Memories of 26.2 Miles through San Francisco

6 years ago today I ran the Nike Women’s Marathon through San Francisco. I loved that race and I like to think it loved me back!  Just to take a trip down memory lane here’s a repost of that race report.  Originally posted here

 

I traveled, I ran and I came home with the signature Tiffany blue box. Yep, this past weekend I made a whirlwind trip from Mississippi to San Francisco to run in the 2011 Nike Women’s Marathon. For 5 years I’ve entered lottery only to be turned down till this year.  In the meantime I’ve ran in 6 marathons with 1 DNF (did not finish) and since August 2010 I’ve been chasing #6 finishers medal. In August of 2010 I planned on running a marathon only to be plagued with injuries. Then in January 2011 I went to Georgia to get #6 finishers medal only to have to throw in the towel with three miles to go.  Then in August of this year I had planned on running the race I wanted to do in August of 2010  but I backed out at the beginning of August so that I could concentrate on the Nike Marathon. So needless to say #6 was worth the wait.

Friday at  9 A.M. I flew out to San Francisco arriving at 1 p.m. busting with pure excitement. I couldn’t wait to see the pink Nike tent and all that awaited. I knew that if Nike was involved it was going to be an awesome event. And it was.  The Nike Expo was located centrally in downtown San Francisco at Union Square. Fortunately it wasn’t far from my hotel, two blocks.

 

From the beginning Nike made it so easy and so much fun to be there.  They had people from the start directing folks to the correct area that we needed to go and if there were any problems they handled them with great ease.  Gatorade was a sponsor so there was nice little area set up so that you could sample what would be on the race course.

Next Neutrogena had an awesome booth that let you sample their products plus sent home some nice samples as well. It was like a mini facial.

Paul Mitchell staff was on sight to help style hair.

While all of this is going on there was a phenomenal DJ rocking the place.

It was so much fun just hanging out. In addition  there was a relaxation area where you could prop your feet up in massaging chairs.

In the back of the expo was Nike’s main area.  In one area there was gait analysis, sport bra fittings and photo ops as well.   They also had several laptops set up so that we could set up our Facebook to request automatic updates to out statuses while we were running.  Outside the expo several other booths were set up as well.  It was definitely a fun and upbeat place to be. They also had a small little booth set up outside (think porta potty small) with last minute race essentials.

Across the street was Niketown and of course, Tiffany’s!!  Fun little thing is that Nike had a huge wall with all the participants names listed.  It was exciting to see my name. It made it all a little more real that I was about to run 26.2 miles.

 

After cruising through Niketown and purchasing a few souvenoirs  I headed back to the hotel to change clothes stretch my legs out and then we were headed to Alcatrez for a night tour.

I highly recommend it if you ever go.  However before we could leave I realized that on our way there we had to go back to the Expo.  Somehow I realized that I was given a half-marathon bib instead of a full marathon.  Fortunately, the folks made it super easy to switch it out and we were on our merry way..

Saturday I wanted to see as much of San Francisco as possible with little walking as possible. The tour company Mr. Toad’s was just the way to go. I had to book our tour before going out there so in advance we knew to meet them at Fisherman’s Wharf.  So after doing the tourist thing and taking the trolley down to Fisherman’s Wharf we spent the next 3 hours touring San Francisco from a 1922 Rambler.

We got out twice to see a few things and to stretch our legs.  First stop was at China Town where we checked out the little shop where they make fortune cookies.It was actually interesting to watch since there was only three ladies doing these by hand. They make approximately 20,000 of these every year!  Next door was fellow who played his violin outside his barbershop. Apparently his quit famous around there. He’s even starred in a movie or two. Pursuit of Happiness was his proudest appearance from what I gathered.

If your ever in the San Fran area and want to see a lot in a short amount of time I highly recommend Mr. Toads Tours.  They really make it fun, enjoyable and you won’t kill your legs climbing hills trying to see everything.

Saturday night was pretty low key.I was pretty tired from the day before and actually fell asleep pretty early.  I was relieved when I woke up Sunday morning knowing I had slept well. Sunday morning getting ready was easy. Had a decent little breakfast and then it was off to get my Tiffany necklace.  From the moment I stepped out the hotel the streets were packed almost an hour before the race was scheduled to start. The city was booming with music, lights and videos being projected on to screens.  Nike even had someone to help warm up the crowd. I personally just watched the warmup. That’s what the first 3 miles are for right?

So after a relaxed start I was off to complete my marathon. The first two miles were easy but mile number three introduced me to my first hill. Immediately I thought, “Oh crap!” I immediately knew that I had to walk the hills in order to make it.  Miles three and four were rough but it was mile seven that really got me.  It was the never ending  uphill.  It’s a hill I never want to see ever again!  Then the downhill was just as hard.  I felt certain that if someone bumped into me I was going to roll downhill!! It was pretty steep.  Miles nine and ten were steady inclines as well.  The whole first half was just brutal with hills.

