About thedancingrunner

Marathon runner & group fitness instructor at 24 Hour Fitness. Passionate about family, friends, traveling. Loves destination races. Loves dining out, cooking in, being around down to earth people, writing, sunrises.

Divas Half Marathon Recap – Spoiler Alert…New PR!

Well I am back from a rather long, fun filled weekend! Hope you all had good times as well. I am here to recap my experience running the Divas Half Marathon on Sunday! What a lovely time it was despite fighting a few obstacles I made it through! And hello, yet another shiny PR is always the icing on the cake. But let’s backtrack a bit!

So my running bestie Tracy and I took the road trip down to Galveston for a long weekend getaway. We got an amazing condo via AirBnB right on the beach with awesome ocean views. I am loving all of the beach inspired décor inside as well. It was so cute and cozy and just perfect for staying a few days. We enjoyed the kitchen too…bought some groceries and did some cooking. Best way to save money on a trip hands down. We went to dinner a couple times but made breakfast and lunch in the condo. Win win situation.

Beach chillin’.

Saturday we made our way to the health and fitness boutique to get our race swag. The boutique itself was rather small so we were in and out of there. But I absolutely loved all of the sweet swag we got and of course all things pink just makes my soul happy. As some of you also know I am the official TX ambassador for this race series so I was proud to be there and represent.

Race morning! It was super windy at the start, with winds gusting 30+ miles an hour and a cool breeze coming off of the ocean. I didn’t mind it because honestly I race better with a little less humidity. So despite the wind, we got lucky with the temps! Hey, super early start really helps too as there was plenty of cloud cover.

So since I have a 50 mile race coming up right around the corner I did not quite taper for this race, instead kept my mileage fairly high. I’ve been running 70-80 mile weeks consistently in training for this ultra. So I kind of just decided to run this one as a fun run type race and as part of my pre birthday festivities. But as some of you know one of the advantages to upping your miles can be that it can make you a tad faster! I sort of ran this race by feel and was clocking 7 minute miles for most of the way through. It has been a minute since I’ve been able to hold that pace for so long! I felt so incredibly strong during this race, mentally and physically. Despite the crazy winds that I was literally pushing against in the back half I made it through. With a shiny beautiful PR of 1:42:10. My 32nd 13.1 and also my fastest ever half marathon! I placed 2nd in my age group out of 178 women and 8th overall out of 1,288. You can’t beat a fairly small race but I have to say that hard work definitely pays off.

Yes, the medal was quite beautiful. And fancy!

How was your weekend? Have you ever run a Divas race or any other festive/themed run?

Virtual Coffee Date.

Hey there! Hope your Thursday is rockin’ and rollin’. Or should I say Friday eve! I thought it would be a good day for a virtual coffee date. Or hey, wine or kombucha…whatever is your drink of choice. So pull up a seat, grab that beverage and let’s get it going.

If we were having a virtual coffee/wine/kombucha date, I’d tell you…

That work has been absolutely hectic and I am ready for a beach vacation. One of my besties, Tracy and I are headed down 45 south to Galveston this weekend for a race-cation! Hello Divas Half Marathon. As some of you know I am an ambassador for this race so it will be a good one. This is totally just a ‘fun run’ for me. We got an AirBnB condo right on the beach all to ourselves so it is going down. Perfect way to celebrate my pre birthday weekend (my b-day is April 26th).

I am actually so excited and ready to embrace turning 33 next week. I think being in your 30s is such an empowering, amazing time in your life and I really feel like I’ve grown into my own skin, so to speak. I’ve gone through so many ups and downs the last few years but it feels amazing to be in the place I’m in right now, at this very moment.

Have you tried the Cherry Blossom wine from Trader Joe’s? It’s such a great pinot noir with an excellent price tag too. If you have a TJ’s in your area, you must check it out.

I’ve been loving going to different parks to explore after work lately. It is kind of like my way to unwind from the work day when I am not teaching classes at the gym.

