For those who run – and those who don’t but like reading about cool gadgets

My new running shoes JUST arrived today, and I realized just how much I rely on all my running accessories to get me through my workouts.  So I thought I’d share my favorites.

These products are necessary.  Whether you are not a runner, and one mile or less is all you are up for (well maybe not “up for,” but willing to put your body through), or a practiced marathoner, I highly recommend looking into these or similar items.

Body Glide is necessary if you are a long-distance runner – male or female.  Just rub it on anywhere that tends to chafe and you are good to go – chafe free. (But really – this has saved my skin)

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I am in love with this little guy.  A couple years ago, I messed up my right hip by running on orthotics that had been molded to my teenaged feet.  Big mistake.  Anyways, it really messed with my gait, and I had to re-learn how to run, which was a disaster.

Fast forward a couple of years, and now because of my failure to understand that I was no longer a teenager with teenage feet, my side hip gets super tight. But this ball is a miracle worker at releasing those spots – such as my side hip – that are hard to get at using a traditional foam roller.  It might be the best purchase I’ve ever made.

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Bryan bought me this watch for my birthday these year, and I love it.  I used to use map my run on my phone, but I had noticed that that app wasn’t always accurate.  Garmin has a built in GPS, monitors your sleep and heart rate, and receives calls/texts.  I also just found a new feature where you can monitor when you need to buy new shoes – which is usually about every 300-400 miles.

I have the vívoactive 3 version.

Also, as a side note, I have never found earbuds that work better than the ones that come with your apple products.  All the other pairs I have tried fall out of my ears.

  • Cliff Bars

Favorite pre-run snack.  These give you enough sugar to get a long run in, but without being too heavy so that you’d rather blerch and take a nap. (If you haven’t heard of the blerch, and you like to run and/or eat, click here.  I promise you, it’ll be worth it.)

  • Thorlo Pads

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These are my favorite running socks ever.  The heel and the toe are padded to ward off blisters, but the body of the socks are still breathable.  Like I said in a previous post, Bryan actively tries to steal these from me every time he visits.

Anyways, these are my favorite running accoutrements.  I hope you enjoyed. And if you have gotten this far and haven’t clicked on the blerch link, you are missing out.

Exercising While On Vacation… Wait what?!

I know, I know – I’m going on vacation so exercise? really??

Unfortunately, yes.  I am getting married next year, and I really love eating so exercising is a must.  But since I will be staying in air B&Bs the whole trip, without access to a gym, my trainer and I came up with a no-gym/no-equipment solution.  Here’s the schedule we came up with:

Day 1 WK1 Reps WK 2 Reps
Escalating Density (12 min) (meaning you do five reps of each exercise and then repeat until the 12 minutes have expired – if this is too easy, increase to 15 minutes)
x5
x5
A1.) Push Up, which is pretty self-explanatory
A2.) Split Squat: This is essentially a stationary lunge.  If anyone is familiar with Barre3, this is basically the same thing as carousel horse.
x5 per leg
x5 per leg
A3.) Reverse Crunch: lay down on the floor so that there is no space between the floor and the small of your back. Then raise your legs so your body is in a v shape and lower them slowly until you feel your abs catch.  Raise them to the starting position and repeat.
x5
x5
A4.) Reverse Lunge
x5 per leg
x5 per leg
Day 2 WK1 Reps WK 2 Reps
Escalating Density (12 min)
x5
x5
B1.) Squat Jump: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Start by doing a regular squat, then engage your core and jump up. When you land, lower your body back into the squat position to repeat.
B2.) Partner Towel Row: so you can only do this if you are traveling with a friend, but the idea of this exercise is that your partner provides the resistance by holding one side of a rolled towel while you stand face to face with them and pull the other side of the towel as though doing a row.
x5 per arm
x5 per arm
B3.) Shoulder Taps: begin by taking a plank position. Then lift one hand to the opposite shoulder (i.e. the “tap”) so that you are in a one arm plank, and then place it back down so that you are once again in a two arm plank position.  Then lift the other hand to tap the opposite shoulder.  Repeat.
x5 per arm
x5 per arm
B4.) Reaching Single Leg Dead Lift.  For those familiar with Yoga, this is similar to warrior three.  The starting position here is standing on one leg, which is slightly bent. As you bent forward at the hips, move your arms directly out in front of you, and raise your non-standing leg to create a straight line from your fingertips to your left toes (i.e. parallel to the ground)
x5 per leg
x5 per leg

I will also – hopefully – be running while on vacation.  My fiancé and I are running our second Marathon in late October, and if I come back having failed to run, he will finish the race embarrassingly far ahead of me.  I’ve posted our training schedule below, if anyone is interested.

I know running sounds horrible to most people.  And it really did to me for the longest time.  In fact, I quit sports in high school because I loathed running.  Had you told me then that I would one day fall in love with it, I would have laughed in your face.  But, after graduating college, running kept me sane.

I had a really hard time my very first year out of college.  I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life (although let’s face it, I still don’t), but back then I had no direction, no plan, leaving me feeling utterly lost.  I had moved home to live with my parents, none of my friends lived in my home city anymore, and I did not have a job, so I spent the year working for my dad – who worked mostly from home. Needless to say, I almost never left the house.  Except to run.

My littlest brother was in his last year of high school, and he forced me out of my house to go on runs with him.  Eventually, he talked me into running a half-marathon.  After running that race, I was addicted.  So much so that I signed my fiancé (then boyfriend) up for the next year’s half.  Although he was not pleased about it – he hated running more than I ever had – he soon learned to love running just as I did.  All it took was for him to realize that running never gets easier – you simply get better at it.

 

Week Sun Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Sat
1 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 3 miles 3 miles Rest 6 miles
2 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 3 miles 3 miles Rest 7 miles
3 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 4 miles 3 miles Rest 8 miles
4 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 4 miles 4 miles Rest 9 miles
5 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 4 miles Rest 10 miles
6 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 4 miles 3 miles Rest 7 miles
7 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 4 miles Rest 11 miles
8 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 5 miles Rest 12 miles
9 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 5 miles Rest 13 miles
10 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 6 miles 5 miles Rest 14 miles
11 Rest 3 miles Cross Train 5 miles 4 miles Rest 10 miles
12 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 6 miles 6 miles Rest 15 miles
13 Rest 5 miles Cross Train 6 miles 7 miles Rest 16 miles
14 Rest 5 miles Cross Train 7 miles 8 miles Rest 18 miles
15 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 6 miles 5 miles Rest 12 miles
16 Rest 6 miles Cross Train 7 miles 9 miles Rest 20 miles
17 Rest 5 miles Cross Train 6 miles 5 miles Rest 14 miles
18 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 5 miles 4 miles Rest 8 miles
19 Rest 4 miles Cross Train 3 miles 2 miles Rest 1 mile
20 Race Day!!