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Chicago Marathon: 10/7/12 - Ran for the Organization for Autism Research. Brutal and AWESOME.

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Faced my fear of the water and tackled a triathlon, July 2014. I've not been in the water since.

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Quack, quack! Been wet for this one the past few years. Hospital Hill Re-Run 2015 (5K/Half Combo).

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Health and fitness are two things (among a few!) that I am very passionate about. They are the reasons I have been able to handle my work, my stress, my life. SparkPeople has been a motivating, exciting, and rewarding way to continue this lifestyle.

I teach early childhood special education as a speech-language pathologist in a positively amazing building with inspiring people and a whole lot of different programing. It is a challenge.

I work around halux rigidus in both feet; I have chronic, significant arthritis and severely limited mobility as a result of the fusion of these joints. The pain is very nearly constant - sometimes better than others. I work in it, around it, and through it because I know that succumbing to the "I can't because I have arthritis and movement hurts" mindset will actually make it worse. I invest in good workout shoes, a joint specialist, good food and just keep going. So far, it's not made anything WORSE, and my docs have confirmed that it's likely why I'm still doing so well.

I love to play on the internet, read, write, scrapbook, and watch movies.

I know what grief is; I have felt depression. I know that some days are easier than others. I know what it's like to get knocked down, to fail, and to give it all the finger and finally overcome.

I am a mommy, and not just a grieving mommy any more. My second child, Bryan (named after his sister, Bryna), was born nearly full term and healthy in October 2008 thanks to a fantastic team and research put into practice by the March of Dimes. Bryan's conception and arrival has been a continued message from our late Bryna that it is okay to keep trying, keep hoping, and keep living.

I am a mommy to three fur-babies as well: two kitties and a pooch that make our house a home. Nikki was been my running buddy for 10 years, but I now have to work around her age (16!) without hurting her feelings.

I love SparkPeople and am more than happy to share the Spark with can love it, too!

"The destination is not where we end, but where we begin again."

"Now, if you are going to win any battle you have to do one thing. You have to make the mind run the body. Never let the body tell the mind what to do. The body will always give up. It is always tired in the morning, noon, and night. But the body is never tired if the mind is not tired." (George Patton)

"The miracle isn't that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start." (John Bingham)

"A tree with strong roots can withstand the most violent storm. But a tree cannot grow roots just as the storm appears on the horizon." (HH - the Dalai Lama)

Member Since: 10/17/2007

Fitness Minutes: 34,490

My Goals:
~ Half Marathon (completed April 2009, June 2009, October 2009, and at least one every year since)

~ Mud Run/Obstacle Course (completed May 2011 and May 2012)

~ Marathon (completed October 2011 and October 2012)

~ Triathlon (completed July 2014)

~ Lose the weight I put back on after rebelling, following my second marathon (halfway there!).

~ Yoga (ongoing!)

~ Star Wars 19.3 Rebel and Dark Side Challenges to complete the coast-to-coast Kessel Run (half done January 2016)

~ Inspire others to make positive and healthy lifestyle changes.

My Program:
* When I'm not following a specific race-training plan, cardio training of 30, 45, or 60 minutes (depending on time) at least 4 days per week.

* Strength training at least 2 days per week.

* Regular stretching after workouts.

* Balanced nutrition of protein, moderated GOOD! carbs, fats, and allowing one day per week to splurge (like having pancakes!) .

Personal Information:
40-something. Aries. SLP. Hopeful. Sometimes hopeless. Believer. Driven. Drum Corps alum. Teacher. Scrapbooker. Runner. Lives in a Montage. Lover. Mommy. Daughter. Adores Clay Aiken. Geek. Obsessive. Reader. Beetle (VW) Lover. Actress. Dreamer. Loves Harry Potter. Believes in Superheroes. May the Force Be With You.

Other Information:
Alum of the 1996 Colts Drum and Bugle Corps, marching as a rook-out in the colorguard.

Read More About CRISSXAPPLESAUS - Profile Information moved here. (Updated February 4)

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