Saturday, November 30, 2013

WIN AWESOME STUFF! Team Fight Fundraiser

Thanksgiving was yesterday and one things I am always thankful for is my HEALTH.

There was a time when I was not very healthy--battling high blood pressure, high blood sugar, I was obese and my resting pulse was thru the roof. If I had not taken steps to fix my life, I could have ended up on a multitude of meds.

Others are not so lucky. I have so many friends and family members who have been touched by cancer.
Recently a very young friend of mine was diagnosed with breast cancer. Luckily, they got the cancer quickly but she had a double mastectomy and is recovering from that, ready to battle what's next.

In 2011, Rev3 had teamed up with Ulman Cancer Fund and Team Fight to help them help others who are battling cancer. There was the Run Across America, the Key to Keys ride and of course, the Half Full Triathlon!!

I joined forces with Team Fight this year and have just a couple short weeks before fundraising is done for the 2013 season. In an effort to meet my goals and THANK YOU for supporting this amazing cause, I am doing a FUNDRAISING RAFFLE DRIVE!!

For every $5 donation to my page, you will get an entry into a multitude of prizes available!! You can even designate WHICH prize you want your "ticket" to go into...or you can have fun and and choose a WILDCARD entry.

So what's up for grabs??

Well, how about an awesome REV3 VISOR!? Since I am rarely spotted without one on my head, it's only natural that YOU should win an awesome one for yourself!!

 I am POWERED by POWERBAR Products so I have a plethora of yummy Powerbar yummies up for grabs!!

 There will be THREE (3) cases of Powerbar Gel available
Vanilla and Berry and Chocolate

To keep you hydrated and recovered, I am also offering one jar of Powerbar Perform and one jar of Powerbar Recover!!

And you gotta look cool when not training, so how's about a REV3 TEE??

Tis the season to be swimming so you will NEED this awesome TriSwim package from SBR Sports!!

I will even through in some awesome FOGGIES to keep your goggles clear!

So how do you enter to win these cool prizes??

Visit my FUNDRAISING PAGE --->> HERE  <<--- and="" b="" donation.="" enter="" nbsp="" your="">

You can comment here with how many entries you earned and what prizes you want to be entered to win...or you can just keep it fun and I will put them in randomly so it will be a surprise!!

If you want to remain anon with your entries, that is fine too! just email me at jsmall14(at) and let me know which prizes you wanna win!!

The deadline is December 15th.
All winners will be chosen at random from all eligible entries.
All prizes are provided solely by me. 

Training is Easy. Cancer is HARD. 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Run A Mile in My Sneakers...

Recently I got to reconnect with a long time childhood friend and catch up on the last 20+ years since we last saw each other. We chatted about life, kids, family and the road we have travelled along the way--we shared the challenges, the triumphs, the mistakes and the memories. We have both faced some pretty tough situations and have come out on the other side still moving forward and trying to be the best version of ourselves.

It really got me thinking about the bigger picture and how in the end all we really need in life is love, kindnesssupport and understanding.

No one is perfect.
Each one of us has faltered and made mistakes.
You live, you learn and hopefully you grow from the experiences, learn and become stronger person.

As I stare 40 in the face (less than a month away), I embrace the ME I am today and the struggles I experienced to get the person writing this, right now. I am pretty happy with the ME I have finally become.

While some of the things I have done in my life make me cringe now, it made me who I am today. Some of the times were painful, dark and lonely, but it makes me appreciate the bright life I live today.
I would not change a thing (ok, maybe a few things...) because without those life experiences, I would not be HERE. As I have said over and over, HERE is pretty damn good!

I am finally comfortable in my own skin, with who and I am and what I have to offer as a human being.
Gone are the days of trying to live to someone else's standards or trying to live life to satisfy other people's judgements.

I am happy and at peace with ME. 
Funky, silly, inappropriate-at-times, Energizer Bunny ME.
Quirks and all.

I think of this friend and how even just a few years ago, before I went through this journey, that I probably would have been very judgemental of some of some of her experiences...and who am I to do that to anyone??  I have never walked a mile in her shoes. Or anyone else's shoes for that matter.

just as no one has walked in mine...or run a mile in my sneakers.

