Women's Running http://womensrunning.competitor.com Women's Running Magazine Fri, 19 Dec 2014 17:35:38 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0.1 5 Runtastic Things Our Staff Loved This Week http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/photos/5-runtastic-things-staff-loved-week-3_33946 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/photos/5-runtastic-things-staff-loved-week-3_33946#comments Fri, 19 Dec 2014 13:02:17 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33946

Check out the 5 things our staff was obsessed with this week.

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Check out our staff’s picks for this week’s installment of runtastic weekly obsessions! Still looking for that last gift for your run bud? Our Holiday Gift Guide is now online and full of awesome ideas, including some budget-friendly choices for stocking stuffers!

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/photos/5-runtastic-things-staff-loved-week-3_33946/feed 0 Why I Run: Country Singer Jana Kramer http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/inspiration/run-country-singer-jana-kramer_33994 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/inspiration/run-country-singer-jana-kramer_33994#comments Thu, 18 Dec 2014 23:00:47 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33994

Actress-turned-singer Jana Kramer says trail time is a mental game.

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janna kramer

Two years ago, Jana Kramer pushed the redirect button on her career. The actress, best known for roles on “One Tree Hill” and the new “90210,” decided to leave the small screen for the music studio and make a country album.

Within a year, she’d scored Top New Female Artist at the Country Music Awards, and her debut single, “Why Ya Wanna,” climbed to No. 3 on Billboard’s “Best of 2012: Country Songs” chart.

Luckily, Kramer says she has a simple sanity-saving tool that keeps her steady during crazy times.

“Running is my therapy,” says Kramer, 30, who lives in Nashville, Tenn. “It’s the time when I let the thoughts come in and then release them.”

Kramer first started running as a kid growing up in Michigan—her dad ran track when he was young, and she followed in his footsteps, competing as a high school student.

But it wasn’t until she moved to Los Angeles that the sport took on a deeper meaning. As a 19-year-old living in a big city solo, she found solace during 6-mile daily runs through Runyon Canyon near the Hollywood sign.

In 2011, she registered for the Country Music Half Marathon in Nashville. She says she didn’t get to train as much as she wanted, but toed the line on race day anyway, surprising herself with a 2:48 finish.

“I never thought I could do it, which is part of why I wanted to,” Kramer says. “I just relied on the energy of everyone around me and the music stations to keep going.”

In the days following the race, Kramer says she was sore—“I was in an Epsom-salt bath daily for two weeks”—but psyched. “We were all out there together trying to be healthy and trying to attain some sort of internal goal.”

The singer says she’d like to tackle another long-distance race in the future. “It helps me stop playing mind games and doubting myself,” Kramer says. “It’s about proving I can go farther than I thought I could. It’s a pretty good metaphor for anything in life.”

Motivation Station: Jana’s Top Tips

I have to prepare to eat well when I go on the road. If I don’t, I end up eating fried chicken every night. I make sure I have healthy snacks, like rice cakes with peanut butter and banana on top. I also bring some veggie burgers and a little grill where I can cook them.

I don’t get upset with myself if have something that isn’t great. I just make a point to pick something healthier the next day.

If I’m out on the trails, I like running with no music at all. If I’m on a treadmill and having a rough time, I listen to Eminem’s “Till I Collapse” over and over.

I have such a love-hate relationship with running. The first 15 minutes, I hate it. I have to tell myself, “You’re fine. You can do this.” After I get past that first 15 minutes, though, I feel like I can run forever.

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4 Simple Tricks To Becoming a Great Hill Runner http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/training-tips/4-simple-tricks-becoming-great-hill-runner_33996 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/training-tips/4-simple-tricks-becoming-great-hill-runner_33996#comments Thu, 18 Dec 2014 20:56:20 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33996

Think of these 4 tips every time you run a hill!

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hill runner

Use these tricks to summit with success

1. Think of hills as a vertical challenge rather than part of your normal run. They require a different strategy.

2. Forget pace. Always run hills by effort, not speed.

3. Your technique is as important as your strategy. When going up, shorten your stride, keep your torso tall, fix your gaze on the top of the hill, drive your elbows back and focus on pushing off from your toes. When running down, open your stride and let gravity pull you to the bottom.

4. If you live in a flat area, run on bridges, use a treadmill with a varied incline and look for trails (off-road options often include more rollers).

Related: Hilly 5K Training Plan

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Good-For-You Holiday Cookie Recipes http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nutrition/good-holiday-cookie-recipes_33987 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nutrition/good-holiday-cookie-recipes_33987#comments Thu, 18 Dec 2014 19:00:35 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33987

Chef and nutrition expert Christina Pirello is a regular contributor to Wellwellwell, where she shares her expertise on how readers

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Chef and nutrition expert Christina Pirello is a regular contributor to Wellwellwell, where she shares her expertise on how readers can look and feel their best with natural, organic foods.

It’s that time of year. The air is crisp and cold. We’ve packed away flip-flops and t-shirts for boots and sweaters. Lights are untangled and ready to adorn the tree, windows and doorways. The holiday season is here and with it, the joy of cookies!

