2017 Intentions

Wow, can y’all believe that it’s almost the end of January? The past few weeks have flown by! We are 21 days into the new year…How are your resolutions going?

Mine are going great, mainly because I didn’t make any. Instead I thought about where I wanted to be this time next year. Then I started an action plan to get me there.

So I chose my destination and developed my road map. My journey through this year will be one of personal and financial growth. My main focus is to be intentional with my thoughts and actions.

I do have a few goals that I am working towards that I’ll share with you all. I’ll be blogging about my progress throughout the journey.

Running goals: I am training for another 50K in October. To prepare for this I will run 500 miles this year.

Lifting goals: I will be able to squat 200 lbs, dead lift 175 lbs, and bench press 135 lbs. To do this I will follow a structured lifting program and lift 3 to 5 times a week with my friend Nicole.

Weight loss and Nutrition goals: I will feed my body what it needs to be lean, strong, and healthy. To do this I will count my macros/calories. I’d like to lose 25 pounds of fat.

Financial goal: Continue working towards financial freedom. To meet this I am following Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace plan.

I will be providing updates on my progress, training plans, recipes, and adventures so please check back in with me. It’s going to be an awesome year!

What are your goals for the year? What topics would you be interested in reading?

 

 

Hello 2017: Welcome to my journey

In order to fully appreciate my journey, you need to know where I have been. My story is one all too often told. Girl has a baby. Girl gains a lot of weight. Girl loses weight. Girl gains weight again. Girl gets depressed and eats ALL THE THINGS. Girl repeats cycle over and over until it affects her self-esteem.

Girl works 40 plus hours a week. Girl lives paycheck to paycheck and is always broke.

Girl has intentions to meet up with friends. Girl gets anxiety and cancels.

Finally, girl says “enough is enough”.

Which brings me to rebirth/redesign of my blog. Welcome to the new year with a discarding of the old beliefs/habits. This year (and beyond) I am practicing self – love instead of being obsessed with the scale. I am going to treat my body and soul with what it needs for nourishment and for health. I am mindful of my finances and will reach financial freedom. I am going to nurture and grow my friendships and other relationships.

And I’m going to see just what this 44-year-old body is capable of accomplishing.

I have done a lot of praying, reflecting, and self inventory over the past few months. This had led me to make some decisions and changes that will truly allow me to grow as a person. I’ve made some dumb decisions in my life that have had a far-reaching and snowball effect, but this doesn’t have to define me forever.

So I am leaving behind the habits and beliefs that have created my problems and manifested into added stress. I believe that if habits can cause my problems, then different habits can create my success, right?

Everyone makes New Year’s resolutions and few stick to them. Instead of resolutions, I have some goals and achievements that I will carry out over the next 365+ days. I will be successful. Mainly because I will not be alone.

I am going to be INTENTIONAL with my life. Practicing simple actions and habits that will have long-term positive effects. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” Philippians 4:13. I believe this verse with all of my heart and soul. With Him I can do anything, even getting through the hard stuff that life will inevitably throw at me.

Over the next few posts I am going to break down my goals and my strategies for accomplishing them. I hope you stick around, read them, and offer some feedback. And just maybe, you’ll find some inspiration or a kindred spirit!

In the meantime, I am headed to Homegrown Yoga for a Manifest and Move class with Anna. I’m starting the year off with intention. Namaste and Happy New Year!

It’s the little things (Endurance Racing Seminar Recap Pt 3)

Hey, welcome back to the third installment of my recap of the 24 hour Endurance Racing Seminar that I went to this weekend. If you missed volumes one and two, please check them out!

Times like these are when I miss my Dad the most. I’d give ANYTHING to sit on the back porch with him and tell him the story I am about to tell you. So if you don’t mind… I’m going to address this one to him.

Dear Dad,

You wouldn’t believe all of the things I did on Friday night and Saturday. Me, your bookish awkward daughter. I know that you were so proud of my running but to be honest since you passed away I haven’t run as much. It made me too sad because running gave me time to think. Quite frankly I didn’t want to think. I still miss you and I always will. But I think I may be healing a little. I’m starting to pick back up running and am trying new things. Part of those new things included going to this seminar.  I will tell you that a very different Heather left that Christmas tree farm on Saturday than the one who naively rolled in on Friday night.

