"Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, Who is in you, Whom you have received from God? ... So use every part of your body to give glory back to God..." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Running for Brian Today

When running solo you have to often times pull all the punches. I can get through an hour run no problem. I can manage my thoughts and keep control of my mind pretty well. But any run longer than an hour and a half I have a hard time keeping a grip on my crazy thoughts.
My mind begins to get the best of me. I can feel the darkness gaining control over my grip and it becomes a tug of war between discouragement and determination/desire.

When pulling punches you have to seek God for training tools. As I ran I sought after him. I needed HIM to give me power to overcome any negative and defeating thoughts.
He placed my nephew "Brian" on my heart that morning. And he continued to rest heavy on my heart as I started my 16 mile run out.

Psalm 18:32-34  the God who equipped me with strength and made my way blameless. He made my feet like the feet of a deer  and set me secure on the heights. He trains my hands for war, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.

I RAN for "BRIAN" this afternoon. I prayed and thought of him as I let my legs lead me to over 2 hours of running.
"Brian" joined the Marines and has been gone to Parris Island SC for boot camp for just over 2 weeks.  This is going to be one of the hardest things he has ever done both physically and mentally. Only about 1 percent follow through.
I thought of him and the pain, sweat and tears he will bleed out over the summer. I thought of him as I ran in 75 degree weather and he would be training in much hotter temperatures. My pain was at a minimal when I considered that he was probably living in the Hurt Locker for the next several weeks.

"Brian" has not lived a life neighboring with Mr. Rodgers. He has had a tough life. Loosing ARIEL, his big sister put permanent scars on him. Scars fade but they never go away. I have heard many say "This is one of the best things that Brian can do for himself." I believe it took a lot of courage and strength to join the military and I am very proud of him.

I RAN for "BRIAN" today. I ran for courage..Courage to believe I can do something most say can not be done. Austin my son says I can not run 50 miles. He does not realize the more he says it can not be done the more I want to prove him WRONG.

CONDITIONS: 73 Degrees, 12 miles of dirt roads, cloud cover
PACE: 9:18
TIME: 2:33

Because I was running the back roads alone Andy requested that I run with PEPPER SPRAY. I grabbed my Little pink can of Pepper Spray and put it in my pouch.
The dogs were out this afternoon. After seeing several dogs I began to realize I have never used this Pepper Spray before. I took it out of my pouch, turned it so the safety  was no longer on and held it in my hand. To my right a couple miles down I saw 2 ginormous dogs. They looked like meat head dogs. I gripped my spray a little bit tighter and thought "I don't even know if this thing sprays."
Well the dogs never even noticed me which is great because I had my self labeled as a doggie treat when I saw them. After relaxing from imagination getting the best of me I then decided to try and spray my can of Pepper Spray to make sure it worked.
At first nothing came out. I turned the can towards me to see if I had the safety off...Yup. So I squeezed again. NOTHING. "Hmm, Why is this not working?" I lifted it up and squeezed even harder and out came a thin stream of yellow liquid. Only STUPID ME I sprayed it into the WIND!
My nose started to instantly Burn. I quickly took a drink to get the taste out my mouth. Then my mouth started to burn. I thought I was going to be ok only for the next 9 miles my mouth was on FIRE!
Andy surprised me and came out to check on me at mile 10 with ice water and a HONEY STINGER. He found me as I was exiting off Laring Rd. He wants me to start incorporating food with my long runs to get used to eating. I was so happy to see him and tell him I was on FIRE from my Pepper SPRAY. He left me like he normally does rolling his eyes and laughing at my shenanigans!

COOKS Farm Dairy:
Had a blast finishing the night off with family at COOKS Farm. I got to enjoy some ice Cream and even more I got to enjoy my family!
There are many reason we run...And eating Ice Cream at COOKS was one of the reasons for me!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

A Season for Everything.

