So You Want To Run A Race…

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A few tips from me based on mistakes I’ve already made:

💡Don’t forget strength training! Strength training is the thing that helping me with not only endurance, but speed too. The stronger your body is the more efficiently it works as a whole unit. And a strong core will help you maintain good posture, while strong hip flexors help you keep form and endurance when you run. Strength training adds resiliency to your joints, connective tissue and muscles which helps prevent those nasty injuries runners get from repetitive motions. 

💡Get a running plan that works for YOU and your lifestyle and prepare yourself for those races. Don’t commit to training for a half marathon if you don’t have the time to fit the training in for a half marathon. You run the risk of hurting yourself (which I did) and potentially disappointing yourself (which I did). 

💡Don’t try to run a marathon if your still running in the back on 5k’s. This is just my opinion. You can’t expect yourself to be ready to run something you are nowhere near trained for. Even mentally if you are focusing too many steps ahead in your goals, you lose sight of the place you are actually at. And your training will falter.
And seriously, if you are training for a half marathon or marathon, get a training plan. And find a training team or get together with a running club. It will help you along the way. And they will keep you motivated when you reach lulls in your training, or are lacking motivation. I myself haven’t run even a half. But I know many who have. And you will go through highs and lows during training. The longer races require not only physical endurance but a lot of mental endurance, mental muscle and even emotional endurance. 

💡Make sure you are fueling your body right. Just stop eating junk and eat clean, period. Hydration is CRUCIAL. If you plan to run longer races, research nutrition and half marathon/marathon training. Nutrient timing can also be important when you eat and run! 

💡We need sleep and rest for muscles to recover and repair. Even when just exercising you need to give your body the time it needs to heal and repair itself. And sleep the night before your race event!! Find ways to calm your nerves the night before (no, don’t go drinking) and get a good nights sleep. Make bed time prep a thing. Plan out how and when in the hours before bed that you will get yourself relaxed and ready for a peaceful nights sleep. 

💡I really can’t emphasize enough the power of not only doing things with a group or team, but also sharing what you do with others. It helps keep you motivated and honest in your training and helps inspire others to achieve what maybe they thought was impossible. Be a lighthouse for others and share your journey!

💡Good gear. And I’m not just talking fashion here. Although, for some looking good out there boosts them up and in turn helps them run faster. Let’s talk about your shoes though. It’s recommended;  switching your shoes every 300-500 miles, and having at least 2 pairs for training. Compression pants, sleeves and socks all are super helpful to recovery. And foam rollers, you scoff, but they are amazing for helping your muscles recover. Plus there are a bazillion apps, watches and heart monitors out there. Hubby and I both use Garmin Vivoactive HR. We’ve been using Garmin for a while and not too long ago upgraded to the Vivoactive HR to get out of a chest strap. We both love it. My biggest complaint is, it’s kind of bigger ?? for a woman’s wrist. Well I myself really would prefer a slimmer look anyway. BUT it works beautifully!

💡With any fitness routine, program or run training you need to learn to listen to your body. You might get all super pumped and motivated, but you shouldn’t skip a rest day. And if your feeling sick, give yourself a break. You have to trust the process and that includes healing processes. Don’t try to run on an injury! You are human, not a machine. 

💡Believe you can. The power of positive thought isn’t just personal development mumbo jumbo. Positive thinking keeps your mood elevated and when your mood is elevated you tend to stay on top of your game. Visualizing your goals helps you keep focus on your destination and helps you alleviate your anxiety about getting there.

💡Make sure a race is legit. From time to time scammers make fake races to steal your money and then close websites down while they happily run with your cash. This is another area that if you are new to the running world, a local running club, running shoe store, or running trainer will know more first hand about. 

💡Don’t forget to enjoy the heck out of yourself. Both in training and on race day. You have to enjoy what your doing, or what’s the point? You trained hard for this day, love it to pieces!!!

Good Morning Moon

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INKnBURN Anahata

I am notoriously not a morning person, or wasn’t. I did have a job where I started at 4am for a couple of years but that was more like a night job since it was still dark and I was off by the time the real commotion of the day started. No, I like sleeping in and all things not morning. But races, most of them are in the morning (boo) and so I needed to work on a morning mantra and start to get moving earlier in the day.

But since we’ve been eating and fueling our bodies with nutritious foods and giving up junk food, not loading down on carbs and focusing on being good to our health. Mornings are coming easier, way easier. I mean seriously, look at that smile on my face!

