November 1, 8 miles from City Island

The details:

  • Meet at City Island at 7 am for 8 miles heading toward PennDot and onto the Greenbelt.
  • This is it! The final group run before the big day. To get our team price for the marathon, contact me for the team discount code. Not up for the full? How bout a relay? We can hook you up with a team if you’re interested. For more Aspire Harrisburg Marathon info click here:
  • Don’t miss Lindsay Leigh’s talk on Nutrition for Optimal Racing and Training on Wednesday, October 29 at 7 pm at Aspire Fit: 4800 Linglestown Road. Cost is $7. Reply to this email to register. YOU DO NOT WANT TO MISS THIS. Lindsay’s knowledge and experience are vast and your training will benefit from the information and tips she provides.

Dear Team,

So here we are! This Saturday will be our 29th weekend of gathering together this year, and if you’re new to the team you might not be aware that we will continue all year long. While our runs will be less formal, our hope is to encourage you to keep moving throughout the winter months so that you start the new year feeling ready to tackle your goals. While some of us will be working throughout the winter to gain the fitness required to run a spring marathon, more than a few of us will be working on staying healthy, getting fitter, losing those last few pounds, or maintaining a newly gained level of fitness. Here are some of the ways I plan to make winter training more fun and, most importantly, achievable and realistic.

Jingle your bells! This year I have embraced the fun of running events that have a party atmosphere rather than an intensely “racy” vibe. As a formerly competitive runner, I was a bit skeptical about the idea of doing an untimed 5k and getting sprayed with paint, but the fun was off the charts. RUN or WALK these fun events: Here are a few that sound fun (sans paint!)- The Swatara Police Hero Run The Sticks and Biscuits 5k

Jingle Bell Run/Walk 5k

Make the Run a family or friends event: Taking my kids with me to a race has been more fun than I could have imagined. Between their own sense of accomplishment at having run, the post-race goodies and festivities make for a good time for all that doesn’t require technology or tons of cash.

Enter a series and sign up for a spring event: To stay motivated, sign up for a run/walk series that get you out among others at regular intervals. Elizabethtown College hosts a series on their campus each year (they are ringing in their 26th series in January). Check out their facebook page for dates for their upcoming Frozen Foot series.


Looking forward to seeing you all this weekend and to being together at the Aspire Harrisburg Marathon and Relay. Come one and all and let’s Keep Moving together.



20 miles already? Conewago Trail at 7 am on October 18

The Details:

  • Meet at the Conewago Recreation Trail at the Rt. 230 trailhead at 7 am for up to 20 miles! Water station volunteers needed! Water and Gu will be available on the course.
  • Don’t miss Lindsay Leigh’s talk on nutrition at Aspire Fit on October 29, at 7 pm. Cost is $7. Reply to this email to register!
  • Aspire Harrisburg marathon is November 9! Run the full, run the relay, but definitely join the fun and participate. Contact Misti to get on a relay team started.


Dear Team,

In the days and weeks ahead we will continue to follow Lori Brulo’s journey from a broken back to Boston, with a few bumps more along the road. Last weekend she continued to inspire our team as she completed the Steamtown Marathon after fighting through debilitating rheumatoid arthritis all year. You will hear more and be inspired by Lori’s journey to the starting line in the coming weeks, but congratulations to her and to Al Brulo, Dave Howey, Jen Hitz, Michelle Cross and Michelle DeStefano for their efforts and achievements at Steamtown. We wish Jen a speedy recovery from the injury which prevented her finish.

We are just three weeks away from the Aspire Harrisburg Marathon. If you are planning to run the full, please contact me for your discount code. If you would like to run a relay, let me know if I can help you assemble a team. The relay is a fabulous way to take part in the day and to cheer on your team. Come one, come all for a great day of fun and festivity! More information about the marathon can be found here:

Please plan to attend Lindsay Leigh’s clinic on October 29 at 7 pm at Aspire Fit. You do not want to miss this wealth of information on nutrition for optimal racing and training. Lindsay is a seasoned tri-athlete whose experiences and knowledge will benefit runners and walkers of all levels. The cost of the clinic is $7. Let me know if you plan to attend.

