The Haunted Half

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To celebrate the Halloween season, I ran a spooky 13 miles with the Breakaway Running marathon training group.

Here’s some great history about the course!

Rainbow Lake in Overton Park where it’s said the ghost of the Lady in Blue is sometimes seen. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=536q_2kXfeo

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Bettis Family Cemetery http://historic-memphis.com/memphis-histo…/…/cemeteries.html

Annesdale-Snowden area. Annesdale Mansion served as a hospital during the Civil War. Many neighborhood homes are said to have non-living Civil War soldier inhabitants. Every few years the neighborhood hosts a “ghost tour” of homes. https://www.annesdalemansion.com/what-we-do

Skeletal remains were found recently in the Annesdale Mansion. https://www.wmcactionnews5.com/…/possible-human-remains-fo…/

The historic Elmwood Cemetery. The history of Memphis is chronicled there with many significant people buried there including generals, yellow fever victims, slaves, politicians, soldiers from pretty much every war we’ve fought. http://www.elmwoodcemetery.org/

 

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The race was great. Perfect foggy, dark, and spooky weather. During the course we ran through the thick forested Overton Park. It was so dark I could not even see a few feet in front of me. Definitely spooky!

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Elmwood cemetery was my absolute favorite part of this course. There is just so much history and beauty in that place.

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Thank you Breakaway Running and Barry Roberson for creating a great course!

 

-Sarah

 

Guest Post: I Still Remember it Like it was Yesterday!

by Lanie Prince

I still remember it like it was yesterday. My friend, Patty, came up to me on a Thursday night in January. She asked me if I would like to train for the St. Jude Half Marathon in Nashville with her and my two other friends, Brittney and Connie. I eagerly said, “Yes!” She told me that I would only have 3 months to train and wanted to know if that would be enough time. Honestly, I never doubted myself when it came to that. I knew I could do it. I signed up for the race the second weekend in January with Connie. It was an amazing feeling.

A few weeks had gone by and my friend Brittney asked me if I had been training. I really hadn’t, but I said yes, so she wouldn’t be disappointed in me. I kept seeing the other girls running and I knew I had to start soon. On January 21, 2018, I made a decision. That decision changed my life. I walked/ran my first 3 miles. I ran down Veteran’s Parkway. It wasn’t as bad as I thought. So, I kept running 3 miles almost every weekday. After I started running 3 miles, my running group wanted to start our long runs. We started going to Shelby Forest every weekend and kept increasing our miles until we got up to 11 miles.

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I remember my first long run. I ran 5 miles. I had never ran that many miles in my life and my hip started hurting. I remember asking a lot of people what I should do. Some kept saying to keep going to make it stronger and some said to stay off of it, or swim, or do the elliptical for 2 weeks. I did my own thing. I didn’t run for a whole week and just did the elliptical along with sitting in the hot tub and steam room. That helped tremendously. I didn’t hurt much after that.

Along the way, I completed a couple 5k’s. I am not a very fast runner though. I can do a 10 minute mile on a great day but usually I run a mile within 13 to 14 minutes. My time never got much faster than that. I was just able to run without my body aching as bad.

Time was going by fast. April was almost here. People kept asking me, “Was I Ready?” My answer was always, “I’m as ready as I’ll ever be.” In a blink of an eye the weekend of my half marathon was here. We all met at Connie’s house and rode in her car. When we arrived in Nashville it was so crowded! We finally arrived at the place to pick up our packets. It was crazy busy. I had one of the best feelings. I felt that I had actually accomplished something. I felt so confident and on top of the world. That was a Friday. That night we walked all downtown and ate at a Mexican restaurant. I needed all the carbs I could get. After that, we made it to our hotel room around 9 o’clock. I was a little anxious, so it was hard for me to fall asleep. My friend Brittney and I ended up walking to the convenient store around 10 o’clock that night because we couldn’t sleep. Finally, around 11:30 I dozed off. I had to be up by 5:45 a.m. to be at my terminal by 7 a.m.. 5:45 came faster than I expected.

