Let’s talk recovery

I received products from Addaday, Arcanum, CEP Compression, NUUN, and Incrediwear as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews.

Let’s talk about recovery. Running recovery. Do you do anything to aid in your post run recovery? Eat a snack high is protein right after? Stretch? Foam roll? Nothing?

The older I get I find that I need to concentrate on my recovery just as much as my runs. At The Running Event last month I received several products that I have come to enjoy and now added to my recovery routine.

Addaday Massage

The Deep Tissue Roller for Runners from Addaday Massage is an amazing recovery tool. I have issues with tight calves and a cranky IT band. This thing can really get in there and help work the kinks out. The balls really help you pinpoint the Massage and pressure too. Paired with my foam roller, they’ve been fantastic in getting me back on the road quicker and with less pain.

Addaday also makes a cool Runner’s Tea. It’s a high mountain oolong tea that’s a clean energy source before your run. I used it for my mid afternoon slump instead of my usual coffee a few times. I loved that you could steep each package multiple times. It had a nice flavor with a good boost of energy without all the coffee jitters.

CEP Compression

I love, love Compression socks. I love wearing them during a run and after a run.

I really enjoyed visiting the CEP Compression booth at The Running Event. These guys are passionate about Compression and know their stuff. I love, love, love the Women’s Run Sock 2.0. They have graduated Compression along the calf of 20-30mMHg. They felt so good after I put them in and while I was running. I think my favorite thing about these socks though is the padded cushioning and seamless toe closure on the foot of the sock. This is the first compression sock I’ve tried with padding under foot!! Wow. Felt so amazing.

I wore them after a couple of long runs for recovery and I really like that they offered good compression without overly squeezing my legs into oblivion. They are honestly comfortable enough that I could wear the to bed.

Arcanum Edge

Activated Hemp is the new thing in sports performance. I’m seeing it pop up everywhere. I’ve tried it out before I liked the benefits. What caught my eye for Arcanum is that is applied directly to your skin instead of ingested. They work with trusted industry leader Mary’s Nutritionals to create their performance and recovery products. We were given a Sarco Freeze (pinpointed recovery and topical cooling), The Quill (everyday use), and Sarco Breeze (Massage oil).

The Sarco Freeze felt so good on my sore knee these last several weeks. I would use it both preemptively right after a run and anytime my knee started to get cranky. The immediate cooling action was very soothing. The Quill is a patented activated hemp delivery pen for daily use. This was perfect for the daily stresses and unease of the Christmas holidays. It helped bring more restful sleep and took the anxiety edge off on stressful days. I only used the Sarco Breeze activated hemp massage oil a couple of times on a sore IT band. It seemed to help break up the soreness.

Incrediwear

Incrediwear was a great discovery at The Running Event. They make anti-inflammatory recovery wear. Their products can be worn 24/7 and they even encourage you wearing it to bed to optimize recovery while your body is resting. Their products have been shown to accelerate recovery up to 46%. Per their website:

Our technology incorporates semiconductor elements within our fabric, which when stimulated by body heat, release negative ions. The negative ions activate molecular vibrations that increase blood flow and speed. Increasing circulation helps bring more oxygen and nutrients to the target area, which optimizes the body’s natural healing process and accelerates recovery.

I tried out the Women’s Performance Capri and socks. I really liked both. The capris were a good thickness and comfortable. I wore them for a couple of runs during short runs and then a couple of times after runs. The tights felt good both during and after. I could see wearing these on longer runs. I really liked the socks too. They are nice and thin and we’re very comfortable.

NUUN

I’ve been a big fan of NUUN for a long time. I like to drink NUUN during my runs and during the day for extra hydration. I just started drinking the NUUN Immunity and Energy tabs for recovery too. I love the immunity and energy boosts they give me.

I recently started drinking it hot in the afternoon too! Who knew it was so good hot! I little stretching, rolling, and warm NUUN is just what the recovery ordered.

I’m most excited about this new release from NUUN: their new performance endurance drink for use during the run. It will be another good add to my post run recovery. Hydration, hydration, hydration is a huge key to quicker recovery.

The Running Event Recap

Disclaimer: I received a travel and hotel stipend and swag from The Running Event as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews! No further compensation was given and as always, all opinions are my own. If something was given for review purposes, it will be disclosed.