The second half wasn’t as nearly as bad.  My hips were feeling the effects of the hills but I feel like I went into the second half feeling pretty good.  The only time I ever started feeling tired was when they took us around Lake Merced.  A lot of people didn’t like the route I learned as I was chatting with folks while we were running.  The didn’t like the traffic part but it gave me something to look at. It kept me entertained.  The thing that was hardest for me was the fact that up until that point it had been cloudy most of the day but the sun started coming out  and it was zapping some of my energy.  However at some point it went away and after a much needed potty break I felt ready to go again. Also on the way to Lake Merced and to the finish line was a beautiful view of the beach.  Yes it was a long stretch of it but it’s not something I personally get to see everyday. It was fun to watch the surfers and it gave me a mental break from what I was doing.

The whole race I had been running off of heart rate instead of pace.  My goal was to keep it above 145 but I didn’t want it going pass 155. I think once it did but other than that I probably had a harder time pushing it up to 155.  My hips were just fatigued and didn’t have the strength to push like I wish they would.  Mentally I feel like I held up really well.   I never questioned myself or doubted myself. I knew what I had to do and that was that.

The finish line was a sweet sweet sight. And the prize was just as phenomenal as I had hoped.  My little blue box I’ve been wanting was just beautiful.

 

It’s definitely the best finisher’s medal I’ve gotten to date! It’ll be hard to top that one!

The post race set up was a little weak.  They were out of fruit and the finishers tee didn’t have my size.  Neutrogena did have a set up with face wipes that was much needed especially since I had my finishers photo taken with some hunky firefighters!

There was chocolate milk available and a really neat stretching area as well.

I also highly recommend purchasing the post race shuttle tickets because I was in no shape to try to figure out how to get back to my hotel. The shuttle took us back to Union Square which was plenty close enough since I was only two blocks away.

Monday I’m back in Mississippi with a little fatigue and some mild soreness.  It was a very fast, fun and busy weekend.  A lot of flying, and a lot running.  Would I run NWM 26.2 again? Probably not. I can say I’ve been there, done that and got the blue box.  A lot people have done that race repeatedly and just love it.  I would give it an A- just because of the finisher’s t-shirt issue but overall I would recommend to a girl friend to run. It’s a fun race, it’s entertaining, it’s challenging and the course is well supported.

I’m so glad this race was my #6 finishing race.  It was well worth the hard work and wait.

Motivational Monday

motivational monday

A couple of positive thoughts to start the day and the week………..

You can’t be positive while being negative.

think positive

drink water happens icandothis one pound at a time positive

~Cheers!

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.-Jeremiah 29:11 NIV

Seeking: Motivation

Before I go any further I have to do this…………

hello december

I kind of like saying hello to a new month and I obviously have not took the time to do that! Can you believe we only have 21 days till Christmas?!!?!?

home alone

My shopping list is small and I haven’t put up my tree yet. Or decorated the house. Or sent out a Christmas card. I still have 21 days right?

I don’t know where my head has been but Since Thanksgiving time has flown by! I’ve had to motivate myself to get things done. It’s not a lack of wanting to do them it’s more of a procrastination thing. There’s always tomorrow, right?

ZIG ZIGLAR

If you been by my Facebook page you’ll notice an increase in motivation posters, it’s because we all need it. We have to constantly motivate and refresh ourselves on why we do what we do. I do what I do because I owe it to my health and I enjoy it. However, as a working adult life does tend to take over. Work, community activities, holidays, family life, etc…..that list could go on and on. It’s up to me (and me alone) to put myself in an environment that’s positive and motivating. Even if it’s subscribing to positive Facebook pages, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest,  friends, family (yes there are positives and negatives, you can pick). What you read, see and hear. It’s like I always tell my 9 year old SaSa (family friend) “be careful what you see because you can’t unsee it.” That’s true for a lot of things.

I even take time to sit down with my Bible for quiet time. I have to carve out that time because I need to stay connected and grounded when the world gets hectic. It is so SO important. It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the holidays but taking time to be still and be quiet makes a huge impact on your life. For me, sitting down to read, meditate/marinate on the Word reminds me that there’s so much more than all of this. Kind of like don’t sweat the small stuff.

So as these next hectic couple of weeks come and go you may see more motivational type material around me. If so, I’m doing it for both of us. Enjoy this time of year. Make plans, dream, wish and hope and enjoy it. End the end, that’s what it’s all about.

Cheers!