Until this weekend, all, stay hydrated and fuel up. But most of all, keep moving! Misti



Team Aspire-October 4 at the North Lot of Wildwood Park for up to 18

The Details:

Gather at the North lot of Wildwood park at 7 am. 18 miles (or less). Water , Gatorade and Gu on the course.

For those not following the marathon plan, have you considered running a relay at the marathon?  Gather a team or let Misti know you’re interested and we will find you one!

Shorter loops are always available so come where you are, and run the distance that suits your plan and race schedule. View the map of our out and back course for turn-around points.

Water-station volunteers needed! This long a run will require two stops! If you have a hankering to help out, let Misti know. We will smile gratefully at you and feel more gratitude than we can express in words.

Yoga for Runners and Walkers will be held this Saturday, October 4th, from 2-3:30 at Yoga Nature on Linglestown Rd. Space is still available if you’re interested in getting our stretch and bend on. Register by replying to this email. Cost is $15.

Dear Team,

It’s starting to feel a bit unreasonable, isn’t it? We are about to embark on a run that will take more than two hours to complete. We will be tired all day, in need of a nap. We will be less helpful than we might otherwise be when we get home (unless we get that nap!). And yet…here we go. We are going to do this thing because we will be better for it. Stronger, fitter, more confident, more ABLE. We will know that we can do harder things than most people dare to do because we did this unreasonable thing on a fall morning in October. And here’s the good part-you’re ready for it. The buildup has been steady and your body has grown more able to handle the work. You are ready for this because on your way to becoming a better you…well, you got better. Sounds simple doesn’t it:  put in the weeks and the result is that you will have made gains and you will be ready to do what most people find unreasonable.  So as we enter this weekend’s run, here are a few tips I hope will be helpful.

Tell the folks at home that you are about to run 18 miles. When they pick their jaws up from the floor, let them know you will be tired and in need of a nap, extra calories, and a day off of the typical hustle and bustle that Saturday brings. Simply said, ask them to help you recover.

Take the unimaginably unpleasant ice bath and reap the benefits of having your legs recover more quickly.

Drink often and take in calories as we move. This long a run requires energy and hydration to remain constant. Hydrate well until Saturday, take fluids on the run and rehydrate and refuel afterward. Have I told you my “I ran the Harrisburg Marathon and ended up in the ER with dehydration and hypothermia” story? It ends well, but a lot of it is rather unpleasant and was totally avoidable.

Pat yourself on the back, buy yourself something pretty (or manly or silly or decadent) because you will, no strike that, you DO deserve a reward for what you have and will accomplish.

If you find yourself, in the days following Saturday, feeling grouchy and sore, increase your amount of sleep and continue to give your body good sources of fuel, but don’t stop moving. Keep Moving, Keep moving, Keep moving. Inactivity will slow the process of healing and the purging of crud from your legs.

Don’t forget that you have a team cheering you on, every step of the way.


Keep moving,






Yellowbird cafe run!

The Details:
Yellowbird Café run 9/27:

Please join us for our 2nd Annual Yellowbird Café Run this Saturday, 9/27 immediately following our run! Pack a dry shirt and some cash and plan to join us for some great team camaraderie and delicious food.  We will gather at 7 am at the Broad Street market parking lot at 1233 N. Third Street and will cover 12 miles before breakfast. Following our run we will head over to Yellowbird Café for a delicious refueling session. Do you sing or play an instrument and want to contribute to the festive atmosphere? The stage is yours! Drop Misti a note letting her know that you want to play for us-a great gig with an easy-going crowd! Here is the link to this weekend’s run:

Yoga for Runners and Walkers 10/4:

October 4th from 2-3:30 Yoga for Runners (and walkers, too): Join Yoga Nature for an exploration of yoga as a preventative medicine tool to keep your body flexible, strong and injury free. The cost is $15/person. Space is limited so let Misti know your plans to attend!

