Wednesday, October 5, 2016

IWSG: Ready, Set . . . Go!


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This October, I'm gearing up for two big things, and I'm anxious about both of them.

The first is National Novel Writing Month in November. I've done and won NaNo a number of times, but it's been awhile since I felt good about what I ended up with. I'm not talking about a perfect, publishable manuscript. I just want to be happy with what I have to work with, to revise, later on. So, I'm doing a lot more prep work this time around, and I'm hoping it will help. 

The next thing is running a 5K. If you've been around this blog for a bit, you know I'm working on my health and weight. I've been training somewhat secretly. Of course, the people in my neighborhood who see me jiggle-jog down the sidewalk know something is up. But I've kept it kind of hush-hush because, honestly, I'm not sure I can even physically do it, and I hate the idea of setting myself up for failure, admitting defeat. (It's actually longer than an official 5K and "zombies" are going to try and grab three flags that will represent my life. The goal is to get to the finish line with at least one flag/life left. I just want to get to the end, "dead" or alive.)

I can use all the encouragement and support I can get, along with any advice - for the running and/or the writing. Wish me luck! I'm going to need it . . . 

*****

I'm co-hosting this month's IWSG along with these folks - Beverly Stowe McClure, Megan Morgan, Viola Fury, Angela Wooldridge, and Susan Gourley. Please show them some comment love!

144 comments:

  1. You have almost a whole month to prep.
    Cool you are training for the zombie run. Keep at it. Just crossing the finish line is all that matters.
    Thanks for co-hosting today.

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    1. I'm going to keep that finish line in sight, believe me!

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  2. Hooray!! I so admire you for doing the 5K! I've had that as a goal for a while and sadly I have never followed-through with the training. Your event sounds like so much fun too, with the zombies. I have no doubt you'll have a flag left at the end. Good luck!!

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    1. If I can do it, you can do it. Totally.

      I never actually had running a 5K as a goal or anything, but then my husband saw the ad for the zombie run and we knew we had to do something about our weight, so.... :)

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  3. You are a brave writer and runner. You are pushing beyond your safe boundaries and stepping into fear. You are protected, encouraged, and loved. Keep up the good work. Continue to put one foot in front of the other. Continue to write one word at a time. You are a powerful force. Thank you for sharing your challenges and co-hosting IWSG this month. Cheers!

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    1. Thank you so much for your lovely comment, Lynn! I appreciate it. :)

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  4. I think having people chasing you might help get you over that finish line. lol Good luck!

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  5. Hi Madeline and thanks for co-hosting. That sounds like a creepy 5k run. Good luck and I hope you escape with your life! I've never done NANO and don't plan on it this year either. I could use the commitment as inspiration, but I know I'd never make it to the end.

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    1. NaNo also runs Camp NaNo with sessions in the spring and summer that are more flexible and loose with word count and projects. Maybe that's something you could work toward?

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  6. I'm sure you'll be successful in both challenges, Madeline. I'll be cheering in the side-lines :)

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  7. Good luck with Nano! If you can run from zombies, you can definitely win that. Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Hmm, maybe I can combine the two? A NaNo novel about running a 5K while chased by zombies....

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  8. Thanks so much for co-hosting! I'm impressed with both of your goals. I failed NaNoWriMo year and there's no way I could ever do a 5k. Cheers - Ellen

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    1. Hey, I never in a million years thought I could run a 5K. I probably won't run the whole thing either, probably do some sort of run walk combo. Never say never!

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  9. Stick to your goals and don't let anyone grab your flats, literal or imagined. You're an inspiration.
    Thanks for co-hosting this month!
    Mary at Play off the Page

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  10. Good luck with both challenges! It's been a few years since I did NaNo, and the last few times I won, but like you, I didn't feel happy with what I produced. The last one was about a modern wizard who turned his cat into a goat!

