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| Miramar Beach, Florida

10 Apr

Making the Most of #MotivationMonday

Three Tips for Meeting Challenging Goals

Last month three members of our management team achieved their goal to run in the Seaside Half Marathon and we sat down with them this week to go over the thoughts, feelings, and fears they experienced while preparing and participating.  John Sallman, Megan Blanchard, and Jessica Hathorn were all “runners” before training for the event, but none had run in a half marathon before, and getting yourself ready to run 13.1 miles is not something you should take lightly. When we asked the trio about their adventure, we noticed three themes in their answers and couldn’t help but feel it was more than coincidence. Through the ups and downs, the blisters, the aches and pains; they stayed motivated. And here’s how:


If you are setting a challenging goal for yourself, you must have a good reason. “Just because” won’t cut it when the going gets tough. John Sallman, the General Manager of the Residence Inn decided to participate in the Half Marathon to challenge himself; an especially good challenge since he does not particularly care for running as a hobby (haha).  Our Sales Manager Jessica wanted to race as a birthday present to herself – Jessica recently turned 40 and knew that challenging herself like this would be a great celebration of her lifetime commitment to health and fitness. Our Food & Beverage Manager Megan was motivated by her wedding date only a few weeks after the race.  With her fiancé serving in the military overseas in the months before her wedding, she knew that setting a challenging goal would help her stay focused and stay positive. John, Jessica, and Megan also believe in the Seaside School and the amazing work they do in education. “Do it for the kids” is a pretty good motivator, don’t you think?



Throughout their training, John and Megan trained together locally while Jessica trained in Birmingham, Alabama where she now resides. Even though Jessica could not join Megan and John in their 4AM runs, the crew kept up with each other through a WhatsApp group chat – sharing recipes, motivational thoughts, run times, mileage increases, and silly before-run and after-run selfies. Staying connected was a key factor in the group’s success. Megan and John had also made a commitment to finish the race together, no matter what. John said, “If she and I crossed the finish line together it would show everyone that we knew that when we team up together we can do anything.”




Don’t deprive yourself of a little lightheartedness when you are working towards an important goal. Jessica, John, and Megan all highlighted the fun they had with each other as being imperative in their training process. Before their 4AM runs, John would message Megan the “running girl” emoji and she would respond back with the “crying face” emoji. Starting the day with humor and dedication is a good rule of thumb when working towards a goal. Megan and John would make sure to send goofy running selfies to Jessica to help bridge the distance between them and solidify their comradery. John also noted that even though he had driven down 30A so many times, that “during the race what was going through [his] mind was how beautiful the area we live in is.” Taking time to ‘stop and smell the roses’ or… ‘keep running and smell the roses’ is important when working towards a goal.



Howard Hospitality is lucky to have Megan, John, and Jessica on our team. They have taught us all a lesson in setting goals and working hard to make them a reality. Their work ethic is evident in all things they do – congratulations guys on a job well done!