Summer Running 2.0

Running in ideal conditions is hard enough as is, let alone in 90 degree heat in 90% humidity at 9 o’clock in the morning when you could still be sleeping. Because of this, I’m up for anything that’ll make it less miserable–and why I’ve gathered a few tips & tricks to share with you and make running this summer a little more fun. 😛

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Tip #1: Go early. I know, I know. I’m cringing too. But, it makes a h u g e difference conditions-wise. For my school’s cross country summer camp, we meet at 7 in the morning, and while that is painfully early, it’s often ten-to-twenty degrees cooler and significantly less humid than it’ll be even a few hours later. Plus, by going for a run not long after you wake up, you don’t have to worry about eating something before you go. By the time you finish showering off after your run, you’re ready for breakfast and you still have your whole day ahead of you to do with what you please. It might take a day or two to adjust to running earlier, but trust me, you won’t regret it!

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Tip #2: Track your runs with some sick gear. I’m someone who likes to be in-the-know and I’m proud of it. I like to know what’s going on, be it the endings of books or plot twists in movies or, in this case, my running stats. I recently broke my old green watch (RIP Garmin Forerunner 10) and replaced it with it’s older sister that’s got a few more bells and whistles. 🙂 I now use the Garmin Forerunner 25 (linked above), which not only gives you the standard features (GPS, pace, distance, etc.) but also provides bluetooth connectivity that syncs up with your phone whenever it’s turned on. Garmin also has a pretty decent app set up (it’s similar to the Fitbit app, if you’re familiar with that) where you can view your progress, as well as connect with friends or family members also on the app. This watch also can act as an activity tracker, counting steps and tracking your sleep, if you so choose. I don’t use it for this particular factor, only because it doesn’t really go with my usual style. 😉 Using a watch also makes keeping track of pace and distance much easier while running. I highly recommend it! 

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Tip #3: Get a good playlist goingMusic makes such a massive difference while running, and because we don’t get to use it during cross country runs, it makes it more of a treat when I do get to have it. It makes running by yourself a little less lonely, too. 😛 I don’t shy away from dancing at stop lights or mouthing the lyrics to myself when running, either. Makes it more interesting ;). Right now, whatever they’re playing on the radio is really workin’ for me (both country and pop 😉 ) so I’ve got a mixture of both on my playlist. Thomas Rhett (T-shirt, anyone?) and Carrie Underwood make some clutch appearances on my playlist, as does that one Ariana Grande song, Into You. So. CATCHY. The new One Republic and P!nk songs are fab, too. You can find my playlist here if you’d like to give it a listen! 😀

That’s all I’ve got for you today! If you’ve got any tips on summer running for me, I would love to hear them! Any help I can get is much appreciated. For real. 😉 

-Grace 

Summer Running

XCsummerPhoto credits to Coach Lev!

With summer drawing to a close, not only does that mean an onslaught of tests and homework and an utter lack of any kind of social life, but it also marks the start of the cross country season!

*cue fireworks and confetti*

Cross country is kind of unique in that, though the season may have officially started this past Monday, a lot of the conditioning and strength-training happened during the summer beforehand, which meant a lot of running these past couple of months. I could not have done it on my own without the help of some amazing teammates and coaches, but I thought I’d share with you some numbers and tips I learned along the way on how to make the most out of your summer training. 😀

265.3 miles logged from June 8-August 15

10 weeks of summer camp made all of the runs go by so much faster, and easier to accomplish. Knowing I had somewhere to be at a specific time, and having to get my rear in gear to get there, helped to make those runs happen. Having a plan to follow throughout those ten weeks also made the runs easier to plan, and much more enjoyable than just doing the same loop every day. 

5-6 runs a week might sound like a lot, but with the amazing group of girls I was privileged enough to run with combined with the different loops and routes we’d do made the time fly. 

4 lonely treadmill runs while on vacation in D.C. My parents weren’t comfortable with the thought of me running around a big city on my own, so I was confined to the row of treadmills in the fitness center of the hotel. 10/10 do not recommend. So. Boring. 

2 pairs of running shoes carried me throughout the summer. I’m a firm believer in my Asics, particularly in their Gel Cumulus line. Knock on wood and all, but I’ve yet to experience shin splints, knee pain, or any other injuries, so I’m going to chalk it up to good genes and great shoes. 😛

1 Garmin watch that tracked nearly every mile I ran. This watch (the Forerunner 10) is the perfect size, weight, level of complexity and durability. As you can see in one of the pictures above, it’s a pretty popular watch among my teammates. I’ve run with it in the rain and dropped it multiple times, and yet it still holds up. I love being able to see how far I’ve run and the pace, too. 10/10 do recommend this watch for your average runner. Perfect! 

1 glass of chocolate milk after almost every run. I read a while ago in Runner’s World that it’s the perfect recovery drink for right after your run (<30 minutes after), and I’ll stand by that! Who doesn’t love an excuse to have a glass of chocolate milk? 😉

1 incredible team that could not have been more encouraging and supportive and all around amazing throughout the summer, coaches and teammates alike, and one that will make for an even more extraordinary season. Go Scouts!

I’d love to hear about any running you’ve done these past couple of months, or what your team (cross country or not) did this summer to get ready for your season! Have a great Wednesday!

~ Grace

Comfy Kicks

comfykicks2comfykicks1// similar shoes here //

Let me start off by saying that I am all for cute shoes. A little obsessed, even. Fall is one of my favorite seasons because riding boots and suede booties go with literally everything, and they are freakin’ adorable. 

But they are not always the most comfortable shoes, no? And sometimes (especially for school) the wooden heels on those cute shoes make just a bit too much noise on the linoleum floors and then all of the sudden you sound like a teacher coming down the hall. Some days you just don’t want to deal with that. 

And that’s okay

That’s what comfy kicks are for! That’s what they’re all about. They’re the everyday, throw-on-as-you’re-running-out-the-door, all-around superstar of shoes. They’re casual but versatile, comfortable but still cute, because any kind of shoe with the word “sensible” in front of it will just not do. Last year I rocked a pair of navy Keds almost every single day until it snowed, and then I had to switch to boots, but that’s a different story. They were trashed by the time summer rolled around, so when we went shopping this past weekend, an updated everyday pair of sneakers was definitely on my list.

The Nike Frees in the picture above came from the Nike Outlet, so they were under $100, but I wasn’t able to find the exact pair online so I linked to a similar pair above. They’re soooooooo comfortable and practically slip on, plus I can totally see throwing them on with a pair of jeans and a fun tee when fall rolls around and calling it a day. I haven’t tried running in them yet, so you guys will have to tell me what you think! What are your favorite comfy kicks? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below! 

Talk to y’all later! 🙂

– Grace