For all of my guilty pleasure Bravo TV watchers, did you watch the RHOA reunion? It was so juicy…4 part series so I am looking forward to catching up on part 2 when it airs. Also…Sweet Home Oklahoma. Hilarious show. I will be catching up on that tonight so do not tell me about the latest episode.

What would you tell me if we were having a coffee/wine/kombucha date?

Weds Spin Playlist.

I am here with your weekly Wednesday spin playlist! I post songs that are perfect for spin class, running and high energy workouts. As always check out the days in which I teach spin class at my weekly schedule here.

Let’s go for a ride!

GDFR- Flo Rida: Warm up
Freak (& You Know it)- Joe Stone: Tapbacks
Juju On that Beat- Zay: Accelerations
Party- Chris Brown: Seated/standing run
Work- Ciara, Missy Elliot: Rolling hills
Hard 2 Find- Calvo, Donata: Jumps
Take Back the Night- Justin Timberlake: Hill climb
4 Minute Twerk Out- Jay Ski, Quad City DJs: Sprints
In the Arms of a Stranger- Mike Posner: Active recovery
Can’t Hold Us- Macklemore & Ryan Lewis: Tapbacks
Paradise- Laidback Luke: Hill climb
Jumpman- Drake, Future: Rolling hills
Spotlight- Gucci Mane, Usher: Jumps on a hill
Show Me- Tiesto: Sprints
Side to Side- Ariana Grande: Rolling hills
Passionfruit- Drake: Cool down

What songs are you grooving to this week?

5 Reasons to Enjoy Running in the Rain.

So I don’t know about you, but down in Texas it is that time of year where it is getting warm and muggy especially in the afternoons. Since I’ve grown up here I’m basically used to the intense humidity in the spring and summertime. And of course with running, the best way to avoid training in the thick of it is to run in the early mornings! The humidity for the most part is the same but it is definitely cooler in the earlier parts of the day.

And along with humidity comes the rain! April showers bring May flowers or something like that. Well, in Texas it’s more like April showers bring some more May rainstorms! Gotta love the rain. Here are 5 reasons you should not skip your run if you see those little droplets outside.

1. Running in the rain can be peaceful. There is something so liberating to me about running in the rain. Some days you just need those days to zen out on those rainy runs.

2. What happens when you run in the rain? You get wet. Big deal. Nuff said.

3. It makes you stronger mentally when facing such conditions…and preps you for cases like racing in the rain. Sure, racing in the rain is not ideal but at least you will be ready in the scenario that it happens. And yes, you can do speed workouts in the rain. Mind over matter. Man up.

4. It cleans your muddy running shoes! CAN I GET AN AMEN?

5. Splashing in the puddles can be fun. Makes you feel like a kid again.

What are some reasons you enjoy (or don’t enjoy…I don’t discriminate let it all out) running in the rain?

Weekly Running Report.

Hi, hey and hello to you! Hope you had a terrific Easter weekend! Mine consisted of all of the things I love the most…friends, brunch, fun and of course running! I was able to get in 79.1 miles of running last week. I am tapering just a bit for my upcoming Divas Half Marathon. Anyway, let’s do a quick recap!

Monday AM- 8.10 miles at lunchtime. It was pretty warm and humid in the afternoons all week long last week. I’m definitely going to have to start shifting back to early Monday mornings as we transition into summer training.

Tuesday AM- 10.31 miles with my Irving Running Club. Still hosting the morning runs and it is going well so far. I did most of my miles with them and then a little more on my own.

Tuesday PM- 4.02 miles, 7:42 overall pace. It felt good to get in a faster (for me) run despite the humidity. And especially after the 10 mile run that morning the legs were still feeling strong.

Wednesday AM- 7.16 miles around lunchtime, work was crazy last week. I got some much needed rest and then ran when I had a little down time. Again, humid and very sweaty but it got done.

Wednesday PM- 3.02 miles to hit double digits on double run day. I discovered a new to me park in the area that is absolutely beautiful! It kind of felt like I wasn’t in DFW anymore. I’ll have to make a point to head back out to this park very soon and run some awesome hills.

