Rough Run; Lessons Learned

My seven miler yesterday morning was pretty rough.  I haven’t had a rough run like this in a long time. When this happened, I try to see the positive.

Lessons Learned from Rough Run

#1 – Set Your Alarm for the Right Day

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Before going to sleep Saturday night, I checked the weather. 75 degrees at 7:00 a.m? 80 at 8:00?! Ugh. I must get out the door and start pounding pavement by 7:30. Set alarm for 6:15? Check. Set it for the right day? Ch…not so much.

#2 – Eat and Digest a Fueling Breakfast

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Arnold Thin w/ a smashed ripe banana on one side and ~ 1 T. Justin’s Maple Almond Butter on the other.  The perfect pre-run breakfast in my book.

 

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It was a great pre-run breakfast, but the time between consumption + running was not long enough. The result was three side cramps. One right when I hit mile two, one at mile four, and by the sixth mile, I was dealing with three different cramps.  Yikes! So I took a couple walking breaks now and then, and rode ran it out.

#3 – Instead of chugging a gallon of water right before walking out the door, rely on Camel Bak a little more.

 

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Refer to lessons learned #2

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So it wasn’t a great run. It wasn’t a horrible run either! I averaged 9:39 and finished in 1:07:33 with some walking breaks every now and then. The stats are actually better than how I felt.

When I got back to the house, I was able to do some damage control. My absolutely soaked shirt was a glaring sign that I needed some e-lec-tro-lytes in my life.

 

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In the form of coconut water!

It’s extremely important to replenish electrolytes after a long(er) workout especially if it’s hot, humid, and you’re sweating a lot. Coconut water does a spectacular job!

Freshened up with some ‘cubes n club (soda.)

 

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I read a little bit (Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) until my stomach growled that it was ready for some post-run fuel:

 

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In smoothie-form! It’s important to get some fuel as soon as your stomach can tolerate it. After about an hour, my tummy let me know it was OK, and I got my fuel in my favorite way post-workout. This was another Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie!

 

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I love taking leaves from my chocolate mint plant and adding them to smoothies. So delicious! Also included was ice, a frozen banana, Vega Shake and Go Chocolate, maca, and a big handful of spinach.

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Topped off with a crumbled homemade granola bar. Perfect!

I had plans of being productive today. I really did. But those plans went out the window when my mom invited me to come over and go shopping with her.

We hit up Sephora

 

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Target, and the grocery store.

Hiiii family:D

 

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After a while, I was back on the road to my hungry husband. Sunday nights are for grillin’ 🙂

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Thermos – Cold Matters

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While I was out gallivanting from store to store with my madre, I made sure to stay hydrated. It was a thick 90+ degrees in Illinois yesterday, so water was even more of a must. It was the perfect day to test out a product that Maggie from Thermos sent me!

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This is a Vacuum Insulated Hydration Bottle. It boasts to keep your beverage cold for 12 hours!!

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Obviously, I had to do the ultimate test and bring it with me on a 90 degree day in an even hotter car while shopping. So how’d it do?

Pros:

  • After 3 + hours of shopping, and leaving it in the car while in the stores, my water was still cold!
  • It fit in all three of my car cup holders
  • The pop-top spout made for ease of drinking
  • The latch on the top ensured no liquid would escape. I could throw it in my purse and not worry about my phone getting water damage
  • It doesn’t sweat. No sweat rings!

Cons:

  • The size. It’s really not big enough to have to keep something cold for 12 hours. It can only hold 18 ounces.

 

All in all, I love it! Would you guys want to do a giveaway on one?

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Well, I’m off to (hopefully) have a productive day. So much to do!!! It’s what I get for choosing fun over work this weekend. Ahhh it was worth it;)

Coming up, I’m going to talk about a local festival held in my town we had our hand at Friday evening – Beer Fest!

Have a Marvelous Monday, all!!

What is your favorite post-workout meal or snack? Mine’s a smoothie for sure. Covers all the bases!

Toughen Up for a Tough Run

Hey guys! 🙂

If you would have told me two months ago that on April 12th I’d be hot running outside in a tank top and running skirt, I would say only in a blue moon would that happen.

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Well, there have been about 8 blue moons this month already! I seriously cannot believe the amazing weather we’ve been having in central IL this spring. Please, please let it stick around!

