Train Like A Mother: Outtake 1

Three of our favorite things: running medals, bikes with streamers (in the kitchen no less) and dora pj's. (From

Over 400 of you badass mother runners took plenty of your precious minutes to fill out the obnoxiously long survey we put together for Train Like a Mother (TLAM). There were so many thoughtful, insightful, funny answers—not that we expected anything less from this tribe—and if space weren’t an issue, we would’ve run about 10,000 more responses. But then TLAM would’ve been a kettlebell, not an orange book you could pull out of your diaper bag or purse to kill time at a park or a piano lesson.

One of SBS’ favorite phrases is “Waste not, want not.” (She tends to proclaim it as we stand in front of the airport security line before chugging 24 ounces of water in less than a minute. Seriously: I would’ve wanted her on my collegiate drinking squad.) I waste water more liberally, but neither one of us are wiling to waste any of your hard work. So as we countdown to the launch of Train Like A Mother in mid-March, every Friday we are going to publish a sidebar that, after much debate, sadly ended up on the cutting room floor.

Take It From A Mother: How do you display your medals?

“I have a [Restoration Hardware] hook in the shape of muscleman next to my bed. I look at it as I fall asleep or wake up, and it reminds me of everything I can accomplish when I put my mind to it.
—Amber (thinking about having a quilt made with her old cotton race tees)

“I store them in my drawer o’spandex.”
—Chandra (hopes to spend some time with a running coach because, “I feel like I bounce too much.”)

Dig this? You can pre-order TLAM on Amazon. (I can't figure out how to link in captions: technically challenged.)

“I don’t. Finish medals, while an accomplishment, are not worth the hassle to dust.”
—Dedra (runs after her girls are in bed because she, “doesn’t want any fingers getting caught in the treadmill”)

“My husband and I accumulate medals, so we donated a bunch to Medals4Mettle [a non-profit that re-gifts the medals to individuals fighting illnesses]. We keep the pretty ones to adorn our Christmas tree as ornaments.”
—Katie (an ultrarunner, who logged 3,256 miles in 2010)

“They hang on the drawer pulls of my nightstand to remind me why I need to get out of bed.”
—Lisa (ran a marathon with a migraine. “I’d rather crawl over the finish line than have a DNF next to my name.”)

“They are in my son’s toy box. When I was younger, I displayed all my bibs, medals, and trophies. Since returning to running after a few years off, I’ve stopped caring about medals.”
—Leslie (ran (and won) her first road race at age 8)

“They hang from the rear-view mirror of my car. My 3-year-old sees them in the car and asks, ‘Did you run that race? Did you run fast?’ It’s such a boost at the end of a long day to answer, ‘Yes, baby, I did.’”
—Wendy (wants to sign up for every race she hears someone she knows is running)

“I don’t have any yet, but I’m scrapbooking my running bibs.”
—Jenni (favorite race: the Cupcake Race 5K. “Great incentive to run.”)

“We have a big armoire in the kitchen and I hung my first one there as a joke, as in, ‘What if I started hanging all my medals right in the kitchen?’ They’re all there now.”
—Laura (a serial racer, she does at least three 5Ks per month. “But probably more like five or six.”)

“They are all somewhere in the black hole of the toy room. Speaking of medals, when my older son was in 3-year-old preschool, we dug through my race medals for those that were gold and silver colored so he could wear them on ‘gold/silver’ day. All of the other kids were wearing clothes those colors; he was the only one sporting medals. When the teacher saw us walking in she exclaimed ‘Great idea! Are those all your father’s medals?’ I immediately responded, ‘No, they’re mine!’ I am still really put out by her assumption, and think of it nearly every time I see a medal lying around the house.”
—Jennifer (pre-kids she was all about massage therapy. Post-kids? “The best I can do now is have the kids walk on my back.”)

 And of course, now we gotta know, how do you display your medals? (Bonus points if you include a random fact about your running with your response.)

