Friday, February 14, 2014

Sexy Mother Runner Featured Friday Runner: Meet Jewels!

Meet a running inspiration, Jewels!

Gone4alongrun – Run Forrest Run  - Running Journey (Jewels)

I wanted to share my journey and passion for running. I know for me, the sport is more than a way to stay fit…’s a way to stay sane and feel whole and alive! It is a lifestyle that ties into every other piece of my world.   Running for me is about giving the best of myself to the sport that I have so come to love!  It’s about feeling fit, strong and getting a new glow about myself….turning my back on sluggish habits and getting that radiance and abundance of old fashioned ENERGY.  I love running because it allows me to compete with me!  Another great thing about running is that improvements happen quite fast! If you listen to your body, give it the necessary rest, fuel it with healthy food choices, and do some cross/strength training, your body will respond even better than you would ever imagine.

My running journey started out in junior (primary) school all the way up to Senior (High) school. I used to participate in track and field, but long distance was not what I took part in! I always stuck to the short sprinting distances – 400 and 800 meters!   My eldest sister was the cross country runner and I could never understand how people could be on the cross country team and just run and run for miles!  Somehow that seemed so boring to me!

After graduating, I pretty much gave up running and got more into dancing and water sports.  Running was the last thing on earth I would ever have imagined myself doing again, as my other activities took up so much of my time.   Later on in life, I did however, get on the treadmill here and there and run a few steps at the health club, but I just couldn’t get into my groove.  I met my husband who was an avid runner back in Chicago and he was always talking about how good he felt after a run.  He had about 35-40lbs to lose, so when we moved out to AZ, he started running again and the weight just started dropping off.  One evening my husband and I were watching our favorite movie, Forrest Gump and I looked at him and said, if Forrest Gump can run like that, then so can I and my husband challenged me and said ok…well I’m going for a long run tomorrow, want to join me…..I said sure and laced up an old pair of “sneakers” and off I went around the block, which is only 8 tenths of a mile.  I could not make it once around the block without stopping and I was huffing and puffing and my legs felt like lead!  I soon realized how out of shape I was.  I decided to keep trying and so I laced up about 2-3 x weeks and before I knew it, I was running a couple miles and then I kept challenging myself to run more and farther each week!  The injuries started to set in and I got very discouraged.  This was late in 2010.  I stopped running for a while and then realized how much I missed running and got back into it in 2011.  I kept pushing myself harder and harder and increasing my mileage and signed up for my first Iron Girl 10k in December, 2011.  It was such a great experience and I got hooked and then signed up for my first half marathon in January, 2012 – that was a great year of racing for me and ran several half marathons for that year and become a half marathon junkie!  I actually got more bling that my husband did my first year of racing and I’m still ahead of him by 2-3 medals! J I am now training for my first 50mile Ultra, coming up in September 2014.  Would love for you to follow my journey to becoming an Ultra marathon runner!

In summary, I came to realize how much running makes me feel both mentally and physically. The main thing that was holding me back before was my pesky injuries. Once I figured out how to prevent them, I knew that I could run relatively long distances.  Running is like any other sport/hobby. It takes a lot of hard work, sacrifice, commitment and discipline. I just happen to love it, so I made the decision to put in the time and effort. Not everyone loves running and that’s perfectly okay, so find something else you enjoy, whether it be weight training, biking, dancing, hiking etc…just keep moving!  I know my story is not that unique in terms of how I started running, but you have to realize that as cliché as this might sound, if I can do it, anyone can you it… you just have to believe in yourself and take that first step! 

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