The Day I Got My Groove Back!

I lost my groove. I don't really know what my groove is, or exactly what I lost. I just know that over the last few years, through having kids, and some major life stresses, something has been off. An unsettled, who am I, searching for myself, feeling. No one else really knew my groove was gone. I didn't even know at first. But over time I could feel that something has been off.

A month or so ago I attended Breathing Spaces. A retreat for Bloggers. It was a great experience. In the swag bag there was an entry for The Dirty Dash. I had no idea what The Dirty Dash was, so I checked out their website and found that it is a mud race. With obstacles. 5.5 miles of mud and obstacles.

If you recall, a few weeks ago I briefly shared with you how I felt about mud and dirt and the bugs that live in mud and dirt. In case the post wasn't clear, I can't stand it.

Naturally you wouldn't think that I would sign up for a Mud Race, disliking mud and dirt and all. Maybe it was the catchy name of the race, or the bright yellow race registration card with the pig face, or the catchy music on the race video website, but one late night, I took that registration code and typed it into the registration form. I didn't really think it would work, but it did. All of a sudden I was signed up for The Dirty Dash.

I told my husband the next day and he laughed, kindly. He didn't think I would really go through with it. He knows I don't like dirt. I think that is why I did it. Because he said I probably wouldn't and didn't need to. Everyone said I probably wouldn't do it. I knew inside I needed to do something out of the ordinary that pushed me and stretched me and scared me. Something that made me dig down deep.

Side note, besides the mud, I had to run. I haven't run in years. 12 years to be exact. I used to run. Everyday. Every single day but Sundays. Religiously. Running was a part of who I was. It was therapeutic and healing. It helped me clear my mind and made me feel strong physically, spiritually and mentally. That was then.

I needed support, so I called my brother who has experience in these types of things, and who is just all around, one of the coolest guys and the best athlete I have ever seen. I wanted to know if I should expect chaffing.
You know, mud, in neither-regions. I wondered. 
Too much information? Sorry.

He loaded me up with advice and then asked who was running with me. "No one, I am running alone". He told me I couldn't do that. He said I needed to find someone to run with, or it wouldn't be any fun at all. Otherwise, he suggested I find a new friend(s) at the starting line and stick with them.

Still planning on running alone I happen to mention the race during a phone call with my closest friend. We have been friends through the most difficult of trials. She told me that she had always wanted to run a mud race and would fly out and run with me. WHAT!!! Fly out and run with me. She IS the BEST friend ever. I must tell you, she is the type of friend that no matter how bad something is, a chat with her makes everything okay. It makes all the world right.

So, long story shorter, she flew out for 48 hours and we went running and swimming in mud, together.

5.5 miles later, I was a new woman.

In the mud, next to my best girl friend, I found my groove. It was around the first 1/2 mile that I could feel it coming back. I was strong, I was confident, I was laughing like I did when I was a child. Those deep gut laughs. I was not holding anything back. We ran together side by side, we slipped and slided in mud side by side, we talked, we scaled walls and swam under cargo nets. And when we swam through two huge mud pools to cross the finish line, I was different.

It sparked something inside that I have been looking for. My groove, it was back. In full force.

It wasn't the mud, the running, or the friend. It was all three.

My friend had to go back to California, and I have not been running in mud, but I have been running, every day but Sunday's, since. I have to run early in the morning, when the house is still asleep. When school starts again I have no idea how I am going to fit it into our schedule. But for now, it has become a part of my every day life again.

Since the race that day there has been more clarity. I am more patient. My mind is clear. And there is a sense of strength and hope and faith that was growing weak. When I look in the mirror I recognize myself again. I am more comfortable with myself. I know I do hard things. But this was a different type of hard thing, and I did it.

I don't know if you have ever lost your groove?
I do know that as women and as mother's and as daughters of God, we are special. And sometimes amidst the house and diapers and dishes and husbands, we loose sight of that. We don't mean to, it just happens, secretly. It sneaks up on us.

I do know that a little individual, push yourself to the limits, laugh until you cry experience can help you find yourself again. What ever it might be for you, go try it, find it, do it. Even if it is scary. You will feel better. I promise.

