One Christmas Down: Weekend Recap

One Christmas down, three more to go! 

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We began Christmas celebrations this past weekend.  Saturday we headed to Norman for a day filled with family, food, and games!  Everyone is so spread out, so we rarely get to see some of them. 

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I got up at 7, so I could get myself and everything that we needed to take ready.  I made chicken dip.  I made it two ways – ranch chicken and buffalo chicken.  I had never made this dip before, so I played around with the seasonings.  Basically I used the same ingredients for each dip, with the exception of the buffalo sauce.  For the dip I used a 12 oz can of chunk chicken, a dry ranch mix packet, and an 8 ounce block of cream cheese.  I mixed all of this together in the mixer, and then I added in about a cup of ranch dressing and probably a tablespoon of cayenne pepper.  Then for the buffalo dip, I used all of the same ingredients minus the cayenne pepper.  I added about a cup of Frank’s hot sauce instead.  It wasn’t too spicy, and it had a good flavor.

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We loaded the car, and were on the road by 9.  We were having Christmas at Jeremy’s cousin’s house in Norman. 

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As soon as we got there, I got busy in the kitchen helping prepare the food.  I made little smokies, and then just helped with whatever anyone needed.  Everyone started arriving around 11, and slowly trickled in.  There was at least 40 people there!  Once everyone was there, we ate lunch.  We had finger foods and we had soooooo much food!   There was an enormous assortment of dips and spreads. 

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There were sausage balls, meatballs, little smokies, and chicken wings.   

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There was salad, corn salad, pasta salad, bacon wrapped dates, and turkey and asparagus roll-ups.  We had ham and cheese sliders, lasagna, garlic bread, shrimp, barbeque baked chicken, and pigs in a blanket. 

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This kind of food is so filling and a little goes a long ways! 

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For dessert there were sugar cookies, cakes, lemon bars, pecan bars, and apple pie bars. 

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There was also so much candy!  Jeremy’s aunt makes it all, and it is the BEST candy I have ever eaten!  She should seriously sell it! 

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I was so full when I got done eating.  I feel like I snack all day when we do finger foods. 

After cleaning everything up, we played dirty Santa.  There were 29 people that played and I had number 21! 


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I was going to steal a Yeti cup, and it would have been frozen, but the person in front of me did.  So, I took a chance and opened a present, and I got a box of oranges. 

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My father-in-law had gotten a Rustic Cuff, and the person after me stole from him, so he took the oranges.  I ended up with an Academy gift card, and Jeremy got an Armor All car cleaning set. 

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When Dirty Santa was over, we played another game called Left Right Center.  You start with 3 dollars (or quarters, or chips, or really 3 of anything) and you roll dice. 

He was posing! ;)
He was posing! 😉

If you roll a dot, you get to keep your money, but if you roll a L, R, or C you have to pass the money.  The last person with money left wins it all.  Last year I won when we played with quarters, but I have never won the dollars. 

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We played a couple of rounds of this, and then we spent the rest of the afternoon visiting with everyone. 

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Around 6, we set all the food back out so everyone that was still there could eat dinner.  I wasn’t very hungry, but I ate some corn salad and turkey and asparagus roll ups.  I was miserable after that! 

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After dinner, everyone left except us and Jeremy’s aunt and uncle.  We watched a couple of movies and hung out until around 10.  We had so much fun! 

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We are so blessed to have such a great family and I am so grateful to have all of them in my life! 

Family Christmas

I love that everyone comes together to celebrate and spend the day together!   I enjoyed every minute of the day – laughing, talking, and eating way to much!  It went by way too fast, and I wasn’t ready for it to end. 

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I hope your holiday is full of love and laughter!

Merry Christmas Everyone!  

Marathon Training Week 3 Recap

Marathon Training Week 3

Week 3 of Marathon Training is over.  My short runs during the week were easy and I got them done with no problems.  However, my long run this weekend has been a challenge to get it done.  Here’s how my week went: 

Monday – Rest day – I did take Jake for a walk.  

Tuesday – I had a 3 mile run scheduled.  I didn’t have a lot of time on Tuesday, so I ran a fast.  The weather was beautiful.  I’m loving this 60 degree weather in December!  I ran 3.4 miles with a pace of 8:35. Week 3 Marathon Training Done!

Wednesday – I ran 4 miles.  I spoke to soon yesterday about the 60 degree weather.  Today it was cold!  I guess a cold front came in during the night.  It was 49 degrees, and there was a chilly wind blowing really hard.  Once my lungs adjusted to the cold, I had a really good run!  I had a pace of 9:55.  I think I run better when it’s cold.  Once I get adjusted, I think the cold makes it easier to breathe.  My run seemed pretty easy.  I’m only in my third week of training, but I’m already feeling stronger.  Two weeks ago I felt like I was starting from scratch.  I had no base, and I felt like I was so out of shape.  But, now I am feeling a lot better, and each run is getting easier. 

Week 3 Marathon Training Done

Thursday – I ran 3 miles.  It was cold again!  It was 48 degrees. I had to wear a headband and gloves.  I also got chased by some dogs. They are friendly once they get close, but I still get nervous when they come running at me. I had a pace of 9:43 today. 

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Friday – This was a rest day.  I didn’t run, but I took Jake for a walk.  It was so cold!  

Week 3 Marathon Training Done!

Saturday – I was supposed to run 5 miles today, but we had a family Christmas out of town, so that didn’t happen.  We had to leave town by 9, and in order to get myself and everything ready I had to get up at 7.  I don’t like running in the dark, so there was just no way to get those 5 miles in.  