Last month I had the insane opportunity to attend The Running Event (TRE) in Austin, Texas. If you’re not familiar, The Running Event is the premier running event/conference/expo for running retailers. All the biggest running names are at this event showing off their latest up and coming products and designs. It’s generally not open to the public, but I was invited to attend as an influencer for BibRave. Such an amazing opportunity! I’m going break the two days of awesome down for you guys.

Zwift Running Event

We all began to trickle into Austin on that Thursday afternoon. We were to meet up at a conference room in the Hilton for a meet and greet, SWAG reveal, and Zwift Running Event.

We got so much amazing SWAG from so many wonderful vendors at TRE. I felt like a kid at Christmas! Many were some of my favorite brands I was already familiar with (Brooks, Altra, NUUN, CEP Compression) and there were several new brands I was excited to try out (Handful, Vuori, Addaday, Vooray, Incrediwear, and Arcanum)!

We settled in, getting to know each other better and then it was time for the Zwift running event!

Several of our Bibrave Pros jumped onto two treadmills and ran a virtual group run on the Zwift app with Bibrave Pros all over the country. It was so cool to watch the app and how it linked up runners from all over.

As we wrapped up the Zwift Running Event we got a huge surprise. We had all been invited to the Brooks after hours party!! But first up, dinner: Texas BBQ.

Brooks Party

With a belly full of BBQ we strolled over to The Brooks party being held in the Cedar Creek Courtyard.

Of course we had to wear our new Brooks Women’s Reflective LSD Jackets to the party. LOVE all the reflective print on it!

We were all just chilling, hanging out with a beer when who freaking walks in???? Des Freaking Linden (no, that’s not her middle name, but it should be) she graciously took photos with all of us runnerds fangirling over her. After that wish-come-true experience we rolled out to the dance floor to shake our booties. We had a great time dancing the night away to the cover band Suede. They were so good!

Bibrave Group Run

Early the next morning the whole Bibrave family met up for a fun group run through downtown Austin and up to the Capitol.

It was fun having our sea of orange running through downtown in the quiet, early morning hours.

The Running Event

Immediately after the group run we went over to the convention center to walk the expo floor and check out the latest and greatest products from running gear retailers such as CEP Compression, Brooks, Altra, Handful, Vooray, Vuori, Addaday, NUUN, Incrediwear, and Arcanum.

It was so interesting and exciting to learn about some of the new, up and coming products and the technology behind some of my favorite tried and true gear.

Overall, the Bibrave Running Event experience was so amazing. I’m still riding the high from all the fun. I’ve been testing all the gear out all month. I’ll be writing up a couple of blog posts on the gear in the next couple of days.

Better life, Better Performance with iKOR Performance CBD Hemp Extract

Disclaimer: I received a discount on the iKOR Performance CBD Hemp Extract delivery service as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

I have been reading a lot about Hemp Extract and it’s benefits for anxiety and sleep but I hadn’t seen it being promoted as an athletic performance enhancer until iKOR Labs. So I opted in to try it out.

IKOR Performance CBD Hemp Oil claims to assist with faster recovery by reducing inflammation and oxidative stress, better performance through boosted mood, and faster delivery to the body through its liposomal encapsulation technology.

From iKOR’s website:

iKOR is a clean, natural source of recovery enhancing CBD that protects your body from the stresses of training, improves recovery from intense efforts and helps you maintain a positive mental state. The most bio-available CBD product on the market, iKOR is a highly protective anti-oxidant, an effective anti-inflammatory and a powerful mood booster.

I used iKOR Performance CBD Hemp Oil for two cycles of 7 days. Immediately I noticed a calming effect after starting the cycle. My anxiety was much lower and my sleep was much better and more restful. I wasn’t as anxious before workouts. I ran three different races while on iKOR Performance CBD Hemp Oil and I did feel like I recovered quickly after each race. I wasn’t as sore as I have been in previous races.

The iKOR Performance CBD Hemp Oil worked well for me mostly in the respect that I felt more well rested and less stressed while on a 7 day cycle. This translated to my training well by giving me more energy for my workouts. My only con to report would be the taste. It’s an acquired taste. The citrus flavor just mixed oddly with the hemp oil in my opinion. I got used to it quickly though.

If you’re interested in trying out the Performance CBD hemp extract you can save 20% off w/ code BibRave20.

5k Crate Runner Subscription Box Review

Disclaimer: I received a sample of the 5k Crate Runner Subscription Box  to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews!

