The Daily Dozen

I’m a big fan of Dr. Michael Greger.  He’s a physician, author, and internationally recognized speaker on a number of important public health issues. His nonprofit, NutritionFacts.org is a science-based, non-commercial website to provide free daily videos and articles on the latest discoveries in nutrition.  If you’re an information nerd like I am you’ll find this stuff fascinating.

In his book “How Not to Die” (http://NutritionFacts.org/book) he shares his “Daily Dozen”, which is Dr. Greger’s list dentifying the healthiest, nutritious foods to eat and how many servings of each we should try to consume every day.  (Technically there are 10 foods but he includes water and exercise and 11 and 12).

He also has a free app, Dr. Greger’s Daily Dozen that you can download (for iPhone and Android phones).  I use it as a reminder to include these healthy foods/habits every day and some folks actually check off the boxes available to track their servings.

It’s a simple way to be mindful of what you’re eating and helping you stay on point. And I like simple.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Who’s Ready for Week 4?

I love a 30 day challenge.  I know, you’ve heard.  I find them very motivating and enjoy the act of having something to do every day.  If, however, you’ve been floundering here’s a little secret.

Making a conscious decision that you are going to stick with a challenge for 30 days is the challenge.

Ahhh young grasshopper…you have much to learn.

Once you flip the switch from “maybe” to “yes”, the struggle is over.  Objections melt away.  It’s not whether you will, your only decision becomes when?

Digest that nugget for a bit.  It’s a game-changer.

Here’s Week 4 of the 30 Day Boot-Camp Challenge.  Enjoy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s a pdf for you to print out if that’s easier.  Boot-Camp Workout Calendar Week 4

Here’s a refresher of the exercises.  30 Day Boot-Camp Challenge Day Exercise Explanations

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

Scared Straight

With most of my fav tv shows on hiatus for the holidays I turned to Netflix for some viewing enjoyment.  Now many of you know how much I like mindless entertainment.  Too much to be sure.  But as I was browsing the cue I found a documentary that looked interesting and one begat another and so on.  So here’s the list of what I watched over my winter break.

  • The Barkley Marathons
  • Finding Traction
  • From Fat to Finish Line
  • Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead
  • Sugar-Coated
  • Hungry For Change

Running, nutrition and the dangers of sugar and processed food.  Fun stuff.

The Barkely Marathons and Finding Traction are about running; ultra and super extreme running.  Waaaay outside of my comfort zone but I enjoy watching people push themselves (from the comfort of my living room as I folded laundry).

From Fat to Finish Line was about a dozen folks running the Ragnar Florida Keys race.  The Ragnar is a 200ish-mile relay race with teams of 12 split into 2 vans of 6.  I’ve run a few and written about them before.  This story highlighted these people because they all had significant weight losses and took up running during their journey.  Truly inspiring stuff.

All of these movies shared the truly transformational effect that running has on people and more importantly how people can accomplish their goals.  Amazing.

I believe in the power of healthy eating and the importance for good health.  And I consider myself to be pretty knowledgeable about nutrition, as well as the problem of excess sugar and processed food in a typical diet.  Or at least I thought I did before watching Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead, Sugar-Coated and Hungry for Change. Well.  Mind.  Blown.

In a nutshell (because I could not do any of them justice in trying to adequately describe them), we are in big trouble.  We, the American people, eat crap, drink crap and are overweight.  Now don’t get all crazy on me.  I know there are very healthy communities and very healthy people withing those communities.

But the majority of adults over age 20 in the US are overweight.  And it’s not just adults.  Check out these stats below.

  • Percent of adults age 20 years and over with obesity: 37.9% (2013-2014)
  • Percent of adults age 20 years and over with overweight, including obesity: 70.7% (2013-2014)

Source: Health, United States, 2015, table 53 [PDF – 9.8 MB]

  • Percent of adolescents age 12-19 years with obesity: 20.6% (2013-2014)
  • Percent of children age 6-11 years with obesity: 17.4% (2013-2014)
  • Percent of children age 2-5 years with obesity: 9.4% (2013-2014)

Source: Health, United States, 2015, table 53 [PDF – 9.8 MB]

So many people think that exercise is a huge factor in weight loss.  And don’t get me wrong, I’m the first one to tell you that exercise is VITAL for a healthy life.  But the reality is that if you don’t change your diet, you cannot change your body.  And I’m not talking just about thin thighs or a six-pack.  I’m talking about your metabolic system, your organ health, your overall health.  See our body is a perfectly functioning machine. Before we muck it up with a Big Gulp and fries.

