Women's Running http://womensrunning.competitor.com Women's Running Magazine Wed, 26 Nov 2014 20:30:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 Caramel Chai Cheesecake http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nutrition/caramel-chai-cheesecake_33127 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nutrition/caramel-chai-cheesecake_33127#comments Wed, 26 Nov 2014 20:30:33 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33127

You won't believe this cheesecake is vegan! It will be perfect for Thanksgiving dessert.

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[IMAGE_075] Caramel Chai Cheesecake

Caramel Chai Cheesecake

This vegan version of the classic dessert is pure decadence. Serve it with a piping-hot mug of chai for the ultimate spicy indulgence. Want to see more dessert recipes that you won’t believe are vegan? Pick up the November/December issue of Women’s Running on newsstands or iTunes.

Serves 10

6 oz. pecans
3 Tbsp. melted nondairy margarine
3 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. superfine brown rice flour

1 (350g) package extra-firm silken tofu
3 (8-ounce) tubs nondairy cream cheese, such as Tofutti
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
5 Tbsp. superfine brown rice flour
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/8 tsp. cardamom
1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 recipe Caramel Sauce (recipe follows)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Pulse the pecans in a food processor, just until crumbly. Stir in the rest of the crust ingredients and press (using hands dusted with superfine brown rice flour) into an 8-inch springform pan. Bake for 10 minutes and then remove from the oven.

Place all the ingredients for the filling into a food processor and blend until very smooth, at least 5 minutes. Spread onto the prepared crust and bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 250 degrees and allow cheesecake to bake an additional 60 minutes. Turn oven off and let cool for up to 2 more hours while remaining in the oven.

Chill in refrigerator overnight and then make the Caramel Sauce just before serving, so that you have hot caramel sauce on a cold cheesecake. Top with sweetened whipped coconut cream. Store in airtight container in refrigerator up to 4 days.

Caramel Sauce

This easy caramel sauce was created for topping the Caramel Chai Cheesecake but is also incredible over ice cream—vegan or not.

Makes 1 cup

1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup nondairy margarine
1/4 cup almond or coconut milk
1 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

In a 2-quart saucepan, whisk together the ingredients and warm over medium heat. Cook, stirring, just until the mixture has thickened to a creamy caramel sauce consistency, about 5 minutes.

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NYC Running Mama: What Do You Do with Your Race Bibs and Medals? http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nyc-running-mama/nyc-running-mama-race-bibs-medals_33133 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nyc-running-mama/nyc-running-mama-race-bibs-medals_33133#comments Wed, 26 Nov 2014 17:27:53 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33133

Michele shares creative ways to display your race bibs and medals.

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photo (60)

I am a packrat. I dislike throwing away things that have even the smallest bit of meaning to me. Everything gets put into chronologically-labeled shoeboxes and packed away for a rainy day when I’m feel nostalgic.

Race bibs and medals are no different. For years, I kept everything to do with my running in those shoeboxes. Last spring I reviewed a medal sign on my blog. After hanging it up, I went through my old boxes and pulled out all the medals I could find. Then, over the summer, I had the idea to pull out my old bibs and create a wall behind my treadmill.  It’s been a source of inspiration for me to physically see the races I have competed in when I go down my basement to run or work out.

With another racing season coming to an end, you may be left with a pile of bibs and medals, but not sure what to do with them. Whether you are a runner who is newer to the sport or a seasoned veteran, it’s never too early – or late – to do something fun with your running mementos.  Or maybe you are looking for a fun holiday gift for that running friend of yours. Either way, below are some ideas for ways to display bibs and medals:

Race Bibs

Wall: Use clear tape on the backs of the bibs to secure them together. It’s not only the easiest, but also the least expensive way to display your bibs. And, you can easily add a bib after each subsequent race.

Frame: First marathon or half marathon? First BQ? First Ironman? This is a great option for those truly special races that you want to highlight. Photographers for larger races typically offer a bib/medal/photo option. Other websites, such as Racer USA, offer decorative frames.

Coasters: Fun way to turn that special race bib into a coaster (or set of 4!). Websites such as Gone For A Run, offer a bunch of different options.

Wall Holder: This is a great option if space is limited in your home or workspace. It’s a single holder that stacks your race bibs. Check out Running On The Wall’s site for more options.

Blanket, Bag, T-shirt, pillows: There are a ton of other options available if you are crafty and/or know someone who is!


Medal Hanger: This is a great way to conveniently keep all your medals together in one location, especially if space is an issue. Companies such as Strut Your Running Stuff Sign Co, offer a wide range of options and designs.

Ornaments: There have been plenty of photos of the Christmas Trees of die-hard runners who use medals as ornaments!

Vase: You can put the medals in any large vase you own – with or without the ribbon. It’s a beautiful way to keep them on your desk at work or around your house without feeling like they are taking over the entire space!

Wall or Thumb-tack board: You don’t need to spend a fortune to display your medals. All your need are some nails or a cork board. Just put the nails in the board or on the wall and hang a medal on each one!

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3 Sensational Side Dishes for Thanksgiving http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nutrition/recipes/3-sensational-side-dishes-thanksgiving_33130 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nutrition/recipes/3-sensational-side-dishes-thanksgiving_33130#comments Wed, 26 Nov 2014 15:30:57 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33130

These healthier side dishes are great additions to the Thanksgiving dinner table.

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These sides allow you to offer some healthier options on Thanksgiving, alongside the mashed potatoes and stuffing. Don’t worry- they are just as delicious! All recipes are courtesy of nutrition & weight management MD, Dr. Caroline Cederquist – founder of bistroMD (www.bistromd.com).