"When exhaustion gets tired.
When agony doubles over pain.
When defeat waves a white flag....
I will still be out here RUNNING." -unknown
This morning I met "Paula" for a 14 mile run. Today was her long run and I need to be maintaining about 50-75 miles a week for my BIG race in September.
I am still feeling very beat up from camp.
Getting up at 6am to run with "Paula" did not come easy. But then running 14 miles on beat up legs and lack of sleep did not come any easier. I loved that "Paula" lead the conversation and set the pace. I just followed her steps with ears to listen and legs to run.
Andy was asking me who I was running with and when I told him "Paula" he responded "Wow Nita, you haven't ran alone hardly at all."
There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven--Ecc 3:1
As "Paula" said on our run this morning. "This is a NEW Season."
Yes it is. This is a season I will be running more that I have ever ran. But God has equipped me with great companionship to run alongside me.
I will be running for endurance more that speed.
I am going to have to be disciplined to slow down and be patient.
I am going to need to run on more dirt roads and trails.
This season of running is going to be so much more different.
But I do believe God has given me this passion to run. He has placed goals within me. I have prayed over these goals. I am not going to lie. Running 50 miles in September is frightening. But I know God is my ultimate Coach. He will protect me, He will guide me. He will heal me. He will provide me with the strength and stamina I am going to need. There is no doubt that the next 12 weeks I am going to be sorer than I have ever been, this is going to hurt so bad, But I KNOW He will be my Rock. I CAN NOT do this with out Him.
The Rundown:
Distance: 14.62
Pace: 9:16
Today was my youngest sons birthday. Alec turned 11 today. It is very sad. Alec starts crying every time you bring up how big he is getting. He can not even look at pictures of when he was a baby without getting all teared up.  He does NOT want to get big. He has been like this for a couple years now. He can not wrap his head around growing up. He wants to be a kid forever. He wants to sleep in mom and dads bed, play video games, eat junk food and cuddle forever. And honestly there are days I want the same thing.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Fear Factor: Eating Cockroaches

Last Sunday I needed a long run so I started early. Not really having an exact plan on how many miles I was going to run didn't really bother me. Knowing that the temperatures were planning on getting towards the 90 degree mark didn't really even bother me. Actually nothing that morning bothered me. I had 2 people meeting me for my run and I  had enough time to run and come home to pack for Camp. So excited to go hang out with almost 150 junior and senior high kids inspired me to 16 miles that morning.

I really look forward to being a counselor for camp. Probably because I do not have to be an adult during that time! I get to have dirt between my toes and yell at the top of my lungs. I get to be 15 again and laugh, cry, play, and eat like crap. I get to giggle, listen to "girl talk", dance and sing.

But in all that fun I still had to RUN. That meant running at 6am with maybe 5 hours of sleep. Sleep on a 4 inch plastic mattress and mosquitos buzzing around you. My bed was the size of my sons crib when he was a baby! Rather than falling asleep to your favorite tunes like you did when you were a kid I found myself surrounded by giggling girls wide awake till after midnight.

The mornings were ROUGH. Ugh, it took everything in me to crawl out of that stupid bed to gear up for my runs. Knowing that it would be hard to gather myself to run I was thrilled to hear when someone wanted to run with me. ACCOUNTABILITY!

Monday I ran 5 miles alone and came back to camp to pick up "Kathy" to finish out my 9 miler. It was terribly hot and humid. "Kathy" is doing Tough Mudder the Saturday she gets back from camp!
The camp is located in a extremely hilly area. This was not an easy run by any means. "Kathy" at one point had to stop and bent over to vomit.

Monday was a very busy day. We went to the beach for the day and this was so exhausting. 4 hours with about 70 junior high kids. There was a group of kids that were banding together with our Youth Pastor Jeremiah and one of our leaders "Amber" to secretly take me out. "Amber" was very suspicious with her smile and the group of girls that were shadowing her. They were like a school of fish ..sneaky conniving fish. I quickly sensed the mission to get me under the water. The water was dark and murky and I did NOT want to go under no matter what. Suddenly the girls started grabbing my legs and arms. They were jumping out at me trying to knock me down. In defense I just began picking the girls up and throwing them one at a time through the air. The Feisty Mexican  came out and the FIGHT was on. More girls banded together and I saw the other leaders all laughing at me. They knew of this mission. Running through the water I continued tossing the girls away from me until my toes hit the sand and I was safe.
To look at me I look like a pipsqueak but when provoked I  unleash the beast! The leaders were cracking up on the beach watching the attack.
That evening after being water logged and sun burnt we ate dinner and headed to the chapel. Every evening to get the kids excited we have group games. These games usually involves eating something nasty. Over the years they have eaten Balut eggs, McDonalds meal made into a shake, a dozen Oreos and Milk until you puked and this year....It was Cockroaches and worms.
With the background music blasting our Youth Pastor was screaming into a microphone "And for this years CHALLENGE...WHO Wants to See ANITA EAT A COCKROACH??"
WHAT???? Are you Kidding me. Nothing like feeling the pressure. These roaches were 3 inches long. My legs were shaking as I stood in the middle of 2 kids who also were on stage to eat these insects. As I held it in my fingers I looked to my right and the kid next to me was pinching his and pushing it to the back of his mouth. Grabbing both the kids I quickly tossed the cockroach into my mouth. It must have known its death was near as it was moving all around in my mouth. I was so scared to chomp my teeth together. Still gripping these two kids I found myself jumping frantically in the air and biting down on the exoskeleton of this disgusting creature. I felt the shell break open and the insides explode in my mouth, it was warm and oozing. "Get it down, get it DOWN." I told
myself. After swallowing the last of the cockroaches' remains I opened my mouth and stuck out my tongue. I DID IT!! The nastiest thing I have ever done. Ok. Actually being kissed by Willard Wares in 7th grade was worse than even eating a cockroach!