Now in light of full disclosure, I had planned on being up at 5am and meeting with the Running Turtles for a pre-dawn run, but, you guessed it, I slept in. But I was up at 6am, laced up, downed water with lemon and was out the door with my hubby. Snapped a few photo’s of the morning moon and we were off!

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And you know what? It felt amazing! I guess the saying “workout early before your body knows what’s going on” is true. I felt strong and pr’d my time for that distance. Granted I was breathing hard and giving my lungs and heart a serious workout pushing myself out of my comfort zone, but it was everything a workout or run should be!

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But beyond that, after the run I was more awake mentally than I ever am at 6:30 in the morning. And my mood was elevated (part endorphins, part wow I just did a super early morning workout). But here its is 2pm and I don’t have any sluggish afternoon drowsy feelings. Hubby and I are planning to a yoga session from the 3 Week Yoga Retreat that we’ve been doing. We’re almost at the end and we plan on restarting again on Monday. Then June 20th I will be doing another round of 21 Day Fix with my hubby and others. The last time I did this program I lost 6.5 pounds and several inches. The 21 Day Fix is a HUGE help with getting not only nutrition in check, but portion control too. I am excited to see what we will be accomplishing by the time summer arrives!!

 

“I felt like I was breathing like a freight train and everything hurt, [but] somehow it didn’t bother me. The joy of moving and getting started overwhelms the negativity.”
– Lauren Fleshman

Run/Walk/Run – The Galloway Method

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Men’s Blue Healing Mandala Tech By: INKnBURN

HOW TO WALK FASTER

Here is the procedure:

  1. Usually done during the middle of a recovery “walk day” between runs or during the warm down walk on a running day.
  2. Warm up by walking very gently for at least 5 minutes – then do the following Drill.
  3. For 10-20 seconds, pick up the cadence of the walk by shortening stride.
  4. Walk gently for 30 seconds.
  5. Keep alternating segments, finding a cadence or rhythm that is quicker.
  6. Ease back on the cadence if you lose smoothness.
  7. First day, do this for ten minutes.
  8. Increase by 3-4 minutes on each successive session.
  9. Goal is to have 20-30 minutes total in this workout.
  10. Do this once or twice a week to maintain adaptations.

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Jeff Galloway Resources: 

www.jeffgalloway.com

Run/Walk/Run Timer 

How I Boost My Energy Level And Metabolism + A Recipe

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Loki & Tinka Belle & Their Afternoon Siesta!

Power naps – 10 to 15 minutes will do. It will recharge your batteries and give you a boost. Don’t make the naps too long or it may have the reverse effect. You really have to tweek this to suit you. So start with 5 to 10 minutes. Some times if I shut my eyes when I am really feeling fatigued, within 5 minutes I wake up feeling refreshed.

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Guest Bathroom

First thing in the morning where does everyone usually go straight to? The bathroom! Decorate in yellows and or reds in your bath area. These vibrant colors stimulate your mind and wake your senses. You can use this trick at the office or before a run or any time you need a mental boost, just focus on something red or yellow.

 

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Afternoon Yoga

Not only will yoga & stretching lengthen and strengthen muscles but will also give your energy levels a boost while helping to increase your metabolism. You can even find simple stretches to do at work.

 

 

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Sunshiny Yoga

 

Focus on your posture. Better posture, sitting up straight, burns more calories, boosts metabolism and keeps energy flowing through your body. Ever notice mid-day you start to slouch? Focus on that posture!

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My favorite outside time is anywhere near the ocean!!

💙

Go outside and breathe in some fresh air. Take a brisk walk, a couple times a day even. This will give you some amazing benefits and get you in the habit of motivating to get out from behind the desk, or off that couch! I love walking the beaches. The sand acts as resistance on your muscles giving you not only a relaxed view, but a great workout.

 

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My favorite snack!

Eat magnesium rich foods. Like almonds. They will give you a boost and fill your tummy with a healthy snack all at the same time

 

 

 

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Strength training is great for runners!

Change up your exercise routine. Muscle conditioning can get even your muscles bored. switching things up gives muscles confusion and they have to work a bit harder.

Speaking of exercise. Don’t just run or walk. Throw in some strength training. Adding lean muscle helps you burn metabolism harder.

 

 

 

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Handle tasks on your feet!

