Going South–Who’s Running With Me

Hello! How was your first week of 2013?

I am having a pretty good time Smile

This morning I ran 4.5 miles to the beach. I had another local stop me and tell me he saw me running by the shopping center earlier this morning. Everyone is just nice here. I like it.image

When I got home I made an omelet – this is my new talent. If I come over your house I’ll make you one too, k?IMG_0329 (800x600)

I wonder what Anthony Bourdain would think of my omelet making skills…


Every morning I’ve been eating a banana with PB too. Ben’s mom is buying Spanish bananas so I’ll feel more at home…cero grasa

I kinda feel like California is an island and I don’t know much about the rest of the country. But, I am OBSESSED with the south.

I think it’s because my Grams had me watch Gone with the Wind when I was a kid and I fell in love with Scarlett (not the nicest character, but I like her).gone with the wind

Or maybe it’s thanks to Luda.

I don’t know.

Anyway, I have always wanted to take an epic road trip from SoCal through the south. I want to wear cut off jorts and drink sweet tea in the sun while listening to country music…

Ahhhh, sounds good.

The Rock N Roll New Orleans Race has been on my "Running Bucket List” for a long time. So, I’m going for it. At the end of February I’m headed to NOLA to run the half marathon. I booked my flight last night, so the road trip is out but Hurricanes are in!rock n roll new orleans

I’m only doing the half marathon because I’m meeting Chandra there and she has a history of getting me drunk and making me walk barefoot through the streets of Chicago.  <- and that was the first night we met!monica and chandra healthy living summit

Neither one of us have been there so we’re hoping to enjoy the city and throw in some running too. Tina, want in on this?martinas

Who’s Running with Me?

My tentative Race Schedule for January / February:

Jan 13 – Los Angeles 13.1

Jan 20 – RnR Arizona Half

Feb 3 – Surf City

Feb 17 – RnR Pasadena

Feb 24 – RnR NOLA

Question: Are you obsessed with some place like I’m obsessed with the south? Any tips for my visit?

Are you running any of these races?


  1. Tara says

    Oh, soo jealous! I am a Boston girl, and I am obsessed with hitting LA (New Orleans-french Quarter..read ALOT of Anne Rice books that has me obsessed with seeing this area!)

    I also want to go somewhere ‘country’ and see what that is all about.
    I feel if I didnt grow up on the beach, I totally should have been a cowgirl (being the tomboy that I am/was )

    Also, love the dedication to your cosmo in the picture above!

  2. says

    Awww, I was considering NOLA since it’s only 8 hours away, but then I decided not to race in Jan/Feb for a break so it’s out. Have so much fun there! :)

  3. Sarah says

    Hmmm, well your omelet is overcooked so I guess that would reflect the self-professed part of you that over-does/obsesses about things right?!

    My omelets tend to be a little too soft in the middle. That doesn’t sound like it would indicate anything flattering about my character. Humph. If Anthony Bourdain weren’t so freaking hot I’d tell him to go to hell.

  4. Jayne says

    Obsessed with England. Lived in London for a year and now go back as often as I can, which isn’t often enough!

  5. says

    I’m totally obsessed with the south too. I really think I could have been a southern girl, except I like my tea unsweetened. I love how the girls get dressed up for football games & how they aren’t obsessed with moving 100 mph. Have you heard Brad Paisley’s song “Southern Comfort Zone” – I love it, but sadly I’m a yankee biotch :)

  6. Angie says

    I love New Orleans. The food is amazing. Everytime we go to visit my husband’s family I gain like 5 pounds, but its worth it!

  7. says

    OMG! We drove from New Mexico to Florida last June to meet my family for vacation (I’m originally from Alabama) and we stopped a few nights in New Orleans….I was just fantasizing yesterday about taking off and doing it again lol. I loved that place! I had never been to Louisiana before and I LOVED it. (They have some crazy big bugs though!) You MUST eat at Pere Antoine!! Me and hubby are still talking about their food. Best food on the entire road trip! Now I’m all overexcited thinking about how much I loved that trip.

  8. Colleen says

    No place beats the south IMO. I live in a large city in the Deep South and cannot imagine being anywhere else. I can go for day trips to the beach, NOLA, Memphis, and lots more great cities. Love!!! RNR NOLA is fun—the city makes it fun!

