Whatever’s the question . . .

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. . . Hydration is the answer

Okay, maybe hydration isn’t the answer to everything, but it sure does a body good!

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I’m linking up with My First 5K and MoreRunning With Attitude, Runs with PugsZenaida and Run Laugh Eat Pie for Fit Five Friday. I know many runners really don’t give much thought to their hydration before, during, or after running. I will share 5 ways staying hydrated can improve your running. It’s your choice what you do with the information.

1: Keep your cool
Staying hydrated can help you regulate your body temperature. We generate a lot of heat when we run!

2: Minimize cramps
Water alone may not be enough to keep you from cramping up, because not only are you losing water through sweat, you’re losing electrolytes, too. Which is exactly why it’s important to take electrolytes on the run for longer and hotter runs. Being well hydrated can be your first line of defense when it comes to cramping.

Also consider spraying the muscles that always cramp with magnesium spray before running!

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3: Run faster
I don’t know about you, but if I’m dehydrated I feel cranky, tired, and often have a headache. That’s even if I’m not active. Now imagine running that way! In addition, being properly hydrated may actually help you stave off fatigue.

4: Recover faster
You know how your massage therapist always tells you to drink more water after a massage? Massage can help move toxins out of your muscles and into circulation in your body. Guess what? Running creates some waste products too! Water can help you flush out those toxins, reducing muscle soreness, and helping you to recover faster.

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5: Potential to reduce joint pain
You know I am not talking about an acute or nagging injury here, right? That has nothing to do with hydration (well, it could over time). Joint cartilage is mainly water. Dehydration can lessen lubrication of the joints, leading to joint pain. No one wants to run in pain!

Final Thoughts
Finding the right level of hydration for you is an art. Too little, and you could slow down, be in pain, and cramp. Too much and it can feel very uncomfortable in your digestive system, potentially even leading too nausea.

The benefits of staying hydrated on the run far outweigh the side effects of dehydration on your running — to my mind anyway.

Have you ever suffered from side effects while running due to poor hydration?

What’s your favorite way to hydrate on the run? Plain water for me, please!

Did any of the benefits of hydration surprise you?

6 Tips for a Peaceful Race/LSD

Tips to Have a Great Pre Race Night

How long has it been since you last raced? Racing is oh so slowly beginning to open up. Are you a bit rusty about what to do the night before a race? Or maybe you’re new to running and you need some tips to help you set yourself up for success before a long run.

I’ve got you covered with these six tips!

Know your go-to meal/s
One of the main points of training is that you do nothing new on race day. That’s why we practice! Try out several pre-long run day meals. See which ones seem to agree most with your stomach — and your long run the next day.

If you’re racing from home, now you know exactly what to eat before the race. If you’ve traveled to race, make sure you’ve tried out a meal that will be easy to find at your destination.

Of course you can try something new — just be prepared for potential consequences

Lay out everything
And I do mean everything!

  • Clothes
  • Accessories: hair ties, sunglasses, hat/visor, gaiter, gloves, socks
  • Fuel
  • Bottles for beverages, if you carry your own
  • Any beverage mix you’ll be mixing up the next morning
  • Race belt or pins
  • Bib
  • Sunscreen
  • Anti chafe product
  • Tape, arm or leg sleeves, braces
  • Ziploc bags for if it’s rainy and you need to put your electronics in it
  • Watch
  • Bag for pre/post race stuff
  • License/money (if I had a $ for every time I forget my license!)
  • Car keys  (or every time I can’t find my car keys when I really need them)
  • Foam roller or balls
  • Anything you can leave out that you’ll have for breakfast
  • Shoes — make sure you have a left & right shoe (even if they don’t match)

You’ll sleep better knowing that you have everything is ready for the next day and there’s no reason to waste time.

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Hydrating well will give you more energy — just don’t overdo it! | Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

During the day, make sure to hydrate well . . .
. . . but know your cut off time. The time where if you continue to drink, you know you’re going to have to get up to use the bathroom. For me that’s usually around 5 pm!

Don’t overdo the hydration. You can’t make up for not hydrating well in the days leading up to your race by slamming liquids the day before your race — trust me, this will backfire on you.

So keep in mind that the time to really hydrate is in the three days or so leading up to your race.

Rest
You don’t have to be a zombie, but now is not the time to go on that strenuous hike or do heavy lifting. Of course if you’re traveling and you want to hike the day before your race, go for it! Just now that it’s unlikely to be a PR, if that’s what you’re shooting for.

