San Dieguito Half Marathon Recap

“Getting what you want is not near as important as giving what you have” – Tom Krause


I arrived at San Dieguito Park around 6:40 on Sunday morning. I  lucked out and was able to park in the lot close to the start line.


It was cool and cloudy- perfect running weather. I picked up my bib, used the portapotties (no line!) and then started the 10 minute walk to the start line.


After catching up with a friend from college (he is crazy fast) I took my place at the start and was ready to go. It started to sprinkle and I crossed my fingers that we would not end up in the midst of a downpour.

The national anthem was sung and then the gun went off. Time to do work.

The first mile or so was a slight downhill. It’s easy to go out fast so I tried to find that comfortable yet slightly hard pace that I thought I might be able to hang on to.

Mile 1: 7:25

Ok, probably too fast. My original goal for this race was to run a 7:30-7:35 average. I knew it was hilly but had forgotten how hard this course actually is. I was quickly reminded as we started the first big climb at mile 1.5. We went from 14 feet to 300 feet in elevation. At that point I figured if I could stay in the high 7’s I would be lucky!

Mile 2: 7:37

Mile 3: 8:00

After mile 3 the course started to roll. I started to feel warm and knew I could run sub 8’s, even in the hills. I would have to run my uphills smart and take advantage of the downhill. I was determined not to let my pace increase to 8’s unless it was during a climb.

Mile 4: 7:18

Mile 5: 7:40

Mile 6: 7:47

Mile 7:  7:51

Once we hit mile 7 I knew we had some flat and that the turn around was approaching. I knew I could make up time on the flat

Mile 8: 7:21

Mile 9: 7:28 (at this mile a young volunteer yelled out you’re in the top 25 of all females. I figured she had to be nuts!)

At mile 10 we hit another solid climb and then had a sweet decline before heading up once again at mile 12-13. Yeesh!

Mile 10:  7:59

Mile 11: 7:15

Mile 12: 7:28

Mile 13: 7:45 (the last climb just felt cruel)

When we made the right turn to head toward the finish I could hear the announcer and kicked it into gear. I knew I was going to be able to break 1:40. I GAVE IT MY ALL…

Last .10 6:45 pace

Finish 1:39:46, 7:36 avg.

143/1094 (small race)

24th Female

3rd in AG Awards! (Technically 4th in my AG but the 2nd female was in my AG so she received a top 3 finisher award)

I crossed that finish line and teared up a little. My purple tank was drenched in sweat. The bible verses on my hands were smeared. My legs were quivering. I freaking did it. 2 weeks post marathon I pulled a PR out of my hiney. With each uphill that felt so ridiculously hard I reminded myself that I was lucky to be able to do it.

Take that hills.


As I gained my composure I quickly looked for my family. I couldn’t wait to see them light up. My inlaws have never seen me race and my husband never misses one. He loves celebrating PRs with me!

After a few minutes of not being able to find anyone I pulled out my phone to call. It was then that I saw the text that my MIL was not having a good morning and they stayed home. I said a little prayer for her and texted back letting them know I did it. I broke 1:40 on a tough course and just like Mimi I refused to give up. We had a little celebration when I got home 🙂


I am so proud of myself. I feel like I am finally coming into my own as a runner. I have found what works for me and I have stopped being afraid to just go for it. Man it is so awesome! Not every race will be a PR, but one thing that is certain I will give it my all each time. Heart and soul my friends. All heart and lots of soul.

My friend PrettyFittie had a big fat PR on Sunday too. So glad I got to see her do it! Congrats Ash!


Winner of the StrideBox giveaway will be anounced tomorrow! GOOOOOOD LUCK!

Family Time, The C Word and Running RSF

On Wednesday my MIL and FIL made the trip from Texas to CA to stay with us for a week.

Dinner At The Beach

Poor LD got cut out. He said it’s because the server couldn’t get over his stunning good looks. You think I’m kidding?

I can’t tell you how awesome it is to have them here. Getting to spend time with family is priceless.

Girl Time
Busy In The Kitchen

As most of you know my MIL is currently battling pancreatic cancer. Her faith (and ours) is unwavering but that doesn’t mean that we just ignore what is very very real. We had a very tough talk on Wednesday night. A talk that we have not wanted to had. I HATE the “C” word. We laughed and cried…a lot. That talk brought us all a lot closer together. We were reminded that the next minute, hour, day, week is not guaranteed. We have to live in the moment and enjoy it. If we don’t we are missing out on life. I don’t know about you but I don’t want to miss a single moment.

My Loves


Today is packet pick up for the half marathon that I am running tomorrow in RSF. I decided to wait until morning to get my bib so that means I will be heading to the start at the BCOD. Nothing new huh?