“How would your life be different if…You stopped making negative judgmental assumptions about people you encounter? Let today be the day…You look for the good in everyone you meet and respect their journey.” 
― Steve MaraboliLife, the Truth, and Being Free

Behind every person, there is a story. A path that brought that person to the being they are today.

So today, put judgement aside. Be kind.
Not only for others, but for YOU too.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

10 Years

Today is my 10 year wedding anniversary. 
Ten years that have gone by in a blink of an eye.

There have been UPS. downs. and even some days where our worlds were sideways.

We've won. We've lost (literally & figuratively). We battled on...

I have known Mr. Small my entire life it seems, from Kindergarten until now--relentless teasing in grammar school, fighting in junior high, disregard in high school and it wasn't until my return to Maine in 2000 when I rediscovered this man and fell in love with his humor. I still have a deep appreciation for his twistedly funny side. He was a "man's man" and very different from the metro-sexual city boys I had been surrounded by for years. He knew my roots and could relate to me in a way no one had before.

As the last 14 years have gone by, I changed and the dynamic of our relationship tested over and over again.

Somehow, by the grace of God, we survived. Things are better now than they have been in many, many years. Happy. Peaceful. Supportive.

It's a good place to be.

Happy Anniversary.
You have given me two of the greatest gifts a person could ask for--


and the freedom to be me and chase my dreams! Thanks for chasing them with me.

Here's to the next 10 years!!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Get Over It

OK, You're a Runner. Get Over It.

Running a marathon is hard enough without also patting yourself on the back every step of the way.

The above is a link to an article written by Chad Stafko. I cannot even recall who originally shared this with me but my first reaction was...WTF? Is this guy trying to be funny or just a d-bag? In this little article, Mr. Stafko talks about runners and the stickers, tee shirts, etc. and equates that it is all done for show and attention. 

Really? Really?? *shaking head*

I drive a Big Rev3 Blue station wagon adorned with stickers. Distances.
13.1     26.2      70.3    140.6 
proudly displayed on the back of my ride.
I have a TRIATHLETE sticker. A Rev3 sticker. A RAGNAR 2013 sticker. I have a  pink SWIM BIKE RUN sticker. A runnergirl sticker.

Are these stickers there for YOU? 

No. They are there for me.

My little visual checklist of accomplishments. 

I am very well aware that more than 50% of the population of the area where I live does not even KNOW what any of these stickers symbolize. Or what they mean to ME. Or the obstacles that I have overcome to earn those silly little stickers. 

Or how these numbers have taught me that I am strong, I am determined and I have the ability to challenge myself push myself to reach goal after goal. 

A paragraph from the article reads: 

Why would someone want to get up at 5 a.m. and run 10 miles adorned with fluorescent tape to avoid being struck by someone who has the good sense to use a car for a 10-mile journey?
I have a theory. There is no more visible form of strenuous exercise than running. When runners are dashing down a street in the middle of town or through a subdivision, they know that every driver, every pedestrian, every leaf-raker and every person idly staring out a window can see them.

Let me assure you Mr. Stafko, I do not run for drivers, pedestrians, leaf-rakers or anyone watching out their window. I can also assure you that any of MY friends who run are not doing it for these reasons either. 
I run for me. I run for the way it makes me feel. I run because it literally saved my life.
I run for my family. I run for my daughter. I run for my mother-in-law (who cannot). 
I run for freedom. I run for therapy
I run because I can. 
Running has brought so much INTO my life, that I cannot imagine a life without running or moving. 
Perhaps that writer was trying to be funny, sarcastic or controversial. Who knows what his intent is here...but should he be dissing on people who are UP and MOVING in a country were the obesity epidemic is out of control?  Mr. Stafko, I encourage you to celebrate your support of the sedentary with that 0.0 sticker and rock on.
I will continue to adorn my ride with additional distances I conquer. 50k, 50 miles, 100 name it. I love seeing the stickers on cars out there. I love the camaraderie that is there in the running and triathlon community. 
If you don't like it, that's ok too. Because I don't do it for you.

