Why I think CIM will be EXTRA Special… Sorrow Prepares You for JOY!

After writing 4,841 blog posts (not an exaggeration… seriously, that many blog posts) I still can’t think of a great sentence to start off a post so let’s keep the tradition going today haha!

The morning started off with 8 miles with Emilee and it wasn’t as arctic cold as last week so I was pretty thrilled about that.

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Skye woke up in quite the mood but her hair made my morning.

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I went in to see Dr. Bennett to help me get my body ready to TRAIN again. After school we went on a bike ride (Skye was in the bike trailer).

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And for dinner we made zoodles again.  This is our favorite spiralizer!

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Grilled chicken, Alfredo sauce with a side of Andrew’s biggest smile and a chocolate chip cookie for dessert.

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Tangent #1:

During marathon recovery= all of the candy and Diet Coke.  During marathon training= all of the nutrients, fats, protein, carbs and see ya later to the below goodness.  My running feels so much better without it and I want to do everything I can to show up to the starting line on December 8th knowing I did everything I could to prepare well for the race.

I’ll miss you frozen Charleston Chews.

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Tangent #2:

I feel like Skye is going to learn how to ride a bike a few years before Brooke and Knox did.  She just wants to be doing exactly what they are doing at all times.

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Tangent #3:

The other day I was thinking about the fact that I had signed up for CIM back in 2013 and was really excited to go and shoot for a sub 3 marathon there.  I was hitting new prs in the shorter distances and things were going really well with my training and then boom….

I quit training.  This was all just a few months after I filed for divorce and I was really struggling.  After training for a little while I decided to focus on healing rather than marathon training and I’m glad I did but it was a hard decision!  I wish I could have seen back then when I made that decision how much life would have changed 6 years down the road and that I WOULD make it to the starting line of this marathon eventually.

Screenshot from a blog post back then before I hit the next portion of the grieving cycle and couldn’t handle marathon training anymore:

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To kind of go along with the above thought, I came across this in a church talk I was reading last night and I couldn’t agree more.  I truly believe that sorrow prepares you for joy.

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Tangent #4:

Has anyone every used the marathon time conversion on FindMyMarathon?  Is it pretty accurate for you?  I was excited when I compared my St. George time to CIM and I’m hoping it is right and that it is just a little bit faster of a course!

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Tangent #5:

I pretty much have CIM memorized by now because I’ve watched this YouTube video of the course a few times.


Do you like to try new courses or do you stick more to the ones that you know?

Dropped out of any races in the past?  Ever had a chance to go back and do them?

What’s the fastest race course that you have done (aka flat or lots of downhill) or the slowest race course that you have done (aka lots of ups etc)?

What are you making for dinner tonight? 

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School was open for you on Columbus Day?? I was lucky to have the day off yesterday and did tons of outdoor activities. The weather was gorgeous here near Boston for the long weekend.

Loved the pictures of the kids biking! Merry Christmas to Andrew :)


I thought the same thing… but I think it is because it is fall break for the second half of this week. So glad you were able to have the day off and spend time outside… the BEST. HAHAHA Merry Christmas to Andrew… SO TRUE! Enjoy your Tuesday Amanda!


CIM 2013 is my PR!!! It was POURING rain the entire time but turned out to be an amazing experience, you will love it!!

I’m attempting to beat that PR this Sunday (!!!) at the Detroit Marathon. I had two kids since then and was 4 minutes too slow last year in Chicago so this is my second chance, I’m so excited!

Do you happen to have a favorite Deena podcast episode you could recommend to help with my mental game?


You are TOUGH for racing CIM in 2013 & a PR too! I got to the start line (I’m local) and bailed out – the wind & rain were unreal. I’d done CIM before and decided to do Napa in March instead of sloshing through that weather! I got a PR in Napa, so it all worked out!


Happy Tuesday Janae! Love to see you getting excited for CIM.

I do like to try new courses out but I live in Florida by the beach so I have to look at elevation charts when I’m deciding hah. If I ever do a hilly route I have to try really hard to train on the one hill we have around here;)

Tonight I’m going out to dinner with a few girlfriends. I didn’t want a bachelorette party so they insisted on taking me to dinner tonight and just having some girl time so I’m looking forward to that:)

5 days and counting till the big day!

Have a wonderful day!


Congratulations on your upcoming wedding. I love fall weddings. I love your name too…….so classic and timeless. You’ll make a beautiful bride.


