Tag Archives | Running

Kaiser Half Marathon | Second Edition

I caught the racing bug two years ago, but unfortunately between a chronic back injury and foot issues, I’ve never been able to maintain a strict training schedule. But I don’t let either of those issues get in the way of my love of running, or the fun I have signing up for and tackling half marathon races.

For my first race of 2018 I decided on the Kaiser Half Marathon, which I ran last February as well. I enjoyed my first attempt at this course so it seemed like a good choice.

As it turned out, I found that I had to psych myself up for the race in a way that I have never had to before. Why? I got a PR last year on this course – Breaking my goal to get under 1:50 – And going into the race this year, I knew that I couldn’t push myself quite as hard. While I understood intellectually and rationally that my body wasn’t up for the same level of punishment, I had trouble taking my ego out of the equation.

Perhaps it’s my nature, perhaps it’s a byproduct of starting competitive athletics at a young age – But I am in it to win it. And my favorite opponent? Myself! I live for breaking my own records and shattering milestones that I’ve put in place for myself.

So I headed into this race with my mind in a war with itself. On one hand, I wanted a new PR! On the other hand, I really wanted to be able to walk after the race.

Kaiser Half Marathon Running Runner Fitlife Fitspo San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger

{Lululemon Tight Stuff Running Tights // Lucy Racerback Tank Top // Brooks Ghost 10 Running Shoes // Long-sleeved Asics t-shirt}

  • Course: This course was just as beautiful as I remembered. I love the Golden Gate bridge views from the San Francisco Half and the Golden Gate Half, but this jaunt through the park and along the Great Highway/Highway 1 is simply stunning.
  • Organization: I had my bib delivered so I didn’t get a chance to see the race expo. Race day was quite organized though, with plenty of volunteers, a giant field full of porta potty facilities, and lots of water stations along the course. This race also starts on the late side – 8:10am – So it’s fully light and everything is easy to find.
  • Race Day Vibes: It might be the location or the late start, but there is always a MASSIVE crowd for this race. Families stand outside their apartments on the panhandle cheering with signs and bowls of orange slices. People are walking their dogs in the park and cheering from the paths near the race. And there are crowds lined up along the Great Highway jumping up and down and keeping everyone motivated and moving forward.
  • Personal Performance: Here’s where I have to separate out, as best I can, an objective overview of my performance versus my secret hopes for the race. My number one goal, as always, was to finish. Done. Next, I really wanted to try to listen to my body throughout the race and adjust as needed to ensure that I didn’t injure myself. Done. Finally, I really wanted to run the race in under 2 hours after hitting 02:02 at the SF Half over the Summer. Done. So, in terms of those goals, I succeeded. Also, I really enjoyed the race. So I’m going to chalk this up as a win!

Are YOU a runner? Would you sign up for a half marathon?

Continue Reading · Comments { 0 }

Top Tips to Start Running

Running is an amazing workout and it’s an easy, no-equipment-needed type of activity, which is great for beginners. Anyone can run and all you really need are tennis shoes.

That being said, I hear people all the time complaining about not knowing where to start or what the first step is to becoming a “runner.”

Tips for Beginning Runners Beginner Running Fitspo Fitlife San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger Products Essentials

I love to run and initially started about 10 years ago, though I only fell in “can’t live without it” love about 3 years ago and just caught the racing bug over the last year.

  1. Outfit yourself – While shoes are really the only thing you need, you may also want a hat or visor and headphones. Head into a running shoe store and have yourself fitted for your beginner pair of sneakers.
  2. Find out how YOU like to run – This is actually a two-part equation. You need to decide if you like to run indoors or outdoors AND you need to figure out whether you’re a solo runner or a group runner. I’m one of those people who took up running just to get outside, so you’ll never find me on a treadmill. But you’ll have to do your own research and see what works best for you.
  3. Walk it Out – Start by walking and going for short jogs, and work your way up. You don’t become a “runner” overnight. Walk, jog, run-walk, run. You just gradually build up your distance at your own comfort level. That’s what’s great about running, you can do it at 100% your own pace.
  4. Intervals – One minute of running, two minutes of walking. One minute of running, one minute of walking. One minute of running, one minute of jogging. Then build up.
  5. Download – A fitness app, like Nike, or a Couch to 5k app, are a great way to track you runs and stay motivated. You can even create a running program for yourself and work each week to keep up on your schedule.

