Author Archives: Brenda Schmidt

Conquering 5k Run Journey

Hey there, awesome ECI 831 readers! Welcome to my final blog post, where I will be sharing my journey of my 5k running project. In just six weeks, I went from a beginner to a determined runner…..just jokes, I am still at the beginner stages, and my “running” is more of a jog, but I am ok with that. My journey was filled with growth and excitement. Let me dive into the highlights, lessons, and triumphs that made this learning project MY learning project.

Getting started: it all began with me wanting to sew a quilt, but then I realized it would cost me $200 in material…..beep that! NO thank you! I had to switch gears completely……

no thank you title written with  chalk on blackboard

So, it actually all began with a simple goal of completing a 5k run within six weeks. As someone new to running, this was a big challenge that required discipline, commitment, and a positive mindset. To kick off the project, I researched some training plans and settled with From Couch to 5k! The plan looked easy enough, however reflecting back I feel I probably needed more time to work my way up to the running times. Realistically, I should have trained a few months for this run.

Weeks 1-2 was about building the basics and focusing on a strong foundation for my running journey.  I was reading articles if running was good for you? Still not sure I agree with this hahaha. I worked on my running form, gradually increased my endurance, and added some stretching into my routine. It wasn’t always easy, but I learned that staying patient and keep going were the keys to successfully completing my learning project.

At this point, I was regretting not spending the $200 on material!

Photo of dissatisfied young woman regrets wrong doing, keeps hand on forehead, clenches teeth, dressed in fashionable outfit, isolated over pink studio wall. Lady forgets something important

Weeks 3-4 I was working on better nutrition and planning some meals, based on the reading Your Guide to a Runner’s Diet. I came to the conclusion I do not like meal planning, prepping, or cooking. Why can’t I win the lottery and have my own personal chef? During the running process I entered a more intense phase of training. I was increasing my time to eight and ten minutes and I was achieving milestones that were giving me a great sense of pride and motivated me to keep going.

Healthy Heart Food

Week 5-6 I tried my creative hand at creating the iMovies for my learning project. I have never worked with iMovie and so I watched full tutorial on YouTube. It was a smooth process and I found it easy to work with. I feel like iMovie is tool I will be using again for future projects. A few things to note when you watch my videos, yes I did cut my hair half way through the class, this made it difficult for re-takes! Also, why do I look down at my feet so much? Well, there is a funny story behind that. I tried running once before, back in 2008, and I tripped over my feet and broke my finger. True story! So, this running project was a big feat (feet LOL) for me!

Accident. stumble and fall while jogging

Race day! Finally, the big day arrived, and I found myself feeling defeated before I even began. I read some running tips on how to prepare yourself for a long run. I wasn’t sure how I would ever run for a full 5k without stopping….As I put on Vanderpump Rules, started the treadmill, I embraced the challenge. I don’t know if it was the culmination of all my hard work or the fact that I knew I would never have to run again, but I pushed myself throughout the entire run. When my fitbit alerted me that I had reached 5k, I was left with joy that it was over, a little bummed that my episode of Vanderpump was over, I mean, it was getting juicy! I think in my video, you can tell I am watching tv as I was looking up at my screen (and not my feet this time!).

Asian girl working out on treadmill at the gym

Important Lessons Learned:

  1. Consistency is key: Regular training, even when I didn’t feel like it, helped me improve and build my endurance.
  2. Patience pays off: Progress takes time, so I learned to be patient and enjoy the journey instead of rushing results.
  3. Mind of matter: Running is not just physical. It is also about mental strength. Staying positive and believing in myself helped me pushed through…..or maybe it was the fact I was able to be away from my kids and watch Vanderpump Rules instead of Sonic Boom or Dance Monsters! Either way, I pushed through mentally and was able to overcome the struggles.

Reflection: I’ve come to realize the power of setting goals and working hard to achieve them. Training for my 5k run not only improved my fitness (a little, but I will take it) but also boosted my confidence, and determination to want to continue on my fitness journey….maybe not with running.

