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Excuses are for the weak.

30 Aug

Harsh? Maybe a little. True? 100%.

As far as physical goals are concerned, 2011 has been HUGE for me. I have run a marathon, run my third half marathon, placed in my age group a handful of times and 5ks and 10ks, and even completed my first sprint triathlon. It is also the year that I have peaked in my weight and, since starting running almost 7 years ago, have dropped down to my lowest mileage weeks ever. When I see what my body has become now, it scares me to think that I may never accomplish those things again.

The farther and farther along I get with this pregnancy, the easier and easier it gets to stay still and be immobile. It is just hard. Everything feels sort of achy and being active just is not as easy as it once was. I feel stiff and some days I feel like I am turning to stone. Literally, from one day to the next, what I am able to accomplish with my body can change…drastically. Thankfully though, at 30 weeks and 2 days, I can bend over and touch my toes. Small miracles! Back to my point…every pound I put on feels like an extra 10 pounds on my frame. I am now at the highest weight I have ever been in my whole life and it is scary…maybe even a little bit depressing. I look in the mirror and I sigh…imagining how easy it would be to just go home everyday, plop on the couch, and peel open a pint of Ben & Jerry’s Phish Food. (Oh, Ben & Jerry’s, how I love you.) After all, that’s what my brain wants to do. I’m not convinced that my body is ready to give up quite yet. There is still a shred of fight left in me.

THIS would be the easy route.

I am now at the point where I have to reach deep down and find the drive. It is a daily battle to push myself to do the little things…and I mean VERY little things…like take one more flight of stairs when I am feeling winded or walk across my job site instead of taking the golf cart. There are days when I just don’t feel like running. (Please don’t EVER remind me that I said that.) But I have to at least try. Eating “bad foods” gets so much easier…especially when everyone around tries to convince me that I am eating for two. “Here, have another fill-in-the-blank. You’re eating for two now!”

Pregnancy is NOT an excuse to give up on my body. It is not an excuse to sit around and turn into a lard-butt and be lazy. Just because doing so would be easy does not mean it is the right thing to do.

People overcome obstacles all the time. Whether your excuse is lack of drive, no time, weather, busy schedules, etc., figure out a way to work around it. There is always an alternative. If you want something bad enough, you will figure out how to make it work. Where there is a will, there is a way! Today, I am determined to find the will to keep on running…whether that means a half mile or a half marathon. I just have to keep trying. And quite honestly, these days, it really is becoming more of a mental game than a physical one. Today I am recommitting to cling to my mental toughness for dear life. I need it.

And when I feel like giving up, I’m going to remember these people. These are the ones who overcome battles every single day. My situation is temporary, but these people fight everyday, training like champions with smiles on their faces (most of the time). 🙂 And do you know why they do it? They do it because they want it bad enough…because giving up on their bodies is not an option. “Failure” is not in their vocabularies. These people have no room for excuses.

What excuses are YOU going to toss out the window today?

What excuse have you been holding onto that you are going to bury today?

What is keeping you from achieving YOUR goals?

Encourage Your Fellow Runners…They May Need It More Than You Think

17 Aug

The other night before going to bed I sent out this Tweet:

“You just never know how much someone else could be struggling. Kind words and encouragement go far. #Perspective”

It got reTweeted. A lot. Apparently, there were lots of other people feeling the same way I was.

Often times, I send out Tweets like this as a result of something I have seen, witnessed, encouraged of others, or done for others. This Tweet in particular hit closer to home, as it was something I personally experienced. A friend of mine gave me some encouraging words and I am quite certain she didn’t even know I needed them.

Its time to get real…I have been struggling lately with my running…a lot. I won’t say that I am in denial that my running is coming to an end, but I can feel it tapering off quickly. My runs are getting much more difficult and where before I was limiting myself to no more that two days of running in a row, now I am down to every other day. I am thankful for every single day that I get to run.

The other day before Happy’s Running Club, my friend, Theresa, said the nicest thing to me right before we got started with our run. I do not remember what she said verbatim, but she casually mentioned how good it was to see me out at running group each week and that I seem to be glowing more and more as each week passes.


I needed that. Badly. I needed the encouragement. I needed the extra little push to just keep on showing up. It is getting so much harder these days and it is so easy to find excuses as to why I shouldn’t go run…which REALLY bums me out.

