Wednesday, April 9, 2014

I'm not witty and I'm average looking

Tonight I was on FB ... My son was fed, happy and had been given attention so while we settled in for some back toback  Peppa Pig I trolled FB tiredly to amuse myself ...

 & then I saw it ... The woman who ran a half marathon for free, supposedly as a prank to highlight her city. Instead she made negative comments about law enforcement and runners highlighted the risk of crime and took a medal for free. What is worse is the 100's of negative cyber bullying comments that don't truely address what's wrong with her prank. && thus I was compelled to blog in response.

These are my medals. They were not free - they were paid for not just monetarily but with hard work, sweat, blisters, lost toenails, blood &  time away from my family . But what I paid for is tiny compared to what each race gave back to me. Each time I run I am inspired by the best of what people have to offer. 

The runner twice as old as me kicking my ass

The runner twice as heavy as me but doing it nonetheless - get it girl! 

The parent running with a stroller

The charity runner

The runner pushing a wheelchair 

The youngin running with their parents

The elite runners. What athletes!

The support people who get there before the runners do snd stay until the last  person. 

This is the heart of endurance events & instead of highlighting the very best you ms "witty & pretty" made negative comments, poor selfies and not very funny captions.

I personally don't care if you ran the race as a prank for free but rather find your attitude offensive and worst of all you took that medal and laughed at us who paid - and then in response to the backlash edited that part out. 

Your prank could have highlighted the very best attributes of the people from your city but instead it highlighted your arrogance and brought out the worst in readers of your blog.

I guarantee to you that real runners are happy to see "rent a cops" on the course - remember Boston?  I, do. God bless all the law enforcement I hope he is "bored as fuck" as you captioned him because the alternative is awful. Oh and the woman with "bitch  face" she's tired because she's awake before dawn to run 13.1 miles - she's not concerned about taking 20 poor selfies to make fun of others. 

Here's my mid race selfie from the Hollywood half last  weekend - I text this while on the course to my mom to let her know I was still going strong halfway through. Even with asthma and a bone spur and recovering from a cold I'm doing work but my selfies have positive meaning ( see the end ).

So to the "race bandit" I say, I am not amused.  I'm not going to cyber bully you with nasty comments as others have done but rather I find your arrogance and stealing of medal & negative comments to be the act of someone wanting attention and just sad. I wish for you that one day you will see the heart of racing as I do and instead highlight the positive instead. 

14 in 2014 for $14,000 & i paid for every race! & proud! #runningforacure

Monday, March 3, 2014

I am a runner?

“If the mind can dream it, then the body can achieve it”

I am a runner?

If you had known me 10 years ago, I have come a long way. I was a smoker for 10 years, I quit January 2007, and February 2007 I signed up for Team in Training with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I was relatively new to living in L.A, it seemed like good way to meet people, it was for charity so that’s a good thing right? and it would get my healthier. Oh ya and we fundraise A LOT of money by doing endurance events such as Marathons.

When people asked me how I quit smoking I tell them it was easy, it was because I wanted to, I found something better, I found the best support system and reason to never go back. Smoking makes you feel bad, it makes you smell and it weakens you. Team in Training and running got my leaner, healthier and I raised approx. $3500 for finding a cancer cure and ran my first ever half and full marathon events.  I had wanted to do a marathon for a while it seemed like a cool thing to do, but the commitment – the time it took, that was the thing that scared me! I remember when I announced it many people had reservations about my ability to complete it or meet the fundraising goal but I kept going. I exceeded my fundraising goal by $1000. I completed my first full marathon in 6 hours and 40 minutes in June 2007 at the San Diego Rock & Roll Marathon. I was not fast and I did not finish first.  Crossing that finish line was amazing; being on Team in Training was life altering. Without a doubt in my mind it belongs in the box of best days of my life ever next to the day I got married and the day my son was born. IT was THAT great. Okay so Marathon – bucket list – check. What’s next? Let’s do it again!

