Wednesday, June 4, 2014

On the Road to Find Out - Running Book Giveaway

Rachel Toor (HERE) just wrote a great book about running and we can all identify with it.  Running changes you in so many ways - your body, your fitness level, your mind, your health, your outlook on your life, your routine, your schedule.  It changes you inside and out.  Whether you are a new runner or a seasoned runner - you are going to enjoy, "On the Road to Find Out".  This book will be available on June 10, 2014. 

From the Author, Rachel Toor:

I’m grateful to have an opportunity to do a guest post on Running Diva Mom because there’s something I want to say.

I say it frequently during races when I’m running near another woman and the distance is long and the pace is slow enough that we can chat and she tells me she’s a mom.

That’s when I have to confess that I am a child-free single woman. I have no dependents except for a four-year-old mutt, Helen. I am a renter. I pay a dude to mow my lawn every other week. When I became a tenured professor, I decided to spring for a monthly house cleaner. I refuse to cook and subsist on Cheez-Its, Ramen soup, breakfast cereal, and Tootsie Rolls.

What I want to say is this: there should be a separate awards category for mothers who run. When I think about my life and how much free time I have to train—and to read, and to write, and to do nothing—I become aware that I have few excuses for not putting in the miles. If I’m not running well, I have only myself and my weak will to blame. 

Mothers are in a different category. Working mothers, single mothers, even mothers whose children have left home—their focus can’t be solely on themselves.  We all make choices and I’m happy with mine. But I would be lying if I didn’t say how much I admire women who are able to do what I do with more limited resources of time, energy, and sometimes money.

Run on, mothers. You deserve an award.

About the book:

On New Year’s Day, Alice Davis goes for a run. Her first ever. It’s painful and embarrassing, but so was getting denied by the only college she cares about. Alice knows she has to stop sitting around and complaining to her best friend, Jenni, and her pet rat, Walter, about what a loser she is. But what doesn’t know is that by taking those first steps out the door, she is setting off down a road filled with new challenges—including vicious side stitches, chafing in unmentionable places, and race-paced first love—and strengthening herself to endure when the going suddenly gets tougher than she ever imagined, in On the Road to Find Out by Rachel Toor.


Excerpt from On the Road to Find Out


I pumped my arms and covered ground with almost no effort. I was Superman. I was Nike—not the shoe company, but the winged goddess of victory. I could practically hear Bruce singing that tramps like us, baby—well, you know.
For one and a half blocks. That’s the part he left out. We may have been born to run—but not very far. After two blocks, everything started to hurt. I couldn’t get enough air and each leg weighed about eight hundred pounds. Great Lake–sized puddles lurked at every corner and I stepped in all of them. When I tried to leap across, I landed—splat!—in the deepest part.
I hadn’t expected to see so many people out on this dreapy holiday morning. It took only a few minutes for me to realize my New Year’s resolution was typical, ordinary, and uninspired—just like me.
The boulevard was buzzing with runners, all trucking along in their tight tights and sporty vests, their long-sleeved shirts with the names of marathons or colleges or clothing brands plastered across the front, their baseball hats from professional football teams and their nondescript black beanies. Some had on backpacks and belts studded with water bottles, as if they were going to be traveling for days. Some people ran alone, and some were in groups. Those in groups chatted as if they were using no more energy than it would take to hoist a latte to their lips. When they came toward me they’d nod and raise a gloved hand.
Which reminded me I was not invisible. I hadn’t realized—when I squeezed into the jeggings my mother had bought me years ago (but that I only got to wear to school twice before my best friend, Jenni, told me they were already tragically unhip), donned a long-sleeved T-shirt from an unfortunate family trip to Disney World, and layered on one of my dad’s plain old slightly tatty sweatshirts—no, I hadn’t realized the superpower I would most want when I set out for my first run would be invisibility.
Each time someone ran past me from behind, splattering me with dirty sidewalk water, I straightened up, went a little faster, and tried to hide how hard I was breathing.
And each time someone came toward me I’d look up only for a second, raise a paw in acknowledgment, and think: Don’t look at me. Please don’t look at me.