Sunday – I had planned all week to get up Sunday and run the 5 miles.  But, that didn’t happen either.  I woke up at 3 am throwing up, and was sick most of the night.  I spent most of the night in the bathroom floor, so my body is sore and achy today.  I don’t know if I’m sick, or if it was something that I ate.  I took some nausea medicine, but that really didn’t help much.  I laid in bed until 12:30 because I was too nauseous to get up.  Once I finally got up and showered, I felt better, but not well enough to run.  So, I will run the 5 miles on Monday.  

This is one reason why I really like this training plan.  With 3 days off each week, I can move my runs around when things come up so I can still get them in.  This next week is going to be a huge challenge to get all of my runs in with Christmas, but I’m going to try my best.  This is one reason why I picked the 18 week plan, when I actually had 21 weeks until the race.  So, if I miss several runs, I can do a week over and I will still have a little extra time before I start tapering. 

For this weekly update I’m linking up with Holly of HoHo Runs and Tricia of MissSippiPiddlin for their Weekly Wrap. I’m also linking up with the other Weekly Wrap bloggers.

Merry Christmas Everyone!  I hope you have a wonderful week! 

What challenges do you face in your training?

Countdown to Christmas

The final countdown to Christmas is here!  We have 1 week!  I can’t believe it!  I am pretty much ready, but I do have a few last minute gifts to pick up next week.  Since I have had such a busy week, I did a mid-week recap on Wednesday, and now I’ll catch you up on what I have done the rest of the week.  😉

Thursday morning, we were served breakfast at work.  There were donuts, biscuits and gravy, sausage, and sausage balls.  I had a sausage ball and a biscuit with gravy.  I only ate a few bites of it.  The gravy was spicy and it had really spicy sausage in it, and I knew it would hurt my stomach. 

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I ate a Subway kids meal for lunch.  I had a turkey and cheddar sandwich on wheat with spinach, bell peppers, and mustard, and a half a bag of Baked Lays. 

After work I went straight home and ran.  The temperature dropped in the middle of my run, and a really strong north wind started blowing.  It was freezing!!  It just made me run faster!  I ran 3 miles.  Then I took Jake for a very quick walk, and we ran into a opossum.  It looked angry; I don’t think it liked having it’s picture taken.  I had to hold Jake back because he wanted to play with it. 

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Then I got ready to go to a Christmas party with the girls I work with.  One of them hosted it at her house, and it was just for the girls!  It’s always fun to get together with them outside of work.  We had decided that we would wear pj’s or sweats, and just be comfortable. 

I had to pick up the meat, so I got there really early and helped set up.  The table and decorations were beautiful! 

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Once everyone was there we ate!  We had smoked chicken, baked potatoes, and salad. 

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While we were fixing our plates, we noticed that it was snowing!  There were huge flakes coming down, and they were covering the ground.  But, it wasn’t cold enough for it to stick, and it didn’t snow very long.  I tried to take a picture through the window, but the snow blurred and you can see everyone’s reflection.  

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For dessert we had my snowball cookies, baklava, and some kind of toffee bark.  Our host also made the best apple cider!  I look forward to it every year!  I had 2 cups of it!  I’ll get her recipe and post it soon. 

Not much left!
Not much left!

Then we played dirty Santa.  You never know what you’re going to get with this group! Countdown to Christmas New Blog Post Run and Live Happy (2)


Last year I ended up with a reindeer that pooped candy.  The best gift of the night was a talking toilet paper roll holder.  It was hilarious!  I ended up with a box of stress relief.  I got a candle, back scratcher, cooling eye mask, fuzzy socks, and a bobble head reindeer.  

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I am so blessed to have such a great group of women to work with.  We had such a good time, and my face and sides hurt from laughing so hard!  I didn’t get home until around 10:30. 

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Jake was waiting on me, and wanted to play!  Jeremy had games at a school 2 hours away, so Jake and I played and watched the new Big Bang Theory while we waited on him to get home.  He got home a little after 11, and I went to bed then. 

This morning, I got the cutest gift!  It is pasta that is in the shape of little runners and running shoes! 

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It is so cute; I don’t want to cook it.

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This afternoon I went shopping for a shirt to wear to our Christmas tomorrow.  I bought a Santa shirt on ebay,

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but it fits funny, so I wanted something new. I went to Rue 21 and Maurices.  I found a couple of things, so I’ll decide in the morning.  

Then I came home and took Jake for a walk. Countdown to Christmas New Blog Post Run and Live Happy (13) It got really cold and I am not liking it.  

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He, on the other hand, loves it!

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After walking Jake, I came home and cleaned up my house and am now sitting here with Jake laying on my legs while I try to talk to you!  

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What’s the best dirty Santa gift you have gotten?

Easy Pecan Snowball Cookies

 These cookies have been a favorite of mine for a long time.  I usually have all the ingredients on hand, so they are easy to throw together.  I can have them done in about half an hour! 

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Sunday night, I needed something quick to bake for the baby shower I hosted on Monday.  So, I dug through my pantry and found all the ingredients and whipped these up!  I also made them again last night for the Christmas party I am going to tonight. 

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These cookies are probably the easiest cookies you can ever make.  They also make a ton, so they are good for a crowd!  I made 65 cookies last night.  How many you make will depend on how big or small you make your balls. 


