Friday, September 28, 2012

2 Mile Run Recap

So I headed out for a run this evening despite still feeling crappy from the cold/flu bug that is slowly but surely taking me down. I did one of my usual routes tonight but extended it so it consisted of 2 miles instead of roughly 1 1/2.

Find more Run in Mayer, AZ I finished it in 31 minutes and 41 seconds which although I'm not too impressed with the time I'll take it. I am still sick so it'll do. Nothing too out of the ordinary until my last tenth of a mile or so when a broom came flying from the back of a trailer attached to a van and nearly took me out. I am not making this up. There was a rouge broom. What's better than a rogue broom? RUNNING with said rogue broom down the street after the van. Oh yes, I totally did. Fortunately I didn't have to go to far with the giant awkward baton because the van turned off into a driveway. I can only imagine what I looked like...always an adventure!

QOTD: What are some unusual thing that have happen on your runs?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Fitness (playlist) I Found on YouTube

I'm getting ready to incorporate these workouts into my fitness regimen,  should be good for cross training. I'll test out some of the video and post back on which ones I liked the most!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Recovery Walk

So I didn't run tonight despite the insane urge my legs got to kick up the pace during the walk. I may have re-injured my left knee which was operated on over a year ago for tears to the cartilage again and was testing it tonight with a long walk. What was better than the fact that my knee never gave out was that Bruce came along with me! We started out just going for a one miler but turned it into just under three which was a great change. I don't think he was nearly as thrilled as I was to be out there but the company was a great change from my usual solo adventures. Maybe I can talk him into coming along again sometime, both both for the walks and runs. You never know!

Water 101

Importance of Water

We all know how important it is to drink water on a daily basis, but do you know why? Well depending on where you look or who you ask you will find that water makes up between 60% - 70% of  our bodies. That's a pretty significant chunk. If you don't get enough water your body will tell you in multiple ways in an attempt to get your attention. Things as simple as a mild headache, dry mouth or fatigue can all be signs you need more water.


The number one way to become dehydrated is simple. Don't drink water. Fortunately the number one way to avoid dehydration is equally simple. Drink more water. Easy right? For some people yes, others no. to understand what dehydration is you should understand what it does to your body. If you don't maintain the proper balance, your body starts protesting; you feel sluggish, achy, cranky and have a general crap feeling. Think of water as lubrication for your muscles, bones, joints and brain. If you don't keep your inside lubricated they will start to dry out in a way, if they dry out then it gets harder for everything to function the way it is supposed to. Water is the vital lubrication your body needs to run smoothly, withhold this simple thing long enough and it can lead to a rapid decline in your health, severe dehydration is an emergency situation and not one to be taken lightly, without water long enough and your body will fully shut down (die). Sounds scary huh? It is. You can only go so long without water and once your body notices the deficit it doesn't really know what to do so it will pull water from any source inside you that it can in an attempt to stay alive. Now that we are past the more frightening part of the post how about I list some symptoms to watch out for?

Mild Dehydration:
  • headaches 
  • thirst
  • fatigue
  • dizziness
  • irritability
  • loss of appetite
  • urine is darker
Moderate to Severe Dehydration:
  • fainting
  • extreme fatigue
  • sunken and shriveled skin
  • extreme thirst
  • lack of sweat
  • fever
  • rapid heartbeat/breathing
  • decreased urine output
 In cases of severe dehydration realize this is an emergency situation and please call 911 IMMEDIATELY!


By now you are probably freaking out and ready to start guzzling gallons of water at a time. DON'T! Just as dangerous as dehydration is overhydration. Seems like a sick joke right? Wish it was but its not. Now this is fairly simple too. Drink too MUCH water. Now you should know that becoming overhydrated is much harder than the former. Still it is something that can end in a trip to the ER. The idea is that if you consume mass quantities of water, in theory what you down is drown your body in water. The balance of your sodium levels get diluted and your body can't flush all of the water fast enough from your system. Please know that this is highly unlikely to happen in individuals with healthy organs and from drinking water alone. The most common cause seems to be from people with heart and liver disease which could impair your body's ability to flush everything out. Here are some symptoms of overhydration.

