Anna Runs America

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A couple weeks ago I had the honor of meeting an amazing person- Anna Judd. Anna is currently running across America as part of Team RWB, which is the running group Kevin and I recently joined. Team RWB consists of veterans, current military personnel and civilians, and its mission is to support and connect veterans and the community. Anna is running across America to raise awareness and support for veterans’ issues. She started her journey on March 22nd in Venice Beach, California, and is scheduled to finish it in New York City in just a few days on Saturday, August 23rd. By the end she will have run a total of 3,400 miles!

Anna with Team RWB of Fredericksburg (our group!)

Anna with Team RWB of Fredericksburg, Virginia

We were lucky to live right on Anna’s route as she passed through Virginia on her way to NYC, and were able to see her in action! Our Fredericksburg chapter of Team RWB did an amazing job of supporting her as she passed through our area. There was a large organized group run and dinner (that unfortunately we couldn’t make), and one of our members ended up running with her 3 days straight, covering 79 miles total! WOW!

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Even though we weren’t able to run with her and the group we still had a chance to meet her and show our support. Kevin met her right as she finished up running for the day at the Marine Corps Museum at Quantico on his way home from work. They were able to talk for a few minutes and she gave him one of her signature dog tags to thank him for supporting her (see above photo by her talented sidekick- Miss Robot).

Anna Runs America

The next day I caught her as she headed north from the Marine Corps Museum. I was driving up to Pennsylvania to visit my family and stopped a couple times to get out of the car with little Kev and cheer her on along route 1 where she was running.

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Each time we saw her she was so friendly and gracious- thanking us for coming out and supporting her- even though she was the one who deserved to be thanked the most! She stopped running when she got close to come over and talk for a minute. Little Kev gave her a high five and said, “Go Anna go!” On this day she was running with a couple female Marines and one of our RWB Fredericksburg teammates (in the red holding the flag). He is the one who ran 79 miles total with her! They did an awesome job on our Virginia hills and in the heat. I was so impressed.

Our second time seeing Anna

Our second time seeing Anna

Anna is TRULY an inspiration. When I think about what she is doing it gives me chills and a tremendous feeling of pride. I love that one of our own in the running community is accomplishing something so amazing and using running as a form of activism. She was also in the running for the Runner’s World Cover Photo contest. I really hope that her journey and the message she is sending gets noticed- if not for that contest than at least as a feature story. She definitely deserves it in my opinion!

Here are some links to learn more about Anna and her run across America:

Run Streak: Week 12

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I am so happy to report that week 12 was SO MUCH BETTER than week 11. I still had a couple runs that were difficult, but for the most part I felt back to my old self after my sickness. I was also able to run with other people almost every day, and finished the week off with a surprise PR at one of my favorite local races!

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Katie’s Miles (8/11 – 8/17)

  • Monday: 2 miles @ 9:18. I still wasn’t feeling 100% after being sick all weekend but wanted to get out and join the Team RWB group run with my husband and friends Chanda and James. The guys took the strollers and I ran 2 miles with Chanda. I wanted to take it easy plus it was raining so we kept it short and sweet. Afterwards we watched the kids play together in the rain, which is just something all kids should do! It was a nice evening that took my mind off still feeling a bit sick!
  • Tuesday: 1 mile @ 10:07. There were thunderstorms in the forecast all day along with heavy rain, so I knew I had to get out early if I was going to run. It was still raining but not too much, and I only did 1 mile because my knee started to ache a little after my run the day before. I wanted to play it safe and take it easy and slow. On the positive side, I was starting to feel better and recover from my never ending stomach bug! Woo hoo!
  • Wednesday: 5 miles @ 10:07. I woke up on Wednesday morning feeling like myself again! I was excited because I had a running date with my friend Laura in the evening. We ran 5 pretty hilly miles and I tried to keep up with her while we had girl talk the whole time (did I mention she’s pregnant and almost at the halfway point? She is awesome!) The miles flew by and before I knew it we were done. I’m so happy to have a running buddy that lives in my neighborhood! Oh, and my knee felt fine too!
  • Thursday: 3 miles @ ?. I made a lot of rookie mistakes during this run. #1: I chose to sleep instead of getting my butt out of bed to run in the morning, telling myself I would just go later. #2: I helped a friend paint her apartment all day and drank hardly any water. #3: We ate Mexican food for lunch. Note to self- this is NEVER a good idea before a run. Ever. #4: I went out to run during the hottest time of day with no cloud cover whatsoever, and #5: I chose the stupidest most hilly route in my neighborhood just to make an already hard run even harder. I didn’t even record my time because it wasn’t really the truth, due to how many times I stopped my watch to walk or answer the phone when Kevin called. I actually stopped right before mile 2 and talked to him on the side of the road for like 10 minutes. Haha. I was so unmotivated. The point of this long post is that I know better, and I need to make sure I DO BETTER!!!
  • Friday: 4 miles @ 10:10. So much better than the day before! I got up before sunrise to run with my friend Laura again before she had to go to work. When I got out there I realized it’s been a long time since I ran in the dark since I have been off all summer! Luckily it was only dark for a little bit before the sun started coming up. It was a picture perfect morning, cool and breezy and Laura said it smelled like fall, which I LOVE! We did 3 miles together and I did a little more on my own. So happy to have had a good run after my tough one the day before!
  • Saturday: 2 miles @ 9:50. The fam ran with Team RWB at their new location by our house again. We knew we just wanted to do a short and easy run since I had my 10 mile race the next day. I ran with Kevin and the stroller and we just enjoyed each other’s company on a beautiful Saturday morning.
  • Sunday: 10 miles @ 8:04. Amazing day, amazing race! Read my full recap here.
  • Total Miles This Week: 27
  • Total Miles So Far: 341
  • Total Days Streaking: 86

