Thursday, February 28, 2013

Asking For Advice

With the race coming up in a few days, I have a few coworkers who are either running in the same race or their spouse is asking me for advice.  One question that was asked; What should they eat before the race?   This is a 10k we are all running, not a marathon.  They were planning on eating a huge pasta meal the night before the race.  I told him to tell his wife to eat what she normally eats before she works out.  

Another question that came up, should I stretch before I run the race?  My personal preference is no.  I never stretch before I run. If my legs do not feel warmed up, I start off slow.  I used to start off with a 5 minute walk before I would break into a run.  

Someone else asked me if we should wear the shirt the day of the run.  They wanted to know if doing this would bring bad luck.  I told them no, it has nothing to do with luck.  You just do not want to wear a new shirt on the day of a race if you never have worn it before.  The reason is comfort.  Why go into a race and be uncomfortable. The same advice can be applied with new shows.  Make sure to wear them a few times before the race to break them in.

The most important thing is to have fun.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Race Packet

Today after work, I went to pick up my race packet.  It contains my bib and new shirt.  When I pulled out the new shirt, a smile went across my face.  I finally got a little excited for my first race.  Of course to pick up your packet, you need to walk through the entire running expo.  

On the way back through after getting my packet, I saw the brooks display.   Living in Israel, brooks shoes can sometimes cost twice the price in the states.  At this display, I found the adrenalines, I have been looking to order at a great price.  I bought a pair.  I walked around some more and didn’t see anything else I needed.  

The chip timer is attached to my bib.  This will come in handy, as during the race, I will be Running Without a Watch.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Make it Fun and Exciting

How do you get kids to eat healthy?  Make it fun and exciting for them,  My wife is a genius.  She found at the dollar store some reusable containers with compartments for different types of food.  She gives each kid a sandwich, fruit, and a vegetable. 

The kids love this.  Before she takes them out for the day, she asks them which fruit and vegetable they want.  They feel part of the decision.   Over the weekend, the kids asked for cucumber and apple as we heading to the park.  They each got half and finished everything,

It is very easy to teach kids to make correct choices, but being creative does not hurt either.

Monday, February 25, 2013

A One Man Race

On Friday night, I went out for a nice short run.  As I was going up the first hill, I got passed by someone else who was out for a run.  I said to myself, no way, you cannot let someone pass you.  I kept a good pace behind him never letting him gain too ahead of me.  I finally passed him near the top of the first hill.  He caught back up and pulled ahead on the flat part.

I decided to go for it.  I sped up and passed him for good.  I swear I heard him laugh as I was pulling away.  I looked back twice and saw he was still behind me.  When I got to the next intersection, I turned around and faced my nemesis.  I waved to him and he just ignored me.  Oh well, I had some extra fun with my run this night.

Have you ever raced someone who did not know you were racing?

Friday, February 22, 2013

One Week

With about 1 week to go before my race, I am in the home stretch.  I will probably go running 5 or 6 more days before the race.  I am not looking to test my speed or endurance until after the race.  My food plan this week is nothing too crazy. I will stick with foods I am comfortable with. 

I am running a 10k on a hilly course.  I am not worried about the distance as I have been running at least this distance if not farther once a week. What I am worried about is the start time. It is early, around 8:45am. I am used to running in the evening.  I think the only affect this will have on me is maybe taking a mile or two to warm up.  

Wish me luck.

What do you remember about your first race?

Thursday, February 21, 2013

An Inconvenient Dinner

One of the main reasons I have stayed away from races is that I am forced to run a certain amount of miles at a certain time.  I like my laid back running schedule.  I run far when I want to depending on how I feel that day or during my run.  This way I can adjust my running schedule depending on what the day has planned for me.

I just found out the day before my race in March, we are having a work event.  This means I need to go to a different office, which is about 2 hours away.  We are also going out to dinner that night as a group.  My plans the night before my race was to have a nice healthy dinner with foods I am used to and to get bed at a decent hour.

Now, I need to have a 2 hour commute back home after eating a greasy meal at a restaurant with food I do not eat on a regular basis.  Well see how this will impact me.

Has anyone run into a similar situation?

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Be Careful

I was out on my run last night and I had a reminder to always be alert when you are out.  As I was running, I heard a car blow its horn and then tires screech.  I looked up and saw two cars sideswipe each other right next to the sidewalk I was currently running on.  Luckily, it was minor and nobody was hurt. 

This was a nice reminder to pay attention to your surroundings. It was a night that I had my IPOD with me.  I was not listening to music but a podcast.  The volume was not too loud.  If you are going run with something in your ears, make sure the volume is low enough so you can hear.  You never know what can happened.  If one of those cars would have swerved into the sidewalk, I could have been hit.

