Tag Archives: blogging

Olympic Inspiration + Blog Vacation

It’s been a few days since I’ve posted.  My annual blog vacation just happened to coincide with the Summer Olympics and it wasn’t too hard to stay put in from of my TV watching all of the amazing athletes.blog vacation

I like taking a short break from blogging once or twice a year to think about why I do it.  Sometimes it can feel like a drag or something I ‘have’ to do, not something I enjoy doing for the fun of it.  A blog vacation is a good chance to clear my head, figure out what’s next (if anything) and what I really want to focus my upcoming posts on.  While I was a little distracted during this most recent one, I’m coming back from my summer blog vacation ready to share my training, race recaps and reviews and any other awesome running related fun I can think of.

Let me start with the Olympics!  I love the spirit of the games, the variety of athletes and being exposed to new sports.  Fencing was definitely not on my radar but I spent time watching and learning about it.  Olympic weightlifting was incredible.  The swimmers of Team USA were mind bogglingly awesome.  And now that we’re on to track and field, the Olympic inspiration hits even closer to home.  There are so many feel good stories.  So many amazing athletes from diverse backgrounds and situations competing you can’t help but be inspired.  Emma Coburn’s bronze, Allyson Felix‘s silver, Usain Bolt‘s gold.  And this story about the final few finishers of the women’s marathon.

With all that inspiration, I’m coming back from my blog vacation ready to rock my fall goal races and tell you all about them!

Meredith

Do you take a summer blog vacation?  One at all?  How much are you loving the Olympics?

2014 in Review: Running, Blogging, Learning

Another year is drawing to a close and 2014 seemed to fly by faster than the last.  It was an exciting year of running adventures, traveling and lots of learning.

As 2014 rolled in, I established both personal and professional goals for the next 12 months.  My personal goals revolved around running, including logging 1,200 miles and clocking a sub 1:40.00 half marathon before the summer began.  My professional goals were to get my USA Track and Field Level I certification, grow FitNicePT and potentially write an e-book.  Now that 2014 is on the way out and learning2015 is knocking on the door, it’s time to take a look back at the last 365 days.

I nailed one of my running goals by PRing under 1:40.00 twice before summer and again in October at 1:37.24.  My racing year was very exciting and if you want to read all about it, here it is!  I exceeded my second running goal by running 1,445 miles in 2014.  Staying injury free was a huge bonus and I credit it to listening to my body in combination with consistent strength training.

My professional goals were not so easy to gauge.  I did receive my USA Track and Field Level I Coaching certification in March and the three-day course was a great learning experience.  I also took FitNicePT in a different direction and struggled with where I wanted to go.  Instead of writing an e-book, I took a lot of time to learn and use Twitter to help build a strong voice for my brand and gave more time to my blogs.  I love sharing my passion and knowledge while helping others reach their goals.  Being a part of the RunChat and BibRave clearningommunities has been very rewarding and while an e-book longer than 140 characters is still potentially on the horizon, I’m happy to be a part of the online running community on a daily basis.

Between my USATF coaching course, various continuing education efforts and some blogging trial and error, I did a lot of learning in 2014.  I stretched my long runs longer than ever before, lifted heavier weights than I thought I could, reached out to brands and businesses I never thought I could and look forward to taking those lessons with me into 2015.

What are my goals for 2015?  I have a Rock n Roll Phoenix and Rock n Roll DC on the calendar but am not aiming for a PR at either event.  I want to continue to grow the FitNicePT brand and need to choose the best way to do that.  I’ll spend some serious time thinking about it over the next few days and can’t wait to share what I decide.

Meredith

What was your biggest accomplishment of 2014?  Did you reach all of your goals?

Right Now: Wearing, Blogging, Running

It’s time for the July issue of Right Now!  This month I’ll cover something new I’m wearing, a recommitment to blogging and having a blast running for fun for a few weeks before my next training cycle kicks off.

Wearing:  The Lululemon Run: Speed Short.  I’ll be writing a full review of the new addition to my workout collection soon but until then, here’s a teaser.  I’m a big fan!  The lightweight running shorts are wonderful.  I love the pocket, just like I do in all of the other Lulu pant/short products I own but the best part is the short’s lining.  I can’t stand the wearingbuilt-in underwear in most running shorts and inside these, rather than a chafe causing, red line inducing pair of granny panties, is a flat seamed, supportive lining that’s very comfortable.