I will be wearing purple to support my MIL. This will be the first time that she (and my FIL) get to see me run. This course is hilly and will probably feel tough coming off of a marathon 2 weeks ago. Regardless of how hard it feels it pales in comparison to what a cancer patient goes through each day. If I have to crawl to that finish line by all means I will do it. Take that “C” word.


Don’t forget to enter my giveaway for a StrideBox. I don’t do giveaways often so get on it 🙂 I mean that in the nicest way possible of course…

A Giveaway That Is All Kinds Of Awesome

When my mailman delivered this little box of magic to my doorstep today I felt like a kid on Christmas morning.


A StrideBox.




For those of you not in the know, StrideBox is a monthly subscription service that delivers a package filled with stuff that us runners love. Their motto “Just Keep Running” is a mantra for  recreational runners and professional athletes alike. I love that. From nutrition products to cool new gear you never know what you’re going to get. One thing is for certain it will motivate you to “Just Keep Running.”


I received February’s box. It was filled with products from Hammer, Skratch, Honey Stinger, OnTheGo, Gu, Lock Laces, Mazamabar and Dr. Hoy’s. I am stoked that I get to try out products that I know and love as well as those that I am not familiar with. Guess who will be using Skratch at a race this weekend? THIS GIRL!

I love that my StrideBox was filled with a good variety of products that actually appeal to me. It’s like a race expo goodie bag on steroids.  Can’t wait to see what March has to offer!


Want to get a StrideBox delivered to you?

Join StrideBox by clicking here. For $15 a month they will fill a box with gear/nutrition for training and recovery and deliver it to your door. Boom it’s that simple.

Want to know what’s even cooler? StrideBox has agreed to GIVEAWAY a March box to one of you lucky peeps! Awwwwwwww yeah!

To Enter:

1. Like StrideBox on Twitter

2. Give StrideBox Facebook Love

3. Tell me what motivates you to “Just Keep Running” and let me know what YOU would like to see in a StrideBox each month!

Comment that you did the above and you will get an entry for each one. That’s 3 chances instead of 1. So rad.

Giveaway is open to US residents 18 and older. All entry’s must be received by Monday February 11th at 10 pm PST (time stamp on comment). Winner will be chosen at random by and will be announced on Tuesday February 12th. Goooooooood luck!

Nowhere to go but up…and then down…and then back up again

When we moved to our current neighborhood I was so excited to run in a new place. It is beautiful, close to the ocean, has a lot of trails and is amazingly quiet. The only thing I didn’t notice is that the place has a LOT of hills. Big ones. Yes, I drove up and down them to get to our house. I guess I never put it together that it meant I would have to run them. Denial maybe?

A few days after our move I went on my first run. And it was hard. And I felt…defeated.

I had to stop more than once. I was pounding water. I was sucking wind. Even felt a little pukey. Ok, a lot. It was if I had never run a mile in my entire life.

I went from runs that looked like this:


To runs that looked like this:


It felt like I was starting all over again. I guess in a way I was. I had to learn to run in a whole new way. I had to do work.

I read articles about shortening my stride, slowing my pace, easing into the hill and then owning it. Most days it felt really sucky. Some days I talked myself out of it all together and headed to flat land. Then there were days that I wo-maned up and felt like a champ. I am pretty sure I looked like I was dying  most of the time but I kept at it.

Weeks went by and those hills that used to own me slowly became my friends. While the runs didn’t get easier,  I no longer had to take midhill breaks (VICTORY!). I could feel myself getting stronger. My pace slowly started to get better and instead of dreading my long runs I embraced the beauty surrounding me.  The sun coming up in the morning is breathtaking when I am able open my eyes and look at it 🙂


Months went by and I saw my race times improve. I had a short distance race on a flat course and felt like I was soaring. It was the hills. They made me a faster, stronger runner.

Love them or hate them they are good for us. Unless you have an injury where in hill training is a “no no” get out there and take on your nemesis. And at that moment when you crest your first mountain put both hands in the air, sing “We are the champions” and feel your strong. You can thank me (or punch me in the face) later.


I have a SUPER SWEET giveaway coming tomorrow. Wheeee! I’m so excited I can barely stand it.

Carlsbad Marathon Recap

Going into a marathon I never know what I am going to get. This time around was no different. I was nervous. Chacha and I had only had time to squeeze in 2 long runs ( an 18 miler and a 20 miler) and going into it we agreed to try to run together. I was pretty worried that my last-minute-squeeze-in-a-few-long-runs would not bode well.

As runners (and friends) we knew that if one of us needed to pull away it was a-ok. It’s kind of an unspoken deal right? Not everyone has the same race and neither of us wanted to screw the other one up.

I woke up at the BCOD on Sunday morning to light rain. I gathered my stuff and headed down to the start. I immediately found Pam and her amazing hubby who had an umbrella ready. They drove down for moral support and I can’t tell you how much that meant to me. It’s few and far between that you meet friends like them! After a few minutes of chatting Chacha arrived and we took a quick “we’re ready” pic.


