Another Action Packed Week for the Cram Crew!

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We had another busy week! The kids and I were able to attend Tuckfest at the Whitewater Center this past weekend and had an absolute blast! What a great event they put on there! The weather was perfect! The rain held off on Friday evening and then Saturday was absolutely gorgeous! Watching the kids complete challenges they did not think they were capable of was awesome! All four kids made it over the rope wall and earned their bragging rights! Chuck was away for the weekend, but was able to take part in the Parkinson’s walk in Central Park, NY along with his team from work. He had a great time as well!

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I was able to run the Union County Girls on the Run 5k with Kelleen and Breanna on Saturday morning. Another great event! Breanna wiped out at the 1.5 mile mark and skinned both knees. She was upset for a few minutes but the support and encouragement she got from the other runners gave her the boost she needed to continue on. Kelleen and Breanna crossed the finish line together and beat their time from their last GOTR 5k by three minutes! Throughout the race, both girls seemed to take turns saying that they were ready to give up or weren’t sure they would be able to finish. It was really cool to watch how they would try to support one other to just keep going, just a little bit further. When we got closer to the finish and realized they could beat their previous 5k time if they were able to increase the pace a little bit, they decided they were up for the challenge! They motored through and both finished strong! After the race, Kelleen congratulated Breanna on continuing on even after she hurt herself. Breanna told Kelleen she was glad they set a new record – together. These are the things that make my heart smile; helping them to create memories together while learning life lessons. We talked about it on the ride home and discussed how just like Breanna’s fall, sometimes life will knock you down but you need to be willing to get back up and push on through in order to find your true potential.

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Running has been such a wonderful part of my life over the past three years. I first started running as means to deal with stress and to get some exercise in after Neave was born. I ran a couple of 5ks and enjoyed them. I wondered if I’d ever be able to run further than a 5k. I decided to look around for training groups in the area to see if I could find one to train for a 10k. During my search I found a group in Charlotte that trains using the Galloway method. I had never heard of this so I researched it a bit more. The Galloway group trains using a run/walk method. The first session is free. You can try it out to see if it’s something that works for you. I went to my first session and loved it! Prior to joining the Galloway group, my biggest obstacle with running was the psychological part; talking myself into continuing on when it would be so much easier to turn around and head home. With the run/walk method, you know you’ll have a walk coming up in a matter of minutes. The fact that you train with a group make all the difference in the world too! The support and encouragement I’ve found in this group has been phenomenal!

Three years ago, I signed up for the half-marathon program. I completed my first half-marathon in the fall of 2011. The next Spring, I decided to sign up for the full marathon program. I ran my first marathon in the fall of 2012. I’m now hooked! In the time I’ve been in the program, I’ve now run 8 half-marathons and 3 full marathons. Using the run/walk method, I’ve been able to stay injury-free and my recovery period after a race is almost non-existent. Had it not been for this group, I’m sure I’d still be struggling through completing a 5k. My goal whenever running a race is simply to “finish, feel good, and have fun”. My pace has steadily improved as a result of the training but I don’t foresee myself trying to break any records. Several members in my running group have qualified for the prestigious  Boston Marathon! Maybe someday I’ll work toward that goal, but for now, I’m good with “finish, feel good, and have fun”.

Having a race scheduled helps to keep me on track in all aspects of my life. Our family life and schedule can get crazy at times. It would be so easy for me to cut out my running time or exercise time in order to be able to fit everything else in. I now recognize the negative impact that would have on our overall functioning as a family unit. I need to take the time for myself to exercise. Doing so helps me to be a better Mom and wife. If I miss a couple days of exercise, I can definitely see the difference in my mood and motivation. I now try to go no longer than a few weeks without being signed up for a race.

Having a race goal holds me accountable since I need to be sure to keep up with the training in order to be ready for race day. Running may not be the answer for everyone, but for me it has been life changing. I hope it is something I am able to continue with for many, many years to come. There are several couples that run together in the group as well. It’s a great way to share an activity as a couple while also getting your exercise in. After some coaxing, I talked Chuck into joining the group with me last Spring. Like me, the furthest he had done prior to Galloway was a 5k. He decided to go for it and signed up for the marathon program with me! I was able to run his first half marathon with him last summer during our training. He then went on to run his first marathon this past fall. We were able to run that race together as well. Never would I have imagined that the two of us would one day run a marathon together! It was a great experience and I feel so lucky to have been able to share it with Chuck.

The Galloway group is getting ready to start up their Spring Half and Full Marathon training programs at the beginning of May. If you have ever even considered training for either of these, I highly recommend you at least try out the Galloway program. Check out their link for more information. 
http://www.mailermailer.com/x?function=view&c=142499657e-38a28353%2a1060927v-78b551e4
John Lineberger runs the Charlotte group. Feel free to contact him at: runwalk26@yahoo.com  if you have any questions. Chuck and I are both planning to do the Marathon program again this Spring. We are looking forward to having some extra time together while also tackling another marathon together!

Now for our weekly highlights:
Chuck- I was able to fit in two runs in Central Park. I didn’t stop at the Carnegie Deli or the cupcake ATM at Sprinkles while in New York City.

Kathleen– Running the 5k with Kelleen and Breanna and watching them set a new personal record. I planned ahead and packed healthy snacks for the kids and I to have during the busy Sunday schedule of soccer and lacrosse.

Kelleen– I loved Tuckfest and doing the obstacle challenge! I chose healthier snacks this week.

Breanna-
Tuckfest was my favorite! I did all of the obstacles. I brought apples for snack all week.

Regan
– The obstacle course! I got frozen lemonade, but not ice cream after the race!

Neave
– I still like the T25. I like soccer too, but I like both! I ate lots of mango too!

Hope you all have a great week! Be sure to try out one of the free fitness classes sponsored by Charlotte Parent. There are tons of great options and they are all free! Just download your free pass and be sure to pick up your code for 100 extra points in the Fitness Challenge on your way out of class!