During the next 2 years I ran numerous 5k’s, 10ks, another full marathon and half a dozen half marathons.  I met the man I would marry, life got way busier and due to some health problems running had to take a back seat for a while. I completed 2 more half marathons with my husband, the second of which I was 7 weeks pregnant.  Then I got tired and lazy. After some very stressful times it felt good to sleep for 12 hours a night thanks to pregnancy fatigue. Then the baby was born and I got itchy feet. I was exhausted with a 6 month old baby when I told myself I did everything else tired so I needed to learn how to run tired too! 4 months later I ran my first post-baby half marathon – I finished! I was slower than before and realized that I couldn’t compare my pre baby running achievements to my present efforts , I had to focus on not what I used to be but how to be better than I was. Better though than any “fast” finish time thought was seeing my son and husband waiting for me at the finish line.

I was full of enthusiasm but my feet were no longer as young as they used to be and were carrying more weight than they used to, I developed some overuse foot injuries. It took me a year, new shoes, special inserts and trial and error how to work through the pain. It wasn’t easy, there were some days I couldn’t stand even from the pain in my heel but we got through it. In 2013 I ran again the Hollywood Half Marathon and also the Long Beach Half Marathon. It was after Long Beach when I realized that my times were improving and almost as good as pre baby times for races, well at least the slower ones. I thought about what I had been doing in terms of running before my family and I remembered a goal of 12 races in 1 year, one for every month – well somehow I decided then and there I needed to do that except this time the goal would be 14 events in 2014. 14in2014 it had a nice ring to it. So that is how we got to where we are today.


When I started team in training I had never even heard of Lymphoma, a couple of months after I completed my event, my Aunt sue was diagnosed. In 2009, she passed away on December 1st 2010 on my mother in laws birthday just 3 months after my husband and I ran the L.A Rock and Roll Half Marathon in their Honor. In 2013 my Mother in Law Janet already a survivor of Leukemia was diagnosed tumors in her throat and later esophagus.  She passed away July 2014. Once the seed of 14in2014 came into my mind it would not leave. I decided that I would dedicate these running events to both my aunt and mother in law and I would fundraise as much money as I was possibly able to because I am tired of crying. We have cried every week for 56 weeks since we found out my mother in law had cancer for the 3rd time. 3 times is not the charm for cancer, we cancelled all plans, we shaved heads and I cropped my hair and donated to locks of love but we couldn’t do anything but love her. Now she is gone and there are not words in and language to adequately describe the loss I feel over losing two women who were my other mothers. I am tired of grieving of them, I want to honor them, to make them proud, the world should know these two angels names.

So because I have nothing better to do I am running AGAIN and FUNDRAISING again for Team in Training and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I am not as young as I used to be I have aches and pains that I never had previously and I have commitments that are time consuming and I don’t have an endless budget for the best running shoes and apparel. None of this matters because I feel very deeply in my soul that I must do it. Every time I run I cry now. At some point whether its 3 miles or 13 miles there is a moment where I think of my aunt and my mother in law and I cry. I then think of what I am doing and their strength and how they never complained and then I keep running.  I leave it all right there in training, and I tell you a secret, now I don’t cry at home anymore. 

I told my husband about 14in2014 and as he is always supportive he said all the right things then I told my Mom and she did the same but I was embarrassed a little to tell other people what if they thought I was silly? But I am fundraising so I had to tell people.  The amount of kind words, support, love and strength that has been shown to me has me in awe. It is an incredibly motivating and inspiring feeling to know people support you and believe in you. The people who cheer me on and have donated are what inspire me to go an extra mile – they believe in me and I cannot & will not let them down.

Some fun facts:

When I was first started running in 2007 I couldn’t run a mile straight – it was around 18 minutes in time.  Pre – baby my fastest race I did was a 10K that I completed at a 10 minute mile pace without walk breaks. Post - baby I am comfortable running a 12 – 13 minute per mile pace and I can run 5 miles without stopping or a walk break.  To date I have completed 2 full marathons and approx. 12 half marathons (I actually can’t remember!) and who knows how many 5 and 10K events. I am fundraising for a cure for cancer and raising awareness that we need better treatment for cancer patients and we need to eat better and exercise often to help minimize our risks of contracting diseases like cancer. 

