The Do's and Don'ts Of Breaking In New Shoes

September 30, 2014

New running shoes are exciting! You buy them, take them home, and you immediately want to test them out on a run. However, most running websites will tell you otherwise. You have to break in new shoes... and it may take some time.

On picking them out
Do: Have help picking out the right pair for your weight, body type, running motion
Don't: Pick out a random pair from the shelf

It is best to go to a local running store and have someone help you with picking out the right pair. Usually the person helping will watch the way you run to figure out the best shoe for your foot.

On breaking them in slowly
Do: Wear them around the house, to school or work, or out for a walk to break them in slowly
Don't: Immediately go for a run in them

On wearing them during long runs
Do: Wear them a few times during the week for a couple of weeks before taking them out for a long run
Don't: Wear them for long runs before they are broken in

After having some pain after wearing new shoes for a long run, I wore them as I walked around school and on shorter runs before running longer distances in them.

What to wear for swim | bike | run

September 29, 2014

I once received a comment on one of my instagram photos that went something along the lines of "I want to do a triathlon but they are expensive"... which is pretty true. If you are doing one sport, such as running, it requires proper running clothes and tennis shoes. You may even want a fuel belt, fuel, headbands, and multiple running outfits. And then you want to add on two more sports. This is general guidelines of what you will need/want for each sport.

There are two basic things you need for swimming-- a swimsuit and goggles. Other things worth considering are: a swim cap and pool flip flops. You can even get fancy and purchase a kickboard, training paddles, pull floats (all of which I do not own).

Swimming needs and wants-- 
Needs: swimsuit, goggles, swim cap
Wants: pool flip flops, swim training gear

The number one clothing article of importance for cycling is padded biking shorts. Riding for minutes or hours in the biking saddle can get pretty uncomfortable so having these shorts helps. I learned that pretty fast. Take my advice. Other things you need a bike, a helmet, clip-in shoes, a trainer for riding indoors, a Garmin that tracks cycling miles.

Cycling needs and wants--
Needs: bike, helmet, cycling shorts, sweat wicking tanks/tops
Wants: clip-in shoes, trainer, Garmin, triathlon kit (jersey and shorts), gator skin tires, water bottle holders, fuel pouch, flat kit, sunglasses, cycling gloves

Running essentials: sweat wicking tanks/shirts/shorts, sports bras, socks, tennis shoes. Other things to think about: Garmin, fuel and fuel belt for longer mileage, arm warmers for colder weather running (they can also be used for biking), headbands.

Running needs and wants--
Needs: sweat wicking clothes + undergarments, socks and tennis shoes
Wants: Garmin, water bottle, fuel, fuelbelt, arm warmers, headbands

Note -- All of these are my opinions of things that I have found to be important. 

How You Know You're In Peak Marathon Training

September 17, 2014

Peak weeks are.. well, the peak of it all. The most important week(s). Everything that you have been training up to. Should I go on? Here are 23 ways to know you're in peak training:

1. Being tired, sore, and hungry 24/7 is a way of life.
2. All social events will resume once you finish the longest weeks of your training.
3. Texting and SnapChat are the main communication with friends.
4. You do not understand how other people have
5. You wear compression socks underneath your clothing to get in a little more recovery.
6. Regular clothes are overrated and you go for the "athletic" look on most occasions.
7. Rather than go out and be social on your off days, they are spent doing nothing. Absolutely nothing.
8. You are guilty of saying, "I only have 10 miles this weekend!"
9. Garmin Connect and Training Peaks are your top search engines.
10. The main questions you ask your coach are, "Are you sure??" and "Why??"
11. You consider date nights to be spent with a foam roller and an ice pack.
12. Most of your time is finding new music to run to and updating playlists.
13. Music is judged on whether or not you can workout to it.
14. You have memorized the course map.
15. Day-to-day schedules depend on when you can fit in 10 hours of sleep plus a 1 hour nap.
16. You get cranky when you can't get 10 hours of sleep plus a 1 hour nap.
17. You can never buy too much Gu.
18. Nightmares consist of but are not limited to: sleeping in and missing your long run, not having enough fuel during your run, mapping out incorrect mileage, or not finishing your run.
19. A swimsuit, heart rate monitor, fuel belt, and running clothes can be found draped over your shower.
20. You get cranky when you think you are injured. Even when you are perfectly fine and not injured.
21. Of course everyone needs to know how far you ran last week.
22. You know exactly where you are chafed.
23. You can't imagine spending all of your time not training.

