Reasons to Smile

Today’s outdoor run was my first in about three weeks. A few things contributed to the lapse: catching a cold that knocked me down for a bit, the weather changed back to normal Minnesota winter conditions and then just tackling the mental battle to get back to it again. Outside of the week of being sick, I was still able to stay active, but it was in the gym doing cycling classes and general strength training versus running outside. As the weather warms, I hope to get back to running five times per week. I also need to get back into the pool, but that’s another blog post.

Back to today’s run. The sun was shining, making it look warmer than the 34° F air temperature felt. I got a stomach cramp less than a quarter-mile in, but I’m blaming that on the granola bar I shouldn’t have ate just minutes before leaving the house. I also took a slight detour about halfway through the run to descend down a side trail and run straight back up it (200 feet ascent in about a quarter-mile distance). I thought the climb would wear me out for the rest of the run, but it actually felt like it was getting easier after leveling out. It was fun.

Here’s the details:

  • Distance: 3.30 miles
  • Total time: 27:34
  • Average pace: 8:21/mile

The last few days have been humbling. A few more generous donations were made to my Team Save the Children fundraiser, bringing my total to $851. When I signed-up for the team back in December, I was nervous if I’d meet the $500 fundraising minimum before the race in July. Now we’re on pace to double that – making an even bigger impact in the lives of children around the world that urgently need help. The support from friends, family and people who I’ve never even met has been truly amazing. I hope to make them all very proud on race day!

Helping Girls Grow into Bold, Empowered Women


Today is International Women’s Day – a day to raise awareness and honor the movement for a more inclusive and gender equal world. As I reflected on the day, I was reminded of the amazing work of Save the Children and how they’re helping girls grow into bold, empowered women.

In the photo above, 11-year-old Sarawati from Nepal tells Save the Children she wants to run an NGO when she grows up. She attends a meeting at the children’s club where Save the Children advocates for child rights and against child marriages. With support from the government and local partners, they educate and raise awareness to end child marriages so girls like Sarawati can stay in school and follow their dreams.

Hearing stories like Sarawati’s make me so proud to be a part of Team Save the Children for this summer’s LifeTime Tri Minneapolis Triathlon. I know the funds that we raise are going to help make a positive impact in the lives of children around the world. This has me motivated to keep adding to my fundraising total between now and race day. And when race day comes, I’ll be extra motivated to make my supporters proud, knowing that together we’re making a difference.

To make a donation, please visit my personal fundraising page here.

*Photo and Sarawati’s story provided by Save the Children