Happiness is the highest level of success

Lately I’ve been thinking about living up to my potential versus being happy right where I’m at. Do I really have to choose between the two? Should I want to take on more at the cost of happiness because that’s what we’re supposed to do?

I absolutely love my job. There is no other job or position I’d rather do than what I’m doing right now. If I retire as a bartender at Pebble Beach, that would be just fine with me. Things may change some day, but for now, that’s what I feel.

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With that said, recently I’ve been feeling like I’m not living up to my potential. It’s so funny and weird because my job is fulfilling and makes me happy. I get to bartend at a prestigious golf course, help provide an experience of a lifetime, and make folks from all over the world happy. Meeting celebs & high profile peeps is a fun perk too. Well, when I actually recognize them. Ha!

I am passionate about my job. I truly want every single guest I come in contact with to have an exceptional experience. I have a system down. From driving the course backwards, being a chameleon to blend in with different personalities, how to mix drinks and keep the pace of play moving, to the three questions I ask almost everyone. Just in case you’re wondering they are:

1) How’s your game?

2) Where are you from?

3) Is this your first time playing Pebble?

I will also remind them to watch out for the birds, because they work for me. Those punks steal food, wallets, keys, even a Rolex watch once which is a legend around the course, to whatever they can get their beaks around. They even know how to open zippers. Seriously, somewhere in  birdland, a bird  has a nest full of really cool stuff. And I wanna be his friend.

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Pic: 7th hole

Inevitably the short conversation leads to a chuckle and some good luck wishes for and exceptional experience playing 7. (Our signature hole that is probably on a gazillion bucket lists)

As you can see, I love what I do. I often drive the course and think, wow, they pay me to come here and do this. #mindblown But let’s circle back to the potential side of how I’m feeling lately.

After doing some soul searching aka talking to Mike about it over coffee, the truth is, I am not living up to my potential and I’m not being challenged.

I LOVE a good challenge and there is still some work to do and things to perfect, but overall I feel like things are kinda stagnant lately. I have the capability to grow within the company. I just don’t have the desire to. I’m happy, so why not leave well enough alone. Ya feel me? And now the 23 year old Jacqueline is cringing. Ha!

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It’s ingrained in us to work hard, do more, get a college education, climb the ladder, strive for more, keep going, etc. Those are all good and awesome, but you know what? I truly believe that happiness is far more important than meeting or exceeding your potential. I mean, we are exchanging minutes of our lives at a job. Take a minute and let that sink in.

It’s a huge deal.

I’m not willing to exchange happiness for a prestigious title behind my name. Having bartender or beer chick is fine by me. Maybe this theory isn’t for everyone, but it’s definitely for me. And I’m pretty dang content with it.

Please feel free to share your thoughts!!

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Why I haven’t been blogging

A couple of you have reached out and asked why I left blogland.

Thank you for reaching out, but you do realize, I’m really not that cool, right?

In all realness, I haven’t been blogging because….. well….I just don’t feel like it. I don’t have some big crazy reason. I’ve just been enjoying the extra time in the morning with my boys, working on the golf course, visiting friends & family, drinking way too much coffee (yes, still), taking care of Mike which really means harassing him, and farting around the beach.

I don’t have any future plans for the blog…I haven’t given it much thought. But for now, I’ll bring you up to date on a few things going on ’round here. How does that sound?

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If we were having a wine date here are some things I’d share with you:

  • What is new and exciting for you? Any fun summer vacation plans?
  • Bam caught a snake while hiking with Mike. He’s fine, but the snake was not.
  • He still chews his butt and sits by the kitchen drawer around 5pm every evening for a bone. I know, exciting stuff. Oh and we’re talking about Bam, not Mike.
  • Pretty sure my half marathon running days are over, so I switched my focus to cycling and trying other sports. There are a ton out there and it’s been fun exploring new to me stuff.
  • I am stoked to start taking surfing lessons! Hopefully I follow through since I just decided this yesterday. Ha!
  • Can the 2016 Presidential election be over already? I’m over it. Especially Hillary.
  • Current favorite photo editing apps are Snapseed & Mix. If you dig editing pics, get these!
  • The GoPro is RAD. It’s been a blast taking pics & video especially underwater. The quality this tiny piece of technology puts out is incredible. If you’ve been thinking about getting one DO IT. All the cool kids are.
  • We finally figured out the whole migraine thing. It’s actually fibromyalgia.
  • The grandma hip is doing fantastic! Still a little sore/tight but dang near to my new normal. I am feeling so blessed and thankful.