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My alarm went off and I casually woke up and started getting ready. I remember letting my running partners know that I was so nervous. I was scared that I wouldn’t complete the race or that I would get bored along the way and have little motivation to keep going. It turned out to be the exact opposite. It was the most amazing experience! There were people everywhere cheering us on. It felt amazing. I didn’t want to stop! As far as I knew, I was on top of the world. I felt as if I could go forever. I mainly walked fast because I didn’t want to run out of energy. As I walked the scenery kept changing. It was so pretty. I remember hitting mile 9 and was anticipating seeing the finish line. It seemed like the miles got longer as I got closer to finishing. As the race came to an end, I came around the corner and went over a bridge and saw the finish line. I told myself that I needed to start running and smiling because I knew they were going to take my picture. When I passed that finish line, I smiled and thought to myself, “I DID IT!” I was so proud of myself! I knew I made my parents proud and I proved the people wrong who thought I couldn’t do it. It was one of the best feelings I have ever had in my whole entire life. That night my running partners and I went out downtown and celebrated. We ate, shopped, and went to a concert. We really enjoyed ourselves. The next day we got up and left. I was a little sad because I didn’t want it to be over. My running partners and I discussed it and decided to run another one in Hot Springs, Arkansas in November.

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Still to this day I run. Running has changed my life and changed me as a person. I can tell that I am happier now. I love life more. I actually like looking in the mirror. Mostly, I am confident! That is something I have never been. I feel free.  Running has made me into a “go-getter!” For example, this summer I worked almost 40 hours a week, kept up with my running, and achieved a 4.0 in my summer classes. I honestly believe that if I would have never started running I wouldn’t have had the energy, confidence or determination to do all of that. No matter what kind of situation I am in, I make sure that I make time to run. I am a different person spiritually, mentally, and emotionally. I have lost almost 50 pounds and plan on keep going. As long as the Lord keeps me healthy, I will never stop running.

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If you ever get to a point in your life where you feel like you’re not good enough or wish you could change something about yourself, I challenge you to start running. Find someone that would be interested in doing it with you or do it by yourself. It is one of the most stress relieving things you can do. I have no doubt in my mind that you will love it. Start today!

Lanie

Nevertheless, I would like to give a big thanks to Brittney, Connie, and Patty for motivating me the whole time and sticking by my side. Also, all of this would not have been possible without the Millington YMCA. I am so thankful for all the opportunities it has offered me. With all of that being said, if you guys ever have any questions, please contact me through Facebook messenger at Lanie Prince or through my email at Lanieprince16@aol.com. If you need help getting motivated or have any question pertaining to running, weight loss, etc. Please contact me. I will be glad to help out any way I can!

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What I learned at the marathon preview

Last week, I was able to attend the St. Jude Marathon Course Preview hosted by Breakaway Running and Can’t Stop Endurance. Coach Kevin Leathers did a very informative presentation about how to prepare, what to expect and how to recover.

I thought I would share some of what stuck out to me in case it could be helpful to someone else participating. Sarah was not able to attend so I took extensive notes to share with my fellow over-planning Virgo!

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First off, the marathon will be host to approximately 25,000 runners!! This includes participants in the 5k, 10k, half and full marathon. That is a lot of people at a starting line. Which is why it takes about 40 minutes for all runners to be released from their respective corral and cross the start line.

Sarah and I will be starting in the 11 minute per mile corral. We want to be able to start together because Sarah will be able to run faster, longer, and we won’t be finishing together. But we are starting off as a team, which I am pretty jazzed about! During the course preview, someone asked how do you stay warm in the corrals? You might need more layers while you are waiting to take off. So here’s a tip! Wear some throwaway clothes. Just some cheap layers you can take off when the race starts. The race volunteers will gather these and they actually donate them to the local community.