Signs and Symptoms of Overhydration:
  • changes in mental behavior
  • confusion 
  • muscular cramps 
  • nausea and vomiting
  • rapid breathing
  • sudden weight gain
If you suspect this, the best thing to do is call your doctor and discuss options with him or her. Again it is harder to over-hydrate than under-hydrate so the vast majority of the population should be safe with increasing their daily intake.
Here's a link I found that seems to be quite good for figuring out how much water you should consume. It has several fields that you input information such as your weight, time you spend exercising per day, and your environmental conditions. Based off of what you put in it will show you an estimate of how many oz. your body needs daily. It also shows it in several different conversions which could be handy.

NOTE: I am not a doctor, nor do I claim to be. This article is based off of what I have found and learned through experience. Please contact your doctor with questions about hydration and risks involved with it. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

RunKeeper Data

I have started actively using an app on my phone called RunKeeper. Now keep in mind this is an app that I've had on my phone for some time now but I've always used MapMyRun for tracking my progress. I plan on using this app even more now because of how easy it has made it to do intervals. Check it out!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Camelbak Better Bottle .75L Review

Finally! Words cannot express how happy I am that after four different bottles, I have FINALLY found one that doesn't leak! Hooray! This gem is called the Camelbak Better Bottle and is simply amazing. 

I took the Bubba bottle back to Big 5 where the manager gave me a go-ahead to grab as many bottles as I wanted, fill them with water and do the shake test to my hearts content. Boy did I! I eliminated a Filas bottle I was considering rather quickly by half filling it with water, opening and closing the lid, and shaking it every which way possible (right-side up, diagonally, and upside down). It was an epic fail; I turned it upside down, shook and it sprayed like a sprinkler. Now the Camelbak's turn; this guy won with flying colors. I shook and shook and shook with all my might determined to get something out of it and not a single drop came forth. We have our winner!  (I may have danced around like a moron for a few seconds doing the victory dance.) In case you wonder what that looks like, look here .

Got it in grey, love it! 

 The flip top straw is really awesome especially with how easy they have made it to open, you really can open and drink with one hand. The loop is perfect for a carabiner, looping onto your finger, or hooking on to any pack with a latch on it. I had it on my backpack yesterday and it easily withstood the constant swinging back and forth.

Closer view of the bottle
Has a very sleek design and simple design which is very different than the bottles I usually am drawn to, see here and here . I really am a sucker for pretty/adorable bottles and that may be why I had such a hard time with them because I got them based off looks. Don't do that. 

The top with the bite-valve
Now, I will point out that if you are unfamiliar with bite-valve straws (I was) it will be awkward the first few times you use it. I fought with it for a while until I figured out how to bite and sip efficiently and I don't doubt that I looked pretty goofy doing it. (Feel free to practice drinking from this alone I won't judge).

Measurements along the backside
I don't know why but it seems like if I can see exactly how much water I am consuming then I get on a roll and keep drinking it. Very good in my book as long as I don't over-hydrate which is as bad as being dehydrated.  That along with having the straw makes it easier I think to sip mindlessly and then before you know it you've gone through the bottle and it's time to refill. Again, good in my book as long as you don't overdo it. 

Oh one more thing, depending on where you get it it can range from $10-$20 which is very reasonable for a non-leaky bottle.

QOTD: Ever owned a Camelbak bottle or pack? What is you're holy grail bottle?

Bubba Raptor 22 oz Bottle Review

So I bought another water bottle to replace the green Trudeau bottle I reviewed here and was very excited once again about it. That didn't last long due to the fact that as soon as I did a water test it proceeded to spray water all over the house. Not cool...again! 

You may recognize the green bottle, the pink one on the left was the new Bubba bottle.