I highly recommend that if you’ve tried meditation and you actually enjoy it (or at the very least tolerate it), meditate before you go to sleep. This will help you to relax, both in your body and your mind, and may help you sleep better. 

Normally meditation will absolutely help you sleep better, but we’ve all had that restless night before a race, right? It will still help to relax your body and calm your mind.

closed up photography of two iphones
Make sure you’re gadgets are charged! | Photo by Steve Johnson on Pexels.com

Charge up all your electronics
A dead Garmin is a real buzzkill at a race — unless, of course, you love to race naked. By naked I mean without a GPS watch, although there are a few races you can actually do naked, if that’s your thing.

Set an alarm — or two
I set my alarm on my Garmin Vivoactive, and since I wear that 24/7, there’s no worry that I’m going to forget to wear it or have it by me. I do need to remember to charge it up before I go to sleep — and usually to top it up a bit before I actually leave for my race.

I don’t normally sleep with my phone on, but before a race I do usually use it as a backup for my Garmin. I’ve never slept through my Garmin yet, but two is better than one. So I’ll have my phone charging, set to do not disturb (no middle of the night calls or texts), and have a second alarm go off a little after my Garmin is set to wake me. Just in case.

Final Thoughts
If you’re new to running or racing, this may seem a little overwhelming. Plenty of people have a much smaller pre-race routine, too. You’ll find out what works for you.

If you want to get a great night’s sleep before your race, these tips will help. Over time you’re pre race routine will become just that: routine. A ritual. Your body loves routines and rituals!

Are you looking forward to some RL races soon? 

How long has it been since you raced? 

What do you do pre-race/LSD that I didn’t mention? 

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Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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All the Seasons: 4/12 – 18 WRD

I had to cram a lot of fitness into the first part of my week this week, so it’s been a very busy couple of weeks. I wrote this post as the week went along; so much easier to remember what happened that way.

I get my second vaccine next week. Moderna is known for more side effects, and I already had effects from the first. This time at least I know it’s coming, so I’m doing some things that may head off those effects — like drinking Nuun Immunity every day.

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I’m joining Kim @ Kimrunsonthefly and Deborah @ Confessionsofamotherrunner, and doing my best to stay active.

Workouts update

  • Monday: Yoga (20 min), 3 miles (with 3 long hill repeats, Dogwalk, Yoga (50 min)
  • Tuesday: Yoga (45 min), Easy Hiking at Olana, Yoga (10 min)
  • Wednesday: Yoga (20 min), Very Short Dogwalk, 6.5 mile LSD, Yoga (40 min)
  • Thursday: Yoga (60 min), Dogwalk, PB ST (25 min)
  • Friday: Yoga (35 min), Filmed Yoga Vidoe (50 minutes), 3 TM miles Intervals, Yoga (20 min)
  • Saturday: Yoga (50 min), Dogwalk, PB ST (25 min), Yoga (20 min)
  • Sunday: Yoga (20 min), Dogwalk, Yoga course (75 min)

Running Mileage: 12.5 (+.5)

JY = Jasyoga
PB = Killer B
TM = Treadmill
YFR = Yoga for Runners*
WU = warmup
CD = cooldown
SB = Stationary Bike
YFPR = Yoga for Pain Relief
YTU = Yoga Tune Up Lower Body*

*Disclaimer: Amazon affiliate links; I will make a small amount of money if you buy through these links

Running Update

Can you see the raindrops?

Monday Intention: easy run
It was supposed to be rainy, so I’d planned out my week to run Tuesday. I also planned out my week to visit my mom on Wednesday, and then remembered she plays bridge on Wednesday. So I ran two days in a row so that I could visit her on Tuesday instead (Thursday and Friday were supposed to be rainy again).

I’m surprised we don’t see more of this sort of thing

I did long/short hill repeats. Up the long hill, down and over to the shorter hill, down the short hill, back to the long hill — 3 times. Oddly enough this run actually felt fine. Strong. Maybe because of the cool (50ish), lightly rainy weather.

Don’t ask me why I headed down this knowing I’d have to go back up it!

Wednesday Intention: go the distance, don’t push too hard
Between last week and this week, I’ve crammed in a lot of activity with not as much rest as I probably need. It was a beautiful day, but warm. Mr. Judy was away, so I had to make sure Bandit got a short walk before I left to do my long run. Had I known Thursday wouldn’t be as rainy as forecast . . . 

This run started out strong, I was dressed correctly, but I got out too late and after a few cool days the warmer temps really wore me down. I reached for a few tricks, but they didn’t really help. At the end of mile 5 there was a loooong walk break. I did tack on an extra half mile, but I’m not sure that made up for that walk break!