5 weeks to go... 

Week Recap: September 1st - September 14th

September 16, 2014

When life gets busy.. I get behind on blogging.

Apparently, when you are twenty-one you are moved off of a family membership at our gym and have to get your own membership. I am still in the transition of gym hunting/finding a good bargain since the only reason I go to the gym is for the pool. Two week's ago I used my friend's neighborhood pool for lap swimming. You can't beat having a pool to yourself...

Monday: Yoga
I found a P90X stretch DVD to follow for an hour.

Tuesday: 45 minute easy run + Yoga
I wrote more about the yoga -- here --

So maybe my lunge needs a little work..

Wednesday: Swim + Weights
I did my swim after my two morning classes, went to nanny for a few hours, then did weight training when I got home.

Swim workout:
300m warm up
2 sets of 50, 100, 150
200m cool down

Thursday: Tempo run
I had thirty minutes in the "orange zone" which means hard but not all out. My goal was to maintain an 8min/mile paces for the thirty minutes but I am bad at controlling pace so it was a bit faster and more like 7:35-7:45min/mile paces

Friday: Recovery day

Saturday: 30 minute run + Yoga
Complimentary yoga at Lululemon is the best.

Sunday: Long run- 18 miles
I wrote more about this run -- here -- It went a lot better than I expected! Afterwards, my sister and I went to buy tacos and smoothies because that is the perfect breakfast. I spent the rest of the day sleeping and doing absolutely nothing. Then my sister and I went to get burgers and chicken nuggets for dinner. Shout out to the best sister who understands the need for fast food after hard runs. (She also has long runs but on Saturday mornings with her team).

This week was:
7.16 hours of training
31.2 miles of running

This past week was a "recovery" week with easier runs and a shorter weekend run. The only hard workout was Thursday's tempo run.

Monday: Recovery day
Monday's and Friday's are now recovery days and that is my favorite. What gets better than two rest days!?

Tuesday: Easy run
I picked up lunch after class. Whole Foods ham and cheese wrap + cake. They have the best cakes!

Wednesday: Swim + Weights 

Thursday: Tempo run
8x half mile repeats at 6:45 pace with 2 minutes walking break between each. I was able to run each at 6:45 pace and finished the last closer to 6 flat.

Thursday was a long day (but so much fun) with a morning run, then class, and Chi Alpha (a Christian fellowship on campus) with my small group.

Friday: Recovery day
I was super tired on Friday so I got home from my morning classes and took two naps. In the evening, my friend was having a get together that called for mustaches and everything Italian. A few girls cooked dinner- pastas, pizza, salad, breadsticks, gelato, cake, etc. Everything was delicious and it was a fun night with friends!

Saturday: Easy run

Sunday: Long run- 10 miles
I ended up running faster than I was probably supposed to (8:22 avg pace) but I felt good and just wanted to get the miles done.

And we bought a new guinea pig.. haha. Meet Lilly:

This week was:
5.02 hours of training
26.33 miles of running

6 weeks until the marathon!! Ahh!!

Makin' A Recovery Smoothie

September 11, 2014

I am hooked on this recovery smoothie! 

I saw another blogger who posted about making a recovery smoothie out of Vega sport recovery powder. I bought the powder at Whole Foods. The other blogger's smoothie was mixed with frozen fruits to make more of a slushy/ice cream consistency. I bet the thicker consistency is delicious but when I made it last week after my run I didn't freeze the fruits beforehand and I didn't want to wait until the fruit was frozen to make it. 

Recovery Smoothie Recipe: 
1 banana
1 cup of strawberries
1 packet of recovery powder (preferably tropical flavor)
1 cup of coconut water or regular water

If you have coconut water it makes the end flavor more of a tropical flavor but regular water works too. I definitely bought more packets so I could make another one this weekend after my 20 miler!