76 responses to “Train Like A Mother: Outtake 1

  1. My first marathon medal is in a frame on the wall behind me as I type. That means the wall between the kitchen and the fmaily room. The rest are in a box somewhere. (My running goal is to be first in my age group. Even if I have to wait until I’m 80 to accomplish it!)

  2. I missed this when it came out, but my medals aren’t on display. Right now, they are taking up room in my jewelry box. When we get a big Christmas tree (right now both of ours are <3'), I plan to make them into ornaments. I think Dimity said something about this sometime. 🙂

  3. They are hanging on a hook in my bedroom. They are a great reminder of the things that I can accomplish, when I put my mind to it. (I feel more motivated to run, now that I have kids. It’s more of a challenge to find the time, but I also want to stay healthy and be a healthy role model for them.)

  4. I hang mine on the bottom of our bill/letter/keyring holder in the kitchen. My kids love to try them one on play with them. I let them with all my most recent marathon medal-that one is still sacred to me for now.

    Random fact: i never run with underwear on.
    wow…there it is for all the inter web to read… ha

  5. Well, currently they are hanging on the two ends of a shelf above my crafting table. I have my eyes on a medal display. I hope someone listens and I get it for my birthday in March. Otherwise, I will buy it as a happy birthday to myself gift!

    Random fact about my running…I feel I’m very slow, but my trainer says I’m the one to stick with because I keep a very steady pace. So, slow and steady is my mottow to finishing, but I’d like to add a little pep to my step in my goals for this year.

  6. I have only one medal (planning to get my second in two weeks) and it hangs on my dresser mirror so I can feel macho everytime I get dressed.

    My fastest run is from my front door, out my driveway and halfway down the street, so my dog won’t follow me!

  7. They all hang on an over the door hook on my bedroom door. Every time I open of close the door they clank. The metal I’m most proud of NWM SF 201o is around my neck everyday. From time to time I have brought them in to work to share with others……they are always amazed. The craziest one I have is a cow bell, from the Running with the Cows half marathon.

  8. We hang ours in our office in lieu of a valance over our window. Too bad we only have one window in there, that one window is getting full 🙂 Great conversation piece for sure (in a non obvious place).

  9. There are candle sconces on either side of my bed and my husband and I have our medals hanging there. He has recently gotten into running saying it was so that we could do more together. 🙂

    Before I started running my oldest of my 3 kids would say “Mom you should go on the biggest loser so you can get skinny.” Now after losing nearly 40 lbs she says “Mom you look really pretty.” That statement makes all of my efforts worth it.

    Now she too wants to be a runner!!

  10. I hang mine in my classroom along with my bibs to show “my kids” that I have a life outside of work. They love to ask me about how far I ran, (without stopping???!!!) and what place I came in.

  11. Mine are pinned on a corkboard in the bonus room where the tredmill is! They are there for inspiration….doesn’t always work;)
    Fun Fact: Not anything exciting really….just love those days when I go for a run not really motivated and the miles start goin’ down like butter!

  12. They are all hanging on hooks in my laundry room, where I spend an inordinate amount of time. Next to calendars, artwork, etc. makes me happy while I’m doing my work.

  13. I have a medal hanger that isn’t hung yet. We just finished our basement and I’m planning on hanging them down there along with a frame that I out together to display my one finished marathon medal and finishers certificate. I hope to have more full marathon medals to display soon.

  14. For my birthday this past year, my husband bought me two shadow boxes to display my running and triathlon medals. I filled the first box and am more than half way full for the second box. We hung them up on the wall in in our basement~aka “the mancave.” My running fact: I struggled with running for several years. It was a love/hate relationship. I can say after reading Run Like a Mother it changed my perspective and I have a great relationship with running now and I actually love it. Its tough but so well worth it. I recommend it to all my friends that struggle with running. Thanks so much!!!

  15. In 1996, I entered the Half Vineman as a relay team. We won 2nd, which resulted in a bottle of wine in an oak box. About a year or so later, our cyclist was killed by a drunk driver at 9am on a Saturday while on a group ride. Every time I slide the cover open and stuff a medal in that box, I pause and think of CeCe.

