In order to help accommodate those who would like some reading on the weekends, I'll be moving my blog updates to Fridays.  So hopefully you'll have something to enjoy with that weekend cup of coffee.  Since I'll be traveling to Memphis this week, you get my weekly ramblings today!

With that said, check out the beauty of Sedona at the start of the Sedona Half Marathon!

The past couple weeks I've been thinking a lot about transparency and how things look on the outside vs. reality.  Many of us have seen those posts about being kind to others because you never know what someone else is going through.  But when it comes down to it, how much are we truly being compassionate for others?  So why is this on my mind?  Well it started on Saturday when I ran the Sedona half marathon.  Everything was great!  But for some reason I couldn't get my mind in the run.  I was so distracted in my head that the run was far less enjoyable than it should have been.  With that, here is one of the photos that I'd like everyone to see and believe that I was feeling great, the scenery was fantastic, and that this is a picture perfect image that every runner would love to have...

But let's skip around a little bit and look at another image.  At the finish, when I felt I should have my arms up in joy of completion, well, as you can see from my face...  It was more of relief and anguish that the run was done.

13.1 Miles  1 Hour 43 Minutes 55 Seconds  
Average Pace 7:56 per Mile

Many people give me kudos and cheer me on as I run, make new strides, and continue to do what I love (RUNNING!)  But the truth is, it's not always easy.  It's not always fun.  Sometimes it's hard.  Sometimes, very hard.  I guess that's why I love running so much because it mirrors life.  Highs and lows.  Euphoria and defeat.  But at the end of the day, its what you put into it and what you choose to take away from it.

After the Sedona half marathon I came back home and then prepared for the Super Bowl 10k on Sunday.  I felt much better this day and put my heart into the run.  Success came this day as I walked away with a new PR, 1st place in my age group, 5th overall female, and 20th overall.  I pushed myself and enjoyed the experience.

 Here is a pic when I received my 1st place age group medal.  It was special to receive it from Steve Nickerson.

As I was not much in the spirit of enjoying the Super Bowl this year, I decided to wear the more appropriate attire for the race. #dodgernation  #dodgerblue #baseballoverfootball

6.2 Miles  45 minutes, 32 seconds  Average pace 7:18 per mile

With the weekend of a challenging, defeating run and an invigorating, winning race behind me, I started looked forward to this week.  Not long ago I was presented with an opportunity that I couldn't pass up.  I've done three races (Rock N Roll San Diego half marathon, New York City Marathon, and the Rock N Roll Arizona Marathon) as a hero for St. Judes Children Hospital.  I'm very proud to say those 3 races together I raised $4,600!!!!

So when I was given the opportunity to attend the annual St. Jude Volunteer Leadership Conference, there was NO WAY I was saying no.  I'm humbled and so thankful to have this experience.  My only hope is that I can continue to give and provide as much as I can.  So let's talk about transparency again.  When we vocalize about hardships people go through, we tend to be softer, kinder, and treat them with more humanity.  The parents of a child with special needs.  Those who lost a loved one in a tragic accident.  The mother who miscarried and lost the beautiful child she's been dreaming of.  I'm a firm believer that these hardships help to create us into stronger individuals.  It's how we process them and deal with them that forms the person we become.  And yes, those events all apply to me.

So for me, I run.  And I'll keep running so I may have some way of releasing these negative events out to the universe and not hold the in my heart.  I'll run so that I may inspire others to live while we can.  Maybe my simple act of running can help change the world.  I know it's changing mine.

I look forward to sharing all about my trip to Memphis with you all.  My request this week is to just be kind to one another.  Let that person merge in-front of you in traffic.  Hold the door for someone.  Text an old friend just to say hi.  Allow the goodness to spread in this world and hopefully we can help create transparency that doesn't just look pretty on the outside.

On the radar:  This Sunday is the Sweetheart run.  I'll be doing the 10k.  It will help me continue on the road to Marathon #7!  Napa Valley Marathon is 23 days away!


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