Day 7: How Does Your Hip Drop?

screen-shot-2016-11-07-at-5-35-12-amGood morning and happy Monday Crew!

Continuing this month’s focus on “All In the Hips” we must talk about side to side stabilization and hip drop. No we’re not talking about the heel drop in your shoes, we’re talking about the way your hips line up when you’re running.

Do you stand tall when you’re running, or does your body involuntarily lean to on side causing your hip to drop to an unnatural level?

I found a really good article on hip stabilization on RunnersConnect.com called, Hip strength and running form: The role of hip drop in running injuries. I won’t recap the entire article for you as the link is above, but it is important to know that many runners who suffer injuries have weak hip stabilizing muscles. Among these muscles, the ones which are most often weakened in injured runners are the abductors and external rotators.

research by Irene Davis at the University of Delaware has shown that one good predictor of future injuries in healthy runners is a mechanical evaluation of hip mechanics: runners who have excessive hip adduction (opposite of abduction) and internal rotation are at an increased risk of developing injuries in the knee and IT band.

The logic is pretty simple, then: weak abductor and external rotator muscles cause excessive adduction and internal rotation during running, since the hip muscles aren’t strong enough to resist the forces from ground impact.

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Here’s a few pictures of me at RNR Savannah this weekend. I look happy and of course I’m smiling as always, but the knee pain was real and it kept me from taking that left turn onto the highway to complete the full marathon as I had signed up for. I was happy with my half marathon finish….but I am guilty of weak hips and here is the proof.

Totally guilty of hip drop. Especially later on in the race when I get more tired and lazy about my form.

Want to find out if you need to work on stabilization and getting those hips in line too? Find a race photo, or use a mirror, camera, or a friend to evaluate yourself to see if your hips tilt when you’re in the stance phase of your stride, particularly if you have had knee or IT band issues in the past…or feel a little niggling in your lower extremities now.

If you do find that your hips are dropping, we can fix it either by overriding your “natural” gait habits and practicing “standing taller” when we run and by doing strength exercises to shore up our weaknesses.  Fortunately, after adding hip strengthening exercises and practicing standing tall and keeping your pelvis level for a while, it will become automatic, overriding the old stride pattern in your brain. YAY…there is hope! 🙂

These exercises are for everyone so even if you don’t suffer from poor running form, eventually your hips will grow weaker and you may find this becoming a reality too. Work on hip strength now to avoid pain and injuries in the future.

Day 7 exercises: Hips/Glutes – Follow video below

  • Side Leg Pulse
  • Side Bicycle
  • Leg Stir
  • Big Circle
  • Hot Potato
  • Back Butt Press
  • Forearm Plank – :60
  • Pigeon Pose – :30 each leg

Seems like a lot…but in reality this workout takes about 5 minutes total for both legs. Don’t forget to start the video over with the opposite leg!


Bonus: Clamshell – 3 sets of 10 (each side) – Perfect addition to today’s hip/glute workout and an exercise we can do daily without any worry of “overdoing” it. Add some difficulty by using a resistance band around your knees.


Sarah’s Calorie Burn: Want to burn some extra calories today? Sarah has extended a little side challenge to us for this month that I am going to include each day. It’s a quick way to burn some extra calories so if this is an off day from running and you want to get your heart rate up a bit more, throw it in!

  • 25 Squats
  • 60 Jumping Jacks
  • 20 Push Ups
  • 50 Crunches

Lots of fun stuff to do on a Monday….but what else are Monday’s for other than a little hard work? 😉


Speed Work: Speed work can be done any day of the week but should be a few days in advance of your long run to give your legs a chance to recover fully before another “effort session”. If you go long on Saturday, get your speed work done by Wednesday. If you wait till Sunday to get those extra weekly miles in, you can safely wait till Thursday for speed work. But don’t put it off. Get it done because we know that speed work has MANY positive effects on on our running. Better breathing and lung capacity during our workouts being a huge motivating factor!

