Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
- Robert Frost
Here at Running on Fumes, I believe in a few basic things –
Mission: Running on Fumes reinvents humor in a world of crazy. While everyone is metaphorically “running on fumes”, we are quite literally running on fumes. At RoF, topics like motherhood, racing, military-affiliation, and fitness are explored without boundaries. By incorporating funny anecdotes and third-person sarcasm, readers are privy to a plethora of reminiscing.
Vision: Running on Fumes envisions a world filled with books, wine, coffee, and running shoes. From a bookstore for thirsty patrons to gear designed for the common runner, RoF will be a site to bring people together with conversations where humor overflows.
Me? I just wear a lot of black and laugh too loudly. (…but I’m serious) Ok, so I also have a dark sense of humor, am an overachiever, and know all the songs to Disney’s Frozen.
My journey with Anytime Fitness began in November 2010 in Oklahoma, specifically a small city named Lawton, home of the U.S. Army’s Training Center. Lawton would be a turning point in not only my fitness career, but also a military career a few years later. More to come on that –
Previously, Anytime Fitness Roanoke was my new home away from home. I have always considered the gym to be my second home because it’s a place where I feel comfortable, where I’m surrounded by like-minded people, and a calm to my storm. For me, Anytime Fitness is more than a gym; my values and desire to be strong are echoed in each person I meet. I bleed purple. Have you met those people who have a tattoo of the Running Man? #goals My dream is to own an Anytime Fitness location, so being an H2i was the second best thing I can do!
In Spring 2020, amid a pandemic, I accepted a government position working for the USAF. I coordinate many programs and have a ton of fun. More laid-back than anything else I’ve done, even managing gyms, it allows me to maintain contact with the military, as well as utilize my best administrative and extroverted skills. It took several years to get in; I’m not hurrying to get out.
It’s no secret what I wanted to do with my life. From the time I was toddler, I always wanted to be a teacher. How does this relate to fitness, you ask? Teaching and training go hand in hand. In my opinion, there’s no better way to learn than to teach oneself.
I’m a runner. At last count: 9 half marathons, a 10k, and countless 5k’s. My personal best was fully realized in December 2021 when I ran a 2:10 half marathon in Dallas, TX. The downside is I paid for my training – a torn meniscus should have prevented me from reaching this goal, but I’m too stubborn to quit. Many weeks of physical therapy ensued and now I fully understand the benefit of strength training consistently.
During my time in the US Navy – told you I’d get back to that – running was mandatory. I didn’t particularly enjoy it. It was just “ok”. Funny how once people stop telling you what to do, you learn to love it. The first day I received my golden ticket out of the Navy, I decided to run my very first half marathon. What an experience! Hooked.
Some of the training cycles are tedious. Some are too long. Fortunately, I quickly learned what worked well for me and now I create my own plans. Alternately, when I’m hating the plan, there’s only one person to blame. Ehhhh, life goes on. Only a few things in life compare to the feeling of accomplishment when crossing the finish line after all the sweat and tears (and sometimes even blood for those unfortunate few).
Currently in the throes life with an almost six-going-on-sixteen “baby” girl (trust me, it’s real), so balancing work, life, family, and working out is tough. Add a training cycle, an out-of-state race, or even long hours and it can create havoc. My mini-me is the most flexible and forgiving person I’ve ever met. Her grasp of expression/language makes me proud; also, terrified. From a mother’s perspective, I try to rationalize what a strong, young girl she is because she sees how much passion I have for the things I love to do and I’m creating an independent, strong-willed, passionate (future) woman. We run together, we have long talks about her feelings, and we tell stories. But you know what the biggest lesson I could ever hope to teach her? BE KIND
You may not think that behind this huge desk is a way to make a difference. However, it’s important to seek out those less fortunate, those needing a kind word, the many who are in need of shelter and solace, the ones who served our country and came back wounded in mind and body, those in our local community also looking for an opportunity to make a change. Will it be difficult? Oh yes. Will it be worth it? Absolutely.
I ask you –
Do you have a favorite poet or artist who inspires you?
Tell me about your family! Siblings, children?
What lesson has impacted your life positively?
6 thoughts on “Behind the Desk + Lessons in Kindness”
Emily Dickenson is one of my favorite poets. I am a retired schoolteacher and write poems about nature, my memories, and my family. I added a blog to my website as an antidote to the isolation of the pandemic. At 71, I find that there is an infinite amount to learn and always something to do.
I enjoyed reading your post about your life. Your daughter is a cutie! ❤ Have a great week!
An interesting post about your life..cute daughter…I am also a walker it frees my mind and lets my thoughts wander …Thank you for following CarolCooks2 🙂
Well done. I will follow your blogs, they are great. Hope you do the same, i will be happy
My daughter was also a 6-going-on-16-year-old who is now an actual 16-year-old and she’s by far one of the most mature human beings I’ve ever known. I knew nothing compared to her when I was her age. I had a tough life growing up (abusive dad, although not to me), parents who divorced when I was 7, poor single mom on welfare, etc. but it all made me who I am today- a strong, resilient woman and the mother of a daughter who tells me all the time how lucky she is to have me as her mom. The biggest lesson I’ve learned in life is life often doesn’t turn out how you think it will but it’s always for the best in the end.
You are an incredible woman and mother who is making a difference in your daughter’s life, as well as the lives of others you may not even know! Thank you for this comment because it reminds me I’m doing a good job – I certainly hope my own little lady grows up to be a thoughtful, compassionate young woman like your daughter!
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I just heard someone say “You never know the difference your words can make to someone else.” So simple but so true. I have no doubt your little girl will grow up to do amazing things.