A whiff of chocolate chip cookies can conjure a flood of nostalgic memories. The act of baking soothes the senses. Touch, hearing, sight and taste are stimulated as you knead dough, stir batter, measure ingredients and sample your work along the way.

Thick and chewy or thin and crispy—who can resist a delicious cookie? We think of cookies as sweet treats to enjoy at a party or a simple weeknight dinner. They are easy to make and small enough to enjoy a few without guilt.

However, cookies made from white flour and refined sugar—no matter how tasty—can make you feel lethargic instead of rosy-cheeked and celebratory. You’ll want to hibernate on the sofa—not party with your friends.

Breathe. I am not recommending you grimly endure the holiday season with no treats. Au contraire! Good quality sweets make us happy, help us manage stress and relax. They are comforting and nothing says ‘it’s the holidays’ quite like a platter of yummy (healthy) cookies. Try these recipes and you’ll soon have the scent of fresh-baked treats wafting through your kitchen.

THE ULTIMATE COOKIE DOUGH BASE

With few exceptions, I use a specific cookie dough base for all my cookie-baking. It results in perfect cookie texture and flavor and allows me to create endless variations.

8 tablespoons vegan butter substitute
½ cup brown rice syrup
¼ cup coconut sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Whip the base until creamy. Yields about 36 cookies.

You can keep this base in the fridge in a sealed container for 1-2 weeks. From this base, you can create chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal raisin cookies, chocolate cookies, peanut butter cookies, sugar cookies…the list goes on.

THE BEST CHOCOLATE CHUNK COOKIES

No kidding, the best—ever. Everyone who tastes these says they are the best.

1 recipe Ultimate Cookie Dough Base
1 ½-2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
Pinch ground cinnamon
Pinch sea salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ cup coarsely chopped pecans or walnuts
1 (3.5-ounce) bar vegan dark chocolate (70% or more), coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350°F and line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Using a hand mixer or a whisk, create Cookie Dough Base as per recipe. Mix in flour, cinnamon, salt and baking soda/powder to form a stiff cookie dough. Fold in nuts and chocolate until incorporated through the batter. Wet a teaspoon and your fingers, and spoon cookie dough onto the lined sheets, allowing room for the cookies to spread, (about a dozen cookies per standard sheet). Bake for 13-14 minutes. Remove from oven and allow cookies to stand for 2 minutes on the sheet tray. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Yield 36-38 cookies.

For more healthy holiday treats, click here.

This story is fueled by EVEN Hotels. Their commitment to enable wellness in travel is more than just staying at their hotels, where wellness is built in. It’s enabling wellness minded travelers to travel well wherever their journey takes them. Discover more at WellWellWell.com

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Hungry Runner Girl: 15 Ways to Get Out Of A Running Funk http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/hungry-runner-girl/hungry-runner-girl-15-ways-get-running-funk_33981 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/hungry-runner-girl/hungry-runner-girl-15-ways-get-running-funk_33981#comments Thu, 18 Dec 2014 17:13:34 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33981

Shake up your running and feel happier with these 15 tips.

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Feeling bored with your training lately? Want to freshen it up a little bit? Here are 15 things that you can do if you are looking to add some life your running!

1. Decide to train for a distance that you really enjoy. If you find the long run boring and dread it, then start signing up for shorter and faster distances. Just because the marathon distance is popular right now doesn’t mean that you have to do it too if you find running 15+ miles to be boring!

2. Join a running group. I used to be extremely nervous about running with other people. I was worried about slowing them down. Once I finally started to run with a group, I realized that running with people is my favorite way to run. Social time plus endorphins- it’s almost too good to be true! Look for a group of runners with goals similar to your race times.

3. Leave the GPS at home! I haven’t worn my garmin for about two months now and it has been so nice. I feel like after following a training plan for a while I get burned out. It has been so nice to just go out and run without any sort of expectations. It has been great to switch things up. I will go into my next training cycle ready to care about pace and distance again!

4. Try listening to some different genres of music. I started listening to movie soundtracks the other day while on the treadmill and it was a fun to switch it up from my normal Pitbull and Taylor Swift.

5. Listen to podcasts or books on tape. Nothing like logging in the miles while getting lost in the storyline of a good book.

6. Work on your form. I love dedicating certain runs or specific miles of a run to working on my cadence, posture or foot strike. It keeps me focusing on something new and working on improving my running efficiency!

7. Take a few days off! If you are starting to feel bored with your running, then take some time off! Sometimes we feel a little burned out and in need of a break if we aren’t enjoying our training. Running will always be there for you when you are ready to go back.

8. Switch up your surroundings. If you are normally on the treadmill, then go outside. If you are normally on the roads, then go on the trails. If you love catching up on your favorite television shows while running, then hit up a treadmill with a tv.

9. Grab your significant other and take them for a running date! A great way to liven up your running and your relationship:)

10. Take a new route! We are creatures of habit and it is easy to do the same loop or trail every single day. Go explore. Find a different way to get in your daily miles!

11. Get a running coach. They will most definitely help you to switch up your normal workouts and take your running to the next level.

12. Try out a different time of day to hit the roads. As much as I will always be a morning runner, it is fun and exciting to throw in a night run with a friend or a lunchtime run on my own every now and then.