Workout: The Short Ladder 

This is a tough workout but once it’s done…man on man do you feel like a total badass! here’s how to set it up. I’m calling it the “short ladder” because I’m leaving out the 1200m this week. Baby steps…

  1. Warm up – 1-1.5 miles slow and easy – Rest 2 min
  2. 1600 – 1 mile – Don’t go all out…yet – Rest 2 min
  3. 800M – 1/2 mile – Speed up a little from your mile – Rest 2 min
  4. 2 x 400M – 1/4 mile – These should be your faster intervals – Rest 2 min between and after
  5. 800M – 1/2 mile – Back off the 400m speed but still give it some power! – Rest 2 min
  6. 1600m – 1 mile – This will be hard…but you can do it! Don’t give up!
  7. Cool down – 1 mile – This mile will feel easy and should be at your long run pace. Take time to breathe and just bring your heart rate down.
  8. STRETCH!! This is just as important as the rest of your workout. Don’t skip it. Your back, hips, glutes, quads, hamstrings, and calves will thank you! Here’s our 7 Key Stretches for Runners. Throw in a final pigeon pose just because it feels so good!

Don’t have time? Make time! This is for YOU! You need it. You deserve it! You will love yourself when it’s over! Get to work Crew and make it a fabulous Monday! 🙂

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Day 29: New Monday…New Goals

Screen Shot 2016-08-28 at 7.09.31 PMOnly 2 days left in our August Challenge…what?!?! Every month seems to fly by and we start so strong then seem to falter towards the end of the month. It happens…

I know it gets harder as the number of sets go up. I know you get tired and busy and feel like you might as well wait to start over again next month…but get that crap out of your head and start the new month today instead of Thursday. It is Monday after all!

Let’s bust out these 2 days super strong, take a break on Wednesday, then attack September with a vengeance!

Day 29 exercises: 3 sets of 10

****Click here for how to videos****

  • Jumping Jacks (50 2X)
  • Walking Push Ups
  • Forearm Plank Jacks
  • Inchworm with Shoulder Taps
  • Plank Challenge Day 20 – Get a Move On! (:45 3X)

Plank – Get a Move On! This plank gets us moving. Remember to hold your core in tight and focus on controlling each move. It’s better to go slow and do it right then be fast and sloppy! Here’s the steps and the Plank Challenge video for Get a Move On! is below.

  1. Start in a high plank with toes on a towel, gliders, or paper plates.
  2. Walk your hands forward four steps.
  3. Open your legs wider than hip-width to a straddle (similar to a plank jack) position, five times.
  4. Walk your hands back four steps.
  5. Continue in this manner for 45 seconds. Repeat 3 times.

Bonus: Ab & Squat Challenge Day 29 – I have no excuse but that I totally forgot about this part of our August challenge over the weekend. I hope you’ve been keeping up with it. If not…no worries…jump back in and let’s finish it strong.

  • 30 Sit Ups
  • 90 Crunches
  • 95 Squats

Speed Work: Last week of the month and I think we should do something fun and  unstructured. How about some Fartleks this week? YAY! 🙂

Fartlek Workouts are not only fun to say out loud, but they’re fun to run. Fartlek is Swedish for “speed play,” and that is exactly what it’s all about. Unlike tempo and interval work, fartlek is unstructured and alternates moderate-to-hard efforts with easy throughout. After a warm-up, you play with speed by running at faster efforts for short periods of time (to that tree, to the sign) followed by easy-effort running to recover. It’s fun in a group setting as you can alternate the leader and mix up the pace and time. And in doing so, you reap the mental benefits of being pushed by your buddies through an unpredictable workout. The goal is to keep it free-flowing so you’re untethered to the watch or a plan, and to run at harder efforts but not a specific pace.

Speed work is meant to be spaced out so it’s a good few days away from your other “effort” sessions. Effort sessions are speed, hills, tempo, and long run. So if you do your long runs on the weekend, speed work should be on Tuesday or Wednesday. Most of us are mid level runners so 2 “effort” sessions a week are plenty. If you’re feeling good you can throw in one more but don’t overdo it.  Remember the general rule of thumb…80% of our runs should be at a conversation pace!

