Last Week’s Fitness News: Back to Normal?

Happy weekend, friends. This week was intense. Between “intensive” week at school, putting together the BostonStrongNYC run, and finishing up with my training for the Long Branch Half Marathon, I’m spent. Good thing I start my rotation tomorrow…

YIKES!

Congratulations to all the Eugene, Big Sur, NIKE Women’s DC and everyone else who raced this weekend. How did you do?

The running world is starting to get back to normal-ish. I know there have been changes to the Finish Line protocol at the New Jersey Marathon/Long Branch Half Marathon next weekend. Anyone else know of any big changes to pass along?

  • I’m happy to report (or to pass on the report) that only 30-something people injured at the Boston marathon remain in the hospital as of yesterday. Sadly, at least 14 of the victims had to have a limb amputated. I’m grateful that there are other people who have had traumatic amputations in adulthood who have been to speak with them and encourage them to that life will go on, including Achilles founder Dick Traum and Marine Sergeant Gabe Ramirez.
  • And as you may have seen earlier this week, the entire running community is here to support the victims and their families. We hope that came across in the BostonStrong<city> runs that were held Monday all over the world! You can read about BostonStrongNYC from ChristineKassandraMichelleTheodora, and Gia.
  • There are many businesses donating proceeds to The One Fund, including: Erica Sara Designs, Adidas, Sparkly Soul Headbands, and Oiselle. Are there others that I can tell people about? Tell me! I’m happy to good gossip about companies.
  • Behind this beautiful Boston Magazine cover.

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Beautiful.

Hope everyone had a great weekend. Posts may be sporadic as I try to figure out my schedule at the hospital. Safe to say I’ll be plenty busy!

Now go out and run!

#BostonStrongNYC

My last marathon was Philly in the Fall of 2011. I didn’t know the course that well and had never run the streets of Philadelphia. In New York, I know the danger zones for potholes and curbs and all that good stuff. Not so much in Philly.

At mile 8, I tripped in the middle of the street and went crashing down in a giant pack of people. I spent approximately .013 seconds on the ground before I was scooped up by three male runners who barely missed a stride before planting me on my feet and sending me on my way to finishing my 9th marathon.

Yaaaaaaay Philly!

Yaaaaaaay Philly!

I’m still in awe of that kind of support from perfect strangers. And then I’m not because that’s just how the running community is.

We pick each other up and help each other finish.

That’s what we did on Monday in Central Park. 300 of my closest friends got together to show support for those killed and injured in Boston last week, our running community, and the entire city of Boston.

Take a look.

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The following photos are courtesy of Eric Stafford (do not reproduce images without permisison) whom you should really use for your next fitness event/shoot cuz he’s pretty rad.

boston1 Boston2 Boston3 Boston4 Boston5 Boston6 IMG_4631 IMG_4635 IMG_4638 IMG_4640 IMG_4642 IMG_4655

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The idea was conceived by Brian Kelly, and I had two fabulous women who chipped in to make our event happen, Christine Yu and Julia Bienstock. Many thanks to American Apparel for donating the shirts so that we could raise money for The One Fund. Thanks to the fabulous Eric Stafford took some photos for us and, of course, to the Runner Army of New York City who showed up big time.

You guys rock.

Now go out and run.

Top 5 Signs of Runner Burnout

Twitter is a funny world. I guess I should say, “world”. Complete strangers (mostly) share their lives, workouts, interests, secrets, fears, and triumphs on the Internet in 140 characters or less.

People follow each other's every virtual move. AKA stalk.

13,699 tweets? What the hell do I have to say that’s so important?

You can link your Facebook, blog, FourSquare, Vine, Run Keeper, Nike+ running, Daily Mile, MapMyRun, My Fitness Pal, and oodles of other apps to your Twitter feed. People can track your every move if you let them.

I actually like Twitter. The people I follow aren’t serial users or obsessive (at least, I don’t think they are) and I genuinely enjoy their quips and updates. As we approach Boston Marathon weekend, I’m seeing a trend in runners that I’ve noticed before, but not quite as much as right now.

Running when one clearly hates running right now.

What happens when it becomes YOUR punishment, too?

What happens when it becomes YOUR punishment, too?

More than one runner who is headed to Boston this week has confessed that their head and heart just aren’t in it. They’re all seasoned-ish runners who have surely defined themselves as RUNNERS, but they clearly no longer enjoy running.

What do you do when you just don’t feel like running anymore?

Even Snoopy feels like this sometimes.

I would say this person is experiencing complete and total burnout.

Top 5 signs of burnout:

  1. Running feels like a chore
  2. Every run feels hard & there’s rarely a “runner’s high”
  3. You come up with any excuse to drop out of races/workouts
  4. Races give you anxiety (more than usual, that is)
  5. Your heart isn’t in it anymore…and you know it
...at least, it should be. (Image courtesy of Runner's World & your inner child)

…at least, it should be.
(Image courtesy of Runner’s World & your inner child)

I want to say this to all the runners out there:

IT’S OK TO TAKE A STEP BACK FROM RUNNING.

