Women's Running http://womensrunning.competitor.com Women's Running Magazine Fri, 24 Oct 2014 20:41:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 Mile Posts: Marine Corps Marathon Tips http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/mile-posts/mile-posts-marine-corps-marathon-tips_31839 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/mile-posts/mile-posts-marine-corps-marathon-tips_31839#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 20:41:35 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31839

Are you running the Marine Corps Marathon on Sunday? Dorothy has great last minute tips!

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Marine Corps Marathon

In less than two days, thousands of runners will take to the streets of Virginia and Washington DC to run the Marine Corps Marathon. Since MCM was where I ran my first marathon, the race holds an extra special place in my heart. I’ve run the marathon 8 times and the 10K twice. Hopefully have learned a thing or two along the way that will help you on your journey on Sunday!

Wear sunscreen - There isn’t much shade on this marathon course. During most of the years I have run MCM, the sun has been shinning even if it’s chilly out. Do yourself a favor and wear sunscreen so your face and body do not get burnt.

Wear sunglasses or a hat - It gets windy on Haines Point and the bridges. If you are wearing sunglasses, it will help keep the dirt that other runners kick up from flying into your eyes. With a hat, you are helping to protect your face from the sun and the wind. When the wind blows, looking down will allow the hat keep to the dirt out of your face. Just be careful that if you go the hat route, it fits securely on your head. I’ve had a hat fly off mid-race.

Don’t overdress - It’s usually pretty chilly at the start of MCM. You will also need to arrive extra early so Marines can look in your bags at the check points. This mean you are there earlier than most marathons. It’s easy to think that you will need to wear long pants and a long shirt during the race. But trust me- not only do you warm up. but the course warms up as well. There aren’t many trees to block the sun from shinning down on you. If you overdress and sweat too much, you may get yourself into a situation where you become dehydrated. Often times runners think more is better if it’s cold out but that is not always true. If you sweat too much in the beginning and your clothing is soaked, you are going to feel like you are freezing when you get on to the windy bridges. If you are wearing shorts and a tank with a hat and possibly throw away gloves, the sweat will evaporate.

Line yourself up in the correct corral - Once upon a time I would have advised against this because other people always seed themselves faster than they are. I hated trying to weave in and out during early miles, expending precious energy. I have now changed my opinion on this one. My husband has told me that nothing is more demoralizing than getting passed the ENTIRE race because you started too close to the front and got sucked into going too fast. If you start in the appropriate corral, you will more than likely pass people the whole time. Passing other runners in the later stages of the race can be a huge confidence boost!

DO NOT, I REPEAT, DO NOT GO OUT TOO FAST - Going out too fast in your first mile can ruin the whole race for you. Start slow, finish strong. By starting out too fast, you put your body into oxygen debt long before it can handle it. Check out this article for the science behind working into your pace. You want to beat the bridge. The absolute last thing you want to happen on race day is to get picked up by the sagwagon and not finish all 26.2 miles. Remember the marathon is about patience, so have it.

When the road splits, it doesn’t matter what side you are on - In the first mile of the marathon the race course will split. It will appear that those on the left have to run uphill while those on the right will be running down hill. Don’t jump the median and risk twisting an ankle or falling. Yes, those on the left run uphill but they also go downhill, while those on the right go down first and then go up. It’s the same race distance whatever side you are on!

Your pace may slow on the bridges - Don’t get discouraged later in the race if your pace slows on the bridges. Concrete takes more out of your body than the pavement does. Whatever time you lose on the bridges, you can gain back later on the flatter parts.

Run up the hill - The last .1 of the race is uphill. You are tired and so close to the finish line. The hill isn’t as long as it seems. Just think to yourself, “Slow and steady. You can keep running.” Power up the hill and finish strong. Use the energy from the crowd cheering.

Let a Marine put your medal on - The Marines at this marathon are some of the best volunteers you will ever see at a race. They are so polite and helpful. When you finish, get in line to have a Marine put the medal over your head. Don’t just grab the medal and put it on yourself. There is something special about this moment. I can honestly say I have felt like a champion, no matter my race performance, every single time this moment happens.

Questions? Tweet me @mileposts if you have any last minute race questions!!

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Women’s Running Blogger Series- Weekly Link Up http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/nyc-running-mama/womens-running-blogger-series-weekly-link_31830 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/nyc-running-mama/womens-running-blogger-series-weekly-link_31830#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 19:00:58 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31830

Check out what our Women's Running bloggers have been up to on their own blogs!

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dorothy at denver

This week on womensrunning.com, our bloggers have preached patience, realistic thinking, and the importance of cross-training. But what have they been up to on their own blogs? Take a click over to some of the stories they have posted this week.

Dorothy spent last weekend at the Denver Rock ‘N’ Roll Marathon and Half Marathon. At the expo, she spent her time at the Mazda booth, greeting runners and listening to their stories. Find out more about her time at the race expo at Mile Posts.

Janae recently had a great race at the St. George Marathon. On her blog, Hungry Runner Girl, she talks how keeping herself properly fueled allowed her to finish strong. Also- a very cool trick about putting candy in an ice dispenser.

Danielle shared a bit about her Prarie Fire Marathon race experience on WR- her first marathon after her back surgery. But it is definitely worth it to go to T-Rex Runner to read her entire race recap. This girl is strong!

