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Hippie Chick 2013: I ran in the Quarter Marathon. Finished in 1:07:36!

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Breaking two boards at once, at my 3rd Degree Black Belt test. April 10, 2010

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In the last push to finish the CATnip 5K on 8/13/2010. My second race! Finished in 28:04!

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Hi, I'm Valerie from Portland, OR. The quick low-down on me is that I'm a mom, a wife, a quilter, and a martial artist. And most recently, I've also become a runner! Quite an interesting combination, don't you think? LOL!

My journey with SparkPeople has been an amazing one. When I started, I was about 40 pounds heavier than I should have been. Two young children and a lack of understanding of my bad eating habits left me overweight, out of energy, and wondering what had happened to me.

About 4 or 5 years ago, I decided something had to change. That I was doing something wrong. After all, I was taking Taekwondo classes and exercising 3-5 times a week. There was no reason I should still be overweight! Or was there? I finally realized that all the exercise in the world won't help you unless you are also eating right. If calories in is greater than calories out, you're in trouble.

With the help of SparkPeople's nutrition tracker, I began to watch my food intake. What a wake up call this was! It's so easy to underestimate the number of calories in food. Now that I have a better understanding, I'm confident that going forward I can maintain my weight and my health.

Member Since: 3/15/2006

Fitness Minutes: 26,246

My Goals:
My goals include:

* Maintain my current weight and health.

* Gain muscle tone and strength, especially in my core. Gotta have awesome abs! :)

* Continue running and increasing my speed and distance so I can run in a 10K in November 2010.

My Program:
My exercise program:

* I go to the gym 2-3 times per week. I worked with a trainer to develop a program, which I'm now following.

* I continue to go to 3-5 Tae Kwon Do classes every week.

Personal Information:

Other Information:

Read More About TAEKWONDOCHICK - Profile Information moved here. (Updated September 13)

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    Thanks! I've never been to the NW but have always wanted to go since I lived in Brittany (France) many years ago and I've been told it's VERY similar weather-wise. I don't mind rain :) I just don't have internal-cooling (with lupus), so hot places, even like where I live but only in summer, means I have to hibernate!
    2405 days ago
    I think you should do it!

    I drive across 3 counties everyday just to reach a small town (not city, I think there's 3-4k ppl here?) for a job. I live extremely remote.

    There's a big race track just across the Mussissppi River in Illinois but that's about a 6 hr RT and I'd rather be half way to New Orleans;)
    2405 days ago
    I totally missed that you're racing cars. I don't think that I'd ever want to do that 'against' others but I LOVE the idea of getting training and doing a lap to see who fast I could go!

    How fun!
    2405 days ago
    I had somebody run into another car the same distance away from me BUT I was walking (not in my car) and that was so weird, that it was more surreal. I still can't believe that happened and I was okay. But this scared me more for some reason -- perhaps because I could almost FEEL it coming, then I saw it and then...
    2405 days ago
    Right? You don't get people just running to help you too often. I mean, people are ALWAYS wonderful to me (except motorists, can we agree most motorists just should NOT be?) but this was amazing.
    2405 days ago
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