Blogging:  Well, not really.  I’ve been a little slack since my Blogging Vacation and am going to work hard on getting back on track.  I usually write three posts per week but only made it to two the last two weeks and I haven’t done a good job of reading, commenting on and supporting my fellow bloggers.  My SweatPink and Girls Gone Sporty sisters, as well as all of the other awesome bloggers I read deserve my attention and support.  I miss all the cool workouts, fun races, comfy clothes and delicious recipes other runners are doing, wearingrunning, wearing and eating and need to keep at it so I don’t get bored with my own workouts and recipes!

Running:  For fun!  I’m all finished building my base and still have a few weeks before I kick off my intense 10 week training plan leading up to Myrtle Beach Race Day.  I’ve set mileage goals and long run distances for each of the next three weeks but left the rest up to the weather and my mood.  The first of my five play weeks ended well and I’m feeling really good about where I’m headed moving into the end of July and eventually the Rock n Roll Virginia Beach.

Meredith

What’s your most recent clothing purchase?  How about your blogging?

Blogger Life Updates

It’s time for a few Life Updates!  I took a Blog Vacation last week and while I didn’t skip out on writing about tons of important, interesting and fun things, some of the things I’ve mentioned in previous posts have changed.  This is different than a Right Now post because most of the things I talk about in those posts are brand new, and exciting.  Life Updates brings back things from previous posts and does exactly what it says: updates you on my progress.  Here we go!

Life Updates #1:  My foot pain from last week is gone.  Thank goodness.  I went out for an easy run Monday evening just to see how it went.  As I ran, the dull ache started in my foot, then crept up into my ankle and shin.  A good ankle stretch and shin rub fixed it right up and the rest of my six miler felt really good.  I was glad it wasn’t anything serious and life updatesrecalled that during Tuesday’s run I had rolled my left ankle twice on two holes in the sand.  Phew!  Still injury free!

Life Updates #2:  Over the winter I went on a shopping spree at Total Wine.  You can check out the post here where I said I’d review each of the bottles as I drank them.  I’ve done a not so great job of following through on that.  I’ll still make en effort, though, and this past weekend Doug and I opened another one of those bottles.  We selected a 2010 Le Columbier Vieilles Vignes from the wine rack and it was fantastic.  We let the room temperature red wine breathe for about twenty minutes before diving in to the medium to full-bodied, sweet, raspberry and cherry flavors that made it wonderful.  It was an inexpensive French bottle and we were very happy with it.  Definitely give it a try if you’re in the mood for something red.

Life Updates #3:  My plants!  I wrote about my first foray into the world of green thumbs in this post.  I admitted I was worried about being able to keep them alive and must admit I’m doing a pretty good job and enjoying it.  Not to toot my own horn, but the happy little green guys growing like crazy.  Here they are after being watered on the deck and hanginglife updates out at home.  life updates life updates

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What’s going on with you?  Any exciting life updates?  How are your plants handling the summer heat?

Meredith

Taking My First Blog Vacation

I’m back!  I took my first blog vacation last week and I missed it.  I broke away from my own posts, made no visits to BlogLovin’ and WordPress and took a week to just relax.  Don’t worry, it was a fairly uneventful week in the life of FitNiceRunner and you didn’t miss much on my end.  Even though it was nice to have a little more free time I do feel like I blog vacationmissed out on lots of everyone’s good news.  Bring on the catching up!