I had my first good nights sleep last night in a week and wow I feel pretty darn good this morning. Not running good yet…but I can see the finish line of this injury and am feeling positive! Can’t wait to tackle arms today and be active. Oh how my body is craving it!

Find that fire within you and let’s get to work Crew! 🙂

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Day 22: Confidence is Beautiful!

Screen Shot 2016-08-21 at 8.21.17 PMConfident people radiate strength, passion and conviction and self confidence looks so good on you.

Own it! ROCK IT!!!

Radiate that confidence today…remind yourself you can do this and use it to power through today’s workout!

Strong, toned arms will give you the confidence to wear tank tops, bathing suits, and that sexy little black dress.

Looking fabulous in your favorite top is great…but the self confidence that strength and a healthy body bring us is always the best outfit.

Day 22 exercises: 3 sets of 10

****Click here for how to videos****

  • Jumping Jacks (3 sets of 50)
  • Walking Push Ups
  • Forearm Plank Jacks
  • Inchworm with Shoulder Taps
  • Plank Challenge – Day 22: Step Up Your Side Plank (:45 3X)

I’ve spoken with some of you who have issues with jumping jacks. If that’s you, remember to switch those out for something equivalent that will get your heart rate up a bit. How about some mountain climbers or high knees?

Step Up Your Side Plank: Today’s plank puts together three moves we’ve already worked on this month. Go slowly and focus on holding in your core for each move. It’s not about rushing through it…it’s about having control. Here’s the steps.

  1. Start in a side plank on your right side.
  2. Dip your right hip toward the floor for two reps, then lift your left leg off your right for two reps.
  3. Rotate your left elbow to your right for two reps.
  4. Do three sets on each side.

Bonus: Ab & Squat Challenge – Day 22

  • 20 Sit Ups
  • 25 Crunches
  • 45 Squats

Extra Credit: #SexyArmWorkout – If you have a little extra time…and the confidence to know you can get through it…power through this Sexy Arm Workout. This ones hits every part of our arms!

sexy arms

Speed Work: This week’s speed work is the one I did at track last week and it was tough but fun! What is your plan to get it done? Plan a day to make it happen this week Crew! Reach out to me anytime with questions…

  • Warm Up – 1 mile at conversation pace
  • 3X 800M – These intervals should be done at a pace 1-2 minutes faster than your conversation pace…but not at all out top speed. Rest 1-2 minutes in between each 800 meters (1/2 mile)
  • 3X 400M – These will be your fastest intervals of the day and should be done a little bit faster than your 800s. Think of negative splits during a normal run…you start out slower than progressively get faster throughout your run. Same concept here…run each interval a little faster than the last. Save your speed for the end so your confidence builds during each round.
  • Cool Down – 1 mile at conversation pace

If you’d like a more precise pace to run these intervals, find your most recent 5K or 10K and private message me here. Let’s chat and I’ll help you find the pace that’s right for you. Don’t be shy…better to know what you’re doing than to guess!

Screen Shot 2016-08-21 at 8.12.02 PMThis is a tough workout but if you start slow and build your way up you will finish feeling strong and confident! You can do this so stop doubting yourself and give it a try!

If it hurts…you’re doing it right! Keep going…it’s just your body changing for the better!

Rock that self confidence Crew….it is your best accessory! 🙂

 

Day 15: Stepping Up

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We’re at the halfway point…and it’s Monday! Time to step it up and become the best version of yourself!

If you’ve already fallen behind or failed to get a good start, now is the time to shake it off and move forward. Forget about the days you’ve missed…don’t worry about “making them up”.  Brush it off, get focused, and commit to a strong finish!

Stepping it up not only means recommitting to finish strong…it also means it’s time to add another set to our daily exercises. 3 sets of 10 for this week Crew….let’s rock it out!

