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“THE MARATHON LADY” Meet Kristi Lovelace

The Quiet Confidence In Each Of Us‌

Five Ways to Flip Money Worries to Favor Your Well-being

Single & Satisfied

Rockdale County’s Positive Magazine

404-477-8257 The Rockdale Connector is an Electronic Magazine centered around positive, productive people & passions in and around our community. Thank you for sharing this with your friends & social networks!

Our Feature Story

ROCKDALE’S MARATHON WOMAN If you don’t already know your potential, then you should meet Kristi Lovelace. Not only does she juggle her job, friendships and marriage, but somewhere in there she trains weekly to compete in 8 triathlons throughout the year. She started running at age 39. and has since entered into over 82 races, 30-40 of them triathlons, clocking more than 1,818 miles/swimming, biking & running. After her most recent race in China, we say down with Kristi Lovelace to learn more about her passion. Watch the interview (click the link below) to learn how she juggles her passion and her life’s work. What motivates her? What are her greatest challenges? Meet another great individual from the Rockdale County area; an inspiring story to begin our year and to kick off our premier issue of The Rockdale Connector. It isn’t often that a person walks into a weight loss clinic and walks out with a brand new passion, but that’s exactly what happened to Kristi Lovelace.

MORE ABOUT OUR NEIGHBOR, KRISTI A native of Pike County, Georgia, Kristi visited a Weight Watchers center in 2009 hoping to get help losing the 50 pounds she wanted to shed. In the midst of accomplishing that goal, she discovered something about herself—a love for the triathlon.
 “First they teach you about nutrition,” she said. “Then they tell you to do something you enjoyed as a child to help you get fit.” For Kristi, those childhood activities were biking and swimming. “I realized that if I combined those two things with just a little bit of running, I could do a triathlon.” That may sound like a huge feat, especially coming for someone who skipped an entire year of PE back in grade school, but at age 39, Kristi tackled it and fell in love. In August of 2009, she completed her first triathlon in Gainesville, Georgia. “The first race was just to see if I could do it. I did better than I thought I would.” Five years later, Kristi says she’s lost count of how many actual triathlons she’s competed in, but according to her recording, she’s completed at least 82 races to date. About 40 of those races are triathlons, with an impressive 1818 total race miles, in the categories of swimming, running and biking. When asked about the biggest challenge of preparing for a competition and the keys to success, the seasoned lawyer and athlete replied, “Prayer and my faith are a crucial part. It requires patience and tenacity. Being consistent is key. It can get lonely and boring. You have to find time to train every day.” How exactly does one train daily for such a grueling competition? For a long course race, Kristi normally trains daily, with one day of rest a week. That training generally includes twenty miles of running, 100 miles of biking and a 2.4 mile swim

Click Here to See The Interview

The Learning Corner, with Maria Brown There is a quiet confidence in each of us that when we enter into a doctor’s office or see a police officer take notes that they know what they are doing and are in essence experts in their fields. We expect them to ask and use questions to help make connections based on what they know or have seen. Children too must be taught to experience life as experts. They are experts of learning whether it is the alphabet, subtraction facts, algebraic expressions or a literature project. Parents should ask their children (the experts) about what they are learning. Simply inquiring how they will use their new skill or what kinds of new students they are meeting in class might lead to discussion about what kinds of changes the students would like to see to help their world not just their minds grow. Questions are the red carpet that carries dreams from the mind, thru the air and into action. It is easy to wish for the success of children who can throw, kick or bounce balls into space. Parents can motivate children by showing a genuine energetic implosion to academic achievements (no matter how small). Education is inch by inch growth, at different speeds. The adults that care for children are keeping pace alongside their children as they juggle the weight of life. We hear that reading daily, science and math driven activity is a recipe for successful parent engagement. The recipe should be artfully crafted to include motivation, tenacity and drive. Parent engagement is at the heart of learning. Educated adults were once children who stood at the cusp of choice. Student growth within a community benefits us all. Would one wish to be on a farm surrounded by a desert? Would one wish to be the only pool of water in that desert? Parent engagement encourages people to bloom where they are and to share the dream of a balanced, fluid mirage. When you make your list of things to do remember to add encourage a child, thank a teacher and uplift a parent or guardian who is balancing learning on the same scale with the heaviness of life. Bio Maria Brown’s professional history is one of Exceeding Expectations through Excellence. She is an accomplished senior manager with a solid track record in operational leadership, project management, and strategic planning for school improvement and academic growth. Ms. Brown has a keen ability to navigate through broad executive direction to structure financially justified programs and to build organizations and teams that deliver. She is certified to teach grades K-12 and has served as a facilitator of learning for both students and adults for almost twenty years. Her belief that using data-driven decision making will supplement internal resources including; parents, community members and, professional development, needs assessment, data analysis, and collaborative planning drives her commitment to bring out the best in everyone around her.

