Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Cherry on Top Award .... Are You Tagged?!?

I was tagged by Stacie (HERE) and Sherry (HERE) with the Cherry on Top Award. You've seen it floating around bloggy-world.

Here are the rules:

#1. Answer this question: If you had the chance to go back and change one thing in your life, would you and what would it be?

#2. The second thing you have to do is, pick 6 people and give them this award. You then have to inform the person that they have gotten this award.

#3. The third and final thing is, thank the person who gave you the award.


# 1 -

This one is easy. I totally wish I would have treated my body better in my early-20's. I wish I wouldn't have been afraid to try new things (like running ... and meeting new people) and that I would have taken better care of myself.

Hubby and I moved in together after I graduated from high school. Instead of gaining the "freshman 15" ... I gained the freshman 50!! Seriously. We lived a sedentary lifestyle, ate cheap junk food, drank sugary sodas, and ate a fourth meal before bedtime!

It wasn't until after I had our first child that I decided to take better care of myself. It wasn't until I had such little free time (me time), that I actually took the time for myself ... to make myself better. It was only then that I appreciated my body and what it could do. I've attempted to fuel it, instead of stuff it.

I still struggle with it. But, I treat myself so much better now and appreciate it that much more.

# 2-

I would like to tag the following inspirational peeps with this blog. I may not post/comment often ... but I know that you are out there inspiring people with YOUR journey ... you definitely inspire ME! Check out these very cool blogs!!

Manderz Road to a New Life (HERE)

Midwest Running MOM (HERE)

Peace Love and Applesauce (HERE)

S Club Mama (HERE)

That Pink Girl (HERE)

Girls Just Wanna Go Run (HERE)

# 3-

Thank you ladies for tagging me with this award! I enjoy "stalking" you on your blogs, too!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

A Sweet Weekend and a 20 mi Training Run

First off ... don't forget to check out my sidebar for all of my current giveaways! The kids and I have been having a lot of fun this week. You can join in the fun by entering!! GOOD LUCK!

Well, we pretty much had a whole weekend with nothing planned (other than relaxing and running -- if you can call a 20 miler relaxing!?!). My house is pretty much cleaned, all bedsheets have been washed and the laundry is all put away. Little Diva is ready to start school on Wednesday; the backpack is ready to go. I even got out to the grocery store ... all by myself ... can I say complete bliss?! I loaded up on good stuff and fresh fruits and veggies.

My wonderful low-key weekend started with a meet up with three great gals from high school. We met up at Daisy Cafe & Cupcakery (HERE). We loaded up on cupcakes and walked down the street for some pasta at Bunky's (HERE). I don't normally get out to eat in downtown Madison. The atmosphere at both places was really nice and relaxing. We had a great time. Half of the group was pregnant, so we didnt' indulge in drinks. Which was a good thing. I didn't get home until just before 9 pm and then headed out for a quick four miles. Maybe I worked off one of the cupcakes?!? Maybe?!?
I also received the latest additions to my Bondi Band collection on Saturday. I was so giddy to open the package. I wanted some new bright colors (that would match everything). I think you will agree that I succeeded!!! The fabrics always differ from pattern to pattern. I was really happy with what I received. The only bummer is that the Marathon Momma band was sent in brown, where the image showed black on the website. I guess I'll just have to invest in some more brown/pink combination running outfits!!

Remember ... If you want to place an order, use coupon code "FIVE" at checkout to receive 5 Bondi Bands for $25 + shipping. A great deal!

Sunday, I wrote this post (HERE) about hubby and I both having long SOLO runs planned ... and dreading it. It was difficult to manage, but we both did fit it in. You can read hubby's 20 mile not-so-good training run report (HERE). He wasn't feeling it. He got out first thing in the morning, while I cleaned up the house and played outside with the kids. The afternoon consisted of moving our lawn chairs from yard to yard for four hours, while the kids decide which neighbor's swimming pool or sprinkler they were going to play in. We had an early dinner at 4pm, so that I could head out for my evening run.

Here is my 20 mile not-so-good-turned-decent training run report!!:

The forecast was for a high of 88 degrees. I had the windows open in the house in the morning. But, it was quite unbareable after hubby returned from his run and lunchtime. We turned the air conditioning on and it ran all day long.

I had my outfit and running gear all layed out the night before, so that I didn't have to fuss too much about getting it all together once I finally was ready to head out.

I've mentioned before that I have bunions and ugly feet. Since my last marathon, I've been getting blisters on both bunions. Sadly, we were out of blister bandaids, so I accessorized my ugly feet with some leopard print bandaids we had on hand! The kids and I had painted our toenails that afternoon. Yes, even Little Dude got some sparkles on his toes (sorry, he begged for it!).