Be Careful.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Whole Wheat Muffins

This is a great recipe my wife found in the “Joy of Cooking”.  She makes these every few days for the kids to munch on as a healthy snack when they come home from school. I also usually eat one when I arrive home of work.

This makes 12 muffins.

2/3 light whole wheat flour
1 1/3 cup of Whole Wheat flour
2 tsp of baking powder
1 egg
2 tblsp honey (we use date honey)
1 cup of milk (we use soy)
2 tsp canola oil
½ cup applesauce

Preheat oven to 400 F or 205C
Mix Dry and Liquid in separate bowls.
Combine and mix.
Fill muffin pans 2/3 full.
Bake 20 minutes

Monday, February 18, 2013

Dog $hit

An interesting thing happened on my 9 mile run last week.  About 4 miles in, I was running and I hear a squish. I was thinking OH NO!!!  Dog $hit.  I am very careful about scanning the sidewalks as I run and sometimes I have to do the dog $hit hurdles, but I have never stepped in the stuff. Not once in over my 12 years of running.  

I stopped and looked down.  I could not see what I stepped in.  I looked closer and found the culprit. It was hiding perfectly in the shadows of a tree that I missed at night.  I quickly scraped my shoe against the curb.  Then I ran through some gravel dragging my feet a little to get the little bits that were stuck. It worked for the most part. When I finished my run, there was a little bit left that I quickly scraped off with a stick.  

Have you ever stepped in dog $hit on your run?

Friday, February 15, 2013


What is it with fasting these days?  I do not understand it.  There are all kinds; Juice fasts, 16 hour fasts, etc…  What is the point?  Is it because all people want is a quick weight loss plan?  They do not want to do any work to lose weight.  It is similar to a get rich quick scheme.

Me?  I want a plan that involves healthy living.  I want to do something I find I can do the rest of my life.  I enjoy eating.  I want to live life.  Fasting is not part of it.  

Has anyone fasted and found success?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

When I'm 64 (Or 74)

Every Morning on my commute to work, our bus passes an older gentleman out for a run.  To me he looks like he is in late 60’s or early 70’s.  I am always impressed when we pass him and I hope that will be me one day.

He has a nice activity to help him stay fit and in shape.  I am sure he enjoys playing with his grandchildren since he is in such great shape.  This is what running is all about.  It gives us the freedom to enjoy our sport no matter how old we are.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

9 MIles. Check.

I ran 9 miles the other night. I still cannot believe that I went that far.  I did not mean to.  It was one of those runs where everything felt great and so I kept going.   I have a 10k race coming up early next month that I know is on a hilly course.  I wanted to include more hills into my run to help prepare. 

I started out planning on doing 5-7 miles depending on how I was feeling after the first hill.  I felt great!!  I decided to go for it.  This was the longest run I have ever completed. I once completed 9 miles on a treadmill, but the last 1.5 miles was by walking as I was finishing a movie after my run.  This was the first time I have run 9 miles.  

A funny thing happens when you are out running that far.  You start to really get into your run. I swear I was singing out loud the last 2 miles.  I was listening to my oldies mix and felt great.  It was wonderful. 

10 miles you are next!!!  Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but someday this year.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

7 Miles Baby!!!

I have just realized that for the past three/four  weeks I have made a long run of 7 miles each Saturday night.  I know a lot of people like to do their long runs on Sunday mornings, but I have found that this works best for me.  Saturdays are usually a fun filled day. We go playground hopping, do a little cooking.  A lot of time I make my delicious chocolate chip pancakes for me and the kids.  

Everything falls into place.  I also find it is easier to go out for a longer run at night with regards to family time.  My kids are usually asleep and my wife enjoys her downtime as well.  Once I come back, we sit and eat dinner together.  

Also, my schedule has become extra busy lately.  I am now training for a volunteer position that takes up two nights a week.  Plus to make a little extra money, I am picking a few extra shifts at the office each month.  Saturday night runs have become my time.

When do you prefer your long run?

Monday, February 11, 2013

National Run A 5k Day

I am declaring March 1, National Run A 10k Day.  On this day which is in three weeks, everyone go out and run, walk or do a combination to complete 3.1 miles.  This will be followed by her sister event on June 2, which I declare National Run A 10k Day.

This is not supposed to be an organized event.  Use google maps and plot a course.  Do it on the treadmill.  Who is with me?

Like us on Facebook.  

If we get to 100,000 likes that means 100,000 people like!!!

Friday, February 08, 2013

More Than Running

I have been slowly adding new things to my work out each day.  Sometimes I experiment with different things to see how my body reacts.  For example, last year, I used to incorporate lunges and squats into my routine.  My knees could not handle these and I wound up being injured.  