This was my first time blogging and using Twitter and all this techy stuff. As I read other blogs throughout the semester, I could see I needed to step up my game, as I felt behind everyone else. Looking back at my overall learning project, there are some things that I would do differently. I would have incorporated more running apps, and maybe included my Fitbit more into the process. To be honest, I only started wearing it again because of my learning project. I didn’t do a lot of flashy posts as I didn’t have the skill set, but I kept learning and trying to do my best and I think that that is what is important for me. I learned some new things this semester and I am proud of my growth and learning.

As I say goodbye to this project, I eagerly look forward to new adventures and challenges.

Thank you all for reading my posts and the comments. This has been a great class. Have a great summer!

Insert ROCKY theme song…..danana…..nanana……

This week I prepared to run my 5k for the full amount. This took a lot of mental preparation. I found I was second guessing myself and wasn’t sure I even wanted to attempt it. I was reading some articles about how to prepare the day before a big run. As 5k really is not that far, for me, being 43, overweight, and out of shape, 5k seemed like a daunting task. Most of the articles were preparing for outdoor running, with distances greater than 10k. But that was ok. I was able to use some of the valuable information from 10 most effective long run tips, and apply it to my 5k journey.

In the article I used for this week, I was able to read about effective running tips, looking at the positive and negative aspects to consider. The positive tips included gradual progression, emphasizing the importance of gradually increasing the distance of your runs. This is to help build endurance and prevent injuries…..something I definitely need more time at building! Making sure that you get the proper nutrition and fueling the night before a big run, while staying hydrated were essential for maintaining energy levels and preventing fatigue. I ate a big plate of spaghetti for supper, the night before, knowing that I would get extra fuel from the pasta, plus I could eat the leftovers for lunch for another round of re-fueling.

Of course, it is really important that you watch your pacing and try to maintain a steady and sustainable pace. Since I was running on the treadmill, I was able to set my speed to 4 mph and didn’t need to adjust it. I was able to keep that slow jog pace, which was enough of a run pace for me!

Mental preparation was the most important part of preparing for my run. The reading suggested using techniques of self-talk and visualization to help stay focused and motivated. I actually watched an episode of trash tv, AKA Vanderpump Rules….I found that was all the focus I needed.

I was able to finish my 5k in just under 52 minutes, which is slower than I had aimed for, but I am still proud of myself for finishing….I do have a video of my final run posted, so enjoy watching my last running attempt. Can you see the agony on my face? I will not be running anytime soon! I love my treadmill, but for walking only. I find that walking at an incline gives me just as good of a workout and I don’t feel like my body hates me afterwards. I found the running a real struggle, not only mentally, but physically.

I read another article, Incline walking vs running, and it explains that the benefits of walking on an incline is just as beneficial as running, so if I enjoy the walking, and it’s just as good for me, shouldn’t I keep doing what I enjoy?

Open Education

What is the concept of open edKnowledge and science children with books artistic graphic collage - Generative AI illustrationucation and its significance? What impact does open education have on education? This week in class, we learned about open education and the fundamental importance of sharing educational resources online.  The topic presented some great debate questions in relation to how people view freely sharing resources online. One point I found interesting from the video Laws that choke creativity, was when he said the “consumer is not the creator” in relation to when people share a read only version of the resource, it doesn’t allow for creator creativity to extend beyond the original creator. That alone can be a huge debate on its own: if we share our resources, do we have to allow for people to change and adapt them?

I read Open education resources offer many benefits: how to remove obstacles. It was about how sub-Saharan Africa adopted distance learning during the pandemic with the use of open education and the struggles they faced in making open education resources available. One thing ironic to note: when I tried to click on the actual study results, I had restricted access. Not so open, is it? But overall, it was a great article regarding how open education is beneficial, especially for students who may not have access to higher level education.

