Journey to 31

Once you realize that there is no limit to the things you can accomplish, you become freaking unstoppable! Never would I have imagined that at age 35 I would come to love the sport of distance running… why you ask? Let’s just say PE was not my favorite class! The only sport I participated in was cheerleading. So, on this journey to 31 miles, the most valuable lesson I learned was what the term commitment really means. The term commitment means to be dedicated to a cause… sounds simple right? Oh boy that simple definition is so complex! It is quite easy to be committed to something when it’s easy or when it come natural to you. But when you hit a rough spot, or when you look around and find yourself having to be committed by yourself when others aren’t—that’s when things can get rough. My training started 4 months prior to my run and at the beginning of the week I would look at my running plan and look at what my family life. My runs were than scheduled around my family time which meant I had to run early. These were the what seemed to me the longest four months of my life and there were times that I wanted to quit the plan…but I didn’t give up! I can remember getting up as early as 3:45 on a Saturday just to get in a long run. I also remember running in the rain, running late at night, running with friends and running solo. I ran when I felt like it and when I didn’t feel like it, I ran in the south Georgia heat and humidity. I was laser focused on this goal and nothing was going to stop me from completing this journey to 31. It was all of that experience and the total commitment that got me across that finish line to 31 miles. I am so grateful for this experience because I learned that if I would apply this same commitment to other areas of my life, I could really become the person that God created me to be! Finally, the big day was here! August 24, 2019

The day that I have been looking forward to! The weather was nice, over cast and I was feeling good, but just a bit nervous. I decided to run the race without my running app or Apple Watch. The scenery was absolutely breathtaking the race was through a bike trail. Halfway through the race I was feeling good, smiling and still happy about running. But at about 19 miles in I was struggling, I was out of water and a couple of miles out from the next water station I was really struggling and at the point I was doing the run/ walk method. I even attempted to listen to  a podcast and music to get my mind off of how I was feeling, but that did not work, by this point I had been running solo for hours. I knew that if I was going to finish this race I had been get my mind back fast and something  happened when I cane to that realization. I totally surrender to God and his strength to finish this race.  I turned off my worship music and my lips just being to worship and praise the Lord. It’s was in my time of struggle that I just begin to focus on God, his goodness and the beautiful scenery. I made it through that rough patch and even caught up with another runner who was really struggling and limbing with 7 more miles left, I said a prayer for him as I passed him. Feeling pretty good I caught with another runner and by than I was having some serious right foot pain and walking only, she told me her watch said we had 4 miles left. She was moving a little faster than me but she would not let me stop moving she encouraged me to finish those last 4 miles!!!! Once I crossed the finish line was I so excited that this run was done and thankfully for Michelle!! Don’t ever put limits on your goals and dreams!!! I am an ultra runner at 35, never would have imagine that I would enjoy distance running. So the big question??? Will I do it again… you bet matter of fact I will be doing it again come January!!!

The Power of the Summer Solstice

By Megan Carter

The Power of the Summer Solstice

Last year, when Reomona and I took this picture, we posted it to our individual pages with a little information on the Summer Solstice. It was to serve as a teaser for our blog and Instagram page that was forthcoming. The solstices are an important time for us because it is what we decided last February that we would base the name of our blog on. The posts last year on the Summer Solstice got so much positive feedback and encouragement that we saw this as a good indicator of what was to come when we launched our Instagram page and blog. I remember that day vividly, we were both so excited, we were barely able to focus at work! The blog or page had not come to be yet, but just the mere THOUGHT of what we could accomplish with them had us ready to shout for joy!

In life, we often celebrate the start of something—at the start of the New Year, we are all excited and busy ourselves setting goals that we feel will make the upcoming year better for us. When we first start a job, we are on time every day, working to our full capabilities, trying to do the best job we possibly can. When we first get married, we are filled with love, and expectation of starting a family, buying a home, and mapping out the rest of our lives together. But what happens when we have been at things for a while and start to lose our motivation? Why do we take so much pleasure in the beginning of things than we do in the middle?

