Name: Nicole (Mrs. Muffins)

Location: Ohio

Age: 24

Race: 4Life April Fool’s 5k

Personal Tidbit: Mommy and Marine wife! Oorah!


In Her Own Words:


“I can’t run,” I used to say. I’ve always loved to exercise but anytime I tried to run, it hurt and it was hard and I would quit. Even being married to a Marine didn’t persuade me to run. It wasn’t until after I had my daughter that I decided I wanted to run. I would read blogs like Caitlin’s and think “Man, she has already ran a race today and I’m just waking up.”


I kept reading about the Couch to 5K program and even though I could not imagine myself running 3.1 miles, I decided to try. The best advice I received was that it was okay to repeat weeks if I needed to and believe me, I did. Week 5, day 3 was my biggest challenge. It’s a 2 mile (or 20 minute) run and after two times of failing at it, I decided to quit the program for a while. 


And then my mom died.


The news hit me a lot harder than I expected and it took me a whole month and a half to bring myself to run again. I asked one of my friends to start the C25K program over again with me and she said yes. Between both our work schedules and Ohio’s winter weather, it took us a little longer than the nine weeks but we finally finished. 


On April 2, 2011 I ran my first 5k. I used Caitlin’s tips on setting goals and listed my three goals. The first, of course, was to finish. I didn’t get my other two goals, of running the entire course or my time goal but I did have an unexpected surprise! I won second place in my age division! 


The race was small but I was still really nervous before lining up at the start. I started out strong and it wasn’t until I took a sip of water from a volunteer that things went south. I had never once drank water during training and I knew I didn’t need it but it looked so tempting! It was ice cold and turned my stomach into knots as soon as I drank it. One of my goals was to not walk at all but I’m proud of the little bit of walking I did. I think it helped me more than it hurt me. I may not have finished if it weren’t for those little breaks. 


Besides giving birth to my daughter, I’ve never been more proud of what my body can do. I can’t wait to do more races and I’m continuing my training using the Bridge to 10K program.   I love running now and I can’t imagine my life without it! I even recently ran a Warrior Dash obstacle race!


More Race Recaps!



  • Samantha @ Health, Happiness & Skinny Jeans June 17, 2011, 9:41 pm

    What a great story! I am inspired by Nicole’s strength and determination. Thanks for sharing this.

  • Baking 'n' Books June 17, 2011, 9:56 pm

    You should be so proud of yourself.

  • Sana June 17, 2011, 10:08 pm

    Get it girl!

  • Molly @ RDexposed June 17, 2011, 10:23 pm

    What a wonderful story! I remember thinking the same thing after running my half. I was so amazed at what my body did! Running is such an emotion experience for me!

  • sam June 17, 2011, 10:42 pm

    Good job! I also did the C25K program and found it TOUGH at some points but am so proud I pushed through! like you I repeated days or weeks when needed. I didn’t care about the time, only the progression! Can’t wait to do my first race 🙂

    • Mrs. Muffins June 18, 2011, 8:01 am

      You’ll be addicted! It’s the best feeling! Good luck!

  • Kamaile June 17, 2011, 11:04 pm

    Good job! You will live the 10k distance!

  • Khushboo June 18, 2011, 2:02 am

    Fab job! U should be proud of yourself! Walk breaks rock 🙂

  • Melissa @ Mouth Watering Morsel June 18, 2011, 2:28 am

    Yayy! Great story. I’m actually doing my c25k and am on my 5th week – well just ran my day 3 so I guess I should say I’m almost on my 6th. I haven’t once stopped, repeated, or gave up but I have a feeling the closer I get to week 9 it might change.

    I don’t know if I’ll ever run a 5k race since this is all just for fun but I just might with stories like these. Stories like these makes me wanna push harder. Thanks Caitlin!

  • The Teenage Taste June 18, 2011, 7:30 am

    Congrats on a great race, Nicole! Your determination and will power are so inspiring!

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin June 18, 2011, 7:32 am

    Awesome job! I’m sure your mom would be so proud of you. 🙂

  • Gina @ Running to the Kitchen June 18, 2011, 9:25 am

    This was one of my favorites! Congratulations and good luck on the 10k!

  • Gretchen June 18, 2011, 11:32 am

    This is such an inspiring post! Congrats Nicole on an amazing accomplishment! You give me hope that I can cross the finish line on my first 5k in August! I am also using the Couch25k program, and I love the way it is structured. My fiancee and I decided to do it together, and it’s been a great experience to share!

    • Mrs. Muffins June 18, 2011, 4:44 pm

      Yay for you! You’ll rock it, I’m sure. It really is a great program. You know, they say couples who exercise together stay together!

  • Amy June 18, 2011, 11:38 am

    Hey Caitlin! I have been reading your blog for about 2 months now– and am so happy to tell you I ran in my first 5K today! I have always hated the idea of running, but something about reading about you doing it made me want to get out there and try!

    Something that really stuck with me from the race was that at the very beginning right after we started running– the announcer said “These are all really healthy people!” I had never considered myself “really healthy,” but knowing that I could run 3.1 miles definitely made me realize how lucky I was when I thought about the cause of the race– autism. I will now look at myself so much differently knowing I did something that just 2 months ago I couldn’t do, and how lucky I am to have had the opportunity to do.

    Thanks so much for the inspiration! On to training for my next race!

    • Caitlin June 18, 2011, 7:05 pm

      You are so awesome! Congrats on running your first 5k, healthy lady 🙂 🙂

  • Kristi June 18, 2011, 11:40 am

    I’m doing the Couch 25k program and have had to repeat weeks a lot. I’m not training for a race so I figured I can take all the time I need before moving on to the next level.

    • Mrs. Muffins June 18, 2011, 4:45 pm

      Yes! I always told myself that as long as I was still trying, it was exercise. It’s not always about winning a race, it’s about doing something good for yourself!

  • Ellie@fitforthesoul June 18, 2011, 2:45 pm

    awesome story Nicole!! 😀 Keep rockin’ and I agree that Caitlin’s blog is inspiring~I’ve been rather active and all for a while, but blogs like these are so encouraging for extra push!

    • Caitlin June 18, 2011, 7:05 pm

      Thank you Ellie 🙂

  • Angela (Oh She Glows) June 18, 2011, 2:49 pm

    Way to go, Nicole! It’s amazing to see how far you have come even despite challenges. You are such a great role model for your daughter.

    That obstacle race sounds really interesting…I will have to keep my eyes peeled for one around here.

    • Mrs. Muffins June 18, 2011, 4:49 pm

      Thanks Angela! I think the Warrior Dash has a couple Canada races scheduled this year but there’s others too, I’m sure!

  • monicanelsonfitness June 18, 2011, 2:50 pm

    Great story!!


  • Billie June 18, 2011, 2:58 pm

    you say you are proud of what your body can do and I agree wholeheartedly. I pushed mine last weekend with an epic cycle ride from York (UK) to Amsterdam (Holland) and back a total of around 300 miles. It was all in aid of Marie Curie cancer care and I managed to raise over £1000. BUT I had such an amazing time with a great bunch of women (it was a women only ride) that I am having trouble congratulating my body. xx

    • Mrs. Muffins June 18, 2011, 4:50 pm

      Lol, I love that you congratulate your body! I ALWAYS take time to thank my body and treat it good. Like, shave my legs or feed it a yummy smoothie 🙂 Congrats on your epic ride!

  • Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife June 18, 2011, 3:20 pm

    Go girl!

  • Nowel June 20, 2011, 7:28 pm

    Great story, I am a “I cant run” girl, but Im pushing myself to overcome this obstacle

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