Running Again

I have decided to start running again.

I was a runner for many years. And now I am one again.

I am not a fast runner, though my speed did increase over the years.

I am not a skinny runner, though my body has seen various shapes and weights in my running tenure.

I am not someone who was “born to run” and just loves every second of being out there.

Running is hard work. It’s hard for my mind, for my lungs, for my heart, for my legs.  Sometimes running feels like soul work more than anything else. It’s all on the table when my feet hit the ground, you know what I mean? I am reminded of my reality, of God’s goodness, of all I am carrying in my inmost being, every time I lace up my sneakers.

I wonder if that’s why I took a break for a little while. It was too much to face. Too much to carry. Too much to run with.


On Saturday morning I went for a run.

I had new shoes, an awesome pair of running tights, and an ocean view.

I ran half a mile, stopped for a minute to catch my breath, and then ran another half mile.

One mile.

During the 2nd half mile my mind was flooded with thoughts of how different running feels. In some ways it is harder to run, but mostly, I was reminded of all my body, my legs, my lungs, and my heart have walked through in recent months.

These are the legs that take me to work, to Whole Foods, to Croutons for soup and salad, every week.  These are the thighs that held extra weight, weight that is still there, to support a growing baby boy. This is the body that is physically holding my grief, my joy, my fear. These are the lungs that laugh and cry, often in the same breath, as I did at church this morning. This is the heart that lays my sorrows and my dreams at God’s feet.

This body has done a lot for me. And now, it is helping me run.

One mile down.




This past week was R-O-U-G-H! Wow! Not fun.

I am feeling all sorts of things, but mostly glad the week is over, and proud of Glenn and myself for making it to the six month mark alive. WE DID IT! Mostly.

Six months down, only the rest of our lives to go.  Anyone else find that depressing?!


Along with Branch’s six-month birthday/anniversary/whatever you call it, this week brought a few other changes.

First up, I am no longer working full-time at Sea World. I am pretty sad about it. It was a really fun job and I was really liking it. I am still there a few hours a week, but for the time being there isn’t room in the budget to keep me on full-time. I guess I will have to find another way to listen to a ten-piece brass band every day. Tee-hee!

Second, I had my eyebrows done. This is a big deal mostly because this is the first time I have had them done since Branch was born. You long-time readers will remember my obsession with my eyebrow lady, Melissa of Anastasia Beverly Hills fame.  WELL, she moved!!!! To TEXAS!!!! So not only did I have to face the loss of my son, I also had to figure out how to manage this mess of a face without the professional help I was used to! Too much change all at once led to me not caring at all about my eyebrows, or much else,  for several months.

{this is right after having my brows done — nice and groomed!}

I finally made the plunge today, and went to a different “brow artist” who was trained by Anastasia as well. I am pleased with the results and am praying this girl never leaves! Or that Melissa moves back! Either would be perfectly acceptable for my eyebrows.


Third, I hit the twenty pound mark in my weight loss! Sometimes I am embarrassed to keep posting these weight updates, but the other day I realized that when I am reading blogs and people are getting healthy and losing weight, I like hearing updates and seeing pictures. So here you have it. Me at the starting point, and me down twenty pounds!


I have just started getting more serious about my workouts, and am having fun with that, too. Maybe I will tell you about those sometime, if anyone is interested.  I haven’t joined a gym or anything, so everything I am doing is either at a park or in my backyard.  I’m looking forward to the day when my “current” picture includes some serious arm muscles…. it may take me a decade, but someday they will show up!

Losing weight is hard work. It seems like everything in my life is hard work… But that’s ok. God has such a great vision for our lives, and I hope that He shows me glimmers of it every day so I can keep at least a little hope alive.

That is all I have for today. Much love to you all. Thanks for reading along … it’s a bumpy ride over here at times, and I am grateful for your continued love and support, and that you read what I write!!! That’s pretty cool. 🙂



The Lionheart Half Marathon … and Weight Watchers

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Glenn has been kind enough to join me on some of my runs. Believe it or not, it has been COLD here in San Diego!

It has been over two months since I had a baby. Wow.

In early January I decided I had given myself enough time to grief-eat and sit around in my sweats all day. Spending my days watching trash television like Hart of Dixie and The Biggest Loser was pretty fun, if I do say so myself, but it was time for a change.  I still do a little grief-lounging, or “hibernating” as I now call it, but I have also started actively pursuing my physical goals. Weight Watchers has really worked for me in the past, so I joined up again. I was super hungry for a solid two weeks, and am now getting back into the swing of things.

