Monday, June 15, 2009

Steppin' Out!

Welcome to week 2!! I must start by recognizing everyone who was so quick to offer a financial gift to the Komen Foundation in support of my efforts!  You have donated $470 so far-that’s 20% of my goal!! I was only a registered participant for 30 minutes when I received my first gift from Amber who is a former classmate and wonderful friend.  Amber participated in a 3-Day event last year and has been a cheerleader for Kim and I!   I’m moved by the generosity that folks from work like the Hunter and Friedman families and Erin Morris have shown! The award for furthest distance traveled for a gift goes to the Houston family!  Julie, Matt and precious Savannah sent their donation from Germany!  Danke, Houstons!  

With the support of these donors on my mind and in my heart, I have made 9 training walks and I feel great!  Getting started was quite a process.  Who knew you needed so much gear.  Everyone recommended that we purchase some good walking shoes to get us started on the right foot (pun intended).  I visited the Strictly Running store in Columbia and exclaimed to the sales guy, who was about 16 years old and skinny as a rail-clearly a runner, “I am training for a 60-mile walk!”  I was so proud of my news!  Certainly a runner, such as himself, would appreciate the feat that is before me.  I gave him the “I’m one of YOUR people now” look and waited for his applause, fist bump, thumbs up, any sign of admiration or respect.  He put his laptop down, came from behind the counter and greeted me with a “Take off your shoes and stand flat on the floor over there.”  With one look he determined that I was flat footed (thanks, Dad) and would need a stability shoe.  He pulled from the shelf an atrocious Brooks brand shoe and asked me what size I wore.  Again, I proudly exclaimed “I used to wear an 11 but I recently lost some weight and now I am a 10!”  Perhaps this news would remind him that I am an athlete now-like him!  60-miles, losing weight…this screams OLYMPIAN!  He left me there, in my bare feet, and headed to the stock room.  They didn’t have the Brooks in a 10 but he brought a 10.5 and claimed that the extra room would allow for swelling.  Swelling?  Hmmmm….  They felt good.  “This is a textbook fit” skinny boy said.  Done!  A quick swipe of the credit card and I was headed home for my first training walk. 

I felt good in my new kicks!  They weren’t pretty but surely the other runners and walkers in my neighborhood would recognize that these were high quality sneakers, reserved only for the most serious of walkers…60-mile walkers.  I was headed out for a 3-mile walk.  The blister on my heel formed at about 1.25 miles.  Textbook?  Humph!

My second visit to the shoe store was much more pleasant.  I was more modest with my arrival sharing with the young woman at the counter that I had been in the day before and the sales person recommended these.   She asked if I was new to walking and I told her that I tended to walk on a daily basis (sans the 11 weeks when I was in a cast) but not to this extent.  I timidly shared that I was preparing for a “Big walk” and I wanted to find a shoe that would not cause a blister so early on.  She asked me how far the walk was.  Here we go…chest partially out, voice not as proud as the day before, “60-miles.”  “Wow!” she responded. Oh yes, this was MY girl!  She fitted me in a size 10 Mizuno shoe built for stability and a wee bit cuter than the bulky Brooks from the day before. 

That night I gave my newer shoes a 3-mile spin around the neighborhood and since then we have logged 30 blissful miles!  (I took a picture of my fantastic shoes but the blog won’t let us post photos.  If you are on Facebook check them out in my 3-Day album.)

In other training news, we are up one teammate!  Meredith Perlman took the plunge! When we met she was the girlfriend of our friend Ben.  Since then she and Ben have married and live in Atlanta. Meredith is the epitome of “Marrying Up!” Lucky Ben!  I am thrilled to have her join us!  Good teammates are a MUST!  We can’t wear iPods on the actual walk so I’ll be relying on my kimPod, jenndPod and merePod to help the time pass.  

I would like to end each blog with a running total of my miles logged in the training process.  I’m not tracking the time it takes me since we have all day when the walk actually gets here.  It’s not about speed, it’s about endurance!  But, I did start wearing my pedometer to track the steps.

Distance so far:  30 miles

Estimated steps (I didn’t log the first few walks):  64,134

It’s time for me to grab my shoes and get to gettin’!  


  1. I am so proud of you ... and excited that you have another teammate! I wish that I could join you ladies. Since starting my 30-day Wii challenge/walking combo, I've walked 18.2 miles but have 88699 steps total with all activity. Somehow though, I feel like I haven't accomplished much. It would be nice to be with you all to stay motivated. I can't wait to hear how the rest of the adventure goes! I'll send you some new iPod mixes soon; at least you can use them while you train!

  2. Thanks, Michelle! I loved reading your blog updates from Ireland last year (can you believe it has been a year) and hope you will enjoy these just as much. At least there are 4 of us to keep you entertained! Send those tunes-I'm pumped about some new jams to keep the pep in my step!

  3. Loving the updates my friend! Keep on are off to one hellava start! So proud of you! Cheering from Oregon! Hope you can hear me. :)

  4. Hey I got the ugly Brooks shoes yesterday! I don't think they are too bad but they are in their versitility section but have the wide even bottom for stability. They are the cool new kicks like you have but they got me through 3 miles yesterday!

  5. Flat-footed is better than fat-footed! I am really proud of you Jen!!

    See you real soon! Dottie

  6. Meredith, Im in the Brooks family too. They have too much orange for my Gator/Hurricane hating self but they were far more comfortable than everything else for me.