From one mom to another..

I have been reflecting on my thoughts about parenting as of late as my daughter gets closer to the age 18 mark later this year and about to start senior year of high school.

From one mom to another you are going to make mistakes. Know it now and move on. Do not dwell on your assumed failures (which are really not, as long as you are trying you are ahead of the game)

Children do not come with instruction manuals on a USB drive in the delivery room (that would be so helpful)  and every one of them are different.

Face it now that you are going to barely survive their teenage years unscathed.  You will get a gray hair or two and possibly a worry line or ten.

Yes, you may need a counseling session or two. You may find yourself reading self- help books on “How To Raise Your Teenager” as well as following Circle of Mom blogs for advice such as curfews. You may question yourself as to “Am I becoming an alcoholic?”, after needing to unwind after this week’s crisis. (and no your not, Have one drink, breathe and move on to the next crisis) Reminder: Mood swings and hormones take on many forms and many neither of you may recognize until you are in the thick of it.

Teenagers are the porcupine with the sharp quills that you must be careful of. You must respect the quills, they have up to 30,000 and you never know when you may say the wrong thing for them to unleash. (Yes, I got that from a counseling session and it was the best advice EVER, Sometimes I see her as the porcupine when we are arguing and I scale it back)Porcupine

I have only one biological child which has made it even more pressure on myself to not screw her up. If you have two or three at least you have a good chance of at least one of them being sane and practical. My eggs were literally all in one basket.

Will she be smart, practical or rebellious? Will she like sports, music or art? Will she like my dance moves and my laugh or just make fun of me?  You have no say in the matter whatsoever and can change daily.

Will I ever know the “right” thing to say when she is sad or angry to make her feel better? The words always seem to escape me in the crucial moment as hard as I try. Did I miss that gene? Sometimes nothing needs to be said, Just Listen. (Can I rewind 2 years please?)

You are going to fight occasionally. You may drift apart but they will return to you as long as you have laid that foundation that you will always be there for them.

Keep that connection going, it can be something as small as driving them to the dentist or sharing a meal and asking “What’s new?”  Make them feel important and that you care about what is going on with them in their lives.

Sometimes the mother/child similarities sneak up on you. How a sappy commercial or life story comes on TV and you both get chills or come close to tears.  (cue Grandma Tala’s spirit as a stingray in the Disney movie Moana). How you see her mommy skills come out when she sees an adorable child and feel relieved that she will be a great mother one day. (Your heart swells with pride and you can say I had a role in that) Yes you did, Savor those moments.


Part of your role as a parent is letting go. Letting them make their own mistakes. That right there is probably the hardest. They really do have so much more on their plates these days with society and social media. It truly is NOT like how we had it and sometimes it is hard to relate. It is hard for them too.

As my daughter grows up I hope I have done my job in teaching her humility, endearment and to be self-reliant.

Will she be an adult at 18?  (I had to look that up on Circle of Moms) Nope, the role of independence and responsibility is one that takes years to master. I am sure she will be testing her boundaries as well as my buttons but she knows I will always be there.

She has my heart. Always will..


To one mom to another…. Just Breathe…


Recap of my Wellness Wednesday posts on Baton Rouge Moms

If you missed it I am one of the contributors for the Baton Rouge Moms website. Who would have thought it?  When I was first approached I was completely flattered. Really, you want MY advice on how to get started with running and races? Sure enough they asked for a short biography, picture to post then it began! You can read about the Baton Rouge Moms team here.

The writing schedule is very flexible plus I tend to only write when I am inspired which is good because I don’t even write on my personal blog daily. People don’t have much time to read a bunch of fluff so I tend to be direct and to the point as much as possible on both sites.

I have been writing on BR Moms since October 2013 and here are my articles to date:

Setting your sights on a Fall race

Join us for the Family Zoo Zoom 5k & Fun Run on August 23rd!

5 Tips to Stay Motivated Through the Summer Heat

Tips For Getting Your Kids To The Finish Line

Girls on the Run BR- Spring 5k

Ladies Self Defense

Aim to Maintain

Apps to Help you Stay on Track of your Fitness Goals

 10 ways to Keep Your Goals and Stay Motivated

 8 Tips for Surviving Holiday Indulgences

Running 101-Taking That First Step

More Than A Race:  Article on Breast Cancer/Woman’s Half Marathon

I tend to write about whatever is relevant at the time or to provide support on local races. Fortunately I have been getting great feedback. My only trouble is that I can’t duplicate content on my personal site. I have to keep the information separate so this is my way of sharing to you. Check out the posts when you get time and let me know if you have any suggested topics.


Baton Rouge Moms  is a one stop resource for parents in Baton Rouge and beyond. Bringing you all things Baton Rouge, family & fun. For more check out their website.

Any other bloggers out there doing dual duty? How do you manage keeping content seperate? Please share and let me know your double duty sites.

