Monday, August 27, 2012

Time Flies

It's been almost 2 years since I put this blog together, and now my blog title just doesn't fit. I'm sure there is a way to change it, but it's more like, "Journey through my Thirties" now.  I am very happy with my accomplishments.  My original goals were to run a 1/2 marathon and sprint triathlon and I did them!  Recording my goals and saying I would do it by a certain day, really helped put the wheels in motion on working on my "bucket list."

I haven't advertised this blog at all to my family or friends, but I know that someone may eventually figure out that I have an additional blog on my list and be curious and check it out.  It may be corny for others, (my husband teases me a bit about it) but I do hope this helps others realize that if you have always dreamed of doing something, that it can be done.  I think when we are young, we have so much imagination and dreams of doing anything, and when you get older, life gets in the way and you settle into routines and then you vaguely remember, "Oh yeah, I always wanted to do that!"  Well, I got stuck in the routine of things, and stopped dreaming.  It finally hit me to stop sitting on the sidelines and to do the things that I swore I would do when I was young.  And 30 really isn't that old, but if I don't get these things done now, I might miss my opportunity to do them in 10, 20 years. 

So here is to my next 10 years of living in my 30's and can't wait to see what I accomplish. 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Food Storage Goal

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (a Mormon) and for a long time the Church has strongly encouraged everyone to have a year supply of food. My husband and I have worked on this every now and then, and we really haven't reached this goal... Not even close.

A few months ago, we had stayed over at a friends house and they have the ideal food storage. They even have a room dedicated for food/emergency supplies. Now, it may sound extreme, and most people have this view as us Mormons doing this for some kind of catastrophic event. Well, it's important to have this type of supply because you don't know what if. What if your husband loses his job, what if their is a gas shortage and you can't get to the store (or the supplies can't be sent to store), what if you just don't have enough money to cover living expenses? Food Storage is for preparation and to help us not be scared of the what if's. Just like the parable of the 10 virgins and 5 had oil in their lamps, and 5 did not. I would like to be one of those 5 that had oil.

So any hoo.. Our friends brought up a good point. They weren't being mean, it was actually a very concerned, loving remark. They stated, "You have been married 8 years, and don't have a supply of food." That's it. This is something not only our church encourages us to have, but the Red Cross and the government. This isn't old news. It really hit me that we have been married 8 years and haven't gone past 3 months of food supplies.

At the same time this epiphany came that we really need to take this seriously and not wait, I had a babysitting job lined up to watch my nephew 5 days a week. It isn't much money, but it is extra. My friend shared her experience of working outside the home and she says, she doesn't spend her money on frivilous things, but to put her money to good use for the family. She says, when work takes her away from being at home with her kids, that money she earns goes towards a need. And that need is supplies.

So, not counting Christmas presents :), I have been putting my money that I have been earning towards first 72 hour kits and now food storage. It is not easy, and does require a lot of thought and organization. I am proud to say we finally have 72 hour kits and the food is food we would eat, so we can rotate it without letting it go bad. So, my goal (and my families) is that we work on our supply of food. My goal is to have 6 months of food/supplies stored by the time I turn 30 this year. It is a sacrifice, but it is something that is useful and benefits my family in the long run, and protects any future struggles we may have.

My 1st Sprint Triathlon Results

This past October I did complete one of my goals which was to compete in a Sprint Triathlon. It was so much fun and I can't wait to do it again!

My stats...

  • I finished 19th out of 85 women.

  • 4th out of 21 girls in my age group (25-29 year olds)

  • Swim:9:54 36th place

  • Bike: 45:16 36th place

  • Run: 26:22 13th place

  • OVERALL: 1:21:32

My experience with my 1st Sprint Triathlon

I showed up real early and am glad I did. Spots to put your bike and stuff filled up fast and I felt like I had a good spot, close to the aisle to get out easier. I felt intimidated because everyone seemed confident and knew what to do, but was surprised to find out there were a lot of people who were first timers just like me.