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Kevin’s Miles (8/11 – 8/17)

  • Monday: 1 mile @ ?
  • Tuesday: 1 mile @ 9:30
  • Wednesday: 2 miles @ ? 
  • Thursday: 1 mile @ 7:37
  • Friday: 2 miles @ ?
  • Saturday: 2 miles @ 9:50
  • Sunday: 1 mile @ ?
  • Total Miles This Week: 10
  • Total Miles So Far: 163.3
  • Total Days Streaking: 85

From Kevin: I had a tough week. I decided to cut back on mileage a little bit because my body was feeling sore and I had a lot going on. I didn’t wear the Garmin a lot because I just wanted to run and not care about my time. I did familiar routes so I knew what mileage I was running. This week I hope to get myself back up to where I was running before. Katie and I signed up for a 5K in September so that is motivating me now.

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That wraps up week 12! One of the most exciting parts of this week was that we got a little glimpse of fall weather, which I cannot WAIT for. There is nothing better than running in the fall in my opinion. Bring it on!!!

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Previous Updates

Hartwood 10 Miler

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Yesterday I ran the Hartwood 10 Miler for the second year in a row! I ran this race last year and loved it even though it rained the whole time. Last year I scored myself an almost-8 minute PR and had a great time. I was excited to run it again, but I wasn’t sure how well I would be able to do this time around. Last year I was in the middle of marathon training and doing a ton of speedwork. This year I am not training for a marathon or doing speedwork- except for short sprints at the track, but no tempo runs or anything like I usually would do for longer races like this one. I didn’t really know what to expect from myself, but I had a bunch of running buddies at the race so I was just excited to be there with them! Luckily it was a beautiful morning this year- crisp and cool and NOT raining! It was a little bit humid but overall, the conditions were awesome for mid-August. I couldn’t wait to get started!

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My running buddies and I were busy chatting and didn’t even realize we were about to start until we heard the gun go off. We all ran together for maybe a tenth of a mile and then we broke off at our own paces. After a mile or so I checked in with my body to see how I was feeling. The pace I was holding (low 8:00/mile) felt pretty effortless and comfortable. I decided I had no reason NOT to try my best and run the best race I could.

  • Mile 1 – 8:16
  • Mile 2 – 7:48 (<– too excited!)

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The race course is basically a big loop along country roads, through wooded areas and alongside farmland. It was beautiful, the sky looked amazing, and I just felt so happy and lucky to be running. There was one small out-and-back section early in the race where I was able to see my friends. Leslie was right behind me, then Chanda, then Cynthia & Laura who were running together – and are also pregnant and due just a few days apart in January!

  • Mile 3 – 8:03
  • Mile 4 – 8:06

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Since I decided to race, I focused on trying to run evenly (after my too fast second mile) and keeping my energy levels up by eating a half pack of Honey Stingers every 25 minutes. I knew from last year that the second half of the race is harder and hillier than the first, so I needed to make sure I wouldn’t burn out. I passed the halfway point at a little over 40 minutes, which I knew was about an 8 minute pace. My 10 mile PR (that I set at this race last year) was run at a 8:07 pace. I started to wonder if a PR was possible.