Day 15 exercises: 3 sets of 10 

****Click here for how to videos****

  • Jumping Jacks (50 2X)
  • Walking Push UPs
  • Forearm Plank Jacks
  • Inchworm with Shoulder Taps
  • Plank Challenge Day 15 – Boost Your Heart Rate (:45 3X)

Plank Challenge – The “Boost Your Heart Rate” Plank puts together a few of the planks we’ve done so far this month. Take your time and do each step correctly the first time then power through sets 2 & 3 to get your heart beating faster! Here’s the steps

  1. Start in a low forearm plank
  2. Do two plank up-downs.
  3. Bring each knee to its opposite elbow.
  4. Do 5 plank jacks.
  5. Repeat for :45
  6. Do 3 sets

Here’s the “Boost Your Heart Rate” how to video

Bonus: Ab & Squat Challenge Day 15:

  • 20 Sit Ups
  • 30 Crunches
  • 20 Squats

Arm Bonus: #SlenderSexyArms – Bringing back another of my favorites! This Slender Sexy Arms bonus workout won’t take long but it will make your arms burn! I know a lot of you don’t like jumping jacks…and for this workout, I usually simplify that move too. For the jumping jack portion, don’t jump, focus on the arm portion and really feel the power in your arms just doing the up and down arm movement with your weights.

You do not need heavy weights for this…I use small 2 pound dumbbells. If you don’t have small weights, grab some water bottles or something that is lighter than what you normally use on arm day.

Slender sexy arms

Speed Work: 4x 400M – At first this workout might not seem to taxing but I want you to run these 400M (.25 mile) at 95% effort so basically at almost your top speed with a half mile recovery in between each set of 400 meters. Here’s how to set it up.

  1. Warm up – 1-1.5 miles slow
  2. 400M sprint at 95% effort
  3. half mile recovery – slow (1 minute slower than your normal easy pace)
  4. repeat 3 more times
  5. cool down 1- 1.5 miles slow
  6. Total workout should be 5-6 miles with 1 mile total of fast splits

If you watched some track and field this weekend and caught any of the 400M races, you can see how taxing this distance at an all out speed can be. Those 1/2 mile recovery jogs are important so don’t skip or shorten them. Of this 5-6 mile workout, only 1 mile (4 x 400) should be done at your all out speed. Questions? Please ask! Reach out to your Crew in our FB group here or send me a private message here and let’s chat about it.

You can do this workout on a track, treadmill or in your neighborhood with a GPS watch. Don’t overthink it…just go out and start with a slow warm up, then push pace for a quarter mile, jog slow for a half mile, repeat this process 4 times, then recover with a nice and easy mile to mile and a half cool down.

The best way to get your speed work done is to plan ahead so you are mentally and physically prepared for it. Make sure to leave a few days in between your hard workouts and other effort sessions (hill work, tempo run, long run).

Rise up and be the best version of yourself Crew….your world is waiting! Shine and sparkle with sweat and give it all you’ve got!

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Day 8: Exercise Makes You Happy!

Exercise makes me happyHey Crew, it’s Monday and we all know the saying…never miss a Monday!

We know exercise is good for us. It keeps our weight in check, makes us stronger, and keeps us feeling youthful.

But did you know that exercise can also make you a happier person? It’s true!

When you work out and stay active on a regular basis, it’s not just a coincidence that you feel less stressed out, less anxious, and generally happier.

Here are 6 reasons why exercising makes us happy:

1. It releases happy chemicals into your brain. Dopamine, a chemical that plays a role in happiness, is a neurotransmitter in the brain that’s necessary for feelings of pleasure and happiness. The best way to increase your brain’s dopamine production? Exercise. So run, lift, jump, play…and get happy.

2. It makes you less stressed out. Working out eases stress by helping you sweat out the day’s worries and regular exercise helps you become less stressed out in the long term as well. Raising your heart rate and triggering a burst of hormonal changes is a low level form of stress. When you subject yourself to the stress of exercise enough, your body will start to get better at handling the rest of life’s stressors. Less stress equals a happier, healthier life. 🙂

3. It energizes you. You no doubt have days when you just feel too tired to exercise. But no matter how exhausted you are from daily life, do your best to muster up all the willpower you have and work out. More likely than not, you’ll feel more energized after your workout than you did before it. And more energy equals greater happiness.

