Well now what?!?!


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Happy Wednesday all!!!

It’s hard to believe two weeks ago I was running 13.1 miles before work, 10 at a marathon pace.  One week ago I was tapering for my marathon, and then today…today I didn’t do crap!!!

I have had a lot of emotions since my marathon on Sunday.  Some moments of anger as COME ON MAN I really wanted that BQ!  Then moments of…. you know what 3:41 isn’t a bad time at all, with 90% humidity nice job. Then omg….training is over now what?!?!  Then wow girl you completed 2 marathons this year with times of 3:35 and 3:41 that’s amazing!

Usually around this time  the Marathon Blues set it, it’s a real thing look it up.  You basically have spent all this time training, preparing and getting ready for this BIG event and NOW it’s over!!! It is well kinda sad!  I didn’t realize it was a thing until a dear friend pointed it out. Pretty much every marathon that I have completed I have had the marathon blues. They have lasted a week or two, and then slowly go away.  SO far…so far GUESS WHAT?!?!  No marathon blues for this girl!  Seriously, I was so darn sick of training for this thing….I would have tossed in the towel months ago if I wasn’t so committed, plus there was the whole going home to run a marathon thing.

I now have time to REST, RELAX, do WHATEVER THE HELL I WANT!  I don’t have a 13 mile training run before work.  Saturday I won’t be longing over 2-3 hours out on the road.  Now don’t get me wrong I love a training schedule I do, but back to back marathons ARE A LOT and for both of these I completed full training cycles.

Now folks keep asking me, welllllppppp what’s next Jamie.  What are you going to do??  You all I am going to rest!  I am going to practice some BALANCE in my life!!!  This past year or so has been crazy miles, CRAZY MILES.  I am going to figure out a balance of food and running for fun.  It doesn’t have to be crazy weeks of 60+ miles, nope……relaxxxxxx enjoy life.

So what is next for me, balance that’s what’s next.  I love fall and I am going to enjoy the heck out of it.  I love crisp morning runs, with no pace to chase after and I am going to run those miles.  I LOVE pumpkin spice EVERYTHING and I am going to enjoy this, with moderation of course.  Now this will take the same discipline I just completed with my training as balance doesn’t come easy for me, it really is something I have struggled with for YEARS.  I am going to try my best =)


So for now I rest, enjoy, and ahhhhh yes BALANCE!!




PS- Part of this plan also involves blogging more =)


Just chasing a dream…

Fox Communities Marathon Recap…. and then some =)

Happy Tuesday!!!  I can’t even begin to tell you how happy I am to be sitting here, out on our patio still in comfortable clothes, drinking my coffee, and just relaxing!!!!  As you all know Sunday I took on 26.2 miles as part of the Fox Communities Marathon, overall a darn amazing day HOWEVER let’s address the elephant in the room (well blog space) I didn’t get my time goal….but oddly I am ok with that.  So let’s hash this thing out and break it down shall we =)

Race Morning:

I woke up at 3:00am to eat some oatmeal, I wanted this to be in my system and digested before the race.  After eating this I went back to bed for a few more minutes as I knew the alarm wold be going off at 4:30.

4:30am the alarm went off and everyone in the house started to get ready.  Mom was even so on top of things, she took a nice shower and did her dang hair/make-up.  I slowly got myself together, which didn’t take me too long as I had all my stuff laid out the night before.

As I have said many MANY of times, race morning I am 99.9% an ASSHOLE.  Seriously I should be punched in the face, but the fact is most people are too scared to even get that close to me.  However, I really don’t think I was that much of an asshole this morning.  My family may think otherwise but I think for the post part I was smiling and not being a rude asshole, so that goal was accomplished =)

We made our way downtown and picked up my mother in-law at her hotel (YES my in-laws came from MN, this seriously was a huge highlight of the weekend).  We then arrived at the race start around 6:15am.  This is when my usual race day anxiety started to kick in, yep this is happening…..oh my gosh 26.2 miles is so long!!!  The anxiety wasn’t as bad as some of my family and friend started to come around and say hello.  Uncle Mike and Aunt Cathy arrived, they were all smiles and even had some awesome run Jamie run shirts on.  Then my friend Kelly who I hadn’t seen in forever showed up with her daughter Taylor, wow that was awesome!!  This all helped my mind a bit.


This pretty much sums up my nervousness… 

At the start of the race the race director greeted everyone, BUT also let us know that it was going to be hot out on the course.  He said the temps were low but as we progressed we would be in the 70’s OH AND HE ALSO TOLD US THE HUMIDITY WAS 90%….I don’t think I wanted to know that….so I tried to push that out of my head, ain’t no body got time for that sh*T.

The National Anthem played, I said my pre-race prayer and before I knew it I was off and on the road.

Miles 1-5

These mies are interesting.  You have the excitement of the start but also the realization that you have 26 miles to run.  These miles did go pretty fast, and I tried to keep my mind clear as it kept trying to remind me that I had about 3+ hours of running ahead of me.  I saw the 3:25 pacer, he seemed nice and my legs seemed really good soooo yea let’s stick with him…..I introduced myself to the group following this pacer at about mile 4, I figured I was making a commitment to stick with them, so I better say hello.

These miles were the best paced miles of the race coming in around 7:30-7:40 per mile.

Miles 6-13

Everything was feeling good at this point.  I was following my little pace group, listening to my jams and somewhat enjoying life.  I could feel my tight hamstrings reminding me of their tightness every now and then but overall life was pretty good.

Somewhere in this group of miles I see my dear friend Melissa.  Now I can’t even tell you where she all was during the race, as I feel like I got to see her EVERYWHERE.  I can’t thank this girl enough.  She had a busy day and took the time to come encourage me, support me, and really seriously gave me the extra push AT MANY MILES throughout the race.


You Melissa are a true amazing friend, I can’t thank you enough.  You were everywhere on that course! 

Around mile 12, there was a bit of a hill.  While climbing this hill I thought, welppppp this isn’t a flat course, and oohhhhhh helllllooooooo tight hamstrings.  Then I heard my name being YELLED, it was my MOM!!!  I looked and she was there with her loud ass cowbell yelling my name and running along side me.  This was just what I needed and OMG it’s my mom at mile 12…THIS IS AWESOME!


