Monday, March 30, 2015

MORE/Fitness/Shape Half Marathon Training

Happy Monday! So many things have been going on over here I don't even know where to start. Yesterday I went to the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum and had so much fun. It was interactive and modern and one of the few museums I actually enjoyed!

[From this picture you'd have no idea it was still snowing just 2 hours earlier and you couldn't see the course!]

As you know last weekend I ran the Michelob Ultra Half Marathon. I was hoping to write a full review of this race but decided against it because I had too many negative things to say about it. While I did take away my sub-2 goal (final time was 2:08- not even close to it) I also chose to run with no watch and I have to say, it was pretty liberating! It also made me realize I have no concept of pace and slowed down dramatically after the 10K. While I was waiting to get started I met a new running friend. Ashley and I hung out for about an hour before and in the corrals until we started (she's much faster than me!). Overall I had a good race and a great day but there were a lot of mishaps on the race organizers part. 

Before the race I had been having knee problems and it got worse during that run so I decided to see a PT. While I had a feeling this was going to happen, I knew it was the right decision to go. No running for 2 weeks. EEEEK! Doesn't he know I have to run 8 more races this year with 4 in the next 2,.5 months?! I'm still excited for the MORE/Fitness/Shape Half Marathon that I'm running on behalf of Fitness so this is how I'm preparing:

1. YOGA YOGA YOGA. MY PT 100% cleared me for yoga so I'm doing a lot of it to keep my body strong. I'm testing out FitnessGlo so I'll be taking classes from there as well. I'll also be continuing to practice acro since it's still technically yoga :)

2. Strength. Planks, leg lifts, bridges, wall sits, you name it, I'm doing it. Along with keeping my body tight, I also need to strengthen the area around my knee. The PT gave me a few specific exercises to work on too. 

3. Occasionally spin. For cardio, I'm going to try and incorporate some spin. It was a compromise we made since he wanted me to cut out all cardio and I couldn't do that. We agreed that spin was OK because I'm not pounding pavement or jumping but should my knee bother me I have to stop.

Can't wait to see you out in Central Park on April 19th! If you haven't already signed up, do so now


Wednesday, March 18, 2015

MORE/Fitness/Shape Half Marathon 2015

[Photo Credit]
I'm happy to announce that on behalf of Fitness Magazine I will again be running the MORE/Fitness/Shape Half Marathon on April 19, 2015. While 2.5 loops of Central Park isn't my favorite thing to do, I really love this race because it's mentally challenging and it's a great way for me to connect with myself. And the weather is perfect!

This is the 12th time the MORE/Fitness/Shape Half Marathon will be run and for the first time it will raise awareness on of the impact of climate change and the importance of sustainability. This year’s Women Run the World™ program will honor women whose work focuses on addressing climate change policy and improving the environment.

I actually just started working on a new client who is going to be a driving force in the sustainability movement so I think this is a wonderful addition to the race. 

2015's media partner is the TODAY show. Natalie Morale and Erica Hill will be co-hosting and running as part of TODAY's "Run for Today" series. Both are runners and Natalie ran the Boston Marathon last year. Races partnering with media personalities has been a trend, at least in NYC. Ginger Zee ran and hosted Lauren Bush Lauren's RUN10FEED10 last year. 

Aside from the TODAY partnerships, additional race sponsors include Healthfull® by Arnold/Brownberry/Oroweat®, Hoka One One, MorningStar Farms and Natalie’s Orchid Island Juice Co. CARE, a leading humanitarian organization that empowers women and girls around the world, is the Charity Partner and MORE/Fitness also paired with Athletes for a Fit Planet to enhance their efforts to produce an environmentally responsible event by taking their Pledge of Sustainability.

Registration is open now at Space is limited to 10,000 runners so sign up early. What are you waiting for?

Check back here for training updates throughout the next month along with a full race recap!


Monday, March 16, 2015

National Nutrition Month

[Photo Credit]
It's National Nutrition Month and I'm halfway done with my nutrition certification so it's only fitting I contribute a post. It took me a few days to figure out what I wanted to write about but I finally figured it out- experimenting. 

