Blog Archives

I Ran to Palm Bay, Florida

As the 2013 is coming to its final hours and minutes, I’m sitting here trying to keep myself occupied (and awake) long enough to watch the ball drop at midnight. I have an hour and 40 minutes to go, and the Texas A&M and Duke football game isn’t doing that much for me. Although I have to say… Johnny Football is as impressive as ever.

Anyway, I’m tired of football as that is about the only thing on our TV during Bowl Season.  So I thought I’d write my last post of the year.  I didn’t know what to write about, so I did some social media surfing and checking on the weather for the next few days.  I have a Running into the New Year 5K tomorrow in Charleston, WV with clear sky’s and temps in the low-50’s.  YEA!!  But then I have a half marathon on Sunday afternoon with a forecast of rain/snow combination and temps in the high-30’s to low-40’s…. I fear that’s going to be a long 13 miles. 😦

As I was thinking about my running accomplishments for 2013, it really struck me that I ran 867 miles this year.

867 MILES!!

For a novice runner in her first full year of running, that’s not too bad.  Then I thought to myself… it would be really cool to see WHERE I could have run to… something like a Forrest Gump moment…. just taking off and running until I was done.  But instead of 3+ years, it would be 867 miles for me.  I played around on for a while finding where I could go.

Going north, I would be somewhere between Montreal and Quebec, Cannada.  Now, I have never been to Canada and would probably enjoy the visit, but NORTH?  No thanks… I’ve had enough of cold, snowy weather here.

palmbaySo I thought I’d head out west and ended up near Joplin, Missouri.  I guess that would be ok, but that’s not much excitement or relaxation.

But then, I started looking south…. aahhhhh, Florida!!  Sunshine, palm trees, ocean breeze, warm temperatures…. that’s where I wanted to go.  What an awesome run that would be.  And when I got there, I could run on the beach early in the morning to watch the sunrise and maybe catch a glimpse of dolphins jumping out of the water near the shore.  So, I ended up near a little town on the eastern side of the state along the ocean called Palm Bay.  From the pictures I saw of the area, it definitely looked like the perfect destination.  Well worth running 867 miles, for sure.

Here’s a map of what my annual mileage looks like.  It sure makes it look a lot more extraordinary than just looking at numbers.  It was fun to find where I would finally end up, just to abruptly stop and tell my zombified followers… “It’s time for me to go home now.”

palmbaymapWhere did your 2013 miles take you?  I encourage you to map it out.  I used actual road routes, so I would have went even further had I used the way-the-crow-flys method of measurement.  You may be even more amazed (and proud) at your accomplishment.  If you do map it out, let me know how far you went and where you ended up.  I’ll help share your post with my virtual running friends on Facebook and Twitter.

Enjoy the run!! 😀 kc


I’m Streaking in 2014… A Lot!!

Ok… so what’s so wrong with streaking anyway.  Admit it, we’ve all done at sometime during our lives.  Granted for most of us it was when we were toddlers as our mom was towelling us off after a bath and we happened to slip away to run through the house with her chasing after us.  But then there is the occasional exposed streaker on the NFL or MLB field that is tackled and led away by security.  I can’t help but think of the Allstate Mayhem streaker commercial.  Classic!!  😀

mayhem streaker

But the streaking I’m talking about isn’t like Mayhem.  I’m not quite that brazen.  What I’m talking about is doing something every day, non-stop for an extended period of time.  I’ve already posted my running goals for 2014, which includes a running streak, but I thought it would be fun to quickly mention some of my other non-running streaking plans for the year as well.  So here’s my I’m-going-to-do-it-everyday-in-2014-or-else streaking list….

  • Run…. minimum of 1 mile per day (it was worth mentioning again)
  • Make my bed
  • Read my Bible
  • NOT sneak a cigarette
  • Eat healthy…. 1 cheat meal per month allowed
  • Drink water… at least 24 ounces
  • Say “Thank You” to someone at work
  • Tell at least one family member that I love them
  • Pet my dog
  • No matter how hard it is, smile at myself in the mirror and say “You got this!!”

So there you go…. that’s how I streak.  How about you?? (No Mayhem wannabe’s, please!)