These days I think there’s a subscription box for everything: beauty, clothes, kids,  science for kids, dogs, cats, wine…you name it, there’s a subscription for it! I’ve seen several subscription boxes being advertised for runners as well. The reviews on some of them have not been too good. The boxes are often filled with random energy bars and gels and not much else. Well, this is NOT the case for 5k Crate. This box was crammed packed with some really, really cool runner gear.

First,  a little about 5k Crate. It’s a quarterly subscription service with each box designed specifically for runners. The subscription costs you $59.99 a quarter and they send you gear specified to your gender and size. You get 4 to 6 handpicked items each quarter and the shipping is free.

The gear in this quarter’s box did NOT disappoint. Inside the box there were:

  • A women’s Mission Vaporactive Alpha Short Sleeve V-neck T-Shirt – in my specified size. And in my favorite color…PINK! I really liked this shirt. It was moisture wicking, thin, and not too tight and clingy. I can see it becoming a repeat in my weekly running apparel.  (Value $25)
  • A Mission HydroActive Cooling Towel – I have a couple of these and they’re really nice on the hot, hot summer days we have in the South. (Value $10 – $15)
  • A pair of Zensah Peek Running Socks – Loved these! Such a cute color and great fit. Love Zensah’s products. (Value $14)
  • A pair of Spigen Wireless Bluetooth Headphones – Our team had mixed reviews on these but I honestly loved them. They fit well in my ears and didn’t pop out. They connected really easily to my iPhone and the battery life was pretty impressive. The sound quality was really great as well. I was very impressed by these headphones and they’re quickly turning into my new faves. (Value $27)
  • Two Epic Wipes – There’s a reason they market these as “The Massive Wet Wipe” because these things are HUGE! You can seriously wipe down your entire body with one huge wipe. It felt AMAZING after a hot, sweaty run. I used one right before I had to run to the grocery store after a run and I felt amazingly refreshed and not quite so stanky. I can see these being very versatile. (Value $5)
  • Two La Fresh Travel Lite Sunnyside Lotion Wipes – I threw one in my backpack and one in my purse for emergency sunblock if needed. They are each SPF 30. (Value $1)

As you can see there is well over $80 is merchandise and gear in the box and all of it is very relevant to any runner.  I liked everything that came in the box. You can get a little better view of everything in the box on my “unboxing” video below.

Therapydia NOLA – physical therapy with heart

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary run assessment from Therapydia NOLA in exchange for this blog post. However, all views and opinions are my own.

I recently had the opportunity to visit the Therapydia NOLA physical therapy clinic in Metairie, Louisiana to check it out and receive a run assessment. Being a runner with a history of knee issues, I’ve been through my fair share of physical therapy clinics. I know what I like and don’t like in a clinic and I know what will get results out of me. I immediately connected with the staff and atmosphere of Therapydia NOLA. They’re definitely one of the “good guys”.

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One of the first things you notice upon entering the Therapydia NOLA clinic is the friendly staff and the warm, inviting environment. I wasn’t in the door two seconds before I was greeted cheerfully by Heidi Ferry, the office manager. I was immediately offered a bottle of water and introduced around to the therapists in the clinic. They have a nice, little waiting area to sit and relax while you wait for your therapists to work with you.

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But, you won’t be waiting long with the way they schedule their patients. Each patient is scheduled personal time with a therapist and evaluated and re-evaluated for every visit. There’s none of the, “Go start your exercises over there and I’ll be with you in half an hour” mess that you often get with the large physical therapy clinics. It’s very, very personal and one-on-one at Therapydia NOLA. I witnessed therapists standing with and over their patient for that hour, giving them instruction on proper form and getting feedback from the patient on their progress and how they felt. It’s this personalized touch that gets patients to work harder, improve, and gain a greater quality of life back. They have a vested interest in that patient/therapist relationship. The therapists care about each patient’s quality of life.

They consistently have the patient in mind. They will work with your schedule to fit you in when it’s best for your busy life. Want to come before work? No problem. They open early several days of the week. Same thing goes for after work. They often adjust their hours to fit the patient. Heidi works with most insurance companies to take all of the headaches out of filing and paying via insurance. And now you no longer have to have a doctor’s prescription for physical therapy. You can call and schedule with them directly if you develop new (or old, familiar) aches and pains. They will perform a full assessment on you and put together a plan to get you back on track.

