Back in the Gym… and running my 18 miler!

Hey Lovelies…

I’m ready for fall… so ready!

While I was laying on the beach in Martha’s Vineyard, the sun was kissing my skin, and I knew I was going to miss it. Laying on the beach felt so good, that I became sad summer was coming to an end. But this week, mid September, a heat wave snuck up on us in the DC area – it is humid and 90. Now I am ready. No more heat. Let fall come soon, delivering us crisp cool air.

MARATHON TRAINING: 

20130913-120840.jpgWhen it comes to Marathon training, I ran my 18 miler last friday. I was blessed with 70 degree weather and was able to run my 18 miler in right under 3 hours! I am very pleased with that timing. Overall felt really good.

STRENGTH TRAINING: 

The only thing is that for the last two weeks I have not been able to get to the gym. For one whole week I was at Martha’s Vineyard running around the island. I was able to lift one time while I was there, but had limited equipment. At one point, I used a picnic table bench to do incline push ups.

It is always hard for me to get back to my regular routine when coming home from vacation. The day after I got home I ran a 12.5 mile long run. For the rest of the week I did my marathon training runs, but having an overwhelming work week, made it impossible to squeeze in some strength training.

All of this running, and two weeks off of disciplined strength training has caused me to loose some muscle, mainly in my upper body. No one else has really noticed because it is only a small amount of loss, but I have noticed.20130913-122142.jpg

It is funny how quickly you can loose muscle definition. However, it is also interesting with the right strength training/ nutrition and supplement plan, how quick you can see gains. 

Also, in phase 1 of the Livefit trainer, Jamie Eason wants you to totally eliminate cardio/running from your workout routine. She claims that cardio/running leans you out and eats away at your muscles.  Phase 1 is a muscle building phase, not a fat burning phase.  I now totally get what she is saying. From my own experiences, after omitting strength training for two full weeks and only running, I have some slight muscle loss.

Back to the Gym:

Because of the heat wave this week, I decided not to torture myself. I am on a taper week for my marathon training. So instead of running in the blistering heat, I decided to hit the gym for some weight lifting sessions. I went all out. I went hard core. It felt good. My body is sore, but it is a good sore.

Another awesome thing, is that my running/workout buddy, L, is pregnant! So she will not be running the Marathon with me, however, after 3 months of not working out together she is back!!! WooHOO!! She is now weight lifting right by my side, and doing some mild cardio. It is fun to have a buddy with me again at the gym. She is going to be one fit strong mom.

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L, was feeling tired, and needed to find her energy again. After coming home from my Martha’s Vineyard vacation I was well rested, but, as the week went on, I woke up really tired too. My weekend was super busy, with wedding hair, art festivals, meal prepping, and my 18 miler, so starting this week at the salon was tiring. However, hitting the gym and doing some serious strength training actually made my endorphins kick in, and I became alive again.

I also ordered a new protein powder! I can’t wait to try it. I’ll write a review on it tomorrow.

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Questions for You…

  1. What protein powder do you like?
  2. Do how is your marathon training going?
  3. Have you struggled with fitting other forms of exercising during your marathon training?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

Running on Martha’s Vineyard

So now that you all have heard my exciting news– that happened on Martha’s Vineyard. It is time to reveal to you some of my favorite places to run on the Island.

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East Chop, located in Oak Bluff, is by far one of my favorite places to run. It is about a four mile run, two miles down hill, turn around, two miles up hill.
However, you can make your run as long or short as you want.

On this vacation I ran East Chop a couple times. I did a 10k by adding an extra two miles easily. After running down East Chop I made a right heading towards Vineyard Haven, then turned around after I ran the bridge. During this run, I felt amazing. It is crazy what a difference cooler weather can be.

Now the reason why I love running East Chop is because the scenery is breath taking. You get the opportunity to run right along the water. You are so close to the ocean that you can hear waves crashing. Most days there is an ocean breeze.

Also the beach houses along East Chop are beautiful and full of character. Although, there is also the famous East Chop light house, which gets attention from tourists, this running route is never too crowded. You won’t feel alone, because you most likely will see a few other runners.

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Another awesome place to run is the Oak Bluff harbor to Edgartown. Let’s explain. I ran this a couple times. There is a sidewalk that runs along the beach with spectacular views of the water and boats coming in. The harbor leads you to a bike path that takes you to Edgartown. On your way to Edgartown you will pass Jaws Bridge. Jaws Bridge is a fun place to pass because it is the famous bridge people jump off into the water. At this point it has been four miles and a great place to turn around, if you are trying to fit in a nice 8 miler in. The last time I ran this the sky was overcast, on the way back the sun came out. I remember running the last couple miles fast to get home in time to hit the beach.

So if you are looking for fun places to run on Martha’s Vineyard make sure you check out these routes. And while you are at it, jump off the Jaws Bridge!!

Where is your all time favorite place to run?¬†Have you run on Martha’s Vineyard?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Good Reads, Good Runs, Good Writes in Martha’s Vineyard

“One Element of what you will learn later is how important and powerful a role visualization plays in performance. The mind follows the body and, in turn, performance follows the mind.”- Eric Orton/

So I have arrived in Martha’s Vineyard!

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I am planning on running and blogging everyday I am here! I also just started a new book.

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And although I will be updating you on this book I still will be quoting Scott Jurek’s, Eat and Run! ‚̧ He’s my favorite.

Marathon Training Update: Long runs.

“We focus on something external to motivate us, but we need to remember that it’s the process of reaching for the prize, not the prize itself- that can bring us peace and joy.”- Scott Jurek

I believe in the words above.

Because of this, it is hard for me to understand people who, hardly train for races, or hate the training process.

Don’t get me wrong, I love running the race. But I also love having a disciplined training plan to keep me on track. For me, one of the reasons I sign up for a race, is to set a goal, that I need to train for. ¬†My training runs, which are sometimes extremely difficult, brings me peace and joy.

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The picture above is after I had finished my midweek 7 miler. It was fast and easy. As you can see, the sun was shining and my hair was blowing in the wind. Although, the beginning of the summer was hot and humid, which slowed me down and made me very discouraged, now the weather has cooled down significantly. I love running on beautiful days. Good weather is motivation enough to lace up my running shoes.
20130819-165339.jpgLONG RUN: Saturday, 8/17/13

Through out my marathon training, I have been doing my long runs on Friday mornings. I don’t work Friday or Saturday, so by doing my long run on Friday, I am able to get it done and have the rest of my weekend free.

However, last weekend, I did my long run on Saturday morning and I liked it 1 million times better. The trails around my house always have traffic, but on Friday, it is much less crowded. Actually, sometimes I feel very lonely out there – it is so quiet. ¬†On Saturday, I didn’t feel alone. Instead, I was surrounded with tons of other runners, running groups, walkers, cyclists. It felt good to be running among other runners that were obviously training for marathons, and in it for the long run, just like me. On Friday, I feel lonely, bored, and really rely on my upbeat music. But on Saturday, I use the other runners on the trail to keep me motivated. The energy is electrifying. My pace was right on target.

Again I was blessed with gorgeous weather, and had an amazing 15 miler. 

1184784_10101290079612166_1249870050_n-1Today, Friday, 8/23/13

Because I am heading up north tomorrow morning, I decided to squeeze my long run in today. I am on a taper week so my long run was 13 miles. I am happy to say, 13 miles felt pretty comfortable, even in the rain. In the above picture, I tried to capture how wet it was – you can see rain drops on my shoulders.

It started sprinkling three miles into my run. It started pouring at the 6 mile mark. Because of the rain, this Friday, the trail was even more empty than usual, however there were still a few other runners out there – we smiled when we passed each other.

Minus the blister on my toe, because my socks got soaked. I am pretty happy with this run. My pace was right on target, and I was blessed again with cooler weather.

Questions for You..

  1. How is your marathon training going?
  2. Do you enjoy training?
  3. Do you like long runs?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

Transformation Tuesday! Lets talk about progress and balance.

It is running season…

Which means, most runners are training for some sort of fall race, from 5K to 26.2, whichever distance it may be, us runners are out there running.

And although, running is our main priority right now, our focus… some of us runners start to worry…

I want to weight lift, but I need to run…

I want to do yoga, but I should run…

I want to ride my bike, but I gotta get out there and run…

Recently, I have been receiving tons of e-mails regarding how to balance a disciplined running plan and fit in weight lifting, yoga, etc.

Well let me tell you this…

Cross training is important.

Strength training is important.

Yoga/ stretching is important. 

I started running 6 years ago. I became so passionate about running that all I did was run. During the colder winter months after my fall marathon I picked up Bikram yoga. I loved it and became a regular, but still I ran.

When I trained for my first marathon, I followed my training plan religiously – I never missed a run. When I trained for my 2nd marathon, I did exactly the same thing, sometimes I even ran on the day that called for cross training.

However, after spending 9 months in 2012, running in a natural running shoe (newton), focussing on running form, in February 2013, I started weight lifting. I wanted to get stronger to improve my running, and I did. I got stronger, I improved my running. It was shocking I was running a little less, but I was running better than ever.

I am now running faster and further. The combination of being stronger and running with a more efficient stride/form, allows me to run faster, further, with less effort.

My point is you do not have to run every day to be a great runner. Running everyday, could actually make your running suffer, from burn out or injury. It is so important to incorporate strength training, cross training, and stretching in the mix. The stronger you are the less injury prone you will be, and the more your running will improve.

So to answer the question … How do you balance a disciplined running plan and strength training, cross training, stretching. How do you do it all?

It depends on your fitness level, comfort level.

Rookie: If this is your first race (first full marathon, first half marathon, etc.) follow your running training plan. Focus on your running. Stretch after your runs. Rest on your rest days. Cross train once a week. Strength train once a week.

Veteran: If this is your second, third, tenth, time racing this distance, then it is okay to use your training plan as a guideline. At this point, you can tweak and customize you plan. This marathon training season, I have been lifting weights on days when I run short and easy. I always do leg day early in the week after my long run has already been completed.

I also advise taking tons of photos to record your journey as an athlete. This way you can keep track of your progress visually.  Take advantage of photography. We have cameras on our phones, and we are lucky we have technology at our fingertips.

With that being said…

Because it is tuesday, I thought it would be the perfect time to honor Transformation Tuesday. So I am posting some progress pics, in hopes to inspire and motivate.

image-1The above photo was taken in March 2013. The bottom photo was taken in August 2013.

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Arms are seeing some major gains! This photo was taken in August 2013.

Anyway I hope these photos inspire and prove to you that you can balance both training plans. And that in the end being stronger is just going to enhance your overall fitness level.

Questions for You…

  1. How do you balance your training plans?
  2. Do you sometimes do two-a-days?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

Marathon Training in a new neighborhood!

“I find the best way to get your mojo back is to loose the technology, forget results, and run free… Run a trail you have never run before…” ¬†– Scott Jurek

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Today, fall decided to make a guest appearance.

So… out of boredom, I randomly decided to run in a different neighborhood.

There is a sweet spot in Alexandria, where the hills are steep and the trees create canopies over the paved road.

It is paradise for a runner.

My marathon training plan advised me to run four miles.

So four miles is what I ran.

I ran fast.

It felt easy.

I thought the clouds were going to pour rain, but they didn’t.

Instead a breeze kept me cool.

I like the taste of fall.

© 2013 sweatdaily

While I ran my 15 miler, Scott Jurek runs the Leadville Trail 100…

Social Media is an incredible thing.

It is way more than just posting photos and connecting with friends, it is the fastest source of information.

I have never watched or followed an ultra marathoner before. The opportunity was just never available. But because of Social Media I am able to follow Scott Jurek run the Leadville Trail, by receiving updates from his Facebook and Instagram page in my news feed. Just like following your favorite baseball team, checking the score. I was excited to see how Scott Jurek was doing during his race. It was also quite funny to read all of the comments people posted.

All photos were found on facebook.

All comments are from people posting them in referral to the photo.

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Good morning! Have a great day all Leadville Trail 100 runners! Mt Elbert and Mt Massive in the distance around mile 25.

“Go Jurker!”

“Man of the hour is Vegan Powered!”

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Leaving the halfway point, Winfield aid station, in 5th. Hal Koerner taking Scott back over Hope Pass, he’s in good hands!

“Go, Scott! Plant power!”

“Go scott! You’re my plant based runner hero! U paced our group in Mardi Gras marathon! Loved it!”

“Awesome! Do you have pasties? Also, is the dude behind you a runner? In sandals?”
“What’s with the blue nipples?”
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Refueling at Treeline in 4th, swapping pacers, running strong!

Go you crazy vegan!”

“where is Dustball??

Only three more runners to pick off!”

I doubt the citizens of Leadville would agree, but this should be televised!”

So today, while I was out on the trail, running my 15 mile training run, Scott Jurek was busy running the Leadville Trail 100.

He is now in 4th place. Still running strong.

If your not following Scott Jurek on Facebook yet, you totally should… and on Instagram.

Who is your running idol? Do you follow them on Social Media?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Marathon Training Update: My Garmin has become Running Buddy.

garmin

I love my Garmin!! This Garmin has been the best present my boyfriend has ever bought me.  I have the Forerunner 50 Рwhich is the oldest of all the Garmins. Sooo old that most people have never heard of it. This watch has been with me for all of my training runs and races for the last 5 years. It tracks my pace, distance, cadence, heart rate, and calories burned. But what I find most amazing about using a Garmin watch is that you get to also use the  Garmin Connect Calender.

With this feature, I am able to analyze all of my current runs, but I also get to look back on all of the runs I have ever recorded. This has been extremely helpful. The last time I ran the Marine Corps Marathon was in 2010. During this training, when I have felt unsure about my progress, I am able to go back to 2010 with the click of a button and compare my runs.

“It had gotten to hot even for the desert rat, Rick Miller, so Dusty joined me and ran me up the next 10 miles. “You da man, Yeah brotha’, that’s how you do it, Jurker, hell yeah!” the Dust Ball hollered.”

The above quote is from the book Eat and Run, by Scott Jurek. Scott Jurek wouldn’t be the runner he is today, with out his best friend Dusty. The relationship between Dusty and Scott is by far my favorite part of the book. Dusty was there by Scott’s side, through almost all of his ultra runs. And although I wish I had a Dusty, the reality is… I don’t, so my Garmin has become my running buddy.

So far during this marathon training season, I have been running solo.  Sometimes when you are running by yourself it is hard to judge if you are running your best, especially considering that last year and up to this point, I have had a running buddy. However, in 2010 I ran every training run by myself, and ended up having a very successful marathon.

I did it then, I can do it now.

Questions for You…

  1. Do you run with a Garmin? If not what do you use to record your runs?
  2. Do you have a running buddy? or do you prefer to run solo?
  3. Have you trained for a race by yourself?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Marathon Training Update (Week 7)

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Today was a raining, overcast, breezy, 75 degree day.