I was nervous and stretched a lot, but I was more nervous because I had worn a one piece swimsuit and wasn't planning on wearing shorts with it, because I wanted to wear dry bike/running shorts and not have to struggle with pulling off wet shorts.. so I was more nervous with being self conscious. We all gathered around to hear directions and finally other women started to take off shorts and I didn't feel like I was the only one standing there practically naked. I do think next time I might invest in a tri-outfit with shorts, just to avoid that stress.

One thing I had not done before was time myself swimming. That is one thing that would have been very helpful. They have you line up according to your average time. They start everyone in 15 second increments, so it's good to be around swimmers that have the same time as you. I was standing somewhere between 10-12 minute people, and I should have been more like 9 minutes. I had to stop and wait a lot (you can only pass at the wall) so my time could have been a lot faster in the swim. I was surprised at the struggle of most swimmers (even the buff, fit people I did not expect them to look weak while swimming) so I was grateful for all the training I did to work on my endurance in my arms and shoulders. I struggled with getting out of the pool (you had to get out at the deep end, so I had no floor for support and to push) After swimming I felt crossed eyed and blurry and actually took a minute to just stand there at the bike rack to get my vision back. I have no clue what caused that but I wanted to make sure I had my bearings before getting on my bike.

I loved the bike ride, it was a giant loop and wasn't crowded at all and loved the peacefulness of riding and no interruptions of traffic and what not. I was afraid to switch gears out of fear my chain would fall off so I could have been faster on the bike as well if I was more comfortable with my gears.

Believe it or not, the run was the HARDEST event, and I thought I was most prepared for that. Grateful for the brick workouts I had done in the past, but I should have done more. Legs were jello and your body makes you run slow. It was impossible for me to get up to my regular pace. It was torture. The trail was horrible and that didn't help one bit. They had us run onto a desert trail, but the trail was for vehicles so it was all rock, so you had to run slow and concentrate on not rolling your ankle.

I finished hard with a sprint and was heaving horribly, but at the same time felt great for finishing. Overall, I was impressed with the organization and didn't feel totally lost. I know what I need to work on next time and what to expect.

Some things to be more prepared next time:

-Sunglasses for bike ride

-Be comfortable in what I'm swimming in

-When getting ready for the bike eat/drink something before you get on. I was to chicken to lift my hands for any reason so I didn't replenish during the bike ride. (Or practice the skill of drink/eating)

-Know my time for swimming

-Swim cap


-back up goggles (just in case)

-Be comfortable in switching gears

-After bike ride, maybe take a few seconds to stretch out quads and hamstrings and then run

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Speed Work

Through out the year I have been participating in our gym's Run Club, which has been a great way for me to meet other runners and talk about upcoming races and sharing advice, and learning to train effectively. Well, during the summer in AZ the Wednesday morning workouts had to be switched from 8:45am to 5:30am. I didn't think it was possible for me to run that early since I have kids... but then I realized it's while they are sleeping and they can just wake up dad while I'm gone! So today was my first speed workout on the track. Usually in Run Club we just go out and work on distance. Well today was a nice change for the usual routine and it felt great to get the burn in my legs and lungs. I don't know much about Speedwork now, but today we did sets of sprinting 800 yards and jogging 400yds, repeated 4 times. I just loved the feeling of pushing myself and the idea of working harder and hopefully improve my time. I couldn't believe the difference between 5:30am an 6:30am (when I usually go running) and that it is possible to keep training in the AZ summer. What an awesome morning!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Blood Hero

This weekend I accomplished one of my newest goals, which is to be an active blood donor again. My husband and I made it part of our date, and we had a blast doing it together. We sat across from each other and joked around with the staff that we were racing on who would get done the fastest. The staff was cheering us on... Freeman finished in 4 minutes, mine was 5min. Then as they have us raise our blood drawn arm in the air, my husband proudly displayed one finger up, signaling he was #1. He got a good laugh in from that. We enjoyed free snacks and beverages during our 15 minutes of waiting afterwards before heading out. It was all done in an hour, and will probably be quicker the next time we go. Such and easy process and you get some great snacks for FREE afterwards. It was such a nice way to spend time with my husband, instead of going to a movie.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Another to add to my TO-DO List....