So the race starts and ends at Autozone Park. If you are wanting to watch any of your friends take off or finish, this is where to do it! FYI: Roads will starts closing by 7am!! Spectators can watch the runners take off on Second Street and you can catch them again on Front Street which is around mile four. The marathoners will pass the stadium area, on Danny Thomas Blvd. near Monroe, again near miles 23.5 and 25.5. This is great place for you to cheer your runner on before they finish! Friends and families can also sit in the stands and watch their runner cross the finish line. Friends and families will not be allowed on the field though. So cheer loud!!

Coach Leathers broke the race down into thirds. And this can be used for any distance. The first third is about Discipline. You are going to be excited and your adrenaline will be pumping. You have to keep in mind to keep your pace that you trained for so that you don’t take off too fast and burn out. The middle of the race you should have a Relaxed Focus. This is where you continue to take it easy. Make sure your hydration and fueling is working for you. Pay attention to your form during this time. And for the last part!! This is where you Dig Deep! You will be hurting. It will be hard but this is why you trained for six months. Welcome the Struggle!

So there are the important logistic points. Now for some fun stuff!

Mile 5.5 is where the runners will run through the St. Jude campus. The kids come out with their signs and cheer the runners on. I am really excited for this part. This is what it is all about. And you can still donate to the cause!

Kayla’s Fundraising Page     Sarah’s Fundraising Page

If you are running the half, around mile 11 is when you will leave all us crazy marathoners behind. If you are running the marathon, don’t panic! Most of the people you are running with will go left while you go right. Important note: if you don’t reach the split point by 11:20 a.m. you will be made to finish as a half marathoner. This means you must at least keep a 14 minute pace for 11 miles. It’s okay! If I can do it, you can do it!

One of my favorite parts of this course preview was that Coach Leathers covered what to do after and gave some good recovery points! Number one Don’t sit down or lay down once you cross the finish line! (SARAH) ! It’s not good for your muscles and you may not be able to physically get up! Change your clothes before you meet up with your group. You’ll be more comfortable for all the selfie taking you’re gonna do!

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He also suggested setting a new goal! Pay for a race and you won’t have a reason to slack off. You won’t have to restart your training. Rumor is we might register to do the St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville half marathon in April!

You can find all this information from the source, Can’t Stop Endurance. Coach Leathers will also be doing the presentation again at the expo Nov. 30 and Dec. 1. And you MUST go to the expo to get your packet and bib. There is NO race day packet pick up!

If you aren’t running in the race, you can still be a part of race day! Check out volunteer opportunities here.

I hope this can be helpful for some people participating. If you can catch the presentation, I highly suggest it! It was very informative, as you can tell!

13 days!!

The more you know,

Kayla

Twenty. Venti. Zwanzig.

Yesterday marked 20 days till our marathon! Ahhh! Speaking of 20, this past weekend Kayla and I ran our longest mileage run ever! We both ran 20 miles! Did you know Zwanzig is German for twenty?!

The 20 mile mark in our marathon training was a major milestone. This was our final test before the race. This is where we see if we could actually make it, if our bodies can actually run 20 miles or more.

I thought of the 20 mile long run as the closet comparison to the actual race day. I was nervous. Not only was I nervous to run 20 miles but I decided to run my long run differently this time. Breakaway Running is an amazing supporter of the St. Jude Marathon. They have a training plan you can follow as well as weekly group runs. So I decided last minute that I was going to run with the Breakaway running group. I had no idea what to expect. I knew they would have water stations set up along the route and I looked at the course but I didn’t really study it because I thought that there would be enough people that I could just follow. Also the course was set up for 11 miles. People training for the half marathon would run the course once and people training for the full marathon would run the course twice. So I would actually have to run 22 miles! 22 miles!! Ahhh! Crazy right!?! The run was also at 6 am and the temperature was going to be 34 degrees. Two more running conditions that I was not use to.