Exhaustion was settling in. Tuesday Morning I slept in till 6:30am. I was meeting a CC student for a 3 miler at 6:45. We had a light rain on us during out run. Unlike Monday where I was able to see deer next to me, This morning we got to run with a turkey instead.

Tuesday after our run we had breakfast and chapel. I had been asked to speak on ENDURANCE to the kids that morning. I was very nervous however I was also excited.
I spoke for 20 minutes on Endurance and running the Race of Life. At times we laughed and other times we cried.

 I was hugged and kissed many times by the kids. They are amazing. I left Austin up there and came home for Alec.  I came home from camp after lunch to a 3 pm client at the salon. I miss the kids already so very much.

But today I was blessed to do my 8 miler with "Lauren". I have been running with her now for 3 weeks. "Lauren" is one of the CC kids I was the privilege to help coach. She is a magnificent runner full of potential.

Distance: 8
Time: 1:12
Paces 8:59

I am still exhausted and so very sore. I have scratches and bruises up and down my legs. My entire body feels like it has been tenderized.
Enough of my whining, I wouldn't change a thing!


Thursday, June 20, 2013

All Kinds of Crap!

It is kinda funny I have even found myself eating like CRAP this week.
From homemade smores, brats, Dairy Queen, popcorn (Movie Theatre) and even WHITE BREAD..UGH!
I have eaten very well trying to recover from my splurges. But not that well! Sometimes eating bad is just so good! I get these crazy cravings and normally I can grab a salad and veer away from it..Not this week!

Yesterday I ran 12 miles with "Paula" and found myself visiting the cold plunge. It was miserable...colder than ever!

I was up at 4:45AM this morning to meet "Danielle" at the Fenton Track. It wasn't too difficult getting up as it was running 400M repeats! God blessed us with a stellar morning, picture perfect to invite our bodies into the hurt locker!
We ran 1 mile warm up and ran 6X400M with a 400 meter light job in between and a mile cool down for a total of 5 miles .

But as the day dragged on I had a small window to try to get some more miles in. Barely able to put one foot in front of the other I managed to put them in my shoes. Alec got out his bike and we headed out the door for a 3 mile run. This gave my day a total of 8 miles for the day. It was more like a Zombie Run as I stumbled back home exhausted and tired.

Long day. Long week. I have a lot to share and I am feeling my 4:45 wake up from earlier.. So with my eyes rolling back and my legs restless I know my limits. Night night!


Sunday, June 16, 2013


5 FOR Fathers Day!

  1.  My sister came in from Florida yesterday.
  2. Had a great day with our family for Fathers Day, Lunch at The Fountains and Play time at Independence Oaks.
  3. Got to reap the benefits of Andys Fathers Day Gift..Signed us both up for the Detroit Half Marathon International!
  4. Cut my oldest sons hair off to a 3 guard: Buzz CUT! ...His beautiful blond locks all gone!
  5.  Turned a 7 miles run into 10 miles. Running in the heat was just to awesome!

Prayers for Fathers Day:
Andys Dad is going in for surgery on his shoulder in the morning and we are praying that it goes well and it heals the way we are hoping.


