Browsing Tag



The Runner Inside Me

My feet ache, my knees hurt, my breath is heavy and my mind is telling me it’s had enough.  The humidity is high. Sweat is covering my eyes and the breeze that I felt within my first few strides has since subsided. I take a deep breath in and then let it out, praying each time my foot hits the pavement the cramp in my side will go away. With every song that plays I wait for the voice through my headphones to tell me I’ve at least run a mile, but when I unlock my phone I’m barely at a half. “I can’t do this,” I tell myself, “not today.” But, I keep going, I don’t stop. The runner inside me is not giving up. The runner inside me will not settle for less than the 3 miles I said I would run before I started this. She knows better. She knows my body is strong enough to finish. She will not let my mind, my self doubt or my insecurities win.

The more I focus on my breathing and my stride, the quieter the voice of doubt becomes. I coast off every now and then to sing a few of the lyrics playing on my iTunes, but that cramp begins to dig deeper into my side so I go back to breathing, tightening my abs to keep it at bay. I hit two miles and am starting to feel better. It may be because my feet are numb and my legs are jell-o that I know longer feel the fatigue, but I hear the voice once again with a per minute mile faster then the last. A smile crosses my face. I’m doing it. I’m more than halfway there!

By the time the 2.5 mile marker comes the sun is much higher in the sky. It’s beating directly down on my face and shoulders and I can feel the stillness of the air much more than before. I thought New York summers were hot until I moved to North Carolina. And even though I’ll take the heat over the snow any day, all I can think of in that moment is water. I’m starting to get dizzy and the ponytail on my head is becoming heavy.

You’re almost there.”

I can hear her loud and clear. She’s pushing me with every bit of strength she has left. With each bead of sweat that is now pouring off of me, she cheers me on. She will not let me disappoint myself. She knows how badly I want this. She is my best friend and my worst enemy. She is the runner inside me.

It was not easy. Actually, it’s never easy. It’s always a battle between mind and heart every time I step out onto that open road. But, when I hit that 3 mile marker, when I could finally slow down to catch my breath, the feeling inside of me was worth it all. I can’t describe it, but I’m sure you know it well. I looked down to my phone for my pace:

Mile 1- 9:43

Mile 2- 9:33

Mile 3- 9:13

I did it. She did it. We did it. I can’t thank her enough on days like this. She pushes me harder, she keeps me going, she won’t let me give up. She has faith in me when I don’t have faith in myself. She is there exactly at the moments I need her the most and because of her I have been able to accomplish goals I never thought possible. All because she believed in me. It took me awhile to find her, but I’m so happy I did. She is the runner inside me.



Toes in the Water, Kindle in My Hand

Now that I am finally caught up on the abundance of emails I returned home to, I can fill you in on my fabulous cruise getaway to the Bahamas!

norwegianThis was a much needed vacation. I really was looking forward to some time to unwind and I have to tell you, I think the best part about cruises is no access to cell phones. It was great being able to turn it off, store it away and not have to connect with reality for three whole days!

Now I’m not an expert cruiser as this is only my second cruise, by in case you’re thinking of going on one yourself here are my thoughts on the Norwegian Sky

Pool and Lounge area

The last cruise I went on was Royal Caribbean. Although I very much enjoyed that one as well, their pool area was overly crowded and quite loud. It was definitely more of a party scene. If you weren’t down by 8am the latest you most likely didn’t have a chair for the day. But, it wasn’t like that on the Norwegian Sky. It was a much more calm atmosphere and chairs were always available. The pool as well I didn’t feel was ever really crowded and since that is where I spent most of my time, I am giving it an A+

TRX Suspension Class

I loved that they held fitness classes on the ship, because I would not have been able to handle running on the treadmill that faced out the window. There is just something about staring out through the window into the ocean that makes my stomach queasy. It was a pretty good sized fitness center though and this class was great! It was 45 minutes and a full body workout and I felt it the next morning. For me, I don’t like going a whole vacation without working out, so it was worth the additional fee. And it was just me and my friend in the class, so the way I see it I paid half the cost of a regular trainer for a little 2 on 1. A+ 


I really wanted to try the Omelettes and Waffle restaurant they had each morning on the ship, but the line was a bit long both times I tried to go and they only had one person cooking so I ended up eating at the buffet instead. There was plenty of options and people moved pretty quickly through it, no waffles though (insert sad face here). Also, my group ate in The Palace restaurant one night of the cruise and I was very impressed with the food options, which from what I heard changed each night. And lastly, a dangerous plus, the ice cream machine by the pool. I can’t remember exactly the hours you could access it, but it was pretty much most of the day. Just grab yourself a cone and pour it on in. I was good though, only had it once. Overall as far as food goes, I would give it a B


Piano Bar

I just loved the piano bar! It’s where I spent two of the three nights on the ship. Very low key, not crowded at all and the servers were very attentive. We even made good friends with one of them, thanks to my friend Julie…see picture.  There’s a much funnier story behind it, but we won’t get into that now :) The piano player too was super talented and had his own twist on some pretty good classics. A+


My biggest advice if going to this port would be this: if you’re not a big drinker/partier, book an excursion. There isn’t much to do on the island itself unless you want to hit up Senor Frogs for the day. I got to spend the day with a some of my favorite people who I don’t get to see very often so that was all that really mattered so A+ for that. But as far as the island itself Nassau would be a B

Grand Stirrup Cay

This was on the Sunday of the cruise. Norwegian’s own private island! Basically the ship anchors and a ferry takes you back and forth to the island. Now I had no idea you needed a ticket to get on the ferry, nor do I still really understand the whole ticket thing. I must have missed a memo here, but by 11am the line to get to the ferry was super long so I went back up to the pool figuring I would wait it out a bit and then go back down. However, this ended up being a blessing in disguise because as I was lounging in the sun, I was able to write a lot of scenes for my third book! I actually got quite a bit of ideas down and ended up staying on the ship for the day just to continue writing. Boy was I on a roll! So it was a successful day for me and my friends that did make it to the island said it was awesome, so Grand Stirrup Cay you get an A!

A few other quick things to mention: loved the coffee bar, the abundance of Backstreet Boys that was played throughout the ship, the White Party and the Vegas Show!

I would absolutely take another cruise on Norwegian again. Do I have any regular cruisers reading today?! If so, what’s been your best one yet?