Consistancy is #1 in 2014

I posted My 2013 in Review recently, and have been reading it over and over to assess my progress over the past year. It’s always hard to make such an assessment when you don’t have year-over-year results to compare. Since this was my first full year of running and don’t have 2012 to use as a benchmark, I have to break the year in chucks and compare it that way.

Fortunately, I used Runtastic, a mobile app on my iPhone to track all of my running throughout the year.  I can review and assess the past 12 months, read notes I left to myself after training runs and races,  see how much speed work I did and how many long runs I ran.  I’ll note if my runs were on the road or on a trail, what the temps and weather was like, and how I felt after the run.  There’s an immense amount of invaluable information I’ve saved in that little app.  I highly recommend using a run diary whether it be one on your phone, a GPS watch or hand written.  You’ll thank yourself one day.

2014 goals

Now I’m ready to set my goals for 2014…. to get serious and down to work about where I want to be this time next year, then… I can make a plan that will get me there.  I take goal setting very serious, because if I don’t give myself a direction in which to go, I’ll fail.  I’m a goal-setting-to-be-successful type of person… at work as well as at play.  So here I go…

  • Number One: BE CONSISTENT!!  After reviewing last year… month over month… the lack of consistency has been my biggest downfall.  My mileage bounced around too much, and I would take as long as a whole week off for no reason.  The most damaging inconsistency was in my speed work… hence, the slow increase in speed.  Typically, I make my goals measurable, but this one is more general.  Additionally, I look at it in three areas:
    • Training Consistency:  I’ll set training plans and goals, and not deviate from them (unless, of course I’m injured).  No skipping long runs!!
    • Actual Running Consistency: Even during races and runs, I need to be more consistent and walk less.
    • Nutritional Regime Consistency: Be more careful with my diet.  Cut back the one cheat meal a week to one a month.  Although this may sound crazy to some, I need to increase my daily caloric intake from 1,200 to 1,500.  I’ll need to research this one some more to set a good plan in place.goodfood
  • Speaking of speed work… this needs to definitely improve.
    • Once a week, I need to either hit the treadmill or the track near work to do intervals or tempo runs.  This has to be 4-7 miles.
    • Twice a month (minimal), do hill repeats.  And do them for real!!
    • Incorporate at least a couple of strides in every easy run (except long runs).

And now for some more measurable goals:

  • Finish the P90X3 program by March 31
  • Incorporate P90X3 workouts 2-3 times per week into training program for remainder of the year
  • Complete a one-year run streak starting January 1st (at least 1 mile every day)
  • Run 1,000 miles in 12 months
  • Get weight down to 130 and maintain it there
  • Get body fat percentage into the fitness range… 21% – 24%
  • Run a sub-25 minute 5k
  • Run a sub-2 hour half marathon
  • Run my first 25K
  • Become a Half Fanatic this year!!

Now… the last thing I need to do is print this up and stick it to my refrigerator so I see it every day!!  If it’s printed, then it’s for real… right??

These may be some lofty goals, but I feel they are completely attainable.  It’s going to be a lot of hard work, but I have a good support system from family and friends.  If I follow thru with these plans and goals, I’ll be in the best shape of my life by the start of 2015.  Then I can start thinking about a full marathon.  😀

What are your goals for 2014?  If you’ve blogged about it, leave me a link below so I can stop by to read about your plans for this upcoming year.  We can cheer each other on!!

My 2013 In Review

Before I set any goals for 2014, I felt I needed to look at how I did in 2013… what I did right… what I did wrong… where  I’ve come from so I know where I need to go from here. Below are some of the milestones I’ve met over the past 12 months…

2013 medals

  • First consecutive 12 months of running in my life (2013 goal accomplished!!)
  • I will have run over 860 miles by December 31 (I still have 3 days left to run) (2013 goal of 500 miles…. SMASHED!!)
  • I will have my first ever 100-mile month in December
  • I ran 16 5k’s during the year (2013 goal of 10 5Ks accomplished!!)
  • Ran a sub-30 minute 5k (2013 goal accomplished!!)
  • My fastest 5k pace was 8:54 min/mile (I only did that once)
  • I ran 3 10k’s during the year
  • I ran a sub-60 minute 10k (2013 goal accomplished!!)
  • I ran 2 half marathons
  • The first half was my first half ever (2013 goal accomplished!!), and my first trail race since high school
  • I set a much better time on the second half at 02:19:18 since it wasn’t a trail race.