Thursday, June 13, 2013

Pain Holds a Purpose

"For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared to the Glory which shall be revealed to us." Romans 8:18
So many times you hear people say things like:
  • "Why does GOD allow bad things to happen to good people?"
  • "How could GOD allow innocent people to get hurt/die?"
  • "Why does GOD allow such PAIN?"
I have heard it dozens of times and I too have questioned God as well.
At a very very young age I witnessed my mother getting beaten by those who claimed to love her. I hid behind furniture crying in desperation and begging God to make it all stop. It didn't stop. I saw hospitals, jails, guns and blood. I saw abuse, hurt and drunkenness.
I heard screaming, shouting, and begging..my own included. 
I could smell the drugs from the other end of the house..and the beer that saturated the carpet. The smell reeked when talking to an unreasonable and ridiculous adult always made me sick to my stomach.
Many nights I cried feverishly asking God "WHY?"
"What did I do?"
"Why did He dislike me?"
"How much PAIN did one have to go through?"
We live in a broken world. Full of Pain. Some Pain we have caused ourselves by bad decisions and like me as a child some Pain we were just handed.
After my marathon this past Sunday I knew I had to keep going...
Monday was not going to be a rest day for me. I had to endure the PAIN for progress. I had to Feel the PAIN as part of my training Plan.
I have a goal to run a 50 mile race in September. In order to do this you have to get acclimated to Pain: to soften the blow.
I know that GOD had a Plan for me as far back as a child. His word says:
He will NOT GIVE YOU MORE THAN YOU CAN HANDLE. He knew as a child I was going to get through that mess. He had a plan for me to use that as my testimony, to Honor and Glorify him. He was not finished with me yet.
God did not design us to be complacent and stagnant. We should always have a plan and not let our Pain give us an excuse for anything BUT drawing growth.
Every flower has to go through a little dirt to bloom.
God can use the Pain we caused and the Pain we didn't.
"Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord hand upholdeth him with his hand." Psalms 37:24
My quads were so sore that every time my foot hit the pavement it almost took my breath away on Monday after my marathon.  The pain made me reach out to Him. He knows the desires of my heart. God has kept me injury free this week and every run has gotten so much better. The first marathon I ever ran I could not run for 2 weeks without wincing.
There is a greater purpose to my pain. I have to know what Pain Feels like to Progress. I have to let that Pain drive me, not just accepting it...but almost embracing it.
That Pain is going to make me better.
Living this Life is the ultimate training plan...There are times it is going to hurt..but we can use that pain for the greater good. We can use our pain as a stepping stone rather than a stumbling block.
Pain will make you  Better.
"Life will make you bitter or Life will make you Better."
Stuffing our feelings down or numbing our pain with drugs or alcohol will not heal you. It hurts to hurt. That gut wrenching, breathtaking pain that never seems like it is going to end..it will. The pain comes in waves, sometimes crashing down on us and knocking our teeth out...But the waters will recede and there is hope.
You can use that Pain for a Greater Purpose.
That is the Challenge..To have the courage to Feel the Pain...Raw. Honest. Unleashed Pain.
Then to embrace it to Its Greater Good.. To use it to fuel you to Joy Immeasurable.
Indian Springs;
Distance: 7 miles
Time 1:20
I had the privilege of coaching 2 girls today. It was awesome to see them push their minds and bodies to greatness.
It was another Great Summer Day.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Goody 4 Shoes! And 5 Favorite Foods

A family that Runs together....

Today was such a good day. It had some tough moments scattered throughout but it was overall a great day.
I snuck outside for an easy 5 miler that turned into 6. I am still trying to shake out my legs.  My legs are still sore and my Achilles is a bit tender. I try very hard to listen to my body. But I am not always good at doing what it tells me to do. But I did take it easy out there.
And to be overcautious  as soon as I arrived back home from running I quickly grabbed my pre-made duffel bag and headed to the gym for a date with the cold plunge. I managed to endure the plunge for 15 minutes. The first 2 minutes is the most agonizing pain I have ever put myself through. I can always hear myself saying "Seriously, This is colder than normal." Even though I know it isn't, it just makes me want to kick and scream. Imagine getting a Charlie Horse for 2 minutes...that is the intensity of the first 2 minutes of the cold plunge to me.

I came home to my oldest son cleaning up the kitchen after he had made scrambled eggs and toast. I was impressed the kitchen wasn't on fire let alone he was cleaning his egg pan!