I also weighed myself quickly before I headed out, because I wanted to see how things differed when I was done.

I had 20-24 miles on tap. I knew that I wasn't going to have enough time or energy for 24 miles or four hours of running last night. After our our early dinner, I loaded up my bags and headed out to the Capital City StateTrail (HERE) at 5 pm. I arrived at Olin Turville Park (HERE) at 5:20 and headed out.

I headed out and two miles in I was already thirsty. My legs were tired and I felt week. At mile four I finally just let myself walk, which I never do. I walked up a huge hill and downed an entire bottle from my fuel belt. I kept going. I ran through a prairie and saw a deer staring at me, less then 20 feet away. It was so neat to see her and gave me some momentum to push on. I wasn't feeling good. The sun was starting to go down and I was headed west. The sun was glaring in my eyes and I didn't bring my shades. My face was dripping with sweat and I was hot. I approached six miles and decided that it was going to get dark before I finished even 15-18 miles. I wasn't feeling well anyway. It really made me realize how much daylight we're losing now and how sad that summer was coming to an end. So, I turned around at mile 6 and headed back. I allowed myself to walk and downed a mint chocolate Gu (HERE). I never walk, so I was feeling helpless and upset with myself and wanted this to be over. My Bondi Band was soaked and my hair was dripping down my back. My neck ached and I felt like I had the chills. As I headed east it was a bit easier, as the sun wasn't in my face. I also ran through some trees and some shade again, which made me cool down a bit. I allowed myself to walk again as I shook out my legs (they felt like lead). During the last three miles, I drank an entire bottle of Gatorade from my handheld water bottle. It tasted like sugar and completely disgusting. All I wanted was water at this point.
I approached the car just over two hours. The Alliant Energy Center said 82 degrees on it, but my car said 88 degrees at 7:30 pm. I'm going with my car, because .... that's how I felt!!

I blasted the AC and pull my goodies out of my cooler. I downed two bottles of ice water and an orange that I had pre-cut. I'm really into eating oranges post-run lately. I also downed a can of Diet Mountain Dew on my way home. I called hubby to let him know that I made it back to the car. I told him that I was coming home to finish out a few miles in our neighborhood. The sun was almost down.

I got home and said hi to Hubby and Little Diva. Little Dude had fallen asleep early while watching a movie. I filled up my handheld water bottle again with ice water, used the restroom, and headed out. It was dark.

I was planning on doing 3 to 4 miles ... maybe 6 if I felt really good. Though my hips felt uncomfortable at first and my legs didn't want to work, that soon eased up. I zig-zagged through the neighborhood and felt great. I was happy to exchange the sun for the moon! It was much cooler, though a bit humid. I felt stinky, sweaty and salty.

At mile four, I decided to just say I was half way done and do 8 miles. I figured that if i felt good enough to do 6, that I wouldn't be happy with myself if I didn't do the extra 2. What's an extra twenty minutes?!

I arrived home at 9:20 pm.

I did it ...... 20 miles done

I took off those pretty leopard print bandaids and had some nasty blisters on top of my other blisters and caluses. I'm definitely going to need a pedicure after this marathon is over.

I weighed myself and was down four lbs from 4 1/2 hrs ... 20 miles ... and seven bottles of water and Gatorade ... earlier. Completely craziness.

What did you conquer this weekend?

Lucky Puppy Kids Tee Product Review & Giveaway

I was so excited when both Little Diva and Little Dude received a package from Lucky Puppy (HERE) recently. Their stuff is even cuter in person! And, since you know that that my two crazy kids like to dress like each other and play dress up, you KNOW that they loved their matching outfits.
My kids love playing with their fifty million stuffed animals and playing petshop. Especially puppies and kitties. You hear a lot of "meow" and "woof" from the playroom!
About Lucky Puppy:
When long time friends Sandi Hochman and Jonathan Cathey joined forces to create products for fellow dog enthusiasts, an innovative lifestyle brand with a focus on children’s fashion was founded. Sandi’s adoration for all things dog related merged with Jonathan’s creativity is the basis behind Lucky Puppy. Admittedly so adorable, the only tagline deemed appropriate was “Nothing But Cute”.

While Lucky Puppy is cute and adorable, the real heart of the brand is what makes it irresistible. Created with the idea of giving back, each online purchase of Lucky Puppy helps to rescue a homeless dog. Lucky Puppy is dedicated to matching strays with loving families and they succeed by partnering with various animal foundations on a local and national level.