Summer solstice is the longest day of the year. The longest day of the year doesn’t come at the beginning, it comes when there are still 193 days left in 2019. Think back to January 1, 2019. You probably had your vision board up, you probably started a gym membership, maybe you even started school. But now that the year is a little over halfway over, you may have lost that spark. Why you ask? That’s simple…things get hard! One year ago when Reomona and I made the post about Summer Solstice, we fully expected to launch on the Winter Solstice. We had meetings, we had plans, we laid out all of our ideas, but then, life happened. For me, school got harder, and I had to devote more time to studying. My son got more involved in more extracurricular activities, and I barely had time to do anything other than work, go to school, do my housework, and take care of my children. For Reomona, her son got sick, and would end up spending a significant time in the hospital–and this occurred during the same time that she was training for the biggest race of her life. Sometimes, life gets in the way of even our best thought out plans. The key is to understand that though there may be delays, don’t give up on yourself just yet!

The other day, my youngest son Karson was playing Fortnite with my son Keaton. Karson began to whine and complain, and finally yelled, “It’s too hard, I am not good enough to beat Keaton, and I’m just going to quit!” Haven’t we all felt like Karson? When school gets hard, I’ve had moments where I’ve thought, “I have a good job already. This is a lot. On top of working full time and raising three boys on my own, no one would blame me for throwing in the towel.” I’m sure when Reomona was training for her marathon while her son was sick in the hospital she had moments where she thought, “There’s always next year, my baby is sick. If I have to drop out of this race, I know people will understand.” If we would have let the hardships of life get in our way, we could have easily said, “Let’s just cancel this blog. We both work full time, we both have families and responsibilities, and we have all kinds of obligations, no one would blame us for not adding another thing to our already full plates.”

But here we are, a year later, and we have this blog and Instagram page. We knew that our desire to inspire and help people overcome things that both of us have faced just so they wouldn’t feel like they are going through it alone was greater than our desire to just relax, and allow life’s difficulties to stop our progress. My dream to impact young children’s lives and help to shape their futures is greater than my desire to come home and enjoy an afternoon nap or be complacent with my current career. Reomona’s drive to achieve her personal goals, and help others achieve theirs through fitness is greater than her drive to shut everything down simply because life has thrown her a curveball. So here we are, smack dab in the middle of 2019, and my question to you is, what do you want for you? And don’t look at your current situation or circumstances and talk yourself out of your dream. I had just turned 37 when I started school again. Reomona was 34 when she realized her passion and got her group fitness certification, and 35 when she got her personal training certificate. Plenty of people will talk against your dreams, make sure YOU aren’t the one killing them before they start!

So what will you do on the longest day of this year? There is no better time than today to decide once and for all what you want your life to be. You don’t have to wait for Monday. Don’t wait for July 1st, and by all means don’t wait for the New Year to make up in your mind what you want for yourself and go after it with everything you have. There is a Bible verse that I never understood until recently that reads, “Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof.”–Ecclesiastes 7:8 I always wondered, why is the end the best part? That means something is over! But then it dawned on me not too long ago, that the end is better because it means that I finished! It means that I started something, struggled my way through the middle of it, and didn’t give up. I finished what I started. Don’t you want that to be your testimony? Don’t you want to know what that feels like? I know I do! 

10 Year Journey

For it has been said that two people are better than one. When two people work together, they can accomplish more. If one person falls, the other person can reach out to help. But those who are alone when they fall have no one to help them. Ecclesiastes 4:9-10. I can remember sitting in my pastor’s office with Lamar going through marriage counseling before we were married and my pastor’s wife said something, she said that God is not giving Lamar a “needy wife.” At the age of 26, I had no idea what she was saying. It has taken almost ten years for me to truly grasp what she was really trying to tell me. Had I really questioned and asked her exactly what she meant, I could have probably eliminated some of the disagreements we have had. I had to realize that God has equipped Lamar and I with many gifts and talents. So that we can use those gifts to serve others. One of the most important lessons I have learned is that we all have a purpose and because I am not the purpose giver I can’t dictate how Lamar uses his time to fulfill that purpose. We’re no experts by any means…with that being said, here is a list of things we have learned in 10 years❤️

  1. Keep God First
  2. A whole lot of prayer
  3. Have patience 
  4. Don’t sweat the small stuff 
  5. Expect to win
  6. Always remember your on the same team
  7. Compliment not complain 
  8. Use your strengths to complete each other 
  9. Communicate  

  10. Take advantage of your time, words and opportunities

I Have Anxiety…But It Doesn’t Have Me!

