09-30-2013

Motivational Monday!

I can’t believe it’s almost October! Fall is my favorite season and I’d like it to slow down because I hate winter…

I found a great quote today for something I can definitely relate to after the past week:

As you may have seen on Twitter or Instagram, I had to take a few days off of running last week due to a shin pain/inflammation. It was hard and it sucked, but I knew I had to do it if I wanted to stay healthy.

Sometimes it’s hard for us to take necessary rest days, whether it’s running or at the gym. Once you get into your groove/flow, missing a day feels weird. Every plan has rest days built in to them (or should), but the rest days that aren’t planned are the worst. So many questions were going through my head – “Will I lose some fitness?” “Will this affect my marathon?” “Should I just try to run and see what happens?”

Remember, it’s important to listen to your body. If it’s hurting, it’s giving you a sign. I’m talking about more than just a little soreness or fatigue. As the quote says, take care of your body! If you want to make it to the starting line healthy (or continue lifting), take rest days. It’s better to miss a few days than be side-lined for months.

Do you have a hard time taking rest days when you’re hurting? How do you cope?

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09-09-2013

Week 10 of NYC Marathon Training

Another week done. Now we are about to get in the tough portion of Hanson’s Marathon Method…I’m kind of nervous! This week includes 6×1 mile repeats, an 8 mile tempo run, and a 16 mile long run…

Here’s last week’s recap:

Monday:

Track workout.

4×1200 meters with 400 recovery @ goal 5K pace.

We felt really good for this track workout, as opposed to last week’s where we started to doubt ourselves. Our paces were right on the money, and we felt strong overall. Obviously I was tired by the last 2 reps but it always feels good to finish a tough workout. My dad tagged along and did his own track workout because he wants to run the Fifth Avenue Mile with us in a couple of weeks!

Family track workout

Tuesday:

Off

Wednesday:

8 mile tempo run with a 1 mile warm up and cool down. Total=10 miles.

Another great run for us. I felt confident going into this that we could keep our goal marathon pace for 8 miles. While we didn’t hit each mile EXACTLY due to hills, etc., the average pace was good and we were mostly in the range, as seen below (though we definitely started too fast).

Thursday:

Had to move my schedule around because I knew I wasn’t doing my long run on Saturday this week (football game). Today we did an easy 5 miles before heading to a Blake Shelton concert! Who are my country fans?

Friday:

10 mile long run for the week.

When we left, we said let’s just do 8. We were feeling tired and slugging, but once we got out there we felt fine. At mile 8 I said let’s just do 1 more mile, then once we hit 9 we were like, well we might as well make it 10! The weather was great too…though I still get salt stains from sweating too much! Who else gets these?

Saturday:

Early morning 6 miles before heading to the Rutgers football game. Check out this weather??? A little TOO chilly for me but I cant complain.

Sunday:

Was supposed to do 7-8 miles but decided to take the day off. My mom has been feeling really fatigued, and this upcoming week will be a tough one, so we called it a rest day. Hey, we haven’t skipped any days yet in this plan and it’s been 10 weeks! This is the best I have ever done following a plan :)

Do you think taking a rest day before a hard week is ok? One day won’t make or break us right? I was a little paranoid all day about it but it felt good to just relax!

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07-15-2013

Motivational Monday!

It will be the hottest week of summer this week in NJ. Ughhhh. Guess that means I will have to either run in the morning or take my run indoors.

I’m starting Week 3 of Marathon training this week…whoa! I have been on point with workouts and have done each day as I should…hopefully I can keep this up when I go on vacation next week! Going along with this, I thought this was a relevant quote:

sports-quotes_00054714

I will try to keep rest days when they are scheduled, and not make excuses! Sometimes it gets hard but so far I’m keeping up with it. Only 15 more weeks to go! :-P

Do you schedule rest days, or just go with the flow of life?

 

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03-07-2013

Thinking Out Loud: Rest days

In order to achieve health, optimal fitness levels, lose body fat and weight, and be in the best shape ever you should work out every day…right? Wrong.

Rest days are so important in achieving all of the above. I thought of this topic after reading this article by Times Colonist, called “Work Hard, But Rest Hard Too.”

These individuals will pack their week full of workouts and forget to give their bodies much-needed rest. While the intent is amazing and it is great to have so much enthusiasm for health and fitness, too much exercise can actually have a negative effect on your body.

Getting active is a great thing, and I applaud you for your efforts! But each time you go to the gym, whether it’s to lift, run, spin, or swim, you are challenging your body, and creating muscle tears. Becoming stronger isn’t about what you do IN the gym, but rather what you do AFTER the gym. You need to make sure you are fueling your body properly, but also making sure you give it the rest it needs. Your muscles need time to repair and get ready for your next workout.

With adequate rest, you will continue to improve and you are less likely to face an injury in the future. Without it, you can face sluggish days in the gym, nagging aches and pains and the release of stress hormones that can slow your metabolism and prevent fat loss.

The book I just finished reading, It Start With Food (find my book review here) discusses stress hormones, especially cortisol. Non-stop working out, without rest, can raise cortisol and make it extremely difficult for you to lose body fat, if that’s your goal.

Aim to have 1-2 rest days per week, and after hard workout days, follow it up with an easy workout. A lot of trainers also suggest a “de-load” week every month, where you decrease the intensity of all your workouts for the week.

For my half marathon training, my “de-load” week is actually in 2 weeks! We will decrease our miles for the week before hitting double digit long runs.

Do you make sure you take weekly rest days?