I feel like I am the weather man, reporting the weather on every blog post. But ever since I became a runner, I have become obsessed with the weather, and even more so now that I am in Marathon training mode.

Because it was raining hard when I woke up I started my work out by weight lifting at the gym. I did arms and abs. Once the rain stopped a little, I headed outside to hit the trail. It was spectacular today for a runner. I¬†can’t believe it is August and I was comfortable running in pants. I ran along the MVT trail, around 10:30 am. No one was out there. I had the whole rainy trail to myself. ¬†I kept my pace consistent between a 9:00 and 9:30 min/mile. My training plan called for 4 miles, so I stuck to that.

Tomorrow is between 7-8 miles. I’ll keep you updated. ūüėČ

How is your training going? Hope you are doing well!!

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

Marathon Training Update

The start to my Marathon Training didn’t go as well as I wanted it to, because ¬†I traveled to Vegas and then came home with a really bad cold. It has also been really confusing for me, because this last year my longest race was a half marathon, with the focus on running form and speed. But now that I am in marathon training mode I am running farther, but slower. I am not that worried about speed though, I am more concerned about going the distance and getting all my miles in.

This week was a really good week. I got all my miles in. And I am starting to get my Mojo back.

On Friday, 8/2/14, I ran my long run for the week. It was only a 10 miler, but it was a hot 10 miler. Humidity was high. When I ended my run, it was 90 degrees.

946315_10101253480482116_1644004689_n-1When I was reading Runner’s World I came across the quote above. I love it and it is so true. I’m going to tell myself this every time I don’t feel like running.

On Saturday, 8/3/13, I headed to the gym and lifted heavy. I worked chest and abs. ¬†Then I changed at the gym, into my running clothes/shoes, and headed out to do 6-7 miles. It was around 3:00 in the afternoon, so it was hot and humid. The temperatures were as high as 90, but it was overcast and started to rain a little. Unfortunately, my run ended early because I tripped and fell at around 4.5 miles. Thank goodness I was close to my car, and didn’t have to run too far with bloody hands and knees.¬†1094782_10101255793841126_745558221_nAlthough, my miles weren’t super fast, and I fell, I was still feeling really good durning this run.

Today, Sunday, 8/4/13,¬†it was 75 degrees, windy, with no humidity. On my break at work, I sat outside to read, and felt a little cold. After I was done with work, I couldn’t get my running shoes on fast enough. I ended up running 7 amazing miles. What a difference it is when the weather is a bit breezy and cooler!¬†1098181_10101257661124076_1265396807_n

This is my first time blogging while training for a marathon. I am having so much fun keeping track of my training this way. I also have been reading tons of other blogs where the blogger is also in training for Marine Corps Marathon. Reading about these bloggers’ training experiences have been so cool and motivating.

I hope everyone has had a good weekend!

What type of miles did you get in? Have you ever fell while running?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

Never forget you are a Newbie…

It doesn’t matter if you have been running for 20 years.
It doesn’t matter if you have run a Marathon in every state.
It doesn’t matter if you are Kara Goucher.

Never forget you are a newbie. The reason why I say this, is because the minute you forget, is the minute running will become boring.

As a runner I know that my daily runs can differ from one day to the next. Running on different trails can be exciting. The best way to tour a new city and experience a new place is by running through it. Even wearing different running shoes in my weekly shoe rotation can work different muscles and essentially give me a whole different running experience.

The running community in itself, does an amazing job coming up with new and different races to try. To name a few- The Color Run, The Glow Run, The Undie Run, The Zombie Run, Mud Runs, Spartan Runs. Stop right now if you are getting snooty. These races are fun, and a wonderful idea.  Although most of these races are shorter distances and untimed, they give you an opportunity to have a less intense race to run with friends that may be new to running. This gives you the chance to mentally and physically take a break, while it gives a non runner the chance to try running in a less competitive atmosphere. If a non runner runs one of these fun runs and loves it, they most likely will have a desire to set a higher goal and try a more serious race Рtransforming from a non runner into a runner.

But running one of these fun runs is not your only option. Stay refreshed and keep running new, by switching things up and setting new goals. Here are some suggestions…

If you are a road runner, try trail running. Maybe you have run the same marathon 3 times, next time you run it try running it using a different training plan. If you always wear traditional running shoes, throw a natural barefoot running shoe into the mix, maybe even use that shoe for your next race. Set a new running challenge, such as run everyday for 30 days, or run 100 miles in one month.

Whatever it may be… Keep running NEW and FUN, and …

Always remember, YOU ARE A NEWBIE!9236dea615788ff6986e504a0889acbc

Questions for You…

  1. What are some things you do to keep running fun and new?
  2. Have you ever run a fun run?
  3. What was your first race?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Marathon Update! Getting back on track.

As you all may know, I am running MCM! Although, I am really excited and craving some serious long distance milage, the beginning of my Marathon training has not really been as disciplined as I would have liked it to be.

But that is OK! No biggie, because this week I finally feel like I am starting to get back on track.

What exactly side tracked me?

Heat.

Travel.

A Bad Cold.

Being Side Tracked

HEAT

The first couple weeks of Marathon training is very low easy mileage. My fitness level is beyond this easy mileage, however my body in the beginning of training was not accustomed to the summer’s hot, humid, weather. So I became very grateful for the shorter, easier, lower mileage weeks.

 

TRAVEL

Right when I began to feel comfortable in the heat, I left for a week of travel. I went to Vegas for work, but also went early to play. I will admit, I played a little too hard. I stayed out late and didn’t get the sleep I needed. I did squeeze in three different workouts, but it wasn’t necessarily following the marathon training plan.

COLD

Then I came home excited to get back to training, but woke up Monday morning with a really bad cold. I never thought a cold would make me feel this tired. I have been congested which made it hard to breath. I felt choked by my cough.

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Getting back on Track

I’m not too worried, because it is still early in my training. I’m glad all of this happened early on, instead of later. Even though, I still am getting over my cold, after 5 days of rest, on Friday, I ¬†started running again. All of my runs have been pretty good, I am just hoping that once I can breath again my runs will feel easy. I have also been extremely blessed with some color less humid days, which I have been taking advantage of. The one thing that I have been really craving is some heavy lifting sessions and some HIIT at the gym. However, because I still have a cold I have been avoiding the gym. I’m not contagious anymore, but I still don’t want to take the risk and get anyone else sick. I have a feeling, that once I am 100% better I will have enough energy to do some 2 a days. ¬†:)

Question for You…

  1. Who else is running a Marathon?? Let me know, I am having tons of fun reading about everyones’ experiences with their marathon training.
  2. Have you ever been side tracked durning training?
  3. Would you ever run a marathon with a cold?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Running with a Cold…

When I got home from Vegas, last Saturday, I came down with a really bad cold. I think it was a combination of too much partying/lack of sleep in Vegas, and coming in contact with the germs that cause the cold virus.
I feel like I am being really wimpy complaining about having a cold, I mean there are much more severe illnesses out there. ¬†But I haven’t had a cold in a really long time, and I never remembered it being this extreme.
My throat hurt so bad that I went to the doctor thinking it was Strep. My strep test came back negative. So the doctor diagnosed me with the cold virus and sent me on my way.
For several days, I haven’t been able swallow which means no solid food for me. My nose is so congested that I am unable to breathe. With out food or oxygen, I feel low energy and lifeless.
I only took off one day of work, which made my other days insanely busy and long. On both Tuesday and Thursday I worked from 10 until 10.
The lack of food and oxygen, and then the long days at work, made it impossible to run.
When I was in Vegas, I was very worried about my Marathon training. There was no way I was going to take a week off of running and cross-training. I was really proud of myself for squeezing in the three workouts that I did. However, then I came home sick and exhausted. Everyday this week the weather was perfect, low humidity, low 80s. I so badly wanted to run, but also knew that it would be best just to rest and hydrate as much as I could. So that is what I did.
Today actually was my first day back on the trail. My first run since last Saturday morning. I did a short easy 5K. I didn’t want to over do it. I didn’t look at my watch at all. I wasn’t worried about time. I just wanted to feel good running, and although, I am still sick (its the tail end) I did feel good running.
And out of all the beautiful days we had this week, today was by far the prettiest.
66400_10101239781509966_1414965816_nRunning Professionals say you can continue to run and train with any cold that is from the neck above. If the cold spreads to the lungs or chest, it is time to take a rest day.
Questions for you…
  1. Have you run sick before?
  2. Do you have any at home remedies or tips to cure a cold?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Running in Humidity

Of corse the minute I start comparing dry heat to humidity I end up seeing a fabulous article about it in the August issue of Runner’s World. This article has some very interesting facts about running in humidity. Here’s some of the things I found most fascinating…

Sweating-alive.

  • The higher amount of moisture there is in the air the hotter it feels.
  • When you run your body temperature rises it becomes hotter and creates sweat. Sweating is the process when your body carries excess heat to your skins surface. In dry heat this sweat evaporates cooling your over all body temperature. In humid conditions this sweat is unable to evaporate, instead it lingers there, and making you hotter.
  • While running your body temperature can spike in minutes. This causes dehydration. When dehydrated your body goes into survival mode maintaining blood flow to essential organs.
  • Breathing can change.
  • Heart rate will escalate.
  • You may loose control over body mechanics. (Hands may shake, running form may become sloppy.)
  • Mental abilities my start to break down causing dizziness and you may become disoriented.
  • Don’t worry about pace. Your speed is guaranteed to decrease.
  • A humid day does not indicate a lack of fitness or mental toughness.
  • There are different types of sweat. Some people are sweat more salt. For the people who sweat more salt, they are more common to have stomach cramps. It is very important for these types of people to consume more electrolytes.
  • It normally takes 10-14 days to get adjusted to running in humid conditions. Those that are use to humidity run better in it.

Tips:

  • Hydrate
  • Eat salty foods. Salt helps retain water.
  • Don’t wear a hat. The hat will prevent your body heat from escaping your head.

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

Running the Vegas Strip

Hello lovelies!

For the last week I was in Vegas! It was a really busy, fun, non stop, sleepless, crazy, weird, hard working, inspiring, motivating, sun-kissed… trip. I will have to admit it was hard to keep my clean eating plant based diet on point. It was also a struggle to find time to get my workouts in.

Let me explain…

The diet: 

  • FAIL: One of the biggest points of eating clean, is to eat 5-7 small meals a day in 2-3 hour intervals. This did not happen.
  • FAIL: While eating clean it is best to prepare your own meals. This did not happen. I ate out every meal, sometimes pretty late at night.
  • FAIL: Although, I do not label myself as vegetarian, my regular diet consists of mostly plant based food. In Vegas, most of the food included some sort of meat, and all of my meals were loaded with salt.
  • FAIL: I definitely did not drink enough water. The heat is dry there, and I felt dehydrated most of the time.
  • FAIL: I drank way too many vodka pineapples.
  • FAIL: Although, most of the food I ate were not considered organic or clean, I am a foodie, and enjoyed trying different restaurants.
  • GOOD: I did find an amazing juice bar, and had a green juice, that consisted of kale.
  • GOOD: On the way back to the East Coast, I randomly found a 2 Mom’s in the Raw granola bar in¬†blueberry.

The workouts: 

6276_10101216329338306_617596903_nMy boyfriend came out to Vegas with me for the first four days. While I was with him I put it in my mind that these days would be my rest days. He was considering this a fun vacation with me and I was not about to be selfish by choosing the gym over him. It is okay, to skip a workout every now and then, when there are other plans scheduled, such as grabbing a morning coffee and bagel with your boyfriend while on vacation in Vegas. It is important to find a healthy balance.

Once my boyfriend left, I switched hotels, and started my work training, I was 20130718-153853.jpgable to find a routine, of waking up early and hitting the gym, at the Hotel/Casino before work. The gym was small and surprisingly very busy. Two days in a row I was able to lift and do some running on the treadmill. I hate running on the treadmill, and most of the time I don’t even consider my workouts on the TMill runs. However, this time around I did some HIIT, which was a really intense workout. Because during HIIT you run for 30 seconds at a sprinting pace and then jump off standing still for 30 seconds, then 1006287_10101225210181026_908292256_nrepeat, it is NOT boring. This type of running gets your heart rate up and then down, which can help you become a faster runner. I was shocked that at one point I was sprinting between a 6:30 and 7 minute mile.

I also went out a couple times at night to go dancing. Dancing is a really good work out as well. I sweat my but off, and worked my legs so hard I should have called it leg day!

Running the Vegas strip:  Finally, the last day, I woke up early so I could do a short run outside before I headed to the airport. The main reason I wanted to get an outdoor run in was because I wanted to compare the dry heat of Vegas to the humidity of DC. I have heard mixed opinions of which one is better to run in.

Dry heat:¬†The dry heat felt like a sauna. The sun felt like it was burning me. My throat was dry. My nose was dry and congested. In Vegas, there are areas where they manually spray mist. This is a good way to get water into the dry air, but it wasn’t enough. While I was running, it felt effortless, but I noticed I wasn’t even sweating. It wasn’t until I actually stopped running when sweat began to pour from me.

Humidity:  When I got off the plane and stepped outside into the Washington, DC air, I felt like I was walking into a steam room. I was so happy to be back in the humidity Рit felt amazing. Never thought I would say that. But because I am born and raised here, I am so use to the humidity that I never even noticed how much moisture is in the air. After being in Vegas and coming back home I could really tell a difference.

The one thing that I like most about running in the humidity is that you immediately start to sweat. Sweating is important because it helps your body detox and cool down. The good thing about running in dry heat is that if it is 100 degrees out, it feels exactly like 100 degrees, unlike in humidity where it normally feels hotter.  However, whether you are running in dry heat or humidity, you still need to drink a ton of water and stay hydrated.

The Strip:972071_10101227542566906_147498669_nI began my run at around 7:00 am. At that time, there were people out, but it wasn’t busy. Finally, I found a time when the Strip was quiet, almost peaceful. There were tons of other runners out too, however they were all tourists like me, no local runner would be running the strip. Also the strip is full of elevated crosswalks which means I ended up running tons of stairs. ¬†If you haven’t had a chance to run the Vegas Strip, I highly recommend it.

Questions For You…

  1. How do you stay on point with your diet while on vacation?
  2. Have you ever run in Vegas? If so where?
  3. Which do you prefer, dry heat or humidity?

© sweatdaily 2013

 

Post Workout Drink

Everyone who lifts, knows protein is the best thing for your muscles to repair and grow.  This is true, so I always try to have a protein shake with in 30 minutes after my workout. However, July is here, which means hot and steamy, air smothering days.  And although, I have found a new passion for weight lifting, my love is for running, that is where my heart is and always will be.

Week 1 of Marathon training is over. I am officially in marathon training mode. And training in this hot July weather, has made me craving something a little more refreshing then my traditional protein shake. Protein shakes are great ways to refuel, but after a run outside in the heat, my body needs hydration.