Remember when you took Holly and I canoeing and taught us how to tip over the canoe so we could learn to save ourselves? Well this weekend reminded me of that. I learned some really cool things that I can use if I ever get lost or decide to go trekking in the wilderness. I learned how to fuel myself to perform well at endurance events. I learned about shoes, socks, and other foot care. I learned how to pack a ruck, what to pack in a ruck, and how to adjust my ruck for comfort. So much valuable information. You’d have loved it!

In fact, some of this information we were supposed to use when we did a community service project to help clear out a woman’s yard. Everyone else is hard headed like me, so we all did things the old fashioned way and lifted/carried those logs out of her yard. It was really nice to be able to give back and do something nice for someone else. It was a great team effort! You would have enjoyed talking to Mrs. York. She owns a beautiful place and has beautiful horses. I think she was tickled pink that we got so much done. 

 I learned how to use a compass too! (Stop laughing, I really did). You would have gotten a kick out of watching the 11 of us learn how to use the compass and orientate our way to find different points throughout the farm. We were hot, hungry, caffeine deprived, thirsty, and at some points hopelessly confused. I will admit I got a little grumpy. But with the excellent instruction, several missteps and help from Matt it finally clicked. Imagine that, your directionally challenged oldest daughter, learned how to navigate using a compass (from an outhouse to a Christmas tree no less, I thought you’d find that funny).

Dad, you would have also enjoyed the people at the seminar. They really made me feel welcome and seemed to offer timely encouragement at the times that I needed it most. Kelli, Amber, Kerri, Alyssa, Matt, Austin, Blake, Kert, Glen, and Juliana were amazing. Such an awesome group to go through this experience with. You would have loved their sense of humor. I think you’d like Matthew and Tanya too. I can just see y’all comparing embarrassing stories about me and my clumsiness. You would have loved. Liana, John, and Mrs. Waller too. They all made the experience so enriching.

One of the things we did was a 7 mile sunrise ruck, this was immediately after about 3.5 hours of rest. I say rest, because I couldn’t sleep. So we set out with loaded packs to ruck 7 miles in the Georgia sunshine together. The rules were to finish in 3.5 hours and to finish together. Dad, this was one of my favorite parts of the weekend. There’s just something about being outside in that fresh air, being surrounded by the countryside that soothes my soul. The ruck covered various terrains and views, including highway and dirt road.

I REALLY enjoyed this, even as the pack got heavier as the second half of the ruck seemed to be uphill the entire way. (I’m not exaggerating, it kept going and going). In typical Heather fashion, I enjoyed the people. I think I got to know Kerri, Amber, and Kelli more on that ruck than any other time in the past. And I am thankful for that. More than they will ever know. Their stories and advice has given me the confidence to move forward into this crazy, I mean different new venture. I also enjoyed chatting with every single person this weekend. Every single one of them has left an impact on me!!I learned so much from each and every one of these amazing people.

We all have our demons inside and Lord knows I am still working on mine. But Dad, I hope I make you proud. This weekend was tough. They made me do all of these things without coffee!!! So I have to tell you that Kerri’s Dad is one of the best people EVER for bring us ice cold Cokes after that ruck. I don’t drink sodas but that was the best darn coke I have ever had.

Sorry, I got distracted thinking about caffeine :). I learned a lot this weekend. A lot of skills that I can apply. I also learned that when it comes down to it, my why is stronger than my excuses. I may be weaker. I may be slower. I may be (lots) less agile but hopefully everyone who knows me will say “Yeah, I know Heather. That girl doesn’t have quit in her, even when she struggles she always has a smile (or a grimace lol)”.  At least that is my goal.

I love you Daddy. Always and forever. I know that you will be with me when I tackle The Gauntlet in August. I will make you proud.

Love,
Heather

PS… To my readers.. thank you for following along with this series. If you are interested in one of these endurance racing camps, please keep a look out on The Gauntlet for further updates!! I hope that you will stay around and follow me as I train for The Gauntlet in August!!

