Running Little Canada

Hello, runfam!

I just wanted to check in after a lovely week in Minnesota! I got to spend time with family and (of course) get some great running in!

I rounded out the week with 44.4 (AMAZING!) miles and it couldn’t have been a better week.

I ran my first few runs this week in downtown Minneapolis. It was really fun exploring such a unique, beautiful, and surprisingly clean downtown. I am beyond impressed with downtown MPLS!!!

I got to see lots of neat restaurants, the Mississippi River, and gorgeous old buildings and bridges.

The later part of the week I stayed with my sweet aunt in Maplewood, near Little Canada, MN. This is one of my favorite places. Ever.

Everything is so green, lots of little lakes and paths, docks with cute patios, boats, ducks, and friendly faces.

My runs felt great and effortless. When the views are this beautiful and the weather this perfect, it’s just a recipe for feeling unstoppable.

Speaking of weather – it was between 50 and 60 (maybe up to the 70s/80s) while I was there! This Texas gal didn’t even bother with packing a sweater or long pants! Thank goodness for Target.

Thank you to you all for your encouragement throughout my ups and downs, and to Lifelong Endurance for always keeping run fun yet challenging.

What are your goals for the week?

Do you set weekly goals? Monthly? Daily?

Medal Monday!

Happy #MedalMonday!!!

This one resembles a really HARD weekend. I mean, heartbreaking. A real slap in the face. BUT it’s one that taught me SO much. It makes me realize how far I’ve come in not only a few year of running overall, but in just a few months of rehabilitating myself…

Rock n Roll New Orleans 5K and Half marathon. March of 2018. This was the weekend that I crumbled. My ability to run literally fell apart. What had been a small “naggle” in my hip area (which I now speculate was extreme tightness of the piriformis muscle causing a pinched sciatic nerve) was suddenly debilitating. I (slowly) ran the 5K with my dad and felt like I could barely hold on. I was trying so hard to enojy my time with him and the scenery (pace/speed was the LAST thing on my mind) – but it was hard to enjoy anything with this discomfort. I felt off.

The next day, I showed up to the starting line to run the Half Marathon. I was worried but thought I’ll warm up after a while! I’m not injured… I got this.

Denial. Something was wrong me. I had to stop and walk within the first half mile. That’s not like me. My goal pace was a 7:40 minute mile for 13.1 miles. Not this. I felt dull, helpless, and useless as strong runners flew by. That should be me… I thought. Something was terribly wrong. I wanted to cry. I did. I waddled my way to that finish line. Walking by spectators, stopping to watch the bands, trying – really trying – to enjoy anything I could. My slowest Half Marathon yet, but one I will surely never forget.

Since this day in March, I’ve been coming back to running – physically and mentally -slowly but surely. For weeks I couldn’t run. It hurt just to walk. I asked for recommendations and suggestions from my running group, got dry needling done, stretched, and was diligent about exercises. I couldn’t sit or put one foot in front of the other without pain.

Then, I walked. Then ran for one minute at a time. Eventually I worked up to two miles, which felt like eternity. It didn’t feel good but the pain slowly faded. I still feel it “there,” but I’m happy to say that with consistent warming up, I’ve managed to keep it at bay (I guess you can only get away with jetting out the door for so long…). I’d like to say I’m coming back stronger. At least that’s the plan.

I will never ever again take for granted an effortless run. That weekend was hard. Depressing, really. Running didn’t feel good so it didn’t make me happy. I can confidently say: running makes me HAPPY again and I am beyond THANKFUL for today’s 5 miles.

THANK YOU Lifelong Endurance for being a game changer and getting me back on my feet.

I think each run teaches us a lesson – have you ever learned the hard way?

Training Update & Highest Monthly Miles Yet!

Hello, July!

The end of June marks an important month in my book! Looking at my monthly totals, I ran my highest mileage in one month ever in the two years I’ve been running consistently! 192.3 miles (309.5K)! I know, I know – how could I NOT just run 8 measly more miles to make it a nice, round 200?! As much as I’d love to see that number, I know I will one day, and I KNOW I needed my rest day. After all, it’s about quality, not quantity anyway – though we all love to see a nice number on our stats. 😉

Thank you to Lifelong Endurance for not only getting me up and running (literally) after my injury, but for helping me come back stronger.

