Connect the Dots Ginger | Becky Allen: August 2013

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Race Is Finished!

The women's 4 miler was AMAZING! There were so many women there running it was such a neat experience to be apart of. I have learned how to weave and bob through women like a pro! I did really well but looking back I probably should have pushed just a little bit harder. But the humidity and "soup" like conditions were not favorable for me! It zaps my energy and makes it hard to breath easily. I just feel like every breath takes so much just to fill up. I cough a ton after those kinds of conditions later in the day too! Anyhew, my legs don't hurt, my feet do because they got wet before we started running. I will say this, I love my run keeper app on my phone because it has been keeping track of my running time. This month alone I went from a 14:30 min mile to 13:30 min mile. So I am getting better and I love seeing the results of all my hard work!
~Foggy, humid morning~
It was fun a lot of my friends were on the other side of the street running back to the finish line before my second turn around yelling my name as we passed. They are all such amazingly fast runner! And are my inspiration to keep no moving my feet!

The last mile of the race is considered motivational mile which has posters lining the road of cancer survivors or for those who have passed. Sadly the last mile I get tunnel vision to FINISH THE RACE and just get in that zone to get back. But before the we had to line up and we were lined up right in the motivational mile. It was really neat to see who we were running for and for the great cause we were running for. (How do you like my pink top?)

Excited to run again next year! This is only the beginning! Oh and one thing. I did get a little too much sun, just slightly pink but man my freckles are so dark after today! I will get a pix of my amazingly awesome racer back freckle line, I mean tan line! :)
 ~Running buddies and Sarg T (Rainbow skirt) who keeps us moving! and Pacing group lineup! A SEA of Women!~~
QOTD: What is your favorite post race activity? Mine is napping!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Pre-Race Jitters

I don't know about you but the night before, and my friend J can testify of this, but I always have bad dreams about me getting lost on the course, being late and missing the start up, questioning of I have everything I need, or being last. I am hoping that tonight that doesn't happen to me since I feel so well prepared for tomorrow! I really do. I know I can do it. My concern now is how humid is it going to be because that just zaps all the energy out of me. But I am assuming that with 3,028 other women running that there will be plenty of energy!

As J has told me before, I won't get lost on the course. Because there are 3,028 other women there running. It will also be marked so no worries there.

I have already set my alarm for 5:30am so that we can leave here around 6am and get to Foxfield area by 6:30. I am pretty sure it is going to be super foggy, because it was this morning. So allowing time to drive in fog is a must!

The pink ladies keep telling us on Facebook to lay out our clothing and everything we need the night before so that tomorrow morning we aren't scrambling to get everything! So my todo list for tonight is: PINK shirt with bib pinned on, bra bottoms, socks, shoes, W4MTP bracelet, towel, water, flip flops to change out of running shoes after, change of shirt for after (so I don't get fried since I am allergic to sun screen, more freckles are one thing but getting super burned, not fun!) iPod and headphones, icy hot,
and snacks for Mace and Matt while they wait at the finish line area to cheer me on. I think that is it.

Being last. WHO CARES IF I AM LAST! At least I finished the race and did it. I will hobble, crawl or drag myself to the finish line if I have to! I ain't quitin'! But like I said I feel prepared and I know that I will make it across the finish line exactly as I should and in a time acceptable. At least I am doing it. Again if I told myself a year ago that I was doing this than I would have laughed (and snorted) so hard! But I am so glad that I am doing this.

SO today is HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE and here is to happy dreaming tonight, an early rise tomorrow and an amazingly fun time with 3,028 other women racing for a great cause!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Planning Ahead

The race that got me actively running, (and yes it was all because of the awesome training program I was apart of), will be here and gone this Saturday. So what's next? I started looking online for other races. Maybe another 5k, whatever sounds fun. (I found a Danger! Zombies Run race which sounds like a blast!) But then I saw a beautiful 10k! Which is a couple of weeks before the Zombies Run race. Both races take place in and around the same area so I am debating on not doing the Zombies Race this year. Anyhew, I want to push myself, challenge myself and do something that keeps me moving forward! I asked the amazing pink lady that "suggested" (over and over, though to her credit it is what I needed) last night if this was something I could do. She pointed out that it is only 2.2 miles more than what I am currently running. (Less than that since we have done 4.5 miles a few times now) What is just a mere 2.2 miles more at this point?

Looking at my twitter and Facebook there are so many people running races this weekend! The big DUMBO race is happening at Disneyland! Good luck to all the runners! Soon I will be there with you smiling and laughing as I run through the happiest place on earth!