Click here to enter to win an entry into The Gauntlet!! http://www.shortyruns.com/?p=79

Gauntlet Race Giveaway (Endurance Race Seminar Recap 2)

When you think of the word seminar, what do you envision? Perhaps a nice Power Point presentation and fancy binders with handouts? With coffee and refreshments? Some instructional sessions followed by those awkward team building exercise that everyone grumbles about?

Y’all… that is what I thought I was going to.

 BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Photo Credit: The Gauntlet

When you attend an endurance racing seminar hosted by Matthew Waller and Tanya Bickham there are a few things you can count on.

1- Solid information. Matthew is a seasoned endurance racer. He has learned his stuff through tons of trial and error and he knows what works and what doesn’t. We learned about nutrition, footwear, what to pack, how to pack, etc. Matthew is very knowledgeable and is very willing to share his knowledge with others. And share he did. He delivers the information in a way that is very interesting and easy to understand. After attending this seminar I am much more confident in preparing to train for and compete in my first endurance event. I was so VERY ignorant before I came to the camp.

I will definitely be applying what I learned! My major takeaways that I need to start ASAP:

  • get fitted for a backpack and start rucking with heavy weight 
  • get some butt paste 
  • take in more fuel that I think I need each hour (FLASHING LIGHT HERE- This is probably why I have performance issues during long runs. I think this blew my mind. Thanks Matt!)

2-  Being put through the paces. They will put you to WORK! Goodness gracious, the word endurance is in the event description for a reason I guess. Between you and me, I secretly loved the way they organized this event. We did a physical activity. Then regrouped for some learning. Then another physical activity. And so on. And so on. And so on (okay.. by this point I was getting tired lol).

The first night after I overcame that first challenge of the WTH water dip burpees, we also did some PT in the moonlight which consisted of my beloved animal movements. (Stephanie, are you reading this? Sigh… I apologize that I complain every time that we do these in class because clearly they really must be useful somehow. And.. ugh.. I need to work on them more.) PT included using our sandbags  and consisted of squats, bear crawls, burpees, Russian Twists, and my oh so very favorite crab walks. (shudder)

Photo Credit: The Gauntlet

A lot of that first night before we took a break at 2 am is kind of a blur, so I don’t really remember the order of events. <read: no coffee for 24 hours> But what I do remember is the camaraderie through the suck (no offense Matt and Tanya). When you are making that many trips up and down a hill to a lake whether it’s empty handed, carrying your pack, or carrying a bucket full of water – never knowing what to expect at either side, it can bring out the best in people or it can bring out the worst. That night it brought out the best. These people were amazing. I’m going to talk more about the group in my next post, but I really enjoyed getting to know this fabulous group of athletes better.

My favorite task that night was the golden brick challenge, which took place around midnight. I have no idea how far we had to walk, but our task was to ruck all the way to the railroad tracks to find a gold brick. The first one back with a brick would win a Gauntlet sweatshirt.

The sky at the farm was beautiful. The stars were amazing.  So it was kind of surreal as we rucked through the darkness in the middle of nowhere to find these railroad tracks and gold bricks. It was in these witching hours that I realized I wasn’t a poser and I really did belong with this group of people. Sure, I may have to try and train harder to keep up with everyone, but I belong. It’s a nice bond to have. And Kellie, Amber, Austin and I had quite the adventure looking for those darn gold bricks.

But you’ll read more about that tomorrow… in the meantime let me talk about the third thing you can expect at a Waller and Bickham event:

 3. Passion behind what they do. Matthew and Tanya are very passionate at coaching people and encouraging those to give their all. They truly want everyone who participates to be successful. I can personally vouch for this. Being told, when it was all said and done, that you made someone proud. That means a lot. Matthew and Tanya give their all and it shows. It showed it the amount of time and effort that they took into putting on this event. It was organized, informative, and well planned. They put their heart and emotions in it.

