How do you move on when life seems so hard?


I just came back from a fun and long weekend in Denver at the Fitness & Health Bloggers Conference. Since it was in Denver, I took a nice 8 hr. road trip with my friend Haley of Climb, Run, Lift Mom. I actually didn’t know Haley too well before this trip, but 8 hour drive gives two ladies LOTS of time to talk. I learned so much about her and she learned so much about me, and I came to realize how much our struggles really mold us into the people we are meant to be.

Today is a very special day for me, because it was 15 years ago today that my life took a drastic turn in a new direction. I was a depressed, angry and suicidal teenager and had no problems abusing my body to no end and I really didn’t care where I ended up. In fact, I had no reason to believe I would live past age 25, so celebrating my 30th Birthday last year really tripped me up! 15 years ago, I gave birth to my daughter whom I placed for adoption.

I shared my story a year and a half ago on a radio show, something I had been keeping in for many, many years. I started to realize that me NOT sharing what I had learned, was not benefitting anyone. I would like to share it again because today, June 25th is my daughters birthday and I would love for you to realize that no matter what has happened in your past, or what is going on right now, you can always change and make a better tomorrow.

Please listen to my radio interview (and grab some kleenex) on


I wanted to share this, because its my story and I can’t share Haley’s or anyone else’s story. I CAN tell you this: we ALL have our own stories of struggles (and mine didn’t stop at this one!) We need to take the lesson from each event and learn from it to make better choices and also to PROVE to ourselves, that if we can survive THIS and get through THIS moment, we can move on and do things greater than we ever imagined!

Mud Runs– the new fad in 5ks+ Which one is for me?


Its been pretty hard to miss these days, seems to be a Mud Run/Obstacle Course type event every weekend somewhere! There are Tough Mudders, Spartan Races, Dirty Dashes, among them, now there’s even a COLOR Run!

I happened to do a Mud Run in 2010, right before it seemed like they were all the rage. There were only about 3 obstacles, which were kind of lame, and the “mud” was nothing but freezing cold brown water! Needless to  say, I was disappointed! I wanted to take really muddy pictures! (I did at least wear a sweet outfit) After that experience, however, the “mud run” didn’t seem all that exciting…… WELL…

Here’s my “after” pic… not so muddy, eh?!! (just wet… DUMB!)

NOW that the mud run/adventure/obstacle race has become more popular, I think it’s time to give it another shot. These races are definitely right up the alley of “being a sweaty betty” because there is a huge element of FUN!

Now the dilemma: WHICH ONE TO CHOOSE??

I did some research and found some of the more popular series. These races range anywhere from 1-12+ miles!  Feel free to add in the comments section any that I may have missed. (all descriptions are directly from the race event websites)

Tough Mudder– Tough Mudder events are hardcore 10-12 mile obstacle courses designed by British Special Forces to test your all around strength, stamina, mental grit, and camaraderie. With the most innovative courses, half a million inspiring participants, and more than $3 million raised for the Wounded Warrior Project, Tough Mudder is the premier adventure challenge series in the world.

Spartan Race– is on a mission to get you active, healthy, excited about change, and return to our ancient roots where running through woods, getting dirty, and facing adversity was part of everyday life. Our events are all about challenging today’s perception of normal. Spartan Race now introduces a level for everyone beginning with the entry level Spartan Sprint, intermediate level Super Spartan, the advanced Spartan Beast, and the ‘99.9% need not apply’ extreme level Spartan Death Race.

Warrior Dash– the only info I got from the site was “The World’s Largest Running Series” but it looks like a blast and has some GREAT training ideas– for core, upper and lower body! gotta like that!

Dirty Dash– This race that puts all other races to shame.  The Dirty Dash is a mud run obstacle course where a military boot camp meets your inner five-year-old’s fantasy and subsequently converts boy to man and then man to swine. You’ll need endurance to trudge up mountains of sludge, courage to overcome uncompromising obstacles, a complete lack of shame to wallow in pits of mud and a smile to show through at the end!

Devil Dash-an adventurous 5K running race. Racers will ascend the “Purgatory” course and conquer obstacles themed after the 7 Deadly Sins, before entering the pearly gates and the “Beer Garden of Eden”. Obstacles include climbing over cargo nets, running through the river, crawling through mud pits, darting through fire and trudging up steep terrain and much more….. Devil Dash is an all day running event, complete with mud, blood, beer, cheer and live music! (they had me at Beer)

Dirty Girl– is a 5k mud run for women of all ages and athletic abilities. Don’t worry, it’s not a “race” in the traditional sense.
It is an untimed obstacle course designed to push you slightly out of your comfort zone, but only as far as you are comfortable going. Forming teams is encouraged, and so is helping your fellow Dirty Girls get through to the finish. At a Dirty Girl Mud Run you’ll find excitement, laughter, and camaraderie—as well as lots of music and even some adult beverages. It’s a day you’ll never forget.

Kiss Me Dirty-Everyone from the pretty princesses to the filthiest of female slop jocks is bound to enjoy the downright dirty goodness that Kiss Me Dirty mud runs offer. You will hop, skip, jump, slip and scramble your way through obstacles and mud to become an OFFICIAL “Dirty Girl”, and with filthy fun like this, you just might have to ask someone to “Kiss Me Dirty” once you finish! Kiss Me Dirty events are female-only mud runs designed for women of all athletic abilities, with a portion of proceeds benefiting gynecological cancer research

The Color Run-The Color Run pretty much has 2 SIMPLE rules. 1. White shirts (any mostly white T will work great) mandatory at the start line and 2. Color plastered EVERYTHING at the finish!  Runner/walkers begin the 5k at the start line like a brand new pristine coloring book, they end looking like they fell into a Willy Wonka… tie dyed… vat of colored goodness.

Beach Dash– Beach Dash is a gnarly running event held on sandy shores where Dashers get their feet wet while tackling a series of radical obstacles. As the sun sets, the stoked crowd lets loose with beer and beach tunes! (they also do fundraising for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospitals)

Great Urban Race– is a wacky urban adventure. Teams of two solve twelve clues, have a wild city adventure and complete fun challenges while discovering the city in a fresh new way!

Run For Your Lives(Zombie Run)-Protect your brain and run for your life. This is one race where your legs giving out are the least of your problems. Run For Your Lives is a first-of-its-kind event, one part 5K, one part obstacle course, one part escaping the clutches of zombies — and all parts awesome.Runners will navigate a series of challenging obstacles throughout a 5K course in an attempt to reach the finish line — all while avoiding zombies. At the end of this adventure race, you get to celebrate survival (or zombie transformation) with live entertainment and music, local celebrities, vendors, food, and of course, beer!

and now please enjoy this video– while you think about “is this race right for me?” LOL