  9. Krystina says

    I’m running the RnR Arizona half too! Hopefully I’ll see you there! And I ran the RnR New Orleans 2 years ago and it was a BLAST!!

  10. says

    Kinda obsessed with NYC or Paris. In the latter I lived a decade and wonder if should venture back. I recommended your blog to my sis who’s a runner, a real one. I just skimp out and run a teeny tiny bit. But… I looove your bubbly bloggin’ styyyyyle;)

  11. says

    I go to Georgia a couple of times a year and love it. Everyone is so polite and I get a kick out of kids always addressing adults as ‘Sir’ and ‘Mam’.

  12. says

    Yes for being obsessed with the South. I want to go all “Fried Green Tomatoes” style & see the big plantations, wear cutoffs, eat buttered corn on the cob & meet the “Sweet Potato Queens”! Happy New Year!

  13. says

    I’m pretty obsessed with Patagonia, in South America. I saw the documentary 180 Degrees South and just became enamored by it. There’s an awesome luxury eco resort down there that I’m DYING to stay at- when I can afford the airfare and the -ahem- $6,000/night room charge.

  14. Bethany says

    Cafe Dumond is a must for beignets however I liked the beignets at Cafe Beignet, a small cafe in the French Quarter. There are a lot of tourist traps in the French Quarter but it is definitely an experience to be had. Central Grocery is THE place for a muffuletta sandwich but you could easily split half with a friend, a whole is the whole round of bread and is HUGE. If you are brave enough to go to Bourbon Street day or night, plan on those shoes smelling like Bourbon Street for the rest of your trip. One barista told me that when you live there you have your Bourbon shoes then the shoes you wear anywhere else. Frenchmen Street is great for live music and nightlife if you want to experience more local flavor. Most debauchery on Bourbon St is carried out by tourists, not locals. Take the Trolley to the Garden District, lots of restaurants and watering holes on St Charles and Magazine St. Slice Pizzeria is really good and was a place my friend and I went to a few times because of their fresh salads which we found was hard to come by in NOLA. Have fun!

  15. Kimberly says

    At this rate, you will meet your 13-13.1’s in no time! My New Year’s Resolution is to read your blog whenever I lose motivation to run in 50-degree weather (that is cold for a born and raised Bay Area CA girl)

  16. says

    Hi ~ I enjoy reading your blog. I am running the R&R New Orleans half; I also live in NOLA. Let me know if you have any questions or need recommendations. It’s an awesome city to explore & run in!

  17. marie says

    omg, how are you running all these and not going BROKE?! two RnRs? that’d be my entire running budget for 2 years…

    teach me how not to poor.

  18. says

    I live on the border of the South.. Southern Missouri so I think of where I live as the semi south. We love country music and sweet tea :) I am also in love with Gone with the Wind. I even went to the extent of naming my daughter Scarlet. (One T to mix it up a little) My Birthday is in February so the New Orleans Rock in Roll is on my list of Birthday wishes. Not going to happen this year but maybe next!

  19. says

    How fun!!!

    Give me another year….when I turn 45 all hell is breaking loose…I am going to be flying more, running more, and simply saying MORE, MORE.


  20. Katie says

    You are going to love this race! The locals take it like an additional Mardi Gras parade, bloody Mary’s anyone? I did this race for my first half last year (this is home)and it was a blast!

  21. Gillian says

    Have fun in NOLA! Braved Bourbon St. and had a great time partying. My friend made me try one of the hand grenades, way toooo sweet, but still tasty! French quarter made me think of an old movie or something, very quaint. And you have to have a beignet (spelling??)

    I’m doing Jan 13 LA 13.1 and I was planning on Feb 3 Surf City half but I have to work :( so I’m doing Feb 17 RnR Pasadena. Hope to meet you!

  22. says

    I am completely and utterly obsessed with the south. There was NO other options for our wedding….we met in the South and we wanted to get married there. I’m from CA and my husband is South African, so there is really no rhyme or reason to our love affair, but we cannot get enough. Charleston is a MUST, but we are also considering a long weekend in New Orleans for the first half of 2013.