Currently, Lucky Puppy is proud to be partnering with Animal Haven Shelter in NYC. Animal Haven recently launched it's Caring Kids program which introduces children and teens to basic animal care and informs them about existing issues in animal welfare. In the past, the brand has partnered with Much Love Animal Rescue and Paws and Learn Humane Education Center, two outstanding foundations; one dedicated to saving the lives of dogs by helping them find proper homes, the other through education in schools.

Lucky Puppy sells:
They even sell matching shirts and hats for adults!

Little Diva tried out the Heart Paw Dress in Fuschia (HERE). This tank dress is adorable. Since Little Diva is on the older side of their clothing line, we opted to wear the dress with a pair of leggings. She is almost seven years old and could sport their size 6 dress.

Little Dude sported the Wings Burnout Tee in Green and Gold (HERE). He is approaching three yrs and fit great in the size 4T. He’ll be able to wear this for awhile. This glam rock inspired tee shirt is absolutely adorable. We always call him our Little Rocker Dude (his first birthday video was set to “Free Bird” … so, this was perfect!). You can double-layer it or sport a white tank underneath. Perfect for boys or girls. WOOF!

Lucky Puppy is offering Running Diva Mom subscribers a 15% discount code. Use "diva15" at checkout. Start shopping (HERE).


One lucky winner will win a
Lucky Puppy
Item of their choice
(based on inventory)


1 – Become a follower of my blog or already are?! LEAVE ME A COMMENT

2 – Visit the Lucky Puppy website HERE and tell me what you think is fabulous. LEAVE ME A COMMENT

3 – Become a fan of Lucky Puppy on Facebook HERE. LEAVE ME A COMMENT

4 – Post about this giveaway on your blog, Facebook or Twitter account. LEAVE ME A COMMENT FOR EACH.

Enter now though Thursday, September 9th.
Winner will be announced on Friday.

[If you would like YOUR product or website featured on Running Diva Mom, please email me at ( runningdivamom at charter dot net ) ]

Hmmm ...

As I'm downing lots of coffee and having breakfast with Little Dude (my six year old teenager is still sleeping ...), hubby just set out for a 20 miler this morning. We ran our last 20 miler together two weeks ago, and experienced a trail that was new to me. It was so nice having someone to keep me company, made the miles pass quickly, and helped us multi-task, so that we didn't have to spend as much time away from the kids.

I have 20-24 miles on my plan today. Yep.

Since we have daycare lined up for all sorts of weddings and events in the weeks ahead, we opted not to bother the grandparents again about coming over to stay with the kids. This means that we have about eight - nine hours of prepping and running and showering to deal with today, between the two of us. I know, we've brought this on ourselves. And, I'll feel good about it, once it's all over with. But, I'm really resenting my running shoes today. And, feeling the mama guilt.

Forecast is for 88 degrees later today. It is a beautiful day to be relaxing and playing with the kids in the yard. I'm not sure if I'm going to run some miles with the kids and do a double, head out to the trail after lunch (while Little Dude goes down for a nap), or wait until just before dinnertime and head out then. Hmmmm ...

I keep looking back to last year, when I ran several half marathons and had a great time doing it. It is my absolute favorite distance, afterall. I didn't have too many long training runs planned, because the races WERE my training runs. It was awesome. I felt fit, too.

I told hubby last night that I'd really like to forego the 26.2 in 2011. If I could compete in at least a half dozen half marathons during racing season again, I would be happy. But, you know how that goes. I'll be all crazy and hating winter on December 31 when a lot of the race entry rates go up, and I'll sign up again!

Did you already get out for your run today?
Good for you!!!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Kohana Girl Pre-Teen Body Care Product Review & Giveaway

Little Diva was so excited to try out some really cool products from Kohana Girl (HERE). I found out about Kohana Girl via the dolls that we adore so much, Go Go Sports Girls (HERE). Go Go Sports Girls and Kohana Girl both encourage young girls and pre-teens to live a healthy and active lifestyle and believe in themselves. Who doesn't love that?!?!?

Kohana Girls products were created by girls, for girls! After all, girls need choices, too. Why should grown-ups have all the fun?

Little Diva (... and Little Dude!! He always has to be like his big sister! ...) tried out the following products:

Perky Pineapple Lotion
Perky Pineapple Glitter Lotion
Groovy Gumball Body Wash
Cheeky Chocolate Cake Shampoo

They also offer these yummy, kid-friendly lipgloss flavors:
Butterscotch Bliss Lip Gloss
Pancakes and Syrup Lip Gloss

Prices of their products are affordable, starting at $6.99/bottle. The yummy lipgloss flavors are only $3.99/container.