  16. I haven’t figured out how to display them yet (I only have two). And one of my medals doubles as a bottle opener. I may just have to figure out how that one can be put on my keychain. I also have a pin that adorns a favorite purse strap…but my medals aren’t the only thing in the house I haven’t figured out how to display, so I don’t feel too bad about it yet.

    Running fact about me…not sure I have anything worth mentioning there either. I’m going to take a ChiRunning class next month and I sing a lot to my playlist songs when I’m running alone.

  17. Mine hangs on a knob of a cabinet above my kitchen sink. I have no window to look out while I am doing the mundane (washing dishes…ugh!!!), so my pretty Rock N Roll Half Marathon Medal reminds me that I am much more than the nose-wiper and dishwasher.

    Fun fact: The placement of my medal inspired my husband to start running (he’s competitive and wanted one, too) and finish his first half, too.:-)

  18. So excited to see me in this article 🙂

    Since I did the survey, I got my first medal, and both of my kids did too. They hang in my scrapbooking area in my bedroom. I remember when I finished that Half, my son saw the medal and yelled “Momma, you WON”. Yes, in my heart, I did 🙂

    Random Fact: I have a running problem. Too many races, not enough time 🙂

  19. Last summer I ran in a 10k, and did pretty good. I was sure I had placed in my group. I waited around for 45 minutes to see the posted results – 4th in my group. I left, dejected. A few weeks later I checked the website to see my time again, to discover there had been an error and I had placed 3rd! I was happy to collect that medal! I added it to my finisher medals that are discreetly hanging in a corner of the living room. Out in the open enough to start a conversation, but out of the way enough to not be obnoxious.

  20. I hang mine in the hallway along with all my race bibs, when we had company once a woman asked me where my HUSBAND got all of his medals, I quickly told here only ONE of them belonged to him….the look on her face was awesome, wish I had a camera. (Fact–I use deodorant instead of bodyglide between my thighs so I don’t get the chaffe on my long runs…my husband alwasy makes jokes about it, I always respond with “at least I’m fresh too”!!!)

  21. Mine are on a hook in my bedroom. I have fantastic plans for making a hanger someday… y’know, when I get the time.

    Random running fact- I plan all my run routes around public restrooms and friends’ homes because I live in fear that I’ll need a restroom while out running. (and I just can’t go in the great outdoors)

  22. I have a running medal. Just one. I am going to get 3 for 3 half’s this year and 1 for my first full one. I keep it in our fireproof safe box, I ran my little heart out to get it and its locked up nice and safe. 😉

  23. I have mine all hanging in my hallway where I see them everyday. My fiance’s army awards are hanging on the opposite wall.

    Random fact: I started running in 2010 as a way to cope with deployment. Since then i have ran 3 marathon’s, 7 half marys and plan to run two back to back marathon’s this July to honor and remember our Soldiers that couldn’t make it home.

  24. Mine are hanging on an Allied Metal medal hanger display thingy on the wall in hallway. Whenever we have company our guests have no choice but to walk by and admire them. =)

    When I was training for my first marathon I dropped my son off at Montessori. He was about 4 years old. When he went in announced to the entire center, “My mom has to run 20 miles today!” The kids had not clue but his teachers all looked at me like I was a martian. It made me so proud.

  25. My medals are handing on the bulletin board in the kitchen. It is a reminder everyday to eat healthy and run (when I can). I received my first medal in 2011 and ended the year with 3 (not winning a race but for finishing-which we all need to view as winning) I hope to get 4 this year!

  26. I only have about 5 or 6 and they are hanging from a knob in the kitchen. Every time my husband goes into that cabinet to get out the laptop I hear them clanging together and think, yup, I am a runner!

    Random running thing: my parents came to watch me run my first (and so far only) marathon. I think their only experience with endurance events was watching the women poop themselves trying to finish the Ironman in Hawaii back in the day. (70’s/80’s) They are not big TV watchers. So, they were so surprised to see me smiling and waving as I crossed the finish line. They kept telling me how amazing it was to see me finish. Best. day. ever.