4. It boosts your confidence. When you don’t feel good about how you look, it’s easy to have low self-esteem. When you start to exercise and see your body transform, that can quickly change. Exercise will help you like how you look and make you feel stronger, more independent, and more confident. There’s nothing like a boost in confidence to increase overall happiness.

5. It eases anxiety. If you suffer from anxiety, exercise may be a simple cure. Recent studies on the effects of exercise show that in people suffering from anxiety, the immediate mood boost from exercise is followed by longer-term relief, similar to that offered by meditation and talk therapy. Next time you’re feeling anxious, try a hard workout. You’ll feel happier for days on end!

6. It fights insomnia. Regular exercise has been shown to improve sleeping problems of insomniacs and people with sleeping disorders. Regular exercise significantly improve your sleep quality and give you that pep that makes you want to get out of bed in the morning and DO things. That equals greater happiness, every time!

What are you waiting for? Get up, exercise, and be happy!  You’ll feel more confident, energized, and calm. You’ll be a healthier and happier person for life!

Day 8 exercises: 2 sets of 10

  • Jumping Jacks (50 2X)
  • Walking Push Ups
  • Forearm Plank Jacks
  • Inchworm with Shoulder Taps
  • Plank Challenge Day 8 – Nail the Basics (:45 3X)

Nail the basics: This plank includes several moves. See the list below and move through each step for :45. Repeat three times.

  1. Start in a forearm plank.
  2. Do two knee taps, one with each knee.
  3. Transition to a high plank.
  4. Tap each hand to its opposite shoulder.
  5. Return to forearm plank.

Here’s a quick video to show you the steps.

Bonus: Ab & Squat Challenge Day 8

  • 30 Sit Ups
  • 40 Crunches
  • 60 Squats

Extra Credit: Recovery Run (slow, easy, and short) – If you went long this weekend, it’s a good idea to go out and get it a short, slow and easy recovery run. Short means SHORT! 30-40 minutes tops. Easy means do not push pace. Don’t even worry about your time. Just shake our your legs and get them ready for the week.

Speed Work: We have several new Crew members this month so we are going back to the basics are starting with some 200M repeats (or .12 miles) for our speed work. Check it out and reach out to me with any questions.

If you have done these before you should have a benchmark for how fast you should be running. Take a look and see what you did before and match or beat those times. If you’re new to speed work, just go out and run at a relaxed sprint pace. Don’t push as hard as you can. You should be able to breathe but it won’t be easy.

  • 6 x 200M (90 recovery between sets) 
  1. Warm up – 1/2 mile to 1 mile SLOW (conversation pace)
  2. Drills – high knees, butt kicks, skipping, grapevines (3 sets of 15-20)
  3. Sprints with recovery (:90 between sets)
  4. Cool down – 1/2 mile to 1 mile SLOW (conversation pace)

This is a fast workout and you will only run 2-3 miles TOPS. Your lungs may be on fire…but the cool down will help and you will recover quickly.

Your speed work can be done any day of the week but make sure you give yourself 2-3 days before and after your long run to recover. This is a hard workout and your muscles need time to rebuild!

impossible until doneFinal thought on speed work. Don’t worry! Ask a few people in our group like who have been doing the speed work consistently (Jennifer Moro-Ortiz or Amiee Cords are great examples) about how they feel when they are done, about how they got past the anxiety over the speed, and how much their times have improved. Once you do it and it’s over… you feel fabulous and strong

That’s all for now Crew. Go out and have a fantastic, active Monday! 🙂

 

Day 1: Start Strong Finish Stronger!

Start Strong Finish StrongerHere we go Crew! A brand new start to a fabulous new month!

Time to shake off last’s months regrets and start the month with a bang!

We’ve got a bunch of new exercises and plenty of running to do to get ready for the upcoming fall and winter races. Start by telling us what your goals are and how we can help you reach them. What races are on your schedule? Do you want me to watch for you? Do you want us to come give you a swift kick in the behind?