They have so many different names – Mexican wedding cookies, snowballs, Russian teacakes.  I remember making these with my friends in junior high.  We were studying foreign countries, and this was one of the popular foods from whichever country we were studying.  I loved them, and have made them many, many times since.  The best part about them is how incredibly easy they are to make. Easy Pecan Snowball Cookies (12)

These little bites of heaven taste divine, and just melt in your mouth!  They are not overly sweet.  They have a buttery flavor, and are also a little nutty.  They are soft and tender, with a little crunch from the pecans.  You won’t be able to eat just one! 

To make pecan snowball cookies you need: 

2 and half cups butter (room temperature)

1 cup powdered sugar (plus more for coating)

3 cups flour

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vanilla

2 ½ cups finely chopped pecans

First, preheat your oven to 325 degrees.  Then line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil. 

Next, cream together your butter and powdered sugar. 

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Slowly add flour, vanilla, and pecans and mix well.  It makes a shortbread type dough, and it is very thick. 

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After you have the dough ready, use your hands to roll it into small balls about a 1/2”.  (You get a little messy!)

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Place them on a baking sheet 1” apart and bake for 18 minutes or until the bottoms of the cookies are light brown color. 

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Once you pull them out of the oven, let them cool for a couple of minutes.  Then, while they are still warm, roll them in powdered sugar to coat. 

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You can place them on a wire cooling rack, or back on the baking sheet. 

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When they are completely cooled, roll them in the powered sugar again. 

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Then it’s time to enjoy!! 

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Halfway Done – Let’s Catch Up

Hi All!  The week is halfway over!  Since I have so much stuff going on this week, I thought I would do a mid-week recap so I didn’t have a ridiculously long post on Friday! 

So, let’s catch up.  Monday morning I ate oatmeal with brown sugar and dried cranberries in it.  I am on an oatmeal kick lately.  I find something that I like, and I eat it all the time until I’m tired of it. 

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For lunch I had baked ground turkey with steamed asparagus and broccoli.  For a snack, I had some homemade caramel corn.

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It was so good, and I hard time not eating all of it!  After work, I helped host a baby shower for a friend. She is due at the end of January and is having a boy. 

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It was a nice shower, and she got a huge gift.  Everyone went in and donated enough money for her to buy a stroller!  After that was over, I went to visit my mom and grandma.  My mom’s cat was not impressed that I was there.  She ignored me the whole time! 

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My mom sent me home with a plate of homemade treats.  This is what makes this time of year so hard!  It’s really hard to stick to a diet or watch what you eat when there are constant temptations. 

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My stomach hurt so bad Monday night because I feel like I ate junk all day.  I had that caramel corn and at the shower I had some punch and a lemon bar and a snowball cookie.  I’m not used to eating all of this, so it’s just so much at once.  I also tried a bite of my mom’s fudge.  I have been craving that, and I almost bought a kit to make it, but I knew I would probably eat it all, so I didn’t. 

I made it home in time to take Jake for a quick walk before dark.  He didn’t want to go in, but I made him because it got cold after dark. 12-16-15 Mid Week Catch Up (7)

After our walk, I wrapped a bunch of presents and Jake kept trying to unwrap them. (While I was wrapping them.) 

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He kept taking the scraps and shredding them.  He had fun, but I had a mess to clean up!

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After wrapping presents, I snuggled up in a blanket and watched TV for awhile.  I was flipping between NCIS Los Angeles and the Adele special.  I recorded Adele, so I will watch the whole thing later this week.  


When Jeremy got home from his basketball games, I fixed him some eggs and bacon.  Jake thought he might share. 

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Then he pouted when he didn’t get anything. 

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I didn’t eat anything for dinner.  All the junk I ate all day really made my stomach hurt.  So I just drank a ton of water to try and make it feel better. 

I stayed up late to watch Tina Fey on Jimmy Fallon.  They are hilarious together! 

I’m sure you can guess what I had for breakfast Tuesday morning…more oatmeal!  And for lunch….baked ground turkey and veggies. 

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After work I rushed home so I could fit in a quick run before going with Jeremy to his basketball games. 

12-16-15 Mid Week Catch Up (21)My best friend’s son was playing, so I went to hang out with her.  The boys game was a nail biter.  It was a one point game for the entire game, and they tied it up in the last few seconds.  It went into overtime and finally one team pulled ahead.   Games like that stress me out, but I had a lot of fun! 

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We got home around 10:45, and I was pretty hungry.  I ate some cheerios and went to bed. 

This morning I woke up 45 minutes late!  I was so tired last night that I forgot to set my alarm when I went to bed.  So, I only had half an hour to get ready for work.  I made some oatmeal on the way out the door.  Then for lunch I had ground turkey and veggies. 

Today was ugly Christmas sweater day at work.  I borrowed a sweater and some light up necklaces from my mom. 12-16-15 Mid Week Catch Up (6)

After work I stopped by Walmart to grab a couple of things.  I was waiting in line to check out and a friend came over to say hi.  She gave me a hug before she left, and the old man behind me asked if he could have a hug too.  I kind of politely laughed, and he kept on!   He said it seemed like I was the designated hug giver, and he would like one too.  Then he told me that I sure was a pretty one. He was kind of creepy!  

Then I went home and ran 4 miles. It got cold since yesterday.  It was 49 degrees!2015-12-16 17.50.10  After that, I took Jake for a walk.  He ran and ran and ran and ran!  2015-12-16 17.50.03We stayed out until I was frozen!  

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He didn't want to take a pic
He didn’t want to take a pic

Jeremy doesn’t have games tonight, and he went hunting.  He will be home early so I’m cooking dinner.  I’m not sure what he wants yet, but it will probably be some kind of taco or burrito.  I am also baking some more snowball cookies for a Christmas party that I’m going to tomorrow night.  I’ll post the recipe tomorrow. 