Along with the good ‘ole WW, I am dipping my big toe into the ocean of running once more. When I got pregnant I was actually in pretty decent running shape, and was convinced I would be one of “those” pregnant ladies who just ran their way in and out of the delivery room.

Ummm, yea, that didn’t happen. If anyone is wondering, the early months of pregnancy are brutal, and the ONLY thing I could manage was lying on the couch, whining, and eating McDonald’s. Once I started to feel better I did maintain my walking and hiking, but running has not been part of my life since April 2013. That was quite a long time ago in running years.

Here is what running looks like for me today:  My legs hurt. My chest throbs. I can barely breathe. A mix of sweat and salt pour down my face. I feel like I am going to fall over dead any minute. I look down at my Garmin and notice that I have just hit the half-mile marker. Ouch.

Needless to say, this is already a challenging growth experience.

Growth. Ugh. Sometimes I wish I were done growing. I mean, ultimately I am so grateful to be able to be better than before, to move forward, to, yes, GROW… it’s just hard work.  It always has been, and it always will be. I am so grateful that God is gentle as I walk the path of growth in so many areas. It hurts, even when I know the end result is worth the pain.

Back to the running. It is hard — yes. But I am doing it. And, even more excitingly, YOU can do it with me! Glenn and I have unofficially dubbed this year’s La Jolla Half Marathon the LIONHEART HALF & 5K. We are running it in honor of Branch, and yes we will be making team shirts. We figured this was a good way to do something productive, get back into running shape, and honor our little boy’s life. He was so strong during his time on earth, we can be strong and run this race for him.

If you are interested in running either the Half Marathon or the 5k, and being part of Team Lionheart, here is what you need to know:

Date: Sunday, April 27th
Location: La Jolla, CA —   Torrey Pines is part of the course! Beautiful and challenging!
Distance: 13.1 OR 3.1 miles
Registration website:

If you live in San Diego, please sign up and run with us! Don’t delay! This race sells out every single year, so if you think you want to do it, sign up now!! Team Lionheart currently has about 6 people running the half marathon and 4 doing the 5k. If you are interested, we will be putting together group runs every weekend to get us prepped!

If you do NOT live in San Diego but still want to be part of Team Lionheart, we are going to be making shirts sometime in the next month or so and I will post about how to purchase one here on the blog.

And finally, I will end this post with my one month weight loss photo and stats. I have decided it will be an added level of accountability to post about my weight loss here on the blog. Sorry if that’s not your cup ‘o tea. It should only be once a month, so I’m sure you will be able to handle it.

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In four weeks I have lost 6.8 pounds. I am starting to see a small difference, and if you look closely you can see some change in the photo. Hoping to lose even more this month!


Half Marathon Training : Update Number Three

The half marathon is exactly one month away. 4 weeks. 31 days. And instead of fear, dread, terror, and hysteria – I’m actually feeling rather excited!

Here are this week’s stats, as best as I can remember them.

Saturday: 8 mile run, 10:25 pace
Sunday: 3 mile easy run, 10:30 pace
Monday: 3 mile run, 9:59 pace. I was supposed to do push ups, too, but I didn’t. Woops-y-daisy.
Tuesday: (4) x 1/2 mile sprints at 8:57 pace.
Wednesday: 3 mile run, 9:25 pace. 50 push ups.
Thursday: 3 mile run at 11:40 pace, then another 3 mile run at 9:26 pace. The first one was more fun, if you were wondering.

Today is my day off and I could not be more excited about having a day to rest my little leggies and eat ice cream! Tomorrow is the big 10 miler. I’m kind of nervous but the weather has been so lovely lately {SEVENTY DEGREES, people! I am officially in Heaven!} I think I’ll be a-ok.

My running adventures next week will {hopefully} include a trip to the athletic shoe shop for new sneaks. I will be sure to bring my camera along so you can share in the excitement!

Happy Friday, my lovelies!


Sports Bra Challenge

Before I get into the nitty gritty of this challenge, let me just say this is not intended to be an attack on modesty, or a reason to flaunt parts of our femininity that should not be flaunted. The intention here is to keep things modest, but to embrace our bodies as they are and be ok with the way we look, imperfections and all. Stepping off soap box now.

I don’t know if you guys watch The Biggest Loser but I totally love it! This season was my favorite by far, and I was SO inspired by sisters Hannah and Olivia – I loved their authenticity, positivity, and willingness to work hard in ALL areas {emotional, spiritual, physical} to make their goals a reality.

