Sunday, August 25, 2013

Signs (A Pictorial)

God/Life/The World is giving you all the signs you need.  You just have to get out there to see them.
I've taken all of these pictures while out on runs.  Except for one.  I won't run on freeways.

This might be my favorite

Bad Ass




Thursday, August 22, 2013

More on Why

A friend of mine recently sent this to me and I thought it was too good not to share.

After reading it, I talked a little with my friend about why we run.  It was funny, my friend, like the author, runs far faster and FAR further than I have ever dreamed of, yet the three of us all had similar reasons and thoughts about running.  See, that's the thing.  Going back to The Runner's Wave here. The reason we runners are always waving at, nodding to, smiling towards, and generally just encouraging the heck out of one another is that we get it.  We can see the commonality in all of us.  We are all going through the same thing and doing it for the same reason.  We support one another.  Now, if I could just figure out how to bottle The Runner's Wave and share it with the whole world...

On a somewhat related note, I was recently talking to another friend who mentioned that she had reduced her running/working out because she realized she was only doing it because she felt like she had to.  She said she thought I was doing the same.  That struck a pretty strong cord with me.  It's true that there are many mornings I get out of my warm, comfortable, and tempting bed saying, "I HAVE to go run."  But have I really only been doing it because I thought I had to?  The very next morning was one such morning.  And as I was tripping over my dog in the dark while putting on my running shoes and trying to slip out without waking my husband, it dawned on me.  I'm not doing it because I have to, I'm doing it because I get a huge sense of satisfaction and pride from doing something that at times, isn't easy, convienent, or even particularly fun because I WANT to.  Let's face it, in this life, I HAVE to do a whole lot of things that don't give me much satisfaction or pride.  The simple fact that I don't have to do it, is at the heart of why I do it.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013


If there were a runner's dictionary, this would be the entry for "frenemy."

The phrase, "hurts so good" comes to mind. Gotta love/hate the foam roller. 

Saturday, August 10, 2013

A Girl and Her Shoes

Say hello to my little friends!
Someone got some new shoes and immediately took them out for a test run. 

Okay, so nothing could be more cliche than a girl obsessing over her shoes. Except when it comes to her running shoes. For runners, the right pair of shoes can make all the difference. If you are considering taking on a running program, I highly recommend that you pay a visit to your local running store and have them analyze your stride and fit you with the best shoe for you. Finding the right shoe can make your run easier and more importantly, can help prevent injury. So here goes, another blog post about a girl and her shoes.
I ordered my new friends online. This is something I would normally never recommend. I think testing out the actual pair of shoes that you plan on logging several hundred miles in is very important. But, I came across these Sauconies (is that the plural for Saucony??) on one of those flash sale sites and I figured I should go for it since they were the exact same style as my current running shoes and running shoes are expensive!  At least, I thought they were the exact same style. Turns out pro grid and power grid are not the exact same thing. Oops!  

See that big green rectangle-ish type thing on the old pair?  Well, that big green rectangle-ish type thing is very important. It serves as a stabilizer for those who tend to over pronate when they run. Several years ago, I suffered an extremely painful knee "injury" and it was determined that I had very weak muscles surrounding my right knee, which was causing me to over pronate and in turn, was causing serious irritation to the nerves around my knee. Ever since then I've been wearing stabilizing shoes when I run. 

The thing about stabilizing shoes is that they really aren't that fun to run in (sorry shoe makers, but I gotta call it like it is). They are just SO much heavier than other, typical running shoes. Also, they are ALWAYS less cute than typical running shoes. It's true. Whenever I'm at Luke's Locker and they are showing me the new stabilizer shoes, I can't help but look jealously over that those cute, bright,  lightweight non-stabilizing shoes on the wall. 

Back to my new friends. So far, I've given them two test runs. One on the treadmill and one on an interval run in the neighborhood. I can't lie, I love the light, springy feel of these shoes!  And so far, no knee pain. I may be jinxing myself, but I have a strong suspicion that through two years of strengthening and stretching my legs at The Bar Method, I may have corrected my pronating issue. I've mentioned it before, but some of the moves we do at The Bar Method focus directly on strengthening those often ignored muscles around and above your knee. Combine that with the consistent stretching of my leg muscles, and I'm hoping my pronating issues are no more. Yes, I'm using one hand to type this and the other to knock on wood!  To be on the safe side, I will be paying Luke's Locker a visit very soon for a stride analysis. If I still have pronating issues, I will go back to the ol cluncker shoes and these new friends will be relegated to gym only use. In the meantime, I am so enjoying these bright light shoes!!  Hey, you can't blame a girl. Cute shoe love is in our DNA!

Disclaimer - yes, I have read a recent published study that claims over and under pronating does not actually cause injury. I am no scientist. I write only about my personal experience with injury and I will continue to listen to my body and trust that my body will let me know what it needs. I encourage you to do the same. 

Sunday, August 4, 2013


How often is this what you find when you go on a neighborhood run?!?! 
This actually happened.  A fighter jet parked in the 'hood.  Of course.

Recently, two of my friends purchased a house not too far from us and they'll be moving in at the end of September.  This morning I mapped my way to their new place and set out on my run.  I am so looking forward to the day they are living only 2.76 miles (to be exact) from me. This is me stalking their new house. 

Possibly my very favorite thing about long runs.  Zero guilt for the rest of the day!

8:55 a.m.  Looks like breakfast to me!


I don’t know about you, but after a vacation, I always find myself in a rut.  For usually a good week or two after getting back, I eat whatever I want (this usually comes in the form of some type of ramen noodles, pizza, and definitely in a lot of sugar), I have no energy for household chores, and my workouts tend to be few and far between.
 I don’t know if it’s that the bikini has safely been unpacked and put back in the drawer where it belongs or if I’m honestly just exhausted from traveling.  Or could it be that bad habits take so little time to set in that I bring my vacation mode back home with me?  Whatever the cause, I am definitely starting to see a pattern in my behavior: work hard, work really, really hard, go on vacation and veg, come home and work a teeny tiny bit, but mostly veg.  And vegging quickly becomes a full time gig for me.
 So, what to do?  How to snap out of my rut and go for a run?  MOTIVATION!!
 I had to find some motivation to get moving.  And I think I did:

Okay, so all you need is a little motivation and it doesn’t always have to be that serious (not that I don’t take Channing Tatum very seriously, because I so do).  Your motivation can be anything you want it to be. I think I’ve mentioned before that I gather a great deal of motivation from chocolate chip cookies.  Your motivation can be as big or as small as whatever works for you.  Of course long term goals are very important to keep in your sights, but they don’t always do the trick for getting you through every day and every run.  My current long term goal (26.2 miles) is pretty far down the road.  I won’t even technically start training for it for months, so while it’s there in the back of my mind, it isn’t what is getting me out of bed way too early on the weekends. 
 What I am trying to say is that we are all responsible for our own motivation.  Motivation is all around us, we just have to latch on to it and use it to move us.  When you feel like you just can’t get up and get on with it, find something, anything, and let it get you started.  That’s the hardest part, getting started.  Once you’ve found the motivation to get started, you’ve found enough.
 And when you can’t think of anything to get you started, I’m fine with you borrowing Channing Tatum.