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  •  I signed up for my favorite race of all, the Mermaid duathlon!! They also have a tri if you’re brave enough to do the open water swim in the Pacific. If that’s you, I bow down.
  • I just started training this week. If anyone would like to join me, use coupon code GOSCB10 and let me know so I can harass you.
  • My goal is to finish strong. No time goals, I just want to be fit and strong. Boom!

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  • The ole paws still do not want to cooperate which is the big reason I feel like the half mary ship has sailed. Some days they feel good, others they are punks. Altra shoes have been a huge help. I may have ordered another pair for work. Dear Lord, please save me from myself.
  • Other than that, life is so dang good. If it gets any better, Morgan Freeman is gonna have to narrate it.

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 Please tell me how you are doing? Seriously, I really wanna know!

If you could no longer run long distances, what sport(s) would you try?

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Refuge

I kinda sorta figured out how to use the GoPro Studio to edit our vacation video clips. It took longer than I’d like to admit and it’s verrrrrrrry amature, but we are happy to finally be able to see our vacation clips in one video. Then us nerds used Chromecast to watch it on the tv. There is no hope for hoodlums like us.

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If you are interested in making fun of my mad editing skillz, have at it.

After the nerdfest ended, we got out of the house for a bit. I wanted coffee and when we got to Starbucks I could see sunny blue skies, so we went for a drive to Carmel Valley. PS if you don’t sprinkle the vanilla powder on your coffee, I feel sorry for your life decisions. #justsayin’

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Have I ever told you guys about “June gloom”? If not, summertime on the Monterey Peninsula is our winter. It’s basically foggy & cool (50’s & 60’s) from June – August. Then Indian Summer kicks in sometime in September, tourists season dies down and it’s just the best time of year to come visit. Well, it’s kinda always a good time to visit, but you know.

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It has been foggy since we got back from vacation, which is fine and all, but this girl is solar powered. As we were driving through Carmel Valley which was sunny & 70(!), I remembered I had a gift certificate to Refuge! I have never been, it’s been on my bucket list forevah and I had the afternoon free. The stars have aligned!

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Refuge is a relaxation spa that has a eucalyptus steam room, dry sauna and several outdoor pools at varying temps.

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They have the most amazing rules ever: no appointments, no talking, no cell phones, no cameras, no kids, no noise, no yelling at Bam to stop chewing his butt. I may have added my own rule in there…

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There are several pools & spas at different temps surrounded by Gods country. The idea is to warm up in the sauna or steam room for a few minutes, then dip into either a spa with temps of an icy cold river or of the Pacific Ocean, relax in a warm or hot spa then relax in cozy chairs by the fire or zero gravity chairs in the sun room. Repeat 3-4 times or do whatever you’d like.

I have a really hard time chilling out. I love being active all the time, it’s tough to slow down, but the entire time I was there and when I left Refuge, I was totally relaxed. The only thing that would have made my experience even better is a glass of wine.

How cool would it be to to plan a long hike at Garland Ranch then spend the afternoon here? It would be the ultimate girls day out!

Who’s in?

Do you have a girls day or night out? What do you do?

If you have a GoPro, tips are very much welcomed!

**This post was not sponsored, I just wanted to share a rad place with those of you who live here or are planning to travel through. Stop in, then feel free to send me love notes and coffee.**

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12 post injury confidence building tips

As long as I stay out of my own way, everything will be just fine.

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Since hip surgery back in December, I lost my desire to run. Even while hobbling around like a grandma a few days post op, I never doubted I’d be able to run again, but I never expected to finally be able to, and not actually want to. It’s just so weird to feel this way.

Many times while on vacation a couple weeks ago, I told Mike how great it felt to hike injury + pain free for the first time in many months. How I just wanted to transition to hiking and not run any more. Happy for me, yet beside himself, he said “you want to run, you are just lacking confidence. You’re afraid of getting injured again.”

Ouch, that kinda stung. Dang it, why does he have to be right?

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I hear confidence building post injury is pretty gnarly to overcome. Actually being perpetually injured, I know all about this. And it sucks. It takes so much patience and will to get back into doing what we truly love. But so, SO worth it.

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Just like running, building confidence is more mental than physical. I don’t have all the answers, but I can share some things that have helped me get back to something I hold close to my heart and am so passionate about.