 Let’s talk about The Gauntlet.  Matthew and Tanya put on a top notch event. After doing this seminar, I am definitely going to compete in The Gauntlet. What is The Gauntlet? Simply put.. it is “an endurance event that will test athletes’ abilities to excel in agility, strength, endurance & mental fortitude” “The Gauntlet will have athletes participating in running/rucking miles of wooded trails, carrying heavy, sometimes awkward objects, competing in time trials, and often times participating in group activities where teamwork is a necessity. Athletes who finish The Gauntlet will have been tested physically, mentally and spiritually.”  

I have a lot more to say about my adventure at the seminar, but my lunch break is almost over! So I will leave you with a giveaway. Matthew and Tanya have given me one entry each to The Gauntlet and The Gauntlet Sergeant. BUT HERE IS THE CATCH. It is non transferable. Which means the entry can not be given away to another person. One tip to enter, I wouldn’t do it from your phone because I made entering a little more challenging this time. And before you complain about it being challenging, well…. I just wouldn’t complain because The Gauntlet is all about overcoming challenges isn’t it? 🙂 Anyway, I hope you’ve enjoyed reading part of my adventure and hope you tune back in tomorrow for the best part of it. 

And please enter and share the giveaway!! (Even if it’s not your thing, please share! Thanks!)

 Until tomorrow!
Heather

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Jump Right In (Endurance Racing Seminar Recap- Pt 1)

On Friday night I rolled into the Christmas tree farm a scared newbie with a car load of borrowed gear. I was headed to a 24 Hour Endurance Seminar hosted by Endurance Racer, Matthew Waller, 4 time Death Race Finisher, Catamount Games Finisher, finisher of The Suck and SISU Iron and finisher of the Winter AGOGE 001. I knew to expect the unexpected but I really had no clue what I was in for. Quite frankly I was terrified. When I met my friends for lunch that day, they joked that I looked scared to death!

You are probably sitting there asking yourself why I would want to do an event that I was so afraid of. Honestly I asked myself the same thing. In fact, at the beginning of the event we had to go around the group and introduce ourselves and say why we were there. I gave them my short answer.

You get my long answer. Grab some popcorn.

Hi. My name is Heather. I am an ordinary woman. I am a 43 year old single mom who quite frankly is a hot mess sometimes. I have never been a gifted athlete. In fact, for much of life I was a couch potato. Even now that I have found running you wouldn’t look at me and say “oh that girl is an athlete” as I fight the scale in a battle of wits. I do love to run though. (I also love to eat, but that’s another blog post). I love the feeling of accomplishment when I complete a new goal. Whether it is a PR in pace or distance it is exciting! If you’ve followed my blog for a while then you know that I have done a whole gamut of races from 5Ks to ultras, from color runs to Spartans. I may do them slow, but I love them!! I keep the back of the pack fun :). I’m always up for new challenges.

I also have fears. I am afraid of heights… mainly due to a fear of falling. I am afraid of jumping into water and going under when I can’t see the bottom. I doubt my own strength. I question my own endurance. How much I can handle. I have my own perceived limits. In fact, I always said that I had no interest in rucking. I mean, does hiking for miles and miles with heavy weight really sound fun to anyone? And I certainly had no interest in an endurance event. Who wants to be cold, wet, tired, and miserable???

At Back the Blue, my friends Blake, Amber, and Anna were talking about this Endurance Seminar. They also talked about their experiences at events such as The Gauntlet and The Green Beret. I was so impressed with their accomplishments! I’ve always had a lot of respect for endurance racers and people who participate in rucks, but I knew it was something that I could never do. Because I wasn’t tough enough. I wasn’t strong enough. I would break too easily. Above all my biggest fear is having people see me at my most vulnerable. God forbid I break down in front of anyone.

But there is also this voice inside me that says if I push myself and work really hard then I can be a competitor. I can hold my own and not quit. So I started thinking. And thinking. I talked to my coach Stephanie who gave me some sound advice. I prayed about it. And I did a whole lot of over thinking.

