C is the Most Important Letter

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Consistency

It wasn’t that long ago that I wrote a post about the ABCs of running (you can read it here), mostly to remind myself of things I would need to remember when I toe the start line of a race again. Except I still haven’t and right now I have zero plans to do so.

When it comes to the ABCs of running, though, I think C is the most important letter — especially when you pair it with consistency!

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The key to keeping your body used to running is running consistently | Photo by Tirachard Kumtanom on Pexels.com

By consistency I mean just keep running
Although I do advise you to mix it up — explore different locations, run on different surfaces, run easy most of the time but hard occasionally. All those things will keep running interesting.

Variety may be the spice of life, but if you’re not running at least three times a week you’re going to struggle because it’s almost as though you’re learning to run over and over and over again.

In fact, I have friend that will pretty much take the Winter off

You know what? They complain about how hard running is when they start again! That’s because it only takes a few days to start “detraining”.

You don’t have to have aspirations of running faster, or be chasing a PR — but by running consistently you are far less likely to be injured, because you body will remain adapted to running.

Be consistent with rest days, too
A friend recently realized that she hadn’t taken a true rest day in almost 2 months. No wonder she was feeling burned out — and achy.

I have to admit that lately I am getting far fewer true rest days than I’d like, as often my rest days are spent going to my mom. There isn’t a lot I can do about that, though, other than recognize that I’m not getting as much rest as I probably need to pay attention to the feedback from my body.

You should have at least one true rest day a week. That might mean some easy walking or soothing Yoga, but it doesn’t mean a power walk or power Yoga (or hot Yoga, or Ashtanga).

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Sleeping in once in a while is no big deal. If you want to become a early morning riser, though, you have to be consistent about getting up early! | Photo by Elvira Gibadullina on Pexels.com

Consistency is the key to almost anything in life
I always say I’d rather you do 10 minutes of Yoga several days a week, rather than an hour long class once a week. When I was playing my flute all through out my school years, that meant practicing — every single day.

Want to get up earlier in the morning? Guess what: getting up early one day a week and late the other six isn’t going to help you make getting up early a habit!

Final Thoughts
Have you ever watched your dog or cat get up after sleeping? They stretch, right? They stretch a lot! Every.Single.Time. It’s part of how they stay limber. They don’t just stretch every once in a while, they stretch after getting up all the time. It’s just their nature.

Run consistently and running will just be your nature, too

You might also enjoy:

5 Cs of Mental Toughness

PRs Don’t Just Happen

Does it Feel Like that Breakthrough will Never Happen?

Consistency is the Hobgoblin of Little Minds

What do you think the most important letter for running is?
What did you wish you did more consistently?
What have you learned you
need to do consistently to keep running?

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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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I Tried It: My First Colonoscopy

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I wrote another post about my top tips for the week before and the prep for my first colonoscopy here. As I mentioned in that post, I’m trying to take some of the stigma out of the prep. Seriously it’s not as bad as we are led to believe, although of course it’s not fun and  everyone’s experience is different.

Dealing with the low fiber diet
Every doctor has different requirements for the prep, and you should absolutely follow your doctor’s instructions. Mine had me start a low fiber diet a week before. You could easily go wild with things like bread and pasta, pancakes and french toast, but I was on a mission to eat as healthy as I could.

Mostly chicken, cod, asparagus, carrots, spinach, bananas, melon, sourdough bread, rice, pasta, and tofu. I did indulge in some vanilla pudding and vanilla frozen yogurt. It was bland and boring, but not too bad. I also indulged in some frozen belgian waffles on my long run day — although in the end they were just meh.

The Prep: what to eat
Ah, the dreaded prep. I know a lot of people find the day before the procedure to be hard — and not just because of the prep, because they’re starving!

I shared in my tip post about having jello for breakfast. I had bone broth for lunch and a late afternoon snack. You’re also supposed to drink 8 ounces of liquids every hour — I alternated Nuun (lemon lime) with tea.

I was never hungry. I did feel kind of bloated from all that liquid, even though I’m normally a well hydrated person, and of course there were frequent bathroom trips for the same reason.

I will also say I am used to a 24 hour fast once a year for religious reasons, and quite frankly colonoscopy prep was so much easier — the religious fast is no solid food at all; just water and tea for 24 hours. On the other hand, you can also eat well before you start that fast! I was never hungry during the prep at all.