Dear Team:
As the season’s change, so must your wardrobe! It can be exhilarhating to run in the crisp fall weather but also frustrating as you try to figure out just how much to wear. Keep in mind that as you run, it will begin to feel about 15-20 degrees warmer than the thermometer reads, so dress a bit lighter than you might think you need. While you might feel chilly starting out, you will soon warm up and feel just right. When a stiff wind blows, layers are the way to go. It’s easy to peel one off and keep moving as you warm up, and slip it back on as necessary. I purchase gloves at the dollar store so that I can toss them aside if I get too warm. After your run, it is essential to slip into a dry shirt so that you don’t get chilled. The drive home can be miserable when you’re wet and cold, so bring a jacket and a dry shirt to stay toasty and prevent stiffness from setting in.

While it may be exactly what you don’t want to do after a long run, an ice bath will help speed recovery by driving inflammation and metabolic debris out of your legs. While some runners will use just cold bath water, adding a few bags of ice will be more effective (and after a few minutes you won’t feel a thing!). Stay in for around 15 minutes to fully benefit. I suggest wearing a jacket, winter runderwear (go here to purchase or at least know what in the world I mean:,  hat and sipping a cup of hot tea to make the experience just a bit more tolerable (and please do post photos because this is too good a photo op to pass up!).
Keep moving, all!



9/20: 16 Miles at Conewago!

The Details:

  • Meet at the Rt. 230 Trailhead of the Conewago Recreation Trail for 16 miles, out and back (shorter loops always an option!)
  • Water Volunteer needed-2 would be best-to provide stops on the trail! Many thanks for Lisa and Elizabeth who have supported us so well these past few weeks!
  • Our Yellow Bird Run is Next Weekend-9/27. Plan to bring dry clothes and linger after our 12-miler for light fare at the café. See the menu so you know how much cash to bring!
  • Mark your calendars for a clinic on 10/8 at Aspire Fit: Lindsay Leigh, fitness expert and Ironman athlete will speak with us about nutrition for optimal running. A Must Hear! More details to come.


Dear Team,

Just as the lovely fall weather rolls in, so do the higher miles! As we prepare for 16 along the Conewago trail this weekend, keep your hydration steady and your fuel sources clean. Remember, you can undermine or strengthen your efforts by what you eat in the days leading up to a long run. Many a runner has suffered the aftermath of a badly timed burrito. While you don’t have to eat boring and bland foods just to avoid pit stops, playing it a little safer than usual is wise. What to eat right before a long run is also critical and usually requires some experimentation. The bagel has become a runner’s staple because it packs a lot of carbs into a small amount of food. Bananas also go down easily, and provide both carbs and electrolytes. Want to play it safe, a little granola and some yogurt should agree with your tummy and give you a boost before you get moving. No matter what you choose beforehand, when the miles get this high, you will want to add an energy source along the way. As usual, we will have Gu and other energy supplements for you to experiment with.

For your post-run recharge, give chocolate milk a try. The drink you loved as a kid has the ideal amount of carbohydrates and protein that tired muscles need for recovery, says Joel Stager, Ph.D., director of the department of kinesiology at Indiana University. According to a study Stager led, drinking chocolate milk post exercise speeds up recovery and increases the time it takes to reach exhaustion during a subsequent exercise session better than sports drinks. And a 2007 British study found that regular milk is better than water or a sports drink at restoring fluid levels following a bout of exercise in the heat. Plus, milk contains bone-strengthening vitamin D and calcium. Need another reason for adding a chocolate mustache to your look, it just tastes good after a long hard effort. Try freezing the milk the night before your run, then leave it in your car while you get the job done. When you’re finished, a chocolate-y slushy will be waiting to reward you for the miles well run.

Until Saturday, Keep Moving! Misti


Lower Dauphin Middle School at 7 am for 10 miles!