This picture is amazing!!  Mom pushing me through mile 12.  

I then see my Aunt Cathy….OMG this also is awesome!!!  I wave and feel my heart filled with so much joy!


Mom and Aunt Cathy! 

At this mile my mom’s work was also set-up for a water stop.  It was so very nice to see Women’s Speciality Care out on the course, they all knew my name and were YELLING IT!  Thanks for making me feel like a VIP ladies, also this location was awesome as you could see their awesome sign as you rounded the corner.

I hit mile 13 strong.  Looking at the clock for the 1/2 way point I realized I had just crushed my fastest half marathon….AWESOME BUT waittttt is that awesome or did I start out too fast?!?!  So much to think about!

Right around this mile marker I see a lady wearing a pink shirt on a megaphone….WTHHHHHH this lady is craazz…..wait, wait that’s my Aunt Sue!  Oh man she is yelling her praises at me.  I couldn’t help but laugh and smile, this was just awesome!

Miles 14-18

I realized at this point I was so focused on my little pace group and awesome excitement that I hadn’t fueled AT ALL.  SH#T that’s probably NOT good.  I reached into my bra (yes I am that classy, hey it has these little pockets in it for gels THANKS LULULEMON).  I start my first salted caramel gel….ughhhh it tastes like crud today and it’s extra warm….yuck.  I manage to choke it down…

At first I thought my stomach was feeling good, at one point I even lifted my hands to the air and praised the Imodium I started taking at noon the day before.  Then at mile 15ish the damn wheels came off.  My stomach dropped…I NEEDED a port-o-potty STAT!  Luckily there was one.  I was fast, off came the pants…. I did my thing…back on the road.  I was so fast that I could still see my little pace group up ahead of me.  Perfect they are within sight!  It was at this point I probably made a terrible decision.  I decided I would try and get back with my pace group.  BAD JAMIE BAD!!!!!! Miles 15-18 were spent trying to gain ground and get back to my new peeps……I did get close but never reached them.

Miles 18-22

At this point I realized it was ok, I wash’t going to make it with my pace group and I still had a chance of hitting my goal time.  However at this point, my fast half and my last few miles of playing cat and mouse were starting to take a toll on my body and legs.  I wasn’t feeling fantastic AT ALL.

Then I got exactly what I needed, a small pick me up!  I saw Cori, Kevin, and Angela!  They were all wearing run Jamie run shirts and yelling….YES YES YES!!!  I managed to high five Kevin and kept pushing forward.


I was feeling pretty great at this point.  Then I had a volunteer coming running up to me….all I could hear was Jamie, Jamie….your grandma is here she is waiting for you.  I was thinking what?!?!?  Is she serious?!?!  Sure enough there was my GRANDMA WITH A SIGN!!!!!!  OMG MY GRANDMA IS HERE….MY GRANDMA IS AT MY MARATHON WATCHING ME RUN!!!  The volunteer even held a sign that said grandpa loves you (as he wasn’t feeling the best).  I did my best to blow a kiss to grandma, made it a bit down the road and felt the need to yell with everything I had… I LOVE YOU GRANDMA (as seriously how many times does anyone get to experience this exact moment).

Mile 18 had me feeling so good, at this point I needed more fuel as I had been sucking in that department.  I took one of my huma blueberry gels….yep tasted like butt….I usually LOVE these but my body was NOT feeling it today.  I took about 1/2 of it and tossed the rest….this will haunt me later in many ways.

Right after mile 18 I see my dear friend Mike!  Mike is like a brother to me, he was sitting there chilling in a lawn chair drinking some coffee.  I think he said something like you are kicking so much ass keep going….this was awesome!

Right around mile 20 that 1/2 a gel I had haunted me….. where the F* is a big blue port-o-potty I need it now….luckily I find one.  Once again feel I am pretty fast and make my way back out to the road.  At this point the sun is baring down on me and there is NO SHADE.

20-22 were hell miles, I hit the damn wall.  My lack of fueling properly was haunting me, the heat was killing me, and ummmmmm that super fast first 1/2 was saying ohhhhhh remember me…WHY DID YOU DO THAT?!?!  During these miles I reached a dark place and various things went through my head things like…… You know you could call Dana and he would come get you, welllllppppp it looks like this thing is going to take you about 5-6 hours to finish, WOW all that training and you are sucking this up big time real nice, all your family came here to watch you hit this goal and you suck, why do you suck so much right now……FFFFFFFFFFFF THAT FFFFFFFFF THAT….

I had run through what seemed to be a prairie at this point, with the sun just beating down.


Then I heard my name…omg it’s my girl Andrea and she is yelling all kinds of great stuff at me.  She is taking this negative talk and helping me move out of the basement and into positive land.  ANDREA you were at the PERFECT spot!!

Miles 22-24 

At this point I stopped the negative talk and got my shit together.  Seriously I am out running a damn marathon, my 4th marathon in fact and I still was managing a pretty respectable time…. embrace the suck and move the fu#k forward Jamie!

Around mile 23 I saw uncle rick, aunt terry, and aunt mary.  It was so nice to have my own personal cheering crowd at this point in the race.  They were all smiles and looking fantastic.  My uncle rick even used his wheel chair to come right out and give me a highfive….. ok if uncle rick and survive a brain injury and be out here, I can do this thing.

Right around this point I hear another loud friend, my friend AMBER is here!!!  WOW, she is so loud I love it.  I knew she’d be at the perfect point in the race and nothing has changed about her, I can hear her as clear as day.  I was almost in tears as I remembered the last time I saw this girl was in college….so much has changed since then and here she is supporting me.

At mile 24 it happened again…. big blue and I were reunited and I was quick to get back on the course.


When I popped out of big blue I was passed by the 3:35 pacer.  I knew at this point a BQ 100% wasn’t in the cards for today…. my heart did sink a bit.  Then I thought really, you are going to be in the final 2 miles of a marathon all upset because of a time…nope NOT TODAY, you have ran a marathon in the heat killing it….no time to booooohooooo about it, F* that.