Well, it was definitely more time on my feet. Coming up on the weekend I had a course both days, so I wanted to try and get a long run in before that. Which is how I ended up running more days bunched together than I have in a while!

At least it was gone by midday

Friday Intention: a little speed
With snow on the ground a treadmill run was a no brainer. I’m not really sure why I chose an interval run, it was a somewhat intense week, but it went okay. It was a slight miracle that the mill and my Garmin just about agreed on the mileage — so weird, usually the Garmin is way off (faster) than the mill.

There are people much better at landscaping than us! And I get to enjoy it.

Favorites of the week
All the signs of Spring, even if it was cool and cloudy, even if we did have some snow on Friday and spotty cold rain on the weekend. This is why I prefer Spring to Fall — it’s pretty, the days are getting longer, not shorter, and it just feels so hopeful — as long as you don’t watch the news.

Spring is s great time to visit Olana! April flowers!

Those signs were amply on display at Olana this week! It was chilly when I got there, but the clouds began to break up and eventually it was really pretty. I ate my lunch there and did a little sketching.

Bandit vegging out while I take a Yoga for athletes course

Seriously, Mr. Judy was gone most of the day yesterday, and I had 3 hours straight in the morning and Bandit laid there without moving (much). I left the door open so he could go out, but he never got off the chaise. I was freezing! It was colder than forecast.

Today I have the second half, but we’re supposed to do some Yoga this morning, Mr. Judy is home, and I suspect Bandit might not hang out with me but we’ll see.

Did Winter come back to visit this week? 

Are you training for something? If yes, how’s that training going?

GWY Root Chakra

ICYMI: A lovely stretch for your lower body, ending with several restorative poses. I’ll be explaining more about the Root Chakra, posing a lot of questions, and suggest that you journal after this practice. You’ll find the video here.

Coming up on Tuesday: My pre long run/LSD routine. Friday I’m . . . not sure yet!

5 More Takeaways about Mobility

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Mobility is a huge topic, and this post isn’t even an introductory post. I just wanted to share some of my takeaways from the most recent mobility course I took (you’ll fine my #1 takeaway at this post here). I hope you find something useful here!

bfitfivefriday

I’m linking up with My First 5K and MoreRunning With Attitude, Runs with PugsZenaida and Run Laugh Eat Pie for Fit Five Friday. Today I am sharing a more about mobility — something every runner can use!

1: Roll fast before running
Rolling fast helps prep the body for movement. This is something I used to do in when I first started to foam roll, then I learned that you needed to roll slow and for a longer period of time — or so I thought.

Before a run, roll fast and for a short amount of time. If you have a vibrating roller/ball, now is the time to have it on medium or high (depending on what you can tolerate).

2: Roll slow for recovery
Rolling slow does have its place: after your run. This will help you kick start the recovery response.

If you have a vibrating roller/ball, now is the time to have it on low.

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Start with the larger balls; slowly move down to the smaller balls

3: The smaller the tool, the deeper it goes
A wider tool (think foam roller) will not give you as much pressure as a narrower tool (a ball). If you’re new to foam rolling, start with a roller, for sure. Even that may be too much if you’re not used to it. 

If you’re feeling a lot of pain, back off. You should feel some sensation, but not pain.

As you get used to myofascial release techniques, you may want to consider moving from a foam roller to a ball — although start with a larger one; maybe even a softer one. Your body will adapt to whatever you use eventually, but if it really feels painful to you, not only are you not helping yourself — you’re unlikely to be consistent.

You may try moving from a larger ball to smaller and smaller balls as you get used to the pressure.

4: Add in some Functional Mobility
Often when we feel pain somewhere, it’s because the opposite muscle is weak. Adding in some functional mobility during foam rolling can really help.

Tight calves? Foam roll the calves, stop at one point, and point and flex your foot. You can also try moving it from side to side. Notice what muscles you feel that movement in.

Rolling the quads? Stop, and bend and extend the leg you’re rolling.

5: Foam Rolling can actually help our proprieception
First, what is proprieception? The dictionary says proprieception is:

perception or awareness of the position and movement of the body

As a runner, I’m sure you can see why this might be important. I can tell you from a Yoga teacher standpoint, we often get into a posture and think our leg is way higher than it actually is, or straighter than it actually is. Try videoing or photographing yourself and you might be really surprised at what you see!

I was definitely surprised to see improved proprieception as one of the benefits of foam rolling!