13. Run for a cause. Sign up for a big race and start raising money for your favorite charity or foundation!

14. Have someone drop you off x amount of miles away from your house. I love point to point courses but usually only get a chance to do them in a race. My dad is the best. Sometimes he will drop me off up the canyon so that I can run home from there to add some variety to my training.

15. Focus on being mindful as you run. If you find yourself constantly counting down the time until you are finished or reaching the finish line, try reminding yourself of where you are in the moment. Focus on being extra aware of how your body feels, the smells, sounds, your breathing, your lungs, your arms pumping and everything going on around you. I enjoy running and life so much more when I am more mindful of where I am at now rather than constantly worrying about the future.

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#JourneyWithSteph: Skinny Shaming http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/stephanie-bruce/journeywithsteph-skinny-shaming_33975 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/stephanie-bruce/journeywithsteph-skinny-shaming_33975#comments Thu, 18 Dec 2014 14:00:00 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33975

Steph addresses some comments made toward her first blog post and encourages celebrating every body.

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Stephanie Bruce keeps it real with a close-up look at how different angles in photos, and in life, can change the way you perceive someone’s body and lifestyle.

Skinny shaming is the name, not cool is the game. A few weeks ago I was announced as one of Women’s Running newest bloggers. I was excited to partner with them and be able to share my journey as a professional runner, new mom, coach, and business owner. It was to be a “transparent” series where I share parts of my journey that some women are afraid to talk about. Open, honest and realistic. My first blog was released along with a picture of me in my Oiselle uniform. Hours later a few comments were left on a FB page that read as followed: “This picture is sick and you are destroying your body. She is not a role model for women and our young girls.” Ouch!

Social media is a tricky platform. In some ways it allows us to connect with strangers, share our stories, and stay abreast with the latest news. In other ways it’s a shield for us to hide behind and criticize strangers and tear people down without having to be present in human form. Imagine some of the things you may have posted yourself or read from others—would you have the courage to say that to a person’s face? My guess is not a chance. Well the comments I received did in fact hurt. We’re all human beings with feelings behind those computer screens. Looking at a picture and deciding to judge a person’s life based on that photo I feel is wrong. I believe we are all entitled to opinions, but being openly critical of someone without knowing them I feel is mean.

In an attempt to defend myself in a situation that doesn’t really deserve a defense, I will explain why I feel being a skinny athlete isn’t a bad thing and should not be criticized. How you look and how you live are two very different things. I run for a living, so that means training at a very high level. Being fit is what my job is all about. It is not about my skinny appearance—that is just a product of the environment in which I operate in. I don’t count my daily caloric intake but am very aware that it is massive compared to the sedentary person. If my intake didn’t match my energy output, I would be constantly losing weight and most likely not be getting my menstrual cycle. A few months ago I wrote a blog about weight and periods as a female athlete in our sport. I shared my personal story and received so much positive feedback. I had several people comment: “What a great role model, every high-school girl should read this.” That was and is my intention: to show young girls who run that it’s not about how fast you run, it’s about doing it while maintaining a healthy female system and positive body image for yourself. Yet on my Women’s Running blog I was the one shamed for being skinny and accused of not being a role model. My definition of healthiness as a runner is preserving your female health by getting a regular period, protecting your bones, and preventing future bone loss and joint deterioration. It’s hard to do as a woman, but it’s something I have strived for my entire career. I’ve gotten my period every month for the last five years with no hormonal help and recently given birth to a nine-pound baby.

We all come in different shapes and sizes. As women, I feel we should be lifting one another up and never tearing each other down. So as we push forward as a gender that’s now more than 55% of the running community, we owe it to ourselves to encourage and support one another. Skinny shaming doesn’t belong in our sport. Judging a person by a picture and using hurtful words towards them is the same as bullying. Realize that demanding images of more “real runner bodies” includes those women that are skinny. I’m a real runner whose body is trained to get every ounce of power, strength and speed in order to do my job and compete with the best in the world. Yeah, I’m skinny, but most importantly I’m healthy. I work hard to be, and I’m damn proud of it.

 

 

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Inspiration Awards: Renee Williams-Smith http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/inspiration/inspiration-awards-renee-williams-smith_33970 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/inspiration/inspiration-awards-renee-williams-smith_33970#comments Wed, 17 Dec 2014 20:22:10 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33970

After becoming the 1st girl to run XC at her high school, this barrier buster returned to coach.

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That’s interesting, thought Renee Williams-Smith, as she watched the infield at a Mira Costa High School track meet, 20 years after graduating herself. It looks like not much has changed. While she saw the boy runners receiving back slaps and trackside assistance, she noticed that the girls had to find the coach themselves to ask for direction in their upcoming event.

Having recently quit her consulting position to get away from a life of 80-hour workweeks, Williams-Smith decided to see if the team could use a hand. “Literally in three days, I started volunteering as the assistant cross-country coach, thinking I’d do that until I found another job,” she says. “But almost immediately I realized, this is what I should be doing.”

Perhaps the position fit so well because Williams-Smith had always been a groundbreaker in girl’s sports—even when she was only a girl herself. As a sophomore at Mira Costa, Williams-Smith became the first female to run on the school’s cross-country team. Even though she was not invited to the invitational meets on the weekends and had to sew her own uniform, the experience left a lasting positive impression. “I was a little insecure and self-conscious, but when I ran, I would feel the best about myself.”