Miles 24- finish 

Well right around mile 23-25ish the race went over bridges…oh awesome, talk about heat and sun…. WTHHHHHHHHHH.  I managed to push on, my body was hating me….my fueling and lack there of was hating me…… I needed more water……

I rounded mile 25 and got to see aunt sue again, this made me smile.  I then saw Kelly and Taylor, they were cheering so loud I think it gave me a little push.  I started into mile 26 and see this big guy in camo crocks running at me….what the hell, it’s my dad…what are you doing I think.  He is running along side telling me to kick it in the ass and finish strong.  OMG dad please don’t hurt yourself…..why don’t you kick it in the ass buddy, you didn’t just run over 25 miles….but wait…it’s my dad and he is helping me finish….THIS IS AWESOME!!!!

I cross the finish line strong.  Looking at the time 3:41….nope not that BQ I was hoping for but A DAMN GOOD TIME, and omg look at all the amazing miles I just put in!


At this point I feel like death…serious death.  I am dehydrated, I didn’t fuel right…..omg where is my husband.  I see him, I see my hero…. I see he is yelling #4, #4 as he is just so proud that I finished my 4th marathon.  At this point he scoops me up and helps me lay on the ground.  I look up and my whole dang family is fanning me……my whole family, with fans above me……alright I may be 1/2 dead but this is awesome…..


********I think this is the perfect point to end this blog post, there is another one coming to finish off some thoughts…..

It’s a JOURNEY not a Destination!


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Happy Wednesday Friends!  I have received many different questions via e-mail (jamariejo@me.com), blog (here), Instagram (@cupcakesforPRs), Facebook (Jamie Johnstons Journey), and personal Facebook page asking questions about running, my weight loss journey, food I eat, and I have promised you all I would address them.

So today’s the day (I know you have been sitting on the edge of your seat waiting (sarcasm).  I am pretty excited to put this together for you all!  As always if you read this and you think of more questions or want more information on a topic please reach out.


My most recent transformation picture.


My most recent transformation picture.

Q: What made you make a change in your lifestyle?

A: I get this question A LOT!  I feel like I should have some magical AHHHH YESSSSS moment to share but sadly I don’t.  I have been overweight my whole life, I joke and say I was underweight once as I was born premature weighing only 5 lbs. I don’t have a moment that made me change, BUT I was finally in a place in my life where I could focus on me AND had an amazing supportive partner along side me.

Q: Did you start with activity right away?

A: NO!  I didn’t start any type of activity until I had lost around 30-40lbs.  I didn’t want to jump into it all like a crazy lady and get burnt out.  I focused first on my nutrition with weight watchers, and from there I started to walk but not until I had lost appox. 30 lbs.

Q: How did you progress from no activity …. to walking…to running?

A: I started walking very SLOWLY!  I did laps around my neighborhood.  Not going to lie it was HARD.  My body wasn’t use to ANY type of activity.  One lap around my neighborhood is .7 of a mile, so I started with one lap and worked my way up.  I had to deal with my body hating me as well as my head playing games.  In my head the whole neighborhood was watching me (they probably weren’t and could have cared less).

After I got comfortable with one lap I added more, slowly working my way up to 3 or so miles.  After about 8 months of walking and about 75-100 lbs lost (so I weighed around 225-250 at this time) I started to venture out of our subdivision, and figured out a 5k (3 mile) route.  I would take this route on 3-5 times a week.  I slowly started to jog across the street at intersections.  Then 1/4 mile by 1/4 mile I started to run more.  My first mini goal was to run a full mile without stopping.  My running progressed after I walked my first 5k and made a goal to run a 5k in the following year.  This is a slow process and you need to do it slowly so you don’t get injured or take on something your body isn’t ready for (which would suck).

Q: What are your thoughts on weight loss surgery?

A: I get this question A LOT!!!!!  Honestly it’s everyone’s own journey.  For me sticking with eating right and exercise worked and I am pretty darn proud of that.  Some have trouble with diet and exercise, that’s their journey.  I suggest really trying the diet and exercise thing, if you gave it YOUR ALL and still don’t have results work with your DR on a plan.  I have seen many success stories with weight loss surgery but have also seen some that have gained it all back….with that being SAID the same is true with weight watchers and other programs, people have success and then gain it all back.  It’s about finding what works for YOU and YOUR lifestyle, what can you maintain for a lifetime and BE HAPPY WITH.

Q: Do you still follow weight watchers?

A: NO!  Now this might get long so please get comfortable…. I LOVE weight watchers and think it’s such a great program and great starting point for many people.  It works with you on portion control and helps you focus on eating healthy and a healthy lifestyle.  Weight Watchers is how I lost the majority of my weight.

NOW….. I was with WW for about 3 years and found myself in an interesting place (I am going to be vulnerable here so hopefully you all don’t judge).  I was at a serious plateau and found my weight was stuck and I kept gaining/losing the SAME 15 lbs. I also found that I would not allow myself to eat things that were higher in WW points and I NEVER really enjoyed food with some type of balance.  During this time it was ALL or deprivation.  So I would have a cheat day and basically eat everything I could this would include pizza, cookies (I mean a whole package of oreos is one serving right?), and other items I could get my hands on. Then I would feel so dang guilty that I would try and limit what I had the next day….I was on a roller coaster that wasn’t going ANYWHERE and high WW points items were off limits.  Most days my diet consisted of vegetables and fruit….nothing else.

During the past Christmas season is when I realized this wasn’t ok and that I needed to do something about it.  I took Christmas on in full force, eating my weight in cookies and other indulgences and told myself enough was enough…


One of MANY Christmas cookies!

I decided to quit WW as I really wasn’t following the program and I needed to try something new. Now you have to understand this was a big deal for me, WW was like my security blanket!  I wasn’t really following the WW program but it was always there waiting for me.  Also WW has just been my thing.  However, why stick with something that is no longer helping????