For this month (and forever) I want you to experiment with new veggies you normally wouldn't touch. A few weeks ago I became very interested in sweet potatoes and have been figuring out different ways to incorporate them into my meals.

[Photo Credit]
 Sweet potatoes are great carbs that keep you full and energized without added sugars or processed ingredients. Have one starch per meal to reap the benefits. 

A few other nutrient dense veggies to experiment with this month include:

[Photo Credit]
Eggplants: I've been roasting these to toss in salads and pasta. I even made a yogurt/eggplant mac and cheese! They can also be used for eggplant parm and a multitude of other things. Eggplants contain many vitamins and minerals our bodies need to thrive. 

[Photo Credit]
Asparagus: If you saw on my Instagram the other day, I made a delicious lemon chicken dinner with asparagus and whole grain rice. Not only can they be incorporated into meals in many different ways, since they are high in folate they can promote sleep and help fight anxiety. 

[Photo Credit]
Artichokes: While I typically don't eat artichokes, they are a great anti-inflammatory and can be eaten as an actual veggie, not just in dip. I plan on making a dish in the next month or two and will definitely share. 

What are you doing for National Nutrition Month? What are your favorite veggies?



Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Tone It Up Tuesday: Push Ups

Here in NYC we have been getting a little preview of spring.Today is supposed to be close to 50 with rain. I'll take it! With that being said, only a few more weeks until sundresses with sweaters and barely-there running outfits. Woo hoo! You already know that I hate doing arm work but since I plan have to run 9 races this year (not including next weeks half) and love me some sundresses, I'd like to start doing more to get my upper body stronger and toned and make me a little faster. 

Push-ups are going to be my go to. From yoga to traditional to moving from high plank to low plank to variations like T's. 

Here are a few examples:

[Photo Credit: Prevention]
The yoga push up goes down into chaturanga and back up targeting biceps, triceps, chest and core. 

[Photo Credit: New Health Guide]
Planking tends to work a lot of muscles for me even before I start doing variations. While keeping core engages, push up to a high plank and hold for 5 seconds, then come back to low plank and repeat. 

[Photo Credit: Running Starfish]
These are for when I really build some strength up! From biceps to triceps to core to glutes, this variation is a full body workout. 

What are your favorite kinds of push ups?


Monday, March 9, 2015

Women's Health 's Next Fitness Star: Emily Schromm

[Photo Credit]
Women's Health has been hosting a contest the past few years looking for their fitness star of year. This years winner was Emily Schromm and I was fortunate enough to be able to ask her a few questions. I'm always inspired by others following their passions and Emily is great example of that!

Life's Better In Yoga Pants: What inspired you to get into the world of fitness?

Emily Schromm: Five years ago I had NO clue the world of fitness would become not only a serious passion of mine, but a career! All I knew was that I had hit a point in my life where I was very unhappy. I wanted to change my body, I wanted to be strong, and nothing was going to stop me. That determination turned into a strong desire to learn about fitness, learn about food, and I have forever been sucked in!

LBIYP: Aside from Crossfit, what other workouts do you do? Any yoga or spinning?

ES: I actually work with a yoga instructor on a daily basis who challenges me with inversions and poses. Outside of the gym, snowboarding is my favorite workout in the world. I am lucky enough to live by the mountains and go up every week. My other favorite workout? Rock climbing. It challenges me to use finesse and technique like yoga does, instead of relying on strength.

LBIYP: Why do you think people love "race against the clock" workouts as opposed to go at your own pace? (I personally love bootcamp style classes when people are telling me to go, go, go!)

ES: When we "race against the clock", we can have a tangible number of how we did. For instance, in one minute, you did 10 pushups. The next time you do pushups, you know that you are going to try your hardest to hit 11. We challenge ourselves more, we fight a little harder, and we get that competitive itch that deep down we all have.