Well, my birthday has come and passed and I now have 1 year left until I am 30. 30 is really just a number to me, and I am not going to be one of those people who will say I'm 29 forever... but 30 is just more of a date I picked to get my goals done by to finally get accomplished...

Well, I have another goal of mine that has been on the back burner a few years now and has been forgotten until now. A few years ago I was pretty active in donating blood, but once I started having babies and breastfeeding I had to put that on hold. I couldn't wait to get back into donating blood (Your are helping 3 people per a blood donation so it is a great feeling.) Well, this morning I realized, "Hey, it's been a year since I've been "allowed" to donate blood and I haven't done it!" So my goal is to get back into the swing of things and being active in donating blood. So, I'll keep you updated on this new goal of mine!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Sprint Triathlon coming up next

So I've been browsing some triathlons and found one that may work for me! There is a sprint triathlon which is on Saturday, October 15th, 2011. It's a great location and lands on a Saturday which my #1 rule to this hobby of mine is not to race on a Sunday. I have exactly 4 months til race day and I'll be focusing on training with swimming and biking since I'm not confident in those areas. The only supplies I need to add onto my "equipment" are a helmet and swim cap.

One thing that makes me nervous are the transitions because I have a hard time picturing what to do and how to have everything set up, and actually finding my stuff in the transition area. But, it's good to start somewhere and experience it so I can build from here.

I have taken a few months off from running due to an ankle strain and just started back up again and love that the pain is completely gone. The only down fall to me not training is that I gained 10 lbs! So along with training for the Sprint Triathlon, I hope to lose up to 15 lbs so I'll be a little lighter on race day!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Length of Hair update

So, on to another goal of mine...

Locks of Love

I measured the length of my hair and have about 3 inches to go. I was thinking the minimum was somewhere between 8-10 inches, but it's 10 inches. I felt a little discouraged because it also says that bleached hair is not accepted (includes highlighted hair) so I didn't know if my hair will be accepted. But then I realized that I only get my hair partially highlighted so if my hair isn't approved on top, then at least I could donated my hair that's underneath and untouched by color.

So, still continuing to grow out the hair so I can cut it. ;) Hopefully by this summer I can reach this goal!

My First 1/2 Marathon!

**My friend Cami took this picture, and I took it off her blog :)

Well, one goal down... 2 more to go.

Yesterday I ran my first 1/2 marathon and loved it! I was surprised that I wasn't as nervous as my previous race and I just wanted to run. I had a friend staying with us from out of town, and she is a full marathoner and she was great to have there with me. She wasn't signed up for the race so she jogged along side me for about 2-3 miles and then tapered off. I felt great running and had a good pace going. I was getting a little nervous because I was passing people and I was second guessing myself if I was running to fast, but with all my practice I knew I was where I should be and just let go of my insecurity and kept running.

Our course that we had was go out and come back so I met back with my friend about mile 10 which is where I felt like I was hitting a wall but I felt like her pace was helping me stick with it and just pushed myself through. The last mile seemed like it took forever and when we could see the 13th mile marker coming up my friend said some encouraging words to go for it and I took off. It was hard because the last quarter mile was uphill and right when you got to the hill/marker I almost thought I was done but no... .1 more mile, I got my pace back up and saw a guy up ahead and told myself to "finish hard" and I ended up passing him right before the finish line. They unfortunately don't give enough room for the ones that sprint because I had to stop right away and knocked into someone because they stop you to take off your timing chip. So that was a little weird to me that they didn't space it out a little more. I walked straight to the port-o-potty to pee because I didn't have a chance to do it before the race. (Only 3 available before the starting line???) So I got my cool T-Shirt, chowed down on fruit, bagels with peanut butter (Yum!) and cookies.

So here are my stats from this race.

I finished my 1/2 marathon (13.1 miles) in 1 hour and 57 minutes.

Overall females: 32nd/124

Overal female age group: 6th/27

So here is what I learned from my first marathon...


  • I loved the view of the mountains and the desert

  • Great food at the end

  • Gatorade at the water stops

  • Awesome T-Shirt which was made out of the fabric that is light and will stay dry.


