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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Personal Trainer Pet Peeves

Tuesday was my last day of the year guest hosting Emotional Mojo and we had a great show.

I unearthed my Top 3 Personal Training Pet Peeves and provided solutions for each.  Are you guilty of any of these?


As a registered dietitian and personal trainer one of my main goals is to help people be in the best shape possible both physically and internally, however most of us have some types of destructive behavior that we’re prone to.  It’s easy to identify that in our diets – We love salty chips or we can’t resist Mom’s macaroni and cheese.  It can be harder to scout out destructive habits at the gym, so today I’m bringing you my Top 3 Personal Trainer Pet Peeves. There are the 3 things you might be doing in the gym that's hurting your workout.

·       Holding On To the Treadmill
o   Walking at an incline is one of the best forms of cardio, especially if you’re someone who can’t or doesn’t love to run.  However if you’re upping the incline of the treadmill, but holding on to the sides, you’re only achieving about 40% of the efficiency of the workout.
o   My tips is to either lower the incline to a level can you comfortably and safely remove your hands OR alternate 30 seconds of holding with 30 seconds of walking.  It will see harder and that’s the point.

·       Resting Too Long Between Sets
o   Maybe this is you and maybe it’s not, but the gym can become a part of your social life.  You can knock out one set of squats and then chat for 90 seconds.  The problem is you’re letting your heart rate decrease significantly and lowering the overall intensity of your workout.
o   My tip is to incorporate supersets into your workout.  Alternate 2 exercises for 2-3 rounds.  That way while one muscle recovers you can focus on a different muscle and keep your heart rate and calorie burn up.

·       Not Using Heavy Enough Weights
o   This one is for the ladies.  Ladies, using heavy weights won’t make you bulk up like a body builder. Women simply don’t have the testosterone levels of men and if your diet is in the right calorie range bulk will not follow heavy weights.
o   Tip if you can complete 10 repetitions with a weight then it’s not heavy enough.

o   Did you know that Cameron Diaz uses 20-pound weights in her workouts?


Sunday, December 8, 2013

Marathon Recovery Plan

It's been less than a week since I ran the Space Coast Marathon and truth be told I am itching to get back out there and run.  I feel so out of place without my calming runs to look forward to...BUT...I'm keeping my feet off the pavement for longer runs for a solid 7 days post marathon.  I feel this is crucial to preventing injury and even though it is super tempting to want to keep running and building speed without the proper rest that's just not possible.

True we are all different and some of us can knock out a marathon a week and be fine.  Others stick by the theory of taking "one day of rest for every mile run."  My path to recovery is somewhere in the middle, so I'm breaking it down for you today.
1 Week to Marathon Recovery
  • Immediately Post Marathon
    • Refuel with carbohydrates AND protein (don't forget the protein ASAP)
    • Compression gear (socks and shorts)
    • Epsom salt bath
    • Ice bath
    • Light stretching
    • Anti-inflammatory 
  • 1 Day Post Marathon
    • Epsom salt bath
    • Nap
    • Stretch
    • Foam roll
    • 2 mile walk
    • Consume lots of fruits and veggies
  • 2 Days Post Marathon
    • 2 mile walk
    • 10 minutes stationary bike
    • Stretch
    • Foam roll
  • 3 Days Post Marathon
    • Full body workout (light weights)
    • Row 1500m
    • Stretch
    • Foam Roll
  • 4 Days Post Marathon
    • 40 minutes on the elliptical with low resistance
    • Stretch
    • Foam roll
  • 5 Days Post Marathon
    • Full body workout with regular weights
    • 1000m row
  • 6 Days Post Marathon
    • 2.5 mile run with 6 30 second 75% sprints
  • 7 Days Post Marathon
    • Usual rest day
Next week I'll go back to my normal workout schedule and see how my body feels.  I still have a tightness in my inner thigh, but I don't know if that's workout or marathon related.
If you're new to running or you have a lot of races on your schedule make sure you take time to recover.  After a race, especially a great race, you want to keep on going...but take a moment to let your body recovery and you will come back stronger...scouts honor!

How do you recover from a big workout or a race?

Love and slowing down,
Carissa & Kyle

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Space Coast Marathon 2013

How can you put an experience that took 6 months of training and 4+ hours of running into one blog post?  How can you thank the family who flew in, the friends who drove over, and the virtual friends who tweeted their support?  It's going to be tough, but I know you guys have been waiting for this recap, so here it is.

I finished the 2013 Space Coast Marathon!
Before I get into my race recap, I wanted to say that I have no complaints with how the race was run logistically.  The start was organized and on time, the water stops were plentiful and well staffed, and everything I experienced went smoothly.  I have a gorgeous medal and a shiny new marathon PR to go with it.  If you're looking for a December race, don't hesitate to check out the Space Coast Marathon.

Race morning I woke up around 4:45am.  I decided to drive to the start and not take the race shuttle. I like to be in control.  Since the weather forecast was warm (67 - 72) and humid with a chance of rain I opted for minimal race costume gear.  Buzz Lightyear was ready!
Our hotel was 15 minutes from the start, so on the way over I had a cup of coffee and attempted to eat my bagel with peanut butter.  My mouth was so dry that I could barely choke down half of it.  I wished I had brought my clif bar from the hotel.  Pre-race nutrition grade? B-.