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    1. Okay, now I want to know why the wizard changed his cat into a goat. Did he do it on purpose or was he going for dragon or gorgon or something? Or did he want goat's milk? :)

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  11. Good Luck, Madeline!!!!

    Thank you for co-hosting!

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  12. A zombie run? That's epic! I would kill myself in a thing like that. (I actually would--exercise induced asthma and all.)

    I'm wishing you epicness for both the race and NaNo. Kick to snot out of both!

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    1. You could sign up to be a zombie - you'd get to move a lot slower. Hmm, maybe I should've done that....

      Thanks so much!

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  13. Two great goals! Don't let insecurity kick you to the curb. Best wishes. Thanks for co-hosting this month.

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    1. Maybe I should pretend insecurity is a zombie I'm trying to run away from.... :)

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  14. I sat out of NaNo last year but I'm thinking about using my current WIP as a NaNo novel. I'm still deciding but I may jump in and see what happens! Best of luck to you! And don't let the unpreparedness get you down. The best time I ever had at NaNo was when I didn't have a plan at all and just wrote from the seat of my pants! It was great!

    Have fun with the 5K! Running and I had to part ways years ago but I admire those who run. And I love your goal: cross the finish line. That's really all there is to it, right?

    Thanks for co-hosting!
    ~Jen

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    1. Good luck if you decide to do NaNo this year! I usually only kind of half prep, but this year I'm doing something different and will prep until I can't prep anymore. :)

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  15. Zombies! Maybe they'll be so scary that you'll zoom to the finish on pure adrenaline. Best of luck with the training and completing the race. You CAN do it.

    Prepping ahead of Nano is smart.

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    1. If only! Maybe I can get the fear to transfer to my feet.... :)

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  16. Good luck on your endeavors! The zombie run sounds like a lot of fun, I would definitely do that!

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  17. Good luck on your race. It sounds fun. It's been years since I've done a 5K but I know there are usually all levels of runners so you'll do great.

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    1. I'm hoping for a mixed group of experience levels. I don't want to be the only one waddling along!

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  18. I wish you all the best with NaNo and your 5K. I have faith in you. :)

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  19. Madeline, we're in the same boat. I've been eating clean and doing a 2k bike ride every day since June. I couldn't do one pushup when I began. I'm now able to do 10 comfortably. Sort of! Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Excellent, Joylene! Isn't it something to look back and see how far you've come? I could barely run at all before losing my breath and have to stop. I'm not all that great now, but I'm definitely better than when I started.

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  20. Congratulations on that running! The waddle will be gone in a flash. :-) And thanks for co-hosting today.

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    1. Oh, I think the waddle will be around for awhile but maybe less jiggly. :)

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  21. Hello fellow Nano writer :-) That sounds like a really fun 5k. Good luck and thanks for co-hosting!
    www.smpace.com/blog

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  22. I've heard of those zombie runs before. Just thinking about doing it makes my blood pressure shoot out of control. That's awesome that you're going to do it.

    And NaNoWriMo, too. I'd really love to do it this year, but I know I won't be done with my revisions by then.

    Best of luck to you on all of your endeavors!

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    1. Thanks, MJ! I'll take all the good luck I can get. :)

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  23. I'm not sure which is most terrifying! (This is where I have to secretly admit that part of the reason I've never attempted nano is because I don't understand all the minutae of how you go about it. Now I've actually written that down it's shockingly pathetic isn't it!)
    Anyway, you're a very brave woman - give thoose zombies hell!

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    1. At its core, NaNo is 50,000 words written over the month of November. That's it! There's few rules and regulations, and it's all on their site if you want to check it out. Hey, if I can run a 5K, from zombies, you can try NaNo. Go for it! :)

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  24. I'm thinking of your two events, writing a NaNoWriMo novel and running a 5K. They both require tons of work and have a clear endpoint. I like that.

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    1. I like that, too. I'm learning that having a clear cut start and finish are helpful for me in achieving goals.

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  25. Best wishes for your November Novel challenge and also for your run. I admire you for doing both!

