Hotel Room Workout

Taking a break from my gift guides (actually takes a lot of time to make one of those lol) and writing about a new video on my channel today.

If you’re traveling for the holidays, you can still workout! All you need is a chair. My video is only a minute long, so you can give it a quick view and then start working out!

Hotel Room Workout

I’m all about effective  movements when in a time crunch. You want to focus on exercises that target large muscle groups, which will not only make you stronger, but also help you burn more calories (which is what we need during the holidays, right?).

Repeat the circuit 3-5 times through depending on how much time you have, OR if you have extra time, do the circuit 5 times through, take a 2 minute break, and then here is an add-on (also repeat 3-5 times through):

  • 10 walking lunges
  • 10 inch worms
  • 15 single leg hip raises (each leg 15x)
  • 15 burpees

Let’s do it! Here’s your hotel room workout video:

Let me know if you try it out, I’d love to hear your thoughts!

I want to continue doing more fitness videos…if you have a topic or suggestion definitely leave me a comment! I am always open for ideas on workouts. My sister texted me yesterday asking for an arm workout so perhaps that will be my next one :)

Are you traveling for Thanksgiving?

Do you have any fun holiday traditions? We usually go to NYC every year on Christmas day!


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Gift Guide For Runners

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.

This will definitely be my favorite gift guide to write up…there are so many running related items I want! :)

Gift Guide For Runners!

If you have a runner in your life, definitely check out some of these ideas below.

Flipbelt for runningFlipBelt – $28.99

This is probably my favorite piece of running equipment. It holds so much and I have used it in multiple half marathons and marathons. It doesn’t budge and is just the perfect belt for running. I have also used it while traveling, so I can keep my stuff with me without having to carry around a purse. If you buy one thing for yourself or the runner in your life, make it this!

RoosportRoosport – $26.99

I discovered this at the Chicago Marathon expo and really want to try it. The magnetic clasp is pretty powerful, so you flip it over your waistband and it stays put. No need for a belt and supposedly doesn’t cause chafing. This is a good choice for those who aren’t fans of belts around their waist!

Sparkly Soul Headband


Sparkly Soul headband – $17

This was another purchase of mine at the Chicago Marathon expo. I needed a headband for the race and ended up getting this exact one but the thicker version. Cute and worked very well to keep the sweat out of my eyes! I want to get more thin ones since I’ve seen people wear them as everyday headbands as well.

yaktrax-runningYaktrax – $40

I definitely need to get a pair of these for this winter. I want to run more outdoors but am always afraid I will slip. Like this:

Do not want that happening to me! :)

Nike Running TightsNike Pro Hyperwarm Max – $70

I bought these tights a few years ago and they are still going strong. They are fleece lined so they’re perfect for winter training runs. You can also find fleece lined tights at TJ Maxx and Marshall’s!

Gu Energy Gel Vanilla BeanGU Energy Gel 24 Pack – $29.80 (currently on sale!)

If you know someone who will be training for a marathon or half marathon, this is perfect. I go through GUs like it’s my job, and vanilla bean is my favorite flavor, though I hear salted caramel is good too. PS – these fit perfectly in the flipbelt!

Other ideas include:

  • A gift certficate to get a massage
  • A gift certifcate to get a pedicure…because we all know how pretty runners feeet are ;)
  • A water bottle, both a normal one and/or a hydration belt or bottle
  • A gift certficate to their favorite running apparel store (like Modell’s, Sports Authority, TJ Maxx, lululemon, etc.)
  • A groupon to group fitness classes like yoga or spin, so your runner can cross-train
  • Pay for a running coach for them…like my coach, Marc of TrainWithMarc!
  • A notebook or running log so they can keep track of their miles
  • New running shoes…because who doesn’t want new sneakers??

If you’re a runner, what do you go through “like it’s your job” while you’re training?

What would you add to this list?

Check out these blogger’s gift guide for runners as well!


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Holiday Gift Guide: Beauty and Makeup

Disclaimer: this post contains some affiliate links

Alright ladies, this one’s for you. If you’re like me, you are throwing various makeup brands on your wish list ;)

I wanted to share my own favorites since we all know makeup lovers like getting ideas from other makeup lovers!