And, if you happen to live in Utah, and have lost your groove. Might I suggest running in mud. Let's do it together. I have already signed up for the next race in September, because I have decided I need more regular reminders of who I am. For fear I loose my groove again.

Before the race, bright and early. Being silly.

 Showing my husband the mud on my hands. He couldn't believe it. 

 There was only a few inches between the top of the mud and the cargo net. I just didn't want it in my mouth. 

 I was just hoping I didn't loose my shoes in the mud. There was no way we would have found them. 

 There we are, right behind the dance troop. And in front of the tie-dyed. 
 This was so fun, I ran back up the hill and slide down twice. Shhh, don't tell anyone. I don't think I was supposed to do that. 
 The end of the slip and slide. You just kept sliding down the mud hill.

 Don't be fooled. That is not water. That is mud, mud, mud, and more mud. 
 I was happy and sad to get to the end. I wished we could have kept going.

 Mountain of mud before the finish line.

 See it, on my face? My groove, it is back baby!

 What I found inside my shoes when I took them off. Yes, the socks started out white.
They were selling hot showers for 6 dollars, instead of the ice cold showers. My friend bargained, 2 for 10. Almost felt as good as my first shower after having babies. 

Have you ever lost your groove?
How did you get it back?



  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. My friend and her husband from my ward went to Utah for a mud race this weekend, they do them all over the country--I guess there's some kind of award if you do a certain number of them? Anyway. I hate running. HATE IT. But I know what you mean, and I'm so glad for you that you're finding yourself again. I wish I knew what it was for me that would bring "me" back.

  3. This is such a fun post! Good for you for finding that something special that makes you feel like you! I have been craving that for myself a lot lately. Here's to finding it.

  4. thanks for sharing... I'm looking for my groove and think i'm on the right path.

  5. oh this is such a great post. I love it! I did the warrior dash last year ( a 5k with like 13 obstacles, muddy,wet,dirty. :) It was great! I would love to do it again! I am pregnant (THANKFULLY, we tried for 1.5 years before it happened) but I hope to be the exercisin' woman/mamma I never was before. The warrior dash was my first 5k ever! This was very inspiring to me!

  6. Hurray! What an uplifting post. You have an incredible spirit and I'm delighted that you shared your journey to the groove.

  7. Wow! You almost make me want to run the dirty dash! Looks fun! Maybe I should start running again. I think it's something about doing something for yourself and exercising that really brings out the best in you. Way to go!

  8. I think you read my mind. Thankfully someone could. I know the feeling and have never been able to articulate it. The answer came all the way from Utah. Thanks for the inspiration. Now that I know going to start working on getting my groove back.

  9. Now that I try and think about it I am not even sure how I ended up on your blog but started reading this great post and then saw Maxine Hatch's face and was like wow, we grew up in the same ward in Gallup. Her brother is in my SIL's ward. It's a small world.
    I have lost my grove to a point. I grew up identifying myself as athletic and when I had kids and c-sections it changed my body a lot. I have grown into allowing to identify myself as artistic but I still want to be athletic. We are starting up ultimate Frisbee to go on every Saturday until it's too cold I am excited and a little nervous I used to kick butt at ultimate now I don't know...anyway you are right we all need to do things push us out of our comfort zone REGULARLY it makes us feel alive. I exercise almost daily and though I may not look any better I feel a ton better about everything. Great blog, I will be back soon!

  10. I love everything about this post. You look fabulous and so happy! Glad you rocked it, thank you for sharing. xoxo

  11. Wow I can't seem to post my comment. One more try. :)

    You have hit on something that speaks to my heart. I too have felt that my groove has been thrown off. This post was just what I needed, I'm so glad I stumbled upon it. I have always been a hater of running but recently something in me has been crying out to me to give it a try. I have this burning desire to tackle this challenge, to learn to run, to endure, to push myself beyond what I think I can do, and possibly even enjoy it. The mud run has intrigued me for awhile now. Maybe this is the time for me, maybe this is the time to start, and just maybe the mud run in September is just what I need to work toward.
    Here is finding and keeping our groove.