On a hot, summer day, Little Diva tried out the Perky Pineapple Glitter Lotion for the very first time. It's 89% Organic. A little bit goes a long way. She loves bling, just like her mommy. This was perfect for her. She wore it running around the yard. It gave her just a little bit of sparkle for summer, but wasn't caked on like clown make-up! It made her arms and legs shine. Grandma even drove up and could see her glistening right away. It’s also phthalate free, paraben free, sulfate free, and pH balanced. It even stayed on, after she decided to go running through the sprinkler!

The kids also tried out the Groovy Gumball Bodywash and the Cheeky Chocolate Cake Shampoo during a few of their baths. The kids thought it was crazy fun! All I can say is ... YUM! The bathroom and their little bodies smelt sweet after they washed up. I wasn't sure if it would be weird to have your hair smell like chocolate cake, but it was wonderful. All the more reason to cuddle up with them and watch a movie after bathtime!

Some other reasons to shop:
- environmentally friendly packaging
- Kohana Girl is formulated especially for girls
- organic and natural ingredients
- products are phthalate free, paraben free, and sulfate free
- They “give back” to girls through their scholarship program
And, about that Scholarship Program:
Check out the Giving Back Section of their website (HERE).

At Kohana Girl, we want to encourage girls to have fun with learning, and to follow their passions. One way we choose to do this is by giving away scholarship money they can put toward pursuits that are meaningful to them. A portion of the proceeds from our products goes directly into a scholarship fund we’ve developed just for deserving Kohana Girls.

Whether a girl is interested in art, music, books, science, or nature, we want to offer her a chance to buy supplies or lessons—whatever she needs to pursue her goals. Four times each year, we will select one Kohana Girl to take home the winnings! All we ask is that the money is used for a meaningful pursuit—a worthwhile learning and/or growth experience.

To participate, all you have to do is write an essay about what you’re interested in, and what you would use the money for! In terms of length, you can write as much or as little as you like. You must have a parent or guardian sign the permission form that appears at the end of the Official Rules, and send it in with your essay.
Visit the Kohana Girl Blog (HERE).


will win
a Selection of
Kohana Girl Products


1 – Become a follower of my blog or already are?! LEAVE ME A COMMENT

2 – Visit the Kohana Girl website HERE and tell me what you think is fabulous. LEAVE ME A COMMENT

3 – Become a fan of Kohana Girl on Facebook HERE. LEAVE ME A COMMENT

4 – Post about this giveaway on your blog, Facebook or Twitter account. LEAVE ME A COMMENT FOR EACH.

Enter now though Sunday, September 5.
Winner will be announced on Monday.

[If you would like YOUR product or website featured on Running Diva Mom, please email me at ( runningdivamom at charter dot net ) ]

Lanacane Anti-Chafing Gel Product Review & Giveaway

Months ago, I was contacted by the folks at Lanacane (HERE) to try out their Anti-Chafing Gel. I was happy to receive my tube just a few weeks later.

Lanacane Anti-Chafing Gel sooths and prevents chafing caused by friction, such as repeated rubbin of skin on skin or skin on clothing. It helps skin heal by reducing ruther damage from chafing.

Lanacane states that the special anti-friction formula is non-greasy, dries clear and provides long-lasting comfort. It’s also fragrance-free, hypoallergenic, moisture-proof, and won’t stain your running clothes.

I’ve used the Lanacane gel at least a half dozen times now. I have applied it on the inside of my knees, my thighs, upper legs and upper arms. I’ve used it on short distance runs, as well as long distance runs.

During the first application, I couldn’t believe it. It was different. I applied the clear gel on my thighs and it disappeared within seconds. It was like there was absolutely nothing there. There wasn’t any moisture and it wasn’t sticky. While I thought that was great (no mess!), I was really wondering if this was really going to prevent chaffing or rubbing on my “mama thighs”. I mean, it was like I hadn’t even applied anything. I didn’t have any residue leftover on my hands. It was silky and kept my legs feeling smooth.

It surprisingly worked great. I had no irritation, caused by my running. It even lasted during my longest test run of twelve miles. Lanacane claims that it will last all day.

The website states that a little goes a long way. I’m not sure if it was because there was no residue, or if it seemed to disappear on me … but, I used quite a bit (at least on my first application). I don’t know if the extra amount I used was necessary, or if I was just being cautious since it "vanished".

I often experience a lot of irritation from shaving on my upper legs and unfortunately get a lot of ingrown hairs. This all started even before I took up running. The Lanacane gel not only prevented additional chaffing or irritation when I ran, but it seemed to almost soothe the ingrown hairs. After two applications, the redness and swelling had gone down. I should also note that there was no stinging or burning when I applied it to my already irritated legs.