Final Thoughts
Although I’d like to call myself an expert on mobility, I am not. I have learned quite a bit about it in the last few months, though, and I practice what I preach. I experiment, and if it helps me, I share it.

We are all an experiment of one. So give some of these things a try, if they pique your interest, and I hope that you find it helpful.

Did you learn something new about foam rolling?

Are you willing to try to change up what you’re already doing? 

What do you do to work on your mobility?

My #1 Takeaway from Mobility Courses

Could you be foam rolling all wrong — and for the wrong reasons? Maybe! I’ve taken several mobility and self myofascial release courses over the last year (and am eyeing yet another one!).

Today I’m sharing my biggest takeaway that I heard at pretty much all of these courses.

Disclaimer: I’m not a medical professional or physical therapist. I can’t diagnose what may be wrong with you. Always check with a doctor first.

It’s not about ironing out our fascia
Back in the day when I started foam rolling, I was taught that it basically takes our jumbled fascia (which creates pain and stiffness) and irons it out, so to speak, so that all those jumbled fibers are more organized.

Turns out that’s not really what foam rolling does.

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Myofascial release is more about the neuromuscular connection | Photo by Harry Cooke on Pexels.com

It’s all in your head
Maybe not all, but like most things running, the truth is it’s often not so much a body limitation, but a neuromuscular protection mechanism.

You know how when you’re doing a long run, and you feel tired towards the end? A lot of that is actually coming from your brain — it’s trying to protect you from injuring yourself, and slowing down is a great way to potentially protect from injury.

Your nervous system acts the same way to protect your connective tissue. It can send you pain to basically get you to stop whatever it is you are doing that it perceives as a threat.

Your nervous system basically says stop yourself! (by triggering pain) before you wreck yourself (injure yourself).

Foam rolling basically tells your brain that oh! it’s okay to feel that pressure. You can tolerate that pressure; it’s not a threat.

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Do you really need to roll at all?
I’ve shared my foot compression routine. The problem with rolling is you generally don’t get as deep pressure as you do by simply putting pressure on the foot (or wherever else you usually roll).

It also takes sustained pressure to get into your nervous system — without those longer holds, your nervous system doesn’t have time to calm down and realize that this sort of pressure isn’t a threat after all.

Can rolling hurt you? Well, yes, it can, but only if it’s done improperly (rolling on bones, over new scars, if you have a serious illness). In general you can foam roll to your hearts’ content — but you may not get the results you’re after.

If done properly foam rolling will not hurt you. It just may not actually heal you.

Should I just throw out my foam roller?
Nooooo! Foam rolling is very beneficial at certain times. That’s another thing I learned — when and how to foam roll — but that’s a post for another day.

Let’s end with a little experiment. I want you to roll your left foot. Do it however you normally do it. Walk around. Notice the difference between your left and right feet.

Next try simply draping your foot over the same ball you used with your right foot. In front of the fat pad on your heel on the inside and the outside. Then just below the ball of the foot, on the inside and outside of your foot. Hold for at least 90 seconds in each location.

Walk around again.

Which foot feels better? 

What else do you notice about your feet after doing this? 

Have you gotten results with foam rolling? 

btuesdaytopics

Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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Spring is Starting to Pop!: 4/5 – 11 WRD

This time I started this post yesterday. The week sort of got away from me — it was busy though! I also suffered from laryngitis this week, so I had to cram my most of my fitness into the last few days. I don’t really remember what happened on what day until the last couple of days.

The leaves are coming in, the trees are beginning to bloom, the weather was seasonably appropriate, and Bandit finally got a bath — Spring has sprung!

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I’m joining Kim @ Kimrunsonthefly and Deborah @ Confessionsofamotherrunner, and running easy.

Workouts update

  • Monday: Yoga (20 min), Dogwalk
  • Tuesday: Yoga (20 min), Dogwalk, Yoga (45 min)
  • Wednesday: Yoga (20 min), Dogwalk, 3 miles easy
  • Thursday: Yoga (40 min), Short hike/Dogwalks
  • Friday: Yoga (20 min), short warmup hike, 6 mile LSD, Yoga (45 min)
  • Saturday: Yoga (20 min), Dogwalk, Filmed Yoga video (35 min)
  • Sunday: Yoga (45 min), 3 miles easy, Dogwalk, Yoga later

Running Mileage: 12 (-1)

JY = Jasyoga
PB = Killer B
TM = Treadmill
YFR = Yoga for Runners*
WU = warmup
CD = cooldown
SB = Stationary Bike
YFPR = Yoga for Pain Relief
YTU = Yoga Tune Up Lower Body*

*Disclaimer: Amazon affiliate links; I will make a small amount of money if you buy through these links

Running Update

Beautiful day! Beautiful daffodils!