I loved too that every therapist was an athlete. They were a well rounded group with a CrossFit coach, triathletes, and runners. I know going into a therapy session with a fellow runner that they’ll understand my concerns and my drive to get back out on the road as soon as possible.

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As part of the assessment I had a change to sit down with the therapists and interview them about the clinic. Below are a few Q&A from the Therapydia NOLA team of physical therapists: Clinic Director Jonathan Burke, DPT, Whitney Braswell, DPT, and Jessica Hernandez, DPT

  1. Tell me a little bit about Therapydia NOLA and the services you offer?

Therapydia NOLA is a physical therapy and wellness clinic that focuses on treating all types of musculoskeletal and nervous system dysfunctions and injuries. We treat a variety of issues ranging from injury rehabilitation to sports-specific conditions as well as long-term chronic conditions. We also do injury prevention screenings to prevent future injuries from happening. Our goal is to work with you to create a unique treatment and wellness program that is designed for you and your body.

  1. What sets you apart from other physical therapy offices?

Treatment at our clinic is provided one-on-one by a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) throughout your entire treatment. We don’t use physical therapy aides or techs, you’ll stay with the physical therapist you’re working with throughout the entirety of your rehabilitation. Manual therapy, or hands-on techniques, is also at the core of our treatment program. Manual techniques are highly specific to the part of your muscle that’s injured and are used to treat soft tissues and joint structures. We use manual therapy as the foundation for treatment and complement it with guided corrective exercises. Our clinic also specializes in offering customized physical therapy services for Women’s Health and Trigger Point Dry Needling.

  1. What would a typical therapy session at Therapydia entail?

We’ll treat your injury by assessing your body’s biomechanics from head to toe. For example, having an ankle injury doesn’t simply mean treating your ankle. You’d have to assess across your lower limbs and core to see which instabilities could be putting extra strain on your ankle. If you come in for an initial evaluation, we’ll perform a screening and depending on your condition look at your range of motion, strength, flexibility, posture, and movement patterns. We’ll take baseline measurements of your movements and use that data to drive our treatment program. We’ll assess and reassess and tailor treatment to your needs throughout the process. For subsequent treatment sessions, exercise-based rehabilitation will be used alongside manual therapy to heal any injured muscles and joints.

  1. What is a run assessment and what are the benefits?

A run assessment is a screening specifically designed to apply to running mechanics. A physical therapist will put markers on you and you’ll run naturally while they observe and take a recording. Afterwards, they’ll use a video analysis coupled with a movement assessment to look at your angles and how you move through the 4 phases of running. We can identify any joint and soft tissue restrictions as well as strength and motor control deficits. The goal is to see how joints across your body move through their necessary ranges of motion and see what injuries you might be at risk for. It’s not just about how your feet hit the groundyour knee, pelvic, and trunk positioning all come into play to when considering your gait. It’s all about getting you to train correctly so your body processes force efficiently as you run. That way, you can prevent future injuries you’re at risk for and prevent joint and muscle overuse.

  1. What advice would you have for a runner dealing with a nagging injury?

Do not continue running through the pain in hopes that it will just go away. Seek out a medical professional that assesses movement to find out what’s at the source of any pain you’re feeling. For example, a nagging and achy knee may be the result of a limitation at the ankle or hip. I would also suggest trying out cross-training. Swimming, cycling, and rowing are great ways to improve cardiovascular endurance. Choose an activity that allows you to perform without pain and supplement this with your running until you are able to run without pain. Often times, athletes say, “I was feeling pretty good so I went for a 3 mile run today” only to end up discouraged because their pain came back. Make sure you have a solid return to a run program following an injury as well. Make sure you work with your movement specialist to work out a training routine that effectively gets you back into running without putting you at risk for injury. At Therapydia NOLA, we use a return to run program that is evidenced based from the University of Maryland.

  1. What’s the number one mistake you see new (and old) runners make?

Blaming any pain or injury on their running shoes or changing shoes to fix the problem. Not having the right type of shoes can contribute to discomfort while you run but the overall source of the pain will have to with your form and biomechanics as you run. Working on your running form and technique will guide you to have a better and injury-free training program.

  1. What is your best advice to prevent common running-related injuries?

I always tell runners to keep to the FIT principle: do not increase frequency, intensity, or time of running too quickly. Your body needs time to adapt to the increased amounts of force that you’ll be putting on your muscles and joints. Keep to proper running progression when increasing distances and keep up a cross-training program on non-running days.