Thursday AM- We had a great turnout for the morning club run. 12.12 miles total. I think people are trying to avoid the heat and humidity later in the day. I always love when we have a decent size early bird group.

Thursday PM- 3.03 miles because I had a little time in the day before I taught class that night at the gym. 15.15 miles total for the day.

Friday- REST DAY for running. This was more of an active recovery day because I took a spin class that night at CycleBar. Glow sticks and a live DJ…come on, how do you resist that?

Saturday- 20.02 mile run with my neighbor in the ‘hood. I was glad to get in another solid training run as I’m running an ultra 2 weeks after the Divas Half. I’ll do one more big run like this before Hachie 50.

Sunday- 11.31 miles on Easter Sunday. My mom gave me an Easter basket! You are never too told for Easter baskets, in my opinion.

And there you have it!

How was your Easter weekend? Did you spend time with the fam?

TGIFriday Faves.

Hey there! Hope you are having a marvelous Friday so far! Let’s get into my favorites from this week, shall we?

-A 12 mile early morning run this week with crazy colors in the sky. Crazy beautiful that is.

-Sparkling Italian water from one of my favorite places. I am simply hooked! It fact I think I will have some more today.

9 things that runners can only say to other runners. Yes, yes and yes some more.

-Dates stuffed with goat cheese. Bake then serve, done! Good gracious they are scrumptious. I have my neighbor to thank for making me these.

That’s all for this week! Have a great weekend.

What are you up to this weekend?
Long run fun, Beyonce yoga (yes it will be as amazing as it sounds), Easter celebrating with the famalam.

4 Reasons to Get Excited About a Long Run, as Told by SATC.

So I don’t know about you but for me the best part of my weekends is always starting it with a long run. It’s a great way to get the training miles in all while having fun with your friends at the same time. Here are 5 reasons to get excited about a long run as told by my SATC ladies. Let’s get to it!

1. To test out your brand spanking new running gear. Long runs are the ultimate dress rehearsal. I just love it.

2. Because mimosas at the end of a 20 mile run are always the best. Yes indeedy.

3. Because sometimes you just want to treat yourself, retail style. New shoes after running some serious mileage? Even better. Treat yoself.

4. The post long run nap. It’s like the holy grail at the end of all of your hard work. Nuff said.

What are your reasons to get excited about a long run?

Weds Spin Playlist.

Hello there! Hope you all are having a wonderful Wednesday so far! I’ve got some spin cycle jams of course for you today! Hope that you enjoy!

And be sure to check out where I’ll be teaching class next in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area! You can also follow me and my playlists on Spotify under thedancingrunner.

Let’s go for a ride!

Something New- Zendaya: Warm up
Keep It Goin’ Louder- Major Lazer: Jumps
Hotline Bling- Drake: Rolling hills
Feels Right- Jocelyn Alice: Accelerations
Paradise- Benny Benassi: Hill climb
Dance Like a Freak- DJ Class: Tapbacks
Pony (Jump On It)- Sick Individuals: Sprints
Worth It- Fifth Harmony: Active recovery
Break Free- Ariana Grande: Hill climb
You Don’t Know Me- Jax Jones: Jumps on a hill
Slow Down- Yellow Claw: Rolling hills
Planet Rock (Boys Noize Remix)- Afrika Bambaataa: Sprints
Come Get it Bae- Rolling hills, Sprint last :30
Save My Soul (Sunrise Edit)- 5 Boroughs: Cool down

What songs are you loving for your workouts/spin cycle therapy this week?

A Few Reasons Why You Should (and Shouldn’t) Run 100 Miles.

So today I thought I’d chat about something near and dear to my heart. The 100 mile distance! It’s definitely not an easy feat but I thought I’d share some reasons why you should (and shouldn’t) run a distance of this magnitude. Just some things to think about if you are thinking about hitting that registration button!

You can check out my 100 mile ultra experience here and here.