Thank you so so much Eleanor! I bet it is VERY hard to find hills in your area:) Wish I could join you guys for dinner… sounds perfect. So thrilled for you Eleanor. You are going to be the most beautiful wife!


The only race I’ve dropped out of was a tiny little 5k in New Hampshire. It was hot, humid, and buggy, and the race took place in the evening. I ended up vomiting on the side of the trail after about a mile, and had to hitch a ride back to the finish line. I was probably about 16 years old.
I tend to do better (speed-wise) with rolling hills. I am really good at running super fast down them without destroying my legs. Plus, I feel like you use different muscle groups going up and down, rather than remaining at one elevation.
Skye’s hair KILLS me!!


OKAY, that race sounded terrible… glad you got a ride back! Okay, I’m totally going to think about that on the rollers at CIM. DIFFERENT MUSCLES. Thanks for that tip. Hope you have a great day!


That looks like a good course! I think you are going to kill it!!
I typically stick with the same races, but both my husband and I are wanting to do some destination races. CIM and St. George we’ve heard are great! One of these years!
Today is full of meetings, so tonight will probably just be leftovers.
Have a great Tuesday ?


Thanks so much Wendy, that’s what I’m planning on haha. COME TO ST GEORGE and I’ll take you to dinner:) . Thanks so much and I hope your meetings go great!


Congrats on your 2:49!! Can’t wait to see what you do at CIM. Did you do a review on your Fenix 6 yet? Would love to hear what you love about it most :) Also, I have to ask, after this weekend of pro racing aren’t you tempted to try out a pair of the new pink Vaporfly Next %?! Curious to hear your thoughts on them vs. the Hyperion


Thanks so much Alex! I haven’t done one yet but it will be up next week for sure. I actually ended up sending the Fenix 6 back and getting the Fenix 6 pro because I didn’t realize the Fenix 6 didn’t offer the music capability! But I’ve had this one for a few weeks and I’m loving it. Those pink shoes are sure pretty! I’m a forever Brooks user and the hyperion have sure served me well! I hope you have a wonderful day:)


Reading from Sacramento! So fun you’ll be here in December. Have a great training cycle/race!!


Also, thank you for that except about joy. Needed


Thank you so much Lauren. Hope to see you there:) . Let me know if you need anything! I’m a great email penpal:)


I can’t believe how fast CIM will be here; I’m sure it especially feels that way for you! I’m always envious of families that ride together. My boys are just not into riding their bikes! They do love riding the big wheel because they can bomb down hill and slide to s top. Makes my heart skip a beat every. time.
I love love love new courses! It’s such a fun way to explore the area. New courses on trails equally scare me and excite me and I’m not too upset if I have to run the same course for those. When I started trail running I was petrified of getting lost on the trails. The fear is still there but not as bad. Did you hear about David Groggins going of course for about 20 miles during Moab? There was another top runner who went off course as well but only for a couple miles I think.
I don’t have any DNF but I have a DNS from when my husband woke up with a sinus infection and I couldn’t bare to leave the kids with him in his condition. I got in bed and sent him to urgent care. The following year I ran that same race and it was a blast!
The fastest course I’ve ran is a (true) net downhill marathon. It’s the only marathon I’ve ran for that reason! Ha! You would easily get your OTQ on that course! https://www.tunnelmarathon.com/pages/the-course if you want to check it out!
Dinner will probably be breakfast since I forgot to buy half the things on my list this past week! I didn’t even have the kids with me to distract me! Ha!
Thanks for the face mask link; I’m definitely going to check them out!
Have a great day!


That course looks INCREDIBLE!! We just need them to allow the OTQ to happen there:) . We haven’t had brinner in forever so now you are making me think that would be our best option tonight!
Oh and watching kids go down a hill fast… my anxiety has never been higher.
HE WENT OFF COURSE for 20 miles. I cannot even imagine. That’s what I wonder about these races… how do they have it marked for 240 miles and how do you see each marking when you are delirious from running for so long!
Have the best day Jenny!


Ha, I had 3 brothers and our next door neighbor boy was about our age. Our street was a fairly steep downhill and I have fond memories of racing and crashing many big wheels back in the day. I think my mom would just shut the front door and try not to watch! I’m 54 now, I commend your boys for keeping up the tradition!


Hahaha sounds like Andrew growing up now John! Have the best day!


You too!

