Friday, June 16, 2017

Father's Day Gift Ideas: Spartan Up!

Father's Day is this weekend (just a reminder!) and if you want to get away from the basic tie as a gift, why not take advantage of the SUPER DAD DEALS happening with Reebok's Spartan Races to celebrate the Fathers on YOUR list. 

When I tell you that these are some SUPER DAD DEALS, I am NOT joking...check out these inspiring promotions that are happening NOW.

First, let's get Dad Dirty and get registered. With the code SPARTANDAD and get in for the afternoon Sprint distance for only $69.00 race entry fee* Plus, there is more. (keep reading)

Second step, it's time to Smarten Up! 

Now, once you're IN, head on over to get 2 FREE digital downloads* from Joe De Sena books, Spartan Up! and Spartan Fit!

I have Spartan Fit and what a great book! This easy to follow book will set you up for success for your Spartan debut or get your skills dialed in even if you are a Spartan or OCR racing veteran.

This is a super cool bonus for sure. Make sure you use the code SPARTANDAD to take advantage of this free digital download.

Finally, let's get Dad Cleaned Up! Let him share his achievement with Spartan gear!!

Head on over to the Spartan Race Shop and save big on training gear, race  bags and hats, nutrition and more. Go know you wanna look! I think I might splurge and finally get that Spartan jacket I've always wanted. You know, for Dad :)

Give your Dad the gift of grit and the long lasting feeling of accomplishment. But hurry up, this spectacular special will be gone very soon...

See you out there


*The Fine Print:
Free e-book download and $69 Sprint afternoon race offer valid with an adult registration during promotional period only. Must use SPARTANDAD code during checkout. Code cannot be combined with other codes, including GovX. Offer not valid with Spartan Passes, Volunteer, or Groupon entries. New, afternoon time block registrations only, cannot be retroactively applied. US events only. Offer ends 06/18/17 11:59PM ET. E-book download instructions will be supplied by 6/22/17.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Bumps, Pizza and Donuts

Isn't life funny? Just when things seem to be going along smooth, driving down the road at a steady clip and *thwak* you hit a bump in the road. well, there ya go. That'll slow you down. I was getting in some good runs (short and slow but...) and even scored some killer new kicks for the trails up when I am up at the "Chateau" in the western Mountains of Maine.

That has been this week for me. just as things were progressing *thwak* I got hit square in the face (or chest) with a giant germ bomb. Ahh, the joys of motherhood. I listened to my inner coach and slowed things down for a few days. My general rule of thumb for my athletes is above the neck, ok to train. Below the neck, rest. So...I took 2 days off. I eased back into things with a 60 min spin session Wednesday morning and some easy core work. 

The season ahead includes a TON of fun stuff so far and I have a lot of work to do!! 

It was celebration day on Wednesday this week. The fine people at Rev3 always take the time to make calls to each person who registers for their races. Being part of the team means we get the chance to help out with calls. I love doing athlete calls, it is SO fun to connect with others coming to race in Maine or one of our other events. And if you don't already know, Rev3 Maine has now become Ironman 70.3 Maine. While the folks at Rev3 are still producing this race, we entered into a licensing agreement with the WTC. The race will be much bigger this year and the course has changed a bit. 

Anyway, as a thank you to the athletes that helped with calls, they treated our families to PIZZA PARTY NIGHT. WOO HOOO!!!  I have been pretty good with my nutrition lately but it was definatly a day to splurge with my favorite pizza and a big salad. 

My very handsome pizza night date, FM.
and yes, we have SNOW in the mountains...still 

Farmers market pizza, loaded with veggies


I even decided to try a local treat - The Holy Donut. Now, honestly, I am not a huge donut fan but I have been hearing about this place for YEARS. Located originally in Portland, ME they had been expanding. A local Tim Horton's closed and in its spot a new Holy Donut opened. This was literally the talk of the towns for days. Pics all over FB from my friends sharing their favorite flavors. I had client meeting so I made a stop at the new location in Scarborough. 

I got there at 2 in the afternoon and there was a LINE. I was standing at least 20 deep and I could see that the selection of flavors had been picked over and there were only a few left. The case did not look like this one (from their FB page)

photo from The Holy Donut 
at nearly $30/doz and $14/half dozen I figured these beautiful gems would be donut nirvana and I would fall in love. I even made a friendly bet with friends to see if any of them would survive the drive up to Sugarloaf. I was so proud of my hungry self for not eating any pizza or donuts...when I got to FM's place, I broke out the box of donuts and we tried one. 


I was expecting SO. MUCH. MORE. but they were just...meh. I was a little sad. The anticipation of some heavenly DONUT ended up in disappointment. Maybe I am just not a donut girl. It definitely wouldn't be worth the calorie bomb that a donut is. Especially one this big. 

I will say, the only donuts I have ever really enjoyed are the donuts from URBAN SUGAR on Sugarloaf Mountain.

But I am a pizza girl. And I am a Rev3 girl. 

So now that I am feeling better and I have goals to chase, it's back at it tomorrow. See you out on the trails!! 

What is your favorite Pizza?
Do you have a favorite donut place?

Saturday, April 1, 2017


determiner & pronoun
  1. 1.
    as much or as many as required.
    "too much work and not enough people to do it"
    synonyms:sufficientplenty, a sufficient amount, an adequate amount, as much as necessary
  1. 1.
    to the required degree or extent (used after an adjective, adverb, or verb); adequately.
    "before he was old enough to shave"

I have always struggled with being ENOUGH.  Am I enough ---
Smart enough. Pretty enough. Skinny enough. Fast enough. 

My persona is such that I seek perfection.
perfectionist is defined as a person who refuses to accept any standard short of perfection. Some might also add that they are delusional, generally nuts, and stress out everyone else around them, including themselves.