I remembered to take a comparison picture of the two bottles side by side before pitching the green one. As you can see the Bubba bottle is again very adorable and has a great shape to it. However it leaked just as bad if not worse than the Trudeau bottle.
What the top looks like, I think it may have been leaking from the hole in the middle but am unsure

The straw was excellent, it flips up easily and is made of silicone so it does bend a small amount. Behind the straw is a little loop similar to what you see on a Camelbak Better Bottle which (spoiler alert) is my new bottle.  I'll review it as well so don't fret. 
Insulated and made with grooves to keep it in your hands
 Now the majority of the leaking seemed to come from where you twist on the lid; it doesn't matter if you lightly tighten it or use the force of God it still leaks. I tried putting the lid on at eye level to see if possibly it was on crooked but nope, there is no obvious reasoning for the leaking except for poor designing.  It like the Trudeau must be kept upright at all times, I unfortunately found out when getting out of the car. It had shifted to its side during the trip and proceeded to leak 22 oz of water into the floorboard of the car. Thank god it was only water but still imagine my surprise when my hand shot up from the lack of weight as I got out.  The flip-side to all of this is that Big 5 is more than happy to exchange the bottle and will even let me test out their bottles by filling them with water and doing the shake test BEFORE I take the bottle home some 30 miles away. *Shakes head and sighs*.

QOTD: How many water bottles have you gone through before finding the perfect one?

Saturday, September 8, 2012

I'm back!

Okay so this will be  quick update on what's been going on and the next post will be reviews for a couple of new products. I have survived my first two weeks of the EMT program so that is very cool in my book, got new trainers the day before yesterday (I'll review them soon) new headphones and a new sports bra (these will all be reviewed). I'm also trying to wrap my mind around a Personal Finance class with the hopes of learning how to be more proactive in budgeting. We'll see how that goes but right now it all seems very confusing. Another thing I've been working on and thinking about is blog posts, what to include and what to write about so I plan on getting some of those ideas going and turning them into helpful posts for you guys. Hang in there!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

EMT Here I Come!

Haven't been able to get on lately, been busy getting ready for my EMT class that now starts in...24 minutes YIKES! I'm going to try to add more running tips once I get situated with the new semester and I assure you all that I have been coming up with post ideas. Hopefully I will have more up for everyone tonight or tomorrow as I'm overdue for a run and post anyways. Right now as far as blogging goes, the hardest part for me is coming up with constructive blog ideas and what exactly I should write about. I'm sure I'll figure it out soon enough though. Stay tuned and so sorry this is so short but I have to get to class, wish me luck!

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Hill Pt. II

Not going to be a very long post right now, just  an update on my running adventures.
Remember this god-forsaken and cursed  hill?

 Don't ask why but I did it again defying instincts telling me to run away, haha run away...I made a funny. Sorry, anyways, I decided I might as well try to defeat this oh so special hill that I hold near and dear to my heart. I set my stopwatch and started up it. Result? 3min18s to the top with me stopping at that special 3/4 mark I cannot get past. So now that I know exactly how much time I spend punishing myself on the hill the logical thing would be to not go near it again right? Yeah, probably right  but for me that's a no. Goal: spend as little time on the hill as possible while still doing it. Translation: Get that time down!! I will try to incorporate this beast in at least once a week or once every other week that is to be determined right now. I will also keep all of you updated as I moved to conquer this madness. Wish me luck!

So this picture was taken before the hill at the beginning of the run but it can easily pass as a photo after. It's generally my face once I get to the hill and when I really don't wanna run :-)

QOTD: What is your current goal with running?
How are you working towards that goal?

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Morning vs. Evening Runs

Which time of day is better to run? The mornings? Or the evenings? Well it really comes down to personal preference, some people rather run in the morning, others prefer evening runs. Here I've listed the pros and cons of both; keep in mind these are just my opinion on them it really depends on you.
©       It’s out of the way.
©       You get a jumpstart to your day.
©       Can help battle daytime fatigue.
©       Gives your metabolism a nice boost for the day.
©       It’s cooler- the sun hasn’t had a chance to warm the pavement yet.
©       Can be easier to work into schedule if it’s done first thing in the morning.
©       Watch the sunrise!
©       For some people getting out of bed at 6:00am is a struggle enough without adding a run.
©       No sleeping in anymore.
©       Can be hard to adjust to earlier workouts.
©       Depending on what time your day starts you may not have a chance to get in a full run if you are running late.
©       Can be a great way to distress from the day.
©       Possibly easier to include family and friends in the evening than the crack of dawn.
©       Can be something to look forward to.
©       Allows you to sleep in a bit.
©       Might work better for people that have a hard time with morning runs.
©       Watch the sunset!
©       Predators seem to prefer preying at night time, more attacks occur at night than in the morning.
©       Can be dangerous if not wearing the proper clothing (flashing lights, reflective strips on clothes, light colors) cars have a harder time seeing you if you stay out to late.
©       Can be harder to get out the door after a long day.
©       If done too late it can make it more difficult to fall asleep.  Rule of thumb: don’t work out within three hours of your normal bedtime. The activity raises your heart rate, and internal temp making it more difficult to relax in bed.