Do you want us to leave you alone and let you flounder? HA! Don’t go there cause you know that won’t happen. 😉

The first of the month is a great time for some new “before” pics. Save them for your eyes only or share them with the group. Either way they will help you see how far you come…or how little you improve from being lazy…

Remember whether you think you can succeed, or think you can’t, is up to you…either way you will be right! It’s time to step it up so let’s think positivity and give it all we’ve got!

We’re starting off with 2 rounds of 10 this week except for the jumping jacks which is 2 rounds of 50. Watch the how to videos and get familiar with these exercises because as we progress through the month it will get harder.

Day 1 exercises: Arms – 2 rounds of 10 

****Click here for how to videos****

  • Jumping Jacks (50 2X)
  • Walking Push Ups
  • Forearm Plank Jacks
  • Inchworm with Shoulder Taps
  • Regular Forearm Plank – :45 (3X)

Lots of planks today which of course are also great for our core. Each day we will be doing a different plank. If you’re new to the group and new to planks please do a regular forearm plank until you are ready to move on to more advanced moves. The forearm plank is an awesome full body exercise that will strengthen your arms, back, legs, and core….and we do them every single day so learn to love them! 😉

Watch as Scott Herman (one of my favorites) shows us how to do a regular forearm plank.

Bonus: Ab & Squat Challenge – Day 1 30 Day Ab & Squat Challenge

This will be 1 of our bonus workouts this month…don’t worry I will add more…but this is VERY doable. It won’t take long so I hope to see everyone jumping in on this!

  • 10 Sit Ups
  • 10 Crunches
  • 10 Squats

Easy peasy right? You got this!

Since it’s day 1 and we have plenty of time…I’m going to wait to add this week’s speed work. Don’t worry…we’ll get to it. Plan ahead for when you will make it happen though because they only way to get faster….is to run fast!

The only other thing I’d love to see lots of today is miles! The first day of the month is a great day to log some miles and start the month off strong. If you didn’t sign up for the Racery, Castle to Wales Race, there is still time. Here is the link and there is a free option if you don’t care about the medal. This course is 113.2 miles through you through lush national parks, quaint villages, bustling port towns, and of course–castles!

If 113.2 miles is a little much for you, there are lots of other Racery options for you to jump in on. Or….I could start one for our team? If there’s enough interest I will get one going today!

Who’s ready for the best month yet?!?

Are you prepared to give it your very best? Are you ready to get closer to your dreams?

Keep going! Don’t quit till you have nothing left! I know it hurts…I know your tired…give me more! Give it your best!

One day at a time. You CAN do this! Do Not Quit! Go out and kill it Crew! 🙂

Day 29: Final Strength Day..Push Hard!

Dont always lift heavy weights

It’s Friday…Day 29 and our final strength day for April! We rested yesterday and it’s time to push hard and lift some heavy weights!

Don’t skimp out today…give it all you’ve got and finish strong!

Day 29 exercises:

  • 50 Jumping Jacks
  • Bicep Curl + Overhead Press – 4 sets of 15
  • Front Arm Raise – 4 sets of 15
  • Side Arm Raise – 4 sets of 15
  • Planks – :30 – 1 min (2X)
  • 150 Crunches

You’ve been doing crunches every single day so these 150 are not going to be difficult. Don’t let the number scare you…get started!

Bonus: #SlenderSexyArmsSlender sexy arms

Bringing back one of my favorites! We haven’t done this one in a little while so go at it hard…3 rounds today would be awesome! Put one in between each of Day 29 exercises.  🙂

If you haven’t gotten much running in this week..go out and log some slow miles but keep it short then stretch because we are going long tomorrow or Sunday.

That’s all for today Core Crew….dig deep, lift heavy, and make it a great day! 🙂

Day 27: Easy to Eat…Hard to Burn!

Every drop of sweatRemember how yummy that dinner was last night? Time to work it off Core Crew!

Let every drop of sweat remind you how hard it is to burn off the calories…then don’t ruin it by eating crap!