  27. I display my medals in my classroom by my teacher area. I tell my students that just because you don’t look the part (elite runner with a flat stomach and no body fat), you still act the part (run. period.)

  28. Mine are hanging over my light beside my bathroom mirror! I can see them every morning.
    Random fact about my running…My husband would say I look random when I run…does that count ; )

  29. My husband and 2 boys gave me a “Pride is Forever” medal hanger for Christmas so now they hang in my room where they remind me every morning what I’m working for.

    A bit of randomness – for my 1st half last yr, my husband surprised me by having “Cheering with Attitude” t-shirts made up for my whole family that came out to support me. They’ve now become standard attire for each race – I love it because I can always find them on the course 🙂

  30. So far I only have 1 medal, finisher from RNR Vegas. It was on the tree for Christmas and now I honestly don’t know where it is. But once I have more, I would love to display them somewhere. I have all of my bibs pinned inside my office armoire.

    random fact – made a goal to run 1000 miles this year, and blog about it. While working full time and raising 2 kids.

  31. Mine are finisher medals, not speedy enough to actually place well in an event. I hang mine from a curtain rod I recently put up in our stairwell. Before that, they were hanging from the sides of large frames.

    Random running fact: I’m headed to Hawaii for a company meeting the tail-end of February. I’m thankful it didn’t fall on the same weekend as my half-marathon. So what’s the first thing I do upon finding out our destination? I looked up any races taking place in the area. I’m going to try to do a 10K race while I’m there 🙂

  32. Mine are hanging on a hook inside my closet.

    I am training for a half in April and because I am enjoying my weightlifting class and my boot camp class, have decided to try to incorporate both in my training and see if it makes me any faster. We’ll see!

  33. I have two medal hangers. One hanger says “Marathons” on the top and I hang each medal on a peg, I’m running my eighth marathon in May in Fargo, but it’s only my seventh state.

    The other hanger is “Mom’s Medals” and has all the other medals I’ve earned from various halfs, Shamrock runs and Hood to Coast.

    I’m kind of a geek about my medals, and usually look up the medal before registering for a race. Hence the reason my BRF and hubby are hoping to run the Marine Corps marathon in October.

  34. I have a shelf near the kitchen where all of our medals hang…mostly mine, but including my hubby’s when he “drug his ass” over the finish line at the Princess Half Marathon “because he loves me that much”, and my kids’ medals and ribbons from various 5Ks and fun runs, and one really cute baseball medal too 🙂 We celebrate all of the fitness accomplishments on that shelf.

  35. Funny you should ask… I posed this question to my fellow runner mommas at a book club meeting a few years ago which eventually prompted the development of my Run Momma Run Medal Display Rack! I used to hang them on my bathroom towel rack – ha! Celebrate women who run became our mission and this is our signature design. Show it off, ladies – you earned it!

  36. Mine are all on motivation boards but I think I’m going to buy one of those medal hanger things.

    random fact – I have lucky undies that I wear for all my races 🙂

  37. They are in a vase on my desk at work. Their pretty ribbons running up the side add color but the the medals at the bottom aren’t too obvious but I know what they are.

    Random running fact – currently running in my 6 month of pregnancy (my first) having completed 5 races while prego and have registered for 4 more. I call it my 9 months, 9 races challenges. Doesn’t have to be fast, doesn’t have to be pretty, just have to start and finish!

  38. My bibs are pinned on a small (about the size of a bib) pin board in my kitchen, and the medals I have are pinned with the bib from their respective races. Wish I could attach a pic, it gets a lot of attention when people visit. I did hang my medal from my first 1/2 on my Christmas tree this year, though, after reading that on the RLAM FB page!

  39. My husband and kids gave me the coolest medal holder for Christmas and I just love it! It hangs on the wall in my office and when its full I plan to order another! Here it is:

    Random running fact: I just signed up for my first marathon and immediately developed plantar fasciitis the following week. I’m working to overcome the PF. My dr feels custom orthotic will help tremendously so fingers are crossed!