So on the day of the long run I arrived at the Breakaway store only about 10 minutes before the run. I stretched a little but not that much. I was so overwhelmed with all the people and trying to figure out what was going on that I didn’t pay attention much to what the speaker was saying about the course. There had to be over 100 people there. It felt like race day. It was super cold and my fingers were freezing but I knew I would warm up once I started running.

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 Once we started, I was in the middle of the group. I was trying to pace myself based on how they were running. Everything was going great. As I came up on the 11 mile mark, everyone that was around me stopped and turned into Breakaway. I was totally confused. I knew that I had to run the course twice so I kept going forward.  There were literally only a few people in front of me that kept going but they were pretty far ahead. I was scared that I was going to lose them and get lost on the course.  The course was actual streets going through downtown Memphis, so we were running on busy roads and under overpasses. I was nervous to be running alone. I kept running ahead and after a while I noticed that there several people in front and behind me which made me feel better. At around the 12 mile mark, my tummy was really upset and I had to stop at a gas station and use the restroom. When I got out, I continued to run and noticed that there were only a few people behind me now. At mile 13, my legs were starting to hurt. By mile 16 my feet and legs were becoming so painful. I was almost in tears because I was in so much pain. I had to keep running though. I didn’t quite know where I was and I didn’t want to lose the few people that were in front of me. There were a few times that I was the very last person with no one behind me. That was scary. I didn’t think I was going to make it. I was running so slow that I was almost walking. Everything hurt. Then I hit 20 miles! I knew I couldn’t stop now. Only 2 more miles left to go. I kept pushing, kept going till I finally made it! 22 miles!! I had tears in my eyes because I was so proud, also because I was in so much pain. I did it. Only 4 more miles after that and that would be a marathon. At that moment, I finally knew that I would be able to run a full marathon. I was scared and nervous before, but now there was no doubt in my mind that I would be able to complete 26 miles!  I was ready!

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-Unstoppable, Sarah

Now for the country girl’s tale of running in the middle of nowhere! Much like Sarah, I was pretty nervous to tackle 20 miles. The Friday before the run, I had visited a doctor so that I could get a physical therapy order. They ended up doing a bunch of X-rays on my hip because it has been hurting for a month or so now. The doctor thinks I have abductor tendonitis, which pretty much means overuse of the muscles there. Of course! Then the doctor asks me, “How important is it for you to do this marathon?”

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Like 100 percent important doctor!! Anyways, he totally understood and gave me some anti-inflammatory and ordered for me to start physical therapy. So with this knowledge, I knew that going into this marathon, my only goal was to finish without completely injuring myself.

Which is the same goal for the remainder of my training. Thankfully, my hip doesn’t completely stop me from running. I made sure to keep my 20 mile run at a steady pace averaging at 12:52 a mile. Which is really slow and I really wish I could run faster but I have to accept that I physically cannot. So that will most likely be my pace for the marathon.

My run was pretty uneventful. I did see some puppies and piggies! I didn’t experience too much pain throughout the run. Toward the end I think my mind wanted to give up but not my body. I just kept telling myself just keep running till the next mile. If you keep running, you’ll be done soon. And sure enough, I was done soon! Jk this shit took 4 plus hours!

 

Being able to finish a 20 mile run though is something I never thought I would do. Once you are done, you know that you can finish a marathon. We have been training since July and now here we are less than a month away from the start line!

During this time, I have learned that I am capable of achieving hard goals. I have a lot going on in my life but somehow I still managed to stick to my training and not give up when the miles seemed too much. I don’t even know what I am going to do with myself after the race. Like I get my Saturdays back!!

As the race approaches, we are going to be doing some fun countdown stuff over on our Facebook page. So make sure you go like us and follow us to Memphis where we will run for the children of St. Jude! (And for the food and beer!)

 

With determination,

Kayla

Seasons Change

Seasons change, the weather changes, the leaves change colors and fall. What does not change is the date of our marathon, December 2nd!