I had nothing to lose by trying and everything to gain. So I decided I wanted to compete in The Gauntlet in August and that I would attend the seminar. EEEEK!! So I registered for the seminar. Once I got the packing list, then the panic set in lol. You see, this girl has NEVER rucked before. In fact I have never done anything like this before. I had to borrow almost everything on my packing list. (Mom, Heathyr, and Kelley- thank you so much)

Even though I was TERRIFIED and ill prepared (I had been up since 4 am and was too nervous to eat dinner),  I went in with an open mind, an open heart, and decided I was going to give it everything I had. Even if all I had wasn’t good enough, it was a start and well… all I had.

So I roll into this beautiful Christmas tree farm and thankfully see familiar friendly faces.  Even the faces I did not know would soon become friends through out the next 24 hours.

The camp started with our setting up our base camp and a couple of lessons on snakes and Swiss seats. Then we jumped right in with introductions and our first task.

Part of our first task was to empty our pack then to run down the hill to the lake where we met Tanya to continue the task… and wouldn’t you know it.

Sigh…….

Water dip burpees. Over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over.  Jumping in. Going into the water. Over my head. Where I can’t see the bottom. In a stinky lake. Noooooooooo!!

(Insert bleep here) I almost cried.

But you know what? I did it!!!! 

If you are interested in reading more about my endurance camp adventure come back tomorrow. I’ll also be giving away an entry to The Gauntlet and The Gauntlet Sergeant as well!! (insert applause and cheers here!!)

In the meantime, tell me about a fear that you’ve worked to get over? Or one that you would like to conquer?

Friday Five: Never Say Never

 TGIF!!!! How is possible that today is May 20th??? Wasn’t it just the first, like yesterday? I guess time flies when you are having fun. Or is it time flies when you are getting old? Any who, I am so ready for the weekend!! But first…

Here are five of my favorite things from the week.

1. The Rock Clock app. Best app EVER!! Dwayne Johnson recently launched his motivational alarm clock app appropriately called The Rock Clock. It allows you to choose a goal with an end date, select your wake up time, select an AWESOME alarm tone, and includes motivational messages each day from The Rock himself. Trust me, when The Rock tells you to get your candy a$$ out of bed at 4:05 am you do it!! (app is free on iTunes and Google Play). I give myself a pat on the back for hitting my class at 5 am all week.

2. Glow Runs with friends. Especially Glow Runs that support our local police department. Last Saturday night was the Back the Blue Glow Run 5K/10K. I ran intervals with my friends Wren, Nicole, Anna, and Blake. We had sooooo much fun. No PRs were made, but we made memories so there is that.

3. Gym Girl Ultra in Tantrum from Skirt Sports , Team RWB socks from The Sox Box both match perfectly with my Team RWB shirt so that I can support the eagle at local events.

Use HSR20 for 20% off at Skirt Sports and use Shortyruns10 for 10% off Sox Box!! 

4. Giveaway winners: I want to congratulate Mandy E. for winning her choice of water tracking bottle from Hydr-8 Water Tracking Bottles. Thank you to all who entered!!! Remember if you didn’t win, you can go to Hydr-8.com and use Shortyruns for 15% off your cart!! These bottles are awesome. I use mine every day to stay on track for my water intake.

5. Taking giant leaps out of your comfort zone and training to accomplish a goal that you once said you had no desire to do. I have always said that I would never do an endurance event. That I have no desire to be uncomfortable, cold, wet, doing physical challenges with no sleep. Buuuuut… last Saturday night after the race I listened to two awesome people who have completed these events talk about the incredible events they have coming up. And that little voice inside my head said “Heather… Heather… Heather what if…”.

Gah. This is the voice that led to my first 5K. My first obstacle course race. My first half marathon. My first marathon. Pushing through injury to complete the second marathon. My first ultramarathon that I DNFd. Dusting myself and trying again. It’s the voice that pushes me to get up at 4:05 am to hit the gym at 5. It’s the voice that gets the tattoos. It’s the voice that wants to lift heavy. It’s the voice that wants to do amazing things. It’s the voice behind Shorty Runs. The one that keeps Doubter Girl in check. Sometimes I wish this voice would hush and eat a doughnut (double chocolate cake doughnut lol), but this is also the voice that helps me overcome my anxieties and fears.