Quinoa and Pumpkin Seed Stuffed Acorn Squash


  • 4 medium acorn squash, halved lengthwise with the seeds removed
  • 3 cups of water
  • 2 cups quinoa
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups diced onion
  • 1/2 cup diced carrots
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1 tablespoon minced cardamom
  • 1/8 tablespoon of turmeric
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup diced apples
  • 1/4 cup dried currants
  • 1/3 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Adjust rack to the middle shelf.
  2. Simmer the quinoa in 3 cups of water to make fluffy, this should take 15 to 20 minutes.
  3. While the quinoa cooks, add the onions and 1/2 teaspoon of salt and cook until softened, stirring frequently, about 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the carrots, celery, cardamom and turmeric.
  4. Using fresh apples, cut into small dices and soak with lemon juice.
  5. Cover the pan and simmer the vegetables for 5 minutes until they are tender.
  6. In a big bowl, toss together the quinoa and vegetables. Stir in the dried fruit, diced apples, pumpkin seeds, nutmeg and season with salt and pepper.
  7. Brush the skin of the squash lightly with olive oil. Place the squash, cut side down, in a baking pan.
  8. Pour 1/2-inch of boiling water into the pan and bake for 20 minutes to soften the squash. Move the squash to a plate and set aside until cool enough to handle.
  9. Stuff the squash halves with the quinoa mix, return them, stuffing-up to the pan, and bake until the flesh can be easily pierced with the tip of a paring knife. This should take 30 minutes or less

bistroMD Cranberry Chutney


  • 3/4 pounds tart apples, (chopped)
  • 2 1/4 pounds of cranberries
  • 2 cups light brown sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3/4 teaspoon pepper flakes
  • 1/2 pound dark raisins 


  1. Place all ingredients in saucepan.
  2. Cook for 25 to 30 minutes.

bistroMD (Mashed) Cauliflower

A great substitute for mashed potatoes, this dish packs all the flavor of mashed potatoes while slashing carbs and calories!


  • A medium head cauliflower. Trim it and cut into small florets (about 6 to 7 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • Low fat sour cream
  • Chives


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add cauliflower and cook until very tender, about 10 minutes.
  2. Reserve 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid. Drain well and transfer cauliflower to a food processor. Add oil and reserved water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and puree until smooth. (Or, mash cauliflower with a potato masher).
  3. Season with salt and pepper and fold in the sour cream. Blend until smooth and then mix in the chives.

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T-Rex Runner: What Is The Best Time Of Year To Train? http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/t-rex-runner/t-rex-runner-best-time-year-train_33122 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/t-rex-runner/t-rex-runner-best-time-year-train_33122#comments Wed, 26 Nov 2014 14:01:26 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33122

Figuring out when you love to train can help you pick your next goal race.

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As a person who runs races in kind of a serial fashion, it seems like I’m always training for something. Often my choice of a goal race has hinged on the weather forecast for that time of year, the ease or challenge of the course, the location, etc. Recently, I started taking another variable into account, and I think this one might trump all the others: the time of year in which the bulk of my training would occur.

Think about it. It seems like every runs a fall marathon, right? Well, by all accounts, that involves doing a bulk of your training during the hot (and humid, where I live in South Carolina) summer months. Some people see that as an advantage because it means that running feels much easier once the cooler weather kicks in. I’ve learned that I have such a hard time running in the heat that a fall goal race is simply unrealistic. I often cannot make it through long training runs. I sweat so much that I have a hard time adequately hydrating and replacing my sodium no matter what I do. I might be able to run a fall marathon, but I certainly can’t race one to the best of my ability.

This year, I decided to train through the late fall and winter months, and picked a goal race in mid-February. The weather on race day should still be nice and cool, but my training runs will be freezing – just the way I like them! Of course, I live in the South. My definition of freezing is a bit different than those in say, Minnesota. While many people in my state are deterred by the cold weather and quit running during these months, it’s the time when my training ramps up the most. I feel more confident running in the winter, and am willing to tackle workouts that I otherwise might not attempt.

In order to decide when to do the bulk of your training cycle, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What is my ideal racing temperature?
  • What time of day do I like to run?
  • Do I mind running in the dark?
  • Am I likely to tackle a hard workout if it is ___ degrees outside?
  • Are there local training groups preparing for upcoming races during this time?

A strong training cycle is the key to a great race. The weather during your training is just as important as it is during race day.

What’s your favorite time of year to train? Tweet @thetrexrunner and @womensrunning to let us know!

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Ask A Coach: Timing Your Massages and Breathing Techniques http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/training-tips/ask-coach-timing-massages-breathing-techniques_33117 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/training-tips/ask-coach-timing-massages-breathing-techniques_33117#comments Tue, 25 Nov 2014 21:00:58 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33117

Coach Hillary Kigar answers questions from our readers!

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

Q: Is it better to get a massage before or after you race?

Both if you can swing it! But make sure you get the timing right. Getting a good full-body massage a couple of days before your race is a great idea as long as the massage isn’t too in-tense. Avoid a deep, painful rubdown that might leave you sore afterward. And I wouldn’t recommend a massage the day before or the day of a race either—you don’t want your muscles to be too relaxed and feeling more ready for a yoga class than some fast running!

After your race, cool down and jog at a very easy pace for 10 minutes and get some stretching in—a massage later that day or the next day will definitely help with the recovery process. If you’re not feeling super spendy, perform a DIY massage job with a foam roller or stick.

Related: Is It Okay Not To Wear A Sports Bra?

Q: If it’s that time of the month and I’m crampy, does it help to go out for a run or curl up in a ball?

I love the saying, “No matter how slow you go, you are still lapping everyone on the couch.” That’s absolutely true—no matter what time of the month it is. While you may feel exhausted, bloated, irritable or just plain grumpy, I guarantee you will feel at least a little bit better from even a short jog around the block.

The combination of fresh air and getting your heart pumping can be just what you need to get out of your funk. While a run won’t necessarily cure those pesky PMS symptoms, you can take confidence in knowing that you are not a victim of Aunt Flow when she comes to visit. Believe in the power of the run!

Related: How To Get Rid Of A Mid-Run Side Stitch

Q: What’s an easy way to improve my breathing? I feel like I can never get enough air.

Often as we start to feel fatigued during a run, our breathing becomes irregular and we begin taking shorter, shallower breaths. When you notice yourself getting more tired, remember to keep your breathing calm and even. Feeling out of breath isn’t a bad thing—it often means that your body and lungs are working, and you are getting stronger! Be patient, your lungs should get in better shape with time and regular training.