Blog vacation week was a 48 mile training week and the weather was a little bit better than the week before.  All of my workouts felt like an improvement on last week.  Here’s how they broke down:
Monday:  Weather was really nice, not too humid so I went out for some speed work.  6 mile pick-up run.
Tuesday:  7 miles barefoot in the deep, soft sand and I paid for the hour of slip sliding around with a pair of nasty blisters on the bottom of my left foot.  Not too painful, I covered them up and did an afternoon heavy lifting session that felt amazing.  Usually a post day, I used my blog vacation to spend a little extra time with my friends at EquiKids.
Wednesday:  My legs were sore and tired from Tuesday’s workouts.  Easy 45 minute evening recovery run in 95 degree heat.  Low humidity but still very easy :).
Thursday:  I really wanted to get some fast running in on the cooler, but still humid, morning.  I ran 8 miles with surges a bit faster than half marathon pace that felt good considering the soupy air made it hard to recover.  As a bonus on this run I met the lovely Leisa Villani, who holds several Virginia State Records, when I stopped at my usual water fountain.  A great dose of inspiration to fight through this hot summer weather and keep working hard.  Deadlifts in the afternoon.  I love deadlifts.
Friday:  HUMID!  A tough morning 12 miler that was hot, sunny and painful.  I cut my intended 15 miler short because I just couldn’t hang.  My legs were tired, the air was hard to breathe, I didn’t want to pass out and some days you just don’t have it.  It was one of those mornings.  Kind of mad at myself for not pushing through, I went back out in the afternoon.  It was much nicer in spite of the higher temperature and I ran through a few 400M repeats.  Luckily, the humidity was way down which made these much better than I expected.
Friday Post Run:  With socks and shoes on, I had completely forgotten about those blisters from Tuesday.  I was reminded Friday night.  I had a little bit of soreness on the top of my left foot.  My first thought was, of course, the dreaded stress fracture.  A good old fashioned massage made the aching go away and I think it’s a bit of tendonitis from all the hard work my feet did on the sand.
Saturday:  Wanted to see how the foot would feel after some rest and took the day off.
Sunday:  Rest worked and the foot felt good when I went out for an easy four mile recovery run to wrap up the running week.

I ended my blog vacation by participating in last night’s RunChat on Twitter.  My bedtime makes it tough for me to chime in during the 10pm EST chats so it’s important to make it whenever I can.  The running community is amazing and I love meeting other runners and hearing their questions, answers and stories (even if it is only virtually).  It was a great way to get my head in gear to start blogging again and I’m glad to be back!

Meredith

Have you taken a blog vacation?  For how long?  Was it hard to get started again?

One Year Blogging Anniversary

Blogging.  This is a blog, and I guess that makes me a blogger.  A person who participates in blogging.  The blogosphere.  And this is the one year anniversary of my entry into the land of online writing.  A world unto itself, I had no idea what I was getting into when I launched this side of my business.  It’s been a fun and exciting journey and I can’t wait to see what the future brings.

I began this journey because I missed writing.  After graduating Delaware in 2006 with an English degree, I went to work and stepped away from writing more than the occasional anniversaryFacebook post, birthday card, email or training plan.  When I started my Masters program at Old Dominion University in 2011, I was back at my desk with some serious writing before me.  I thoroughly enjoyed my time as an ODU student as well as both the challenges and rewards it presented.  Upon completing my course work, I found I missed it.  So, there I was.  Wanting to write something but totally lacking direction.  Enter blog.

Here was an opportunity to write as much or as little was I wanted without any pressure.  Perfect!  I didn’t care if anyone read it, I just wanted to put my thoughts down on ‘paper’.  I haven’t the faintest idea what led to me think I was ready for the demands a blog places on its writer.  In fact, I most likely started it exactly because I had no idea what I was getting into.
Before launching, I narrowed the focus of my future blog and created the FitNiceRunner division of FitNicePT.  Always one for a challenge, I was excited to begin my blogging journey.  This is my first post.  Not really the pinnacle of content.  I had a long way to go and didn’t even know it.

With my plan to make this blog a place to express my passion for running and help others build a love for the sport, I started to build.  After learning some of the basics of WordPress, it was time to start the FitNiceRunner Facebook page.  Then it was Twitter.  I was faced with the new challenges of managing both the FitNicePT and FitNiceRunner blogs, Twitters and Facebooks and struggled.  I had a lot on my plate and put pressure on myself to blog constantly.  I had to learn to manage all of those accounts, my clients and my business while still eating and sleeping.  I knew that couldn’t go on for long, so thank goodness for HootSuite!

At the same time I started using HootSuite to help me schedule social media posts, I slowed down my blogging and began to get more involved in other community media, such as RunChat.  I slowly gathered followers and fans, interacting with amazing runners, bloggers, men and women who are a part of the blogging, running and fitness communities.  Not only was this blogginga more effective way to build my brand, every person I have interacted with since delving into the online running bloggers business has been amazing.  As a group, they are supportive, enthusiastic and altogether awesome.  With the support of my runners friends, I launched a YouTube Channel and had the honor of becoming an Ambassador for Girls Gone SportySweatPink and BioSkin in only the last few months.  I can’t wait to see what comes next.

