Big Girl Dance Class with Todd & Whit!

Hello readers! I have an exciting story to share! About 3 weeks ago, I came across a shared screenshot on Instagram from one of my running friends, Elana. It was a post in which Whitney Way Thore announced a pop-up Big Girl Dance Class being held in Pittsburgh on 6/19/18! I immediately signed up and waited for the day to come!

I knew I had to leave work early if I wanted to get to Rex Theater (South Side) before the line got crazy long. I arrived and parked around 5:15. I had a mini meltdown because I thought I lost both my license and debit card. I put them in my skirt before I left work and thought they fell out of my pocket. They ended up getting buried deep inside my pocket, not knowing the pocket wrapped around the entirety of my waist until that time. Crisis averted! I placed my purse inside of my trunk and did so with much difficulty. As I pulled my hand out, I scraped the top of my thumb inside of my trunk.

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Only me. I figured, it can only go up from here!

When I finally made my way to the event location, the line had roughly 30 people in it. I quickly got in line to hold my place, while I waited for my friend, Elana, to show up. The show’s crew came around with clip boards, in which we were required to sign a waiver for the show if we were to make an appearance! *Fingers crossed we do!*

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Just before going inside.

Anyway…we stood in line for over 1 hour. There was some sort of delay; I’m still unsure of what happened. I’m glad I had a buddy to keep me company while we waited. We heard people screaming and around the corner came Buddy! It was pretty surreal to see someone in person whom I’ve seen on television dozens and dozens of times. He walked down the entirety of the line and waved to everyone. I’m super proud of how much he has accomplished in his continued sobriety and his openness about it. Way to go Buddy!

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Things I wish I knew Before I Started Running.

With seven years of experience under my belt, it’s safe to say I’ve learned a thing or two about running. I’ll be the first to admit, as a seasoned runner, I sometimes forget that I wasn’t always runner savvy. I’m here to talk about things I wish I would’ve known before I started running in hopes they might be helpful tips for you.

OMG, SHOES!

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I can’t stress enough the importance of a good pair of running shoes. When I first started running, I got a pair of shoes from Marshalls for less than $30. I’m not saying you need to sell your soul for a pair of soles (#dadjoke), but it’s important to find a proper fitting shoe that also works with your biomechanics.

My first pair of running shoes were a size too small because I went with my usual shoe size. A good rule of thumb is to purchase a half size to full size larger than your everyday shoe because your feet will expand as you run. If your shoes are too small, you put yourself at risk for black toenails, blisters and foot pain.

I also recommend heading to a local running store for a free gait analysis. Staring blankly at a big wall of shoes can be a bit intimidating and overwhelming, but don’t worry. The specialists will spend time with you to get you in the correct pair of shoes.

WINTER RUNNING.

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There are questions I get asked by non-runners, especially this time of year. A frequent one is, “Don’t you get cold in the winter?” When I was a novice runner, I didn’t want to go outside if the weather wasn’t in my favor. I hate being cold! When I trained for my first marathon in 2012, however, I didn’t have a choice. I had to get out there and put in the work if I wanted to see results.

My first training run with the Steel City Road Runners was in a snowstorm. Not only did I survive, I also made a friend I now view as a brother. I didn’t need to dress like Randy from A Christmas Story during that run and neither do you. If you’re not sure what to wear, Runner’s World has a great tool! Also, I often tell people to dress for the finish and not the start.

Yes, there are going to be times when the treadmill is necessary due to unsafe conditions (i.e. ice, negative wind chill). However, for me at least, I usually opt outside. That’s why we train. You will become stronger from these character building runs – not only physically, but mentally as well. Plus, you never know what can happen on race day. If you live in Pittsburgh, you know that we can sometimes experience every season in a week’s time.

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Gift Idea for your Runner Friends Whom Are Expecting!

Hello! Do you have special people in your lives whom are expecting a baby? Do they also happen to be runners? Not sure what to get them? Well, you’re in luck! I’m here to show you something that I recently put together for 2 very close friends of mine! They absolutely adored it!

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Top left: I purchased this adorable personalized race bib onesie from a seller on Etsy. The number I chose has meaning behind it. A while back, I asked dad-to-be what his favorite numbers were (didn’t say why I was asking), and then I combined them into one number.

Top right: Dad is a marathoner, so I had to purchase this onesie from Gone For A Run. They have the best gifts!

Bottom left: I also got this shirt from Gone For A Run! They had awesome deals at the time. Plus, what runner doesn’t love a fresh change of clothes?

Bottom right: Obviously, the most important thing a runner-to-be should own is a good pair of shoes! Saucony has the cutest little baby shoes!

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Next, I thought about some important items that runners use and/or need. I then translated them into baby world, and here’s what I came up with!

Top left: Baby Blanket (HEAT SHEET after a race).

Top middle: Sunglasses (for those sunny runs and to keep bugs from flying into your eyes).

Top right: Waffle Teether (carb loading is a common thing for distance runners).

Middle left: Boogie Wipes (to control those snot rockets).

Middle: Gerber Banana Puffs (we all know that runners love bananas – a staple at races).

Middle right: Baby Socks (next to shoes, socks are crucial).

Bottom left: Butt Paste (one word: chaffing).

Bottom middle: Baby Bottle (runners need to stay hydrated).

Bottom right: Rattles (celebrate every moment).

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I put everything into a basket that can be reused (P is for their last name). And I purchased a custom running medal from eBay, which replaced the need for a bow or ribbon. I thought it would be a cute touch to the theme of the gift!

So, there you have it! A perfect gift for the little runner-to-be in your life!