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No matter what changes are going on in the weather, in the seasons, or even our personal lives, the fact that we still have to run stays the same. The race is not going anywhere therefore we still have to train no matter what changes are going on.

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Change! That’s a loaded word. With change can come frustration, anxiety, and chaos, but it can also bring joy, excitement, and new beginnings. For myself, I am slightly OCD. Slightly meaning I like things to be a certain way. I like things to have their own place and for it stay there. I like to do things a certain way and to not deviate from that way. Thus I do not like change that much. Change stresses me out and gives me anxiety. I really think it is a control thing. I’d rather be in control of the outcomes of my life. Funny right? Because we all know that will never be the case. Change is constant. It will forever interrupt our lives. So we can either get used to it or forever fight it.

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Running continues to teach me every day about life and about myself.  And as the seasons change, running teaches me that change is okay. You have to adapt. As the weather gets colder, I have to now learn how to run with more layers of clothing. I have to figure out the right amount of layers and what is most comfortable as well. I have to get use to running in the cold. I hate the cold! I also have to adjust my running schedule due to the sun rising later and setting earlier. Because of this I have had to do a few afternoon runs in between my am and pm jobs. I am thankful for the time change though. I can hopefully be able to get in more early morning runs now. 

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Running teaches me that no matter how life changes we still have to keep running. I have worked hard training for this marathon and I’m not going to let any changes stop my progress. Through running I have learned that I can adapt. I am strong and change does not have to be difficult or scary.

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Without change you are comfortable and complacent. Without change you don’t progress, you don’t grow. Change forces you to fight, to push. Change forces you to change something about yourself which then forces you to grow and become a stronger and better person. So when changes happen, embrace them. Yes it will probably be difficult and uncomfortable but it will also push you to grow into the strong person you are meant to be and the badass unicorn you truly are!! 

-Forever Adapting, Sarah

How Unicorns Run Far

We have made it to November, meaning one month until we toe that start line and put all of our training to the test! Now that we are up to 17, 18, 20!!! mile runs, we thought we would share our long run routines. We thought it would be interesting to share the differences between our routines. If you didn’t know, not all runners are the same. We’d also love to hear about your long run routines! So leave us a comment when you’re done reading.

Okay, so this first part is how Kayla preps for a long run. I thought about referring to myself in third person but I think that would be weird.

I usually wake up an hour before sunrise to give myself time to get ready. So the first thing for me is COFFEE! I take about 15 minutes to drink my coffee and scroll through the social world. Then I make myself something to eat while I finish up my coffee.

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This is my absolute favorite pre-long run breakfast. When I don’t have this, I like to have a toasted peanut butter and jelly. It’s important for me to get enough on my stomach to give me some energy but not too much where I am feeling full.

Next, I make sure to Glide Up! Is it too much information to talk about the chaffing of running? Probably, but it’s reality. This training cycle I found out I can chaff under my arms where it rubs against my shirt. So weird! Just thought my thunder thighs were the issue!

 

Another reason, I have to wake up before the sun is so that I can take my water bottles out to my running route and drop them off. I live in a pretty rural part of Tennessee and do not live around any running trails. (I am pretty jealous of Sarah’s convenient Green Line! Even though I get some great nature shots!) Anyways, I take two water bottles out, one to the halfway mark and one to the two mile mark.

I also carry my handheld water bottle with the strap with me. When I get to my other water bottles, I refill with some nice ice cold water. They make for pretty good rest stops!

Last but not least, I take my first nutritional gel. I used to use Gu Energy Gel but recently I have switched to Huma Plus Energy Gels. They are more natural, lighter on my stomach and seem to give me more of an extra boost. I take my gels at the top of every hour. I have also learned that I need some type of electrolyte drink during the really long runs. So I try to have Gatorade mixed in my waters at the pit stops. This nutritional routine is what has worked best for me. But like I said, everyone is different!

And then finally! I am ready to run! I would love to hear about other’s long run routines. Leave us a comment!

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Kayla and I are perfect examples of how runners can be completely different.

