Why I Don’t Totally Hate Running Anymore

Anyone who knows me knows that I do. Not. Run. I hate running, passionately. It’s uncomfortable, I can’t breathe right, I am sore afterwards, I get all red, I sweat profusely, and I can think of about 1000 things I would rather do than to go running. When I was in Jr. High and we had to run the mile, I was like “nope, I am just going to walk this, I am not even going to try to run it”. I was embarrassed that I couldn’t really run, never had good endurance, and oh did I mention that my legs are about 2ft long? When I walk with my husband I have to take 2 strides for every 1 of his. It’s a chore folks.
  I thought that you had to be athletic to run. We can all safely assume that athletic is not a word I would ever apply to myself and I would discourage myself before I even got started. Then, when I would get the occasional whim to go for a run, I would make it about a 50 yards basically sprinting and then just want to go home and cry because I was so out of shape. I had no clue what I was doing (still really don’t). And on top of all of this – many of my closest friends are runners. Legit marathon runners yo. I thought that I should just content myself being the cute, chubby girl with the nice rack. (Hey – work with what ya got right?) But ya know, it is a little hard to look at yourself in pictures with beautiful, in shape, healthy girls when you are the chubby one (nice rack or not).

 Then, these stupid running events started to turn into social events too. I kept getting invited. Finally, I said yes – I will run the freaking 5K. I think that a good portion of the reason I agreed to this is because they are going to give me chocolate at the end.
Well, in an order to not sorely embarrass myself like I did on the Turkey Trot 2 years ago (my ridiculously health mother-in-law finished in about half the time it took me… yeah.) I decided I should actually train to run this thing. I started in September, so I am definitely still a newbie to this whole running business and much of it is fueled by the desire to not be embarrassed. I decided to set realistic goals for myself and followed a 5K training plan. I have been running 3-4 times a week for the last 7 weeks and my progress has been slow and arduous, but incredibly rewarding. I jog, I walk, I run to get it done, but I finish. Yesterday I ran 3 miles. Today I am sore, but definitely feel a sense of accomplishment.
One thing that has helped to motivate me (besides health and fear of humiliating myself) is actually a new ap I downloaded, Zombies, Run!
It is a fun ap that puts you into a storyline about the zombie apocalypse. You are a “runner” for a small township and they send you out on missions to collect information and supplies. They use your own music in between radio transmissions to you and sometimes, zombies chase you. When they chase you, you have to speed up for 30-60 seconds to outrun them or else you lose your supplies. The supplies are important too because they help you build up your township. This ap has actually made running fun for me. I am totally invested in the story line and characters now too. I don’t know what I am going to do when I run out of missions!
Hopefully by then this running thing will be more of a habit and I won’t have to rely on wanting to know what happens in the story to get my butt off the couch! Wish me luck guys – that 5k is Sunday!

What I Wore Wednesday: Mustard, Cinnamon, and Cognac

No - I didn't roll in my dinner. These colors are quintessential autumn and I may have done some "back to school" shopping for myself to bulk up on my fall clothes. Both outfits shows off a new fall purchase :)
I got this lovely cinnamon-orangey wrap sweater from Modcloth.com and new boots from amazon.com!

Again, wearing the new boots, and a new mustard-yellow dress from modcloth.com. I also re-styled my leopard belt by flipping it backwards to match the cognac brown of my boots!
I also wore these sweet little owl earrings both days that my cousin gave me as a late birthday gift :) Love them and the owls are perfect fall critters! :)

There are only two this time and I know I haven't done a WIWW post in a while, but can I get real with you guys? I was really sick of looking at pictures of myself. Not because of a lack of self-confidence issue, clearly... I was sick of it because I have been feeling pretty convicted about my vanity and getting caught up striving for outward beauty.
Do I think women should take pride in their appearance? Absolutely.
Do I think we should spend all of our time shopping, dying, waxing, and photo editing to get to a look we are proud of? No. 
I am never going to be the person who says women shouldn't invest time and effort into the way they look because of some "body is a temple" reason. However, I think that we should tread cautiously. It is so easy to get sucked into striving for an ideal, external beauty while sacrificing our internal beauty.
It says in Peter 1: 3-4
 Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight.
Now, not that I don't love a good braid and some fine clothes, but I am desperate to have an inner-beauty that shines through, no matter what my hair, make-up, and clothes look like. That kind of beauty takes time and investment too, and probably time and effort that will be better spent than an afternoon on pinterest or in a salon.
What about you? Do you ever feel convicted about your vanity? How to you draw a line?

Fall Bucket List Progress

Oh my goodness, I feel like life has definitely gotten in the way of blogging here folks. Sorry about the extended time away! I thought that since we are in the full swing of autumn that I would update you on how I am doing on my Fall Bucket List!

Take an autumn nature walk – I am checking this off, because I do this every day twice a day with my pups. If I had an extra hand I would’ve been taking tons of photos of the fall beauty all around me, but alas, I only have two hands, so I just say a little prayer of appreciation instead. Fall makes me quite introspective and contemplative so I have especially been enjoying these early morning quiet times outside… that is when my dogs aren’t yapping their fluffy little heads off at other dogs.

I am also checking off decorate your porch for the season – now technically I can’t really decorate my porch because of the Nazi Homeowners Association where I live BUT I have fall-ified my condo. I have twig wreaths, white pumpkins, and owls scattered throughout my living room which is good enough for me. I am already thinking ahead to Christmas d├ęcor… I know it’s awful. I just can’t help myself.

Get a new fall hair-do is done! You may have seen if you follow my self-absorbed instagram feed:@ashb_86

I love the darker do AND the plus side is that this will fade out into my natural dark brown, so no more dye jobs for awhile.

Make my own Halloween costume – also done-zo! My buddy Molly and I have matching costumes that we made and I am SO excited for the big reveal. Why did we make these a month early??? Izzie may also have a matching costume… J Stay tuned to see if we win big at the work costume contest!

I haven’t baked pumpkin muffins yet – BUT – I have eaten some, so that counts right?

My final thing to cross off this list, but continue doing, is to go running regularly in the crisp fall air. I have been doing that and I think am going to need to do a whole separate post about why I have been so much more consistent and that I may… might… perhaps actually enjoy it. I don’t even know who I am anymore! Haha

I also have a couple more bucket-list items scheduled for the upcoming weeks, and AlliFerg said I can come over and rake leaves to check off another one, so I will be keeping very busy this Autumn! How are you doing on your Fall traditions?