So I decided to sign up with a macro coach (if you are interested in who and the program e-mail me and I will tell you more).  So now you probably ask what the heck is a macro coach???  Well, a macro coach works with you and develops a plan for the number of macros you have in a day.  Macro-nutrients such as Carbs, Fat, and Protein.  I started this program and after a week or so fell in LOVE!!!  I was eating foods that I had sworn off of.  I worked a cupcake into my day, just an ordinary day with a dang cupcake.  I ate it and didn’t feel guilty!  I use myfitnesspal to track my food and find it to be a fun experiment deciding what I want to work into my plan each day.  I also include something I seriously enjoy at least once a day (lately this has been ice cream).  This has provided me with balance and FREEDOM.

Now I won’t lie and say it’s been rainbows and butterflies, I still have struggles.  I see some food items and think wellllllll I really shouldn’t have that, OR I find myself having a cheat day and going CRAZY eating way to much.  Now I must say I have actually found the most balance I have had in a LONG time and am moving in the best direction for me.  I have reached my original goal weight and have set a new goal, nothing crazy just a little bit more to go.

Q: I have started to run, but what running shoes should I wear?

A: I can’t stress this enough, no two people are the same.  For me I love my Hoka Clifton 2


running shoes BUT everyone is different.  I highly recommend visiting your local running store and getting fit, these people know best and it will help you from becoming injured.

Q: What do you eat, what are some of your go to items:

A: I am very much a creature of habit and have many of the same items everyday, which you can see on my Instagram and Facebook pages.  Here are some of my goto items per meal…

Breakfast: Oatmeal with egg whites….(It takes a bit of time but so worth it! 1/2 cup of oats (quick oats) put them in 1 cup of hot water and let that sit for 5 minutes so the oats get fluffy, then microwave for 2 minutes. Add 1/2-1 cup egg whites (depending on what you want), microwave for 3 minutes stirring every 30 seconds (this is key otherwise you will have a hard egg mess). Add anything else you’d like at the end. I like to stir in some pumpkin puree and splenda is a must for me.


It doesn’t look the best but it tastes very good AND makes a TON! This is in a pyrex bowl! 


Puffed Kamut, 



Breakfast Smoothie (I like to make mine with Quest Nutrition Protein Powder)


Mighty Muffins these can also be made into waffles, I also use this companies pancake mix for waffles (online link), egg white breakfast sandwiches.

Lunch: Salads I really like salads and don’t mind them daily mine usually have some type of protein (chicken, tuna, lunchmeat) low fat cheese (I can’t do fat free YUCK), and salad dressing, Sweet Potatoes with Jiff Whips Peanut Butter these are paired with my salad, Oatmeal I really dig oatmeal during the winter months and have been known to have it for lunch

Dinner: Sloppy Joes, Egg White Omelets, Tacos, Soup and Sandwich, Hamburgers, Turkey Cheddars, Mini Pizza (made on lavash bread, english muffins, or flatouts) , Chicken Breasts.  All meals are usually with a veggie, lately it’s been steamed broccoli.  For Hamburgers we use 96% or 93% lean beef, sloppy goes and tacos are made with extra lean turkey.  Chicken breasts are great as you can make a bunch and use them for your lunch salad.  Lately for dinner I have been enjoying chicken breast shredded with pizza sauce on a bun with moz cheese.  Lots of great possibilities. 

Snacks: Fruits, Veggies, Complete Cookies, Slow Churned Ice Cream, Arctic Zero (I only like SOME of the flavors: Salted Caramel, Mapple Vanilla, Cookie Dough, Snickerdoodle, Brownie), Quest Bars, Greek Yogurt, Picky Bars, Chips…

Thanks so much for reading along and I hope I have helped answer your questions.  Feel free to reach out if you have any other questions or would like more information on something I addressed.  Thanks for your continued support and for following along on my journey.










If it were EASY EVERYONE would do it!


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Happy Saturday!

It’s hard to believe a week ago I was hanging with my parents and Dana attending the Cleveland Marathon Expo.  I wish I could relive the whole weekend, as it was one for the record books!!


As YOU ALL know (and are probably rolling your eyes as I keep posting about it) I finished the Cleveland Marathon in 3:35:46 WITH 4 rest stops AND the worst weather EVER (hail, snow, sleet, rain, down pours, water spouts, squalls of CRAP).  Oh yea and those 4 stupid rest stops with hands not working to take off my pants!!!


As you know I have been dwelling on those rest stops, as if they wouldn’t have happened I am pretty sure around a 3:25 marathon would happened… Bathroom stops at miles 9, 14, 17, and 24 as shown below…



What can I do about it??  I mean I could have crapped my pants, but really no one wants that.  So I need to move on. IT IS WHAT IT IS!!!

FullSizeRender not LITERALLY 😉

Well, for me in order to move on I NEED A PLAN!  I can’t come that close to my Boston qualifying time and just throw in the towel.  I have to go after it.  SOOO I HAVE A PLAN!!  There are many steps to this plan =)  You know I can’t ever just do something EASY….because you know what Boston takes work, not everyone gets in and there is a reason for that!



So here is the plan…

1.) I have race anxiety that messes with my stomach MAJORLY on race day, so what should I do?? RUN MORE RACES!!!  I don’t run many races so it’s about time I get my act together and get out there. I have a few 5k’s, 10k’s, and a half in mind…

2.) Continue lifting…this was a game changer for me during my last training period, so this must continue.

3.) Follow the same training program, as let’s face it my paces were spot on! YAYAY HANSONS =)

4.) RELAX…. I seriously need to do this, this is all supposed to be FUN.

5.) Figure out when my next marathon will be, so here is that plan…

* PLAN A (this is what I want to do if all works out) RUN the Fox Cities Marathon on Sept. 18th in Wisconsin.  logo

That’s right family and friends, I need you all at every dang mile! I know I have my pace DOWN but seeing you all out there will even make me faster!  Plus once I figure out my nutrition plan I can give you all water, snacks, other items to have on hand to assist me.  SERIOUSLY PLEASE MARK IT DOWN AND FILL THE STREETS!!!

* PLAN B…..now the Boston Marathon has yet to announce it’s registration dates.  IF the dates fall in line with how they have in the past, the Fox Cities Marathon date is just fine.  I hopefully will qualify and can register that Monday BUT if for some reason this is earlier I am going to have to go to the ERIE MARATHON.$_35

Boston usually announces these dates around July 1st, so this is when everything will be 100%.

