Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Bacon Chase 5K 2014

Well hello there!  It's been a bit hasn't it?  I know I haven't written in a while, but I have blogged about every race that me and my mom have done (4 so far!), so I felt compelled to post about our most recent race.  And folks, it was a good one!  It involved a personal record and tons of bacon!
This was the first themed/novelty run, that we have done and we had a blast.  The whole premise of the race was to run your hams off (isn't that punny?!) and then eat all the bacon you could stand at the finish line.  The race bibs even smelled like bacon!
As is tradition, we snapped a couple of pictures of ourselves before the race
And with the really cute pig
After taking our pictures, we went up to the start line.  Now if I could just take a moment to rant...there is a reason why most races have "corrals" that list times, such as 8:00 mile, 9:00 mile, etc. Most people would assume that means that the faster people need to be towards the front of the line, yes?  Well apparently not everyone realizes that it is race etiquette to stay towards the back if you are planning on walking.  Now, don't get me wrong, I don't have a single problem with people wanting to walk instead of run, or people who run slower than others.  When I first started out, I was pretty dang slow, but I realized that and knew to stay towards the back of the group.  So with all of that being said, me and mom positioned ourselves around the middle of the pack.  So they count down, 3-2-1 and we're off!  Except, no. No, we are not off.  We are running into people's backs because the 100 or so people in front of us are walking. 
At the start, you can see me towards the back in the purple shirt. 
So about the first 1/4 mile we are dodging people who are walking.  And these people are walking with friends, so each group was about 3 people wide.  In the shuffle to dodge walkers during the first mile, I lost my mom in the pack.  Because we haven't run a race together in about a year, we had decided that we were going to run our own race since we weren't sure of each other's pace.  It was all pretty frustrating, and I was so focused on dodging people that I didn't realize until I got to the first water table at mile 1, that I had just ran that first mile in 7:42.  Guys, I just need to take a second to retype that...7:42.  I'm almost certain that this is the fastest my body has ever run a mile in my entire life.  I'm certainly not saying this to brag, and I know that to many people a 7:42 mile is pretty slow, but in that moment I felt like these past 2 years of consistent running had paid off.
At the mile 1 water station they had water (duh) and little cups of bacon bits, which was really hilarious and very unappetizing to me at that moment!  That might've had something to do with the fact that I was huffing and puffing, but I was feeling pretty confident and decided to just keep pushing my pace.  I passed by the water station without getting water and thankfully entered one of the tunnels on the course.  The race was held at the Atlanta Motor Speedway, so we ran through the parking lot and in front of the grandstands and then through the tunnels where the food vendors are located.  We ran through the tunnels twice and they were gloriously flat and shaded, and a very welcome respite from the sun.
At mile 2, I was at 16:47.  My pace had slowed to about a 9:00 mile, but I was still pretty happy with that pace.  My body was certainly not comfortable at that pace, but according to what I've read, you're not exactly supposed to be comfortable during races.  They are a time to push your body, and I was pushing it for all I had.  I got water at this table and walked a few paces before picking it back up.  After getting water, I rounded the corner to see that our final stretch would be through a black asphalt parking lot.  My feet were feeling pretty warm by now, and I was loathe to leave the shade of the tunnel but I could see the end in sight.  After looking at my watch I realized I could run like a 12:00 mile and still beat my previous PR of 31:00 but I knew I had more in me than that, so I made myself hold the pace of my previous mile.  With Justin Timberlake blasting in my ears, I huffed down that final stretch and across the finish line.  I looked down at my watch and saw 26:02.  I couldn't hardly believe it!  As I mentioned earlier, me and my mom got separated during the first mile, so after having not seen her for about 2.5 miles, I was thrilled to hear my name called out about 20 seconds after crossing the finish line.  She had finished right behind me!  We had both kicked that race's butt!!!
Proudly displaying the 26:02 on my watch!
So with the race behind us, and new personal records secured, we headed to the real reward of the race...the bacon!!!  We both had about 10 pieces of bacon, and it was so delicious!  I was afraid it'd be all limp and stringy and that they'd run out of bacon, but it was really crisp and had a great flavor and they had trays and trays of it!  After sweating as much as we did, the sodium from the bacon was just what we needed to clog our arteries replenish our bodies.  We also got a wristband for bloody marys, but the line was ridiculously long, so we decided against it.  As we were eating our bacon, the announcer came over the PA and said he had something the a participant lost that was very valuable.  After checking our pockets, we realized that my mom's car key was missing!  Thankfully, a good samaritan turned in her key.  That would've been really bad!!!
Overall, we had a blast at this race!  We will definitely be doing it again next year.  For a few things I would've done differently:
1.  I totally would've worn a costume.  There were girls there with pink tutus and pig tails and pig ears, and they looked awesome.  I think it would be really fun to just go all out.
2.  I would've gotten water at the mile 1 water station.  I'm used to drinking water throughout my runs and I think mile 2 would've been easier if I had stopped for water.
3.  I would've stayed with my mom.  Now that we know we're still at the same pace, I think we should stick together at our next race (next month!)
4.  I would've encouraged more people to attend.  It was a very fun and stress free race.  Novelty races are supposed to be fun and to encourage people to be active.  There were people like me who were aiming for a PR, but then there were also people walking it just to have a good time and be active.  I'm all for that (as long as you don't get at the front of the line!) and invite more people to go with us next year.
5.  I would not have shouted those encouraging words to a girl who had stopped to walk.  She then took off like a cannon and beat me across the finish line.  Just kidding!  I will probably still try to encourage people.  I appreciate it when people yell encouraging things to me during the race.
6.  I would've put our key in our gear check bags! haha!
Our bacon chase t-shirt!
Courtesy of