My biggest take aways from this week in regard to open education are:

  1. Open education aims to provide free and open access to educational materials and resources. Open education empowers individuals who may not have access to traditional educational opportunities.
  2. Free online resources play a crucial role in democratizing education by enabling individuals, regardless of community, country, or marginalized background, to access quality educational content. This allows for reduced financial burden on learners and prompting equitable access to education.
  3. Open education encourages a culture of lifelong learning. It allows for individuals to explore new subjects, skills, and pursue personal interests. This fosters intellectual growth, professional development, and personal fulfillment.
  4. Open education promotes collaboration and community engagement by sharing resources openly. This allows educators and learners to contribute to a common community of knowledge and can encourage the exchange of ideas and creation of educational content. The open sharing of educational resources fuels innovation in teaching and learning.
  5. By making educational materials accessible to a global audience, open education facilitates cross-cultural understanding, promotes diversity, and allows for the exchange of ideas across different countries.

iMovie unleashes my inner filmmaker

This past week I compiled all my running and put it in an iMovie. This was my first time doing anything like this, and I found it a very smooth process. Here is the link for my Overall Running Progress for the duration of the class.

Next week, I plan on completing the actual 5K run and will create another movie of the full run! Eeeeekkkkkkk, I am very nervous about this. I am not too sure I am ready for this.

Horizontal shot of anxious good-looking female student in striped blouse, biting fingernail nervously, frowning and looking aside, being scared of consequences, standing over gray background

I previously posted about this video, a beginners guide to iMovie. I found it very helpful as a beginner. Let me share my experience as a newcomer to iMovie and the features that stood out to me.

As a first-time user of iMovie, I must say that I am impressed with how user-friendly it was. iMovie has allowed me to dive into the world of filmmaking without the complexity that often accompanies professional video editing tools.

Upon launching iMovie, the layout was well-organized, making it easy to navigate and find the tools I needed. The drag-and-drop functionality simplified the process of importing my video clips, audio files, and images, allowing me to start editing my footage right away.

The timeline editor in iMovie was another aspect that won me over. Its simplicity and visual representation of my video clips made it easy to trim, split, and rearrange footage with precision.

I was able to overlay music tracks, add voiceovers, and fine-tune the audio levels to ensure a polished final product.

When it came to sharing and exporting my video, iMovie offered a variety of options. I was able to share directly to social media platforms, export to my iPhone or iPad, and save the video to my computer.

While iMovie delivers an exceptional experience overall, there were a few minor drawbacks. I found that working with large video files could sometimes slow down the performance, and exporting lengthy videos took a bit longer than expected. Since I had videos of myself running for a long duration, I ended up having to edit the videos prior to uploading because it was taking too long.

In conclusion, iMovie is an excellent choice for first-time video editors and enthusiasts looking to unleash their creativity. With its user-friendly editing features, and customizable templates, iMovie offers a pleasant introduction to the world of video editing. While it may have some limitations, it more than makes up for them with its accessibility and impressive results. I’m excited to continue exploring iMovie and honing in on my inner filmmaking skills.

Social Media Activism

When I was researching social media activism, I came across this blog that discusses company brands supporting causes or campaigns. The blog summarizes what social media activism is and provides a list of “do’s and don’ts” when posting. Even though this article is geared towards companies, I found many aspects of the article useful for my own personal narrative.

What is social media activism? The following summarizes the article:

  • Social media activism is when people use the internet to protest or support a cause. They often use hashtags to gather people and spread their message. Sometimes, people use the terms social media activism and hashtag activism interchangeably.
  • When people participate in activism on social media, they try to make others aware of important social issues and show support by using hashtags, making posts, and joining campaigns.
  • However, it’s important to know that just using a hashtag or sharing symbols like a black square or rainbow flag without taking real action offline can seem like they’re only taking advantage of the situation and not putting in much effort. People who criticize these small actions often call them “slacktivism” or pretend support. They think these actions don’t really make a difference.
  • Words and hashtags are important, but actions carry more weight, especially for big brands that have a strong presence and resources. Social media activism should be backed up by real-world actions.
  • It’s crucial to listen to credible voices who are actively involved in the cause. Learn from experts who have extensive knowledge and experience in the movement. Make a genuine commitment to making tangible improvements.
  • To have a better understanding of your audience’s emotions, use social listening. This helps you empathize and show solidarity when negative sentiments are expressed. Additionally, it enables you to rally your audience around positive sentiments by providing clear and impactful calls to action.

So what are my thoughts on Social Media Activism?

