Friday, February 27, 2009

Hot Mess

I was reminded tonight that I do indeed have curly hair. I was told that I hadn't worn my hair curly in over 2 months and I guess that's true since I got my bangs cut before Christmas and haven't worn in curly since. Right when I got home I showered and let my hair dry curly. It feels so good and free! WHEW..its way easier to just be how the Lord made me. Even though my husband said my hair looks like a, "hot mess" at least the word "hot" was involved ;) 
I guess this look suits the piles of paper STILL atop my table and the loads and loads of laundry that I must do tomorrow (after that last pedicure I have been planning since before I started and completed that marathon). 
Hot Mess...YEP! I'm gonna go ahead and own that! 

Good night!!!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

What Makes Me Tick

I have been a little unmotivated to do much of anything ever since completing the Austin Marathon. In fact my new goal to fit into a pair of jeans that I wore the day before I got married cannot even be focused on. I was warned about this. I have papers piled up on my table that need to be filed, loads and loads of laundry that must be completed, a floor that needs to be vacuumed, a whole list of people to call back, and bills to get in the mail. Besides all of the stuff that I MUST accomplish there are many other things that I would so love to do. So...I thought I would make a list of the things that I WANT to do. The stuff that makes me tick!

1. a pedicure (I can't seem to allow myself to get one of these now that we started Dave Ramsey classes up again)
2. sitting in the sun reading
3. writing out cards to friends 
4. blogging :)
5. making the right food choices for one whole day
6. snuggling close to my husband for hours with nothing to do
7. catch up on Grey's Anatomy (shhh don't tell me)
8. watch American Idol every night that its on
9. pay off my car THIS month!!
10. Have coffee with Jenny H
11. Have coffee with Nocona
12. Eat chips and queso at Adobe in Gruene with Christina and Stephanie and then take a walk to the river and sit and chat with our feet in the COLD water!
13. Have a pancake supper with Kyle, Dani, Whitney, Joel, and Casey and talk to very late! 

Okay im done for now. Im off to NB for meetings today and looking forward to seeing how this month turns out. I'll do that laundry later!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Under the Weather

Now I understand why "they" recommend taking a month off from running after running a marathon. I am so sick with a cold and can't seem to get my body hydrated or refueled. I still can't believe that I finished that marathon. It all seems like a blur. I am looking forward to accomplishing my next goal...but I don't know what it is yet! Thanks for all of your encouragement! It was well worth it!!!

Monday, February 16, 2009


My cousin Julie completed her marathon in Dallas on December 14th of 2008. She blogged about her race and I was inspired at that point to continue training for the marathon. The whole training process has been a big mental game. I'm excited to tell you about yesterdays Austin Marathon!!!

My Marathon. I was nervous on Wednesday prior to the race. I had butterflies and was wishing that the race would be the next day. On Friday I read a blog by Nocona that set me at peace until race time. She wrote about God knowing the end of the story. I knew at that moment that He knew I would finish. I slept very well that night. Saturday was Valentine's day and I literally layed around the house. I was very nervous about not being hydrated enough so I downed about 90 ounces of water and Blue Powerade during the day. I took two hot baths to relax myself. I took one at 4:45 because my stomach was in knots and the other at around 9 so I could go to sleep. I was asleep by 11 (AMAZING) and up one minute before the alarm went off at 4:15AM!!

It's RACE DAY!!! I am energized and excited not groggy and dreadful like I thought I might be. I have a Luna Morning bar, another blue Powerade (its my favorite kind) and a cup of coffee (I know but I must start my mornings with a cup or two of coffee). I get dressed and Kyle and I are out the door by 5:20. We make it down town and find a very convenient parking spot on 5th and Colorado and we walk to the Austin Fit tent to meet Sara (my running partner).  We stood around and stretched and there was this buzz of excitement in the air as the runners chatted about their game plan and what they hoped their time would be. I made 2 trips to the porta potties before lining up at the start. Sara and I decide that we will stop to walk at the water stops only. (SIDE NOTE: The water stops were about ever 1.2 miles and that is when we walked throughout. I didn't write about every water stop. Just the important ones at the end).

The start: They didn't start the race until almost 7:20 and that made me nervous! Thousands of runners are standing around me. It takes nearly 10 minutes for Sara and I to make it from where we lined up to the start line. Kyle was within seeing distance on that walk to the start and that kept my mind at peace. The first few miles seemed to breeze right by but our time was a little slow. We averaged 12 minute miles for the first 4 or 5. Neither of us wanted to start out fast and regret it later in the race. At the 5 mile mark we take a GU (an energy shot without caffeine that is 100 calories a little packet). That seems to help me and I am ready to run. Miles 5-10 went by quickly because there were all different bands lining the streets of Austin and so many things to look at. At around Mile 11 we see a lighted sign saying that the half marathoners turn right and the full marathoners turn left. I was really wishing I had a camera with me at that time to capture the excitement of turning to the "FULL MARATHON" side. It really energized me. Sara tells me to go ahead if I want. Her Achilles is really bothering her and I was ready to run. I asked her if she was sure and she said yes. 

The Middle: I turned up my ipod and ran. I really started feeling like I was in the "zone" At mile 13 I see: Kyle, Dani, Joel, and Whitney and I stop to get a GU from Dani and steal a kiss from Kyle. Kyle even ran for me for a few yards to tell me how much he loves and believes in me. Miles 13-20 were SO boring and very hilly. There were no bands but there were a whole bunch of people sitting in lawn chairs in their front yards. At mile 19 I see Jenny, Stevie, and Carl and am energized anew! I didn't stop to say hello. I was really in a good running zone and trying to make up for the slow start I had had. I get very excited at mile 20 because I get there at 4 hours and 7 minutes and the last time I ran 20 miles it took me 4 hours and 27 minutes. VERY good improvement for me. This time I take a GU with caffeine and "I was running"! I only have 6 miles to go but 20 miles is as far as I have even run before. This is new territory. At mile 21 I see Kyle, Dani, Joel, and Whitney again. That really helped me to the end!

