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Pretty Much 2018 All In One Post! 🙄😂

May 3, 2018

I will start off this post with my recent race and then back track to all our other craziness, fun, heartaches & adventures… but 1st and more importantly, here is my family:

January 2019

Houston Marathon Race recap:

I’ve been out of the racing community for the last 2-3 years. Back in October I decided I wanted to train for the Houston marathon and try for the 2:45 time. I hired John from Ireland and he put me on a 12 week training plan. It was hard work but wonderful! I started off by pacing a friend of mine at the St. George marathon (in October)… and went on from there.

The race morning was extremely cold for Houston. 32 degree weather (and by the time we finished it was 35 or 36 degrees). The humidity was at 70% and it was windy. On the news it said the wind chill made it the coldest in record for that morning of the marathon. I was so bummed… not about the cold (even though we were all in shorts and a tank tops… I did have arm sleeves and gloves) so much but for the dang wind and the extra cold it brought. This training cycle went great and I hit the marks I needed (even on the days that I felt like crap). So I was ready for this race but not ready for the weather conditions.

I was so nervous and In a way dreading going into this race because my confidence was not there due to the lack of racing. I didn’t know if I could run at the 6:15’s (even though I did it through training) or if I even belong where I was corralled (sub-elite). But there was no turning back as we lined up and I just took a deep breath and said to myself to just enjoy it!

As the gun went off, I started into my pace along stride everyone else. I felt great and for the 1st 3 Miles, I was faster than where I wanted to be (6:13, 6:13, 6:04)… I slowed down a little to hold on to an even 6:15 pace. There were a few miles I would pick it up and had to slow down. We turned a corner around mile 7-8 and headed into a head wind. More corners and it was a side wind, then back to head wind (this continued on for much of the race… 8 to about 16-17 Miles). I came across the half way point at 1:22. Right on a 2:44 pace for the marathon time. I felt good and felt like I could hold on to this pace.

I decided to be more conservative starting into the second half because I wanted to make sure I could finish strong. I was tired of the wind coming at all angles except for the back. And finally at about mile 17 the wind was against our backs. It was a nice tail wind. I did start to struggle with the mental thoughts at about this time but still feeling ok.

I ran into my friend Ashley at 19 miles… we realized we were still on for our time but getting closer to the 2:45 time. We knew we had to dig deep and push. (She ended having to stop for a potty break which is always a bum deal but said she will catch up). Mile 20 comes around and I came across at a 2:06 flat. Doing the calculations in my head, I knew I had to stay right on a 6:14-6:15 pace, no room for dropping back. I totally felt this was achievable and going to be extremely hard. I kept repeating 38-39 min left.

Then mile 21 hit and somewhere around that mile we turned a corner… back to the challenge of the wind. Instantly I felt a dread of that dang wind. I unintentionally began to give up and more frequently I let the negative thoughts seep in. My pace slowed and by mile 23 I was a minute off pace. I took another gel and my stomach started to churn (I think I took too many gels… I believe 6 total every 25-30 min and I took 2 run-gums… too much sugar). Mile 24 I slowed down to a 7:30-7:45 pace and Ashley caught back up to me. She hung with me the rest of the time and helped me the rest of the way. I wanted to throw up and my legs began to feel heavy but because of her, I held onto that 7:20 pace.

I came in at 26.47 miles in 1:50:52. Not what I wanted at all but it was a good fight. The beauty of this entire race… I went into it as a 40 year old and ended up winning the masters age group! Kara Goucher started the race (she is 40 as well) and was unable to finish… so I took 1st. I won money and was so stoked about it. There were 33,000 runners and majority of the field were women.

I’m not going to lie… I am so bummed about my time but I am ready to start all over again for another try at it.

We did have a great weekend together. I stayed with Ayisha and Ashley and Marco was with us to do some video and pictures for Ayisha. These ladies were amazing and an inspiration. Fun weekend. My 3rd daughter left this cute note for me before I left; loved seeing the support for the TSA workers during the shutdown; loved the Texas shaped waffles:

These 2 ladies (Ashley and Ayisha) were so funny! Ayisha had me cut her hair the night before the race… she said it was weighing her down. I am not going to lie… I was a little nervous at 1st to do it.

December 2018

Christmas is always a fun time for us. We Try to do activities throughout all December with games, crafts, outdoor snow things, service, etc. We have two boys staying with us from a different country for the school year. One is from Brazil and one is from Spain. This was their 1st time making Gingerbread houses.

We all enjoyed Christmas! We usually have a $75 budget per child. Sometimes we go over and sometimes we are good with staying under… it is nice to have them at a young age still. Once they get older, that will be a little more difficult. We had our traditional Christmas Eve Greek dinner, with family and friends. We were able to go bowling and snow boarding (up a little hill by our house) over the break as well.