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  26. Woot woot! That sounds like a great setting for a 5K. Have you been following a particular training regime?

    Best of luck with your run and NaNo prep. I know I typically crash and burn on the latter. :)

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    1. I basically started walking with small bursts of running until now, when I'm doing more running than walking and for longer stretches.

      If I can run a 5K, you can totally do NaNo!

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  27. As I was reading, I imagined doing a zombie run as a fund raiser for our football team...using the players as zombies. But I quickly dropped the idea as I imagined overzealous boys body-checking the 40-something crowd of runners.

    But how fun!! I think you've already won to just be getting ready for it. Just like any big goals, you baby step your way there and be sure to pat yourself on the back for the progress.

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    1. Ha! I'm hoping these zombies will be kind and gentle. And really slow.

      Thanks so much, Elizabeth! I kind of do already feel like a winner. :)

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  28. I'm impressed with how you are tackling these two challenging things at the same time. I've never done NaNoWrMo myself, except for the camp one, and that did help me finish a rewrite (not a new draft of a novel). The accountability and daily goals helped a lot. You can do it-can't wait to hear how both of these go!

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    1. I'm doing these two hard things . . . and that's pretty much it. A lot of others things are going by the wayside. And I'm learning to be okay with that. :)

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  29. Slow and easy is my method. I started "back" into running this year and to make sure I kept at it, I signed up for a triple crown race, with each race 6 weeks apart. The first 5k was in the mid 90s and tough, tough, tough, but I kept up the practice runs. That was in July. I turned 60 in Sept. I did 8 miles on Monday, and my skinny jeans are too big(sound of me cheering and clapping and jumping up and down)! You can reach your goals too! Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Wow wow wow!

      Okay, forget all the other stuff for a minute. I'm going to applaud the fact you're wearing skinny jeans - that are now too big! - at age 60. I have never worn skinny jeans - and the world thanks me. :)

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  30. What a fun way to get or stay in shape! In this and in your writing plans you have a lot of built-in support, as well as inspiration, besides having the perfect attitude for success! Very best wishes ;-)

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    1. I always have my husband's support and encouragement, and now after sharing these two tough things here, I have all of you on my side as well. I can't lose!

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  31. You can do it!!! You're an inspiration to me - I realized I haven't run a 5k in . . . well, at least six years. I don't think I can. I can walk that far, but run? Wow.
    You rock!

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    1. You've at least run one 5K! This is my first. I'm not sure if I can run the whole thing - I want to, and I will try to - but I'm okay if I have to walk parts of it.

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  32. I've run in four 5k races and I realize that I like running by myself a lot more. Less pressure. My husband, on the other hand, has run a lot more races because he likes how other runners inspire him to go a bit faster a bit longer. His advice: start in the very back so you have the opportunity to pass other runners. It will inspire you to keep going.

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    1. Wow! Four of them? Good for you! :)

      As much as I like the idea of starting in the back and passing others, I'm not sure I WILL pass anyone else. I'm the one others will pass. :)

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  33. OMG! A zombie race? That would make me run - fast. Good luck!!

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    1. I might have to pretend they're real zombies in order to give me the bursts of speed I'll need. :)

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  34. I've considered doing a zombie run, but I'd be a zombie. ;) Good luck to you with NaNo and the 5k!

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    1. I think it would be so much fun to be the zombie, but I wouldn't get the workout I need if I did that. Plus, I'd probably be a terrible zombie because I wouldn't want to grab anyone's life flags and "kill" them off. I'd probably end up cheering them on toward the finish line. Or grunting them on. :)

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  35. Thanks for co-hosting today, Madeline. Your comments about NaNoWriMo are spot on. I've taken to doing prep work also so that 30 days and 50k words aren't stuffed under the bed in December, never to be looked at again.
    Best of success with the 5k!

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    1. I'm really hoping the prep work helps with the end result of NaNo. I don't need for it to be pretty, just better than it's been in the recent past. Good luck with your NaNo prep and project!