  23. TiffanyS says

    I’m doing my first RNR experience at Arizona. I’m kinda nervous for how huge it is going to be. Plus, I live in MN, so snow and cold haven’t made for the mood to run much. So, I’m hoping all my CF and spinning will help me to the finish.

    I have been to NOLA, and my favorite place was in the quarter called Cajun Cabin. Best bread pudding of my life.

  24. Kate says

    Definitely agree about Cafe du Monde and the Central Grocery Muffaletta. Also, park somewhere ( like at your hotel) then take trolleys or walk if you can. Parking get expensive down there fast. Go to Preservation Hall also if you’re into jazz…it’s amazing.

  25. says

    When I was in college, some friends and I took a road trip from Vermont to the south. We wanted to experience the “dirty South,” Deliverance style, but in the end, we didn’t find it. We were still happy with cutesy, plantation South though!

  26. says

    I am running the Rock N Roll Half in New Orleans too! I actually emailed you the other day about the mystery pain in my foot, and the half I’m training for is that one! I hope and pray I can continue training after this minor set back. I’d love to meet you in N.O!

      • says

        A litte bit! My running coach suggested the RICE method and lots of stretching and massaging my calf and it seemed to do some good. I won’t do my long run tomorrow (continuing to rest it) but will definitely attempt to run again as soon as the pain is totally gone. I know I’ll lose alot of my training momentum but the goal is just to cross the finish, not concerned with time! Thank you for asking :)

  27. says

    I’m obsessed with the west – I’ve been to Colorado once and I’m dying to go back, I can’t get enough of the mountain views!

    I’ve really been wanting to run the RnR Nola race! I’m still contemplating, I think it would be so much fun. Never been to New Orleans, and what better way to visit than with a race!

  28. says

    I’m obsessed with bora bora. I’ve never been but someday I’ll convince my husband to splurge.
    Love all the races, wish UT wasn’t so cold so we had more races in jan/feb. guess I need to visit Cali…

  29. says

    LOVE your goal of 13 half marathons in 2013! Makes me totally miss running. (I’m 38.5 weeks prego, so there’s NO running going on right now and I miss it terribly) Sometime soon I am going to strap on my shoes and just run for a very long time. For now I am going to live vicariously through you!!

  30. says

    I’m obsessed with Chicago–it’s just the coolest city ever! I was born there and lived there for a year after college, too. But it is just too cold. I tool the fam on a road trip up there this summer and we had an awesome week!

  31. says

    I’m running the RnRAZ Half too!

    I’m obsessed with The Bay Area. San Francisco can do no wrong. And I hate country music, but the moment I enter Texas, it has to go on the radio. And I suddenly really want cowboy boots.

  32. Erin says

    I’m running too! It’ll be my first full and my step-sister and her bf’s first half. My sister lives in NOLA and our parents are going to come cheer us on. It looks like it’ll be a great flat race, hope to see you there!

  33. says

    No way! I’m running the RnR Nola half too; my first half! I live in Baton Rouge (45 minutes away) so I know the conditions well. My pointers would be 1. it will be hot (“warm” considering February) and 2. it will be humid, you’ll drink your air!
    and as far as the Nola life night goes; I’ve heard Harrah’s casino has free drinks if you gamble there 😉 AND i highly suggest getting your palm read in Jackson square just for shits; it’s pretty cool to see what the person gets way right and way wrong about you!

  34. says

    I’m jealous you are doing RNR NO…thats on my bucket list! I love RNR AZ…this will be the first year I’ve missed it in the last 5 years. I just did IMAZ in November so I couldn’t justify going back to Phoenix so fast…I’ll be there next year though! Are you trying do do a lot of RNR’s to get to Rock Legend or Rock Idol? I did 7 last year!! I will be at Surf City. Super excited for that one!

  35. Micaela says

    I just watched about half of that music video and my favourite part was definitely the INCREDIBLE halter jumpsuit the woman at 0.38 is wearing. I was in South Africa recently and saw a woman at a swimming pool wearing one in purple. Amazing.

  36. april says

    i love your goal of running 13 half marathons in ’13! RnR NOLA looks SO fun! i’ve never been to new orleans, but it’s definitely on my bucket list. i’m excited to read your posts about the trip and the race.

    i’ll be running RnR pasadena, too! i’m a pasadena native – love this race! =)

  37. says

    New Orleans rocks!!!! Good call on running the half cause you will definitely want to partake in some (or many!) hurricanes!!! I don’t even know y’all but I wish I could come drink – I mean run – with y’all!!!!