The End: I can see the Frost Bank Building in the distance and I know that downtown is getting close. By this point it is about 70 degrees and beautiful but also the warmest weather I have run in in a LONG time. I am sweaty and know that hydration is the key to me finishing this race strong. I not only grab water at the next water stop but a Powerade too. SO GOOD! At mile 24 I see Christina and Michael and it was just in time for a big hill! I was about to walk up the hill because my feet are hurting really bad but Christina said, "come on lets go!" and she ran up that hill with me in her jeans and not running shoes. I am so glad she did that because mile 25 was all down hill and well worth the run up hill. I shook my arms out and felt my shoulders relax. I had so much joy inside that I had to make myself calm down and breathe. I was ALMOST a marathoner. At mile 25.5 I stop at the last water stop hydrate and breathe. Here I go! Up a hill to mile 26 and now I know there is only .2 left in my race! I start sprinting. I run harder and faster than I have run since high school and as I get closer to the finish I can hear my dads voice. Just like all those years in high school running track. I start to tear up and have goosebumps. I see Carl and a few others running with me to the finish line and there I stood, overjoyed, exhausted, free. They even placed a medal around my neck and gave me a finishers shirt. 

And to my faithful fans, who made race day even more of an adventure. Kyle for sticking with me and supporting me at all 6 of the races in the Austin Distance Challenge since October (YEP I GET THAT JACKET!!!) He is the most amazing husband in the whole world and I love Him with all of my heart. When I would see him at different mile markers I felt stronger just because he believes in me. To my dad and Diane thanks for being there. To Christina and Michael for driving in from Stephenville to cheer me on. To Jenny H for making sure I completed all of the races in the Austin Distance Challenge. She never would have let me quit. For Stevie, Carl, and Molly! Thanks for your support. To Dani and Joel for being there and for giving me the first charm for my bucket bracelet (the shoe for completing the marathon) and to Whitney for yelling loud and taking beautiful pictures. Im gonna have a photo book made!!!

What a day. February 15, 2009... I  Won't forget the day I could finally call myself a marathoner.

Friday, February 13, 2009

More than a Marathon

I started out on this journey to the marathon not knowing that that was the goal. I started running again in May of 2007 and after being spoiled with the slow moving streets of New Braunfels it took me a while to find a place I was comfortable running in Austin. I started my running program from running a minute walking a minute 7 times. I followed this slow moving training program for 10 weeks with the final task being completing a 20 minute run. I remember finding that difficult. The next 10 weeks built up to running for 30 minutes. The weeks following that I was comfortable running for 30 minutes 3 times a week and then I would add in a longer 45 minute run. Then something WAY beyond myself started happening. I realized I couldn't wait for these "alone" moments and found myself praying through things that had needed to be dealt with so very long ago. I felt that pains of the past were literally falling off of me as I ran. I ran through the summer heat of 2008 and remember loving the feeling of the hot sun and piling on the sunscreen. 
In early August I stumbled upon The Austin Distance Challenge. I was wrestling with the idea of beginning another 16 week program to complete my first half marathon. The Austin Distance Challenge offers 6 different races that help to build a runner up to the final task of completing a marathon. I remember feeling a spark of excitement with the idea that maybe I could finally train and complete THE marathon. That night I signed up for the challenge and have now completed a 10K, 10 Miler, half marathon, 20 miler, another half marathon, and this Sunday I will run in my first ever marathon right here in Austin. 
I write this because the Lord of my life gets all of the glory for every step I have completed. I have fallen head over heels in love with Him and how He believes so much more for my life than I do. As I was running my last training run 2 days ago (an easy 25 minutes) I had goose bumps all over my body and tears in my eyes for the last 10 minutes or so. He has been with me every step and in every situation and in every breath since before I can remember. He has been beckoning me and loving me and accepting me through every sin, celebration, and heartache. He doesn't let me down. He cheers for me. This is not about running a marathon. This about much more than I can even comprehend. God is calling me to this 26.2 mile journey with Him and I cannot wait to put on my shoes on Sunday morning. I have this huge understanding that He will literally be running WITH me that day as He has been faithful to do through all my days. 

Friday, February 6, 2009

Running Partner

That's Sara. The one with the white band around her head. It's also the first race that I ran in back in October and where I met her. I think it's amazing that I met her at my very first race in the Austin Distance Challenge and now we have become great friends. Sara is HILARIOUS and makes running for hours a breeze *cough* *cough* not really but she sure makes it fun. She is a believer in Christ and we ran many races with the thought of finishing in time to make it to church. I NEVER made it to church after a race but Sara went each time. Sara sent me this text message today, "hey girl, i am flying home tomorrow. My grandmother is in the hospital and the doctors don't think she will make it through the weekend. Hopefully I will be back for the marathon" WHAT?? No!! You MUST make it back for the marathon! What will I do??? Was my very first thought. Then I knew that I must quit thinking about myself and how LONG of a run 26.2 miles would/will be without Sara but I am BELIEVING GOD for a miracle! So I am asking my friends and readers of this blog to please pray for Sara and her grandmother and her whole family. I ask that you would pray that the marathon would not be Sara's focus but that she will enjoy the time with her family back home. Sara has encouraged me through so many miles with her inspiring cheerful spirit and I know that she will be a blessing to her family during this time too! 
Thank you Sara! You are wonderful!!!