Jello was very helpful in my prep!

Mixing up the Prep
Again I wrote about this briefly in my tips post here. The tip about the apple juice I shared there worked really well; I didn’t mind drinking the mixture at all. I also used a straw, which always makes liquids go down easier.

I had made jello a couple of days before: mix 2 Tbsp gelatin with 1/2 cup chilled white grape juice (that was the flavor I chose, anyway). Let it thicken.

Pour the remainder of the 32 ounce bottle of juice into my large (8 cup) glass measuring cup. Heat the 32 oz of juice in the microwave until warm (this is so the gelatin and honey will mix evenly with the juice), then pour in the jelled juice mixture and mix well so any clumps break up and it’s a smooth mixture.

Lastly pour in half a cup of honey and mix until dissolved. Honey loses its health benefits if heated so never heat your honey! Pour into smaller containers, refrigerate overnight,  and voila! Jello.

I used that same large measuring cup to mix up the prep. I’d already chilled my apple juice, so I measured out 32 ounces, added half the prep mix, mixed well, and then divided it between some mason jars. Repeat for the second half.

The Real Prep
There are apparently different types of preps, but again, stick to your doctor’s guidelines. I was doing a split prep, which meant I took some laxatives (pills) in the afternoon, then chased that two hours later with half of the above prep mix.

You drink that over the course of about 2 hours, and I found I started to go right about the time I finished. I continued to go over the next couple of hours, but it was never as though I didn’t have enough time to make it to the bathroom.

I was also able to go to bed after that and sleep a few hours, although it was somewhat restless. I woke up about an hour before I needed to drink the second half, and realized I had time to practice some Yoga Nidra (a deep relaxation technique), which helped much more than just laying there trying to sleep. I have a similar video here.

Then it was time to repeat the same procedure of drinking the prep, in my case starting around 4:30 am — I am often up that time anyway, but of course I’d only had around 5 hours sleep plus, well, you know.

Another tip that didn’t make it into my tip post: get some diaper wipes and coconut oil (or diaper rash cream). I used the coconut oil, since I already had it, and the wipes. I think you can figure out what both were for.

They had me stop all liquids two hours before the procedure. Again I wasn’t at all hungry, even though this was my longest fast ever. TMI alert: You know you’ve done your prep correctly if you’re basically peeing from your butt, and you’ll know it when that happens.

The drive to the doctors office was no problem, the 30 minute+ wait at the doctor’s office was no problem, and they offered me a bathroom right before the procedure, which I used.

Was I Aware During?
Not at all, and that’s exactly what I wanted. In fact, I know that I got dressed, went down the elevator, and met Mr. Judy afterward but I actually have little memory of that. Which jives with the time I was knocked out to have my wisdom teeth out — they read me instructions afterwards, Mr. Judy said I was nodding my head, but I have no memory of it. Come to think of it, the wisdom teeth extraction was actually a lot harder than this! The recuperation, anyway.

I have read of some people who wake up briefly during, but personally I’m glad I slept through the whole thing.

Final Thoughts
I think the worst part of the whole thing for me was actually getting the IV put in! I am a hard stick in the best of times, but of course there’s really no way to avoid being somewhat dehydrated. The nurse failed on the first one, and it was somewhat painful; she brought in a pinch hitter, who was successful, but even that was a bit painful. I had a lovely bruise afterwards.

Colonoscopies save lives. They are not fun, but they are not that bad either. It’s a relief to know that at the moment I am cancer free there, given my family’s history: my Dad had polyps, so even though I didn’t, I still have to have another colonoscopy in five years.

Everyone’s experience is different, but don’t let the horror stories of the prep stop you from getting this life saving test!

I know that this post really doesn’t have anything to do with running, but most of us fold in running to a healthy lifestyle. Getting the tests we need to stay healthy helps to keep us running!

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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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Ready to Start Running?

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I’ve got 8 Tips to get you started running — and enjoying it!

Running is often seen as a simple sport, and on the surface, it is: Put on some clothes, lace up your shoes, and just run.

Speaking of shoes, that leads me to my first tip . . .

Get fitted for shoes at a running store
Here’s a cautionary tale for you: my sister decided, no doubt after years of hearing about my running, that she would start running, too. She didn’t get running-specific shoes (or ask me for any advice). She injured herself badly and that was the end of her running.

