Saturday, November 10, 2012


Time... a measurable concept in our live. 
How do we use our time?  How valuable it out time?  What do we do with the time we are given?
Time flies...
All in due time...
He doesn't know what time is...
Just a minute...
Just a second...
Marking time...
Stitch in time...
Time is running out...
Time is on your hands...

I never feel as if I have time on my hands.  I always seem to find something to do with my time.  Yesterday I actually found time on my day off to sit in the coffee shop and read a novel.  One that I have had on a waiting list for some time.  It has been really really popular and I only have 14 days to finish it. So I am under pressure to get it done. So I have to find the time!

I work as a librarian so I get to see a lot of books.  Working at the library for me is like a kid in the candy shop.  So many books, so little time.

I picked up the book "The First 20 Minutes: Surprising science reveals how we can exercise better, train smarter, live longer" by Gretchen Reynolds. I saw it on display at the library and thought it would give me some great insight into my running.  Great theory.  But it was way to detailed and way to wordy for me to spend the time to read.  When it comes to exercise books/life books/time management.  I want easy to read and concise.  Just the facts.  It took me more than 20 minutes to figure out what the authors main point was.  Don't waste my time. Time to move on.

So another blogger threw this concept out last week...Do you know what you do with your time?
Are you happy with the way you use your time?  Do you sacrifice time away from family and friends to get ahead at work?  Are you happy?
So I started to read the book " 168 Hours: you have more time than you think" by Laura Vanderkam
Now why would I be interested in this book?  I don't know.  I have a great 9-5 job that requires very little of me after hours.  I balance my job and work rather well.  I live 5 minutes from work and 5 minutes from my daughters school.  I exercise 4 days a week.  Keep the house relatively clean ( I like clean but I am not a clean freak) Have a great husband and daughter who help out around the house ( we believe in team work and the concept works for us) Son is off at college so the house and laundry have been a lot less!
I just thought it would be interesting to chart how I spent my day.  So I kept track of what I did each day in 1/2 hour increments.
Well I learned that I sleep about as many hours as I work.
I only spend 5-6 hours a week exercising.  I am not one to watch alot of television but I logged in 11 hours of T.V. time (ouch)
Lacking in my life: social time with friends. (ouch again) Except I do interact with people all through the week so maybe that one was just had to put into a time frame.  I talk to people about books and computers at work, I talk with people at church and bible study, I talk to the husband and daughter.
I haven't finished the book yet but I hope to gain more insight to share.
So have you ever tracked your time and how you use it?
Link to time tracker.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Season of Storms

It has been a busy week and I meant to blog on Tuesday but time got away from me.
This certainly has been a season of storms not only with the weather but with life in generally.

Three of my friends have sent cries out for prayer this week, for challenges and rocky times in their lives.  Sometimes we have challenges from our own decisions and mistakes that cause storms in our lives.  But the real emotional storms come when we have no idea why this should be happening (ie the illness or death of a child) We all soon or a later encounter storms in our life.  I just don't think we can go through life with out a few storms.

Storms challenge our faith. Storms cause us to look up to God for strength. Storms cause us to change and grow.  Storm stretch us outside our comfort zone.

Storms for the soul are like my doing a marathon. The marathon training caused my muscles and heart to be stretched and change and grow. Then I had to properly nourish my muscles with good food to continue to stay strong and perform a marathon.

After the marathon I knew that I wasn't the same person I was before.  I had reached and completed a challenging goal.  I was strengthened physically, spiritually, and mentally. I was a stronger more confident person. Would I have reached this place in my life had I not been challenged by the marathon?  Was it easy training or recovering?  But it was all worth it in the end.  When you can look back on it all and see the whole picture.

I pray for all of those out there who need prayer and have a storm in their life.  But I know that no one get out of this world unscathed. And I know, that God's not mad at you. But He can't leave us where we are at, we have to change and grow and be challenged outside of our comfort zone.  Then we have to dig into the Word of God to nourish our spiritual muscles and soul to continue on with strength.

There were a few time during the Marathon I thought, why should I go on?  I could just quit right here? Just give up? But I prayed for strength to go on. I knew there were others out there praying for me.  I got to a point in the marathon where I had to give it up and give it to God.  He pulled me through to the end.  I have a Savior who has suffered with us and for us.  He carried me through.  He will carry me through the storms of this life.