  • Only 3 port-o-potties available before the race.

  • The race started at 7am so it was dark when you had to pick up your number and get your chip so I thought it was weird not to have lights up. (Especially if you were lucky enough to get into a port-o-potty.

  • They had 3 different places to go to and they put them all close together so all the lines were meshed together and just seemed chaotic. 1st table, pick up your bib, 2nd table:pick up chips (line was running perpendicular into the lines to pick up bibs) 3rd: pick up shirt (which should be done I think after the race because there is no where to put it?

  • The course. We ran on the shoulder of the road which was narrow (smaller than a car lane) and the course was out and back so if I was to ever do a full marathon, this would NOT be the course. I think it could bother me mentally seeing all the people already heading back (and yes you stick in the same lane coming back to the finish line) So I think my next race I would look for one that you don't just have to turn around and run back the same way I came.

  • Didn't like the finish line ( having to go up hill) and that they didn't give you enough time to stop running and get into a walk before stopping us to retrieve the chips.

  • You couldn't tell who were volunteers so if you had a question you had to ask around.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Safety with Running

My 2nd week into training I learned a hard lesson to expect the unexpected. I was jogging through my neighborhood and I could hear a neighbor yelling and I knew a dog had gotten out... I turned around and saw a tan colored boxer running full speed... at me! I stopped and turned so my left side was facing his direction and I yelled at the dog to stop, but it didn't stop and I turned my face and brought my arms to my chest and the dog jumped full force and I flew into the rocks and the dog pinned me down. He kept his face near my hip and my reaction was to get up (it's recommended to stay down and curl into a ball and cover your head and face) but luckily the dog stayed back until the owner got him. I luckily just limped away with a scraped leg and sprained ankle, but now a runner with slight anxiety. I thought I was being safe by carrying water with me and my phone, but it's not enough. I always think, "What if?" So now I need to be better prepared in my run. I was looking into mace/pepper spray but my husband said that won't do anything, but there is one that is a "dog pepper spray" so I'm probably going to go to Petsmart and see if they have it available. Another thing is identification. Yes, I have my phone but that doesn't give immediate information. There are some ID's that you can get personalized either by RoadID or YikesId, and can put your name, address, emergency number, blood type, allergies, whatever you want on it and you can choose between a bracelet, attachment for your shoe, or on your bike. Those are 2 ideas that I hope to implement into my running routine very soon. I also try to do a better job letting my husband know which route I am planning on taking and how long I will be out for.

Monday, December 20, 2010

12k Run

It's recommended to try to get a race in as practice and there was a 12k (7.5 miles) which is where I was at in my training. I found a fun Christmas themed race, which had Carolers at every kilometer, it was on a Saturday and was at 10am. (A great time since we lived farther away). I also looked up different foods to eat before the race and the day of. I made sure to drink plenty of water the 2 days before (I know it's gross to talk about but your urine color tells it all so make sure it is a pale yellow... and of course this should be daily not just before a race) The morning of I had a little bit of orange juice, water, banana and toast. It's good to nourish yourself before, but not a huge heavy meal. There are great articles explaining what foods to avoid and amounts and the reasons why.


We gave us enough time to drive out, but the event had such a great turnout that there wasn't enough parking! I was getting worried because I needed to get my chip and bib still and wanted to warm up and we only had 15 minutes before the race started! Luckily my husband was driving and suggested I just get out of the car and jog to it and he'll meet me there.

Another thing I didn't plan for was long lines to the bathrooms before the race, so maybe on our nice long car ride we'll stop at a gas station before we arrive instead.

The race was getting ready to start so remember your etiquette and find a good place in line for the start of the race. Leave the very front for the more experienced runners. I was probably right in the middle. Don't worry this won't effect your time because if you are running with a chip it will start keeping track of your time right when you go through the start line, so don't think your time is going to be ruined because you are towards the end of the starting line.

Remember what you have practiced and try to keep your pace. You are filled with adrenaline and seeing everyone running with you (or passing you) gets you excited and you don't want to go faster than you planned and then have it hurt you later.