A good running store will at the very least watch you walk to see if you pronate or supinate. If you’re lucky, they’ll have you run a bit. If you’re really lucky, they’ll video you running and do a gait analysis. Although I’ve had different opinions about my foot mechanics at the same store.

Run in those shoes before you buy them
In pre-Pandemic days, running stores allowed you to run a little bit in the shoe. I don’t know if they still do that. You can’t really tell if a shoe is right for you — especially if you’re a beginning runner — but you will at least be able to tell whether or not the shoes feel good out of the box.

I like to say that I have to run at least 6 miles in a shoe before I can tell if it’s really the right fit. As a beginning runner, you won’t be running 6 miles at a time! If there’s a problem with the shoe, the store should accept a return (like the time the sole came off my trail shoes).

In the future, once you know your foot mechanics and the type of shoe recommended for you, you can try buying your running shoes online. Some brick and mortar stores have loyalty programs — make sure to ask about that.

If running feels terrible . . .
. . . you are probably running too fast. You should be able to talk. Your runs should feel easy. Don’t worry about pace, that will come with time. Even if running feels good, you should still run easy! It takes time for your cardiovascular system — and more importantly, your body — to get used to the effort of running.

It’s okay to walk
New — and experienced runners — get very hung up about not walking while running. You are still a runner even if you walk. Especially when you start, walk breaks will help running feel easier. Even experienced runners can hold off fatigue by taking walking breaks. Jeff Galloway is a famous Olympic medaler who promotes run/walk.

What about the famous runner’s high?
It definitely exists, but many runners will tell you they don’t feel it until they stop running. Some never experience it at all. Thankfully I have, and it’s a wonderful feeling — usually one I get after a race.

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Cotton is Rotten
Unless you enjoy chafing, I highly suggest there should be no cotton in your running gear (yes, that includes your socks). Cotton blends can be okay — often race shirts are a blend of polyester and cotton. Cotton doesn’t wick away moisture, which is part of why you are much more likely to chafe if you’re wearing cotton anything.

You Earned Your Callouses
I suggest you keep them! They are usually places on your feet that take a beating, and hard skin builds up in that area. They are there to protect that area from damage. Whatever you do, don’t try to get rid of them before a race!

2 Tips for Your First Race, No Matter the Distance
Almost every first time racer obsesses over their finish time. Don’t! Enjoy the experience. Soak in the atmosphere. Chat with some of the runners: before, during, after.

My number one racing tip, and this one applies to both seasoned and novice runners: don’t go out too fast! Just trust me on that — it pretty much never ends well.

Final Thoughts
Running is sneaky. You may start it thinking I’m only doing this to lose weight, or because my doctor told me it would be good for me, but it has a sneaky way of getting under your skin. Some people love running from that first run, and others can take months or even years to fall in run with running.

Follow some (or all) of these tips and I promise that your love affair with running will start sooner rather than later.

You might also enjoy:

5 Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Running

ABCs of Running

What if I ___________ in a Race?

5 Cs of Mental Toughness

What’s your number one tip for beginning runners?
What did you have to learn the hard way?
What do you wish you’d known when you started to run?

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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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Breaking Clear Away: August 2021

Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.
— John Muir

I know that it’s a privilege to be able to go away on vacation, and I very grateful that it was my privilege to finally break clear away. The previous few weeks had definitely been intense — heck, the previous few months! Also very grateful to our friends for inviting us & driving us all over northern Maine.

Getting in scheduled runs
August was another crazy month. More trips back and forth, my first colonoscopy, bringing my mom back home, a vacation (yay!) — it was another month where I just juggled everything the best I could, which sometimes meant running 4 days in a row and other times not at all, some weeks a long-er run instead of a long-ish run.

Grade Earned:  A for Effort

Recording my runs
I have veered off course here again . . . seriously, I need to start using my planner again because it helps me to keep focused. It’s a broken record, folks! But hey, I did finally got a haircut, LOL!

Grade Earned: C

Dynamic Warmup
I’m still consistently doing my warmup (and morning yoga, and foam rolling before I run). Although morning Yoga took a hit during our vacation — I did give one of our hosts a private lesson one day. Talk about hot Yoga!

Grade Earned: A

Foam Rolling
I haven’t had time to do as full a foam rolling routine as I’d like to a lot of morning, but at the very least I always do my calves and a quick lower leg foam roll before I run. Except on vacation . . .