So there you have it friends!  I have a plan!!!  Going to take my stab at Boston ONE MORE TIME. Nothing worthy while ever was easy right????


This is going to be EPIC I just know it!!

Thanks for following along on my journey! MORE CUPCAKES WILL BE CONSUMED!!!














Cake but not THE BEST CAKE!

I am still on cloud 9 from this weekend’s marathon, and should be right?!?! However I must admit, in the back of my head I still keep thinking about Boston, qualifying for Boston.


I think of this weekends race like this (follow along it will make sense) it’s like you are at a Birthday party and you go to get a piece of cake, you see the piece you want it’s awesome….a corner piece….with the frosting down the sides….ooooo it even has extra frosting as this corner piece has a flower on top.


You wait for that piece, you are already thinking of how great it will taste.  Then it happens, the person in front of you TAKES your piece of CAKE!  You get yourself a different piece, are a bit disappointed BUT I mean you still have cake!  Then later….later you see this person, throwing away most of the piece of cake they have, making some comment like well it had too much frosting…………….NEVER ENOUGH FROSTING!

So I still had a pretty awesome race, it just wasn’t exactly what I wanted. However, this will throw you all for a loop…it was the race I NEEDED.  I needed to build some confidence.  If running through hail, snow, sleet, squalls of crap, down pours, and 4 bathroom stops with a finishing time of 3:35:46 doesn’t build confidence….I mean come on, OH AND A 14 MIN marathon PR!  I seriously had a turning point this weekend.  I now kind of think I am a serious runner, not just a runner a MARATHONER!!

Jamie Johnston Runners World 2

Also I did have a big realization.  Ok so I missed the BQ by 46 seconds, but did I really?  I mean there are many people that got the EXACT qualifying time they needed, but still didn’t make it into Boston last year, as they needed to be just a little under.  So how terrible would it have been to get the exact time needed, and then not get in.  I mean that would be like having no cake at the party and having to go home early……………SUCKS!

So now I have a fricken fire in my belly.  This BQ IS and WILL happen but when?!?!  What race? Where???  What’s the plan?? I have to have a plan!  Ok, ok , ok one thing at a time.  I have some races I am considering here is the short list: Fox Communities Marathon in Appleton, Wisconsin OR  Erie Marathon in Pesque Isle, Erie PA.  Those might get me into the 2017 race.

Pros/Cons to Fox Communities Marathon

Pros: It’s in Wisconsin, my family and TONS of friends are in WI.  I bet I could have a friend or family member at every darn mile!  This would be pretty fantastic.

Pros: It’s a small race.

Pros: With having family and friends throughout the course they can have my water and gels, I really wouldn’t have to carry a single thing.

Cons:  Still not sure about the course, in the description it stats 6 miles of paved trails. Also unsure of the course elevation.

Cons: The date….September 18th, this might be REAL close to the cut off for Boston 2017.

Cons: Travel time, it takes about 8 hours to get there.

Pros/Cons to Erie Marathon

Pros: This race is known to be a Boston Qualifier.

Pros: The date is still close the 2017 Boston cut off, but it’s Sept 11th.

Pros: Travel time is under 2 hours, wouldn’t have to take much time off

Cons: What would we do with the dogs?

Cons: I’ve never traveled to an unknown location to run…maybe this could also be a pro?

As you can see I have a lot to think about.  There is also the idea of waiting and doing a real true fall marathon like Columbus which would get me into the 2018 Boston Marathon (If I qualified).

So there are a lot of if’s out there.  Also this is all relative as I might sign up, go out on race day and not qualify….but I need to get out there and TRY!!

Here’s what I am going to do.  Keep thinking….I will take advice if anyone has any….Consult with my crew (DANA)….Make a plan with said crew…..rock the plan…

Stay tuned…







Cleveland Marathon Recap…Part 1


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WOW!!! Another Cleveland Marathon in the books. This year the full 26.2, as I usually participate in the Cleveland half taking on my full marathons in the fall. As we woke up and got ready at 4:15am I already felt a bit of a pit in my stomach, I could hear the rain outside down pouring like crazy. Then I thought well it’s just getting it out of it’s system it will be fine.

We all got ready for the race, my family putting on their awesome shirts I got them (that no one would have seen due to the 25 degree real feel).



I actually don’t think I bitched at my family this year while making our way downtown/getting ready. I think the weather had me too nervous to yell or talk back to them (#winning). We found our parking spot easily and found ourselves parked and ready by 5:15am. As we sat in the car my emotions and the two hail squalls we drove through on the way downtown were starting to get to me….cue the tears, let’s go home, bed sounds good, maybe I will just do the half…. My family reminded me that I trained too hard for this and tried there best to lift my spirits.
We made our way to the Q arena where the start of the marathon took place. Luckily this year the Q was open for all participants, hello warmth and flush toilets!!! I made my usually bathroom stops, got all my gear ready and tried my best to put my head in a good place. The many comments from race participants around me concerning the weather didn’t really help. At this point my husband could tell I was struggling. He pulled me aside and said Jamie think of all those 4am wake up calls, you put in the work today isn’t the best just embrace the suck….run this thing.
The announcer came overhead telling the participants in the Q to make their way outside. To my surprise I was in corral A, right with the elites….dang!! I listened to my music, getting my head right. Maybe cried a bit in the corral as the rain and hail bounced off my face. I worked too hard for this, I got this….the air horn sounded it was go time!

Miles 1-13

For the first half of the race I felt pretty good. I was wet and somewhat cold, but I think it was still the honeymoon phase of the race, I was still excited and heck I was running through the streets of Cleveland. I was really excited to pass in front of Cleveland State, and it just so happy that on my playlist “This is my House” started to play…heck yes this is my house!! =) I also saw my friend Stephanie out there cheering, omg my peeps are here!!! At mile 5.5 I took my first gel, hello huma blueberry….it tasted alright and my stomach seemed to like it.
One could say mile 12 was magical for many reasons. At mile 12 I got to see my friend Susan, she was jumping….yelling…. and just plan excited. Made me want to push on harder!! She seriously gave me the pick me up I needed. Also around mile 12 I started to feel my stomach drop…sun of a gun I need a portapotty! I saw the green structure in front of me, it was glowing!


