Runner’s Why

Running is my constant. I am just getting back to it after having 2 beautiful children.  When a friend asked me about doing a 10-mile run with her, I felt a chill of excitement come up from my toes to my head. I had plantar fasciitis, sciatica and pubic bone separation after having the kids and running was causing me pain. Instead of giving up, I built strength through my home fitness programs. It was like having a personal trainer in my living room and I got conditioned for cardio with Insanity, flexibility with Piyo and strength with Hammer and Chisel. I felt ready again! I’ve been on 3 training runs and only have about 2 months left to build mileage. I will do it! I am committed. Running is my jam.

My passion for running started around 10. I remember my father was on a fitness kick and I jogged with him around the neighborhood. I didn’t always know how to connect with him, but running alongside him and being part of what he was doing, felt good. When I was younger, I looked forward to mixing his drinks when he got home from work., so running around the neighborhood was at least a healthier way to relate. I don’t remember having conversation or how many times we actually ran, but we ran. I completed my first 5k race for a cause with my cousin when I was 12 and I loved the excitement, the free snacks and the random strangers who seemed so excited that we were the ones running and not them. The feeling of excitement and joy while willing your feet to keep moving one foot in front of the other has always sparked a deep sense of fulfillment in me and when it was paired with people I cared about and strangers who cheered for me, well it just became even more of my favorite thing. That feeling of crossing the finish line is like the cherry on top. Nothing like it!

In my junior high track years, I remember getting to the indoor track and seeing the workout for the day on the wall and dreading the long miles we had ahead of us whether they were indoor or outdoor. As soon as I started running, the dread faded out and happiness and joy seeped in. High school running left me with slightly different memories. I remember running the mile on the indoor track and when I crossed the finish line out of breath and exhausted, I would make a break for the bathroom and dry heave or actually get violently sick. I don’t know if I ever fueled my body right back then or even knew how to. It was an awful feeling, but when I recovered, I’d go check out my time, go back to the team and get excited to see if we won the meet and got excited for the next race. Runner’s high always set in, either during the run or right after. There is nothing like endorphins to brighten your mood. I will never forget one day when we got back on the bus and the coach called me the VIP of the meet because I placed 3rd in the mile and got a 6:13 time! Those few points I earned at the end took us into winning the meet! This was my fastest mile ever and I was proud beyond words. I’ll never forget the feeling of the one time I placed in track.  I have more memories of college cross country especially those group sprints or 5 am runs uphill (which I think was actually soccer practice).  I didn’t stay with cross-country throughout college but I still ran for enjoyment and exercise.

Over the years, I’ve run through trails, streets of Boston, Maine, Cape Cod, Nara, Japan, Spain, Mexico, Florida, Vegas and just about every other place I’ve visited. Running is an experience for me.  I take in all the sights and sounds around me at a higher level. I’m more present than ever when I’m running.  For me, it makes me feel at one with the earth, sky, and universe, and for that 10, 20, 45 minutes, my head clears and I’m on top of the world. When I finished a run this morning, I was brought back to all those times in my life where running was there. I thought of the timeline of my life and how I always came back to this no matter what was going on in my life.

In my running career, I have run 5 half marathons, 1 full marathon, a ton of 5ks and 10ks, 3 sprint triathlons, and 1 olympic triathlon all completed before having children. Last year, I did 2 Spartan and I loved how it incorporated strength, skill and I had a team to lean on and help out.   Half marathons are my favorite distance, but my most memorable run ever was the Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon. It was exactly how I imagined it and I felt awesome throughout the beautiful run with new bands at every mile.

If you ever have a goal in running, set up your training schedule, believe in yourself, trust in yourself and put one foot in front of the other! Find some music you love, and find some scenic spaces to visit.  I love running by the water. The breeze helps too!  Run with a friend whenever possible or at least stick to areas where other runners or people are around for safety.  If you’re interested in some programs that may help you get conditioned to start running and you want to do that at home, I can help you find something that works for you.  I also recommend Hal Higdon’s free training schedules for running. Couch to 5k is a great place to start, and get a great pair of sneakers you replace often! Happy trails!!

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Spicy Egg Roll Wrap

I love spicy food whether it’s Mexican, Thai, or Indian spice!  Just bring the heat to my plate and I’m happy!  The past couple of weeks, we have had celebrations, social events and trips/outings and I have overindulged.  My jeans do not lie.  I don’t beat myself up over that.  I enjoy myself!  I just know I need to start eating smaller meals designed to fuel and energize me and stay away from refined sugars and carbs again.  This is where I get off track. Pizza, tacos and margaritas are my weakness!  So I started day 1 of a new round of 21 Day Fix yesterday.  This always helps get me back on track.  I sometimes go a whole day without fruits or veggies but when I stick to the fix eating plan, I get PLENTY of fruits and veggies, and way less carbs.  I will STILL eat pizza, but less and I balance it out with some extra veggies!  It helps the kids too.  Yesterday, we all snacked on cucumbers and apples.  The kids ate two cucumbers and even pulled the cukes out of my water to eat those too.  Yikes!

Today when I had only a short time after teaching my fitness class and hopping on a call for my business, I whipped up lunch.  It was 11 am and I was hungry for eggs, but wanted veggies too.  I ended up adding some salsa to my eggs to make a spicy scramble!  I used one egg and two egg whites!  I then mixed cabbage slaw (same mix for cole slaw) with lowfat sour cream and sriracha sauce.  I SWEAR it’s good!!!  I loaded the egg scramble on top of a romaine lettuce leaf and added my crunchy, spicy sauce on top!  It was AMAZING!  The sour cream had 40 calories for 2 tablespooons.  The cabbage slaw was 25 calories for a cup and a half and I only used about 1 cup.  The salsa was about 20 calories.  A whole head of romaine is 108 calories and I used 2 leaves, so let’s say 20 for that!  One whole egg is 79 calories and egg whites are only 11!  I am watching my cholesterol so that’s why I’m using the whites.  That is how I got to about 190 calories TOTAL!  The eggs have the protein which should keep me pretty full but I’ll also have my shake around 1.  It’s a great idea to have multiple smaller meals every day instead of 3 larger meals to keep blood sugar steady!  Here’s the recipe again:

2 romaine lettuce leaves

1 whole egg and 2 egg whites

1 cup of cabbage slaw

2 tbs of low-fat or whole fat sour cream or Greek yogurt

2 tsp of Sriracha sauce

3 tbs of salsa

Coat pan with coconut oil.
Arrange 2 romaine lettuce leaves on plate.
Scramble eggs with salsa and cook until done.
Mix cabbage slaw with sour cream and sriracha.

Fix container equivalents= 1 red container, 1  1/2 green container, 1 teaspoon

(sriracha as with all spices are free foods)

Load lettuce leaves with eggs and top with cabbage mixture.  Fold and eat as a wrap!  Enjoy!!  If you try this recipe, please tell me what you think!  Leave a comment or shoot me a message!  If you love it, share away!

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