God said, "My power is made perfect in weakness" 2 Corinthians 12:19

I pray for all those suffering after the Hurricane Sandy.  I pray for all those who's heart are hurting.  I pray for all of you.

God bless.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Another Tuesday

Tuesday thoughts....
  • I was in the Kohls this morning picking up a shirt tie for son (aka College Boy). I could not believe that they had a red Christmas tree on display by the front doors.  Really, come on folks it is not even Halloween yet!  This week Target has been airing Christmas commercials.  So too early for Christmas promotion. 
  • It has been three weeks since Chicago Marathon and I am getting through the post marathon blues. But I have been struggling with muscle spasm and cramping in my left leg.  The weird thing is is that it occurs through out the entire leg and not one general location.  So after some internet searching I have been icing my foot in hopes that it is not platar facitiis (which I have had before and is not picnic), eating more bananas, drinking more water, and eating Tums for the calcium.  So I will let you know if it gets better. Has anyone else had this problem?
  • I have gotten in a few easy runs last week and one fun virtual 5k with Virtual runs can fun.  It was all about cupcakes.  Check it out. I had to do my run on the treadmill because we had several day of rain here.  Been a long time since I was on the treadmill.  Will have to get use to it again as the weather get colder.  Now, I don't mind the cold-it's the ice and snow that I don't get along too well with.
  • This years running goals are to work on speed and pace.  Neither of which I am any good at and it effects my 1/2 marathon time.  I really want to see a 2 hour time. So I got to thinking about a garmin watch cause for several years I have run with the Nike + on my phone cause I was only really concerned about logging miles or running for a set amount of time. But Nike + does not give me accurate mile splits.  It give an average which is not helping me work on pace.  So I have been investigating Garmin watches.  I don't want a really expensive one but I do want one that is user friendly and will give me splits.  Anyone have a garmin watch that they like?  Christmas is fast approaching and I have to put a watch on my Santa list (LOL)

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


Gratitude does the body good!
Give things, and you may get something back: better health. University of California researcher Dr. Robert Emmons found that grateful people report a host of benefits, such as stronger immune systems, better sleep, and more joy and optimism.  To foster gratitude write down what you are thankful for. 
(FamilyFun Magazine Nov 2012)

Saturday, October 13, 2012

What moves you....

The Invitation  

Oriah Mountain Dreamer
Canadian Teacher and Author

It doesn't interest me what you do for a living
I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.

It doesn't interest me how old you are
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dreams
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon...
I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life's betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your
fingers and toes
without cautioning us to
be careful
be realistic
to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.

If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand on the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn't interest me
to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after a night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn't interest me who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the center of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments.
© 1995 by Oriah House, From "Dreams Of Desire"
Published by Mountain Dreaming, 300 Coxwell Avenue, Box 22546, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4L 2A0

Got this from a friend and thought it would be great to share. Sums up why I run and how it has caused me to grow and mature into a better person. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

I ran a good run!

Start Line
Ten Things I Liked About Marathon Weekend
1.  Time on the train reading.
2.  Time spent quietly with my own thoughts.
3.  Time enjoying the city of Chicago.
4.  Cruising through the Chicago Marathon Expo and eating all the goodies that they give away at the expo!
5.  Perfect weather for running.
6.  Staying in the Family Hostel and meeting other runners.
7.  Eating dinner with World Vision runners and getting to hear their stories.
8.  Meeting with World Vision runners the morning of the race and praying together.
9.  No mishaps: dressed right, ate right, got to start on time!
10. Enjoying the run and finishing (on my feet running)

Five Things I Wished I Could Have Changed (Because I don't have 10! Positives outweight the negatives)
1.  Less nervous.
2.  Ability to adjust pace accordingly.  I always have a tendency to go out to fast.
3.  Nike + app on phone would work correctly.  It had me finishing the run 1.5 miles before I actually got to finish.
4.  That I had a better finish time.
5.  That I would think less about the time it took to finish and more about what an awesome experience running a marathon can be.

So, I really did have a great experience running the Chicago Marathon.  The weather was chilly starting out but it was a gorgeous sunny 50 degree day by the end.  I finished 5 minutes faster than last year.