Mom and I arrived to the start around 5:15 and had a little trouble finding parking.  It was dark and busy.  Luckily my car didn't get towed and I was able to use the bathroom and catch the start of the half marathon.
Around 6:10 I met up with my running group and snapped some photos before the start.
 My race plan was to stay with my running group until 13 or so and then see how I felt.
Ed's MarathonFest group
At 6:30am after a video of the Challenger space shuttle taking off we did that same thing.  Oh boy.....
The first few miles were spent chatting with my running group and just trying to keep focused and not think about the many miles to come.
Mile 1 - 9:46
Mile 2 - 9:43
Mile 3 - 9:46

My race leader's Garmin decided to die that morning, so while he was with us, he wasn't able to fully control our pace.  I kept trying to slow down, but we were all moving at the same pace so I played along.
Mile 4 - 9:35
Mile 5 - 9:33
Mile 6 - 9:45
Around mile 6 I took my first few Gatorade chews and we spotted some dolphins in the water next to the road.  The course is basically two out and backs.  You go about 6.5 in one direction, come back, cross the finish line area, and head back out for another out and back in the opposite direction.  I was feeling great at this time and enjoyed shouting out the other runners and we crossed directions.
Mile 7 - 9:36
Mile 8- 9:28
Mile 9- 9:32
Mile 10- 9:43
Around mile 11 I started to lose my group.  Our group leader got some terrible back pain and nobody else in the group was feeling good.  I felt good at this point so I just ran.  I was feeling wonderful.
Mile 11- 9:33
Mile 12 - 9:35
Mile 13 - 9:21
Mile 14 - 9:25

Miles 13 and 14 we crossed back by the finish, so I got cheers from my Mom and Track Shack friends.
That boosted my energy so much.  I crossed the halfway mark around 2:07 and I felt SO GOOD!
Mile 13.4
At this point I was already alone and I knew that a 4:15 would require me to keep this pace for the rest of the race.  I told myself to try and I set off on the longest 12 miles of my life.
Mile 15 - 9:42
Mile 16 - 9:56
Mile 17 - 9:49
I kept repeating to myself, "Don't give up on yourself.  You can do this."  I think my brain started to win the battle here. 8 more miles seemed crazy.  I so wish I had someone with me at this point to help motivate each other.  Mile 18 I stopped to use the bathroom and almost fell over when I sat down.  I was dizzy and it scared me.

I had told myself to wait until 20 to start walk breaks, but I caved.  I decided to go with 2 minutes of running and 30 seconds of walking.
Mile 18 - 10:26
Mile 19 - 10:26
Mile 20 - 11:01

Around Mile 20 we FINALLY go to the turnaround.  I took my last Clif gel at mile 18 and I felt like I needed more nutrition, so I tried to Gu on course.  Yuck!  Note to self - bring more nutrition next time.

Miles 21 - 24 all feel like a fog to me.  I tried to hold my run/walk strategy, but I found that I felt better if I walked 1 min and tried to run close to 3-4 minutes.  Ironically I remember saying to myself over and over that I felt better when I ran, but I just couldn't keep it up for more than 5 minutes.  I also think I threw up at one point.  It's a fog.

Mile 21 - 10:59
Mile 22 - 11:01
These last few miles of a marathon are sad to see.  The crowd is sparse and everyone hurts. I don't watch Zombie movies, but I think this is what they would look like if I did.
Grumpy cat runs.
Mile 23 - 10:59
Mile 24 - 11:32

By this time my goal was just to finish sub 4:30.  I knew I just needed to do the last few miles in 12 minutes, but even that felt tough at this point.  We were running into a strong headwind and I was exhausted.  I kept waiting for the 4:20 pace group to pass me and I would tag along with them, but I never saw them.

I kept trying to dig deep and find the motivational thoughts I had been thinking all race.  Have you ever been so tired that your brain can't materialize thoughts?  That's what it felt like.  It took everything to keep moving forward.  I wanted to sit down so bad.  By the time mile 25 came I finally knew that I could finish and sub 4:30 felt pretty good at that time.
Mile 25 - 11:09
Mile 26 - 10:46
At mile 26 I heard the screams of the Track Shack group and I ran by to high 5 them.
Thank you Betsy, Krystal, Lori, Bob, Amanda, and Zeke for begin out there!  I was so excited that I almost missed the final turn to the finish.  Longest .1 of my life.

Space Coast Marathon - 4:27:27 - 10:14 average pace - 30 minute PR

I caught up with my Mom immediately after the race and was so happy to have her there.
I also found Jeff Galloway.  I saw him several times on the race course and I knew he was gunning for a Boston Qualifying time.  When I talked to him he said it was "close" and he was waiting for the results.  Not 30 seconds later someone came bounding up to say that he ran a 4:09:54, qualified by 6 seconds, and got 2nd in his age group.  Congrats Jeff!
Two girls from my running group, Victoria and Mel, had great days out there.  Victoria PR'd with a 4:08 and Mel ran strong after an injury in 4:18.
After the race I found these pancakes and devoured them.  Most delicious things ever. The lemonade after the race?  Not so much.  Too sweet.
So that's my marathon story.  Not the time I wanted, but after being out there I'm proud of what I did that day.  I think I gave the best my body could.  My body did not have a 4:10 in it.  I could have started slower.  I could have trained better.  I could have run faster, but I'm in no way disappointed with my effort.  I never gave up on myself and I kept moving forward.
That's what makes the marathon so alluring and addicting.  You never know what race or what runner will show up on race day.  It's you against the road and I think this day belonged to me.

Have you ever run a marathon?
Tell me your marathon story?
If not, would you ever run a marathon?

Love and 26.2 and beyond,
Carissa & Kyle