Sunday, January 20, 2013

#NoGymJanuary Update IV: Keeping it safe

Wait, there's only two weeks left in January?! Yes, that's right! It's been almost three weeks since we all made our goals, committed to resolutions, and got all "I'm going to the gym" or "Ugh, the gym." Time is flying, so let's see what's been happening this week!

Monday: Kettlebell workout on Daily Burn, plus sprints at a running store to test out new shoes. I opted for the 15 minute workout with kettlebells because I was short on time, and boy did it burn! I had to head into the city for running shoe shopping and a meet up with my church, and I was very satisfied with my workout. In addition I added 50 swings with my heavier kettlebell and some push ups. Needless to say, this strength training session was 20 minutes of nonstop strengthening! Then it was off to a GREAT running store with a VERY helpful staff where I FINALLY decided on these bad girls:

Saucony Kinvara 3's, you'll be mine TOMORROW!!!

Tuesday: Runmute with my coworker! Ms. Bailey has joined the run club and is also my coteacher at school. She is a very fast runner (First half marathon was 1:53!!!). She pushed to a great, yet unexpectedly CHILLY post work run home!

Wednesday: Stayed home and STRETCHED. I was suppposed to do a track workout, but my hamstring was TIGHT. I stayed home and did 20 minutes of yoga, plus my hamstring stretches/workouts (Will be listed below). 

Thursday: 5 mile tempo run. The goal was 1 mile warm up, 3 miles at 8:30, 1 mile cool down. I met up with Steph and Ms. Bailey with our run club to throw down an AUDACIOUS run. I ended up doing okay, averaging around 9:30, with my tempo miles averaging around 9 or just below. My stomach was a mess and my hamstrings were still sensitive; I call this run a win despite some tough (personal) elements!

Friday: Yoga club (at school) WORK OUT! The first week I got the kids doing workout moves (Mostly pylymetrics/using your own body weight moves) for one song. The second week was two songs. This week? THREE SONGS! We did mountain climbers, high knees, mummies, football sprints,  burpees, criss crosses with arms, whoa. It was an intense workout! THEN we did yoga. All around sore and satisfied.

Saturday: 5 miles at a 9:15-9:30 goal pace. This was a cutback week in half marathon training, and it went well. Kim wrote me wondering if I was working, and thankfully I was NOT! We did 5 miles together, averaging 9:20 pace. I was very happy with this run, since I was feeling extremely tired.

Now, onto the No Gym January topic: SAFETY.

There are many ways to keep it safe. Without the guidance of a trainer, it's easy to lose form, logic, and understanding during a workout. This week I learned many things about being safe while working out sans gym. Here are a few of those gems:

1. LISTEN. TO. YOUR. BODY. I pushed it Tuesday night on my runmute, and my hamstring/glutes let me know it. I started using dynamic stretches for runners, which has helped loosen me up before/after a run. However, I had to skip Wednesday's workout because of tightness, so I did a crazy "lower body release" workout on Daily Burn to get my act together. Note: If you had a tennis ball, use to it roll your feet and glutes. It's painful but definitely gets the job done. Livestrong has a great tennis ball therapy guide. I also found this site that listed similar release moves. Listening to your body today enables you to run your best tomorrow!

This week I will NEED to follow point number 2! It's going to get COLD up in hur!

2. Dress appropriately! Ah, as simple as this sounds, wear the right gear! I'm an obsessive weather checker, but I got caught off guard Tuesday night, as did my running partner. It was a fairly mild day, but somehow it was bone chilling by 5pm! My partner and I were so cold, I lent her my fleece head band because I had brought running tights, a tank and a long sleeve...she only had a long sleeve and capris! Remember to check the weather for when you will RUN, not the daily high!!! For more winter running tips, check out:

Cold Weather Running
How to Stay Motivated in the Winter
Winter Motivation: Logging Miles
Winter Running Style

3. Run SAFELY in the dark! Since my running club doesn't meet until after 7pm, I've been seeing a lot of gear that encourages a safe run! A running reflective vest or headlamp are obvious, but I also saw some great reflective arm bands as well. Although it is less prominent than a vest or headlamp, a reflective armband is a great choice for runners who run in well lit areas but may be wearing dark clothes, or simply want to be more visible.

4. PARTNER SAFETY! There's always safety in numbers. I tell my students this, and I tell me friends this! I never run beyond well trafficked streets in my neighborhood after dark alone. I'll venture to the park after dark if I am with friends. If you feel uncomfortable, follow that feeling. If you have to loop within the confines of a safe cul de sac over and over again, DO SO. Follow your gut, always trust your instincts. My friend started a SMALL Facebook group for local runners in our immediate neighborhood (We have six cool...), and we post last minute running partner requests, fitness classes, etc. This helps us find someone to run with so we won't be alone. 

So, safety first, No Gym January participants! 

How about you? Do you run in pairs? Ignore caution and run with the wind? Never stretch or always stretch!? Tell me about it!
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