Not The Hardest Run Ever + Dealing With An Athletically Gifted Spouse

With that, happy Sunday! I hope you’ve had a great weekend.

On Friday, Dan and I packed up my car and headed 2 hours north to Columbia, SC for an early morning race. Saturday we had plans to run the Mountain In The Middle 12K.

Normally, I would just drive up the morning of, but Dan convinced me it would be best for our bodies and minds (aka we could sleep longer) if we just stayed overnight.

He was right! It was wonderful to be able to take our time in the morning to eat breakfast, drink some coffee, and well, you know, before the race.

We stayed at a Wyndam Inn less than 10 minutes from the race start. With a full continental breakfast and comfortable, clean rooms, we were very pleased with our $75/night decision.

Mountain In The Middle Race Day

Race day was freezing… and Dan was thrilled to go out into the cold to run:


It was a frigid 32 degrees at the starting line! Jeanette (who met us there), Dan and I walked around as much as possible to stay warm. The gazebo on site didn’t offer much warmth.

But as for the race itself, it was just as great, if not better, than I remembered from last year!


I had one of those runs that just feels great and reminds you why we put our bodies through so much pounding.  From start to finish, I felt strong and in control.

What made it even more sweet was remember how challenging this race was for me last year when it had been my very first trail run. I remember struggling and wondering what in the hell made me want to do this.

This year was different, I felt stronger, more confident. I felt as if I had the right to be on those trails with the other runners.

A difficult race? Of course, all trail runs are hard for this sea level girl. But it wasn’t the hardest.


Post Race Pict!

I finished solid, and even wished I had chosen to run the longer trail (we all ran the 12K instead of the 17K). I thought with my foot just coming off injury that it would be best.

I managed to place, but because they only award the 1st place winners, I am not sure of my official standings. But I think I either got 3rd overall or 2nd in my age group. I’ll let you know when the results are posted!

And I am sure it was the right decision.

Finding Passion

Remember how just the other day I confessed I had no passion for distance running? Well, this trail race changed that. It once again ignited my spirit and my confidence.

It was just what I needed.

Like all of the GoRunTrails races, this one was organized and filled with camaraderie. That’s one of the reasons I love trail running so much, the races are smaller and we’re all there to not just run our race but to support one another. One person falls, we all go and check on them. One slows down, we all rally together to get them moving.

If you’re in the Southeast, check them out! If you want to do a race, let me know and I’ll try and sign up too. I think I am going to do this one in June for sure.

Dealing With An Athletically Gifted Spouse


I mentioned it above that Dan ran this race with me. It was the first race he’s run in over a year and the longest race he’s ever run.

2 weeks ago he started training by running on some local trails (aka flat). He got up to 6 miles like it was nothing.

Impressed? I was.

He told me at the start of the race, his goal was to run the whole thing. His plan was to start in the back of the pack so he wouldn’t hold anyone up, and he could zone out.

To be honest, I knew he could run it, but I had no idea what his pace would be like. He’s not a runner after all, with just 2 weeks of training under his feet, who knew how he could handle those steep climbs? Declines?

After I crossed the finish line and grabbed some water, I decided to walk to my car to grab my iphone so I could snap a picture of Dan’s finish.  You can imagine my surprise when I saw him finish from a distance, I didn’t make it back in time!


He finished just about 5 minutes behind me and looked strong.

I was flooded with emotions, on the one side I was extremely proud, on the flip side I was a bit agitated that he did so great for having barely trained and for hating the sport of running!

Jeanette was initially annoyed by this as well. Glad I wasn’t alone!

I can honestly say that Dan is a natural at most fitness activities. He catches on fast, understands his body and is able to excel.

Frustrating for me? Yes!

But more than anything, I am proud of him. He might be better than me at a lot of things, but I can’t hold a grudge or blame him for that. Instead, I have to support and encourage him.

I won’t lie… I try to encourage him to find activities that he loves that I don’t so we can excel in our individual activities without feeling competitive towards one another.

He knows at this point, I am a stronger runner, so he never tries to race me. I know he’s an awesome paddleboarder and talented with kettlebells, so I don’t try to compare myself to him.

We have to find our own passions. Luckily, running isn’t one of his!

  • Do you have a spouse that seems good at everything?
  • Do you ever get jealous?

Thank you for all the kind words and extra prayers for my family. I am sad to say my grandmother passed away just this morning at a little after 9am. She would have been 82 next week. I appreciate everyone’s support.


  • I am so sorry to hear about your grandmother. Love and hugs are being sent to you and your family <3
    Congrats to Dan (and you) on an awesome race! That is so great 🙂

    • Thank you Rebecca. Hugs are greatly appreciated!

  • Amanda

    you can add me to the annoyed group hahaha! still proud of Dan way to GO!

  • April

    So sorry to hear about your grandmother. Lots of prayers and hugs sent to you!

    I was excited to read about this race since I ran it last year. Awesome job on placing and congrats to Dan for doing great!

    • You were there in spirit, motivating Dan the whole time!

  • Congrats!!! Glad your running mojo is back. You look super cute post race. It was FREEZING yesterday. I think my lungs still hurt from the cold air. Josh is also extremely athletically gifted.

    • Thanks! It’s great to have it back. Congrats to you too!

  • Kim

    Sorry about your grandmother!!!
    Chris is good at mot things but running is the one are I have always been able to dominate – he does just enough to max out his PT test for the military every year but he doesn’t love it.

    • Thank you Kim. Thats how Dan is, just does it enough to succeed. Not trying to break records. Still annoying though. lol

  • RebeccaL

    Such a great recap. That is a fun trail to run. Congrats to you and Dan!

  • Sheila Watkins

    So sorry about your grandmother. Hugs from Louisiana!

  • I’m very sorry about your grandma, Kindal. Let me know if there is anything at all I can do. Stinks that you were having such a great weekend with the little getaway and race, until that happened.

    It also bugs me when people do a race and have barely trained. I think a lot of them say they barely trained but they really did train. Even Dan kinda trained for it, I mean he didn’t train by running, but he does work out. So it’s not like he basically got off the couch from a sedentary lifestyle, or “going to the gym” 3 times a week and ran it. Still though, I run 35-40 miles a week, and I do feel annoyed when someone beats me in a 5K and then says “Oh, well I run maybe 15 miles a week!”. Then there’s that infamous run, you know, the one that begins in Mt. P and ends in Marion Square… the one that no one really trains for but everyone “trains for”. Yeah that.

    These trail races look fun, I have never heard of this race series but it seems neat to do! Congratulations on beating your time from last year and feeling stronger!

    • Thank you Amy. It means a lot to me. We knew it was going to happen, and the entire race I dedicated to my grandmother. She was an amazing lady. No matter how much you prepare for it, it still stings a lot. Thank goodness for such a great support system!

      That’s true, and Dan will confess to that. He’s in amazing shape and our workouts definitely help with endurance! Oh yes, I know that little race you’re talking about Still not sure if I am going to do it but we’ll see!

      We are on for Tuesday probably 6:45 though? I will double check!

      • I am 90% sure I will not do it. If I do happen to get the time I want in a 10K, I think I am going to wait until 2015 because the race is expensive and seems like a hassle. Plus I think the date for your name on the bib is past. Yeah, I’m picky like that.

        I will see y’all tomorrow at 6:45 at the PG track (every time I type or write that out in my planner I think “Are our workouts PG rated or something?” lol).

  • ahhh yes we’ve talked about the amazing spouses of ours before 🙂 glad you found a love for running again with this one

    • Haha, I knew you would understand 😉

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