Grade Earned: A

Just one or two pieces a day . . . I actually did pick these up while out walking on our last morning in ME.

Nutrition
I had a couple of weeks at home when I wasn’t able to visit my mom, so nutrition was slightly better. Not too many sweets on vacation, either, despite the chocolate — but not as much freggies as I’d like, either! Plus meal times were very different from normal. Again I did the best I could.

Grade Earned: B+ (for trying)

Plenty of movement in ME & I gave our host a private yoga class, too

Cross Training
Yoga, some hiking, walking around rehab & hospital, lots of Pahla B (see her YouTube Channel here — my savior!), a bit of swimming when I can.

Grade Earned: A+ again for effort

August 2021  gets  . . . 
. . . an A. It was an intense month, but I did what I could when I could & didn’t beat myself up for not always being able to sneak in a workout. Heck, I may even be at my eye doctor appointment when you read this — still a few more doctor’s appointments to be scheduled. Also some doctor appointments I need to take my mom too.

August Goals:

  • Shorter/Recovery runs after harder runs. Y/N. Sometimes yes, sometimes no. It just depends what’s going on with my week. Or sometimes if my treadmill is running . . . 
  • ST 2 x week. Y.  I’ve been trying to make strength a priority — as much as possible. Most weeks it was 3 x week.
  • A project with a friend. N. Totally had to be put on hold.
  • A no guilt getaway. Y. I called my mom every day, except when day when we were out from 9 am (too early for my mom) til about 8:30 pm (too late for my mom). I knew I needed to recharge my batteries, although not completely sure that’s what happened, LOL!
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up.. Y. A Colonoscopy prep to vacation — talk about extremes!

Which leads me to September Goals:

  • Run 3 x week. I am hoping that life can settle down. Just a little bit. Pretty please?
  • ST 3 x week. Running is a little bit on the back burner, which should make time for more strength.
  • A project with a friend. Hopefully we can get back to this in September!
  • At least one hike. Local, day trip . . . I actually hope for more than one but we’ll see if the weather cooperates! Some may enjoy wet hikes, but Mr. Judy & Bandit aren’t fans.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. It’s always a goal, of course. I’ve just been at a plateau at a higher weight than I’d like. I want to continue to try to limit frozen foods (when possible) and maybe it’s time to downsize some portions, too, while I’m not running as much.

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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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I Tried It: Mezcla Protein Bars

I had seen Mezcla Protein Bars on sale at Fresh Market — in the app. When I went to buy them, though, there were none to be found. Until finally, probably a month later — not on sale — there they were.

Yup no chocolate & I still loved it!

I tried two flavors and I love them! I knew you could get a mixed flavor box, but of course the bars are pricey, so I didn’t want to spend $$ before I knew I liked them.

Plant protein, relatively healthy ingredients

What I like about Mezcla Protein Bars
There’s a lot to like!

  • Soy, dairy, and gluten free (although made in a plant that might use milk/soy)
  • Plant protein (pea crisps/protein, quinoa, amaranth)
  • 170 calories, only 7 gm sugar, 10 gm protein, 20 gm carbohydrates
  • At 170 calories they’re a true snack (perfect for post run IMHO), not a meal
  • 2% of the profits go to fund art projects in underserved schools (browse through the amazing artwork here!)
  • The flavors: Mexican Hot Chocolate, Peruvian Cocoa Peanut Butter, Japanese Matcha Vanilla

Not my fav flavor (or best photo) but you get the idea

What about the taste?
Initially I tried the Mexican Hot Chocolate and Japanese Matcha Vanilla bars (all I could find) and loved both! The Chocolate bars have a chocolate coating on the bottom, while the Matcha bars have a vanilla coating on the bottom — so they’re not a snack to bring along on a hot day.

I did worry about the coating melting when I got my variety box from Amazon, but they are well packaged and even in summer they arrived in great shape. I did finally try the Cacao Peanut Butter bar — oddly, that wasn’t my favorite. Still good I preferred the other two flaovrs.

Great flavors & great tasting!

Final Thoughts
The ingredients are pretty natural. Sure, 7 gm of sugar is still almost 2 teaspoons of sugar, but it’s far less than many protein bars. These bars won’t weigh you down but they should help stave off the rungries as a post run snack. Best of all is the taste!