Whether you run in the mornings or in the evenings please make sure that you are being safe in doing so. Tell people where you are going and when you will be back. For the morning runners, leave a note somewhere visible like on the fridge handle or the coffee pot if the rest of the house is still asleep. For evening runners, make sure you are aware of your surroundings if you use music to keep you going keep the volume low and keep one headphone out to hear even better. Only you will know which one works out best for you, so experiment with both for a week or so to see which one works out better. Good luck!

QOTD: What time of day do you prefer to run?
Any other additional tips on morning or evening running?

King Snake on Run

 Okay I recorded this little guy about a week ago before I started blogging but I wanted to add him in anyways. I saw him on the road as I was finishing my after dinner run and he was just slowly creeping along as he absorbed the heat from the pavement. If you live in an area with a lot of snakes, be on the lookout for them in the evenings. They go to the road to warm up after the sun has gone down so it doesn't burn their bellies. This guy is a harmless little king snake, now that doesn't mean he can't or won't bite you because he will and it will hurt but he's not poisonous. You've probably realized by now my fascination of snakes, I absolutely love them! :-)

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Staying Motivated For Running

Okay, so I know how hard it can be to stay motivated for running. There are days where the last thing you want to do is lace up and head out the door, where the couch looks much more inviting than a pair of running shoes. I’ve put together a list of things that I think helps keep you motivated in your pursuit of becoming a better runner.

1.       Take music with you: If you have an iPod, MP3 player or even a Smartphone, you can bring along music with you to keep you company and help get you going. Songs that are between 120-150 bpm (beats per minute) have been proven to help you push through a workout as the fast beats help energize you.

2.       Find a new route: If you tend to run the same routes over and over, try running your usual route only in reverse, or turn your run into a mini adventure by creating an entirely new route. The change of scenery may be just what you need to keep boredom at bay.

3.       Bring a friend or dog: If solo running is getting to be a chore, see if you can bring a friend along with you, the company can help keep you going and even help you work harder. If a friend is unavailable and you have a dog, bring him along with! The two of you will get in quality time, exercise and you won’t have to worry about walking the dog later. It’s a win-win situation! If you have a dog that isn’t used to running too much, start out slow maybe with a half mile or a full mile to get your pup used to the activity. If you are both beginners then you can both build up endurance together.

4.       Add sprints: Not only a great way to burn even more calories but also another way of building up your stamina. Try sprinting for 10-20 seconds then slowing back down to your normal pace. Great way to kick up your runs a notch.

5.       Post-run effects: Aside from the runner’s high that comes from endorphins being released during strenuous activities, there is also the feeling of accomplishment. Think about how good you feel after a run simply because of the fact that you went out there and got it done. You won’t get that feeling sitting on the couch or at the computer wishing you were outside running.

6.       Schedule it: Put it on a calendar, on your phone with reminders to go off, on the fridge, anywhere you will see it. If you see it written down as a scheduled event you are more likely to hold you self accountable and less likely to skimp out on it.

7.       Talk to people: By telling people such as friends and family your plans, they can provide you with support and motivation. Not to mention it’s easier to tell them about the runs you have been doing than explain why you AREN’T running.

8.       Join a running club: They are everywhere and in nearly every town/city so you can’t use the excuse that none are around. Not only can the group provide you with pointer on what to do but being around more runners can get you more excited about running once you see you’re not the only one out there.

9.       Remember why you started: Be it for weight loss, getting into better shape, or being able to run a marathon, remember that the only way you are going reach those goals is if you go out there and work for it. Remembering why you started running will provide you with enough ammo to keep running.

10.   Have fun: Also remember that it doesn’t have to be a chore. Have fun with it, use it to clear your mind, distress and get away from everything for a while. Don’t you out and kill yourself on every single run. Repeat DO NOT GO OVERBOARD! A common mistake with new runners is think they have to go out everyday and run at 110%, this is wrong, not only is it wrong but is also unhealthy. It can lead to multiple injuries, exhaustion, and burnout from running. Don’t feel bad if you’re running slower today that the day before, let loose and relax a little you will enjoy it much more if you do.

