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Oh, hello October.

In my head it’s still somewhere around late July.

Since 2873462875195 of you have asked: No, I’m not writing a 31 Days this October. Sorry Charlies. Can’t do it.

In the photography world, this is Go Time – particularly if you live anywhere in the northern half of the country. Leaves are changing, weather is chilling and days are getting shorter. I filled my available sessions back in late July and early August. And would you believe? I forgot to schedule in ANY makeup dates. So it is not allowed to rain nor are any of my clients allowed to get sick. I have every available hour scheduled from now through the holidays.

I ran my first 5k back in August. It was a race through Up with Down – a charity benefitting Down Syndrome research and support. It was two laps about 1.5 miles each lap. I ran the whole time, I did not get lapped, but I was beat by a 7 year old girl. All in all, I’ll call that a win. My next race is next weekend.

1st_race

I’m up to 3-4 miles each run, and I hit the pavement 3-4 times a week. Considering I had a string of explicatives running through my mind when my C25K app first had me run 60 whole seconds, this is a modern miracle. Proof that anyone, and I mean ANYONE, can run. Yes, that means you.

People often tell me they would never run, they hate running. To which I say – I hear ya’. I do not like running. It is not fun. I don’t jog happily through my neighborhood and think to myself how lovely this is. Instead my inner voice is something like this, “This is horrible. But you’re 1/4 of the way done.” “Okay, just 1 more mile, it will be so worth it at the end!” “Just suffer through 1/2 mile and you can take this awful bra off and wear yoga pants the rest of the day!”

Am I the only one motivated by wearing yoga pants all day??

As an aside, I bought jeans from the juniors section a few weeks ago. That day, while vain and petty, felt pretty stinkin’ victorious. It’s little things like that that keep me motivated. I can see improvements in my time, distance and many, many fewer profanities in my stream of thoughts. While the number on the scale has changed only 5 lb since I started running in early May – the shape of my body has changed a lot. The scale means nothing compared to my clothes fitting totally differently.

Most of all, I’m sleeping better. While I still make a bee-line for the espresso machine in the morning, my energy levels are not even comparable to a year ago. I don’t feel exhausted after a triple-shot, wondering how long is socially acceptable before I brew another coffee just to feel alert. My metabolism is clearly better, and I totally understand what runners means when they describe the hunger known as “runger.” It’s voracious.

So, while this post sounds a whole lot like, “yay me!” it’s really meant to speak to those of you who are ME from a year ago. I know you’re out there. You are stressed. You are exhausted – all the time. Coffee doesn’t even wake you long enough to feel good. You are sedentary and out of shape. You feel frumpy and tired. Please know – I am not an athlete by birth. I am not long and lean like runners’ bodies are. I’m 5’3″ and a cautionary tale to the Shawn-Johnson-body-types of the world. Running not your thing? Fine. Join Zumba. Walk. Do Just Dance on wii. Watch yoga videos on your phone. Does not matter. Just get moving.

Move your body. A lot. It’s that simple. Being sedentary was killing me slowly.

Oh and this girl? Ran 13.5 miles (update: 17 miles!) this week. Me a year ago would have laughed her sedentary-buns off if told I would be running at all.

Can’t post without sharing a photo! A million thanks to Brent and Jen from October Moon Photography out of Marion, Iowa. They pretty much hang the moon, in my book.

my family

To see what I’m up to more regularly than this neglected blog, come hang out with me on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/hisandhersphoto

What have you all been up to?

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Comments

  1. You wrote this for ME!!!! Thank you SO much!!!!!!!!!! I can hardly run 60 seconds. AT. ALL.

    Any tips for running with kids? Well, not that I want to take my kids, but not sure what to do since I need to watch them? Run on a treadmill?
    tips???? please?

    • Hey Mel !Remind me again how old your kids are?

      Mine are 9, 11, 12. they were 8,10 and 11 when I started and they cannot really be left alone. I run in my neighborhood. They have the iPad and can text me if they need me. They also have the ‘Track my iPhone” app installed on the iPad and the iPhone so they can watch my little phone icon move through the neighborhood and know I am only a street away.

      I run with my iPhone (see the top pic) and I can text with my kids, if needed.

      If your kids are too little, I recommend the local YMCA. They have child watch included in your membership fees, as well as lots of perks like Zumba, Yoga, Pilates, etc. My local Y only accepts children under 8 – so we didn’t join because I couldn’t bring them. They are at an awkward “too old for child care, too young to be left home” stage.

      If running wouldn’t work, the Just Dance and Wii fitness are great starts. I just got Zumba for Wii, but I haven’t tried it.

      • Thank you, sweet friend!!! :) Mine are 4 and 8, old enough to burn down the house. ;) I may have to experiment a bit, but truly, you have inspired me today to at least TRY it!!! :)

        Hugs,
        Mel

  2. Love this post!!!!! Congrats on your running. I’m so proud of you, because I am the girl who has downloaded the C25K app…and can’t get through day one of week one. I can do about 1/2 of it before my body feels like it’s going to explode! I’m so thrilled that you’ve shared your story…and I’m hoping that I can do better too :)

    • The C25k app is hard! I used the one from ZenLabs sponsored by Breast Cancer research. It’s a little bit easier of a start, and it’s 10 weeks instead of 8. But I totally did many of those weeks more than once because I wasn’t ready to progress. There were some days her chipper little app voice made me want to punch her in the patellas, but it was just what I needed. ;) (I swear I’m not a mean hostile person!!)