In her new position, Williams-Smith wanted to give girls the same gift of confidence she’d received. After transitioning to head coach, she took a team with only 20-odd “runners” (most of whom only put their names down on the participant list before skipping practice and heading home) to the second best squad in the state of California.

The Mira Costa girl’s cross-country and track teams now are 90 strong and regularly compete for national ranking. Many runners have gone on to earn scholarships from the best colleges in the country.

Williams-Smith credits her success to encouraging accountability, healthy competition and inclusiveness. But we think it’s her incredible dedication, beaming spirit and full heart.

“To be able to influence kids is so amazing,” she says. “There are so many things that can go wrong. To feel like you’re a part of something positive in their life is a gift. I’m blessed to have that.”

RENEE’S INSPIRATION
The coach says that her girls are an endless source of inspiration. She remembers, “I had a new runner who told me, ‘I have been the last person picked on every team I’ve ever been on.’” Through the support of the team, the girl flourished to become a top varsity athlete.

GIRL POWER
Studies show that girls who compete in sports are more likely to graduate high school, attend college and even earn higher salaries in their careers. Help every girl have a chance to gut it out on the track by donating to Dream Big! (dreambig.org), a charity that provides low-income girls the resources for uniforms, footwear and training feeds.

Related: Inspiration Awards- Harriette Thompson

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2 Easy Holiday Party Recipes http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nutrition/recipes/2-easy-holiday-party-recipes_33954 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nutrition/recipes/2-easy-holiday-party-recipes_33954#comments Wed, 17 Dec 2014 17:37:49 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33954

Make these delicious appetizers for your next holiday party. And surprise- they are vegan!

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These two holiday party recipes, from nutritionist Katie Casto Hynes, are easy to make ahead, delicious and healthy. And the most surprising part- they are both vegan! You may find yourself making these all year round.

Walnut Basil Pâté

Time: 10 minutes tops!
Serving: 1 to 1½ cups

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 cup basil
  • ¼ cup sundried tomatoes (dry)
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • ½ to ¾ cup water
  • salt to taste

DIRECTIONS

1. Blend all ingredients in food processor or high-speed blender.
2.  Add more water as needed to achieve desired consistency.
3.  Serve with your favorite raw veggies (carrots, snap peas, bell peppers, etc).

Related: 3 Tips For Breaking Holiday Bloat

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Eat Pray Run DC: Running with No Expectations http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/eat-pray-run-dc/eat-pray-run-dc-running-no-expectations_33947 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/eat-pray-run-dc/eat-pray-run-dc-running-no-expectations_33947#comments Wed, 17 Dec 2014 13:38:32 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33947

After an entire year of training, sometimes you just need to run for fun.

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After running two marathons in two weeks, I rushed off to the Caribbean for my honeymoon. It was amazing! And it also started my month or so of off-season running. For me, off-season running is the time frame where I’m not training for anything. I’m running because I enjoy it. I think that this time is really important. For most of the past year, I’ve been training. I started out 2014 training for a marathon, only to get sick the weekend of the race and pull out at mile 17 (you can read that story here, if you’re interested). I then ran a redemption marathon two weeks later. After a few more races, I got married in June, and began training hardcore for my fall goal race. That was an intense and hard training cycle, and my first experience with speed work and tempo runs. Right after running my fall half marathon, I transitioned into training for the Richmond Marathon. Two weeks after running that, I ran another marathon. Whew! What a year. And so that brings me to the month of December, in which I am running with no expectations.

So far, I’ve run in the Dominican Republic while on my honeymoon. I’ve run through DC on a holiday lights tour. I’ve run by myself without a watch. It’s been fun, easy and amazing. I find that in general, I need the pressure and motivation of a race to keep running exciting for me. I like having goals. I enjoy crossing out workouts and keeping track of how much, far and fast I’m running. In fact, I’m so excited to start using my new training journal starting January 1! But, every once in awhile, I just like to run. With no goals, no expectations and no pressure.

I have run 16 races this year…a number that I was actually shocked to see when I counted. Between each of those races was a lot of work, a lot of sweat and a lot of ice baths. Now I’m thoroughly enjoying this time to take in the holidays, reflect on the year and just run. I haven’t solidified my race calendar for next year. While I do know a few races I’ll be running, no goal races have been chosen yet and I’m okay with that. I know that sooner rather than later my calendar will be packed and I’ll be back on a training schedule. And so for the next couple of weeks, I’m going to continue to enjoy running with no expectations and all the fun that can bring.

Do you take an off-season break with running? Tweet @eatprayrundc and @womensrunning to let us know!

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Above or Below Freezing: What to Wear on Winter Runs http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/training-tips/freezing-wear-winter-runs_33932 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/training-tips/freezing-wear-winter-runs_33932#comments Tue, 16 Dec 2014 20:00:14 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33932

*Content courtesy of POPSUGAR Fitness If you’re forgoing the comfortable temperatures of your gym this Winter, that can mean dealing

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*Content courtesy of POPSUGAR Fitness

If you’re forgoing the comfortable temperatures of your gym this Winter, that can mean dealing with a lot of snow, ice, hail, rain, and sleet. Winter running has just as many challenges as running in extreme heat, but with the right gear, you’ll stay warm, dry, and comfortable.