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 12 post injury confidence building tips:

  • Adjust your goals. Maybe that half marathon feels overwhelming, so start training for a 5K and work your way up from there.
  • Look into doing a triathlon or duathlon so crosstraining will feel more natural instead of something you have to do. I recently signed up for a duathlon woot woot!
  • Try a new sport. For me, it was pool running and it’s something I still do and love.
  • Cross train. Cross train. Cross train.
  • Take a new fitness class. I got into spin class after hip surgery and loved it.
  • Focus on things you CAN do.
  • Slowly ease back into running. I started with run 1 minute, walk 2 minutes for 30 minutes.
  • When you can run again, my physical therapist has me running on a dirt trail. It’s so much easier on your joints & feet.
  • Take your pup with you. Watching Bam take the lead and occasionally look back to make sure I’m keeping up makes me smile and forget about the fact that I’m sucking air during a slog (slow jog) at sea level.
  • Be consistent. You will slowly build confidence each time you run. Just be smart and don’t overdo it.
  • Stay out of your own way. Don’t allow your mind to take over. Let your body guide your progress.
  • Pick up some new workout gear!! Pieces you love, feel good and make you want to work out!

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PUMA gear I’m rocking in case you need some ideas:

ST Watch Me Leave T-Shirt Lightweight, breathable with a low back so rock your cute, strappy sports bra.

Clash Long Tight <-My absolute fav! Super comfy, catchy pattern & colors. Perfect for running, cross training and basically living it them.

Pulse XT  Super comfortable, lightweight, yet supportive. I wouldn’t recommend these for running, but they would be perfect for cross training & walking.

Shout out to PUMA for designing gear that runs true to size!

And just in case you need a little more encouragement to take reclaim your passion, here’s a little perspective.

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People say you don’t know what you have until it’s gone. Truth is you knew what you had, you just never thought you’d lose it. – Unknown

Be thankful for things you have right now friends. <3

We learn so much from others, so please add your tips in the comments!!

Anyone else rocking PUMA gear? If so, what are your favs?

Runners, what is your biggest challenge right now? 

This post is sponsored by FitFluential on behalf of PUMA.

I’m a little hesitant to share this with you guys…

Since we got home from vacation, I’ve found it difficult to transition back into the slower pace of life. We were up in the 5am hour, car fueled up with coffee in hand before 7am every day, ready for our next adventure. We didn’t book any hotels, so there were no plans, no time or mileage constraints. We just did whatever we felt like, which turned out to be a lot more than we both thought. It was seriously the best trip ever.

Not wanting the feeling of vacation to end, I’ve been hiking almost every day since we got back. Bam is loving it as well.

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Sunday we hiked Pinnacles National Park with some friends. Mike & I didn’t expect it to be so intense (for us), but the views were amazing. Looking at the trail map, we did a strenuous trail. It was more of a mix of rock climbing on steep, narrow ledges. Our friends picked it and we are pretty sure they were trying to kill us, but we lived another day in our little lives.

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Here is the data from that hike/rock climb according to my Garmin Vivoactive:

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If I wear my backpack, that means I’m still on vacation…right? 😉

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I’m a little hesitant to share this with you guys, but I have completely converted to Altra Running shoes. As a long time Mizuno lover (with much love for them to this day), my podiatrist suggested I to try something new after being injured off & on for so long. His first suggestion was Hoka’s and after a few days of wearing them, they were not comfortable. The ankle came up too high and they didn’t fit just right for me. After hearing so much about Altras, and picking Heathers brain about them, I decided to give them a try.

HUGE difference. They are unlike any other shoe I’ve ever worn. Super cushiony with support and I feel like I could walk forever.

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As a last resort, I had custom orthotics made and between the two, my feet haven’t felt this good in a very LONG time. I averaged 9 miles of walking, 4 days in a row in Vegas and even bought another pair while we were there. We also hiked a ton on vacation and I swear I couldn’t have sustained that level of activity without them.

I was a little worried how my feet would do transitioning to zero drop shoes, but other than sore achilles a couple times after running, I have done really well. I emailed Altra about it and they suggested I alternate shoes while transitioning. Worked like a charm.

In case you are wondering, I have the Torin 1.5 and Olympus.

**Altra Running did not sponsor this post. I bought both pairs with my own, hard earned scrilla. I simply love their product and wanted to share it with you.**

Have you tried Hoka or Altra brand shoes?

If so, what do you think? Do you have a summer vacation planned?

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2 hooligans took a road trip and no one died

Warning: Picture heavy post coming attcha.