Check out these other Lanacane products:
Anti-Itch Cream
Anti-Bacterial First Aid Spray

One lucky winner will win a
Tube of
Lanacane Anti-Chafing Gel


1 – Become a follower of my blog or already are?! LEAVE ME A COMMENT

2 – Visit the Lancane website HERE and tell me something you learned about their products. LEAVE ME A COMMENT

3 – Post about this giveaway on your blog, Facebook or Twitter account. LEAVE ME A COMMENT FOR EACH.

Enter now though Thursday, september 2
Winner will be announced on Friday.

[If you would like YOUR product or website featured on Running Diva Mom, please email me at ( runningdivamom at charter dot net ) ]

I See Me Personalized Children's Book Winner .....

I was recently given the opportunity to review "My Very Own Fairytale" Personalized Children's Book from I See Me. You can read all about my fabulous experience HERE.

Please visit I See Me online HERE and start shopping.

There were 50 entries in my recent giveaway. One winner was chose at random.

Random.org chose ……..

Megan from Little Daily Escape (HERE)

Congratulations, Megan!!! Please email me at ( runningdivamom at charter dot net ) with your name, email and mailing address. And, I will get you your prize! Thank you for following my journey!!

[If you would like YOUR product or website featured on Running Diva Mom, please email me at ( runningdivamom at charter dot net ) ]

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Goody Bag Giveaway

Remember that awesome goody bag (HERE) that I handed out at the bloggy meet-up last weekend? Well, you are going to be so happy that one of the locals wasn’t able to make it down to Madison … because you can snag one of the Running Chics tote bags filled full of goodies!

Running Chicks Tote Bag (HERE)

Fleet Feet Sports Madison (
Goodies including PowerBar Gels and
A Fleet Feet Sweaty Band

Pink Argyle Socks from
Chrissy's Knee High Socks (

13.1 Bondi Band (

GoLite Visor (

Gu Energy Gels (H

Run Like a Girl Sticker
from Family Fan Club (

Coupons + More

All you need to do is FOLLOW MY JOURNEY and LEAVE ME A COMMENT. That’s it! If you’ve been lurking and have been looking for a reason to comment … now’s the time!

Enter now through Thursday, September 2.
Winner will be announced on Friday.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Running Diva Mom's 10/10/10 10K Virtual Race

In ten-pin bowling 10 pins are arranged in a triangular pattern and there are 10 frames per game.

Ten is the smallest noncototient, a number that cannot be expressed as the difference between any integer and the total number of coprimes below it.

In blackjack, the Ten, Jack, Queen and King are all worth 10 points.

So …. What does all of this mean?!?!?

In honor of October 10, 2010, I’ll be he hosting a 10/10/10 10K Virtual Race. Whether you are training for a fall marathon, looking for some motivation after racing season or are just competitive (you know who you are …), I hope that you will join me.

I’ve actually never run a 10K before and am looking forward to seeing what I can pull off at that distance. On October 10 I will have had exactly one week to recover from my third marathon.

Create your own race bib, featuring the #10, to be eligible for extra prizes!

Here are the details.

When: Anytime October 1 – October 15

Email me [ runningdivamom at charter dot net ] with a link to your race report, photos and finishing time by midnight on Sunday, October 17.

Race reports and prizes will be announced on October 18.

Distance: 10K (6.2 miles)

Cost: FREE


Fastest Time: Five packets of Gu Energy Gel

Most Creative Race Bib (featuring the #10): One Pair of Chrissy’s Knee High Socks

One Random Winner: One Pair of Ryders Eyewear Sunglasses w/ Case

Now, go ahead! Simply, LEAVE A COMMENT to let me know you’re committed. Feel free to repost about this virtual race on your own blog. Thank you for spreading the word!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

MCM Mama Goes Masters Virtual Race Report

Last month, the wonderful MCM Mama announced her Mama Goes Masters Virtual Race (HERE). In honor of her 40th birthday (and my ninth wedding anniversary!!), she was challenging folks to run 4.0 miles or 8.25 miles in honor of the actual day. Some crazy folks even took the third option of running a 40K.

I had the opportunity to meet MCM Mama at the bloggy get together last weekend. She's EXACTLY like her blog -- smart, funny, straight-to-the point, confident.

