You Know You're a Real Runner If/When...

Hi folks! How are you doing? 

It's Friday Eve! 

(when you read that, fake like I'm singing it to you because that's how I meant it to come across)

So we've got Friday Eve going for us - is it just me or is this week dragging? Maybe that will mean this weekend will drag too (yeah right...). 

And if you've already subscribed but aren't seeing the emails in your inbox, they are probably going to your junk mail so check there!

Today's workout was a doozy. Like I woke-up and then farted around for 25 minutes avoiding it before I finally forced myself out the door. Just so you have some insight, I typically get up at 5:10 in the morning but I do not bounce out of bed all excited and energetic. Sometimes I hit snooze, but I'm almost always up and out of bed by 5:20, and I don't usually get started with my workout until 5:30-5:50 depending on what it is and how tired I am that morning. So I roll out of bed, go to the bathroom and look on Facebook while I wake-up, get dressed, make my preworkout drink, take some selfies and then I'm usually ready to tackle whatever workout I have planned. This morning I woke up and went to the bathroom and then did this:

That's me, face-down on my bed. I could not even. So I did that for a minute or two and then I finished getting dressed aaaaaand I threw myself on the bed again. Finally I was like, GET UP AND GO. 

That face is the face of someone who is forcing themselves to workout when they really wanted to sleep another hour. 

And that's the face of a person who just realized they have to get out the door RIGHT NOW or they won't have time to do their core workout and meditate after their run. 

So I did it. I went outside and ran my scheduled workout, which was 25 minutes of running at race pace. I don't really have a race planned right now, but know that I want to improve my 10K time so I ran at my 10K race pace based on what my 5K race pace was (THIS is the calculator I use to figure out all of this pace stuff). I warmed up with a 1/2 mile run and then pushed myself to run around an 8:14 pace the rest of the run. Dude...it was so hard. Like I really didn't think I was going to be able to keep up that pace for the entire 25 minutes. I'm talking I really had to push myself to do it and would feel myself slow down a bit here and there. But whenever that would happen I would concentrate on increasing my cadence and would naturally start running faster just by doing that. This is when having a music playlist with high BPM comes in handy because I just try to match my feet to the beat. I did it guys, but man was it hard!

And super sweaty...but I'm pretty sure I could walk 3.5 miles and end up this sweaty afterwards. I'm a sweaty, sweaty beast! Then I did my transverse abdominal workout for my DR that I posted about yesterday (check it out here), stretched, did a really awesome body scan meditation (great for relaxation) and got ready for the day.

While I was running and trying to keep myself from stopping, I came up with the idea for this blog post. There have been a number of times during my running life that I have thought to myself "now THIS makes you a REAL runner" and I knew I wanted to share it with you guys.

Without further ado, you know you're a real runner if/when...

  • You spit on yourself while running because you were too tired to turn your head far enough to the left and it flies back in your face. And instead of being grossed out you just wipe it off and keep going without a moment's hesitation - this is what happened to me this morning and gave me the idea for this post. 
  • You come back from a run in the winter and have snot all over your sleeve/inside of your shirt where you had to wipe your nose during your run. Bonus points if you've actually blown your nose into your shirt *raises hand slowly*
  • You're convinced your child will love running as much as you do so you try to force them to run and sign them up for races without telling them...to be fair, we won this race and he did love that part, but he hates running overall. Which is a shame, because his form is perfect! Maybe someday he'll run with me again. And I can always try to brainwash Jules!
  • You spend over $100 on a race and then spend hours over the course of the next weeks/months looking up every review you can find of the race, studying the course map and elevation, and planning your race day outfit, gear, and fuel. 
  • You'd rather buy new running shoes than any other type of shoes. 
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  • You have a race day hairdo that you always fall back on #pigtailsforlyfe
  • You do everything you can to smile and have at least one photogenic picture during a race even when you feel like dying, but usually end up looking like a troll. I wish I could find the pictures from the first half marathon I ever ran...it was super windy and my face looked like I was in a skydiving picture but in serious pain too. It wasn't cute. This is the only photogenic racing picture I have and I'm kind of mad at myself for not buying it, but I'm a cheapskate and couldn't justify it. 
  • You have favorite items of clothing/equipment that you can't live without on your run. Mine is my Experia running socks. I may or may not wear them at least twice before washing them on a pretty consistent basis because I forget to wash them after my run and refuse to run without them. They're just that comfortable, people! No substitutions!
  • You regularly wake up before the rest of the world and run around for miles in the dark listening to music or podcasts or nothing and aren't even afraid of getting eaten by a werewolf or vampire because you're 99% sure you could out-run them anyway, even though you're normally pretty afraid to be outside in the dark alone. 