So I’m letting her get her way and I am going where no Shorty Runs has ever gone before. So there is this….

First step: I am participating in a 24 hour seminar hosted by Matthew Waller and Tanya Bickham to learn how to prepare for endurance events. 

I hope you will join me over the next few months as I train both physically and mentally for the biggest challenge of my life to date. I’m sure it will be an interesting journey as I have LOTS of work to do. But you know what, most of the time the journey to the destination is where the magic happens. I’m excited to be on this journey and am looking forward to learn more about myself along the way.

Have a great weekend y’all! No racing for me this weekend, just gym time, trail run, and quality time with my family.

Until next time, happy running!
Heather 

PS. If you have ever completed an endurance event like The Gauntlet, any and all tips and advice would be welcomed :).

Friday Five- Friday the 13th Edition

Welcome to Friday!! We made it, so lets give ourselves a golf clap. It has been a particularly rough week as I had a migraine for 4 days. Thankfully Friday has me feeling so much better!! This episode has left me feeling rather dissatisfied with my current pharmaceutical treatment so I will be researching and exploring other avenues of treatment and prevention. I’m very curious about Botox as I have heard that it works well for migraine pain.

I will be writing about my journey to treat my chronic migraines as it is a part of my journey. Hopefully what I discover can help someone else. One good side effect of this past episode is that it has strengthened my resolve to do better at food tracking. Being able to track the foods I eat just before a migraine episode starts will help me determine if the food is a cause or trigger. Plus I can’t manage what I don’t measure, so it will assist with my other goals too.

But today I feel good and strong so hopefully the episode is over. So I figured I would take advantage of that fact and tell y’all about five of my favorite things.

On May 1st I ran the Diva Half Marathon in North Myrtle Beach with some of my friends that I met through Moms RUN This Town/She Runs This Town. We had a wonderful ladies racecation and had a blast. During the race, my friend Kelley and I discovered the wonders of Facebook Live. We probably annoyed the heck out of my FB friends, but broadcasting live sure helped us stay positive and focused. We turned a race that we hadn’t exactly trained for into 13.1 miles of fun and laughs. We have an upcoming 20 miler jaunt through Atlanta in July so I am sure we will be live broadcasting from that event too. (I know, I know… you are so excited to see it that you can’t stand it!)

Which is why #1 on my Friday Five is quality time with my sole sisters. I love these ladies so so much.

#2- Coming together to show support and awareness for NET Cancer.  What is NET Cancer? “Neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) is the umbrella term for a group of unusual cancers which develop from cells in the diffuse endocrine system. NETs can affect people of any age, and can be slow-growing or very aggressive” according to http://netcancerday.org. The symbol for NET cancer is a zebra, as the tag line for net cancer awareness is “if you don’t suspect it, you can’t detect it”. Many times this type of cancer is overlooked and misdiagnosed because many doctor’s don’t expect to see it.

Our friend Erin’s mom is currently being treated for NET cancer. When we were planning our trip we discussed matching shirts. Erin mentioned that she always wears zebra print for her mom. We all decided to wear zebra print as well to show our support. Luckily my favorite skirt brand, Skirt Sports, has the Safari print so we all purchased a skirt or pants in the pattern. We stood out in the sea of pink in our beautiful skirts/capris so of course we received tons of compliments. So we were able to share the reason behind our cuteness. (If you love them too… check out Skirt Sports and use HSR20 for 20% off!)

#3- Beach workouts. While we in North Myrtle Beach another MRTT Chapter Leader posted that she was attending a free beach workout hosted by a local gym Strong Moms. Most of our group decided to go too! We ended up not only having a great workout but came away with an awesome t-shirt and swag bag. So much fun!!

#4 Squats… I am working on improving my squats this cycle. This morning I did 2 sets of 6 at 125 pounds followed by 2 sets of 4 at 135 pounds. I have improved soooo much on my depth so now I am working on building up my strength in my working sets. I’ve also started videoing my lifts so that I can critique my form and measure my progress. Sharing those have been kind of scary, but also exhilarating. Weird, huh?

