Gift Guide 2012: The Lady Runner

I’m a big fan of holding out til holidays to ask for big ticket items. Then again, I love a stocking stuffer, too.

Ok, I just like presents.

Correction: I like nicely wrapped presents.

And I LOVE Christmastime. It’s my favorite time of year. Everything is prettier in lights, we always get a REAL Christmas tree, gift-giving is almost as fun as gift-getting, and I love getting Christmas cards in the mail. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE.

Speaking of gift-giving, some of you might be wondering what to get the lady runner/athlete in your life. Here are a list of my favorite things. Click on the image to go to the website.

Note: Do not attempt to buy workout stuff for someone who doesn’t already workout or who has not expressed a desire to own workout stuff. This could be extremely insulting and ruin your holidays. Trust me.

1. Garmin Forerunner 10: $129.99

It’s got all the basics for half the cost: pace, time, distance, personal bests. It’s great if you don’t need/want all the stats. And it’s pretty and small!

2. I am in love with my Saucony Kinvara 3s: $100.00

Hello, gorgeous! They’re a great lightweight shoe for those of us with higher arches and, again, SO PRETTY!

3. Race Bib Coasters: $22.00

What a creative way to commemorate a great run! What will those geniuses over at Etsy think of next?!

4. Sugoi Women’s MidZero Tight: $55.95

AKA my favorite winter running tight EVER. Seriously, these are cozy and they breathe. I don’t know how they did that, but they did.

5. lululemon What the Fluff Vest: $158.00

I’m a HUGE fan of a running vest. My arms get freakishly warm in the winter. This one is especially warm and, duh, pretty to boot!

6. Erica Sara Designs Love Note: $78-98

Write your friend/running buddy/wife/daughter a note to take with her on her runs. Erica will engrave it for you (in your handwriting) and put it on a beautiful charm. A good luck charm for the lady runner in your life.

7. Oiselle Indigo Melange Arm Warmers$32.00

The perfect way to stay warm but have options. And they’re so on-trend!

8. Cross-training Gift Cards: The sky’s the limit!

   

It’s cold out there and sometimes even the most dedicated runners want to head indoors! Plus, it’s a great way to stay in good physical health. These are my favorite places to sweat in NYC, in case you are my Secret Santa 😉

There are so many other fabulous gifts out there, if you run into a problem and need a woman’s advice, feel free to holler at me. I love to shop. If all else fails, a day at the spa is always in order.

Get going, everyone! Only a few more hours til Cyber Monday is over.

Now go out and run!

Fitness News of…Last Week

Thanks for all the congrats on the interview, everyone! It went well and now it’s just a waiting game. More interviews to come and, hopefully, one seriously awesome letter (or phone call, I’ll take either) from my chosen university in the mail soon so that I can sleep at night.

These eyes should be shut.

‘Til then, here’s the Fitness News you might have missed last week.

How awesome is this photo (Courtesy of the Denver Post)

Did I miss anything? Let me know! In the mean time, this is the first week back at school for me. Last semester as an undergrad/post-bac. I cannot WAIT to start my doctorate program this summer. Bring it!

Yeeeeaaaah, this is officially gonna be me...some day.

Now go out and run!

Make the Investment In Yourself

Christmas/Hanukah shopping is in full-swing, if not at critical mass, and people are dropping serious dough on the ones they love before the holidays officially start on Wednesday. In our family, we do a Secret Santa among the “kids” in my family because I am one of 5 and when you add in the significant others/spouses, it just gets ridiculous. So, besides coming up with a fabulous gift for JB, coordinating for our parents, getting the one Secret Santa gift and trying to stop myself from shopping even more for my fat little angle baby niece, Christmas shopping is pretty easy for me.

Shopping for others is easy for me.

Thoughtful presents for parents/loved ones? I got you covered! By the way, how is it possible the Post Office is so broke with all the presents and cards I'm mailing?

Investing in myself is not always so easy-breezy.

JB wants a tree for five days? Sure, we'll get a tree!

I have such a hard time spending on myself. Why is that?

Why can we find and spend on everyone else but ourselves? Some of it is <insert religion> guilt (Catholics/Jews, you feel me on this one), but the same could be said for any other type of religion/parenting/upbringing that encourage you to think only of others and never yourself. It’s not all a bad thing, mind you, and I don’t mean to rag on Catholicism or Judaism but it’s just something I personally struggle to find the balance between.

As a runner, I pride myself in being able to just lace up my shoes and run out the door, no fancy equipment required.

Got shoes? Can run!

But then I get an awesome new gadget for my birthday and my running is that much more enjoyable and I can tailor my workouts even more to the goals I have. Why did I wait so long to get my Garmin when I am absolutely at that place in my running career where pace/tempo/time matters to me?

My Garmin was a total life-saver in Philly!

I’m getting a lot better at investing in myself (ahem, NYU), thanks to JB and some very encouraging friends. Because, when you break things down, what are the cost equivalents for your health vs. other stuff?

  • $30 = Flywheel class or 3 drinks at a bar (~1 night out for most of us)
  • $90 = new pair of Brooks Defyance shoes or 1 dinner out (you know: drinks, dinner, dessert, tip…it adds up)
  • $20 = copay to see me favorite chiropractor or 1 movie with a snack
  • $76 = 1 month gym membership for winter treadmill running or going out for lunch once (or twice) a week for a month
  • $85 = lululemon run: inspire crops that last FOREVER and never chafe or 1 haircut I could honestly skip because my hair is always a mess pulled back in the winter
  • $12 = 1 yoga class at Laughing Lotus or 1 cheap-o manicure (tip not included)
  • $100= marathon race entry or Starbucks coffee 5 days a week (thank goodness I don’t drink coffee!)