Your comfort level depends on many factors, including how fast you’re running, how comfortable you are in the cold, and how long your run is, so your perfect Winter outfit may differ. However, below are good rules of thumb for dressing for Winter running, whether it’s in snowy, freezing conditions or slighter warmer temps.

When It’s 32 Degrees or Below

  • Start off with a wicking bra and a wicking tank. We love Ibex sports tops since they are made of comfy, breathable, and natural merino wool.
  • Pull on a long-sleeved midweight base-layer shirt made from either nonitchy merino wool or polyester.
  • Slip on wicking socks that go up to your knees to keep your calves warm. Lightweight ski socks do just the trick; many, like these Smartwool PhD Snowboard Light socks ($14), are made of a natural and synthetic blend that keeps your toes warm without too much bulk.
  • Wear warm running tights on your legs. Try these Under Armour cold-weather compression leggings ($50).
  • Over the long-sleeved shirt, wear a fitted, wind-stopping softshell like this one from The North Face ($149).
  • Running gloves or liners will protect your hands.
  • Wear a lightweight hat so your head doesn’t get too sweaty.
  • On cold days, wear a fleece neck warmer. It will keep your neck and chin warm while also helping to prevent burning lungs.
  • Facial sunscreen and lip balm with SPF are both musts, as are sunglasses to protect your eyes. Snow reflects the sun’s harmful UV rays, and the light bouncing off the snow can be blinding.
  • Water-resistant but breathable running shoes help make snowy or rainy conditions bearable for your feet. These Salomon XR Mission trail-running shoes ($110) are made just for bad Winter weather. Wearing gaiters over your calves will keep your ankles and legs dry when the snow is deep.
  • When it’s icy, slip on a set of Yaktrax Run straps ($40) on your running shoes to give you more traction and prevent slipping on hard snow or ice.

When It’s Above 32 Degrees

If temperatures are chilly where you live but haven’t hit that freezing mark, you still need to dress for the weather. But while all of the above are Winter essentials in snow country, layering that much on your body in 40-degree weather can lead to a sweaty, uncomfortable run. Dressing like it’s 20 degrees warmer than it is will help ensure you don’t over-layer. With that said, here are some guidelines for those (relatively) warmer Winter runs.

  • Dress in layers, but leave out the insulating middle layer. Depending on the temperature, you may want to stick with a thin moisture-wicking shirt (go for short-sleeved if you are running for a long time and temperatures are 40 degrees or higher) and lightweight zippered jacket that you can easily take off when your body temperature rises. Look for a thin, waterproof windbreaker with vents to keep you dry and comfortable if it’s raining, and choose a jacket with zippered pockets as well to stash any headgear or gloves when you warm up.
  • If it’s windy, you probably will need running tights to help insulate your legs from the chill. If there’s not a lot of wind, regular fast-drying pants should work.
  • If you find that hats trap too much heat while you run in warmer Winter weather, look for ear-covering headbands that keep your ears warm while preventing overheating.
  • Rainy Winters call for shoes that protect your feet, so look for shoes that have as little mesh as possible for your wet Winter runs. Trail runners work perfectly; just be sure to wear noncotton moisture-wicking socks and avoid puddles as much as possible.
  • Gloves are still important in above-freezing temperatures, since cold weather can chill your extremities and cause discomfort while you run. Go for thin, wind-resistant gloves without the bulk, and stash them in your pockets after you warm up.
  • Sunscreen, sunglasses, and lip balm with SPF are still a good idea, even if you’re running under cloudy skies. The sun’s UV rays can pass through clouds.

Related Articles:
8 Tasty Combos For Your Quinoa Bowl
3 Simple Moves For Stronger Thighs
20 Lazy-Girl-Approved Fitness Hacks
Sweet and Savory Latke Recipes For a Healthy Hanukkah
This Treadmill Workout Is Like Having Your Own Personal Running Coach

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Photo Gallery: Foot Locker Cross Country Championships http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/races/photo-gallery-foot-locker-cross-country-championships_33904 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/races/photo-gallery-foot-locker-cross-country-championships_33904#comments Tue, 16 Dec 2014 16:58:49 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33904

Check out photos of the girls race at Foot Locker Championships.

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On Saturday, the best high school runners in the country gathered in San Diego to compete at Foot Locker Cross Country Championships. To earn a chance to compete in the 5K championship at Balboa Park, runners had to finish within the top 10 of their regional races (North, South, Midwest and West).

Anna Rohrer, a senior from Mishawaka, Indiana, won the girls race in 17:13, 10 seconds ahead of her nearest competitor. Rohrer also won the race in 2012 as a sophomore. Following her win, Rohrer said, “I’m a strong advocate of never looking back. I’m going to race as fast as I can and if they catch me they catch me. There’s nothing I can do about it.” Very inspiring words from a teenager!

Check out our photo gallery of the amazing girl’s race, taken by our photographer Scott Draper.