So, let’s see how my last week of an epic (for me!) month went!


5 miles easy

After doing speed yesterday (did my runs a little out of order because – life), I wasn’t sure how this would feel. Specifically, I wondered how “easy” my easy run would feel, if at all. What do you know! It ended up feeling pretty good (once I had my coffee!)!!


2 miles easy, 6 x 1K @ 7:45-7:35, 2 miles easy

This one was TOUGH. I actually plugged the workout into my watch, which I had been meaning to teach myself how to do for EVER. My inspiration for this was my Coach keeping me on my toes by using Kilometers… HA! No way I was going to be able to track that on my own (Kilometers = gibberish to me) 🙂 I’m thankful for this (silver lining!) because it turns out plugging in a workout is ridiculously easy! I can’t believe I hadn’t done it until now. It was nice to be told what to do and see my splits afterwards! The run was not easy but I did it!


4 miles easy

So, waking up at 4-5:00 am daily to run can be *slightly* tiring – but COMPLETELY necessary during Texas summers. I was going to sleep in today but saw that it would be 103 degrees after work (“feels like” 110)… SO! 5:00 am it was! Glad I did it!


6 miles easy

I started off super slow and tired but after a mile or two, it was nice and smooth!


Tempo! 2 miles easy, 3 @ tempo, 1 mile easy

This one felt surprisingly GOOD! I ran in a new/different location so it was nice to switch it up and I felt powerful!!!


Long run! 14 miles – 8 miles easy, 6 @ tempo/hard

HOLY HUMIDITY. I died. I didn’t know HOW the heck I was going to step it up for the last 6 miles. I didn’t step it up MUCH pace-wise, but I worked hard and did my best. I kept it at a little under a 9 minute mile the last 6 so I was happy with that!



How do you measure your running goals? Distance/# miles run? Time? Enjoyment? All of the above? 🙂

Review: Mercury Mile

Disclaimer: I received a Mercury Mile box at 50% off to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to review find and write race reviews!

Reservation Details

– This $20 is applied as credit to anything purchased from your box

– Choose your box’s shipment date below

– Your box will be delivered by USPS within 2–4 business days of your selected date

– As a reminder, we aren’t a subscription service.   We only ship when you tell us to!


So! How did I like my box?

What I got:

  • Rabbit Hop Crop – Griffin (Retail: $45)
  •  Goodr Sunglasses – Ted’s Easter Bunny Nightmare (Retail: $25)
  • New Balance Ice 2.0 Tank – Solar Yellow (Retail: $40)
  • Brooks Distance Tank (Retail: $30)
  • Brooks Just Right Racer Bra – Asphalt/Black (Retail: $48)

The items that were hand-picked for me were INCREDIBLY thoughtful! Everything was catered to someone running in a hot climate and they were all pieces I could really use. I ended up returning a few things just for the sheer fact that I have so. many. running clothes.

The lightweight tanks were a really smart pick – probably the #1 thing I need. I LOVE racer back sports bras (how did they even know?!) and the Goodr sunglasses were a perfect color for me (definitely kept those!)

If I needed to gear up and stock up on running outfits, I would have kept everything.


Here is what to expect when you open your personalized Mercury Mile box.

4 to 6 hand-selected pieces of running related activewear. Think capris, crops, split shorts, tanks, singlets, socks, racerbacks, distance shorts, pants, jackets, the list is long. We sort through it all to find the best fashion and function for your own running adventure.

A note from your stylist. He or she can help you navigate some of the features and fabrics in your box. Plus the personal touch is important to us.

A return shipping bag. Hey, our stylists are awesome but nobody is perfect. Use the prepaid shipping bag to send back any items you do not want to keep.

Bonus items! While apparel is our quest – we know there may be more to your run. As a thanks for using Mercury Mile, you may find special items in your box for you to keep for no charge! This could include the latest energy gel, accessory, or so on. Let yourself be surprised!



