Six Life Lessons from the Marathon

Hey party people! As you can probably tell with my last few posts, the new year has me feeling reflective. Especially with this bomb cyclone going on, it’s easy enough to stay inside and curl up with a hot cocoa and relax under a warm blanket.  Ahhhhhh that sounds amazing right about now! As I discussed in my last post, my goal this year is to run marathon #11.

When you are setting goals for yourself, it’s important to know why you want to accomplish that goal. So why do I want to run a marathon in 2018 after taking 2017 off from running 26.2 miles? Easy. For me, the marathon is more of a mental challenge than any of the other distances. Yes, I think all the distances present their own challenges, but NOTHING will challenge you like the marathon does.

Here are 6 life lessons that the marathon will teach you.

#1- You have to do things you don’t want to do in order to get what you want.

I think this really holds true with EVERYTHING in life.  Think about it. You think to yourself, “it would be so awesome to vacation in Napa Valley.” So you have this grand vision of yourself drinking amazing wine and eating the most delicious food. Great! That can become a reality. But you have to do the things that aren’t so pleasant in order to make that dream vacation happen such as researching flights, comparing prices, figuring out an itinerary, making dinner reservations, flying, etc. Same holds true with the marathon. You have to wake up super early. You have to run 20 miles on a Saturday. You have to stay in on some Friday nights. But guess what? If you don’t do those things, you’ll never run the marathon. I’ll say it again, you have to do things you don’t want to do in order to get what you want.

#2- You can handle it.

When you run a marathon, you are redefining “hard.” The marathon is the single hardest thing I have done in my life. When you are at mile 20, everything hurts and your brain is telling you to quit. But you don’t.  Because you have worked too hard for this to quit! At this point in the marathon, it really is mind over matter. So if you go through anything hard in your life after running a marathon (e.g. loss of a loved one, divorce, illness) you can remember how you felt at mile 20 and say, “I can handle this.” You just know that on the other side of that pain is something greater.

#3- You need a purpose.

Too many people wake up and live the same way day in and day out. Almost like they are just going through the motions. They stop growing personally and professionally. I am not saying you have to set out to be the next President of the United States. But you need something that gets you out of bed every morning and makes you strive to be your best. It could be anything from being a great parent to teaching. The marathon gives you purpose every day. You know why you are out there running in crappy weather and what you are working toward.

#4- You don’t have to go at it alone.

So many of us feel like the road to success is a lonely one. You automatically assume that no one wants to help you or worse, that everyone is against you. That’s simply not true. You might show up to the start line of a marathon alone, but you are among many that are about to embark on the same journey!  You can just feel the energy in the air! Think about those random spectators at a race. They aren’t out there booing you or telling you to go home. They are cheering you on, and they don’t even know your name!  How amazing is that?! And what about the volunteers? They wake up bright and early to get to the race to support you with whatever you need. Again, they want you to succeed. Life is the same. How many times have you seen a random act of kindness? Or saw your team at work supporting someone going through a hard time? Always remember that you have the love and support of many.

#5- You need to keep moving forward.

A marathon is run in many steps, not one giant leap. It takes time, patience, and consistency to get to where you want to go. Even if it’s one tiny step forward, that’s progress. Same is true in life. You aren’t going to be Picasso after your very first painting. I love the quote, “The expert in anything was once a beginner.” You have to keep moving forward and keep doing the work. Your time will come.

#6- You need to be consistent.

When I first started running, do you know how many times I tried to run around the block and didn’t make it? It was a lot. Ask my neighbors 😛 But I kept at it almost every day.  It wasn’t like I tried it once and was like, “Oh well didn’t make it! Guess I’m not a runner!” I was consistent. I am a believer that every failure is one step closer to a success. You just get back up and try again. Think about when babies are trying to learn how to walk.  How many times do they fall down? A ton! But does a baby ever say, “Well I just fell, guess I’ll never be able to walk!” This is a trick question. Babies don’t talk 😉 But NO!  They just get back up and try again until they get it. As the quote goes, “it’s impossible until it is done.”