  • Mile 5 – 8:01

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The big hills started around mile 6. I felt like I was either running up a hill or down a hill from miles 6-9, but I actually kind of liked it. I’ve always been strong at running hills and I like how the different elevation changes keep all of my leg muscles engaged. I focused on powering up them and then trying to relax going back down, over and over and over again! I was running either in front of, next to or behind another guy from Team RWB the entire race and I tried to stick with him- he was a great pacer! You can see him in the background of the photo above :). Miles 6-8 were a little slower due to the hills, but I knew based on my overall time that I was still on track to PR if I stayed strong the last two miles.

  • Mile 6 – 8:07
  • Mile 7 – 8:15
  • Mile 8 – 8:19

I got a boost of energy during mile 9 when I saw Kevin and the baby drive by. They had come to meet me at the finish and I remembered from last year they passed the runners on their way to the park where the race ended. I was so excited to see them and that adrenaline carried me through the last 2 miles. When we turned to head back into the park toward the finish line, I told the guy from Team RWB that he had been a great pacer, but that I was within a minute of my PR and needed to push it to the end. He told me to go get it and so I did!

  • Mile 9 – 8:10
  • Mile 10 – 7:43 (<– my last mile was my fastest!)

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I was so focused at the end that I didn’t even see Kevin on the side of the road taking pictures of me. All I saw was the clock ticking away and getting closer to the 1:21:00 mark. That last stretch seemed like it took forever, but I got my PR by 30 seconds!

  • Finish Time – 1:20:43, 8:04 average pace

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I was so excited, so proud and so shocked that I pulled a PR out from somewhere inside of me. Why do I always do the best in races that I don’t have any expectations for?

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After collecting my cool glass and some water I went over to where Kevin was hanging out with Chanda’s husband James and the kids. We watched other runners finishing, and then my running buddies started coming through!

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First was Leslie, who finished in 1:37! She is training for her first marathon and this was her first race ever in the United States. She just got back after living in Germany for 3 years!

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Then came Chanda, who came in right at 1:39. I was so excited for her because she ran at her goal half marathon pace (9:55) on a course that is much tougher than the half marathon she has in October. She totally killed it!

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And then these two amazing mamas came in right after Chanda, a couple seconds past 1:40. I was so impressed that they ran 10 miles at a 10:00 pace, almost halfway through their pregnancies. Plus they looked adorable in their Running for Two shirts! Does Laura’s look familiar? It’s actually mine :)

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We all decided that we love this race and would definitely do it again. Smiles all around!

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The Hartwood 10 Miler is a race I want to continue doing every year. Beautiful course, friendly runners and volunteers, small, local, and for a great cause. What more could you ask for?

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365 Days of Fitness: July Recap

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OMG you guys. It’s August 17th and I still haven’t written my 365 Days of Fitness recap for JULY! Wow. I am so behind on so many blog posts. The truth is that this summer has kept me insanely busy- in a good way! I have chosen to spend as much time as I can with my toddler who craves (and deserves) my attention rather than in front of a computer screen.  July was another amazing month. I finished it off with 134 miles, which is the most I’ve done since before pregnancy! We traveled to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and across the country to Oregon. I scored a new 5K PR and finally beat my husband! I also reconnected with a lot of my old running buddies and was able to run with them a ton which made me super happy.

Here’s the picture recap!

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I say this every month but time is flying. I can’t believe we are on the downward side of 2014. 7 months down, 5 to go!

Previous Months

All of my pictures were taken with the FitSnap App (it’s free!). Check it out!

Our Summer Vacation to Oregon, Part 2: Bend

The second half of our west coast adventure took place in what is probably my favorite place in America: Bend, Oregon! Here’s how we spent our time there.

Monday, July 21st (continued)

We arrived in Bend around 3 p.m. after our road trip from Portland. My aunt and uncle hadn’t arrived yet, so we parked downtown and walked around for a bit. We ended up at Drake Park by the water where we sat and relaxed while little Kev ran around collecting pinecones.  Once my aunt and uncle got there we all headed to their house where we would be staying. They live on a huge cliff that looks down into the Deschutes River. It is absolutely BEAUTIFUL. I love their house so much!

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Once we got into our rooms and settled me, my husband and my sister all took turns going for short runs. We thought about going together but decided we could all use a little time to ourselves after being all up in each other’s business for the last 5 days. Running in Bend is more challenging than running in Portland because we are at 4,000 feet elevation, but the scenery just can’t be beat! It just doesn’t get more beautiful than this.