The details:

  • Meet at the Lower Dauphin Middle School at 7 am to run/walk the Jon Eshenour trail-distance is 10 miles but shorter options are always available!
  • Gu available for $1
  • Water and Gatorade will be on the course
  • Save the date! Our second annual Yellow Bird Café run will be on September 27. We will meet at 7 to cover 10 miles then head over for breakfast after. See the menu and prices here inder the CAFÉ tab:
  • GOOD LUCK to all Team Aspire members who are competing in the Harrisburg Half and the Lehigh Valley Marathon on Sunday!
  • Boston Qualifiers: Monday marks the beginning of the 2015 registration! Check this link for important details:


Dear Team,

Now that we have a couple of months of good solid work behind us, you certainly have begun to notice that covering the same distance on the same course on any given day can be frustratingly  different experiences. Wall Street Journal writer Rachel Bachman reported recently on why our workouts can fail on some days and soar on others.  While many factors impact what you bring to your daily workout, the most significant consideration is whether you are recovering well between hard efforts.  Peter Thompson, a long-time track and field coach from Eugene, Oregon says we “should train to recover not recover to train.” Simply said, the greatest gains are made as we recover from a hard effort.  He goes on to suggest that athletes should rank their energy level daily on a 1 to ten scale. If you never rank yourself at least an 8 or 9, then you simply aren’t recovering. The outcome: flat tired legs and a lack of motivation to stay on track.

Consider Thompson’s other tips, especially as the miles get longer and the physical exertion rises:

Power Down-Sleeping adequately is essential! Poor sleep can impact workouts for up to 48 hours.

Keep Hydrated-Sleep is dehydrating. Hydrate well the morning of a workout, and make sure you are drinking enough daily if you have a high fiber diet.

Easy Does It-If you consume alcohol the night before a workout, make sure you replenish lost fluid with plenty of water.  Alcohol dehydrates!

Mix it Up-Vary your running route, routine and type of workout (try those intervals perhaps?). Boredom is a motivation killer.

Stay Fueled-Be sure to consume enough calories to meet the demands of the work you are asking your body to do. If your tummy doesn’t tolerate food before a workout, make sure you snack the night before and consider adding a Gu to your workout.

Recharge-Use the 1 to ten rating scale to make sure you are feeling recovered before adding another hard effort into your week.

See you on Saturday at 7 am, Lower Dauphin Middle School. Until then, Keep Moving.





Week 20 at City island

The details:

  • Gather at City Island’s walking bridge at 7 am on Saturday 8/30 to run the Harrisburg Half Course! Our plan calls for 13 miles, and so it is a perfect venue. Water and Gatorade will be provided along with shorter options! Bring a friend and you’ll get a tshirt and free GU!
  • Next team event: The next Aspire Team event is September 7-the Harrisburg Half Marathon-Test your training and give it a go! Register at
  • Yellow Bird Café Day- September 27th will be our 2nd annual Yellow Bird Café Run-we will gather for our 12-miler then linger a bit over a delicious breakfast at the café. Great, reasonably-priced food and a time to catch up with the team!
  • Ladies of Aspire-Interested in trying something a little outside the box? Consider joining me for the Shape Diva Dash on September 13th! If you think over the river and through the woods is exciting, consider swinging from monkey bars and climbing ropes to get through this 5k! Can I get a woohoo?
  • Congratulations: Congratulations to Al Brulo, Lori Brulo, Michelle DeStefano, Shelley Casey, Lisa Williamson, and Dave Howey on their achievements at the Aspire HARRC After Dark 7k, and to the entire team who came out to challenge themselves! Also, kudos to Amy Reed for her recent half marathon finish and to Michelle Cross for her 50k trail run!
  • As always, Gu will be available for $1 before runs. Gatorade and water will be on the course.

Dear Team,

Can you believe we have been at it together for 20 weeks? We have hit the roads, trails, hills and have arrived at a new place of health and fitness. I saw plenty of evidence of that fitness at the Aspire HARRC After Dark 7k last Friday night.  Not where you want to be yet? That’s okay. Really, it is.  There is no set timeline on this process, no due date or buzzer telling you you’re out of time. Whether you are just getting moving or have been with us all along, as long as you keep moving you will grow stronger- bit by bit, and day by day.