Holiday Makeup Gift Guide

Okay here are some of my daily go-tos:

Urban Decay 24/7 EyelinerUrban Decay 24/7 Eyeliner – $20

I have been using this eyeliner for years now. I absolutely love it. I have tried other brands but they always seem to fade away within hours. I cannot rave about this eyeliner enough. AND now they just came out with a special waterliner for lining your waterline (duh). I love so many Urban Decay products (also try out their mascaras!). You can order Urban Decay online or go to your local Sephora.

Korres Face Cream TrioKorres Firm Believer Black Pine Collection (Sephora) – $68

Omg this is an amazing deal. The Korres day cream, night cream, and eye cream all for the price I paid JUST for the night cream. I honestly might order this myself…today. 

I bought the Korres Black Pine night cream because my boss told me I should start taking care of my skin more now that I am getting older (lol ugh). I had a Sephora giftcard so figured why not. I can’t believe this trio is now on sale for the price I paid for one! It says limited edition so hopefully that means it will be out through the holidays. I love it and it seems like the ingredients are okay. After reading about  how some St. Ives products actually AREN’T that great for your skin, I wanted to find something else and of higher quality. My face feels much softer and more moisturized now…I highly recommend this product!

Maybelline Waterproof MascaraMaybelline Lash Sensational Mascara – $6-$7 at any drugstore

I actually only started using mascara again recently. My eyelashes are totally straight…my friends call them “camel lashes.” So mascara only accentuates that. BUT then I found some video on YouTube about how to curl your lashes and have them actually stay curled. It’s a process but you 1) heat your eyelash curler, 2) curl, 3) apply waterproof mascara, 4) let it dry, 5) apply normal mascara. Apparently the waterproof mascara acts like a gel and keeps it up. My only complaint is that it is hard to get off at the end of the day but hey, my eyelashes finally curl! This one does the job well.

Mac Studio Sculpt FoundationMAC Studio Sculpt Foundation – $33

If you’re looking for a solid foundation, this is the one. I never wanted to spend on foundation and always just brought drugstore brands. I liked Revlon foundation and Maybelline FIT. Then I went to the MAC counter to pick up my usual Studio Fix powder (another thing I’ve been using for years) and asked about the foundation. My skin get super dry in the winter so I wanted to try using liquid instead of powder. This one is moisturizing and is SPF 15. I apply with a brush and it takes me less than a minute each morning AND it lasts all day! 

Curling Wand


Tourmaline Curling Wand 1″ (Sally’s) – $29.99

I can’t find the exact curling wand I have but it is very similar to this one. I use a 1″ barrel because my hair doesn’t hold a curl so I do tighter curls since it will fall out anyway and just become waves. If your hair DOES hold a curl I’d suggest 1.5-2 inches for a natural wavy look. I know you can do basically the same thing with a curling iron but I prefer using a curling wand and feel like it holds my curls longer…who knows! I spray styling product in it first, curl, then light hairspray. It actually doesn’t take long at all!

Too Faced Sun BunnyToo Faced Sun Bunny Bronzer – $30

I’ll leave you with my now all-time favorite bronzer. Perfect for winter when you want a little color. I know people rave about NARS but I find their bronzer a bit too shimmery (can’t think of the specific one right now). This one is the perfect blend and not too shimmery or matte. I have also tried MAC bronzer which I thought was too shimmery and not pigmented enough. This one is seriously amazing, and you just need a little bit on your brush for the perfect color.

So there you have it…my beauty favs. My beauty routine is rather simple, but when I find products I love (like the Urban Decay eyeliner or MAC powder), I will use them for years.

What product have you been using for years?

Do you straighten or curl your hair? Do you prefer a wand or curler?


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Fitness Gift Guide For Men (Apparel)

Disclaimer: this post contains some affiliate links.

Yesterday I wrote up a fitness gift guide for women, and today we are focusing on the men in our lives. Sadly, I don’t think Forever 21 has fitness apparel for men though… ;)

Check out this fitness gift guide for men!