Hello!! It’s been so long since I last checked in. I figured after getting some messages about being MIA on here, I’d pop in and fill y’all in. Thanks to those who checked in, I am in fact alive and well, no one has contemplated murder or filed for divorce while on our road trip either. Hey man, ya never know. 😉

If you stalk me on IG, then you may know Mike & I took a 10 day road trip. We flew into Vegas, rented a car and drove the southwest with only a few points of interest, no hotel reservations and big plans to go wherever the wind takes us. This Type A was a little apprehensive, but that whole YOLO thing happened and we had the time of our lives!!

Here’s a map of our travel route:

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Vegas, NV -> Richfield, UT -> Moab, UT -> Denver, CO -> Pueblo, CO -> Amarillo, TX (took the scenic route to see Oklahoma because we are dumb) Albuquerque, NM -> Flagstaff, AZ -> Sedona, AZ -> Grand Canyon, AZ -> Zion National Park, UT -> St George, UT -> Vegas. Afternoon Margaritas by the pool erry day. The end.

We took over 1,000 pictures and I will not bore you with all of them, but here are a few of our favorites. If I had to choose my top 3 experiences they would be:

1. Hiking Zion National Park, Utah

2. Off road Jeep tour in Albuquerque, New Mexico

3. Hiking Sedona, Arizona

Here are some of our favorite pics starting with the Coral Pink Sand Dunes, UT.

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Grand Canyon, AZ south rim

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Grand Canyon, AZ south rim

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Sedona, AZ

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Sedona, AZ

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Salt Wash lookout, UT

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Arches National Park, UT

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Off Road Jeep tour in Albuquerque, NM

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Wild horses while on the Jeep tour.

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Spanish ruins built on top of Puebloan ruins.

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Zion National Park, UT

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Zion National Park, UT to freak my little grandma out.

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This was truly a trip of a lifetime. It was 100% Mike’s idea because I kinda like living in my little bubble by the beach. I owe a lot to that man for busting me out of the norm and pushing me to live and experience life. SO many times while hiking or driving I kept saying cowboy, this is what living is all about!!

Other than a Starbucks cup from every state we visited and a belated Birthday Lululemon trip, we only collected memories that will last forever. Can’t wait to do this again, after we go back to work for awhile. Why can’t we just be independently wealthy??

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Utah, you are gorgeous

I’m sitting here in a dark hotel room blogging while Mike sleeps. Lets be real, I had next to zero intention to blog but I can’t sleep right now, so why not? Heck, I have red eyes from getting zero sleep last night and I’m pretty sure a few new wrinkles on my face from smiling so much. But dang it, life is so good.

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Our flight was delayed, but as soon as we landed into Vegas, we got on the road. We stopped into Cracker Barrel for dinner at 9pm (yah grandma goes wild on vacay) and now I am mad Cali doesn’t have one. Seriously LOVED that place!

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Anyway we decided to skip Zion National Park in lieu of spending more time in CO and the Grand Canyon. We made a deal that it is the first thing on our list the next time we fly into Vegas. Annnnnnd now Mike is roped into going back to Vegas. Muhahahaha.

After dinner we drove to Richfield, Utah where a hotel took us in for the night. And by that I mean we had the last room available right by the front door and next to the breakfast room so we could hear every conversation. Ha! We were there a total of 7 hours and back on the road to Moab and Arches, with a few lookout stops along the way.

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There is so much I want to share with you guys, but I don’t want to bore you either, so I’ll leave you with some pics I pulled off the camera from Arches. It was truly one of the most incredible experiences of my life. If you ever get the chance to visit, go for it!

{Pic below was taken on our drive down the 70 to Arches}

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Utah, you are gorgeous!!

We made it to Grand Junction, CO and found a (quiet) hotel room for the night. Gosh thank you guys for all of the recommendations. We are having the time of our lives. <3 M+J

Test results & I need your recommendations

Good Monday morning to you!!

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{And be comfy}

I met with the podiatrist last week for my test results. The blood work came back 100% normal and the MRI showed no signs of fractured bones, but it did show a muscle strain between the 1st & 2nd metatarsal. I’ll take it!

Since the sesamoid area has been a source of pain for close to 3 months and didn’t respond well to PT, we did the blood test to rule out an autoimmune disease like rheumatoid arthritis, Lupus & some others. Thankfully it’s just a strained muscle which has over time, healed itself. He is also having custom orthotics made that should help “little miss skinny foot” as my podiatrist so lovingly calls me.

So onward and upward!!! J is running again and it’s 100% pain free. Miracles do happen my friends!!