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for the love of fitness

Iheart fitness

 

 

 

Motivation Monday

Welcome to another dose of Motivation Monday. Yes I know, it’s been a while but here we are and it’s time to get the week going. If you ask me I think this week is the beginning of the last surge to meet our goals by the end of 2014. It’s the start of the holiday season and the new year is creeping up on us. It’s time to kick it into overdrive and crush those goals!! Here’s to a great week and goal crushing…..Cheers!

Motivation Monday 1 Motivation Monday 2 Motivation Monday 3 Motivation Monday 4 Motivation Monday 5

Hello April!

hello april

I say this all the time but………time flies!  Okay it could be because I have no concept of time.  So being in a new month totally is blowing my mind. I’m not exaggerating one bit. I feel like March was shorter than February!!  So……….Hello April!

New month, new goals, new resolutions. It sounds tiresome I know and honestly some times it is. However, I feel like it necessary in order to not be too lazy and a way to remain conscience in my everyday living. I think so many times we take our daily routine for granted and before you know it, we’re in a new season of life (or month) and we have nothing to show for it.  So yes every week, month, and year I set small goals/ resolutions.  Sometimes I pile on too many and I set myself up for failure. Others, are more realistic and attainable.

This year has really been about my quiet time. Making sure that I set time aside for my own quiet time and in addition to that having a desire to spend this time with an eager heart. Not a chore but a true want. Not just ticking off the to do list of “Yep, got that done, next!” But craving and wanting to have quiet time and actually doing it.

Now that’s not to say that I have  put my running on the back burner. In fact it’s just the opposite. Running keeps me sane in an insane world. Running keeps me moving. If I’m tired…..move. If I feel yucky…..move. If I feel lazy…….you guessed it..move!

So here’s to another month filled with wishes, hopes and dreams!  Cheers!

“While wishing and hoping makes you a dreamer, acting and doing makes you someone who can turn dreams into reality.” Nan S. Russell

Workout Wednesday

workout wednesday

Welcome to Workout Wednesday!!  A mid week workout to break up all the craziness going on in your life (and mine too)!

So how’s it going? Are you making plans and acting on them? Or are you wishing, hoping and dreaming that somehow your life will be magically changed for the better?  Sometimes living the good life requires us to be happy with where we are currently and with what we have. Maybe you are in the midst of your “good life” but you don’t see it. Remember to be grateful for what you have and where you are but strive to always do better and be better. Believe in yourself (a little self love never hurts, but like anything else too much can be well, too much) and that you are meant to succeed.  I believe in you. I believe that you were meant to set out and do good things and love others. You can’t do those things if your not healthy so that’s where the self love comes in. Love yourself enough to workout daily (even if it’s just a walk and few squats) and to eat properly.

I know your life may be a little topsy turvy but it’s only temporary. So don’t forget to notch out a little time in that crazy life of yours. If your not at your healthiest and at your best, wading through the craziness will only make things more difficult. Once again, I can’t say it enough, I believe in you. You can do it. If you think I’m talking to you………….I am.  I’ve been there and I understand. I’ve had my world turned upside down and all around (and as life dictates, I will again) but we always come out a little wiser and little stronger on the other side.

Just keep fighting the good fight and remember to love yourself. Be gentle with yourself and give yourself some grace. We’re not perfect but a healthier, stronger version of yourself will emerge. I believe it.

Today’s workout is provided by yours truly! It’s a workout I’ve used with students several times, and they always hate it love it.  Take it slow and steady. It’s truly an up down workout that will get your heart rate going. Cardio is a great way to get the weight loss train going.  Modify if you need to and remember,  if it hurts or doesn’t feel right, STOP!  

Workout Wednesday

Cheers!

Motivation Monday

It’s Monday!?!? Yep and we’re going to like it! I love Motivational Monday! It gets me excited about the week ahead. So……….no sour attitudes or ugly looks, nothing but positive, fierce, happy attitudes. If anybody gives your attitude about your positiveness you got flowing, just laugh because they’re the one ruining their day, not yours!  OWN IT!

Last week was rough. I had major plans for the week and then…………….TOM showed up. Just like a dude to rain on my parade. He showed up with headaches, exhaustion and irritability. I was struggling. By Saturday I had packed his bags and booted him to the curb just in time for a 7 mile run. This week, I’ll redeem what he squandered last week. No excuses. I’ve got 24 hours in a day just like everyone else so all my goals will be met!

Be sure to stop by my Facebook page to share how you’re getting your Motivational Monday going. I always love hearing from you!

Here’s to a successful week filled with fierceness, love and laughter. Cheers!

weight loss motivation Motivation running motivation

 

 

BB’s Quick And Easy Salsa Recipe

I need summer in my life!  Seriously. I need warm temperatures, sand between  my toes and the smell of sunblock clouding my judgement as I sip on fruity or not so fruity libations. (They can be lite libations, don’t judge!)