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After my 3 mile run and a shower I put little Kev to bed. It was so nice to be able to put him in a separate room and then go do something else while he slept- and not have to worry about whispering! Not possible in a small hotel room! We all ordered pizza and ate it outside on the deck while talking about everything under the sun and drinking wine. Perfection :) After that Lauren and I watched the Bachelorette with more wine. It was so nice to be able to watch it with her, since usually we’re in separate states and texting each other the whole time. I love my sister!

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Tuesday, July 22nd

All night long I heard it raining and it continued into most of the next day… which is weird for Bend! While we were there, Oregon was actually experiencing very bad wild fires due to the dry climate and not enough rain. So the rain was very much welcomed but it made us change our plans a bit. In the morning we went out to the store to pick up some food for the week, and then we hung out and relaxed for a little while. Later on we started to get stir crazy so we went to the Old Mill to do some shopping. Right as we pulled up it started to thunder, lightning and hail like crazy. It was insane! Then all of a sudden it stopped and the sun came out. So crazy. We did some shopping then went back home to get ready for the main event of the day- the Float Run!!! This is reason #273846 why I love Bend. On a random Tuesday night they had this “Float Run” event, where we were going to run from the local running store to the river, floated down it on rafts, then had root beer and Deschutes brewery Black Butte Porter floats. Unfortunately there was still some lightning around that time, so we couldn’t float down the river, but Kevin, my sister and I still did our run and had ice cream floats. It was so much fun!!!

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Wednesday, July 23rd

I had been itching to get out for a longer morning run since we got to Bend, and I was finally able to on this day! It was a beautiful and cool morning, and I ran from my aunt’s house down to the river trail and came back. It was a LOT of uphill on the way back but I felt surprisingly good. I didn’t feel as out of breath due to the altitude as I did on my last few runs. The scenery was absolutely gorgeous. I decided we need to move here ASAP!

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When I got back from my run Kevin and Lauren went out for theirs, then we got ready to embark on the Bend Ale Trail! Another reason why Bend is awesome is that is has a TON of great breweries. The “Ale Trail” is a self-guided tour of all 14 of them (including one in a nearby town). It was another rainy day, so it was a perfect time to go for it.

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The first 5 or so breweries were on the outskirts of the town and the rest were all closer and within walking distance of each other. Since my dad is the best, he drove us around to the ones that weren’t walkable and dealt with our annoying-ness as we progressively became less sober. He also took awesome pictures for us!

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Once he dropped us downtown to explore the others we were definitely feeling good.  We really only shared flights or small tasters at most of the breweries but it did end up being quite a bit more than I am used to drinking these days (I am definitely NOT at Penn State anymore!). It was so fun to try different types of beer, learn about each of the breweries and collect our passport stamps- especially since last time we were in Oregon I was pregnant and couldn’t try anything! We got appetizers along the way and ended up eating a full dinner too at Deschutes Brewery, so that helped keep us going without passing out entirely :).

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While we were Ale-Trailing, little Kev was back at home having a blast with his Oma!

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Once we started to look like this (see below picture), we knew it was time to call it a day. We were so tired! Beer tasting is hard work! We made it to a grand total of 11 breweries in one day. I was very proud.

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Here are the breweries we visited (in order):

  1. Cascade Lakes Brewing Company
  2. GoodLife Brewing
  3. 10 Barrel Brewing Company
  4. Riverbend Brewing
  5. Worthy Brewing
  6. Boneyard Beer
  7. Silver Moon Brewing
  8. Deschutes Brewery
  9. Bend Brewing Company
  10. Brew Werks
  11. McMenamins Old St. Francis School

Whew! And then I promptly fell asleep when we got home :)

Thursday, July 24th

After a lot of sleep that night I woke up feeling great. The whole family wanted to walk on the river trail, so my sister, husband and I decided to run and meet them there. It was about 2.5 miles from my aunt and uncle’s house, but I went a little farther to make it 3. After the run we did a 3 mile walking loop on the trail alongside the beautiful Deschutes River. It felt great to do something active with the entire family and to sweat out some alcohol!

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After we got cleaned up we made it our mission to finish the Ale Trail. We had 3 stops left, two in Bend and one in the nearby town of Sisters where my other uncle and cousin live. We did the last two breweries in Bend (Rat Hole Brewing and Crux), then stopped at the Visitor’s Center to collect our prizes!

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We still had one brewery left, but we knew we would never get back to the Visitor’s Center in time after going out to Sisters and back, and we were leaving early the next morning. The nice women who were working there understood and let us get our prizes anyway. We were very excited! We got stickers, silicon cups, bottle openers and t-shirts.