I quick made my way in, luckily making it in time. The hardest part here is dealing with my compression pants, it’s like a wet swimsuit. I think I spent more time trying to get my darn pants up then going to the restroom.
I made my way out of the portapotty still adjusting my pants. I knew I had to make up some time at this point, so I looked at my watch and brought my pace into the 7:30 range. I was feeling strong and wayyyyy better, so the pace was fine. Around mile 10 I saw the cut of for the half, part of me thought hmmmmmm….. but then I focused on how strong I was feeling…..nope I got this! I took my 2nd gel around mile 11, once again hoping for the best!

Miles 13-20

These miles were interesting. The hail was pelting me in the face, it almost felt like someone had a bag of frozen peas and decided to throw them directly at me. At one point I thought seriously God, what the hell. During these miles I lost all use of my hands, it was pretty scary. I tried to grab a cup of water and my hand wouldn’t open nor move. Now what?!?! I thought hard on this, is my hand frost bit could that be a thing? Am I starting to experience hypothermia? Why won’t my hands work?!?! I blew into my hands trying to warm them. As I did this my fingers did give me a wiggle, I figured this was a good thing and no medical tent was needed.
Around mile 14, I felt that gel take hold of my stomach again. AWESOME I need another portopotty. This time it was questionable on if I would make it in time. I saw the green meca and kicked up my pace to get there. At this point my hands still were not working. I couldn’t get my pants off!! My hands weren’t working!! Now what?!?!?! I shoved my hands into my compression pants and used my arms to pull them down. Now I debating sharing this part but figured….let it all out (literally) as I did this my stomach let lose….I am pretty sure the back of the toliet was a dang mess. At this point I thought on no I literally have poop all the way up my back and lululemon jacket. I thought well there is nothing I can do, I might me the shitty runner out there but I have to continue on (I did later find out, no poop on the jacket…praise!!!). Now I tried to get my pants back on, yep those hand still not working. Shoved my arms down and pulled them up the best I could, back on the road.
Once again I knew I had time to make up, pressing the pace again moving forward. At this point I discovered due to the whole hands not working thing, my underwear never made their way up, help they were some where lower butt….awesome!
I kept pressing on and honestly was starting to feel the suck but trying to embrace it. It was at this point the wind gusted so darn hard that it literally moved my whole body. Between this and the hail, I just couldn’t…..I might have yelled you have to be F*ing kidding me. Then I saw two angels…I am not exaggerating here. I see Boyd and Lisa Yarbrough, sitting there yelling my name all budded up in the elements. OMG they are here, yelling for me, hells yea….I got this!!! They were at an amazing spot on Lake Ave, so not only did I see them around mile 14, I also saw them on my way back around at about mile 16 or so. This really gave me the 2nd ok maybe 3rd wind I needed.

At mile 16 I also knew my gels weren’t really agreeing with me but what do I do, I need the carbs but well I don’t want another shitty experience. I decided to take the gel, I was feeling strong with my running and figured I could always up my pace to make up for things. I just needed my hands to work. Well….those gels once again attacked me around mile 18… once again no hands working….using the whole arms to raise and lower my pants, exiting and pushing my pace into the 7:30’s.
Mile 20 came, at this point I figured only 6 miles left. I usually run 6 miles with my dog Reese on Sunday mornings. I thought well all I have left is a Reese run, that’s no problem. Also around this point there was a lovely volunteer handing out out honey stinger gels, at this point mine weren’t working and I figured what the hell I have had honey stinger before…it was vanilla and the lady was a doll and had it open for me! I took the gel, it tasted pretty good….

Miles 20-25

At mile 20 I usually have a conversation with myself and God, my body usually wants to walk at this point. NOT THIS TIME! Seriously I felt so darn strong. I kept looking at my watch and I was consistently around a solid 8:00 pace. I could see the city in front of us… almost there, almost to home base. Well you know my body much like the Cleveland weather wanted to be shitty….so at mile 23, guess what…yep stomach drop. I will spare you all the details as you know what this had to involve, and yes my hand still weren’t working. I came out of the bathroom at mile 23, knowing I had 3 miles left. Time to leave it all on the streets. I have to kick it in the butt…it’s go time.

Miles 23-25

I kicked hard, keeping my pace around 7:50-8…it was a slight incline but the view of the city kept me focused. I knew I was close to my goal, just didn’t know how close. I also knew the elements, bathroom stops, and loss of usage of my hands did play a part in the day.

Miles 25-26.2

These miles were the best, the end was in site. I felt strong, the rain was just a mist….time to bring it home. As I entered the finish line area I knew I was close to that BQ but also had a feeling it was just out of reach. I finished strong and saw my husband and family.


Dana gave me a huge hug, I could tell with the elements he was relieved I finished he also couldn’t believe how strong I was running through weather HELL. I walked through the finishing area getting a few things to eat. Saw my friend Stephanie and gave her a hug. Then connected with my family. At this point I saw the results….yep 3:35:46 I teared up a bit BUT I had just ran a marathon through fricken Armageddon…..no reason to be upset! Some people didn’t even compete today due to the weather! I braved the elements and really kicked it’s butt!

Here are the result from my Garmin….yep you can see exactly what miles included those 4 bathroom stops!


After the Race..

I didn’t think I was that cold until about 20 min after the finish.  I started to shiver uncontrollably, yep I think I was a bit hypothermic!  Dana tried his best to warm me up, but I wanted to make sure to get some after race photos.  I tried my best to women up for the pictures, as I knew this truly was a race to remember.

After the pictures we made our way home for a much needed shower and relaxation!!!!  Now you are probably wondering what I am thinking.  I mean I almost qualified for the fricken Boston Marathon…..yep that is true.  I almost qualified with terrible weather conditions and 4 restroom stops. So I am giving myself this week to celebrate (today I will eat whatever the heck I want and go back to real life food tomorrow), and will just enjoy my accomplishment the rest of the week.  Then next week I make a plan for the next 26.2!!  I will keep you all up dated.  However, I really can’t be mad I mean seriously 3:35:46 THATS JUST DANG AMAZING (and you know I don’t toot my own horn).