Some things I have learned over the past year from racing and training is as follows…

  • Trail racing is very, very, VERY hard!!  Never ever underestimate the trail!! :/
  • Don’t try to carb load with a heavy pasta dinner the night before the race…. start two days prior and end with LUNCH the day before!
  • Dress for temps 20 degrees warmer than what it really is, and in layers in case I get overheated
  • Drink lots of water every single day to be properly hydrated
  • Remember to eat and hydrate properly for trainings runs, especially long runs…. not just races
  • Although I have a good base now, I need to increase leg and core strength and do more speedwork to improve speed
  • LISTEN TO MY BODY!!  If I’m in pain, get it checked!!
  • Just because I burned 1,000 calories doesn’t mean I can eat 1,200 calories of junk food!!  Seriously!!
  • Don’t skip the long run!
  • Don’t skip breakfast!

And finally, when I look at what I’ve done right and what I’ve done wrong… here’s a look at where I started a year ago to where I am now… 12 months later….

  • January 2013 I ran a total of 53.92 miles…. December 2013 I may double that as I currently sit at 93.39 miles and 3 days left to run… yea, I’ll double that!!
  • In January 2013 my longest run was 8 miles at a 12:00 min/mile pace…. I ran 10.5 miles today at a 10:30 min/mile pace
  • The longest distance I ran this year was 14 miles in November
  • Today I ran up hills with no problem that I couldn’t run up in January 2013
  • My first 5k of 2013 (March) took me 35:06 at a pace of 11:19 min/mile…. I ran my fastest 5k in September at an 8:52 min/mile pace…. I ran several 5k’s later in the year between 9:00-9:30 min/mile pace
  • I ran not just one, but TWO half marathons… the longest race I’ve ever run
  • January 2013 I weighed 130 pounds…. today I weighed in at 135 pounds.  I’m confident the increase is muscle.  🙂
  • I’ve lost over 3 inches around the waist, but feel I can still tone up more with some concentrated core exercising

runjunkeeProbably one of the coolest things about my running adventures this year is how I’ve made literally hundreds of new running friends both in real life as well as virtually.  I started out running alone, but then moved up to having my racing buddy, Wanda join me for most of my races and even my husband for a few.  Now, I’m part of a group of ladies who support and cheer each other on as we train and go to races together.  Additionally, I’ve met friends that I keep running into at different races on the circuit (no pun intended).  Then there are the virtual running friends I’ve met…. I started a Facebook running club called Central West Virginia Road Runners Club where I’m keeping in contact with folks in my area.  I’m also a part of an awesome Facebook group called Run JunkEes Run Club.  On Twitter, I virtually hang out at #RunChat and participate in a virtual group discussion every Sunday night.  It’s a great way to get and receive motivation and inspiration.

I would love to hear how you did in 2013.  Leave a comment below telling me about it, or better yet… I encourage you to write a post on your blog about it.  Let me know, and I’ll definitely stop by to read about your accomplishments and share it with my virtual friends.

How You Doin’?

I’m doing fine… glad you stopped by for a visit.  I just thought it would be nice just to chat a little bit if you have the time.  I haven’t posted for several days as the craziness of the holiday season has kept me quit busy.  I have a few minutes of downtime at work before I go to the company Christmas dinner…. so I thought I’d jot a few things down to let you know about some posts coming soon and what I’m thinking of writing about.  I’ll be quick as I know you’re just as busy as I am.

Everyone is starting to post their 2014 goals.  I have some ideas of what I want to do, but haven’t really taken the time to start putting my goals down on paper.  You know how it is…. once it’s down on paper…. it becomes real.  So I want to be sure my goals are ones that will best benefit me, that I want to accomplish and can accomplish.  I’m tossing ideas around in my head, taking into account what other bloggers are saying and making some plans.  I’ll be posting about that soon.  I’d really like to read your 2014 goals…. so if you don’t mind, please leave me a comment with a link to your blog post.  Others might be interested in checking out your goals as well.