In terms of form, you’ll want to shorten your stride and increase steps per minute (cadence) to reduce stress to your hips and knees during running. Try to land directly under your center of mass to eliminate breaking motion when your foot hits the ground. Make sure you stay upright but lean slightly forward at the trunk with a slight bent knee when your feet land. The hips are an essential area of the body for runners to work on. The musculature of the hips help to stabilize the pelvis during running. The muscles around the hips like the glutes especially keep the pelvis from dropping in single limb support. If this muscle has trouble stabilizing the pelvis then the knee will move inward and the arch of the foot will collapse. This results in improper running form that will be setting putting you at risk of injuring yourself.

Therapydia NOLA was a great physical therapy clinic. I really connected with the staff there and would highly recommend it to anyone seeking physical therapy for an injury or even a run assessment to see where they can improve weaknesses in their form. I’ll be writing up another post shortly on my run assessment and everything it entailed (*hint* it was SUPER interesting!!)

Stay tuned!

Therapydia NOLA is located at 2701 Airline Drive, Suite L in Metairie, Louisiana. You can call them at (504) 507-9375 or email them at hello@therapydianola.com to set up an appointment.

Staying hydrated with Ultima Replenisher™

Disclaimer: I received a sample of Ultima Replenisher ™ to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!”

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Summers in south Louisiana are brutal. The humidity regularly stays above 80% and the heat index is at least 10 degrees higher than the actual temperature. So, that 96° temp actually feels like 106°. Running and training in the summer is tough. It’s hot. Your pace slows a lot. You routinely sweat 2 to 3 lbs. of water weight off during a run. I am a sopping wet mess after a simple 3 miler. With the heat and added loss of fluids through sweat, hydration and electrolyte replenishing become extra important.

This is precisely why I was really excited to try out the Ultima Replenisher™ Electrolyte Powders.

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Ultima Replenisher™ was founded by a nutritionist and long distance runner and was created for the USTF athletes for the 1996 Olympic Games. The combination of electrolytes, vitamins, and minerals was essential in keeping the runners hydrated and aiding performance.

Ultima Replenisher™ Electrolyte Powders are:

  • vegan,
  • gluten-free,
  • contain no processed sugar,
  • carb-free,
  • zero calorie,
  • contain no artifical flavors or sweeteners,
  • caffiene-free, and
  • made with plant-based colors and real fruit flavors.

The powders are sweetened with stevia leaf. Compared to other sugar laden sport drinks, Ultima Replenisher™ has 3x more potassium, zero sugar, and five other electrolytes and support minerals that are key to performance and hydration: magnesium, chloride, calcium, selenium, phosphorus, and zinc. Replenisher™ also has 167% of your % daily value of Vitamin C in each serving. It’s almost like drinking a multi-vitamin!

What I noticed immediately about the powders is the flavor. These drinks TASTE GREAT. Really. I didn’t notice any of the strange aftertaste you experience in some sugar-free drinks. I tried several different flavors out and really enjoyed every one of them. My only issue is the full scoop was a little sweet for me. I like my water flavored subtly. Cutting the scoop in half was perfect for me. But my husband and kids liked the full scoop flavor better.

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The powders come in two sizes of bulk tubs: a 90 serving and smaller 30 serving canister. You can also get the stick packs (shown above) which are great for on-the-go and travel. I keep a couple of the sticks in my purse for work and in my hydration vest to put back in my water as I drain it repeatedly on my longer runs. The individual serving size package makes them really convenient.

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My whole family loves these powders. I even bought the toddler formula for my kids to get them away from the sugary sport drinks. They love it! They love making their “berry drink” themselves. I’ve actually been drinking a lot more water because of it. The great taste makes it so much easier to get in my water consumption for the day. Before I know it, I’ve downed 80 oz!

I highly recommend trying out the Ultima Replenisher™ Electrolyte Powders. Ultima Replenisher™ and BibRave have partnered to offer a great discount code.

You can receive 35% off your order plus FREE shipping with the code BIBRAVE2016!!

I’ve already used that code twice to re-order. Ha! Guess I’m kinda obsessed with the stuff.