He was just so excited though because I was taking him to get his new shoes and shorts for CC. Cross Country just started this week for the high school. This worked out great with Austin just coming out of CC from the academy right into the High school.
I just love that he is loving running. He loves his coach and is really encouraged and motivated by him. Today after we bought his shoes Austin says to me "Mom, only 6 more hours." He counted all day the hours until practice this evening!
His coach has given Austin encouraging goals both physically and academically. He is already making his relationship with Austin personal. This is what speaks volumes to my son. Almost all his teachers would say "Once you take the time to get to know Austin he is really a great kid, kind, funny, deep, and compassionate but for those who do not they will struggle with him." And that is really true.  He had a few that struggled with him but that is life...We are not going to win em' all!

We had a great day. I took Alec with me to go visit Ariel. He had not seen her headstone yet and we were meeting Ariels step-mom there to see it for the first time as well.
I did better today visiting her than I normally do. I guess I just know she is not there. Who knows?  I could feel totally differently about it tomorrow. I miss her. It stinks. Life is full of pain. But God is Good...all the time.

Distance: 6.01
Time: 54

So it was fun going into the running store. It is fun when they know you by name because you frequent it so often. I loved Alec saying "Mom, I love the smell of the running store." And I Love seeing passion and excitement in Austins face to get out there an run Stronger, Faster and Better.

A person can succeed at almost anything for which they have unlimited enthusiasm.”Charles Schwab

5 Favorites Foods:
  1. Angies Popcorn ( Boom Chicka Pop, Sweet and Spicy)
  2. Noosa Yoghurt..Thanks "Michelle" for introducing me!
  3. Juice Plus Complete Whole food drink mix. GREAT recovery drink without all the supplements.
  4. Uncle Gregs fresh farm eggs!
  5. Justins Nut Butter


Monday, June 10, 2013

Ann Arbor Marathon Recap

"Only as High as I can Reach can I grow, only as far as I Seek can I go, only as Deep as I look can I see, only as much as I Dream can I BE." Karen Ravn

4am comes very early no matter what time you go to bed.
We had to be in Ann Arbor by 6am. Surprisingly, I got up before the family and made it to the Keirig for coffee with no problem.
As we all headed to the car I was really pleased that we were moving so smooth. I walked along side of the drivers side of the car and I almost spilled my coffee on myself.  I jumped seeing passengers already in the car, it was mom and dad! They surprised me and came out to cheer me on. It is the best feeling in the world to have support and encouragement.

"Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing." 1 Thes 5:11

I seriously can not stress enough how much of an impact support and encouragement means in all arenas of life and all ages as well.

The car ride wasn't too painful heading to Ann Arbor once the kids settled down from bickering with one another.  I didn't have the pre race jitters this time. I had a good night sleep and had decided early on that I was using this race as a training run. I was not going to go all out but I wanted to run this respectably for myself.

We parked the car at the local high school. Where was everyone at? I was surprised to see very few runners. Even as I headed to the Port-O-Johns there not only was no line but they didn't smell like sewage either!
The Ann Arbor Marathon started at 6:30am and it was a few minutes past 6am. Some of the runners were lining up. During this the time before the race I continued to feel more relaxed. This was not a large race like I am used. "Go out and have fun Nita." I told myself.

Right before the start we gathered together as a family and prayed. I  can not imagine not seeking God in such a enormous feat.

I headed towards the other runners just minutes before the start. This darling 85 year old man spoke of how he has ran over 150 marathons. His words were encouragement to all.

With not much of a plan for my run I found myself sneaking in behind the 3:40 pace group. "I think I can maintain this." I told myself.
With the start of the race I laid low in the shadows of the pace group. There seemed to be about 15 runners all together.
I put my music in my ears while allowing my body to embrace the run. Emotions quickly began to erupt from my body. "Oh My Goodness, I am running a marathon today." I heard the inner voice speak out of shock. Even though I had mentally told myself I wanted to run this marathon I had not physically signed up until 5 days before.
Humility overcame my body and my mind. I knew that there was NOTHING in ME that was going to get me to the 26.2 mile Finish. I also knew that there was NOTHING in me that could have even got me to the START! I am a Nothing deserving of Nothing and YET HE has given me Everything I do not deserve. My Heavenly Father has given me so much, STRENGTH, STAMINA, ENDURANCE, HEALTH, PASSION  and so many gifts and all He wants in return is for me to seek Him in obedience and glorify Him in everything I do.

By mile 4 or 5 I was still hidden with in the pack upon hearing this very loud and excited female voice. She was yelling to a friend of hers "I GOTTA GO POOP!!, I Gotta POOP Right NOW!!!"  This is when I was noticed because we all looked around with wide eyes and were cracking up.

