Small Steps – Big Gains

monday motivation

Here are a sampling of some little things you can do that will add up:

  • Drink water instead of juice or soda.
  • Make brown rice or whole grain pasta instead of white rice or semolina pasta.
  • Add a veggie with every meal.
  • Eat fruit to satisfy your sweet tooth.
  • Add a few minutes of faster running, walking, swimming, riding, etc.  at the end of your workout.
  • Add an extra 10 minutes of exercise 3 times a week.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

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Some days you’re a statue…

successI like to mix up my boot-camp class with different things to keep it fresh.  Sometimes it works and sometimes, like today…not so much.

My problem this morning was that my numbers were lower than I needed to properly execute the activity.  But I plowed ahead anyway.

So after watching the workout unfold (badly) I made a quick decision to cut the activity short, regrouped, laughed about it and then moved on.

But just because my initial attempt at a new workout didn’t go as planned does not mean I won’t try again.   You only fail when you stop trying, right?

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

If they worked, it wouldn’t be called a short cut..it would just be the norm

The truth is, there no such thing as taking a short cut to better health and/or fitness.  It takes focus, commitment, dedication and a very high level of sticktoitness.

Sure, there are people who want to sell you potions, pills or programs and promise you results.  And yes, some of these products or plans work in the short term.

But true results; long lasting, permanent results comes from good old fashioned hard work.  It’s chicken and veggies when you’re craving a cheeseburger and fries.  It’s going for a run when you’d rather watch Bravo. It’s  working to reach your goals no matter what or who is trying  (subconciously or blatantly) to derail you.

And this takes time.  You are a work in progress but you’ll get there.  Every healthy food choice, every workout is taking you one step closer to your goal.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

The Power of a Positive Morning Routine

catMorning is hectic.  Whether you managing yourself and/or spouse or trying to get 1, 2 or even 4 kids out the door to school, and yourself to work or to your appointments it’s usually a mad flurry of activity, stress and in my house, loud voices.  And let’s be honest, this mad dash and increased stress and tension at 8:00am really does start us off on the rails and can have a negative impact on our day.

We can’t eliminate the fact that people have to be places and odds are it may be your job to get them there.  So we’ll call that a given.

But what we can do is learn to set up your morning routine so it can run more smoothly and in turn send you out the door in a more positive frame of mind.

  1.  Make the List.  Before you tuck you and yours into bed take 5 minutes to write your to do list for the next day.  Such as exercise (that should be #1), scheduling appointments, that you need to meet with department heads, writing an article, buying a birthday card for your sister or taking the kids to the zoo.  Having this list prepared allows you to wake up and have your plan of attack in place.
  2. Get your stuff together.  Lay out or know what you’ll wear (especially so you don’t have to dig for workout clothes at 5:15am).  Charge your phone, make sure you have what you need for work ready to go (computer, cords, calendar, etc.)  Like the Boy Scouts, be prepared.
  3. Train your kids.  I have a family rule that roughly goes like this; your inability to be prepared is not my problem.  So if someone (I’m not naming names) has a softball game today,  the odds are one knew about it say yesterday, so one should make sure one know where the gear and uniform is in one’s room.  Yelling at me to find something is not acceptable nor will it be acknowledged.  Unless it’s the 4th time I’ve been hollered at from down the hall and then I will yell even louder. (What can I say? I’m a work in progress too.)
  4. Upon waking drink a big glass of water. You’ve been asleep for 6-8 hours so you are probably dehydrated.  Have some H2O, then drink your coffee.
  5. Workout.  A habit only becomes a habit with consistency.  Now if you have a big meeting or your kids need to get somewhere early and can’t do your full workout do something for 10 minutes.  Even if it’s jumping jacks, marching in place or a quickie body weight circuit.  Get the blood flowing and it will improve your mood instantly.  If you exercise after work, I encourage you to do at least 3-5 minutes of something in the morning too.  Just to wake you up and get oxygen.
  6. Say Good Things.  Don’t start the day with negative self talk.  Maybe your skirt is tight or you feel sluggish from too much wine with friends the night before or you feel badly for yelling at the kids or arguing with your spouse. Beating yourself up for how undisciplined you are or how bad of a parent you are is pointless. You can always fix what’s broke but not by tearing yourself down.

So take a deep breath, look at yourself in the mirror, smile and tell yourself how great you are and what a great day you’re going to have.  You’ve got this.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

Spring Races

Having races on your calendar is a great way to push yourself to the next level in your training.  Here are a few of the races that I’ve either signed up for or are interested in.

12651366_1119737321404525_4838889025019815138_nSan Francisco Challenge / Urban Scavenger Hunt – March 19, 2016

Think Amazing Race Lite.  This 5K takes you through the City solving clues and completing challenges.  Not quite a fitness event but it might be a great way for team or friend bonding.  Plus there’s prizes, snacks and a team costume competition.  It looks like it’s totally family friendly too.  Click here for details.

nightSweatsPacific Coast Trail Runs Night Sweats Spring Run – 8K, 15K and Marathon – April 2, 2016

This Night Marathon, 8 Km and 15 Km begins at Rodeo Beach. You will see from several vantage points on the trail the beauty of the lights of San Francisco, Tiburon and the Bay Bridge.  The trail is marked with glow sticks and reflective ribbon to keep you safely on course. They employ the same safety procedures used for their 100-mile nighttime events.  So they know what they are doing.   Click here for more details.  I am doing the shorter distance for this run.

logo@2xRock N Roll San Francisco Half Marathon – April 3, 2016

This series hosts runs across the country.  Music.  Cool locations.  Fun Finisher Medals.  It’s a great time.  Click here for more details.