Year One has been amazing.  My half marathon PR has dropped by 10 minutes, I’ve learned more about social media than I ever thought I’d know, or need to, and met some very wonderful people.  I look forward to growing as a runner, coach and person by meeting, helping and learning from more and more fellow runners and bloggers in Year Two.

Meredith

How long have you been blogging?  What are the most important things you’ve learned about yourself and the blogging world over the last year?

Liebster Award Love

LIebster AwardI was given the Liebster Award by Montana at Pretty Lil Mudder last week and was happy to receive it.  She’s a fellow Girls Gone Sporty and SweatPink ambassador who has Rock n Roll Savannah on her Race Bucket List.  I hope she has an opportunity to run it soon, it’s a fabulous race and a great city.  Liebster Awards are given to bloggers who have small followings, usually less than 200, to help their readership grow.

Of course, there are rules:
1. You must link back to the person who nominated you.
2. You must answer the 10 questions given to you by the person who nominated you. 
3. You must pick 10 bloggers to be nominated for the award. 
4. You must create 10 questions for your nominees.
5. You must go to their blogs and notify the nominees.

Here are my answers to Montana’s questions, my Nominees and my questions for them:

1. When did you start your fitness journey?
I ran track and cross country in high school, but I really focused on equestrian sports until college.  I had a job in Student Rec at Delaware and that’s where I really got into fitness.

2. What’s your favorite way to be fit?
Running!  I Crossfit because strength training is a huge part of helping me reach my running goals and enjoy a good mountain bike session every now and then.

3. How do you normally spend your weekends?
I work Saturday mornings, then usually take a big nap, especially if I got up at 4 or 430am to run beforehand.  Sometimes I’ll hang at home, play some backyard games and grill, and every now and then Doug and I will have a date night.  Sundays are pretty laid back with NFL when available, hanging out on beach when it’s warm and definitely sleeping in.  That’s all, of course, assuming it’s not a Race Weekend.

4. Where did you go on vacation last?
Nashville!  The Country Music Half Marathon was a destination race (State #7) but also a fun road trip and cool city.  Read all about it right here.

5. Who would you say is your biggest inspiration in life?
Eek!  There are lots.  With it being Memorial Day Weekend, I’m doing Murph on Monday, and getting lots of inspiration from our military and their families.  They give up so much to protect everyone and everything we love about America and they deserve much more gratitude than they get.  (See Lone Survivor).

6. What’s your favorite quote and why?
‘It’s today,’ squeaked Piglet.  ‘My favorite day,’ said Pooh. – A.A. Milne  Sometimes I can be quite the Eeyore and at others I’m most definitely Team Tigger, but there are lots of times I would like to be more like both Pooh and Piglet.

7. When did you start blogging?
My first ever post was 3 June 2013.  Almost one year anniversary time!

8. What do you feel is your biggest accomplishment to date?
Building my business, getting my Master’s Degree and helping people reach their fitness goals every single day.

9. Tell me about your fitness goals for the year.
liesbter awardI already hit my Spring PR goal (break a 1:40 half marathon), and for the Fall my goal is to run a 1:37.30 Half Marathon at the Myrtle Beach Mini in October.

10. Are you a dog or a cat person?
Dog.  I’m allergic to cats.

Here are my Nominees:
Kelli at Mom 4ce
Heather at Josh’s Mama
Mallory at My Camo Painted Life
Jolene at Southern Fried Soul
Jil at Running thre Wit
Vanessa at Glitter Girl Runs
Mindi at Build Your Dream Body
Molly at In A Nutshell Nutrition
Katelyn at Swim Run 4 Life
Smitha at Faux Runner

Questions:
1.  What’s your favorite thing about blogging?
2.  Name one thing you can’t hit the gym without and explain why.
3.  Tell me one international place you’d like to visit and what you’d do there.
4.  What’s your favorite book and why?
5.  There’s one thing you love most about your job, what is it?
6.  What’s one fitness class/program/event you haven’t tried yet but are looking forward to in 2014?
7.  What’s your favorite social media outlet, outside of your blog, and why?
8.  If you could have a super power, what would it be?  Why?
9.  What is your proudest accomplishment so far, and what’s next?
10.  Cake or ice cream?  Or both?

I can’t wait to read the Liebster Award answers of these 10 great bloggers!  Be sure to check them out and give a follow.

Meredith