So tell me, what lessons has the marathon taught you?

Goals for 2018

Hey gang!  Instead of a What I’m Feelin’ Friday post, I wanted to talk about my goals for 2018. How about what I’m feelin’ today is kicking butt and taking names in 2018? 😛

So here are my goals for 2018…

Goal #1: Get my personal training certification

If you follow me on Instagram, you saw my post about getting my personal training certification this year through National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM). Why am I doing this? To keep elevating my level of expertise in health and fitness to better serve my coaching clients. I actually debated getting this certification back in 2008 and leaving my full-time job to be a trainer. Do I regret not doing it then? No. Because I am doing it now and that’s all that matters.

Goal #2: Keep growing my business

In 2018, I really want to ramp up the growth and look at multiple ways to bring in income. And just keep working on my ultimate goal. It’s just like running. You eventually run a marathon by taking hundreds of thousands of steps forward. You don’t run a marathon in a single leap. It’s easy to get discouraged when it feels like your taking a long time to get there. But you just keep moving forward and eventually you’ll get there.

Goal #3: Read 10 books

Join the Reading Challenge!

I have been participating in the Good Reads Reading Challenge since 2012. It’s a fun way to stay motivated and look back on what you have read, what were your favorite books, and think about the lessons you have learned from those books. I crushed last years challenge by reading 17 books when I set out to read 7. To help me read more, I’m debating on getting a subscription to Audible. I tried the free trial years ago and really enjoyed it. But remember I am a podcast junkie and that’s all I listen to on my commute. So it’s like, do I spend the $15/month when I listen to free content already? Am I just being cheap? LOL

Goal #4: Learn more about branding and marketing

This one will also help with goal #2. Ever since I have been watching Shark Tank, I have always been fascinated with branding and marketing. I feel like marketing can be the secret sauce to a simple business idea. How about this, I download some branding and marketing books on Audible. That will also help me accomplish goal #3! Hahahaha!

Goal #5: Run a marathon

So this isn’t a new goal, but last year I did not run a marathon. I was feeling a bit burnt out and wanted to shift my focus to other things in life.  Truth be told, I was afraid I wouldn’t miss it. The long training runs every Saturday, the pain you felt during the race, etc. But I definitely do miss it!  Nothing compares to the marathon. I am going to enter the lottery on January 15th for the New York City Marathon but if I don’t get into that race, I will run the Philadelphia marathon. Woohoo!!

That’s all for now!  So tell me, what are your goals for 2018?

2017: A Year in Review

Happy New Year!  Hope everyone had a great first day of 2018. I started out my day with a very cold run on a trail around a lake and came home to a yummy breakfast of eggs, sausage, and toast courtesy of my boyfriend. Then we just spent the day lounging around.  It was perfection!

Before I talk about my 2018 goals, I want to do a year in review for 2017. Last year I blogged about my 2017 goals.  Did I accomplish them all? Mostly.  And I am okay with that!

Goal #1 of 2017: Break 1 hour and 9 minutes at the Parkway Classic Ten Miler

Accomplished?: No. I ran a 1 hour and 14 minutes but I am still so proud of my time!  I did the best I could and had a great day during the race and after. After the race my boyfriend and I headed to Hank’s Oyster Bar for their yummy fried fish sandwich, then headed to Bluprint Chocolatiers for some of the yummiest chocolate EVER, and went to Port City Brewing to continue the celebration!  You can read more about my race day recap here.


Goal #2 of 2017: Continue to grow the blog

Accomplished?: Yes!

Here is a snapshot of users that visited the blog in the past year. Each dot on the chart represents the month.  The big spike was due to my announcement of my clothing line. I know there is a ton of room to keep growing, and that’s what I intend on doing in 2018.


Goal #3 of 2017: Take a cooking class

Accomplished?: Womp Womp lol. No. We didn’t even get near a cooking school!  No sweat though.  Just adding it to the bucket list for 2018!


Goal #4 of 2017: Read at least 7 books.