P10-Levis_Logo-01Levi’s Presidio 10 – 10 miler, 10K or 5K – April 17, 2016

This run is a fundraising event for the Guardsman and it’s a very well-run race from my previous experience.  Added bonuses are that the 10 mile and 10K distances have you running across the GG Bridge and there’s a hot breakfast and festivities after the race.  Click here for more details.  I’m signed up for the 10 miler.

12670159_10156407989015167_4574996627822308198_nMuir Woods Marathon, Half Marathon and 7 Mile Trail Run – May 14, 2016

Not for the faint of heart but worth the climb! Starting at Stinson Beach you’ll be heading, up, up and away into the thick wooded trails of Muir Woods. You’ll follow the legendary Dipsea trail to Steep Ravine, where you’ll climb a wooden ladder, march up natural rock and wooden staircases and scramble under tree trunks. Along the way, enjoy the sounds of babbling brooks and waterfalls. Drink in the fresh smell of the towering redwoods and oaks that surround you. Click here for more details.

zapposB2Blogo2016Bay to Breakers 7 Mile Run – May 15, 2016

The Bay to Breakers has run continuously for over 100 year as a staple to the City by the Bay. With a starting point near the San Francisco Bay, a few blocks from The Embarcadero, the 12K race runs west through the city and finishes at the Great Highway where breakers crash onto the Pacific Coast’s Ocean Beach. It’s a wild run so be prepared for anything!  Click here for more details.

10-Rodeo-BaseRodeo Valley Trail Run 8K, Half Marathon, 30K and 50K

Starting just steps away from historic Fort Cronkhite, this trail race is comprised of steep pitches and lofty downhill sections as it undulates the beautiful Marin Headlands hills and coastline. Coastal trail and Pirates cove provide astonishing views of the Pacific ocean, while glimpses of San Francisco and the Golden Gate bridge appear as you traverse the SCA Trail single-track.  I’ve signed up for the half marathon.  Wish me luck!  If you want to join in the fun, click here for details.

Remember, stepping outside of your running comfort zone can bring great rewards.  All you need to do is say “yes” and you’ve created an opportunity for growth!  And you never know where it can take you.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

Now For Something Entirely Different

One word.  Podcasts.  podcast

I have a friend who loves them.  Just loves them.  But I just couldn’t quite get into them because when I go for a run I don’t want to fiddle with finding something to listen to and then it running out (no pun) while I was halfway through my 4 mile loop.  I am such a creature of habit that my “Keli’s Running” playlist on iTunes hadn’t been updated in about 5 years.

But over the winter holidays I started some personal development reading and stumbled across some motivational podcasts that I thought might be interesting to listen to on a run. I opened up the Ziglar Show, it’s heavy on goal setting, personal success, leadership, etc., so I decided to give it a shot.

I didn’t think I’d be able to focus on a podcast since my mind tends to wander but it’s amazing what you can learn when you just start to listen.  I like the motivational podcasts because I come back from a run feeling very inspired and ready to take on the day.  But since I’m a runner, I’ve also added a running podcast, Another Mother Runner, and a guided meditation one.

Meditation?  Well, I have tried meditating set to a timer but this guy has a delightful British accent that is very relaxing and great for when I’m trying to wind down.  It’s definitely not good for running!

I’m also finding that having a podcast lined up gets me motivated to get out of the house because I know I have something interesting to listen to.  I know many runners who listen to audio-books feel the same way.

And as I’m listening, I think to myself that I have so much to say that maybe one day I’ll start up a podcast. You never know, stranger things have happened!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

 

 

 

By Jove, I Think He’s Got It

The first 10, sometimes even 20 minutes of a run usually don’t feel good; mentally or physically.   It’s too dark or too bright, you’re too tired or really too tired and your body is stiff from sitting all day or it’s so dang early you’re still half asleep.

Some days, especially in the dead of winter I would rather sleep in.  But I get up and go because:

  1. it’s a well-established habit
  2. I know that I’ll feel so much better once I get past the first mile or so

That’s when the ‘runner’s high’ kicks in and any feelings of ‘meh’ or ‘whatever’ melt away.  The ‘runner’s high’ is the rush of endorphins that a lot of runners get after about 10 or 20 minutes into their run.   It can be a big swooshy feeling of love for what you are doing or a begrudging “this is not so bad” acknowledgment or something in between.

Once we hit this mother lode we are golden.  No, this doesn’t mean our runs will be like dancing with unicorns on a glittery rainbow but it may make you want to run a little faster, a little farther or you are just feeling really good!  (Until you’re not – but that’s distance running which we won’t tackle today!)

If you are new to this sport, however, you may not have been able to get to the 10 minute mark yet.  And so this ‘runner’s high’ of which we speak is as foreign as Sanskrit.

Brad, my husband, has started running.  He has brand new running shoes and has been going out on his own for short runs.  And so far it was going ok, but he’s struggled a bit.  To find his pace or any joy in the task!

But I started to notice a subtle shift.    After one run he came back and said he ran the loop only stopping a few times.  A week later it was that he did the loop with less stops and then it was the loop without stopping.

This past Thursday morning he went for a run and when he came back I asked him how it went.  And out of his mouth came the words I have been longing to hear.

“I got to the corner and felt ok so I decided I could run farther.  It was a good run.”

Big deal, you may be thinking.  The guy only ran an extra 35 seconds.  And yeah, in the whole scheme of distance and time you’re right.  But he finally got what I’ve telling him and anyone else who will listen.

If you are patient, and don’t give up you’ll get there.  For you it may mean running more than walking.  You may be able to run a loop without stopping.  It may be tackling a hill or adding 5 minutes to your run or walk.

The point is not what you do, it’s that you do it.  Because the reward is #awesome.  Just like running.  And you!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