I opted to do the doable 4 miler. I set out tonight just after 8pm when the kids were headed to bed. Hubby had already gotten in his miles for the day and helped put the kids to bed (thank you!). It was cool and a slight breeze. I was sad that the sun was already setting at 8:10. I was feeling great heading out into the neighborhood and was feeling speedy, even though I was putting out a moderate effort. I reached the top of my first hill at mile one. Usually my watch reads around 10 minute for a midweek training run, but it read 9:13!! I continued on and at mile 2 it was pretty dark. For some reason some of the street lights weren't on and I was really trying to watch my footing in the dark. There were no bugs in sight and I wasn't even breaking a sweat. The cool breeze felt awesome. This was one of the few times this summer that I didn't wear a running tank. My Madison Marathon technical top felt loose and comfy as I ran in the dark. I passed several runners and people out walking their dogs. I passed Little Diva's school around mile three, with the "Welcome Back" sign out front. It made me realize that summer was really coming to an end ... sigh. I headed up my last hill and was sprinting with all I had. I was feeling awesome and breathing hard at this point. On the downhill I had a huge smile on my face and felt like I could run forever. I wish every run (or race!) felt like that.

I ran up to my mailbox and stopped my watch.
I believe this may be the fastest
I've ever run that four mile route
... 35:23 ...

If the end of the summer means
that I'll run speedy like this in the fall
... bring it on ...


Sunday, August 22, 2010

2010 Madison Mini Marathon Race Report

I set the alarm for 5 am on Saturday morning for Second Annual Madison Mini Marathon (HERE). I ran the innaugural race in 2009 and absolutely loved it! I actually got up before the alarm went off and got out of bed to get my running gear on. Got the kids up after I had some breakfast and we headed out the door just before 6 am.

We drove into downtown Madison and the Lake Street ramp was a lot busier this year. We ended up parking in the new (expensive!) parking ramp at Lucky. There was little-to-no line to enter and was just a short jaunt over to the start line. The forecast was for a humid morning and cloud-cover. We weren't supposed to have any sunshine until the afternoon. The race started at 7 am.

Little Diva and I used a port-o-potty and I gathered up my nutrition. Took a quick pic in front of the Red Rym at the UW Memorial Union, and headed over to the start line.

It took me a couple of minutes to get to the start line after the green flag was waved. I was starting with the 2 hour group. As I headed down State Street, I spotted Little Diva in her bright green t-shirt from Family Fan Club (HERE), called out her name and gave her a high-five. I had little to no energy for some reason and gave her a smile.

At around mile two I felt completely zapped and even had the chills a bit. I'm not sure what was up. I had a total of four shot-blocks and some water before I hit my third water stop. I heard my parents yell out my name as I passed by the Henry Vilas Zoo. It was really cool to see them before I entered the quiet portion of the race in the UW Arboretum. I was trying not to drink Gatorade, because I had believed it was making me feel nauseous at the end of my races. I needed some energy however, and decided to grab some at the next water stop. I saw my parents again at the end of the Monroe Street portion of the race. They were cheering for me. I gave my mom a high five and told her that I was going really slow and not to worry at the finish. I'd finish, but was going to be way off of my time goal of sub-two hours. I kept doing calculations in my head and figured I'd cross the finish line around 2:10, which was upsetting for me. But, I felt so crappy, that i just wanted to finish. Around mile 9 I saw them change the flag at the mile marker from green to yellow. It was humid and the Bondi Band was no longer holding the salty sweat out of my eyes. I had also been dumping water over my head and it was causing my eyes to burn. I grabbed some more Gatorade and was starting to feel my first burst of energy. I was cruising down a hill and started passing other runners. I had been getting passed the entire race.
As we headed along the lake, around mile 11.5, I heard this gal breathing really heavy behind me. My watch wasn't quite 1:50 yet. I was feeling good. I asked her if she was aiming for sub-hours. She said that she'd love to and had the same top at home, that I was sporting for the race. She said I was her target for most of the race and she had been trying to catch up with me. Huh? I felt like I was crawling through the entire 11.5 miles I had just dragged myself through. I asked her if she'd like to finish strong with me and she agreed. We got to mile 12 and she said, "OK, here we go ...". I felt a huge burst of engery and kicked it into gear. A friend of hers came up on his bike and was chatting with her. I could tell that she didn't want to chat, or couldn't. She was obviously giving this all she could. I waved her in and encouraged her to come along. He got the picture and drove off as she told him we were aiming to go sub-two. We ran through the sprinklers at the last water station and I grabbed some water and lost her in the crowd. She yelled that she was still coming and to keep going. I kept turning around and she would wave me on. I was counting backwards in my head the last half mile, as we approached the Memorial Union. I saw the finish line immediately and picked up the pace.
I realized I wasn't going to go sub-two, but was close. I crossed the finish line with a smile on my face ... after feeling so terrible for most of my journey. I stopped my watch at 2:00:42. I was pleased with my strong finish, but knew that I could do better. I saw the doctor from work that was volunteering at the finish line. She spotted me right away and told me I was a rock star and gave me a high five.
I grabbed my medal, two bottles of water and some treats. The chocolate milk was the best! I spotted Jason (who introduced himself at Waunafest and confessed that he reads my blog!), and opted not to wait in the long line for my finisher's photo in an oversized Memorial Union chair.
I spotted hubby and the kids. Then, I called my parents to meet up with them. Little Diva loves to take pictures, so she took some of us in front of the Union. A lot of runners were jumping in the lake to cool off.
Despite how I felt, I loved this race and the convenience of it just as much as last year. I will definitely be signing up again in 2011.
My parents and I
after the race