January 2019

2019 New Year’s Eve 4th annual Salem Pond Town Polar Plunge. It was 4 degrees out and so feakin’ cold! The girls all jumped in and obviously Corom. I did not!!!

April 2018

My Youngest’s birthday and Baptism: Oh, I just love my youngest! She has so much energy and drive, it is hard to keep up with her. She is so carefree and can definitely hold her own.  It was an extremely special birthday for her! She turned 8 (in 2018) and was baptized into the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

May 2018

My oldest had her 12th birthday. We threw a nice surprise party for her. She was pleasantly surprised! She is so talented and creative! She has a confidence about her that I wish I had. She is a great young lady.

September 2018

My 2nd oldest turned 11 this year (well in 2018). She is so kind and loving to all those around her. I will have to say she is the 2nd mother here in the home. Very mature and has a great sense of humor… she is the one that is always joking around with the adults.

November 2018

My 3rd daughter turned 10 (in 2018). She is a ball of energy and fun. She is always laughing and wanting to do something. She is also my clean child. Everything has to look perfect and she hates messes. I love it!

August & November 2018

Corom and I both turned 40 in 2018. Gosh we are getting old!!! The only good thing for me is now I can compete for the masters division in races. We both had a few surprises for our birthdays. Corom had a band (during our City Day’s) surprise me with a birthday song. And for Corom’s present, I reached out to many people throughout his life. I had them write something about him (a memory, story, how he has touched their lives, etc). I had a little over 100 letters come back and oh my… they were hilarious. I loved reading all of them. Oh and Corom let the girls start a controlled fire in the backyard. Well… it got a little out of control and our fence caught on fire .

April 2018

So much has happened since I’ve been home from Greece and Georgia ! I was home for 2 days before our new exchange students came (well they are soccer coaches… Renan from Brazil and James from England). They are going to be here for about 2 1/2 months (April – June) and then Renan will be back in August until October or November.

April 2018

Easter/April Fools: Easter and April fools fell on the same day. We made the girls salted pancakes for breakfast and then during the Easter egg hunt, half their eggs were filled with Brussel sprouts or rocks.

It was fun watching the girls with their Easter baskets (they had to find them); and it was great to have Renan and James with us. We had an Easter dinner with my sister (missy and her family), my brother John (and his family) and Aunt Georgia on Saturday night. Easter Sunday, we all went up to Yolanda’s house (Corom’s sister) with his mom and Gary and another family.

Spring break: We packed a lot in during spring break. Many hikes (bridal veil falls, 5 mile hike up diamond fork hot springs), museums, activities, etc. We did go to Moab… absolutely love it there! On our way home our 3 hour drive turned into a 7 hour drive. Our van broke down and couldn’t go faster than 30 mph. It was hilarious driving home. Fun times!

Still April 2018

September 2018 (and on)

We have New Foreign Exchange Students (one is from Brazil and one is from Spain). They came into our home at the beginning of September. Our student from Spain will only be with us for 4-5 months and the one from Brazil will be with us for 8-9 months. And everybody always asks us, “How much do you get paid for housing all these people from different countries?” Absolutely nothing! We actually take them all in as family and it comes out of our pocket. Some of the times/people are harder (financially, emotionally, etc.) than others, but we do love to house those from other countries.

End of July- Beginning of August

We had the opportunity to House 6 musicians from Peru for a couple of weeks. They were here for the Springville Folkfest (2018). Such a great group! They had Smore’s for their 1st time, learned American “football” at the high school that I coach at, were “arrested”, made us amazing Peruvian food, we went to the Bean Museum, the host families met up every evening and watched them perform, they did some kayaking, some fishing, bowling, swimming, shopping and played mud volleyball for Salem Days… oh and one had to visit our good friend Dr. Fullmer because he messed up his wrist pretty bad. Mike was able to cast it up pretty nicely. He was the drummer… it was a painful week.

October 2018

I love the month of Halloween! Pumpkin patches & mazes (with the Thompson’s), pumpkin carving (with the Harris’s), costume 5k’s (the cross country team put on)- ok us coaches put it on, Sundance Spooky Lift rides, and trick or treating in Las Vegas at our cousin Dan’s house. The boys staying with us think we are crazy with the way we trick-or-treat her. 🙂

This was Gianluca’s and Zecheng’s (the boys staying with us) first time carving a pumpkin.

 

April-May 2018

Track 2018: Track season has been so much fun. We have a lot of great talent and hard workers. Our girls took the Region Title and the boys placed 2nd. My distance runners excelled on so many levels… it was a great season to coach. Our 4 x 800 boys team did break the record this season. It was awesome to watch.