If you sit at work, do portions of your day standing. Whatever tasks can easily be done from a standing position, do it. The benefits far outreach just a metabolism boost or upping your energy levels

Bonus Recipe

 

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This isn’t my recipe. But it is a recipe I’ve used a few times and is a staple in my kitchen now. We don’t use energy bars often in our house. But hubby likes them when he does long runs and they are awesome for when we hike. This is my very favorite bar recipe!

Raw Superfood Energy Bars

Cherries and goji berries are soulmates in the dried-fruit world—I often make trail mixes that pair these two red beauties. Here, they’re friends again in these wholesome, cacao-nib-accented raw bars. Packed with all kinds of antioxidants, these bars appear to be “only” sweet treats, while undercover they are anti-aging workhorses.
Author: Julie Morris
Serves: 8 bars
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup raw almonds
  • ½ cups raw walnuts
  • ½ cup dried goji berries
  • ¼ cup Medjool dates, pitted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup dried cherries
  • 2 tablespoons cacao nibs
Instructions
  1. In a food processor, combine the almonds and walnuts, and process the nuts into the size of small gravel. Add the goji berries, dates, vanilla extract, and cinnamon powder, and process until the mixture forms clumps and begins to stick together. Add the cherries and cacao nibs and process briefly to incorporate the ingredients, but leave some small chunks for texture.
  2. Place the dough on a large sheet of plastic wrap on a cutting board. Press the dough into a compact rectangle, then wrap it tightly in the plastic, compacting it even more. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a ½ -inch-thick layer.
  3. Unwrap the dough and cut it into 8 bars or smaller bites, as desired. These superfood energy bars will last several weeks unrefrigerated and covered, or keep them in the freezer for long-term storage.

Recipe Source: Superfood Snacks: 100 Delicious, Energizing & Nutrient-Dense Recipes 

To Race Or Not To Race

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There are many many reasons TO run races. They can be really very motivational and being surrounded by so many amazing and supportive fellow runners can be a great experience and very inspirational. But during my mini hiatus from running I considered the race I have coming up and the pressure that can put on me. I signed up for that race long before my injury or my dog passing and all the other stresses life’s thrown at me and us over the last few months. And it’s a length I’ve never even tried before, a half marathon. I’ve done one 10-miler before but usually I do 5K’s, maybe a couple 7 or 8K’s thrown in through the year. But not even in training have I ever done a half marathon. The last time I even walked something that distance was likely the slow walk we did through our Disney excursions. So a half marathon is a little intimidating.

 

course_muertitoTo Race

There is something to be said to be in the crowd waiting for the horns or whistles to start a race. There is an energy that can be addictive. It has nothing to do with competing. It’s the vibe of all these athletes (yes you are an athlete if you are in a race, or even running for that matter) who have trained, prepared, anticipated and usually woke very early to line up with everyone in the wee hours of morning. It’s a camaraderie. And it gets your adrenaline pumping.

That preparation you do before a race is a huge motivator for many. For me it’s been both a source of inspiration and specific time to focus on improving my pace and form. It’s the thing that makes you lace up your shoes on days you’d just like to stay in bed with the covers over your eyes. Those cold mornings can be rough, and the hot afternoon sun mid summer is brutal. But still, you have that date ingrained in your head and you gotta keep pushing.

Most races your entry fee is for a charity and that for me is a big reason to do races. I think I do races more for that reason than any other. It’s such a win win. You help a charity with your entry fee and yet you get a shirt, a medal, a piece of fruit, or more (hot chocolate races are awesome from what I hear) AND you get to race yourself, test yourself and your capabilities.

LIVE music! Or at least radio stations playing music. What a rush that is for me. Music is a big motivator for me. I only wish that the Rock & Roll was done more towards the winter months. Great music, but sooooo humid usually. And I don’t take the humidity well. So instead I usually volunteer for that one, and many others in the dead of summer heat. I am not a summer runner!

Some people actually thrive on running neck and neck with another in a race. For a few it really is competitive, especially when you become one of the fastest in an area, or a specific race. But still, it’s usually that competition with self. But running alongside others can be a push for you, especially when you start to drag. Usually I always keep someone who stands out who is going just a little faster than my pace, and I make myself keep up with them. And if I pass them, I focus on another who stands out. It all helps with focus, especially when I start to hit a wall and my legs just want me to stop. I look for that person and it becomes tunnel vision until I get over that hump.