I am running 14 events in 2014 to raise $14,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in loving memory of my aunt and mother in law because every single moment without them is one too many.

My name is Erin and I AM a runner.


Thursday, February 13, 2014

All you Need is Love ...


I hope that 2014 is opening up to be a wonderful year for you all filled with good health, love and laughter. In anticipation of tomorrow – the 14th – aka “love” day aka Valentine’s day, I write to you with much love in my heart for all of your continued support, friendship and love during the last year and now on my #14in2014 mission.  I am happy to share with you that so far in less than 1 month I have already raised $430 towards my fundraising goal. I sincerely thank all of you that have helped to get me here.

BUT I am not done yet! I have dedicated this entire year to Janet and Sue my beloved Mother in Law and Aunt and so as many of you have expressed to me an interest in my running from one time to another OR more recently expressed to me that you wish you were closer so that you could participate in my #14in2014 mission to raise $14,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in their memory, I came up with the BRILLIANT idea of doing a Virtual 5K. Virtual 5k? What is that I hear you cry? I can’t run, I don’t walk, I am busy that day – well hold up a minute folks while I answer all those questions below.


The event will be done on the weekend of March 28 – 30 at any time you choose.  This will be the weekend that I run my 4th event of #14in2014 and my 3rd event in the month of March.

Each person will get a Bib emailed to them that they can print from home and wear throughout the event. Additionally I will be mailing some other “spirit” goodies for the event day.


You can run or walk or relay it. If you are concerned about completing 5k (3.1 miles) then this is the one for you, you and some friends can split it up. You can split it 5 ways – 1 k per person OR 3 ways 1 mile per person.


You choose where, you can do this at your park or on a treadmill and for those of you internet savvy people out there you can use any number of online map websites to help plan your course. For those of you with iPhones you can not only plan your course ahead of time but you can track it using my personal favorite – the Nike Ap.

If you need help, I am more than happy to assist you virtually to plan your day. For groups doing relay I would recommend a “loop” course or an “out and back” so that you can return to the starting line and your team member can then take his turn OR you can simultaneously do it together – it’s all up to you.


For the Month of March I am running a 5k (3.1), 10K(6.2) and a half Marathon(13.1) – these events will total together 22 miles (not including training miles)  To sign up for this amazing, once in a lifetime event ALL you need to do to sign up is donate $22 (per person) on my fundraising website all proceeds are 100% tax deductible (US residents only) and 100%  goes to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. This may just be the cheapest 5K of your life – especially for all of your European folks – just think of the exchange rate!

I ask that you take lots of photos of the run, your bib, you and your friends enjoying yourself (running is fun remember!) and either email them to me or for those of you using social media tag me and use hash tags listed below. Please also link to my fundraising website and hash tag everything with #14in2014 and #nomorecancer and finally #nevergiveup.

I ask that even if you participate on a treadmill that you still wear your bib – it is not just about raising cash y’all, but also awareness so any promotion of my mission is appreciated.

One more favor, not only should you participate but I ask that you ask a friend - OR if your friend thinks it’s a great idea but has plans for that weekend (well they should cancel the plans because this is way better) then instead maybe they can share their support of you (and me) and sponsor you via my fundraising website.

LASTLY, don’t just run, don’t just sponsor someone, or me  … but take a moment and be grateful for the memory of those you love who have suffered from this disease and reflect on the battle they went through. After you have completed your 5k go to brunch or dinner or happy hour and remember those we love who went through cancer and celebrate their memories together with other friends and family.

If you really really really can’t join in *tear* *tear* then feel free to rush right to my website and donate $14 in honor or memory of someone you love for Valentine’s day.

I hope that you will join me in this Virtual 5K and share with others so that those like My Mother in Law and My Aunt will never be forgotten.

Thank you - from the bottom of my heart.



#nevergiveup ß Follow: 1California_Mama



Thursday, January 30, 2014


New Year - New Me - New Job - New House?