  12. Haa, I am just a mother of one (15 month old), i have totally lost my groove. I am trying as hard as possible to get it back, hopefully, its not long gone.
    A very uplifting post by the way, which happened to be that i just watched the film New Years Eve, its all about living life to the fullest, getting your groove on and letting your balls drop, really interesting. Not a coincidence that i came by your blog just a minute after watching the film, a message for me it is. I shall find my groove wherever it may be hiding.

  13. I know exactly what you mean about losing your groove and I'm happy you found a way back! Love the pictures. Y'all look so joy-filled!

  14. I've lost my groove. I haven't found it yet because, well, I didn't know I lost it. I married young (17) and had my first child at 19. Almost 16 years later and 6 children... I find that I don't enjoy life like I use to. I'm not sure why. I have an amazing marriage and fantastic kids! Maybe it's because things are just plain harder w/ 6 children? I don't know. Anyway, I wanted to thank you for this post because now that I know that I'm not so groovy anymore, it's time to find it!

    1. I came across your blog today and am so glad! I lost my "groove" too and I finally decided to get it back a few weeks ago. I started working out more and making some time for myself. I have also been thinking about running. I hate running, but my husband was a big runner. He also ran every day except Sunday. I have always wanted to do a run with him and this gave me the motivation I needed! I also love your tips on parenting and being a better mother. I felt like I was reading about my life! Thank you!

    2. Yes!! Yes!! Yes!! I totally get it. Thanks for your post. I'm not a runner, don't even want to be. But I am trying, one mile at a time. I'm signing up for the dash - see you (and maybe my groove) in September!

  15. Good for you! I got into running when I turned 40 and it became necessary to stay ahead of the aging monster. Things like mud runs, Warrior Dashes and my first ColorRun in October is what makes it fun. Otherwise, blech.

    On another note: I have 3 boys (14,13 and 10) and I learned early on that if the only time I got "ME" time was 5a, so be it. I am a much more patient mother/wife when I have had that time to myself in the morning; for those who aren't morning people, they found time after bedtime. Make time for yourself and you will be an even more amazing, fun mom than you already are.

  16. Thank you so much for ur blog. Now I understand what I was missing. This blog has given me the motivation to get back to exerciseing regularly again. Thank you so much.

  17. I stumbled across your blog through pintrest. I just signed up for my first "Fun Run" and it is an "extreme" race with mud and the slip n slide at the end. I am seriously out of shape and have NEVER liked running but I found myself in the same boat, your first paragraph grabbed me because it was ME! I can't wait to try the Zombie Run in October as well :)

  18. Thank you so much! You've helped me put words to my struggle and feel so much better that I am not alone in it.

  19. This is exactly how I feel right now! I just had my second baby she's two months old today. And I'm trying to get my groove back and find me again.
    I used to laugh a lot and I was happy. I haven't felt that way in the while. Maybe a few years?

  20. This post really resounded. thanks.

  21. Yep. Lost my groove. In the process of getting it back. Ran my first 5K, the Color Run in KC a few weeks ago. The training for that started the "I'm on my way back, baby!". Glad to know I'm not the only mom out there going through this as well!

  22. I am in the process of losing and finding my groove every other week. I lose it regularly to 3 adorable, and needy kids under the ages of 5. Lately I have been finding it through hot yoga....and blogging. Great post, thank you!

  23. Thank you so much for sharing! It would be a dream to mud race with you in utah..sigh... I lost my groove when I had my 3 kids and then got it back through running and eating right and feeling like myself again ....i recently lost my groove through a huge life stress that really rocked me... but I'm feeling slowly back to normal and have to get my groove back again and am having a hard time :( but you have inspired me with your story and photos. I want to look that happy and athletic again! Thanks so much!

    Stacie Varga
    Windsor Ontario Canada

  24. Somehow I ended up at your blog this morning. (I have no recollection of how.) I am at a point right now were (for many reasons, which are a long story), I have lost my groove. I just wanted to tell you, that once I read your post, I put on my running shoes and went for a 3.5 mile jog/walk. It felt great, so thank you for inspiring me!!

