about me

Hello and welcome! My name is Heather and I am a lover of dogs, running (most of the time), wine, lazy days on the couch, runDisney, shoes, and food. I'm a graphic designer living in the 'burbs of Chicago with my husband and two (some may say large) dogs. I was a competitive Irish Dancer for twenty-some years and 'retired' back in 2007, which put me in the market for a new activity to stay in shape. I knew that my metabolism would start to slow down (I was nearing my mid-twenties, after all) and I would no longer be able to eat all the food I wanted, especially since I wasn't burning hundreds of calories at dance classes throughout the week.

At the suggestion of my husband, I tried running. I signed up for a local 5k to get me motivated to train, and I've been off and running (ha!) since then. I've had a few dips and lulls in the training since that first 5k about three years ago, but I always come back to it. I enjoy registering for races, because it gives me the boost I need to get off my butt, as well as giving me something to look forward to. In 2012, I decided to register for my first half marathon, and ended up completing three that year and four the next. None of them were very pretty, and not fast by any means (I'm quite the slow lady), but I finished, and that was a great accomplishment for me. My first half marathon was the first time I had tried a training plan, and now I LOVE having a plan to keep me accountable.

I had a lot of doubts regarding my running abilities, and even though I had some problems during my first year of half marathons — my first half I was throwing up at mile 6, the second half was extremely hot (my body has never reacted well to exercise and heat) and my third I had to skip because of being sick and unable to train for the weeks leading up to the event, which meant I wouldn't be able to keep the pace of the race — I've always had fun and cross the finish line with new goals in mind for the next race. I've found that the more races I complete, the more confidence (and less nerves) I have, so obviously I keep signing up for more! And of course, one of the most fun races to participate in are those that runDisney puts on!

I have become more and more active in the running community since I started this blog, and have found it to be filled with kind, motivating, inspirational, and helpful people. It's wonderful! In early 2017 I joined the Oiselle Volée team and have been so happy about that decision. I've met so many amazing women through the online community and from meetups. I was afraid to join the meetups, since I am much slower than most, but it has been a great chance to make new friends and usually it makes me run faster trying to keep up (while they slow down so I can).

I've also learned that in order to become a better runner, I had to also incorporate other types of training — cross and strength — as well as focus more on my nutrition. When I started a new job back in July of 2017, I slowly started gaining weight from eating out too much, drinking too much pop, and eating all the food and candy available in the office. Soon I was at my heaviest weight yet. I was embarrassed by photos where I looked so much larger than others. I decided to finally do something about it and joined Beachbody after telling so many people no multiple times. I figured the accountability would help after all the failed attempts on my own. Look for more details about this journey to come on a new page soon.

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