Do you eat treats this time of year, or are you able to pass on them?

Attack of the Ugly Christmas Sweaters

Hi Everyone!  How was your weekend?  I hope you had a great one!  I hope you’re ready for Christmas..because it’s almost here!  I’m a little closer to being ready now than I was.  I went shopping with my friend, Jen, this weekend and I got a few things crossed off of my list.   

Let’s catch up on what I did this weekend. 

Around 4:30 am Saturday morning, I woke up with a horrible headache.  I never have a headache, so this was weird.  I got up and took some Tylenol and went back to bed.  When my alarm went off at 7, I was planning on running.  But, my head still hurt…bad!  So, I took some more Tylenol and laid in bed until 8.  My head was feeling better once I got up to get ready, and I was glad because I was really excited about having a girls day and getting some shopping done! 

Jen picked me up around 9:45 and we headed to Oklahoma City.  We stopped in Midwest City first to go to Old Navy.  We were searching for some shirts for the hubby’s.  Jeremy needs one to wear to his family Christmas on Saturday.  Next we headed down to Dick’s Sporting Goods.  I was looking for Jeremy some shoes, and she was looking for a YETI for her husband.  We spent a while in there, but we didn’t buy anything. 

We ate lunch after leaving Dick’s.  We went to Chick-Fil-A.  I love their chicken nuggets. 

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I think if we had one of those in my town, I would eat there at least twice a week!  I have also decided that honey mustard is my favorite dipping sauce right now. 

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When we finished lunch, we headed for OKC.  We went to the Red Coyote Running store.  I loved their Christmas “tree”.  

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I was going to exchange my new shoes.  I have worn them 6 times, and they are starting to come apart. 

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I took my shoes in, and the girl that helped me said that the Ravenna 6’s had done the same thing, but she hadn’t seen that on the 7’s yet.  She said they would exchange them, but she didn’t have any 7’s in stock.  She told me I could get a different brand, but I didn’t want to.  I only wear Brooks!  I told her that, but she still brought out a couple of other brands and I refused them.  She said that the spot shouldn’t spread, but if it does, Brooks is running a special so I have 90 days to exchange them.  I was a little disappointed that I didn’t get new ones, but I really like the Ravenna 7’s, so I wanted to keep them.  If that spot spreads then I may have to exchange them.  But, I had posted a picture of them on Instagram, and when I got home Saturday night, I had a message from Brooks to call them.  So, I will and we’ll see what happens!  And that is why I love Brooks!

After leaving the running store, we went to the mall, and HOLY COW!!  It was absolute madness!!  We were stuck in traffic trying to find a parking spot for at least half an hour!  But, once we got inside it wasn’t too bad.  We saw so many weird things in the mall.  I lost count of how many people we saw with bright blue hair.  I have decided that it really doesn’t matter what you wear anymore, because anything goes! 

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We went in Dillard’s, and had so much fun laughing at all of the Christmas sweaters.  But, what was even funnier was that they were $99!! 

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I can’t believe anyone would actually buy them.  The light up ones would definitely be a hit at an Ugly Sweater Party! 

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I found this fun Christmas headband in one of the stores! 

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I really wanted my picture made with Santa, but there was a line, and we thought people might frown at us if we sat on Santa’s lap! 

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We spent a couple of hours at the mall just walking around and in out of different stores. 

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I didn’t buy anything!  I was shocked!  But, I was trying to buy gifts, but I was having a hard time figuring out what to buy. 

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And, I felt bad buying for myself since I still needed gifts.  Jen bought a few things, and then we had to go to Pottery Barn to pick up her new dishes.  While we were waiting on her dishes, we saw the mall cop!  This really made me laugh because it reminded me of the movie Mall Cop!  I have been in this mall a million times and have never seen one of those. 

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Once we got the dishes, we headed back to Norman to go to Academy.  We spent a while in there, and we both found some gifts.  I also found Jeremy a shirt that I hoped he could wear to Christmas.

Then we went to Metro Shoe Warehouse and spent forever in there! 

What is this?
What is this?

I bought Jeremy something in there for Christmas.  I’m not telling what it is in case he reads this!  I did try to buy me some new TOMS, because when I put mine on Saturday morning, this is what they looked like. 

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I guess they are a little worn out!  But, they were out of my size, so I’ll have to order some.  I also want to order some of their wedge booties.  They are super cute!

Right across from Metro Shoe is a cupcake shop that I am obsessed with!  It’s called Gigi’s cupcakes, and they have the BEST strawberry cupcakes.  Jen and I used to go there every time we were in Norman, but we decided to pass this time.  I figured with all the holiday treats that I will be having the next couple of weeks that I really didn’t need a cupcake. 

Next, we ran by the Norman Dillard’s.  Jen was looking for a sweater for her mom.  I found another gift for Jeremy!  I was really excited about this one.  I got a major deal!  It is usually $55 and it was marked down to $37!  I am finally done buying for him.  Now all I have left is my dad and grandpa and they are super easy because all they ever want is gift cards to restaurants. 

I think I had such a hard time buying gifts because no one will tell me what they want this year.  I asked my mom and her response was, “nothing that I have to dust.”  Thanks mom!  And, I asked my grandma and her response was, “a half a million dollars.”  I’ll get right on that!  So, I didn’t get any gifts for my family. 

Then we ran to Ross so Jen could look for dog beds.  I found Jeremy a new shirt in there!  But, Jen didn’t find any beds, so we went to PetSmart.  All of the hamsters were sleeping, so I watched the birds while she looked at beds. 