So here's to me planning ahead! (I am even thinking about doing the Richmond half marathon in Oct) Check out my races tab to see what I have done and what is in the works for me! Hmmm... maybe a disney full marathon, or a few more half marathons. Maybe the Tinker bell 1/2 at Disneyland AND the Disney Princess 1/2 at Disney World and get the coast to coast medal! Maybe even the Marines Corps
Marathon in DC or The biggest loser races! Man there are so many to choose from!!!

QOTD: What is your dream race or distance?

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Good Morning

I finally figured out, early this morning 4am early, that I have indeed created a habit. Mason woke up crying at 2:30am. He just cried for a few minutes but it woke me up and put me on mommy mode. (The shocking, adrenaline rush mommy mode.) I could not for the life of me fall back asleep. By 4am my legs started to burn. They wanted to do something. They missed doing something. Well yesterday was the first Tuesday in 11 weeks that I didn't run. Yep. I made a habit of it. And I think my legs were yelling at me because I didn't go running. (Mace still has a little cold so no gym again). So instead of fighting it. I told Matt I was going on a run and be back in a half an hour.

It did not clear my head of all the things I was thinking about. I don't know how many stray spiderwebs I ran into. Had a beetle on me when I got home and was pouring sweat because it was so humid. It did help add more burn to my legs, a good burn, thanks in part to the nasty 900 ft hill right outside my front door. Made me realize that I really do enjoy running. I listened to my body. Did what it wanted and when I got back after a nice shower I was ready to go back to bed. I slept from 5-8 like a log! Out of it! Way to go me on exercising before the world woke up because I am done for the day and I did it all before 5am! Time to go buy some reflective clothing because I do not have any. Best to be safe than sorry and there were a couple of cars out.

QOTD: Do you have any night/early morning running tips or suggestions.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Second Day Soreness

You know you worked it when you are still sore, actually more sore, 2 days after a good run or exercise! I might complain to my husband that I hurt. I might take it a little slower going up and down the stairs but man it sure does feel good. I know good things are happening in my body when I have second day soreness. That means that I pushed myself. My body is saying, "What the heck was that!" Well body get used to it because 10 miler/ half marathon training will begin soon! I do know that my muscles will get stronger and I will grow more accustom to what I am doing because of it. Here is a great and fun read on DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). To help prevent DOMS Beachbody Recovery (post workout shake) and Recharge (nighttime recovery shake), part of the the Beachbody Performance Line, work together to help reduce muscle soreness and promote muscle repair and recovery. Plus there are some foods you can eat to help accelerate recovery? Check out Muscles Zone's great article here on some top foods you can eat!

Today, I'm going to do in home exercise. Maybe my Zumba DVD or a 2-3 mile walk DVD. Mason is still sick and therefore can not go to the gym childcare. GRRR! It is also taper week before the race. But I must keep moving today so that my soreness goes away!

QOTD: Do you reduce your exercise due to second day soreness?

Saturday, August 24, 2013

There's No Crying...

In running! Seriously love that movie. Today I shed some tears. Tears of happiness and joy. I was so proud of myself. Today I ran 1.75 miles without stopping to walk. Up hills and down hills. I told myself that I was going to run to the fields and I did. When I got to the fields I was so happy and proud of what I had just done that it took me a couple of minutes to get my act together. I still had 2.25 miles left to do, argh! On top of that amazing feet, with my amazing feet, I ran 4.1 miles in 55:24. My 4 miler race is next week, the actual race, even though I have been doing 4 miles every week now for the last month but my goal is to run it in under 55 min. I think I can shave off 30 seconds next week. It is a downhill finish, but there is a nasty uphill climb in miles 2 and 3. That part won't be too fun but I can totally do this! Regardless of what happens, I am doing this. I am so proud of myself for actually kicking some major butt!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Squat Day Today

Poor Mace is sick. Not horribly sick but enough so that he can't go to the daycare at the gym, which makes me not able to go to the gym during normal times. And Friday evenings are family days here. Movie and going out type dinner. Usually we get dinner to go but today we ate out at our fav Mexican Restaurant! So no gym for me today (and yesterday for that matter).

So I decided that today was going to be a squat kind of day. I think I need more leg strength to get up all the hills because I just putter out half way on the hill. Run out of gas. (If anyone has any advice on how to conquer these hills better besides just do it let me know. currently I am running shorter distances on them walk a little then jog up a little more. Still learning here!) Today I decided I would do 4 sets of 25 squats during the day. I have 1 set left to go. I'm still doing something which is more than I was doing 3 months ago! Wanna join me???

QOTD: What is your go to indoor exercise when unable to go to the gym?