I was so honored to be a race ambassador again this year!  Thank you Cleveland marathon!!


Until next year Cleveland!!!


Don’t worry all updates on the next big adventure to come, we have a BQ to get!







20 Tips to Survive Race WEEK!


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Wow it’s race week!!! It’s finally here!!  Cue the taper crazy, self-doubt, HUNGER, phantom pain, and ALL THE EMOTIONS!

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Race week is sure to make you anxious, as you are used to kicking butt most days out on the pavement.  The lack of running or sticking to your usual schedule will make you a bit crazy and HUNGRY.  So I thought I would put a few tips together to help you get through the next few days!


  1. Trust your training! If you kept a training log, I encourage you to look back at all the miles you have logged.
  2. Not like college! Remember training for a running event is NOT like college; you can’t cram and do a couple quick runs to prep. The training is in the books… TRUST IT!
  3. HUNGER will strike. You are nervous and your body is healing from all the training you have put it. Try to manage the hunger. Address it but don’t go crazy.
  4. Figure out your carb loading plan. Some people take this to the EXTREME, don’t get too crazy. Figure out your plan and stick with it. For me I will be carb loading Friday and Saturday. My carb loading involves decreasing my fat and some protein, focusing on carbs.0e4a4974e1b6c4f51b1bab563d64dee0
  5. Along with Carb Loading/fueling….nothing NEW! You might be tempted to try a friends fueling plan before your race….well so and so did so well and they had a bagel, banana, and cliff bar before their race I will try that…… NOOOO you are not so and so you did not practice this race nutrition….stick to YOUR plan.
  6. Also going with nothing new on race day, no NEW CLOTHES! Yes please treat yourself at the expo BUT if you haven’t wore the item for a long training run, DON’T WEAR IT ON RACE DAY. Yes that new tank might look supers sweet but it won’t be super sweet at mile 10 when it is chafing the HECK out of your armpit.
  7. BELIEVE! This is something I am trying hard to focus on, but seriously believe in you. You put in the work.
  8. Envision yourself crossing the finish line……… CRUSHING the finish line. I recently started to read a book about mental training, one of the things they stressed was envision yourself completing your goal, if your mind sees it your body will help you achieve it.
  9. STOP THE NEGATIVE TALK! It’s easy to get down on ourselves…the SECOND you start thinking ANYTHING NEGATIVE concerning this race, replace that with 3 POSITIVE thoughts and stop the negative thought in it’s tracks.
  10. Make sure to go to the expo, shop the heck out of the expo BUT remember you will be on your feet a lot the next day….so maybe don’t spend the whole day on your feet.76b21877f97e371f615b33e92ebe0046
  11. While downtown picking up your packet, make sure to put together a plan for race day. Drive around downtown and figure out where you will be parking in the morning, this will save you some stress the morning of the race.
  12. Plan a meeting spot. If you have family and friends coming to see you crush that goal, make sure you have a meeting spot for after the race. The finish line can get a bit congested, so knowing exactly where to meet your loved ones will save you some trouble.
  13. Charge all your STUFF. If you are like me you use some technology on race day. Make sure this stuff is all charged and ready to go.
  14. Get everything together and laid out the night before, you don’t want to be searching and playing where’s waldo on race day.
  15. Stick to YOUR plan. If you are use to running with others and plan to run with a pacer, do it. IF you are more of a solo person and want to do your own thing, that is cool too. Remember it’s your race day.64cad7d3b779a6420380c0d48851404c
  16. SMILE….at this point and time your family and friends have probably offered you more advice than you could ever really use, they just care. So SMILE take in the advice BUT stick to your plan….remember once again YOUR RACE, NOTHING NEW.
  17. TAPER….It’s going to get hard, but stick to whatever YOUR taper plan is. My taper plan is a mini taper because that works for me. You know what works for you, so follow it. Don’t get caught up with what others are doing.
  18. I’m going to say this again because it is so key…..remember all the training you have done!!!!! YOU GOT THIS.
  19. Remember this is what you do for FUN, don’t suck the fun out of it. I am trying to remember this and focus on that. We do this for FUN, this is your thing…ENJOY IT.60d332b4f129a81a6b92328886bb973c

Can’t wait to see you all at the finish line!!




Wait… Where’s the Confetti?!?!


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Happy Monday all!  That is kind of an oxymoron but heck it’s Monday and well my Monday has been pretty fantastic.  I finished up my last interval run before the Cleveland Marathon!!  Intervals are never easy BUT they really pay off!!  Then something AMAZING happened, but first I need to share a little bit of back story…… Grab your carpet square and try to stay with mer, I promise it will be worth it!

So as many of you know about 5 years ago I decided to make a lifestyle change.  I joined weight watchers and started to focus on my health.  Weight Watchers taught me all about portion control, how to eat healthy and how to create a healthy lifestyle.  Weight Watchers was just what I needed at the time, and the perfect start.  I lost most of my weight in the first 3 years I was on the program.  Then you could say I kind of hit a wall.

My weight didn’t change too much and I would add and lose the same 10+ pounds, sometimes 20 (the holidays though…).  However something not so good was also happening.  As many know Weight Watchers focuses on points.  The higher the points a food item is the less you have to eat the rest of the day.  So in my head it started, high points = BAD stay away from that.  Then I started to save points, because if I don’t eat all my points well that should be good right??  I will lose more and make it to my goal weight.

Well, I played the point game and tried so hard to lose the last 10-20 pounds, and got close so many times BUT really wasn’t doing it the right way OR HEALTHY.  My head started to also play games with me, still focusing on high points IS BAD.  I also found myself not eating many carbs, because those aren’t that great either right???

This past Christmas I decided something needed to change.  I was sick of not making progress and KNEW if I wanted to do better with running, I needed to slim down BUT Weight Watchers really wasn’t my answer anymore.  So I QUIT, I quit weight watchers.  The program that got me started, my security blanket. What I had known for about 5 years…

I decided to work with a coach and start marco counting.  This was exactly what I needed.  Food no longer had a points number, it was just a combination of carbs, protein, fat and calories.  I could can play with different food items and fit them into my day  however I’d like (I’d like to note if you are doing WW the right way this is also possible, but I NEEDED A CHANGE). After starting with this new program I started to feel re-energized….I also was eating CARBS!  This new program not only helped me start seeing results on the scale BUT my running has been stronger, who knew carbs were a runners best friend.