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And, finally before heading home we stopped at McAlister’s for dinner.  I had a cup of potato soup and a half of a turkey melt.  It was really good! 

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Once we got home, Jeremy was starving, so we went to Applebees.  Some of his friends were in there so we sat next to them to visit.  Jeremy ordered a ton of wings, and I ate 4 of them.  They tasted good at the time, but by the time we left my stomach hurt so bad, and so did his.  We hung out with his friends until midnight, and closed the place down!  I was so tired!  While we were sitting there, I kept getting prank called.  I mean seriously people, we’re adults!  I haven’t prank called anyone since I was in Jr. High!  They called probably 5 times, and every time we would pick up the phone there was a recording saying, “Call the Po-Po”.  And, we could hear people laughing in the background.  It was obnoxious! 

Sunday morning we slept until 11:30.  I guess we were tired!  As soon as I got up and ready, we headed to town to go get everything we needed for all the week’s activities and Christmas next Saturday.  This was a HUGE chunk marked off of my to do list! 

We also went shopping for a shirt for Jeremy.  The one I bought was way too long!  But, we didn’t find one.  We spent all afternoon at Wal-Mart and Aldi, and now we have everything we need for this week.

When we got home and unloaded everything, we took Jake for a walk.  We fit that in right before it started raining! 

Then I got busy baking lemon bars for the baby shower that I hosted today. 

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I also baked some ground turkey for my lunch this week.  I steamed some asparagus and broccoli to go with it.  This time I seasoned the turkey with Cavendars, Lawry’s seasoning salt, and a little bit of Mrs. Dash Southwestern Chipotle. 

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The box of lemon bars didn’t make very many, so I also made some pecan snowball cookies.  I will be making them again for a party I’m going to Thursday night, so I’ll post the recipe later this week. 

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After I got the cookies done, I made some buffalo chicken dip.  I am supposed to take it to Christmas this weekend, and I have never made it, so we wanted to try it first.  It was good! 

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Then, for dinner I made some chicken, bacon, and ranch quesadillas. 

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Finally, before I went to bed, I got a few Christmas presents wrapped.  And then we played with Jake.  He was mad because I made him wear his Santa hat, and he ignored me when I tried to take his picture. 

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I had such a fun weekend, and now I’m ready for this week to be over because I’m ready for Christmas!





Would you wear your pj’s to the mall?

Week 2 Marathon Training


Week 2 Marathon Training Recap

Week 2 of marathon training is done!  This week I was really stressed and feeling a lot of anxiety about getting my runs in.   I think it was because we were so busy and I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to get them done.  Then of course I start worrying that if I miss some, I will not be ready for a race in April.   I told myself that was ridiculous!  Even though it stresses me out, this is why I like having a training plan, because I will do it instead of finding excuses not too. 

Here is what my plan was supposed to be this week:

Mon              Tues                      Wed                      Thurs                     Fri                           Sat                          Sun

Rest               3 mi                        3 mi                        3 mi                        Rest                       7 mi                        Cross


Here is what my week actually looked like:

Mon              Tues                      Wed                      Thurs                     Fri                           Sat                          Sun

Rest               3 mi                        3 mi                        Rest                       7 mi                        3 mi                        Cross


Tuesday’s run was really good.  It was slow, but I felt good and I didn’t have any pain or get tired.  I ran 3.2 miles at a 10:30 pace.  It was a great run!  The weather was perfect.  It was 72 degrees, and I got to wear shorts!  When I was finished, I went home and iced and stretched. 

Week 2 Marathon Training

Wednesday’s run was not as good.  It started out bad, and I struggled the whole time.  My body felt tired, and my foot was bothering me.  It wasn’t painful, it just felt uncomfortable.  I ran 3.1 miles with a pace of 11:26.  I did stop to pet and take a picture of this mini cougar!  I have never seen a cat with this coloring.  It is pretty.  It was really sweet too. 

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When I was done, I took Jake for a walk and then iced and stretched.  I did not take a picture when I finished because it was such a bad run, and I was just ready for it to be done!  

Thursday I just could not run.  When I woke up that morning, I felt like I had been hit by a truck.  My whole body ached.  My back hurt, and it was hurting down my hips and into my legs.  I hurt my back a couple of years ago, and every now and then it bothers me.  Usually it isn’t a big deal.  My foot was also hurting.  I took some ibuprofen and hoped that it would feel better later in the day.  Unfortunately, it didn’t.  So, I decided not to run and make it worse, but to rest and hopefully it would get better.  I stretched a lot and iced my foot. 

Friday morning when I woke up, I felt 100 times better!  My body wasn’t hurting anymore at all, and neither was my foot.  I decided to run 3 miles to make up for Thursday, but I once I hit 3, I felt like I was just warmed up.  I knew I was going shopping on Saturday, and we were leaving early.  I had been stressing all day about what time I was going to have to get up to fit in my 7 miles.  So, I just went ahead and got them done!  I did have a couple of breaks during my second mile.  It lasted 16 minutes!  First, my neighbor stopped me to talk, and then I had a phone call that I had to take. 

One of the couples that live near me is always so encouraging!  I love running into them when they are out working in their yard or walking.  They always tell me what a great job I am doing!  Friday I ran into the man, and he said that he looked up the word discipline in the dictionary, and my picture was next to it!  I thought it was sweet! 

They finally started pouring asphalt on my road on Thursday.  I was the first one to run on it on Friday!!  It was pretty nice, but there isn’t any traffic because my road is still closed unless you live on it.  So, it was really nice to be able to run and not have to jump in the ditch! 

