Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Q & A


so i have a question- Would you recommend eating an energy/protein bar before a run/race or just go straight to a food item that would give you more nutrients you need? What good energy bars have you found to work for you? My issue is I'm trying to figure out what food to eat before my runs to give me enough fuel. Also my other problem is I am not waking up early enough to eat something- i don't want to wake up an hour before i run to eat something. any help?

A: I would always recommend a natural food source in leu of a packaged anything, except in your case! What you need is the most energy for your bite. You don't want to eat a lot and feel too full and yucky to run, but you also need some energy for milage. Here are a couple of options that you can try out and see what you like best.
1. Energy Bar: I like power bars a lot and luna bars are also great. Look at the labels and try to find one that has the most carbs, some protein, and low fat and sugar...and that you can stomach! You can eat a couple of bites before you run and then take it with you to eat along the way. Some people schedule a grocery/gas station stop in the middle of the run to refuel. As I've run marathons, I've always had to eat along the way. You definitely feel the boost after just one bite/drink.

2. Sports drink: A sports drink is really great for morning runs. It provides energy and not a full, bulky feeling. In one of the marathons I've run, all they had was sports drink along the way. I made sure to start drinking from mile 3 (something that I used to laugh at other runners for doing...until I about died in a race from dehydration and lack of energy). I remember I could actually feel that sweet nectar coursing through my body, renewing my depleted energy stores.

3. Fruit: A bite out of a pear or orange is also great for a energetic boost in the morning. I've even carried a clementine along with me to eat along the way...perfect!

Q: another question- You like New Balance running shoes right? I'm trying to find some new ones that aren't $85-$100!

A: Sorry, but NB are NOT the shoe for me. For some reason they always feel like hard cement under my feet. However, if you like them, they can always be found for $30 at TJMAXX...that really makes me wish I liked them!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

September Challenges

What would life be without its challenges? This month I have two for you.

1. Come to my birthday party! I'm celebrating with a 10k in Dallas on the 20th of September. If you're interested go HERE.

If you live no where near Dallas, join me in a 10k of your own. Run 6.2 miles by yourself, with a friend, or in a different road race. However you do it, you have to do all 6.2 miles at one time.

This will be my first race post partum and I'm anxious to see how it goes. I've set a speedy goal for myself and I hope I can do it!

2. Eat like a saint month. I'm not exactly sure what an actual Saint eats, but I assume since they're very good, almost perfect people, they probably eat healthy stuff. You'll pretty much set the rules for yourself on this one, what eating like a saint means to you. I would say, try to rule out lots of packaged snacks, extra sugar, soda, candy. This pretty much rules out my ice cream night caps and any other dessert...until my birthday of course. If you can't handle the thought of going the whole month (until the 22nd) you can also do weeks only and let your hair down on the weekends (hey, 5 out of 7 ain't bad!).

So, sign up for a challenge in comments and commit! Hope you'll celebrate with me!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Vegetarian Month

The vegetarian month ended today, but for most of us, days and weeks early! I actually ended my month on Saturday the 16th. I couldn't resist a Salmon fillet at Sambua in the city! As far as results, what did you all think? I've heard from most of you and we all had different experiences. If you haven't already, please write in and share what you learned/liked/hated/had happen. Then I'll post a record of it all.

As for myself, I did enjoy the experiment overall.

Week 1 I starved to death
Week 2 I was super tired
Week 3 and 4 I felt great

I noticed that "things" were moving more smoothly, as in clockwork (I don't want to talk too dirty here) and I also felt light. I never got that sick too full feeling, no matter how much I ate. I fell in love with quinoa and tried a lot of other great veggie food. After first eating meat again I felt okay the first day. The second day I had a serving of pulled pork. I felt pretty heavy the next morning and "things" were NOT moving smoothly. I think I'll have a veggie day tomorrow and give my poor tummy a break from the meat again.

So what did you think?

I'm going to continue on with Meatless Monday and will probably give myself an equal challenge next summer.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Fart What?

Fartlek. A fun way to develop aerobic fitness and mix up your speed training a bit. I think it's a stressless way to get some speed on.* Fartlek is the Swedish word for speed play. In this type of training you run continuously in a natural setting, such as a park, the road, a forest, changing the pace at will. If you feel like sprinting from one tree to the next, that's what you do. If, after the sprint, you're in the mood for a long, controlled effort covering one mile, go for it. A fartlek session of 15 minutes and surges of at least 5,000 meter race pace will lead to marked gains in aerobic fitness. (current read: Training for young distance runners by Larry Greene and Russ Pate)

This type of training is great for a variety of races from 5k to marathon by simply adjusting the session time and length of each surge.

* a week ago on the track, I was changing from my running shoes into my flats and some guy asked me why the change. I said, "I'm getting my speed on." ha! Putting cool shoes on and going to a big high school stadium track does motivate me to speed up! I love it!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

More Kettlebells

Here are a couple of my favorite Kettlebell moves. There are so many good ones. I have done these with dumbbells too and it works okay. Go HERE for more!

I hope you try these out (eventhough this guy is a little cooky)!

How to do a Squat Press with Kettlebells -- powered by

How to do a Windmill with Kettlebells -- powered by

Saturday, August 2, 2008


I've been keeping this under my belt for a while so I could do lots of studying and practicing. Kettlebells. The new HOT strength training method. And I LOVE IT! It's not huge right now, but I predict it's going to be. Pavel Tsatsouline brought the method over from Russia about a decade ago and it's just grown from there. Apparently he ran some tests on two study groups. One group preformed and trained specifically for several track and feild events. The other group trained soley on kettlebells. Test day came and the kettlebell study group scored higher in every competition. One reason that I really love it is because it uses kenetic strength movements or dynamic strength movements...which I've written before, could be my number one get in shape and work your best/smartest training. You can buy kettlebells online or in stores. Hopefully your gym has them cause they're kind of spendy. I've also used just dumbells for a few moves and it works okayish. Kettlebells are best though.

Here's a little preview clip.