#5 New kicks from awesome friends. That moment when you get a text from friends telling you to check on your carport steps. You go out to find a beautifully artistic hand drawn unicorn card and lovely wrapped box. You shake the box and hear the call of your people coming from inside. You open the box. And there… nestled in the tissue paper is the most beautiful pair of size 6.5 Brooks Adrenalines 16 that you have ever seen. They are plaid. They have lobsters, whales, and sailboats on them. I shall call them Claws. And I love them. They feel like all the things right in this world on my tiny little feet. Sigh…..

Aren’t they purty?

Bonus for Friday the 13th… I am lucky girl to be loved by my friends. I used to let my anxiety keep me from forming friendships and taking adventures. I am so beyond thankful that has changed.

I love my unicorns. I love my circle of friends and family.

Have a great weekend! What big plans do you have? I am running the Back the Blue Glow 5K to support our local police department. It should be tons of fun!!

Until next time- happy running,

Heather

Heather’s Helpful Hydration Hacks (Hydr-8 Water Tracking Bottle Giveaway)

Summer time is already here in Georgia!! Higher temperatures plus higher humidity equals a need to stay hydrated. And unfortunately drinking 64 ounces of coffee each day isn’t going to cut it!!

How much water do I need to drink? 

Most experts say that an average person needs to drink at least 64 ounces of water each day. I have been told by my doctor that for an athlete I need to drink at least half of my body weight in water each day.

Geez Heather, that’s A LOT of water!! I know you just said that. That was my reaction too!! But just think.. the more water you drink the more steps you can earn on your activity tracker. (I’ll let you mull that over).

Avoid dehydration 

By the time your body realizes it’s thirsty, you are already dehydrated. Continuing to perform heavy exercise such as running or lifting while you are already dehydrated will decrease your performance capabilities. It will also put you at risk for serious health issues. (This is where I put in the standard disclaimer that I am not a doctor, but I read it on the internet so it must be true).

Does the water have to be plain water? 

Not necessarily. I love the taste of water and typically do not add anything to mine. Since I work for a company that operates and maintains drinking water for my City, I proudly support drinking our delicious water. However I know not everyone enjoys drinking plain water. Here are some ways to liven up your water.

  •  Add cucumbers or fruit to your water. Umm… if you have never tried it, this tastes amazing. So refreshing too!! This is good to fill up a large pitcher with water. Add sliced fruit or sliced cucumber. Go crazy with the fruit. Use various combos: strawberries, raspberries, oranges, limes. After a few hours the water has had a chance to be diffused with the flavor of the fruit or cucumber. Soooooo good!
  • Add lemon or lime juice to your water.
  • Add a little fruit juice or mint leaves to your ice cubes. 
  • Add coffee beans to your water….. oh wait. Sorry. You can do this for a small part of your fluid intake though. #moderation
  • Add an electrolyte mix to your water during runs or other outdoor activities. My favorite is triberry Nuun!! 
  • Add BCAAs to your water, especially during a work out session.
  • If you must use other water flavorings, pay special attention to additives such as sodium, sugar substitutes, etc.


How the heck do I keep track of how much water I drink? I’m a busy person you know. 

There are apps and other tracking tools that help remind you to drink your water. These are very effective for some people.

I am a visual person. I am motivated by things I can see and measure. So 2 years ago I was very excited to discover a product from Hydr-8.com. Michelle had an ingenious idea of making a special bottle with time stamps to track her water intake. I love it!! I did a review on this bottle for my birthday 2 years ago and several of my friends bought themselves one. We all love it!! Don’t you want one too?

Michelle at Hydr-8 was so gracious and has provided a bottle for one lucky winner!! She has also provided my loyal readers with a discount code to order bottles for themselves or for gifts. Use ShortyRuns for 15% off!!!

I have the teal 32 ounce bottle, but I am eyeing the purple travel bottle to purchase. (There is a red bottle too!!! I need it lol)To purchase yours go to www.hydr-8.com and remember to use ShortyRuns for 15% off your purchase. And in the meantime, don’t forget to enter and share the giveaway!!