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After that we were off to Sisters! Sisters is a small, ridiculously cute town. It feels like you are stepping back in time when you go there. We went to my uncle’s house first and then walked around downtown, got some coffee and hung out in the backyard of the coffee shop for a while.

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Next we went to visit Mahonia Gardens, which belongs to my cousin Benji and his girlfriend Carys. I was amazed and so proud of all that they have done with their business! Kevin enjoyed some fresh raspberries straight off the bush and was in heaven!

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We started getting hungry so we headed to the last stop on the Ale Trail, Three Creeks Brewing, where we had all had dinner and tried a beer. It made me a little sad because I knew the trip was coming to an end and it would be a while until I saw everyone again. I love my Oregon family!

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Once we were back in Bend we ended our night in my aunt’s hot tub. So amazing to be out on the deck listening to the loud river while relaxing in hot and bubbly water. Aahhhh… I slept so well that night.

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Friday, July 25th

I only had time for a quick run before we left for the airport early that day to go back to Virginia. It was a beautiful, crisp and clear morning- only 44 degrees which actually felt amazing! I ran around my aunt and uncle’s neighborhood and took in one of my favorite views- the river that runs behind their house. I wished I had more time to run on our last day, but we had to leave the house by 8 a.m. and Kevin had to run too!

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We packed the car, said goodbye to my aunt and uncle and made the drive back to Portland to catch our flight. I was nervous about this day because it was going to be longer than our travel day the first time around. We had a 4 hour drive, 2 flights, and an hour long drive back to our house in Virginia.

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Surprisingly, Kevin did AMAZING. I guess he finally got the hang of this traveling thing? We kept him busy with snacks and moving sidewalks, and got lucky with an extra seat on BOTH flights back home (score!!!). He ended up sleeping most of the time. I guess the trip really tired him out.

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We arrived back in Virginia a little after midnight, and after getting baggage, driving back to our brother-in-law’s house where our car was waiting, then driving back to our house which is farther south, it was after 2 a.m. We were greeted by the biggest moth of all time on our door (see below picture, although it doesn’t look that big there! It was HUGE!)

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And then Kevin decided after sleeping all day that he was wide awake and wanted to play until 4 a.m. Fun times :)

It really was an amazing trip and the memories we made will always have a special place in my heart. Until next time, Oregon!!!

Our Summer Vacation to Oregon, Part 1: Portland

I am finally writing about our amazing vacation we took back in July! I have a lot of family in Oregon and we try to make it out there to visit as often as we can. This year we had extra exciting reasons to head out there- my cousin was getting married, and most of my family there had not met little Kevin yet! So we packed our bags and flew cross country with our almost 2 year old… whew. It was quite the adventure! We were in Oregon from Thursday, July 17th until Friday, July 25th. We had an amazing (and occasionally challenging) time, making memories that will last a lifetime. I really want to remember the details of this trip since it will most likely be a while until we are brave enough to do it again, so I am going to break it down day by day to tell the story.

Thursday, July 17th

Rise and shine! Our alarm went off super early and we were out the door by 3:15 a.m. We had a long drive to the airport and a painful 6 a.m. flight. First we drove to Kevin’s sister’s house and then our brother-in-law dropped us off at the airport. We hauled in all our stuff (1 large suitcase, 1 small suitcase, 1 carseat, 1 stroller, 1 backpack, my purse, and Kevin’s little backpack- and I tried my best to pack light since I knew we could do laundry at my aunt’s house!), checked in, went through security and arrived at our gate already exhausted. I chose flights that had off-times, hoping for flights that weren’t full so we could score a seat for little Kev. Since he isn’t 2 yet we didn’t buy him his own seat because it would have been an additional $500+ (!!). This strategy worked, and we were able to have a whole row to ourselves AND bring his carseat onboard rather than checking it at the gate- score! It was nice to be able to keep him restrained in a seat that he felt comfortable in. He ended up sleeping for most of the 5 1/2 hour flight from DC to San Francisco, and only really had a hard time during take-off and landing. Nothing a lollipop couldn’t fix.

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When we arrived in San Francisco we had a couple hours until our next flight, so we got some food and let Kevin run around and stretch his legs. We also connected with my dad and sister, who had just arrived there after flying from Philadelphia. I was happy to let them play with Kevin and thankful that they were on our next flight with us!

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I was very nervous about flying with a toddler for the first time- especially since we had such a long day of travel ahead of us. I definitely over prepared and brought a lot in my ‘bag of tricks’ but was super thankful I did! I needed almost everything. We weren’t so lucky on our second flight and were not able to get a seat for little Kevin. I thought this would be fine since it was a much shorter flight (only over an hour) but I was so, so wrong.