According to the article, What kind of (Digital) citizen?, I am definitely categorized as personally responsible when it comes to activism of any kind. Yes, I wear my pride ally shirts, I have my “everyone is welcome here” sign up on my classroom, and I wear my orange shirt, but beyond that, I try to keep my opinions on social justice to myself. I can’t tell you why. Maybe I am insure about my opinions, fear of offending someone, or maybe I feel too uninformed on certain topics that it makes me feel uneasy. After reading Katia’s blog, In online spaces, silence speaks as loudly as words, it made me feel shame that I don’t speak up more for social justice issues. I am sure her blog isn’t intended to do that, but it really gave me the opportunity to reflect on what my silence is saying. Am I really saying, “these issues are not important?”.  While difficult, it is important to have these honest, internal conversations about your values and the changes you may need to make.

Here are my most valuable take aways from this week:

  1. When you post a message in support of a cause, ensure that your post leaves no room for ambiguity. Don’t leave people asking questions or filling in the blanks for you.
  2. Be upfront about anything that goes against your current position. Without doing this, your social activism will ring hollow—or worse, hypocritical. It could also prompt people to call you out.
  3. The aim of social activism is often to disrupt the status quo. Not everyone will agree with your position. Some followers may applaud you, while others will be critical.
  4. Diversity shouldn’t just be a box you check during Pride month, Black History Month, or on International Women’s Day. If you support LGBTQ rights, gender equality, disability rights, and anti-racism, show that commitment throughout the year.




Happiness is running with a friend…..or son!

This sums up how I am feeling right now with my running project!         

This week I was running (or supposed to) be running for 8 mins straight…..It was not happening. I really found it hard to keep a steady pace at that length of time.  I definitely need to continue working on my cardiovascular endurance. I am going to keep powering through the running times, but I will continue to take breaks as needed. I think the most important thing for me, is that I keep trying and not give up.


I reflected this week on my struggles with running. I am finding the mental struggle is the hardest part about running. I decided to look up some articles and blogs on how to overcome this challenge. I came across NonetoRun (N2R).
This article provided nine tips to help overcome obstacles and develop a positive mindset towards running. These tips emphasize the importance of setting realistic goals, starting slow, and gradually building endurance. It encourages beginners to focus on their own progress and avoid comparing themselves to others, and to build a running community for support and motivation. Additionally, the article suggests that, as a runner, you should use positive self-talk and mindfulness to overcome mental barriers. The writer emphasizes the importance of staying consistent, listening to your body, and celebrate the small victories along the way!

For the duration of my journey to running a 5K, I will be focusing on some strategies to keep me motivated during running, here are a few things I will focus on to help me overcome my challenges and improve my running experience:

  1. Set realistic goals
  2. Find a running buddy (which I started this week, as you will see in my video!)
  3. Practice proper form and technique
  4. Listen to my body and take breaks when needed
  5. Incorporate strength training and stretching
  6. Track my progress
  7. Stay positive and be patient

iMovie update!

This week I tried working with iMovie, as I will be using it for my final wrap up to this project. I had a very handsome workout partner and so I decided to take a short video of him running and added music over the video.

I watched a video on YouTube that helped me get started with iMovie, as I have never used it before. I found it informative and was able to follow along quite easily.

Here is my summary of the video (or my take aways):
iMovie is a user-friendly video editing software designed for Mac users. With iMovie, you can create and edit professional-looking videos. The interface allows you to import media, arrange clips, add transitions, apply filters, and incorporate background music. You can also adjust the speed, crop, and rotate videos. iMovie offers various themes, templates, and title options to customize your project. Once you’re done with your creation, you can easily share your masterpiece on social media or export it in different formats.

I will be playing around with iMovie more this week and try to post another attempt with some of my earlier running from the first half of the semester…..


Mobile hashtag vertical concept

This is my first time using Twitter and I have to say I don’t mind it. I have been finding the posting useful, and have been trying out some of the resources to build my tech portfolio (as limited as it is). What I like about Twitter is that it allows users to connect, express their thoughts, and stay updated on current events. I find that it is a user-friendly interface and that navigating Twitter has been quite easy for me to pick up. I like how easy the search and explore functionality is to find tweets and accounts. The hashtags and trends are a great way to organize conversations and engage with trending articles. My newfound relationship with Twitter hasn’t been all positive. It has been very overwhelming trying to keep up with the vast amount of information, adding extra stress. And, of course, when you post on any social media, you are opening yourself up to Internet Trolls. Thankfully, I have not had to experience that within this class! Whether you are a casual user (like myself) or a social media enthusiast, Twitter provides a satisfying and enjoyable user experience.