My family was waiting for me at MILE 10 full of smiles. Touching each of them I smiled back and  tucked their encouragement inside for fuel.
The course was not an easy one. It was a very scenic course full of rolling hills, switchbacks and turns. Our group was slowly dropping off.  We had a switchback so I was able to see my family at mile 10 and at mile 16. This was very ideal for family cheering you on because they did not have to move.
The course not only had you running through the city but it also had you running through a park and alongside of the Huron river. I was not prepared when the course took us into a secluded park and unto a trail. This part of the course had me a little apprehensive which I was quickly forgot  with the beauty of the forest. The large trees and foliage smelled crisp and fresh. This trail was a bit rolling but otherwise smooth.  Out of the woods suddenly came a VERY large doe almost taking out the 2 runners directly in front of us!  Running with that excitement I was not prepared for the uphill exit out of the park.

With just the pacer and myself, "Jessica" and I caught our breath and headed towards mile 18. Cruising along "Jessica" she shared with me her story of running Boston this year. I didn't mind listening I just didn't want to talk at this point.
By mile 22 there was an even larger gap between us and ANY other runners. My legs were comfortably numb and I was running on auto pilot, telling myself to just turn the legs over.
"Jessica" was keeping track of all the woman we had in front of us. She had a very competitive spirit telling me "You will be able to catch them and pass them." Together we actually passed 3 more ladies. But by mile 24 she was encouraging me to take off on my own "You have more in you, you can finish faster than this pace, you need to go ahead."
"Thank You" I replied and I put my music back in my ears and focused my eyes on the woman "Jessica" had showed me to try and pass.

It didn't take long to pass her. Just after I passed her I saw Andy ahead of me. He was alone with a camera in his hand. " With a smile larger than life he came along side of me yelling "You are doing great, you have a down hill, then a uphill, then a down hill finish, You got this now FINISH STRONG!"
All I could yell back was " OK, Ok...I LOVE YOU."
At that moment I felt strong. I had a mile and a half to go and I could feel God putting air in my lungs and power in my legs.
I saw another girl at the last switchback and was determined to pass her. I felt bad for her because I could tell she was exhausted. As I passed her I yelled "You are doing good, You are almost there."
Coming into the home stretch they have both the half marathon and the marathon finishing together. I passed several more people and found myself running along side two guys who were running together. The one looked at me and he could tell that I was going to try to hit the finish mats first. He challenged me and kicked it into gear. "Ohh No you Don't" I  looked at him laughing and grabbed the invitation to race to the finish line...I beat! Not by much though I can assure you!
I am so thankful for mom and dad being there. They both wore their Team Harless shirts that they wear only to our runs. It was a perfect day for a race.
Time: 3:27:36
Pace 8:18
Overall: 70/402
2ND Female in my Division..there were only 20!
11TH Female to cross the Finish line out of 141.

Great Race. But a TOUGH course.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Quit trying to Fit IN!