You really can't beat the sunrise in the morning. In my opinion it's worth waking up at the buttcrack of dawn and running around in circles for awhile in order to see it. Unless I did end up getting eaten by a beast of some sort, in which case I would say it wasn't really worth it and I should have stayed in bed that day. 

  • You regularly smile and wave at strangers when you pass them and get kind of butt hurt when they don't wave and/or smile back.
  • You've yelled "great job!" to a random person you pass on a run who is running themselves. I always make a point to yell out encouragement to anyone I pass while running who's pushing a stroller...because that ish is hard, yo! And just in case you have any doubt whether anyone will think you're weird for yelling positive stuff at them, I have had it happen to me a bunch of times and it always make me feel so much better/happier. I remember one 9 mile run that was hot AF and I thought I was going to die. Then this random older running dude yelled "you're doing great" to me around mile 6 and it literally made my run turn from crap to awesome. So don't hesitate to encourage each other out there!
  • You run in the rain/snow/sleet/humidity and like it. I remember this run like the back of my hand - I was training for a half-marathon and woke up excited to run. And then it was raining. There was a point in time when I would have just said nevermind and skipped my run, but for this one I put on a hat and went for my scheduled run. And I remember very specifically that I was running with a smile on my face pretty much the entire time and at the end I thought "I'm a real runner now"

Finally, the number one way you will know you're a real runner? If/when you go for a run.

It doesn't matter how long you run or how fast you are, just that you lace up those shoes and if you're me, more that likely dirty socks, and you get out there and run/jog/shuffle. 

And if you have ever wondered if you are a "real" runner when you pass someone who's faster/has cooler running clothes/wears 95 different gadgets/has "13.1" tattooed on their calf muscle, you are one already and have been one ever since you shuffled out there your first time. And you should be proud of yourself because not every does it, even though everyone can.

So kudos to you, runner!!

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That's some positive talk courtesy of me. Maybe I should become a professional motivational speaker or something? Can you say the f word when you do that for a living or is that frowned on? I better stick with blogging (not that I get paid to do this, because I don't). 

Now I'll turn it to you - when did you decide you were a "real" runner? Did you have a turning point like I did while running 8 miles in the rain like a loony tune, or have you always felt you were a runner? Or perhaps you think running is dumb and I'm insane. That's cool too. I respect your opinion. 

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by! 

Behind the Veil

It's Thursday Eve! I hope everyone is ready to push through the rest of this week and conquer it!

The idea for this post came to me as I was prepping for dinner last night. It started when I first got home and saw cat puke on my new living room carpet. Then I kept walking through cat litter the stupid cats like to throw all over the floors. It finally became a must-do when I almost caught the oven on fire due to someone cooking something with grease that spilled all over the bottom and didn't clean it up (it was probably me, since I'm the cook).

When you almost catch your house on fire using your oven, modify and work with what you have! Instead of oven baked chicken thighs, I covered the pan and simmered for 20 minutes. Just as good and no fires!

When you almost catch your house on fire using your oven, modify and work with what you have! Instead of oven baked chicken thighs, I covered the pan and simmered for 20 minutes. Just as good and no fires!

I love reading blogs and catching up with people on Facebook, but too often it looks like everyone has their shit together way more than I do. Their kids always appear showered, well-dressed, and not covered in snot, and their homes are decorated nicely and not covered in cat litter. After reviewing what I've posted on social media recently I see that most of my pictures show some pretty well put-together kids and a nice, clean house. 

Well my friends, I think it's time to go behind the veil, pull back the curtains a bit, and let the truth shine through. This will be picture heavy, but bear with me. 

This swimsuit has been hanging here since the end of September. That's almost 6 months.

This swimsuit has been hanging here since the end of September. That's almost 6 months.

Current laundry situation in our hall - those are all clean (they've since been picked up and put in a laundry basket where they'll probably remain until tomorrow or this weekend)

Current laundry situation in our hall - those are all clean (they've since been picked up and put in a laundry basket where they'll probably remain until tomorrow or this weekend)

An example of one our closets; I'd estimate that 50% of them look like this. It's like a junk drawer...but a closet so there's room for so much more crap!

