Save Gas…”Run” (or Walk) your Errands!

As a runner, I often hear friends tell me they’re not “into” running. It’s boring, it hurts, it’s hard and it takes too much time. Well, here I am refuting all of those issues.

1) It’s boring. Plug in your headphones! I really love dance/electronic music – especially for running. I listen to free podcasts that I download from the iTunes store (I’m sure there are similar things available via Android, etc.). My 3 favorites are: Podrunner, Cadence Revolution and Motion Traxx. All free – all fun. Electronica not your thing? There are free podcasts on all kinds of topics…music, politics, NPR, SEX (hubba bubba!). There is definitely something out there to keep your boredom at bay for a few minutes. I love the music because my body gets in sync with the rhythm and my mind can check out.

2/3) It’s hurt/It’s hard. Uh, what ISN’T? There isn’t much worth doing that isn’t “hard” – is there? Running hurts for newbies because your body isn’t used to it. Start slow. Run to the end of your block and walk back. Run to the mailbox and walk back. My sister is on a running team that does versions of 2-1, 2-2, 3-1, etc. That means that they run for 2 minutes and walk for 1, then repeat. As you get more comfortable with running, expand the running interval. This is a great workout, it’s great for your body and you won’t believe how quickly the miles can tick off. That goes for the HARD part too. It’s hard, but so is life, so why not breathe some fresh air while you experience it?

4) It’s takes too much time. Yeah, this is a tough one. I’m a morning person, but NOT an early morning person so I’ve always hated it when people suggest getting up early as the answer to fitting a workout into a busy schedule. This works for lots of folks, but not me. What I like to do is “run” my errands. My children both go to preschool 1.5 miles from our home. A few days a week, I put them and their backpacks in the double jogger stroller and I run them down to school (I often leave the stroller there and get it after school so I can continue my run unencumbered). Sometimes I only drop off one child so I use the second seat for my groceries. Sometimes I throw our dry cleaning in the lower shopping basket. This allows me to kill multiple birds with one outing…one run. Not a parent? Don’t have a jogger stroller? You’re not off the hook! Strap on your backpack with the waist belt (it’s there for a reason – to keep your backpack from bouncing while you RUN!). Backpack too heavy after you pick up a carton of milk…no worries – just WALK home. Walking is awesome for your body (maybe better than running – I’m not an expert!) and it’s very low impact. Walking doesn’t require any special equipment and everyone knows how to do it, right?

Fair weather or cloudy, you can get out and move yourself.

Do you integrate exercise into your daily routine?

Happiest Lady Ever!

I’m truly the happiest lady ever. My life is freaking awesome thanks to my amazing husband, gorgeous children and wonderful community. But, Sunday was a dream come true (I know I’ve already covered that topic but this was another one!). Tina and I hoped to register 25-50 people for Fun Fabulous Fierce’s inaugural wellness challenge in Walnut Creek. When we hit 60, we were near tears. On Sunday, our final registered number was 79. It’s still climbing. Isn’t that AMAZING?!?

We could hardly believe it! Your enthusiasm for what we’re doing matches ours…that is so fulfilling. 

All we want to do is create a tribe of women who support one another. Working out, listening to speakers and winning prizes just makes it all even more fun (and makes the reason for leaving hubs with the kiddos more legit). The MOST important part, for us, is seeing the connections you’re building. She and I are so fortunate to have found each other – at JUST the right moment in our lives. We hope our FFF Lady Crew is doing the same thing right now. You seem to be and we’re ELATED. 

Now let’s get LOUD! Share your thoughts with us on our facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/funfabulousfierce or leave us a comment below. We want to hear from you! Whether you’re registered and joining us weekly or following us from Timbuktu, we want to hear about how connecting with YOUR lady-crew is making your life fuller, richer and more awesome. SHOUT IT!

My Dream Came True

This morning, something happened that I’ve always dreamed about.

I ran (for exercise) for the first time at about age 16. My Dad had always been a “jogger” and was always bugging me to go out running with him. I avoided it at all costs. He finally broke me down and I laced on some sneakers and shorts. It was in the early evening of a warm, late spring day. We stretched a little on the front porch and then I begrudgingly got started. We went to the end of our short block, turned right, passed 2 more streets and then I declared I’d had enough. My Dad said, “Are you sure? We’ve only been running for 3 minutes.” Ugh.

