The Minivan Mom Runs – Part 2

It was 1994 and we were in Spanish Wells, Bahamas for a family reunion.  I know, awesome place for a reunion right?  There are some definate perks to having missionary grandparents.

This was the summer that it became apparent I would no longer be able to compete in the high jump at school because of back issues so I was trying my hand at running.  Spanish Wells is 2.5 miles long and a half mile wide so I mentioned that it would be fun to run around the whole island.

“I’ll go with you,” my cousin Sean piped up. 

“Great!” I said, glad for the company.  And especially glad that it was Sean as in my eyes he was the bees knees – he still is. I have a lot of admiration for him.

“I’d like to come too, if that’s alright,” my Uncle Cletis said from across the room.  He’d recently begun running himself (or maybe he’d been running for awhile, I forget).

“Fun!” I exclaimed.  “We’ll go early in the morning before it gets too hot.”

Except, there was just one thing.  It was the hottest summer EVAH down there.  Which meant that by 7:30 am, which is when we rolled out of the house, it was already in the ’90’s.

About a half mile into the run, I realized I’d made a grave, grave error.  Graaaaave error.  My first clue came when I looked down at Sean’s calves as he kept pace in front of me.  They were thin and muscle-ly.

“Do you run a lot?” I heaved, sweat dripping into my mouth.

“I have been,” Sean replied.  “Actually, I’ve been biking a lot.   I’ve been doing 70-80 mile bike rides along with my runs.”

“Oh,” I said, swallowing hard.  I think Uncle Cletis chuckled.

A mile into our trip, I thought I was going to die.  The only saving grace was the fact that the scenery was spectacular.  Then we came to a place in the road that was blocked.

“Let’s just run this stretch on the beach,” Sean said all perky like.  Honest to God, I don’t even think he was breathing hard.  Not one to give up and be left behind I agreed with as much enthusiasm as I could muster and we headed onto the white sandy shore. 

Running in and of itself is hard.  Running when it’s 10,000 degrees out is harder.  Running in 10,000 degrees on sand is torture.  As we jogged next to the crystal blue waters and I stared at Sean’s legs, I realized that I’d bitten off way more than I could chew.  But I would not give up.  I told you – competition killed the cat.

The last half mile did not find me hitting any kind of stride.  While the guys picked up the pace (just slightly…they were being nice to me), I huffed and puffed and no longer tried to pretend I was having fun.  I’ll never forget the sight of that house as it came into view.  I won’t foget it because there were angels flying above singing “Hallelujah” as white doves flitted in and out of the windows.

It was glorious.

And I didn’t run with the guys again that week.

I am two weeks into my new committment of running.  I’m doing ten minutes miles now.  I’m waiting for it to get easier so I can up my time a little.  I didn’t have a lot of time to run last week due to kiddos having colds and being unable to go to the gym, but I’m back in it this week.  I will up my distance to a mile and a half next week. 

I still don’t like running.  But, I have to say, I’d much rather be doing it on a Carribbean island, staring at my cousin’s legs than at the gym staring at the backside of the guy in front of me.

Just sayin’…


FYI – I wanted to make you all aware of a couple of things coming up.  This Saturday I will be leading a Lunch and Learn session for the St. Louis Bloggers Guild on publishing for the Popular Market.  The official title of the seminar is “So You Wrote a Novel – Now What?”  It will be from 11:00-12:00 at the Stone Spiral Cafe in Mapelwood, Missouri.

Also, on Friday, Feburary 26, our church is hosting a Ladies Night Out from 6:30-10:00.  There are 13 different breakout sessions to choose from, one of them being blogging, which I am leading.  I will be discussing the ins and outs of blogging, some do’s and don’ts and how to monetize your blog.  Beginners and advanced bloggers are all welcome.  You can find out more information on how to register here.

Happy snow day to you all!


  1. Oh! Send me your blogging notes! PLEEEEEAAAASSSEEEEE! And um, I am sick of having runners for friends. I despise running and I really, really stink at it. I keep getting invited to go running with friends and I do it and I DON’T KNOW WHY! What is wrong with me?

  2. Nothing, Tiff. Nothing is wrong with you. I’m not a runner. I’m a girl who wants to get rid of baby flab and knows that running is the fastest way to do it. I don’t enjoy it and can’t envision myself ever enjoying it. I’m with you running = BOO! 🙂

  3. I started running on the Wii Fit last week. I’m not sure how accurate the distance and timing is, but I feel pretty good regardless, and it’s helping my weight loss!

  4. Landon singing HAPPY BIRTHDAY was precious.

    Seriously, he has the most adorable little voice.

    That video will be a treasure for you!

  5. I too tried to run the entire island of spanish wells. i emphasize TRIED. I also ran with Cletis and I think I made it slightly half way and i literally collapsed on the side of the road. I was conscious…but that was about it. I had to embarrassingly drag myself off the ground and walk the rest of the way. And the sad thing was this was only about a month after my soccer season was over. I attribute it to the heat…yeah…that’s it. But I don’t even want to think about running that anytime soon!

  6. Yes, Steph! Precisely. It’s the heat. Maybe, juuuust maybe, the island has powers that allow only those with the Y Chromosome to physicially withstand the heat.

    Or maybe you and I are jsut a couple of wimps.

    I dunno. 🙂

  7. Hey the back side of the head in front of you was me, is it that horrible to look at?? Ha! 🙂

  8. Nope. You’ve got lovely hair, Julie. I was admiring it. 🙂