Related: Photo Gallery: Jamaica’s Reggae Marathon

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/races/photo-gallery-foot-locker-cross-country-championships_33904/feed 0 T-Rex Runner: A Runner’s Holiday Wish List http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/t-rex-runner/t-rex-runner-runners-holiday-wish-list_33900 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/t-rex-runner/t-rex-runner-runners-holiday-wish-list_33900#comments Tue, 16 Dec 2014 14:32:53 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33900

Forget running gear. Danielle's wishlist includes things that money can't buy...like quickly located satellites.

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At this point in my running career, I’ve amassed pretty much all the gear I could possibly need and plenty of running-related trinkets. There are a lot of things that money can’t buy that I’d like for Hanukkah/Christmas/Kwanzaa/other holidays. So without further ado, here is my holiday wish list:

  1. Better pacing skills: I am the actual worst at sticking to the prescribed pace for a training run on any given day. Intervals are supposed to be done at 8:06 pace? Eh, 7:42 is close enough, right?
  2. Or, a personal pacer: If I can’t have #1, I will take a personal pacer to run all my training runs with me and make sure I hit the correct paces. Anyone interested?
  3. Self-restraint when it comes to injury: I’m not the best at making the smart choice not to run when I feel pain. I tend to adopt an “Oh, one more run won’t hurt” attitude, but news flash, self, it always hurts. Sigh.
  4. Located satellites: Oh for heaven’s sake, Garmin, just find the stupid things already.
  5. Pockets in all my running shorts and tights: Who are these companies making running bottoms without a pocket for your key, and why am I still buying them without checking first? Ugh.
  6. A running rain jacket that doesn’t cause the greenhouse effect to happen inside it while I am wearing it: Self-explanatory.
  7. One good race picture: To qualify as a good race picture, I must not look like I’ve gained 30 pounds during the race AND it must look like I’m actually running. The two never happen together.
  8. Miles and memories with friends: Priceless, and they make for more appropriate party stories than anything I did in college.

What’s on your wish list this Christmas? Tweet @thetrexrunner and @womensrunning to let us know.

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NYC Running Mama: Destination Races http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nyc-running-mama/nyc-running-mama-destination-races_33892 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nyc-running-mama/nyc-running-mama-destination-races_33892#comments Mon, 15 Dec 2014 23:14:59 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33892

Michele shares her tips on how to survive the flight to a destination race.

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This past weekend I traveled to Hawaii to run the Honolulu Marathon with my sister and the other members of the Saucony 26 Strong team. It was an amazing experience filled with good friends, relaxation, SUN and warmth! Even though it wasn’t a goal race for me, I was anxious and nervous about traveling 11+ hours only a day and a half prior to the start of the race. We flew out Friday morning, arrived Friday afternoon (Hawaii time) and ran the 26.2 miles early Sunday morning.

I’ve had some experience with destination-type races in the past including flying out to Los Angeles (~6 hours) for the LA Marathon last spring and driving (~5 hours) to the Potomac River Run Marathon last month. But this was the furthest I had ever traveled for a race before.

Destination races always sound so appealing when you are planning them, but if you are like me, reality sets in as the race approaches about how tough it can be on our bodies. Below are some of the things I did in the days leading up to and during the flight to ensure that I was as fresh and stretched out as possible.

Limit Salt: My hands, feet and calves typically swell when I fly. I reduced the amount of salt I was consuming two days out, as well as during the flight. I didn’t completely eliminate salt because I wanted to ensure I had enough in my diet for the race.

Walk + Stretch: Every hour, I made a trip to the bathroom (thanks to all the water I was consuming). On the way back to my seat, I’d walk around a couple of times before standing and stretching at my seat. It’s a bit tougher if you are driving, but consider making a few stops, (and you will likely have to for bathroom breaks) so you can stretch out your legs.

Bring water on the plane: The small cups of water that the flight attendants pass out will not be enough to keep you hydrated. I purchased (and drank) four 24oz bottles of water for the flight. You can also bring your own water bottle and ask the flight attendants to fill it up for you mid-flight!

Don’t rely on airplane food: We didn’t know what our options were going to be before the flight, so my sister and I brought enough food to last us the 11+ hours including a low-sodium wrap, tons of fruit (bananas, apples and oranges), bagels and salt-free nuts. Ensure you are carb-loading (if running a longer distance) and getting the nutrients you need for the race.

Compression Socks: This was the first time I tried this and truly feel like it made a huge difference in how I felt post-flight. I put on my socks right after takeoff and wore them until we got to the hotel.

Shakeout Run: This is a great way to run out the soreness and stiffness from the flight. It doesn’t have to be long. Just 20 minutes will do the trick. You can run it shortly after landing or the next morning.

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Kara Goucher Web Series: Episode 2 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/inspiration/kara-goucher-web-series-episode-2_33884 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/inspiration/kara-goucher-web-series-episode-2_33884#comments Mon, 15 Dec 2014 20:00:11 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33884

Kara opens up about the lack of equality for women in the running community.

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Kara Goucher Women’s Running Web Series – Episode 2 from Steve Godwin Films.

In August, Editor-in-Chief Jessie Sebor had the opportunity to spend time with Kara Goucher. Women’s Running captured a day in her life as an elite runner for our new web series.