I am also one that does not do anything "half-assed" (I always use my whole ass). I am an ALL or NOTHING person. This has been both a blessing and a curse. 

The combination of striving to be "good enough" and wanting perfection was a driving force in academia, in my career and in training & racing. It also brought insecurity and a need to excel; an intrinsic desire to succeed in whatever I did. Some days I would set my bar too high and walk away from whatever feeling defeated and not good enough. 

I remember PR'ing a 5k by several minutes (from a 23:xx to a 21:12) and being so upset with myself because I did not meet my goal time by 13 seconds. All I had wanted on that day was to go sub-21. I gave it my all...and I was so disappointed in myself. After filling in Training Peaks with all kinds of horrible words about my performance, my coach sent me a scathing note, telling me I should be thanking my body for performing minutes faster than it ever had before. Instead, I was chastising myself for not being "fast enough". A PR was not good enough for me, it had to be sub-21.

People who have crossed paths in my life brought hurt and disappointment, and the message I heard was "Jen, you're not enough for .... "whatever it was in the situation. the truth. their loyalty. positive change. love. or to stay. 

Why did this person do this? or say that? I believed that since my ex-husband couldn't change for the better, it was because I was not worth it or I was not loved.  It has been a process of learning that most of the time, THEIR behavior had nothing to do with me, but their own internal bullshit. It is hard when people let you down to think it isn't some flaw with YOURSELF.

For years that quest to be enough was my own barrier to being healthy. I would try this fad diet or that fad diet and FAIL. Failure in THAT would make me feel like a failure in life, so I would quit, then soothe my feelings by trying to eat and drink my inadequacy away. I would try another fad diet, fail again and eventually I would stop. I did not succeed so, I must suck. I completely gave up on myself. I no longer cared. 

I vividly recall the day I quit on ME. I packed up all my beautiful size 4 and 6 designer clothes. I had grown to a size 22 and there was no way I would ever put on those Versace jeans or that Donna Karan suit. I took thousands of dollars worth of clothing to the local thrift shop and gave it away. 

A smile can hide a world of hurt. Me at 260+ lbs

In my mind, I would never be determined enough to lose the weight and be healthy. But if I was gonna be fat, I was gonna do it well. I would eat all that I wanted. I would drink as often as I could. And I would grow to hate myself even more. 

It took a long time to get to a place where a glimmer of hope started to shine my desire to be a better me was based on something bigger than myself. It was the hope of being a Mom that finally motivated me to change.

Getting better is an ongoing processing. I have been working on this kind of mindset and changing the internal dialog that happens. It is learning to change 40+ years of thinking one way to another. It takes practice and it is difficult most days. 

It is learning that I AM ENOUGH. 
I am smart enough. 
I am good enough. and I deserve love and wonderful things in life. 

I now set my own standards a little differently. My value and worth is not determined by a scale. or a clock. a label. or another person. I have learned that 

⇒There is no single goal achievement that will magically make me feel like I am enough. 

↠There is no such thing as perfection.

⇒As long as I know my self worth, no one else can make me feel like not enough. 

and YOU?


Thursday, March 30, 2017

Ready, Reset, GO

...sometimes you need bad things to happen 

to inspire you to change and grow...

There is no doubt about it, the past 2+ years have been filled with some incredible highs and some extreme lows. It has changed me in so many ways and life has shown me, yet again, that the storms prepare you for the sunny days.

I completely stepped away from training and racing this past season, only doing things as I felt like doing them. The stress of a 2-plus year high conflict divorce took it toll on me, both physically and mentally. I just wanted it all to end so I could focus on this new life as a single mom and with an amazing partner. I wanted to get back to ME.

STRESS can really take a toll on a person. My sleep patterns changed. I was exhausted all the time. I did not have the energy to train. When I got done teaching 3, 4, or 5 classes in a row, the last thing I wanted to do was WORKOUT. All I wanted to do was eat some comfort food and take a nap!!

Getting into therapy to sort out the toxic and abusive marriage I was in for too many years was a double edged sword; rehashing the past was not fun but it allowed me to leave it there - in the past. Plus, having an unbiased person to vent to and listen was a gift. The days prepping for court, the hearings, the mediation...ugh. I don't wish that on anyone!

As the months dragged on, I put on some weight and lost endurance. I was missing a big part of who I am and what makes me happy. Luckily, I was surrounded by family, friends and a boyfriend that loved me and supported me no matter what life threw my way. With love and support, anything is possible!! 

a few weeks ago, things fell into place for me to finally get off my ass, to stop making excuses and get back to being the kickass, happy, spunky human being I am. 

I had to LET GO of the things I had no control over. I had to leave the resentment in the past. And I had to accept my flaws and mistakes for what they are. Life handed me a more than a few lessons in the last 2.5+ years. Instead of remorse and regret, I am heading into the NOW with a grateful heart for the family and friends that surround me. For the lessons learned. For the love I have received and for the bolt of reality that RESET MY MIND!! 

Getting back to training has certainly been awesome. I am feeling better every day and I am finally sleeping better. I am making healthy food choices daily and I am being KIND to myself. I am being patient with the slow miles of running and loss of endurance. I am not watching the clock like a hawk in the pool and letting things BE.

I am excited to celebrate the finality of things (soon, I really hope!) and chase new goals.

I have so many exciting things planned for the rest of 2017! 

New things, new challenges and revisiting some of my favorite races. There is some travel & trips planned and I am so optimistic about things to come. 

  • I am still racing with the best race series ever, Rev 3
  • I have an amazing tribe of people with From Fat to Finish 

And I will be back to writing and sharing this new chapter of my journey, and it feels like coming home...