As we walked down to the start line we discussed pacing. We decided a good start pace would be around 8:45 as the first 9 miles are the toughest.

The gun went off right at 6:15 and we were on our way. The first few miles went by really fast. That’s what happens when you have someone to chat with!

We were doing a really good job of keeping the pace between 8:40-8:50. The plan was to keep the pace right there until the first turn around after mile 9. After mile 9 we knew that the hills were rolling yet manageable. No more monster climbs!

Not sure when we hit the half mark as there are no clocks on the course and the mats were in weird spots. Per our official splits we hit mile 13.8 in 1:59 with an average pace of 8:41.

When we finally made it out to the beach around mile 15 we hit a pretty good head wind. It wasn’t terribly strong but enough to knock a little bit out of us. Even with a pretty decent climb in that mix we made it to the 18 mile turn around in 2:36. We were still maintaining that 8:41-8:42 average.

We merged back with the half marathoners around mile 21 I believe. I was really impressed at the organization as it was yellow taped off to keep the two distances separated. In years past I know there was a complaint so it seems like they did a great job of resolving the issue.

It was at mile 21 that we started to pick up the pace.

Mile 21: 8:26

Mile 22: 8:18

Mile 23: 8:15

We started to talk less and focus on finishing. At each mile I was calling out our Garmin time to try to mentally hang on. Chacha looked so strong and I just kept thinking to myself do not let your legs stop. Keep going. I remember asking her if she ever hear the song “Gangham Style” and we both started singing it. “Heeeeeey sexy lady…” LOL!

Mile 24:  8:21

We then hit a complete merge with the half marathon and that was tricky. There was a hairpin turn that was somewhat chaotic and it slowed us a bit.

Mile 25: 8:30

Chacha told me at that point if I wanted to take off I could. I replied ” I am barely hanging on!”  She said “Me too!” I guess we both must have thought the other was feeling a lot better than we were. The power of having a running buddy is amazing! We put our heads down and just ran.

Mile 26: 8:06 (that there is how you crush the final mile of a marathon)

As we turned and saw the finish line I could see the clock. 3:45. I knew it was a PR for both of us!


We crossed with an official time of 3:45:25. Average pace 8:36.

We smiled, did the sweaty side hug and took a picture. We couldn’t believe that we made it all 26.2 side by side. And we both PR’d. And we ran a negative split. What are the odds?! She helped me so much during those last tough miles. Having a friend to sing with and talk to for 3:45  is priceless. Thank you my friend, you are amazing.


I absolutely loved this race (even when it hurt like a mofo) and highly recommend that you all run it at some point. There is a half and a full, the course support rocks and overall it is a very well organized event. Plus who wouldn’t want to spend a morning staring at the ocean?

Next race is on 02/10. Half Marathon in beautiful Rancho Santa Fe. It is hilly but so peaceful and pretty. My MIL will be here visiting so that race will be for her. No matter how hard it feels nothing compares to what she is going through. Time to show PANCREATIC CANCER who is BOSS.

Rainy Day Expo and Race Ready

Yesterday the munchkins and I headed over to packet pickup at the CBad mall


It’s been raining for 3 days now but yesterday we got the brunt of it. The expo was tented off but the floors were super soggy and there was literally a river running through the Rock N Roll SD Booth. Of course my boy couldn’t resist puddle jumping. I’m sure we ticked off a handful of peeps. 



It literally took me 2 seconds to get my bib and swag since the marathon only had 2 check in tables (capped at 2000 runners). I believe the half marathon had at least 10 check in tables but it’s a much larger field (I think it has approximately 8000 runners). 

This year marathoners got a long sleeve tech shirt AND a jacket. CHA-CHING!


So there ya have it. We were in and out. Nothing too exciting. I was bummed that Rise Bar did not participate this year. They are local and have these awesome coconut blueberry bars that I was hoping to go home with. Eh, maybe next time.


I’ve got an early call so I’m off to eat dinner and hit the sack. It’s go time.

See you all bright and early for the race. Let’s hope the rain subsides.


#BCOD Workouts: Why and How

I never planned on being a BCOD runner (or a runner at all for that matter). The whole workout before the sun rises started when I was pregnant with my oldest.

Picture 23


For whatever reason I couldn’t sleep past 4:30 a.m. Not kidding. I would wake up and just lay there staring at the ceiling wishing I could fall back asleep. Eventually I’d flick on the tube to numb my mind until it was time to go to work. One day I got a wild hair up my butt and decided to go to the gym since I was awake anyway.