And while a few of the movies promote vegetarian lifestyles as well as juice fasts, etc.  I think that if we committed to eating at least 6-8 servings of (mostly) vegetables and fruits and cut out all or even just half of the processed foods and sugary drinks consumed we would be in much better shape.  Literally and figuratively.

Food for thought, right?

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lucky 13

The Plan

So this was the 13th week of my training.  I had a long run and some speed work tossed in to the mix.  In full disclosure, the Thursday tempo runs cause me anxiety. Speed work is my mental kryptonite.

But there’s no ‘opt-out’ button in my training.  I mean I could skip things that I don’t like but I’m no quitter and if my plan says speed work or track workouts or whatever I do it.  I just embrace the discomfort and bust my, um sweet cheeks.  🙂

Now the long slow run I’m used to.  You put one foot in front of the other at a consistent pace.  Check.   This weekend was my 20.  What can you say about running a 20 mile run in your neighborhood?  I notice the houses that are for sale, the rentals that are looking for tenants, who’s doing landscaping, who needs to do landscaping and how many people let their dogs leave their um, droppings along the sidewalk. I also feel like my very own Neighborhood Watch – on the lookout for shenanigans.  You’re welcome.

Before I forget, I have to give a huge shout out to my friend Noel for driving up alongside me and saying Hi as I was at Mile 12 of my 20 miler on Sunday!  It was the highlight of my run.

Here’s my recap.  week-13-12

The Food

Two bright spots.  1)  It’s pomegranate season and 2) our avocado tree in Petaluma is yielding some fruit.  Happy dances commence.

I wanted to do some baking this week (remember the energy bars I mentioned recently?) but didn’t get around to it.    I made a big pot of soup, a pasta dish and cooked a huge package of chicken breasts.  Having things on hand make it much easier for me but according to my kids, my culinary skills were lacking.

Yoga/Stretching and Body Work

Here’s what I’m noticing.  I’m sore after a long run but I’m recovering very quickly.  And this is without icing, Ibuprofen or alcohol!  The only thing that’s a bit rough are Monday mornings.  I teach a 5:30am class and am stiff at the outset as we move along and around the neighborhood.  But about 10 minutes in I feel fine.  I’ll credit yoga and my stretching regime for the recovery.

So coming in to Week 14 I was expecting the taper.  And nothing. In fact, I have 2 long runs this week, both with fast finishes.  Today’s went well and I’m confident for Sunday’s run, I just have to figure out where to go.

I’m into the final weeks.  The homestretch.  Looking forward to the taper.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

An Even Dozen

Week 12 is in the books.  And now I have slightly less than 30 days to go until race day.  Gulp.  Sh*t is getting real.

The Plan

In a nutshell; there was a lot of running goin’ on last week!  My old pal, Yasso was back and I have to say I had a fun track workout. I got there at 5:50am and it was pitch black and the regular track-walking crew hadn’t yet shown up so I ran up and down the street until they arrived.  Now, I don’t know these folks, but knowing they were there with me made me feel much more safe.

Anyway, back to the workout.  Yasso 800’s are a good test run for a marathon; you run 2 laps around a track (800 meters) in minutes that is your marathon race goal (then you recover and do it 9 more times – keeping that same pace).  So my goal is 4 hrs, 15 minutes for the marathon so I aimed for 4:15 800’s.  I ended up doing all of them at or slightly faster than 4:08.  And I got them done before the high schoolers started PE.  Bonus!

The long run on Sunday was another ‘fast finish’ run.   You do a long slow pace for the first 10-12 miles then finish at marathon pace for the next 6-8 miles.  Sounds good but turning up the speed at mile 10, 11 or 12 is the challenge.  You are teaching your body to work through muscle fatigue.  And general fatigue as well.

I have some minor things to work on before race day but I felt strong for most of it. Running solo, even with the Hamilton soundtrack as company is not easy.  But I’ll be running this race without a posse or a group (except for the runners around me) so it’s good practice to rely on myself to get over tough spots.  Repeat after me, ‘mental toughness’.