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  36. A zombie run--what fun! Good luck with your race, and with NaNoWriMo, which is also a race, n'est-ce pas?

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    1. Thank you, Rhonda! Yep, two races, although one is over a lot faster than the other. Even the way I run. :)

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  37. Thank you for co-hosting!

    I think you're going to do great at your zombie run and what a fun way to get started. You're way ahead of the game by just participating and training! Best of luck to you!

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    1. I am pretty proud of myself for doing the training in itself. So not easy.

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  38. Thanks for serving as a co-host this month. This is only my second time participating, but even before joining, I knew how supportive this group is. It's an honor to be a part of it.

    Good luck with the NaNo. Since you've already completed it in the past, you should breeze right through it this year, and I'm sure your extra preparation will pay off.

    MAYBE if real zombies were chasing me, and threatening to eat my brains, I MIGHT be able to run 5K, but I wouldn't bet on it. I wish you all the best with it. It should be a lot of fun, dead or alive.

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    1. So glad you've joined the IWSG! It really is a wonderful group, and I'm thrilled to be a part of it, in general, and to be able to co-host now and then.

      I'm trying to approach both NaNo and the Zombie Run with a relaxed, fun attitude but my competitive, stubborn streak might have something else to say about that. :)

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  39. Best wishes with your run and with NaNo. You'll do it.

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  40. Since there are so many writers whose idea of exercise involves pacing while their characters attack them... just remember you're running for three or four, or a hundred and twenty of us. And we're all rooting for you (whilest hiding behind our desks.)

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  41. Awesome, Madeline! It doesn't matter how ugly the journey, it's reaching the end that's sweet! In life and in writing. Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. Trust me, it's all pretty ugly right now - the running and the writing.

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  42. Thanks for co-hosting today. Good luck with your Zombie Run. I wish I had some advice for you, but I should be trying to do some running myself. I hope your prep for Nano pays off. Right now, you're planning for two things I'm currently too afraid to try. Maybe one day.

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    1. If I can do two, you can do one! And believe me, I might be attempting these things, but I'm still afraid all over the place.

      Maybe give NaNo a try? Or look into Camp NaNo for the spring/summer?

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  43. Wishing you the best for staying clear of those zombies (sounds like lots of fun). And best of luck with NaNo. Wish I could do it this year, but alas, I can't see it happening.

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    1. I'll take all the good wishes I can get - thank you! :)

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  44. Hi Madeline
    No advice on running. The only time I enjoyed running was when I was a kid. I've also never done NaNo due to my health. I can lose entire days to health issues so adding that kind of pressure doesn't make sense. What I do do is personal goals with lots of room for forgiveness of myself.
    Nancy

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    1. I love the idea of personal goals with room and freedom. Being good to ourselves, being kind to ourselves, is something we need to do more often.

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  45. I love your goals. As far as running goes, do it for you, find joy in small accomplishments like time improvement or getting another five steps in. Walk and run in places that inspire you. Listen to great tunes along the way. These are all things I loved about running. I wish you luck. I think he same things about writing too. Celebrate the small things and never give up. :)

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    1. When I run outside, I tell myself to get to the next tree or reach the corner, etc. Then I usually push myself just a few steps past that just because I can. The treadmill - or the "dreadmill" - is another story. Ugh.

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  46. Have fun with Nano! I never actually do Nano in November, but I have often done the same word count or more in certain months. And don't psych yourself out too much on the 5k. I've done some, and I never jog the whole thing. I take plenty of walk breaks. Just completing one is great.

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    1. I was worried a bit about walking and running the 5K, but your comment made me feel better about that - thank you! :)

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  47. Gosh, running 5K - that's even harder than writing a novel. For me, it's nothing short of heroic. Good luck! NaNo will be a breeze in comparison.