Tips for getting your kids to the Finish Line

This past weekend was a unique race experience for me. After I was done volunteering I got to join my 8 year old niece and 6 year old nephew for the Girls on the Run 5k. As soon as we knew it the kids said “It’s starting, we have to go!” We lined up in the back since my sister in law said they would probably be walking most of it. Not a half a mile into it I started hearing the excuses from my niece:

“I have to pee”
“My side hurts”
“My feet hurt”
“Can I just sit?”
“How much further?”

Her younger brother was like Superman. You could have just put a cape on him and he would have been gone. He was enjoying himself and taking in the sights along the way. When we got close to the Finish line you couldn’t keep either child from make that quick sprint to claim their medal they earned for their 3.1 mile journey. My niece wouldn’t let the volunteer put the medal on her though she saved that honor for me her Aunt Nicole which made my day. I thought I would share some tips on how to make race day a bit easier on the kids so they can claim their own Finish Line experience.

• Research the pre & post-race day activities and food options that your kids would like ahead of time.
• Choose light breakfast options for your kids to not weight them down but provide enough energy to carry them through.
• Lay everything out the night before so you’re not scrambling to get out of the house.
• Try not to over dress your kids. Check the race temps and dress for 10 degrees warmer. You will warm up within the first mile of starting your activity.
• Check your kid’s shoes before race morning to make sure there is enough wiggle room and the soles look good. Check their shoe laces before the race starts.
• Take them to the restroom 15-20 minutes before the race start.
• Allow them to drink at the water stops but not chug! A few sips will suffice.
• Watch your kids breathing. Quick, shallow breathing will bring on side stiches. Slow your pace. The faster the pace, the shorter the sequence (fast pace = one or two strides per breath, slower = three or four strides per breath).
• Encourage them to keep moving when they want to slow down or stop. Tell your kids you are proud of them and focus on the shorter targets rather than the finish line. Let’s get to that stop sign or next water station.
• If your child has any medical or physical impairments write it on the back of their race bib along with their full name, allergies as well as your name and phone number in case you get separated.
• Don’t forget sunscreen and enjoy this experience with your kids. It may be something they pass on to their own kids one day. 🙂


gotr both

Light at the end of the tunnel

A little over two years ago ago my daughter was diagnosed with Idiopathic Scoliosis during a routine annual physical. At the time X-rays revealed her S curve was at 14% overall. Twelve months later (last May) it went to 23%. Unfortunately this meant it was time for her to wear a back brace.
To put an active 13 year old that just ran a 10k into this contraption for 23 hours a day was very difficult but she understood it would be necessary to prevent surgery. The brace is needed to keep her spine straight until she stops growing which would be monitored every six months with X-rays.

Front/Back view

Front/Back view

The past year has been extremely challenging. I was worried she would lose some of her sparkling personality due to the brace but she started off with the best attitude saying “Haters are my Motivators”. She went to school with the brace under her clothes and yes, unfortunately it stuck out past her hips and buttocks being very visible. She can take it off for PE since it is only every other day and a short period of time (PE in our schools are such a joke, She tells me half the time they just stand around so she doesn’t even bother taking it off. Instead she goes to the gym with me occasionally to get her excercise in or joins me for a race.) Fortunately she has supportive friends and family so the transition was made easier. Clothes shopping has been the biggest obstacle. She can barely button her jeans, the brace wears holes in all of clothes, she prefers tops that covers the brace which is extremely hard to find. (She lives in Varsity Sports t-shirts) Vacations had to be reconsidered. Beaches and water parks were no longer practical so we went on a cruise last summer. We gave her one day out of the brace when we were in Cozumel (don’t tell her doctor).
Cozumel 4th of July Weekend cruise 2013 at Mr. Sancho's

Cozumel 4th of July Weekend cruise 2013 at Mr. Sancho’s

I have encouraged Alaina to stay physical as much as possible but her motivation has been lacking over this past year. She still has done a few races. (We take off the brace right before the race starts and leave it in a safe place)

Pics from just a few of Alaina's races the past year

Pics from just a few of Alaina’s races the past year

This Monday we had our one year update. I had a huge amount of anxiety leading up to this appointment. Would the doctor say the brace is keeping her curve in check? (She had gotten quite tall in the past year.) How much longer would she have to wear it? Would she still need surgery?
The doctor pulled up the previous X-rays and the current. Success! From the last appointment in October she increased 2% overall (of course I would have preferred a decrease, She is now at 29% overall apprx) but the doctor said that was good news. Looking at her growth plates she is about to sprout up again so he tells us the brace is no longer fitting well for her low lumbar (which has the largest curve) so he tells us she has to get a new brace made ASAP. This is disappointing for Alaina since she starts high school in the fall and this means the new brace will fit low on her again (she will have a hard time hiding the brace under her clothes) but we understand it must anchor on her hips correctly. (I hadn’t noticed how much taller she had gotten until then.)
The good news is it appears she will only be in the new brace for 9-12 months and her journey should be over. No surgery! (I breathe a sigh of relief) I tell Alaina to just “embrace the suck” and that her Sophomore, Junior and Senior year will be great! She will be able to wear whatever clothes, dresses she likes and that she will be a beautiful Swan. She looks at me and asks “What, are you calling me a Duck?” lol! I laugh! (Mouth, insert foot) I respond, “Well, your a beautiful Duck!” laughing….