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Right before Kevin lost his mind.

I was counting down the minutes until this flight was over! He was totally unhappy, did not want to play with anything I packed for him, wouldn’t eat his fun snacks, didn’t want to be held or restrained, screamed and kicked the seat in front of us. Ugh. Nightmare. But we made it and I have never been so happy to get off a plane in my life!

After collecting all of our baggage we all went to get the rental car we were sharing with my dad, then drove into Portland to the house my aunt was renting for the week. We hung out there for a while but didn’t stay long because we were tired, and she had a lot to do since her son was the one getting married. We drove across the city to our hotel, checked in, unloaded all of our stuff and collapsed onto the bed… until we remembered we still needed to run for our running streak! I contemplated breaking the streak but Kevin talked me out of it. We got dressed, brought little Kev next door to my dad and sister’s room so they could stay with him (we didn’t bring our running stroller on the trip because we wanted a smaller one) and headed outside for one mile.

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It. was. so. hard. My body felt like it didn’t work and we were starving. It was ridiculously slow and painful but we got it done. I took a quick shower which felt amazing after a long day of travel then we ordered pizza for dinner. It wasn’t even 5:00 at this point but to us it felt so late since there is a 3 hour time difference. I shared a pizza with my sister and we killed the whole thing. It was awesome!

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I was ready for bed at this point but somehow Kevin headed out for my cousin’s bachelor party with my dad. I have no idea how he did that because the baby and I were both asleep by 7 p.m.! Kevin said they didn’t end up staying out super late, but I was impressed.

Friday, July 18th

Of course our toddler was up bright and early at 4:30 a.m… which is really 7:30 a.m. east coast time, so that’s late for him! :) I was feeling pretty good because I had gone to bed so early. I knew one of the challenges with this trip would be Kevin’s sleeping schedule, being in a different time zone and with so much going on each day, but I just tried to go into it with a flexible attitude when it came to sleeping at night and naps. I was in desperate need of coffee so once Kevin got up we all headed out for a walk and to get Starbucks nearby.

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Once I was properly caffeinated I headed out for a run with my sister. We had heard that you can do a nice 3 mile loop by running on the path along the river, crossing over the Steel Bridge on the pedestrian pathway, running along the other side of the river, and then crossing back over the Hawthorne Bridge. It was a beautiful morning and we took our time, taking in all the sights and enjoying the cooler weather. We ended up running 5 miles total, since the river was about a mile from our hotel. I felt so much better after getting a good run in and was ready to tackle the rest of the day!

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After our run we showered and relaxed a bit while little Kevin napped and my husband went out for his run. I knew it would be a long afternoon and a late night so I wanted to try to get a decent nap in. After he woke up we grabbed some lunch from a nearby deli with my dad and sister. One of the things I LOVE about Portland and the west coast in general is all the delicious vegetarian options there are everywhere. This is a huge change from where we live, and was so nice for both little Kev and me since we both don’t eat meat.

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After filling our bellies we got ready for the rehearsal and drove about 25 minutes outside of Portland to where the wedding was taking place, the Scappoose Creek Inn. It was a beautiful farm setting with a barn for the reception and lots of animals roaming around. Kevin LOVED having free space to run around after being confined to a small hotel room/plane/stroller for so long!

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Sunscreen hair!

Sunscreen hair!

We were not in the wedding party, but my cousin invited us to the rehearsal to catch up with family and also to help out a bit with setting up chairs and things like that. After the official rehearsal part was over we all went to a local Mexican restaurant nearby for dinner. Dinner was DELICIOUS- along with the margaritas of course :)

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Little Kev couldn’t hang for very long and actually ended up passing out on me in the middle of the loud, bright restaurant. I was shocked! But it was about 8:30 at this point which is super late on east coast time, so I was proud of him for staying up and staying happy as long as he did. We all followed his lead as soon as we got back to the hotel!

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Saturday, July 19th

Wedding day! I started the day off with an amazing 11 mile run all around Portland. One of the things I love about Portland is how you can be in the middle of the city one minute, then in the middle of nature a few minutes later. The best of both worlds :) This city is also FULL of runners, walkers and cyclists. I think there are more of us than there are cars! The bridges even have a bicycle counter to see how many cross each day and all year.

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Kevin ended up meeting me at the end of my run, and I took the stroller so he could go on his. We walked around downtown and then headed toward the Saturday Market once he was finished running, which is a big craft/food/random vendor market that they have every weekend. Portland is GREAT for people watching, and this was no exception. Once again little Kevin passed out during all the commotion. I was just happy he was getting sleep, no matter where and when it was happening!