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I took Jake for a walk until it was too dark to be out.  He ran and ran!  I love getting to see him running around happy.  Then I went home and iced, stretched and massaged both of my legs. 

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I was really proud of myself for this run.  I was nervous last week about my 6 miles, but this one seemed to just come easy.  I think I had so much on my mind, that it was more therapy than training.  It was exactly what I needed! 

Marathon Training Week 2

Saturday morning my alarm went off at 7:00.  I was going to get up and get in 3 miles before I went shopping with a friend, but I had the WORST headache!  I had woken up at 4:30 with one, and I took some tylenol hoping it would make it go away, but it was still there when I woke up.  So I laid in bed for another hour before I had to get ready to go.  I never have a headache, so I don’t know if I just didn’t eat enough after my run Friday night, or if I was just really tired, or getting sick???  It was weird, and I fought it all day long Saturday.  

Sunday was a cross training day, so I went for a walk.  I still had a headache on and off all day.  

I’m ready for next week.  It’s going to be a challenge because we have so much Christmas stuff going on, but I’m looking forward to it all, and I WILL get my runs in!  

Here is what next week looks like:

Mon              Tues                      Wed                      Thurs                     Fri                           Sat                          Sun

Rest               3 mi                        4 mi                        3 mi                        Rest                       5 mi                        Cross


For this weekly update I’m linking up with Holly of HoHo Runs and Tricia of MissSippiPiddlin for their Weekly Wrap. I’m also linking up with the other Weekly Wrap bloggers.



The Week is Finally Over – Weekly Recap

Hi Everyone!  It’s been a really busy week.  But, I guess it always is right before Christmas!  This week did go by fast, but it was a very stressful week.  This was basketball tournament week around our area.  So, that meant that Jeremy had games every day and night this week.  Some days he did 6 games a day.  It’s just hard when he is gone when I get home from work, and then I am asleep when he gets home at night.  I feel like I saw him for about 30 minutes total this week.  So, here is what my week looked like. 

I did a picture post about my Monday.  (You can see it here.)  It was a rest day from running.  So, I took a rest day from running and everything else!  I took Jake for a long walk, and then we hung out being lazy. 

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I was really hungry after our walk, so I made an omelet egg scramble with bacon and cheese, with a side of toast and hash browns.  Then, I relaxed and got caught up on Married at First Sight:  The First Year.  I love reality TV! 

Tuesday morning I fixed some oatmeal for breakfast.  I was out of the instant packets I have been eating, so I made regular oatmeal with some brown sugar and dried cranberries.  For lunch I had another Smart Ones Chicken Parmesan.  That is probably my favorite right now.  Tuesday afternoon I was getting ready to take Jake for a walk and when we went outside, the most random thing was in our yard!!

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A potbelly pig!  I have begged Jeremy for a long time to get me one of these, but after seeing it, I think I have changed my mind.  It was cute, and really friendly.  But, it was weird.  Jake loved it! 

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It came right up to him and was wagging it’s tail.  It walked all over our yard, and Jake just followed it.  I put Jake in the backyard, and the pig went to the fence trying to get in with him.  I got some corn and led it back down to the house that I think it lives at, and once it ate the corn, it came running back to our house. 

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When the pig finally went home, Jake and I went for a walk.  

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He got mad because when we got to the other side of the pasture, he could see all the puppies down the road, but they wouldn’t come to see him. 

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After I walked Jake, I went for a run.  I ran 3 miles.  Then I went home and ate a bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich, with a side of hash browns.  I am really liking hash browns lately.  

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Wednesday morning I fixed some oatmeal with a stevia packet and some mini chocolate chips in it.  And for lunch I finally tried the Fit and Active lasagna meal from Aldi.  It was not good!  It tasted as bad as it looks!  So not worth 97 cents.  I will not be eating this again. 

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Wednesday afternoon I ran a bunch of errands.  We had a new store open up in our town that sells name brand products that have been damaged or are dirty and can’t be sold in stores.  Jeremy wanted me to go by there because he heard they had a bunch of hunting stuff.   I went it, and it really stressed me out.  There were folding tables set up all over the building, and the tables had boxes on them overflowing with stuff.  None of it was organized or sorted.  It was kind of overwhelming.  I walked around for about 10 minutes and left.  I was on a mission to try and find Jeremy a new shirt to wear to his family Christmas next Saturday.  I went to the two stores in town that sell men’s clothing, but neither had anything he would wear.  One of them sells clothes for older men, and then we have a Rue 21, and he won’t wear anything in there.  I did not find him any shirts. 

When I got home Wednesday afternoon, I ran 3 miles.  Then I took Jake for a walk. 

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This time a couple of the puppies came through the fence and played with him.  He loved it!  We really need to get him a friend. 

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I was planning on cooking dinner Wednesday night, but Jeremy had done 6 games that day and he ate at the gym.  Since he wasn’t hungry, I fixed me a grilled cheese and turkey sandwich.  Then I curled up in bed to play on Pinterest, but I fell asleep! 

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Thursday morning when I woke up, I literally rolled out of the bed.  My body felt like I had been run over.  It hurt so bad everywhere.  My back was hurting, and the pain was going down through my hips and into my legs.  I hurt my back a couple of years ago, and every now and then it bothers me.  It usually doesn’t last long, and it isn’t very bad.  On top of that, my foot was hurting as well.  I took some ibuprofen and did some stretches that usually help my back.  I happened to look out the window while I was getting ready, and the sunrise was beautiful.  I immediately went outside to take a picture.  The pinks and purples were absolutely gorgeous! 