The last 3 miles were my toughest but that is where you really have to dig deep down inside to talk yourself in to getting to the finish line.  When you see the last turn into the home stretch you know that it will soon be over!

I can't imagine running a marathon any where else but Chicago. So this makes my second Marathon, both run in Chicago.  I think that I might take some time off from the marathon scene and stick to the half marathon.  I am comfortable with the 1/2 and can spend less time on long runs.  I think I have the marathon bug all out of my system for now.

This is my last race for the season so now I have to switch modes from training to running for fitness.  I always feel a little out of sorts when I don't have a race goal to focus on.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Racing Season

This is the season that we have all been training for....fall racing season.  By profession I am a librarian and love to read when I can find the time.  I am enamored with my Kindle Fire which I often read while I eat lunch or hang out in the coffee shop.  The latest book I am reading is "Accidental Athlete: A Funny Thing Happened..." by John "Penguin" Bingham.  Some times I can really relate to what he is saying.

But let's back up. Speed has just never been my thing.  I was a swimmer in High school and love the long distance events.   I took up running in college because I was giving lessons to a lady who was a runner and wanted to be a triathlete and in exchanged she gave me running advice and got me started. Did a few community 5k's and 10k's for fun and a challenge but was never the fastest runner.  But I enjoyed the challenge.
Got married, had kids, and let life get in the way so I just never ran again. But when my kids got older and my weight pushed higher, I began to slowly take up running again.  Over the course of 6 years I have worked my way up to the Marathon. Why do I feel compelled to join races? GOALS: I am a goal setter and if I set the goal I will achieve it.

This weekend I participated in my favorite 1/2 marathon, Fort 4 Fitness.  This was 1/2 marathon #5 for me and I was really hoping to improve my time. I have been getting all my runs in and have been improving my cardio/hills/speed.  I started the race out with a friend so that I wouldn't go out too fast (cause I have a tendency to do that and then pay for it in the end).  We were running great, feeling great, and keeping our projected pace.  As my friend began to slow at around mile 8 we made the decision to split up. She had had a more difficult training season .
I really though this was going to be the race where I would PR.  Everything felt so good.  My final time: 2:11
So close to the same time as all the other races (except my first at 2:20) Four other 1/2 marathons all between 2:09 and 2:16.  So should I be running for time?  Should I be setting other intrinsic goals? Will I ever get closer to 2 hours?  Now I am not beating myself up about my time and I don't feel bad.  The whole morning went really well: great shoes, good nutrition, no porta potty stops, and I am even learning to get through the water stations without walking!

"challenges, the achievements, and the satisfaction you get from running can be obtained from any pace" -John Bingham "Accidental Athlete"

"It isn’t pace that separates those who are willing to test themselves from those who are content to be what they are. It isn’t speed that makes a person a better runner or a better racer. It’s that moment when you aren’t sure what you’ll find when you reach deep into your guts and discover there’s something left."

Bingham, John "The Penguin" (2011-09-14). An Accidental Athlete: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Middle Age (pp. 138-140). Ingram Distribution. Kindle Edition.

"I am literally running for my life. I am running because, for me, the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual benefits of running far outweigh the struggles, setbacks, and challenges. I am running because, for me, not running is unthinkable. I am running because I am a runner. It’s that simple."

Bingham, John "The Penguin" (2011-09-14). An Accidental Athlete: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Middle Age (p. 164). Ingram Distribution. Kindle Edition.

"Running has become an act of faith. Running allows me to believe that there is something better out there for me. Running allows me to believe that I can be not just a better runner but also a better person. Running allows me to believe that if I am willing to work hard enough, I can achieve the impossible. Running has taught me that the limits I place on myself are illusions. Through running I am learning not just how to run today but how to run tomorrow. My running is a mirror of my life, and my life is a mirror of my running."

Bingham, John "The Penguin" (2011-09-14). An Accidental Athlete: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Middle Age (pp. 164-166). Ingram Distribution. Kindle Edition.

So now I am 5 days away from running the Chicago Marathon.  Now it is important to remember why I am running this race. I am running this race to challenge myself and be a better person.  Not a faster runner but a better person who runs.
Does running carry over into other areas of your life?  Do you see your race as a goal time or do you see it as a way to be a better person?

So close to my goal with World Vision.  Support the cause at