While I’m always a little “off” on the days where I skip a work out, the next day I wake up filled with motivation. As was the case today. My eyes flew open at 8:30 and I was stocked to get the morning rolling so I could head out for my run!
But first things first.
This morning I woke up and saw that Rebuilding Roberts had given me a Liebster award. What a wonderful way to start my Sunday!
I’ve seen this award a few times on a few of the blogs that I read and I’m touched to be invited to the party. Here is how the award is described:
This award we’ve discovered is given to bloggers who inspire you and have less than 200 followers. The Liebster Award takes its name from the German word meaning ‘Beloved, Dearest or Favorite.’
And here’s how it works:
- Link back to the person who gave it to you and thank them.
- Post the award to your blog.
- Give the award to 5 bloggers with less than 200 followers that you appreciate and value (It’s a great way to get to word out there about other blogs!!)
- Leave a comment on the 5 blogs to let them know that they have received this award.
I don’t technically “follow” any blogs. Never have. I don’t like Google reader and don’t need my inbox flooded when one of the hundreds of blogs I read has a new post. But there are plenty of blogs I check every day or even just have open 24/7 on their own tab. I also loooove Twitter and finding new bloggers through social media. Picking just five is kind of a challenge.
1. SavvyFoodies I found this blog through Twitter and the moment I saw she had a post called Fat Pants, I was hooked. Check it out for food, health tips and some all around great humor.
2. Ditch The Wheat I’m not gluten-free but I love reading about recipe ideas that incorporate this technique. Carol’s blog is ideal for those looking to eat gluten-free or for those like me who have always wondered how to make gluten free baked good that still taste good!
3. The Weight Run Down I love reading about how other people shed the pounds! Not only is it inspiring, it’s so wonderful to read about how other people deal with keeping it off every day. Makes me feel like I’m not so alone when I choose a salad and everyone around me is chowing down on a cheeseburger. If you’re looking for honesty about weight loss, this blog is for you!
4. Ovenmitts Raquel’s blog has so many great vegan recipes and ideas, something I’m always looking for more of. Vegan blogs are some of my favorite because I think to eat properly as a vegan, you need to be educated. Check out her blog for some great recipes and vegan tutorials.
5. Upbeat Eats Another blog about food, fitness and a wedding! Stephanie is a little further along on her wedding plans than me but I love reading other people’s progress (it inspires me to get my butt into gear) and I come back to her blog because I think we have a similar view of healthy eating. Plus, I love the name. So catchy!
I think the concept for this award is wonderful. There are sooooooooo many blogs out there and so many gems just waiting to burst on to the scene. I love finding a new blog that I can connect to and hopefully one of the above is a new discovery for you.
Now back to today’s run. 8 miles was on the agenda and rain was the forecast. As I bounced out of bed at 8:30 it was sunny and cool but the forecast predicted rain by 11:00 so I had to get moving.
Breakfast was my standard pre-run eats: Oatmeal and coffee.
Since going without dairy for the past six month, I’ve had to find other things to add to my coffee. I’ve tried, I have, but I just can’t do black coffee. I need a little creaminess and so I’ve been using So Delicious French Vanilla made with coconut milk. It’s like dessert! Mmmmm….
All put together – PB&J oats (seriously addicted) with a drizzle of rice milk and my creamy coffee in a giant mug.
I don’t drink things out of normal sized glasses. This mug is actually one of my smaller ones. I’ll have to remember to get a picture of the ones I use at work. They’re huge. One of them even requires two hands. I’ve been working there for six months and people still comment on them!
As I was getting dressed I noticed something disturbing – my sneaker has a hole! They both do right in the same place!
I’m really not financially prepared to buy new running shoes at the moment. They don’t really cause any discomfort but I generally feel if the outside of the shoe is wrecked, the inside can’t be doing much good for my feet anymore. The investment will have to happen soon. I’ve learned about wearing bad shoes the hard way.
It was gorgeous out today. Cool, partly cloudy and all around great running weather.
Through the neighborhoods of cute houses:
Across Chapman’s perfectly manicured campus:
My run was excellent! As I cruised home, I was completely in the zone and didn’t want to stop running but I’m trying to be smart about increasing my milage to avoid injury. Since I’m not building up for anything in particular, I can take my time. Right now, I add another mile every two weeks, giving me a second weekend with each new distance to really feel comfortable with it. As I mentioned last week, running is really a mental sport and having a week where I’ve already conquered the distance and get to do it again with that confidence in mind helps put me in a positive mindset for the next week. Every time I increase my distance, that run is hard because I’m asking my body to do something new. If I was asking that every weekend, I can guess that it would start to get mentally draining. While it has taken me a while to build up my distance, I’ve never felt better about my running!
This week though, I start to think about something new: form.
With the holes in my shoes, I started thinking about how I run and whether it’s right. I’ve always been of the belief that our bodies run the way that best suits them and I’ve a read a few articles about how no one really knows what the best form is and those reaffirmed my beliefs.
But as I was thinking about my shoes and the nagging pain in my left groin (upper, upper inner thigh – is that groin pain?), I started to wonder if maybe paying attention to how I run might change things.
I’ve alway run on the balls of my feet. This is often thought to be how sprinters run and that distance runners would push off with the whole foot to get more bang for the buck. I know some of you heel-toe-heel-toe runners are probably writing me off as a newbie for putting so much strain of my calves and not spreading out the work load but consider this: my calves have always been the same size as my thighs. I was genetically gifted huge calves.
As a teenager, I though they were hideously disgusting and hated the way they looked. But I’ve grown up and now I love them because they give me a little extra advantage as a runner. I can run miles and miles and miles on the balls of my feet without feeling it in my calves and then, if I really need to, I can switch to heel-toe and work a different muscle that hasn’t been used as much. Ironically, I’m a terrible sprinter and a great budding distance runner.
But I’m curious to learn more about form so, in addition to some googling on my agenda today, I ask you all: Could my running form (striking mainly on the balls of my feet) be potentially harmful?
I’m not saying I’m going to change how I run, but I’m interested to hear what people think.