So I struggled on how to tell everyone that I quit WW, as it IS AN AMAZING program…I just needed a change!  So now that I got that off my chest  (thanks for sticking with me here), gosh that feels great …



Today, after my run…. today is my weigh in day.  I hit the scale like I do EVERY Tuesday and GUESS WHAT…. GUESS WHAT?!?!?!?  I HIT MY DANG GOAL WEIGHT!!!  YES!!!  The weight that I set as my goal about 5 years ago….I FRICKEN HIT IT!!!!!  I am not going to lie, as I stared at the number on the scale I did expect some magical things to happen…… I mean I have been doing this thing for over 5 years…WHERE’S THE CONFETTI???? FIREWORKS???? FLOWERS FALLING FROM THE SKY…ANYTHING???? COME ON GOD JUST MAYBE A PARTY POPPER???

It only took 5 years and some serious struggles!


I am not sure now if this is where I will stay, or what I am really comfortable with BUT I can figure that all out FOR NOW, I WILL CELEBRATE!! WHICH REMINDS ME….. I think someone AHEMMMMMM DANA said he’d take me shopping in NYC when I hit my goal, I might need to remind him.

Thanks for all your support friends, and thanks for sticking with this log DRAMATIC post =)  I also need God to work on that confetti for moments like today 😉

Happy Monday indeed!



STOP! It’s Taper TIME!


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OHHHH MYYYY GOSHHHHHHHHHH…………………..The Cleveland Marathon is 2 weeks away, I MIGHT be freaking out JUST A BIT! I keep watching the weather like some dang crazy lady.  As of now it has changed about 3 times, with the latest being 73 and cloudy PLEASE LORD KEEP THIS!!



So some of you might be wondering what the heck is a taper and what does it mean.  The taper is what happens in the weeks leading up to a racing event.  There is usually a decrease in miles and an increase in runner irritability.  YEP I haven’t even really started my taper yet and I am feeling this……UGHHHHH!!!!  My taper is usually CRAP, I don’t taper well and I usually get crabby, hungry, and doubt everything.  With the Hanson’s plan there is a very small taper, this will start for me after this Wednesday.  I know my body is ready for a little break and I am going to try my best to embrace it.

So now you might be asking how in the world is Jamie going to handle this taper, I mean I have been logging miles like a crazy lady…crushing some intervals, making those Wednesday Tempo runs my B*TCH…HOW IN THE WORLD WILL I HANDLE THE TAPER (yes I am yelling this in my head).


Ok deep breath here’s the plan…

I am going to focus on the following to survive my taper:

1. I am going to try and just RELAX…


2. I am going to look at my training log and see all the amazing things I have done in the past 18+ weeks, no need to doubt anything!


3. I will take many evening baths.  Yep I love a bath and it’s the only thing that really seems to relax me.  Most evenings I can be found in the bath with a beer…yep diet root beer, I am so hard core.

4. I am going to try to be over confident.  As you know I am usually pretty dang hard on myself.  So the next 2 weeks, I am going to be so dang confident.  HECK I might even come across arrogant as I will be THAT confident.

5. I will foam ROLL!  This NEEDS to happen…. Yes Dana I need to bring the roller back out, I know you have been telling me this =)

6. EVERY single night I am going to envision myself crossing that finish line.  Not only will I see myself crossing the finish line, I will be CRUSHING IT.

7. I WILL take care of me and get some sleep.  Less miles means more sleep, oh sleep I miss sleep! I might even cuddle with these little cuties…


8. I will look back at all the photos and running posts I have made, seeing how far I have come.


9. During this taper I am going to enjoy it, I have worked hard.  This is the clam before the storm….what I have been waiting for.

10. I am going to enjoy and look forward to marathon weekend during this taper.  My family will be coming from WI.  I have an amazing VIP reception Friday night, with a hot date and my fellow race ambassadors.

11. I might even clean the house a bit….ok yes I will do this as my family is coming =)

12. Not only will I focus on crossing that finish line, I am going to think about that ice cold adult beverage or 2 I will have after the race.  I gave up alcohol during training, so I should actually say that 1/2 of beverage I will have, as it’s not going to take much =)

13. During this taper I will carb load, but with a plan!  Last carb loading I MIGHT have gotten a bit carried away…I mean ummmm yea…. a learning experience right?


I might have hit the pancakes a little TOO hard during my last carb load =)


14. I will keep this in mind….. at the end of the day I did all I could to make sure I am ready for this marathon.  The rest is in God’s hands =)

15. I will remember and think of all my amazing supporters.  I have so many friends and family that have my back and support me.  I might even try to be extra nice to them…especially DANA!!  =)



How will you embrace the taper?  Are you ready to rock this thing, because I sure am!!






Treat Yourself Day!

Happy end of April all!!

Seriously where did the month of April go?  I feel like I blinked my eyes and May is just around the corner.  I guess time files when you are having fun right???  Well here we sit April 26th, 2016!  Today I celebrate my 5 year get my S#!t together anniversary, LOL I guess I need to figure out a new name for it… maybe class it up a bit!

Five years ago today I stepped on the scale for the very first time, or I should say for the very first time I volunteered to do so.  I remember it like it was yesterday, stepping on the scale and hearing the number 350 (it was something like 349.2…but my head always says 350).  My heart sank and I just couldn’t believe it.  How did this happen and how in the world did I get there???

So today I decided to celebrate by treating myself, my over 194lbs lighter self!  I took the day off of work and got my hair done!  Some color, trendy highlights (yes I actually went trendy and outside the box ), a cut…..heck yes!!!!

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Thanks for letting me share my day with you.  I am not always the best at tooting my own horn, but I am pretty proud of what I have accomplished in the past 5 years and also that I have kept the weight off (well mostly, the scale does go up a bit around christmas as I LOVE CHRISTMAS FOOD…COOKIES).

If you’d like to celebrate with me, go ahead and treat yourself!!