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I was hoping that by later in the day, my body would quit hurting and I could run.  Unfortunately, that didn’t happen.  I hurt bad all day, so I decided that instead of running and risking getting hurt, I would take a rest day and hopefully it would make me feel better.

Since I wasn’t running, I went with Jeremy’s dad to Jeremy’s basketball games.  It was a tournament, and his games didn’t start until 7:30. 

Watch the game and quit looking at me! :)
Watch the game and quit looking at me! 🙂

I didn’t have time to eat before we left, and I knew I wouldn’t eat when we got home because it would be so late.  I don’t like concession stand junk, so I had a couple of chocolate chip cookies instead.  😉  (I’m sure that’s not much better.)  They were baking them fresh in the lobby, and they smelled heavenly!  My father-in-law went to get us some, and he came back with 8 cookies!  There were delicious, but I stopped at 2.  We got home close to 11, and I went straight to bed.  I was tired, but couldn’t wind down, so I watched the new episode of Big Bang Theory and then I went to sleep. 

I must have slept hard last night because when I woke up today I felt refreshed.  I wasn’t tired at all, and my body didn’t hurt!  I fixed some oatmeal with dried cranberries for breakfast. 

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Then for lunch I had the alfredo meal from Aldi.  It was pretty good.  I also had a small piece of strawberry cake at work. 

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While I was eating lunch, my friend texted me and asked if I wanted to go shopping with her tomorrow.  Of course I said yes!  She is the one we had the baby shower for last weekend.  She needs to go pick up some more baby stuff and get some Christmas shopping done.  While I was talking to her, I realized that I forgot her birthday.  It was Tuesday!!  I am the worst!  I feel awful!  So, we will celebrate with a girl’s day tomorrow!

I spent all afternoon making lists of stuff I need to do, and groceries I need to buy before next week.  I was starting to feel a little stress, but I felt better after I made my to do lists.  I will get a bunch of it taken care of tomorrow when my friend and I go shopping. 

I had a good run today.  I finished just before dark. 

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Then , Jake and I went for a walk. The sunset was beautiful!  

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I was starving after my run, so I fixed some eggs, bacon, toast, and hash browns. 

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I ate every bit of it!  And now I’m just talking to you nice people and trying to find something on TV to watch.  I think I need to get Netflix! 

I have a busy weekend planned with shopping and hanging out.  And, I am looking forward to sleeping in on Sunday! 

What are you doing this weekend?

How to get Christmas Spirit

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There’s something about December.  It’s such a magical month, and a special season.  It’s a celebratory and happy time of the year.  Christmas is in the air and the holiday spirit is everywhere!   Most people you meet this time of year are cheerful and friendly.  (Although some are just a plain old Grinch!)  A lot of people say Christmas is for kids, but I strongly disagree with that.  I think it is a special time of year for everyone.  Christmas spirit is a joy that is in your heart.  It’s a warm and fuzzy feeling.How to get Christmas SPirit


I love everything about Christmas!  I love being able to decorate my house, and put up a tree.  I love the feeling of nostalgia that I get when we decorate our tree. I love buying gifts for my friends and family.   I love planning our Christmas Eve dinner and Christmas morning breakfast.  I absolutely love Christmas music, and I start listening to it as soon as Thanksgiving is over!  I love Christmas lights!  This is probably one of my most favorite things about Christmas.  They are just so pretty to look at!  I love Christmas movies.  And, of course I love all the Christmas food.  (except fruitcake – it’s just weird!)  I love to eat all the Christmas food!  One of my most favorite Christmas foods is a strawberry bread that my mom makes.  She puts a strawberry cream cheese filling in the middle of it. 

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As you can tell, I’m full of holiday spirit.  But, as much as I love the holidays, they can be a very stressful time of the year.  So, instead of writing a guide about how to survive the holidays, which always seems to be a popular topic, I thought instead I would write a guide about how to get in the Christmas spirit so you can have a happy holiday!

  1. Decorate!  Put up a tree.  Decorate your house as much as you can.  How to Get Christmas Spirit - Run and Live Happy (3)
  2. Go look at Christmas lights. There is something magical about lights.  They are so shimmery and pretty, and will put you in a good mood for sure!How to get Christmas Spirit - Run and Live Happy
  3. Watch Christmas movies. Light up your tree and drink some eggnog or hot chocolate while you watch.  My favorite is Elf.  But, I also like the old Rudolph and Frosty movies.  I think they used to be shows on TV when I was young.  There are so many movies to choose from, and mostly all of them have some sort of lesson in Christmas spirit.  They usually play on TV all month long. 
  4. Listen to Christmas music. Listening to the classics may bring back some happy memories, and help you to reminisce. I like old songs and new ones.  Some of my favorites are:

All I Want for Christmas is You (Mariah Carey) – This reminds me of my friends.  We used to drive around and sing this song at the top of our lungs!

Silver Bells, Rocking Around the Christmas Tree, and White Christmas – These are some of my mom’s favorite songs, and I remember listening to these with her when I was young while we decorated and baked. 