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So many single people want to be married. They talk about it constantly and have a habit of seeking a marital companion with every new relationship they make. Please don’t get me wrong – there’s nothing wrong with wanting to be married, but if a person is unable to embrace who they are as a person (a single person), then they will not be ready for a relationship that leads to matrimony. A person who’s single is not a broken person. Let me say it this way: There’s nothing wrong with being single because when you’re single, you’re able to know who you are, define your goals, and plan out your life without any outside interference. All too often, you’ll have family members push you into marriage without telling you to work on you to be a better you everyday. If it’s not family members, you’ll have those in the church trying to hook you up and making you feel bad because you’re single. Instead of encouraging you to work on a spiritual relationship with the Creator, they want you to be hooked-up with the first person that seems logical. Again, I want to reiterate, there’s nothing wrong with being single because being single helps you to know who you are, what you want, and where you want to go in life. Whenever I counsel those who are single, I have to remind them that singleness is not a sin. That’s right: Singleness is not a disease, a curse, or some bad omen. In fact, singleness has its benefits such as you can do what you want when you want, not having to deal with arguments or disagreements, no jealousy or insecurity, and no worrying about someone always being in your business. Even though these are just a few examples, it’s important to know that singleness is a time to examine one’s life and gain clarity. Here’s a few suggestions for you if you find yourself single in today’s world. Just about every single person I talk with wants to be loved by someone special. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that, but when a person can’t love themselves and all of themselves, they are setting the stage for disappointment. A person who is single and desperate to get married hasn’t taken the time to adequately examine themselves. Without self-examination, an individual doesn’t know who they are. When a person doesn’t know who they are, they will quickly become confined. I want you to remember this – it’s okay to be single and satisfied with yourself.

Sinclair’s Tips 1. Get to know who you are. What I mean by this is, get to know who you are as a person, not what roles you play or titles you have. Try this: Google the meaning of your name and see how your meaning reflects your identity 2. Don’t feel pressured to have someone in your life because family and friends are pressuring you. 3. Date yourself. Through dating yourself, you begin to understand your likes and dislikes 4. Never use the phrase, ‘I’m tired of being by myself.’ If you use the phrase, ‘I’m tired of being by myself,’ no one will want to be with you because you’re tired of being with your own self 5. Write out your career goals. 6. Use your singleness for spiritual development. 7. Travel and explore the world.

More with Dr.Sinclair Grey

5 WAYS to FLIP MONEY WORRIES With Felesha Love

When things go wrong in life, it sometimes seems as though we are watching a horror movie. The vivid pictures of hardships, violence and destruction can cause one to respond in three ways. 1. We take the “duck and cover” approach dodging issues by blaming and judging everyone in our path. 2. We take action and fight injustices for ourselves and others. 3. We become complacent with a noted sigh of relief that the occurrence did not affect us or those we care about. Our society is becoming immune to destruction and injustices not only locally but in our global community. The echoes of students across this country complain of alienation, loneness, and lack of motivation. Rape culture, campus shootings, sexuality pressures, depression and addictions of all kinds persist but to what end? The job market is not promised to graduates, leaving many underemployed or living at home much longer than anticipated, nursing a false sense of security. Over 4 million, single women heads of household are poorer than men working the same or similar position. The average income is less than $25,000 a year. Stress exacerbates health and well being. According to the American Psychological Association, women are more likely to be diagnosed with depression and anxiety disorders (Groh, 2007). Research shows that mortality rates for women with coronary heart disease appears to be directly related to socioeconomic status (Hemingway, 2007). Low energy levels, economic deprivation and reduced access to healthy food contribute to obesity for women (Jeffrey & French, 1996). Isn’t it time to rethink our approach to wellness and quality of life? Generations are waiting in the balance for a shot at quality living. We have no time for the duck and cover approach in the way that our parents have taught us or for prolonged complacency. It is time for action. Believe it or not, I’m not going to tell you to write, call, email or complain to political officials, although in some cases it might help. I would like to draw your attention to the power you hold individually. 1. Assess your immediate environment. Notice how well you are coping with your current circumstances. The fastest way to organize your finances is to stop the bleeding. Identify your highest expense and strive to control it. 2. Acknowledge your efforts, as well as, those around you. Sometimes a verbal acknowledgement will go a long way for those in your household, neighbors or community members. Let someone know that you see them and offer encouragement or resources. The fastest way to give relief to one’s struggle is to let them know that you care. 3. Watch your self-talk. Oftentimes, we unknowingly perpetuate our pain by entertaining negativity and cynicism. Emotional pain is real, so why add anxiety with negative self talk. 4. It takes two to dance the Tango. If your socioeconomic status is not what you would like it to be. Create additional sources of income, take a course or learn a new trade. Create a way out. Difficulties in life, only have the power that you yourself give it. 5. Break the cycle of your unhappiness. You can choose to enhance your life with true desire and passion or complain about it. Sorry to tell you but even helplessness is a choice. Blaming another may provide you with explanation at the time but it is not the real issue. The real issue is that you feel disempowered. (Continued)

(Continued) From Felecia Love… Take action now to reclaim your power and get closer to your desires. Conflict has a way of making us fear defeat. Here’s the key. Fear is your mental perception of the outcome it does not mean that your perception is true. Blaming is the fuel that supports irrational thinking which causes us to do and say things that are different from the desires we hold in love. The illusion is that you will have outcomes you did not bargain for or outcomes that cause you or others pain. Think about what it looks like to have your hands over your eyes while driving. You see from a blocked perception. This is why it is difficult to see the whole truth of your power. Many of us live our lives from this limited perspective and how we show up in our families, schools, on our jobs and definitely in the way we relate to others. Resources:

Bio Felecia is the author brave Leap To Freedom” and is also a veteran radio emcee/personality. You can find more of Felecia at

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The Rockdale Connector Contributors Our contributors believe in the growth and progress of Rockdale County. We live in or nearby, we’re here most everyday, and we serve as not only concerned citizens, but connectors who are making things happen in our lives and in the lives of others. We do it through our deeds. We do it through our words.

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Rockdale Connector Premier Issue