While that was the first time I went out with him, it was not the last. I didn’t really enjoy running then, but as a teenage girl who would do anything to avoid spending time with her parents, I still really enjoyed being with him out there on the road. Exercising with my Dad seemed somehow removed from the “total lack of coolness” of being around him under other circumstances. My Dad would use the time to tell me about his day, his aspirations and about how much he loved to run. I would listen, complain and wonder how much longer I’d have to be out there. I also got a chance to talk to him about how I was doing. Running allowed me to break down the barriers my teenaged attitude was building around our relationship.

My Dad died about 3 years later. Now I have many wonderful things left to remind me of what a lucky person I am to have had such an incredible man in my life for as long as I did. But I think perhaps the thing that’s encouraged my survival the most is the running.

He loved being with me. In fact, he loved being together with all of our family. He was a great Dad. He was an amazing husband to my mother and she was lucky enough to have also been dragged kicking and complaining into running with him. Of course, I couldn’t have known it at that time, but running with him was such a special way for me to share myself with him. Somewhere during that time, the seed was planted in me for a lifelong love of running.

Fast forward many years and I still miss my Dad more than I could explain. I’ve since experienced more loss, in the form of a divorce, and once again, running helped me find my way back to myself. Running (and triathlons) also helped bring my love into my life and we now have a beautiful family.

As I often see families out running together, I’ve always wished my family could do it too. I’ve savored that image of mom running alongside dad pushing the kiddo(s) in the jogger stroller.

Injuries, schedules and excuses had always seemed to prevent it from happening. But this year, that changed.

I started training in January for my first half marathon in a long while. A consummate competitor and lover of all things “race,” my 5 year old son’s curiosity was peaked hearing me talk about my race preparations. And that, my dear friends, has changed everything!

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So this morning, I got to see one of my dreams realized. My husband pushed our toddler in the stroller as we ran a family fun-run. (In all honesty, they did the 5k and I did 2 laps on the same course for a 10k but I’m in training so you’re not going to hold me to the strictest details, right?!?) I fulfilled a personal best by finishing my 6.2 miles in 1:00:39. But my son was the star of the family. He came in second in the 5k for little boys (aged 5?)! The child ran 3.1 miles with his father and sister, 2 more blocks in the kids’ run and then got to stand on the podium while a crowd cheered for him. So cool, right?

I’m sorry everyday that my Dad isn’t around to see me and the amazing life I’m so proud to lead. But today has been a banner day for me in so many ways and I’ll take those however they come.

I’ll always miss him but I know he’d be overjoyed to see me fulfill these dreams – especially since they involve running with my family. I only hope to inspire my children as much as he inspired me!

Who inspires you to be your awesomest you?

Intentionally Busy

I haven’t written a blog post in a bit because I haven’t really had much to say or I haven’t given myself enough free space to think about it. But it hit me today…I miss writing and reaching out to all of you.

Things have been usually busy lately. That’s right, I said, “usually busy” because “unusually busy” doesn’t exist in my life. I’m exactly as busy as I want/need/strive to be. I intentionally keep my life running at a super high intensity because I love it that way. I know I love the drama, but I also can’t stand to be bored. My kids have the usual kiddo style activities and that keeps us all busy but I also keep myself busy – intentionally.

While it’s given me even more to do, working on Fun-Fabulous-Fierce has been such a fun experience for me so far. Reaching out to sponsors, inviting women I meet to attend and promoting the event EVERYWHERE I go gives me an awesome reason to connect with the people around me and I love feeling connected to our awesome community.

Today was my 5 year old son’s first soccer game (of his whole life). His little team played pretty well, kind of fumbling around the field and knocking the ball out. It was so cute I couldn’t stop smiling. I beamed with pride sitting on my picnic blanket watching my little boy. I started chatting with a mom who’s little boy is also on our team and almost forgot to mention the challenge to her. Then I remembered! Whew! I told her about it and we’ll hopefully see her with us starting in a few weeks.

The point is that I need Fun-Fabulous-Fierce as much as I believe we all do. In my opinion and personal experience, connecting with other women is central to women finding presence and connecting with themselves.

Check back next week – we’ll soon have an event calendar prepared. You’ll get to see some of the fruits of our work on this event. I know you’ll LOVE it. Either way, we’ll all get to know each other and that is the prize about which I’m most excited.

How busy are you?