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    1. I so wish something I was trying to do would be a breeze! :)

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  48. I wish you success on your zombie run - how appropriate! I, too, am a "secret" runner, although now sitting out with an ankle injury. My 5:30 a.m. treks are seen by no one who could identify me to the authorities!

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    1. Ha! :)

      Sorry to hear about your ankle. I keep trying to make sure I'm as uninjured as possible in the days leading up to the run. After that, I can fall apart if I need to. :)

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  49. Wow, zombies! Just running the 5k would be enough of a challenge for me. Good luck, Madeline! Kudos to you for tackling your health and weight. That's not easy. And good luck with NaNo. I had thought about trying it this November, but we'll be traveling. Thanks for hosting the IWSG today. I hope that you had fun!

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    1. Thank you for all those good luck wishes! And I always enjoy co-hosting the IWSG and "meeting" so many great people. :)

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  50. Best of luck with NaNo and the 5k! I know what you mean about not being happy with the NaNo results. I'm seriously thinking of re-writing (as opposed to revising) the book I worked on last year as this year's project--really making the outline work and starting over more or less from scratch.

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    1. My NaNo ms is one I've worked on for years, off and on. I am finally going to get a good draft of it.... Fingers crossed!

      If you do, NaNo this year, good luck with your project!

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  51. Oh, and for the 5K? Just run your own pace no matter what. Don't let the exciting start lure you into a sprint, and let the zombies eat you rather than trying to put on a burst of speed. You can do it!

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    1. Good point!

      Although, there's not really all that much difference between my jiggle-jog and my bursts of speed.... :)

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  52. Writing and running omgoodness you are my hero. I really need to exercise more. I wishould you the best of luck with both!

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    1. If you could see me run - or write - you would not be calling me your hero. It is so not pretty. :)

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  53. Hi Madeline,
    All the best for the 5k. You can do it. I run and go to a fitness center. Started also because of my health some time ago, and I have to make myself start but after I start, I feel soooo good. So hang in there. I know you can do it. Also, I'm doing NaNo too. Good luck, and I hope you receive joy from doing it.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Patricia

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    1. Good for you! I need to make myself start as well. I try to remember that I'll feel good when I'm done.

      Good luck on NaNo! :)

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  54. Good luck on your 5k! You'll get through it, I know it. Like you said, the real goal is crossing that finish line. You can do it!! I'm thinking about doing Nano again this year too. I tried it a couple years ago but failed miserably... this year however, if I can get in a complete outline first, I may give it another shot. Good luck on both!!!

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    1. I'm preparing way more for NaNo this time around than I usually do, and I'm hoping that will help with the end result. Good luck to you!

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  55. Good luck with NaNo! My last two I have also felt were not quite salvageable. I mean maybe eventually, but nearly full rewrites. I plan to plan, but I have not gotten to far yet...

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    1. It was really in the last few years that my NaNo drafts turned really ugly. Must. Get. Back. On Track! :)

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  56. Good luck with the 5K! The zombie part sounds kind of scary. Hope you can keep your flags. Good luck with NaNo, too! I've thought about doing it several times, but never actually tried it. I just know too many things would come up and interfere, which would stress me out. If I'm going to do it, I'd like to have at least a little chance to succeed. Thanks for co-hosting!

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    1. I'm hoping I don't have nightmares about zombies when the run is over.... :o

      Don't forget that NaNo also has spring/summer versions that are a little more flexible and might fit your schedule better.

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  57. I'm going to prep for NaNoWriMo for a change too. Maybe even have an outline. There's a novel idea...at least for me. Good luck with your plans and that race. That's hard!

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    1. I usually do some prep for NaNo, but this time I'm going to be more thorough and hopefully better prepared. Good luck to you! :)

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  58. A zombie run sounds like such a blast. Hope you have fun!

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  59. Failure? Why would you think that? Just getting out there is a great success. Just ask your body, your mind, your spirit. You're doing it, girl. You've beat the part of you that hopes to maintain the status quo, the fear of change has been pounded into submission. When you achieve the 5K you'll wonder why you thought it was going to be hard. Congratulations.

