Friday Five!! 5 things that get me to the finish line! #runbaltimore

Happy Friday!! Even though this week was a short one, I’m so happy its over! ¬†Waking up on a Friday sets my mood to “Happy”. ūüôā ¬†I’m linking up with my girls from the DC trifecta today,¬†Courtney of Eat Pray Run DC, Mar of Mar on the Run and Cynthia of You Signed Up for What?!. ¬†We have a free Friday today (no theme), so I’m going to talk about the 5 things that get me to the finish line. ¬†Because I have been running a WIDE range of distances the last two weeks, some will be long distance specific, some will be shorter.

  1. My Garmin Forerunner 620¬†garmin_620_white-orange_l-550x400I’ve only had my Garmin¬†since May, and I’m pretty much obsessed. ¬†If I happen to forget to put it on after my shower, I feel completely naked. ¬†(even right now as its charging, my wrist feels… weird) ¬†This little watch is amazing! ¬†I’m not a fast runner by any stretch of the imagination. ¬†Being able to track my pace just by looking at my wrist makes me feel fast. ¬†Don’t laugh too hard at this, please… On Wednesday, my father and I ran the Ravens5K. ¬†My dad is quick, but I felt pretty strong, so I kept pace with him for a while. ¬†I looked down at my Garmin because I started to have some shin pain. ¬†We were running a 9:30 mile. ¬†(remember that part where I said I wasn’t fast!) ¬†I knew I could keep that pace for the remainder of the mile, but I also knew that if I did, my next two would suffer tremendously. ¬†I told my Dad to run ahead without me, and I slowed my pace about a minute. ¬†If I hadn’t had my trusty Garmin, that wouldn’t have been doable. ¬†Yes, I could have just guessed pace, but I like to see how fast/slow I’m running.
  2. My Brooks Ghost 7’s¬†brooks-ghost-7-womensI cant say enough about these shoes. ¬†After my huge fail at the Baltimore Marathon with shoes, it was imperative that I find a pair that not only fit correctly, but were comfortable! ¬†After a visit to Charm City Run, and a ton of choices laid out in front of me, I believe I’ve found my shoe “solemate”. ¬†I could (and have) fall(en) asleep in my Brooks. ¬†When I put these on, it feels¬†like small pillows under the arches of your feet which as a person who has stupid sensitive feet to begin with, is a welcome feeling. ¬†Except for OCR’s and Fun runs (like the color run that is incredibly messy) you will always find me running/and walking in these. ¬†(side note, I also LOVE the “Run Happy” that goes along with Brooks.)
  3. Music¬†Music-image-music-36556275-1680-1050This is long run specific. ¬†I no longer run with headphones on my short runs because I’d rather use that time to think. ¬†Also, the sound of my feet, and the runners around me tend to give me the same push that my “power” songs do on long runs. ¬†I’ve also run two longer distances sans headphones. ¬†My half marathon training run on the NCR was without music, and I forgot my headphones for the Chuck12, soooooo that was also without music. ¬†However, I plan to use my tunes on my long run this weekend so I’m able to turn my mind off. ¬†(one headphone out of course!)
  4. Nuun¬†Nuun-I-heart-2– again, this is long run specific. ¬†I haven’t found anything comparable to Nuun as far as hydration on long runs. ¬†I never feel dehydrated, and Nuun doesn’t make my stomach hurt – both HUGE things!! I’ve gotten much better at hydrating after nearly passing out on one of my mid distance runs this summer. ¬†Holy humid batman! I realized as I finished that I was drenched in sweat, and I didn’t have to pee. ¬†I was also insanely dizzy and was getting a pretty fierce headache. ¬†These things (pre previous experience) could have been avoided had I better hydrated. ¬†I got back to my car and chugged an entire bottle of Nuun (watermelon – delicious!) that I had waiting for me. My go to flavors are fruit Punch, Watermelon, and the Cherry Limeade Energy. If you’re a Nuun virgin, I definitely recommend giving it a try.
  5. My thoughts¬†Listen-to-Your-Thoughts-Cropped yea, that sounds weird. ¬†Especially because my brain can also be the reason I want to stop running. ¬†On short runs, I think about the people around me, the scenery, my IRUN4 buddy, and my son. On longer runs, I have a little game I play calls “how much is left?” ¬†On my 13.1 mile training run, I was not feeling it… at all. ¬†I knew I needed to complete the distance, but my feet had other plans. ¬†So, I began to think mathematically. ¬†I ran a 6.55 down and back. (again, thanks to the Garmin i was able to track this obscure distance) ¬†At mile 4(ish) I said to myself “you’re over half way to the turn around, just keep moving”. ¬†At mile 10, I told myself “only a 5k left!! That’s easy! DO.NOT.STOP”. ¬†I also like to keep track of my “kills” (Ragnar terminology) when I’m running alone. ¬†It doubles as motivation, and security because I know I’m not the only runner on the trail. ¬†It’s a bit more difficult to do this in a race setting (unless its small) because I’m passing people right and left (all while being passed myself!). ¬† ¬†Although, I’m guilty of the last minute kick, passing someone at the finish. ¬†Being that I will (most likely) NEVER place at an event, let alone WIN the thing… I don’t feel bad trying to shave a few seconds off my time by hauling towards the finish.

