However, I think, in a way, making those hard decisions is a little heroic. I’m proud of myself, and know that when I get the chance to run Monday, it will be GLORIOUS… because I will be healthy again.

To your health!


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(Originally published 1/15/2011)


Recently, I was reminded of the importance of balance.
I really love running. Well, I don't usually love the first mile, but once I get going I love it. I love talking about running. I love thinking about running. I love running gear. I love going to the local running store. I love running races. I especially love the feeling after a good run.
So, do you see that I love running?
Last Saturday, I decided to run inside. It was snowing, and while snow itself usually doesn't deter me, the harsh wind seemed like it would be rough. So I went to the gym and ran on the treadmill. Well, I just never got it together. I lasted about half a mile and had to quit. I got discouraged, but decided to use this time to do some lifting.
Well, I haven't run since then. It just keeps snowing! Monday and Tuesday,my kids' daycare was closed, so we were housebound. Wednesday, I returned to work and planned to run, but another obstacle has reared its head: I'm sick.
Runny nose, stuffy head, cough... I can take those things. Achy body... okay, that could just be from training. Pain in my chest when I take a deep breath.... uh oh. I decided not to run, and I went very quickly from, "I don't think I'll run today", to "I need to go home and get in bed immediately."
So, Thursday became a rest day, in every way. Home from work resting. Looking at all the things that need to be done at the house, but not doing them because I'm resting.
It got me thinking about balance. How balanced is it to run when I can't even breathe? I may be a little crazy.
It's one thing to be motivated, to have a goal you're working towards (like me with the Country Music Half Marathon), and we're all motivated by "cosmetic reasons" to some extent (I admit this openly- I want to look like I work out!), but isn't the main reason we do this to be healthy? How healthy is it to push through illness and get worse just to keep exercising?
So, I reviewed my training schedule for the half, there's a bit of leeway... I logged my calories carefully (which I usually do, but I'm burning about 300 less so I needed to adjust) and allowed myself to rest.
You know what? I'm already feeling better.
So, my friends, if you're driven, like me, take a minute to think about why you do it. Remember your ultimate goal, and take care of yourselves!
To your health,
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Turbofire Review Series: Fire 30

The following is part of a series. For an introduction to this series as a whole, please see this post.
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Fire 30 Description:
Fire 30 is a 30 minute Turbo workout following the typical format: Warmup (each Fire workout does the same warmup, just likeTurbokick and Turbojam); A few punching/kicking sections; fire drills; and a finale.
This workout, like the other Fire workouts, offers the "New to Class" option. If you choose this option, after the warm-up, there is a seamless transition to a section where Chalene reviews the choreography for the upcoming section (If you're familiar with Turbokick, this is the way the instructor videos did the section reviews before the workout... at least back in my day...).
Using the "New to Class" option makes it more likely that you'll get the choreography, but even if you don't get it perfectly, you'll get practice. As Chalene says, "Practice burns calories!"
This moves pretty fast and is pretty intense. The fire drill consists of the same one minute drill, but it's repeated two times.
The cool down is pretty short. Each of the DVDs in this series includes a 10 minute workout called "Stretch 10". The user is encouraged to use this after as many workouts as possible. But there is a very short, very basic "get you back to where you were when you started" stretch at the end.
Some of songs include: Play That Funky Music, We Want the Funk, Proud Mary, Every Little Step (I found myself recognizing several sections and tunes from previous Turbokick rounds).
Some of the moves include: Fast feet/Football run (Flashdance), Clockwork, Hi-lo punches, Twist, and Fire Throw (a new move I hadn't seen before Turbofire that consists of contracting your abs, lifting your knee and acting like your throwing. Looking back on that, it doesn't seem right. It's very hard to describe.)
Intensity (from 1: laying on the couch to 10: I'm about to puke in a bucket):
Again, modifications are offered, and you can make it as hard as you like. I find that the speed itself makes it intense, so if you are modifying down, you might try making the movements smaller (when I did Turbofire 8 months pregnant I found that the speed was the most challenging element for me). So, I think you could probably work this from about a 5 - 8 or 9. (Remember, the goal is not to work at a 10 all the time).
Other thoughts:
Overall, I find myself reaching for this one pretty often. Part of it is the length- with 2 kids and a full time job, if I can do a tough workout in 30 minutes, I am happy. I would rather complete a 30 minute workout than get through 30 minutes of a 45 minute workout and have to stop (that's just me...).
Also, it's quite a fun one.
Stay tuned for more reviews, and if you have done any of these workouts, please add your thoughts, especially if you can help me explain "Fire Throws".
To your health,
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