Sunday, October 30, 2011

In the "spotlight" with Ann from Wisconsin

Meet Ann the stay at home mom from Wisconsin!  Ann's "me time" is running...
My name is Ann. I’m a stay-home mom who enjoys Ultra running, marathon running or really any kind of running. I will run fast or slow with anyone willing to join me for 2 or 12 miles. It makes me feel brave and confident enough to tackle any obstacles and I love new adventures. Yup, that’s me!

However, it wasn’t always who I was or how I felt about myself. I used to be overweight, reluctant and as for adventures...those where nowhere to be found.

In 2002, when my youngest daughter turned 2, I saw myself as not the picture of health or beauty. Being overweight made me incredibly unhappy. I had always been thin until my husband and I started a family. We are blessed with 4 beautiful daughters! They are always a great source of joy for me, although, at the time, I found my personal life was lacking my own joy.

 I decided it was time to turn things around so in January of 2003, I began walking on a treadmill in my basement and eating only healthy foods. As the weight dropped off, I began hearing other moms telling me how great I was looking. That was nice to hear, but I wanted something more. The walking was going great, but I figured, if I start running...the weight will come off quicker, and of course it did!
Dropping 45 lbs and fitting into small jeans again was nothing short of feeling wonderful!

As for the running, I should confess that I’m a little competitive...OK, a lot competitive.
My running began to take off. My children were small (four girls under the age of 9) so I found time in the evenings to go run alone. I ran 2 or 3 miles at a time. I entered 2 mile races and enjoyed watching my times get faster. Little rewards for my hard work!

I entered my very first 10K run in June 2005. It was a huge accomplishment to run for 6 miles at one time. Spring of 2006, I entered my first Half Marathon, in 2007 my first full marathon and the rest seems to have gone by in a blurr. Running on a daily basis is almost like watching my daughters grow into young women. It’s a subtle process that’s filled with hope, joy and a bit of faith.

Over the years, my running evolved from the short 2 milers into marathon and ultra running.
Now-a-days, I enjoy being a Pace Team Leader for the Green Bay Marathon and the Fox Cities Marathon, both in Wisconsin. Pacing involves helping others complete the 26.2 miles of the marathon within a specified time.
My current totals are: 12 full marathons (including Boston), three 50Ks, 15 half marathons and several other race distances thrown in for fun.

Even though I still consider myself a stay-at-home mom, I work 2 days a week at the local Run Away Shoes. I also belong to the Green Bay Running Club, where I’m the Event Director. We have put on some new running events this past year that include, the MBG 2010 (a marathon fun run) in November and the GBRC 6Hr / 8Hr Ultra run in June. Both events are scheduled again for 2011 and 2012. Coming up April 2012, for Run Away Shoes, I will be directing a brand new relay event from Oshkosh to Green Bay called Run Away to The Bay.

When I’m not running or directing events, I’m out cheering on my own daughters in their Cross Country and Track meets. It’s a joy to watch them share my passion.

Currently, I have just completed training for my first solo 50 Mile event on October 22, 2011 at the Fall 50. My long term goal is to complete 50 marathons before I turn 50. I have 35 more to go and 8 more years to complete.

All the competitive running, as well as the time spent training has been so rewarding over the years. The new friends met and friendships formed have been greatly satisfying. The fantastic people I have had the privilege to meet have really been the reason for me to get out and run. I have the entire running community and especially my family to thank for this incredible experience.

‘I don’t run to add days to my life, I run to add life to my days.’

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

EC 100 MILER - October 22, 2011


The 100 Mile Endurance Challenge runs through Southern California.  The course starts in Corona and ends at the Santa Monica Pier.  I finished 29:57:00. 
I felt strong, energetic and excited.
Kara the founder of the 100 Mile Club

Keenan, me, Jakob, Mieko and Ed...excited and ready to start...
I made it to mile 25 and I only lost 3 pounds...still feeling great, excited and happy. It was 88 degrees...

Nice scenery along the way...
My back was hurting and I developed the Larry Macon lean!
Both feet have blisters and I'm still smiling...12 more miles!!!
Yes I'm running!  I only had 5 minutes to get to the finish line...
I did it!!! 100 miles in 29:57:00  I finished last but I finished!!!
Thanks Jean!
I was the top fundraiser and won this beautiful quilt...I raised $895 for the 100 Mile Club ( ) whose focus is addressing childhood obesity one school at a time.
It took determination to get this buckle!

It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop.

People who fulfill their dreams are not merely lucky;  neither are they necessarily the most talented.  Rather, they understand the value of perseverance and determination.  They believe that setbacks are simply a means to grow, and that small failures only pave the way for new insights.  They know where they are going even when others do not and believe in their own dreams when others doubt.  Their vision comes from within - and it is always burning in their hearts.
-Lisa Crofton-

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Life is all about the choice you make...This quote is hard core but true!
-I love to Run-
I'm featured in the September/October issue of Walk About Magazine. 
Stepping out of your comfort zone takes courage, confidence, and believing in yourself.  Never stop believing in your dreams. Take the first step, it's the hardest one, lace up your shoes, get out the door, and take yourself on the journey.  Life is what you make it.  Believe you can!
-Walking Diva-

But seriously though...what was your excuse???