Let’s jump into my fitness gift guide for men!

lululemon men's fitness apparelMetal Vent Tech Long Sleeve 2.0 (lululemon) – $78

I love lululemon tops and their “no stink” technology. I swear it does work. As much as I also love my Nike shirts, after a while there is just this sweaty stench to them. Hot, I know. Anyway, that is why this lululemon top is on my list!

Men's Fitness Apparel Gift GuideNike Men’s Short Sleeve T-Shirt – $26

You can’t go wrong with a workout shirt of his favorite team. Dan finds all of his Rutgers stuff at Kohl’s, so check them out for sports apparel (both normal stuff like cotton tees, sweatshirts etc. and also fitness/dri-fit stuff) too!

Reebok Men's Crossfit ShortsReebok Crossfit Board Shorts – $59.99 (on sale currently)

Have a crossfitter in your life? Definitely check out Reebok. Also, even if you’re not a crossfitter I’d look through their stuff. I really like some of their spandex shorts and board shorts. Their material is super comfy!

Nike Socks For MenNike Elite Crew Socks – $13.99

My brother loves these socks and so does my dad. Though he also buys the Puma version from TJ Maxx (which is just as good). I like thicker socks for working out/running, so these are a good option for that. 

Men's Lifting Gloves


“The Gripper” – $24.95

So I was actually searching for men’s lifting gloves but then found these. First of all, do guy wear lifting gloves or do they WANT calluses? lol. Second of all, how cool are these? I kind of want some of my own. I think they’d really help in exercises where your grip strength is lacking a bit, like pull-ups or any pulling exercise. 

And that’s all my men’s fitness apparel ideas! Stay tuned for a running gift guide and a fitness gift guide focusing on accessories (which is the one I’m most excited to write).

Did any of these ideas help you?

Are you or do you know a crossfitter?


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Fitness Gift Guide For Women (Apparel)

Disclaimer: this post contains affiliate links

Can you believe the holiday season is upon us? Because I can’t! I have a few holiday related things up my sleeve for you all, starting with 6 gift guides coming at you this week and next. I figured we will all start shopping soon, and why not get inspired OR find ideas for what YOU might want to add to your own wish list ;)

Here are my topics for the gift guides after this one:

  • Fitness gift guide (apparel) for men
  • Stocking stuffers (health/fitness/running related)
  • Health and fitness gift guide (think tech, appliances, food, etc.)
  • Gift Guide for Runners
  • My Favorite Makeup Gift Guide

Today’s gift guide will focus on fitness apparel for women. Whether you’re shopping for yourself, your mom, your spouse, your sister, your BFF…you will find some ideas below.

Holida Gift Guide: Fitness Apparel For Women

Okay let’ get started…

Forever 21 Activewear - Heathered Capri Leggings

 Heathered Athletic Capri Leggings (Forever 21) – $12.90

I love that these are heathered and high-waisted. Forever 21′s activewear is actually surprisingly good, and their heathered stuff is really soft. This is perfect for winter workouts!

Forever 21 Activewear - Pullover

 Drawstring Cowl Neck Pull-Over (Forever 21) – $22.90

I love cowl neck pull-overs! So comfortable and cozy. Perfect for warming up or just day-to-day wear.

Nike Winter Running Gear

 Nike Dri-FIT Headband & Running Gloves Set – $30.00

This will probably be in my running guide as well but a headband and gloves set is perfect for anyone who plans on exercising outdoors this winter. 

Nike Pro Warm Running Gear

 Nike Pro Hyperwarm Top – $80

Nike hyperwarm tops are my favorite winter tops. They are so warm (same with their tights) and I use them for running, sitting out at football games…basically anywhere where I will be cold. They make a great base layer as well to add lighter tops over them for those bitter, cold runs.


 Burnout Racer Back Tank (Old Navy) – $10

Winter = more indoor workouts. This tank is perfect for that! PS – all Old Navy activewear is currently up to 50% off online. Check it out!