August 2018

Camping and summer family fun: our family for the past 10 years have gone beach camping in California. We have always gone to Leo Carrillo in Ventura. This past summer (2018), unfortunately, most of it burned down in a huge fire, so we will see if we are able to go there this summer.

September 2018

Mountain biking on a few different occasions… a few falls but nothing to serious. Our youngest has no fear! That scares me.

October 2018

Capital Reef with the Thompson’s: It was really cold in the morning and the evening but the day time was perfect. Our little camper trailer held up real nice (the heater inside worked great).

June – December 2018

Cross country (2018) started 2 weeks after a track ended. We have had a busy but fun summer season so far. Cross Country season came and went with another successful year. We started off with our cross country camp and finished off at the Footlocker meet in California (in December). The boys made it to State and we had 2 of our girls make it as individuals. We took our annual California trip to the footlocker cross country meet. Always a fun time (especially with Corom around). Disneyland, the beach, racing, etc…

November 2018

Hanging out with my side of the family during Thanksgiving. At my parents in Couer De Lane, Idaho (missing a sister- Keri and her family, and a brother- Mike and his family): My dad was just diagnosed with Parkinson’s a few months ago. It has been hard for him and my mom. They just retired and now have this next chapter in their life to worry about. We are a very close family and will be there to help!

July 2018

Pictures of when a few siblings and/or my siblings kids and my parents were able to come visit during the summer… we attended our family reunion at This Is The Place in Salt Lake City…

December 2018

Snow shoeing with the Harris’s and our exchange students.

April & June

James and Renan the 2 soccer coaches that stayed with us.

January 2018

At an indoor track meet (2019) with the high school team and the Thompson family. It was held at the Olympic oval in Salt Lake.

August 2018

The fire that hit close to home but we were fortunate enough to have 100’s of firefighters from all over and time on our side. And of course many prayers were answered. So many people from our community stepped up and volunteered time, necessities, homes for all the evacuees (3 cities were evacuated and all people were housed… Red Cross did not have to set up a base camp at the HS). We took in a lady who had 4 cats (no one wanted to house a lady with cats)… we just told her to keep the cats in 1 room and to keep the door closed. We also took in another family for a few days. We had a full house with 2 families and 2 Foriegn exchange students and 1 foreign soccer coach. Talk about full house!

Random Pictures: The next set of pictures are all random!

May 2017

A poem my oldest wrote for her class:

Heroes

(6th grade)

Heroes to me are my mom, my dad, my friends, my grandpa Bill and my uncle Steve. Why are they my hero and what is a hero? I guess you will find out.

First of all, I will talk about my mom and dad and why they are my hero. The reason they are my heroes is because I would not be here today without them. And who’s better than mom and dad, right? Second of all, they make most of my food and tell me all sorts of wacky stories that as you can tell do not actually exist. The reason why they are my heroes is if something bad were to happen they would try to protect us no matter what, just like a moma bear and her cubs. That is why they are my heroes.

My second paragraph is why my friends are my heroes. The reason my friends are on this list is because friends are family and friends mostly always have our backs…. so why would I keep them off the list? Did you know the word friend means companion, confidant, ally and many more. A friend is always there for you. A friend can keep a secret for you and trust you to keep their secrets. Last of all friends can give you company. That is why my friends are my heroes.

My third paragraph is about my grandpa Bill. Even though I have never met him I still love him very much. He was a cop and a mayer of a city in Sacramento. He is my hero because he was here to protect and make everything safe for you and me. They named a police station after him. On my dad’s birthday he had a heart attack and died. Even though he is dead he is still my hero.

My fourth paragraph is about my uncle Steve. He is in the Navy and is probably away from home right now. My cousins always have to move because of his job. Why is he my hero? He goes to battle and risks his life for our country. He is my hero and a lot of other people’s hero to. If I was a hero I would want to be like my mom, my dad, my uncle Steve, and my grandpa Bill. That is why they are my heroes. They inspire me to be like them.

A hero to me is someone who protects, love’s and care’s about you and me, like the people I was talking about. Heroes don’t care whether they win or lose. They try and try again until they succeed. People think a hero is someone who flies around kicking and punching bad guys waring tites, but that is not what a real hero is to me. A hero puts someone else before themselves. If there was a fire in our house I would make sure my sisters are out of my house before I get out. Or if something like that happened in school and the teacher was out of the classroom doing something I would make sure everyone got out before me, and then I would go out.

That is what I think is a hero. You and me can be heroes without even trying to be one. Maybe just one smile can brighten ones day. That is what a hero isto me.