I try really hard to put on the happy face and make it look easy. I assure you…its not. It is getting hard on me physically, and even harder on me mentally and emotionally. I know it sounds selfish and like such a “sacrifice” that seems so easy to make. Those on the outside are probably thinking, “How can she even consider not running a ‘sacrifice’ at all!? This is her CHILD she is talking about!” It should be so easy for me to think, “I am pregnant…its okay to not run, right?” But it isn’t easy. When you associate yourself with something you love so much, it isn’t easy to just put it aside…not even for a few months. Pre-pregnancy, I was running 30-40 mile weeks (if not more) and I loved every single minute of it. I feel so ashamed that I want to put the death grip on that level of training and not let it go.

I get frustrated when I go to my running groups these days. I want to be able to run FAST again. I want to be able to push out a full-on sprint. I want to still be able to talk full long strides and pump my arms as I run. I want to challenge my running buddies to see who can make it to that next stop sign first. I want to run hard…so hard that I can feel it in every muscle in my legs and core. I feel bad saying that I am jealous that they can all do that and I can’t. I feel so left out and I hate it. Sitting on the sidelines is not fun. While I support my running buddies and know that when the time comes (sooner than my ego would like, I am afraid) I will be the best support sign holder/pom-pom waver/cowbell ringer EVER for them at races, I would by lying to myself if I said that I wouldn’t much prefer to me running right along side of them.

My sweet running friends (those in real life and the awesome ones that I have found in the Twitterverse and blogosphere) keep reminding me that “it is only a short while” and that I will “be back in no time.” But right now, a few months on the bench feels like a few years.

Determined to make lemonade out of lemons, however, I am going to keep letting my friend’s kind words ring in my ears. I am going to make the effort to keep on trying and keep on moving…even if that means all I can do at run group is walk. I need it. I need the exercise and though I would like to think of myself as strong enough to not need it, I DO need the support of my running buddies.

And, of course, I plan on paying it forward. If I can’t push the heck out of myself right now, I can be the Master of Peer Pressure and push the ones around me. Making them better will only make me work harder post-baby to catch up with them. And I assure you, I will catch up with them.

How do you feel when someone randomly encourages you? How do you make the effort to support others…especially your fellow runners?

Gear Review and GIVEAWAY: GO Sport ID Band!

29 Jul

A few weeks ago I heard about a special promotion that GO Sport ID was having to get the word out about their new product! Always wanting to be hip to the new latest thing, I quickly signed on and requested my new ID wristband.

The timing for this product was absolutely perfect! I had been wanting a sport ID bracelet for a long time, but never really got around to ordering one. After becoming pregnant, I realize that it is so important to take my and my child’s safety more seriously. On my rides or runs, I often find myself considerable distances from my home or car and it is good to know that IF anything were to ever happen to me (and, of course, I hope it doesn’t) that someone would be able to identify me and contact the emergency numbers on my band quickly.

There are several sport ID bands on the market, but I really feel like the GO Sport ID band is the ideal product for me and fits my needs perfectly.

GO Sport ID Bands

Here is what I like about it…

THE BAND. My particular GO Sport ID band is made of silicone, similar to the awareness bracelets that are so popular. I love that it doesn’t hold sweat and that if it gets anything on it, I can wash it off with a little soap and water. Easy, clean, and sanitary!

THE ID PLATE. The titanium ID plate, measuring at 1.5” x 1” has plenty of room to put all of your emergency information. On the front, it is customized with three lines of text…one for your name and two lines for your personal motto. One of the goals of the GO Sport ID band is to help you “push the finish line” by showing a message that helps you prepare physically and mentally for success. For my band, I chose the quote, “Pain is weakness leaving the body.” I wanted to remind myself that, most times, pain is a state of mind that we are all able to push through, if we choose to. The back of the plate, the side against the wrist, has four lines of customizable text. I chose to put my husband’s name, his phone number, my mother’s name, and her phone number.

Easy to read and holds a lot of text.

THE WEIGHT. The silicone of the band and the lightness of the titanium make this band super light. Altogether, it only weighs 13g (0.5oz)!

