All posts by Jenny

Why I Love Running

This makes me laugh every time I see it:


It’s so true! We finally had a break in the weather here in Central PA last week, and I went out for my first training run of the season. I took a hiatus from running after my half marathon in September, so I knew not to expect it to be my best performance.

I hope I’m not alone when I say that during almost every single run  there comes a point when I think to myself, “Why in the world am I doing this.” But just as it never fails that that thought enters my head, it also never fails that I feel completely AWESOME after I’m done.

My first love is and probably always will be lifting weights, but there are a few things I truly do love about running (even if I don’t always think of them while running):

The Power of Using Your Entire Body – There are times while I run that I mentally “sit back”, and notice the sheer power that comes with setting your entire body in motion. It gives me a chance to fully appreciate the mechanics that go in to what is normally described as merely putting one foot in front of the other.

Sweating – It sounds weird, I know. But I’m normally not a “sweater”. When lifting I may break a slight one, but it’s only when running that I break out in to a full on sweat. And perhaps it’s mental, but I feel like it cleanses my pores AND my spirit.

“The Glow” – Tying nicely in to the above, lets talk about the glow that comes after a good run. This one may be directed more towards the ladies. I don’t know about you, but I love how my face looks perfectly sunkissed/flush for a few hours after a good run. It’s nature’s perfect blush.

The Scenery – Running outdoors is so addicting. One of my personal favorites it trail running. I love having to bob and weave my way through the woods.  And with the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run in particular –  how can we NOT fall in love with the beautiful scenery that comes with running in our nation’s capital! The cherry blossoms, the monuments, the bridges, etc.

and last but certainly not least………..

Carb loading – is there really anything more that needs to be said? 🙂

See you out there!


Jenny is a 30-something working mom, wife, avid weight lifter, and four time half-marathoner who blogs at

Back in the Saddle

a145f00a0bb137187f3148a790e25fc6I’ve been hard pressed to get out and do any “decent mileage” runs in quite some time. During winter months, I normally will run 2-3 miles at most because that’s about all I can handle boredom-wise when running on a treadmill.

With the “polar vortex” we’ve been experiencing here in PA, winter just doesn’t seem to be letting up! But with only just over 2 more months until the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run— it’s time to get back in the saddle!

Whether you’re like me and take a hiatus during winter months, or you’re just coming off an injury related break– the first time you lace up those shoes and strap on that Garmin can be quite frustrating with regards to time/pace. But I do try to keep it in perspective. Here are 4 things I’ve done to try and keep myself in check:

1. Keep it in Perspective

There have been so many times that I have been ready to just throw in the towel. It’s not even funny. Throwing hissy fits within myself because I didn’t finish my (for example) 5 miles “fast enough.” How about let’s keep it in perspective—I was ABLE to run 5 miles! Some people aren’t fortunate enough to be able to say that. Some would give anything to be able to run one.

2. Find a Newer Runner to Share in the Experience

I started running in December 2010. I ran my first half marathon in October 2011. I have since run 3 other half marathons, but I’m telling you, I have YET to feel the same runners high as I did when I completed my very FIRST one. It’s still there, but just not as intense. Because of that, I felt like my love affair with running was waning a tad bit.

What renewed my enjoyment in running has been living vicariously through others as they complete their “running firsts” milestones! I have several friends who are planning to run their very first 5k this year, and I plan on being there for each one!


IMG_20130414_084021_461_thumb 3. Make It a Family Affair

This actually kind of pairs well with number two for me. My daughter Mackenzie (she’s 10)will sometimes join me on my runs. It makes it not so much about the running as it is about picking a healthy activity to be done with your family. We actually practice her spelling words while we run! Plus (and this is how it pairs with #2) – we have the opportunity to hit new milestones together. Slowly I would increase the distance or the time that Kenzer and I spent running. And before I knew it, she had run her very first 5K with me last year! This past Thanksgiving, we ran her second “Turkey Trot 5K”- and she shaved a full 5 MINUTES off her time!


4. If All Else Fails Say “Screw it”

Now not so fast– make sure you read this in it’s entirety—I’m not saying stop running altogether. Or giving up. I’m saying take the pressure off yourself. Leave the Garmin at home. Don’t start the running app on your phone. Just go out and enjoy it.  Remember why you started running in the first place, and reflect on how far you’ve come to this point. You’ll slowly get back to where you left up, but enjoy the journey until you get there.


See you out there friends!


Any more words of advice for the good of the cause? Do you run year round, or take time off during winter?

Jenny is a 30-something working mom, wife, avid weight lifter, and four time half-marathoner who blogs at


Quirky Running Habits!

With the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run only a few short months away, and the recent warm spell we had in my neck of the woods (Central PA)– I’m starting to get those little butterflies in my stomach made up of excitement, joy, and nerves all at the same time!

I don’t know about you, but I’m less than thrilled with treadmill running and am eager to get my run on outside!


While doing some interval training the other morning, I passed the time by thinking about some of my quirky running habits. It’s funny how “set in our ways” runners can be! I thought I’d share a few of my non-negotiable habits with you:

  • I Don’t Wear the T-Shirt Prior to the Race – Call it a superstition, but I feel like it would be unlucky to wear my race t-shirt prior to actually running AND FINISHING the race. As if perhaps the “running gods” would swoop down and trip me prior to crossing the line. However, I DO wear it that day (along with my finishers medal of course!) once I’ve cleaned up after race.
  • I Have a Running “Persona”, Jenny Bennie – The first half marathon I ever ran, I ran for my uncle, who had passed away of cancer a few months prior to the race. He always referred to me as Jenny Bennie, and I had that name ironed on to the shirt I wore for the run. Since then, I’ve almost always signed up for runs under this exact name. At packet pickup I usually get a smile out of the organizers.
  • I Always Wear Sunglasses – I think this one goes back to my first half marathon as well. I have this big pair of sunglasses that I always wear when I run. Even if it’s cloudy or rainy and I have no use for them, I’ll wear them on my head. (My ponytail keeps them from falling off the back.) It’s like a little security blanket!

Here’s a shot of the shirt and the sunglasses during my first half. The future was so bright, I HAD to wear shades.


  • I Don’t Look at the Route – I know, I know……. this is the EXACT opposite of what pretty much everyone recommends as far as preparing for a race. Leave it to me to not follow directions. So *why* do I do this?! I don’t want to psych myself out. AND – it makes it feel like more of an “adventure” to me.
  • Pre-Race Banana, NO Exceptions – I’ve tried plenty of other pre-race snacks, but the banana just works for me. Now it’s an absolute MUST!! My belly doesn’t get upset during the run, my energy seems to stay even throughout the run, and it doesn’t feel like it weighs me down.

Now it’s your turn! What’s your habit – lucky pair of socks? Same dinner the night before? Share away!!


Jenny is a 30-something working mom, wife, avid weight lifter, and four time half-marathoner who blogs at