 

Reindeer Run 5k recap

This weekend the entire Z Family went out to Ponchatoula, LA for their annual Reindeer Run for Restoration House 5k and kids fun run. We did this race last year and loved it. Little Z ran the kids run and loved that he got a medal at the end. This year they were passing out the cutest reindeer medals for everyone. Coming back from a week at Disney we were exhausted but we HAD to do it. Little Z had been talking about running to get his medal for weeks.

Of course, our family had to go in costume. In fact, there are specific costume award categories for this race. Almost everyone was dressed up in Christmas gear.

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Little Z wanted to be Santa and wanted us to dress up as either elves or reindeer. Elves were much easier to do so elves we were!

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He was soooo excited to run with Daddy as they lined up at the race start.

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Annnnddd they’re off! Apparently the gun/horn went off by accident and everyone started running in the wrong direction. HA! So they had to run another block in the other direction.

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But Little Z and Mr. Z did GREAT and finished up strong.

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He was so proud of his medal.

After the kids race was done it was time for us to line up for the 5k. We were pushing both boys in the double stroller and it was cold so I wanted to get it done quickly. Last year when we did this race I was just a few months off having Baby Z-peat. I wanted to crush that time this year. We started out pretty quickly and Mr. Z asked me what time I was going for. I just told him, “get this done as quickly as possible”.  But I did have a goal in my head. I REALLY wanted to get a sub-9:00 pace.

Miles 1 & 2 ticked by pretty easily. I had pulled up the holiday channel on Pandora on my phone as we were blasting Christmas music as we ran. At the start of mile 3 I started to get tired. We were both getting tired. But we were almost there and we were on track for sub 9:00/mile pace. We pushed each other and ran it in at a sprint for a 26:37 finish time! Whoohoo!

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Shortly after we finished I check the official finisher results and saw that we had both placed in our age groups! I took 1st and Mr. Z took 2nd! SWEET!

The race starts and ends at a cute park in Ponchatoula. They have a cute backdrop to take race photos and Santa is even there for pictures.

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There was hot cocoa, Chic-fil-a chicken biscuits (YUMMY!), chicken quesadillas, jambalaya, fruit salad and a cookie decorating station.

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There’s even a nice playground for the kids to run around and burn off some energy too.

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We even took home the best group costume! The prize was a HUGE box of chocolates. All in all, it was a great morning. We had a blast and we will be back to run it again next year.

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You can check out my race report on bibrave.com here:

Reindeer Run for Restoration House 5k

Inside the Mind of a Runner

While a day late (I’m always running late), I thought this would be an appropriate post for National Running Day. These are just some of the thoughts that go through my mind as I run.

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To run or not to run

Sitting on the couch, outfitted in my running clothes, I have visions of Cameron in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. “He’ll keep calling meeee….I’ll go.I’ll go….I’ll go”

Trying to motivate myself, I pull my sluggish body off of the couch, “I’ll go. I’ll go….I’ll go!”

Slowly I walk to the end of the block to my starting point – the stop sign. I bargain with myself, “One lap; that’s all you need to do. Just get through one lap. One point eight miles – you can do it. Easy.”

Ipod shuffle. Check. Shoes laced. Check. Deodorant. Check. Let’s go.

0.5 miles

The weather is great today. That rain really cooled things down. Nice breeze going, lightly blowing against my face. Ohhh… here comes a guy running the other way. OK, pick up the pace a bit. Look like you know what you’re doing here. Look like you’re an avid runner. Wave back. Smile and head nod. OK, he’s gone. Slooowww back down. Back to the agony.

1.0 miles

I hate the first mile. Man, this hurts. Where is that runner that was training for the half marathon? I liked her. She was smooth, strong, … confident. Where did this jiggly, spastic stride come from? Awww, what a cute dog. THEY won yard of the month? Would fajitas be good for dinner?

1.5 miles

OK, now I’m finding my stride! This isn’t so bad. I am an efficient running machine! Breathe in, breathe out…breathe in, breathe out. Relax your arms and shoulders. Ohhh…I like this song! I think I’ll speed up the pace a bit.

1.8 miles

OH MY GOD – that’s the longest song EVER! I hate that song! Fast forward. OK, coming up on one lap. How do I feel? Should I go for one more? Lungs, how’re you holding up?

“We’re a little tight, but holding on! Keep going!”

Heart?

“Still pumping away! Keep going!”

Legs?

“We’re just getting warmed up down here! Keep going!”

All right, knees you’re the weak link in the system. How are things with you guys?

“Wee’r givin’ ‘er all she’s got Capt’n but I don’ know how much longer she’ll hold.”

