Wednesday, September 25, 2013

This is for Me

I have been training for months for my first half marathon.  I have put in the miles to train and build up to the long distance running that is required.  I've pushed myself harder than I ever thought I could. I never imagined that I would be able to run for over an hour at a time, yet there I am on the treadmill hitting a good rhythm while running for 75 minutes! The feeling I have when I am done is amazing to say the least. 

I signed up for my first half marathon after talking about it and training for it.  As soon as I received the confirmation email, I wanted to throw up from the anxiety of it.  What have I done?!  I'm so excited, nervous and anxious about it.  However, just like my training, I am going to take it one mile at a time, one step at a time. 

I am not too worried about my time for the race, heck, I want to enjoy the experience, the scenery and the cool, fall air on my face.  I won't beat myself up if my time is nowhere close to where I think it may be.  The feeling I will have when I cross that finish line is all I will remember anyway.

I signed Chuck up for the half as well.  He said he can't let me run alone and he would love to cross that finish line together.  I explained to him how I wanted to give myself a goal, train for it and achieve it.  That it would be a great life lesson for our kids and what a great example of dedication and determination it would be for them.  He asked why I had to choose such a long goal haha. 

I also had to explain to him that this is for me.  This is my goal, this is my race, this is my accomplishment.  Yes, he will be with me and this will be his first half marathon as well.  I am proud and thankful that he wants to do this with me and I can't imagine a more fitting finish to this run than to cross it together.  However, at the same time, I am doing this for me.  For years, I have been catering to others.  I have been serving my husband, my kids and pushing myself and my goals to the back burner to accommodate everyone else.  This is my shining moment (hopefully I feel this way at the end ;))

I hope to have a great time and that it is an experience I won't forget but I am also hoping that I enjoy it enough to sign up for the Pittsburgh Half Marathon next May.  ;)

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

It's Not Easy Seeing an Empty Shelf

I became a blogger ambassador for the Monkey Do Project with the intent to help spread the word about areas in our own country that are in desperate need of our help.  Families and individuals who have so little, that do not have the means to get help, no running water, no electricity and are often forgotten.  Children that go to school and the lunches that they eat are the only meals they have.  Yes, there are children in our country that are only able to eat 5 times a week. They need our help.  They need someone on their side who can help them receive the most basic of necessities. 

The mission of the Monkey Do Project is to help spread awareness, raise funds to help the people of Appalachia and to better the lives of many people who know the desperation of just trying to survive. 

One of the places that they are trying to help is in Clay, West Virginia.  There is a food bank there that the organizers said had empty shelves.  The Monkey Do Project visited the food bank in Clay and saw for themselves that the shelves were not low or lacking a few items....they were literally empty.  No food to help the families that it is there to help.

An image of the food bank shelves, empty.

They have two refrigerators and a deep freezer in the food bank as well.  The contents were 3 packages of meat.  This is all they had to hand out to families in need.  Families who need to feed their children, the elderly.  It really pains me to see this.  We are so lucky to have the things we have. 

So many times, I have thought to myself about how tough life is, how much I wish that my life were easier but it doesn't compare to the way that these people are living.  We need to do better for our neighbors.  No, I don't live in Clay, West Virginia, they need us. 

The Monkey Do Project is pledging to help Clay, West Virginia food bank as their FILL THE FOOD BANK PROJECT.  Can you help?  Are you able to make a donation, no amount is too small.  Every dollar is a dollar toward a meal for these families and individuals.

You can go here to make a donation today!