An example of one our closets; I'd estimate that 50% of them look like this. It's like a junk drawer...but a closet so there's room for so much more crap!

What's that all over and IN the toilet you ask? It's freaking cat litter. The asshole cats like to do their business in their litter box and then drink water from our toilet, making an even bigger mess in the process.

What's that all over and IN the toilet you ask? It's freaking cat litter. The asshole cats like to do their business in their litter box and then drink water from our toilet, making an even bigger mess in the process.

It's hard not to be embarrassed whenever a neighbor walks by and sees the state of the garage.

It's hard not to be embarrassed whenever a neighbor walks by and sees the state of the garage.

It feels like I spend every single day from 5am to 9pm constantly mom-ing, cleaning, helping, managing, and running myself ragged. I generally take a 1 hour lunch at work and will spend time catching up on social media, reading the news, and taking ridiculous snapchats of myself, however my social media is filled with posts like the ones I mentioned earlier. Everyone I know is a pinterest professional, has perfect kids, they party way harder than I ever could, eat so much healthier and more than I can imagine while spending half of what I spend at the store, have immaculate houses, super cool jobs, they travel to so many awesome places way more than I could ever envision, AND they don't have any effing wrinkles on their face. How is this possible?

How everyone on social media wants you to think they look after their 5am workout - suck it in, turn to get the right angle, filter the crap out of it. 

How everyone on social media wants you to think they look after their 5am workout - suck it in, turn to get the right angle, filter the crap out of it. 

It's Not. 

How I really look after my 5am workout #nofilter #mascaraface

How I really look after my 5am workout #nofilter #mascaraface

Social media is not real life, and the stuff that people post is usually not their reality. People almost always post only the good stuff, which is understandable. However since all of us are only seeing the good things that everyone else is experiencing, it has set all of us up to constantly compare ourselves to each other and wonder why we're not as good/thin/rich/traveled/well-rested/cat-litter-free as they are.

I now realize that I'm just as guilty of this and most of my pictures and posts are filled with rainbows and unicorn farts. Don't get me wrong, I like for things to be as clean as possible, but this will often result in me being on my feet from the second I get home from work playing, sweeping the floor, talking, cooking, cleaning, bathing the baby, cleaning some more, making dumb snapchats with Justin, before finally collapsing in an exhausted heap on the couch or bed wondering where my time went and how is it already 9:30 and I haven't even watched anything but Moana all day long. And then even with all of that, our house still looks like the pictures above. Guess what? I. Don't. Care. 

Having been a single mother for most of my son's life, I quickly learned that in order to keep both of us sane and to be the best mom I can be, I have to choose my battles. Having an immaculate house is one of those battles I have chosen not to fight and here's why:

  • My kids aren't going to remember that their laundry was always folded or that the closets were organized. They're going to remember that mom would always take the time to play with them, read them a story, crack poop jokes, or cuddle on the couch. 
  • When I die, I don't think my last thought will be "oh, if only the garage was better organized". I want my last thought to be, "girl, you LIVED". 
  • My husband isn't going to love me for my pantry organizing skills (even if they are pretty sick). My husband loves me because I always take the time to think of ways to make him and the kids feel special, whether it's making some ridiculous cake I've found on Pinterest that won't look anything like the picture but will taste good or picking up their favorite candy when I'm at the store. 

So I urge you to stop the comparison game and know that no one's life is perfect. Figure out which battles are really important to you and those who matter the most to you and let the other battles go. If you have to choose between having a clean closet or cuddling your babies I hope you choose to cuddle your babies. The closet/pantry/garage will always be there and it will get done, I promise. It may not happen until you move or die, but it will happen. But for now take time to slow down and appreciate what you do have, don't compare it to what anyone else has, and breathe it in...unless you're standing next to the litter box, in which case that ish probably does need to get cleaned so go ahead and do that. 

Look, a snot-free baby picture! Sure, she's not smiling and has some serious RBF, but 1 out of 2 ain't bad!

Look, a snot-free baby picture! Sure, she's not smiling and has some serious RBF, but 1 out of 2 ain't bad!

So I turn it to you - do you feel trapped in the comparison game sometimes, or are you able to just ignore it all and not worry about it? Also is your house immaculate and if so, teach me your ways. Or is it just a veil like mine? Don't hold back and let me know your secrets!