Thursday, July 26, 2012

St. George Marathon

I am currently training for the St. George Marathon.  After a few tries, I finally made the lottery. Most of my east coast friends have never heard of this coveted race.  This race boasts, ideal weather conditions, an awesome drop in elevation (perfect for a PR) and is limited to only 7400 runners.

It is also:

Voted "Most Organized" by Runner's World Magazine survey. January 2010 issue

15th Largest Marathon In The USA 

Listed in Runner's World as the "Fastest Fall Marathon" and included as one of Runner's World"10 Most Scenic Marathons and Top 20 In the USA." And one of the "Cream of the Crop"marathons in the nation. 

Just take a look at that drop from 5240 FT to a blessed 2680 FT.  I like.

I am determined to beat my fastest time of 3:30 (and some change) finally, after years of trying to accomplish this goal.

It takes time. It takes determination. It takes a lot of pain. It takes  A LOT of running.

If you think I am kidding, just take a look at this week's runs:

Monday: 6 miles with 6X 100's
Tuesday: 12 miles
Wednesday: A Much Needed Day Off
Thursday: 11 miles with 6 at 15K Pace
Friday: 5 miles
Saturday: 20

Total: 54 Miles

The toughest two things about training right now are the blasted heat/humidity and having the kids home. Getting up before the sun rises is NOT "my thing."  And trying to fit a 2 hour run in while shuffling kids to and from swim team, camps, and piano lessons can be tricky.

But you know what?  I am actually doing it!

I make each day its own.  I focus only on that days responsibilities.  After completing one day, I move along to the next...and something amazing is happening...I am doing it.

St. George, here I come.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Run For the Opened Door

Tomorrow I have to wake up at 5 am if I am to get my 12 mile run done before the temperature reaches 100.  And I HATE getting up before 7.

I have a piano workshop I am attending at 8:30 that runs through the morning and into the afternoon.

If I wait to run, then my choices dwindle to either running on a treadmill for 2 hours (NO!) or wait until the sun goes down (NO AND NO!).  If I do wait, who knows what will come up in the afternoon that may stop me from even stepping on that treadmill.  And if I wait until dark, a myriad of things will most definitely attempt to "block" my way.  Getting up at 5 am seems like the best choice. As much as I don't want to do it, I know I must simply run for this choice.

I know we all encounter choices each day.  And therein lies the beauty...we have a choice!

YAY for choices!

As choices are made, doors of opportunity begin to close.  As one door closes, others may open but the need to make it through that door still remains....

I am a firm believer that when, "When one door closes, another opens." Do you realize that there is more to that quote?  It continues, "but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one that has opened for us." -Alexander Graham Bell

You want to know what I do...


And guess, what? I am rarely sitting around, looking at closed doors, waiting for another to open.

Truth is, there will be other doors that open.  The problem is, it may not be our door of choice....simply a way out.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Awake. Arise and Shine.

Last night I had trouble falling asleep.  As I the minutes turned to hours, I tried to figure out my running plan for the next day.  Originally I had hoped to get to bed early, thus making the difficult early morning transition a little less painful.  I envisioned waking up as the sun was just rising, before the heat began to penetrate the black asphalt and the humidity enveloped the day thus making my long run even possible.

But alas, as I drifted off to sleep, the time much later than anticipated, I began thinking, no, dreaming of sleeping in, forgetting about my 11 mile training run and simply eating Chipotle.

And then I awoke.  Miraculously, the sun was just coming up.  And so, taking the advantage on the day's heat, I quickly dressed and was on my way.

Gratitude filled my soul,  knowing this small, yet important to me, miracle occurred. I was able to complete one simple run, one of many, which will lead me to a successful end.

And so, when we are given the opportunity to awake, arise...and shine.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Ever Grateful


Today I am ever grateful for...

Fresh vegetables from my dear friend Jill's garden (perfect for a pasta salad not to mention previously made salsa)

Jean allowing me to borrow her iPad while I ran 10 miles on the treadmill (I don't have a treadmill or an iPad)

My job (I love teaching piano lessons)

Chocolate covered almonds (secret stash in closet)

Running buddies (you know who you are)

Running in general

Thrift Store (where I can find the brands I love on the cheap)

Couponing (what a gift, to be able to find everything I need for next to nothing...and keep up two of my favorite things...eating candy and lunching)

My "Shows"

Tomorrow I will be sure to recognize even more...

Friday, July 13, 2012

Small Act of Service

Today you can help send my dear friend, BethAnn to Kona's Ironman by simply taking a moment to vote.