Anyways, with all that being said, I made salsa today. I needed something that reminded of the fresh veggies soon to be in my  house.  I thought I would share this super easy salsa recipe.

salsa

Ingredients:

2 (14.5 oz) cans of diced fire roasted tomatoes

3 garlic cloves

2 (4 oz.) cans of diced green  chiles

1 small lime

1 jalapeno

Fresh cilantro (the more the better for me)

1 tablespoon black pepper

1 tablespoon oregano

1 tablespoon cumin

Directions:

Chop up  the cloves of garlic, not too much, let the blender do most of the work. Just a couple of chops to make smaller pieces. In the blender pour one can of the diced fire roasted tomatoes and drop in the chopped garlic cloves. Blend for a few second. Garlic should be blended in with the tomatoes.

Take your lime and cut away the rime.  Slice lime in fourths and throw the lime into the blender. Also throw in the your cilantro. Cut up your jalapeno and throw in as well.  Don’t worry, the blender will take care of all the chopping.  In a bowl combine second can of tomatoes, the 2 cans of chiles,  and the rest of the ingredients. Stir to mix in the dry ingredients. Pour on into the blender with the rest of the ingredients and blend till cilantro and lime are pureed.

Pair with veggies or chips for a delicious snack!

Cheers!

 

Motivational Monday

MM-I-can-do-this

Welcome to another edition of Motivational Monday. The day that gets our week primed and ready to go! And yes, I really feel that way!

This morning I got in a 3 mile run. The weather was 50 degrees, no wind, no rain. Just perfect. I almost wish I was one of those people who could remember feelings because this morning was a great way to feel. Afterwards I got in a 30 minute workout and a big glass of water. Personally I think it’s a great start to the week.

dream it wish it do it

By the way people, plan your days. I didn’t plan as much as I should and there were a few key things I should have done. PLAN, PLAN, PLAN!!!  It’s a key to success.

Lastly……………….

1. Drink water

2. Move (walk, run, trampoline, do something)

3. Eat something good for you. Your eating plan doesn’t have to be perfect. But something is always better than nothing!!

Here’s a couple more Motivational Monday’s going on……….

MotivateMeMondayButton

 

Grab Your Kicks

Passion for Life, Love and Health

 

Cheers!

sign

Motivational Monday

no more excuses

It’s MONDAY!!! For some I realize it’s Monday but it’s Motivational Monday!! One of my favorite days.  Mondays are a great way to hit the restart button and start new. Out the old in with the new.

I started my Monday off with 4 miles, 16 oz. of water (great way to get the digestion system moving) and a little quiet time to give thanks. I’ll probably sneak a little more quiet time tonight but something is always better than nothing!  Meanwhile, I’ve got less than 8 weeks to get myself into fighting shape for the local half marathon (that I haven’t fully committed to yet) and less days than I care to imagine to get this winter booty ready for Memorial Day!  The day that all winter booties go into hibernation and summer booties come out to play (not literally unless your a little less modest than me, which I think most people are).

Speaking of 4 miles. This morning on I was on the treadmill (because I’ve been a complete baby about this winter weather this year) enjoy  watching curling (greatest Olympic sport ever!) when I started feeling a slow pull in my neck.  I wasn’t doing anything abnormal except running when what felt like slow motion was a very slow annoying pull begin to take place.  Just like that. I couldn’t stop it. So now, I’m walking around with a funny neck position nursing an uncomfortable crick. What gives?!!? I was able to continue on but how annoying!

Anyways, so time to get busy with the week.  I hope you have a great one and remember, drink water and think positive. It’s

going to be a great week! Cheers!

run. run. run.

suck it up now

keep your head up

Motivation Monday

Happy Monday!!! Did you have rough weekend? Maybe ate a little too much? How about sat a little too much? That’s okay. Don’t worry!  We’re going to hit the restart button and start new. So get moving, eat cleaner and healthier than you did yesterday and remember to have a some quiet time to reboot at the end of the day.  Cheers!

I know it seems at this point that all I’ve become is a glorified Tumblr account just posting pictures on motivation. I don’t mean to be. To make matters worse,  last week I let a pile of excuses get in the way of posting  more other than Motivation Monday. Sadly, I was sort of locked away inside thanks to a ice storm (I guess that’s the right title for it) and my excuse for not posting, “I’m cold and don’t want to do anything.” How’s that for motivation!?!? I did clean the house and had some valuable down time.  However, I’m back this week with a schedule for posting and working out!  Even though I post so much about motivation, without it, a lot of task would never get completed. So Monday Motivation is more than a post I do to generate traffic, it’s a tool I use to get us all moving in a positive direction.

Stop back by tomorrow when I talk about the importance of habits.

How to stay motivated

A year from now

Monthly motivation

What you eat in private

 Remember to Move, Nourish and Believe……daily!

Psalm 103:5