THE COLORED BANDS. Unlike other sport ID bands, this one has interchangeable colored bands (purple, pink, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and black)! I love this feature as I like to change the colors to match outfits or show support for certain events. For example, you could color coordinate with your favorite sports team or show support for a particular charity (like using the yellow for a LiveStrong event or the pink for a Race for the Cure). I realize that the changeable bands aren’t completely necessary for the inherent safety of the band, but it is a nice added bonus. Plus, for someone who gets frustrated easily with things like changing watchbands, changing out the band on the GO Sport ID band is REALLY simple and takes only seconds.

Bands are EASY to switch out!

Changed to red to match my swimsuit for Saturday!

THE SAFETY FACTOR. I like knowing that should something happen to me, a good Samaritan or First Responder could quickly access my name and emergency contact information. As I mentioned before, knowing that me and my baby could get help quickly and efficiently if needed gives me peace of mind.

GO Sport ID officially launches their product line next month, but they want to give YOU the opportunity win one! C’mon, you know you want one!

Here are the ways you can enter. Feel free to do as many or as few as you wish! You get one entry per task. Leave me a separate comment for each one that you do! The contest officially closes at 5:00PM CST on Thursday, August 4th, with the winner being announced the following morning!

  • Follow @GOSportID on Twitter
  • “Like” the GO Sport ID facebook page
  • Leave a message on the GO Sport ID facebook page telling them why you would like to win! (Be sure and mention that you got there from!)
  • Leave me a comment below with what your personal motto is!
  • Follow @katieRUNSthis on Twitter
  • Tweet about the contest! (Be sure to mention @katieRUNSthis and @GOSportID and this link –>
  • Mention the giveaway on your blog. (Don’t forget to leave me the link to your blog so I can come by and check it out!)

And it would be cool if you decided to subscribe to katieRUNSthis, but you don’t have to. But, if you do, I’ll add you to my list of super awesome people that I like…which, I might add, is a pretty prestigious list to be on.

What are you waiting for? Get started on your entries! GO GO GO!

Negativity in the past…THIS is what running is all about.

26 Jul

First, I really want to say that everyone who reads katieRUNSthis is awesome. Your outpouring of support for your fellow runners (see comments on yesterday’s blog) is touching and it is so good to know that runners (especially female runners) really are supportive of each other and, ultimately, do not want to bring each other down.

Today I wanted to highlight a fellow blogger/runner and a new friend of mine, Christine, aka DubyaWife. I first “met” Christine via Twitter (thanks, #RunLA tag!), found out she was just starting to run, and encouraged her to come out to our weekly Happy’s Running group run. After a few weeks of peer pressure encouragement, she decided to come out, and I think it is pretty safe to say that she has not looked back since!

When I first met Christine at the group run, she basically said something like, “Look, I’m not a runner. I’ll probably walk most of the way. I might even come in last.” I gave her the raised eyebrow “so what” face and told her it was time to get going. Well, those group runs must have been like crack because before I knew it, she was posting solo runs on her Twitter and even blogging about her runs. Her paces kept going down and the speeds kept going up! She stuck with it…in the heat…and the humidity…because she wanted it bad enough.

Yes, it lit up!

This past Saturday, she completed her first ever OFFICIAL 5k at the Light Up the Night 5k Benefiting Operation Smile. I could not be more proud of her!

Guys, you should have seen her! She was running along in all her pink tu-tu glory…smiling the whole way. (She was obviously giving her best for Operation Smile!) In fact, not only did she set a PR for the distance, but she also WON the Brightest Runner Award! (Really now, could it have been given to anyone else??)

In her race recap summarizing that night, the very last line is, “I. Am. A. Runner.

Yes, Christine, you are a runner. You know why? Because you finally believed it! We knew you had it in you all along!

This photo is also "borrowed" from Christine's blog. 🙂

This, folks, is what running is really all about. It is about setting goals, working hard, making friends, getting healthy, trying new things, pushing yourself, and doing it all because you want more for yourself. At least, that’s what it means to me. It is not about being negative, putting others down, or having the attitude that your achievements are better than anyone else’s achievements.

To all of the other readers out there that think you aren’t “real” runners because someone says you are walking, jogging, shuffling, waddling, etc. too much (or not enough)…forget them. Whether you are pushing out 50+ miles per week, or 5+ miles per week, you are still running. As long as you are hustling, you ARE a runner. Just remember to always give it your best..for YOU…and no one else.

Happy running, friends! Keep it positive and share the love!

Mental Constipation. Its time to clear out the crap.