I hope you enjoy your weekend and this amazing fall-ish weather!! (at least in Maryland)welcome-autumn-

What powers you through a race?

Have you tried Nuun? Whats your favorite flavor?

Do you have a Garmin? ¬†what do you do to keep track of your distance and time if you don’t?

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#FridayFive {Favorite race fuels} linking up with @EatPrayRunDC, @Marmaone1, and @Yousignedup

Good Morning!!! It’s Friday again! This Friday however, I have a HUGE smile on my face… why, you ask? MY BABY BOY TURNED 4!!! My beautiful son, (@ 2:35 this morning) turned 4 years old! ¬†Yea, I got a bit weepy, because he’s at his Dad’s house, however (yes, my index finger is in the air), that didn’t stop me from sending a voice recording of me singing happy birthday to Alex, telling him hoe much I love him and that I can’t WAIT to spend this (what I GUARANTEE will be) incredible day with him… ya know, once I leave this thing we grown-ups call “the work”.

Also, pretty special about today (and even though I LOVE my birds, this is DEFINITELY second to my son’s birthday), My Orioles are taking on the Royals in the first game of the ALCS tonight. You’ve heard me rant about sports before, however, NOTHING… I repeat, NOTHING comes before Alex… ever. ūüôā (mamabear’s peaking her head out a bit this morning I think… let me get that in check…)

On to what you REALLY came here for!!!

THE FRIDAY FIVE!!! As per the usual, I’m linking up with the lovely ladies of the DC Trifecta;¬†Courtney¬† from “Eat Pray Run DC”, Mar from “Mar on the Run” and ¬†Cynthia¬†from “You Signed Up for What?”¬† Today we’re discussing 5 things we use to fuel our runs (and other fitness endeavors). ¬†So, lets get started!

1. ¬†Coffee –¬† I cannot function without a strong cup of joe. ¬†Before the Ragnar, I drank a HUGE cup of coffee… if I hadn’t, there is NO WAY I would have made it through the first leg on 2 hours of sleep. ¬†Coffee fuels me in more ways then just through fitness. ¬†I don’t need to put anything ridiculous in it, especially prior to physical activity, because lets face it… as a Gastroentrologist I used to work for said so eloquently, “Coffee makes me poop”. ¬†As long as I have a black coffee before a run, I’m good to go! ¬†After said run, however, pumpkin spice me up baby!! ūüôā

2. ENERGYbits –¬†These little suckers are AMAZING! ¬†Every morning, I pop a few in a smoothie (or if I’m running late, which recently has been the norm… pop them straight with water), and I’m set! ¬† For pre-race fuel, I take 30 of these 45 minutes prior to my long runs. ¬†6-8 miles in a pop 30 more. ¬†The energy is natural, so I never feel the crazy like I would from a 5 hour energy or a RedBull. ¬†They’re also PACKED with protein, so I’m not hungry! They keep me full while I’m running, so my whacked out stomach doesn’t start bothering me. ¬†Unfortunately other energy supplements upset my stomach, like Gu and Stingers. ¬†Because ENERGYbits are all natural (Algae) this doesn’t happen. ¬†You can check out WAY more about this tiny green wonders on my blog here. But obviously I’m a fan. ūüėČ

3. Larabars –¬†These little bars are straight from heaven! (not exaggerating). ¬†I got hooked on these when I was trying (and failing) at my Whole30 attempt. ¬†However, this actually stuck. ¬†They’re DELICIOUS. ¬†They keep me energized before I run/lift, without packing on extra calories and bulk that I (and lets face it, no one) needs before busting out a killer workout. ¬†Also, they’re simple. ¬†No artificial ANYTHING!! ¬†And, they taste like candy! (well, not really, but pretty fricken close! Enough that my 4 year old – sounds so weird to say that!! like them!)

4. Bananas –¬†Yes, I’m that girl that SEARCHES for Bananas at the end of a race. ¬†The potassium helps me with my RIDICULOUS leg cramps, and It’s JUST enough to curb my runger until I can get to a meal. ¬†Prior to races, I also love Bananas because (as i previously mentioned) I have a temperamental belly. ¬†Bananas don’t seem to piss off the beast that lives inside me!! Win Win!!! (also, YUM!!!)

5. Nuun (Cherry Limeade Energy) –¬† Pre/During/Post. ¬†This is my FAVORITE hydration method while running, training, tapering, anything. ¬†It’s delicious, hydrating, energizing, and just amazing when it comes to an all around balanced energy drink. ¬†¬†THE BEST PART?? ¬†No crash, because there is no sugar. ¬†Backed with vitamins and minerals, it’s pretty much a super drink. ¬†Again, I’m (obviously) a fan. (NUUN LOVE!!)

Well, I hope you enjoy this awesome Friday!! As always have a happy and healthy weekend!! ūüôā