  38. Jessica Kempainen says

    Live in New Orleans & running the RnR here for the 3rd year! Great flat, scenic course with plenty of spectators & local music!

  39. Mary Neill says

    Visited NOLA for my 21st birthday last fall–one heck of a trip! Other than drinking my way down Bourbon st, I had some wonderful runs all up and down the french quarter–not so bad when you’re hungover because its all flat! Wishing you so much luck and for you to have as great of a time as I did in such a wonderful city. I wish I could run that half but I have a feeling I wouldn’t be able to risk the temptation the night before to be able to run a good race so early in the AM! Haha!

    Love your blog by the way–you were one of my motivations that helped me start running last year and I’m never looking back:)

  40. Anne says

    Don’t walk barefoot in the quarter! Ick! I was looking at the half but were going down to take my son for his first mardi gras earlier in the month about 45 min north of NOLA. You will have a blast! Also- that road trip would be epic, but I’ve done it twice from SoCal to Nola. It’s mostly desert on 10 till east Texas. Worst drive ever lol!

  41. says

    Yeah I like your plan!!! Running a half hung over is totally doable, it’s just a half!!!! That is the beauty of being an experienced marathoner is that a half will never seem far or hard again, it’s always “just a half”.

    I am obsessed with San Juan Islands in WA, mostly I am majorly obsessed with ORCA whales and there are tons there. The towns all look so quaint and the surroundings are just beautiful. Some day….

  42. says

    My omelets always end up delicious and disheveled. I’m inferring incredible things about myself from that 😉

    Have a great time with all those races! Read GWTW – as is often the case, the book is better than the movie.

  43. Kristy says

    I’m running the RnR NOLA half also! I was so excited when Tina announced on her blog that you and her were running there. You two are my running celebrities! I actually started running after reading Carrots & Cake which lead me to your blog. Excited at the possibility of crossing paths!

  44. Shannon in Tustin says

    I’m running Surf City! It will be my first full. I am just coming into “terrified” mode. My 20-miler on 12/22 went well but I haven’t run since (Christmas week and a weekend trip) then I have been whallopped with 5-days in bed and the nastiest sinus infection the world has ever known. I am not sure where to pick up from here. Still really not better enough to even run; hoping for Sunday or Monday. I just have to believe in my fitness level and follow my plan to my best. It’s all I can do. Full-time mom, full-time mom, part-time runner…keep moving forward.

    Good luck with these fun races, Monica. If I see you in HB, I will shout-out like I did at the PCRF last May! :)

    Happy New Year!

  45. says

    Your race schedule is impressive! I hope I can run that many races within the next 2 years. I’m actually running the Surf City marathon on February 3rd, and it’s my first marathon! Can’t wait :) / I’m super nervous. / Still really excited though.

  46. sally says

    i did the RnR nola half last year and LOVED IT!!! The course is super flat and goes through some beautiful tree lined streets with houses that are amazing to look at. Wraparound porches. I stopped to take a ton of pics and STILL PR’d. It felt like a fast course. Plus the half and full mary runners all start together so it seemed to make the energy level all around amazing. We partied after. Did the whole hurricane drink in the big tall glass thing and walked around the french quarter. I agree that you must have a beignet! So delish. How could you go wrong with fried dough and powdered sugar. And the finisher’s medal was attached to beads instead of the typical cloth ribbon =) I’ve done the Arizona RnR half too. and that was a really crowded one with a very long wave start. And it was really cold that morning! (I did it in 2010). Enjoy all your races this year!

  47. says

    Well snap. I live in NOLA and ran the RnR half here last year but I’ll be at the Disney Princess Half that weekend instead! The course is pretty great and goes all over the city. Eat at Jaques Imoes. No joke, best place in town. BEST.

  48. Denise P. says

    I’m not running any of those races. My first one will be RnR half in Dallas in March.

    I’m mildly obsessed with Guatemala, ever since my bf told me he wants to get married at the base of a volcano there. It’s where my future in-laws live, so we’ll be going there often. I’ve even looked up if they have races there. Yup they have 1 – a tough, but beautiful mary and half.

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