21 Jul

I am a not a runner.
I can’t/could never do that.
I only run if I am being chased.
I don’t have time.
I haven’t run since high school. I could never do that now.
I am too old for that.

These are just a few of the phrases/excuses I hear from people when they find out that I like to run. When I hear them, I get frustrated because, to me, these words represent nothing more than mental blockage. Friends, today is the day to start clearing out the crap and changing your attitude.

You are the only person that says what you can and can not do. The longer you sit there and tell yourself you cannot do something, the closer you are to fulfilling that destiny. Who wants to be a person that can’t do something? Not me! If nothing else, I want to know that I at least tried with 100% solid effort everything that I have ever wanted to do. So what if I fail? Hey, at least I was not the one sitting on the sidelines.

Part of what drives me to keep running and training is all people who say, “I could never do that.” I am not a natural athlete, and if I can do it, they can to. Anyone can…even you. The difference is, I never told myself that I couldn’t.

Running is a mental game every bit as much as it is a physical one. If you are a couch potato, just making the decision to buy running shoes and give it a try is a huge mental hurdle. If you are a 5k/10k runner, taking that leap to the half marathon distance requires courage and faith in your body. And anyone who has ever run a marathon (or longer) will tell you that overcoming “the wall” takes mental persistence and determination like no other. No matter what your goal is, you still have to be decisive, make a plan, and figure out what works for you to get your body to the finish line.
Mental Toughness
Have a strong will, develop a mantra, and surround yourself with others that support your goal (for days when you need an extra push.) Keep the Debbie Downers away as much as possible. Never stop telling yourself that you can do it. Trust me, your mental stamina will fail you long before your body will.

Quite frankly, this sprint triathlon that I have coming up in 9 days scares me to death. Have I mentioned that this will be my first “official” triathlon? And that I will be exactly 26 weeks pregnant on that day? Have I mentioned how many people have told me I am absolutely insane for attempting such a thing…in the summer…in Louisiana? Or that I haven’t been able to get in any regular swim practice in the last 3 weeks (but am starting back today)? Sounds like the odds are stacked against me, yes?

And they are. However, I refuse to let self-doubt infect my thoughts. I am more aware of what my body can and can not handle than anyone else, and I know that I CAN do this. And when I finish, however long that takes, I will officially be a triathlete. For all those people that have something negative or snarky to say about my baby bump in my tri kit, keep it coming…you are just adding fuel to my fire. 🙂

What mental hurdles are you struggling with today? What are you doing to help you clear out the crap? What decisions are you making TODAY to get you closer to your goals?

I am a race medal gold digger.

13 Jul

I will admit it, you CAN buy my love.

Yesterday, the Rock N Roll Series unveiled their new Heavy Medal race medal. You qualify to receive it by doing 10 Rock N Roll events (half or full marathons) in one series year. The new Rock Idol 10 medal is pretty awesome and is one that I would TOTALLY love to have hanging in my collection.

Photo courtesy of

I don’t know how this got me thinking about it, but I wondered to myself, “Would I ever run a completely sucky race if there was the promise of a ridiculously awesome medal at the end?” And by “sucky”, I mean completely unscenic, lame aid stations, hilly, double loop, in the rain/snow/desert, etc.

My answer? YES. My loyalty to a race can easily be secured with a heavy, fancy, shiny race medal.

Curious to know if other runners were as big of sell-outs as I am (and I mean that in the nicest way possible :)), I took to my Twitter (I love that my mom calls it THE Twitter). It turns out, I am NOT the only one! Of all the people that answered, 33% said a sucky route is NOT worth all the fabulous race bling in the world. That leaves me with the other 66% of people who would absolutely be coaxed into a less-than-stellar race/event with the promise of a rocking medal or other race swag. Woot! I’m not the only race medal grubber in the world!

I totally admire the people who answered no. I really do. That means they are truly out there for the love of the run. I can really appreciate that. While I do run “for the love of the run”, a little shiny incentive placed around my neck, accompanied with a pat on the back and a “Job well done!” never hurt anyone (especially me!) either.