Wednesday Intention: easy run
I almost ran Tuesday because while I couldn’t talk, I felt better, and it was a beautiful day. Felt like it might still be better to rest, so Wednesday it was. An easy run in the neighborhood. The only thing memorable was seeing a dog off leash (we’d seen him off leash a few days before that). The owner was waiting for him to come to him, basically — he didn’t seem terribly concerned.

Chasing a dog never works, but he lives on a busy corner where people often speed around the curve.

A bike trail warmup for my run — this one looks muddy in the beginning, but really wasn’t

Friday Intention: go the distance
It was another beautiful day, but I relaxed in the morning and got out too late and chose the wrong top. This wasn’t an easy run by any means. Maybe it wasn’t such a good idea to do my warm up hike. The first entrance was a lake, but the second one wasn’t muddy — I won’t be running at this path too much longer because it gets so buggy in the Summer. Too bad because I enjoy my warmup hikes, even though there’s nothing really that great about the scenery there.

A few interesting sights on the run. The daffodils basically in the brush at the end of someone’s property along the path was definitely a surprise!

This photo was taken yesterday, when it was sunny. Today’s cloudy. But the forsythia are sunny!

Sunday Intention: enjoy the Spring weather
Ugh, I waited too long to get out there today, and it was really humid. At least I hit the outfit right! The first mile was a nice pace, but it was downhill from there between the ups and downs of the route I chose.

I started to skip some of my walk breaks to work on endurance.

Dionondahowa Falls; photo credit Mr. Judy (except the one of Mr. Judy)

Favorites of the week
We really had a pretty glorious week weather-wise. The Daffodils and Forsythia are blooming, always a sure sign of Spring. No snow. We took advantage of the weather and took a drive up to Schuylerville to do a short hike to a waterfalls, and then over to the Schuyler House to walk around some more. We ate lunch outside at a restaurant. It’s been 5 months! I needed that!

On Monday I woke up with a sore throat. I’d spent a lot of time sitting outside the day before. An allergy? I didn’t feel too bad, although I was really tired that day. I felt better on Tuesday, but could only croak (barely).

I’ve spent a lot of time outside the rest of the week, but by Saturday I could talk again. Weird!

We also grilled outside (which Mr. Judy has been doing for a while now) and ate outside. No need for the patio heater! And obviously I filmed this week’s video on the Yoga platform. I still love that so much!

Vegan zoodle bowl

Plus ordered some food for pickup today. I just haven’t been into cooking lately, although I’m trying to get back at it — but I wanted something healthy.

Finally it occurred to me to look into whether or not Forsythia are dog-friendly. They are! Cat friendly, too. We are constantly trying to get things into the backyard that aren’t toxic for Bandit. Why it took me twelve years to think of this, I don’t know, but now I’m hoping to look forward to Forsythia front and back next year.

What are you looking forward to in Spring? 

Has it been warm enough to enjoy outdoor dining? Have you?

What’s blooming around you?

GWY Throat Chakra Yin

ICYMI: I decided to create a Yin Yoga video devoted to the throat chakra, for obvious reasons. This practice will also help you release tension in your neck, throat, shoulders, and arms. You’ll find the video here.

Coming up on Tuesday: My biggest takeaway from my Mobility course. Friday I’m sharing more takeaways from that mobility course. It’s mobility week!

Boost Your Running with . . .

. . . These 5 Essential Oils

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Have you seen all the hype about Essential Oils (EOs) and wondered if it could boost your running? Maybe. There are many Essential Oils that can soothe sore muscles, reduce anxiety, and help you get a better night’s sleep.

Buy your oils from a reputable source. Sadly there really is no regulation of EOs. As you can see, so far I’ve been buying mine from DoTerra. I signed up for a Wholesale Account, and that gives me a discounts on the oils I buy. The good news is that small bottle goes a long way!

Disclaimer: I am not an aromatherapist or medical professional. Some EOs are not appropriate for everyone (or animals!). Please do your due diligence before using Essential Oils.

Do not put EOs “neat”, or undiluted, on your skin. You need to mix them with a carrier oil because they can irritate your skin if they are not diluted, or sometimes cause sun sensitivty. 

The two easiest ways to use EOs is to diffuse them in your home (add them to water and then the diffuser diffuses the EOs mixed with water into your living space) and as an inhaler. 