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Only The Best

We all want to give our children only the best in life. I want my son, Mason, who just turned 2 to have everything he wants (within reason). But even at 2 he really does get better things that me. We buy him nice clothing (usually on sale and he is better dress than me), the best in fruits and he gets super healthy (somewhat healthy on a better budget now) snacks. When he was 10 months I was breaking the bank trying to buy all the fresh fruit he could eat because he loved, loved, loved fresh fruit! He still does but we had to reign in his allowance on how much fresh fruit we could give him since he WAS breaking the bank. He could and would eat a whole pint of blueberries or strawberries. Multiple apples a day, and whatever he could get his mouth on. He loves those fruit and veggie puree squeeze things too. Oh and I do make green smoothies most days and he loves those too!
~Mason at 15 months eating his fav, blueberries!~
I try to feed him as healthy as possible. Breakfast he is the best eater! He will eat a whole egg, over medium, 1/4 c oatmeal (gluten free, organic), 1/2 banana and a cup of milk. Lunch is homemade wheat PB&J with grapes or apple on the side. And yogurt and Gold fish for snacks. I think my pushing and prodding has finally won in the veggie dept. The only way I could get him to eat veggies was in the Happy Baby squeeze things and green smoothies but never just straight up leafy greens. Last night was the first night he didn't turn his nose up at salad. He usually spits out the green stuff and eats the other stuff but last night he was eating it all!!! Granted it was the poppyseed strawberry salad from Panera Bread that had TONS of chicken, pineapple, strawberries, blueberries and mandarin oranges. But at least he finally ate the green stuff. Now onto a new chapter of healthy eating with veggies.

Disclaimer: Please know that not everyday is like this, most days he eats this well, but some days I give in and just do what I can to survive. I am not a perfect mother, never will be, but I try and that is all I can do!

QOTD: What is your kids fav healthy snack?

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Just Finished

When I am not running or exercising at the gym, chasing my son, teaching, practicing, cooking or cleaning my house my fav relaxing thing to do is READ! I love reading. Just upgraded a few months ago from my Kindle 2 to Kindle paperwhite and I love it. I can read in bed at night without having to have the light on, which my hubby loves.

I love Jane Austen. I have loved her books for years. I read them only once in awhile because I love the movie adaptations of her books. My fav Austen book is Pride and Prejudice. I watch the movie about ever 6 months. For fun. Because I love it. The BBC Version. Its 6 hours long.
I finished reading Austenland by Shannon Hale last night. Figured that I would see the move eventually so might as well read the book. Austenland was an ok book. Predictable. The idea of role playing and dressing up in Regency attire for 3 weeks sounds fun. But a fake set up romance not so much. I am looking forward to the movie because Jennifer Coolidge as Miss Charming totally fits! She is going to be hilariously annoying! Fast read if you are interested I would give it a 3 star on Goodreads. Enjoy!

QOTD: What are you currently reading?

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Red Faced Red Head!

What I look like after running with no moving air around me, in the back of the gym, right in front of Old Glory! I promise you I am not dying! I actually did really well for 4.5 miles and did it in an hour (1 hour 1 min to be exact). Best for me, but man it was a hot one in there!

QOTD: How red do you get?

Lead By Example

My goals for this blog is to help inspire women to not only run but to challenge themselves and grow in their own confidence that they can accomplish a task that seems impossible. Believe me, a year ago, if I told myself that I would be running 4 miles for fun I would have laughed at myself but wondered if I really could do that. I know I can, not only because I want to but I have pushed myself and have done it. (Today training run is 4.5 miles so I know I can do it!)

But I also want to lead by example for my son. I want him to beat the odds in this 1 out of 3 kids are obese nowadays. That is such a disturbing fact. 1 out of 3 ARE obese. When I was 12 I was bigger than all my string pole friends. I remember I weighed 125 lbs at 12 years old. But I was not fat. I in fact did have more muscle on my body than any of my friends. My son is proof of that because he inherited my muscle mass and he is solid and stacked! I struggled with self confidence issues and thought I was fat to the point that in my junior year in school that I was barely eating. I lost 20 lbs in 7 months. I got down to 145. I looked skinny but it was a bone sticking out everywhere kind of skinny and was very unhealthy. When I started eating again I gained all the weight back. Thus started my yo-yo dieting. But in high school I was never fat. I was bigger but I was stocky. I actually had a flat stomach, just a tiny little pooch. And I thought I was the fattest girl ever. I do not want my son to feel like I did, EVER!