Well after flipping through the pages of my favorite cook book, Super Natural Every Day, I found the perfect drink to hydrate me post run.

Cucumber Cooler

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cucumber
  • A couple cucumber peels
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 3 cups of ice
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 lime juiced
  • mint leaves or you can garnish with a cucumber slice or lime wedge.

DIRECTIONS

  • Combine all ingredients in a blender until slushy like consistency.
  • Pour into class and Enjoy!
  • Garnish with mint, cucumber slice, or lime wedge. (Your choice)
  • Store in a pitcher in the refrigerator for up to a day or freeze as popsicles.

Cucumber is a Super food. It is a good source of silica, which helps promote joint health by strengthening the connective tissues. It is also rich in vitamin A, B1, B6, C & D, Folate, Calcium, Magnesium, and Potassium. Cucumbers are also 95% water, but always remember to chose ones that are organic because pesticides can be hard to remove from skins.

*This would also be a wonderful drink after Bikram Yoga!

Questions for You…

  1. What is your favorite post workout drink?
  2. How do you hydrate and prepare for the heat?
  3. Do you like cucumber flavored drinks?

© 2013 sweatdaily

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Day 2 of Marathon Training

“And yet ultra runners – even the fiercest competitors – grow to love each other because we all love the same exercise in self-sacrifice and pursuit of transcendence. Because that’s what we’re all chasing- that “zone” where we are performing at the peak of our abilities. That instant when we think we can’t go on but we do. We all know the way that moment feels, how rarely it occurs, and the pain we have to endure to grab it back again…
We all struggle to find meaning in a sometime painful world…
We’re all human, that there’s so much messed-up stuff going on, we need to hold on to what we love. “

-Scott Jurek

The above passage is from yet again, Eat and Run. And although, it mentions ultra runners- I believe all runners can relate. People don’t understand why I am so passionate about running, and they wouldn’t, unless they too run. But it is all about the “zone.”

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Day 2 of marathon training was another short 3 mile run. Today the heat and humidity was a little suffocating, but it was tolerable.

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Questions for You…

  1. Have you reached the zone?
  2. What mile are you at, when you reach it?
  3. What sport are you doing when your reach the zone… yoga? running?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

Day 1 of Marathon Training

“Run for 20 minutes and you’ll feel better. Run another 20 and you might feel tire. Add on 3 hours and you’ll hurt, but keep going and you’ll see and hear and smell and taste, the world with a vividness that will make your former life pale.”

– Scott Jurek

The above quote is by far one of my favorite quotes from the book, Eat and Run, by Scott Jurek. And it totally sums up the reason why I run marathons.

Today, was my first day of marathon training. I ran a short 3 mile run. I was relieved from the heat by a heavy rain.
So far it has rained a ton this summer. Hopefully it will stay mild.

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Get your beauty sleep!

This week I really took things easy. I needed a good long week of rest. I ran on Monday. I slept in on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday.

Rest is very important! I can’t stress that enough.

When you lift heavy you create little tears in your muscles. For muscle growth, these tears need to repair. Repairing happens when your body is at rest.

When you run far your body creates lactic acid, which makes muscles sore. Adequate rest and hydration helps flush the body of toxins, reducing soreness and inflammation, preventing injury.

Your body is capable of repairing itself, but it needs rest and hydration in order to do so. It is designed to repair. It wants to repair. So listen to it.

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On Friday, I’m back to grind. I hit the gym hard. It was amazing how much energy I had after a couple days of rest. I worked my back and arms, by combining super sets and active rest periods into the mix.

I have come to the conclusion that I prefer circuit training, supersets, and active rest periods, oppose to heavy lifting with less reps. Simply because it gets me a lot more sweaty. However, I know there is a time and place to do each one. If your goal is to build muscle then lift heavy with less reps. If your goal is to burn fat and build endurance then circuit training, and active rest periods are necessary.

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Always remember that when lifting heavy you should NEED to take at least a 1 minute rest period in between sets. You should feel so tired and out of breath that you need to take a rest before moving on. If you are able to move on to the next set then you are not lifting heavy enough.

MARATHON TRAINING

I have completed the Livefit trainer and because I love it so much and saw amazing results I am repeating phase 2 and 3 again. This time with a closer focus on clean eating, carb cycling, lowering my sugar intake, and upping the protein shake and water intake I am also going to customize the trainer according to what my body needs.

The plan for this coming week is to continue to take it easy with a couple of heavy lifting sessions mixed in. The reason why is because my Marathon training will be starting in a week, and I want to make sure I am physically refreshed and mentally ready.

Marathon training is going to be interesting this time around because I will be training with L. This will be her first full 26.2, so I am going to teach her everything I know about running this distance. I am also going to continue weight lifting and yoga during my training. I also want to cross train on my bike. It will be hard to juggle everything, but it will be important to do so.

I also wanted to mention that I was featured on Fit Blogger.
Please head over there and read my article.
I hope you enjoy it!

To all the Dad’s out there, including mine. I hope you have a wonderful Father’s Day!

© 2013 sweatdaily

Getting Lost while Running!

Yesterday, I got lost running!  

I started running on one trail, then I ended up in a neighborhood, then I realized I was lost. Being lost was not a scary thing, it was actually really fun. It gave me the opportunity to explore.

I ran hills I hadn’t run before. I discovered new neighborhoods I hadn’t been to. I saw some gorgeous houses, gardens, I even randomly ran passed my old pool club, I use to swim at when I was a kid.

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I wished I had my pool pass. Jumping in the pool would have felt really good. I miss being a member of AFC.

Although, DC is a “Running City” full of runners, and running trails. ¬†Running the same paths everyday can get really boring, especially after 6 years of running here.

But running totally lost, was very refreshing. It mixed things up. Not knowing where you will be the next turn, made my running route unique. This is something I am going to try more often, I actually tried it again today.

Have you ever gotten lost while running? Do you ever just run, not knowing how far you are going or where the path might take you?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Keep Calm and Run on

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“Never let success get to your head. Never let failure get to your heart. ” When reading these words, I have come to the conclusion that I rarely almost never let success get to my head. The problem that I have is letting failure get to my heart.

It happens more often with work stuff. Most of the time I let things go. However, because I work so closely with people, sometimes I find myself absorbing their energy, even when it is negative. I try to leave work stuff at work, but sometimes it is impossible. I began to dwell, which can be emotionally draining, and then I find myself at home exhausted. Call me sensitive, I am a pisces.

This is when a night run is necessary. 

After a long hard day of work, the average person finds relaxation by curling up on the couch and watching their favorite TV show. For me, I prefer to go running and on really stressful days, I like to run fast.

 

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Running in the morning is rejuvenating. Running at night is relaxing.

It is an amazing feeling to wake up early and hit the running trail first thing in the morning. On the weekdays, you may be totally alone, just you and the running trail. On weekends, the trail may be packed with other runners, but which ever it may be, running in the morning brings this amazing energy that lasts the whole day.

However, if you are looking for relaxation, and a stress reliever, nothing is better than running in the evening…

On Sunday night, I needed to find a way to relax. After a long hard work week, I was exhausted and stressed. They were calling for thunderstorms, which made my desire to run even more. When ever it is about to rain, I always feel like, “Gosh, I gotta get out there.” It is almost like I feel this rushed urge to get my run in before the rain starts.

So that is exactly what happened. I hit the MVT. I ran a short 5K, but I went all out in a speedy sprint. I know it will get hotter, so I am trying to cherish these cooler hours of the day, but it was a major sweat session, being around 80 degrees, and extremely humid.  There was a slight breeze and then the sky turned dark. And the rain came.

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Do you find running relaxing or rejuvenating?

Oh and if you haven’t already, don’t forget to check out kindrunner.com!

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

Kindrunner has officially Launched!

Today is a special day!

I am so excited!

 Kindrunner.com has officially launched. 

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Kindrunner has been super busy over the past few weeks. Why? Because they are runners, who care so deeply about their mission.  Busy trying to bring something NEW, something DIFFERENT, that the running community has yet to see.

But finally after all the hard work, kindrunner.com is ready. Products are uploaded.  Videos reviewing these products, and giving expert advice has been shot.  Even the warehouse has been stocked with tens of thousands of shoes.

What you will find at kindrunner.com...

  • Confident Runner Pricing ‚Äď An option presented upon checkout. This option waives the Free Return Shipping but offers the shoe at a below retail price. Free shipping of product to customer and free return shipping of donated shoes for Kindness Cash Rewards Program.
  • Free 3 Way Shipping ‚Äď Free shipping of your order to you, free shipping of any returns for any reason, free shipping of your donated shoes back to us for re-purposing with Soles 4 Souls or The More Foundation Group.
  • Kindness Cash Rewards Program ‚Äď Turns your old shoes into credit towards new ones or any product on our website. KCR are available to the customer after any footwear purchase (the idea behind this is to replace your old shoes with new ones, and keep the old ones out of the garbage, landfills, or ones closet.)
  • Expert Product Reviews ‚Äď ¬†Check out videos on youtube¬†www.youtube.com/kindrunner. Every product kindrunner has will come with an expert product review video. These videos are done by individuals who have worked in the running industry for years. Some either as shoe reps, store owners, or expert shoe fitters. Kindrunner brings the knowledge to the comforts of your own home!
  • Easy 365 returns ‚Äď A customer has 365 days to return any product, so long as it is in its original packaging and in its original condition.

Kindrunner will give you a unique experience with features which NO ONE else in the running community offers. A place where you can find expert advice, product reviews, shoe fitting. A place where you can donate your old shoes to someone who desperately needs them, while keeping them out of a landfill.

I have more exciting news!

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Kindrunner is also offering,¬†‚ÄúFree Socks for Life,” to the¬†first 500 customers! Each time one of the first 500 customers returns and purchases a new shoe their order will ship with a free pair of socks of their choice.

So head over to kindrunner.com! 

© 2013 sweatdaily

To the Running Community: I have a secret to share…

This blog has a lot of purposes… but one of the ultimate reasons why it exists is so I can share information with you.

So I have a secret to share with you…

Something NEW is happening in the running community starting June 1st.

Something HUGE… and ¬†guess what? YOU can be apart of it.

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We are runners. We change our shoes on average every 400 miles, some sooner if they are natural barefoot running shoes. What do you do with your old running shoes? Most end up in the trash and then a landfill, where it could take up to 100 years for those shoes to biodegrade.

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Well this no longer has to be the case.  Instead you have a better option then throwing out your old running shoes. You now have the amazing opportunity to donate them to Kindrunner.

So let me introduce you…

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Kindrunner.com is scheduled to launch in the US marketplace June 1st. (Yep, that is right, you are the first to know!) It is the only place on the web where you can donate your retired running shoes, along with all the shoe packaging materials ¬†– this helps lower the running community’s impact on the environment.

Kindrunner makes it easy, by covering all shipping costs, recycling all shipping materials, repurposing footwear, and donating them to Soles 4 Souls and/or the More Foundation Group. You receive Kindness Cash Rewards for every pair of shoes donated, and your shoes find a new home with someone who desperately needs them. 947119_380598015382612_1792782895_n

Kindrunner.com also is your new online informative platform.  Along with bettering the environment they want to better you, as a runner. With the focus on expert shoe fitting and product guidance online, they are offering the best performing and highest rated running products, including Newton, Saucony, Brooks, Mizuno, Asics, Innov-8, and  Pearl Izumi. Yes, thats right, they have Newtons!!

A little note from Kindrunner…

“We stretch a single carbon foot print to its maximum potential. We believe that thoughtful and educated runners all over the country will relate to our movement and want to be a Kindrunner.”

If this is you, and you want to be a Kindrunner…

Start by visiting their¬†initial homage, ¬†www.kindrunner.com¬†, and enter the”Win Free Running Shoes for a Year!” contest. ¬†If you and a running partner both register (just enter your email address and confirm it’s yours) you both are signed up to win. If either one of you is selected to win the contest both of you will win free running shoes for a whole year (three pairs each!).”

Find more information about kindrunner on their facebook page.

Also check them out on YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter.

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Questions for You?
  1. What do you do with your old running shoes?
  2. Do you want to be a Kindrunner?

© 2013 sweatdaily

*Most pictures are by Kindrunner.

I am a runner, and you are too.

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I am a runner and have been now for 6 years.

Over these years, I have learned, that runners come in variety.

Some run fast, some slow.

Some run 5ks, while others run marathons.

Some run to PR.

Some run to BQ.

Some run in honor of someone else.

Some run barefoot.

Some run on trails.

Some run races, others run everyday.

Some run at night, others in the morning.

Some prefer hills, others prefer flat.

Some run to make a point, raising money for a cause.

If you run, you are a runner…

What kind of runner are you?

© sweatdaily 2013

My favorite kind of running…

971127_10101120647779916_445663003_nDC is definitely a place cool enough to consider as a Rave Run.

I use to never bring my phone with me when I went out for a run, but ever since I got an iPhone, I can’t resist when I am running – I have to take a photo of my view.

Today, I woke up at 6:00 am and hit the trail by 6:30. I was able to get this shot, of the sun hitting the potomac. It is times like this that I am so thankful I have become a morning runner.

Soon after I had completed my morning run, the clouds rolled in and it began to storm. If I had slept in I would have missed out on not only the view but simply the opportunity to run.

© 2013 sweatdaily

Do you remember that day when you became “a runner”?

Runners come in all shapes and sizes, really the variety is endless. And after running the Nike Women’s Half Marathon, this idea, became true to me more than ever.

Do you remember the day when you became “a runner”?

Running has always been a part of my life, because my Dad is a marathon runner. Every year he would run Marine Corps Marathon, and we would go along the race course to cheer him on. We made our traditional sign, that said, “Go Papa, GO!” It was a simple poster board, taped to a yard stick ruler.

Growing up, I played tons of sports. I pretty much tried them all, but wasn’t necessarily good at all of them. In high school, I played tennis on my school’s team. As a tennis player, the only running we did, were “suicides” on the court. This consisted of sprinting to and from the different lines on the court. The idea was to quicken our step and improve our footwork. And although, I played tennis all year, I tried track during the winter, thinking it would be a good sport to keep me conditioned during my off season. I went to one practice, and decided running wasn’t for me – boy was I wrong.

I began working out at the YMCA when I was a junior in high school. My older sister, E Рwho is 2 years older than me, came home from college and inspired me to hit the gym with her. My gym sessions consisted of 30 minutes on the elliptical machine. She on the other hand, chose to run on the treadmill. A couple times of week, I would do additional cardio on the stationary bike, and sometimes together we would venture out and do a couple of the weight machines. It is funny how people grow and change.  (Now I am a marathon runner, in love with lifting heavy preferably free weights.)

Meanwhile my little sister would swim in the pool or play some basketball at the indoor basketball court. My dad, who was a serious marathon runner, had taken on training for triathlons so he too would be lifting weights, or swimming laps. The YMCA became a family outing, that happened several times a week, even my mom lifted weights occasionally.