My finisher's photo
(courtesy of Little Diva)

Chip Time: 2:00:42
Pace: 9:13
10K: 56:12
Overall Place: 1235 / 3205
Gender Place: 474 / 1756
Division Place: 97 / 317

HAPPY to have
another half marathon in the books!

Madison Mini Marathon Bloggers Meet-Up

I was so excited to be hosting a bloggy dinner on evening before the Madison Mini Marathon. The packet pick up was at the SERF on the UW Campus. I decided to hold our carbo-loading dinner at Porta Bella in downtown Madison. The atmosphere is kind of dark, but it never disappoints and the Italian food is always awesome.

I had been collecting items for Goody Bags for a couple of months and the gals had a blast looking through them. It was awesome seeing the cute smiles on their faces.

Running Chicks (HERE)
donated the adorable Tote Bags

Fleet Feet Sports Madison (HERE)
Goodies including PowerBar Gels and
Fleet Feet Sweaty Bands

Pink Argyle Socks from
Chrissy's Knee High Socks (HERE)

13.1 Bondi Bands (HERE)

GoLite Visors (HERE)

Gu Energy Gel (HERE)

Run Like a Girl Stickers
from Family Fan Club (HERE)

I also passed out extra goody bags at the end of the evening that included miscellaneous items, including a signed copy of Girls Sweat ... and that's Sweet! (HERE)

I also used my running shoe cookie cutter again, and made some fun cookies with the kids.

I put the cookies in cello bags and attached a notecard that included everyone's name, blog name and website address.

I left my house at 5pm and headed down to UW Campus. The tornado sirens were going off at home, but I headed out anyway (smart, right?!). I was on a mission. I headed through downtown traffic and parked at the Lake Street/Frances Street parking ramp. I walked down to the SERF in the pouring rain, to pick up my packet. There was actually a small expo this year. I sadly didn't have the time to look or purchase anything (which is probably a good thing). I passed the Bondi Band booth and gave the gal a grin, on the way to pick up my packet and t-shirt.
The bibs included your chip, which stayed attached this year. I thought this no-fuss chip timing system was an awesome idea!
I then headed back towards my car in the downpour and waited to cross traffic. Grrr. I arrived a Porta Bella and Linda, Chelsea and Kerri were already there waiting for me in the bar (for some non-alcoholic drinks, of course!). Erika and Heather arrived shortly after.
We had a great dinner, great conversation about the normal stuff: running (of course!), training, kids, pregnancy, school, kids going off to college, traveling ... and Bondi Bands!
The food was fabulous and the Porta Salads were a big hit. We all loaded up on water (notice the huge pitcher in front of Heather!).
I had met Linda and Chelsea before, but not the other gals. Everyone is just like they are on their blogs -- sweet, witty, funny. It was really cool to meet them all in person. We discussed time goals for the race and the innaugural race from 2009. It was a great course and we were all really excited to tackle it the next day!
Linda (HERE), Heather (HERE), Erika (HERE)

Chelsea (HERE), Kerri (HERE), Me

Heather (HERE), Kerri (HERE), Erika (HERE), Me, Linda (HERE), Chelsea (HERE)
We said our good-byes and wished eachother good luck for the half marathon. Kerri was going to be running her first running race ... a half marathon (WOW!) !! She was beyond excited! Erika had parked her car at my house, and I also drove Chelsea and Kerri home. So, it was fun to chat with them for a bit more.

PeaceLoveMom Tee Winner ....

I was recently given the opportunity to review the Happy Mom Tee from PeaceLoveMom. You can read all about my fabulous experience HERE.

Please visit PeaceLoveMom online HERE and start shopping.

There were 134 entries in my recent giveaway (for the tee above). One winner was chose at random.

Random.org chose ……..