By Megan Carter

This time last year, I didn’t think I’d live to see another spring. It’s true. Let me explain. The years after I had my last child, Karson, were plagued by migraine headaches. I suffered at least 14 days out of every month with them. Finally, in 2017, I went to a neurologist for the problem. I was prescribed a drug called Topamax. To my delight, after just one week of the medicine, the migraines stopped. What I soon found is that what replaced those migraines was far worse!

I was sitting in my office one Friday afternoon, when all of a sudden my heart started pounding. I began to sweat. I could not catch my breath. I felt as though my tongue was swelling up. I went to the bathroom and splashed water on my face. I recovered, but over the weekend, this would happen 3 more times. I attributed the symptoms to the medicine, and quickly stopped taking it. 

After 3 ER visits, where they ran multiple tests and could not find anything wrong with me, a doctor at the Lanier County ER held me by the hand and said “mama, your labs, EKG, and Cat Scans look better than mine. You said you work full time, you’re in school, and you take care of 3 boys by yourself. Honey you have anxiety.”

“Anxietyyyyyy???” I thought. There had to be a mistake. I felt that I was too mentally tough to suffer from such a disorder. Then, all at once, memories of past anxiety attacks rushed to my brain. The first one happened when I was 5. I had won the honor of “Thanksgiving Princess” at my school. I’d earned the most feathers, and had the most bedazzled vest. This honor would allow me to take center stage at the Thanksgiving program and say “Welcome to the festivities!” to all of the kindergarten classes and our parents. When my time came, my mouth felt numb. I began to sweat and my vision got blurry. I couldn’t utter one word. My teacher, Mrs. Killgo came to my rescue and shouted my lines for me. 

This would happen a few more times over the next few years. When I had to bring my mom home a report card with B’s on it (that was a no no). When I had to balance work and college and was overwhelmed. When I was moved to a different department in the hospital where I work and it was obvious that my boss disliked me…the anxiety was always there. But it had only happened sporadically so I attributed it to not eating enough, or having too much caffeine. Yes, the Topamax exacerbated the condition, but I

begin to understand that the anxiety was always there. 

Now if you have anxiety and you’re on meds for it—good for you. Do whatever you have to do to be well. As for me, I saw medication as part of the issue, so I chose to combat mine naturally. How? It took a while, but these strategies helped me, and hopefully I can help some of you.

  1. Know your triggers. For me, it’s being overwhelmed. I no longer feel guilty about turning down dinners, family gatherings, or other events. I know how much I can handle, and that’s all I put on my plate.
  2. Breathe. During an anxiety attack, it feels as if you are dying. I literally was in the ER asking the doctor one morning “Am I dying? Please don’t let me die, I have young children.” Find breathing techniques that help you settle down. I like to breathe in for one, out for two, in for three, out for four, and so on up to the count of 10.
  3. Exercise. Getting your heart pumping fights against the improper triggering of your fight or flight response that causes anxiety attacks. It also calms you down by releasing endorphins into your blood stream that can stop the anxiety effect.
  4. Talk yourself down. I was so afraid of nightfall, because that’s when most of my attacks would come. Because I was so afraid of nightfall, I started napping from 4-7 in the afternoons, and staying up all night so that I wouldn’t “die in my sleep” I know that sounds crazy, but that’s how I felt. Once I realized it was anxiety, when I felt those feelings coming I’d say to myself, “You know what this is. You will not die from an anxiety attack. It’s happening, and it will be over soon. Just get through this.”
  5. Be open and honest with others about your condition. At first, I was ashamed of this diagnosis, but now, I have no issue telling people about it. I’ve gotten so much advice from others and that has truly helped.