In 2007, my sister, E, decided to sign up for her first half marathon, the Virginia Beach Rock N Roll Half Marathon. She would train during the brutally hot summer, with her friend Jen, and they would run it on Labor Day weekend. It was then that she became a “real” runner. She retired her sneakers, for real running shoes, that were fitted for her at a local running store. She realized that Soffe gym shorts and cotton t-shirts made her chafe and the wrong socks gave her blisters. She discovered body glide, and jelly belly sports beans. And she taught me all of this.

Soon I became intrigued. I on the other hand, had switched gyms from the good old YMCA to Washington Sports Club. While enrolling for my membership I got a personal trainer for 5 sessions. She switched me from the elliptical machine to the treadmill.

The treadmill, for me was much harder than the elliptical. I began by warming up for 5 minutes. Then I would do the walk/run method. I would run a mile, and then walk for two minutes, run a mile, walk for two minutes, until I completed a 5K. As time progressed, so did I. Soon I realized I could run 2 miles straight, and no longer needed to walk. Then I cut my warm up time shorter. Then I brought my speed up, so I would be running faster. Soon I was running for the full amount of time. I would bring the incline up to keep my body guessing, and make it feel as much like running outside as I could.

I didn’t last long at Washington Sports Club. A new Golds Gym was opening up across the street and it had a more affordable membership, so I switched. Again I would hit the treadmill. The t-mills at this gym faced the windows so I had a clear view of outside. One day I was on the t-mill looking out the windows, on a beautiful spring day. It dawned on me, “Why am I inside right now, when I could be out there.” That is when I decided, I would never run again on the t-mill, unless it was an extreme weather condition, or I was doing HIIT, (High Intensity Interval Training.) It is actually hard for me to even consider my treadmill runs… real runs.

At this point, E, had been bragging to me about how amazing her half marathon experience was. It was then that I decided, if she can run a half marathon, then I can too. I immediately signed up for Cherry Blossom 10 miler and then the Zooma Half Marathon. Both races went so well, that I couldn’t wait to sign up for my next race. More half marathons, led to a trail half marathon, and then 2 full marathons.

Take time to click on the photos. They are really funny, and full of emotions!

As I ran more races, I began to realize each race definitely has it’s own energy. I find it so interesting how the vibe from one race can be so different from another race’s. It took me running three races around the same lengths, (two 10 milers, and one half marathon), in April to fully understand this.

I use to always get nervous before a race, but now races have become a fun way for me to set a goal, and train hard.  They are the ultimate reason why I can call myself a runner Рa marathon runner, who prefers to run long and far.

What kind of runner are you?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Passion and Dedication…

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Someone once asked me, “Why do you have to work out sooo much to feel attractive.”

I answered back, “I don’t! I work out, because I think it is fun!”

The truth is simple…

I love to run, and when it comes to running, I prefer to run long and far.

I love Bikram yoga, the constant struggle to prefect each pose. And when it comes to my yoga practice, I prefer it  sweltering hot.

Ever since I started the Livefit trainer, I have learned to love lifting. And when it come to this new found love, I prefer to lift heavy.

When it comes to my diet, I am a foodie. However, I love organic clean eating. I enjoy the challenge of cooking vegan and vegetarian recipes. People ask me, “How do you have time for all that.” It is simple I believe you are what you eat! And what I eat, is very important to me, so I make clean eating a priority. Also practice makes perfect, the more I meal prep the faster I become at it.

I will admit, I like to be extreme, and intense. I like to see how far I can push myself mentally, physically, and emotionally. Some people may find this annoying, obsessive, addictive, overly involved, but I am just simply passionate and dedicated.

It is that simple, and that is the truth.

© 2013 sweatdaily

Nike Women Half Marathon DC

The Nike Women Half Marathon is a famous race in San Francisco. It has always been on my list of races to someday run. However, in the fall of 2012, there was a rumor floating around, that the race was coming to the East Coast. And just my luck, to my very own home turf, Washington, DC.

For a while the rumor, stayed a rumor. There was no information or advertising on the race. The only way people found out about the possibility of the race was through word of mouth – one girl runner telling another.

Race organizers kept us in suspense.

REGISTRATION

However, finally the day came when race registration became available. It was interesting because they did not have a website, instead you had to “like” their facebook page, and click on the registration link. Getting into the race depended on a Lottery system based on a random drawing. The registration was very long, asking questions about ethnicity, income, and what shoes you run in. I am guessing this was a marketing tool for Nike to discover who their consumer is, and what brand is used by the majority of female runners. The registration fee also came close to $200.00, which by far is the most expensive race I have run.

Anyway, two weeks went by, and finally I was notified that my registration was accepted, and thankfully L and E got in as well. During the time between registering for this race and finding out if I got in, registration opened for my 2 other favorite spring races, so I registered for those as well. Cherry Blossom 10 miler is also a lottery, and race day was scheduled for the first weekend of April. The Parkway Classic 10 miler, a first come first serve registration, had a race day scheduled in the third weekend of April. And then Nike Women Half Marathon race day scheduled for the last weekend of April. That means the Washington, DC area would have races 3 out of 4 weekends in April. The only reason why they left the second weekend free of races is because that weekend is the weekend the Queen of all Marathons is scheduled, the Boston Marathon (Boston Strong.)

I ended up getting into all three races I registered for, which was perfect because my 10 milers became my training runs for the Nike Women Half Marathon!

TRAINING

At the end of January, I started the Livefit trainer. The first 4 weeks of the Livefit trainer (Phase 1: weeks1-4) it is advised that you do NO cardio of any form. So I took a month off of running (not running was torture for me) but I focussed on lifting weights and building muscled (and loved it.) The next 4 weeks of the trainer (Phase 2: weeks 5-8) I still focussed on building muscle but was able to include my running. Currently, I am on week 9 of the Livefit trainer (Phase 3.) I should be further along, but because of my races I am starting from the beginning of Phase 3 repeating week 9. I am ready to complete this phase as intensely as I can!

I do want to say this though, building muscle has taken my running to the next level. I always thought when it came to training, the more running I did the better I would be. But by doing the Livefit trainer I have proved that, this is not always the case. Training is not about how many miles you can log a week, but rather are the runs you do, high quality. Too much running, can lead to over training, and injury- which gives running a bad rep. More muscle and a stronger body, along with high quality training runs, leads to faster and stronger running, injury free. Running less, does not mean I did not train hard. I did high quality training runs, and intense lifting. My PRs are my proof.

EXPO

The expo for the Nike Women Half Marathon, was available to runners on Friday and Saturday. Because L and I both have friday off from work, we headed to the expo on friday, so we could beat the crowd. The location of the expo was perfect, right along the Georgetown waterfront. This allowed us to park in the neighborhood and do a quick training run along the MVT before walking over to the expo.

Of course we hit up the Nike Georgetown store on the way down to the expo. 3580_10101094792828446_1237519482_nWe had to stock up on our Nike Women Half Marathon apparel. I loved how Nike didn’t have a trace of pink in the store. Yes! We are women, but enough with the pink, we like other colors too. My favorite color combo that Nike had available was blue and orange!

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They also had a variety of Nike Frees available. I have always been interested in the Nike Free, for weight lifting, but when it comes to my runs, I am pretty obsessed with my newton shoes. Anyway, they created a Nike free in a light turquoise color with white ribbon as the shoe laces. ¬†The inspiration behind these shoes came about, because the finisher swag for the Nike Women Half Marathon is a Tiffany’s necklace.417839_10101090212467526_1523067281_n I think this is a really fun idea. I also like how they included the phrase, We Run DC on the tongue of the shoe. This phrase was important because the original race is held in San Francisco. There were tons of ladies, from California, Denver, and other places who had already run the Nike Women San Francisco, who were excited to now run the race in DC, and was on the hunt for any race apparel that had this phrase on it.

After we hit up the Nike store, we headed down to the waterfront. On the way down to the expo they had a huge wall with every race participant’s ¬†name on it. What a cool idea! L and I searched for our names and finally we found them.

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we run dc

The photo below is a photo of the expo. Picture found on the NWM facebook.
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They also had nuun available to sample. Instead of gatorade, they would be providing this on race day! I actually prefer this over gatorade, but when it comes to hydrating during my races, I stick to water. Nuun was really delicious post race though.

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After the Expo L and I had an amazing lunch at Farmers Fishers Bakers located along the Georgetown waterfront. This is a “must try place,” So delicious, especially the sushi.

Night Before the Race

Just like every other race, I have my night before race ritual, where I lay out my race clothes, and prepare/organize everything for race day.

Night before race clothesRACE MORNING

I always have a hard time sleeping  the night before a race, not because I am worried about running the race, but more worried about waking up on time. Turns out that this race started at 7:00 am, an hour earlier than most races. Plus because I had never run this race before I decided to wake up by 4:30 am.

I ended up throwing E off a bit when I showed up at her house at 5:00 am, 15 minutes earlier than I said I would be.

We then met L at the metro and headed to the start of the race. 
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When we got to our corrals, we packed on in.¬†I knew it was going to be a crowded race. While I was at the expo, I actually tried to get my pace corral changed from a 9:00- 9:30 minute mile to an 8:30. I wasn’t able to change my corral, so L and I squeezed as close to the front of our corral as we could.

While waiting for the gun to go off, we took some race photos. 217537_10101092698036426_292698585_n

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THE RACE

After the National Anthem and a moment of silence in honor of Boston. We started running. Immediately, I was annoyed and wished I had moved to a faster pace corral. It was extremely crowded, and impossible to run at the pace I wanted. I sucked it up and politely weaved in and out, trying to pass slower runners. It started to space out around mile two, but there still were times through out the race when I felt squished. Although, this is a negative aspect about the race, this is also something that is totally out of race organizers’ control. Really this is just how large popular races are, and there is nothing anyone can do about it. I totally expected it and wasn’t shocked when it happened.

Below is a picture I found on the NWM facebook page, proof to show how crowded the race was at the start. 934153_541121825926278_1618223195_n

MY SPLITS

Finally, I was able to get up my speed. My first split, 5K (3.1 miles) mark was 0:25:19 which meant I was running around an 8:12 min/mile. My second split, 10K (6.2 miles)  mark was 0:51:48 which meant I was running between an 8:30 Р8:48 min/mile. I was feeling really good about this pace, and refueled with water and beans at this point.

It was around the 15K (9.3 miles) mark, when I¬†started to slow down a little. I got to the 15K mark at 1:21:05, it was then that I realized I wasn’t going to PR at 10 miles. At this point my legs started to feel heavy and my feet started to hurt a bit. This annoyed me, because my lung capacity was perfectly fine, I just desperately wished my legs were capable of moving faster, but they really couldn’t. I tried to focus on my form, and even did some high knees, but could only maintain that for a short bit. The only thing that could cure my heavy legs was a down hill.

Most people really love fast flat courses, I on the other hand love hills. It was at this point that I desperately began wishing for an up hill then a speedy down hill, just to mix things up a bit. But the hills were nonexistent, there was one small hill towards the end, but no down hill to follow. So I was just chugging along with heavy legs, on the boring flat pavement of Washington, DC.

Picture below from NWM facebook page. 

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My 20k (12.427 miles) split was 1:50:49 – not bad, but not a PR. I could see the finish line straight ahead, but I kept chugging along with heavy legs, and I finally made it there 13.1 miles in 1:57:03.

This is not a PR for me, but it is my Second Best half marathon time! Yay for that!! My last half, the Annapolis Half Marathon, that I ran on 12/1/12 was a PR 1:51. But before that I had never ran 13.1 in under 2:00:00. So to run two half marathons in a row in under 2 hours is a big accomplishment. I think I am done with running 2 hour half marathons, and on a different level now. Both of these races were also run in my Newton shoes, after months of focusing on my natural running stride, it proves that working on running form really does pay off in the end.

The Course

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Honestly, most races that are held in DC, the course always ends up being the same that I train on daily. So there are really no surprises.  Sometimes this is an advantage, while other times it ends up being a disadvantage.  Why? The advantage is this is my home turf, and I know it inside and out. The disadvantage is that I have run it a million times, so it can become very boring.

Picture found on NWM facebook page.

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We ran over Memorial Bridge, which I have run in many other races including Cherry Blossom 10 miler earlier this month. I also run this bridge often in one of my regular 5 mile training loops. We ran Hains Point, which again I ran during the Cherry Blossom 10 miler. The only point of the race that I had never run before was when we ran in the 3rd street tunnel. This tunnel is a very long dark tunnel, a never-ending tunnel. Most of the girls, including E, thought this was the best part of the race. We ran through it in the beginning of the race, probably with in the first mile, and then again towards the end. The first time running through it, I hated every minute of it, and actually experienced a bit of anxiety. The reason for my anxiety was that in the beginning of the race it was so extremely crowded, I couldn’t run fast and I was behind slower runners, so we were all squished in there elbow to elbow. It was also extremely dark and loud. They had a band under there, made up of drummers, the noise was so loud I had to turn off my ipod. The sound echoed over and over again. On the way back though, the tunnel wasn’t as bad. I knew what it was going to be like, and at this point the crowd spaced out so I had more control on how fast I wanted to run. It also provided some shade which at that point was nice to get out of the sun for a minute or two.

Other than that the race was extremely flat, and since I love hills, there were times during the race I was wishing for more of a hilly course. Although, it was small I actually enjoyed the hill towards the end of the race. Hills mix things up and is good for runners, mentally and physically.

FINISH LINE and RACE SWAG

I could see the finish line in the distance, it seemed so close, but took forever to get there. But once I got there, I noticed they had put out a red carpet. Sweet move Nike! red carpet

Then there were a bunch of hott guys, handing out our race swag Р Tiffany & Co. necklaces, on a silver platter. The nice gentleman below was the one who handed me mine.

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tiffany

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We also received these awesome finisher shirts. I love the wicking material and the Tiffany themed color.

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The necklace was really stylish too. It says NWM Half 2013 on the back and it has a runner girl on the front. I think it would be fun to run the race several times just to collect the different necklaces.

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In the end, I really enjoyed this race and thought it was an amazing experience. It also was really different to run an all women’s race. I had only run an all women’s race one other time before, which was my first half marathon, the Zooma Half, and I couldn’t really judge the vibe because it was my first 13.1. But the energy for this race was definitely positive and¬†enthusiastic.

E said, “The race was about women empowerment.” I couldn’t agree more. With out men there, it felt less competitive. There were also a lot of runners there that were not running competitively, but rather running for a cause, such as raising money for cancer. Team and Training was one of those groups. In the end, we all raised money for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. This being said, there were tons of runners running for people they knew who had cancer, and some were cancer survivors, themselves.