I bet Andrew and I could compare notes on tree climbing then as well. We had some oak trees in our backyard in Kansas that were taller than our 2 story house and we’d climb up to the tippy tops of them. One time a neighbor called my mom to inform her that “your boys are at the very top of the oak trees in your back yard and what exactly are you going to do about it??!!”. My mom simply replied, “close the shades” (so she could not see us), and hung up. Lol…


That was so cool to watch the course and see where you will be running!! Do you get to run CIM as an elite with your own bottles? Will you be running with your training partner again? I’m so excited for you and cannot wait to see how you do!!


Hey Torrie!! I will not be getting water bottles (as far as I know) but I will be running the whole thing with Emilee again wahooo! Thank you so much and I hope you have the best day!


Long time reader who just finished listing to your interview with Ali, and wanted to send a huge congratulations your way! Your success is well-deserved and I have no doubt this is just the beginning for you. Thanks for sharing your journey so openly. I appreciate your continued positivity and determination. Very excited for you at CIM!


Thank you Sarah! I am so glad you listened and your words mean a lot to me! Thank you and have a wonderful day:)


CIM has definitely been one of my favorite races so far! The people are awesome, I remember there being a group of people on stationary bikes at mile 20! I had such a great pacer who not only knew the course incredibly well but actually reminded us to take nutrition and he even knew when to move on certain parts of the road so it wouldn’t bottleneck quite as badly.

I love new races but I tend to PR on ones that I know super well.

I probably should have dropped out of St. George but didn’t and I definitely want to go back! I’ve missed 2 other races because of injury and I did go back and do one (and PR’d) and I definiltey plan on doing Mountains 2 Beach, hopefully this year!

The racest and slowest were actually part of a 3 part series, ha. The Heavenly Half, which is mostly downhill at a 1:34, the Hell of a Half at 1:55ish, and then what I consider my actual PR because it wasn’t downhill at Judgement Day 1:39.

Tonight is taco Tuesday!


I literally just used that marathon conversion thing today for the first time. I was trying to see if there was another local marathon that would likely be faster for me than the Steamtown marathon that I just did on Sunday. I’ve done it twice but it’s the only marathon I’ve done. There is a lot of downhill in it so not surprisingly, I discovered that I’ll actually likely be SLOWER anywhere else nearby. But maybe a flatter course will reduce the quad pain after. Two days later and I’m still cringing when I see stairs.


I’ve used the marathon conversion thing and for me it seems to be fairly accurate! Hopefully it will be fore you too! Excited to see what you do at CIM!


I love that quite about sorrow and joy! I posted something similar today. I wrote that you can’t enjoy the downhills without embracing the pain of the uphills!
I love knowing the courses of the races I’m gonna run. If I haven’t done them before, I study the race course map like I’m heading to finals. ? I like to envision the turns and know different landmarks, etc.

I’ve had to drop out of one of my Boston marathons. I was diagnosed with severe anemia during training and knew it wouldn’t be wise to give it my all. With my dads support (love him) I got myself to the start line and did what I could, but took a DNF rather than spending time in the med tent (or worse). It was the most difficult, gut wrenching decision…but in hindsight, also the smartest.
Have a beautiful evening!


A couple years ago I dropped out of Napa marathon due to injury and high stress level of changing jobs after 20 years and finish my last term of college. I will be running it Mar 2020 – and can’t wait!

My best marathon was CIM – you are gonna do awesome! I ran it 3 minutes faster than any other course I’ve ran.

I’m unfortunately on the healthy food kick – Las Vegas marathon coming up and trying to get speed back up there!

I just started following you and love the honesty and humor! You are an inspiration!!!!


“Sorrow prepares you for JOY”… i LOVE THAT!!!! <3


I put my time in 3:35:09 to convert at CIM and it gives me a minute slower, but I put your time in and it’s faster. Crazy! Do you understand how/why?


Is your 3:35 from St George or from a different marathon? That is strange if it is from the same marathon!!!!


St George, it must know I need that downhill or something. ? My brother told me register for CIM months ago, should have done it because now it’s full and I need a speedy marathon to avenge my 9 second over BQ time.


I tried the race converter for the first time – interesting! I’ve only done the same two marathons multiple times (Jacksonville and Juneau) but THIS SATURDAY I’m doing the Kansas City marathon!! My 6th marathon and 3rd state. The race converter said it’s a slower race than Jacksonville but I guess we’ll see! I’ll just be thrilled to be running it honestly; I had some shin problems a week ago that made me worry about not being okay to run it but now things feel pretty good. I’ve never dropped out of a race and I really really hope this won’t be the first time for that!

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