Thursday, February 22, 2018

Runfessions February

This post contains affiliate links.

Aren't you so glad February is such a short month? I certainly am. I'm ready to kick winter in the snowballs and make it go away. I know they call March the cruelest month--winter-weary northerners sometimes have to endure more cold and snow--but at least we're making progress towards spring.

I'm also glad February is coming to a close because that means it's time for another edition of Runfessions. Marcia opens the runfessional on the last Friday of the month and it's a great chance to clear your conscience of any indiscretions that might have occurred on (or off) the road.

Earlier this month, life was just ticking along and I didn't think I was going to have any runfessions! I should have known better...



Tuesday, February 20, 2018

A Runner in Real Life: 8 Ways to Practice Mindfulness Everyday

Disclaimer: I was provided clothing from prAna in exchange for this blog post. All opinions are mine.


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"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it. "
Ferris Bueller's Day Off

If I was to pick a word to focus on for 2018, it would have to be the word mindful. It seems that everywhere you turn, there's an article or post on being more mindful. Is that a bad thing? Everyone is in a hurry, we've all got too much on our plates, and something's got to give.

Being reminded to slow down and be present in the moment is a good thing, in my opinion. Here are few ways you can integrate more mindfulness into every day.

8 ideas to help busy runners find ways to practice mindfulness in their everyday life


Sunday, February 18, 2018

Running Love

This post contains an affiliate link.

Sunday night I returned home from my weekend whirlwind to Birmingham and the Mercedes Half Marathon. It was back to the cold and back to reality.

Fortunately, it wasn't cold for long. The temperatures warmed up and melted quite a bit of our snow cover. The onslaught of sick children with the flu continued at my clinic. When will it end? Fortunately, I was still feeling the love from my weekend away.

Let's recap the week!



Friday, February 16, 2018

Book Review: Gratitude in Motion

Disclaimer: I received a galley copy of Gratitude in Motion from Hachette Publishing in exchange for my honest review. This post contains affiliate links.

Colleen Alexander was riding her bike to work on a beautiful fall day when she saw a truck coming at her. Meeting his eyes, she expected him to stop, but he didn't, hitting her and running her over. After the impact, he drove away, leaving her in the intersection. That she didn't die was truly a miracle. Her trauma surgeon at Yale New Haven Hospital calls her a "force of nature". Colleen miraculously survived the accident, but her recovery was the ultimate marathon. To this day, she is still undergoing surgeries to repair the damage from the accident.

Gratitude in Motion is the inspirational story of Colleen's journey from her accident back to running and triathlon. Throughout her physical recovery, she also struggled with anxiety and PTSD but was able to use her mental toughness honed from years of competing to help her focus and keep moving forward. Colleen was raised in a devoutly religious family and also leaned heavily on her faith to give her strength.



Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Mercedes Half Marathon Race Recap

This race has been on my radar for a while. I've said in the past that I don't choose races for the bling, but when I saw the medals from past years of this race, I knew that I wanted in. Holly and I had discussed getting together for an early spring half and made plans to run this one. I found a good flight, she found a hotel, and we were set.

The week before the race, our plans threatened to come unraveled. Between a huge snowstorm the day before I was set to leave and my very real fear of contracting the plague aka influenza that seemed to be afflicting every child I saw in my clinic, it seemed that we might not get to do this race at all. Fortunately, everything fell into place and early Saturday morning, I was Alabama bound.

photo credit: Holly

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Running in A Snow Globe

If you read Friday's post, you know that Chicago got hit with a whopper of a storm and I was agonizing over the possibility of not traveling to Birmingham. I prepared this post in advance hoping that today, I would be in Birmingham with Holly and I was able to run the Mercedes Half Marathon! I'll have a full recap on the race for you later in the week.

Meanwhile, let's wrap up the week in the snow globe!



Friday, February 9, 2018

Keep Calm and Stay Optimistic When Your Race Plans Go Awry

I wasn't even planning a post for today. My plans for the weekend were a quick trip out of town to Birmingham to meet up with Holly and run the Mercedes Half Marathon. I figured that I wouldn't have time to respond to comments and read other blogs for a Friday post.

As I often say, God laughs at those of us who make plans, and he's having a good laugh right now. As you read this, we in the Chicago area are getting a big snow storm. Predicted totals are 8-14 inches, and they keep upping the amount. Already on Wednesday, I received a text from United that there's a good chance my flight will be canceled.

I'm kind of a wreck about it. I know, first world problems and all but I was really looking forward to this race and spending the weekend with my pal Holly. The good news is that nothing has been canceled as of this morning. I continue to remain optimistic that I will be leaving on that jet plane tomorrow morning.

Staying calm? That's another story...



Tuesday, February 6, 2018

In Pursuit of Happy Joints

Earlier in February, I posted an informative discussion about Great Lakes Gelatin Collagen Protein on Facebook Live. Check it out!

Disclaimer: Through my affiliation with Sweat Pink, I received Great Lakes Collagen products and compensation in exchange for this post as well as social media sharing. All opinions are my own. This post contains an affiliate link.

Most runners experience inflammation after a run, especially after one where you might have pushed your pace a little harder and/or ran a little farther. Sometimes you just feel sore, even if the run went well. Other times, the soreness comes a day or 2 later, aka delayed-onset muscle soreness or DOMS. What do you do when this happens? Do you reach for the bottle of ibuprofen? Do you let it go away on its own?

In the past, I took more than my share of ibuprofen to ward off post-run soreness. You and I both know that isn't the best thing to do. As I've gotten smarter about training, I incorporate foam rolling and stretching into my post-run routine to help ward off some of that pain. But even that wasn't enough. It wasn't until last year and my diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis that I began to really educate myself about inflammation--both as it relates to running and working out as well as RA. I've made changes in my diet and have incorporated more anti-inflammatory foods. I've also started using hydrolyzed collagen protein supplements.

Hydrolyzed collagen can help reduce inflammation in active people


Sunday, February 4, 2018

The Running Kind

Just when I thought it was safe to remove some layers and run without my ninja face mask, the weather gods did a 180 and sent us plunging back into the deep freeze. In all my years, I don't remember a winter as cold as this one. I was so glad to see January come to an end. Even though I know that February can be cruel too, it's only 28 days.

Yet I'm still not desperate enough to run on the treadmill. I'm trying to integrate those Mindful Running principles into my runs, but when conditions are harsh, it's tough to stay focused and keep the negative voices quiet. I loaded up my playlist with some new songs, tunes guaranteed to keep my mind occupied and my legs moving. You know it's a good run when I'm singing along with the songs. 

Can't stop, won't stop! That's me. The running kind. 



Friday, February 2, 2018

5 Things I'd Tell You Over Coffee

Let's sit down over a cup of coffee and catch up! How do you like yours? I'll take some half and half in mine. So tell me what's new with you? I've got a few things to share...