Guest Post: Connections by Paula Tansey


My uncle and godfather worked for a NASA subcontractor back in the day. His work included work on the Lunar Excursion Module (LEM) that took the astronauts from their capsule to the moon. If you saw the movie “Apollo 13” with Tom Hanks you will recall that the astronauts were running out of oxygen due to an overloaded CO2 thing-a-mabob (not to be confused with “Thing-a-majig”, please) and a fix had to be improvised. There is a scene where Ed Harris dumps a load of ‘stuff’ on the table and tells the engineers something like, “This is what they have in the spaceship, make it work”. My uncle was one of the engineers in the room; in real life, not the movie J I’ve always been proud of my ‘connection’ to the moon and space has always fascinated me. I could never be an astronaut though because I am claustrophobic and heights don’t thrill me either. Joining Moon Joggers lets me travel to the moon and make connections with the many folks who are on this mission with me.

Moon Joggers also lets me engage my other fascination – people. I’m not what most folks would consider an extrovert – although as I get older my shyness has faded by degrees – but I love people. Running has introduced me to many people and adventures that I’m sure I wouldn’t have had otherwise. While running – or talking about running – the walls come down and suddenly I’m telling relative strangers things that my close friends and family may not know yet – or had to wait a long time to find out. And just like that ‘strangers’ become friends. Our common bond – walking and running – creates a connection like no other.

If you are new to running and walking – take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to connect with others who share your new hobby addiction. It might be the Moon that brought us together but it’s the people that will keep us here.

I’m relatively new to running (2008) and the only thing I’m an expert on is me. And that’s my advice to everyone in this group– new or experienced. Become an expert on yourself. Learn what works for you. Listen to others, ask for help, and maybe even try things that other suggest. But don’t expect everyone else’s solutions to make sense for you. If someone else’s plan, pace, nutrition trick, favorite gear, etc. doesn’t work for you it’s because the solution for you is something else. Keep trying and you’ll find it.

Connect with others but in the end compare yourself only to you. Compete only with yourself.

My name is Paula Tansey. I live in Media, Pennsylvania with my husband Dave. I’m a happy dork whose goal in life is to finish and have fun and to try to make a difference while I’m at it. If you’d like to follow my progress in running and life visit my blog at



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