"Most of us want very much to be loved perhaps we are not concerned enough about loving."
As school draws to a close I find myself drawing back to a common thought that circulated in my head the past few weeks.
Fitting in.
Funny even as a 39 year old mother- out of high school for over 20 years you can still get caught up  in being a "Try Hard" if you are not careful.
The last several weeks I have been very involved in my kids school. So much so that I had to cut back my hours at work.
This year in school I volunteered in one of Austin's classes once a week, was on a committee for a 5K, I helped coach the Cross Country team 3 times a week, and I coached the Husky Roadrunners once a week.
Being that involved you get to be around a lot of people. There is a lot of adversity. Just because you try to like others does not mean they are going to like you.
Just because you try to be a good person does not mean people are going to like you.
Just because you have things in common with others does not mean they are going to like you.
There is No Guarantee that is going to make someone like you!
So GET Over it.
"Quit trying to fit in when You were meant to Stand out." 
I had a few restless nights knowing someone was not in The Anita Fan Club.
I had to remind myself "What Defines Me"
CHARACTER. That is what Defines us.  God Defines ME!
"Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me."
Psalms 51:10
"Character is what you really are, while reputation is what others think you are." 
  • Not a banking account
  • Not a title attached to our name
  • Not the car we drive
  • Not the groups we are involved in
  • Not the clothes we wear
  • _____________________________(fill in yourself)
I sat in enough groups, meetings, and adult functions to see people try to fit in. Try to be part of something. I see this all the time. In all facets of my life. From work, to running, to church, to parenting, to family and friendships. And unaware...I have caught myself self consciously doing the same.
" Let no man despise his youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity." 1 Timothy 4:12 
When I catch myself being hurt or left out I remind myself the BIG Picture...HIS EYES are the only Eyes that define ME.
When I first married my husband I worked so hard at trying to get the family to like me. It was a job that I did around the clock. I had no mom and dad to love me. My siblings lived in Florida and I just wanted to fit in. The harder I tried the more damaged I became.  I found myself enabling others to get them to love me, I found my Codependency went into over load mode. Like a worker bee I tried and tried to work at fitting in with Andy's family.
For over 10 years I found myself hurt, disappointed, discouraged and empty.
But it wasn't until I got Sick and Tired or being Sick and Tired that I started Letting Go.
When I let go of my expectations on others, when I let go of trying to fit in or get someone to love or accept me it was Then that I felt Free.
Letting Go does not mean you do not CARE. It means you do not let it Hijack your sanity; compromising who you are.
It means you Detach Lovingly.
You Accept YOURSELF. Only Working on a better You...For yourself and God.
You Live Life with Integrity.
You Live life Honestly.
You Live Life Self Controlled, Disciplined
You Live Life being Kind, with a Good Report
When I do the right thing...which is NOT all the time..But when I do..I have more security, more confidence, more peace.
As the end of the school draws near I  am confident in who I am. I am comfortable in my skin. I have things that I need to work on but that is for HIM no one else.  I am in HIS club. And that is the only place I want to fit in.
So no matter what age you are when you find yourself on the carousel of codependency.. Let Go.
Do you Let Others Hurt you??
Where do you try to fit in?

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Not feeling like Celebrating.

I feel Like she is looking right at me.....So close..
Ariel, Today you would have turned 22. Today I would have celebrated with you. We would have gone out to eat like  PF Changs or some place new and exciting. You always liked wherever I took you. I would have bought you something out of my budget. I would have probably colored your hair this week. I would have embraced every moment I got to spend with you and would have been jealous of those who got to enjoy you too. I am greedy. I loved every minute with you. Every second with you. I loved your pearly white teeth and your golden tan skin. I loved those BIG brown eyes and silky hair.
I loved your voice when it would whine. I loved hearing you ask me deep questions and wait for my response. I loved your story telling..wow you could tell a story!
Your bargain shopping always made me proud.
 I loved the way you would comfortably just stroll into my house knowing your were part of me.
I loved the crazy hair on your arms and razor burn your always got from shaving.
I loved your crooked feet and black eyeliner.
I loved playing with your hair and smelling "KISS" perfume on you.
I loved when you tried to hide things from me only to realized I knew AND I still loved you just the same.
I loved when you asked "work out" questions and nutrition questions looking for advice.

I Loved when you looked up at me with those big eyes and I could see the love you had for me. I would fight all of hell for you. When you cried I cried. When you hurt I hurt. When you laughed we all laughed.

You defended me, you supported me, You loved me right back.
 I miss your Love.

Today is your birthday. You would have turned 22. The only thing Happy about today is knowing you are up in Heaven.
There is nothing else to celebrate. I smiled today. Because I had to. I even ran today, only because it was National Running day. But I wanted to curl up inside myself and listen to sappy music, closing the world out.
But I smiled today. For You are in Heaven. That is worth celebrating.
For your Birthday not to break tradition I again broke the budget. Mama and I went in on a Eternity Light for your headstone. It is beautiful. Your light will forever shine.
Ariel, Me and Sarah. Sarah visited you today Ar. So sweet.

Aunt Nita

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Back to Back Race reviews

"Progress lies not in enhancing what is, but in advancing toward what will be." Kahlil Gibran
Next Sunday I am running another marathon. " Michelle B" was my inspiration for running 2 marathons in a 6 week time frame. She had something like 5 marathons that she was running in the same amount of time. Sheer craziness but a contagious thought.
This week I finished off my training with two 2 races:
  • Saturday: The HA5K- Holly Academy 5k
  • Sunday: Dexter Ann Arbor Half Marathon

The HA5K was a race that was directed by some of the parents from the school that my kids attend. I was asked to be on that committee because of my experience directing a 5K. I enjoyed going to the meetings and being part of the 5K but I really didn't do much. I would have like to have done more but I enjoyed the participation that I was involved in.