Are YOU a runner – How did you start? Any tips for a beginner? If you’re not – What’s holding YOU back?

Continue Reading · Comments { 0 }

The SF Half Marathon | Second Edition

Last weekend I tackled the SF Half Marathon for the second year in a row. Last Summer this race was my very first Half Marathon and set off months of excited running and racing. Between the end of July and the beginning of February I did four races – The SF Half Marathon, the Women’s Health 10K, the Golden Gate Half Marathon, and the Kaiser Half Marathon.

When I signed up a few months ago, after taking a little break from running, I was extremely excited. I started a new training program and was setting some goals for myself to work on over the Spring and beginning of the Summer.

Unfortunately, a week before the race, I re-injured my back. With an existing spinal injury, running is all about finding that delicate balance and I work hard to find a program that works for my needs {I talk more about my training in Race Training for the Injured.}

SF Half Marathon Running Runner Run Diary Fitspo Fitlife San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger Training

{Lululemon Tight Stuff Running Tights // Lucy Racerback Tank Top // Saucony Guide 10 // long-sleeved Asics shirt}

  • Course: Since I moved to South Beach last year I’ve had little to absolutely zero hill exposure during my weekly runs. Needless to say, I wasn’t excited for the hilly stretches… But, despite that, the San Francisco Half Marathon is one of the most beautiful courses I’ve ever run. From the Ferry Building along the Embarcadero and around Fort Mason until you’re running straight down Marina Blvd surrounded by fog and stretching to see the Golden Gate Bridge as the sun comes up. Just amazing!
  • Organization: The expo for this race is serious business – From gear and tech gadgets to food, drinks, and supplements. They’ve got it all. The big day went smoothly as well, the volunteers were great, and the aid stations were excellent. I loved the Gu Energy Chews available on the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • Race Day Vibes: It was a MASSIVE crowd. Finding your wave and the right start time was a little intimidating with the sheer number of people milling about, but everyone was excited and encouraging which helped ease the tension. The post-race vibe was great too – Everyone was so psyched and all the volunteers I chatted with after finishing were funny and helpful.
  • Personal Performance: After re-injuring my back, I wasn’t actually sure whether I was going to be able to run. Each day I felt a little bit better so I tried to keep an open mind and just waited to see how I felt on Saturday. Truthfully, I went out to the starting line Sunday morning planning to just start the race and see what happened. I wasn’t sure if I’d walk the course, just run a mile or two, or turn right around and go home. Luckily I found a friend a few miles in and we kept ourselves relaxed and enjoying the race, and I was able to finish the full 13.1 miles. So, while this race wasn’t anywhere near a PR, I would call it one of my favorites because I was just so thrilled to be out there!

This is the third post in my Virgin Sport #GoFitYourself series to get us all excited and prepared for the Virgin Sport Fitness Festival in October {check out the first post here – Virgin Sport San Francisco}. If you want to join me in October to celebrate fitness, or run the SF Bay Half Marathon, I’m excited to say that I have a discount for anyone who wants to join!

Use “LAVIE” and you’ll get $10 off the cost of registration for the SF Bay Half Marathon.

Sigh up here!

Have YOU run a half marathon? Does everything always go okay on race day?

Continue Reading · Comments { 0 }

Race Training: What I Eat on Training Days

Training for a race is a lot of work – Running, cross training, recovering, keeping yourself healthy, and – My favorite part – Fueling your body.

As I talked about in my Race Training for the Injured post – I love running, but due to my chronic injuries, I’m not able to follow a standard training program.

Even with only one run a week in my program, I’m still working very hard in preparation for my next race, and fueling my body with whole foods. And plenty of them.

