The Fartlek

Standard

We get it. With traveling and family coming into town, the amount of time to run and workout is severely impacted. So instead of an hour workout, you’re lucky to squeeze in twenty minutes!

You hate them. You dread them. You gotta do ’em. Fartleks.

Fartlek: Swedish for speed play, alternating easy and hard running.

This allows you to gradually increase speed and intensity for a short period of time.

Incorporating Speedwork into your Runs

This can turn a 20 minute run into that intense workout you need to stay in shape for that spring race you’re training for. Since its the holidays, it might be exactly what you need. You can get some intense sprints in, leaving you with more time with the people you love. Experiment with different paces and go as hard as you can for a 20-30 minute run, you’ll not only increase your stamina, but you’ll burn off a lot more of that egg nog and rum!

Here are some options from Runners World:

5k-10k:
• 8 to 12 x 1 minute hard/1 minute easy
• 6 to 8 x 2 minutes moderately hard/1 minute easy
• Descending ladder: 6 minutes, 5 minutes, 4 minutes, 3 minutes, 2 minutes, 1 minute. Start at 10k pace and slow to 5k pace.

Half and full marathon:
• 4 to 8 x3 minutes moderately hard, 2 minutes easy
• 3 x 5 to 8 minutes comfortably hard with a two minute jog between each
• 2 x 10 to 13 minutes at half-marathon effort with a 2 minute jog between each

Fartleks - Speedwork

Fartleks – Speedwork

Surviving the Holiday 15

Standard

With only a week before Christmas, who doesn’t dread the part of the Holidays that endorses unlimited eating, forgotten workouts, and the dreaded Holiday 15!?! It’s almost become a part of life, “gain the weight in December, work all year to lose it”. It’s a North American rule. Sound familiar? I think some of us may do the same thing with credit cards… but back on point.

How do we enjoy the holidays without ending up feeling like bloated whales by the time it’s all over? Well, we can be strategic, set some goals, have a few guidelines, and we’ll be sure to Survive the Holiday 15:

Keep moving.

1. Switch it Up.
Take the stairs, get up and get water, park a little farther from the mall. With the added stress of the holidays, we need to keep moving. It’s okay to shorten your Cardio if you can’t fit it in, instead of the gym, try a yoga set on YouTube.

2. Involve the Family.
This season is about family right? Encourage healthy living by involving the whole family! Go for walks with the family through the Christmas tree farms. Park at the end of the street and walk through the lighted neighborhood with hot chocolate. Bundle up and hit up an outdoor skating rink.

3. Try some at home strength training.
Between commercials during your favorite Christmas music, alternate with sit-up, push-ups, burpies, squats and stretches. I’ve found this to be the very best way to fight the urge to munch throughout the entire movie.

Just take time to enjoy the peace and love during the Holiday Season

Just take time to enjoy the peace & love during the Holidays

Watch your Eating

1. Eat before you go. If you are planning on hitting up a really great Christmas spread, make sure you eat before you go. All those little appetizers are not as safe as you think, and the salad you ate on the way out the door will help cushion the little treats you may indulge in.

2. Pick a Treat.
Once you make it to the party, make sure you get a drink in your hand (tea or water), which will limit your handling capacity. make the rounds and decide on your selected treats. You know your limits. Make sure that every piece of food has been considered (and don’t just eat chips… what’s so special about that?). Ps. Skip the egg nog, at up to 350 calories a cup, it’s just not worth it!

3. Keep your eating clean at Home.
Just because it’s a big party out there doesn’t mean you have to forget about healthy eating at home. Keep the carrots, celery, oranges and apples handy this Christmas. This is one of the best ways to balance out all those Christmas parties, meals and celebrations.

We hope you take time to spread love and peace during the Holiday Season.
Merry Christmas!

Christmas Update

Standard

So, this blog is dedicated entirely to my Christmas life.

1. Decor has been up for a while. Cheers. Say hello to the adorable little tree and please note my complete laziness in not even getting up to take the picture… I just was too comfy snuggled up on our couch! tree

2. Presents have been thought about. People that need gifts have been kind of terrible about getting me their gift lists. Ugly sweaters it is. Take that!

3. We’ve kept up with the traditions pretty well! Went to Williamsburg, VA to check out the Christmas wreaths (Yes, we go there to strictly look at wreaths. Best. Tradition. Ever.)

williamsburg

Christmas Wreaths in Williamsburg

Went to the Hollydazzle in Newport News, VA (Hollydazzle?!? LOVE that name!) and had the BEST time watching the Christmas fireworks/light-show, set to Christmas music. We went as a group, and had a blast!

hollydazzle

HollyDazzle in Newport News

 

Exactly 17 days till Christmas and only 7 more workdays until I’m off for Christmas break! I couldn’t be more excited to sleep in AND go for my long runs in the same day 🙂

What are your Christmas plans and traditions? I’d love to hear about them!

She Believed she Could, so She Did.

Standard

Running is more than a healthy and cheap way to stay in shape, it has become who I am. When I wandered into my first run group after about six weeks of run/walking (mostly walking), I ran beside a woman who was pushing a baby stroller with a month old baby wrapped up inside. This was several years ago, in another country, and I never saw her again… But she inspired me more than a personal trainer could have. She ran until she was seven months pregnant! And after pushing out a baby a month prior, she was still able to run farther than me.

No, this isn’t a dual announcement of a marathon and a baby… I just thought of her and how she gave me the inspiration to be who I am today.

A runner.

Someone who plans their weekend around the long run. Goes to bed early to get up to run. Packs more running clothes on a weekend getaway than regular clothes. Buys a pair of stretch pants from lululemon in all black so I can wear them with high boots for a dual purpose wear… Sound familiar?

she believed

People ask me how to keep fit through the holidays. It’s easy. Make it your priority. Fit in your work outs, they are non negotiable. Eating clean isn’t debatable. You know how it works in your life… You just need that motivation. Maybe I’m like that new mom was in my life to you or maybe you’re that person to someone else. Be that motivation to someone else.

I pray that there is at least one person out there that is motivated to be fit and decide to honor their bodies because of the motivation from us at Girls Run Faster.