The items I received were RIGHT up my alley. I mean, really, really thoughtful. Everything is perfect for a gal running in the Texas heat. They were all, truly, items I could really use.

Here I am sporting a few of my favorites – the New Balance tank and Goodr sunglasses! I will use these to the bone!

It’s really nice having someone pick things out for you. It surprising how sometimes we know our own style, yet cannot decide what we might like best – especially when online shopping and you can’t actually *see* or *touch* the material before buying.

Use code: BibRave10 for $10 off your styling fee!

Falling in Love With Running: An Epiphany

When I’m asked “When did you start running?” I wish I had a simple answer. In my mind, the answer is conflicting.

My first answer: I, like many people, have been running since childhood. Running is a natural movement that we all do. In elementary school, I always loved racing “the boys” at recess (because I knew I’d always win thanks to an early and serious growth spurt), running around my neighborhood, and a playing ALL the sports that involved running. I was just a busy body. A long, lanky, twig that adults thought just “ate like a bird” but in reality: just loved movement. In my mind, a completely normal child.

My second answer: Since middle school. 8th grade is when I was recruited by the nearby high school to run Varsity track. They saw me running for fun and asked me to join in on a practice. I thought, why not? I never (even now) thought it was anything special. I just thought they needed someone. And there I was. I continued running Varsity track (as well as school and club volleyball, school and Select soccer, and cross country) and excelled in the 400m, 800m, 4×4, 4×8, high jump, and long jump. It was a true miracle for me to get to all my track events on time – often (literally) running from one to the other, still huffing and puffing from the last sprint or jump. My most successful moment in track was running the 4×4 at the Texas Relays in Austin, Texas. This is a huge event. I ran the 400 meters in 60 seconds flat. My fastest time. I only knew it was a PR because Coach told me I looked like a “real runner” and beat my record. I never even knew what a PR was, kept track of records or time, wore a running watch, or even knew what a “good” or “bad” time was for any of my runs. I just knew to run hard. I didn’t work out outside of school or really take it seriously – I didn’t even consider myself a “runner!” (which is just now sounding crazy as I type this!)

My third answer: Two years ago. Early 2016, I was asked if I wanted to go on a girls’ trip to Las Vegas. Sounds fun, right?! One tiny detail: it was to run a half marathon. At this point I’d just started enjoying running during and after college for 10-20 minutes at a time here and there outdoors (again, no running watch so no idea how far, fast, or anything – 20 minutes was a “long run” then). So I thought why not? Sounds fun (I think!)! I go to the website to sign up and – what do you know! – the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon series was running a special deal! The Half Marathon and Full Marathon were the same price! I didn’t even hesitate (and probably didn’t even know how many miles a full marathon was) once I saw “free finisher’s jackets for Marathoners” and signed up to run 26.2 miles (more bang for my buck, right?!). Next thing you know, I’m training to run 26.2 miles. I got really into it. I started a Twitter and an Instagram (and this blog) to track my progress. I took it seriously, and rarely (if ever) missed a workout. So. This is when I was like “OK, I’m a ‘runner’ now!” I was now a dedicated runner. Ran daily. Kept track of my miles. The works.

So. There you have it. These are three points in my life that I became a runner. I’ve never been good at multiple choice tests – there is always more than one correct answer.

My point to all this is: is it really when you became a runner that matters?

I think the important part and the more relevant and interesting question is: When did you fall in love with running?

If you would’ve asked me this yesterday, I would have struggled to answer. I know I love running because I love being outdoors, exploring, and it just plain makes me feel good. Nothing complicated. But why do I love it?

Today, I had an epiphany.

It was a chilly winter morning in Minnesota. I was maybe 15 years old. My mom, dad, and I were there because my grandmother was at the Mayo Clinic getting the best treatment possible for her Pancreatic Cancer. I was told it “wasn’t a good cancer to have.” Before we went with Grandma to her appointment, my Dad woke me up from a family member’s pull-out couch in the basement. (My family lives in Minnesota). Ready for our run? Ugh. I forgot I said I’d run with him. I’m tired. I always struggle to keep up with him, so bed sounded better. But I couldn’t say “no” to my dad in his long socks, basketball shorts, neck warmer pulled over his face, and mittens. I rolled out of bed.