Happy Christmas (John Lennon)

I’ll Be Home for Christmas

Wonderful Christmastime (Paul McCartney)

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  1. Send out Christmas cards. Sending cards to family and friends will help you to feel more festive.  Plus, you may even get some back! How to Get Christmas Spirit - Run and Live Happy (2)
  2. Bake Christmas treats. You have so many choices.  There are cookies, breads, pies, candies, the list is endless.  The smell of Christmas will fill your house.  (And the food will fill your belly!)How to get Christmas Spirit
  3. Hang out with friends and family. This is a time of year to gather with your loved ones and be thankful that you are together.  And, if that’s not enough, then surely you will know at least one person who is crazy about Christmas, and maybe their enthusiasm for the holidays will rub off on you. How to Get Christmas Spirit - Run and Live Happy (8)
  4. Give – It’s always better to give than receive. Of course I like getting presents at Christmas, I mean who doesn’t?  But, it makes me feel even better to give a gift to someone I love and to see them happy.  You can also give to those in need.  Every year, I give toys or clothes to children that I know will not get anything at Christmas.  There are lots of ways to do this – local schools or churches, angel trees, Salvation Army. How to Get Christmas Spirit - Run and Live Happy (10)

But above all, let’s not forget the reason why we celebrate – for the birth of Christ!

“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”  Luke 2:10-11. 

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Running Survey

I came across this questionnaire yesterday morning.  Kathryn at Dancing to Running had these questions posted along with her answers.  I think this is such a great way to get to know people!  I used to love when my friends emailed those chain questionnaires.  We had so much fun with those, and I thought this would be too.  So, I thought it would be fun to post the questions and my answers.  Feel free to take them and answer them as well.  But, leave me a comment so I can come read them! 

  1. Would you rather run along a beach path or on a mountain trail? 

There’s no question about this one.  I LOVE the beach, so for me, it would definitely be the beach.  We go every year somewhere tropical, and I love taking long walks on the beach! 

Running Survey

  1. If you could choose the flavor of Gatorade at your next race’s aid stations, what would it be? 

My favorite flavor of Gatorade is Lemon-Lime.  And honestly, that’s about the only flavor that I really like.


  1. If I gave you a $100 gift card to a running store, what would be the first thing that you would purchase with it? 

I don’t know.  There’s too much to choose from.   I would love to have a $100 gift card.  I would either buy some new Brooks shoes.  You can never have too many pairs of running shoes!  Or, I would buy some new running clothes. 

I <3 Brooks
I <3 Brooks! 




  1. Do you prefer to follow a training plan or wake up and decide then how far and fast you want to run?

I think I prefer a training plan.  I know I run better when I am following a training plan and it gives me more motivation to get up and do it.  But, when I’m not training, I will just wake up and decide if I want to go run.  And then I will usually just run until I’m tired, and I think when I do that, I am running a lot of junk miles. 


  1. Would you rather start your run with the uphill and end on the downhill or start with the downhill and end on the uphill?

 I would rather get the uphill over with so that way the rest of the run is easy.  I hate when the uphill is at the end, because by that time I’m usually tired.  There is a 10K course that I run in my town, and the entire course is relatively flat until the very end, and there is a three quarter mile steep hill.  I hate it! 


  1. When you can’t run, what type of cross training do you choose to do?

I like to go on long walks with my dog, or sometimes by myself and listen to a podcast.  I also like to do pilates. 

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  1. What’s your preference – out and back or point to point or loop runs? 

I don’t really care.  The only thing I don’t like is when you have a loop and you have to go around it more than once.  I hate having to pass the finish line and go around again!  When I’m running at home, I usually do out and back, or a loop back to my house or car.    

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  1. If you could recommend ANY running related item to a new runner, it would be a….?

A pair of shoes that fits correctly.  This was my first mistake when I first started running.  I just ran in any old pair that I had, and my legs and feet hurt so much! 

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  1. Do you ever see any wild animals while out on your runs?


I have started seeing lots of guineas, and lately I’ve been seeing this cat that looks like a miniature cougar.  (I know it’s not wild, but it looks cool!)

Running survey


  1. Ever gotten lost while out on a run?


No.  I live in a small town, and I usually just run around my house, or my parent’s neighborhood.  The only time I ever thought I was “lost” was when I was running a half marathon.  The marathon runners also started with us, and somewhere during the course, they turned one way and we went the other way.  There were no signs, so I worried for several miles that I had taken the wrong turn and was running the marathon. 


  1. If you could have one meal waiting and ready for you each time you got home from a run for the next 30 days, what would that be?


That’s a hard one.  After I run long runs, I am always craving food that isn’t good for me.  Usually it’s a cheeseburger.  So, I know I don’t need to have that all the time, but since this is just for fun, I’m going to go with cheeseburger and pretend that there are no calories!  (Realistically, I would probably like to have eggs, bacon, and toast waiting on me.) 


  1. Capris or shorts….what do you run in most often?


I like shorts better.  I run in those until it is absolutely too cold for them.  But, I wear compression sleeves on my legs. 

  1. At what mile (or how many minutes) into your run does your body start to feel like it is warming up and ready to go?


It usually takes me about a mile and a half to two miles before I am warmed up.  Somewhere around the second mile, I feel like I am ready to go. 


  1. What do you do with your key when you run?


Usually I run by my house, so I don’t have to carry a key.  But, when I do run somewhere different, I tuck it into my arm band behind my phone. 


  1. If you could relive any race you have done in the past, which one would it be?

It would be the Go Girl Half Marathon back in March of this year.  This was my first half marathon, and I was so proud of myself.   I had been nervous going into it because it was my first one, and my training the couple of weeks before had not gone very well.  And, my leg was starting to bother me a little bit.  But, I rocked it!  I finished in 2:05, which I thought was pretty good for my first one.  And, I didn’t have to stop and walk at all!  I felt so good that day, and it was probably the best run I have ever had! 

Running Survey

I had a lot of fun with this.  I hope you enjoyed reading my answers.  I would love to hear your answers!