One day at a time…one meal at a time…baby steps. When you go to reach for crap…think about all those crunches you did today…and WALK AWAY! 🙂

Day 27 exercises:

  • 50 Jumping Jacks
  • Frog Sit Ups – 4 sets of 15
  • Oblique Crunches – 4 sets of 15
  • Reverse Crunches – 4 sets of 15
  • Plank – :30 – 1 min (2X)
  • 100 Crunches – 4 sets of 25
  • Ab Stretches – see below

Bonus: #FlabToFab flab to fab

This bonus is SO doable! Find an extra 15 minutes and get it done! I want to see lots of posts with #FlabToFab today!


Speed Work: I see some people getting their speed work done…but not many. Huge props to Jennifer and Marion for knocking it out! Who else up for a little speed today?

Warm up then get ready for 6 – 10 sets of 200 meter sprints. That’s just over one tenth of a mile. YOU CAN DO THIS! Stop thinking about it…just go do it!

If you need a reminder of how to do it…or how fast you should be going for that .12 mile click here.

Just go do it.. don’t make me come find you and drag some speed out of you! 😉

Stretch Core Crew!! Here’s our 7 Key Stretches for Runners. Give those muscles some love!

Let’s get over the hump and get closer to the weekend. One day at a time y’all…only 3 more days in our April Challenge…finish strong!

Ab Stretches:

 

 

 

Day 26: Stop Comparing…Love Yourself!

Love Yourself

We are all walking around with all these spot-checking body “shoulds” running on infinite repeat in the back of our heads. Stuff like “I should have arms that don’t jiggle”, or “I should have thinner ankles“, or “I should have a flatter stomach” — why?

Why “should” we have or be any of those things? The word “should” is really important to think about here.

The definition of “should” is “used to indicate obligation, duty, or correctness, typically when criticizing someone’s actions.” It’s a term that relates to what we believe to be our goals, and whether or not we are living up to them. But what goals do we actually fulfill by attempting to obtain arms that look like someone else’s arms, arms that might not be possible for our individual bodies to have? And what obligation are we really under to not have arms that move?

The key here is to stop looking at your body with the media messaging in mind. Why assume that once you start getting stronger and losing body fat, your arms would get slimmer…they won’t.  Instead, they’ll get firmer.

Your arms will bear the marks of the work you put in…not just in the way they look, but also in their capabilities. It’s enlightening to know that your body may not works in such a way that you’ll have slender, Jennifer Aniston-type arms. The way your body works, the way any of our individual bodies work is all that’s important.

Stop comparing yourself to others…because that’s not the way you “should” look. Figure out what works for your body….and love yourself.

Day 26 exercises:

  • 50 Jumping Jacks
  • Tricep Overhead Extensions – 4 sets of 15
  • Tricep Dips – 4 sets of 15
  • Tricep Swings – 4 sets of 15
  • Plank – :30 – 1 min (2X)
  • 100 Crunches

Bonus: #TankTopArms Tank Top Arms

How our arms look in a tank top won’t be the way someone else looks in a tank top. But you can look fabulous in your own way. Get stronger and find your fabulous!


Speed Work: This week’s speed work is 6-10X 200 meters

  • Start with six to 10 200-meter repeats at a one-mile to 5-K pace (or an 8 or 9 on an exertion scale of 1 to 10), with a 200-meter jog in between.
  • 200-meter intervals should be run at 12% faster than your 5K pace.

Here’s another way to think about it. 200 meters is .12 mile so just over one tenth of a mile. Take your current 1 mile average time…then divide that by ten. So if you run a 10 min mile…your .12 mile is probably just over 1 min. For a 10 min mile, this speed work should be done FASTER than your mile time so someone who runs a 10 min mile should be running a 200 meter sprint in under 1 min. Make sense?

Another example: If you run a 12 min mile…your .12 time is about 1:20 give or take a few seconds….so you should be running this 200 meter sprint FASTER then 1:20.