The only downside to Mezcla Bars is the price. Although I always say to Mr. Judy — what is your health worth?

You can buy Mezcla bars from their Website here or on Amazon here (Amazon Affiliate link, mixed variety box). I bought these bars on my own, and the opinions in this post are my own, too.

Do you use protein bars as post run snacks sometimes?
What’s your favorite one?
What’s your favorite healthy one, LOL!?

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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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What if I ________ in a race?

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Runners invest so much time and energy in training for their races that it’s completely understandable when we start to get worried about something going wrong before or during the race.

You know what? Sometimes it will. Sometimes that race will totally suck, and other times you’ll dig deep and come out smiling.

What if I’m last?
I have never come in last in a race, although I have definitely been DFL (dead frickin’ last) at some point in some races. You know what? Someone is going to be last. I’ve even heard of races where they really throw a party for the last person to cross the finish line — but let’s face it, that’s the exception.

I did one race that ran out of medals (even though I wasn’t even close to being the last runner, long story).

I have done races where there’s really slim pickings for food at the end. Generally because the public has partaken, and I’m towards the BOTP. One memorable race they ran out of the promised chocolate milk straight from the cows — it was a farm — yes, I know chocolate milk doesn’t come straight from cows. The point is you can’t depend on getting what the faster finishers get — although again, that is not always the case.

Most races have runners and walkers and if you’re running, chances are pretty good that the walkers will be finishing after you. Although I have been passed by race walkers in races.

My worst race, the one where I was injured and had to walk by mile ten, my most painful and almost slowest race ever — a small one, in fact — guess what? I still wasn’t last.

So what if you’re last? Did you do your best? Did you cross the finish line like all the other runners? You earned your medal. You have nowhere to go but up.

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What if I get sick during the race?
It’s only happened to me once, knock on wood. I’ve definitely had races where I didn’t feel great, felt run down in fact, but only one where I had to make a stop to use a portapotty urgently.  I actually had to run quite a few miles while really needing that portapotty.

Endorphins are a wonderful thing. I finished the race. It is still, in fact, my half PR despite that stop. I couldn’t eat much for a few days after, which really sucks while you’re on vacation and have just run a half, but I survived.

The worst that can happen is that you’ll DNF (did not finish). Be kind to yourself. There’s always another race. Know when it’s time to throw in the towel.

In my case the race was a point to point we had to be bussed to and from, so it’s not like I could just easily go back to the hotel. I was lucky to get a ride with a kind stranger, and luckily I wasn’t feeling that bad at that point (endorphins, again!).

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What if I choose the wrong clothes?
It happens. Maybe that raincoat wasn’t such a great idea even if it was rainy. Maybe you ran half a race holding onto your hat so it didn’t blow away. Maybe it was supposed to be cool and suddenly got hot — or hot and suddenly got cold.

My best advice is to lay out several different outfits no matter what the forecast, so even if it changes overnight (it definitely can), you can quickly change outfits on the fly. If you’re traveling to the race — do the same thing. Take it from me!

Final Thoughts
When it comes to racing, there are a lot of What Ifs. Most of them you just can’t control.

What if it’s suddenly hot on race day (wish I had a nickel for the many times that’s happened to me). What if there’s a Nor’easter (yup, been there, ran in that). What if I get lost — so far I’ve been lucky on that one. What if I can’t find the start — well, I had one race where I did find the start, but I had to run to it because I thought it was somewhere else. So many What Ifs in racing.

What was your best race experience when things went wrong?
How do you overcome your own What Ifs?
Have you ever actually been DFL?

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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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I Tried It: ChillPal Gaiter

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When I did some research for things to help you cool down on the run, I came across the Chillpal Cooling Gaiter (Amazon Affiliate link here). I knew I had to try it!

I love my cooling towels but . . .
I do love my cooling towels. It always shocks me that the vast majority of runners shun them. Are they perfect? No! Do they help? Yes! At least in my humble opinion. I like that they knot around your neck, so you have the choice about how tight or loose they fit.

What I don’t love? The way they have a tendency to drip water all over your top, no matter how well you wring it out, because the ends hang down onto your chest. Great for wiping the sweat off of your neck and or head, but not so great sporting the saturated top look.

How does it work?
You just thoroughly wet the gaiter, and then wring it so the extra water comes out. It works by cooling as the water evaporates off of the gaiter.