If you don’t notice improvement with your breathing after a few days, consider talking with your doctor—you may need an inhaler to help with lung strength. Even some of the fastest runners and Olympians use inhalers on occasion!

Related: Keep Your Laces Tied

Dixie Magic

Suffering from chronic shin splints? Runner’s knee? Aching Achilles? Fill up a few small Dixie cups with water and put them in the freezer until frozen solid. After a run, pull one out and peel away the top rim of the cup, exposing the ice. Rub the ice on the sore area for 10 minutes.

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

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Eat Pray Run DC: So You Want To Start A Running Blog http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/eat-pray-run-dc/eat-pray-run-dc-want-start-running-blog_33112 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/eat-pray-run-dc/eat-pray-run-dc-want-start-running-blog_33112#comments Tue, 25 Nov 2014 18:45:38 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33112

It's the perfect time to start a running blog! Here is what you need to know before you start.

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2014-06-21 12.07.04

As an avid reader (you are an avid reader, right?) of Women’s Running magazine, there is no doubt that you have also read a few running blogs. (Or at least you are reading one right now! :)) You may have started to think, “Hey self. I run. I like to write. Maybe I should start a running blog.” Well, you definitely should! If you have a few days of downtime over the holidays, this is the perfect time to get started!

So, you love running and you love writing? Here’s what you need to know (not the mechanics – that’d be way too practical. Go here for that):

  • It can help motivate you to run. I won’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to cut a run short or not even start it, but thought: “Ugh, I don’t want to have to blog about why my 18 miler turned into an 8 miler.” Okay, not that many times, but knowing that I’ve committed to share my training has definitely helped motivate me on runs. It’s like having an online accountability partner. Or partners, as it may be.
  • You’ll have to decide how much to share. Personally, I love writing about races and about my training. It’s like having an online record of all things running related. I love seeing my growth, learning from my mistakes and have my post-race thoughts captured somewhere. If that weirds you out, then you don’t have to share details about your exact training, your times and anything too personal.
  • You will have running friends everywhere you go. In almost every race since I started blogging, I’ve run into (or purposefully met up with) running friends that I “know” from my blog. This is one of my favorite things about being a running blogger. Expanding my circle of running friends is ah-maz-ing!
  • You will quickly learn to take things with a grain of salt. I’ve been pretty fortunate to have very few negative comments or people. However, if you start blogging, you may open yourself up to that. Most people mean well and are just sharing their opinion. I’ve learned to be gracious and remember that only you know the true, full story of whatever you may be blogging about — your race, your training, your life.
  • It will take up MUCH more of your time than you think. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I’ve become a better writer, a more engaged reader and more thoughtful since I’ve started blogging. It does take up a great bit of time, but if you love to run and love to write, it’s a win-win.

That all being said, I love blogging and if you are thinking of taking the plunge, there’s no time like the present.

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3 Healthier Pie Recipes for Thanksgiving http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nutrition/3-healthier-pie-recipes-thanksgiving_33107 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nutrition/3-healthier-pie-recipes-thanksgiving_33107#comments Tue, 25 Nov 2014 16:40:09 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33107

After indulging, try these dessert recipes that sneak in healthier ingredients.

The post 3 Healthier Pie Recipes for Thanksgiving appeared first on Women's Running.


bistroMD pumpkin pie

Let’s be serious- Thanksgiving is a time to indulge a bit in great food. But after helpings of turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing and more, it is great to sneak in more nutritious alternatives for dessert. These pie recipes are cleaner, healthier alternatives to Thanksgiving dessert staples. Swap out ingredients for options like fiber-rich oats and shredded wheat. Or use holiday superfoods like pumpkin. These recipes will keep guests satisfied without over-indulging!

Pritikin’s Cherry Pie
From Chef Anthony Stewart of The Pritikin Longevity Center (www.pritikin.com)

This recipe uses fiber-rich oats as a topping.


  • 8 cups frozen pitted cherries
  • 4 Tbsp. apple juice concentrate
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 6 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups oats


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients except oats. Place mixture in baking dish.
  2. Pour oats on top. Bake for 25 minutes. Let cool and serve.

Pritikin’s Spiced Apple Pie
From Chef Anthony Stewart of The Pritikin Longevity Center (www.pritikin.com)

The surprising ingredient here? Shredded wheat!


  • 5 Red Delicious or Fuji apples, peeled, cored, and cut into wedges
  • 1 Tbsp. water
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1 tsp. apple pie spice (a simple blend of cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice)
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon (1 Tbsp.)
  • 2 cups low-sodium, fat-free corn flakes


  • 1/4 cup crushed shredded wheat
  • Pinch of ground cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine apples, water, cornstarch, spice, and lemon juice in a medium mixing bowl.
  3. Combine shredded wheat and ground cinnamon in a separate bowl.
  4. Lightly spray bottom of pie baking pan (8 inches in diameter) with Pam.
  5. To make crust, press corn flakes into bottom of pan
  6. Fill pie pan with apple mixture, and top with the shredded wheat.
  7. Bake 30 minutes. Let cool slightly and serve.

bistroMD’s Pumpkin Pie
From nutrition/weight management MD Dr. Cederquist and the bistroMD kitchen (www.bistromd.com).


  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 1-ounce envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • 2 cups fat-free evaporated milk, divided
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar (or can use 1/3 cup packed ©Splenda Brown Sugar)
  • 1 15-ounce can pure pumpkin
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Spray a 9-inch pie plate with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, sprinkle gelatin in water. Leave to stand for 5 minutes.
  3. Pour 1 cup of fat-free evaporated milk into a small saucepan and heat until almost boiling.
  4. Remove from heat and whisk into gelatin. Don’t worry if it the gelatin has hardened, the hot milk will liquefy it.
  5. Stir in remaining cup of evaporated milk, sugar, canned pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and vanilla extract. Stir until well blended.
  6. Pour pumpkin mixture into pie plate. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Serves 8.

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Inspiration Awards: Kayla Montgomery http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/inspiration/inspiration-awards-kayla-montgomery_33099 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/inspiration/inspiration-awards-kayla-montgomery_33099#comments Mon, 24 Nov 2014 23:39:47 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33099

This young runner is living proof that anyone can get back up.