Courtney has a message for runners taking on their first 26.2: don’t make the same mistakes she did! On Eat Pray Run DC, she outlines three mistakes first time marathoners make and how to avoid them.

Michele is running not one, not two, but THREE marathons back to back. Her travels will take her from New York to Maryland to Hawaii. Read about her plans for each race at NYC Running Mama.

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Breast Cancer Awareness Month: A Team of Doctors http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/health-wellness/breast-cancer-awareness-month-team-doctors_31826 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/health-wellness/breast-cancer-awareness-month-team-doctors_31826#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:00:47 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31826

Medical Oncologist Keely Hack

Medical Oncologist Keely Hack shares how she guides patients through their breast cancer fight.

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Medical Oncologist Keely Hack

Hack_Keely_BP_MUG_RGB

Medical Oncologist Keely Hack

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and since one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, it is important to be not only proactive but informed about the disease. We support looking out for your “girls!” This month, we are taking a look at different aspects of breast cancer—from screening and diagnosis to prevention and treatment, from fundraising and research to healthy nutrition  and supporting people you know battling the disease.

Being diagnosed with any kind of cancer is scary and the start of a life-changing journey. As a medical oncologist for Edith Sanford Breast Cancer Foundation (ESBCF), Keely Hack helps guide her patients from that initial stage through treatment and survivorship. There are many doctors a woman will encounter once being diagnosed with breast cancer. Keely explains that medical oncologists are “the physician that serves as the ‘go to’ for the patient—from the time we initially meet with them to several years after their diagnosis, whether they are cancer-free or if they have a reoccurrence. We tend to maintain a relationship for many years in the future.”

When a woman is initially diagnosed with breast cancer, she and her medical oncologist will discuss what type of cancer the woman has been diagnosed with, how far it has spread and what kind of treatment plan will work best for her. Keely meets once a week with all of the doctors who play a part in a patient’s treatment, including a surgeon, radiologist and geneticist, and they discuss those who have been recently diagnosed. Keely states, “We look at their age, risk factors, family history and overall health to decide which route they should take.”

Once a woman has gone through treatment, ESBCF has a special survivorship program. “Once a patient finishes treatment and enters survivorship, Edith has a program where the patients get a summary of all of their treatment that they have had up to that point,” she says. “They receive an outline of follow-up visits with a timeline and options of different continuing therapies as well as reviewing lifestyle changes, such as exercise.”

Keely adds, “Exercise plays a huge role for many different reasons.” She jokes that during treatment she advises patients not to ‘start training for a marathon’ but does recommend low-impact exercise during that time. After treatment is finished, introducing exercise is a key component to survivorship. Keely states, “Studies have shown that if women are positive for estrogen receptors and progesterone receptors, if they do incorporate regular physical exercise into their life, it does reduce the chance of having the breast cancer come back in the future.”

While Keely recommends 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity exercise, and says, especially for breast cancer survivors, exercise should be a priority. “We know exercise is a really effective coping mechanism for dealing with all of the long-term social issues that goes along with breast cancer—the anxiety and worry. Is this cancer going to come back?” Keely refers patients to ESBCF’s Launch program, where patients meet with an exercise specialist to determine what pace is safe to get back into exercising.

During survivorship, Keely sees her patients a little less: every three or six months. As someone who sees a patient through the entire treatment process, she says her favorite part of her job is “how much I get to share with people in the joys that come out of breast cancer. My best days are when someone comes in and finds out their tumor is completely gone and we get to share in that and celebrate. It is awesome to share in people’s victories.”

Learn more about Edith Sanford Breast Cancer Foundation at edithsanford.org.

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Friday Photo Inspiration: Chasing Happiness http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/inspiration/friday-photo-inspiration-chasing-happiness_31821 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/inspiration/friday-photo-inspiration-chasing-happiness_31821#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 13:02:15 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31821

Remember to run towards happiness as you log miles this weekend.

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success is not the key

 

Sometimes running isn’t just about pace, miles, and personal bests. Sure, striving to go faster will always be a motivation to keep moving. But the main reason to run is out of love. Love for yourself, love for how it makes you feel, love for to run. Let go of the stress that surrounds the goals you have set for yourself this weekend. When you head out for your long run or line up at the start of a race, remember you are running because it makes you happy. And that is the quickest way towards success. 

Related Articles:
Women Who Move: Christine O’Hagan
Esther Erb, 2014 US Marathon Champion

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Your Running Shoe Cheat Sheet http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/shoes-gear/running-shoe-cheat-sheet_31818 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/shoes-gear/running-shoe-cheat-sheet_31818#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 19:47:56 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31818

Make the shoe buying process easier by knowing the lingo.

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6.-Gazelle-Sports

Walking into a running shoe store can be daunting, but knowing the common terminology and the concepts behind them is the first step to feeling empowered.  These commonly discussed running shoe terms will get you off on the right foot and will be a good starting point for you to begin more in-depth research on finding the perfect running shoe for you.

Know Your Lingo

“Drop”
This term refers to the difference in millimeters between the heel and the forefoot. The industry standard is 12 millimeters. However, with the “minimal” and “barefoot” trend pervading the industry, many shoe companies have included lower heel-to-toe-ratio models in their lines.

“Ride”
The ride refers to what it feels like to run in a shoe. A “plush ride” means the shoe is designed to feel super soft while running. A responsive ride means the shoe is designed to feel like it responds to the ground, giving energy back, instead of feeling dead under your foot.