Here’s my long run preparation check list:

The day before a long run:

  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day
  • Stretch
  • No alcohol at all
  • Eat a carb loaded dinner- now that I am eating gluten free this meal usually contains rice, or potatoes.
  • Charge my wireless headphones!!! – I Always forget to charge my headphones the night before so I usually wake up in the middle of the night and remember to charge them or plug them in as soon as I wake up.
  • Get a good night’s sleep

The morning of a long run:

  • I wake up about an hour before I want to start my run
  • stretch
  • make sure headphones are charging lol because I probably forgot to plug them in the night before
  • Eat a granola bar- the best for me is the Kind brand.kind bar
  • Go to the bathroom – a definite must!!
  • Apply Glide to chaffing prone areas
  • I can not drink much of anything before my run – helps me avoid having to go pee during the run
  • Eat an Energy Gel on the way to my run- I am currently still trying to find the best Energy gel for me. I have tried Gu, Huma, and now Hammer. All pretty good. Huma and Hammer contain more natural ingredients and are lighter on my stomach.
  • I make sure I bring enough Energy gels with me on my run- I consume an Energy gel about every 5 miles.
  • I bring my handheld water bottle with the strap with me on my runs. I refill my water bottle with the water fountain at the beginning of Shelby Farms Green Line and at the Tap Routes along the green line.
  • tap route2  tap route

After the long run:

  • stretch
  • refuel immediately- meaning lots of water, Gatorade, and FOOD!
  • post results on Social Media because I am proud that I am I runner!greenline

-Sarah

How do you prepare for your long runs? Leave us a comment!

Running is Always There for Us

A couple of weeks ago I was listening to Kelly Roberts’ podcast  where she had Coach John Honerkamp as a guest. I have been tuning in to the ones he has been a part of because those episodes are specific to marathon training. Really good stuff, I highly recommend it if you are in a training process for a race.

On Episode 74 they specifically talk about when life gets in the way. He said something along the lines of “When you’re having that bad day or bad week, it’s okay to be selfish and take time for yourself. Running is always there for you.”

And damn! That just washed over me. Running is always there for you. It can be great therapy. It can be a way to refocus on a number of things in your life. When I have that quiet morning while the sun rises, it allows me to be grateful for the good in my life.

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I think it is time I just get it out there. Some people close to me know what I am going through right now, but most people don’t. I am currently in the process of getting a divorce. From my high school sweetheart. Although it is somewhat mutual and we both know this is for the best, it’s still really hard and sad to end an 11 year relationship.

So talk about life getting in the way… Sometimes I feel guilty taking the time to train while I know I need to finish painting my house, make sure the roofers show up, the lawn gets mowed and the weeds get pulled so we can get it on the market. But I need to run. I have to run. I think we have to figure out ways to balance training and life. Running isn’t easy and life definitely isn’t easy.

For example, this morning, I woke up to my pool completely drained therefore flooding my back yard. I just stood there, in the dark, like “Well, what the fuck now?!” Still have to go to work. Still have to get a run in. So I thought back to what Coach Honerkamp said and told myself, “Just run. Run through this.”

So that’s what I did. I pushed through a five mile run with too many thoughts spinning in my head. By the last mile, I broke down in tears. But I kept running. I cried on that last mile. It wasn’t pretty. But it helped cleanse my soul. A wise woman told me this morning that crying can heal us as long as we don’t linger there too long and let it render us helpless.

It also helped when Beyonce’s “Freedom” started playing during this break down. I mean, “I’m telling these tears, Go and fall away, fall away May the last one burn into flames.” “I break chains all by myself Won’t let my freedom rot in hell I’ma keep running cause a winner don’t quit on themselves.” YASSS Queen. Listen below. Seriously, listen to this song!