Anxiety sucks. There’s no denying that. Today, I am so much better than I was this time last year. My attacks have pretty much subsided. When I feel the anxiousness rear it’s ugly head, I’ve gotten pretty good at stopping it in its tracks by using my techniques. So while anxiety is a part of me, it no longer consumes my life.

Megan Carter

Self care


Have you ever been to the point where you were exhausted mentally and physically? At some point in our lives we have all been there just drained spiritually and mentally. When I reflect on my life, I realized that one of the constant things I was lacking is self-care. For me, I really did not realize the importance of self-care until after my second child. The word self-care may sound a little selfish to some, however self-care is absolutely necessary. Self-care is defined as the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health. My belief is that in order for me to take care of others I must first practice some self-care activities focusing on spiritual, physical, emotional and mental stability. I realized that making sure my needs are met makes me more equipped to support others. For example, if I’m worn down physically and emotionally, how can I comfort my sister in the same place? So I encourage each of you reading this blog to come up with some self-care activities for next week and incorporate them into your lifestyle, I guarantee you it will change you. 

My favorite self-care activities include:

1. Reading devotionals

2. Exercising 

3. Journaling 

4.Going to the spa

5.Sleeping 

“Allow yourself to enjoy each happy moment in your life.”

– Steve Maraboli

“When you recover or discover something that nourishes your soul and brings joy, care enough about yourself to make room for it in your life.”

– Jean Shinoda Bolen

Mindful Meditation


By Megan Carter

                How packed is your schedule? Between working full-time, raising 3 boys and attending to their extracurricular activities, going to school, homework, church, etc…mine is definitely full! It is hard to find time for myself. This year, one of my resolutions was to set aside a little quiet time each day to just reflect.  Even if it’s just a few minutes, I always try to find the time to be still and meditate. Mindful mediation has many benefits such as:

  • Reducing stress
  • Keeps anxiety under control
  • Lengthens attention span
  • Improves sleep

The great thing about meditation is that it can be done anywhere, at any time. Some people do it first thing in the morning, to set their intentions for the day. It can be done in the middle of a trying day to help you regain focus and not become overwhelmed with stress. I personally prefer to do it at night. I have a hard time falling asleep, and I have found that meditation helps me to “quiet” my brain. The main thing is to not focus on everything that has to be done. I’ve learned to focus on the present moment, with all of its goodness as well as its challenges, and not become overwhelmed with the things that are around the corner. If you would like to begin this practice, but don’t really know where to start, here are some links I used that helped me to get started.

For beginners—https://youtu.be/lzV6J4WCwRM

For anxiety sufferers—hattps://youtu.be/1vx8iUvfyCY

And if you want to just sit with your own thoughts, but have soothing sounds in the backgrounds, I recommend the Relaxing Sounds, Sleep Easy app.

                Meditation has helped me tremendously! If you need more links or just have questions about this practice, just email me anytime at soulisticwithrnm@gmail.com

Ready set Go!!



So you made a new goal or you decided to pick that goal back up from the beginning of the year. So how do you get started?? Let me help you out with a few tips I used when accomplishing some of my goals. I remember adding more goals to my vision board and one of them was to run a Marathon. The first tip is to have a clear vision of what it is you would like to accomplish. Vision is defined as the ability to see. Therefore, visualize what you might ask. Visualize your goals and visualize yourself doing the very thing you listed as your goal whether it is weight lost or financial. You have to see yourself being 20 pounds lighter, you have to see yourself being debt free. I had to see myself running in that marathon. Secondly, you have to believe that you can do it. I like the quote by Muhammad Ali, “If my mind can conceive it and my heart can believe it, then I can achieve it.” I can remember I was getting ready to run a 5k and the night before I told three people that I was going to hit a PR (personal record). I went to sleep that night feeling good and confident. The next morning it was cold. I got to the race site, warmed up and started the race. During the race I felt really good, I felt like I could really accomplish what I had told my three friends and as result of my belief, I obtained a new PR…You HAVE to believe, if you don’t who will? ❤️The final tip is to do the work!!! For me that meant finding a running plan and following it!! So once a week I would sit down and look at all of my obligations for the week then look at my training plan. During my training for this marathon, I ran at 4:45am, after work, and the weekends. Sometimes I felt like all I was doing was running. I can remember on one of my 20 mile runs I was at the track on a Saturday at 4:00am.😩To be honest it was a struggle to juggle all of my other task and train. I had all kinds of obstacles thrown my way, but that’s life. I was committed to my goal and you should be as well. However, you will have set backs, obstacles, roadblocks and detours but if you have a vision, and you believe and you do the work you can do ANYTHING!❤️