This is what goes through my head when I’m budgeting every month for my fitness. As I get older and as my disease starts to make itself known in my everyday life, I am now more aware than ever how important it is for me to take good care of myself and make the investment in my physical health FIRST.

Cross training is a must. Flywheel class > boozy night on the town

Drinking, eating out, going to the movies and gorging on unhealthy snacks, these things don’t usually make me feel better. There’s a time and a place for them, but when they become the priority, I know I’ve lost my grip on what’s important in my life. My health, my happiness, my well-being have to come first. For me, that means I make lunch so I can afford Flywheel, yoga and a gym membership during the winter. My toenails are pretty bare throughout the winter so I can get those new pair of running shoes that I need. I invest in the right running clothes that will last because that just makes good sense.

And your time. Your time is so valuable and scarce. How do you spend it? What gets top priority?

Like I said, there’s a balance. But if you find yourself making time for your favorite sitcom or to catch up on your TiVo and not for your daily workout, don’t you think it’s something to re-evaluate? I do.

What do you give up so you can be the best, healthiest you? What aren’t you willing to give up? Tell me about it in the comments!

Now go out and run!

 

 

…By New Year’s Day 2012

Confession: I hate New Year’s resolutions. I have never set one. I don’t like the idea that there’s one day of the year when people are supposed to start something. I get that some people need the start date to start anything, but I am going to propose something radical.

Start today.

Start now.

So that by New Year’s Day 2012, you have already accomplished something. Instead of:”I will start (insert New Year’s resolution) on January 1, 2012″ try this on for size: “I will be doing/have completed (insert goal) by January 1, 2012.”

It’s much more powerful to have an end goal date than a start goal date. Procrastinators (ie. most of us out there) get this. You will work much harder if you have a deadline than if you have just a starting date and an open timeline.

Why start now?

Why not?

The holiday season is one of the most stressful times of the year for people young and old. Money, travel, family drama, work, end-of-year job stuff, seasonal depression, holiday food, office parties…the list of potentially nightmare-ish scenarios goes on and on. Why not set a goal during this crazy time and do something good for yourself?

Need more of this

I will…

have run every day since Thanksgiving…(STREAK!)

be taking a yoga class twice a week…

be running 7:30 miles for my long runs…

finish one non-school book…

take one Flywheel class a week…

turn over my wardrobe and clean out my closet…

race hard one race…

By New Year’s Day 2012!

There are a lot more sweaty Flywheel classes in my future!

Not very lofty goals, but goals nonetheless. I challenge you to start now and not wait for midnight on New Year’s Eve to decide to start something. Nothing will ever live up to the moment when Billy Crystal runs up to meet Meg Ryan and tell her he wants to spend the rest of his life with her in When Harry Met Sally.

It’s never that climactic, so let’s stop putting expectations on that one day and do it now. Don’t think to hard about it, just do it.

What are you going to achieve by New Year’s Day 2012? I want to know! Tell me all about it!

Now go out and run!

Fitness News Fridays

Happy Friday! I have had a very productive Friday that began in the wee hours of the morning when it was only 36 degrees outside. You read that right. It’s FREEZING here in New York. I hear it’s been snowing upstate and my dear family in Colorado just got blasted with their first snow of the season. Apparently, Vail looks like this:

Courtesy of Vail.com

Wow. Ski season is totally on. Red and her BF must be thrilled!

Anywho, there’s lots going on in the health and fitness world this week, too! As predicted, most of the news is about running and marathons as we count down the days (9) to the New York City Marathon. It’s funny, it’s not the biggest or only marathon in the world but when people in New York ask me, “Are you running The Marathon this year?” they are referring to the New York City Marathon and have rarely heard of another outside of possibly Boston. They are often confused when I say, “No, Philly. The Philly Marathon” and don’t know how to respond.

On that note, GOOD LUCK MARINE CORPS MARATHONERS!!! If you find yourself near Washington, D.C. or Arlington, V.A. this weekend, take a walk along the course and cheer on the 35,000 people running The People’s Marathon this year. I love, love, love this marathon and hope to do it next year.

OOOORAHH!

And now, the news.

  • If you are a female runner, you have Dr. Julia Chase-Brand to thank for paving the way and debunking the myth that your uterus will fall out if you run for more than half a mile.
  • If I had kids, I would make these for Halloween. I may still make them. JB and I are big kids.
  • California has banned teens from using tanning beds. Personally, I dig it cuz it causes cancer.
  • ACL and meniscus injuries in young athletes are on the rise. This drives me crazy because their mostly overuse injuries. A year-round single sport child seems to me to be on the fast track to lifelong debilitating injuries.
  • Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall calls magazines out about unhealthy images portrayed and how it affects young women’s perception of health and beauty. Good on her.
  • Sam Fox is running 2396 miles to raise money for his mother who has Parkinson’s. What have you done for your Mom lately?
  • Yoga helps to relieve back pain. Do you really need MORE reasons to take up yoga? Do it.
  • Adidas made a shoe in honor of the late, great Grete Waitz. 100% of the proceeds goes to Waitz’s cancer foundation.
  • People rarely challenge me to an Anatomy/Physiology discussion about running being “bad” for you (guess who wins that one?) but not everyone has the information to back up their plans to run a marathon and sometimes they encounter the nay-sayers. My advice, tell them “I’m doing it because I want to.” So there.
  • It’s never too late to save your life and start exercising.

One last thing, by popular demand, Aleah and I will be hosting ONE MORE BRICK workout tomorrow starting at 12:30pm at the Upper East Side Flywheel. If you didn’t make the list, come on by and jump on the wait list. See you there!

Have a great weekend. Now go out and run!