In Episode Two, Kara opens up about the lack of equality within the running community. She is frustrated by the false perception that women runners are less serious than men. She speaks about her goals to empower women runners.

Stay tuned next week for Episode 3! Want to find out even more about Kara Goucher now? Pick up our November/December issue, available on newsstands or to download on iTunes!

Related: 
Kara Goucher Web Series: Episode 1
Sneak Peak at Kara Goucher Web Series

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Reader Run Brag Gallery 12/15/14 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/just-for-fun/reader-run-brag-gallery-121514_33799 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/just-for-fun/reader-run-brag-gallery-121514_33799#comments Mon, 15 Dec 2014 16:29:58 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33799

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

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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/2014/12/just-for-fun/reader-run-brag-gallery-121514_33799/feed 0 Photo Gallery: Jamaica’s Reggae Marathon http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/races/photo-gallery-jamaicas-reggae-marathon_33715 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/races/photo-gallery-jamaicas-reggae-marathon_33715#comments Mon, 15 Dec 2014 13:50:31 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33715

Starting at 5:15 in the morning to beat the heat and the humidity the Marathon starts in almost total darkness.  Torches light the rout

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Starting at 5:15 in the morning to beat the heat and the humidity the Marathon starts in almost total darkness.  Torches light the rout near the start and finish which is also the mid way pout in  a 2 lap race.  Following the race runners cooled off in the ocean and sometimes didn’t bother taking their shoes off.

Attended by 1500 runners from 34 countries the Reggae Marathon does two laps up the coast of Negril in Jamaica.  Swiss Ruuner Melina Frei won the women’s half , pictured surrounded by cameras.

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/races/photo-gallery-jamaicas-reggae-marathon_33715/feed 0 After Party: College Professor Wins Beer Mile Champs and Breaks Record http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/inspiration/party-college-professor-wins-beer-mile-champs-breaks-record_33792 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/inspiration/party-college-professor-wins-beer-mile-champs-breaks-record_33792#comments Fri, 12 Dec 2014 22:03:49 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33792

Kent State geology professor Elizabeth Herndon gets an A+ in running and chugging.

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Kent State geology professor Elizabeth Herndon gets an A+ in running and chugging. The 29-year-old scientist took a break from her usual long-distance racing to crumple some cans and run some laps at the first official Beer Mile World Championships hosted by Flotrack in Austin on Dec 3. Not only did she win the event, but she also broke 44-year-old Chris Kimbrough’s world record of 6:28.6, set less than a month prior to Herndon’s 6:17 performance.

“I don’t remember feeling that bad physically. I think I felt really fast because I was sprinting for all I was worth. I think I was a little nauseous, but not too bad,” says Herndon, who holds a 5:03 mile PR sans brews.

This wasn’t Herndon’s first go at the popular four-lap, four-beer event. Prior to toeing the line in Austin, Herndon had completed a handful of other beer miles, starting with a championship among her grad school running club at Penn State. She finished in 7:24 and went on to do two more before the Flotrack event.

“I hosted my own beer mile the week after I defended my PhD as a celebration,” says Herndon of her second beer mile. “I got together with five of my friends—the goal was to go for the world record, and I ended up going 6:48, which was six seconds short of it.”

One more attempt came during her time living in Knoxville, Tenn., so she decided to go for the championships—and the record again—when she heard about event in Texas. Herndon says she hadn’t focused much on speed prior to the event; she placed sixth at the Twin Cities Marathon in early October with a two-minute, sub-2:40 PR.

“When I finally decided I was going to do the championships, I also made the decision to not really train for it specifically,” explains Herndon. “I didn’t want to overthink it and ruin it for myself beforehand. I wanted to be a little ignorant about it going into it.”

Herndon did some last-minute speed work leading up the championships in December. She also practiced some isolated chugging to “get re-aquainted with the feeling” and select a friendly brew that would work for the event. For world record-holder, it was New Belgium Fat Tire. Her no-run-and-chug-practice policy seemed to work—the speedster broke the tape and world record with her performance.

“The last laps are the hardest. You’re trying to drink beer you don’t want to drink, and you’re trying to run, and your stomach is bursting with liquid and carbonation you’re forcing into it,” explains Herndon. “The chugging definitely separated people a bit more. I didn’t do as well as I’d hoped on the chugging.”

Unlike regular running races, beer—understandably so!—was not an appealing celebratory bevvie following the event. Herndon opted for a pizza following the race, which she was the “most delicious thing ever.” The college professor says reactions about the campus from students and colleagues are all the same: “That’s awesome!”

“I think my favorite part was the guys in banana suits! Everyone was just really into it during the race.”

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5 Runtastic Things Our Staff Loved This Week http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/photos/5-runtastic-things-staff-loved-week-2_33784 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/photos/5-runtastic-things-staff-loved-week-2_33784#comments Fri, 12 Dec 2014 19:48:35 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33784

Find out which run-friendly picks Team WR obsessed over this week.

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Inspired by our run, nutrition and beauty “obsessions” in the magazine, the Women’s Running staff decided to turn our favorite products into a weekly series! Every Friday, check out what products make our runner brains tick as we strive for our goals in 2015. We are also super excited to share some favorites from our friends at Triathlete magazine! Happy Running!