2011 Rock n Roll Mardi Gras Marathon

And in other news…
I have decided to start putting myself on a weekly mileage goal of 20 miles. At 23.5 weeks big and pregnant, I feel like a realistic plan is:

Monday: Varsity Sports Running Group – 3.5 miles
Tuesday: Happy’s Running Club – 3.1 miles
Wednesday: Mid-City EZ Riders (Cross-Train on the Bike) – 15 miles
Thursday: Varsity Sports Running Group – 4 miles
Friday: Running in my neighborhood (with my Mace) – 3.5 miles
Saturday: Varsity Sports Running Group/Race – 6 miles
Sunday: Rest and stretch (P90X Stretch DVD? Maybe ride my bike?)

This mileage is only an approximation and to keep me on track with hitting my goal each week. Once upon a time (just last fall), I covered 20 miles in two or three days, but I think 20 miles per week is a reasonable and attainable goal for me. I do not plan on imposing time goals for myself while pregnant; I only want to keep my body used to the distance and “feeling” of running. This mileage includes warm-up and cool-down and I will walk any time I feel like I need to. But, for now, this is the plan.

Okay, I’m back to day dreaming about that Rock Idol 10 Heavy Medal. I may need to get a second job or take out a second mortgage to be able to pay for all those entry fees and traveling costs, but it WILL be mine! One day!

Are you a gold digger like me? Would you run a totally sucky race if there was an awesome prize waiting for you at the end?

SLOW is totally the new FAST.

6 Jul

At least in my world it is. My body only moves in two speeds these days…slow and slower.

After my completely WRETCHED performance at Happy’s Running Club last night, I am still astounded as to how this happened only the day before.

2011 BASF Freedom Mile

How do I go from getting 2nd in my age group on one day to *barely* being able to squeak out a mile at my running group? Just goes to show you…during pregnancy, your body can literally change from day to day. Some days are good, some are not. Its funny how on “good” days, I am so quick to ride that high, but on “bad” days, I beat myself up about it SO badly. It is such an adjustment when your brain is saying, “Go faster, you turtle!” but your body is saying, “If you don’t slow down, I’m going to snap your legs off at the ankles just to prove a point.”

C’est la vie.

I am definitely at the point where my body no longer wants to run like a gazelle speeding across the savannah. No, those days are history…at least for a little while. But, all hope is not lost! I recently came across this article (thanks, @sbarrouquere) about the benefits of slow running. I mean, I knew that all the elite runners spent most of their time running “slow” (keep in mind that an elite athlete’s “slow” is my hauling you-know-what-I-am-about-to-die pace) but I never really thought of all of the other benefits that slow running offers. The article mentions that slow running is “the foundation of your running house.” When you think about it, this is so true. The slow run is what EVERYTHING else builds from. For now until the end of October, I will just plan on taking care of my “running house.” This means no new renovations, no crazy upgrades. I want to keep a solid 5k foundation and be able to build from there once Baby Key arrives. That, I can handle.

In addition to a bruised ego, last night’s run left me with seriously sore calves and ankles. I know EXACTLY where this pain is coming from. It is my own fault for not stretching and doing the proper strength training I had been doing. My excuse has been a lack of time, but I have to start making more time for strengthening my muscles, even if that means cutting my cardio (running) time shorter. After I walked in the door though, my whole attitude changed as I saw these jewels waiting for me!! WOOT!

New calf sleeves! Hallelujah!

The plan for today is to take breaks at work to work in mini-sets of lunges, squats, and calf raises. My lunch hour will be spent stretching…and stretching some more. Tonight, I plan to put on my new calf sleeves and hit my neighborhood for a little solo running. Group running rocks, but maybe I just need some time alone tonight to find my zen.

So, from here on out, slow I go (channeling my inner Kara Goucher the whole way). You might even find me walking. (I know, right??) But, you WILL still find me out on the roads…tearing it up at a speedy “mall walking” pace. I might even give those blue-haired old ladies down the street a run for their money. Please keep those giggles to yourself. 🙂

How do YOU feel about slow running? Do you work slow runs into your training? Do you feel defeated on days when your body forces you to take it down a notch?

Falling in love with running…again.

5 Jul

Last night I got the kindest comment/e-mail from an old friend (that’s right, first boyfriend EVER from 8th grade…I am calling you out 🙂 ) asking about running. After running through high school, his romance with running ended in favor of other sports like hiking, kayaking, etc. Now he is interested in getting motivated to start pounding the pavement again and needs some tips on how to get his running mojo back!