One of the best things about running a large popular race is all the spectators that come out to watch, cheer, and support the runners. This race’s spectators did not fall short. Along the course, there were Team and Training coaches looking for the runners they coached. There were also tons of cool signs, that were more than inspiring, some even made us laugh. There were bands and dancers, that had one two many red bulls. There were kids , who sat as you approached the finish line, I probably high-fived, five of them.

Picture found on NWM facebook page.

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Spectators make such a difference for runners, during the race. And it was very comforting that people still came out, even after the tragedy that happened two weeks ago, during the Boston Marathon.

It was also very impressive how well organized the race was.  This was their first time in the DC area, but everything was beyond my expectations. There were tons of amazing volunteer. There were tons of porta potties, with short lines. I never had to wait in line to check my bag, or pick it up. And again the swag for this race was the best I have ever had!!

When I first heard the Nike Women Half Marathon was coming to the DC area, I thought to myself – Perfect, now I wont have to run it in San Fran. But after running this race, now more than ever, I want to run it in San Fran. I love running hills, so it would be interesting to see if I could do a better time running the Nike Women race in San Fran. It would be fun to compare the two races, and getting another Tiffany’s necklace wouldn’t be a bad thing!

However, when it comes to running an all women’s race, I have to admit I’d rather run with men mixed in the group. It is always fun to pass them.

Well done NIKE!

Thanks for a great race! 

Pictures found on NWM facebook page.

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© 2013 sweatdaily

Night Before Race Ritual!

The month of April has been a very busy month for me, especially when it comes to running races.

The first weekend of April was consumed with the Cherry Blossom 10 miler.

The second weekend of April was the weekend I headed down to Miami, for my best friends Bachelorette party – it was also the same weekend as the Boston Marathon.

The third weekend of April, last weekend, I ran the Parkway Classic 10 miler.

And tomorrow the forth and final weekend of April, I will be running in the Nike Women Half Marathon. I am beyond pumped to run this race. So once again here is a photo of my night before race ritual. For those who do not know, the night before a race, I always lay out my race outfit, and pack my bag. This helps me get ready quickly, in the dark of the morning. Tomorrow, I will be meeting up with E and L as early as 5:15 am.

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I will be writing posts about all of my races and their expos this week. I can’t wait to share my experiences with you, because each race so far has been fantastic!!¬†

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

Heart Broken over Boston

F#*$ing with the Boston Marathon is not cool. I can hardly watch the news because it makes me tear up.

The Boston Marathon is the queen of all marathons. It brings runners from all over the world to Boston. These runners are the strongest and fastest. Like all runners they have dedication and passion. It is suppose to be a fun, happy time, in which runners push themselves to their ultimate limit emotionally, physically, and mentally. Why does terror and violence have to ruin this for the innocent, for the running community.

I pray for all those hurt. I pray for Boston.

Although, it may be hard- lets find strength and lets do what we do best, come together as a community and continue to run- strong and fast.

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Thankful for The Boston Marathon!

Sorry I have been MIA this week. I am in Miami! I have tons to write about because life is very busy and exciting right now. However, at the moment, I am soaking up some much need vitamin D, and swimming in the ocean in South Beach – I am going to keep this post short and sweet.

So with that being said let me reveal to you my beach read…

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Yep you guessed it… Runner’s World!! I didn’t get very far before I was inspired!Tomorrow is the Boston Marathon and although I have yet to qualify for it, like most runners, I too have the dream to someday run Boston. However, in the mean time volunteering sounds very appealing.

While reading Runner’s World I came across the article, Boston Prep. One of the things they talked about in this article was The Artist of the Boston Marathon.

In 1982, Jack LeDuc got race organizers’ permission to jazz up the simple starting line from a white strip of paint to the race logo and his own creative designs.

Being a runner and an artist, I not only found this article interesting, but super relatable. It is very cool to read about who is involved behind the scenes of this amazing race. It also is interesting that they highlighted the ART of the marathon, because this is a very important aspect of the race that is overlooked and under appreciated.

Anyways that is what I have for you for today.

Is anyone running Boston? What is the volunteer service or overlooked aspect of race events that you are most thankful for?

Thank You, volunteers and marathon race organizers. Good Luck running Boston!

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Who would have thought… The gym has become my playground!!

I know I have posted this motivational quote time and time again. tumblr_mijzdgHfwG1rwkaswo1_500

But I had to post it again, because it is the TRUTH! I am actually very shocked I have seen such results this quickly. Maybe it is because I have always had confidence in my body, and didn’t feel like I needed to change much. I went into this trainer, hoping to build strength so I could better myself as a runner, not really thinking about what I would physically change appearance wise.

My upper body has always been skinny and weak. My core was by far the weakest part of my body. People always told me strengthen your core and you will be able to run further and faster. So that is what I did, during this trainer, and now I am running better than ever.

PROGRESS PIC

Anyway, I wanted to post a progress pic. I found a photo of me from 6 months ago wearing the same outfit as I was a couple days ago. week 9 results

6 months ago I had already ran the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler 2012 and The Parkway Classic 10 Miler 2012. I was running 5-6 days a week and I had been training for the Annapolis 10 miler. In the photo above I was at the Annapolis 10 miler expo getting my bib. So I was very athletic, but running my body was not sculpted with muscle.

As you can see in the photo above my upper body was very weak and skinny. My core was weak as well, and my body overall was just not as toned. I had a different shape. If you look at the current photo, taken April 5th, you will see my shoulders are starting to take shape, my arms and chest are much more toned. My core and hip area are showing strength. Overall my body has a more sculpted shape. I feel stronger and my running has improved.

LIVEFIT TRAINER UPDATE…

At the moment, I am currently finishing up week 9 of the livefit trainer! Week 9 is the first week of phase 3. In this phase we are incorporating (all of these are defined by bodybuilding.com.

  • Supersets:¬†performing the first exercise and then immediately do the next exercise. Only then do you take the 2-minute rest in between before repeating again.
  • Triple set:¬†Perform the first exercise, followed immediately by the second exercise, followed immediately by the third exercise. Only then do you take the 2-minute rest in between before repeating again.
  • Active rest:¬†Do the first exercise, and then instead of resting, perform the active-rest movement (for example, jump rope). Immediately repeat the first exercise.

The supersets is something that was introduced in phase 2, but the triple set and active rest is something that is new to phase 3. The superset and triple set is suppose to help you continue to build muscle and maintain the muscle you have. The active rest period gets your heart rate up so you are able to burn fat. I actually really like the active rest part, way better than just resting. Before when it was mandatory to take a minute or two in between sets, I always felt antsy to continue on. I love having active rest periods, but boy does it kick my ass. 

On leg day, some examples of an active rest periods are squat jumps and jumping rope. So I bought this new jump rope, so I would personally have my own at the gym. 529476_10101060508754006_1519705170_n-1

On upper body days, active rest periods consist of ab work/core strengthening, and tons of push ups. The hardest push ups yet are kettle bell push ups.  (photo found on bodybuilding.com)

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My favorite new core strengthening exercise is the Exercise Ball Pull In. (photos found on bodybuilding.com.)

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Anyway, those are my two favorite new exercises, and above are the new terms added to phase 3 of the livefit trainer! Another new thing added is treadmill sprints. This is something that I can tolerate, because it is switching up routine on the treadmill, so it is not as boring.

I never thought I would enjoy weight lifting as much as I have. The work has been hard, but I really do like pushing my body, and challenging myself. I have seen amazing results, in myself, and my running.

Although, I always head outside for my runs. When it comes to weigh lifting… The¬†gym has become my playground!!

Question for You…

  • Where is your playground? examples:¬†pool, the ski slopes, the¬†half pipe, the trail, yoga studio, the gym, tennis court …
  • Do you prefer to work out indoors or outside?

© 2013 sweatdaily

It’s not my first time…

I know I am late telling you guys this news … but better late then never…

Last, Wednesday, March 27th, something very exciting happened!!

I registered for Marine Corps Marathon, and I GOT IN!! YAY!

Let me explain, this is how it all went down….

In 2009, I ran my first Marathon, the Marine Corps Marathon (MCM.)  Registering for the race was smooth sailing. I got online the day of registration, filled out the form, paid, and received my confirmation email.163066_830289276726_3970357_n

In 2010, I ran my second Marathon, the Marine Corps Marathon. I didn’t register for this race on the day it opened. I received an email from them the day after registration had opened. The email claimed that they were 80% filled, so I freaked out and registered as quickly as I could. I got in, and received my confirmation email.

In 2011, I registered for the Chicago Marathon, again registration was a piece of cake. Done and Done.

In 2012, when registration day for MCM came around, I was busy at work highlighting a client. When I was finished I went to the back room, to check the status on MCM, and it was sold out already, filling up in 2 hours and 45 minutes.  So I took a break from marathons that year. Instead, I ran several 10 milers and a Half Marathon. I switched my running shoe to Newtons, a natural barefoot running shoe. I worked on improving my running form, and speed.  I also started this blog.

On Wednesday, March 27th, 2013 registration for MCM rolled around again. I had promised L that I would run this race with her. It will be her first full marathon. She was able to sign up early, because her husband is deceased military. Because it filled up so fast the year before, I knew I had to be on it immediately when registration opened. The only weird thing about the registration is that it opens at noon, when most races open at midnight. This is a problem for me because my first client at work is noon.

Anyway, because I thought my internet would be faster and less unpredictable at home, I decided I would sign up really quickly at noon, and then head into work for my first client by 12:30.

Turns out, the first minute I tried to pull up the website, Active.com, I couldn’t get on. I tried for the next 5 minutes, still nothing. I went to MCM official web page to click register¬†and when directed to Active.com ERROR.

I decided to head into work. When I saw that my first client had swapped spots with her high school daughter I was relieved. Yay! High school girls are very tech savvy. I told her the situation and she immediately wanted to help. She pulled out her iPhone and started registering me.

I highlighted her hair, while she continued to refresh the webpage. Finally we got through the the first registration page. I quickly filled out my information. She submitted it and then again… WEBSITE ERROR, WEBSITE OVERLOAD. While her hair color processed she continued to refresh the page. I shampooed her, and glossed her. Still she continued to refresh the page, finally we got through to the payment page, but again WEBSITE ERROR, WEBSITE OVERLOAD. While she sat with her gloss on, adding shine, and refreshing the color on her ends, I checked the MCM facebook page, to find information. They apologized for the Web Error and said to continue to refresh page until the declare a sell out. So that is what we did. Finally as I was rinsing my client, I heard her yell, “WE DID IT!! YAY!!” My client is a high school cheerleader, so she definitely showed enthusiasm. Ha, it seemed like she¬†was more excited than I was.

I received my confirmation e-mail.

Dear Meghan,
Thank you! You are now registered for the Marine Corps Marathon 2013 – Marathon Registration. Please check the event’s website for updates.

CONGRATULATION, You are in!!

Thank you for registering to participate in the 38th Marine Corps Marathon on Sunday, October 27, 2013. Please note that you are officially registered and this is your confirmation e-mail.

Although, a week has gone by, since MCM registration, a lot of people, whether they got in or not, are still complaining about how complicated the registration process was on Wednesday. To make up for it, Active.com has donated to Wounds of  Warriors.

But honestly, I expected the complications, and I loved every second of it. The complications made registration really exciting, and I appreciate getting in even more. And seeing website overload and errors, on day of registration didn’t shock me not one bit. Some people are annoyed by it, but this makes me happy. It proves that more people are becoming runners. It shows that running is becoming more and more popular. Our country is stepping forward toward healthy. More people are becoming aware of running as a sport, and it’s heart healthy benefits.

Running is no longer for the athlete. Runners now come in all shapes and sizes. Some are fast, some are slow. And that is what the Marine Corps Marathon is all about, hence why it is called, The People’s Marathon. So whichever kind of runner you are, MCM is the race for you.

Although, this will not be my first time running MCM.

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I am beyond EXCITED! Marathon training will start in July.

Questions for You…

  1. Have you had a difficult time getting into a race you really wanted to run?
  2. Do you find running getting more popular where you live?
  3. Are you running a marathon this year?

© 2013 sweatdaily

It is worth the money!

I am definitely a¬†fashionista…

always have been…

So why would that change when I work out?

well it doesn’t…

On a normal day, I work out early-morning before I head into work. On rare days, something will come up or I may have a desire to do a double, so I head to the gym late-night. However, there was a particular day a couple months back when, I had to squeeze my sweat session in, during my break at work. On this day, my co-worker complimented me on my lululemon tank top.

She said, “Wow! You are going to work out in that… It is way to cute to sweat in.” Then when I told her I purchased the tank she so desperately desired from lululemon, she claimed lululemon was way to expensive, and she just couldn’t justify spending that much on a shirt she would be sweaty in.

Running… and why you should invest in the proper gear.

I see people all the time running in a simple t-shirt and shorts. I don’t judge. But I will tell you this, when I was a new runner I too wore a t-shirt and shorts. However, it didn’t take long for me to began to experience chafing, and blisters on my feet. I felt suffocated running in a heavy wet sweaty cotton t, and when my blisters became blood blisters, I knew something had to change. That was the day, I bought a pair of running shorts, a proper sports bra, and even running socks. And wow, what a difference. ¬†So yes, I run in high tech running gear, made from ¬†sweat wicking materials, and these items can be pricey, but I¬†have never been so comfortable running, and they look cute too. ūüėČ

One of the reasons why I love running is because it is such a simple sport. You can run in an old t-shirt and barefoot if you choose to. But for me, I’ve been there, done that, and learned that having proper running clothing/gear is worth every penny.

Although, I am a runner now, that wasn’t always the case…

Growing up, I played tennis. 

Out of all of the sports tennis is by far the most fashionable. It was when I played, and even more so now. Venus and Serena Williams are the ones to thank for this trend. They began designing their own tennis skirts and dresses. They turned heads with their bold fashion choices. They make statements with their daring looks, breaking boundaries beyond the traditional preppy white. At one point, they wore beads in their hair, and you will never not catch them wearing an array of jewelry.  Some people find this distracting. I find it FIERCE Рthey are fearlessly expressing themselves, while being bold, and challenging traditions, evolving the sport, while influencing others. They even influenced me.

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In high school, when I played varsity tennis, I definitely embraced the fashion side of the sport. My tennis team picked out new team outfits every year. I had a collection of tennis skirts and dresses, even a tennis bag, to transport my rackets, and gear from practice to matches. You may be thinking, damn that girl was spoiled, but I played tennis everyday. 

If you are going to be playing a sport everyday, like I did with tennis, and now do with running, then it is worth it to invest in some high quality clothing and gear. Honestly, it is very important to get the proper gear for any sport you invest time in. For example, although I don’t practice Bikram yoga everyday, I still do it enough, that I have an drawer full of hot yoga shorts and tops. I also have my own mat, bag, and towel. Investing in the proper gear will make you feel more comfortable, and in the end help improve your game.