The true reward of my day though was not finishing the race or getting bacon, it was getting to celebrate my niece Mae's 1st birthday!  My sister did such a great job with the decorations and the food and it was great to see so many family members!
Isn't she a cutie?! 
Overall, it was a wonderful day and I look forward to many more races with my mom by my side!  Daily she encourages and impresses me with her determination and commitment to running.
For more information on the Bacon Chase, visit!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Spain, Gladioulus, and Valium Grapefruit!

Any time I get an email that a comment has been left on my blog, I get a little excited.  People don't really comment on my blog very often and a majority of the time the "comments" are actually spam.  It's usually disappointing to get spam comments, but sometimes they're pretty comical.  Oddly enough, these spam comments usually show up on my post Poultry Palace, about a local chicken farmer who has fair exhibits.  Here are a couple of my favorite spam comments (click on the image to make it bigger):
Yes! Spain! Wait, chickens....what?

Oh silly autocorrect!  Gladioulas, ha!

And of course, the lovely drug ads.  Gotta get me some of that valium grapefruit!

Hope everyone had a good weekend!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

What's your dream voice?

Last night Husband and I had a conversation around the hypothetical question: If you could be able to sing like any singer, which singer would you chose?  I, of course, said Adele.  From her soulful voice to her endearing British accent (and adorable "Fank You"s), who wouldn't want to sound like Adele?!
I mean, really....
Husband couldn't decide, and eventually said Leeann Rimes.  Haha!  (he was just kidding, of course) So I wanna know, who would you chose to sound like?

Saturday, January 11, 2014

2014 Goals

I hesitated even writing out any "New Year resolutions" because they seem pretty cliche and just set you up for failure most of the time.  But I also know that in the past when I have put my goals out there for others to know, I feel more accountable.  Therefore, I've decided to type out some hopefully attainable goals for 2014.

Fitness Goals:
1. Run at least 365 miles in 2014.
   *I started this goal in April 2012, and have done pretty well with it.  In 2013 I was 12.4 miles  short for the year, so this goal seems pretty attainable for 2014.  My agreement with myself is that if by each Friday I have run at least 7 miles during that week, then I get to take Saturday off.  If not, then I have to make up the miles on Saturday.  Unfortunately, I had to run today (in the mud) to complete my 7 miles for this past week.  I think I need to replace my running shoes as well, they have about 375 miles on them.
Below is a chart of my 2013 mileage by month.  June was lowest because I took off a week for our Maine vacation.  August and September were low as well because it was hot as blazes outside.

2. Run a half marathon
    *I've done several 5Ks and a 10K, so the next distance to conquer is a Half-Marathon (13.1 miles).  I'm going to attempt to convince my mom to do this with me.  (Whadya say mom?!)
3. Try to do more strength training
     *Strength training is not something that I have ever really done, but I know there are benefits for runners and for changing the tone of your body.  Anybody have recommendations on this topic?

Bookish Goals:
1. Read at least 25 books.
    *This goal should definitely be attainable.  Currently I average about a book a week so 25 books might seem like a low ball number, but I have several large books on my to be read list that might slow me down.  I've also considered writing some book reviews on this blog.  Would any of you be interested in those?  Below is a chart of my August-December 2013 reading list from Goodreads.  I just started using this website in August to track my reading, so my 2014 stats should be more comprehensive.