Slow down when it's time to get water. Unless you have mastered this skill, but when I did I kept my pace and spilled water all over my face. I then just would grab a water move out of the way and start walking and taking small sips and throw it out, and start up again.

I mentioned before that I was a sprinter and I have always had the motto, finish and finish hard. So I love to sprint at the end... except for today. I was sprinting but I think it was a little to much because I was doing the dry hacking at the end and was dying to get a Gatorade. So next time I will sprint, but not so hard.

These races provide food so stock up. This race had bananas, oranges, cookies, potato chips (probably to replenish your sodium that has been lost) and water and different sport drinks. Remember if you don't refuel you will just feel sick later on and your recovery will suffer.

So my goal time that I set for myself was 75 minutes, because I knew I was around a 10 minute mile or less, so for 7.5 miles I wanted it to be 75 minutes. And guess what? I beat my goal. I made it in 72 minutes and they even post what your average pace was and it put me at 9 minutes and 45 seconds per mile.

So here are my stats for that race:
I was 326th place out of 1024 runners,
146th place out of 688 women.
27th place out of 134 in my age group. (25-29 years)


I had taken a Yoga class and the instructor said something that really made an impact on me that I say to myself in physical and spiritual moments. We were doing a pose, and I had looked up and noticed some other women that were incredibly flexible, and I started to feel down about myself and my own flexibility and it was like the instructor was reading my thoughts and said something like, "Focus on your body and what it can do. Enjoy improving yourself and do YOUR personal best. Don't compare yourself with others in the room, but think about building on what you have." So now when I work out I have changed the mind frame of improving on my self day by day, and just be better than I was yesterday and build on that. Every body is different and don't wish you had someone else's talent, just better the talent you do have.

So when I run my races or I'm working out, I'm not going to focus on winning the race, but to focus on beating my time that I have set as a goal, or improving each time. I'm thankful for the health of my body and being able to do what I enjoy. I love to challenge my body and to see each mile get easier and know that I could train my mind and body to do this.

The Start of Training for my 1/2 Marathon

I've been training for the AAR 1/2 marathon for about 3 years now. This is my year! The last 2 years were slightly interrupted because, well... we had a few surprise pregnancies... So anyways. I officially started my training program on November 1st. We don't have much money, so I don't have the convenience of technology of mapping out distances and keeping track of my pace, but I'll share what I've done to work around that.

I had been running on the treadmill at the gym and I was at about 3 miles and my pace was just under 10 minutes per mile so I figured that I would train by time and not miles, since I didn't have the equipment to track my mileage.
On my calendar I wrote down how many minutes I was going to run for. My first week was 30 minutes, and then I would add 10 minutes every week. The week of Thanksgiving was 60 minutes and I kept it 60 minutes the week after due to the holiday and company in town. Last week I reached 80 minutes (about 8 miles!) I have 6 weeks left until my race (Saturday, January 29th)

Help along the way

Some things that have helped me along the way so far in my training is to:
1. Choose a Race or a Date to complete your goal
Experts recommend giving yourself 4 months to train, so try to make your goal 4 months out from when you start. I gave myself 3 months, but I had some mileage under my belt when I officially made up my mind to train for my 1/2 marathon.
Make sure the race fits your schedule! Don't just close your eyes and let your finger land on a race and pick that. For me, I will only run on Saturdays, because it's important for me to keep Sunday open for church and family.
Location and Time is important to consider. Some races have a very early start time and if you live pretty far from the race, you need to consider traveling time, checking in, and time to warm up. Races are supposed to be for fun, and don't do one that you know will just stress you out and not let you enjoy or do your personal best.

2. Plan out your workouts and Write it Down.
For me, this was getting my calendar out, writing down the minutes I would run each week, and really considering what would work for me. (Taking in holidays, guests in town, or busy schedule)

3. Go out driving
My car is what I used to track some good running routes. Even though I am counting my workouts by minutes, I didn't want to go exploring and get lost or do a distance that was impossible for me to finish. So I drove around some areas to get an idea of what the mileage is. There is also a website that runners contribute to called, "" where you could look up running routes in your area that you could follow. I think this site has more to offer too.