During this time, I think one of the things I am most grateful for (besides my amazing family) is running. There have been mornings where I am so angry at the whole situation I knock out a 6 mile tempo run and know that this divorce isn’t going to kill me. There are mornings when I am so sad, that I slowly meander through a 5 mile run and even though it’s slow, I kept moving. It helps me know that this divorce isn’t going to drown me. There’s mornings where I have to run 10 plus miles and then immediately work on a house in order to sell and I know that this divorce will only make me stronger.

So I encourage the reader to find something to throw yourself into if you are going through a hard time. It can be running, painting, gardening, poetry, woodworking, or hell even sword fighting! Just find something that challenges you but also brings you peace. Find something that brings you joy even if it makes your heart want to explode! We are stronger than we think and our brains give up long before our bodies have to.

So I will leave you with a poem from a poet my heart connected with immediately, Rupi Kaur. Because this is not a pity me post. This is a soul cleansing one to show that I will get through this. I will get through this with running. I will get through this with my friends, my family and even the random readers of this blog by my side. Because I am strong.

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With determination and courage,

Kayla

100 Miles Later

I’ve been in the trenches of marathon training for a month now. I’ve ran 103.78 miles. I’m sore. I’m tired. I’m hungry. All. The. Damn. Time.

I don’t know if I mentally blocked what training for a half marathon was like but this seems different. I am not even up to the super long distances. Next week I will be hitting 12 miles. Of course, 13 is the longest Sarah and I have ran so we are getting close to new territory. The level of hunger at 25 miles a week is literally ravishing. I can’t imagine what it will be like in another month. I want to eat all the foods!

Other than the never ending need to consume something delicious, the training is going pretty well. I have only skipped one run and one cross training session. I think it was from the sheer fact that training is exhausting. I don’t remember being this tired last time I trained. It may have to do with the fact I get up at 4:30 in the morning. But it comes with some beautiful sunrises, so it works out.

If you are ever thinking about running a marathon, just know, you will be tired and hungry. Very hungry. And sore. I have come to realize how important stretching is. If I do not stretch after a run, I will pay for it by the end of the week. I get horrible lower back pain. So I have been making sure to take the 15 minutes after a run to stretch it all out.

So far, this training has been a good way for me to focus on a goal. It’s been a good way to let my mind wander. I have been able to center my thoughts and focus on a path moving forward. A positive path that will allow me to move on. Training is hard and so is life. But I’ll get through it. And after I cross the finish line, I’ll eat and eat. And eat and eat and eat.

 

Don’t forget, all this training is for a great cause! The children of St. Jude! Donate today!

 

With love,

Kayla

Only 5 miles

only 5 miles

Today was my first time running in over a week! What happened? Life! Life happened. I went out of town for a convention and did not find nor make the time to run. Horrible I know. Especially when in the middle of marathon training.

So today I woke up and told myself that I was going to run just 5 miles so I could get my muscles back into the routine of running. After I said that I smiled. Just 5 miles? Yea its only 5 miles! Only 5 miles? I couldn’t help but to smile and reflect on how far I’ve come.

5 miles is more than a 5K race (3.26 miles). I remember when it was so difficult, nearly impossible, for me to run 3 miles. Now the minimum I run is 5 miles. People tell me all the time that they can’t believe I run that far daily and that they could never do that. I know how they feel because I was there once. I thought a 5K race was impossible but I trained and then I did it. Then I thought that there is no way I could run a half marathon(13.2 miles) but I trained and I did it, twice! Now I’m training for a full marathon and I think to myself, what have I got myself into. There is no way I can run 26.2 miles but I know I will. Because I will focus on the goal, train hard, and keep pushing till I accomplish that goal.