The Next 100 Days Challenge



By Reomona Thomas and Megan Carter

If you’re reading this, that means you made it to the 100th day in 2019!!! Let me guess, like most of us, you probably started the year off with a New Years resolution. A New Years resolution is a tradition in which a person resolves to change an undesired trait or behavior, to accomplish a personal goal, or otherwise improve their life. For example, you may have said I want to lose weight this year. You started the year really strong, you got a gym membership, you may have even stated working with a personal trainer, and somewhere between January and now you fell off!!!

It’s okay, it happens to the best of us. While we can’t do anything about the 100 days that have already passed, we absolutely CAN do something about the next 100. Let’s revisit those resolutions and make it happen this time! You owe it to yourself to lose that weight, travel more, or whatever it is you have decided will make you better. We have goals to attain ourselves, so let’s do it together! Tag us using #thenext100dayschallenge so we can follow each other’s progress. 100 days from now, you can be one of two things—disappointed that you’re still not achieving your goals, or happy that you chose today to make a change for the better. We can do this! Are you in?

On December 2, 2018, my life was turned upside down. I was riding in the ambulance with my son headed to Wolfson Children’s Hospital. Unexpectedly, we ended up staying two weeks. I was an emotional wreck. The first couple of days, I watched as my son was in severe pain and sleep was not an option, especially during the night. Sleep deprived and emotionally stressed, I found myself in deep thought, wondering to myself how could this happen to my son and why is this happening to my son? From that night, I realized I must trust totally on the Lord. In the midst of my storm, I decided that each day would be different from here on out…I would have a different perspective. So I took my pain and lack of understanding to the throne of glory. For I knew there was something bigger going on in my life. God shaped my heart to understand His perspective for my life. I got up the next morning, opened up the Bible app and started reading Psalms 23. I recall a dry erase board in the room over the sink. I stood on the counter writing out the entire scripture. Each day I stood reading this scripture. A few days later, I changed the scripture to Isaiah 53:5…I remember having an entire discussion about this verse with one of the night shift employees. Eventually, my son ended up having two procedures and one surgery. After the surgery, he needed physical therapy to help with walking because he had just spent a entire week in bed unable to walk due to excruciating pain. The following day, we started physical therapy. We went from the bed to the chair and eventually he was using the walker to get to the door. When we finally left the hospital, I remember looking at the board where I left that scripture. My son returned home with a Picc line and could not return to school. We continued physical therapy for a few weeks. Long story short, he finally had the PICC line removed, returned to school and started back walking after two months of physical therapy. Prior to this incident, I had signed up for a marathon. As my son was getting well, I was in the process of finding a training plan for my first marathon. I found an eight week plan and followed it to the T, only missing one run. While my son was doing therapy, I ran every chance I got…I ran in the mornings and on the weekends. I did not have a goal time for this marathon…I just wanted to finish and feel good after completing 26.1 miles. So as the big day approached, I was excited and nervous. However, I had the support of my family who made the trip to Albany with me❤️ while some of my running buddies ran the half marathon. Near the end of the finished line I saw my son running towards me and was reminded of the miracle that had just taken place in his life❤️ So the miracle was not that I had completed the marathon, but it was seeing my son running towards me…something he had not been able to do since the beginning of this year!!! Nonetheless, I encourage you…Don’t ever give up on your goals even in the midst of adversity…Keep pushing and keep moving forward towards your goals!