How Running Changes You – Guest Post By Melody

My very dear friend, Melody, sent me this email this week. It was so good, and spoke so clearly to the power of running, that I decided to use it as a post. Used with her permission. She’s awesome and I love her. Read it to the end. It will inspire and encourage you.


This is Melody. I stole this off her FB wall without asking first. But seriously, how could she not love this picture?

Hi Jen,

I just wanted to drop you a line this morning to let you know what an encouragement your blog is to me. I really appreciate that you talk about running and working-mom style adulting in a real way.

I thought you might be interested to know that I started running this spring after I left IBC staff. I say running because joggers always seem to be the ones getting abducted and whatnot. So I don’t jog, no ma’am. I run (however slow it may be). I had never run or played sports or really asked much of my body before, and I’m happy to say that my body can do lots more than I expected of it. Isn’t it funny that even knowing the pain of being underestimated and undervalued by other people, I still underestimate myself?? Ha!

Running is hard. There were the first few weeks when I thought my knees were just sore and adjusting and needed more stretching. But then I finally mentioned the knee pain to my chiropractor and she popped my knee back in alignment! There were the weeks I had to take off just as I was starting to see some progress. There was the unending summer heat and humidity. There was my sister’s wedding. There was my best friend’s funeral. There were so many excuses.

But this time, I’ve decided to be stronger than my excuses. This time, I’m getting my whiny diaper baby butt up and out on the trail. Did you know that if you jog at midnight, every leaf will look like a frog and you will be terrified to step on them? Would you also believe that the teenagers smoking pot on the trail didn’t even offer to share even though I’m obviously young and cool? 😉

Regardless, I’m running anyway because I decided to. It’s not about being seen on the trail or setting a good example, or buying cute workout clothes, or treating myself to an extra cookie because I can. It’s about giving myself permission to prioritize myself. It’s about being disciplined to meet my goals, even when I don’t feel like it and no one is watching. It’s about celebrating the body God gave me by using it!

So all that to say, I think you’re onto something with this whole running thing. Even if I never win a race, even if I don’t lose a pound, I’m glad to have running in my life. So thanks for continuing to encourage me through your honest (and often hilarious) posts. I appreciate you.



Big sigh. Run with joy and intention, Friends. It can change everything.

RnR Savannah Training Recap and Things I’m Loving Right Now

Warning: this is going to be a rather ADHD post. But that’s OK! Because one of the things I’m loving this week is an article about exercise and ADHD. And it doesn’t just work for children! I was never formally diagnosed but have a STRONG feeling I may have it, and I KNOW that when I am regularly exercising I am far more focused and productive. Here’s the article if you want to check it out!

Happy to say this week’s training has been truly great. My 7 mile training run last Saturday was a hug confidence booster. Yes, I have trained for a half marathon many, many times and yet somehow always convince myself I can’t. What is that about? Very weird.img_4220

So that was followed up by a 2 a day on Tuesday (including a super fun run with my running group!), and a 4.5 mile run yesterday where I truly enjoyed every step. That hasn’t happened in awhile. The scenery wasn’t bad either!

I’ve also added cross training back in and am up to being able to swim half a mile. I would love to get that to a whole mile but ya’ll, it’s HARD to swim that far! But I feel very normal in the water and it always brings me joy so I’ll keep plugging away. At my pool at Lifetime Fitness, a mile is 32 full laps (back and forths) and the half mile took me about 25 minutes which I don’t think is that bad!

I am feeling more and more excited about the RnR Savannah race weekend!

Did I tell you I added the VIP experience? Can’t wait to tell you all about that! Hoping it was worth the money. Oh, and if you wanted to sign up but haven’t yet, there’s actually a groupon for it right now for $69 which is way less than I paid. Check it out!

I love listening to podcasts on long runs and if you’ve never done that you should try!

You can learn a lot and it makes the miles fly. You can check out the one I was interviewed for if you want (#humblebrag). Because Nicole DeBoom is amazing and mostly interviews Olympic Marathoners and founders of amazing companies. And ME. Crazytown. You can check that out here.

But this week I found another podcast I love! It’s the How She Really Does It podcast with Koren Motekaitis and it is PURE GOLD. Yesterday I listened to her interview with Martha Beck and am hooked! And bonus, she posts a lot so I have lots to catch up on. Check it out!makeacommitmentsmall

Also loving our new treadmill purchase!

She doesn’t get here until early next week (I thinks it’s a she – I’ll wait and let it reveal it’s gender;). I had a great experience at Fitness Resource and we got just what we needed in the Horizon T7 for the perfect price! I loved our last Horizon treadmill so was very happy to stick with a brand I trust. I walked in and told Matt (hi, Matt!) exactly what I needed and that we had to be under 2K all in, delivery, tax and everything. We opted for the service package because between the 5 of us we are very hard on treadmills! Thanks for a great experience! If you’re in the Atlanta area, definitely check them out.elitet7-treadmill_hero

As soon as I’m done posting this rather long post (sorry!), I’m off to bake for Cookies for Kid’s Cancer! We do this every year at work and it is SUCH a great organization! Please check them out and see how you can get involved. I’m going to really have to have some self control to not buy and consume all the things my lovely co-workers make. This girl is in training!

Have a great weekend! Do you have a race or a long run scheduled? Tell me about it here or on the FB page so we can cheer each other on!