  40. They are currently all on a plastic clothes hanger in my closet. Yep. In my closet. One day I will find the right thing to do with them- or my closet shelf will collapse from the weight of them!

  41. I had them all stuffed in a reusable grocery bag. It was my husband, with his overwhelming pride for my accomplishments, who felt the need to display them. He and his dad hand-carved two, beautiful shelves. They hold plaques on the top and have hooks for the medals. Their thoughtfulness only fuels my desire to earn MORE medals and plaques. After recent races, my 3 boys fail miserably to hide their disgust if I don’t come home with a medal.

    Random Fact : (as if all that weren’t random enough) In the past year, I have personally inspired 3 of my non-running friends to fall totally head-over-heels in love with the sport. That’s an amazing feeling.

  42. Our family displays our medals on medal holders by “Allied Medal Displays.” We have one that says “My Race Bling” and another that says “My Wall of Fame.” Running Fact: I’m so excited to run my 1st Diva Race in North Myrtle Beach this May! I pray the PF that I’ve been dealing with since Labor Day goes away so I can display the AMAZING Diva medal!

  43. I only have one right now from my first half-marathon (but plan to add three more this year) and it hangs in my bedroom with the rest of my jewelry.

    Random fact: I recently bought a new to me treadmill because I didn’t want to run in the cold anymore and wanted to be able to fit in my runs during nap time. In my speech to my husband convincing him why I needed one I used the line “it will make me a better wife and mother.” Worked like a charm 🙂

  44. My medals and bibs are in the office in a pile on my desk. One day, I’ll display them nicely when the basement gets done.

    Random fact of my running… My brothers laughed at me when I told them I registered for my 1st marathon after only running for 18 months. 3 marathons later & they have been at every one to cheer for me 🙂

  45. Great Friday morning read, thank you so much for sharing . I was already so excited for your next book and now I can’t wait.

  46. I hang my bibs and medals around my cubicle at work to keep me motivated and energized. I also have them hanging from my bathroom light so I see them when I look in the mirror, by my college diplomas in the playroom and on my home office desk. I like to put them around my life to see what I’ve worked so hard for.

  47. My husband bought me a “Marathon Mom” medal hanger. My 4-year-old son helped him hang it on the wall in front of my treadmill. When I got back from my first long run after they hung it, he wanted to know where my medal was. I got to explain that sometimes we run for the fun of it.

  48. My medals hung off the bathroom mirror for a long time. I ended up sort of liking having them there – inspiration for me in the morning and a surprise for guests. It’s not very braggy to have medals in the bathroom, but still quite visible, you know? Right now we are in the middle of a bathroom renovation and the medals have been relegated to a dresser drawer.

    Random running fact: I ran on snow this morning for the first time this year. Cold but gorgeous!

  49. I hang my bibs and medals at school for the year. I think it’s great for my students to see my accomplishments. Right now, the old ones are buried in my scrapbooking closet. And buried isn’t an understatement. I really should do something with them.

    And a random fact about my running? I’m terrifed that a squirrel will think I’m a tree (because I’m that slow) and run up my legs while I’m running. 🙂

  50. I only display the ones from full marathons. DH and I each have our own wall of framed finishers certificates. Each frame has the medal for that race hanging off of it.

    (I haven’t run for over a week because of tendonitis!)

  51. All of mine are hanging off of our long board skateboard in the guest bedroom. Except for the most recent ones. My husband’s Disney half medal and my Disney full medal are hanging in the kitchen.
    Becca (just ran a minute off of my fastest marathon time for my first post baby marathon! My baby is 7 months old)

  52. I don’t have any yet — but will have my very first one when I complete the Rock N Roll half marathon in St. Pete. on 2/12. I can’t WAIT to get it, and will most likely keep it in my office at work since I spend so many waking hours there….

  53. Hey, I trained 3 months for that marathon, no stupid migraine was going to stop me! 😉

    (As far as the DNF, I have learned I’d rather have that than a TSS- Too Stupid to Stop: live and learn.)