This was after I had finished my run — it was still wet!

Did the gaiter deliver?
It’s always hard to judge — would I have felt hotter without the gaiter? Who knows?! I tested the gaiter out on a warm and very humid morning. It was still quite wet (and cool) by the time I was done with my 3 mile run plus meeting up with Mr. Judy to finish up Bandit’s walk (about another half mile or so).

My cooling towels definitely help — but I don’t think they stay wet as long. Because it’s a gaiter, you can’t tighten it around your neck as you would with a towel, although I guess how tight it is depends on your neck size. It still gets your top a little weight, but nowhere wet as it did when I used a cooling towel. I found it to be more comfortable than a cooling towel, too.

The Chillpal Gaiter comes in four different colors and only costs $9.97.

Final Thoughts
I’ve only used it once so far, but I do think I prefer the gaiter to my cooling towels. I think it would be useful on hikes, too (hmmm, do they make a doggy sized one?). I wonder if the moisture attracts more bugs? I’m not sure. The gnats were bothering me just a little on this run, but nothing terrible and it’s that time of year.

You can try your own Chillpal here! (Amazon affiliate link). If you do, let me know your thoughts.

Do you wish there was a way to feel more comfortable running in heat & humidity? 

Have you tried something that helps you on those hot & humid runs? 

What’s your best beat the heat tip? 

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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Food for thought: July 2021

To keep the body in good health is a duty . . . otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.
— Buddha

I see it all the time: people saying eat what you want because if you don’t you’re going to regret that you didn’t enjoy yourself. I’m not trying to tell anyone how to live their lives, but I know that if I ate what I wanted, it would look something like this: chocolate, cookies, grilled cheese, french toast, brownies, croissants . . .

Do I eat these things? Of course I do. Sometimes. One thing I’ve gotten very clear on, watching my parents age — I don’t want to age like that. There are many things out of our control, but eating is generally not one of them.

The above quote from Buddha really spoke to me. Then there’s Hippocrates: let food be thy medicine.

Just food for thought, is all

Getting in scheduled runs
I had been thinking of taking a week off running when we went on our hiking vacation — because I’d be hiking for a few days, not that I planned any crazy difficult hikes. The vacation didn’t happen, but I did end up taking the week off of running anyway, due to my mom’s fall and subsequent surgery. My Achilles liked that anyway. I will be going back and forth a lot for I don’t know how long, so I’ll be happy with whatever I can get in.

Grade Earned:  A for Effort

Recording my runs
I have veered off course here again . . . seriously, I need to start using my planner again because it helps me to keep focused. It’s a broken record, folks!

Grade Earned: C

Dynamic Warmup
I have a really short dynamic warmup. I’m pretty religious about doing it, too.

Grade Earned: A

Foam Rolling
I take some of my balls with me to my sister’s. There may have been a day here and there where it didn’t get done due to time, but overall I know it makes my body feel good so I just do it.

Grade Earned: A

Sometimes you do need a treat. Enjoy every bite & I sure did! It’s nice to share though (most of the time).

Nutrition
Still struggling with what will help me take off a few pounds. I have tried to limit frozen foods (too high in sodium), and try to make most of my own meals. On the other hand, there have been a lot of days while in the hospital (no cafeteria, no car) or rehab (car, but still can’t eat inside and don’t want to spend $$ on restaurants) where my lunch was a protein bar and that’s about it. Sometimes the dinners weren’t great either, but again, mostly out of my control. I do bring healthy food with me, but I’m just using an insulated backpack so space is limited.

Grade Earned: B+ (for trying)

Not as much hiking as we’d planned; Mr. Judy might be happy about that!

Cross Training
Yoga, a couple of hikes, walking around rehab & hospital, lots of Pahla B (see her YouTube Channel here — my savior!), a bit of swimming when I can.

Grade Earned: A+ again for effort

July 2021  gets  . . . 
. . . an A. Life definitely handed me lemons and I did my best to juggle them.