Yoga, yoga, and more yoga.

September 9, 2014

One word to sum up last week = yoga.

On Tuesday night, my friend invited me to go with her to small group. The text said "wear workout clothes and bring a towel." One of the girl's in the small group is working on getting her yoga certificate (or whatever it is called) to teach classes and was willing to teach all of us. It was really fun to be able to yoga and meet new friends. 

A different friend, Spenser, and I have been wanting to go to yoga all week but never could find a class that fit both our schedules. That is, until we saw on Facebook that Lululemon was having complimentary massage infused yoga on Saturday morning with juice samples after.  

Free yoga. Free {self} massages. Free juice samples. At Lululemon. Um yes.

I had a thirty minute run to do before and quickly got dressed to head down to Lululemon. The teacher showed us how to do self massages. Basically, you use your own feet to massage your feet or calves. In a seated position, you use one of your heels to massage your other heel. Maybe a picture would demonstrate better but I didn't take one of that.

She had us find a partner (good thing I went with a friend) and massage each other. It was kind of weird/gross since we had to lay on their feet while they massaged our temples and heads... Super weird.  But the rest of the class was good as she led us through warrior one and two poses, triangle pose, etc. 

After the class, Spens and I tasted one of the juice samples. It was apple, watermelon, ginger and they don't use sugar or water = all natural. The line was busy so we only grabbed one sample then went to 
Bird Bakery. It is a small bakery close to Lululemon. She has been before but I have never been.

It was a cute place with delicious food. I got a quiche and chai tea; Spenser got a brownie with her chai tea. I definitely want to go back for lunch and/or cupcakes.

I haven't practiced yoga in a few months and doing it a few times this past week reminded me why it is fun- stretching, working on balance, getting stronger.

18 miles

September 8, 2014

Yesterday morning I had an 18 mile run to do. I have not done a single 18 mile run.. the last marathon training cycle I skipped over it (overtraining) and went straight to 20 miles after taking some time to rest and ease back into training.

Shout out to my dad for his photography skills haha

I have had a couple bad long runs due to the heat/humidity and not hydrating properly. The last couple of miles would be slow as I was dehydrated. I was super nervous for this run because I didn't want a bad training run. (Add to the fact, I had a dream that I didn't wake up in time for my long run and wasn't able to run well because of the heat).

I tried a couple of new things today in hopes of a better training run that worked out great!

1. I listened to coach and ran by HR zone (effort) rather than pace. My pace ended up better than my last few training runs. I was trying to maintain a certain pace but would tire quickly.
2. I ran in my old shoes as I am still breaking in my new shoes. My new Mizunos caused a bit of pain in my calves during my last long run so I am running in my old ones since they aren't used all the way up yet.
3. I tightened my fuel belt to avoid bounce (see picture below). This caused no annoyance and I could just run rather than be frustrated the whole time with trying to adjust it.
4. I woke up around 6:15am and started running at 6:30 so I would have a little less running time in the heat.
5. I fueled more often since I knew I would be thirsty and hungry running for 2 and a half hours. I took one Gu chomp every three miles, drank a sip of Gatorade every mile, and ate a bite of a Clif bar at mile 12 and 16.

I used safety pins to wrap the fuel belt more around the smaller part of my waist ^^

These small changes helped me have a better, stronger run and got me more mentally focused. Now to get prepared for the big 2 - 0...

Friday Faves

September 5, 2014

Hey, it's Friday! I only had one class today and finished before 9am. Once I got home, I made waffles then took an hour and a half nap. I have been super tired these past few days. Friday's are my off day so I just spent the day relaxing.

Having Anna home this past weekend was so much fun. We went shopping and matched colors. (see shirts)

There was a double rainbow at my sister's cross country race last friday, except you can only see one in this picture.

Anna bought us flowers! We put the individual bundles together so it could be a full arrangement on our kitchen table.