Other places I shop for activewear also include T.J. Maxx (you can find really warm fleece-lined leggings here) and Marshall’s. I’m telling you though, you can find a lot of apparel (and inexpensive at that) at Forever 21.

Where do you shop for yourself or the fitness lover in your life?

Do you prefer capris or shorts for gym workouts in the winter (or you don’t care)? I like capris so I’m not AS cold on the walk from my car to the gym lol


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Which Fitness Tracker Should I Get?

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. 

Alright, alright…I think I’m ready to jump on the fitness tracker bandwagon. I have been intrigued by FitBit’s for a while, and now Dan has one that his company gave him for inter-office “competition.” 

I have seen many bloggers review various fitness trackers, so I don’t know which to get! I was leaning towards the FitBit wrist tracker (is the the official term? The one that looks like a bracelet?). But I figured I would talk about some of the more popular trackers and their features…perhaps this will help me make a decision!


FitBit Charge HR - $149.99

455975-fitbit-charge-hrPhoto source

There are different type of FitBits, but this is the one I would want. I love that it has a heartrate monitor – I think I need that when it comes to my running. I would like to track my HR and make sure my easy runs are easy, and hard runs are hard.

Like all FitBit’s and most trackers, it measures your steps too. When I had my Samsung Galaxy, it had a built in step-tracker. I was always waaayyyy off the recommended 10,ooo steps her day. I really want to work at this because I know I sit too much throughout the day. Between blogging and my business, everything is on my computer. Sometimes I don’t want to get up just to fill up my water bottle because I’m in the zone with my work. #truestory I really need to get more steps in. 

The battery is supposed to last 5 days which is impressive. I just worry that it might be too bulky on my wrist? I have bony wrists…hmm…

Garmin VivoSmart - $129.99

garmin-vivosmartPhoto source

I like that this is smaller on your wrist than the FitBit, but am not sold on it due to the fact that you need the chest strap heart rate monitor to get your HR. I’m sure that might be more accurate, but I also don’t know if I want to wear one on runs since I chafe…a lot…

The Garmin VivoSmart allows you to get push notifications from your mobile device which I think is actually pretty cool! You can’t respond to them obviously, but I think it is a nice feature. It also has vibration alarms which is perfect for me. I hate waking up to alarms, it always jars me awake. I feel like a nice vibration on my wrist would be better :)

The battery life lasts about 7 hours, and it also measures steps, sleep, calories burned and active time.

Jawbone UP2 - $99.99



Wow I love the look of the Jawbone UP2! This is exactly what I would want a fitness tracker on my wrist to look like. It is sleek and small, and not obviously a fitness tracker. The only downside is that I want one that displays info on it while you’re wearing it, as opposed to having to plug it in to my computer to get the info or opening an app (there is an app for this one).

It tracks steps, monitors sleep and has a smart alarm feature which wakes you up when it feels you’re most ready to wake up, instead of jarring you awake while you’re still in REM cycle (which can lead to grogginess). From the reviews I’ve read, the Jawbone does a great job of giving you details on your sleep…something I need because I feel like I NEVER get a good night’s sleep.

Interesting…I started writing this paaragraph thinking I wouldn’t be interested in this because of the lack of screen but as I kept typing, I kind of want to try one out now!

Misfit Flash - $24.99

misfit-flashPhoto source

The Misfit Flash is only $24.99! Can you believe that? I honestly might go pick up one of these after work today just to try it out before I dive deeper into the fitness tracking world.

While this one does not have a screen interface, it still tracks steps and sleep AND can running, swimming and cycling. You can tell it what activity you will be doing and it will track accordingly. However, this is mainly just to track what kind of activity you did – it does not provide pace, distance, miles, etc. Also, the circular part seen above actually comes out so you can either put it into the watch strap thing or into the clip. Very cool.

Like the Jawbone, since it doesn’t have a screen, you can track using an app. Since the Misfit uses a watch battery, the battery lasts about 6 months!

Garmin Vivofit 2 – $99.99

garmin-vivofitPhoto source

The Garmin Vivofit 2 comes in different colors BUT also allows you to buy the wristband separately so you can can switch it up. I believe the above photo features a Jonathan Adler wristband.