Like a true Bieber fan, I have totally e-stalked Hannah and Olivia since the Biggest Loser finale.  To my delight, they have a SUPER cute blog called My Fitspiration. Love it! Aren’t they just too presh?

Side note: Olivia’s haircut has definitely been added to my “cute short hair” collection. I have always wanted to go Pixie but have never had the cohones to go through with it. I’m thinking next year might be the year. 30 is a good year to chop your hair, right?

Welllll anywaaayyyzzzz… Hannah and Olivia really are an inspiration to me as I’m inching toward my weight loss goals, so I’ve decided to accept the challenge they have thrown out: the sports bra challenge. Basically, on July 29th, I’m going to join them and anyone else who is brave enough, and work out in my sports bra WITHOUT A SHIRT. *Shudder.*

I will also post a {thumbnail sized} picture of said workout. *Shudder again.* It’s time to embrace it, ladies… who’s with me?

You can watch the video where Hannah and Olivia throw down the challenge HERE. Also, if anyone is wondering how my “Half Marathon Training Bootcamp” as I have dubbed it, is going… I’m on day 3 and still going strong. Yesterday I had to run 6 UP-HILL sprints. Brruuuuutttaaaallll, but I felt good afterward.



Thoughts of purpose, success, and how to define my life goals have been filling my mind lately. It could be because many of my waking hours have been spent listening to Oprah and thinking about the legacy I want to leave. It could also be due to the challenging words I heard during a recent Sunday church service: “Serve God where you are now, and let Him control where you go next.” I am realizing that I have, in some ways, buried my purpose since coming to Little Rock. I haven’t allowed myself to shine, I haven’t allowed myself to succeed, I haven’t allowed myself to serve others through my gifts because I don’t really want to be here.

I will likely share more of this with all of you in the coming weeks as I continue to process. For now let’s talk success.

According to Webster’s success is: degree or measure of succeeding or favorable or desired outcome.

Favorable or desired outcome. Is it just me, or does it seem like the favorable or desired outcome is impossible? Like success is impossible? Like failure is imminent? I think a part of me feels this every day, in one aspect of my life or another.

As I slowly learn and grow, as I push and drag myself to be the healthiest {emotionally, spiritually, physically, relationally} the more I realize I avoid goals. I shy away from telling people what success would be for me. Why? Because I have a deeply rooted fear, founded in lies I choose to believe, that I won’t get my goals. What if I don’t do it? What if I fail?

My heart is at war with my head. One side says Stop! It’s not worth the risk! You’ll never be able to do it! Why try when it’s impossible? While the other speaks truth: You can do all things {ALL THINGS!} through Christ who gives you strength. You are capable of so much more than you could even imagine! Success is only possible when there’s a risk of failure. You’re worth it!

Argh, the work that goes into being healthy.

What was the last time you allowed yourself to set a ridiculous goal, a goal you thought was close to impossible, a goal you very well may have failed at? Did you make it? Did you get close? Closer than you’ve ever gotten before?

That is success.

Sure, I wanted to have lost 20 pounds by today instead of 12… but 12 is a heck of a lot closer to my goal than 0 is.  Yea, I would have liked to have completely stopped waking up in the night with minor {or major… take your pick} anxiety. But waking up once or twice a month, and knowing what to do when anxiety comes, is significantly better than what used to happen 2 years ago. {Which was, in case you were wondering, regular illness and slight hysteria.}

And now for a happy story:

Last week I had a moment of undeniable success. I blew success out of the water.  I did something I honestly, HONESTLY, never thought was possible.

Glenn had challenged me to beat my “mile” record of 8 minutes. I know people run entire races at a faster pace than that, but these short little legs were pushing it to get 8 minutes. Glenn told me that if I could run a 7:50 mile, he would buy me two new pairs of the world’s greatest running socks. The Nike Elite Cushion Stability Running Socks. These socks are $14.


Understandably, I have only one pair. I wash that one pair multiple times a week so that I can wear them on all my serious runs. Two new pairs sounded miiiiighty fine. But a 7:50 mile? That is fast. Really fast. And the last time I ran an 8 minute mile was over a year ago.  I was sure I couldn’t do it, at least no time soon.

For some reason, last Tuesday, I decided to try it. I was sick of living in fear of failure. I wanted to succeed. To prove to myself, and Glenn, that I could push myself harder than ever before.