My feet hurt because I had secretly borrowed a pair of never-worn, slightly too-small running shoes I found in my mother’s shoe room. Yes, my mother has a room just for her shoes. Other people might call it a closet. But then, as Dad likes to point out, other people live in houses with less acreage than the space dedicated to my mother’s footwear. She’s a material girl, my mom, a doctor who earns enough jack to pay for everything she needs and wants, and a bunch of things that I neither need nor want.
My eyes never stopped watering and I had to constantly wipe my face with my sleeve. I’m sure I looked like I was sobbing throughout the whole thing. It might have been the wind, or maybe I was really crying.
My calves cramped up and I felt dizzy. On the other side of the street I could see a huddle of teens smoking cigarettes. Or something. They yelled an insult, or maybe it was just a whoop, a holler, and I thought again: Make me invisible.
My feet still hurt. It felt like my arches had flattened into the shoes. Some jerks drove by in a pickup truck adorned with a Confederate flag and honked their horn. It scared me so much I jumped and landed funny and that made my feet hurt more. I wanted to scream, Go back to your cave, you howling trolls, but I didn’t say anything.
Then came the panting. I was breathing like a prank caller. My arms were so heavy I could hardly swing them.
And then a guy with long legs, floppy hair, and a dog that looked like Toto with trashy blond highlights passed me.
Hear this, people: I got passed by a dog who was off to see the Wizard. The little dude trotted fast on his abbreviated limbs. He held his head high—as high as you could hold a head on legs only about four inches tall. He wore a harness with a camo design, and his leash had rhinestones on it. His mini-legs were going like crazy.
The guy took graceful strides and did not seem like someone who would have a little dog dressed in camo at the end of a sparkly leash. Toto dogs go with blue-haired old ladies who smell like Cashmere Bouquet body powder and maybe the faintest hint of pee. People and their animals usually look right together. These two didn’t.
The guy was around my age. He was attractive. He was so attractive Jenni, a small girl of big appetites, would have referred to him as a tasty morsel. He glided along, his head straight, his arms tucked in neat by his sides.
I struggled to try to keep up with them and did. For about ten seconds. Then they pulled away.
I had been chilly when I left the house, but my body soon equilibrated (yes, I paid attention in honors chem), and I sweated through my layers. I stopped for a second to wrestle out of the sweatshirt and tie it around my waist, and looked up to see another pair of runners coming toward me, a guy and a girl. The girl had her hair pulled into a long ponytail and as she ran it swung from side to side, a blond metronome. She was smiling and he was smiling too and he said something and she laughed and she turned and socked the guy with a playful punch to the belly, and he bent over—all while they were still running—and when he stood up straight again I saw the sweatshirt he wore.
It said, “YALE.”
The burn rose from my stomach and settled in my throat. I could feel my face flush. I choked up.
The happy couple passed by me without a wave, without even noticing me, and I thought: Right. In some ways, I am invisible. I am nothing.
I slowed to a walk. My nose was full of snot and I didn’t have a tissue. I felt like throwing up. On this day, January 1, I had kept my New Year’s resolution and gone for my first run ever.
It was over in eight minutes.
For about seven and a half of those minutes, around 450 seconds, when I had been concentrating on running—on how much my body hurt, on what other people saw when they looked at me, and even on wondering what that hot guy was doing with a Toto dog—I had been able to forget that I, Alice Evelyn Davis, top student in my class at Charleston High School, champion taker of standardized tests, favorite of teachers, and only child of two achievement-focused parents, had been rejected Early Action from Yale University, the only college I ever wanted to go to.


One lucky winner will win a copy of
On The Road To Find Out
a novel by Rachel Toor


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

2 – Follow Running Diva Mom on Facebook HERE.  LEAVE ME A COMMENT

3 – Visit the Rachel Toor website HERE and tell me what you think is fabulous.  LEAVE ME A COMMENT

4 – Post about this giveaway on your blog, Facebook or Twitter (@RunningDivaMom #RunningDivaMom @RachelToor) account. LEAVE ME A COMMENT FOR EACH.
Enter now though June 12, 2014.

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


  1. I'm an RDM blog Follower on Feedly.

    Amy Lauren

  2. I also follow RDM on facebook.

    Amy Lauren

  3. I really want to read on the road to find out it sounds like a great book!

  4. I follow your blog

  5. I follow RDM on facebook

  6. I love her website...I hate ferrets, too!!

  7. Love Rachel Toor's blog post about yoga...and I love how she tells it like it is. I enjoy her writing and humor.

  8. Posted the giveaway on my FB!

  9. Posted the giveaway on Twitter

  10. I am a facebook follower of RDM

  11. I went to Rachel Toors page and love that she has a blog and her dog is super cute.

  12. I follow your blog via Bloglovin'

  13. I checked out Rachel's website - I love her blog!

  14. I follow your blog via Feedly.

  15. I Follow Running Diva Mom on Facebook.

  16. I tweeted! https://twitter.com/carrotrunr/status/475429492513460224

  17. I think Rachel's dog, Helen, is pretty fabulous. And Rachel is pretty fab herself with all of her writing achievements!

  18. I visited the website and think the book would be amazing!!

  19. I tweeted about this giveaway on Twitter-@diaperderbymama