The Vivofit 2 tracks your steps, goals, distance and calories burned. It can also be paired with a heart rate monitor/strap. You can connect to the Garmin Connect app to get even more details about your day and activity. This tracker also uses watch batteries, so battery life is a year or longer! I like the look of this and it looks slim/not bulky. From what I’ve read, you can also pair it with your MyFitnessPal app.


Ahhh, decisions, decisions. I like the FitBit Dan has, but I do think I want something more robust (hence why I like the FitBit Surge). BUT I like the look of the Jawbone and Vivofit. Help!

Do you use a fitness tracker? Which one?

Do you get in 10K steps per day? I think I was getting around 3-5K…definitely need to step it up (no pun intended).

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Random Monday Thoughts

Happy Monday!

I have been kind of MIA and only posted once last week (I usually was posting 2-3 times a week)…but I don’t have much to talk about at the moment! My marathon training is over so my workout routine is nothing exciting…just running a bit and lifting a bit…but man, that first day back to lifting REALLY kills you. I was so sore and tired for 2 days following a simple lifting workout with TEN POUNDS lol. Yikes…

So I just wanted to recap with you all what has been going on with me and get your input on a few things as well :)

  • This past Friday and Saturday I went up to Massachusetts for the NJCAA Division III XC National Championship. I had one runner qualify and although he did not have the race he wanted, I am proud of him. He did not skip one practice all season and worked his butt off. I hope we are able to go back next year but with more of our runners!
  • I have a 15K race on December 22 that I am not prepared for at all lol
  • I think I’m going to start PowerFlow Yoga? Has anyone tried it? It’s hot yoga and more movements so it’s more strength based. I really want to make spin and yoga more of a regular thing…it’s just hard fitting it in with running when you’re trying to run 5 days a week. Any tips on how to do this?
  • Only two  more Rutgers football games left. It has not been a good season, and Dan is hoping the current coach gets fired. Some of our games have just been embarrassments. 

Goals for this week:

  • Eat better. My nutrition has not been good BUT I have started incorporating smoothies back into my routine. I use PlantFusion’s Phood powder, which is more of a nutritional supplement and packed with vitamins, minerals, greens, probiotics and more. I have been making my smoothies with Califia Farms double espresso cold brew, vanilla Phood, banana, spinach and PB. So delicious!

A photo posted by Patty Rivas (@pattyrivas13) on

  • Run at least 4 times this week, with a longer run of 6 miles.
  • Lift minimum twice a week and try PowerFlow.

Not that exciting of a post but oh well. Let me know if you’ve tried PowerFlow or incorporate yoga into your running routine…and does it help?

Do you have a favorite college football team?

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Post-Marathon Blues – Where Do I Go From Here?

So I took my 2 weeks off after Chicago, and have started somewhat running/lifting again. Well, I ran and lifted twice last week. But hey, it counts :)

Now I’m at the point where it’s like, now what? For those of you who ran a marathon or half marathon, you know what I’m talking about. You train for months and months, the big event arrives, you run, finish…and then it’s all over. I mean, I welcomed my 2 week break, but now I want something to train for again.

I have my goals for the rest of 2015 and for 2016 that I wanted to share with you and get your feedback on. Let me know what you think or if you have any advice or insight!

Rest of 2015 Goals

  • Run around a 28 minute 5K on December 5. I just ran the Dash To The Finsh 5K this past weekend (recap coming soon) in 30:04. Not my best by a long shot, but I’m ok with it after 2 weeks off and then only running once before that. BUT my goal is to run around 28 minutes by Decmeber 5. I have a month to gain some of my fitness back and make that happen.
  • Run a strong 15K race December 22. In order to qualify for next year’s NYC Marathon, I need to run 9 races with the NYRR. My last one will be Dec. 22 and it’s 15K (9 miles or so). I didn’t really want to run this race but it’s the only one I could do. Goal is to just finish strong and feel good!
  • Lift more during my “off-season” so once I start running more again I have a good base of strength.