I ran a mile in 7:47.

I ROCK! Aaah, the sweet taste of success. Aaaah, the sweet smell of new socks. It was a good day.

There is so much more I have to say about this subject, but for today:

May you acknowledge the successes you have already achieved, and challenge yourself to become who you are *truly* capable of being.

Love to you all,


The Bod: Update Numero Uno

I told Glenn that I would update the blog on my weight loss journey every time I lost 10 pounds.

I’ve lost 11 pounds! That’s more than 10!

Sometimes people say the first part of weight loss is the easiest, but that is not the case for me. It’s all hard… but I don’t think anything will ever be as hard as the first 10 pounds.

I am still using all of the same tools that I was when I started. I have also started running more {and faster than I ever have!} as I begin training for the 2011 Nike Women’s 1/2 Marathon in October.

11 down. 29 to go. Woop-woop!


A Week of Breakfast

This is a segment called What Kristin Had for Breakfast. Welcome.

Sometimes I think it’s helpful to see what other people eat, especially if you are trying to focus on health and moderation. Oh, and especially if you’re trying to shed some of that “winter layer” that has somehow managed to stay on you for 2 years.  So here’s what I ate for breakfast.

Sunday: A handful of raw trail mix and a Starbucks passion iced tea. Oh, and a bite of #3‘s turkey bacon sandwich. Older sisters must always have a bite of younger sisters’ food.

Monday: A whole wheat English muffin with a smidge {and by smidge I mean 1/2 a tablespoon} of natural peanut butter on one side and raspberry jam on the other side. A hard boiled egg. Some sliced strawberries. Yumminess.

Tuesday: Breakfast date with Glennard! We shared a pancake breakfast at Mimi’s, so I had 2 pancakes, 2 slices of bacon, a scrambled egg, and half a grapefruit. Although the service and food at Mimi’s is decidedly mediocre, they have somehow figured out how to make pancakes extra delicious.  I am married to a true pancake lover, so it looks like Mimi’s will be in my life for a while.

Wednesday: Egg white omelet with green bell pepper and a sprinkling of goat cheese. I used to hate egg whites but now I love them. End of story. Light English muffin with 1 teaspoon of butter.

Thursday: Boulevard Bread’s fruit plate. We’ve talked about this. It’s delicious. I should try to make it for myself because it would save me lots of cash every week, but then I would have to buy myself a fresh baguette every week and that would mean I would be forced to eat an entire fresh baguette every week. It’s happened before. It could happen again.

Friday: Weigh-in day.  Beginning of a new week. My day to eat sweets and have a glass of wine. Since it’s currently Thursday and I haven’t eaten Friday’s breakfast yet, I am pulling this stuff out of my ear. Not my rear, my ear. Ears are family friendly. Rears are not. Back to breakfast. Maybe I’ll have a latte and some toast. Maybe I’ll have an egg sandwich. Maybe I’ll eat apple slices or a hard boiled egg. Or I might skip breakfast and have a brownie. Because I can.

Happy Almost Friday, folks!!


A New Love: Hiking

On a recent hike with Glenn’s parents – they came to visit us – you should too!

Hiking has never been my “sport” or whatever it’s called. I grew up hiking all over the Alps {pause for me to stick my nose in the air and you to roll your eyes at my snobbery} and even had fancy hiking shoes we picked out at Adventure 16. They were grey, hot pink, and teal. Totally hot in 1993. Would have matched my neon yellow paint-splattered ski jacket I also used to wear when skiing {where else} in the Alps.

When we moved back to Southern California anything that was dubbed a hike involved excessive amounts of dry dirt, Mother Sun beating down on me and making me sweat until I had lost all the fluid in my body via my armpits and upper lip, and people who were far more physically fit than I was spelunking up and down cliffs that might as well have been the Grand Canyon.  Hiking, it seemed, was no longer my thing.

Fast forward to today: I am living in The Natural State, I call myself an athlete, I have come to grips with my excessive sweating, and there’s no sign of dry dirt from here to the Mississippi {which is not far away, btw}. Dare I try hiking again? I dare. Here’s why:

When you go on a hike, you see lots of pretty trees.

When you go on a hike, you feel strong because you walk up steep hills and climb over big rocks.

When you go on a hike, you eventually get to the top of the mountain, which results in a feeling of accomplishment and a pretty view of your surroundings. Both are good.

Yay hiking! Well, short hikes anyway. If you’re planning on actually spelunking the Grand Canyon, don’t call me.