Sunday, January 19, 2014


By now you have all heard about Meg Menzies and her tragic death caused by a drunk driver.  She was a wife, mother, friend, sister and daughter, no different from most of us reading this blog.

It did not take long for this news to hit runners everywhere.  Soon, #megmiles was created and we were all encouraged to run Saturday, January 18.

My heart was broken for this women and her family.  The posts that started popping up about her brought tears to my eyes every time I read one.  Then, I made the mistake of clicking on her personal FB page and I couldn't even scroll down.  The photos of her and her family were beautiful and I could not believe this family was broken apart.

There are so many questions but no answers.  There is nothing that I can do to change what has happened but I knew I could run with the thousands of other runners on Saturday.

I messaged all my running buddies and a plan was set.  Meet at the town beach at 7 am. Early, and I hate early.  Didn't matter, I was alive and well and early was irrelevant.

I had a hard time sleeping and getting up.  Once I was moving around, I was feeling pretty good.  I ate breakfast and headed out.

As soon as I was out of my garage and on the road, it started raining, my least favorite running condition. I was not prepared for this. I would of worn a different jacket.

I am a person who talks to myself. Out loud.  So I started to talk to Meg.  I asked her to watch over everyone who was running today. I told her she would not be forgotten and that I was happy that I was able to do this for her and her family.  Then, I asked her to hold the rain off, just a bit.  Silly?  Maybe.  My drive was about 10 minutes and once I was parked, the rain stopped.

Beth was already there, Jenn showed up a couple minutes later.  Mary and Elaine were both a maybe, but they showed up.  Mary with her dog Kelly.

We ran a five mile loop that we like.  It was great to see everyone. I haven't run with Beth or Elaine since the Fall.  BTW, Beth is training for her first 50k! I am in awe.

These girls are easy to talk to and the conversation was good. We talked about Meg, our kids, our jobs, and races.  This was a tough run emotionally and I don't think I would have gotten through it without my girls. Thanks for being with me ladies!

Once we were finished we snapped a few pictures, got in our cars and then, it started to pour. I am sure Meg held the rain off for us.

Meg is not the first person to be killed by a drunk driver and, unfortunately, she will not be the last.  I can not fix this problem, but I can bring awareness to it and just do my damnedest to raise smart, happy and responsible children.

I have only be a runner since 2011, and in that time, we lost Sherri Arnold, Sarah Hart and now Meg Menzies.  Three mothers, doing what they love to do, who's lives were taken away far too soon.  I know they are not the only ones who have lost their lives, but they are the ones I know about.  Not a run goes by that I don't think about Sherri and Sarah, and now I will think of Meg too.

On my FB page, I asked you all to add your miles and I hoped we would get 100 as a page. You all came through and we ran a total of 424.18 miles. Thank you!

If you haven't already done it, there has been a page set up so you can post your miles and leave a message for the family. You can do that here.

On a positive note, this five mile run was my longest since my marathon.  I am well on my way and feeling very excited about this up coming year.

I know you have probably read so many blogs about Meg and I just want to thank you for taking the time to read mine as well.

Be safe everyone!

Run Strong, Think Big! ~ Nicole

Monday, January 6, 2014


Today, I ran.

It has been one month since my last run.  I have stretched, rested, used ice, rolled my foot with a golf ball, used my foam roller and slept with a goofy sock thingy.  I think, so far, it paid off.

Before I go on, let me be clear.  My heel spur did not just disappear.  It is still there, but I have hit a place where I feel like I can manage the pain, still run and still do all the PT.  If this is not the case, I will stop and reevaluate.

I started thinking about todays run days ago.  I kept wondering if I would feel any pain, would I be able to do it, what would I wear? I know silly, but my mind went there.

I decided early on that I would do my first runs back at the gym.  For a couple reasons, but mostly because if anything went wrong, I could just stop and not have to worry about how I would get home.

I got the kids off to school, had breakfast, got dressed and posted all over FB that I was on my way.  (Well that is what bloggers do, right?)
Heading out the door and ready to go!
Love this shirt!  The sub30 club is a group I belong to on FB.  We got these shirts for doing a virtual and all the money went to Wounded Warriors.  It is such a fun group of runners!

After I stretched, I hopped on a treadmill and panic struck.  I was afraid.  Afraid that I would start to run and everything would hurt. I was afraid that I wouldn't make it and would never run again.  Dramatic much?

I started the machine up and walked. I walked.  I didn't want to find out I couldn't do it.

My music was good, crowd was decent and I started to calm down.  I turned my speed up and I ran.  I started out slow with a goal of three miles.  Three miles that were dedicated to my I Run 4 buddy, Wyatt.

I was matched with Wyatt right after my marathon and up until today, I only ran six miles for him. I biked but that, to me, was not good enough.

It didn't take long for me to realize my endurance was shit! I wanted to stop. I started pleading with myself to just get to one mile. One freaking mile!  I wanted to cry. How did I make it 26.2 miles just six weeks ago?

I got to one mile and walked, again.  Not long this time, I pictured Wyatt and his smiling face and positive attitude.

I was running and I was feeling pretty good and then my mind went crazy again. Was this false hope? Was I going to hurt later and not be able to walk again? And why is it so damn hot in here?

And then, I was at 2.5 miles.  Ok, good. I feel good.  I am doing this!  Calm down, calm down, calm down!

I picked up the speed but there was no PR for this one.  I had walked too much.  I finished in 36:15.  Honestly, I think this is my slowest time since finishing the C25K program. I realized quickly though, that this run was not about any of that. I just needed to run and finish.  Stay strong and healthy, and until I am back to my normal level, just go at the pace that gets it done.

In fact, that is going to be my mantra for the year.  Go at the pace that gets it done.  Be happy with that. Have fun and enjoy the ride.  Run because you can and run for those who can't.  It's as simple as that.
Finished! And yes, it says Suck It Up Princess!

I am now showered and still feeling good.  Mornings were always tough with the PF and spur, so I guess we will know for sure tomorrow.  Although, my gut is telling me I will be ok.

So there we go. My first three miles of 2014.  Looking forward to seeing where I go from here.

If things continue to feel good, my first half of the year is March 9. I am going to sit down today and map out a plan that gets me there.  I will let you know more about that later.

Thanks everyone for the messages and kind words over the last several weeks.  I am looking forward to  running with my friends again and blogging more.

So, tell me how you are. How did you kick off the year? And what is the race you are training for?

Run Strong, Think Big! ~ Nicole