Couple things to think about. I couldn't run a mile. I was weak in that regards. I didn't push myself activity wise. I pushed myself in other areas but didn't do sports. Didn't think I could. I would use the excuse of I couldn't breath and had asthma but that was because I didn't exercise. I hated to. It wasn't fun and I could have done more than I attempted.

I am so strong now. I might not be high school skinny but I think I am in better physical shape. I can push myself farther. Eventually the weight will come off. That I do know. But for right now I am just going one mile at a time. Here is a great article I found for childhood obesity.

Also here is the website to the Let's Move campaign by Michelle Obama! 

So let's lead by example together! Let's show our kids it is fun and amazing to exercise! Happy Running!!!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Rainy Days

It is so hard to roll out of bed sometimes when it is just dark and cloudy and rainy. Do I really want to go to the gym today? It is just my recovery day. My bed is so warm! These are the things I think on a rain day like today. We as humans are naturally lazy. We really are. It is hard work pushing our bodies and minds to physically push itself beyond where it is comfortable which is a somewhat inactive state. But on days like today, especially since I don't have to do my training run, and shouldn't it is still a great day to work on thighs and do a little light cardio. It is only for an hour or so. Then we can rest the rest of the day. We can do it!!! So lets roll out of bed and lets get going! See you on the flip side!

QOTD: How do you motivate yourself to roll out of bed on gloomy days?

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Pretty in Pink

In 2 weeks I will be running in the Women's 4 miler. The benefits are donated to the UVA Cancer Center Breast Care Program. The running color for the race is...PINK! My whole life, my mother taught me never ever ever should a redhead wear pink or peach for that matter. I have never ever liked the color anyways so it was pretty easy to avoid the color for most of my life. For the first time in my adult life I actually want to wear pink. My husband thinks I am crazy and is mildly amused that I am going against my dislikes to support a cause.

I just purchased my pink shirt ( and WOW is it pink. I think that it glows in the dark it is so pink.
Do not let this photo fool you. It looks like this shirt should be a soft salmon color. WRONG! Is is the most florescent neon pink I have ever seen let alone ever worn. It is a mesh like material that has a little static cling but I don't think that the static will matter when I am pouring sweat all over it. My husband will not have a problem finding me in the sea of pink in 2 weeks time as I will be the neon sign running amongst the other 4,000 women! Proud to show my support even if it means for me to wear pink. 

Charlottesville Women's 4 Miler:

QOTD: Have you or will you purchase a specific outfit for a race? 

Saturday, August 17, 2013


Welcome to my new running and all things fit adventure blog. I know I don't look like a runner. Not yet at least. But I am getting there. I am new to the running world learning and running more and more everyday. (Maybe not running quite everyday)

My back story. Why I wanted to run.

I have always wanted to run. I remember back in the 7th grade that I ran 1 mile without stopping. 1 mile. It also was at 4:30 in the afternoon in the blazing heat of Arizona and I wanted to get back inside. I knew the faster I ran the sooner I would be back inside. So I high tailed it around the track and finished super fast. That was my first and only mile run until I was 28 years old.

At 28 my husband was deployed and I needed something else to keep me busy. No kids yet and teaching piano was fun but I needed something for me and needed to get my big butt in shape. Got a personal trainer and after about 6 months of personal training I started running. I lost 30 lbs and got below 200 lbs. It only lasted for a few months because we became pregnant with our first son through the help of fertility treatment. I only walked during the pregnancy because it took 8 years to get pregnant and I didn't want anything to happen. So walk I did.

Husband got deployed to Iraq when our son was 3 days old and I didn't have family around so no more gym. It took 2 more years and heartbreak to get my big butt again back into shape. May of 2013 I suffered my second miscarriage in a year and I had made it to almost 12 weeks pregnant. The pregnancy was so stressful. Went to the doctor all the time for blood work. Husband was in AZ for training the entire time I was pregnant. Day before Mother's Day I miscarried. Broke my heart, my faith, and I became angry. Plus I gained 12 lbs. So I had the 12 lbs plus what I was still trying to lose from my first son. NOT GOOD! I was not happy.

There were signs up all over town about a local 5k on June 1st. 3 weeks after my miscarriage I walked my first 5k. 2 weeks after that I joined the local Women's 4 miler training program. 1 week after that I signed up for my first 1/2 marathon and 4 miler.

I am now 2 weeks away from the Women's 4 miler and rocking it. I am run/walking 4 miles comfortably now and look forward to signing up and joining the 10 miler training program this fall. So that's my story. The rest from here on out is going to be my amazing journey of self discovery and motivation. I hope I can motivate you in any way to change your lifestyle and try out a new sport!

QOTD (Quested of the day): Why do you run?
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