What are you thoughts?
Do you "stickerize"?
Brag away, I want to hear from you!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

What's Up Wednesday & A Winner

So...what's up?

Mother Nature is being funny in Maine. Last week I was running in a tank top and 60* sunshine

yesterday I was running with frozen snot hanging from my face. 

yesterday was only a hour run, (just about 7 miles) and I have the perfect loop around my house. It was COLD, temps said 33*, "feels like" report was 20's and the winds were pretty cold. It was the last 2.6 miles HOME where the winds got brutal. OUCH. 

But welcome to Maine. It is November. This should be no shocker that it gets cold here.

What's YOUR weather challenge? Do you like hot? cold? 

Ever since I finally got the courage to cut off all my hair, I also got the courage to have a little fun with it.  I got it set into my mind that I wanted pink hair. Of course, Pinterest was of no help...

with my new cut I knew that I wanted it pink just in the back, underneath. I could NOT find a pic that would show my hair stylist what I wanted...then on a visit there, the salon owner had exactly what I wanted (just a shorter version). 

It's more purple right now...but we needed to do that to cut the "yellow" in my hair. Im really digging the purple actually. Pretty soon it'll be HOT PINK. And we cut a little more off too...

My parents hate it.
My daughter thinks it's cool.
My husband is indifferent.

I love it. It's fun and it's me. 

I finally feel like I have my running mojo back...I missed it. I am looking forward to the long runs again and being out in the cold yesterday made me feel so ALIVE. I loved it. 

So to all my Southern California friends...I'll be there in February!

Speaking of running...I recently got a pair of Athleta Bare Run capri pants in (REV3) blue which are AhhhMaaazing. The color is awesome and they are super cute. Never mind super comfy. Totally rocking my world right now. 

What's something NEW you have that is making you smile? 


WINNER: Now to announce the winner of my Old Pool Glassworks giveaway. Chosen at random by writing the entries down on paper and picking out of a Powerbar hat...

Jen, please hit me up so I can get you in touch with Renee to design your prize!!

Thanks to all who played along! I have some more really fun, cool giveaways coming up very, very soon!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Day One

Today was Day One of training for what is NEXT

As you may recall, the late season triathlon plans had to take a back seat to family right now and I have spent the last couple of weeks trying to see what the Universe would have me do next.

I am a next person. I like need goals. That ever present carrot dangling before it small or large, goals are what keep me motivated to keep on keeping on. It gives me drive and focus to have that NEXT item to check off.

When it comes to checking things off, I have this list of things that I want to accomplish, races and distances I want to tackle and such. These range from small goals and target race times to lifetime goals and "pie in the sky" races across the globe.

I don't believe anything is TOO big to tackle.

I was sitting there one day when the Universe once again whispered into my ear.
GO. go west. run.

It all happened quite fast actually (as most things in my life do). I got an email from Angela about Surf City Marathon in Huntington Beach, CA in February. This is one of those races that has been on my list since the early days...simply for the magnificent medals.

This is the actual medal for the 2014 race

So when it's cold in February here in Maine, I will be running here:

And since I'm running a marathon on the LEFT coast, let's call it a double header! I am also running the Maine Coast Marathon along the Maine beaches in May!

So my little post-Cedar Point "break"/off season is officially over. Today was DAY ONE of marathon training.

What more can a girl ask for? November in Maine and 60's weather!? Sunshine!! Tank Top!! Sunglasses!! Smiles!! Oh...and I found money.
a dime.
ten cents.

I actually stopped and picked it up. Not because it was ten cents but because I am considering it a little trinket to remind me of this next journey to California and a faster marathon.  I tucked it into my jewelry box along with a couple other small mementos I have kept, including a small rock from Lake Erie and the first toenail I lost (yes, really. Gross, I know. Whatev'

day one

10 cents to California

I am excited to focus on my run for a bit and work on getting faster and stronger.
Which is only going to help with goals for NEXT season!!


Do you take an "off season" or change gears this time of year?

What is one of your "bucket list" races and why?