Monthly Archives

September 2015

Exercise, Race, Review, Running, Training, Weight loss

Spencerville Family 5k Run/Walk Recap


This past Sunday was Let’s Move Day at Spencerville Church and I participated by doing the 5k alongside about 100 other church members.

My goal was to run the out and back course in less than 40 minutes at a goal pace of 12:54 min/mi or less for the run. A little depressing because that would have been a goal easily met last month before I messed up my back.

Spencerville SDA 5k 2015

Step-sis Stef finishing the 5k

The last time I did a 5k was my first year at college, 5 years ago, as a way to get extra credit in a fitness class I was taking. I hadn’t trained or done anything to prepare beforehand I finished in a little over 49 minutes.

More people showed up on Sunday morning than I had expected and it was really cool to see entire families getting ready to run including a couple moms with their running strollers and a few dogs.

We started off with a quick prayer before being ushered across the road to the sidewalk. A sidewalk that I’ve apparently never noticed in my 14 years of attending this church! It wasn’t too long before Brady was running off and looked like a little dot in the distance.

Brady Running Spencerville 5k

Brady finishing in 4th (25:09)

Most of the kids also started off running pretty quick but I figured that most of them would get tired and start to drop back after half a mile or so. Some of them did, but I was surprised how many of them kept on running even though you could see they were tired. Kids can be pretty stubborn little things.

A few minutes before reaching the halfway point, Brady and I passed each other heading in opposite directions. He was running in 3rd place at that point and looked like he was still holding up pretty well. He’s a natural endurance athlete. No fair.

During the second half, I had some pain, a little added numbness in my right foot, and it sort of felt like I was running up stairs so 12036648_1218345171519148_6947613403724712807_nI did some more frequent run/walk intervals.

The last half mile was a mental game to keep my legs moving because I was starting to get close to the 40 minute mark and I just had to beat the goal I had set for myself.

I ended up finishing with a time of 39:12!

I’m pretty sure a kid 1/4 of my age did it at least 10 minutes faster than me, but overall this was a lot of fun for me because it’s the first time I’ve ever done any kind of race with any of my friends. I’m hoping that this will be an upward trend and I can convince them to jump into these kinds of events with me more often. 😉

Spencerville SDA 5k 2015

Happy and healthy 3 amigos


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All photos taken by Merle Poirier and used with permission.

Hiking, Race, Uncategorized

12 Things To Do This Fall



Fall is here! I don’t know if I’m the only one, but I feel like like the transition from summer to fall is the most significant season change.

It’s one of those things that you just step outside and it’s like the air feels and even smells completely different! Once it’s happened, it’s never truly summer again.

I am a little disappointed because I feel as though we’ve officially set the winter timer into motion… but I am looking forward to a lot of things this fall! It’s the season where we apparently gain the most weight… as I have in most years past… but it’s no surprise with all the rich and delicious foods that we only really eat around this time of year!

Renaissance Festival, Face Painting, Fall Autumn, Blue Eyes, Moon, Curly Hair, Costume, Face Paint

Renaissance festival when I was 16

Here are some of the items that I’ve put on my fall bucket list.

1 . Renaissance Festival– Brady and I have gone together twice before early on in high school (long before we started dating). It’s a really unique experience – costumes and showy bosoms everywhere.

2. Food, Food, Food! -A few of the things I’m looking forward to:

  • Soups are one of my favorite types of meals to make, especially the creamy ones with the help of one of my favorite kitchen tools. I have this Soup Bible book that I really need to try more recipes from. One of my favorite Pinterest recipes is a delicious Taco Soup that I make vegetarian by using this recipe.
  • Apple and Pumpkin Pies– It wouldn’t be fall without them
  • Applesauce– mom used to make me apple sauce each fall with the fresh apples we would pick. She even shipped some up to me my freshmen year in college because I love it so much.
  • Homemade Apple Cider Donuts– I’ve heard these are amazing and I’d really love to try making them myself!
  • Crockpot apple cider
pumpkin display, Trader Joe's, Giant, Grocery Store, Pumpkin pie, bread, cereal, patch, spice latte, Pumpkin sauce, plates coffee, puree, syrup, butter

Pumpkin themed everything at every store including Trader Joe’s and Giant

3. Camping, hiking, and enjoying the beautiful fall colors.

5. Collect and then make these cinnamon scented pinecones!

6. Pumpkin decorating (Carving, Painting, and Glitter)

7. Game Night– A couple of favorites include Ticket to Ride, Scotland Yard, and Dutch Blitz.

8. Corn Maze– This is something that I love doing even though I only did it for the first time a couple of years ago.

9. Build a fire in the fireplace and have a warm and snuggly night in.

10. Apple picking at Larriland farm.

11. Fall 5k. I’m starting to bounce back from my injury and I’d really like to be able to do at least one more event this year.

apple picking, Larriland Farm, Howard County Maryland, farm, ladder, green apple, country, barn

Caleb picking apples at Larriland

12. Clear Meadows Farm Sunflowers– I’ve heard a lot about this place and over the past few years it’s become a really popular place to go and take photos. I’d like to check it out before the harvest!

13. Mockingjay Part 2. There haven’t been a whole lot of good movies that have come out this year… Hanna, Brady and I have seen the last 3 movies together so I’m looking forward to finishing out the series the week that Hanna is home for Thanksgiving.


Did I leave out one of your favorite fall traditions? 

What are you looking forward to doing this fall as the weather starts to cool down?

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Exercise, Healthy eating, Injury, Running, Training, Weight loss

Too Young for Back Troubles

14 months ago, I herniated a disk in my lower back. One week before my wedding.

2 months of PT, 2 MRI’s, numerous doctors visits and loads of medical bills later, I still had a herniated disk. Every single medical professional that I have seen has told me that I’m too young to have this problem. Yay me!

Surgery was suggested but not a reality at this point so I went on an expedition to lose weight and do the best that I could to alleviate the pain in my back and legs.

I spent 3 months preparing for the IronGirl triathlon and I did lose weight (about 1/3 of my goal) as well as finding a new passion for exercising and living healthfully.

Things were going well until one morning, two weeks ago, I happened to lean forward in just the wrong way and aggravate an already temperamental herniated disk. I spent the next few agonizing days in bed feeling discouraged as well as frustrated that I couldn’t just go for a run and have that, “My body accomplished something great today!” sensation.

I’ve had a lot of time to think about my situation and I’ve come to realize that good health is a blessing that not everyone has and is too often taken for granted.

Yesterday I was reading a blog post by Run to the Finish about training secrets and one of her points really emphasized this thought. 

Realize that you don’t “have to” run. You are a lucky person that “gets to” run. You have people in your life that make it possible for you to have the time to run, you have a body that allows you to run, and crazy people like me who encourage it. This is your choice.

So although I’m out of action for at least a few more weeks,  I’m learning the valuable lesson of patience as well as not jumping back in too soon. I’m also reminded to be thankful for all that I do have and to never take being healthy for granted.