You can buy inhalers for EOs on Amazon. They’re inexpensive and small enough to fit in a pocket on the run. It’s a small metal capsule with a thick cotton wick inside, and holes so that you can open it up and take a sniff. Just soak the cotton wick, put it back inside, and inhale as needed.

You don’t have to invest in a lot of EOs to begin with, and they last a long time. My personal suggestion if you want to give EOs a whirl is to start with these four:

  1. Peppermint
  2. Lavender
  3. Lemon (lemon didn’t make this post, but I use it all the time!)
  4. Tea tree (also didn’t make this post, but has so many uses)
bfitfivefriday

I’m linking up with My First 5K and MoreRunning With Attitude, Runs with PugsZenaida and Run Laugh Eat Pie for Fit Five Friday.

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Peppermint for Pep | Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Peppermint
Want some pep in your step? Then peppermint is your friend! Also helps with:

  • Muscle soreness
  • Digestion
  • Tricks the brain into thinking you’re not working so hard
  • Roll some peppermint on your feet to put some pep in your step
  • Nausea relief
  • Bug Repellent
shallow focus photography of lavenders
Lavender to relax & recover | Photo by Palo Cech on Pexels.com

Lavender
I think most of use have heard of using lavender for sleep. Having something in your tool kit before a big race to help you relax is important. I actually use lavender oil before I go to bed every night. I use a roller ball, and I roll it on my temples (if they’re feeling tight), the back of my neck, and the soles of my feet.

Lavender is great for many other things that plague runners:

  • Muscle soreness
  • Reduce Allergies
  • Helps relieve anxiety
  • Helps relieve headaches

I mix lavender and peppermint together with a carrier oil, then apply to my feet in the mornings. Remember, peppermint peps you up, while lavender relaxes you — put together they can help soothe and pep up tired feet (or any other muscle soreness you may be experiencing).

Diffuse equal parts peppermint, lavender, and lemon to help with seasonal allergies.

Eucalyptus
Eucalyptus is well known for its ability to help you breathe easier (Vick’s Vapo rub, anyone?). It’s great pre-race, and in the days leading up to a race because:

  • It’s anti-inflammatory
  • Helps support respiratory health

Unfortunately, Eucalyptus is highly toxic to dogs.

potted lush rosemary plant placed on market stall
Reduce Stress & Mental Fatigue | Photo by Uriel Mont on Pexels.com

Rosemary
Although I have Rosemary EO, it’s not one I reach for often. Researching its many benefits, though, maybe I should! I do use it in an inhaler along with peppermint and lemon — when I start feeling tired on the run I will inhale this during a walk break.

  • Reduces stress levels
  • Reduces mental fatigue
  • Reduces muscle soreness
  • Reduces tissue inflammation
  • Bug Repellent
  • Benefits memory
  • May stimulate hair growth

Vetiver
I once made the mistake of diffusing vetiver (and another EO) on a long drive. Somehow it got stuck in my mind that Vetiver is good for focus. Oops! It’s actually yet another EO that is good for sleep. Yes, I actually did feel sleepier than normal on my drive back!

  • Bug Repellant — especially ticks that carry Lyme Disease (I use this often on hikes)
  • Reduces Anxiety
  • Helps promote restful sleep

Final Thoughts
This is not an in depth study of EOs, obviously. You may find other EOs more helpful to your running (or life). It’s just a quick introduction to how EOs can support your running.

Do you already use Essential Oils?

Which EOs are your favorites (doesn’t have to be running-related)? 

What do you use for muscle soreness? DoTerra’s Deep Blue Rub is another favorite of mine. I use it when I get shots I know will leave my arm sore — it helps a lot!

I’ve missed you, Spring Running!

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I love the in between seasons for running: Spring and Fall. If I had to pick one, I would pick Spring. Spring, with the returning birds, returning sunshine (sometimes), the flower and flowering trees — it’s just so hopeful. It’s entertaining stalking all those signs of Spring!

Shedding layers
There comes a point when you’re just so over running in #allthelayers. You feel like a bundled up kid — it’s heavy, and it restricts movement. Like a caterpillar slowly making its way out of its cocoon, the warming temps of Spring allow us to ditch all the layers.

It’s not all rainbows and unicorns, though, because the mornings in early Spring can be pretty darn Winter-like. It takes a while for those longer days to start warming the roads (especially if there’s still snow on the ground), so as I wrote about in Prepping for Spring here, it’s not quite time to put away all your warm running clothes.