      I promise you can do it. I promise.

  3. Good for you! I hear you with the hating. It’s a process. I still hate it, but maybe not quite as much? This week I pulled out my jeans from last year and held my breath. They fit better than they did before. I’m pleased even though those numbers on the scales refuse to budge. I love that family picture. Gorgeous.

    • SO so proud of you!!!!!!!!! You go girl.

      And I know its silly and vain – but putting on the skinny jeans is just SO rewarding, isn’t it?

      Yay you!

  4. Congratulations! You look amazing! I was thinking today how I’ve gotten off the exercise bandwagon and need to get back on it. Thanks for the pep talk!

  5. Darcy!!!
    I miss you, and I will be missing the 31 days photos series. But I’m really happy for you, and yes, you are an inspiration.
    btw, te ves muy bonita en la foto familiar :)
    Beautiful you, beautiful family!

  6. ugh… I read this and I’m one of those people that will never run… but I do know I should at least be moving somehow!! Do you suppose if I started now, I could fit back into my skinny jeans for Allume?!??!

  7. As I’ve never met you, I’m still very proud of you! Do you ever do any small workshops? I’m going to be in Urbandale at the end of October (my daughter is having baby #2). Take care and you have certainly encouraged me to get off my duff and do something!

    Quite honestly, when I read all the material so many of you young mothers put out, plus homeschool, I always wonder how in the heck do they get it all done and still find time for the easy fun things in life?!!

    Regards,
    Joanne
    Michigan

    • Hi Joanne –

      I’ve been asked about workshops and my husband and I have gone back and forth about scheduling or not. Mostly – we run a busy, full-time studio and I can’t figure out how to schedule all my existing clients and still have time for workshops. Maybe when our boys are a little bigger and more independent?

      :)

      Darcy

  8. I’m with you sister. Still looking for that runner’s high and haven’t found it yet. I play mind games to make myself run. I do most of it on a treadmill or even an elliptical as it is easier on my knees. But the important thing is that I am doing it. Proud of you and I know this post has inspired many.

  9. nice family photo. I reluctantly became a runner after I just couldn’t find a dance class to fit my daily schedule; my four kids had to come first. after a few years of running, it definitely gets easier over the years. the dowling catholic cross country coaches have said something like three years is what it takes to get really good. if you keep at it, your natural jog will be so fast compared to your pace now, you’ll giggle about it. i laugh when i think about my first running days. glad to hear you finished and were happy with the up w/ down 5k.

    • Good gravy – 3 years seems like a lifetime. We’ll see how my big race in June goes before I decide if I’ll really own this ‘I’m a runner’ thing. But I’m totally inspired by your natural jog being faster!

  10. Yay, Darcy! You don’t have to be a marathoner to be healthy, and that’s the bottom line for me. For the first time, I will be writing a 31 Days series this year—on better grammar. Nerdy? Yes. But it’s what I know and love. Beautiful family, lovely photo.

  11. We are looking forward to our session in a few weeks!! :o)

    I love the shot of that really cute 7 year old girl running ahead of you…she did look pretty fast. Keep up the great work!!! You are awesome!

    • She was impressive. I was so proud of her, too!

      Looking forward to seeing / shooting you guys again! :)

  12. Love that family shot, just beautiful.

    13.5 miles? Wow, that exhausts me just reading it!

    Congratulations on all the positive changes you’ve made. Proud of you!

  13. Darcy,
    Thank you for sharing this! I was doing the C25K and was in week three when my crazy September hit and I got off track. Your post has inspired me to hit the pavement again – ASAP.

    Your family is beautiful!

  14. I think that you were IN MY HEAD when you wrote this!! I hated running & thought that all runners were just.plain.looney. Until my sis & sil convinced me to at least try this “cool” app called Couch25k. After swallowing a bug (and displaying all the necessary drama which THAT experience requires one should show), I thought “There is NO way that I’m gonna be a runner!”

    But I just ran my first 5k this past Saturday! Granted, only an old man and 55yo woman came in behind me but my time was a personal best of 32mins 10secs. And I felt great!

    I still have to force myself to get out there 3-4 times each week to do it. But I LOVELOVELOVE how I feel after I run! As well as the fact that my rear no longer bounces (jiggles? gyrates? wobbles?) when I have to jog from here to there after one of my kiddos!

    So glad to see that you are one of those “looneys” as well! Thanks so much for the encouraging post!
    –Andrea

    • Hi Andrea –

      Add me to the list of people you beat! My time was 43 min something. I said I was slow.

      But… that’s only further motivation to everyone else! I thought I’d be the last one in. I was even more afraid they’d all have packed up and gone home.

      I wasn’t. They didn’t. There will always be someone who is all the things you are afraid you are…. more than you. :)

      And if you are last? Good. Fine. Even more cheerleaders for you.