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    1. Love this - "You've beat the part of you that hopes to maintain the status quo, the fear of change has been pounded into submission."

      Thank you! :)

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  60. Congrats to you on so many fronts--Nano winner and healthy lifestyle changes. For both, just remember you can break down such big projects/goals by doing a little at a time. Don't attempt to do it ALL at once or you'll be overwhelmed Thanks for co-hosting!
    JQ Rose

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    1. It doesn't matter how small the steps, as long as I'm moving forward. :)

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  61. That's AWESOME!!! I think it's so great that you're training for a 5K! I need that kind of motivation right now. I WISH I was training for something! There's actually a group called Writers Who Run and they have a writer's retreat every year in NC. Don't know if you live close or not, but it sounds like a lot of fun. They asked me to speak at the retreat and be part of the faculty this coming up summer, but I had to decline. I'm hoping I can do it the next summer (2018).

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    1. Training for something - the run, NaNo - is helping me stayed focused and motivated. That retreat isn't really near me, but it does sound like fun.

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  62. Good luck with both NaNoWriMo and the 5K. I've done NaNoWriMo a couple times--still revising both stories! and it's been a really long time since I ran a 5K!!
    Also thanks for co-hosting.

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  63. That run sounds awesome! I'm sure the zombies will give you an extra spring in your step.

    As for NaNo, I'll be in the trenches with you. I'm pretty sure we're already writing buddies, so let's connect.

    I'm cheering for you, Madeline--you will rock these challenges!

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    1. Good luck on NaNo! I haven't checked my NaNo page yet, but I'm pretty sure we're already buddies over there. :)

      Thanks! I appreciate the support.

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  64. Pre for NaNo sounds like a good plan. Prep work really super-charges the writing.

    Good luck with the 5k. Run, run, run. :)

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    1. Prep, prep, prep. Write, write, write. Train, train, train. Run, run, run. Welcome to my October/November! :)

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  65. Good luck, both with the NaNo prep and with November itself. I'm sure you'll rock it! A zombie threat certainly sounds like excellent motivation for a run!

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    1. That's probably about the only way you'd get me to run. Unless I was running toward chocolate cake.... :)

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  66. If you can write and publish a book, then you can run 5km!
    ...and it seems like EVERYBODY is doing NaNo? I did Camp NaNo in July and I won (15 500 words)
    But I haven't tried a November NaNo yet. One of these years I will...but to be honest, I'm terrified. I feel I'm wired for flash fiction and wonder if I'll make 1667 words a day...?
    Good luck with the run AND with NaNo!

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    1. Congrats on your Camp NaNo win!

      You could always be a NaNo Rebel (there's more info about that in the NaNo forums, I believe) in November and work on some kind of collection of stories or linked stories. I did that one year.

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  67. Good luck with NaNo. Tried it once, but I wasn't at all happy about what I came up with. It needed so much work that it was easier to start writing the story all over again.

    Thanks for co-hosting this month's IWSG!

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    1. Oh, I've been there! Hopefully this year's NaNo ms will be different.

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  68. Run Madeline Run, you can do the 5K. Prepping for NaNo is a good idea. Plot the story in detail, then you have nothing to worry about.

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    1. Thanks, Rachna!

      I am prepping more for this NaNo than I have in a long time. :)

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  69. Thanks for co-hosting this month! I'm right there with you. I'm a sedentary person but I've overly sedentary lately. My health and weight are my concerns from here on out. Then I have to reacquaint myself with a fantasy I had on hiatus for NaNoWriMo too, so in prep mode too. Good luck to us both and good luck with your 5k.

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    1. Thanks, Lidy! Good luck to you, too, with everything. :)

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  70. I've always wanted to enter a Zombie 5k! Never managed it yet, but your determination gives my burning hope a little boost. Good luck with it, and with your Nano plans for this year!

    --Suzanne
    www.suzannewarr.com

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