2016 Goals

  • Start building up my base mileage and get to around 45-50 miles per week average by late spring. I want to do a 5K training plan for now, and work on speed, then take a short break, and start marathon training in June, where hopefully I’ll hit 50-60 miles in peak.
  • Get faster. Period. I really want to get a half marathon and marathon PR in 2016. I want to get faster over longer distances, and know I need to increase endurance. So that’s why I plan on running more miles. 
  • Run a sub 4:30 marathon in NYC in 2016. It seems crazy to me, but that’s my goal. I am sick of slogging through marathons and slowing down significantly in the later miles. I NEED to work on endurance and really want to try “racing” a marathon next year. We’ll see..

This is the first time where I’ve ran a marathon, and immediately was ready to get back to running afterwards. In the past, I was SO ready for the break, and ended up taking the whole winter off until March. So everytime I would be starting from scratch again. I do not want to do that again. I want to keep building up my fitness and really want to conquer the marathon next year :)

What goals do you have for the rest of 2015?

Any tips for building endurance? Does strength training help? Looking for any insight or advice!

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5 Glute Exercises To Add To Your Workout

My glute strengthening workout post is one of my most popular posts on my blog and Pinterest, so I figured I would do a follow up and talk more about my favorite glute exercises.

While squats DO target your glute muscles, there are many other exercises that work them as much, if not more. Also, doing a proper barbell squat is challenging, and if you do not have correct form you are risking injury. I’ve seen many people load up the bar with a ton of weight, yet do not have the right form for it. Here are some of my tips for working on your squat form.

Anyway, let’s go through 5 exercises where you will definitely feel the burn!

Add these glute exercises into your workout routine to work that booty!

Hip Raises

There are so many ways to do these, that I guess this list actually won’t be 5 exercises ;)

If you’re just starting out, I suggest doing bodyweight hip raises. Lay on your back, lift your butt and hips up, squeeze your glutes and pause for a second, then lower. To make it more challenging, put your feeet on a bosu ball. To make it even MORE challenging, place your feet on a Swiss ball. I’ll show you that variation here:


When doing the exercise, really focus on squeezing your glutes and raising your hips as high as you can. You should feel this in your hamstrings and glutes.

Once you feel like you’re ready to add weight, you can do weighted hip raises with a barbell across your lap. I do these laying on the floor, but you can also do them with your shoulders on a bench (shown below):


I’m telling you, you will feel this in your hammies and glutes!

TRX Single Leg Squat

I am not yet able to do a single leg squat/pistol squat on my own, so I use a TRX. Trust me, you will still feel it the next day. The TRX stabilizes you until you’re able to do a single leg squat on your own. By using it, you’ll also get the added bonus of a little arm workout ;) Here’s how to do it:


As always, make sure to keep your chest up and shoulders back throughout the exericse. If you need one cue that is good for any exercise, it’s that one. Chest up, shoulders back.

Banded Walks

I talked about this in my previous glute strength post, but banded walks are a great way to target your sometimes neglected Glute Medius. It looks easy but it is not. I remember my personal training clients hating this exercise. I should actually do it more often because it is really important for runners to have a strong, stable Glute Medius, which helps with hip strength.

Front Foot Elevated Split Squat

This exercise will target more of your quad than glute, but you’ll still activate glutes as well. It’s a great way to make the normal split squat more challenging, and works on your stabilizer muscles as well.

Keeping your chest up and shoulders back, you’ll lower yourself down as low as you can, then come up. Your front foot wil be up on a step or small box.


Bulgarian Split Squats

These are my nemesis. I have a love/hate relationship with them. They are so challenging and I get so sore the next day…yet you know that means you’re getting stronger.

This exercise is the opposite of the front foot elevated. In this one, your back foot is elevated on a bench. If you don’t think you’re ready for this yet, you can do a rear foot elevated split squat first, where your rear foot is elevated on a small step or box (like the image above).

With Bulgarians, you have to make sure your knees are tracking in the right direction, and that your knee doesn’t go over your toes. You should be lowering yourself straigth down. It might take a few tries and adjustments to figure out the right position for you. Once you do figure it out, place a towel or water bottle where your foot was so you can easily get back into position after your rest.