After Saturday’s humid walk or run of up to 12 miles,  a blister on the back of my heel told me it might be time to mention some common afflictions you may be encountering (or can look forward to after I tell you about them here!).  As I have said before, a stitch in time saves nine, so let’s stay ahead of small aches and pains that can derail us just when the getting is so good, and certainly let’s prevent what we can with good preparation and common sense.

Blisters:  To pop or not to pop, that is the question. Blisters can occur on arches, heels, toes and beneath toenails and they can go from a little hot spot to a full on torture session in a blink unless properly cared for. If you are suffering or think you’re on your way, check out this link for tips:

Chafing:  Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I might have to discuss bleeding nipples, but ladies and gentlemen, I assure you…it can happen. I have seen the blood stained shirts on men over the years and have myself felt the sting of chafing (though mercifully not in quite the same way), and so this is important stuff.  Chafing is one problem that doesn’t discriminate-elites and new athletes alike deal with and dread it.  If this is an issue for you and body glide hasn’t helped, check out this link:

Tummy trouble: Still haven’t gotten just the right energy source and keep ending up in the Porta-pot?  Or perhaps you haven’t even experimented with gus and gels but Runner’s Tummy (my old true friend) still has you down after a longer outing?  Check out these great tips:


So thankful to be with you all and to share the road. Run, walk, jog or wog…just show up and Keep moving.





Conewago Rt 230- 12 miles!

The details:

  • Meet at the Route 230 Conewago Trail head for 12 miles! 7 am start. Portajohns are available!
  • To reach the State Route 230 trailhead from Elizabethtown, proceed northeast for about 2 miles on State Route 230 (North Market Street). The trailhead is on the right just before a bridge over Conewago Creek.
  • HARRC After Dark 7k is this Friday, 8/23. Gather at Kunkle Plaza at 6:30 for a team photo ( at the corner of Front and State Streets, where the race starts) !There is still time to register!
  • We need volunteers to man the water station in the coming weeks! Please email Misti if you are available to cover 8/30-we will start at PennDot that week or 9/6-we will start at North Wildwood that week.
  • Mark  your calendars for our 2nd Annual Yellow Bird Café Run will be on 9/27! Plan to join the team for breakfast immediately following our run.
  • Our next team event will be the Harrisburg Half marathon: September 7, 2014
  • This Thursday’s interval workout will be at Lower Dauphin at 7 pm. Scott Walter will lead-come for 800s, your own intervals or walk laps! All are always welcome!
  • Let Misti know if you plan to run the full marathon or a relay!

Dear Team,
I am really beginning to see the fruits of our labors as we cover longer distances and move through the weeks together.  Paces have increased, walks have gotten longer (up to 8 miles for our hearty walking crew), and personal bests have begun to fall. I dare say that I am beginning to sense temptation in several of you to become first-time marathoners this fall! You may deny it now, but I can feel it in the air!  While we’re not in this to become elite athletes, we are surely about improving the quality of our lives by establishing  healthy bodies that can hold up to the stressors of life. I hope as you look back on your training from the past few months (we have covered nearly two seasons together this year) you celebrate your own personal accomplishments and begin to rewrite your goals with your new level of fitness in mind.
I have heard from some of you this week who have struggled with injury, illness or other responsibilities that have kept you away. Be assured that you can start up at anytime-you will never be “behind” the program as we offer options each week along with the marathon program. Come where you are and let us get you to where you want to be.   Put yourself on your to-do list this week. We will be there waiting to help you get moving.
I will see you at the Route 230 Conewago Trail head on Saturday at 7 a.m.. Thanks to the Matthew and Tim Fox for volunteering to cover our water stations this week!  Let me know if you know someone willing to cover one of the next two runs. This team is so very thankful for the support.
Keep moving, team.


Lower Dauphin Middle School at 7 am for 7 miles!