Tobi from Busy Running Mama (HERE)

Congratulations, Tobi!!! Please email me at ( runningdivamom at charter dot net ) with your name, email and mailing address. And, I will get you your prize! Thank you for following my journey!! [If you would like YOUR product or website featured on Running Diva Mom, please email me at ( runningdivamom at charter dot net ) ]

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

My Little Diva is a Resilient One

After being overwhelmed from the traumatizing experience on Sunday evening (HERE), I have been again overwhelmed with other emotions. The outpouring of care and concern from our friends, family, neighbors and co-workers has been heart-warming. My usually quiet phone never stopped ringing on Monday. My Facebook was buzzing with concern for Little Diva and our family. And, the blogging community has been absolutely tremendous. I’m completely overwhelmed by all of your comments, care and concern for a “complete stranger”. Heck, I received over 90 comments in response to my post … and I didn’t even have to host a giveaway!! (Sorry, had to finally add some humor, there!) Your thoughts meant so much to me as I read through them. Several of you that have been following my journey, but never commented, were compelled to leave your thoughts. Friends and family have offered to help out with bike helmets and bicycles.

We’re waiting until next week, when we can receive a copy of the police report and we will take the next steps from there. We are still waiting on a getting her new gear and a new bike. I hope to do it sooner, rather than later, so that she doesn't lose interest. We will get out there again ... soon.

Tonight, we took gourmet cupcakes and a card down to the nice couple that dialed 911 and who consoled us so wonderfully during our ordeal. (Who doesn't like a yummy cupcake?!) It was so nice to see them under better circumstances. They were happy to see us both smiling. Class lists were posted at her elementary school and we ventured down the street to see who her teacher and classmates will be for the next school year. First grade -- gasp! She found out that she's getting the new first grade teacher. When asked why she was so excited, she stated, "I want to congratulate her on her new job!". Seriously?!

Colleagues from work made a fantastic suggestion. They think that she should help the teachers at school promote bike safety and how important it is to wear a helmet. My outspoken little girl has often been told that she will someday work in public relations or have her own talk show. This would be a great jumpstart to her future career!

My Little Diva is a resilient one. That is for sure. She has always been very confident and ambitious. And thankfully, I don’t think that she has lost that.

I’m still seeing visions of the accident in my head over-and-over. Hearing myself yell out her name over and over, the sound of her helmet and bike hitting the pavement, and my screams from the nearby lawn. But, I hope that fades a little with time. Though, I’m sure that Sunday evening will forever be a snapshot in my mind; and hers. It is simply a reminder about how quickly life can change. In an instant.

This just reinforces the fact that I want to live every moment, doing the things that I love, with the people I love. I simply can’t wait until I get that next request from her, to go on a bike ride for some candy. That will be even sweeter than the Fun Dip itself!

I See Me Book Review & Giveaway

Little Diva and I were recently sent a personalized book from I See Me (HERE). I See Me specializes in personalized children’s items and gifts. We chose “My Very own Fairy Tale” (HERE).

You can personalize the book with your child’s first and last name, gender and birthdate. We also included a special dedication inside. You may also include your child’s middle name for less than $5 extra.

The book is 8 ½ x 11 and is hardcover. This book is professional done and is filled with dozens and dozens of fairies throughout, complete with a “fairy patch” of all 62 fairies in an index. Little Diva loves Tinkerbell and her movies. She was really interested in all of the fairies and their beautiful names. She kept asking, “Which one is your favorite, Mommy?”. Throughout the story and illustrations, your child’s first and last name are spelt out from page-to-page. Each fairy brings the letters together, one-by-one.

Little Diva's favorite was "A" - the Azalea Fairy; she thought that is was cool that fairies wore pigtails, too!

I was amazed to find out that the illustrator, Joyce Patti, spent over two years painting all of the adorable fairies!!

I See Me also sells these personalized items:

- Books featuring your child’s drawings!
- Wall Canvas Art
- Plates
- Floor Puzzles
- Stickers
- T-Shirts

Little Diva and I enjoyed the magical story and she enjoyed all of the personal touches. The fairies were a big hit. She enjoyed being taken into her very own fairytale!! I will need to get Little Dude the pirate story sometime.


One lucky winner will win an


1 – Become a follower of my blog or already are?! LEAVE ME A COMMENT

2 – Visit the I See Me website HERE and tell me what you think is fabulous. LEAVE ME A COMMENT

3 – Visit the I See Me website HERE and suggest a theme that your child would like to see added to the I See Me book collection. LEAVE ME A COMMENT

4 – Post about this giveaway on your blog, Facebook or Twitter account. LEAVE ME A COMMENT FOR EACH.

Enter now though Thursday, August 26th.
Winner will be announced on Friday.

[If you would like YOUR product or website featured on Running Diva Mom, please email me at ( runningdivamom at charter dot net ) ]