Tomorrow morning, my friend and I are going to check out a yoga class provided by Lululemon and I am super excited for that! I will post more about it next week.. 

On Recovery

September 2, 2014

Today's post is all about recovery. I write different ideas on how to recover, etc. but I never keep up with them. This past week I was a lot better at keeping up with recovery. 

I had 10 miles this past weekend that went better than the last weekends run (16 miles). With an 18 miler coming up, I want to be strong enough to run it at a decent pace rather than struggle through the miles. I grabbed ice at the store for an ice bath. My sister and I put on spanx and sports bras and soaked for fifteen minutes. The time that is recommended is ten to fifteen minutes or however long you can stand it. 

While it isn't the most comfortable thing in the world, it definitely helped as my legs didn't feel so tight. Compression socks, foam rolling, and stretching also helped. Yesterday I skipped cycling and weights and opted for an hour of P90x stretching. 

One thing that I changed this week on my long run was my fuel belt. I have noticed a huge difference in how I run when I take it vs. when I don't. However, I become easily annoyed when it bounces on my hips. This weekend I used safety pins to tighten it more around my stomach/waist. I didn't have trouble with it so I may just have to run with it pinned. 

Vega sells packets of Recovery Accelerator that I mixed into a smoothie. This one isn't recovery but I made it last week as a breakfast smoothie:

Banana and Oat Breakfast smoothie:
1 tablespoon rolled oats
1 banana 
1 cup milk or almond milk
1/2 cup cold water
1 teaspoon honey

The Vega recovery accelerator comes in tropical flavor which I mixed with water, bananas, and strawberries. I don't know how much it accelerates recovery but it did taste good!

Week Recap: August 24th - August 31st

September 1, 2014

Ever since the 16 miler, I have not been feeling strong. I took all the "easy" days this week super easy. I emailed my coach and we are changing a few days of this week to (hopefully) get my legs recovered.

Anna and Jake got here on Thursday night, the weekend was so much fun with them here!

I'm pretty sure I wore that tank all weekend

Sunday: Recovery day

Monday: Cycle + Weights

Tuesday: Easy run
Tuesday was my last day of summer- I ran 60 minutes easy, got my hair cut, went to the grocery (my new chore), and didn't do much after that.

My new look is no makeup. I get ready so much faster ;)

Wednesday: Swim + Weights
First day of classes! I went to the gym after class for my swim then did weights later in the afternoon. I have not been in the mood to follow detailed swim workouts so when I get to the gym I normally make it up as I go or swim until the 30 minutes is up.

1000m swim workout:
2 sets of 200m, 100m, 100m, 100m

Thursday: Tempo run
The run was a warm up + cool down with the main tempo of 25 minutes at the top of the orange HR zone (around 8:15 pace). My class on Tuesdays and Thursdays starts at 1pm which means I have a few hours in the morning to get ready for class, stretch, relax, eat, and pack a lunch. It's pretty great.

Friday: Recovery day
I had two morning classes then I met up with my mom and Anna for shopping and errands. Anna had a swim workout to do so while she swam laps, I got to tan/read a book. Afterwards, we went to Lululemon where I bought some of the items from my "must haves" list. Later in the evening, Kathleen had her first cross country meet and the whole family went to cheer her on.

Pool time
Lululemon tanks/top
Back together again!

My sister, Liz, is interning at camp for a year. She has been gone for a week and wanted to surprise Anna since she was able to come home only on Friday. We went to support Kathleen at her race (the biggest support group there- all seven of us) and grabbed burgers for dinner.

Saturday: Easy run- 45 minutes
When you don't have a Saturday morning long run, you get to sleep in. I woke up a little later than normal, ran easy for 45 minutes, went to the bike store with Anna, and went to church.

Sunday: Long run- 10 miles
I finished the run before 8:30am and was able to go back to sleep until everyone else got up an hour later. My mom, sisters, and I spent the afternoon at the mall!

Strawberry banana smoothie (and a cookie that I ate too fast to take a picture of)

Loving the new split back Lululemon tank

8 weeks left until the marathon!

This week was:
6.02 hours of training
26.22 miles of running
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