I have always done pushups and I slowly have been increasing the amount. I am now consistently able to do 35 at one time and once I made it to 50.  I also now have added sit ups and planks.  Depending on the season, I sometimes would go down to the playground near the house and attempt to do pull ups on the monkey bars.  

What do you incorporate into your routine each day?  What has worked or what has not worked?

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Do You Believe in Uphill Magic

Uphill running, either you love it or you hate.  I am the former.  I love hills. I especially love running uphill.  Going uphill can either make or break your run. I conquer hills as if they were nothing.  There have been many times I have been passed when out for a run by a fellow runner.  I always know, I will be able to get them on the next hill.  Sure enough, I fly past them leaving them in my dust. 

The trick is a tip my father told me.  He said to take little steps almost like baby steps when you are going up.  Amazingly this works.  I did this during my run Saturday night when I was out for 7 miles on a hilly route.  I felt good and my long run turned out to be a long and fast run at the same time.  I knew it was going to be good, when I conquered each of the hills fearlessly.  Sure enough, I took these baby steps and came to the top of the hill without feeling like I exerted all my energy. I maintained my fast pace and finished the run feeling great.

What is your secret to running hills?

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Who Cares What People Think

In the February issue of Runners world, there is a question in the Ask Miles section.  Someone wanted to know at what mileage they can wear a fuelbelt without being laughed at.  I say get over this.  Who really cares what someone thinks of you when you are out running.  

First of all most people will not know how far you just ran or how far you are planning on going unless you are doing a race.  Second, runners can be a little self-centered.  I know I can be when I am out on a run; I am usually focusing on myself.

I used to use a fuel belt and I would go out for 3-6 miles.  It was great.  I enjoyed running hands free.  Now I use a handheld bottle.  I enjoy this more.  I wear what I want and I when I go to my race this spring, I will be wearing what I have practiced in. 

If wearing short shorts, tube socks with a camelback for water will get you out of the house, I say go for it.

Be yourself.

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

The 10 Minute Rule

I have a friend who is training for the same race I am running in March.  She was asking me, how I get through the first part of my run.  She was complaining about shin splits and low motivation. I told her to get out there slowly and warm up.  I said there was nothing with walking, especially to warm up for the run.  I then told her of a tip I read somewhere.  I go for my run and after 10 minutes, if I do not feel like continuing, stop.  I have yet to stop. 

I also told her just to get out there a few days this week.  She needs to keep her motivation up.  The hardest part of any run is the start.  After running a few days in a week  and then a few weeks of running, it will start to feel more like it is part of your lifestyle.

What do you think?

Monday, February 04, 2013

January Stats

I knew I was not going to reach my goal of 21 days when I did not run on Sunday.  It was too crazy with my schedule for me to get out there.  I still had a chance to make it to 20 days and 80 miles this month.  This would have been the 8th month in a row with at least 20 days running and 7th with at least 80 miles.  I fell short of both. I finished January with 78 miles over 19 days.  

Part of the reason I feel short was twofold. This month, we had a lot of rain.  There was a period of 4 straight days where it poured and I could not get out there.  The other was my usual reason; spending time with my wife or just relaxing.  It is actually kind of freeing to end both of these streaks.  I was putting a little too much pressure on myself.  My main goal is to have running a part of my life and not my life.

February has been my Achilles heel the past two years. I always seem to get injured.  Maybe it’s the cold, maybe it is when my shoes start to go bad or maybe it is just bad luck. I have a 10k race in early march that I am training for. I am hoping to get out there for at least one or two runs of 7 or 8 miles and 2 runs of 6.  My goal for the month is 20 days and 80 miles.

How was your January?

Friday, February 01, 2013

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

I already knew that when I went out tonight that I was not going to reach my goals of 21 days and 85 miles or even 20 days and 80 miles to continue streaks I had going.  I decided to get out there anyhow. I took last night off due to the weather.  Tonight it looked like it was clearing up and on my way home from work, the ground was starting to dry. 

I got changed and then went out.  As soon as I got out of the front door, I noticed the ground was wet.  I said to myself, “WTF”. It was raining.   I decided to take my chances and go for it.  I thought about doing my loop run and started to make a turn to reach the path, but I decided that I wanted to go up and back.  I figured if it started raining hard, I could always catch a bus or cab to get back home.  

The first 10 minutes of my run, it was a light rain. It was the annoying cold kind of rain. My face got wet and my clothes started to get wet and cold. I decided to just do 3 miles and go slow. I was not looking to slip and hurt myself.  Plus, I was not trying to reach any milestones, so there was no reason to go much farther.  With a new month upon us, I wanted to be fresh
After about the first mile and a half, the rain started to subside. I finished running downhill very carefully and made it home not as wet as I thought