We get outside and it feels good. It’s daylight outside and it’s cold, but feels nice. The neighborhood is gorgeous. So green and open. Tall buildings don’t mask the beautiful sky. When I normally run with Dad, I’m counting down the minutes until the run is over, but before I know it we are running around a gorgeous lake. I remember the way the water looked, the blue, cloudy sky, and the stone bridges. There was a paved trail and we passed by a few people, but not many. It was quiet. Everything is so vivid, even now in my memory. I remember this whole trip like it was yesterday. My grandmother was like a mother and best friend to me. It just seemed like a dream.

I didn’t realize it until now. This moment. Running with my dad in Minnesota. This was when I fell in love with running. I felt free. Truly free. Like nothing was real. Like everything would be OK. Forever.

I didn’t even know how much time had passed. We just kept running. We played follow-the-leader through the trail and over a bridge. I didn’t feel tired. I just ran and looked at everything that I could.

Little did I know that these few days that I remember so vividly would be the last moments that I spent with Grandma. I thought she was invincible. It brings me to tears to remember the feeling. Tears of sadness and joy.

I love running.

I feel good again!

Good morning! I had an awesome run this morning and just realized that I FEEL GOOD.

Running has its ups and downs – which I always thought was just “something people said” my first year (or so) of running. Now I’m a few years in and realize that “improvement” (whatever you consider that to be) isn’t always a direct route. After the past few months, I’ve come to realize that running is truly a mysterious journey. And you don’t always (or ever?) know what will come next.

Thanks to Lifelong Endurance, I’ve always had someone on my side to decode the mystery. Even then, anything can happen – injury, nutrition, sickness, etc. But having my runs scheduled rather than playing the guessing game has been a game changer. Some days I think I could run further today… I could run faster… and some days I think No way in hell am I running today… This is going to be awful… and to my surprise, Coach always knows best.

For example, today.

My alarm goes off 4:05 AM… BZZZ… the silent alarm on my watch… This can’t be right… Oh Hell no. I’m not running today. Too tired. Bye Felicia. *Reality sets in* Ok. I’ll wake up and see what happens…

Yes, I wake up at a ridiculous hour to get my runs in early. I am just a morning person. WAKING UP is not easy (is it for anyone? ever?) but I feel better on my runs. Plus the thought of running AFTER working all day long, in the Texas heat, is enough to wake me up at practically any hour.

So, I get up, do my normal thing – click the ON button on the coffee pot, let Derby outside, feed her and tell her she’s a Good Girl. I relax (scroll Instagram) and drink my coffee for about 30 minutes. I just need this time. I slowly do one thing, then another. Put my running clothes on, back to the couch and put my shoes on.

It’s become a routine. A habit.

So. I’m back in the habit and I’m feeling good! I didn’t expect it today. I woke up thinking I’d be so tired my run would be terrible. Would I even hit my paces? I had a progression run planed:

2 miles easy (warm up), 2 x 10:00 progression from 8:45-8:15, 2 miles easy (cool down)

Before this run, I wondered if I could even hang in the 8’s – and, to my surprise, I could, indeed! In fact, I kept looking down to see paces in the 7’s and feeling good. Slow down, buddy!

It’s a good day when running feels so good.

How do you make running/your routines a habit?

Review: Brooks Levitate

Disclaimer: I received a pair of Brooks Levitate as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to review find and write race reviews!

Brooks Levitate. I’m sure you’ve heard of them. They have caused quite a stir for anyone who uses running shoes. They are a brand new shoe from the brand that’s sole focus is running, after all. So. What’s so great about them? What makes them stand out from the seemingly overwhelming amount of shoes claiming to be “the best of the best” running shoes?

From the website, the Brooks Levitate is described as:


The most energy return of leading performance running shoes, for runners looking for a springy, responsive ride.

Energized Cushioning

With the most energy return of leading performance running shoes, Levitate’s DNA AMP midsole technology gives energy nowhere to go but up, straight back to you.

