Tools of My Trade


Hi y’all!  I’m sorry for the week-ish hiatus from writing.  Last week was a big test week at school and this week Tiff, Erin and I have started a new training plan for my spring goals (SPEED!) and it wasn’t until today that I could even move my fingers to type something.  I am so sore everywhere from starting to lift weights again.  But it’s a good feeling 🙂

A few weeks ago, just before the marathon, a very dear childhood friend asked me to contribute a feature for her marketing blog.  Megan Stewart lived down the street from me in Indiana and we spent hours upon hours in various fantasy lands – her creativity and imagination was limitless and my childhood was brighter because of it 🙂  Now, she’s grown up and putting that creativity to good use with her husband at their very own marketing company – Paired Inc.

As a girl who hopes to own her own business someday, I find Megan and JK’s story inspirational.  They’re chasing their dreams by helping others design their own.  What a great job!

Check out the piece Megan helped me put together here and her other resources below:

Once Upon a Pie: Megan’s Personal Creativity Blog

Paired Inc.: Megan and JK’s business page

Paired Blog: Megan and JK’s blog for small businesses and entrepreneurs

If you’d like to be featured on her blog, she’s looking for more business owners and bloggers to feature on Tools of the Trade!  Send her an email –

See y’all soon 🙂


Foodie Friday: Marathon Weekend


My friend and client Sharon who was in town for the race, is also a blogger. She describes her blog

as silly, sexy, spiritual, serious, sarcastic and sweet. Surely there’s something here for you…grab a cup of coffee and stay awhile.

Even though we have a big gap in our ages, she is a young spirit and has a lot of wisdom in her words. I often find myself completely relating to her through her poignant honesty, or laughing out loud to her matter-of-fact humor. She wrote about the food we ate during marathon weekend better than I could have, and I wanted to share it with y’all!

Midlife Moments

One of the benefits of running for a hobby is that it burns calories. Thankfully, I love a lot of things about running, so the calorie burn is just an extra benefit. I don’t think I could stay motivated if it was the ONLY reason I ran. I probably burn somewhere between 2500 and 3000 calories in a 2 1/2 hour marathon. Now, before you get too excited, keep in mind that I probably eat a little more to fuel for this event. So, I’d say that I have an extra 2000 calories to play with over my regular daily allotment of calories to maintain my weight. You have to remember that not many of the runs are that long. That’s the one race of that distance in a 10 week period. For a long time, I thought that, if I ran marathons, I could eat what I wanted. But…

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Marathon #3: Livestrong Austin Marathon – Part 4


Four days out and I finally laced up the shoes again (different shoes – the Saucony Mirages are retired).  It was short, and it was slower than marathon pace but it was (mostly) pain free!  I rolled for 10 minutes, ran for 30 and rolled for 10. Getting back out for the first run after a big race is always challenging mentally and physically.  I always talk about my relationship with running and well, Sunday we went through a tough time.  There’s fear that running will be abusive and painful again.  Fear that I won’t be as strong.  But bigger than that fear are the feelings of excitement and anticipation to return to something I love.  We can’t jump right back in, we’re starting over.  Nice and easy for a few weeks before we get really committed again.  Here’s the plan:

Long distance running and I are going to take a long break.  Erin’s already talking about the next marathon but Tiff and I are staying strong and not giving in.  I’m sure I’ll run another one (see how quickly it changed from Sunday…..), maybe before I’m 30.  No marathons in 2013, probably not 2014 and maybe not even 2015.  I have a big half marathon goal to get back to – but even now, due to budget and races scheduling restraints, that must wait.

Next big thing: BE FAST!

Time to win more prizes…..!


This spring I want to switch from being a really long distance runner to a faster and shorter distance runner.  It’s a completely different kind of fitness, training and running.  I’ve been studying a little bit in school how to train for speed and I’m interested to apply it to myself.  So, that’s what this spring will be for, and then a little bit in the fall I’ll get back into the halves….gotta get some more states (Michigan, Oklahoma, Kentucky and Kansas are bein’ talked about!)

This week

I took the first two days after the marathon (Monday and Tuesday) completely off of working out.  Just going down the stairs felt like enough effort to count for an hour on the road.  Wednesday I managed to take a spin class taught by Tiff and it felt so good to slightly achy muscles.  Today I went for an easy run, and I’ll either Spin or run again tomorrow.

This Next Month (Through March 17)

I will take a break from any kind of scheduled running.  I’ll use the extra time to nest around the apartment, explore my hometown, practice cooking, read, study (guess that one should be first!) and maybe even date a little ;).  I plan to continue doing the Taco runs on Tuesday and maybe one or two other maintenance fun runs on the lake throughout the week with friends and music.  Easy, no-pressure running.  The goal for this month is to rest my mind, rest my running muscles and develop strength and power.  To work on strength and power, I’ll start doing a lot of jumping workouts and strength training.

If you’re just coming out of an intense training season (like for a specific event), it’s a good idea to check in on your body composition.  I know that normally during endurance trainings I gain a little weight.  It’s nothing that’s a big deal but the time to take care of it is now, in this off-season.  It’s so hard to lose weight in-season because you need to eat enough to feel fueled to perform the higher quality workouts.  So now, in the next four weeks of lower quality workouts, I can balance the energy systems a little better (and get off the “I just ran a marathon, I can eat whatever I want” mentality.  Two days is enough 🙂 ).

I also hope to explore the options at the campus gym a little bit.  I’ll have some specific workouts I need to get in (the plyometrics stuff I mentioned above) but for the most part, I can wake up and do whatever kind of activity I feel like that day.  And that is so refreshing!

March through April

Time to lace up on the track again

Time to lace up on the track again

Photo Courtesy of Reid Sprenkel

This will be track season for me.  I’ve already written out my specific plan for each month (I had to for a presentation in class) and know what to expect.  Lots of laps on the track by the stadium.   Fewer miles total but more miles at specific paces.  It’s going to be challenging but I’m hoping to rope Erin and Tiff into parts of it.  My target race will be in the April/May/June months.  I’d really like to try to redeem the Gibson course (ran the first mile too fast last year) but I also want to run a 5k here in Austin.

Details on the individual months will come as the months do….excited to put some science behind it, and my degree to use!