August 19, 2014
by hyedi
8 Comments

FAB Fitness: Week of 8/11 Workouts

Monday: 4.14 mile walk (17 min/mi pace)

I tried really hard to get my average pace to be sub-17:00 and was thrilled when I pressed “stop” on Runkeeper, because it said 16:57. However, once it recalculated, it adjusted my pace to an even 17:00. Bummer.

Tuesday: 5.24 mile walk (18:48 min/mi pace)

Met up with a friend for a couple of laps around Lake Nokomis. It was an absolutely gorgeous afternoon — sunny with a nice breeze.

Wednesday: REST DAY

Thursday: 2.19 mile run (13:42 min/mi pace)

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I had a doctor appointment in the afternoon where I was cleared to run again! I couldn’t get home fast enough to change my clothes and slip on my running shoes. Since I know myself all too well, I’ve decided to use the Couch to 5K app for the next couple of weeks to make sure I really ease back into running. Day one of the program had me do a 5 minute warm up walk and then alternate between one minute of running and one minute, 30 seconds of walking for 20 minutes, before cooling down with a 5 minute walk. I felt great!

At my appointment, I also found out that I’ve lost two more pounds, although we’ll see how that holds up with my birthday weekend plans!

Friday: REST DAY

Even though the day started out with the bummer news that it was going to cost $900 to fix the air conditioning in my car and I had to say goodbye to the hubs and the rest of his van that was leaving for Ragnar, the day did eventually get better. It started by meeting my friend Katrina for gel manicures!

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Then, that evening, Andrea and I headed to Open Arms of Minneapolis for the North Coast Nosh. Check out my recap here. After the Nosh, we had a fun sleepover, complete with beer and Friends!

Saturday: 2.22 mile BIRTHDAY run (13:31 min/mi pace)

With the dew point steadily creeping up and a full day of birthday fun planned, I headed out for day two of the Couch to 5K program around 8 a.m. I improved my pace slightly from Thursday’s run.

After I returned home from my run, I got ready and met up with friends to get my birthday kicked off with a fabulous brunch at Heyday!

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After brunch, me, Andrea and some other friends met up with J’s van at one of the exchanges. It was good to see them and although I wasn’t necessarily jealous that I wasn’t running Ragnar this year, it looked like they were having a lot of fun.

I picked up my free birthday drink at Starbucks and then got ready to go out for the night! Since J was going to be recovering from Ragnar, I had planned a girls’ night out at the Rabbit Hole. I had the best time and now want to go back to The Rabbit Hole for future girls’ nights out! The service was awesome, the drinks are super fun (and yummy) and at the end of the night, they brought out an amazing dessert platter!

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(more photos on Instagram)

Sunday: REST DAY

I wrapped up my birthday weekend by sleeping in, being lazy all day and dinner at my favorite restaurant!

Have you run Ragnar before? Did you run this year?

What’s your favorite way to celebrate your birthday?

August 18, 2014
by hyedi
3 Comments

Another Night at the Nosh

This past Friday, Andrea and I headed to Open Arms of Minnesota for the Heavy Table‘s North Coast Nosh. Upon arrival, we found out that it was going to be the last North Coast Nosh event ever! Major sadness.

At the last NCN event I attended, they didn’t get their shipment of tasting mugs in time, and I was SO bummed but this time, we were handed a cute glass when we arrived.

We made sure to sample the Sweet Corn Blueberry and Salted Caramel ice cream from Sweet Science Ice cream and my favorite blue cheese from Fairbault Dairy — two of my favorite purveyors that were at the last NCN event I attended.

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Some of my favorite nibbles from the evening included:

The Triple Crown Organic BBQ sauce – OMG delicious and the perfect balance of smoky and a tiny bit sweet.

The Dominican Republic chocolate from Meadowlands Chocolate. Love their bean-to-bar method — check out their Kickstarter, here!

Watermelon mint St. Pops!

Lob chicken lettuce wraps from Lao Thai. (I grabbed a takeout menu — maybe this will be a new favorite Thai restaurant for us!)

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The best brews (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) in my opinion:

The ginger ale from Tree Fort Soda. I’m a self-proclaimed ginger ale connoisseur and this stuff knocked my socks off.

The Flip Switch IPA from Tin Whiskers was a really nice, approachable IPA.

Verdant Tea’s iced chai latte (with almond milk). I enjoyed the hot version of this at a local coffee shop the other day and was really impressed. Found out that our co-op is going to start carrying the concentrated chai soon!

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The event was held at Open Arms of Minnesota. I had never seen their kitchen before, so it was neat to check it out. We also got to taste some fantastic ceviche they made in their kitchen. If you’ve never heard of Open Arms before, you should take a look at what they’re all about — it’s a great organization. And check out this cool Cook-a-Thon event they have coming up!

What did I try that looks good to you?

Ginger ale = yes or no?

 

August 13, 2014
by hyedi
0 comments

FAB Fitness: Week of 8/4 Workouts

Wednesday: 4.03 mile walk (17:57 min/mi pace)

Lesson learned: bring water with you when you’re planning to walk four miles. To be fair, I had planned to drink water at the halfway point, which is a park with a water fountain. However, when I got there, there was a bright orange cone where the fountain was supposed to be. I was feeling pretty awful by the time I got home, so I won’t be making that mistake again.

Thursday: REST

I felt like maybe I had overdone it the day before so I took it easy on Thursday (4,400 total steps for the day).

Friday: 2.5 mile walk (23 min/mi pace)

Although we had gotten preliminary results back, we got the final autopsy results on Friday and while the news wasn’t anything necessarily “bad” or surprising, I was feeling pretty stressed and anxious, so meeting Andrea for a walk around Lake Nokomis (followed by dinner at Sandcastle, of course) was just what I needed. We walked with Cole, so our pace wasn’t anything spectacular (because my dog stops to pee on EVERYTHING) but it felt good.

My new Oiselle Distance Shorts arrived on Friday!

My new Oiselle Distance Shorts arrived on Friday!

Saturday: 1.31 mile walk (21:06 min/mi pace)

Just a leisurely walk after dinner with the pup and husband.

Saturday morning, Mandy and I made a trip to my favorite local running store, Mill City Running where I dreamed about buying one of everything in the store but instead just picked up a few things. Then, we met my friend Rose who was in town from LA and Jen for a fun al fresco brunch!

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After brunch, Rose, the hubs and I got to babysit Jen’s two-month-old while she and Mandy went and got inked!

Speaking of getting inked — here’s a pic of my new tatt:

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Then that afternoon, thanks to my amazing friends who got me a giftcard, I went for another energy bodywork/massage session at Blooma with the amazing Deborah Savran.

Sunday: REST

Another low total steps day (4,500). J and I went to a St. Paul Saints baseball game and then were pretty lazy for the rest of the day.

I’m hoping to be cleared to run at my six-week postpartum checkup tomorrow! I talked to my OB earlier in the week and he didn’t seem to think there would be any reason that I wouldn’t be cleared as long as I make sure to ease back into things. I plan to take Katie’s advice and use the Couch to 5K app to do so!

How have you eased back into working out after taking some time off?

August 6, 2014
by hyedi
3 Comments

Firing up the Fitbit

The Fitbit has made a reappearance! While I wore it through some of my pregnancy to keep me motivated after I wasn’t running anymore, it’s been sitting in a drawer for the past couple of months — ever since the doctor told me I wasn’t allowed to do any physical activity anymore. But this past Friday I charged it up, referenced my tips about how to get the most out of a Fitbit, and have been wearing it everyday since.

I’m loosely aiming for 10,000 steps per day since I’ve been cleared to walk again, but I’m not being too strict for the next week or two since I’m still healing and want to take it easy. Here’s what the past few days have looked like:

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Since I used to rely on running to get my steps in, I’ve been having fun just using walking to hit the 10,000 mark. On Saturday, I met my friend Mandy for coffee and we went for a 1.77 mile walk and then later in the day, J and I took Cole to the big dog park where I got another mile or so walk in. I topped off my steps with a quick trip to Ikea that afternoon. Sunday was pretty low key — we went to brunch and then after a mimosa (or two) I took a little nap. We did go for a nice long walk that evening, but not long enough to get in 10,000 steps. I did some shopping mall walking at the Mall of America on Monday and went for an afternoon 2.77 mile walk on Tuesday.

What’s also fun is that while I’ve been off of work, my co-workers have all gotten Fitbits and they’ve even set up a group to track all of our steps! I’m looking forward to seeing what kinds of numbers we can rack up! I’m kind of bummed though, the next badge I can get is for 45,000 steps. I don’t think I’ll be able to get that until the next time I run a marathon.

Do you have a Fitbit? Let’s be friends!

How do you get your steps in?

August 1, 2014
by hyedi
6 Comments

You gotta walk before you can run

My doctor cleared me to start exercising again this week! Nothing extreme, and no running yet but I can start going for longer walks now and can hopefully start easing back into running in the next month or so. I definitely don’t want to set my recovery back or anything, so I’m planning to take a “better safe than sorry” approach and start out super slow and back off if anything feels the least bit off. It’ll feel good to get moving again.

Of course I can’t help but start thinking about racing again. I’m signed up for a couple of 5Ks in September that I’m planning to just walk if I’m not back to running yet. One is the annual race that my husband’s work puts on and the other is in Wisconsin and we’re going to visit some friends at the same time. Thinking that mayyyybe a spring half could be a possibility. I’ve never trained for a spring race that’s longer than a 10K before, so we’ll see.

Over the past week I’ve been slowly getting back into some kind of a routine. Sleeping has been pretty difficult lately, so instead of tossing and turning, I was staying up until the wee hours of the morning watching Netflix. I’ve been trying to do less of that though, and when I’m successful, I’ve also been working on getting out of bed before 10 a.m. I’m not being hard on myself about either of these things, just trying to be conscious of the fact that I’ll be going back to work in a couple of weeks and don’t want it to be a complete shock to my sleep schedule when that time comes.

Also, ever since J went back to work I’ve had so many lovely friends who have met me for breakfast and lunch dates to get me out of the house. And I’ve had plenty to keep me busy at home, too. I’ve been writing out thank you cards and doing light housework. Oh, and I’ve gotten a few fun care packages from friends — complete with trashy (and some not trashy) magazines! Catching up on celebrity gossip certainly passes the time.

I’ll leave you with a random photo dump from my phone:

We're having a memorial for Charlie put in this Garden of the Sleeping Angels

We’re having a memorial for Charlie put in this Garden of the Sleeping Angels

Loved this new (and healthy!) restaurant -- went with a greek yogurt parfait and an almond milk chai latte

Loved this new (and healthy!) restaurant — went with a greek yogurt parfait and an almond milk chai latte

We're been enjoying white buttercream and red velvet cakepops made by the lovely Aimee.

We’re been enjoying white buttercream and red velvet cakepops made by the lovely Aimee.

My friend Kate sent me this beautiful Bama Ry necklace and I've been wearing it everday.

My friend Kate sent me this beautiful Bama Ry necklace and I’ve been wearing it everday.

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We tried growing beets in our garden this year. I think they’re supposed to be bigger than this?

Happy August…AKA my birthday month!

July 22, 2014
by hyedi
6 Comments

Picking up the pieces

Just when we started easing back into some kind of a routine and life was somewhat returning to normal, this past week the hospital bills started showing up, we had to go pick up Charlie’s death certificate and after months of super clear “pregnancy” skin, I started breaking out like a teenage boy. We were quickly reminded that this will be our life for awhile, because:

We’re still in the early stages of the grieving process. J and I are working through all of the emotions “appropriately” (whatever that means) but we have a long journey ahead of us. Even when we have a good day or two, out of nowhere, something will catch us totally off guard. Like reviewing Charlie’s death certificate or planning an upcoming trip for a family wedding and thinking about how the day of the wedding was supposed to be my due date. I saw this article the other day and it really hit home.

I gave birth.  I’m still physically healing from surgery. The recovery process doesn’t speed up just because you experienced a loss. I spent the last week thinking about how most women recover from a caesarean while trying to take care of a newborn at the same time and therefore mentally beating myself up every time someone asked if I was back at work yet and I replied “no.” It took some wise words from a friend and the book “The Gift of Time” to remind me that I had major surgery and to be kind to myself.

My body knows that I gave birth. But it doesn’t know that I don’t have a baby to take care of. So almost a week after I delivered, my milk came in. It’s another thing I had prepared myself for but it was still hard to deal with. I read somewhere that for some women who have experienced a loss, this can cause a “second grieving” and I can understand why, especially since breastfeeding was something I was looking forward to.

And then there’s the baby weight. Because of all of the extra fluid I was carrying around, I had already gained around 40 pounds when they last weighed me at 29.5 weeks (and that was after my water broke). At my appointment last week, I had lost 27 pounds, which means I have 13 pounds to go to be back at pre-pregnancy weight. Right now, I’m not able to exercise (hoping I get the go ahead at my six week follow up appointment) but I’m also not ready to really start watching what I’m eating, either. I’m not too concerned about it actually. The hardest part about the extra weight and my changed body really comes down to this: when I look in the mirror, what I see is a reminder of losing Charlie — and that’s hard.

On a positive note, we got some good news this past week at my two week follow up appointment. The doctor said that the takeaway message for us is that what we went through was likely an isolated, extremely rare thing and that we should be able to treat any future pregnancies as “normal.” It’s hard to think about the future right now, but it was reassuring to hear.

July 14, 2014
by hyedi
18 Comments

Charlie’s Birth Story

After going back and forth about how detailed I wanted to be in Charlie’s birth story, this is what I landed on. I wrote a more detailed one for J and myself to have but decided to keep that private.

It would be an understatement to say that so many things about my pregnancy didn’t work out anywhere close to what I had imagined or hoped for (I realize that they rarely do). One of those things is that all along I wanted nothing more than to have a vaginal delivery if it was possible, but once it became clear that we were going to need to deliver Charlie to be able to give him a shot at life, that option went out the door. The doctor strongly recommended a C-section because she was worried about Charlie being able to tolerate labor.

The events leading up to the decision to deliver Charlie all happened very quickly and once we made that decision, things continued to move quickly. The conversation with the doctor took place at 10:26 p.m., the anesthesiologist was in the room less than ten minutes later, and then before we knew it, it was go time. The rest of the team was in place, and they got Jesse suited up. The adrenaline started kicking in and I couldn’t help but start shaking uncontrollably. They took me up to the OR first and got me all numbed up (luckily I was able to hold still for long enough that they got my spinal in without any issues or pain). They brought J in shortly after and at 11:12 p.m., Charlie was born. J then saw them whisk Charlie away.

The anesthesiologist went to check on Charlie and came back to let us know that the neonatal team was working on inserting a breathing tube. He also let us know that he was struggling and that his heart rate was quite low, around 60 bpm. Minutes later, one of the neonatalogists came in and I think we knew what she was going to say even before she said it, but her words still hit us like a ton of bricks: “I’m so sorry, but Charlie isn’t going to make it.”
They cleaned and bundled Charlie up, brought him into the OR and handed him to me so we could  hold him while he was still alive. I was starting to feel nauseous from all of the pulling and tugging, so J then took him into his arms and we held our precious baby boy until they came back to check him again, at 11:46 p.m., when they let us know they could no longer find a heartbeat. Our sweet boy passed away peacefully in our arms.

Once I was all stitched back up, we were moved into recovery, where we took turns snuggling Charlie some more. As the shock started to wear off (slightly), we were able to admire just how cute our sweet baby boy was.

Just before 2 a.m., after a couple of hours in recovery, they brought us to our room and got us settled in. Jesse’s family joined us in the room and my parents arrived a couple of hours later, around 4:30 a.m., to meet their grandson.

The rest of Friday (the Fourth of July) was busy, the hospital chaplain that I’d reached out to after we got Charlie’s diagnosis, came to perform the naming ceremony that Jesse and I had picked out. Shortly after, Megan, a professional photographer volunteer with Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep arrived to take some photos of Charlie and of Jesse and me with Charlie. The day was mostly a blur, I had barely slept at all since we were first admitted to the hospital and I remember not wanting to sleep, just to spend as much time with our little family as possible.

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**All photos in this post are by Megan Crown with Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep
On Saturday evening, we decided to keep Charlie in our room for one final night. After they got my discharge information drawn up and prescriptions filled, we started packing up and I got ready and put on some real clothes. We said our final goodbyes and Jesse went to pull the car up while the nurse wheeled me down a back hallway instead of by the rest of the postpartum rooms. Letting the nurses know that we were ready for them to take Charlie away and then leaving the hospital without him, was the hardest thing we’ve ever had to do.

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We are so thankful for the outstanding care we received throughout this entire ordeal and for the amazing nurses (seriously, we can’t say enough good things about our nurses), doctors, care coordinators, social workers, our doulas and other members of our care team. The past ten weeks have been a roller coaster (to say the least), but it also made us cherish each day that Charlie was still alive and fighting.

We’re also very thankful that we were able to keep Charlie in our room with us for as long as we wanted. We’ll never forget that precious time we had that gave us the chance to snuggle him and give him lots of love and to take our time saying goodbye. His grandparents, aunts and uncles (both blood and not) and cousins were also able to meet and say goodbye to him.

Last Tuesday, J and I met with the funeral home in the morning. After that was over, we headed up to his family’s cabin, where we stayed until Friday afternoon. I’m so glad we decided to get away for a few days. And as hard as it was to come back home, we came home to beautiful flowers and sympathy cards and home cooked meals (seriously, thank you for helping me not have to think about cooking right now) and people wanting to stop by to visit with us. We’re so grateful.

Tomorrow I have my first postpartum appointment — I’m still sore, but recovering and feeling a little better physically every day. And I keep reminding myself that my body, like everything else, needs time to heal.

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July 2, 2014
by hyedi
5 Comments

Pregnancy eats + summer snacking with Blue Diamond

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this post. Blue Diamond provided me with one 6 oz. can and one 4 oz. bag of almonds for free as part of the Blue Diamond Tastemakers program. All opinions shared are my own.

It’s been kind of a bummer summer so far since I’ve had to cut back on my physical activity pretty drastically ever since my hospital stay. Because of that, I feel like watching what I eat has become even more important than ever. I’m also trying to focus on upping my protein intake (I don’t think I’ve been super successful at that) and being mindful of my iron intake also. My hemoglobin levels checked out OK surprisingly, but it’s not uncommon for pregnant women to be a little low and mine was low when I was in the hospital.

And to add to that, truthfully, cooking has been the last thing that J or I want to do and it’s been that way, pretty much since we got Charlie’s diagnosis. So we’ve been going out to eat more than we probably should be, but each week, we do a little better at finding something to eat at home. Here’s a little sample of what I’ve been eating lately:

Breakfasts

Baked oatmeal – you can totally play around with this recipe by cutting back on the brown sugar and adding different kinds of fruit. I made a batch on Sunday night and had for breakfast during the week!

Fresh fruit – strawberries and bananas (trying to keep those pesky leg cramps under control!)

Puffins!

Scrambled egg with salsa, a little shredded cheese, spinach in a whole wheat tortilla

Lunch

Lunch is probably where I struggle the most. There have been quite a few Whole Foods salad bar salads and leftovers from dinners.

Dinners

Two good recipes that don’t require firing up the oven:

Crispy Gnocchi with zucchini, basil and sweet corn

Tilapia tacos

Snacks

Snacking has become really important because when I make good snacking decisions, I also make better meal decisions because then I’m not starving when it comes to eating lunch and dinner. As I’ve gotten more pregnant, I also can’t eat as much in one sitting (I think the hot weather is also a factor) so I find myself hungry shortly after I eat a meal. Some of my favorite snacks currently:

Blue Diamond almonds – The folks at Blue Diamond sent me the blueberry and coconut flavors to try. I loved them both — just a few after a meal will satisfy my sweet tooth and the toasted coconut flavor is not too “coconut-y.” But as a side note, my favorite flavor will always be salt and vinegar.

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Trail mix – especially loving this stuff:

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Cottage cheese

Again with the fruit!

Anything with peanut butter on it

Treats

I’ve been doing a decent job of keeping my sweets intake under control, but now that it’s officially summer, it’s been really tempting to treat myself to ice cream. Most nights I satisfy that craving with frozen yogurt bars, fruit bars (both strawberry flavored) or dark chocolate dipped bananas. But one special treat that the hubs and I enjoyed the other night was gelato with coconut and blueberry almonds as a topping — DELICIOUS!

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Instead of having to get the food processor dirty, I just threw a handful of almonds into my little food chopper.

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We went with good old fashioned vanilla gelato, but in my the head the flavor combinations are endless! I’m thinking the caramel macchiato would be especially good on chocolate or sea salt caramel gelato — yum.

Any good snack options I should add to my rotation?

What have you been eating lately?

June 25, 2014
by hyedi
2 Comments

Weekend recap + how I feel about the third trimester (so far)

This is a little late, but I hope you all had a good weekend. On Saturday, we officially made it to 28 weeks! But uh, to celebrate, we spent 2.5 hours in the hospital. I was having a lot of contractions again and wasn’t feeling Charlie move as much as he had been the past couple of days, so we figured it was best to go in. After some tests and monitoring, we were relieved to hear that everything looked fine and that we didn’t need to be admitted again.

The weekend had its upsides too though, we went to a BBQ with some friends Saturday night and Saturday morning, before I decided to call the doctor, I made a quick trip to the farmer’s market with Andrea.Then, besides going out to dinner with some friends, I mostly took it easy and rested/napped all day Sunday.

J, with his very serious sandwich.

J, with his very serious sandwich.

How I feel about the third trimester so far

I think that the third trimester is really catching up with me already. Or maybe it’s because really, I had it pretty easy during the first trimester with no morning sickness to speak of. But really, the biggest challenge these days is to maintain a balance between noticing when things don’t seem right with either my health or Charlie’s and not freaking out over every little thing. It’s hard because just like with other things during pregnancy, some of the warning signs I’ve been told to look out for can either be really serious or just a typical pregnancy thing. Basically, this has turned me into a giant ball of anxiety and stress, which can’t be good for me or Charlie, either.

Oh, and due in part to Charlie’s condition, I’m carrying around a decent amount of extra amniotic fluid these days. Which as my doctor put it “makes you look and feel like you’re at term already or carrying twins.” So trying to get sleep at night, find a comfortable position to sit in for more than a few minutes at a time and to fit behind the steering wheel in my car are all fun things lately.

Weekly appointment

We had another good appointment yesterday. No big changes to Charlie which is good news. I also had my gestational diabetes test that I’ve basically been nervous about since I got pregnant. (Seriously.) From all of my blog stalking, I was expecting fruit punch or orange-flavored juice, but it was Sprite-flavored and it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be! They said that I wouldn’t hear from them yesterday unless something was abnormal, so hopefully that means I passed! We go back tomorrow for another fetal echocardiogram where we will get some more information from the pediatric cardiologist about — this will help our care team determine what possible interventions to consider as we move forward.

Random things

Even though I won’t be able to wear it for awhile, I got word that my Oiselle swim order shipped! Hoping it shows up any day now :)

We celebrated my kitty’s birthday last week. She turned seven! It feels like we just brought her home — she was an anniversary gift from the hubs (then-boyfriend)!

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How was your weekend? Congrats to everyone who ran one of Grandma’s races! :)

How do you deal with anxiety? Favorite ways to relax?

Tell me how your running is going so I can live vicariously through you!