I run. I love it. I have not always been a runner. I became a runner in grad school because of my beloved roommate, Brittany (Perrin) Quick-Warner. Running helps me tune out, relax, refocus and build energy. Running is what I consider to be the cornerstone of my fitness plan. Again, there are a million tips out there to help you become a better runner but here are four (sorry I could not do three today) tips from my perspective:
- Find a good running shoe store. I don’t buy shoes for color or look. I buy for comfort. My favorite shoe is the Mizuno right now because of the angle from the ball of your foot to the toes, it is perfect for me! (It is higher pitched than most and it helps my knees for some reason). The store I exclusively buy my shoes from is called Super Jock n’ Jill in Seattle. They do everything right. They watch you run before they even go in the back room. They study your old shoes. They let you bring stuff back if it does not work. They donate your old shoes to those in need. With the uptick of running, most towns have a running store where whey will fit you and give you what is best for your foot and your gait! Find your running shoe store… It changes everything.
- When I travel to a new city I always prefer to run on campus or downtown
over running at the hotel I am staying. People always ask me what do I love to do when I travel to a new city. I love to drink at a local coffee place, check out their downtown “local boutique’ area and run in the heart of it… that is what makes me feel like I have truly visited a place. I have run in some amazing cities in the early morning hours. I love dawn and I love running… the combination of the two makes me incredibly happy. My 3 favorite campuses to run on are: 1) Arizona State 2) Louisiana State 3) University of Central Florida. I love these campuses specifically because they are flat and there is a obvious circle to run around that my hotel is usually on. I also love running on Marina Island in San Diego… My company attends a conference there and it is honestly the best place ever for the view… and it is flat. When I travel, I always look up popular runs on Map My Run. I run at the least 3 miles. A perfect run for me is about 3.5 – 4 miles. All of this depends on if I was able to get 7 hours of sleep.
- Currently I run about a nine-minute mile, depending on how tired and jet lagged I am. My goal is 8:30 (the week before I left for Europe I ran an 8:36!) I know that if you want to increase your speed, you need to run intervals. I have read that in so many places. Here is my interval plan I use when I am at a hotel or just have no desire to do an actual long run:
- My running playlist is KEY to my speed, energy and overall performance during my runs. I am super picky about what I play and the order. Here is a link to my current playlist on Spotify. But here is how I pick. I think of three songs per mile (about 10 minute miles & 3 minute songs). I don’t like rap when I run because I prefer songs that have a base pace which matches my steps and at the speed I want my steps. In other words, Rap, R&B and Hip Hop slow me down. My average ‘mile’ in my music is broken down with first, a fast paced song, then a more chill song, finished with a song that builds and ends with high energy to transition you into the next mile. I like music I have heard before so I am not distracted by trying to figure out the lyrics.
Finally, I don’t run to stay thin. I run because it gets me up, and outside and it reminds me that the world is full of beautiful things and moments. I run to get out of my head and to push myself hard… so I can remind myself that I am capable of sticking to something even when I feel like I am about to puke. Running taught me that everything worth it in this world is really hard, and if it is easy you should push a little more.