July Goals:

  • Shorter/Recovery runs after harder runs. Y/N. Sometimes yes, sometimes no. It just depends what’s going on with my week. Or sometimes if my treadmill is running . . . 
  • ST 3 x week. Y/N.  I did the best I could. Luckily my niece keeps a set of weights at my sister’s, because I wasn’t about to drag mine (a multi-weight set) down. I always packed resistance bands, too.
  • A project with a friend. Y/N. We got started but haven’t been able to meet up for follow ups yet.
  • A few Yoga teaching opportunities. Y/N. I still haven’t met with the person who won the free Yoga class — it’s done, but again, it’s a time thing — she’s been incredibly patient, thankfully. Unfortunately I was not able to teach the other class I’d volunteered for.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up.. Y. Weight is somewhat steady, but it needs to go down. I keep playing around with things, trying to figure out what I need to do.

Which leads me to August Goals:

  • Run 3 x week. Some weeks it may not happen. I can run at my sister’s — I have in the past — but right now I just haven’t been feeling it. I do other exercise in the morning  when I’m there.
  • ST 2 x week. I may be able to get in 3 x week sometimes. Better to aim low right now.
  • A project with a friend. I would like to meet with her at least once in August, but I realize it just might not happen right now.
  • A no guilt getaway. I hope, anyway. We have plans to go see some friends in ME at the end of August. Originally I thought we’d stay over somewhere going and coming, but now I’m leaning towards shortening it just a bit — I guess it depends on what sort of progress my mom has made by then. I’m also not quite sure about this as my mom might be going home around that time.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. It’s always a goal, of course. I’ve just been at a plateau at a higher weight than I’d like. I want to continue to try to limit frozen foods (when possible) and maybe it’s time to downsize some portions, too, while I’m not running as much.

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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Why I Also Like Running Solo

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Choosing the right route for me
I might want to run some hills. Or I don’t want to run hills because something’s bothering me! I might be short on time and want to stay in my neighborhood. I might not want to drive to the route the group has chosen, which might be close to them but further away from me.

Running at the time I want
Sometimes I want to start earlier to beat the heat. Sometimes I want to start later when it’s colder. I am lucky that I don’t have a 9-5 job and am able to cherry pick when I run (sort of).

Choosing a different long run day
Again, no 9-5 job. Which means I often choose to run my long run on a Thursday, Friday, maybe Sunday — it might be that a different day has better weather, or that I just have other commitments on the day the group runs a long run.

Go with the flow
The weather changes. A lot. Always running on the same day means you may be dealing with foul weather. There is nothing wrong with that, but if you can choose another day with better weather? Yes, misery may love company, but going solo helps build that mental muscle.

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I don’t think I was mad because I was running alone . . .

Sometimes I just need to be alone
There have definitely been times when I’ve been angry, or sad, or just overwhelmed, and the truth is I want to be alone. Sometimes running hard by myself is just what the doctor ordered. Or running slowly and stopping at lot!

Final Thoughts
I think it really comes down to flexibility for me. Running with groups has many advantages, as I wrote about last week here. Don’t count out running solo, though — it’s got its advantages too.

Group runner?
Solo runner?
Both Group and Solo?

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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Running Groups are Great …

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. . . even for Shy Runners. That’s me in the white vest towards the right above.

A Reason to Show Up
It’s much harder to bail on a run knowing that other runners are waiting for you. It also helps if you’re a runner who tends to procrastinate.

Someone to Share the Miles With
As the saying goes, misery loves company. Sometimes it’s about sharing the wins:

  • PRs
  • Overcoming injuries
  • A new distance
  • Maybe just some cute new kicks or running clothes!

It’s all too easy for runners to get in their head, but running with other people can help you forget about what’s bothering you.

A Little Push
Sometimes you end up running with someone who is a little faster than you are — as long as you’re careful and don’t run too fast for your body, a little push every now and again is a good thing.

Slowing Down
For the runner that always runs like a bat out of he!!, sometimes running with someone who runs slower is just what the doctor ordered.

Finding Your Tribe
Let’s face it, our non running friends, or SOs who don’t run, and probably the rest of our family can get a bit tired of hearing about our runs. Runners love to talk about running!

Final Thoughts
I started out as a solo runner, I ran with different groups for a lot of years, and for a variety of reasons I’ve been a solo runner the last couple of years. Like anything there are pros and cons to running solo and to running in a group.

I will say this though: I wish when I had started to run that I joined a group. It can be immensely helpful when you’re a new runner, although if you’re a slower runner, sometimes finding the right group takes a few tries. It’s worth it though!

Group runner?
Solo runner?
Both Group and Solo?

btuesdaytopics

Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

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

Runners_Roundup_Logo-640x640