My first time at the gym at opening was weird. I was the sole preggo in a group of mostly men over the age of 60. Lucky them. I walked the treadmill, lifted light weights and made friends. I was eventually accepted into the geriatric club (literally) and bets were placed on when my little dude would arrive. It was nice to be held accountable by my new group of friends.  If I missed a day they were sure I went into labor. I had to give my peeps a head up if I wasn’t going to be there and they did the same.

Eventually my boy arrived and kept me up all night like most babes do. Since I was up I would get him back to sleep and head to the gym at 5 am. I was up and if I didn’t go then lord knows I would not have gone. Working out at the BCOD was becoming normal for me. My friends helped get me back into shape (old people are awesome) and eventually worked out with me through baby #2. 

When my Dad talked me into the running thing at the end of 2009 my first 2 mile run was at the gym. I thought I was going to DIE right there on the treadmill. It was so hard. There was an 80-something year old named Chuck who walked on the treddy every day for an hour and would then crush the elliptical. The dude was amazing.  Each day he would chat with me about running and would encourage me to keep going. I came to realize that if this old cat could stay on the hamster wheel for an hour I could eventually do it to. And I did. At 5 am. My old friends saw me train and finish my first marathon all at the BCOD.

The rest is history. This fall I will celebrate 7 years of BCOD workouts. It’s not easy to wake up at 4-something in the morning. There are times when the alarm goes off and I turn it off and go back to sleep. There are many mornings when I have to literally talk myself into getting up. There are also days when I talk myself out of it!




I guess my best advice to those trying to do this BCOD thing is don’t do it alone. Find someone to hold you accountable. Lay out your clothes each night, fill up your water bottle, set more than one alarm and commit to it. It’s not for everyone but you will not know if it works for you until you try it. If you miss a day so what. It just means your body needed rest! At least that’s what I tell myself 🙂

Some of my best runs have been along the beach watching the sunrise. It’s so quiet that it almost seems like all in the world is perfect. I’m pretty lucky to live and workout in such a beautiful place. That in itself is motivation.


Are you a morning person? Lunch runner? Night owl?

~ When I miss morning workouts I often go at lunch. I’m sure my office loooooooves that.

Off to the Carlsbad Expo!! Wheeeeeeee! Excited for packet pickup!




This time last year I was tapering. And here I am doing it again. With only 1 1/2 weeks to go until Carlsbad it’s time to reflect back on twenty-12 and figure out just what the heck I am going to do with myself in twenty-13 (besides the obvious like fill up my DVR with guilty pleasures).


Twenty Twelve:


Ran: 1,618 miles. Short of the goal I had set, but still an awesome accomplishment. Not sure when I found time (mostly before sunrise) but it happened.


* Had my first DNF. Learned a lot from this race.

*PR’d in the 5 mile15k, Half and Marathon Distance! Cheeeeseee! Cheeeeseee

* Ran an Ultra Relay with girls who are now my best friends 🙂


* Finally found shoes that work for me and have been injury free ever since! Dear Brooks, I heart you and your Pure line.


* We moved to a new city and rented out our little place. (Don’t you love how I make it sound like we ventured far away?)


* Had a successful business year (although at times I felt royally defeated)

* My oldest started Kinder, finished his first season of pony league baseball and reminded me daily that he rules the world


* My littlest continued her efforts to become a real life “mermaid” or “princess.” She started pre-k, and attempted to get me to sign her up for dance, gymnastics, soccer and softball. Ha! I love that she wants to do everything. She does not love that I make her choose one activity at a time.


* We learned that my MIL was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. This was the hardest part of 2012. She is an inspiration and a warrior. I look up to her more than she probably knows. She is still fighting this awful disease and we will not stop praying that she will be healed.

Mama Kay and her little Bear
Mama Kay and her little Bear

* Spent more time with family and friends. That was the best part of this year. Making time to see each other is HUGE!


So what’s the haps for 2013? Set a goal to run a zillion miles? PR in life? I’ve decided upon no mileage/workout resolutions this year. I bust my hiney every dang day. Period.  Hard work + dedication = life change that I committed to 3 years ago.


(#BCOD = Buttcrack of dawn. You all know that’s when I do the most work.)

Plans for Twenty-13:


* Stay injury free, explore new places and have fun. No pressure, just good times 🙂 Motivate people to move their feet!

* Races- my schedule is pending. Nothing like waiting til the last minute to register!


* Continue to pray for MIL and be an advocate for her. Cancer sucks.

* Do work. On the job and in life. I want to be present for everyone I come in contact with. That means for you to. Yes you reading this 🙂

* Read the bible from cover to cover and do my best to be a good and faithful servant.

* Work hard/Play hard. Bring on vacation! Life is short so we are going to do some exploring 🙂 WOOOHOOOO!!

Pretty simple eh? I like things that way. Overprogramming is not my gig.


OK, I’m off to go over my training plan for the next couple weeks!


Did you make any resolutions for 2013?