But before I set my goals for next year, I think it’s wise to review the past year first.  I want to revisit everything I accomplished as well as everything I failed, where I went wrong and what I did right, how I did improve and where I can continue to improve.  Since I just started running in late 2012, I don’t remember setting any goals.  Since I was a beginner, I really didn’t know where I was in regards to running and where I was going…. or if I even wanted to go anywhere.  I hadn’t decided yet if running was just a temporary fixation I had, or if it would become a true change in lifestyle.  Since then I do believe it’s become part of my lifestyle.  I’ll find what 2013 goals I can find (if there’s any) and assess how I did on them.  That will help me look toward 2014 and setting next years’ goals.

Finally, I have my third half marathon coming up in about 18 days, so I may post some on training, tapering, running in the snow, streaking, doing intervals on the treadmill, P90X3 or just some general Christmas posts.  All my kids are coming home for the holidays this year, so it will be exciting and I will want to tell you all about that.  I’m sure I’ll get some running-related Christmas gifts that I’ll have to talk about, too.   And who knows what else may pop into my head and end up here.  😀

So until next time….. run happy!!

December Goals….With a Little Help

So… I didn’t quite make all of my goals for November.  Please allow me a few minutes to revisit and appraise those goals.

  • A monthly mileage goal of 80 miles… Unfortunately I got in 68 miles, but pre-race tapering and post-race recovery for a half marathon took easily took away the 12 miles I needed to complete this goal. 😦
  • Do Jillian Michaels’ “Ripped in 30″ DVD at least 4 days a week…  I worked out with Jillian for 2 weeks, but then… half marathon.
  • Run a half marathon on November 24th in under 02:20:00…. I was successful here, and actually just now realized I was under the time I set.  I ran the half in 02:19:18!!
  • Maintain weight at 130-135 MAX!!  I weighed in at 137 yesterday.  Considering it was Thanksgiving last week, well….. I’ll take it.
  • Run at least three early morning, pre-work runs per week… Just couldn’t get my schedule set for this.  Will try it again later.

So all in all, I didn’t do too bad.  There’s still room for improvement.  Sometimes just learning how to set goals is a lesson in itself.  I’m learning more about me, my running, how to fit it into my schedule, when too much is too much and visa versa, and et cetera.  So goal setting is a lot like running, you just have to keep working on it, tweaking it and refining it, until someday, you’ve mastered it.  And with that being said… on with December’s goals.  😀

My goals are going to be a little different this month.  I’m getting a little motivation from a couple of sources.  One is my all-time favorite magazine, Runner’s World, and a little fun challenge from a Twitter group I’m apart of… #runchat.

  • This month I WILL HIT 100 MILES!! Do or die… 100!!!!
  • I will complete the Runner’s World Run Streak and run at least 1 mile every day from Thanksgiving Day to New Years Day.
  • I will complete 15 minutes of Nike Ab Core workouts every day during December.
  • I will run my last 5k of 2013 and complete it in under 28 minutes (a new 5k PR).
  • Return to and maintain weight at 130-135.  No excuses this month!!  Self discipline!!!
  • I will have fun by successfully completing the #RunChatHunt… a pictorial holiday-themed scavenger hunt. (See pic below.)

So what is one of your goals for December?  Are you streaking?  Run hunting?  Are you going to hit that last PR of the year? Above all, I hope you have fun this month!  Run happy!!  😀

2014 Half Marathon Wish List (EDITED February 2014)

I put this post together several days ago, but hid it away in my draft file thinking it was way too soon to talk about the large races I hoped to participate in next year.   Then I read a blog post of a fellow blogger, Running Wild that talked about his 2014 Race Season Planning.  So, I decided it wasn’t too early after all.  I put some finishing touches to this post and decided to publish it tonight.  Granted it will probably change throughout the year, but at least I have an idea of what I want to do.