I am running(walking) the 100-Mile Endurance Challenge on October 22-23, 2011 to raise awareness and funds for the 100 Mile Club.  This event will start in Corona, CA and end at the Santa Monica Pier.  The 100 Mile Club ( ) is a 501c3 non-profit organization whose focus is addressing childhood obesity one school at a time.  $5 will make a difference!

Thank you for your support! Click on the link and donate...please!

In the "Spotlight" with Ginger from Washington

Meet the fabulous and fit Ginger from Washington!
My running story has humble beginnings. In high school, I participated in sports, including track and field, but wasn’t a runner. I had attempted a short race in 9th grade but my heart and body weren’t interested. The shot-put and discus were my events and I did my required 2 lap warm-up and not a step further.
After high school and a year of marriage, my weight was up and I started at-home workouts with Jane Fonda and Billy Blanks. Some friends ran 4 miles during their lunchtime and invited me (a lunchtime walker) to join them. After I picked myself up off the ground from laughter, I eventually conceded and found I could complete the distance, albeit slowly.
I was a stay at home mom, homeschooling and totally invested in my daughters. My husband and I began running together just to have some alone time. Running had been put on the back burner since the birth of my first daughter.
In 2000, I felt the need to do something totally new to celebrate a new century and convinced my husband to enter a race. We did our first 10k and I won an age-group award! A competitive fire was lit that day.
The 2001 Portland Marathon inducted me into a whole new world of running. I followed the Galloway program because running a marathon without a walk break seemed impossible and I may never have kept going. I finished in 4:21 and I have NEVER looked back!
I ran the Seattle Marathon the next year in 3:51 and found out I could QUALIFY for Boston Marathon with a 3:40. 3:48 in 2003, 4:05 in 2004, and in 2005, my husband promised that if I qualified, we would go to Boston . I had turned 35 and my qualifying standard was 3:45. I crossed the line in 3:42:31! He was a man of his word.
I went on to run in the 2006-2008 Boston Marathons. I clocked my second fastest marathon at Boston in 2008 in 3:17:11.
In 2007, after completing my second Boston in April, I ran the inaugural Tacoma City Marathon in May. I discovered if I could run one more marathon by the end of June, I could be a Marathon Maniac so I signed for the Discovery Bay Marathon in June and was admitted as #607!
Since I began racing, I have moved up from “middle-of-the-pack” to a top age-group winner and sometimes am in the top 3 overall winners. My old self, the one who didn’t want to be seen or heard, who felt inadequate and overweight just needed to start moving and believing the seemingly impossible. I’m over 40, have kids, am not coached, and have no “natural” running ability. What I do have is the desire to be more, do more, and expect more. My fastest marathon of 3:16:34 was at Winthrop 2 weeks ago!
Motivation can come in many forms; inspirational stories, setting goals, pictures and quotes, etc. I have used all these to push myself on days when I would rather be lazy. Another strategy in my arsenol is NEGATIVE reinforcement. It's not for everyone, I know that! During one of my early 5ks with one mile to go, I passed a "who has tickets to the gun show?" kind of guy who was struggling and he muttered, "Stupid girl!". Well! He was frustrated that a GIRL was passing him. I took that and have held it close to my heart as one of the biggest compliments I've ever received. I'd like to think that when the race was over, his idea of what women were capable of doing was elevated. Even if it didn't, I remember that as one of the first days I truly felt powerful in racing.
My love for running has evolved into a general love for physical fitness and I continue to pursue knowledge for myself and others. I am a certified personal trainer, promote health in every way possible to anyone who will listen and blog about my running and racing adventures. I’m currently a 4-start Maniac and will be running my 40th marathon in November. I'll see you at the races!
You can read about my running adventures at

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Long Beach Marathon - October 9, 2011

I had fun in the sun at Long Beach Marathon!!!
Who said you can't look fashionable while running /walking a marathon?
One who wants to do something, will find a way; one who doesn't will find an excuse.

My journey to "Greatest Mileage Run Daily in a Year" is on hold due to nutrition issues.  My rapid weight lost and no appetite cause me to stop at Day 92.  I do plan in the future to continue this amazing feat.
Long Beach marathon course has miles of ocean views.  You could  have not ask for a more beautiful day in southern California.

If your Dreams don't scare you, they are not big enough.
Miss Debbie from Arizona...good to see you!

Race Director Charlie of Charlie Alewine Racing  and Race Director Steve of Old Goat Trail Races
Believe in what makes you feel good.  Believe in what makes you happy.  Believe in the dreams you've always wanted to come true, and give them every chance to.
-Dena Dilaconi-
The lovely Miss Anne!
The pretty and fabulous Violet!  You go girl!
The man behind the voice that makes you feel special as you're crossing the finish line...Rudy Novotny!!!  Facebook him and tell him your story.