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After we got back to the hotel we all showered and got ready for the wedding! It was shaping up to be a beautiful, perfect day and I was so excited to see my cousin get married and celebrate! The venue looked AMAZING and all the details were perfect. My cousin’s beautiful and creative new wife did everything herself, and she did such a great job.

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After the ceremony it was reception time! Awesome food, dancing, delicious drinks, cute babies, a fun photobooth, a pick-up game of soccer, chickens, and lots of love. What more could you ask for?

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Unfortunately, sitting in the backseat for the long ride home from the wedding on the windy streets made me feel pretty sick. They had an after party at a bar near our hotel but I wasn’t feeling up for it at that point, so we all went to bed. LAME! My dad and sister said they had a great time!

Sunday, July 20th

I woke up the next day feeling better and slightly guilty that I didn’t make it out to the after party. I went for an early morning walk with my boys to Trader Joe’s to pick up some snacks and some green juice. This is actually something we did most mornings we were in Portland, since our hotel room didn’t have a refrigerator and TJs was really close.

Feeding daddy some blueberries

Feeding daddy some blueberries

My aunt and uncle were hosting a brunch at their house later that morning, so we headed over there to spend a little more time with family before leaving Portland the next day. It was so nice to be able to spend so much time with people we don’t get to see often. I was able to see my aunt, two uncles, 4 cousins and all of their wives/girlfriends/kids- it was amazing! Once we finished up there we went to the hotel for Kevin’s nap and I went out for a run. I wasn’t sure what I would want to do, but I ended up running the 5 mile loop that I did with my sister earlier that week. Again, it was amazing and made me fall more deeply in love with Portland!

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When I got back Kevin went out for his run, and then we got showered up and headed out for some fun! Kevin was dying to go to Cascade Brewing Barrel House to try their beer. We had fun tasting all different types of beer with my dad and sister. Kevin has really taught me to love and appreciate craft beer, and we like to explore the local breweries when we travel.

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After our beer tasting we went across the street to eat dinner at the Green Dragon restaurant which is part of Rogue Brewery. It was good as well, but unfortunately little Kev kept having meltdown after meltdown so we were kind of done at this point. He had really been pretty flexible so far during the trip but I think he was tired of being confined in a hotel room and being out of his routine. I didn’t blame him! We love Portland but we were ready to move onto the second part of our trip- Bend, Oregon where my aunt and uncle live.

Monday, July 21st

Early Monday morning we packed up our hotel room and got ready to head out. But first we had a very important stop to make- VOODOO DONUTS! This place is famous for their unique and delicious donuts, and we had been dying to try them the entire time we were in Portland. Every time we went by the line was out of control, so we decided to try Monday morning before we left, which ended up being a great idea. There was no line at all! We were so excited.

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I decided on the chocolate peanut butter donut, while Kevin and my sister each got a maple bacon bar. Kevin also got a maple blunt one, and we got a plain glazed donut for little Kev to try. The donuts definitely lived up to their reputation. They were DELICIOUS! I wished I had more once they were gone!

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After we had our donuts we started our 4 hour road trip to Bend. Next up, part 2 of our trip!

Run Streak: Week 11

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Week 11 was probably the most challenging week for me so far in this journey for many reasons. The baby got sick, I didn’t sleep well, then I traveled home to Pennsylvania. My husband wasn’t there with me during the week which meant I had to get creative with how I fit in my runs while also being with my son full-time. I was also hit with one of the worst stomach bugs on Saturday that lasted the rest of the weekend. I had decided to break my streak at that point, but somehow I pulled a mile out of me late Sunday night and didn’t! Read on for details.

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Katie’s Miles (8/4 – 8/10)

