Mother’s Day 5K

“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas …”

Oops, I almost forgot! It’s May, not December, and today is Mother’s Day, although you wouldn’t know by the snowfall we are getting at the moment in Colorado! Luckily, I did most of my weekend running yesterday and not today. That’s when my kids and I did a local 5K together. It was their Mother’s Day gift to me. They know how much running means to me.

We took all these pictures yesterday morning. It was still about 70 degrees. (That’s Colorado weather for you. If you don’t like it, blink.)

RSCN0232My daughter running to the 5K turnaround at yesterday’s race.

RSCN0233Thelma & Louise plus five kids meet again …

Don’t you just love it when things come together when you least expect it?! My kids and I had just picked up our race packets and were headed to our car to drop them off when we ran into my friend Becky and her two boys. It turns out they were running the 5K, too, but neither of us knew until we got there. How cool is that?

Becky is a runner/mom friend I’ve blogged about before. (See Iron Skillet Moms and Thelma and Louise Plus Five Kids.) Becky’s youngest son is my son’s best friend. They ended up running the whole thing together, which made it even better. It was their first 5K for both of them.

Our two families ran the whole thing together and everyone finished within a minute of each of other. (We all came in around 37 minutes.) I was pleasantly surprised at how much all the kids actually ran. I expected to be walking a lot more of it. Afterward we stuck around and enjoyed a pancake breakfast together. It was a beautiful, sunny morning (unlike today) and we had a blast. My kids even told me they want to do another 5K with me soon. Yay! More future runners in the family!

The other thing that I thought was so cool about this experience was showing my kids how healthy running can be for everyone. When you get into long distance running, it’s easy to forget that the 5K and 10K are really the backbone for everything else and these shorter races are how most of us got started. I loved talking to my kids and pointing out to them how so many different kinds of people were out with us — in all kinds of shapes and sizes and from all walks of life. I mean really, you see a lot of people out when you run a 5K — moms, dads, kids, parents pushing strollers, people with dogs, people getting in shape, uber-fit people running fast (like this one woman I spotted wearing the same Boston Marathon shirt from the year I did it), couples running together, people running slower, people walking it. It really is pretty cool when you think about it and it’s so inspiring to see so many people getting fit together. I just love that.

RSCN0230This is exactly what I mean about how great a local 5K can be. I snapped this shot of a young couple holding hands near the end. If I had to guess, I think it was her first 5K. He was talking her through it and helping her finish.

I can’t wait to do another race with my kids. I don’t know if they will ever take to it — all the running and racing and long distances — as I have but that’s OK. They don’t have to. I just hope they run and have a ton of fun along the way.

And really, isn’t that what it’s about anyway? 🙂


“Aging is inevitable but growing old is a choice. Lace up your shoes and let’s go!

Mileage today: 6; Mileage for 2014: 401


Throwback Thursday: Jump Around

In honor of Mother’s Day (this Sunday) here’s a blast from the past. This song always reminds me of the party scene from “Mrs. Doubtfire’ where Robin Williams dances on top of the dining room table. (FYI, this is on my iPod for when I choose to run with music along with a lot of other eclectic stuff.)

To all you mother runners out there, and everyone else, too, have a Happy Mother’s Day!  Get out this weekend, put in your miles when you can, enjoy being with your moms, and have fun!


“Aging is inevitable but growing old is a choice. Lace up your shoes and let’s go!”

Mileage today: 3; Mileage for 2014: 387

What’s your power word?

cropped-meandkiddos2.jpgIf you could choose one word to describe yourself, something to power your running or your life, what would it be?

OK, go!

And if you’re willing, please share your word in my comments section and keep reading to learn what mine is. 🙂

I was thinking about this today because my life and training often mirror each other and I’ve got a lot on my plate. I just finished my application for grad school and I’m probably going back to school in the fall, and I’m also training for Mount Evans Ascent in June.  All of that feels outside of my comfort zone, and that’s why I’ve been playing with words and mantras.  I can use all the help that I can get.

I LOVE words — I always have. Back when I was a newspaper editor one of my favorite things was writing headlines. It always gave me great satisfaction when I came up with a good one. I love how words can paint pictures in your head. This also happens to me when I pick a good mantra. I think mantras can help you stack the odds in your favor during training.  Obviously, nothing is a guarantee but when you’re training hard, you want to draw strength and inspiration from wherever you can. For instance, both of my kids did something cool recently that made me think of power words to describe them.

My son just tested for his next belt in karate. That, by itself, wasn’t a big deal, but he was the only one testing at his level, which meant he had to do it alone with everyone in the room watching him. Keep in mind he’s 8 years. I’m not sure I could have done that when I was 8. I was shy and probably would have cracked under the pressure, but he didn’t. He passed and I was proud of him, but most of all, I was floored by his courage. That leads me to my power word for him: “Courageous.” He’s always had a courageous heart and I admire that about him.

Last week my daughter gave a speech in front of her entire fifth grade class at school. Like many people I know, public speaking scares her.  Later she confided in me, after her presentation was over, that the first time she ever spoke in front of a large crowd, about a year ago, she cried afterward. This time, however, she practiced in front of me and she was better prepared. When it came time for her to do it she came off confident and happy — just the way she is when you’re with her in a small group or one-on-one. She blossomed like a sunflower, which brings me to the word that makes me think of her: “Ebullient.”  She’s always had a joyous spirit about her no matter what.

Last weekend I ran the Greenland 25K Trail Race in Larkspur, Colorado.  Here’s proof:

dirtyfeetGoing to the dirt side: No, that’s not five o’clock shadow — just the dusty remnants of my efforts.

greenland25KBaked runner: This was the path to the start of the race and that was about as shady as it got it.

Greenland was balls to the wall for me and the longest run (15.5 miles) I’ve done since the Tucson Marathon in December.  I knew I was under-trained going in but I went for it anyway.  It was exposed the whole time and my Garmin (timer) crashed at the first aid station, but I finished.  It was good training for Mount Evans in that it had some climbing and some less-than-ideal conditions, although I expect it will be windy and cold and miserable in a different way at high altitude rather than being baked. Still, Greenland was challenging and while it wasn’t a spectacular finish, it was a finish nonetheless and indicative of the power word I choose for myself: “Tenacious.”

I’ve always been a tenacious person and I’m a plucky runner. That’s my strength. I’m not an elite athlete, but I’m willing to work hard and train smart and see where it takes me. Sometimes that’s all you need. Next month I will run up Mount Evans, which is a 14er.  I’ve never hiked a 14er but I’ll succeed because I’ve made up my mind to do so.

“Tenacious” — that’s me.

What’s your power word?  Can you go outside your comfort zone?  I bet you can if you try.


“Aging is inevitable but growing old is a choice. Lace up your shoes and let’s go!”

Mileage today: 3; Mileage for 2014: 293