I especially love it for classes! We are SO much stronger than we think we are! When we have someone telling us that, or pushing us past that point in our head where we want to stop and call it good, we see CHANGE happen. Not only are you distracted from what your mind is telling you (STOP! PLEASE!! NO MORE!), you are pushing your body outside it's comfort zone.

LBIYP: What are a few of your favorite workouts for runners?

ES: Runners tend to have very tight hip flexor and quads, so I really make sure to develop that backside on my runners. Hamstring strength and most importantly, that booty! Balancing out your legs prevents injury in hips and knees, and also will make you faster! My go-tos?

  • Weighted stepups, 3 sets of 10 each side.
  • Good Mornings, 3 sets of 10 each side
  • Reverse lunges to balance, 3 sets of 10 each side
  • Single leg deadlifts, 3 sets of 10 each side

Before Emily became a fitness guru, she was a former MTV reality TV star. She now lives in Denver and is a full-time personal trainer and CrossFit coach. Emily’s workout style focuses on function fitness for every level that allows people to unleash their inner superhero.

Check out her Next Fitness Star Body Burn DVD here.


Friday, March 6, 2015

Home Stretch

Winter is not showing any signs of disappearing yet it's already almost time for my spring half marathon! 

With a little help from my friends at Fit Reserve, I was actually able to keep my fitness level up all winter unlike last year and only getting 3 training runs in for the NYC Half. Unfortunately, while I had that sub-2 goal in mind, I don't think I will hit it which is why I'm moving it to the Brooklyn or Staten Island half so I know I don't have to worry about training through the winter. For me it's the right decision. For Michelob, nice and steady to the beer!

I got a lot of workouts in this week including Mile High Run Club, Peloton and some strength at home. My last long run is 11 miles on Sunday then it's taper town! Next weekend I'm volunteering for the NYC Half in the med tent and have 6 miles on the schedule. I do want to incorporate some extra yoga and spinning in the mix to get me ready for the 21st. 

I put my name in for the NYC Marathon lottery and of course didn't get in for the second year in a row. Which is fine because I already planned on doing 9+1 for 2016 but it just seems so far away! I am happy to announce that I will be running the More/Fitness Half Marathon again on behalf of Fitness magazine (yes, I know they folded). Look out for more information in the coming weeks on who's going to be there and some training ideas. Women's Health's newest Fit Star has a few great tips for you!

Have a happy and safe weekend!


Monday, March 2, 2015

Washington Heights Salsa, Blues, and Shamrocks 5K Recap

And so it begins. Yesterday I incorporated my first race of the year and of my 9+1 into my long run for the weekend. It was the Washington Heights Salsa, Blues and Shamrocks 5K! I haven't run this race before so I wasn't sure what to expect. I didn't take any pictures so I'll keep the post short. 

I ran 6.60 miles from Queens to the 86th St. 1 train. It was supposed to be 7 miles but I was running late and didn't want to get to the race too late. Which I, and apparently a bunch of other people, ended up being. I had a strong run into the city today. Definitely not the best, but I felt the best I've felt in weeks. I think a combination of the warmer weather and no wind played a factor. 

I also learned something about myself today. I am very mean if I am late to a race and don't start in my corral. I had to weave (read- move and pissed a lot of people off) in and out to get at a comfortable pace. There were a lot of walkers right off the bat. 

The course is hilly but not overwhelming. What I really liked is that I had never run in Washington Heights so the scenery was all new to me. There was a point where you got a beautiful view of the ice on the cliffs. I ended up running into Jane just after mile 2 and dragged her along with me (she's actually faster than I am). We finished in a decent time. Definitely not my best but that's what you get after running 6.60 miles and being late. 

[Brunch! That's me in the pink trying to get out of the picture. Photo courtesy of Jane.]
We grabbed out bagels then decided we were going to go to brunch which was delicious. 

Despite a VERY crowded course, I do recommend this race. The weather was nice, there was a lot of cheering and spectators, there were a few bands along the course and can't beat that view of the cliffs.