Camaraderie! When you run with a team you don’t all necessarily run “together”. But you do have team members spread around the course who are out there giving you support and keeping an eye on you. Plus before and after the race, getting together with your team makes for a double the fun of the day! Some teams train together. The RWB runs together, and does cross-training together. Some times we do rock wall climbing or yoga too. Many bigger races have training teams for half marathons and marathons.

I love race expo’s! Packet pick up day is a fun time. Especially if you like shopping or trying out new gear. Often you can grab a great deal and learn about new advancements in gear and tech.

 

 

 

course_muertitoOr Not To Race

Some people shouldn’t run races. Plain and simple. For some it’s added pressure that takes away from the shear joy of the run. And the spontaneity of place and distance. Many runners and I’m one of those, especially when on a trail like to stop and take in nature, snap some pictures, enjoy the experience of feeling the air around me and the sights before me.

For others signing up for a race, no matter how much you know you’re only in competition with yourself, let the pressure of others running along with them dull the experience of the run. Then what’s the point of even running? You have to find joy. Or as RunJunkEes® say, “Find The magic In The Misery”. If it’s not fun, you’re just going to stop, so don’t do what makes you unhappy with your run.

I’ve talked to a few who just don’t like the crowds or the noise that events bring with them. While others feed off the rush of all that energy around them. I am a huge fan of the music. I like music when I walk or run. No chatting, just me, nature and music. Usually races like half marathons require a training schedule of some kind and some people just enjoy their runs to be more spur of the moment and unplanned. A free spirit approach, letting the run flow where it will free of constraint.

Weather can be iffy for some people living in certain areas making training for races difficult. Some see this as opportunity to toughen up and face the flurries or downpours. Not to mention some areas get pretty humid in the summer months. If I lived in Florida I would only run at night. But some see these weather obstacles as difficult to try and juggle specific training plans.

Not every charity is one you may want to donate to. I have one I will not run (no names will be mentioned here) because I personally don’t like how their monies are allocated through the charity. So I never run that race, ever. I don’t even volunteer for it.

And finally, my big pet peeve with races. I am not a morning person, not one bit. And getting up early for anything other than my job is always a constant mental battle with me. Most races you have to be out there before the sun even comes up. And on the weekend some times, that is just not sounding fun to me.

 

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So seriously, do what makes you happy and what makes you love your run and find excitement in your training. Running or race walking is trial and error. To run pavement or trails, races or no races, method of run training, etc… It’s all about makes you enjoy what you do. Running is not a competition and it’s not something that should be scary or torturous. It should be challenging yet fun. So get some good quality shoes fitted for you and lace up and get out there. Every step you take is another accomplishment and better health. Adding years to your life and life to your years. Above all else…

runhappy

personal opinion from personal experience – Not advice from an expert 👍🏼

Autumn Skies & Matthew

 

I’m thankful for the cooler weather to train in. I am notoriously not a warm weather
runner. I think I need to relocate up north for better for coolerme, running conditions 😊

Tonight the sky was gorgeous and it was hovering around 70 degrees, perfection 💋 But it comes at a price because what’s driving those temps down is Hurricane Matthew driving those cool breezes this direction.

My heart hurts for the destruction Matthew is already leaving in it’s wake in Haiti and Cuba. And it seems to be well on on it’s way towards the states and Florida is already considering evacuations the last I heard. Please be safe, get your kids, and your pets and evacuate if they say to go. You have the time, get it together and get somewhere safe. Don’t forget your furkids!

Click the button below for the National Hurricane Center’s

Hurricane Preparedness Checklist

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The Government Hurricane Preparedness Checklist

National Hurricane Center Up To Date Info

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RunJunkEes® Tip Of The Week:

Now that the weather is starting to get warmer and there’s more hours of daylight in the evening, you may be itching to get outside and run. But if you took a bit of a running break during the winter, don’t expect to be running at the same level as you did in the fall. Here are some tips to keep in mind as you head outside to take advantage of the nicer weather and ease back into running:

Make slow increases.
If you haven’t run consistently all winter, start your spring training with short, easy runs — no more than 3 or 4 miles at a time. Don’t run two days in a row. One of the easiest ways to get injured is to increase your mileage too soon, before you’ve established a good running base. Don’t bump up your mileage by more than 10 percent per week.

http://running.about.com/od/runningforbeginners/ss/runningmistakes.htm#step2

http://running.about.com/od/injuryprevention/tp/springrunning.htm

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