Quick Transitions

A flexible, arrow-point pattern on the outsole helps you move from heel to toe quickly, without losing energy.

Intuitive Fit

The 3D Fit Print and FitKnit upper comfortably accommodates your foot as it moves and expands.


The reviews from the website: (I refrained from reading any reviews prior to testing the shoes)brooks2

So, how are they?!

I was honestly skeptical of these shoes. What is brooks going for here? Something to “Levitate” you off the ground yet weighs in at 9.7 oz? Are these a long run shoe? Speedwork shoe? I just can’t place them in a category.


After a solid month or more of running in these, I can honestly say I understand why they don’t fit one of my categories. These are a DO-IT-ALL shoe. Seriously. After my first run in them I realized they fit perfectly (in my usual running shoe size) and just felt natural.


With every single run in them I love them more and more. I’ve never had a shoe get better over time but really, I quickly went from a few runs per week in them to ALL my runs. I grab them for long runs, speedwork, and everything in between,

For me to do my long runs in these shoes says A LOT. I have been terrified of doing long runs in anything other than “what works” and had been using the same shoes for TOO LONG. Well, (this is a bigger deal to me than you but…) THEY ARE GONE. Goodbye, old shoes!


I had zero doubts running my first long run in these. They just feel like they truly are custom made for my foot. I can not think of one thing I would change. Maybe make them lighter, but even then – and I don’t understand HOW – they somehow don’t FEEL as heavy as they are. Which is all that really matters, right?

To describe the feel:

  • Comfortably soft
  • Foot feels protected (I don’t feel like I’m running on the ground)
  • Cushioned yet not mushy
  • Responsive but not hard
  • Helps propel you forward without feeling like a “rocking horse”
  • Flat/natural form yet supportive (neutral shoe – so no stability/intense arch support)

So, quite literally everything that I admire in a shoe. All in ONE.

Bottom line, I have never loved another shoe more than this. It’s the only shoe I reach for! This shoe is perfect for anyone that wants a do-it-all shoe. Long runs. Race day. Speed work, Easy runs. Seriously.

I already have a back-up pair and am stalking the Brooks website to catch another on sale when the Levitate 2 comes out (which I will also be ordering!)


Go here to check out a video of the Brook’s Levitate in action:

Find Brook’s Levitate here:, retail: $150 (now on sale for $129.99)

RnR Seattle: City Guide

Disclaimer: I am promoting the Seattle City Guide as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to review find and write race reviews!


Who’s running Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle?!

This one is on my bucket list. I LOVE RnR races. In fact, the Rock n Roll Las Vegas Marathon was my first race and full marathon! So these races are always special to me. Well-organized, always in fun cities, and have great crowd support!

Seattle is a place I’d also love to visit. My absolute favorite thing to do is use running as a way to explore a new city and an excuse to travel! Run-cations are THE best.

So, I wanted to share something really cool that I’ve never seen before! The Seattle City Guide! Check it out on Pinterest:

This just makes me want to pack my bags and GO! I wish there was a City Guide like this for every major city. Yes, there are travel websites out there, but I want to know where the LOCAL people go, what they do, and what the city’s REALLY like!

So, if I were running Seattle I’d check out Fleet Feet Seattle (I always hear about “Fleet Feet!” but we don’t have one here!) and, OF COURSE, post-race brunch at Biscuit Bitch. Holy YUM. This is seriously right up my alley.

seattle city guide

Oh, and DON’T SKIP THE DONUTS. Never. Ever. Skip the donuts.


This guide even shows you nice routes to run while in Seattle – even Strava routes! YES!

seattle 2

So! Are you running Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle? What will you be checking out while you’re there?

Review: COROS PACE GPS Multisport Watch

Disclaimer: I received a COROS PACE GPS Multisport Wacth to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to review find and write race reviews!

This is a review of the COROS PACE from a fellow runner (me). I am not an official “techie” or a gadget “expert.” I have USED many gadgets! I love watches, cameras, wireless headphones, etc. So I AM a very thorough and consistent USER of gadgets. The COROS PACE GPS Multi-sport watch is brand new to the market, retailing for $299.99.