QOTD: What do you use as motivation?
How do you get yourself out the door when you don’t want to?

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Birthday Recap

So yesterday was my 24th birthday and I truly did have every intention of getting out the door to run or at least walk. Well, that didn't happen but in a way I'm kind of glad it didn't; I got to camp out and watch movies with my fiance all day and devour spaghetti (big time favorite). I meant to go after dinner but with pasta being such a dense food, I figured it wouldn't be the best idea out there. 

Well, my birthday is over now so I can't really hide behind that for today, guess I'll have to go out eventually (as in when it is no longer breaking triple digits on the thermostat).  I really did love how Bruce (my fiance) went through the effort of actually getting me to sit still, it couldn't of been easy but I do love him for it. Now I am back to running all over the place trying to get everything squared away for the EMT class that starts on the 21st. I;m insanely nervous and excited about this class but at ten credits hours it's definitely going to be a challenge  The thing is, it will be worth it because it will bring me one step closer to my end goal...

What are your experiences with tough college classes?
How did you get through them?
How do you stay motivated to run or exercise?

Monday, August 13, 2012

Journal not Blog

So I've decided that maintaining this will be a lot easier if I think of it as a journal/diary/log. Although keeping a diary has always been a struggle I think this will be easier to do if I use it for running and fitness experiences. Even thought this is technically a blog, if I think of it as just a log or diary it should be easier...right? Well I guess we'll see now won't we?

What are your experiences with starting a blog?
Did it work out the way you hoped it would?
Comment below!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

The Hill

So I started out tonight's route with every intention to WALK the entire thing...(it didn't work). I made it ten minutes before breaking into a run jammin' out to iheartradio and grinning like a maniac.
Went the direct opposite direction I usually go and found myself quite pleased with the new area and fresh scenery, I thought I'd share the pics with all of you. Now I am fully aware that I would of covered the 3.17 miles much faster had I not been stopping to take pretty pictures but oh well, I had a great time and that's the big thing right?
                                                                          See? Happy!

This here is why my pace was so slow, it doesn't take much to distract but hey if you don't slow down you'll miss everything. Like Quail X-ing signs...
 Mr. Cow that scared the ever-lovin' out of me when I turned my head...

A second Mr. Cow, and two adorable bunnies who seemed to like having their pictures taken.
Then came the hill. I've seen it before, driven over it before but never thought of walking and definitely not running up it. Yet here I was. As I got closer I got a kick out of one last chance to back down...

                                            Easy way                                      or                    Hard way
Halfway through I was secretly cursing myself for not going with the peaceful looking road. That was until I got to this view.
Rewarding view from the top!

Hopefully you can't tell how exhausted I was.
Oh wait..I still have a mile to go.
 Final stretch means another hill in a sick twisted way.

Don't really know what happened but all of a sudden somebody turned out the lights. So does a sweat covered face count as the 'dewy-look'?

I finally made it back home and boy did I high-tail it once I caught sight of the roof. I'm sure I'll be plenty sore tomorrow but I think it is well worth it. Til next time!

Recovery Day

So yesterday I had a random shoulder injury creep up on me, possibly from me sleeping wrong but we're still trying to figure it out. Woke up today very late (1 p.m. yikes!) and although it was still there, the pain was half of what it was yesterday. Totally weird I know. I've still been nursing it (for the most part) today but think I'll be able to get out the door and log some miles in the evening. Hooray! Since blogging is very new to me, I'll still be working on the site to make sure every little bit is taken care of. It's a process ya know? Feeling fairly optimistic about how it will turn out so wish me luck!


Here we go!

First I'd like to say welcome to my little blog here, now it's my first time doing this so please bear with me. This blog will mainly be about my adventures of becoming a runner and improving my fitness, a way of documenting and sharing my experiences with everyone out there. I'm new to the whole running scene and am still learning tricks and tips on improving my performance so I think it will be a good place for other new runners to come and learn along the way. I'll also include fitness information as I dig it up so stay tuned!