Below are the Half Marathons (or longer races) I’m looking at for 2014.  I’m already registered for the first two, and I won’t get to do all of the others, but these are the one’s I want to run in the most… kinda like a wish list.  Who knows, maybe a friend or family member will ready this and pay for my registration for one of these races as a Christmas gift.  Nice idea!!  😀

If I do get to complete them,  I should meet the criteria to become a member of the Half Fanatic club also.  What an awesome extra bonus.  That would be so cool!!

What do you plan on running next year??


January 5, 2014
9th Annual Run to Read Half Marathon

Fairmont, WV



March 22, 2014

Haulin’ in the Holler 25K

Eleanor, WV




April 19, 2014

Gristmill Grinder Half Marathon Trail Run

Babcock State Park, Eleanor, WV




April 27, 2014
Run Like a Diva Half Marathon

North Myrtle Beach, SC



June 7, 2014

Deckers Creek Trail Half Marathon

Morgantown, WV




August 16, 2014
News and Sentinel Half Marathon

Parkersburg, WV






August 30, 2014

42nd Annual Charleston Distance Run (15 miler)

Charleston, WV



*** OR ***



R&R VA Beach

August 31, 2014
Rock & Roll Half Marathon

Virginia Beach, VA





beckley HM

October 5, 2014

Beckley Half Marathon

Beckley, WV






October 17-19, 2014 (?)
Runner’s World Half & Festival

Bethlehem, PA






November 9, 2014 (?)
Marshall University Half Marathon

Huntington, WV






November 23, 2014 (?)
Miles of Smiles Half Marathon

Monongah, WV

November Running Goals

After reviewing my goals from October, I felt a little disappointed in myself.  My mileage goals wasn’t anywhere near what I wanted to complete, I’ve lost control of my weight maintenance and gained a few pounds, and I haven’t been working on my core strength and it’s showing in my running.  I can’t agree more that running needs to be fun, and I’m trying to keep that in mind.  But at the same time, I want to improve.  I’m too competitive for my own good, but fortunately I’m mostly competitive with myself.  I want to constantly improve, and failure is not an option.  So… here I go again with new goals for this month with the hopes I can do better.  I’m going to adjust them to be more attainable and realistic, but keeping them challenging.  I have been known to set my expectations for myself too high which just sets me up for failure, so I’m going to dial things back just a little.

For the month of November, my goals are as follows:

  1. I’m dropping down to a monthly mileage goal of 80 miles… that’s 20 less than October’s goal, but a little more than what I actually ran last month.
  2. Do Jillian Michaels’ “Ripped in 30” DVD at least 4 days a week (5-6 will be better, but 4 will be acceptable) P90X will have to wait for off-season training.
  3. Run a half marathon on November 24th in under 02:20:00.
  4. Maintain weight at 130-135 MAX!!  Remember…. half marathon!!!
  5. Run at least three early morning, pre-work runs per week.
Those are doable goals…. yep, totally doable!! 


I can… no… I WILL hit all five goals!! 


WILL be successful!!!


WILL kick this half marathon in the @$$!!! 

I am woman…

hear me ROAR!!!lion-cub-standing-on-rock_27535_600x450


***SIGH***  Ok, I’m settled down now.  Just had to get that out of my system.


I set a new PR and ran my very first sub-1 hour 10k during a race this morning, and I still a little excited.  (I’ll post the race review soon.)  I didn’t run quite as well as I wanted, but was satisfied with the end result.  The biggest deal of this race is that it was an eye-opener for me regarding some areas I really need to work on over the next three weeks as I prepare for my half.  Test races like that are good, especially when you’re a novice runner like me.  It helped me put together the goals for this month, given me a lot of motivation to start the month out and added 6.2 miles to my goal on just the second day… 93.8 miles to go!!  😀

What’s your goals for this month?  Going for 100 miles?  New PR?  First half or full marathon?


