We are barely 24 hours back to “real life” after our Another Mother Runner: Run + Refresh Retreat in Ogden, Utah, and already, like Eddie Money, I want to go back and do it all over.
But since I can’t go back I know, let’s collectively relive it with lots of pics, okay?
Building up pre-retreat excitement—and getting familiar with people’s faces, like Mary + Allison + Andrew, hotel manager extraordinaire—by posting almost-there! pics on the Facebook page.
First order of business: unpack the stocked swag bags, which included Balega Socks, Nuun + Gu galore, SweatX Sports Detergent, AfterShokz Trekz Air headphones, a little Chosen Foods Avocado Oil, and an Ogden Marathon hat. (And not pictured? A limited-edition AMR Run Utah sweatshirt.)
Huge thanks, as always, to our partners who love the BAMR tribe as much as we do, and to the GOAL Foundation + Visit Ogden for helping us host this lovely weekend.
Second order of business: EAT! Such delicious, nourishing food all weekend long. (Ellie would’ve been proud!)
Our first night together, the BAMRS got to know each other via a short, collective biography, an exercise dreamed up by author Amy Krause Rosenthal; divided into small groups, the ladies had to find things they all had in common:
Some of the statements from the evening:
We’ve all run an extra mile so we don’t have to go home.
All of us our missing our dogs right now.
We’ve all been broken by the death of a loved one, and nurtured a new life.
Sometimes we leave dirty dishes and just take off.
We all like Amazon, especially Amazon prime.
We sometimes don’t love running until we’re done.
Not one, but two live podcasts: one that focused on tapering, one that focused on having a great race day. On both panels was Dr. Justin Ross, a #fatherrunner and sports psychologist, who talked about among other things, how to cast your mind’s spotlight and why clarity at the starting line is so key.
Pre-race activities included three amazing educational sessions: first up was Pelvic Floor Health with Julie Weibe, who connected the pelvic floor to the breath and nearly every other muscle in the body, including those in the lower back, hips, and, of course, the b*d*ss.
Second up, a 90-minute session with Kolleen Riddick of Trigger Point therapy; she leaves no muscle, ligament or tendon behind. A Perform Like a Mother session with Dr. Justin Ross rounded out the educational portion of the retreat. (Read: keep your pre-race mind occupied with actives that will help you thrive.
A foursome—Camille, Mary, Cleary + Ashlee—striking a pose before our short shake-out run on Friday. We think they collectively have a future as AMR/Aftershokz models.
Petra Goofing it up as Coach Amanda warmed us up on pre-shake-out run.
Put your hands up if you love being a BAMR in Ogden!
Picking up our VIP Bibs (read: a special bus right to the start, free post-race massages, and other perks) at the expo, we had to snap some goofy pics. I adore Mary, Susan + Julie, petite but mighty BAMRS. (And yes, I’m on my tiptoes.)
Friday night was a quiet one; pictures of flat #motherrunners appeared, one-by-one, on the Facebook page while Megan, a crazy talented designer, made the best.race.sign.ever.
Race day! We had 5k’ers, marathon relay-ers, half-marathoners and marathoners. Because all the races except the 5k were point-to-(scenic) point, warmer clothes at the starting line were key. Alicia’s ladybugs wanted to go 26.2 with her.
The half-marathon ladies keeping their bodies warm and their bladders empty at the starting line.
The courses were unbelievably beautiful; when it comes to downhill, scenic races, Utah does not disappoint.
First-time marathoner Anne flying like a #motherrunner. She also attended our Spokane retreat in fall of 2017, where she mentioned she might want to try a marathon. She was assured she could do it—and she nailed it!
The cheer-tator squad (Katie, Sarah, Debbi and your’s truly) also nailed it, I might add–and half-marathoner Heather would agree.
Pat ran a half-marathon PR; on a mission, she was not stopping for an on-course pic!
Stephanie and Maggie, part of Another Mother Runner 2.0 Relay Team, bring it home together.
The day brought a significant number of PR’ers (hello, two 40-minute PR’s in the marathon, one BQ, one 11-minute half-marathon PR, among others); plenty of strong races; and hundreds of happy miles.
Saturday night: Time to truly celebrate! The marathoners, not surprisingly, were all smiles; with the #motherload of races behind them, they had nothing left to do but eat, drink, and chat about their races.
Nothing left to do but this: Karaoke! Sweet Caroline, Uptown Funk, Love Shack: you name it, we rocked it out.
Sarah played the role of ringleader—and inspiration. Her motto: enthusiasm trumps talent in karaoke. #truth
And then Sunday morning—and our celebratory brunch—came much too quickly.
Although this picture is blurry, it’s the words from first-time half-marathoner (woohoo!) and Andrea, who came to the retreat by herself, attached to the image that sum up the weekend beautifully.
I’m a pretty shy person. I’ve also been yearning and searching for community. I am so grateful to have had the privilege of spending this weekend with all of you talented, strong, beautiful, warm and welcoming women united in a pursuit that has already given me so much. —Andrea, first-time half-marathoner and BAMR!