Thursday, July 24, 2014

10 fitness things I really LOVE!

I saw this blog post on The Hungry runner Girl and I thought wow, that looks like fun.  I commonly get asked questions about running hardware/software and supplies that I love.  Being  type A, I am a list maker already, so here is my list of 10 things I really love pertaining to fitness and running.   Maybe I should also do one for dog agility too in another post.  

1.  My Garmin 220.  I use it for my everyday watch as it is lightweight even though it is big.  The large display makes it so easy to see.  While I am a little disappointed that I haven't noticed it locks onto satellites quicker than my older Garmin, I love all of the features and have not even begun to use all of them.  I will admit that my watch in particular has been a little buggy, sometimes dropping out on pace and sometimes not recording distance, but I can usually power it off and back on and the problem stops.  I love the big display and the detailed stats it gives you.  I also love that it comes in purple.  That was a big selling point for me (EMAW baby, go cats!).
2.  Map My Run.  This is my logging app that I use for running, biking, and walking.  I have used it for years and used it for coaching for mileage and pace before I bought my GPS watch.  I LOVE the live function so my hubby can click on his map my run app and see exactly where I am at, at all times.  I sometimes say I am going one route and for whatever reason, change my mind, and he can just look on his phone and find me.  I used the web based MMR for years before I had a smart phone, just to plan out routes of certain distances.  I do love the challenges that Map My Run has going on, like the Purina one right now where you can win dog food and prizes.  While I haven't won anything yet from doing the challenges, it is still fun to get the little badges after you hit certain milestones.  I also have several friends who use MMR and we can view each other's progress through the dashboard part of the app.  I also like to leave myself comments on how the run went or the weather conditions that affected my run.  

3.  Pandora.  I have a list of running songs and most of the time, unless it is a speed work out or I am with someone else like my BRF, I don't listen to music while running.  If my BRF can't long run with me, I try and go most of the run without music and just enjoy the scenery, but sometimes boredom does set in.  I like using Pandora for the fact that I can get variety at the touch of a button, versus a list on my phone.  I like Steve Aoki, Skrillex, or electronic cardio channels for speed work, or for slower runs, I like summer hits of the 80s or 90s. The beat and cadence of the music helps me set my pace sometimes.  I will even listen to comedy channels if I am having problems getting through a run, just to get a smile on my face.  I like having channels versus a list so that I don't really have to skip certain songs as I can customize my likes or dislikes.  I have done races where WIFI is non existent, so I have listened to my running playlist or just chatted with someone that had a similar pace.  

4.  My Nike Volmeros.  I cannot stress how important getting running shoes that are right for YOU is.  I ran in the wrong shoes for years and did damage to my feet. Brand does not matter, what matters is what is right for your feet and your running style.  I did a gait analysis at the local running store and was shown the options that fit the way I run.  I tried all of them but kept coming back to my Nikes.  As a dog person, I caught a ton of flack for being a Nike girl (ehem, the whole Michael Vick sponsorship issue), but they are the only shoes that fit me and my running.  Believe me, I have tried EVERY brand out there in the neutral shoe division and these just work for me.  Find what works for you.  On top of video gait analysis, our local running store commonly does test nights for other brands of shoes, so take advantage of these kinds of things!
5.  A BRF or training partner.  I have both of these:)  I pretty much train with both or either on every run unless one is injured or it is too hot for the dogs.  I can't tell you how much this helps you stay accountable on a training program.  Both having someone you have said you were going to meet up with at the butt crack of dawn and a crazy dog that is more crazy without daily exercise keeps you motivated.  It also helps to have someone a bit faster than you.  My BRF can run a 26 minute 5 K, so training and racing with her has helped me get faster and stay competitive, just by trying to keep up with her!  I met her at the gym and we are now great friends.  I don't know what I would do without her weekly "therapy sessions" AKA long runs.  I also love having a dog to train with because when my BRF can't go out, Stella or Deuce can, and I feel so much more protected as a woman runner with a dog.  Granted, we do live in a very safe area but you just never know.  
6.  Good summer running clothes.  I have been lucky to find some really awesome running clothes at really good prices.  I always hit sales at change of season and I have lucked out.  Having the right gear helps you to feel comfortable on your run and if you aren't comfortable, you will be miserable and will probably discontinue running.   My favorite summer piece right now is my Nike compression shorts.  I have never been blessed with a thin figure, and I have always had bigger legs, thanks to all of my sports endeavors.  This means no cute running shorts for me but that is okay.  I embrace my body type thunder thighs and clothe it for what I do and what makes me comfortable.  I love compression shorts in the summer and compression pants in the winter.  Keeping all the jiggly bits in for me makes me feel so much better:)
7.  Chocolate Milk. Nothing is better after a hard work out than a tall cold glass, and I am NOT a milk drinker.  When it was suggested to me to try it as a recovery fuel, I think I probably rolled my eyes and gagged.  I use milk in cereal and I literally drain every bit of it from every bite I take.  For whatever reason, chocolate milk, already mixed mind you, just doesn't bother me at all!  Maybe it is a texture thing.  I love it and always drink it after speed work or long runs.  YUM!
GU Chomps Strawberry - Box of 16
8.  Watermelon or  Cherry Chomps or Cliff shot Bloks any flavor.  Never been a GU fan.  Again, I think it is solely a texture thing and that snotty, bleh consistency just makes me gag.  For the record, I can't eat yogurt either for this very reason.  I kind of am changing over to Cliff shots because they are packaged different (all in a line) and seem to be easier to chew and swallow during running.  GU chomps are a bit bigger and gooey-er and seem to choke me up sometimes when I am running and eating, but I love the strawberry flavor.  
9.  Running Friends.  I can't say enough about running friends.  They are just like agility friends, always there for you.  All of us have ups and downs in training and in life and it makes it so much easier when you have great friends around. I love going to races and seeing my friends and celebrating PRs or PBs or just finishing!  

No comments:

Post a Comment