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Zooming to ZOOMA: When Eight Feels Short

Before we catch up with our ZOOMA Duo, a quick head’s up: the Stride into the School Year program starts on Monday. It is five weeks of unique, fun workouts that blend running and strength training. (Read: You rarely repeat a workout.) The plan has you sweating five days a week, with an option for a sixth day if your schedule and energy allow. The goal is forward movement, which we could all use now that the kids are back in school!


For their fifth blog post, Bridget and Heidi, friends and business partners in the Hell Yeah Projects, interview each other about their training and soon-to-be race experience at ZOOMA Cape Cod.

Heidi Bellamente, 39; mother of two, entrepreneur and leadership coach & consultant (and future ½ marathon finisher) starts us off by interviewing Bridget Sprague, 41; mother of three, entrepreneur and Director of Marketing for Revision Energy (and future 10K finisher). 

Bridget’s husband is. An. Ironman.

Heidi: Fill me in: what’s been happening? 

Bridget: My husband, Billy, just finished his half Iron Man at Old Orchard Beach in Maine. It was big accomplishment for all of us, given the training regimen. Plus, we all got up at 4am to go watch him.

So was it inspirational?

It’s amazing what humans can put their bodies through and still be so happy about it. I definitely walked away wishing I was in better shape!

How are you feeling about your own race?

I’ve decided I’m going to be happy just walking it and finishing it. I’ve had two injuries now- first my toe, then this last week I threw out my back.

Did you have carry Billy up the stairs? Is that how it happened?

No, but I did take a good pic of him crawling up the stairs after his race! The honest truth is I’m not sure how it happened. I woke up one morning with shooting pain in my back. I thought it might be a kidney stone because it was right near my kidney but, alas, the doctor told me it was muscle related.

The picture in question.

That sucks, Bridget. So tell me what does this month look like, what with trying to heal and a goal to finish the race?

I guess my next month looks like trying to get in as many nice walks with my husband as possible without hurting myself! The kids go back to school and my husband goes back to school (he’s a physical education teacher) so it’s going to get crazy again for us.

So in our first blog, we talked about what we were most nervous about and yours was injury. Here we are, a month away from Zooma and you’re hurt. Are you discouraged?

At the moment, I’m very discouraged. I keep thinking, “What can I do to make things better?" but keep coming up short. I guess the best thing for me to do is focus on finishing, even if it’s just finishing and walking.

Pre-race family portrait.

I don’t hear you giving up and I think a lot of people may have done that by now.

Well, luckily I have you, and I don’t want to disappoint you.

I think you’re really just afraid I’ll beat you up!

Yes, I’m really afraid of you. But honestly, I’m really grateful that you’re with me on this crazy journey.

Heidi and her friend Jean running in coastal Maine during a retreat.

Then Bridget asked Heidi some questions.

Bridget: We’re a month out. How are you feeling about the race? 

Heidi: I’m feeling good! Well, at the moment I have a head cold so I don’t feel all that great, but overall I’m feeling ready. I did 11 miles last weekend, so 8 miles (with a fast last 10 min) this weekend felt like a breeze. I was joking with my running buddies that now 8 felt like a “short” run after doing 11!

I know you were going to do some yoga. How’d that go? 

I did it. Once. I wanted it to be relaxing and very zen like but the truth is that I did it at home via a YouTube channel and I didn’t get to finish because the power went out. I was in my living room doing down dog looking at old Cheerios on the carpet. It felt like the opposite of zen.

That’s hysterical! So no more yoga?

Ideally, yes, but not at home. I think I need a professional for my next experience! For now, I think I’m just going to give myself permission to do the training plan to the best of my ability up until race day. I like the foam roller and do know I should commit to more stretching, even if I’m not doing yoga. I don’t ever regret a good stretch.

Heidi in her Zooma sweatshirt taking her oldest to the bus on the first day of school!

What do you have left to do to get race day ready?

I desperately need some new cool weather running shirts. I really am running in shirts from 1999. I did love the SweatX detergent sample I got but you can’t get a decade of funk out with just one wash. It might be time to invest in some new  clothes. I also realized I have no idea when I last bought new shoes. That might mean it’s time to replace those, too.

Do you ever get that massage we talked about last time? I didn’t and I sure could use it! 

No! Why does that keep getting put off? What are we doing?  

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