June 2018

I had the opportunity to run Grandmas marathon in Duluth Minnesota in June as well. Corom (my husband) and Sarah my mother-in-law flew out on a Wednesday. The race was on a Saturday so we had a few days before to relax and enjoy the weekend of race activities. Grandma’s marathon does not disappoint on everything they have planned. I was also given the opportunity to receive an elite bib. Along with the comp pass, I was given a room for half off, 3 different dinner opportunities, massages, a room open all day for snacks/food/drinks, a few after parties, an elite charter bus and a separate starting lineup area. I felt very blessed and a little saddened at the same time. Don’t get me wrong… all the elite runners have worked so hard to get where they are at and deserve the benefits.

But I was saddened for I felt like I did not deserve to be there this time. I began my training for this race in February. I am going to try for the Olympic trials time and give it another go. I know I am not young and just about 40 years old but I still have a few good years in me.

But about a month before the race I started to feel flat and my legs were really achy (I found out due to my car accident when I was 23, I have arthritis in my legs.. oh well, right)… it did cause me to worry about my workout performance but I knew I had to keep fighting through it. I ran a few races and paced a few and felt ok.

About a week after that I strained my left groin and it went down my quad to my knee. It was so painful to run. I immediately went to Dr. Brady to start work right away. That 1st appointment he told me I could not run for a week. You tell a runner who has been training extremely hard for the past 4 months to take a week off of Running 3 weeks before a race is not going to go very well. I did break into tears . I just sat there and said ok… I guess I can start my taper now. I did a lot of biking and yoga. The next week, I was able to run every other day to every 2 days. I added in the elliptical with more biking and yoga. The week of the race was not any better. Monday was a bike day; Tuesday was a run; Wednesday I took off; Thursday a run; Friday was a bike/elliptical/mile run; then Saturday the race.

Throughout those last 3 weeks, I spent many times at the doctors getting shots, acupuncture, herbal bandages, etc… it helped but not completely healed. The day before the race I was able to go to the doctors they had for elite runners and he also put KT tape on. I went into Saturday’s run with everything I could have done.

I knew this was not going to be the best chance I had but I still mentally and deep down wanted it to go well.

As I started the race the pain was not as bad as it has been and actually considerably better than what I expected. I don’t know if it was also do to nerves and the adrenaline but I was so excited to start with little pain. I was right with 3 other friends of mine for the first 2 Miles at a 6:13-6:15 pace. I realized I had to back off because my training was not up to their level with the time off I had. I was going to have a better chance if I ran my race and not theirs. So I slowed down and ran a 6:20 pace for the next 4. I hit the 10k mark at a 6:19 average. I continued on and had to reevaluate my pace. I realized I could not keep up that pace and this was a race that was just not going to go well if I didn’t back off. I came across the half at a 1:25 I believe.

A few miles after the half way mark my left leg (thigh/groin) area began to ache… I wanted to shake it off but it was there. The last 10 Miles began to drag… especially the more my leg hurt. I kept thinking that I needed to slow my pace so I can enjoy the race and not reach that point of hating the marathon! I knew I wasn’t going to hit the time I wanted (or even come close) so I needed very much to just enjoy this. This race is my 1st marathon back into my racing career in 3 years. So I was determined to make this an enjoyable one to start of my marathon racing.

The last 5 Miles approached and my left leg was not happy with me. I decided I would walk through all the water stations that were left to stretch out the leg and take some stress off of it. That 5-10 second walk helped every time! I finally came in at 3:04:09.

The 3 ladies that ran this race with me all qualified for the trials. I was so happy for them. With that happiness brought on a sadness of why it didn’t come together for me in my training. I know I will get the time I want and who knows… it may make me stronger and more determined but it was bitter/sweet.

My dear friend Amber green finished at a 2:43 and instead of walking ahead into the runners field area, waited right by the finish line (for 20 min) just so she could cheer me in. I was so overwhelmed with emotion to see her there! When I asked if she did it (qualified) and she gave me the nod I was so extremely happy for her! Many emotions at that moment. I did spend a good hour in the medical tent but it happens to most of us at sometime.

Overall… I’m just happy to be out running in these races, to be around all the runners. And most importantly… I am so appreciative of my husband for coming with me on this journey. He is my biggest supporter and the shoulder I can cry on. He gets me and it was so fun to see where he would pop up along the course. He made our entire group laugh all weekend long. Always the entertainer!

My mother in law came in just around 6 hours. She did so well and the 3 of us were able to have a great time doing it.

From → Running

One Comment
  1. YAY Jen!!!!!! Love you so much. I am SO PROUD of you! You are an awesome momma, racer, coach, friend, and so much more!!! Thanks for modeling what matters most! You are amazing!!<3<3<3

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Running On Healthy

Living Life Healthy, Fit, and Happy

Mother Racer

Mother, Wife, Coach, RACER

Barlow Family

Mother, Wife, Coach, RACER