My diet right now is decently high in carbs and fat, and really high in protein. A challenge with a vegetarian diet, but not impossible.

Race Training What I Eat on Training Days Running Runner Half Marathon Vegan Gluten-Free Paleo Vegetarian San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger

Here’s a peek into what I’ll eat on a standard running day.

  • 7am – Coffee or tea & half of a No Cow Bar
  • 8am – Head out for a run w/ the other half of the No Cow Bar in the pocket of my running tights
  • 10am – As soon as I’m home from my run I’ll make a quick smoothie
  • 11am – After the quick hit of carbs and protein from the smoothie, I’ll make something more substantial like a veggie scramble. High in protein, fiber, vitamins & minerals
  • 2pm – Pasta made with zucchini noodles and chopped veggies & tomatoes
  • 5:30pm – A large salad or roasted vegetables with a veggie burger on the side
  • 7pm – Bedtime snack of apples or rice cakes with Fluffbutter

What do YOU eat on training days? How do you fuel your runs?

Continue Reading · Comments { 0 }

Race Training for the Injured

As a long-time athlete, I’ve learned a lot about my body. For the most part, I can tell when I should sit something out, and when I can push myself. I’ve trained and competed while injured many times of the years. Broken collarbones {gymnastics}, dislocated shoulders {volleyball}, and spinal injuries {diving} haven’t done much to slow me down over the years. But what they have done is taught me how to listen to my body and how to train smarter instead of longer/harder.

Race Training Running Runner FitLife San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger Street Style

Leggings & Tank – Fabletics

Active Colorblock Windbreaker – Forever 21

Sneakers – Saucony

Here are a few things that I’ve learned to apply to my programming over the years:

  1. Rest when needed – No matter how careful you are with training, you will hit a wall at some point. You need to learn to listen to your body and realize when fatigue can’t be pushed through.
  2. Recovery is vital – Giving your body time to recover is important, but you also need to think about the foods that you put in your body which also impact your recovery.
  3. Fuel is everything – How you fuel your body before, during, and after training is imperative for keeping your body in top condition. All of your hard work will be wasted if you try to keep yourself going on Hot Pockets and Coke.
  4. Invest in your equipment – Whether that means a bike or running shoes, you want to research what will work best for your needs. Quality equipment can stave off injury as well as help you heal.

Race Training Running Runner FitLife San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger Street Style

So how have I applied these to my own training? With back and feet injuries, I realized that following a traditional half marathon training schedule wasn’t feasible. Attempting 2-3 runs a week left me in so much pain that I couldn’t get through all the runs and my cross-training.

What works for me is, like I spoke about in my Workout Schedule: Weight Training & Race Prep post, is one run a week. I do either a longer, somewhat slower run, or a shorter, faster run. From a cardiovascular standpoint I’m capable of running 13 miles if I manage my pace, so training is much more about preparing my body to take the intense physical beating. 3-7 miles once a week does just that – My joints and muscles stay in top shape, without being overworked to the point of increasing my pain levels.

Race Training Running Runner FitLife San Francisco Bay Area Fashion Food Fitness Lifestyle Blogger Street Style

{Photography by Brad Wittke of Pacifica Gallery}

I’m sure by now some of you are thinking – Why do you keep running?

Because I love it!

I started running in my 20’s to get outside when I became utterly sick of the gym, and I quickly became addicted. And I just LOVE racing. I may not be fast, but the excitement and fun and rush of race day is a total blast.

I’d love to try a half triathlon in the future, but for now I’m stick to a few foot races a year. In the past year I ran five – The Guardsmen Presidio 10 Mile Race, the San Francisco Half Marathon, the Women’s Health 10k to benefit the Feed Project, the Golden Gate Half Marathon, and the Kaiser Half Marathon.

Have YOU ever trained for a race or competition while injured? Any tips?

Reminder: I’m not a doctor and I don’t have background on your specific injury/injuries. Please do not take this post as a personal recommendation to you for race training – Please speak to your doctor about what would work best for you.

Continue Reading · Comments { 0 }