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/photos/5-runtastic-things-staff-loved-week-2_33784/feed 0 Running a Healthy Holiday Party http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nutrition/recipes/running-healthy-holiday-party_33620 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nutrition/recipes/running-healthy-holiday-party_33620#comments Fri, 12 Dec 2014 18:21:04 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33620

Some fun and festive ideas for holiday food that won't throw you off the nutrition track.

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Whether you’re hosting an open house, attending a potluck, stocking up at a cookie exchange or just looking for some holiday eats that won’t get you too far off the good nutrition track, here are some fun and festive ideas.

Take Two Truffles

As a welcome variation on cookies, we are partial to the cookie dough trend and truffles, which both tend to be bite-sized and include chocolate (of course!). When I came across Chocolate Covered Katie’s date and coconut balls, I couldn’t resist her suggestion to add more ingredients, so I concocted a holiday version with dried cranberries, shredded unsweetened coconut, chunky peanut butter and chocolate chips. They were particularly good after sitting in the fridge for a bit.

We’ve also been particularly impressed of late with the versatility of avocado (healthy fats!) in desserts like pudding and these truffles. It’s impossible to resist all of the chocolate treats this time of year, so why not share this healthier version?

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NYC Running Mama: Treadmill Workouts http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nyc-running-mama/nyc-running-mama-treadmill-workouts_33762 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/12/nyc-running-mama/nyc-running-mama-treadmill-workouts_33762#comments Fri, 12 Dec 2014 15:46:25 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33762

Treadmill workouts don't have to be boring!

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It’s that time of year again when more and more runners turn to the treadmill as a safe way to stay in shape and train for those big spring races. Most of us are usually kicking and screaming whenever we have to log more than a couple of miles.  But you don’t have to loathe your treadmill time! It can be an awesome – and dare I say fun? – training tool.

Below are some workouts that will keep you entertained and help make the miles (or tenths of a mile!) tick by while also getting a good, hard workout in.

400m Hill Repeats

Hill workouts are a great way to get stronger and faster. They can take the place of an interval or tempo workout for the week. This workout has you running fast uphill (400 meters) and recovering slower as you run down (400 meters). Note: For the treadmill workout, the incline will be set at 0% for the downhill portion.

Start with 4-5 repeats and gradually increase the number of repetitions.

  • Warmup: 5-20 minutes
  • Increase incline to 4.5% and increase pace to a difficult, yet sustainable level (roughly 10-15 seconds slower than half marathon pace). Run .25 miles.
  • Reduce incline to 0% and decrease pace to recovery pace. Run .25 miles.
  • Repeat: 4-5 times (or more if you are a more experienced runner).
  • Cooldown: 5-20 minutes

Descending Ladder Workout

This is a fun, yet challenging interval workout that gives you a good range of speeds to tackle. You start with 10 minutes of hard running and gradually work your way down to 2 minutes of hard running. The pace gets faster as the intervals get shorter – but the recovery stays the same throughout (2 minutes).

This workout is 30 minutes of running (not including the warmup or cooldown). It can easily be tailored for shorter or longer mileage by increasing/decreasing the warmup and/or cooldown or increasing/decreasing start time (start with 12 or 8 minutes).

  • Warmup: 5-20 minutes
  • Start with 10 minutes of hard running (roughly half marathon pace).
  • Recover with 2 minutes (recovery pace)
  • Repeat with 8, 6, 4 and 2 minutes of hard running (pace increases for each 2 minute interval)
  • Recover with 2 minutes (recovery pace)
  • Cooldown: 5-20 minutes

Rolling Hills

This is typically what I do when I have easy-paced miles to run but am forced to the treadmill, due to weather, time or child situation. It helps mimic outside running and keep my mind occupied so the run doesn’t feel like a lifetime.

Since it’s meant to be an easy-paced run, the pace stays pretty consistent throughout. The only thing you are changing is the elevation. Each rolling hill segment is 10 minutes with a 5 minute segment of 0% incline.

  • Warmup: 5-15 minutes
  • Increase incline to .5% – run for 120 seconds
  • Increase inline to 1.0% – run for 90 seconds
  • Increase incline to 1.5% – run for 60 seconds
  • Increase incline to 2.0% – run for 30 seconds
  • Decrease incline to 1.5% – run for 60 seconds
  • Decrease incline to 1.0% – run for 90 seconds
  • Decrease incline to .5% – run for 120 seconds
  • Repeat as necessary
  • Cooldown: 5-20 minutes

Strength + Speed

This workout combines short, fast spurts of running with strength work (lunges) sandwiched between easy running. The lunges will strengthen your legs and the speed portion helps teach you to run fast with fatigued legs.

It is an 8 min long set which can be used as a stand-alone workout OR added to the end of another workout (do 2-3 sets instead of 5+).

  • Warmup: 5-20 minutes
  • Run 2 minutes at your easy pace
  • Run 3 minutes at your 5k (or faster) pace
  • Run 2 minutes at your recovery pace
  • Lunge for 1 minute (set treadmill to .9 or 1.0)
  • Repeat: 2-5 times (or add a few at the end of a workout)
  • Cooldown: 5-20 minutes

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