“Minimal”
Minimal is a trend that simply refers to less. Some companies address this by providing a more traditional amount of foam under your foot, with a low heel to toe (like the Saucony Cortana). Other companies go with less foam and low drop (such as many Altra models or the Brooks Pure Project). Regardless of approach, the minimal trend means different companies are approaching the “more with less” from different angles.

“Medial” vs. “Lateral”
These two terms are taken from the world of anatomy and refer to what side of the body something is on. The Medial side is the inside of the body, and the Lateral side is the outside of the body. These terms are applied to running shoes to provide reference where technology is inserted or how the shoe is constructed.

“Stability” vs. “Neutral”
Stability models are designed to help prevent over-pronation, which occurs when the foot rolls inward during the transition from heel to toe. Pronation itself is a normal occurrence, but over-pronation happens when the foot pronates too much and too quickly, placing extra stress on the lower leg and foot muscles. Most shoe companies have at least one model that addresses this by placing denser (think less soft) foam along the medial side of the shoe, called a post. The more stable the shoe is designed to be, the longer the post. The idea is that the harder surface of the denser foam will slow the acceleration of the inward rolling. Typically, the higher the price point the more stability is involved. But that doesn’t mean the highest priced shoe is the best shoe. Each runner has different needs. One runner might only need a light stability shoe with only a little post, while another may need a large post.

Neutral shoes, on the other hand, will not have this dense foam on the medial side. Their focus will instead be on providing cushioning and comfort. Generally, the higher the price point means more cushioning and a more “plush” feel. Sometimes, companies will incorporate two different types of foam in an effort to provide a softer landing, or create a softer ride. The term “neutral” refers to the lack of a post or stability feature.

“Performance” and “Lightweight”
Many companies are offering models described as “lightweight performance” or “lightweight trainers”. These shoes are designed to give runners another option for training. Performance oriented runners will be doing at least one (if not more) hard workouts per week, including tempo runs, hill repeats, fartleks, or progression runs (just to name a few). Lightweight trainers are meant to be an option for these faster runs. They are usually lighter and sleeker than their “daily trainer” counterparts, and typically have a lower drop. This makes it easier for runners to get up on their toes to go faster, and prevents the heavy or “klutzy” feeling that can sometimes accompany trying to run faster in a more robust training shoe. These shoes also work well as racing shoes for longer distances like the half marathon and marathon.

Know Your Limits

Running shoe foam doesn’t keep its elasticity forever. After a while it gets compressed, and those places where your foot might hit the outer edge a little hard, or toe off a little on the inside, will only continue to be more ingrained in the foam the more miles it goes through. It’s best to switch out your shoes after 300 miles or so.

High mileage runners may want to consider having multiple pairs of shoes that they rotate through. And many runners like mixing up weight and drops, using a more traditional neutral or stability model for slower, recovery days when the body is tired, and a lower drop, lightweight model on their hard days when they’re ready to run fast.

Know Yourself

There are a lot of different opinions when it comes to running shoes, but nothing beats your own experience. Just because the minimal trend is alive and well doesn’t mean it’s the best option for your situation. Like all things, each individual will react and respond to stimulus differently. Your training regimen, mileage level, intensity level, along with your own anatomy, strength, and foot structure will all play a part in determining what shoe will work best for you. Go for quality and don’t pay attention to fads. Find a shoe that works for you and stick with it.

About CoachUp:
CoachUp is a service that connects athletes with private coaches. We believe that private coaching is the secret to reaching the next level in sports + life. Our mission is to help people change their lives through sports and fitness.

As the nation’s leading private coaching company, CoachUp has over 12,000 coaches across the country, in everything from basketball and soccer, to fitness and dance. CoachUp helps athletes find the perfect coach, and helps them get the most out of their ongoing training. We are a community inspired by passion, big dreams, hard work, and a love of coaching. www.coachup.com

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Editor’s Picks: Sun Protection Essentials http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/beauty/editors-picks-sun-protection-essentials_31809 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/beauty/editors-picks-sun-protection-essentials_31809#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 16:47:04 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31809

This month, we are totally into sun protection to keep our skin looking glorious!

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The summer may be long gone, but that doesn’t mean you should slack off on sun protection. You need to block UV rays all year round! This month, we are totally into sun protection to keep our skin looking glorious!

1. “My boyfriend and I both tried the Mission Enduracool Instant Cooling Cap ($25, missionathletecare.com)—and when the run was over, he said, ‘It’s actually cold!’ I loved the UPF protection it offers you.”
Caitlyn Pilkington, associate editor

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4 Healthy (Yes, Healthy!) Ice Cream Recipes http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/nutrition/recipes/4-healthy-yes-healthy-ice-cream-recipes_31800 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/nutrition/recipes/4-healthy-yes-healthy-ice-cream-recipes_31800#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 13:03:55 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31800

Photography by Olivia McCoy

Churn up homemade healthy ice cream worth screaming for.

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Photography by Olivia McCoy


Even with the temperatures dropping, sometimes you just crave ice cream—like every single day? But too many scoops from store-bought tubs, packed with sugar and fat, aren’t exactly part of a balanced diet.

If you want to satisfy your need for a bowlful of frozen goodness without waistline repercussions, you’re in luck. These guilt-free recipes let you luxuriate in ice cream pleasure from morning to night. Let the Ice Age begin!