The Details:
SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: We are NOW taking orders for team tech shirts! See below for full details!

  • Meet at Lower Dauphin Middle School on Saturday at 7 am to cover 7 miles! Check out the route map here:
  • Track workout at Lower Dauphin High School on Thursday at 7:00-join us if you’re able for Yasso 800s or your choice of workout! All are welcome!
  • Don’t forget to register for the Aspire HARRC After Dark 7k on 8/22! Go to to sign up.
  • You can place your team tech shirt order by replying to this email with your name, address, and shirt size (we will offer men’s and women’s sizes s-xxl).  Orders must be received by 8/18!

We are happy to be able to finally show you the new tech shirt design for Team Aspire! Stay tuned for pricing and ordering information!

Dear Team,
It is my pleasure to tell you that we have the final design for the new tech shirts and we are ready to begin to take orders!  As is usually the case, the more shirts we order, the lower the cost per shirt.  At this time we are able to tell you that the shirts will be between $28 and $33, dependent upon how many we order. Please respond to this email letting me know that you would like to order one. Include your name, address, and your shirt size (men’s or ladies sizes S – XXL). We will be taking orders only until August 18th, so please let me know as soon as possible. We realize this is a short turn around, but our hope is to avoid further delay in getting these shirts on your backs! Thanks very much for your patience in this process. The final result looks amazing and I can’t wait to see them in action.
On another note, this is the time begin to experiment with energy gels and drinks if you plan to run the marathon (or even if you intend to continue to increase your mileage over the weeks with us).  Your stomach may need to adjust to receiving calories and electrolyte drinks, and it is best to discover what works and what doesn’t so adjustments can be made.  Keep in mind that these electrolyte replacement drinks and gu/gel fuels must be taken with plenty of water. As with most elements of our training, practice makes perfect, so give it a try now for maximum benefits later.
Looking forward to seeing you soon. Keep moving, all!


North Wildwood Lot on August 9th for 10 miles! 7 am start!

The details:

  • Meet at North Wildwood Park at 7 am to cover 10 miles,  (shorter distance options shown on the map).
  • Water and Gatorade will be provided on the course.
  • Team Memberships available for $10-membership allows you discounted fees at Aspire HARRC after dark 7k and the Aspire Harrisburg marathon and at the Inside Track , Appalachian Running Co, and other retailers.
  • Register for the HARRC After Dark 7k held  8/22 at
  • See Misti to purchase superbands for stretching and strengthening! 1” is now available.

Dear Team,
What a joy to see so many new and familiar faces out to cover 9 miles last Saturday. The central location and early start may have made it easy to attend, but our hope is that the support and encouragement you receive from our team will keep you coming back.  Keep in mind that while the training plan will increase our long run steadily over the weeks in preparation for the marathon in November, shorter options will always be offered, so there is no pressure to show up able to cover a certain number of miles. Come run, jog, walk, or wog…just come.
Over the years, I have found that inspiration can come from many sources. In this information age, we are just a click away from videos, news stories, and a plethora of tales of personal triumph. With so much information at our disposal, I had forgotten the simple pleasure of leafing through the pages of a running magazine.  A few weeks ago, our teammate Dave Howey gave me some past issues of Runners World to share with my kids.  I found myself reading every issue cover to cover, and even enjoyed combing through the ads to see the new gizmos and gadgets that are now on the market for runners. What I most appreciate about this kind of magazine, I think, is feeling connected to a population of others who are on a quest similar to mine, to gain greater health and push myself into uncharted territory. If you’re looking for an easy dose of inspiration and information, pick up a copy at a local running store or give a subscription to Runner’s World or Running Times a try. Not a runner? They provide encouragement for people moving at all speeds and distances. ( I promise, I don’t get a cut from either!).  As crazy as it seems, sometimes it’s the little things that get you moving, like a good story about a runner not so unlike you.
Looking forward to seeing you soon. Until then,  Keep hydrating, keep believing in what we’re  doing, and especially Keep moving.