She still has her Spark 🙂

• 5/1/2013: Starting point with the brace: 11 thoracic/ 14 lumbar
• 10/28/2013: 6 months in the brace: 13.5 thoracic / 14 lumbar
• 5/5/2014: 1 year in the brace: 14 thoracic / 15 lumbar
• 5/2015: Hoping this journey will be behind her. Stay tuned.

On Vacation but until then lets play a game “Name my Blog”

For the next week I get to be in Nature. ( Smoky Mountains Tennessee ) =Happy Girl

Tomorrow I will be running the Crescent City Classic 10k with several thousand friends then next week I get to be in Nature. ( Smoky Mountains Tennessee ) =Happy Girl

Yes, I am a Mountains girl over the Beach. I can not wait to a visit a place with my family that has been on my ‘list’ for quite sometime. Gatlinburg, Tennessee. ROAD TRIP!

While I am gone I would like to pick your brain.
Currently my blog is on WordPress and it will stay on WordPress but I would like to secure a domain name to host.

So right now I have it simply as:
Since my Twitter, Facebook and Instagram is ALL listed as ndeckerrunner I can take off the ‘WordPress’ on the name and simply leave it as for ease of searching or I can be a bit more creative.

Two names I have liked for awhile are:
Don’t Think, Just Go (or) A Journey to a Healthier ME
I checked and all three domains are available.

I “think” with WordPress I can still keep all my previous blog posts with the change and the links will auto re-direct. (I am a newbie forgive me and please correct me if I am wrong. This is the main reason I have not made the change already.)

Since you follow my blog I would LOVE your suggestions on the name.
Last question: Would you like to see giveaways, sponsor posts on my blog? or keep it personal as I have it currently?

Thank you!! 🙂

It’s that time again Crescent City Classic 10k

Per the Experience New Orleans website there are a few changes this year:
• More security and bag checks.
• Every group will start in a fenced-in corral.
• The top 500 fastest men AND women will receive a commemorative print.
• There will be more runners this year than last year. (26k estimated)
• You will see people running for charity.
• More Food Trucks, drinks, music and larger Fun Zone for the kids.

This race started in 1979 with 902 participants, the Crescent City Classic has long been a New Orleans tradition. It was even featured recently in Runner’s World magazine.
Runner's World March 2014 CCC10k
This race course runs you right through the best of New Orleans, including the historical Jackson Square,tree-lined Esplanade Avenue and a finish at the beautiful City Park.
This will be the race’s 36th year and is only getting bigger every year.

Thanks to Eat Fit NOLA’s Fit Find Giveaway of the Week I will be joining the thousands of runners this Saturday morning.

You can read my race recap from last year’s experience here.
It’s not too late to sign up. If you missed online registration you can still sign up at the Expo and join the fun this weekend! For more on this race check out their website.

What races have you ran in New Orleans? Which are your favorite?

Faint of Heart 4 Miler with Forge Racing

An adventure in the woods doesn’t even begin to describe this trail run at Clark Creek in Woodville,MS this past Saturday morning. I promised my daughter and stepkids a fun,challenging,scenic experience for them to get up early so we could make the 90min drive out and the fellas with Forge did not disappoint.
We arrived early to give us plenty of time to prep but all you needed was a water bottle, trail shoes and a good attitude for what is in store. A quick race meeting for the 70+ runners and a unicorn bell led the runners off (along with the trail of skittles on the ground).

Pre-race meeting

Pre-race meeting

This trail has a elevation gain/loss of nearly 2000 feet so the key was definitely to go at your own pace. There would be mud,creeks and plenty of hills to climb that made you feel like a kid again. Along with that was the sound of waterfalls in the distance which kept you pushing forward to find the next one in the distance.
I hung back with my daughter Alaina since this was a very challenging course for her as my older ones took the lead. The course was well marked and led the way well.
Alaina still trucking along.

Alaina still trucking along.

Very scenic course

Very scenic course

In the distance I could hear other runners as everyone was having a good time. It took us right at 2 hours to enjoy the nature filled route. Afterwards there was several choices of homebrew beer to choose from as well as corndogs, chips and a huge Strawberry birthday cake for Bobby one of the racers. Jeffrey Beck with Forge presented the awards for top 3 and gave out some fun raffle prizes then we headed home in desperate need of showers. Fantastic way to spend a Saturday morning.

When was the last time you did a race that made you feel like a kid again?

For more on Forge Racing see their website.
For more pictures and even a video from the race start of this race check them out on Facebook.

Finally got to do a Forge race. (Check) *This pic was "before" the race started because I clearly was not this clean and fresh afterwards lol!)

Finally got to do a Forge race. (Check)
This pic was “before” the race started because I clearly was not this clean and fresh afterwards lol!)