Tool of the Trade
Want to make homemade ice cream in a flash? The Cuisinart ICE-21 Ice Cream & Sorbet Maker ($60, cuisinart.com) produces frosty treats in 20 minutes or less at a budget-friendly price.

Nutty Banana Ice Cream With Granola

Indulge O’Clock: BREAKFAST (yes!!!)

No ice cream maker? No problem. Whipping up frozen bananas into an ice cream consistency is a tasty way to keep your mornings cool. Simply freeze chunks of ripe banana on a baking sheet and store in an airtight container until ready to blend.
Serves 4

1 Tbsp. coconut oil
1 Tbsp. honey
3/4 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup unsalted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
4 medium-sized bananas, chopped and frozen
1/4 cup unsalted almond butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Heat coconut oil and honey in a skillet over medium heat until melted. Add rolled oats, pumpkin seeds, cranberries, cinnamon and a pinch of salt to skillet. Heat until grains are toasted, about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Spread mixture on a baking sheet or cutting board to cool.

Place frozen bananas in a food processor and blend until creamy. Don’t overprocess or you’ll melt the bananas into a soupy consistency. Blend in almond butter and vanilla. If not serving immediately, place banana cream in freezer in airtight container. When ready to serve, leave mixture to sit at room temperature for several minutes to soften. Serve banana ice cream topped with granola.

Nutritional info per serving: 419 calories,  12G protein, 18G fat, 54G cabs, 2MG sodium

Related Article: The Athlete’s Cleanse

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/nutrition/recipes/4-healthy-yes-healthy-ice-cream-recipes_31800/feed 0 Rave Races: Obstacles, Zombies, Hunts, and More! http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/races/rave-races-obstacles-zombies-hunts_31796 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/races/rave-races-obstacles-zombies-hunts_31796#comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 00:00:00 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31796

Mix up your racing season with super-fun races that buck tradition with spunky twists.

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roc run

Mix up your racing season with super-fun races that buck tradition with spunky twists.

RADIANT RUN
You’ve painted your nails, maybe you’ve painted your house, but when was the last time you painted yourself? Runners start The Color Run wearing white but, with four color-explosion stations on each course, they cross the fi nish line resembling a tie-dyed kaleidoscope. Once you’ve got your human canvas on, jam over to the post-race party to experience a sea of rainbow runners getting down.
WHEN: Multiple dates throughout 2014 and 2015
WHERE: Locations worldwide
thecolorrun.com

DIRTY WORK
Ready to step up your run? Flip into beast mode and take the Spartan Race challenge. Not for the faint of heart, this obstacle mud run tests your mental grit with boot camp–style challenges. Whether you choose the Sprint (3+ miles), Super (8+) or Beast (12+) distance event, getting to the fi nish will be a dirty effort. You’re likely to crawl under barbed wire, over eight-foot walls and through fi re pits before running through the fi nish with a big, muddy grin.
WHEN: Multiple dates throughout 2014 and 2015
WHERE: Locations worldwide
spartan.com

RUNNING DEAD
If running alone doesn’t jump-start your heart, being chased by a pack of wild zombies might to do the trick! Straight out of a scene from “The Walking Dead,” grave dwellers go on the hunt for fresh-faced runners at the 5K Zombie Run. Strap on three fl ags and protect your “life” as zombies try to steal your streamers. Score extra lives at hidden safe zones, where you can recharge to survive the apocalypse.
WHEN & WHERE: 11/08- Tampa, FL; Early 2015- St. Pete, FL
the5kzombierun.com

GAME SHOW BUFFS
Channel your inner Ninja Warrior at the Ridiculous Obstacle Challenge (R.O.C), the only game show–inspired race around. With 12 enormously fun obstacles to conquer (wrecking balls, infl atable water slides and foam pits), participants make their Nickelodeon dreams a reality—just replace the green slime topping with a totally rad fi nisher’s medal when you’re done.
WHEN: November 15 & 16
WHERE: Phoenix, AZ
More Dates and locations to be announced for 2015
rocrace.com

CITY SLEUTHS
Forget Carmen San Diego—where in the world are you? Scavenger hunt–loving runners will fi nd out as they zip through a CitySolve Urban Race. This race challenges teams of runners (often in fun costumes of course) to get to the fi nish line fi rst by way of Amazing Race–style clues. Armed with the technology of your choice and a local map, teams must take a picture of each discovered location to prove their skills and nab the win.
WHEN: October 25
WHERE: San Antonio, TX
More Dates and locations to be announced for 2015
citysolveurbanrace.com

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Time-Saving Tips For a Lunchtime Workout http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/training-tips/time-saving-tips-lunchtime-workout_31792 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/training-tips/time-saving-tips-lunchtime-workout_31792#comments Wed, 22 Oct 2014 22:30:29 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31792

With a bit of planning, you can leave your desk for a mid-day workout!

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*Content courtesy of POPSUGAR Fitness

The best way to combat work-related weight gain — not to mention on-the-job stress — is to work out in the middle of your workday. We know cramming a sweat session into your lunch hour often involves some serious logistics, but with a little planning, leaving your desk at noon won’t create stresses of its own. Here are tried-and-true tips to help maximize your workout.