The post Inspiration Awards: Kayla Montgomery appeared first on Women's Running.



Three years ago, Kayla Montgomery took an unexpected spill during a high school soccer tournament. Later that evening, she felt numbness in her feet. The sensation crawled up her legs over the following week before a painful spinal shock sent the then-15-year-old to the doctor, who referred her to a neurologist.

“After having many blood tests, including being tested for Lyme Disease, a spinal tap, a couple MRIs of my brain and spine, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis,” explains Montgomery. Despite the devastating diagnosis, the young athlete found hope in the fact that her doctors cleared her to run. “That was when I decided that I wanted to continue training to become the best runner I could be.”

Almost as soon as she was back on the cross-country team, Montgomery was running faster than ever. However, she discovered her disease created one difficult and visible consequence: Montgomery collapses the second she crosses the finish line. Because the young runner’s legs go numb as her body temperature rises, she runs “as if on autopilot,” but loses control when the forward motion stops.

“I can’t feel most of the pain in my legs while I run—it’s really hard for me to tell if I’m going too slow or too fast,” says Montgomery. Instead, she uses her arms as measures of effort—and she’s become a master of her craft, winning her North Carolina high school state title in the 3,200 meters earlier this year with 21st fastest time in the country.

Spectators’ hesitant reactions to her dramatic finishes don’t phase Montgomery, who says that running “is a great distraction from whatever life may have thrown at you.” For her, having MS is just another bump in life’s road—even if that means falling again and again.

Montgomery, now a freshman at Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tenn., says, “If you go into a race confidently, there should be no reason you can’t achieve the impossible.”

Along with school, track and managing her own condition, Montgomery hopes to become an ambassador for the National MS Society. Support her and others with this disease by visiting nationalmssociety.org.

The student gains motivation from another high school phenom:  “Tessa Barrett has overcome a debilitating disorder to become a national champion.” Barrett battles migralepsy, which causes migraines and occasional seizures. One tough chick inspiring another!

Recently ESPN’s news program E:60 chronicled Kayla’s story. CLICK HERE to watch. Prepare to be inspired!

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Hungry Runner Girl: 13 Things I Do When The Going Gets Tough http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/hungry-runner-girl/hungry-runner-girl-13-things-going-gets-tough_33085 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/hungry-runner-girl/hungry-runner-girl-13-things-going-gets-tough_33085#comments Mon, 24 Nov 2014 19:59:21 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=33085

When a run gets tough, try one of Janae's tactics to keep moving forward.

The post Hungry Runner Girl: 13 Things I Do When The Going Gets Tough appeared first on Women's Running.


janae 13 things

It happens to all of us at some point.  Maybe in a race, a hard workout, or a long run- we just feel off. It happens. We feel like we can’t possibly run one more step. We feel like our tank is empty mentally, physically or worst of all, both. We’ve all been there, and we have all learned to come up with ways to keep pushing ourselves forward to discover our strength and reach the goals that we have set for ourselves.

Whether you are training for your first 5k or shooting for a personal record that you didn’t think was ever possible, it is important to find what helps push yourself to the next level.

Here are 13 things that I do when the going gets tough.

1. Stay in the moment. Thinking about running five more miles when the first 21 miles of my marathon have left my legs feeling like jello is not what is going to help me to finish. Rather, I stay in the mile. I keep my brain thinking about where I am in that moment, not how much farther I have to go.

2. I think of things that I have overcome in my life. The trials, the speed bumps and the lows. It helps me to realize that I have conquered some tough stuff in the past (like we ALL have). It helps me to have confidence that I can continue to persevere when I want to quit.

3. I pump my arms harder. When I turn my attention to my arms rather than focusing on how tired my legs are, I am able to push through a tough spot. The faster I pump my arms, the faster my legs go to keep up with my arms.

4. Repeat YOUR person’s name over and over again. At mile 12.5 during my last half marathon, I started feeling really defeated. My music stopped working. I was feeling like I had already given everything I had to give. I decided to repeat my person’s name (my little girl, Brooke) in my head, which gave me the strength to keep going. Just thinking of her waiting for me at the finish line got me there.

5. Turn that power song on. Put it on repeat if you have to. Find that song that speaks to you and includes lyrics that motivate. For me, my power song is, ’Till I Collapse by Eminem: “Find that inner strength, get that motivation to not give up and not be a quitter”

6. Think about how you have done it before. There have been runs or races in the past that were tough, when you wanted to quit, when the weather was insane, but you didn’t. So don’t do it this time either.

7. I count steps. It takes my mind off of how tired I am. When I am exhausted toward the end of the race and I can barely think of much else, counting my steps for at least a few blocks helps me to push forward.

8. Remember that your brain gives up long before your body does. Your brain does this as a part of survival. It tells you that you can’t keep going…but you can. I’m not talking about unhealthy levels or behaviors, but your body has a lot more to give than we think it does.

9. Eat or drink something. Some water and a Gu always give me that boost of energy that I need to get that second wind during a tough spot in a run or race.

10. Choose a spot and get there. Then choose another one. You know that you can at least get to the next stop sign, so do it. Make mini goals along the way and use those to reach your big goal.

11. Run for someone that can’t. Think about that injured friend who wishes they were out running or that person who is going through so much right now that they can’t fit in their normal runs. Complete your run for them. I think of my dear friend’s daughter that has never been able to walk, and I run for her.

12. Visualize tying a rope to the person in front of you and have them “pull you” along. I keep imagining this until I have enough strength to do it on my own. That brain of ours is powerful and using visualizations can really keep you going.

13. Speed it up a bit, I know this sounds crazy when you are already super tired but it works for me. It takes different muscles to go different speeds so switching up the muscles you are using by increasing your speed will help with some of your muscle fatigue!

What do you do when the going gets tough? Tweet @hungryrunnergrl and @womensrunning to let us know!

The post Hungry Runner Girl: 13 Things I Do When The Going Gets Tough appeared first on Women's Running.