And in the process, after watching her story, like me, you will be inspired.

Please share this link with your friends. She is currently in third place and needs your vote. You can vote once each day to make her dream a reality!

Click here to be inspired and share a small act of service.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Memories, Dreams and Cash

I just yawned. 

I think I am officially having a boring summer. And this boredom becomes more evident as I see others around me headed to beaches, reunions, cruises, dream trips...all those super awesome fun summer activities that I am not privy to at this time.

Aren't we supposed to go somewhere?  See someone?  Do something "out of sight!?"

Here lies the problem...all of these things cost money.

I have none.

So I have done the next best thing to actually going somewhere...I pretend I am going.

Just the other day, I planned my trip back home to Alaska.  I had decided to bring the two youngest and Sommer (she babysits) along for the journey. We would spend a few weeks visiting my brother Matt and his family. We would help them move in, maybe paint a room or two. We would eat at our favorite places, climb our favorite mountains, stay up into the wee hours of the endless summer nights and watch the sun not set.

It really sounded great...until reality quickly set in after I decided I would check how much a ticket costs these days.  Yikes!  $900 a pop.

Nope, it wasn't going to happen.

A few weeks ago, I decided it was my turn to do as many as my friends do and pack up the car with all the kids and drive the 35 hours to visit my parents in Utah. It just seems everyone does that...they leave their crazy (boring) lives for a month and simply HAVE FUN!  I visualized a trip to Lagoon, BYU, more hikes, more eating...the works!

It really sounded great...until reality set in after imagining what a 35 hour drive would be like. I mean, I can barely stand a 2 hour car ride.  And gas?!  Shoot, gas would cost a small fortune in my big guzzler.  What about my old, barely surviving Suburban? It mocks me every day or two by withholding cool air conditioning and replacing it with hot, hot blowing air.  Really nice!  Totally love it.

Nope, that wasn't going to happen either.

Even a trip to the beach is out.  I mean, to rent a house for a week costs a couple grand.  I totally should have made a few friends over the years with beach houses...dang...too late.  And one hotel room is completely out of the question. Five growing kids and a mother that likes to sleep in peace and quiet just can't survive in a closet.

And so you may think I have been moping around each day as my dreams are dashed one by one.

Nope...well maybe a little.

But these dreams are something I have actually already done. I have been blessed to make the journey to Alaska (multiple times), travel to Utah and to spend beautiful days on the beaches of Hawaii,  Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina.

And I cherish those memories and hold them dear...especially when I am feeling a bit bored.

So thankful for memories, dreams that come true...and a little cash to make it all happen.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Salsa Recipe and Guacamole Recipe

And for the easiest and yummiest salsa, thanks to Cris Mardo, all you have to do is start chopping.

Photo: Cant wait.


3 tomatoes diced
1 onion, finely diced
A Bunch of Cilantro (I love this stuff, so load up)...and the easiest way to chop this (thanks Melanie) is to put it in a cup, take a pair of scissors and start cutting it while in the glass.
2 jalapeno peppers (more if you want spicier)
1 can tomato sauce
1 lime
Cracked Pepper and Salt to taste

Mix ingredients together and grab some chips (my favorite are Tostitos Multi grain)

And since Chips and Guacamole are my favorite past time, here is my recipe for that too!


4 or 5 ripe avocados
1 red onion finely diced
A Bunch of Cilantro
1 tsp cumin
Fresh Lime Juice
Salt and Pepper to taste

Mash together to your liking and what else, GRAB SOME CHIPS!

Time for a Mexican Fiesta!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Talented Brothers

So here we have two  (of three) talented brothers, Matt (on left) and Mike (on right).  Matt is an amazing runner and will be attempting to win Alaska's famous Mt. Marathon this Wednesday (I will be posting about that exciting event soon).  Mike is an amazing photographer with an additional talent of "editing."

The reason I am pointing out these two specifically, is the tendency Mike has of taking Matt (or other innocent pictured...but mostly Matt...thank goodness) and adding humor to the photo.

Let's start out here with Mike and his siblings.  You will see five normal (rather good looking) people in this shot.  No, Yoda is not one of them...

And here at a simple Novakovich family photo shoot, it is obvious, that Obama is not related to our family.

On a relaxing vacation, Matt and Tiffanie are interupted by "Jaws."  

Here is Matt out running a cheetah...I told you he was fast.

And out running even a bear...(after "stealing" her cub)

And our poor parents.  Goofs, Mike and Matt are just about to run them over on the tracks.

I love how both can be so dang talented and add some humor.

Thanks are funny.