Before Heading to the Gym

Time your meals and snacks so your stomach is not growling or stuffed when you hit the gym. Between one to two hours before working out, have a carb-packed snack. Think of it like a mini second breakfast: a little granola with skim milk or some trail mix.

Save time by wearing workout wear that easily doubles as everyday clothing to skim minutes off your pre-workout locker-room time. Just be sure to pack fresh clothes for heading back to the office.

Power walk to the gym to jump-start your warmup and get the thought of working out in your mind. I use this time to take off my jewelry and put on my heart-rate-monitor watch.

Locker-Room Prep

Having a well-organized gym bag — we like ‘em with lots of pockets — can seriously cut down on the frantic nature of a quick change. I also know exactly where to reach to find my Word Lock, which I consider a time-saver too. The one-word combination is much easier to remember than three pairs of numbers.

If you have long hair, opt for a cute braided up-do that works for both the office and the gym. A well-placed braid will save time before your workout — no fussing required to put your hair up. After your workout, you can skip the long washing and drying routine that keeps you stuck in the locker room. Here are some of our favorite braided ‘dos for different types of sweat sessions and also tips for doing makeup quickly at the gym.

The Workout

Most gyms offer quick and dirty 30- to 45-minute fitness classes between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Since the CDC recommends 30 minutes of exercise five days a week, these shorter classes help fulfill this requirement and get you back to your desk quickly.

Multitask! Find a circuit class that will keep your heart rate elevated to burn calories while you strength train to build muscle.

Go intense! Head to an abbreviated spin class. Indoor-cycling teachers can pack a calorie-burning workout into three-quarters of an hour.

If you’re in a cardio mood, maximize your treadmill time with interval workouts. Playing with the speed burns more calories than working at a steady pace. Need some guidance? Here are some interval workouts.

Getting Back to Work

Let’s face it, getting in line for a shower during the lunchtime rush is almost as competitive as finding a spin bike. Once in the locker room, don’t waste time changing out of your clothes. Grab a towel and head directly into the shower line before it grows too long. Just strip down right before it’s your turn to clean up. I also like to use my time waiting in line to stretch, which is much easier in workout wear than a towel.

It also pays to pack a nutritious post-workout lunch the night before. This not only saves time (and money), but also ensures that even though you may be rushed, you’re eating the proper amounts of carbs and protein to recover from your quick sweat session.

Related Articles:
6 Easy Ways To Detox Everyday
3 Daily Habits For A Cold Free Winter
Take a Break and Burn 50 Calories With These Quick Workout Ideas
A Quickie 4-Minute Yoga Ab Workout
You’re Running Hills All Wrong: Here’s What To Do Instead

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Running Gear That Supports Breast Cancer Research http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/shoes-gear/running-gear-supports-breast-cancer-research_31787 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/shoes-gear/running-gear-supports-breast-cancer-research_31787#comments Wed, 22 Oct 2014 19:15:36 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31787

Gear that supports breast cancer research is in style well beyond October!

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We may be in the last few days of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but that doesn’t mean you have to put away your pink gear. Proceeds from these products support various charities that promote breast cancer research. Showing your support is fashionable all year! Take a look through the photo gallery at gear that does good.

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/shoes-gear/running-gear-supports-breast-cancer-research_31787/feed 0 T-Rex Runner: The Power of Realistic Thinking http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/t-rex-runner/t-rex-runner-power-realistic-thinking_31765 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/t-rex-runner/t-rex-runner-power-realistic-thinking_31765#comments Wed, 22 Oct 2014 16:10:02 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31765

Sometimes being realistic about how you feel while racing is the most positive approach.

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On October 12, I ran my first marathon since having back surgery in April. To say that I was undertrained and nervous would be the understatement of the year. I vowed on my blog to only think positive thoughts about myself in the week before the race. I wanted to celebrate my accomplishments (the fact that I was running a marathon at all), not worry about my finishing time (because who really cares besides me?) and to focus on the fun I would have with my friends. Even though negative thoughts did try and creep in during that week before the race, I stomped them all out and only thought happy, self-affirming things.

Fast-forward to race day. I cross the starting line feeling positive. Mile 3 comes, and I’m positive. Mile 8, positive. Mile 16, positive. As the miles ticked by, though, I felt that I could not keep up the positive thoughts. I could not tell myself things like “This doesn’t hurt! I feel awesome!” because I did hurt and I did not feel awesome. While my running buddy did a great job of staying upbeat  (she is one of the most upbeat people ever anyway), I did not. What I realized, though, is that while positive thinking is great, it isn’t entirely necessary. I found that being realistic and honest with myself in those later miles was equally important. For example, when I tried to think “My legs don’t hurt at all!” I would just get annoyed with myself. It clearly wasn’t true. What I said to myself instead was “Ok, my legs are getting a little tired. Of course they are getting tired – I’ve run 20 miles! Are they more tired than they should be? No. Am I in pain, like an injury? No. Ok, keep running!”

This continued over the last 10 miles of the race pretty regularly. For someone reason, acknowledging the fact that I was in pain, a little grumpy, and ready to be done made me feel better. I wasn’t lying to myself about how I felt, but I also wasn’t being pessimistic. I never let myself get down about my running speed, even when it slowed to what might generously be called a shuffle late in the race. Instead, I cheered myself for continuing to move forward and told myself that any forward movement was progress. I let myself cringe every time one of the hundreds of spectators said “You’re almost there!” because I was truly, really not almost there. Note: please tell your family and friends to stop saying this to runners. It is horrible, even if well intentioned. I digress. The point is I think it’s ok to acknowledge that not everything is perfect during a race. That doesn’t mean it’s ok to get down on yourself or be negative. But it’s possible to acknowledge reality, keep going, and finish strong.

