ClassPass – Get Your First Month For Free!

For the TL;DR – get your free first month here.

Ok, I am a runner first. But every now and then, I like to shake things up and try out a new workout class. Maybe spin, pilates, yoga, or boxing?!

I may have started my marathon training cycle for Mountains 2 Beach but I have also started back up with ClassPass. And I am LOVING it! It allows me to add some variety to my training schedule for my “off” days. Thanks to ClassPass, I have found my favorite studios for cycling, pilates and hot yoga. I also love to try out new places or use ClassPass when I travel because they have locations all over the world!

By signing up through this link, you’ll get 45 credits which basically amounts to your first month free. Classes range in credit amounts but you should be able to fit in 5-8 classes – you also have the option to purchase additional credits should you need more.

Hope you try it out in your local area and have a blast. After all, it’s free to give it a try!

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Ab Exercises for Runners

It hopefully comes as no surprise that having a stronger core can help you to become a stronger runner. And how does one get a stronger core? You guessed right… ab exercises! Is it time to start adding some ab exercises in after your runs? Or maybe it’s time to change up your current ab exercise routine.

Here are a few of my favorite exercises to do after my runs.

Forearm Plank

  1. Start face down with your forearms on the ground and your legs extended behind you. Align your elbows under your shoulders. Though many people prefer to clasp their hands, it is recommended to try palms up or palms down. That way, you are focused on engaging your core and avoid putting additional stress on your hands.
  2. Ready? Engage your abs, tuck your toes and lift your body off the ground. Check to see if you form a straight line. If you notice that your hips are a little high, you may need to drop your hips and engage your core even more.
  3. How long can you hold this for?
  4. Side Plank Variation – Yup, you guessed it. Choose a side to face, stack one leg on top of the other and balance on one forearm. If you’re having trouble balancing to begin, start by practicing with your knees stacked on the ground.

Glute Bridge

  1. Lie on your back (face up) on the floor. Your knees should be bent (90 degrees) and your feet should be flat on the floor. Your arms will stay at your side, palms down.
  2. Now lift your hips and back off the floor until everything forms a straight line down to your knees. Make sure you squeeze your glutes to keep a strong back.
  3. Hold for 10 seconds then lower slowly to the floor, repeat 10 times.
  4. Single Leg Variation – Same instructions but one leg will be lifted. Remember to keep your quads even and your hips straight.
  5. Twist Variation – Instead of holding for 10 seconds when you get into the bridge, you will slowly dip one hip (keeping the other hip in place), then raise it slowly back up. Then slowly dip the other hip (keeping the first hip in place). Repeat, 10 times on each side. Remember to keep your glutes and abs engaged.

Bicycle Crunch

  1. Get ready. Lie on your back (face up again) and place your hands behind your head for support.
  2. Now extend your legs into the air. The motion will be similar to pedaling a bicycle, hence the name.
  3. Rotate to the left, your right elbow will meet your left knee while your other leg extends.
  4. Keeping your feet off the ground, now switch sides, continuing to alternate or pedal your imaginary bike.
  5. How long can you keep this up for? For starters, try to aim to reach one minute.

Of course, these are only to name a few. It is important to switch up exercises and continuously challenge your body in new ways. What are some of your favorite ab exercises?

Running in the Dark – Crazy or Stupid?

Every morning my alarm goes off at 4:45 am and I know that it is time to go for a run – after all, it wouldn’t feel right if I didn’t get my morning run in! I never used to worry about my early morning runs because I would rarely see anyone else or any cars on the road. Then I joined a running group and heard horror stories about running in the dark without a reflective vest so naturally, I bought one to fit in with all of the other runners. Now flash forward a year to yesterday morning when that running vest saved me from getting hit by a speeding Uber driver. Ok.. maybe that was a bit dramatic considering I also heard and saw the car coming so I easily moved out of the way. However, it did make me feel better to be wearing a reflective vest because I know for a fact that he saw me.

I don’t love running in the dark but here are some my favorite things to remember when I do:

  1. Be aware – I admit, I’m almost too aware. I always get startled by my shadow or sounds from nearby bushes. Better safe than sorry!
  2. Ditch the tunes – To my point above, I wouldn’t be able to be aware if I was distracted. I love listening to music and podcasts during my runs but I save it for when the sun is out.
  3. Lights, lights, lights! – In addition to being seen, I would also advise to run where there is at least SOME light for you to see, even if you have a flashlight. For me, it’s not worth falling and getting injured because I couldn’t see something on the ground.

I love hearing tips and stories from fellow runners, feel free to share!

Gear Review: Beats Powerbeats2 Wireless

beatsProduct: Beats Powerbeats2 Wireless
Price: $90-$150*
Review: Image result for 5 stars
Find it here: Best Buy, Target, Amazon, etc.

It was the week before Thanksgiving/Black Friday when my earphones broke while I was running! It was devastating because I run with music 80-90% of the time. Luckily, I knew that I only had to wait about a week for these fancy wireless earphones to go on sale for Black Friday! They went on sale EVERYWHERE so I was really lucky. Beats also released the Powerbeats3  so you can either find these on sale still or try out the newer version.

Everyone had been trying to convince me to go wireless recently. I was not sold on the wireless feature at first because I always stuck with my same basic pair of inexpensive earphones and I didn’t think that I needed anything fancy. Needless to say, these have changed my opinion completely! Below are some of my favorite highlights in my opinion.

  • Easy to use – I don’t like learning new technology but these were surprisingly simple and easy to learn and use!
  • Comfortable – It took a few days to get used to but the fit is good overall and it is very secure.
  • The sound is good but not overbearing – this is important so I can still be aware when I’m running on the roads.
  • Bluetooth connection – I have heard that some people run into issues with their connection cutting out but it has been pretty good for me.
  • Customer service – Beats uses Apple customer service and my experience was seamless! I thought that I had lost my charging cord (which would have been extremely unfortunate) and the representative quickly gave me all the information I needed to know through an easy online chat window.

I am not sure if I would have committed to buying these if they were not on sale, but they were worth the sale price for me!

What are some of your favorite earphones to run with?

Time Trials

It’s been a bit quiet here but I’ll be catching up on blogs and reviews this week!

First, we have this week’s speed workout. Try it out while enjoying all of the pretty fall colors outside!

  • Warm up – 1 mile
  • 4×400 – half marathon pace, 1 minute breaks in between
  • 4 minute rest
  • THE MILE – All out pace
  • 6 minute rest
  • 3×800 – half marathon pace, 90 second breaks in between
  • Cool down