Remember to get in about a mile warm up and a mile cool down…and if you do 10X 200 meter sprints…that’s another mile. All in all your speed work consists of about 3 miles…2 miles slow….1 mile fast. This is a quick workout so it’s over before you know it and should be your shortest workout of the week. Questions? Please reach out to me…I will be happy to help you find the times which are right for you.

Stretch out your arms and legs after these workouts! Your muscles are working hard and deserve to be pampered. Here are our 7 Stretches for Runners and our arm stretches are below.

Our body will never look like someone else’s. Stop comparing! We work out to get healthier and stronger…not to look like someone else. Remind yourself why you push so hard and love yourself for giving it all you’ve got!

Arm Stretches:

 

 

 

 

Day 25: It’s Thigh Time!

thunder thighsWe do not work our thighs to make them thinner…we work our thighs to make them stronger!

Running might be considered a cardiovascular exercise…but strong runners use strength to run longer…and faster. Don’t think The Terminator kind of strong, think Karate Kid…Mr. Miyagi strong.  Whole body, stabilizing, balance-on-one-leg kind-of-strong. After all, you’re only as strong as your weakest point.

If your weakest point is your thighs…today is for you.

Day 25 exercises:

  • 50 Jumping Jacks
  • Bridge with Inner Thigh Squeeze (use a pillow) – 4 sets of 15
  • Inner Thigh Leg Lift – 4 sets of 15
  • Side Step with Squat – 4 sets of 15
  • Planks – :30 – 1 Min (2X)
  • 100 Crunches

Plie Squat HoldBonus: Plie Squat Hold

The key to this bonus exercise will be holding the pie squat position. Feel those thighs burn and count for 10 seconds then do it again. Bonus is 2 rounds of 10.


Speed Work:

“I’m running my first half or full marathon, so I’m focused only on building distance.”

According to Runner’s World, this statement is

“the bane of many first-time marathoners: Near the end of a long run (or the actual race), they run out of fuel and their form falls apart. Fast repeats teach your body what it feels like to have a light, quick turnover—a biomechanical efficiency applicable to any speed or distance, says St. Pierre. Quick repeats also strengthen seldom-used “fast-twitch” muscles so they can be called upon when your other muscles are trashed at the end of a long race, he adds. And the workouts improve running economy, teaching the heart to pump more blood per minute and deliver oxygen to the muscles more efficiently, so that slow runs feel easier.”

Whether you’re training for a 5K or a Marathon….runners who add speed work to their routine will benefit from faster times and increased endurance!

We are shortening our speed work this week to 200 meters (.12 miles or half way around a track). If you can’t get to a track…just use your GPS watch to calculate the .12 mile distance. It doesn’t have to be exact…but keep it close.

  • Start with six to 10 200-meter repeats at a one-mile to 5-K pace (or an 8 or 9 on an exertion scale of 1 to 10), with a 200-meter jog in between.
  • 200-meter intervals should be run at 12% faster than your 5K pace.

To do this workout it would be helpful to know your current 5K time. If you haven’t ran a 5K recently…use the exertion scale…on a scale from 1-10…you should be running at an 8-9. This means you should be pretty much giving it all you’ve got for about 1 minute.

The beauty of this workout is that it’s over very quick! Your lungs may be on fire afterward, but you’ll recover soon enough. Since this is the first week of this workout…make a note of your 200 meter times. Write it down…and let’s see how we can progress over the next few weeks.

Give it your best shot. This is a tough workout but it is doable…remember it will be over quick! It is important to warm up and cool down before and after every speed workout. Give yourself a good mile warm up…or at least 10 min and a similar cool down.

Other than your speed work…you should be focusing on “time on legs”. Remember that the key to success for any runner is putting in the miles. Work on getting your base weekly mileage up so you’re ready for those upcoming races. What is a good weekly base? 15-20 miles a week is perfect. How many miles a week are you logging?

After it’s all said and done…it’s time to stretch! Here’s our 7 Key Stretches for Runners.

It’s Monday so let’s start the week right and give it all we’ve got and make it a great day! 🙂