Maybe that’s just my inner pessimist being optimistic for a change.

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Women Who Move: Christine O’Hagan http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/inspiration/women-move-christine-ohagan_31759 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/inspiration/women-move-christine-ohagan_31759#comments Wed, 22 Oct 2014 12:58:57 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31759

Running pulled Christine back from the brink of depression.

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CHRISTINE O’HAGAN
Age: 38
Montgomery, TX

Running saved my life. And I don’t mean that in a cliché way. I mean it in the purest interpretation of the words.

Almost two years ago, I woke up with the crippling pain of depression coursing through my body. I believed I was unable to live another day. After seeing my two daughters, then 9 and 16 years old, off on their respective school buses, a plan unraveled in my head to end my life. Though I hadn’t previously outlined the methods by which I would attempt to complete my suicide, I moved through the motions methodically as if following a map my brain always knew. I proceeded with the plan, losing consciousness before being discovered and ultimately rescued.

I was resuscitated—but in order to go on, my life had to change. After spending time in intense therapy, I integrated running into my treatment program
(along with prescription medication) to manage my severe depression, anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Running helped me remember how to enjoy life in the most simplistic way. Plus, it gave me a natural source of serotonin (the “runner’s high” feel-good chemical people with depression often lack). I learned to enjoy working toward a goal, so I started registering for races.

My favorite race is now the marathon—I’ve run eight of them! For me, it’s the perfect symbol for life. There are times during the marathon when you feel amazing and others when you’re not sure you can take one more step and you have to force yourself to keep going. I’ve found that running, like life, is always worth it.

I learned to run toward life, not away from it. Running is a healthy tool to battle depression. Even when I don’t feel like lacing up my shoes, I make a deal with myself to get out for 5 minutes. Even this little amount of time always makes me feel better.

If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts, get help immediately. Call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline (1-800-273-TALK) to speak with a trained counselor 24 hours a day.

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/inspiration/women-move-christine-ohagan_31759/feed 0 Behind the Shoot: Mýa http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/inspiration/behind-shoot-mya_31751 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/inspiration/behind-shoot-mya_31751#comments Tue, 21 Oct 2014 22:08:42 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31751

Go behind the scenes of our August cover shoot with Mýa.

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R&B artist Mýa has an impressive musical résumé—including a Grammy!—but in real life, the 34-year-old performer from D.C. is anything but a diva. After a mini fender bender on the way to our Los Angeles studio, she showed up solo and chill about the vehicle situation. The New York City Marathon finisher’s glowing smile and warm demeanor totally lit up the set.

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/inspiration/behind-shoot-mya_31751/feed 0 Eat Pray Run DC: Why You Should Be Cross-Training http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/photos/eat-pray-run-dc-cross-training_31745 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/photos/eat-pray-run-dc-cross-training_31745#comments Tue, 21 Oct 2014 19:05:16 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31745

Cross-train to be a better runner. It really works!

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Cross training is something that many runners don’t make time for. When I was training for my first marathon, I found all the running to be so exhausting that I barely had the energy for physical activity that wasn’t running. This turned out to be a mistake. I ended up in physical therapy 2 months before my first marathon because I had injured myself. My story is all too common: A runner tackles a new distance, is overwhelmed by that distance, stops cross training and ends up injured. I was lucky that I was able to heal and still run my race, but that is not always the case. Here are three reasons why you need to keep up your cross training, no matter how many miles you are running each week:

  1. Cross training really DOES help prevent injury in runners. Now, just for the record – I’m not a doctor, a trainer, or certified expert. But I’ve read the science and worked with my PT enough to understand the basics behind this statement. Many overuse injuries are caused by weak stability muscles. Running doesn’t help to develop these smaller muscles. But cross training and strength training does. For example, I had extremely weak stabilizing muscles when I began training for my first marathon which led to ankle pain. Once I began doing things OTHER than running, those muscles strengthened which helped me to run pain free.
  2. Other activities help to alleviate boredom. Real talk- sometimes you can get tired of running the same routes, day in and day out. By switching up your routine and mixing in some different fitness activities, you can keep yourself excited about running.
  3. It can make you a better runner. Cross training can help increase your aerobic threshold, without the risk of injury from pounding the pavement. Additionally, exercises that focus on your core can really help you improve your form during runs.

So what cross training works for me? I really love barre classes. I’ve found that the full body workout, with the emphasis on the core, has helped me immensely. I also enjoy spinning for the cardio benefits. Another very popular method of cross training is swimming because it is so easy on the joints. My advice is to find something other than running that you like, and try to work it into your schedule a couple times a week.

Do you cross train? Tweet @eatprayrundc and @womensrunning to share your favorite cross training exercise!

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/photos/eat-pray-run-dc-cross-training_31745/feed 0 Ask A Coach: Your Questions on Long Run Recovery and More http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/training-tips/ask-coach-questions-long-run-recovery_31739 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/training-tips/ask-coach-questions-long-run-recovery_31739#comments Tue, 21 Oct 2014 16:02:32 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31739

Swimming is a great form of cross-training and a way to help muscles recover after long runs.