Mother nature scheduled thunderstorms for the morning of the 5k and the morning ended up to be perfect. There were over 200 signed up for our first annual 5k which is a great turn out.
One of my other roles for success of the 5k was to coach runners, prepare and encourage them over a 16 week period for the HA5K. I was one of 4 coaches. I love to see the success of others. I feel their excitement, anxiety and anticipation. I saw many of the runners that I had the honor of being part of their training program lining up for the race. With each smile and familiar face I felt myself adhering to their emotions. Like a mama on the sidelines I was cheering them on.
I greeted in many of the Cross Country kids that I help coach also. I took them for a warm up run, leading a group of about 10 students through part of the course. I described the course to them and tried to prepare them mentally for what they would be running. They looked so incredible running in a pack around the course in front of all the other runners.
We crossed the starting line in the front of all the runners. I was on a mission. I wanted to be the first female to cross the finish line. I knew I could do it only I also knew it was going to hurt like a son of a gun. "Lauren" our fastest runner on the CC team was right beside me as I coached her through the first quarter mile of the race.. She was moving a few steps ahead of me when I heard a guy take over coaching her. He was really good with her. After the 1st mile I began to kick it in. I then passed her with more words of encouragement. " "Lauren" , STAY With ME. Keep your eyes on my pony tail."
I ran in front of her for about a half of a mile. During that time I began to think......
I do not need to be first to cross the finish line. I do not need accolades, labels, recognition. I am a 39 year old woman who only needs to be recognized by Christ. And He would be more honored if I dropped back. And besides, I did have to race again in the morning.
I dropped back and let "Lauren" pass with confidence. The other coach and I took turns encouraging her all the way to the finish, where she was the first female to cross.
Personal success and goals are fabulous but I believe that there is a time when the greatest reward is watching someone else's victory. I believe there is a time when that  is more rewarding then a personal running achievement.

Some of the Roadrunners I had privilege of coaching and running with.
Unfortunately, this run had a few mishaps.
  • A lot of tags didn't match the bibs.
  • The course was cut short, volunteers sent people the wrong way. But at least everyone ran the course short!
But I saw many many smiles. You have to let it go and learn from it when directing a race. The best way to end a race is to end it with a good attitude. A good attitude is like the garnish on a plate. Without the little extras it doesn't stand out. But everything can be enhanced with a good attitude, a smile, words of encouragement and being positive.
Distance: 2.87
Both my boys, Austin and Alec also raced. The both did incredible also. Alec came in 1st in his division for 10 year olds.
Clint came in 1st! He is my Physical Therapist.
I was a bit  sore waking up for this race. "Paula" met me at my house and we headed to Ann Arbor at 6am. This was the first time in about 5 years running this race I did not have my family there.
I was not nervous about running this half marathon like I was nervous about getting us lost getting there.
Surprisingly, we arrived in Ann Arbor without a problem. I set "Paula" up with a 1:55 pacer. She had never used a pacer but I knew she would do great.
Before I left her I put my arm around her and began to pray. Joining in we gave Glory, Honor and Thanks to Him.

"Progress lies not in enhancing what is, but in advancing toward what will be." Kahlil Gibran
Me and Paula at the finish.with the Aardvark!
Even after I heard the alarm go off to start I had no idea what I was planning on running. All I knew for sure was I was going to use this run as a training run for next Sundays race.
As each step turned over I began to put a plan into action.
Head out nice and easy, maintaining a sub 8 minute mile and see how I feel at mile 10. If I feel good, slowly pick up the pace and try to have a good negative split.
And that is how it worked! The last mile I heard a guy next to me breathing very heavy. "Your doing great, You are almost there." I spoke to him with a smile. Struggling to speak he responded "You are pushing me, I am following you." 
Knowing this I continued to encourage him up the last hill where the finish rested. "Come on, you got this, just maintain." I cheered at him. He slowly starting dropping off going up that 1/4 mile incline. Wanting to finish strong I slowly pulled away passing several other runners up that devilish hill towards the finish.
Out of breath and wanted to throw up I calmed myself down and mustered up a smile for the volunteers at the finish congratulating me.
8th place in my division.
It was a great weekend for races. I am pretty sore but thankful to God for all the places these legs take me. All the opportunities my legs have given me. All the friendships I have made from my passion.
I will post pics tomorrow. Heading to bed.