Yesterday morning I chose to fumble upon the snooze button instead of getting to the gym to run. I’d decided on just making it an impromptu rest day (it’s been happening often lately.) But you know how plans go. I only had to train one client in the afternoon since my second one rescheduled, and had a bit of the running bug, so after training, I headed out for a quick run after taking Niko on a walk.

I ran 3.67 miles in 33 minutes – sans iPod – and just enjoyed the glorious day. There were elementary school soccer games, men’s softball practice, tons of other runners, and many other signs of summer. Lurve. Average pace was 9:04.

I came home very, very hungry and made a huge salad and side of potatoes and veggies:

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And a POM spritzer.

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In the salad was spinach, romaine, avocado, strawberries, baby bellas, broccoli, Quorn meatless nuggets, and raw goat cheddar. For the dressing, I put 1 T. apple cider vinegar, ½ T. olive oil, stevia, sea salt, and a splash of POM juice. So. Freaking. Delicious.

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Potatoes, carrots, green beans in an olive oil, basil, and garlic mix.

A little while later, dessert was had:

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Oh yes I did buy Chocolate Cheerios and eat them! The ingredients are ehhh, but I couldn’t resist!

Seven Tips for Getting through a Tough Run

After pressing publish on my post yesterday, I got to thinking about all the different tricks, techniques, and tips I pulled out of my hat CamelBak to help me get through all 11.25 tough miles.

Because let me tell ya, it’s pretty much impossible (for me, at least) to get through an already tough 11 mile run without relying on some go-to tactics.

Disclaimer: I don’t consider myself to be a running “expert” – this is just what works wonders for me!

1. Don’t let your equipment rule your run.

Obviously I’m a proponent of gadgets and gear while running. I don my Garmin, Camelbak, iPod, hat, and phone during every run that’s over 5 miles. But I don’t depend on it because iPods break, Garmin’s die, and Camelbak’s leak. Gadgets are very helpful in one’s training, but can lead a runner to a dead end if dependant upon them.

2. Get in your Planned Distance Mindset.

Before heading out for a run, it’s important to get in the right frame of mind. I don’t go out for a run with the same head on my shoulders during a short run as I do a long one. During short runs, for me, the mindset is all about paying attention to my pace, my breath, my intervals, etc. For long runs, it’s all about zoning out and telling myself “you’re going to run for a long time, and you’re going to enjoy the outdoors.” The only thing I concentrate on really is trying to achieve a negative split by not burning out early.

3. Run through cramps. Muscle cramps, joint pain, and tummy problems are really the only things that have literally forced me to slow to a walk. However, in this first year that I’ve become a “runner” I’ve learned to run through the muscle cramps. By taking deep, lung-filling breaths and holding it just a second before slowly breathing out can really help ease muscle cramps. If this doesn’t work, I slow down, stretch, and massage. As far as breathing while running in general, it’s important to keep your breath with your pace. If you speed up your pace, speed up your breaths. If it’s a slower run/pace, slow down your breaths.

4. Stay Hydrated/Fueled.

Whether you are carrying a water bottle, a Camelbak, or taking water break stops, it’s very important to stay hydrated during exercise. Also, after an hour of running (or any intense exercise) it’s beneficial to intake some form of carbohydrates during your run. Clif Shotbloks are my favorite solid form of instant energy, but lately I’ve found that drinking my carbs continuously aids in a constant stream of energy. For example, in Sunday’s long run, I diluted the water in my Camelbak with half a bottle of POM Wonderful juice. It worked wonderfully, and I don’t know if I’d have had the energy to finish if I didn’t have it.

5. Practice Proper Form

Keep your head up and your shoulders away from your ears, your abs firm, and your torso upright or tall. Your arm swing pretty much mimics your stride. If your arms are going super fast, odds are your legs are too. When running up hills, shorten your stride and slow your pace slightly.

6. Unleash your Inner Hardcore

I’m all about the mantras when runs get tough. The ones that work best for me focus on pushing through the run. Some of my favorites are: “if this were easy, everyone would be doing it,” “think of how you’ll feel when you get to the finish,” “you are a machine,” and some more positive mantras such as “you can do it!” “look at how beautiful it is,” “great job, legs, keep it up!”

7. Keep the ends to your means in mind.

Why are you running in the first place? For good health? To lose weight? Gain muscle? Training for a race? Whatever it is, you are definitely worth this tough run!

What are some tips and tactics that help you get through a tough run or killer workout? I’d really love to hear your advice and apply it to my training, too!

Well I’m off to go to that one work place 😉 Have a fabulous day, everyone!