© 2013 sweatdaily

Livefit trainer, Progress pic…

Hey!! I have some EXCITING NEWS to tell you guys, but I am going to hold off until tomorrow… So stay tuned…

Today, I am going to talk about how I am doing on my livefit trainer…

I have completed day 53 of the Livefit trainer. Two more training days and I will be finished with week 8 and totally done with Phase 2. I am now not only feeling stronger, but starting to see some serious change in my upper body and in my core. (My legs have always been pretty strong because of running.)

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Anyway, this morning, I woke up and headed to the Gold’s gym that I regularly go to, and the power was out, so they were closing until the problem was fixed. My time is precious so I didn’t wait around. One of the perks of living in the Washington, DC area is that there is a Starbucks and Gold’s gym on every block. So I headed down to the next closest Gold’s.

What a different vibe…

This Gold’s was so much darker, and over packed with gym equipment. The benches were old, and so were the weights.

look at these Old School weights…

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Although, everything was older, my work out was still good. That is one of the positive things about lifting free weights. You don’t need to be picky. If the weight ¬†weighs 15 lbs, then the weight weighs 15 lbs, regardless if it is old or new.

Another thing that I loved about this Gold’s was because it was over crowded with equipment, the lifting area was more private, which was really nice. Even though, there were plenty of other people around, I felt like I was the only one in there. This privacy made me very focussed and it seemed peaceful – which is funny, because I was lifting heavy. Never thought weight lifting would be peaceful in anyway, but it was today.

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Along with this new found peace, I am also finding that I am really starting to love weigh lifting. ¬†It isn’t up there with running or yoga yet, but it is close behind them. I have come to the conclusion that I like sports that are simple. For example in running, all you really need is a good pair of shoes, and some runners will argue that you don’t even need that. Weight lifting is similar, in the way, that it is simple and you don’t need a bunch of stuff to see results.

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Anyway, in the end, I am happy I got the opportunity to try the other Golds. They are both by running trails too. This is a plus since I hate the treadmill, and love running outside right after I lift. They are also both near organic grocery stores and Starbucks. So I think I may alternate Gyms depending on my mood. Its good to keep things interesting and switch things up.

Tomorrow, is day 54, in which I am going to hit Legs hard. However, it is also my day off, so I might also squeeze in day 55, if I have time, and then go for a run. We shall see… but I know I am a total fitness junkie, because I am already getting excited about my tomorrow work outs. Hopefully, the weather man is right, and it will get warm this weekend, I really want to run in shorts.

I’m going to leave you with a progress pic…

Livefit trainer, Week 8, day 53

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Questions for You?

  1. What is your favorite body part to work out?
  2. Do you switch up your gyms, or gym routines?
  3. What work outs did you do today?

© 2013 sweatdaily

RUNNING under the sun and then through the snow.

“March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb…”

You may have heard the above quote time and time again. “March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb…” and in most places this is quite true – but not here in DC.

Last night my morning meeting was canceled do to the possibility of a wintery mix. You may be thinking, why… it is the end of March? But here in the DC area, having a disgusting mix of wet rain and snow in early spring is not shocking.

For some of you snow bunnies from up North, you may find my rant about 1 inch of snow annoying. But let me tell ya, I love snow, and would rather have a beautiful light dusting, or actually, bring it on I’ll take a blizzard, over this wet, dirty, already melting wintery mix.

Ever since I became a runner, 5 years ago, I have become very weather sensitive/picky. And every year, I take note, and remember quite vividly what the weather is like in late March through April. Why so obsessed? Because that is when my running season begins. That is when I start running my races, starting with the Cherry Blossom 10 miler, scheduled for the first weekend of April.

I love this race, however out of the five times I have run it, I have only run under the promised¬†canopy of Cherry Blossoms once. Most of the time, we will have a hot week, and the Cherry Blossom will bloom, and then we will have a cold week, where the wind will blow the blossoms away. ¬†So as you can see it is a roller coaster ride… when it comes to the weather around here.

So this is what I am talking about…

Is it spring?

Is it winter?

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Cherry Blossoms covered with wet snow…

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Ok… enough of that… Lets talk about Running…

This last week, I continued with my Livefit trainer, but I have also taken my half marathon training up a notch. Or in other words, I have been doing some serious runs. What do I mean by serious runs? Well, because this spring I am only doing races between 10 and 13.1 miles, my long runs are really not that long. Because I am a marathon runner, I don’t really consider anything below 10 miles a long run. ¬†With that being said, because I am training for the 10 – 13.1 mile races, so far my weekend long runs have been 6, 7, 8 (if that makes since.)

I also want to make a point, that no matter which distance you are running from 5k to 21 miler to ultra marathon, it is important to practice proper form. Even on the shortest runs, you can still have a serious, high quality workout.

Friday, 3/22

L and I went out on our 8 mile run. We ran south side of the MVT. It was a really great run, averaging a 9 min mile. It was cold but sunny. Good weather, happy runner!

221767_10101047893554966_1477093678_nSaturday, 3/23

I ran a 4-5 mile loop, and did 5x hill repeats. I was averaging an 8:30 min mile. It was 55-60 degrees. I ran in shorts and a tshirt. It felt amazing. I thought spring was here… what a tease.

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Sunday, 3/24

L and I met up at 7:30 am to get a 4-5 mile run in before work. It felt really nice to wake up early and hit the trail. We ran the north side of MVT. I ran faster than ever, definitely averaged 8:30 min mile, sometimes running faster. Focused on short fast strides. ¬†Stopped to take this quick photo…

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Anyway, I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!

Questions for You…

  1. What types of runs did you do this weekend? Fast? Slow? Long? Short? Hills? Flat? Training? Races?
  2. Is it snowing where you are? Is it spring or winter?

© 2013 sweatdaily

LiveFit Trainer Update

I haven’t written a post on the Livefit trainer in over 2 weeks…

So here we go…

Today is day 48, which will also be my last day of week 7. I am more than half way through phase 2.

The differences between phase 1 and phase 2 is…

Basically, the program progressed by adding cardio into the mix during  phase 2, weeks 5, 6, 7, 8. This cardio consisted of a moderate 30 minute cardio session at a constant pace. Because phase 2 is still considered a building phase the weight I lift has gotten heavier, the reps increased, while the sets decreased. I am normally still resting for 1 minute in between each set, unless it is a superset. Some sets I lift to failure, while other sets are a dropped set.

Lets get that run on…

I am very happy that I am able to run again, however adding running along with the weight training has been very time consuming. If I complete my run on the treadmill, I normally spend between 1.5 – 2 hours in the gym. If I run outside then I am in the gym for 1 – 1.5 hours and then I hit the pavement running. So as you can see, I am in the gym a lot… and I hate the gym.

When I run on a treadmill, I feel like a hamster on a wheel…

To be totally honest, in the last 4 years, I have probably run on the treadmill 5 times each year, when it is a heat wave summer, and too dangerous to run outside. (I will not be one of those crazy runners, running in 110 degrees 90 percent humidity. Trust me I have done that before, and ended up in and out of the doctor’s for 3 months.)

But now, I am running on the treadmill, 1-2 times a week, and I hate it. The only reasons, I put myself through this treadmill running torture is because it saves me time, and I’m sick of the cold. It is the end of March and it has been in the 30s with gusty winds.

Anyway, I have been trying to make my treadmill runs interesting by putting up the incline slightly (1-2), and running at faster speeds, normally 8:30 min mile. I can deal with this because it is only 1-2 times a week. Hopefully, the sun will come out soon and I will be able to forget the treadmill for good.

As for outdoor running and half marathon training…

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I have been doing hill repeats, short easy runs, and some long runs on my weekends. But that is just another reason why the Livefit trainer seems time consuming. Along with trying to complete this trainer to the best of my ability, I am also training for 3 races, but the one I am really focused on is the NIKE WOMEN’S 13.1. This races is scheduled for the last weekend of April. So I have 6 weeks to get some serious running in. (I will write a separate post, and go in more detail about my training plan.)¬†

Weight training and results…

I will not post my progress pics quite yet. However, I will tell you this… In phase 2, I am lifting heavier because it is a requirement, but also because I am capable of it. I started this program with strong lean runners legs, but no upper body strength what-so-ever. During phase 1, I was lifting 5 lb dumbbells, now I am lifting 15 lb dumbbells. I was lifting a 20 lb bar, now I am lifting 30-40 lb bar. I was deadlifting with a 40 lb bar, now I am with a 60 lb bar. I am not only feeling stronger, but looking stronger too. I am not seeing bulky muscles, but rather a lot of lean muscle definition, which was my ultimate goal.

Abs, I knew you were there, but never saw you before… it is so nice to finally meet you!¬†

What I am probably most excited about, is that I am finally seeing a flatter stomach which is revealing some abs. This makes me excited, because the weakest part of my body has always been my core. Every expert runner has always told me a stronger core will help improve your running, and that is what I am hoping for.

The whole point of me doing the Livefit Trainer, was to get stronger, so I would improve my running, by being able to run stronger, further, faster. 

When I am out on the running trail, that is exactly how I feel, stronger and faster.

I also trust Jamie Eason. She has a video, that I posted earlier on my blog, about how you should train your abs like any other muscle group Рnot every day. She also said that while lifting free weights, most of the exercises engage your abs anyway. I have found this to be soooo true! 

Clean Eating…

In phase, 1 I struggled with clean eating, because I was having a hard time packing enough meals for the day. ¬†Now I have this…

MOMS


Above is a picture of my lunch box. I found it at MOM’s Organic Market. I like it because it fits all of my meals for the day, and it keeps everything cold. It is like carrying around a mini fridge.

Calorie Counting

In phase 2, it is required to start calorie counting. I am not very good at this, and I don’t do it all the time. But I am aware of how many calories I need. It is less on days that I lift upper-body. It is more when I lift lower-body, or go on longer runs.

A clean eating tip, that is introduced in phase 2, is measuring all ingredients. Because of this, it is suggested to purchase a kitchen scale.

scale

I really don’t see myself getting to particular about measuring and counting calories, but I will try my best while I am doing the Livefit trainer. ¬†So I purchased this Cuisinart kitchen scale. My food processor is a Cuisinart. I really like this brand. I haven’t used it yet, but I think it is going to be a good thing to have on hand in the kitchen. Plus all fitness models, and fitness competitors have their leanest results when the measure everything. So if you are trying to loose weight, or lean out, it might be a good thing to look into or purchase.

Supplements

In phase 2, it is suggested to take a digestive enzyme,¬†in addition to Protein powder, BCAAs, Glutamine, multivitamin, and fish oil/flax oil . So I purchased…

digestive

(I just bought these yesterday, so I will write a more detailed post about what the are and how they work, so stay tuned. )

So that is an overview of what I have been doing for the last 2 weeks, with the Livefit trainer, and my half marathon training… Stay tuned for shorter but more detailed posts, on long runs, and supplements.

Questions for You…

  1. Do you ever run on the treadmill?
  2. What is your favorite way to run on the treadmill?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Funeral for My Fat

inspire

INSPIRE

My desire to seek knowledge is constant. Along with this knowledge seeking desire, I am on a never-ending quest to find inspiration. This is how and why my addiction to reading blogs developed in the first place.  Which then later led to creating my very own blog(s).

I just can’t help myself…

I want to learn more…

I want to be inspired…

I want to inspire others…

With that being said, let me tell you who inspires me…

Let me introduce you to Sharee! We have never met face to face, but she has an inspiring story. Sooo inspiring, that I find her worthy enough to write a blog post about her. She is the writer and owner of the blog, Funeral for My Fat.

Sharee is a 23 year old female, who in the last five years, has lost 118 lbs. She changed her life around, by becoming vegan, and working hard, sweating in the gym. She wears black when she works out because it is a funeral for her fat, hence her blog name.

She is 5’8. Her highest weight was 256 lbs and now she is down to 138 lbs. Earlier this month, she had surgery to remove loose skin in her midsection and upper thighs. It will take her two months to recover, which means no working out.

In her honor, a lot of her blog followers are wearing black in the gym.

482067_10101039998127466_1965005441_nSo if you are looking for inspiration, check out her blog,¬†Funeral for My Fat. And wear black in the gym, in honor of a fast and speedy recovery for Sharee! Also try Sharee’s Starbucks drink, Iced Hazelnut Soy Latte, great for post work out.

Be Inspired…

Inspire others….

Sweat daily…

Questions for you…

  1. Who has made your blog roll?
  2. Who inspires you?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

 

 

Mental Strategies for Runnners

There are several different types of runners…

just-run

While reading, Eat and Run, Scott Jurek compares himself to his hero Chuck Jones and Ron Nicholl. He also discovers bushido, which is a code of honor and morals developed by the Japanese.

Bushido means letting go of the past and future, and focusing on the moment. Do you bushido while running? Or is your mind in constant thought? Do you run better when your mind is empty or do you run better when you are focused on your running?

¬†When you have been consistently running, or have properly trained for a race, you are physically capable to run the speed and distance you have trained for… But are you mentally strong enough?¬†

What mental strategies do you have, if any at all?

“The mountain reminded me that races are not run all at once, that the only way to survive an ultra was piece by piece. So I ran Mount Si piece by piece.”

Scott Jurek used a mental strategy in order to run the distance of Mount Si. He broke his ultra into 3 parts. I do this often while running the marathon distance. During my training my two longest runs are 21 milers. My easy runs during the week are 5.2 mile runs. This becomes a mental strategy for me because when I hit mile 21 in my marathon, I am able to tell myself, “Oh Yay! Just hit mile 21, now it is just my 5 mile easy run.”

A lot of runners have tricks like this. When my dad use to run marathons, he use to break the marathon distance into 4 different 10K parts.

Hal Higdon, a marathon coach, states in his marathon training guide, that he wears a rubber band on his wrist, that every odd mile he switches it to the other wrist.

“According to Bushido, the best mind for the battlefield-or the race- is that of emptiness, or an empty mind. “

I use to just let go, and run (bad form and all.) ¬†I wouldn’t really think of anything, my mind was empty. It was my quiet time during my day, my time to myself. But, I wasn’t becoming faster. I wasn’t becoming a better runner, having no goals.

“My craft was running, and as I climb those northwest mountains, I tried to do so with extreme focus. It’s easy to shut your brain off when you’re running long distances, and sometimes it’s necessary, but I stayed plugged in.”

When I decided to change my shoe to Newtons, and really focus on improving my stride. I had to stay focused. During that time, when I was transitioning my stride from a heel striker to a more natural barefoot runner, there were definitely days when I missed the times when I  could just go out there and run., with an empty mind. It was very exhausting physically running, and then mentally thinking about how to run properly, but I had to, I was invested in becoming a better runner.

“In my two months training in Seattle, my endurance improved all by itself. Dusty and all the other tough guys were right about that. Just do the distance and that will usually save you. “

I totally agree, it is as simple as that… practice running the distance, and it will save you.

“I stood in icy rivers to strengthen my mind’s control over my body.”