Did you hear me? IT’S OK. It doesn’t take anything away from you or change anything you’ve done. If you aren’t feeling it, don’t force it. Forcing it will only make you resent it more.

Take a step back. Do something else. Try something new.

Don't be afraid you might like something else better.

Don’t be afraid you might like something else better.

You are not defined by only being a “runner”. You are so much more and can be anything you want to be, just don’t be afraid. Don’t be afraid to walk away from it until you miss it. Don’t be afraid that you might find something you like better.

You can always come back to it.

If you don’t love it, don’t do it. Life is too short to waste your time and energy doing something you hate.

Just a thought.

Now go out and run (or not).

PS. Pictures from the Kick Ass 5K must be received by me via email (runstrongereveryday@gmail.com) by midnight tonight to count toward the raffle. Get ‘em in–I am loving all the ones I have so far!

Boston Who?

Confession: I don’t get the hype about Boston.

(Go ahead and amass your mad rant in the comments now. It’s cool. I’ll wait.)

But really, what’s the big deal? Is it elitist thing with qualifying? Is it the history of the race itself? Tell me, because I don’t get it.

I don't really get the hype about Boston. Then again, I'm a Jersey Girl.

I don’t really get the hype about Boston. Then again, I’m a Jersey Girl.

And before you go crazy on me, yes, I’ve been there to see it. I’ve cheered for my aunt who ran. It was…like most other marathons. Except for one thing.

Standing around near the finish, I heard a lot of things that made me sad. From more than one person, runners and cheerers alike, came the comment:

“Oh, they didn’t qualify. They’re on a charity team.”

Not once, not twice, multiple times from multiple people.

My first Marine Corps Marathon. My first time running for Team Fisher House. A very proud moment, indeed.

My first Marine Corps Marathon. My first time running for Team Fisher House. A very proud moment, indeed.

I was disappointed to hear this from runners and non-runners alike as I wandered around Boston the weekend of the marathon. Who puts down charity runners? I mean, seriously?!?! These people have no soul.

That’s when I lost any desire I had to run Boston.

 

I’ve run 6 marathons for Team Fisher House and am proud to have done so. I don’t think there’s any shame at all in running for a charity team. I would never look down on someone running for something more than his/herself. I think it’s admirable.

It’s not like Boston has a great history, either.

MARATHON

(Image courtesy of KatherineSwitzer.com)

I get that it’s prestigious and maybe that draws some people. But what about the rest? I would really like to know, those of you have been or are hell-bent on getting there…

…why?

Why Boston?

Just wondering.

Now go out and run!

 

I Am Still A Runner…

Welcome back from the weekend! How was it for you? Did you race/run/spin/downward dog/walk/lift/etc.? I ran, but mostly did adult things like take care of pressing household issues. I was thrilled (for more than one reason) that the weather was dark and stormy all weekend–no better time to be running all over Deliverance than on a cold, rainy day! So happy I didn’t miss out on the sunshine.

There’s something that’s been on my mind lately, partly because it’s a hot topic of conversation among runners and non-runners alike and everyone seems to have an opinion. What makes a runner a “runner”? Some people have a laundry list of exactly what makes a runner a “runner”. I have one qualification: you run. That’s it.

And it go me thinking…

I am still a runner even though I look like this when I run:

Yeah, Jersey.

…not like this:

Kara Goucher, you're my hero (photo courtesy of Erica Miss America)

I am still a runner even though I mostly run here:

IBD doesn't will never stop me! I *heart* the treadmill.

…not here:

I miss my Central Park runs (sigh)

I am still a runner even though I probably eat too much of this:

Nutritionist asked me to eat more yogurt. 16 Handles froyo counts, right?

…and not enough of this:

It looks like pea soup, but is actually pretty tasty!

I am still a runner even though I am regularly hopped-up on drugs:

No blood-doping here. Just your run-of-the-mill internal biologic warfare.

…and sometimes, even steroids for a race:

Good thing I wasn't drug tested at Philly. I am guilty of steroid use during a competitive event. Not that I'm anyone's competition, but totally 'roided up nonetheless.

I am still a runner even though I don’t finish first.

I am still a runner even though I don’t run very fast.

I am still a runner even though I haven’t raced since Philly.

I am still a runner even though I sometimes choose spinning over running.

I am still a runner even though I don’t get paid to run.

I am still a runner even though I don’t run every day.

I am still a runner even though I haven’t qualified for the Boston Marathon.

I am still a runner even though I don’t run for a team.

I am still a runner even though I sometimes run in a skirt.

LOVE my Speed Skirt.

I am a runner because I run.

And so are you.

Now go out and run!