Twitter was initially created as a social media tool, however with the growing popularity of Twitter, more educators are using Twitter as a way to connect with students and parents outside of the classroom. So, How can Twitter be useful in the classroom? This article outlines 10 ways that educators can utilize Twitter to enhance student learning/engagement. I like how the article outlines ways to use Twitter to keep the parents updated with what is happening in the classroom, as it gives the teacher ONE way to communicate with a large group, instead of sending out 30+ individual emails. I understand this also comes with some challenges, however it does put some of the responsibility on the parents. Other classroom suggestions are using Twitter as a research tool to extend learning, feedback surveys from students, and using Twitter as a way to communicate reminders to students.

How will you use Twitter in your classroom?

I’ve got 99 problems, and TikTok is one of them!

I have 99 problems and TikTok is one of them!

This assignment was really hard for me because I don’t really like to engage with social media apps. I have never been really interested in technology, so I try to keep things on a very basic level. So, I decided to look into TikTok. I did not create any videos, nor did I post anything, as I don’t feel comfortable with having a digital footprint of this sorts, but this is my review of the app.


  • Creative and Entertaining Content: TikTok has a variety of videos that show people dancing, lip-syncing, skits, DIY projects, and informative videos. The purpose of this app is for users to express themselves in unique ways.
  • User-Friendly Interface: TikTok is quite easy to navigate. The app’s algorithm analyzes user preferences and presents personalized recommendations, tailored to your preferences.
  • Global Community and Trends: TikTok has a massive user base, making it a platform with a diverse community. TikTok’s accessibility features make it inclusive for various user groups and with the text-to-speech functionality, captions, and customizable settings, this app can meet the needs of individuals with disabilities.


  • Potential for Cyberbullying and Harassment: TikTok is not immune to cyberbullying and harassment. Viewers can leave negative comments or engage in harmful behaviour, leading to conflict. You can block on TikTok, but it is not fool proof.
  • Privacy Concerns: Anytime you use social media, or computer anything, you run the risk of having your personal information hacked.
  • Time Consumption and Distraction: TikTok’s addictive nature can lead to excessive distraction from other responsibilities. I think of how much time I spent on it this week for my review and I couldn’t believe it! I’m not going to lie, I wanted to watch more!

Woman viewing social media content on mobile phone

To get started, I watched a Beginner’s Guide to TikTok. It was pretty good for just an 8 minute video to get started. I also watched a video on how to create TikTok Videos. It was a little longer, at 26 minutes. Overall, I enjoyed watching some of the videos, however, I did not even want to attempt to make a video. I honestly cannot get into this craze of videoing one’s self and posting it for all the world to see. I remember when I was in Vegas last summer and we had talked about doing one of the trends, with the “this is my first drink”, second drink…..until you get to, “this is my last drink”.  When we woke up in the morning, one of us said, “oh, weren’t we supposed to video our drinks?”. It just isn’t second nature for me to always have a camera in my face (and I am happy that we didn’t create that video!). I am pretty sure, I will delete this app as soon as this class is over.

Don’t Eat Less, Eat Right!

Week 1 of running in the books, and I have officially started week 2! I would think that the runs would be getting easier, however they are getting longer, making them more challenging. This week will be difficult as I am running for 5 mins by the end of this week. EEKKKK! I’m powering through the workouts and I have been thinking about taking my runs outside in hopes the fresh air will help energize me more.

I found I have been lacking energy and I wanted to research some meals that would help fuel my runs. I was reading an article on what is best to eat before and after running. I realize that I am eating too much processed food at lunch and that by the time I get home from work, I feel extremely sluggish.

Water is another important piece of this puzzle. I don’t normally drink a lot of water, and I have always struggled to get my recommended daily intake of water. I am working on drinking more water throughout the day and rehydrating after my runs!

Hydrating after a run!