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Reader Run Brag Gallery 11/24/14 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/just-for-fun/reader-run-brag-gallery-112414_32976 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/just-for-fun/reader-run-brag-gallery-112414_32976#comments Mon, 24 Nov 2014 16:56:18 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32976

Marathons, turkey trots, and more! Let's see how our readers raced this weekend.

The post Reader Run Brag Gallery 11/24/14 appeared first on Women's Running.


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. 


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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/just-for-fun/reader-run-brag-gallery-112414_32976/feed 0 Inside Nike’s Brand-New Women’s Store http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/shoes-gear/inside-nikes-brand-new-womens-store_32955 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/shoes-gear/inside-nikes-brand-new-womens-store_32955#comments Mon, 24 Nov 2014 13:54:46 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32955

Nike's brand-new retail store in Orange County is just for chicks. Take a peek inside!

The post Inside Nike’s Brand-New Women’s Store appeared first on Women's Running.


Last week, Editor-in-Chief visited the brand new Nike’s Women’s store in Orange County. Take a peek inside!

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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/shoes-gear/inside-nikes-brand-new-womens-store_32955/feed 0 #CbadCait: 4 Recovery Week Problems From A Marathon Newbie http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/team-wr-2/4-recovery-week-problems-marathon-newbie_32949 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/team-wr-2/4-recovery-week-problems-marathon-newbie_32949#comments Sat, 22 Nov 2014 15:57:36 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32949

Less mileage and a stressful week made Caitlyn solve some problems with her training.

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Ah, the lovely recovery week. My wearied gams discovered that tapering during full training is much, MUCH different than sort of, not really tapering for a half. In other words, mileage still makes you tired, but less time in your running shoes makes you go insane. Womp womp. Lucky for me, one of my craziest weeks at the Women’s Running HQ happened this week, so even the slight adjustment in weekly mileage was appreciated (kind of).

In honor of shortened mileage, I will keep this brief. Here are four things that mocked me this week—and my self-made solutions to each of them:

Problem: I still want to eat everything. Food is not running. Therefore, eating everything in sight does not replace the 4-5 miles you shaved off your Thursday morning sessions. But it needs to be crunchy. I want something crunchy. 

Solution: Instead of noshing on Fritos for every meal, I grabbed an easy package of green beans—something I’ve admittedly never eaten for a snack. The crunch satisfied that strange need for a loud chew, and the veggie sugars tickled my sweet tooth in all the right spots.

Problem: I’m more stressed out. I can’t totally blame an influx in work tasks for my on-the-edge demeanor. It’s no coincidence that I’m going to bed with my work laptop and feeling an incessant need to respond to every email and text as soon as the digits change to 6:00 a.m. Last night I realized that I only saw my boyfriend once this week, and we live four miles from each other. The extra hour every morning just wasn’t cutting it for me.

Solution: Breathe. But really, $%&#ing breathe. Sometimes I just needed that reminder. A colleague and marathoner helped calm my jitters by simply offering a pep talk and yes, telling me to CALM DOWN.

Problem: Motivation declined by Friday. Due to the previous problem and an unexpected soreness from Thursday’s Pilates/yoga mashup, I slapped snooze and fell back asleep instead of hitting the pool. This caused some mental foreshadowing: Is this going to be a problem for the next eight weeks leading up to race day? This cannot be!

Solution:First, we all know throwing back warm blankets when the temperatures drop is more mental than anything. Friday’s quick fix: going nocturnal instead and still getting the 1-miler in at the pool. You know your body. If it’s really calling for some extra rest, listen to it. Pack your gear for a post-work jaunt. If it’s simply overcoming that internal lazy bum and her excuses, you have to force the issue. Many friends have asked me how I find the energy to rise early almost every morning and pound out double-digit miles. The only response I give: You force yourself for two weeks, then it gets easier. Dose of your own medicine, Cait.

Problem:I feel out of shape. It is only a recent development for me to feel confident as a runner. I can be extremely hard on myself, and I knew that would be my biggest struggle during this training. However, minimizing mileage brought back some dusty feelings of inadequacy I wasn’t expecting. To a normal person, the insecurities make zero sense and sound eye-roll worthy. But to me, I’ve felt especially lame these last five days.

Solution: Social media—true story! There’s plenty of mixed opinions when it comes to Twitter sensations and Instagram queens that share their every running move. But perhaps the critics out there simply have more inner confidence than I do. One of the blessings behind this industry is how connected you become with avid runners—women who share similar issues and aren’t afraid put them on blast to their entire network of #runnerds. To all the bloggers and social media fiends—your feeds, Tweets, photos and existence got me through this week of eating way too many brownies.

What struggles have you faced during marathon taper weeks? Tweet @caitpilk—it will help me get through my next three-week training circuit!

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Marathon Maniac: Shoe Blues http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/t-rex-runner/marathon-maniac-shoe-blues_32945 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/t-rex-runner/marathon-maniac-shoe-blues_32945#comments Fri, 21 Nov 2014 20:00:54 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32945

When a marathon maniac has to put away her running shoes, what happens to her running self?

The post Marathon Maniac: Shoe Blues appeared first on Women's Running.


marathon maniac shoe

When I walk into my closet, my running shoes are the first thing I see. It’s not that they’re front and center—I keep them hidden so I don’t have to look at them. But somehow their blue and lime-green design always peers out at me from be-hind the scarves and shirts. I hear them calling to me, asking why I have abandoned them, why they’ve had so much rest lately.

For the last 12 years, I’ve battled chronic back pain. Since I’m only 28, that’s a pretty long time. Until recently, I’d been able to more or less run through it, but this year I experienced the worst flare up of my life. The damage was bad enough to require surgery. This time I wouldn’t be able to take a couple weeks off and get back into training. It was going to be a long layoff.

Like many runners, I’m a little compulsive about the sport. If I’m not running, I’m talking about running, planning my next marathon trip or buying the latest running gear. Case in point: When my favorite running shoes were discontinued, I bought eight pairs in my size. The look on my boyfriend’s face when he saw the collection read, Is this really necessary? His well-trained mouth said, “Way to think ahead, babe.”

