It has been 20 days since my last blog post. No, I didn’t forget about it. No, I’m not dead. No, I haven’t hit a block with my writing. I’ve just been…well, busy. Like really REALLY busy.
Since I started this blog, the only time I have gone that long without a post was last fall when Baby Key was born. Everyday that would go by, I would think about all the things that were going on and all the things I couldn’t wait to share.
Well, as a family, we sort of find ourselves at this same point. The last few weeks have been eventful, stressful, busy, and exciting! I know I have been teasing about dropping some big news on my Twitter for weeks, but I really had to wait until the timing was right. So, without further ado…
“Now this a story all about how my life got flipped turned upside down” ~ Fresh Prince
I AM QUITTING MY JOB
Well, technically, I am turning in my 2 weeks notice today. Over the last year or so, I have come to the conclusion that I am not destined to be an engineer. I have learned that just because I can do calculus and physics in my sleep, it does not mean that I have to. In short, my heart is no longer in it and I no longer feel fulfilled pursuing this career. I have realized that I have other talents and gifts and I need to use them.
I don’t get all preachy very often on my blog (though some would argue that I should use my voice to do so, but this is my blog and I will write about what I want, when I want), but I feel that God is opening doors for me and my family and is leading us down a new path. Over the last six months or so, I have crossed paths with several different members of my church who have reminded me that as Christians, God wants us to be joyous in our work. I can honestly say that I find NO joy in being an engineer. In fact, I dislike it so much that I often find it putting me in a bad mood. That is not the kind of person I am and not the kind of person that I want to be. I find joy in helping people, encouraging others, helping people pursue their fitness goals, running, and leading others. The decision has been made to pursue a line of work where I can be happy and share my passions with others…even if it means getting comfortable in a new salary bracket. The value in being happy and healthy far exceeds the salary I collect as an engineer.
But, I won’t be broke for long, because…
I HAVE LANDED AN INCREDIBLE NEW JOB
Goodbye, hard hat…HELLO, RUNNING SHOES! Let’s be real, I have made no secret about wanting to shift my career from engineering to all things running. But how does one actually do that? By working your tail off, that’s how. I have been involved with the management, direction, and timing of races as a side job (or by contract work) over the last several years. However, I have been extended a partnership opportunity with a successful race management and timing company and I have decided to accept it. Two weeks from today, I will literally be immersing myself in all things running and racing…as a career! In addition, this new position will bring the opportunity to do some beginner run coaching. My two new partners are accomplished athletes…one is a successful track and running coach at a university (who also writes about running) and the other is a multiple marathoner and back-to-back Ironman 140.6 finisher (yes, he did a full Ironman on one Sunday…and then did another full Ironman the following Sunday). I have known these guys for a long time and I feel honored to be working with them. I am excited about all the good things this will bring and I look forward to growing our business and putting on first class races/endurance events for our clients! While I have managed, directed, and timed many running events (both road and trail), I will also be expanding my horizons and venturing into the management/timing of cycling events, swimming events, triathlons, duathlons, and mud/obstacle runs. So much to learn! Me…a (partial) business owner! All things running…all the time! Say what!?
So where is this great new opportunity? Well, this brings me to the next item…
WE ARE MOVING
Sadly, my dream job is not located in Baton Rouge…not even in the State of Louisiana. It is actually located in Upstate South Carolina, so that is where we will be relocating! Although I am originally from Baton Rouge, I spent 6 years in Greenville, SC after I graduated from LSU so this area is very familiar to me. Plus, my husband is from that area and we have plenty of family there (read = lots of family to gush over and spoil Baby Key rotten 24/7). The Upstate is beautiful and I am looking forward to having more places to run (both on the road and on the trails) and being able to do more cycling, as Greenville is a cyclist’s dream thanks to George Hincapie.
One of the best parts about this move is that we will be able to buy our first home. Just writing that makes me tear up. We have dreamed about this for SO long. The cost of housing in Upstate SC is 20% lower than it is in Baton Rouge, so that means we will be able to afford a nice house, nicer than anything we could have gotten here. My husband is working with our real estate agent this week and we are hoping to put an offer on a house this Friday. I simply cannot wait! Owning our own home will bring me so much joy! I will have a kitchen with lots of counter space where I can prepare healthy meals for my family. We will have a big backyard where Baby Key and Elvis (our furbaby) can play and run around. Our new home will be big enough for me to have a home office that I can work from…giving me almost three hours (my current commute time) of my day back. Seriously, do know how much you can accomplish in three hours!? Hello long runs and training time!
My business partners and I are currently seeking new office space. With all that I have going on in Baton Rouge, I could not add that to my list right now. I will be tackling that project once we are there and settled. One space that we are seriously looking at is in a specialty running store in town. That’s right…I would get to work out of a running store! That sounds so fun, but I fear I may come home with new gear everyday and it probably take my running shoe addiction to a whole new level. What a sacrifice, right? Ha!
That’s the long and short of it…quitting a job I hate…starting a job I know I will love…and planting roots in a city that makes me happy. Folks, it is going to be good. GOOD.
But wait, what will my husband be doing?
As fate would have it, my husband has also found an incredible new job in the Upstate. His new company is AMAZING and it is one that he has wanted to get on board with for a long time. Plus, it comes with lots of perks…on-site fitness center (that the whole family can use!), on-site doctor/medical facility, great health benefits, and incredible contributions to 401k, etc. He is very excited and I know that he has so much to offer in this new position!
But wait, what about the #RunLA fam?