New sights
I don’t know about you, but I really struggle to find something to photograph on Winter runs. Often it’s really gray. There’s little wildlife and no pretty flowers.

As Spring begins to unfurl its leaves. there’s literally beauty everywhere around you. Even though we often seem to skip Spring and go straight into Summer, at some point the trees will have leaves, they’ll flower, and the Spring bulbs will bloom.

I have so much fun hunting down the signs of Spring, too!

Lightening the load
You could take that almost literally, as in the days are getting longer and the sun is putting in an appearance more often — both things that just put a smile on my face.

As we move further into Spring, though, I no longer need leggings with skirt. Then I can move on to capris. And one day it’s time to run in a skirt again! There is such a sense of freedom running in a skirt — not to mention not having to be on the lookout for black ice.

Sunny days. Rain. Lingering snow/ice. It’s all Spring.

Speaking of it’s not all rainbows . . .
The pretty flowers and flowering trees come at a price: for some that’s allergies, and for most of us that’s rain. Spring is often very wet, and when I lived in VT, it was known as mud season — for good reason!

I enjoy a nice run in a warm rain, but cold rain is the worst.

Can we talk about that wind? Spring comes roaring through some days — literally!

Time to race, anyone?
Spring is one of my favorite times to race. Races are sparse in Winter in these parts – but that oh so fickle weather can also get you in Spring races. Not to mention the Pandemic still chugging along.

Take stock of how you trained through the Winter. Are you really race ready, even if all you want to do is have fun? Consider building a base if you haven’t run as much during Winter. Have you kept up with strength training? Now is definitely the time to get back to it!

Consider hiring a coach to help you ease back into racing. We’ve got some great ones in these linkups!

You may also like 5 Spring Running Tips here

What’s your Spring weather like? 

Do you have RL racing opportunities? 

Enjoying (or sneezing through) the Spring flowers? 

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Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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Waterfall Chasing: 3/29 – 4/4 WRD

One of the benefits of rain/snowmelt is the waterfalls are quite full. There is definitely something about a waterfall that has always entranced me!

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I’m joining Kim @ Kimrunsonthefly and Deborah @ Confessionsofamotherrunner, and running post vaccine.

Workouts update

  • Monday: Yoga (20 min), Dogwalk, PB ST (25 min)
  • Tuesday: Yoga (30 min), 3 easy miles, Yoga (20 min)
  • Wednesday: Yoga (20 min), Dogwalk/Short hikes/walks
  • Thursday: Yoga (20 min), 4ish TM (Endurance + Tread Bootcamp), Yoga (20 min)
  • Friday: Yoga (30 min), Dogwalk, Yoga (50 min)
  • Saturday: Yoga (20 min), 6 miles easy, Dogwalk, Yoga (45 min)
  • Sunday: Yoga (30 min), PB Cardio Toning?, Dogwalk

Running Mileage: 13 (+3)

JY = Jasyoga
PB = Killer B
TM = Treadmill
YFR = Yoga for Runners*
WU = warmup
CD = cooldown
SB = Stationary Bike
YFPR = Yoga for Pain Relief
YTU = Yoga Tune Up Lower Body*

*Disclaimer: Amazon affiliate links; I will make a small amount of money if you buy through these links

Running Update

Hello sunshine (in flower form)

Tuesday Intention: easy run
It was a positive splits kinda day. The first mile was brisk — both weather and pace-wise, but after that I began to tire and got slower and slower. It was also pretty windy. I think? I didn’t start this post until Thursday. Oops!

Thursday Intention: endurance, speed, strength
I know that if I want to put in extra miles I have to do it before the Peloton Tread Bootcamp, so I did a short endurance run first. The Bootcamp had sprint intervals. All told an hour of hard work. Normally I’d do a bike cool down, but it was lunch time!

What a great idea!

Saturday Intention: enjoy nature
Ultimately I was glad that Mr. Judy had something today so I got my run done yesterday — it was a beautiful (but cold) sunny day! I did trail miles, and I ended up at a dam I didn’t even know was there, because I hadn’t gone that far on that trail before. The last 2 miles were a bit of a struggle. Definitely notice a slight hit to my endurance with that first vaccine, even a little over a week later.

I might have seen an eagle (so many birders come to these trails), but hard to say. I saw a very large bird flying, and I don’t think it was a hawk or crow. They had this really cool exhibit with pages from a children’s book on trees, so a nature walk where the kiddos could read a book page by page. I thought that was so clever!

Nice having these so close to home!