NCAA runner turned high school coach Hillary Kigar has an answer for all things training

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Swimming is a great form of cross-training and a way to help muscles recover after long runs.

 

Swimming is a great form of cross-training and a way to help muscles recover after long runs.

Swimming is a great form of cross-training and a way to help muscles recover after long runs.

NCAA runner turned high school coach Hillary Kigar has an answer for all things training!

Q: “I’ve been running for two years and have started to notice broken capillaries on my legs. Is this caused by running?”
Broken capillaries are typically related to challenges with blood flow, due to aging. On the contrary, running helps prevent broken capillaries from forming, by increasing your activity and blood flow. But of course, it is always a good idea to consult your doctor if they become a concern. While not particularly glamorous, most likely your legs are just showing a little age. And two years of running (and healthy living) is awesome—keep up the good work!

Q: “I’m training for a marathon. The day after my long runs, is it best to do a short run or rest?”
Neither! Just kidding—kind of. Because variety in training is key, the day after a long run, I recommend cross-training. This is the perfect time to include non-running activities like yoga, Pilates, spin class, kickboxing, swimming or whatever strikes your fancy—like that salsa class you’ve been eyeing!

Maybe you will hear a great new Latin song in class that would be the perfect addition to your running playlist. Keep in mind—if you need a day of total rest, take it to allow your body to recover.

Q: “Is it safe to run two half marathons 14 days apart?”
Sounds like you have been bit by the running bug! Whether or not your plan is wise really depends on your training. If you have had several months of good training and have been going on quite a few long runs (10+ miles), then it wouldn’t necessarily be a bad idea. However, if this hasn’t been the case (or if you want to race your very best in both events), I would still wait a minimum of one month in between.

If you do go forward with the two-week plan, be sure that you take several easy days between races so you can recover and not have any lingering aches and pains. And don’t get discouraged if that second race isn’t quite as fast as the first—it’s possible your body will still be tired from the initial hard effort. Good luck!

Coach’s Tip: Coffee Run
Do you ever get tired of running that same 3-mile loop? Mix it up by going on a destination run. Look at Google Maps for a cafe 3 miles away. Ask a friend to meet you there and buy her a coffee in exchange for a ride home. You will be surprised how refreshed you feel from just a little tweak to your routine!

Have a question for Coach Kigar? Email editorial@womensrunnning.com or tweet @womensrunning with the hashtag #AsktheCoach.

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Photo Gallery: 2014 Nike Women’s Half Marathon San Francisco http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/races/photo-gallery-2014-nike-womens-half-marathon-san-francisco_31729 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/races/photo-gallery-2014-nike-womens-half-marathon-san-francisco_31729#comments Tue, 21 Oct 2014 12:00:37 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31729

Check out photo's from the largest women's only race.

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On Sunday 25,000 women, as well as a few good men, ran in the 11th annual Nike Women’s Half Marathon in San Francisco to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The mission of LLS is to find cures for blood cancers and ensure access to treatment. Since its inception in 2004, the Nike Women’s Half Marathon Series has helped raise more than $152 million for LLS. It’s also considered the largest women’s race in the world, with a total of 245,000 female race participants representing 54 countries and all 50 U.S. states in the ten years it has been held.

Extra hype surrounded the race this year due to the brand new course. Runners began at the heart of the city in Union Square, making their way through the hilly terrain of Golden Gate Park, and coasting downhill through the Presidio, where they hit the last mile and a half on a fast straight away along the Marina. Check out these photos from race day to experience the women inspiring event. #WeRunSF

Photos courtesy of Nike.

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/races/photo-gallery-2014-nike-womens-half-marathon-san-francisco_31729/feed 0 NYC Running Mama: Patience http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/nyc-running-mama/nyc-running-mama-patience_31724 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/nyc-running-mama/nyc-running-mama-patience_31724#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 22:00:27 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31724

Being patient with your training can pay off in the long run.

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When it comes to running, there are certainly many things that can help you improve – dedication, natural talent, a solid training plan. But I’d argue that the most important quality to possess is patience. It’s not always easy to maintain it, especially after a bad run or race or when your goal seems so far off. However having patience will pay off in the long run (no pun intended!). Here’s how:

  • Patience to see the big picture. It’s hard to see that picture during a 20 mile run at 6am in the cold in January when your goal race isn’t until April or later.
  • Patience to improve and see results. This is one that I struggle with. I want to see results yesterday. But it doesn’t always work that way. Improvement can take time – months, years even. Don’t let impatience deter you from moving steadily towards your goal.
  • Patience to build mileage. We may want to #runallthemiles but our bodies may not be up to the task yet. If you are looking to increase your daily/weekly/monthly mileage, do so gradually. Increase by a reasonable amount (~10%) for a few weeks and then let your body adapt to that mileage before adding more.
  • Patience in a race. This is another aspect of running that I struggle with frequently. At the beginning of a race your well-rested legs, pre-race jitters, and the excitement of the crowd cause you to go out too fast.  There is no such thing as building a time cushion for the end of the race. If you go out too fast, you will pay for it later in the race.
  • Patience when you have an injury. There is always the temptation is to immediately start running the moment your body shows signs of recovery or improvement. Take an extra few days or week or two and ensure you are 100% before returning to running.
  • Patience after an injury. Be wary about the inclination to jump back into the routine you were in before your injury- running the same mileage and the same pace. It will take some time to build back up to where you are.