  54. My medals hang on the drapery rods in my bedroom. I’m not much of a decorator (clearly) but when I look out the window to check the weather, I realize that I’m very much a runner.

    Random running fact…hmm…sadly, I’m not a very interesting runner, but I guess it would be that I’m a creature of habit. I have my pair of long run and race socks, my pair of long run and race undies, and a headsweats hat that my BFRs joke is as much a part of my head as my hair. (I did a HM in an alternate pair of rundies this fall, and missed my PR goal. I blame the panty choice.)

  55. I hang one or two of my favorites from my dressing mirror to remind myself that how my body looks isn’t nearly as important as what it can do.

  56. Mine hang on my bulletin board at work as a reminder to myself and others, that I have a life outside of the office. They also make a great conversation starter, and remind me to leave work behind at quitting time, and go get a good sweat on!

    Random running factoid – I began running to lose weight (post-40, post-hysterectomy, mid-menopause); I continued to run because I liked the results if not the process; then I continued to run because I liked the feedback; now I run because I can’t imagine not!

  57. I’m quite proud of my medals! Mine began hanging on a picture frame cluster above this computer in my bedroom (with racing pictures in the frames, of course!) and now they’ve spread onto the top of my dresser mirror (which is beside the computer). Not to brag, okay, heck, yeah to brag, but these medals are extra special because besides 2 finishers medals, the rest are all age group medals. (My races are short enough distances that you don’t always get a medal for finishing…so you hafta at least be faster than the other women in your age group if you want a souvenir to take home! 😉 My random running fact? I love to run for the joy of it, but I race for the medals! 😉 runner_girl5k at yahoo dot com

  58. I post them on a bulletin board above my home office desk along with family pics to remember that balancing work, family and fun is all part of who I am! Random fact about my running — I absolutely LOVE not knowing the route so my running partner does all the work of mapping out the runs!

  59. My medals are hanging from a wire clothes hanger that is directly over where I sleep. My son says it’s like a Native American “dream catcher” and lets me dream good dreams of running.

    (I have enjoyed listening to the exact same playlist for over a year.)

  60. I’m still trying to decide what to do with mine. One hangs from my rear view window & the other two hang on a hook in the bedroom. I like the Christmas tree idea. I wish I could get away with wearing them every once in a while. I didn’t start running until my 40s. It’s helped me take off & keep off 50+ pounds.

  61. Mine hang in my scrapbooking room. I found a little “storage solution” for my spools of scrapbooking ribbon (Here is a photo of one I put my spools of ribbon in the top and hang my running medals underneath with the little clips. It works perfectly!

    I have learned cross-training is much more fun when you WANT to do it than when you HAVE to do it because of an injury.

  62. Hey- That picture is my daughter, Lola!!!
    It was submitted to RunFasterMommy for a contest on how we keep our medals-how appropriate! 🙂

    This is how I keep MY medals-Lola wears them and rides around on her tricycle in the house to remind me of WHY I changed my life — FOR HER.
    She was 2 in this picture and at the tender age of 3, Lola can now sport her own medals that she has earned–two of them!!

  63. I created a 5 hook display that hangs in my room. It is the last thing I see before I go to bed and the first when I wake up. Incentive to get up and make it another great day. (this from a mom of 5 whose kids don’t mind that she runs races as long as she brings home bagels when she’s done)

  64. My daughter immediately takes them and hangs them up in her room. She has said, “Thanks for running so much on your treadmill to win medals for me” (of course, she has also said, “Don’t go, Mommy!”).

  65. They’re collecting dust in my hutch right now – but I did get them out last year when I spoke to a group of high school runners at my alma mater. I took them to show the girls that you can keep running into your adult life and get some pretty kick *ss hardware too!

  66. They are in a hutch cabinet in the living room.

    Random running statement…the number of medals I have gotten post-kids is much smaller than the number I got pre-kids. Not in it for the medals anymore…unless its a half marathon finishers medal!

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