(Why my knees sound like Scotty from Star Trek I don’t know, but it makes me smile.)

Consensus – Keep going!

2.0 miles

Here comes the guy again. Head nod. Smile. I wish he would quit passing me! It’s hard to keep this pace up.

2.5 miles

I’m really finding my stride today. This actually feels great. How about adding a little speed work? Ok, sprint to the end of the street. Ready…Go!

2.7 miles

Ouch. That hurt.

3.0 miles

I’m rounding the last corner. Only half a mile to go. Relax the arms and shoulders. OK, time to trade out my tired legs for “NEW LEGS”. Commence with Operation New Legs.

3.4 miles

Bring it on HOME. Strong finish…The stop sign is only a few feet away now. I think I can, I think I can!

3.5 miles

Wow – what a high! I feel amazing! The runner’s still in there – I just had to dig a little for her. I feel like I could conquer the world right now! All right stop-sign, same time tomorrow. See you then.

#100milesinMarch update

Well, we’ve reached the halfway point of March (a little over, but I was on travel the beginning of this week). I figured I’d better check in on my progress with the #100milesinMarch challenge.

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I am happy to report that I have logged 73 miles so far this month. SEVENTY-THREE MILES!! I’m averaging about 30 miles a week. That’s a huge step up for me. I’ve got some of the  normal aches and pains, mostly in the form of achy knees but I’m feeling pretty great for the most part. I’m taking care of my knees by foam rolling, stretching, and anti-inflammatory meds when needed. My endurance has greatly improved. I feel like a 6 miler is a warm up. Ha! And I’ve actually lost a couple of pounds as an added bonus. But, I’m also hungry ALL OF THE TIME. It’s difficult to not grab a huge hamburger and fries and shove it into my mouth every day (well, OK, I did that ONE day). I’m getting excited for my race on Saturday! I think this challenge has kept me focused and helped prepare me for my first post-baby half marathon.

Weekend Recap – Half training, DST & spring-like weather!

Hello Spring Weather!! It was such a gorgeous weekend. The sun was shining. The birds were singing. And I was running! I had to take advantage and get out there and enjoy the beautiful sunlight. We’re supposed to have rain ALL WEEK LONG. Ugh.

I am super proud of myself though. I got out and ran this week. I RAN! I logged 30 miles! That’s the longest run week I’ve had in a long, long, long time (like over a year I think). I’m sore and a little achy, but not too bad actually. I’m pleasantly surprised. I definitely need to stretch and have a date with the foam roller this afternoon. That’s 30 miles toward the #100milesinMarch so far!

I took Baby Z-peat out for a slow and easy 4 on Saturday afternoon to shake the legs out in preparation for my long run on Sunday.

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We took our time waking up on Sunday and were hurting a bit due to cranky baby (up every couple of hours) and Daylight Savings Time. I have a love/hate relationship with Daylight Savings Time. I love that I have an extra hour of daylight at the end of the day to play with the boys and run, but I hate the loss of an hour and the impact it has on our bodies. It always take us about a week to adjust to the new schedule. I wish we would honestly just pick one time and stick with it.

I was a nervous wreck going into the 10 on Sunday. I don’t know why. Well, I do. I put a lot of pressure on myself. I’m running the Blue Angels Rock N Fly Half in two weeks. I don’t want to embarrass myself and completely bonk it. I know I won’t. I know I’ll finish it just fine. But there’s still that little voice in my head that nags at me. I really have to work on that self deprecation.

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We started it out slow and easy. My goal was a negative split on this run. I wanted to take the first half very slow and easy and then pick up the pace on the second half. I knew I’d be running on tired legs and that’s just what I wanted. It actually went really well. It took a couple of miles for my legs to loosen up and feel warmed up but then I just kept plugging away. I was feeling really good at mile 6 and knew I could finish with ease. In fact, I easily had 3 more miles left in me. I needed this run to build my confidence for the race. I’m super excited about the race now. It won’t be my best, but it’s a great start to getting back into racing again.

wpid-img_20150308_141744.pngI’m hoping the rain will hold off enough today to allow me to get a 3 mile walk in with the boys. I don’t plan to run today. My legs need a rest. Then back to training on Tuesday. I’m going to try and get a 12 miler in sometime this week. Whew. No rest for the weary or anyone training for a race. 🙂

Make it a great week everyone!