I recommend starting off with just bodyweight, and working up to adding weights. This one really targets those glutes and is also another great exericse for runners!


The photo source for the image above is actually a link for “7 benefits of the Bulgarian split squat,” so you should check it out! Here’s one of their 7 reasons:

If you want to end up having a booty like the famous J.Lo, you better stop neglecting the Bulgarian split squat right away. It’s the best exercise to lift your butt.

Want to make these into a workout? I recommend splitting it up into separate days. Also, make sure you pair glute/hamstring dominant exericses with quad dominant exercises. For example, here’s a workout with some of the above exercises:

  • A1: Hip raises on Swiss Ball
  • A2: Front foot elevated split squat
  • B1: Banded walks
  • B2: TRX singl leg squat
  • Continue with other exercises (arms, abs, etc.)

Which of these do you regularly include into your routine?


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What I Learned From My XC Team: Part 2

Last year, I wrote up a few things I learned from my cross country team and my first season coaching. Now, our second season is about to come to a close. We have our last meet on Sunday, which is our Region Championship meet. If any runners place top 7, they qualify for the National meet. I am hoping at least 2 will but we will see!

When working with students, you learn new things every day, whether it’s new “slang” or new ways to look at life in general. So today I wanted to talk a bit about what I learned this season from them.

If you're a runner, check out these 5 tips from college cross country runners!

Don’t Complain

This was my number one lesson. I think that people don’t realize how much they complain…and when you complain a lot, people get annoyed. If you have a goal, do the work in getting there, and don’t complain about how hard workouts are. I know I will use this tactic in my own life next time I think about complaining about something. Nagging pains? Sure. But complaining and asking to do less reps of a workout? “Come on bro.”

I think complaining is just a natural thing we do to make conversation…such as, “omg it’s so hot out,” “omg it’s so cold out,” “omg this workout is hard!” But after a while, the people you complain you will start getting tired of it, trust me. Just do the work – get it done. You’ll be proud of yourself when you finish a tough workout and push through.

Be Competitive

One of my runners is very competitive, and competitive with himself in practice. He has a great attitude and works hard every day. Now I’m not saying to make every practice a race, but I’ll give him times he needs to hit, and he will push himself hard to hit those times, as opposed to having an “I can’t” mentality. I’ll give him a pace, he will say oh WOW! but then push himself to get it done. We can all do this on our runs and workouts. You will surprise yourself by how you can push yourself. Sometimes my own running coach, Marc, gives me workouts and paces where I really doubt myself. Yet somehow it gets done. Compete with yourself and work to make yourself better every day.

Be Cocky

One of my runners said to me yesterday, “I don’t care if you’re cocky and confident, but just don’t act like people need to bow down to you.” Very true. He is very confident in his abilities, but also supportive of everyone else. There is nothing wrong with being cocky – in fact, it might even pump you up before races! Tell yourself that you’re fast, strong, faster than your competition…change your frame of mind. I love this quote by Ronda Rousey that relates to this:

Some people like to call me cocky or arrogant, but I just think, “How dare you assume I should think less of myself.”

So true, right??

Talent Doesn’t Matter, Attitude Does

This is something new I’ve learned this season. Of course every coach wants a team of all-stars, but we know that everyone has different skill levels. What I learned this year was this: Look, I don’t care if you run a 20 min. 5K or a 30 min. 5K. If you show up to practice every day, and work hard, THAT is what matters and makes an impression on me. Do not complain to me about your race times after a meet when you’re not putting in the effort every practice.

Don’t Judge By Running Form

The first day of practice, this student shows up and I took one look at him and thought he’d be an average runner. His form was not your typical running form. Well, guess what, he is the number one runner on our team and making improvements every race. If you saw him run, you would be surprised too! So I guess the age old adage don’t judge a book by the cover is true in most senses ;)

Overall, it was a great XC season and I am proud of what they have accomplished. I am crossing my fingers some of them qualify at the Region Championships – they really deserve it!

Can you relate to any of these? What do you think about complaining? After this season, I feel like I’ll never complain again :)


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