When I was forced to stop running, I realized just how intertwined my life is with the sport. It was enough to cause an identity crisis of epic proportions. If I can’t run, what am I going to talk about with all my running friends? What am I going to write about on my running blog? How am I going to travel if I don’t have a race to go to? Who will like me? How will I justify the amount of candy I eat?!

The thought process quickly spiraled out of control. When we spend so many hours of our lives devoted to one pursuit, our emotions, social circles, actions and, dare I say, sanity can get tangled up in the mix. By focusing on what I couldn’t do instead of what I could, I was driving myself crazy.

I decided to take a look at the other shoes in my closet. There are the cowboy boots I inherited from my great-grandfather, a square-dance caller with bizarrely small feet who shared my love for horses and country music. The dozens of heels remind me of my old office job; the hiking shoes, when I trekked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu; and the comfortable slip-ons, of sightseeing trips around the world. And of course, there are those eight brand-new pairs of running shoes, just waiting for the day when I can put them back on.

This injury hasn’t been fun, but it’s taught me a valuable lesson: I’ve got lots of shoes to fill, and not all of them involve running—just my favorite ones.

My Heart Grows Fonder
What do I miss most about running? Let me count the ways…

  • The chance to clear my brain during a hard workout.
  • The feeling of satisfaction after finishing a long run.
  • Getting beers with my friends after an easy run mid-week.
  • Having an excuse to buy new running gear.
  • Making new memories with my friends during marathon trips.

Danielle Hastings lives in South Carolina with her Rottweiler, Rocket. When she’s not running, Danielle blogs at trexrunner.com.

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Inspiration Awards: Norma Bastidas http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/inspiration/inspiration-awards-norma-bastidas_32941 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/inspiration/inspiration-awards-norma-bastidas_32941#comments Fri, 21 Nov 2014 17:00:46 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32941

After enduring personal tragedy, this mother runner turned to endurance sports.

The post Inspiration Awards: Norma Bastidas appeared first on Women's Running.



When Norma Bastidas’ oldest son was diagnosed with an incurable eye condition, the 38-year-old single mom wasn’t sure where to turn. Her child would lose his sight—and she could do nothing but stand by and watch.

To combat the stress, Bastidas started running. The Vancouver resident discovered that pounding the pavement not only made her feel more focused—it could also help her son. She wanted to do something big, so she committed to run seven ultras on seven continents in seven months, an effort she dubbed 777 For Sight.

Bastidas’ journey caught the attention of the OWN network, and she was featured in “Extraordinary Moms,” a documentary produced by Julia Roberts.

“All of the sudden, I found myself in the spotlight,” says Bastidas. “I was just doing things any mom would do to help their child, but I was being called a hero.”

Through pushing her physical limits, Bastidas discovered that she was helping herself heal as well. She tapped into fears that had been holding her back since childhood—terrifying memories of being sexually abused and kidnapped. She set another incredible goal of running from her home in Vancouver to her childhood home in Sinaloa, Mexico, a journey of more than 2,600 miles. Along the way, Bastidas found closure.

The advocate knew she needed a way to pay this forward too. This year, she partnered with iEmpathize.org to raise awareness about sexual abuse and human trafficking by completing a triathlon from Cancun, Mexico, to Washington, D.C.

The swim portion of her tri was 95 miles between two buoys set a mile apart in the Caribbean. For the bike, Bastidas rode from Cancun, through Mexico City, into the U.S. and on to LaGrange, Ga., (for a total of 2,932 miles). That’s when she started running—for 735 miles. Bastidas told herself, “It’s okay if it’s hard because when you run for a cause, every mile counts.”

On May 5, she finally made it to D.C., where she met several trafficking survivors who joined her for the last 2 miles of the run.

Bastidas says, “When I saw a 14-year-old trafficking survivor cheering for me, I realized there was not a single ounce of me that would quit—I had a promise to keep to the survivors.”

“Be Relentless,” a documentary about Bastidas’ record-breaking triathlon, will be released this December. Learn more at berelentless.iempathize.org.

“There is nobody that inspires me more than my son Karl. He has Cone Rod Dystrophy and has been losing his sight since age 11. I’ve never heard him complain, and he handles every challenge with so much dignity and positive attitude.”

RELATED: Inspiration Awards- Harriette Thompson

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Eat Pray Run DC: 5 Reasons You Should Run A Holiday Themed Race http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/eat-pray-run-dc/eat-pray-run-dc-5-reasons-run-holiday-themed-race_32936 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/eat-pray-run-dc/eat-pray-run-dc-5-reasons-run-holiday-themed-race_32936#comments Fri, 21 Nov 2014 13:00:24 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32936

Get your holiday spirit on and hit the road for a fun race!

The post Eat Pray Run DC: 5 Reasons You Should Run A Holiday Themed Race appeared first on Women's Running.



Fall is in full effect. While it isn’t officially winter yet, temperatures around the country are quickly dropping and many of us have even seen snow. I was recently in Boulder, Colorado on a business trip and the temperature was 1 degree. ONE DEGREE. That is just downright rude! What does any of this have to do with running a holiday themed race? Well, because, just like the bears, many of us like to hibernate when the temperatures drop. But why hibernate when you can run? Here are five reasons you should run a holiday themed race:

  1. Force yourself to get outside. Let’s face it. When the temperature drops, it’s so hard to find motivation to leave your warm bed, let alone the house. Sign up for a race and get yourself out your front door!
  2. Feel like a total badass. It’s 10am, it’s freezing and you’ve already raced 5 miles in a holiday themed race. AH-MAZ-ING. You’ve done more already than most people will do all day. Go ahead and post that finisher’s photo to Instagram. Feel awesome! You’ve earned it.
  3. Earn that Thanksgiving dinner! Speaking of earning, if you run a Thanksgiving day Turkey Trot, you can indulge guilt-free in all of your favorites. You’ve already burned so many calories.
  4. Help others. Many holiday themed races are fundraisers for charities. The turkey trot I run in DC each Thanksgiving raises money to help feed DC’s poor and homeless residents. The organization (So Others Might Eat) is well run. I feel good knowing that my small contribution is helping someone else on a holiday that reminds me to be grateful for all that I have.
  5. Costumes. Whether it’s a turkey trot or a holiday lights run, many people dress up in festive gear for holiday themed races. While I’m not a huge fan of running in costume (unless it’s a tutu, then I’m IN!), I LOVE seeing the creative costumes other people come up with. It definitely makes a race feel more festive!