Review of October Running Goals

October 2013 is quickly coming to a close with only four hours left in the day.  Since it’s close enough to being over, and I have the extra time, I thought I’d review how I did on the goals I had set for myself this month.  They were …

  • Run over 100 total miles in the month (I ran 70 in September, but only ran 13 days… I can do better than that!) I bombed this… I did run 16 days, but only got in 76.3 miles.  I’m disappointed in myself, but missed getting in a 12-mile long run and an entire week of regular runs due to activities going on.  I just didn’t have the time.
  • Complete P90X training at least 4 days per week I tried doing the P90X, but not much luck on this either.  An additional hour for this program just wasn’t happening this month.  I’m thinking about waiting until after my half marathon on January 5 to start it since the weather then will probably keep me from enjoying my runs outside.
  • Run one 5k race at sub-30 minutes  I got this one!! Yea!!!  I ran a 5k last Saturday at a pace of 9:09 m/m for a total of 28:24.  I placed second in my division!!
  • Continue to maintain weight at healthy 130-135 pounds  I have totally failed this one and have started back to using MyFitnessPal.
  • Restrict myself to no more than 3 cups of coffee per day by October 15th  I did this one!!  Once in a while I’ll sneak a 4th cup, but I’ve done really good with stopping at 3 cups on most days.  Additionally, I switch over to water and am increasing my water intake.  That’s good!
  • Have fun!! Take at least 6 pictures of the colorful leaves during training runs this month and write a blog post about them (My favorite goal!)  I nailed this one too.  And had loads of fun looking for good pics during my runs.  Here they are…


This is a local farm I run by a lot.  They had just finished cutting hay a few days prior to this pic.  You could still smell it.


I’m pointing to a couple of Black Walnuts I found along a route I was running one day.

Those things are everywhere this time of year, and really hurt when they land on top of your head.  🙂


This is some pretty flowers along the creek in my front yard.  This was taken at the start of a run one evening.


I took this at end of another run that I ran at night this month.

You can’t see any leaves, but the October full moon was gorgeous!!


I spooked up these two deer, but they stopped and watched me long enough to get a pic.

I see deer on nearly every run I take here.


I couldn’t help but take a pic of this beautiful October sunset over these WV hills.  Breathtaking!!

Did you take my challenge and snap some pictures along your running routes this month?  I hope so.  Let me know in the comments below, and I’ll check them out and share your blog on Twitter and Facebook.  I’ll be posting my November goals and challenge in the next couple of days, so be watching.


You Know You’re a Runner When….

I haven’t made a post in quite a while… I have run a couple of races that I need to review on here; had some good ideas for posts, but not had time; and, finishing up my October goals today, so will need to post about that real soon.  My goals are what brought me to this title, and this short little post today.

I’m not feeling well today.  Headache, dizziness, nauseous, tired.  I’m not sure if it’s this crazy weather, female hormones, or stress, but honestly suspect it’s a combination of all three.  Add on the fact that I haven’t had the time to get all my running in, I think my body is just throwing a temper tantrum.  So I took the day off from work, laid in bed until 11:30am and am just chilling out on the lap top.  That’s when I looked at my Runtastic account….

My goal for October was to put in 100 miles.  As of today, I’ve run 76.3 miles… way, WAY short of my goal.  I looked over the training days and realized I missed one week due to events going on and literally not having a single evening free to get in even a short three-mile run.  Then I missed a long run that would have been 12-13 miles.   So, I’m a little bummed, but looking at 76.3 miles, I just can’t finish the month on that note.  I have to make it an even 80 miles…. but…. I’m freaking sick!!  On the last day of the month, my last chance to get in that 3.7 miles…. and here I am sick!!


So, what am I thinking to myself?  I hope I get rid of this headache soon so I can get an evening run today.  Or at least, I hope I can get this run in without puking all the way.

I do believe I have become a full-fledged runner.

You know you’re a runner when you’ll take a sick day from work for a headache, but will still get your run in (even if it means puking along the way).
Or, you know you’re a runner when you’re sick and hope you’ll start feeling better just so you can run… not go back to work or anything else, just run!
Or, you know you’re a runner when you’ll run on the last day of the month… regardless of how you feel… to hit your goal mileage, etc.

I know there’s a million more of those “You know you’re a runner when” axioms out there.  What are some other good ones you’ve heard or created yourself?  I’d love to hear more, especially ones regarding being sick and running.