Until next time- Happy Running,

Heather

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But first, let me take a selfie…

The selfie. The word was first heard on an Australian newscast in 2002 but did not soar in popularity until 2012. Now you can not log into social media without seeing a barrage of selfies. So what IS a selfie?

Merriam-Webster defines a selfie as:

selfie

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noun self·ie ˈsel-fē

Definition of selfie –  an image of oneself taken by oneself using a digital camera especially for posting on social network

There are a lot of varying opinions on selfies. Some view them as narcissistic pleas for attention. Some view as a means of personal expression. For others, like me, selfies are a method to document our progress and to learn to be comfortable with our bodies. Body positivity is a learned trait. Such like hating our bodies is learned, we must also learn to love ourselves. 
I am on a journey in embracing body positivity myself. I am not where I want to be but I am enjoying the process to get there.
So do I take selfies? Yup. You bet I do. One might be thinking… “girl, at 43 years old you have no business flaunting your selfieness like a 20 year old”. Well you may be right, but…
  • There is at least a decade of my life that is non-documented with photographic proof. Over TEN years where I was too uncomfortable with the way I looked to be included in pictures. 
  • When I am asked for “before” pictures from my heaviest weight I have very few to choose from. 
  • I also have very few pictures of myself with my family and my son from when he was little. Let me repeat that…there are almost no pictures of myself with my son as a toddler or most of his childhood.
  • No vacation pictures. 
  • Absolutely nothing in pictures that documents my twenties and most of my thirties .

All because I thought I was too fat and ugly to be in pictures.

How sad is that???? 

I have very recently learned to love who I am and to embrace my body and the way I look. Society tells me that I am smart so I don;t need to be pretty. And although I do not meet the classical definition of beautiful I am finally realizing that I am. I also am blessed and love my life right now. Is it perfect, heck no. Far from it. But gosh, being a beautiful mess is so much a part of who I am. I am on a journey which takes me through hills and valleys. AND I WANT TO CAPTURE IT ALL. 
So I shall selfie the gym pics, the running pics, the pics with my nephew, my friends. I shall selfie it all. 
I want to be able to sit back as a very old woman, look at my FB memories, and giggle with glee. Giggle because I am a woman who LIVED. Lived out loud, lived with messiness, lived with love, lived with enthusiasm, lived with abandon, lived in spite of fear, lived to the best she could. All documented with tons of goofy selfies that hopefully convey this spirit. 
With some pics of other people thrown in there too of course. A true alpha female loves her pack dearly. 
So no matter how you see yourself… take the selfies, take the group pictures, and LIVE.  (Oh and by the way, if you are reading this then you are beautiful. You are worthy. You are enough. So be in the pictures!!)

Do you selfie? Why or why not?

Spartan Fit! and Giveaway

http://www.spartan.com/en/media/spartan-fit/author

If you enjoyed Spartan Up , the lifestyle book from Spartan Race founder Joe De Sena, then you need to check out his newest book: Spartan Fit

What is Spartan Fit? Spartan Fit! is a complete training guide to prepare an individual to compete in a Spartan Sprint or to just get into awesome shape. 
No time to get to the gym? No access to equipment? Then this book will be perfect for you.

Joe De Sena’s New Book

31 Days. Transform your Mind. Transform Your Body. Commit to Grit. No Gym Required.

  • A 31-day workout and diet plan to prepare for the Spartan Sprint — or to just get you in ultimate shape
  • Full-body workouts requiring no gym and no weights
  • How to build fitness levels from one race to the next
  • Inspiring, motivating stories of Spartans

A complete Spartan training guide, Spartan Fit! arms readers with the strength, knowledge, and grit to never question their potential again, both on and off the race course.

If you want to get in better shape and to prepare for your first Spartan Sprint or just want to build your fitness level, then pre-order Spartan Fit! today. I really enjoyed Spartan Up and I can not WAIT to get my hands on this book.

http://www.spartan.com/en/media/spartan-fit/author

So once you are finished with the book you’ll be ready for a Spartan Race! Lucky you… I just happen to have a free race entry to giveaway. Please enter and share with all of your friends!! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway