September 30, 2013

Motivational Monday #34

Happy Motivational Monday! I've had a GREAT back-on-track week, and I'm feeling very motivated to keep the streak going so that I feel my best during the Chicago Marathon. It looks like this was a great week for lots of you as well...

Amanda ran her first half-marathon! At the beginning of this year, she was 227 pounds, tired, and sluggish; she decided to make some changes, and joined Weight Watchers. She also started running. She's now 45 pounds lighter, and finished her first half-marathon in 2:35! She's very excited to do another :)

After losing 90 pounds, and keeping it off for the past 2 years, Carla went on a 30-mile bike trip around Grand Traverse Bay! Best of all, she was able to keep up with her brother and sister-in-law, who are avid bikers. She said it felt great to join them on their family vacation, rather than sit back and watch!

Dawny recently reached a year of maintenance after losing more than half of her body weight! In 2004, she topped out at over 415 pounds; last year she reached her goal weight of 155, and she's maintained her weight ever since. She had several ups and downs throughout her journey, but she never gave up. On her one year anniversary of being at goal, Dawny completed a half-marathon... a challenge she never dreamed would be possible!

Katie ran her first half-marathon in 2:26:38! She went into it very unprepared, and while she doesn't advocate not training, she didn't want to skip the race. She took a few walking breaks throughout the race, and was very excited when she caught up to the 2:30 pacer. She says being a Jazzercise instructor probably helped make up for the lack of training ;)

Katie ran 5 miles at a sub-10:00 pace... while 34 weeks pregnant!! She says it's been challenging, but she keeps going out for more.

Stephanie just completed her third 5K with a shiny new PR! She took 3 minutes off of her previous best time, finishing in 52:32. She said it rained the entire time, and she was soaked to the bone!

Ashley completed her first race ever--a half-marathon! She claims to be "as slow as molasses in January", but she is very proud to have finished. She plans to train for a marathon next! (Ashley's race recap on her blog)

Carol ran a 5K race with her 19-year old son! She was very happy to have run the entire thing, something she says she hasn't been able to do in over 20 years. She's thrilled with her finish time of 33:15, and average pace of 10:43/mi (her goal was to run sub-11:00 miles). She said the best part of the whole experience was getting to share something she loves doing with her son. 

This month, Carolyn participated in Alex's Lemonade Stand's Million Mile Run. Alex's Lemonade Stand is a non-profit that was started by a girl named Alex who was fighting cancer, and opened a lemonade stand to raise money. Before she died at age 8, she raised over $1 million in the name of pediatric cancer. The Million Mile Run challenge was to get 10,000 people to run 100 miles each throughout September, in the hopes of raising $1 million in honor of Alex. Carolyn lost her 11-year old nephew last year to a brain tumor, so she was eager to sign up. She'd never run 100 miles in a month before, so it was a challenge for her, but she did it!! She raised $920, and completed her challenge with a half-marathon yesterday, finishing with a PR of 2:23:52. And as a bonus, they were serving her favorite pizza at the finish line! (Carolyn's blog about the experience)

Hilary (bib 2806 in the photo) had been planning to send in a Motivational Monday share once she completed the Couch to 5K program in a few weeks, but she had a big accomplishment that was definitely worth sharing now. At the beginning of the summer, she signed up to WALK a 5K race. As she started eating better and exercising, she decided to start the Couch to 5K plan in late August. She was only midway through the program when she attended the race, and she hoped to make it through two miles of running before walking the rest . She said when mile two came around, she felt good enough to keep going--and she ended up finishing the entire race without a single walk break! Throughout the training, she's also lost 28 pounds, and now she's already planning a couple of more 5K's this fall. (Hilary's race report on her blog).

Yesterday, Jess ran her first race, a 5K MADD Dash (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), after raising $170 for the cause! She sadly lost her cousin in an alcohol-related car accident, and she was happy to raise money to help raise awareness of the dangers of drinking and driving. She wasn't even able to run for a full minute when she started, but at yesterday's race, she ran the entire distance, including her fastest mile to date! She's also lost 14 pounds during her training.

Over the past year, Sarah has lost 138 pounds! To celebrate the anniversary (as well as her 42nd birthday!) she went for a walk on her local bike/walking path. Her ultimate goal is to start running!

Ivayla ran her farthest distance yet--12 miles! In January, she couldn't even run one mile, and now she's running 12. She says that her new hydration pack and Gu helped get her though the run, and she felt great!

Elizabeth has done several races throughout her weight loss (she's lost over 150 pounds!), but she'd never done an obstacle race; so when she saw that a Warrior Dash was going to be near her home, she decided to go for it! She was very nervous she wouldn't be able to complete all the obstacles (a rope wall was particularly intimidating for her), but decided to do her best and attempt them all. Well, she completed each and every obstacle during the race, including the dreaded rope wall! She says that at 325-lbs, she never would have been able to do this; she's very proud for facing the challenge! (Elizabeth's race report on her blog).

Katelyn has been running to maintain her 50-pound weight loss, and she just PR'ed her second half-marathon! In April, she ran 2:19:17, and she set a goal to run 2:10 this time. Well, she crushed her goal, finishing in 2:03:41! Her parents, siblings, friends, and running buddies were there to cheer her on and push her to work really hard for this goal. Next up? Sub-2:00!

Michelle completed her first 20-mile training run! She's running her first marathon in November, and she had a 20-miler scheduled last weekend, but she wasn't able to accomplish it then. She was extra proud this weekend when she did it! (Michelle's blog)

Naleen and her husband, Karl, have lost a collective 120 pounds; and they just completed a six-mile bike and run relay race, with obstacles every mile! Naleen was very nervous about this race, because she admits she's not very good on the bike, and she's terrified of heights (an issue with most of the obstacles). But not only did the pair finish the race, they placed third in their division, earning a trophy in addition to their medals!

Don't forget to check out the Motivational Monday Facebook post for more stories!


  1. I love these posts ... and not just because I am featured in this one! :) It is so motivating to see all different types of people reaching their goals and living a healthy lifestyle! Thanks for doing them!

  2. Thanks for including me! I loved reading them. And that's awesome Katie can run while pg! I could barely walk. :)

  3. Congrats to everyone for such wonderful accomplishments this week!

  4. Thanks so much for including me, Im thrilled :)

  5. I can't wait for Mondays to come so I can come and get inspired by everyone successes.


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