Favorites of the week
I spent multiple days trying to get close to Cohoes Falls, which is a large waterfall quite close to me. Didn’t happen — yes, I saw it, but from a distance (closer park doesn’t open until May).

Imagine my surprise to find this on my run yesterday!

I did discover the dam I didn’t know existed on my long run, though. Next week looks like we’ll have decent weather so I’m hoping to get Mr. Judy & Bandit on a short waterfall hike again.

They were not happy I invaded their space this time 🤣

In one of our unsuccessful waterfall hunts, we did come across this pleasant little park. Wish I had that right in my neighborhood! More geese, you’ll notice, but no interactions (unless you count Bandit trying to eat their poop, of course).

It did stick around overnight but quickly melted

Not a favorite? The April Fool’s snow! That happens pretty regularly in these parts, though, and was gone as quickly as it came.


I think we need more; don’t you?

Last but certainly not least, the bulbs emerging!

Have you discovered new things in your area recently? 

Has Winter made an unwelcome return? 

If you celebrate Easter, a very happy (and safe) Easter to you!

GWY Immune Boost + Breast Health

ICYMI: If you’re going to be vaccinated or just were vaccinated, you may enjoy this gentle, immune boosting practice, which is also great for breast health. You’ll find the video here.

Coming up on Tuesday: I share why I love Spring running. Friday I’m sharing some great Essential Oils for runners.

All the Seasons of Spring: Tea/coffee Date April 2021

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Thanks,  Coco and Deborah, getting us altogether virtually for a coffee date. It may be Spring, with all that applies — swinging back & forth between Spring & Winter — so I’m still drinking hot chocolate. 🙂

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If we were enjoying tea/coffee . . .
I’d tell you a couple of weeks ago I was having serious vaccine envy. It seemed as though everyone I know — aside from my sister & BIL — is vaccinated. I whined to everyone about it and I apologize! The next week they opened it up to 50+.

It says “Own Today”

If we were enjoying tea/coffee . . .
I’d tell you the day I learned that I would be eligible to try to make a vaccine appointment the next day — (3/22) — was also the first day I was able to use the Yoga platform in 2021. I got a little goofy trying to take photos of my wrap after I wrapped that practice. It was a good day! My appointment is 5/29, although I’m hoping to move that closer.

ETA: the day after I made the 5/29 appointment (3/24), I made an appointment for 4/26. It was at a site a bit over an hour from me; the 5/29 appointment was much closer. Then I made one for 4/15 (same place, longer drive). This was all the morning of the 24th. Then Darlene told me there was a more local place that had a lot of appointments for that day (the 24th — are you following all this?).

Yup, I made an appointment for that afternoon and prayed I wouldn’t have a reaction so I could go visit my mom the next day as planned, which also happened to be my Dad’s birthday. My mom is pretty stoic, and rarely mentions those sort of anniversary dates. Still I thought it would help brighten her day to have a visit. I knew it would brighten her day to hear I’d had my first vaccine!

On top of all that, my brother is in the middle of getting his vaccinations, and planning a trip out to see my mom in June. He hasn’t seen her in over a year. Plus I also have to fill out a jury questionnaire by the beginning of April; I don’t know when/if I might be called, but the thought of jury duty was definitely freaking me out. As long as it’s not on the date for my second shot . . . 

 

This photo was less than a week before the photo above — Spring is nothing if not changeable!

If we were enjoying tea/coffee . . .
I’d tell you I’ve been doing my best to dragtake Mr. Judy out for hikes. Any day that is even reasonably warm and dry (and by warm I’m including windy, cloudy, and about 50 sometimes). Bandit doesn’t need any prodding.

 

I really needed these brownies

If we were enjoying tea/coffee . . .
I’d tell you I have been jonesing for a cookie. I’ve also been busy and not baking. Then I spied a container in the freezer — lo and behold, it was brownies! I’m usually fairly good at mentally keeping track of what’s in there, but I had no clue they were there — and so happy they were!

If we were enjoying tea/coffee . . .
We started to watch Upload (Amazon Prime). The first episode was silly, but mildly entertaining, and it’s definitely light fare, but it got better after the first episode. Although I’m beginning to think we should consider an HBO subscription. You’d think Netflix and Amazon Prime would be enough, wouldn’t you?

Does your beverage of choice change with the seasons? 

Have you been able to put away Winter running clothes? At least I’ve fairly certain I won’t need the stuff for 20 and below anymore, but I don’t want to jinx it!

What are you watching these days? Always looking for recommendations.

Also linking up with:

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