Monthly Archives: February 2012

In-training

Just registered for the Baylor Bearathon this week, and no, I don’t mean the 5K! That’s right, in less than a month, I plan to complete my third half-marathon. I was able to run 7 miles this morning, unfortunately, not as smoothly as I would have liked to. Two halfs later, I don’t feel like I’m running distance unless I’m getting double-digit mileage. Crazy, I know.

My first half-marathon was the Bearathon last spring. I finished the race in a bit of pain, but I felt so accomplished. Then I went with blistered feet to work a baseball game as a Diamond Girl in the Texas heat. Before my first half, I never understood the phrase “addicted to the pain” like I heard people say about getting tattoos (don’t worry, not my style) or other things. I crossed the finish line, in just over two hours, and almost instantly thought about running another half.

I happened to come across running in middle school. I was playing basketball at the time when a random coach commented on my natural running form and told me I should consider running competitively (such an ego booster!). So naturally, I couldn’t say no to joining the track team that spring. Reminiscing, I like to gloat about my value to the team in my variety of events – 1600 meter run (1 mile), 4×100 meter relay and triple jump. When I do decide to talk about it, it’s only because it means nothing now, just funny how that combination even worked out. For some reason I was always drawn to long distance running. Like they say, “Life is a marathon, not a sprint.” Personally, I’m about long-term goals and progress then short-term results. Then in high school, I ran cross country and track – good times.

I followed through with my goal to keep running half-marathons. My roommates plus Margaret and Haley all ran the Rock ‘n’ Roll Half-Marathon in San Antonio in November. It was Kylie, Margaret and Haley’s first half, but Abby and I ran the Bearathon together the semester before. Running together seems like the ultimate bonding experience with so much time to talk. In fact, that’s how Haley and I became friends in the first place. On the first day of practice, summer two-a-days I remember well, we were given two options, a shorter or a longer route. I was the slower runner in the fast group. I wanted to go a longer run, but I didn’t want to run alone. That’s when Haley showed up, thinking the same thing, such a God-send. When you run over an hour together everyday, you have plenty of time to get to know another. Needless to say, we’re still best friends today. I had so much fun spending the weekend in my hometown with some of my very best friends! Did I mention I earned my personal best time, 2 hours, 5 minutes? It was a really hard run on my shins and knees especially since it was all on pavement. It was also the ugliest run I’ve ever been on – renovated buildings, incomplete construction and back-roads with virtually no music at the ROCK ‘N’ ROLL race. I’m sorry to put you down, San Antonio, but that race did my hometown ZERO justice. If I do another race besides the Bearathon, I will make a vacation out of a pretty destination and provide my own music, thank you.

After all of that, I’m registered and training for my third half, back where it all began. The Bearathon is my favorite race so far because I love the campus participation and the beautiful route along the Brazos River and Cameron Park. Many Baylor organizations line the route to cheer and provide hydration and carbs. Back at the San Antonio race, a group sponsored a carb-loading station with beer. Beer is the last thing I’d like to drink while running. Of course a beer stand won’t be anywhere near the Baylor-sponsored race. The difficulty of the Bearathon hasn’t entirely escaped my mind though. Cameron Park hills are no friend of mine. Check out this elevation (and by elevation, I mean incline of hills):

They don’t call it the “toughest half in Texas” for no reason! I suppose I’m up for the challenge.

Ultimate goals? Well a sprint-triathlon is next on my list! I’ve got the running down, I’m enrolled in a biking class and I’d like to pick up swimming soon. I have swam nearly a mile along the Frio River a few mornings at camp. A road bike is among next investments on my list. I am also determined to run a full marathon in my lifetime. Obviously my time and ability are ticking! First, I ‘ll need a running companion for motivation. I had a friend who ran her first marathon with the support of dad, running miles 15-20 with her, and her boyfriend, running 20-26.4 beside her. Any takers to help this girl out?

Happy training to my fellow Bears. I’ll see you at start on March 24, and I’ll be sure to bring my a-game – going for personal record under two hours this time!

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February

I love February for a number a reasons. For starters, it begins with my parents’ anniversary, a sweet reminder of their love for each other, making me hopeful that I will one day find a great guy to experience that with. On a less romantic note, the rodeo comes to San Antonio. It’s a good excuse to slide my cowboy boots on (my newest pair are red) and enjoy quality country music with people who appreciate it. My family and I just went last week to see new artist Chris Young. Then of course, Valentine’s Day is on the 14th. Since I’ve yet to have a boyfriend on this sentimental holiday, I look forward to the chocolate-dipped strawberries and a new perfume from my parents. This year, my roommates and I did receive a bright, beautiful bouquet of flowers, sent anonymously. We suspect it was from a thoughtful mutual friend of ours. The 18th marks my half-birthday, but more importantly my grandmother’s birthday. As of tomorrow, I’m only six months away from 21, also the age I’ll be when I graduate from college. I never imagined being this age, crazy! Besides all that, college baseball begins.