My 5 miles today was tough. My muscles we sore, tight, and it hurt. I was hot and hungry and did more walking then I wanted but I pushed through and got it done! I know 5 miles or even 1 mile might seem like a lot but you can do it. Will it be easy? Hell no. You don’t learn from easy. You don’t grow from easy. You grow from struggling and pushing through.  You grow when you think you cant go any further and yet you take one more step, then another. Will it happen over night? Hell no. It is a process. I’ve been running for 4 years now.  I’ve trained for every race weeks and months in advance. It takes time and dedication. You have to just keep training. Keep fighting. Keep pushing. Keep going and don’t give up. That feeling at the end, when you accomplish your goal is all worth it. That is the feeling that keeps me going and keeps me pushing to accomplish my next goal. The feeling of knowing you are a strong badass unicorn that can do anything you put your mind to is all worth it!

-Sarah

The Marathon Training Officially Begins

Today is the day that our marathon training officially officially starts. I say officially twice because we kind of started last month in order to give ourselves room to miss a run or get in longer runs if we needed to. But today, July 17, is the day that our plan lines up with the date of the full marathon, December 2.

We wanted to share our plan with everyone. I, Kayla, simply Googled a first time full marathon training plan and found this one on Women’s Running. The plan explains what some of the terms mean like XT=Cross Train, H=Hilly Run aka DEATH!, EZ=EASY Effort and so on. Hopefully by sharing this plan with everyone we will hold ourselves more accountable. I know that when I have a structured plan I do much better than just running freely. Something about being able to cross the run off my calendar gives me a sense of accomplishment. Or I just like highlighting things!

qoXBIB-First-Marathon-Training-Plan-2

So there it is! So many miles! During this training, we are going to share with your our successes, our struggles, our funny stories, what we do to prepare, what we eat, how we fuel and more. As some of you may know, we are registered for the St. Jude Memphis Marathon which raises money for the Children’s Research Hospital here in Memphis. We are really proud to be raising money for this great cause. If you didn’t know, patients and families that visit St. Jude never receive a bill for the care they receive. This means that the hospital functions on donations. How amazing is that. At the end of this post, you can find both of our fundraising pages. We hope that you will donate to each of us. Any amount is helpful!

So, we may be crazy. And we may regret having to run more than 13 miles! But I know it is going to be worth it. I also know that it is going to be hard. A lot of people ask us what our goal is for the marathon. My goal is to finish it. I am not a fast runner. This is going to be an all day thing. Someone will need to carry me to food and beer! But I know that I want to say that I have run a full marathon. This may be my only one. I am glad I chose a local one that is for such a great cause. So don’t forget to donate!

Love,

Kayla

stjude marathon

So today may be the official first day of the training plan but I, Sarah Burns, am already on week 4. Now to be honest with you I have not followed the training plan exactly and I will not follow it exactly. And that it totally ok. Find a training plan you like then tweak it to fit you and your schedule. So on this training plan, I’m trying to focus on the miles. I’m not too focused the type of run (Ex: hills, easy, etc.). For my shorter runs throughout the week I run on trails at Shelby Farms Park (my favorite place) which contains several hills. Then on my long runs I usually run on The Green line (also at Shelby Farms) which is flat. I also TRY to include going to the gym at least twice a week.

My goal for this marathon is the same as Kayla’s which is to finish. We want to try to stay within an 11 minute to 12 minute pace but if that doesn’t happen we aren’t stressing about it. We want to say we ran a marathon and survived!

stjude how much does it take

I am just so excited to be able to participate in this awesome race. I absolutely love St. Jude and all that they do. I have a close friend with a daughter that regularly goes to St. Jude. So this hospital is very close to my heart. Not only do they not have to pay a cent, the staff at St. Jude is amazing. Always so nice, helpful, and truly cares for the patients. I am so glad that I am able to help support this amazing hospital. stjude marathon kid cheer

I was told that some of the patients come to cheer on the runners during the race! Wow that will be a site to see. I’m not sure if I should include bawling my eyes out during a run into my training plan in order to be more prepared! lol Please help us raise money for this amazing cause by using the links below! Every little bit helps and is appreciated! Thank you so much! Continue to follow our blog for updates on our marathon training mishaps and successes, life, and everything in between.

Love,

Sarah

Donate for Sarah

Donate for Kayla