Do it for you and only you. I definitely think running this distance is not for the faint of heart. You have to go into a race like this knowing without a shadow of a doubt that you WANT to finish. Sure, it’s not going to be easy. But mentally, you have to just be ALL IN. You can train your ass off but frankly if it’s something you are not sure you want to do, it’s not going to happen for you. There are no bones about that. Be confident in your abilities and know that you are capable of making it to that finish line.

DON’T do it for social media or for bragging rights. Because let’s be honest, most people on social media do not even really understand why someone in their right mind would even want to accomplish such a feat. It takes a special kind of crazy to run an ultra, specifically a hundo. Hey, if you are looking for likes on instagram, just go run a marathon. You will probably get more likes doing that anyway. 100 miles is not about bragging rights. It’s about proving to YOURSELF that you can push past those limits and achieve something incredible. It’s an accomplishment that no one can take away from you.

Do it to immerse yourself into nature. If you are a true nature lover like myself you can totally geek out on God’s great masterpiece. You will see the sunrise, sunset, trees and if you’re lucky maybe even some wildlife. It’s freaking amazing and makes me want to sign up for another one just to go explore some more incredible parts of the world.

Don’t do it to compare yourself with your fellow runners. It should always be you vs. you when it comes to running and racing. Because at the end of the day, there will always be someone faster or who can go longer than you. Sizing up yourself against others will get you nowhere. Be proud of every milestone that you make and keep moving forward.

Do it for the experience that you will truly remember for the rest of your life. When I signed up to run the 100 miler, I truly had no idea the impact it would make on my life. It’s truly like living a lifetime in a day. More than 24 hours of being out on a trail will really change you from the inside on out. It brought out emotions and feelings in me that I did not know I had. I made best friends with total strangers and remember so many amazing people who made my experience worthwhile. All of that is what makes this distance so special.

What are some reasons why you would sign up for a 100 mile race or an ultra?

Weekly Running Report.

Hey there! Hope you had a wonderful weekend! I am here to recap last week’s running! 82.7 miles of ultra training and the body is feeling good! Let’s review.

Monday AM- 8.25 miles at lunchtime. The weather was pretty much perfection for most of last week so just enjoying the sunshine and spring flowers.

Monday PM- 3.03 miles after teaching a class at the gym. Yes, extra daylight means enjoying a little extra time outside. People watching while running is the best.

Tuesday AM- 11.18 miles in the morning with the Irving Running Club crew. I ran a few miles with them and then the last few on my own.

Tuesday PM- 2.02 mile warm up before teaching at the gym. 7:39 pace. It feels good to get back to being speedy again after all of this ultra training.

Wednesday AM- 10.13 miles at 6 am with my neighbor. Lovely sunrise coming off of the lake. It’s funny how now 10 miles in the morning just feels like nothing. I kind of love it.

Wednesday PM- 3.05 miles getting the legs moving from a long busy day at work. Running can be marvelous stress relief I tell ya.

Thursday AM- 10.26 IRC miles. Love my morning club runs…I honestly sometimes don’t know how I’d get all these miles in without this wonderful crew.

Thursday PM- Quick 3.27 mile warm up before the gym. The weather was again fantastic and we did get some cloud cover. Most times that is all I can ask for!

Saturday- 16.16 miles before yoga. I did tons of hills and the run itself was quite windy! But the sunrise was super fantastic.

Ah yes, post run stretch at Jade and Clover. They have yoga on a weekly basis now and they did a class with a hip hop/gangsta rap vibe! Kind of fun to stretch while rocking out to some Snoop Dogg.

Sunday AM- 11.27 early Sunday miles with my neighbor. And hey, miles are way better when there’s homemade brunch at the end of it.

Sunday PM- 4.11 sunset run because I wanted to push past that 80 mile mark for the week. Hey, just being honest.

And there you have it!

How was your weekend? What did you do?
Lots of running, brunch, cousin’s birthday, Deep Ellum Arts Festival.