Don’t worry, friends! I’m not leaving you! C’mon, did you really think I could just up and leave?? No way! I am still working on several races in Louisiana and even after we move, I will be making regular trips back for race planning meetings, expos, conferences, and events. I plan to schedule my trips back to Louisiana on days where I can meet up with my running groups as much as possible! I am so blessed to have established so many wonderful friendships here and I look forward to continuing those relationships…just from a little farther away. Thank heavens for facebook!
But wait, what about your family in Louisiana?
While most of my family will stay in Louisiana, my mom has decided to make the move with us! She is about to retire and is ready to start a new chapter in her life. She always loved visiting me in Greenville when I lived there before, and she is ready to make it her home also! She will not be making this initial move with us, but once our little family is settled in, we will start the process of relocating her. I am so excited that Baby Key will be able to have my mom and my husband’s parents in the same city!
But wait, won’t you miss Baton Rouge?
In some ways, yes. In some ways, no. I will miss my family and friends tremendously. I will definitely miss the food. I will NOT miss the traffic and the never-ending construction. Baton Rouge is my hometown, but I am ready to make Greenville my home. And I’m really, really ready to get my legs used to running in the mountains again!
When does all this excitement go down?
As soon as possible! My husband starts his new job very soon and as soon as we can set a closing date for a house, we will be scheduling the big move! The tentative plan is to be settling in to our new home around the first week of July.
First week of July? Isn’t the AJC Peachtree Road Race on July 4th?
Sadly, it is. I was so excited to have won the lottery for this race and I was really looking forward to it. However, with all the craziness we will have going on that week, it just is not feasible for me to get to that race. So, as of right now, I am going to have to move it off my race calendar. However, as things develop over the next month, if it looks like I can squeeze it in somehow, I will. After all, it is the largest 10k in the country…and I really don’t want to miss out on it!
What about the other races I’m planning on running this year?
Other than the AJC Peachtree Road Race, my race calendar should continue on as normal. I am currently committed to Hood to Coast in Oregon at the end of August and Rock ‘n’ Roll Savannah (half marathon) in early November. Conveniently, one of my Nuun Hood To Coast Relay Team teammates, Corey, also lives in Greenville, so we will be able to train together in July and August and we will be able to be travel buddies! Too fun! I am seriously eyeing the Kiawah Island Marathon (full marathon) in early December, especially since they have changed it from a double-loop course (I loathe double-loop courses!) to a single-loop course. However, I will make that final decision after Hood to Coast, when I have a better idea of what my fall work/event schedule will be. I want to make sure I have the time to train properly.
So, have you been keeping up with TurboFire and Shakeology?
Yeeeeeah…about that. Y’all, I couldn’t. I just couldn’t. I tried…really hard…but with still working full-time, working on races part-time, house hunting, organizing everything for the move, and dealing with an infant that STILL refuses to sleep through the night, something had to give. So, I put it on hold. Trying to do it all was creating so much stress, so I had to pare down the commitments. I will say that I LOVED TurboFire and Shakeology and I am super amped to restart the program once we are settled into our new place. I have been able to maintain the weight loss from the few weeks I was on the program, so that’s a bonus! From now until the actual move though, I will just be doing a few weekly runs to maintain my endurance.
As I mentioned above, I have sort of already started my new job and I am currently working on three big races…one repeat race and two inaugural events!
“Super Secret Race” (September 16, 2012; Atlanta, GA)
I am so, SO excited to be part of this race! This race is collaboration with two incredible organizations and although we are still in the initial planning phases, I know this race will be a success. Technically, it has a name, but since the press release for it has not gone out yet, I am sworn to secrecy. Don’t worry, though, as soon as I can spill the beans on this one, I will.
Woman’s Half Marathon (December 9, 2012; Baton Rouge, LA)
The women of South Louisiana needed a female-only endurance event, and the Woman’s Half Marathon is just the thing to fill that spot! The press release for this race just went out last week and we are already seeing excellent registration numbers! The course is awesome, it will have a beautiful finishers medal, and the health and wellness boutique (read = expo for ladies!) will feature all kinds of women-specific vendors, running apparel brands, and information on women’s health. While this is event is focused on the ladies, it really is okay for dudes to register too. All I’m saying is that if you are a single runner guy looking for a fit runner chick, you might want to consider running this. C’mon, the odds are in your favor, man!
The Louisiana Marathon (January 20, 2013; Baton Rouge, LA)
I am excited to be working on the Louisiana Marathon again. It was held for the first time in January of this year and I am thrilled to be part of this race team again! It is going to be fun! The extent of my involvement with this race is still being hammered out, and as more details unfold, I will share!
Once I move to South Carolina, I will have the chance to work on some other really fun events! Here are just a few of the races I will get the opportunity to work with…
Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure (Lowcountry Affiliate – Daniel Island, SC) – The largest 5k in South Carolina! (10,500+ runners)
Cooper River Bridge Run 10k (Charleston, SC) – The 3rd largest 10k in the United States! (34,000+ runners)
Spinx Run Fest (Greenville, SC) – A weekend of running events!
I think that pretty much covers all the excitement that has been going on in our lives lately! I promise to not let so much time go by again without posting! The next 6 weeks will be jam-packed and busy, but I hope that you will keep reading and enjoy the roller coaster with me!
As soon as I hit the Publish button on this post, I will start typing my resignation letter. I am a mixed bag of emotions, but I am ready.
I can do this.
I can do this.
I can do this.