In the "Spotlight" with Serenity from Boston

Meet the beautiful Serenity from Boston!
I have always loved being out of the house, I guess you could say I’m an out door girl. Growing up, whenever my life became difficult I found my answers in moving my body. Working on a farm & riding horses. I began competing in horse shows in the Hunt Seat when I was 15. I wanted to compete in the Big E, a major event in here in Massachusetts, but before I realized this dream I was thrown from Candy, a beautiful brown Morgan horse when I shifted my body left & she went right, I hit the wall hard & was rushed to the hospital with an injured back. Since then I have had back problems.
This put my competitive nature on hold for a while until I finished college & met my husband Michael. He was a bodybuilder & we worked out together. Soon I found a love for pumping iron & competing in shows. I desired to become the next Ms Olympia & trained everyday. The Golden Era of Bodybuilding it was called, that is, until woman began sacrificing too much for the sport; it was becoming clear to me that in order to reach my goal I would have to use high doses of Anabolic Steroids. Have I failed myself once again I thought? Because it was clear that I fell short.
Both Michael & I began to feel that the four walls of the gym closing in. We found our answer in nature’s gym, the mountains! Our baptism by fire was attempting a 21,000 foot mountain in the Bolivian Andes as our first expedition.
We called our team Expedition Outreach & to this day we promote world peace & raise money for Cancer research. It all fell into place, the exercise I needed, my daily dose of nature, a new love of travel & helping others. Our new dream was to scale Mount Everest. We travelled back & forth to the Andes playing extreme sports, getting sponsored & even climbed an unclimbed peak in the Wrangell Mountains ofAlaska naming it MountHope in the symbol of the world working together to fight the common enemies of the human race, like disease.

Climbing rock & ice, SCUBA diving ship wrecks, sea kayaking & river running, caving, skydiving, bungee jumping, there was nothing we didn’t do. The thing about trying to master so many sports is that you really cannot. So we attained a certain level of proficiency in each one but every time seemed to fall short of that place where we really wanted to go, a certain perfection, a goal where we would only know we got there by feeling its truth, in that place where my heart thinks & my mind feels.
Despite all the risk sport we played it was my husband’s career as a state trooper that put things on hold for us. Getting taken down in the line of duty by a man who simply decided to hurt the next officer he met. I spent the past four years playing my role as a nurse & loving wife but knew that we were both getting older & falling away from what we loved most. Michael had always been such a motivating force in my life with his endless ideas of what mountain to scale next, I saw now that it would be up to me to get us moving again.
I found my new challenge by setting my sights on an Ironman Triathlon in 2013 in New Zealand. Competing in local races I tend to enjoy running on trails but riding on the roads. I got Michael into training by competing with him as part of a relay team.
I look back on my life & see how I didn’t really fail myself; my aspirations always brought me higher than if I never dreamt so high. I may still get to Mount Everest & having been involved in weight training taught me about my body & how it responds to diet & intensity. I have now found my truest passion, for when I run, bike or swim I feel the perfection I was seeking all along, not at the finish line but deep inside me, in the joy & contentment that I get from my life just the way it is.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

In the "Spotlight" with Angie from Utah

Meet Angie the most famous marathoner in Utah! Angie puts the fun in marathoning!!! 
I was an avid runner in High School (even before that actually), but an injury side-lined me my senior year thus ending my running career. To tell you the truth, I was thrilled with that news. As a teenager, I was sick of training everyday instead of hanging out with my friends. I just wanted to have fun and didn't care if I ran ever again.
I moved to New York City after college where I worked in the fashion industry and as a professional dancer (teaching, performing, etc.). Forward 20 years- I met my husband, got married, and relocated to Salt Lake City in 2008.

Giving up my dance career, I needed a healthy outlet to stay fit, so I decided to register for the 5K walk held during the Deseret Marathon. I finished the run/walk and felt great! The first place marathoner was just coming to the finish line as I finished and got got such a rush, that I stayed at the finish line for 2 more hours, just cheering for runners as they came in. I called my twin sister (who had already run 12 marathons herself) and shared my excitement. I never thought I would like (let alone love) to run again. She told me I should find a Jeff Galloway Training group and train to run a marathon myself! So I did!
In April 2009 I ran my first marathon at the Salt Lake City Marathon. By November I had run 5 marathons and qualified for the Marathon Maniacs. In 2010 I took over as Program Director of Jeff Galloway Training here in Salt Lake City and with 25 marathons (26 this Saturday at St. George) under my belt, I try to inspire others to get off the couch, have fun, and enjoy the fellowship and friendship running has to offer. I am currently working towards running a marathon in all 50 States and finally got into the 50 States Club! Whoo Hoo!
Angie Whitworth Pace
Marathon Maniac #1975