Do you struggle with patience with running? Tweet @nycrunningmama and @womensrunning to share you story!

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Breast Cancer Awareness Month: How To Approach A Breast Exam http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/health-wellness/breast-cancer-awareness-month-approach-breast-exam_31718 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/health-wellness/breast-cancer-awareness-month-approach-breast-exam_31718#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 18:53:32 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31718

If you're over 40, it's time to make friends with this 3D-imaging machine. See, it's not so scary!

Changing the way you approach breast exams could save your running life.

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If you're over 40, it's time to make friends with this 3D-imaging machine. See, it's not so scary!

If you're over 40, it's time to make friends with this 3D-imaging machine. See, it's not so scary!

If you’re over 40, it’s time to make friends with this 3D-imaging machine. See, it’s not so scary!

Changing the way you approach breast exams could save your running life. 

Step #1 Consider your genes.
Thomas Cink, a doctor at Edith Sanford Breast Bancer Foundation, says it’s important to take note “if you have a lot of cancer in your family.” For women with two first-degree relatives who have been diagnosed with cancer, he recommends seeing a geneticist who will conduct a full interview and discern if it’s appropriate to perform genetic testing. For women with a first-degree relative diagnosed with breast cancer before the age of 45, Cink advises to begin mammograms at an age five to seven years younger than the relative’s detection.

Step #2 Then start with yourself.
Cink says, “The first thing for women to do is good self-exams.” He recommends performing these monthly, starting in your 20s, to get a sense of how your tissue feels so you will be able to detect any future changes. Massage the breast and armpit area both while standing up and lying down, looking for any abnormalities.

Step #3 Get professional help.
Clinical exams are performed by a gynecologist or physician. Cink says that women should start receiving annual clinicals in their mid-30s. Your medical professional will look for lumps as well as changes in the nipple.

Step #4 Up your mammo-game.
At 40, every woman should begin receiving yearly mammograms. Cink says, “This is where we find cancers that are very curable and treatable.” When scheduling an exam, he recommends looking for clinics accredited by the American College of Radiology and the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers.

If possible, find a clinic that performs 3D (instead of 2D) imaging. A recent study found that 3D imaging detected 41 percent more cancers—while producing 15 to 20 percent fewer false-positive tests.

Always Remember

1. Know you’re not immune. One in eight women, regardless of family history, will develop breast cancer in her life. “We see up to 40,000 women every year, and we find the majority of cancers in people who don’t have any other risk factors,” Dr. Cink says.

2. The process can be comfy. Exams of any sort can seem icky on the surface, but if you find a good doctor, the experience should be comfortable. Cink explains, “People who are dedicated to breast cancer deliver the highest quality of care.”

3. Make mammograms a priority. The worst thing you can do for your breast health is skip a screening. “It’s easy in a busy world to forget, but that’s when cancer can develop,” says Cink.

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Photo Gallery: Reader Run Brag 10/20/14 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/just-for-fun/photo-gallery-reader-run-brag-102014_31520 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/just-for-fun/photo-gallery-reader-run-brag-102014_31520#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 16:24:03 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31520

Our readers never stop! Take a look at who crossed the finish line this weekend.

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We love to celebrate the accomplishments of our Women’s Running readers. Take a look at the latest gallery of #runbrag photos from our favorite run girls – YOU!

Want to be featured in a future Women’s Running Reader Run Brag gallery? Email your weekend race photos to runbrag@womensrunning.com for a chance to be included, or tweet us @WomensRunning using  #runbrag.

*You must own all rights to submitted photos. 

CHECK OUT ALL OF OUR READER RUN BRAG GALLERIES HERE!

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/just-for-fun/photo-gallery-reader-run-brag-102014_31520/feed 0 Training Plans: Run Your Fastest Mile Ever http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/training-tips/training-plans-run-fastest-mile-ever_31511 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/10/training-tips/training-plans-run-fastest-mile-ever_31511#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 13:26:32 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=31511

Start a new challenge by trying to break your own personal 1-mile record.

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What’s your mile time?

Runners are always looking for new challenges. Some people get bored of 5Ks and start doing obstacle races. Others graduate from improving their half-marathon time to tackling the full 26.2-miler. Here’s a new challenge to consider: See how fast you can run a mile!

There’s something magical about the mile. It is the fundamental unit of long distance in the English measurement system. In the 1950s, the pursuit of the first sub-4 minute mile for men, and sub-5 minute mile for women, captivated the world. Now it’s your turn to pursue your own fastest time. Plus, regardless if you’re a newbie or advanced runner, this is a distance you can master!

Training for the Mile

You might assume that training for the mile is all about speed. It’s true that speed work is important in mile training. But as the legendary running coach Arthur Lydiard pointed out in a famous 1962 article for Sports Illustrated, titled “Marathons for Milers,” there are plenty of people who can run at a world-class mile pace for 400 meters. It’s the ability to sustain that speed that separates the elite milers from the rest. So optimal mile training puts as much emphasis on stamina as speed.

These three plans do just that. Each is eight weeks long and contains a recovery week halfway through the plan. At the end of the recovery week, you will run a 1-mile time trial as practice for your real
1-mile race four weeks later.

Related: Diane Leather, First Sub-5 Minute Miler

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