I will cover some specifics but this watch does so, so, SO MUCH. I am here to give you my honest onion, thoughts, and impression of a running watch simply as a runner who has experience with 3 other GPS running watches in my lifetime. So, there are my credentials! If you have specific questions about the watch that go unanswered here, please ask me in the comments!


The COROS PACE is a multi-sport watch with built in wrist-based heart rate monitor (HRM). This watch is sure to help someone reach their fitness goals by providing a plethora of data – running, cycling, swimming – it does it all. Here are a few specifics:


I received the watch a few weeks ago and was really impressed with the packaging and the aesthetics upon opening. The screen is so CLEAR.


The other thing I noticed right off the bat as I put the watch on my wrist was the COMFORT of the band. Far superior to any other watch band I have placed on my wrist. It’s soft – almost stretchy – extremely flexible and comfortable. I’ve never been able to wear a watch 24/7 like some people, but this one I think I could!


The watch is available in 3 colors – red, grey, and blue. I got red. It is a nice deep red, not neon. Did I mention the screen is so clear? That is, by far, my favorite part of the watch. The back light turns on when you move your wrist up to look at it and it’s just amazingly readable – day or night. My other favorite part is how FAST it syncs after runs.


After running with the watch for the first time, I could not believe as soon as I clicked “SAVE,” the run was already in my COROS app and Strava. Never ever has anything synced so quickly. In fact, that is the #1 trouble I have with other watches – not connecting/syncing.

Other features of this watch are really similar to watches I have experienced in the past. The time, pace, and distance all seems accurate as far as I can tell. One thing I did note was that this watch is defaulted to the Imperial system (kilometers), so if you are in the US/use the Metric system (miles), you will need to change a few settings. Fortunately the COROS app and watch itself are very user-friendly and I had no trouble at all changing over (without using instructions!)

The COROS app is great and easy to maneuver. Your running stats are at your fingertips – distance, pace, elevation, cadence, heart rate – all in one spot. These all seem accurate as far as I can tell. If you’re like me and use Training Peaks – COROS is working on that update as we speak.

The battery life is exceptional. To take the watch from “dead” to full charge only takes 2 hours. The watch lasts 30 days of “standard” use or 25 hours of use in GPS mode. I have only charged the watch once since I have had it (a few weeks) and even then, it was not drained. It was a “just in case” charge before a work trip.

So what is the bottom line? Do I love this watch? Yes. I really do. It is everything I want and need in a watch. The only exception is that it doesn’t (currently!) sync with Training Peaks. This multi-sport watch is brand new to the market (as of May 15, 2018), so the updates will only continue to make the watch better and “smarter.” I do know that it currently does sync to other apps I use, including Strava. 

Do I think the watch is worth the price? Yes. I think this is a fair and on-par price for a good-looking GPS multi-sport watch with wrist-based HRM and stunning screen quality and band comfort. I know the band doesn’t seem like top priority when making a decision on a watch, but who wants to wear something that’s not first and foremost, comfortable? I think the band and screen quality set it apart from the rest.

You can find the COROS PACE here:

What do you look for in a running watch? What features do you consider must-haves?

I’m running the Tulsa Run Double!

  • Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Tulsa Run as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to review find and write race reviews!


It’s official! I am registered for the 2018 Tulsa Run Double! I’m so happy that my dad and I ran this on a whim last year, because as SOON as we both got in the car to drive home to Dallas after the race, we decided it’d be a tradition. For my race recap from last year, go here!


So, before you know it, it’s time to register for 2018! Right now, the DOUBLE (5K and 15K) is only $65 – and use code BIBRAVE18 for an extra $5 off! That’s $60 for TWO races, two shirts (really nice long sleeves – I wear mine from last year ALL the time), and double the fun! Even if you are up for one race – prices are really great right now ($40 for the 15K and $25 for the 5K with the code!). I really recommend this race. Tulsa is really unique!


I think it says a lot that I’ll be driving up to Tulsa for the second year (and counting!). It’s just an all around great time.


The Tulsa Run 2017, featuring Dad’s thumb in the corner!

Let me know if you decide to run it! See you there!


The Tulsa Run – a tradition for my dad & me!