Tag Archives: running

Summer Running Essentials

16 Jun

The extended spring we were enjoying here in DC was nice while it lasted, but the summer stank has settled in– and if things keep heading in our current direction, I’d bet 2017 will go down as the Swampiest Summer Ever. But I’ll leave that right there.

Anyway– here are some things I think are essential to summer running:

1. Shorts You Can Actually Run In

A few years ago, I chronicled my quest to move from capris to shorts here and here. I stand by the claim I made back then that the Lole Lively Shorts are the best thing to ever happen to my thighs, but my endorsement of them must have broken the internet because they are now sold out everywhere. I am happy to report, however, that the Oiselle Long Roga shorts I wasn’t 100% sold on have been through some updates since my original test run, and I am now a big-time fan of them. I suggest sizing up because the built-in brief seems to be about 1/2 size smaller than the shorts themselves– but, if callipygian isn’t the word the Ancient Greeks would have used to describe you, you might not worry about that.

roga

2. A Hand-held Water Bottle

When it’s damn near 80 degrees and 100% humidity by 6am, there’s no two ways about it: you need to BYOW. I love this little 10-oz guy, but admit that it’s only enough if I know I’ll have access to a fillup while I’m out for a run. I’m considering upgrading to a 16 oz and would love to hear your recommendations if you’ve got ’em.

water

3. Something–anything–to Keep the Sweat Out of Your Eyes

What is worse than being hot, tired, and soaked in your own sweat? Being hot, tired, and having that aforementioned sweat running into your eye and threatening to knock your contacts out of place, too. I love this Roga Visor from Oiselle (surprise). It’s made of the same super-lightweight and sweat-wicking fabric as the Roga shorts are, so it keeps the sweat out of your eyes without adding extra heat. The brim is a bit shorter than most other visors I’ve tried so I don’t find that it does a ton for face shade, but that’s a price I’m willing to pay for eyes that don’t sting.

visor

If visors aren’t quite your thing, I also sometimes use those 80s terrycloth sweatbands as a headband and have found that easier than trying to keep one of those super-cute-but-not-all-that-functional sparkly ones in place. Plus, you can roll out with your squad looking like this… because nothing says “I’m ready to run” like pantyhose:

80s

4. Sunglasses

As a health professional, I should recommend sunscreen… but the best this sun-worshiping (and foolhardy) Greek woman can do is to recommend good polarized, non-slip, non-fog sunglasses. I am pretty into these fun and durable KnockArounds, most of which cost around $10-25. (Click here and enter your email address for $10 off any purchase of $20+.)sung

5. A Plan

Listen, y’all– I have learned this the hard way. July is not the time to figure your route out while you’re running it. Are there water fountains available on the route? Is there shade? Are the hilliest parts of the route also the parts in full sun? If you keel over from heat exhaustion, will anyone be around to find you? Is your main obstacle going to be bikers (who provide just enough breeze as they blow by to count as a blessing) or a group of middle schoolers from Iowa (who totally screw your Garmin stats by making you slow down at every crosswalk because their chaperone refuses to let anyone by)? These are things I want to know BEFORE I head out of the house.

Pacers St Pattys Day 10k Recap

9 Mar

I haven’t written much about running recently- largely because I haven’t had any races since my big “A” race back in November 2015. Nuts.

With all the extra time not spent on training for a specific goal, I focused the last several months of my prolonged off-season on beating the hell out of my legs in order to gain some strength. This is a bit of a revolution for me, as I will pretty much always choose running for 90 minutes over squats, push-ups, and burpees for 30 minutes. Of course, it turns out that 100% of expert exercise science consensus is not wrong–after about 2 months of regular strength training (ESPECIALLY consistent core work…. blech), I noticed a big difference in how my muscles felt during/after runs, and an even bigger difference in the numbers ticked off by my Garmin.

I signed up for the the St Pattys Day 10k mostly because I love 10ks and just don’t think there are enough of them. I’ve been running a lot with a Oiselle Teammate who is quite a bit faster than me, and I’ve been more or less keeping up — so I had a sneaky suspicion this race could be a PR. Previously, my best was 51:30 from the 2015 Capitol Hill ClassicCapitol Hill Classic, so of course I hope I could eek it in under 50:00, but I wasn’t too sure.

Here’s how it went:

Mile 1: 7:27
Mile 2: 7:32
Mile 3: 7:50
Mile 4: 7:45
Mile 5: 7:44
Mile 6: 7:45
Last 0.29: 2:04

I spent the first two miles pretty much freaking out– maintaining any mile split that began with a 7 was absolutely new territory for me. Somewhere into mile 3, I switched from the doubting voice to the DO IT voice, and decided to commit to making this sub-50 10k happen. Per my race MO, I tuned out whatever nonsense people were engaging around me and just focused on the phrase I had chosen for the day; for this race, I went “fly fast to the finish then rest,” another Oiselle maxim.

And that’s pretty much what I did! I finished in 48:09, which came as a huge surprise and a big relief, and then went straight from the finish line to the movie theater for that rest (if you haven’t seen Get Out yet, stop everything you’re doing and go see it right now).

FullSizeRender (17)

Like all Pacers Races, the St Pattys Day 5k/10k is amazingly well organized. Packet pickup is easy, the race is metro accessible, and day-of logistics are a dream (plenty of portapotties, lots of volunteers, well marked gear check/info/medical/etc booths). Almost everyone else I talked to commented on how beautiful the course is- Ohio Drive is the main drag, so you pass the Washington Monument, WWII memorial, Tidal Basin, and Kennedy Center but, per usual, I was too dialed-in to say whether the course is pretty or not. It is, however, pretty flat, and I most certainly took note of that.

My next race is the the GW Parkway Classic, and I’m not sure whether I’ll shoot for another PR or just enjoy the course and the run. Both are equally appealing right about now–so only time will tell. Until then, it’s back to the burpees.

 

Link

Guest Post at EatPrayRunDC

12 Jun

Guest Post at EatPrayRunDC

While Courtney at EatPrayRunDC is off getting hitched, I’m THRILLED to step into her awesome running shoes for one day to talk about why I love Local Running Stores– and why you should, too! Stop by over there and say hi.

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