4. Equipment
Shoes! Let's start with shoes. I do recommend going to a store that is geared toward runner's. I tried to go to a regular store, had them fit me for a running shoe and left feeling with buyer's remorse. I knew it didn't feel right to me and I couldn't get away with buying a cheap shoe, so I went back and returned it. I later found out that the size they put me in wasn't right at all! I went to the Road Runner Sports over at the Tempe Marketplace and loved it. They measured my foot, gave me advice on what to look for, and after I had picked a shoe, they had a treadmill that video recorded my running so the salesperson can check to see if the shoe is correcting my foot posture. :) (The treadmill test is free by the way!) So make that investment in your running shoes, because if the shoe doesn't fit, it will cause problems in the long run.

Clothing. I'm now learning about purchasing the right clothing for running, and I'll explain later why. But when I started, shorts are a must for me. My lower body has it's curves and the feeling of material rubbing together is quite irritating and will distract you the whole time during your run, so if it's the same case, shorts or better material is a good option.

5. Nutrition
When you are training, it helps to see food as "fuel." You are challenging your body hard time and eating proper foods that will fuel and replenish what is lost during a workout is key. Reaching the 8 mile mark I realized the importance of feeding your body. I had eaten a good meal before my run, but afterward I had doctor appointments, errands, and then feeding my kids. So after a few hours from my 80 minute workout, I never refueled and I started to feel weak and nauseous. Whoops.
Also hydration, Before, During and After.

On my way

We are always encouraged to keep a personal journal and I have always struggled to keep one current and up to date. But typing it out is just easier and quicker, and being a mom of three that is what I'm looking for.

This personal journal, "Journey 2 My Thirty," is just about me trying to reach my own personal goals, that of course will continue beyond my thirtieth birthday, but there are some goals that I've always wanted to accomplish, goals that are added to my New Year's Resolution list that have been repeatedly put on for the last 15 years, but never accomplished and now is the time to get my bum in gear and do it.

My first 3 goals that I have in the process of doing, and would accomplish in the year 2011 are:
1. Run a 1/2 marathon
2. Compete in a sprint triathlon
3. Donate my hair to Locks of Love

Run in a 1/2 marathon
Growing up I loved to run... mostly short distances. I was a pretty fast kid and loved the feeling to run as fast as I could and to feel that power that my little body had. Once I hit my teenage years, my body started changing and started slowing down. I remember being 14 and my start of running was a mix of being prepared for track and to slim down. I would wake up before school and do my tortured workout of jog/walk, jog/walk and then after a few weeks it would be so much easier and it was jogging the whole time. I've carried that memory of my struggle at the beginning and how hard it is to start something new, and the struggle, but then see the improvements in my body and how you could build up to something.
I've been setting this goal to run a 1/2 marathon for the past 7 years. At first I didn't put the effort into reaching this goal, I think out of fear and doubting that my body could turn from a sprinter into long distance runner, but then when I did start training and putting effort in, we were surprised with some children. :)

Compete in a Sprint Triathlon

When I see triathlons, running obstacle courses in the mud, or even American Gladiator, those challenges seem like that would be awesome to do. Of course over the years of being the viewer, and having that ache in my heart to do it, I just want to go out and do it and be a part of it. Why be on the sidelines all the time? There are so many things that look fun to me, yet I don't do it? So, this is one of them. I enjoy all three events, and since a "sprint" triathlon is shorter distances, it is something I know I can obtain and won't be overwhelmed doing it.

Donate my hair to locks of love

I've had this goal for 10+ years now. I start growing out my hair and of course, get sick of the growing out phase and cut it off before it is an acceptable length to donate. Now that I'm getting older, it seems that more people that I know personally, are affected by cancer and lose their hair. I feel humbled now and appreciate the hair that I do have, but know that I could really help someone else out. So, I'm hoping by the end of 2011, my hair will be long enough to donate and this will be something I will do! My mind is set and I'm done not following through with my goals.