Here’s how my week went.

week-12-1

The Food

Listen, if you want to eat somewhat healthfully you have to take care of the two P’s.  Planning and preparation.  Some people get hung up on the planning part and I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to spend 4 hours chopping and cutting veggies on a Sunday.   Be smart.  What can you make on Monday that you can reheat for lunch or dinner the next day?  Veggie lasagne, crock pot dishes, roasted pans of veggies, soups and large salads are all things that can be made once, eaten twice or even three times.  Salads can be refreshed during the week and veggies can be paired with a roasted chicken or ground beef and rice.  Think eating smarter, not harder.

I plan dinner for the week, figuring out what days we’ll eat out or have plans where we will be eating at different times due to sports, etc.  The night before long runs I make pasta.  For lunches I make a huge salad or soup and eat that and breakfast rotates between a yogurt parfait or eggs on toast.   Find what you like and go from there.

Yoga/Stretching and Body Work

I am really happy that my body is recovering well and managing the training distances.  Sure there are some aches and pains when I finish a long run but that’s to be expected.  I give credit to stretching, yoga when I can fit it in and mobility exercises.  Also, I found the LAX ball and my foam roller is my new BFF.

Until about 6 months ago I was never a stretcher.  Like most of you I would go for a run, shower, dress and then get out the door to work.  Color me converted.  And if you want to keep running or doing the activities you enjoy, take 5 or 10 minutes once or twice a day for some mobility work and add yoga to your workout regimen. Your body with thank you

Oh wait!  I forgot.  Core work.  Having a strong core will save your bacon on long runs.   More on that Friday.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

Happy Halloween!

pumpkinHappy Halloween!  Today was our annual pumpkin workout at boot-camp.  It just goes to show that you can get a great sweat on with or without any traditional equipment. 

We’re *this* close to November and we have some big things planned.

You know we talk a big game here about healthy eating and exercise.  In November we’ll be providing more useful tips and  a lot of real-life strategies that will help you stay on track during the festive and oh-so-fun holidays.  

And don’t forget to mark your calendar for our Annual Turkey Trot!  Stay tuned for details on our Thanksgiving Day event. 

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

Following the Plan

Today was a really rainy day in my neck o’ the woods.  Luckily I don’t mind the rain.   And even if I did, it wouldn’t matter because I don’t have a back up plan for my training runs.  So into the dark and rainy morning I went and 8.42 miles later I sloshed back to the house, sopping wet head to toe.  Check.

The Plan

Week 10 was a huge week, the highest weekly mileage to date and 2 hard runs.  The first long run on Thursday was 10 miles and 6 of those were at tempo run pace of 8:35 per mile.  It was a good run but I was really tired the rest of the day.

Then the longer run on Sunday was 16-18 miles with the last 6 or 8 of it at marathon pace.  Overall I’d say it was a great run.  My last part was a smidge slower than I planned but there wasn’t any (please forgive the foul language) “mind-fuckery” that often gets in the way of my training.   So I consider it a victory.

Here’s how the week ended.

week-10-1

 

 

 

The Food

Yep.  Still hungry.  But not allowing myself that “oh I’m training for a marathon so I deserve mountains of food”.  I’m just kind of eating what my body needs and allowing some treats.  Wish I could share some very wise nutrition tips but, yeah, nothing.  🙂

Yoga/Stretching and Body Work

Well, something had to give.  And I’m sad that yoga has had to take a back seat to the couch stretch and other pre and post-run stuff.  I fit in a few short practices last week and I’ll be back but I have to cut myself some slack.

The stretching I force myself to do after a run is really helping.  Sure, my body will be tired but I’m not particularly sore.  Ok, when I wake up in the morning after a long run I’m stiff but just until I get moving.  But I’m not in pain.  If that makes sense.

Do I sound a little short this week?  My daughter told me last night that I’ve been snappy and on my run this morning I realized she was right.  So I had to have a family meeting this morning to explain that this training has been long and hard and I still have to work and take care of the normal day to day things that goes with being an adult so I asked them to cut me a little slack.   And I promised to chill a bit.  Then we awkwardly hugged it out.

This week’s training looks interesting.   I don’t have a big run but some speed work on Thursday and Sunday.  We’ll see how it goes.

Thanks for following my journey.  I appreciate the support!

Now go run!

Keli 🙂