I’ve loved baseball for as long as I can remember. I grew up around the exhilarating spring sport. I loved experiencing games with my family, on a freshly manicured field on crisp spring afternoons. Baseball became a bigger part of my life when I joined Baylor Baseball Diamond Girls last spring, and became co-captain for this season. Baylor Baseball kicked off the season tonight with the QTI Classic against Oral Roberts University (yeah, the only reason I know that school is because we play them opening weekend). Friday starting off, and seems to be ending now, with rain. The weather pulled through just long enough for a pretty afternoon for the opening game. The team also came through to show off their hard work at practice when they won the game 3-2. I’d say it was a perfect afternoon. I sold programs and welcomed fans for a half-hour before working the entire game on the Baylor side. Fortunately it only lasted 8.5 innings since we had the lead, because I was hungry and thirsty after jumping into full-game responsibility. I can honestly say that I love the action and view from the field as much as I love greeting loyal Baylor fans at the gates and working with my organization. I’ll get to experience it again tomorrow, again on Sunday, and for the remainder of the season! I love what I do, and I’m so proud to be part of the Baseball program, representing Baylor this way. It’s completely worth those four hours of my day when game days roll around.

Here’s to a promising and enjoyable baseball season and spring season!

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ABWK Campaign Update

After a few group meetings and a thorough discussion of our campaign with Waco Habitat for Humanity, our project is heading it the right direction. We are scheduled for completion in just two weeks from tomorrow on our campaign for A Brush with Kindness. My group members and I have plenty to accomplish, but we are completely capable!

We have completed background information and research. Our latest project was a Twitter directory – a list of organizations or businesses, their Twitter ID and the numbers of followers and following. A large portion of these names are campus organizations, including sororities and media outlets. We hope to extend to fraternities, honor societies and service organizations as well. Baylor also has the first collegiate chapter of Habitat for Humanity that should be included. Other names listed in the directory are involved and supportive of local non-profits. My idea is to team up with a radio station like Mix 92.9. I worked with Mix 92.9 and its sister stations as a public relations intern. They have a strong, middle-aged following that seem like ideal candidates to volunteer time or donate money to the program.


My major task for the overall campaign is to create a public service announcement. I have only written one PSA in the past for the Turkey Trot, an event that Mix 92.9 was helping to sponsor. My plan for this PSA is to introduce ABWK and its launch set for later this year. I plan to write a script, make a video slideshow and record a voiceover. I can publish it on YouTube, but it is intended for the website and social media outlets to introduce the Waco Habitat’s newest program. If we are able to partner with a radio or news station, like Mix 92.9, then the PSA can be aired.

Our group is doing our best to divide the workload evenly since we have such a short time frame. At this point, we are working quickly to produce sufficient documents before we focus on editing and compiling for our final product and presentation. I also plan to contribute to designing a flyer, social media and a mockup additional tab for their website.

Time is ticking on our deadline set for March 1. We’ll keep you updated!

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A New Project – Working with Waco Habitat for Humanity

I’m glad to say that Waco Habitat for Humanity has agreed to work with my group members and me for our Public Relations Programming course project this semester. Our project will be entered into the 2012 National Zenith Awards, due in March. I am working with Emilly, Gloria, Lauren and Leah. It was Gloria’s idea to work with Waco Habitat since she is taking a class with Mr. John Alexander, the executive director there. We met last week with Mr. Alexander and Mr. Tim Moon, Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator, to discuss major goals and objectives for our project.

The focus of our project is to promote Waco Habitat’s newest program, A Brush with Kindness (ABWK). ABWK is an exterior preservation service, primarily painting and landscaping, for qualifying homes and families. It will be implemented later on this year after legal issues are worked out, mostly due to lead-based paints. ABWK already exists in larger cities, including Greater LA and Birmingham, Ala.

Since this program is new to our area, Waco Habitat is in the beginning stages of promoting. We will be working from the start to create awareness of Habitat’s newest service. Luckily, Waco Habitat has an established website, in addition to Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and YouTube accounts. They stay current with hundreds of followers, and they upload post almost daily. Mr. Alexander mentioned that the most valuable items we can produce are flyers or brochures and create a link and mockup for the program’s own page on their existing website.

I applaud Waco Habitat for Humanity’s effort to stay current with social media, especially with a small staff of less who stay busy running the office and building or revitalizing homes. It will be beneficial to them and our group that their fan base stays well connected through these outlets. We will be able to reach this group with information about ABWK easily. I would like to improve their public relations efforts with tangible information, presented in flyers or mailouts to the less tech-friendly generation who are likely to volunteer or donate to these efforts. Churches and community organizations are ideal groups to appeal to.

I am looking forward to working with the hospitable staff at Waco Habitat for Humanity and my creative and insightful group members. I am new to the business of nonprofit organizations, but I believe my experience in working with for-profit companies has prepared me. I’m willing to take on a challenge. One month to do this, we’re ready!

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