You can read the full comment here, but here is a snippet of it…

“So, long story short, what suggestions, if any, do you have for making running interesting again? I’m having to start slowly because of my ankles, but my body remembers the high-intensity workouts and cadence of at least a 6-min mile. I just don’t know where to go or how to cope when I can’t do what I used to do. It’s like a quarter-life crisis (I’m expecting to live to 112!)!”

Over the years, I’ve taken breaks, had times where I took the sport more seriously than others, or even faced the dreaded runner’s burnout (GASP!). Here are a few ideas (in no particular order) on rekindling that love of running or just getting started, in general.

Get good shoes. I know I have said this a million times over, but seriously, it is SO important. I am not going to say that the employees at those big box sporting goods stores don’t know what they are doing, but your best bet is to find a running specialty store in your area and get properly fitted. People who work at running specialty stores are more knowledgeable about the runner’s body and finding the right shoe for your gait and foot. Their goal is to help keep you injury-free and running happily!

Find a group. Again, I know I preach about the benefits of social running a lot, but it is because I believe in it. When you are at the point where you need motivation and support, there is no one that you can rely on more to keep you accountable than your running buddies. Plus, it is FUN! Seeing your friends each week (or a few times a week) puts me in a good mood and makes me WANT to run. They are always there to push me when I need it and watching us all meet our goals (whatever they are) keeps me going.

Be realistic about speed and pace. Just because you could run a 6-minute mile in high school does not mean you can (or should) be doing that now. For those of you who participated in track/cross-country in high school (I did NOT), those glory days were (at least) a decade ago. It is not realistic for you to be able to hit those same goals now, so many years later, after not having run in so long. That doesn’t mean you can’t get there, but you’ll just need to be patient with yourself and train properly. Set new, realistic goals and stay focused on those.

Get a good program and be consistent. Whether you are a new runner or someone trying to find the passion again, a good program can be a very valuable tool. If you haven’t done ANY running or any in a long time, I highly recommend the Couch to 5k program. This program is do-able, not overwhelming, and provides really amazing results. I have had friends, relatives, and even my husband complete the program with great success. For training for longer distances or even increasing speed, check out any of the programs by Hal Higdon. I have used his programs for increasing speed on my half marathon and for training for my full marathon. Just remember, like with any training program, consistency and commitment are the key. No one said every run has to be “great”…just keep doing them! Just keep trying!

If not using a program, dial up the distance and intensity slowly. Use the 10% rule. Want to do your best to stay injury-free? Then remind yourself that you are NOT Superman. If not using a specific program, remember to increase weekly training mileage by no more than 10% per week. Keep track of your mileage and be smart about adding distance. There are a lot of online tracking tools out there (DailyMile is a very popular one), but a notebook works just as well. Remember that just because your head is all gung-ho, does not mean your body is ready.

Keep kayaking, hiking, or whatever it is you like to do. Anyone who runs will tell you, running can be addictive. While running is fun, don’t get obsessive about it…unless you want to. If you are into kayaking, cycling, swimming, hiking, etc., still make time to do those things. No need to give up one thing just to incorporate another activity. Plus, doing a variety of activities will keep your body and skill level well-rounded. Or, if you are the outdoorsy type, give trail running a try! I would not suggest trail running in your road running shoes (check out Salomon or Brooks for awesome trail running kicks), but hitting the trail can be an awesome way to break up the monotony of road running.

Read running magazines and immerse yourself in running culture.
The next time you are at the book store, pick up a copy of Runner’s World or any other running or triathlon magazine. Browse through the running books in the Sports section. On your next free Saturday, spend some time hanging out at the running store…asking questions, getting advice, meeting other runners, and checking out the gear. Better yet, go out to an event that you would like to run one day, and just watch. Being a spectator is fun and you get the chance to watch others and learn a lot. I know that when I am around other runners and cool gear, I always find some inner motivation and get jazzed up!

Sign up for a race. Last, but not least, pick a goal race, put it on your calendar, and put a big red circle around it! Knowing that you have an event that you have to be ready for will help keep you committed and focused. Take it a step further by sharing this goal with your family, friends, and new-found running buddies! Let them hold you accountable to stay focused on your goal. Keep your eyes on the prize!

So, there you go! Those are my go-to reminders when I feel myself needing that extra push on getting outside or staying focused on my training.

How do YOU recover from a running vacation? What advice would YOU give to someone trying to get their running mojo back?