Running a holiday themed race is an easy way to keep up your running. Have some fun and earn all the treats that seem to be everywhere during the holiday season!

Do you run any holiday themed races? Do you wear costumes? Let me know! Tweet @eatprayrundc and @womensrunning.

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Recipe: Thai Shrimp Pizza http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nutrition/recipes/recipe-thai-shrimp-pizza_32933 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/nutrition/recipes/recipe-thai-shrimp-pizza_32933#comments Thu, 20 Nov 2014 20:16:53 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32933

Why tip the pizza guy when you can bake up your own pie that really delivers?

The post Recipe: Thai Shrimp Pizza appeared first on Women's Running.


thai shrimp pizza

Any way you slice it, the popularity of pizza has never waned among hungry runners. Is there a more satisfying post-run fuel than a cold leftover slice? But all it takes is a look at the bottom of an oil-stained pizza box to realize that your takeout pie isn’t exactly a nutritional superstar. That’s why DIY pizza almost always reigns supreme. Simply choose a crust that suits your style and pile up topping combos that are good for you and tasty too. Try this Thai Shrimp Pizza for a new take on classic dinner choice.

Thai Shrimp Pizza
Serves 6

8 oz. silken firm tofu
1 1/2 Tbsp. red curry paste
3 Tbsp. unsalted smooth natural peanut butter
1 Tbsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
2 tsp. Asian chili sauce, such as Sriracha
1 tsp. honey
2 tsp. grated or minced fresh ginger
1 carrot, shredded
1 mango, thinly sliced
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 lb. large shrimp, peeled and patted dry
1/4 cup cilantro

In a small bowl, mash together the tofu and curry paste. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together peanut butter, 2 tablespoons warm water, soy sauce, rice vinegar, chili sauce, honey and ginger until smooth.

Spread tofu mixture over prepared dough, leaving 1-inch border uncovered. Top with carrot, mango, green onions and shrimp. Bake until shrimp is pink, about 10 minutes. Garnish pizza with nut sauce and cilantro.

Nutritional Info Per Serving (using whole wheat crust): 482 calories, 24g protein, 11g fat, 74g carbs, 324mg sodium

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Mile Posts: 10 Ways To Fend Off Holiday Weight Gain http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/mile-posts/mile-posts-10-ways-fend-holiday-weight-gain_32928 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/mile-posts/mile-posts-10-ways-fend-holiday-weight-gain_32928#comments Thu, 20 Nov 2014 17:50:09 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32928

Keep your health and fitness goals this season with these 10 tips from Dorothy.

The post Mile Posts: 10 Ways To Fend Off Holiday Weight Gain appeared first on Women's Running.



The winter holidays are almost here! For many of us, it truly is the most wonderful time of the year, with one very real downside: weight gain.

Here are 10 tips to help you enter 2015 feeling happy, healthy, and fit.

Don’t believe the lies you tell yourself: How many times have you said that it’s okay to stuff your face today because tomorrow you will start a new diet? You know the lies. “Tomorrow I will eat completely clean. It will be easier tomorrow. It’s okay because I will get back on track in 2015.” Your mind can convince you of almost anything, but don’t believe these lies. It’s not going to be any easier tomorrow. If you believe these lies today, what makes you think that you won’t believe them again tomorrow, and tell yourself it’s okay to overindulge every day from here until Christmas. Be honest with yourself.

You are not treating yourself by overeating: This goes right along with tip #1. When indulging, there is no reason that eating three pieces of pecan pie should be considered giving yourself a gift. One piece is slack, three is not. One of the ways I have successfully lost 7 pounds in the past 3 months is by stopping the “food is a gift” way of thinking. A gift to myself is keeping myself in check, and not letting myself get out of control.

Give yourself the gift of a workout:  I recently traveled to Las Vegas for a marathon and really wanted to fit in a workout before I left. Earlier in the year, I would have dreaded my alarm going off at 3am and hit snooze. I would have told myself it was much too early to be awake. When my alarm when off last week, I jumped out of bed and did a Jillian Michaels DVD without an ounce of regret. I gave myself the gift of a workout on a day when I knew it would make me feel better before sitting on a plane for hours. Overeating is not a gift. Doing a quick workout on a busy day is.

Offer to bring something healthy to your holiday gathering: Holiday parties and gatherings among friends and family are a constant this time of year. It’s always nice to ask the host if she/he needs to you to bring anything. If the host gives you something specific to bring, like a chocolate cake, by all means bring that chocolate cake! But you can also bring an extra item that is healthier. That item could be a healthy side dish you would like to eat, so you feel a little bit better about the slice of chocolate cake you want to have. It could also be a healthier version of your favorite dessert.

Don’t starve yourself before a giant meal: Have you ever tried skipping breakfast or even lunch in advance of a giant meal to come, only to find yourself so ravenous that you eat everything in sight as fast as you can? Eat a smaller than normal healthy meal at your regular time if you are trying to cut down on calories in advance of a big meal. This will help prevent that ravenous feeling. Go ahead and sample all the food, but keep the portions to a normal size. Then stop when you are full. The food will still be there later on that day or the next day if you really want to eat more of it.

One overindulgence doesn’t have to equal a whole day: I was one of those people who gave up on a day when I had eaten badly at one meal. I had already ruined one meal, so I would eat just about anything I wanted for the rest of the day, thinking I would start over tomorrow. Only I didn’t eat any better the next day, because it was still just as hard to resist all the treats and drinks around me. If you indulge, that’s okay. Just don’t let it become a waterfall because the day is ruined. Nothing is ruined! You ate some food you wanted to that might not have been something you would normally eat. Now you will return to being back on track.

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate, with water and tea: It’s the simplest tip. It’s always suggested for a good reason- it works! When you are in the early stages of dehydration, your body is often going to trick you into thinking you are hungry when you aren’t. Drink plenty of water and liquids, like tea, to help fill you up in between meals.

