Five Minute Friday: Park

This week the topic for the Five Minute Friday link-up post is Park. What is a link-up? Essentially a link-up is when you join other bloggers and write on a similar topic. You share your blog posts with one another and begin conversations via a host site. You can head over to Kate Motaung’s page to check out other entries from inspired bloggers. Here’s my five minutes of uninterrupted, unedited writing on this week’s topic:

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I’ve been lucky enough to have the second half of this work week off due to my town’s annual festival, The Pumpkin Show. Every year it seems to come at just the right time. I’ve gotten into a good routine with school and I’m starting to get a bit tired of all the energy that goes into being a teacher and mom all while trying to keep on top of the housework, cooking, and the never ending mound of laundry. The temperatures have been changing on top of all of my demands, and for about two weeks I’ve felt the tickling of germs in my throat just waiting for the right opportunity to spread into a full blown cold. I’ve diffused Essential Oils nightly to stave off any symptoms, but the true remedy for the way I have been feeling is a short break. Thank you, Pumpkin Show!

On Wednesday I kicked my break off with a run at a local park. I’ve been going to a cardio and strength class that my aunt teaches and that group decided to avoid the town’s festivities and run at a park just outside of the city. I woke up reluctantly on my first day of break, but I was so glad that I did.

For class that morning, we ran over two miles. Every quarter of a mile we stopped and did a variation of jump jacks, lunges, push ups, and crunches.

It had been so long since I ran. Over the summer I battled a bit with allergies which kept me from running. Instead, I turned to another way of getting myself in shape. I started attending classes once a week at my aunt’s place and found myself getting stronger and stronger. I was still taking time to focus on me and my fitness, but in a way totally foreign to me. I think that’s why I loved it.

I’m so glad that even though I was tired and feeling a little run down that I decided to start my break with an early morning at the park. The cool air and slight humidity felt good. The scene was beautiful as the trees around me were changing colors. The vibrancy of the colors added a little pep to my step. It was a day that reminded me of my love for running and the great outdoors.

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The Ameri Brit Mom

 

Race Day Snapshots

This weekend I finished the Patron Quarter Marathon in Columbus. My official time was 1:08:57. I ran the race with my friend, Leah. We ran eleven minute miles fairly consistently until mile 5 and then we left all we had on that course and finished strong.

In the last mile I passed 97 people!!!!

This was a comeback run for me. I ran competitively in high school but haven’t done much running since and barely any at all since the birth of my daughter in 2012. Here is a look at some snapshots from the event.

I’m excited to journey back into running. I’m setting goals for better overall health and wellness and running is a big part of those goals.

The Ameri Brit Mom

Five Minute Friday: Easy

This week the topic for the Five Minute Friday link-up post is Easy. What is a link-up? Essentially a link-up is when you join other bloggers and write on a similar topic. You share your blog posts with one another and begin conversations via a host site. You can head over to Kate Motaung’s page to check out other entries from inspired bloggers. Here’s my five minutes of uninterrupted, unedited writing on this week’s topic:

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As an adult very few things come easy.

I can remember in high school taking months off from working out and being able to pick up where I left off. Running came easily. Working out wasn’t a struggle. Finding time to invest in my physical health was simple. School and friends were my only distractions.

Now, is quite the opposite. I’ve been trying to get in shape for a race (6.5 miles) I may end up doing with a friend. I’ve had to plan in advance and re-arrange my days in order to complete short runs. Plotting physical activity requires so much more than getting dressed for the exercise. Now that I’m a mother it requires childcare and making sure I still have time in my day to cook, clean, work, and fulfill all of my duties as a wife and mother.

Once I do find myself in a pocket of time set aside for running there is a brand new problem that comes with being an adult. Running is hard! As a petite high school student I was able to run long distances with mild levels of exhaustion and discomfort. Now, it’s an accomplishment to run two miles without contracting knee pain or shin splints. I don’t pay attention to the clock. It’s embarrassing. As long as I’m trying my best and getting good cardio through a heightened heart rate I’ll take whatever time I can.

Easy is not a word I would use to describe my road to getting in shape. But valuable is. Getting back into a regular routine of working out is valuable to my health and well-being and for that reason I will continue.

I’m back at it again. This isn’t easy. But I have resolved to not be too hard on myself and to enjoy getting back in shape.

 

Nike Workout Gear

Nike Workout Gear

 

I can’t believe I did it.I was so close to writing out the story of running from my life. I had come to terms with the fact that running was a thing of the past. No hard feelings. Then, a random message of conviction caused me to go back on my commitment to never run again. An old friend with good intentions made me do it. I can’t believe I caved in.
Over the weekend I found myself in a conversation with an old friend. During our conversation she mentioned she was running a quarter marathon in April and needed a partner to join her. In a moment of weaknesses I said I would do it, and that’s how I got myself into this pickle.
For a little background, I ran competitively in high school and post-high school I participated in a couple of half marathons and a dozen 5ks. However, since I had my daughter I have not done anything of the competitive sort. I’ve dabbled in running, but the time commitment has kept me from really taking training seriously. Over the winter I tried to do some runs, but found my knees aching and hips in pain as a result. I had more or less thrown in the towel on the idea of ever really competing again until this weekend.
But now that I have decided to give it another try I’m in need of motivation to get out there and do the work necessary to go from couch to quarter marathon in a little under two months. So how do I plan to motivate myself?
1. Running Buddy– Having a friend to run with keeps me accountable for finishing each workout. Some days the weather is less than ideal for running so finding accountability with another runner helps motivate me to run regardless of the conditions outside. Luckily, I have a few friends who also enjoy running and I plan to do a couple of runs each week with another person.
2. Set Weekly Goals– Having a long term goal is important, but sometimes I need to set smaller goals to keep me motivated on a daily basis. In the past, I would set weekly mileage goals or set a goal based on the amount of time I planned to run that week. These smaller goals help to give purpose to every single run. Each mile (or minute) becomes a step toward that weekly goal. I also love rewards. A great reward for hitting my weekly goal is giving myself a day of rest. (Example: If I can run 25 miles before Friday I will take Saturday off.)
3. Cute Workout Clothes– Who isn’t motivated by looking good? Recently, I went to a sporting goods store to pick out some soccer gear for my daughter. In the process, I found myself drawn to all of the brightly colored workout clothes for women. From sports bras to leggings there were so many adorable styles. I’m in need of a shopping spree to amp-up my workout wardrobe. (I’m a Nike girl if you haven’t guessed from the picture above.)
What is your favorite piece in your workout ensemble?