2. Read at least 5 classics. 
     *This goal might actually be a little more difficult for me.  I struggle with reading classics because they remind me of mandatory high school reading lists and writing AP essays.  But I know there is a reason why certain books are considered classics, so I am willing to try to read at least 5.  I plan to pull from this banned books list.  I started 3 classics in December and couldn't finish any of them, which was pretty frustrating.  I am, however, looking forward to reading Gone with the Wind, which I got for Christmas.  At 960 pages it will be the second longest book I have ever read (right behind The Pillars of the Earth), so that should be fun!

3. Get my "to-be-read" list down
    *This one is actually pretty embarrassing.  I have waaaaay too many books sitting on my bookshelf that I have never read.  When I lived in middle Georgia I sold a lot of my books that I had already read (unless they were favorites), so now about half of the books on my shelves I have never read.  I'm going to try to curb my book buying until I can be less embarrassed about the to be read pile I already own.

4. Read more of the Bible
    *I've gotten in a bad habit of only reading Bible passages that are outlined in my Bible study, so I want to focus on reading through certain books of the Bible this year. What are some of your favorite books of the Bible?

5. Attend a book club meeting
     *There are a couple of book clubs in my area, but I haven't yet gotten up the courage to attend one.  My introversion gets the best of me and I get intimidated about being in groups of people where I don't know anyone.  I think if I could find someone that I knew to go along with me I would feel more comfortable.  Any takers (in the Cairo area)?

Other Goals:
1. Post on the blog at least once a week
    *I think one of the reasons I got burnt out on my blog last summer was because I demanded too much of myself and felt like I needed to write posts at least 5 times a week.  I realize now that this is just not feasible for me, and I don't want to feel like this blog is just one huge obligation.  So I am only setting a limit of at least once a week.  Hopefully I can find 1 thing a week that is interesting enough to post about! :)
As you can see, my blog posts over the last 2 years became fewer and fewer.

2. Attempt to make more friends around south Georgia.  
     *As I mentioned above, I'm an introvert by nature, so putting myself out there with people I don't know makes me a little anxious.  I want to try to meet more people around Cairo and focus on deepening relationships with people I already know down here.
3. Make more of an effort to communicate with my family. 
     *I used to be pretty good about maintaining contact with my family, but I destroyed my iPhone this summer and my replacement phones have not been group message and picture message compatible.  Hopefully that'll change when I get my new iPhone in April, though I want to make more of an effort now to let those that I love know that I'm thinking about them and care about how they're doing.

4.  Be more committed to doctors/wellness visits
     *I'd like to be more committed to going for yearly physicals, dentist visits, dermatologist check ups, etc this year.  I pay for insurance which rewards me for preventative care, so I need to take advantage of that.  I just haaaaate going to the doctor/dentist!

So what do you guys think?  Would you help keep me accountable?  Any advice for sticking to your goals?

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Life in the South Pt. 3

How you know you live in the South...
An article on "Four dead donkeys disposed of along county roads" makes front page news.
Guess those poor equines won't be attending Mule Day next year...

Hope you guys had a good Christmas and New Year.  I just might return to this blogging thing.  I got pretty burnt out on it over the summer, but want to try it again.  What do you think?

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Maine: Lighthouses

Continuing with my Maine posts today!  Sorry for that little break I took.  If you missed the first two posts about our Maine trip, you can find them here and here.  Today I'm going to post about the lighthouses we saw on our trip, there were quite a few!
Again, here is a map of Mount Desert Island where we stayed for a little bit of reference!
Our first full day we went to Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse 
(which is at the very southern tip of the island)
Me and husband!
The shoreline was very rocky, not sandy like we are used to in Georgia.

Then we hiked around to the other side of the lighthouse.
The next day we saw this lighthouse while having a picnic in Acadia National Park.  
We have no idea what the name of this lighthouse was.  
Wouldn't mind being the lighthouse keeper at this one though!
Next up is East Quoddy Lighthouse on Campobello Island in New Brunswick, Canada.  
This lighthouse was gorgeous!  
We couldn't go all the way out to the lighthouse because workers were re-graveling the footpath.  
One of the ladders we had to climb up/down to get to and back from the lighthouse.
That same day we went to the Lubec, Maine lighthouse.  
Lubec is the easternmost point of the United States. 
 I love that all of the lighthouses matched in different patterns of red and white!
Looking at all of these pictures makes me want to go back so bad!  We definitely live in a beautiful country.  Hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Happy 3rd Birthday Emma!

This past weekend I drove up to Henry County to celebrate my niece Emma's third birthday.  We had a luau and the food was so delicious!  My sister did a great job!  Here are some pictures from my sister's phone.
Emma blowing out her candles
Me and sweet Mae, my other niece
My parents and our friend Tracy!
Love this picture of Mae, with my grandparents holding her.
Planning on posting some more Maine pictures tomorrow, so check back!  Hope ya'lls week is off to a great start!