  25. This post just speaks to me! I had lost my groove too and back in January my daughter suggested we do a triathlon together! On May 19th my 10 yr old daughter and I did our first sprint triathlon! It was an incredible experience. I found out 1 week before I was surprisingly pregnant and I still did it even 7 weeks pregnant. I live in southern Utah and if I wasn't pregnant I would love to do a mud race. Maybe next year! You seem like the kind of friend I need. Glad I found your blog!

  26. Wow. What an amazingly uplifting and inspiring post! I laughed and cried the whole way through it. I just found your site via pinterest and kept reading past what I came for. I think I am in the beginning stages of losing my groove. I am a stay at home mom with a soon to be two year old. I have a degree I have never used and a husband who works out of town for months at a time. (I haven't seen him in over a month and probably won't for a couple more). Sometimes I just feel lost. I can't seem to get my head above water. I feel like it is either clean house and neglected toddler or neglected house and happy toddler. And neither of those options leaves time for Mommy. I would pay the $6 for a nice, long, hot shower most days. I think this is the first time I have heard that someone out there felt the same and was able to overcome it. Thank you so much for sharing! Now I just need to find what will work for me!

  27. It's funny that I stumbled upon this tonight, in an effort to get to something I've forgotten on Pinterest already... I was just telling my husband I've lost my groove, and I have no idea how to get it back. I was never a runner, but a mud run looks fun. I need something like a mud run.

  28. I am SO thankful I stubbled upon your blog & this post in particular. I have been feeling 'lost' for a few years now & recently decided to take my life back. This blog post has totally inspired me!!! Thank you so much

  29. Wow, I just found you through Pinterest & am stuck in the ALWAYS BEHIND mode... with 4 kids as well. Your comment about starting school but not knowing how you're going to fit it in had me laughing out loud. And the mud race? AWESOME. What an inspiration & your girlfriend rocks!
    So glad to have found you!

  30. Like Anonymous before me, found you through pinterest. I am in the process of getting my groove back after having twins (they're 7 now). My groove is projects (sewing), medication, and a new kitten. I am still behind on a lot of things, but I can be happy anyway. Therapy kitten is especially good at injecting happy.


  31. What a great post! I have four children! I didn't realize I had lost my swag but one day I started caring about how I dressed everyday and wow I felt like a new women. Clothes make a big difference in how you carry yourself.

  32. Heather! I LOVE this post! I run which speaks to moms everywhere who felt the EXACT way you did! So many moms just need help finding their "groove" and that is where comes in.

    With your permission, I would love to share this post. What do you think?

  33. I lost my groove three and a half years ago when my daughter got sick. I have often described in the time since that I have been drowning, drowning in my 14 year marriage, drowning in being a mother/sister/wife/daughter/niece/grandaughter, drowning in college trying to get into a nursing program, and drowning in cardiology/heart cath/medication issues/the thought of losing my daughter, drowning in fear/worry/sadness, and a need to do as you just stated, get my groove back. I live in Michigan and in September did a version of your Mud Run called the Warrior Dash. It's been a slow crawl out of the drowning in the mud so to speak but it's coming back. I am coming back. Congratulations and I can completely relate!!

  34. Wow. That is exactly what I didn't know I needed to hear. I think I've been slowly losing my groove for the past couple of years, with a sudden loss of grooviness this year. But the truth is, I don't know if I even realized it was happening until recently. Thanks for sharing your experience. It makes me realize that if someone as vibrant as you can lose her groove, it can (and probably will) happen to all of us at one point or another. The great thing is, you've shown that it doesn't have to stay lost. It's inspiring. You're inspiring. Now if you'll excuse me, I've got to go get my groove back.

  35. This was a fun and wonderful read! I even got a little emotional, knowing that exact feeling of losing who you are is. I am pregnant with my second child and I am always feeling stressed about losing myself and reading this post was super motivational! Thank you!!!

  36. How do you find out about these mud races? They look crazy, fun and messy. Thanks for your post--it helped me put to words how I feel. I do live in Utah...if you wouldn't mind sharing about these mud runs/walks.

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