However, Scott Jurek prepared his mind by standing in icy water. Sometimes running isn’t enough. Sometimes your need more. So in addition to the distance, mentally preparing for your race can take you to a different level of running, maybe even a new PR. Focusing on running while you run, can keep you injury free, and a stronger faster runner.

“I concentrated on running a particular section harder, on picking up speeds downhill while I rested my heart and lungs.”

You would be surprised how the mind can play tricks on you and actually turn a good race into a nightmare. Using mental strategies when you have approached that unbearable distance is just a SMARTER way to run.

There are several different runners, some that empty their minds, others that use their minds just as much as their bodies, but we can all agree on this…

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Questions for You…

  1. Do you just run? Letting your mind empty?
  2. Do you have any good mental strategies? Please share them!

© 2013 sweatdaily

Protein Shake Recipe!

Lets talk about clean eating…

As you all may know, I am currently doing the Livefit trainer by Jamie Eason. Besides the daily weight lifting and cardio sessions, Jamie Eason teaches us how to eat clean. Boy have I learned a lot! For those that are totally clueless, (don’t worry if you are, I was too at one point) she has a meal plan written out, along with grocery list, videos, and recipes… all on bodybuilding.com.

Here is what goes down…

  1. The meals consists of mainly a protein, complex carb, and healthy fat.
  2. Ideally, with in an hour of waking eat your first clean meal, then continue to eat 5-6 small clean meals a day in 3 hour intervals.
  3. Never workout on an empty stomach.
  4. Use measuring tools, such as a scale, to get exact portions.
  5. Use apps, such as fitness pal to record calories. It is important to get at least 1600-2000 calories in order to build muscle, (but it also depends on your size/BMR.)

When reading this reviews on this trainer, a lot of people claimed they were vegetarian and following the meal plan was impossible. But nothing is impossible.¬†If you are vegetarian or vegan, you should be getting the same amount of protein as someone who eats meat. I am not going to label myself as a vegetarian or vegan, but I do cook most of my meals meatless. I will eat eggs and fish, but for those who don’t…¬†Stop thinking that protein is animal flesh,¬†because it doesn’t have to be. ¬†You can sub, animal protein for many things example: beans, or lentils, and there are tons of vegetables that are a great protein source.

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I found these charts on google, while researching protein for you guys!

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Supplements

Along with a multivitamin, BCAA, and fish oil/flaxseed oil, Jamie Eason suggests we drink a protein shake. Research claims that if you drink a protein shake with in 30 minutes to an hour after exercise, you will see more muscle growth/recovery, and less soreness.

I have always been a very big fan of juicing. I will make a green juice a couple times of week and have been simply adding my protein powder to that. I actually started to grow my own kale in my vegetable garden because I use it so often. But right now during these cold months of winter, a lot of produce is not in season at the moment, so I have recently began playing around with different ingredients. I finally came up with this amazing protein shake.

Protein Shake Recipe

protein shake

I know it looks like a Starbucks coffee drink, but the reusable travel plastic cups work perfect for protein shakes.

Ingredients

  1. 1 banana, (really good source of potassium, which helps with muscle cramping.)
  2. Cacao powder (good source of antioxidants)
  3. Chocolate protein powder (I use Vega Sport because it is vegan, soy free, and created by an iron man athlete.)vega
  4. Wheat Germ (good source of antioxidants, vitamins, fiber, very good amount of protein, 27g per 115-gram serving.

    Read more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/2707-facts-health-benefits-wheat-germ/#ixzz2MtlCygsN

  5. Flax seeds (omega 3s)
  6. Coconut Water (good source of potassium, and hydrating)
  7. Spoon full of organic all natural peanut butter (make sure nothing is added. This is an additional source of protein and healthy fat.)

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This protein shake recipe is very high in protein, heathy fats, and potassium. It is also enriched with other vitamins, and omega 3s. I drink this to refuel after my workout, and use this as one of my my meals.

No need to waste calories on Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. It definitely satisfies my chocolate and peanut butter craving.

Question for You

  1. What is your favorite ingredient for a protein shake?
  2. What is your favorite protein powder?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

When do you workout? Morning or Night?

Livefit update…

Today, I completed Day 36 of the Livefit trainer. J and I hit the gym in the morning and today we focused mainly on back, although, we squeezed in some leg exercises too. I also got a little bit of cardio in.

Through this new fitness challenge, the Livefit trainer, I am not only seeing a difference in my fitness level, but I am learning a lot about myself.

Do you workout in the morning or at night?

I have definitely realized that by doing the Livefit trainer, I have my best workout sessions, early in the morning before work. It just feels really good waking up early, getting a great work out/run in, and then have my whole day ahead of me free to do whatever…

I find if I don’t get my morning work out/run in, I end up worrying about it the whole day, desperately wondering when I am going to fit it in. I also feel that if I don’t get a chance to lift and then find time to hit the weights at night, I end up being too tired to lift at my fullest potential. However, I can run or do bikram either in the am or pm.

Running or doing birkam in the morning, before work gives me energy for the rest of the day… it must be all of those endorphins, creating my runner’s high. When I run or do bikram at night, I feel like I relieve the stresses from the day. I find myself winding down, feeling relaxed, but refreshed.

Nike+She+Runs+The+Night+Race+CygAimeCDhjl LM-run-420x0

But when I have the choice to choose morning running/bikram or night, I will always choose morning.

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Getting my workouts in, in the morning also gives me the opportunity to do a double if I want to. Sometimes after work, at night, I feel  like it is necessary to blow off some stress, and although, I already worked out, another sweat session is in order.

Well whether, you run…

do yoga…

lift weights…

whether you are an early bird…

or a night owl…

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Questions for YOU?

  1. Do you workout in the morning or at night?
  2. Do you prefer running in the am or pm?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

Livefit Trainer, Week 5, Progress Pic

Update of the Livefit trainer…

I wanted to update you on the Livefit trainer. I have just completed week 5. Today is my rest day, which means tomorrow is my first day of week 6. It is hard to believe I am halfway through the trainer.

Phase 2 has begun…

Week 5 is the first week of Phase 2. And let me tell you this week had been super intense! However, Jamie Eason claims that it is just the beginning. Let me explain to you what Phase 2 is all about.

Remember how in Phase 1, there was NO CARDIO… which meant no running. Oh how I missed my runner’s high. Jamie Eason wanted to use Phase 1 as a muscle building phase. She also wanted us to focus on our clean eating diet which meant eating whole clean foods, as 5-6 small meals in three hour intervals.

Well in Phase 2, we are still building muscle. Actually, there are way more work outs. Some work outs are combined with another as a super set. Other work outs have reps up to 20 or 30.  Another thing that has finally been added is 30 minute cardio sessions,which Jamie Eason suggests doing after you weight lift. This means running for me. Yippee! We are also continuing to eat clean, 5-6 small meals a day, in three hour intervals. Drinking tons of water, and taking our supplements. One new thing, Jamie Eason suggest, that I am going to start to do is using the app My Fitness Pal, which will help me keep track of my calories, making sure I get enough.

Week 5 has been intense, because it has been more time consuming, but I haven’t missed a day. Today is my much needed rest day. Tomorrow week 6 begins. I am also starting my half marathon training. In order to fit all this in, and stay on top of everything, I am going to be waking up earlier. I have a feeling there might be some days where I will be doing a double, but I am going to try my hardest to try to avoid this and just get all my work outs done in the morning time, before work.

Phase 2, Week 5

Day 29 – Back/ Cardio

  • ¬†Seated Cable Rows¬†–¬†3 sets of 8 reps – (40 lbs)
  • End of superset; resume normal sets

Day 30 – Chest/Abs

  • ¬†Superset:

Day 31- Legs

    • ¬†Leg Extensions¬†–¬†2 warm-up sets with lighter weight for 30 reps – (I used 30 lbs and it was killer.¬†
    • ¬†Wide Stance Barbell Squat¬†–¬†2 lighter sets of 15 reps, 2 heavier sets to failure – (First two sets with 50 lbs, Last two sets 70 – 90 lbs)
    • ¬†Leg Press¬†–¬†4 sets of 8 reps- (90 lbs)
    • ¬†Walking Barbell Lunge¬†– ¬†3 sets of 20 reps, baby steps (30 lbs)

Day 31 – Arms, Abs, Cardio

  • Barbell Curl¬†–¬†3 sets of 10 reps – ( 1 set 20 lbs. It was too light, ¬†so I went up to 30 lbs. Someone is getting stronger. ūüôā )

Superset:

End of superset; resume normal sets

  • ¬†Hanging Leg Raise¬†(or roman chair) –¬†3 sets of 10 reps – (body weight) I like roman chair better.
  • 30 minute Cardio session on treadmill. I hate the treadmill, because I would rather be running outside. But I ended up, having a sweaty fast treadmill run, working on speed work.

Day 33 – Shoulder/ Cardio

  • Smith Machine Military Press¬†–¬†1 warm-up set, 3 sets of 10 reps – (I got up to 30 lbs on this, but I didn’t like it. I have done this one before with just a 30 lb bar with my chair in and incline position, and felt it much more, so I think I will do that for now on.

Superset:

End of superset; resume normal sets

J and I headed to the gym by 7:00 am. We were completely done with this work out by 8:30 am. It felt really good to have it done that early. 

Day 34- Legs

I was up and at the gym by 8:00. I wasn’t able to finish this work out because I had to be at work by 10, so had to leave the gym by 9:00. This was an intense work out and my legs were still really sore from working out earlier during the week. So I am going to finish this work out tomorrow along with completing day 36 which is back and cardio.

Tomorrow is also suppose to be very snowy in my area. So my cardio session might end up being another treadmill session. Oh well, I’ll do what I have to do. Desperately wishing it was spring.

Anyhow, at the end of Phase 1, I snapped a progress pic I wanted to share with you. This is my first progress pic, I took last week at the end of phase 1 beginning of phase 2.

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Trust me, I didn’t have arms or shoulders like that before. This is proof that 4 weeks of lifting weights really can transform your body.

tumblr_mijzdgHfwG1rwkaswo1_500Found this motivational picture on tumblr, and felt it fit this post perfectly. It has been 4 weeks and I have noticed a change in my body, and I feel much stronger. It will be interesting to take another photo when 8 weeks approaches, and then again when 12 approaches.

I wish it was already TOMORROW…

because…

I can’t wait to start week 6. Although I hate the gym, I ¬†have found a new love for weight lofting… so I hope the snow doesn’t close the gym . ūüėČ

P.S. I am now officially starting my half marathon training as well… so I will post my training program tomorrow.

Questions for You?

  1. What races are you training for?
  2. What training program do you follow?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

 

 

Livefit, Days 23/24/25

The last three days I have completed Days 23, 24, and 25 of the Livefit Trainer. OMG! One more day and I will be done with Phase 1, and moving on to Phase 2, week 5. This is exciting, but things are going to get tricky.

a quick recap of my days…

Phase 1, Week 4, Day 23 

Back and Biceps

Phase 1, Week 4, Day 24

Chest and Triceps

Phase 1, Week 4, Day 25

Legs

So that is what I have been lifting for the last couple of days…

Challenges…

I have come to the conclusion that my weakness is not clean eating, but rather organization and time management. I have been eating very clean, I just need to make sure I am eating enough. So this next phase, Phase 2, I am really going to work on planning my meals on Friday. I thought about Sunday, but Friday is my day off from work, so I will have more time to get these meals planned. I’ll have time to go grocery shopping, make the meals, and divide them up into their proper portions. ¬†I can’t wait to blog about it… so keep your eyes open for more “clean eating” posts!

Also in phase 2, Jamie Eason talks about measuring out your food, and calorie counting. I measure out my food, from time to time, but I never use a kitchen scale. So this will be my next purchase. A kitchen scale is important and helpful to  measure all sorts of things, especially meats, in my case fish. Jamie Eason also suggests the app My Fitness Pal, for calorie counting. I have yet to use this app, but I have a client that is using it and he loves it. People can follow you, so they can see what you are eating. In his case, his personal trainer follows him.

This app will help recored calories. You are able to keep track of what you are eating – Maybe at the moment you are eating way to many carbs, but aren’t really aware of it… this app will make you aware. And because others can follow you, you will be motivated to stay on track. Sometimes people just need that little bit of support. Honestly, I am just not that picky, so I have never even thought about counting calories, but I am excited to try this app. I am really curious to see how many calories I consume on a daily basis.¬†DownloadedFile-1

Rest in between sets is more important then you think…

Another helpful app that Jamie Eason suggest is called the GymBoss Timer. In Phase 1, we were lifting 3 sets of 10-12 reps using a minute to rest in between each set. This app has a basic timer on it that times a one minute rest period. It worked perfect. Resting in between sets is especially important in phase 2 when we will be lifting heavier and incorporating supersets into the mix.

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¬†“For some exercises, you’ll feel ready to continue after one minute; other exercises might require two. Regardless, the rest period should be long enough to allow you to tackle each set with as much exertion as possible.” – Jamie Eason

Supersets… What is that??

A superset is when you perform an exercise set and immediately after you do a different exercise set with no rest time in between. ¬†You will also be “lifting to failure.” This means that on your last set, instead of lifting to your last rep number, you will continue to lift until your muscle is so tired it can not possibly perform another full rep.

Things are going to get tricky…

In the beginning of the post, I mentioned that I am excited about starting phase 2, but I also revealed that things will get tricky… In phase 2, we will start to throw cardio into the mix, which means RUNNING for me. Because I am a runner, this is super exciting for me… finally I will have my runner’s high back. Yay! However, ¬†things are going to get tricky, because I am also going to start my half marathon training.

Jamie Eason says it is best to lift weights first and then do your cardio. So the easiest thing to do, would be to hit the gym, lift and then go on the treadmill. But I hate the treadmill. When I am on a treadmill I feel like a hamster on a wheel. So the plan is to do my weight lifting and then go for a run outside. This also means I am going to have to wake up earlier. I am going to have to be in the gym no later than 7:30, and then have L meet me outside my gym, so we can start our runs from there. Or we could even meet up in our regular spot, since my gym is up the street from the running trail.

So what will J do?? She has options… We can do our weight lifting together, and then she can stay in the gym and do her cardio, while I go running with L. Or after weight lifting she can come along with L and I on our run.

Another tricky part… ¬†

In phase 2, Jamie Eason, claims that phase 2 is still a building phase. So she only has us doing 30 minutes of cardio… Well there are going to be days when I am just going to have to run longer then that… Sorry I am a long distance runner, training for three races in April.

Ok so that is it for now… Hopefully, I can juggle all of this. As long as I wake up earlier, and plan out everything well… I think I will be good to go.

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Also guys, you can now follow me on Daily Mile!  The above photo is my profile pic. I had to model my new lululemon running outfit and my newton shoes. But if you are a runner and you are not on Daily Mile you must get on it asap. It is an awesome community for endurance athletes, and a great way to track mileage, share it with others, and get the support you need!! I love it!!