Accomplished?: Heck to the yeah!!! I read 17 books in 2017. I am seeing a theme here 😉 My four most favorite were:

  1. “The Magnolia Story” by Chip and Joanna Gaines- This book is funny and inspiring. Chip and Joanna do not sugar coat their humble beginnings, which is refreshing in an Instagram world where we only see someone’s highlight reel.
  2. “The Kind Worth Killing” by Peter Swanson- Umm talk about a murder mystery with some serious twists and turns!  I could NOT put this one down!  I was left wondering the following day what was going to happen in the next chapter.
  3. “The Girl Who Wrote in Silk” by Kelli Estes- This is a great tale of two stories from two different women who are standing up to do what they think is right. This story is so vividly told and I loved imagining each scene. I can still remember them as if I saw them happening in real life.
  4. “The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls- This non-fiction story about a girl living in poverty with parents that do not conform to society’s norms will send you on a roller coaster ride of emotions. It’s heartwarming and heart-wrenching, but it’ll make you think twice about how you feel about homelessness and raising children. Definitely my favorite book of 2017.

Goal #5 of 2017: Take a fashion illustration class

Accomplished?: Yes! Doesn’t mean I was any good haha! I took the fashion illustration class online through Brit & Co. I really love their online platform and have taken several of their classes. Here is what I came up with….

Hmm okay so the hair can use a little work 😛 But not a bad first attempt! Have I made a second attempt? No. Will I? Meh the jury is still out. I liked it, didn’t love it. But I still think about other outfits/scenes I’d like to draw.  We will see what 2018 brings!

All in all another successful year. Looking forward to an even more successful 2018!

So tell me, how was your 2017? Any big accomplishments? Any bucket list items scratched off?

Goals for 2017

Hi guys!  Hope everyone had a wonderful New Year!  I like to spend New Years Eve partying it up….in sweatpants, drinking champagne, stuffing myself silly with pasta, and in bed by 9 pm. #winning

But once January 2nd rolls around, I get antsy. What do I want to accomplish this year? Did I accomplish what I wanted to last year?!  I NEED ANSWERS PEOPLE! 😉

So today I sat down to come up with a fun yet challenging goal list for 2017.

#1- Break 1 hour and 9 minutes at the Parkway Classic Ten Miler.

I ran this race in 2010 and scored a personal record (PR) in a huge way. I ran ten miles in 1:09:48, averaging 6:59 min/mile pace. For the ten mile distance, the fastest I have ever run was 1:13:00. How the crap did I run three minutes faster?! I want to get back to that. I know I can! I’ll definitely be posting my training over the next few months.

#2- Continue to grow the blog.

For yeearrrsss I really wanted to start a blog. I wanted to share my passion for running with the world! So I am glad that in 2016 I finally committed to starting a blog.  But in 2017, I would really like to ramp it up with fun challenges and content. Even learn some cool blogging tools! Yes, I am an old millennial LOL

#3- Take a cooking class.

My boyfriend and I really enjoy cooking. I enjoy the eating part just as much if not more 😉 We wanted to go in 2016, but time slipped away so this year I am committing to taking a class. There are two cooking schools here in Baltimore, Schola and Baltimore Chef Shop. Heard good things about both, so really it’ll just come down to our schedule and the cuisine being cooked.

#4- Read at least 7 books.

Every year I participate in the Good Reads Reading Challenge. Last year I read 6 books. I know what you’re thinking….slow down scholar! Well I am going to knock your socks off when I read SEVEN whole books! For my first book of 2017, I have chosen to read The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl by Timothy Egan. Yeah, how about that for some light reading? LOL!

#5- Take a fashion illustration class.

You guys…..I have no creative outlets.  There I said it.  God help me when my children come to me asking for help with their diorama. I lack serious artistic abilities.  I am pretty sure I got straight C’s in Art all throughout school. Well now is the time to redeem myself! I seriously LOVE fashion and Project Runway. Fashion illustration is definitely something I am drawn too (no pun intended).  I’ll be sure to post my artwork to the blog.  My only request is that you laugh to yourself 🙂

Well that’s it folks!  What are your goals for 2017? Please share in the comments section.