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In other news, Mike & I are leaving for vacation soon and I can’t tell you how excited I am. Nervous, but mostly excited. We’ll be flying into Vegas, renting a car and traveling through Utah, Colorado, New Mexico & Arizona, and back to Vegas. Lawd help our marriage survive this trip. Ha! 😉

We don’t have any set plans or scheduled hotels so hopefully some place along the way will have a room each night. This trip is a little (okay a lot) out of my comfort zone, but you know that whole YOLO thing. Yah, at least that’s what I keep telling myself.

Mike would rather figure things out as we go, but the Type A in me has to ask the locals or folks who have visited in the area for recommendations. As someone who lives in a touristy area, I’m always stoked to share our favorite places & things to do. So if you live in one of these states we’re traveling to, please leave us your recommendations in the comments!

Major cities on our list are:

Moab, UT

Denver, CO

Colorado Springs, CO

Grand Canyon, AZ

Mike is stoked to see Colorado & possibly do the Breaking Bad tour since he is a huge BB fan. I’m excited to see the Grand Canyon. My obsession with it started when we visited the Hoover Dam last summer and found out 400ish miles was too much of a day drive for us at the time, but since then I’ve wanted to see it one day.

Do you have a summer vacation planned?Where are you heading?

What places are on your list to visit?

Austin, Texas, Nashville, TN Seattle, WA, a warm beach in Mexico & Phoenix, AZ are on our list. And now I need a second job ha!

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100 bottles of wine…

It’s been a super fun week! Jackie came to hang at the beach with Heather & I Tuesday. We naturally hit up La Bicyclette in Carmel for lunch, grabbed a cup of hot coffee & a brownie(!) for Jackie and sat outside to chat for a bit. Carmel has a laid back, take life easy vibe, which was perfect to catch up on a cool foggy day.

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Back in my Bay Area days, Jackie (on left) was an intern at my PT’s office and we became friends through our mutual love of Lululemon. She went on to become a PT but also loves yoga so she opened Bright Heart yoga studio in Cupertino. Bay Area peeps, go harass her for me.

Heather had a brilliant idea of starting a weekly girls wine night, so we invited Maiah & Maria to join us, got some snacks and had a fantastic time. Wine night shall never end because Heather has something like 100 bottles of wine left over from her wedding. So yeah…

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Between all the fun there is more fun! The Big Sur marathon is this weekend and I have a coffee date with someone special.

I’ve also been trail running, chasing storm clouds. Friday was sunny & 80 and since then it’s been cool & foggy with no sign of the sun. Welcome to winter at the coast.

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A couple super slow miles. I swear a 100 year old turtle passed me, but I am so incredibly stoked to be doing what I love again!

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Plus this view pretty much makes me want to run even slower, so I am pretty much winning in life.

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I’m off to see the foot & ankle surgeon to find out my MRI & blood test results. Hope you’re having a fantastic Thursday!!

Do you have a girls night?

Anyone running the Big Sur marathon?

Anyone have fun plans for the weekend?

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The way every Monday should start

Yesterday I spent the morning glued to the Boston Marathon. I could feel the excitement, anticipation, chills and more excitement. Now THIS is how every Monday should start!!

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The women put up a good fight until the end. I was cheering for Des, but feared she would get smoked at the end. She took 4th place and put up a good fight and finished strong. So proud of her! I absolutely loved the moment when Meb grabbed the hand of a fellow runner and held her hand as they crossed the finish line. That’s the true spirit of the Boston Marathon!!

CONGRATS to every single runner who finished!!!!! Y’all are truly inspiring!

I felt inspired to run a little after. How could you not, right!? So the boys joined me to run/walk a trail.

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A couple free birfday miles later, my day was made. Feeling so thankful for the opportunity to run and walk pain 100% pain free for the first time in years. It’s almost time to start a strength & running training program and see what the hip will do now. I’m sure it comes with promises of PR’s and BQ’s.

Or not.

The afternoon was spent torturing myself on my new Perfect Fitness at home gym. The soreness is real, yo. Mike may have to wash my hair tonight…

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A good life reminder: always practice your ninja skillz. Ya never know when you might need them.

Do you follow a training program or wing it?

I’ve always just did whatever, but nowadays I’m thinking about training smarter. Not to be confused with me being smart or anything like that.

Anyone out there dreaming of a BQ? (Boston Qualifying time)

I may be the odd one, but nope. I can honestly say I have never dreamed of running Boston or a full marathon. Probably because I’m perpetually injured and my split times would have to average an 8:34 and there are no coffee stops along the way.

San Francisco friends: Check out the Tour de Mermaid fun ride. They have a ride for everyone starting with 7 miles and up to 60 around the Bay.

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