I also joined Fitocracy!¬†¬† This site does not just cater to runners. It is an awesome fitness community that is filled with a very diverse crowd. You will find all sorts of athletes here. It is very easy to track your daily workouts, whatever it may be, including weight lifting. It is also very game like… because the more workouts you track the more points you achieve. You can move up to levels. There are groups you can join, where you can discuss whatever topics your desire. You will find motivation and support here!¬†Join asap and follow me!

I know this post was a long one but…

Things you need to do…

Check out the apps.

  1. MyFitnessPal
  2. GymBoss

Check out the sites… Join and follow me!

  1. Daily Mile
  2. Fitocracy

Other amazing free fitness apps to check out…

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Questions for You…

  1. What is your favorite fitness app?
  2. Are you on dailymile or fitocracy? If so let me know and I will follow you!

© 2013 sweatdaily

Missing my RUNNER’S HIGH.

Tuesday was Mardi Gras. Wednesday was Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent. Today, is Valentine’s Day. All of these special days falling in one crazy week. I am so thankful today, although it is everyone’s Thursday, it is my Friday. (If that makes since…)

AT THE SALON

This has been a crazy work week for me. I have had a week full of hair color transformations. It is only mid February, but for some reason everyone wants to go lighter. I wasn’t expecting to change my brunettes to blonde bombshells until March or April, but it happened this week, which meant long days, and late nights at the salon.

LIVEFIT UPDATE

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PHASE 1, WEEK 3, DAYS 16,17,18

DAY 16, Monday, 2/11/13,

BACK and BICEPS

  • Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (30lbs) alternative work out PULL UPS
  • Seated Narrow Grip Cable Rows¬†– 3 sets 10 rep – (30lbs)

  • T-Bar Row¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (10lb weight, 20lb bar, total 30lbs.

  • Back Extensions¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (body weight or hold weight with arm across chest) NOTE: This is my new favorite work out for lower back muscles.

  • ¬†¬†Barbell Curl¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (20lb straight bar) NOTE: I really felt this worked my biceps. They were super sore the next day.
  • ¬†Incline Dumbbell Curl¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (started first set with 5 lbs just to work on proper for then went up to 10 lbs for the rest of the sets)¬†
  • ¬†Alternate Hammer Curl¬†– 3 sets 10 reps – (10 lbs)

Tuesday, 2/12/13, REST DAY

The original plan for this day was to hit the gym at night. I am busy all day with an art class and work, so night time is the only time I have to work out. I ended up not being able to get home until 9:00 pm and the gym closes at 11. I decided I didn’t want to be the one closing the gym, so I used this as a rest day and planned to do that day’s work out, Day 17, the next day along with that day’s work out. Double duty. Didn’t want to fall behind.

THE DOUBLE DUTY DAY

DAY 17 & DAY 18, Wednesday, 2/14/13

CHEST, TRICEPS

LEGS

Today, Thursday, 2/14/13 is DAY 19 of LIVEFIT. I will be hitting the gym this afternoon, to work on Shoulders & Abs. I will not be taking any more rest days until the end of phase 1. If for some reason I can’t make it to the gym, I will take a rest day and do double duty the following day. But this is only if for some reason I am desperate and can’t make it to the gym. Jamie Eason does have 2 videos of at home work outs just in case, but I’d rather just try to stick to the program as closely as I can.

SEEING RESULTS

First things First. I am desperately missing my RUNNER’S HIGH! But I also can’t believe how fast Phase 1 is flying on by. Today will be the last day of week 3 and then I am moving right on to week 4. 1 more week and then Phase 2 begins, where you can introduce cardio into the program, and for me running. Yippee!! Can’t wait to experience my runner’s high again. However, I will admit that I have really enjoyed focusing on getting stronger. I think that it is super important, and it gave me the opportunity to focus on eating clean as well. Plus, waiting to run, will just make my runner’s high that much sweeter.

I also wanted to tell you, that I am starting to see some results, and feel them too. I didn’t think I would see much results especially this fast, because I am an athlete already in pretty good shape. But, my arms are starting to take shape, and I have began to see even more definition in my legs and abs. As for feeling results, I am feeling stronger. I also have been really tired lately, but I think that has a lot to do with work and not really the Livefit program. I am pretty sore though, everyday. I am also much more hungry, but I think that is because my growing muscles need fuel and my metabolism is fired up.

CHALLENGES

I have already been eating clean for about 9 months now, but I was having challenges with eating enough calories. I am doing much better about preparing my meals, and packing my food. The two things I need to work on now, is drinking more water, and making more protein shakes. But I am still taking my other supplements.

So that sums up my update with the Livefit program. I can’t wait for Phase 2 to begin, in about a week, because during Phase 2 I will also start my half marathon training.

I found this on tumblr... Now she is hardcore!

I found this on tumblr… Now she is hardcore!

Oh BTW, I updated my about page, so check it out. I also updated my race times. Please follow me on twitter, athlinks, and instagram.

Questions for You

  1. Do you eat clean? What is your favorite eat clean food/meal?
  2. What challenges do you have it your fitness routine?
  3. To my Runner followers: What is the longest amount of time have you gone with out running?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Newton OBSESSED!

312305_10151249154527639_1954403749_nI know… I can’t help it, I am totally OBSESSED with Newton Running! Anyway their 2013 line of running shoes became available yesterday. I am really excited to buy a new pair of the Distance U. However, I was unsure if I needed a new pair of the Gravity or not. So I posted photos of my shoe’s lugs on their facebook page and this is what Newton had to say about them.

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Below is my conversation between Newton Running and I, regarding my shoe wear analysis.
I have had them since September! I have raced 2 races in them, The Army 10 miler, and the Annapolis Half Marathon. They have a little over 400 miles on them. – dorseyml
  • Newton Running¬†Quite good! You could probably get another 1-200 miles out of them and maybe even more if you can tighten up your gluteus medius, relax your ankle and land with your foot a bit more even on the ground rathe than so far out on the lateral side.

First of all, I want to Thank Newton! When I posted photo’s of my shoes on their facebook page, they immediately responded. I didn’t think they would get back to me that fast, but they did.

Also they gave me amazing advice! I  was confused on how many miles my shoes were capable of having. Everyone is different, and I had heard that you can run in these shoes for twice as long as traditional running shoes, but I was still unsure. I am so glad they cleared this up for me. I also have been really focusing on my running form. So for them to notice from the wear on my shoes, that I need to tighten up my gluteus medius, and relax my ankle a bit,  is brilliant. I will work on this, so it will better my form and make me a more efficient runner.

Thank You Newton Running!

© 2013 sweatdaily

8 mile runs on Monday mornings…

Now, if you are from a place, where it is seriously cold, and you are getting dumped on with snow, you are probably thinking this girl should count her blessings. But let me tell ya, I would rather have snow than rain. I would rather it be 30 degrees and sunny. I can tolerate crisp, refreshing, winter air, as long as, the sun is shining bright. ¬†With that being said…

It has been dark and dreary. Fog has formed, and a cold mist of rain has been lingering since early last week. It is totally dull, gloomy, depressing. I know it is January, but the weatherman promised the weekend would be a warm 65 degrees.

He lied.

It stayed around 50 degrees, the sun never came out, it was raining, but I still ran. I actually ran everyday…

Saturday, 1/12/13 – I ran an easy 5 mile run. It was 50 degrees, but gray and gloomy.

Sunday, 1/13/13 – ¬†I woke up early, and met L before work, for a 5.32 mile run. This one was full of “bitch” hills. It was a little warmer than 50 degrees, but again gray and gloomy.

Monday, 1/14/13 – I met up with L and ran 8.29 miles. This was the warmest of all the days, being 61 degrees. It still was gray and gloomy, with rain. This run actually felt amazing, and gave me the energy I needed for the rest of the day.

Today, Tuesday, 1/15/13 – I had my Art class in the morning, before work, so I took a rest day. It was gray, gloomy, and by the end of the day the rain was coming down hard.

You are probably wondering what is giving me my drive, to run on miserable, dull, winter days of gloom?

Well…

I am reading an amazing book called, Eat and Run, by Scott Jurek. It is inspiring me in many ways, including giving me motivation to run an eight mile run on a rain drizzle filled monday morning, like yesterday.

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(photo taken from my iPhone)

“and now, running had turned into something other than training. It had turned into a kind of meditation, a place where I could let my mind… float free.”

Above is one of my favorite passages from the book, so far. Trust me, there are many more quotes to share… and although, the weather around here has been totally depressing, running in it, though it, all around it, feels good and keeps me sane.

Questions for You?

  1. What is the weather like near you?
  2. What motivates you to work out, run, eat healthy?

© 2013 sweatdaily

 

running and photography

Let me tell you a little story.

One friday, late last year, I decided to join my mom, and all of her old lady friends for lunch. After we had finished our meals all of my mom’s friends demanded that they updated their contacts. So they all pulled out their phones, and yep you guessed it they all had marvelous smart phones, androids, iphones – you name it. I immediately felt left out and embarrassed to even pull out my phone. I should be the one with the nice iPhone, and they should be the one clueless on how to work theirs. But nope they weren’t. ¬†After that- I had, had it. It was time for me to become trendy and get a smart phone.

So in October of 2012, I got an iPhone 5. Finally, I could recycle my old piece of crap phone and upgrade to a smart phone. Yes, I was the only 20 something year old that had not done this yet, but better late than never.

really bad picture of me. but great picture of my iPhone 5.

bad picture of me. but great picture of my iPhone 5.

Before I use to never run with my phone. What was the point? But now that I have my iPhone 5, I never run with out it! Although, there are tons of cool running and music apps, my favorite part of my iPhone 5 is the camera. This phone takes amazing pictures. Before, I would go on runs, and sometimes see something really cool, that I wished I could take a photo of, with the iPhone 5 now I can. I have become obsessed with instagram as well- follow me @dorseyml.

Anyway, I don’t take photos on every run, but I took a couple over the past 2 weeks. This is what I have been running by…

Most of these are taken on the south side of MVT.

543875_10100911979877066_935238712_n This photo was taken during my run on January 3rd, 2013. Although, it was cold, look at that sun streaming. Cold, but refreshing, and soaking in that Vitamin D.

550924_10100913420515016_1899771480_nThis photo was taken on my morning run on January 4th, 2013. Look at those ducks!

540827_10100920818843706_1037442360_nThis photo was taken during my morning run, on January 10th, 2013. On this day, it was 53 degrees out.  It felt amazing running. The sun reflecting on the water almost looks like ice Рbut its not.

24416_10100922172845276_1233965895_nThis photo was taken today, January 11th, 2013. It was 50 degrees, but felt colder because it was lightly raining. I was craving a run, so even those it was raining I was ready to hit the trail. Running forces me to get outside, during the winter while most people are cooped up inside.¬†Don’t be scared of bad weather. A light rain even in January, can feel quite refreshing.

I  will start up training for longer races in mid February. So all of these runs, were fast, easy runs, between 5k- 5 miles. However, this weekend is suppose to be 65 degrees so I might throw on some shorts and go on a 10 mile run.

I also wanted to let you guys know that I didn’t feel it necessary to set a New Years Resolution for running, because I am always setting running goals. However, the one thing I do want to do, is record/log my miles. I do this anyway. I use to log them on runnersworld.com, but even since I began running with my garmin I log my miles on garmin connect. But I have never evaluated my mileage. What I mean by this is…

If you had asked me, “How many total miles did you run last month?”

I wouldn’t be able to answer that question- because I have no clue. So this year I will continue to record my mileage, but I will actually keep track. I have just become really curious of how many miles I run a year! ¬†So lets see how many miles I can run in one whole year. I am really excited about this new goal/challenge.

Questions for You…

  1. Do you run with your phone?
  2. What is your favorite thing about your smart phone?
  3. How many miles do you run in a year?

© 2013 sweatdaily

Running Music

It has always been a common debate of whether running with music helps or hurts you as a runner. When I was training for my first Marathon in 2009, I had a running buddy that never ran with music. We would meet up for runs, and right before we started I would always turn on two things – my iPod and my Garmin, mean while he didn’t have either of these. I asked him why he didn’t enjoy running with music? He replied that running with music did not make him a consistently paced runner. A fast song made him run faster, when a slow song made him run slower.

There is also always the topic of safety. Why else are headphones banned from races? But who follows that rule anyway…

I have had a lot of non runners, scold me about running with music/headphones, because it alters my sense of hearing, making it dangerous. I guess this could be true, not being able to hear a cyclist behind me, on the trail. A car honking when I cross the street. A dog barking. A kid laughing. And because I am a female runner, the odds of a possible predator approaching me from behind is much greater than if I was a male runner. All of these scenarios are dangerous, but even more so with my sense of hearing impaired. (Oh and even even more dangerous if you are on a bike. If you are a cyclist, it is a whole different story.)

Although this is all true, I still love running with music and rarely go for a run with out my iPod. However, with that being said, I want to make one thing clear- I do not rely on my iPod to carry me through the miles. I am capable of running with out music, and actually during my first marathon, there were so many spectators with cool signs, that I didn’t pay much attention to my running playlist until the last 5k.

So being a female runner, running with music, I have to be even more aware of my surroundings – but believe me I am, because I use my eyes. I am constantly scanning, I don’t want to miss anything. Plus, now that I am running in a more minimalist shoe- I can feel the ground. By wearing a more minimalist shoe I am able to use my sense of touch, which allows me to be way more in tuned with my body, my running form, the run itself.

But back to the music… One of the top reasons I love running with music is not because it betters me as a runner, but rather because it is the one time during the day that I get the opportunity to totally engross myself with my favorite tunes.

Don’t get me wrong, I listen to music pretty much my whole day. I listen to the radio in the car, but I don’t choose the music. Pandora plays in the background, while I am at work, but I can’t really listen to it, because I am busy with clients. So while I am running my morning route, I am able to stop thinking, instead I run, and listen, listen to the newest music on my iPod.

Now because I run so much,  my playlist quickly become boring. So I am always on the search for new music. Lately, I am all about Lindsey Stirling. 

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Lindsey is a violinist. In her album, Lindsey Stirling by Lindsey Stirling, she creates 12 instrumental songs, blending both classic violin with her signature¬†electronic violin style. I know this is a unique choice of music to suggest you to download, but aren’t you bored of the same old music? Aren’t you desperately searching for something new and different to listen to on your long runs? Well trust me Lindsey Stirling is your answer. Although, her music is instrumental violin, you will not be put to sleep. This music will get you pumped and make you run faster and faster.

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So although, there are negative things about running with music, there are many positive things as well, including increasing your cadence. Lindsey Stirling is who I am listening to while I run. Who are you listening too?

Questions for You…

  1. Do you listen to music when you run?
  2. What is on your running playlist?

© 2013 sweatdaily

all photos were found on google