  • Monday: 3 miles @ 8:33. I know I say it every week, but I am loving my Monday morning dates with my friend Gina at the track. I didn’t sleep well the night before but I knew running with her would make me feel better, and it did! On this day we did sprints, ran the bleacher stairs, and did two Tabata rounds that included bench step-ups, mountain climbers, tricep dips and more. I ended up running a little more to make it to 3 miles for the day. Really going to miss this when I go back to school at the end of the month!
  • Tuesday: 3 miles @ 9:37. Another very sleepy day for me. Monday was super busy and long, and I couldn’t wait to get a good night’s sleep that night. Right as I was going to bed I walked by the baby’s room and smelled something horrible. I walked in and saw puke all over his crib, the wall, the carpet, the floor and him. We got him up, gave him a bath and cleaned everything up, but his room still smelled really bad so we brought him into our bed to sleep. He was fine- no fever, and lots of energy, so there wasn’t much sleeping going on for any of us. I didn’t have much energy to run this morning but I knew I would feel better if I did, because I turn into a cranky monster when I’m sleep deprived and was already being a brat to my hubby. I thought I’d do 1, maybe 2 miles, but it felt so good to blow off some steam that I kept going and did 3. I felt MUCH better afterwards and was prepared for another long day… with a nap fit in there :)
  • Wednesday: 4 miles @ 9:22. Summer weather is back! The cool temps and low humidity were nice while they lasted. I took the difficult uphill route on the way out and was pretty much struggling the whole time until I turned around. Once I finally did I was able to see a beautiful sunrise and enjoy the nice view going downhill. So glad I stuck it out and did the entire 4 miles I had planned. After this run we packed up and headed to Pennsylvania!
  • Thursday: 2 miles @ 9:37. This day was a crazy one! I started by running 2 miles with the stroller around a park that has a paved loop. This would have been a good idea except there was a playground there, and every time we passed it Kevin would scream, “Out! Go play! All done!” So after hearing that about 6 times I stopped at 2 miles and let him play. After our run we spent the day at Dutch Wonderland with friends- Kevin’s first amusement and water park experience! It was awesome and exhausting, but our day didn’t end there! We got home, are a quick dinner and met my two best friends for a walk around the neighborhood. Whew!! Needless to say we both slept well that night.
  • Friday: 5 miles @ 9:14. After yesterday’s craziness little Kev and I both slept in and enjoyed a lazy morning. We eventually ventured out so I could get coffee and then we went to nearby playground. When we got home I put him down for a nap and hit my dad’s treadmill. I don’t usually like treadmills but with my dad and sister both at work and my husband not with us, it was the best way for me to fit my run in today- especially because I really didn’t want to run with the stroller! It helped that I was able to watch the episode of Big Brother that I missed the night before while I ran. It was so entertaining that I didn’t even notice the miles ticking away.
  • Saturday: 3 miles @ 9:15. I was so happy on Saturday morning’s run because my hubby finally joined us in Pennsylvania! We took little Kev to his favorite tot lot playground and then took turns running around that area, because it’s hard to find stroller friendly places to run around here. I LOVE running in my hometown though. It brings back so many memories and makes me happy. Unfortunately later this day the stomach bug from hell hit, which actually caused me to make Kevin pull over while driving so I could throw up on the side of the road… that’s a first. It was all downhill from there for the rest of the day and night :(
  • Sunday: 1 mile @ 9:55. My toughest day yet. Obviously this is not the 12 mile long run I had planned, but considering I had decided to break my running streak due to my sickness the day before I’m thankful to have gotten 1 mile in! I woke up in the morning feeling a little better but was still nauseous on and off and felt weak from not having any food in my body and being dehydrated. I spent the whole day taking it easy and relaxing by my friend’s pool, making sure to hydrate and try to eat, then we drove back to Virginia. I had pretty much decided I was not going to run but since I hadn’t thrown up at all that day and was feeling better I went out for 1 mile. Definitely the hardest mile I’ve run in a long time but I did it slow and steady and got it done. The weirdest part is I actually felt the best I did all day afterwards?! Let the streak continue!
  • Total Miles This Week: 21 (my lowest mileage in 12 weeks… must bring that up next week!)
  • Total Miles So Far: 314
  • Total Days Streaking: 79
Love running in my hometown!

Love running in my hometown!

Kevin’s Miles (8/4 – 8/10)

  • Monday: 3 miles @ ?. (Group run with no watch)
  • Tuesday: 1 mile @ 8:40.
  • Wednesday: 2 miles @ ?.
  • Thursday: 2 miles @ ?.
  • Friday: 1 mile @ ?.
  • Saturday: 2 miles @ 7:46.
  • Sunday: 1 mile @ 8:20.
  • Total Miles This Week: 12
  • Total Miles So Far: 153.3
  • Total Days Streaking: 78
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Running with Team RWB!

From Kevin: I don’t have a lot of times for my runs this week because Katie had the Garmin with her in Pennsylvania. I know different 1 and 2 mile routes around my house really well by now so I just go out and run them and don’t worry about my time. I did get to run with Team RWB again on Monday evening, which is always great!

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My goal for this upcoming week is just to feel better! That won’t be too hard to do because it’s pretty much all up from here :). I have a lot of runs planned with friends, including a local 10 miler that I’m doing again this year. I’m excited for a brand new week!

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Beautiful sunrise!

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