New Year

I remember January 2013, I started off the year full of ambition and excitement for a new year after what I thought had been a difficult year. Turns out 2013 was ever harder than 2012 was and around this time last year my mother in law was diagnosed with cancer for the 3rd time. I immediately lost motivation, be came depressed and for the first time in my life would suffer from anxiety and anxiety induced vertigo.

Well that was last year, and last year is SOOO over. Here we are at the start of 2014 and again I am filled with ambition and excitement and a bucket list a mile long. Overly ambitious? Always, Yes I am - but I am learning not to mind it. If I set the bar high and accomplish even half I will walk away satisfied, much better than not having any goals or not even trying to try.

Recently I was at the LA FitExpo ( amazingly awesome day BTW ) and the MC to an event there said "THE ONLY THING YOU NEED FOR A BETTER LIFE IS TO GET MORE EXCITED".

Well y'all, I am excited. Is my life perfect? HELL no. Don't let me think about Bills too long cause the anxiety comes back, am I behind in my training because I got Bronchitis ? (more on that later) absolutely and now I have to move house unexpectedly in a month of less (deep breath - a planners nightmare) - but am I stressed - nope, not one bit and that's because I am TOO excited about what life will bring us this year to be stressed out.

New Me

Each situation in life that we face we can cry and whine and stress and lose sleep but none of those things make us feel better and none of them help us get through. I never saw my mother in law complain she had to do chemo again. I never saw her once complain "why me?" that she should have cancer 3 times. At the end when treatments didn't work, she still had infinite patience for her grandchildren and she only worried for those she would leave behind. So each day when I get stressed I remind myself of her patience and I breathe and some how I become more patient. I remind myself of my promise to her to take care of her boys, so my getting stressed out is not going to help my husband feel better or myself. Each time we go though something in life that is hard we have to struggle but that struggle is where we learn something and we grow. Losing her was one of the hardest things I have been though but I feel that I am stronger, more patient and each week I think about how I am and what I can do to make her legacy live on and that is how I approach life and how I behave. Each situation negative or positive always presents an opportunity, so I am not looking at the closed doors but I am searching for for a window of opportunity opening up for me.

To that end when I recently got extremely sick (Asthma Attacks, Bronchitis) only a month before my first Race for my #14in2014 - I tried to practice what I preach and not get discouraged. Instead I didn't just eat clean but I specifically ate for health and specifically my upper respiratory health - ginger, garlic, onions, dark chocolate (good for coughs if you didn't know) , Kombucha, fruit - anything I could eat to boost my immune system I did. I was still sick for a full week, but 10 days later I was running (slowly) again and just a week after that I managed to run 4 miles non stop for the first time post-baby.

New Job

I am excited to share that after making a dedicated personal commitment to make my career more meaningful last year, after many months and numerous applications I have finally been offered and accepted a new position. I will be working for a very prestigious cancer center on the west coast in the department of "Cancer Prevention and Control Research". Am I going to be curing cancer? Nope I doubt it, BUT I will be in a position to learn and be able to assist others who are trying to do great things. Every Doctor and Researcher needs an assistant and now I will be assisting many. I am excited.

Additionally, my fundraising website has been set up for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society as I have been confirmed to participate in their Team in Training Train Your Way program.  I have set my fundraising goal as $14,000 for my 14 in 2014. Overly Ambitious? Possibly, but did you read above ^^^

New house

Lastly it would seem the rental company is selling our property so we have to find a new place to live. This is just the thing that would stress me out so much before but not anymore. This is an opportunity to possibly find somewhere better with cheaper rent or a nicer laundry room and if we have our way - it will be closer to the gym.

So that's whats going on with me - A LOT! && this weekend is my 1st  #14in2014 event - the Surf City Half Marathon.

So please  show your support, make a donation to the LLS and support their mission to find a cure and support cancer patients and their families #nomorecancer.

Thank you in advance for all the continued support but emotional and financial.

<-- <---- Fundraising link :-)


Meeting "no excuses" fitness Mom - Maria Kang @ the LA fit expo