Indulge earlier in the day: If you are planning a big meal on Thanksgiving, eat that meal at lunch or late afternoon, rather than at dinner time or right before you go to bed. This gives your body a chance to burn off some of the calories before sleeping. It also allows plenty of time to take a walk as a family.

Plan out your parties: Make a decision to indulge at a couple of your obligations and keep yourself on track for the rest. Planning out the days you want to let loose helps you stick to your healthy plan. You won’t see the pounds creep up by the week.

It’s okay to say no: You don’t have to go to every party you get invited to. You don’t have to eat everything put in front of you. It’s okay to turn down something, even when a friend or family member is pressuring you. Remember this is your life, not theirs. You have a goal of “mostly” staying healthy this holiday season. You are giving yourself the gift of health. Don’t let their issues, or well intentioned guilt trips, make you feel like you have to say yes to something.

The post Mile Posts: 10 Ways To Fend Off Holiday Weight Gain appeared first on Women's Running.

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#JourneyWithSteph: Wear Your Sports Bras Loud and Proud! http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/photos/journeywithsteph-wear-sports-bras-loud-proud_32921 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/photos/journeywithsteph-wear-sports-bras-loud-proud_32921#comments Thu, 20 Nov 2014 13:32:11 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32921

Running moms- stretch marks are nothing to hide! Wear them loud and proud!

The post #JourneyWithSteph: Wear Your Sports Bras Loud and Proud! appeared first on Women's Running.


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]]> http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/photos/journeywithsteph-wear-sports-bras-loud-proud_32921/feed 0 An Ultrarunner’s Guide to Running in Snow http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/training-tips/ultrarunners-guide-running-snow_32913 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/training-tips/ultrarunners-guide-running-snow_32913#comments Wed, 19 Nov 2014 23:00:14 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32913

Hal Koerner, one of America’s best ultrarunners, shares his tips for snowy runs.

The post An Ultrarunner’s Guide to Running in Snow appeared first on Women's Running.



Hal Koerner is among America’s best ultrarunners with podium results in more than 90 ultramarathons. In his smart, down-to-earth handbook, Hal Koerner’s Field Guide to Ultrarunning, Koerner shares hard-earned wisdom, field-tested habits, and insider tips to help you prepare for your ultra. In this excerpt from his book, Koerner dispenses his expertise  for running in the snow. His tips apply not just to ultraunners, but anyone who plans to log some miles outside this winer.

The first thing to remember about snow is that it has many different personalities. It can be soft and powdery, heavy and wet, or hard packed, with each type creating its own potential hazard. Running in wintry weather means you can be enjoying an easy day, glissading down a peak, for example, and the next thing you know you are on rock-hard ice! This abrupt change presents a dangerous situation, so be familiar with what you are running on and remain alert to temperatures and terrain changes.

When you head out in snow, stay protected from the elements as best you can. Cold and its more menacing partner in crime, frostbite, can end a run quickly. Staying protected means having full coverage from your feet on up. It is common to break through the upper crust of older snow, only to ram your shins into the hard surface and cut yourself. Because of this, capris aren’t a wise choice when the course is likely to cross through snow fields; go with tights or pants instead. Also, wear higher socks, which can go over or under tights and provide much-needed insulation on your ankles, where abrasion, exposure, and frostbite are common. Further, toe socks are a potentially hazardous choice in the cold; better to allow for the heat that grouped toes create. Wear wool and technical materials, not cotton, which will chill you when it gets soggy.

As for shoes, regular shoes and wool or at least wicking socks are probably all you will need, especially in dry, light snow. In heavy, wet snow, Gore-Tex shoes can provide waterproof protection, but they can also trap water inside, adding weight and creating an unpleasant feeling, as well increasing your susceptibility to blisters. Regarding the outsole, some rubbers are better than others in snow. If you are running in a lot of snow, the main thing to look for is an aggressive tread; this helps with confidence and keeping you upright.

I like to dress in layers, such as a long-sleeved shirt coupled with a vest that covers my core but allows unrestricted arm movement. I really like wool tops, which are great insulators; wool is a natural fiber and a warm option that also works well to wick moisture as the temperature rises. These days, with advances in technical materials, you can get away with a stand-alone piece more than you used to, saving you from the need for multiple layers and having a bunch of extra clothes to deal with as you warm up.

A hat is a must: It covers your ears, an area sensitive to frostbite, and keeps you from losing heat through your head. Gloves or mittens for your hands are also essential. Gloves are a practical choice because they allow you to tie your shoes, get into zippered pockets, adjust your audio, and so on. However, mittens pool the warmth of your whole hand and are a better choice if you are concerned about frostbite. Fortunately, there are convertible mitts, which provide the dexterity of a glove with the warmth of a mitten, as a great hybrid option.

Adapted from Hal Koerner’s Field Guide to Ultrarunning with permission of VeloPress. Preview Hal’s book at www.velopress.com/hal

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Runcation Destination: Tallahassee http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/active-travel/runcation-destination-tallahassee_32906 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2014/11/active-travel/runcation-destination-tallahassee_32906#comments Wed, 19 Nov 2014 20:00:38 +0000 http://womensrunning.competitor.com/?p=32906

This panhandle capital is a runner girl’s Southern charm.

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Free of beaches but full of character, Tallahassee isn’t what you think of when you think of Florida. Nestled between the Alabama and Georgia border, this panhandle city has a campy-fun vacation feel, mixed with the energy of a college town. And for runners, there are pancake-flat trails aplenty.

“I consider Tallahassee a premier place for running,” says local runner Amanda Heidecker. “Year-round mild temperatures and lush green landscape make it comfortable and visually appealing. There are more than 600 miles of trails with varying surfaces—sand, clay, grass, shell, board-walk and asphalt—all within a 20-mile radius of downtown.”

Plus, this little Sunshine State gem harbors a ton of history. Lucky for us—the moss-draped canopy roads and accompanying paths built back in the 18th century allow for some seriously gorgeous running.

RELATED: Runcation Destination- Switzerland

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