Last weekend was the Key West Half Marathon and a big weekend for both of us in terms of racing. Heading into the race, both of us had lofty expectations that we were trying to keep rational. The goal was to go test ourselves and see what we could do, but it had been awhile since either of us had raced a half marathon which increased the size of the question mark over what was possible.
On our previous episode we talked about reducing race anxiety by controlling as many conditions as possible and accepting the rest. This race was the epitome of extra outside conditions. We travelled with a huge group, were vacationing with our kids, celebrated birthdays, and dealt with crazy weather delays.
By the time we made it to the starting line two hours behind schedule neither of us were looking at the clock and aiming for a precise personal best. Listen to the episode for some details, but this course was certainly not shaping up for an ideal day. When the...
It’s race week for the Real Life Runner household and with that comes this week’s episode on pre-race anxiety. The episode gives us a chance to discuss the concept, talk about our own emotions heading into the upcoming race, and cover some methods of calming the nerves.
We start with a major point that everyone is going to have some feelings connected to an upcoming race. It is simply natural to have an emotional reaction when a big event is coming. What is under your control is not the feeling, but the name you give the feeling and the response to it. Instead of nervous, rename the feeling excitement. This works the same way that fatigue in a race can be interpreted and a sign you are running fast enough.
Next we discuss the causes for extra anxiety during the week before a race. The list is lengthy as to why a race could be given greater importance, but it comes down to expectations. Racing is an unknown and when...
New year, new you! It’s time to go all out on training. You have signed up for a race and it’s approaching rapidly so you need to get your running cranked up. Enthusiasm is great, but can lead to some major issues involving overtraining. In this episode let’s cover some signs of overtraining, how to avoid it, and how it may sneak up anyway.
Overtraining can pop up whether you are a new or seasoned runner and it’s signs can be subtle at first. If you are not paying attention, you can find yourself wiped out and burnt out and probably hurt.
Some early signs to looks for include rating heart rate and generally how you feel on a run. Keep daily track of your resting heart rate and notice if it seems like the number stays elevated for several days. It will likely pop a bit after a hard workout, little sleep, or an extra drink or two on a night out, but will come back down. When it does not come back for a few...
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As we wrap up the end of the holiday season, and especially Christmas in this household, the idea of delayed gratification has been forefront in my mind. We were able to watching our two little girls count down the days until they were done with school and then until Christmas morning. It seemed like every day our little one would announce “I can’t wait until Friday!” After I asked why I realized she was actually talking about the Friday that was 12 days away.
In this episode we visit the idea of goal setting from the perspective of delayed gratification. Goals should be large enough that they cannot simply be achieved tomorrow because they will not having any lasting satisfaction. This applies to running and our physical well being, but also to job promotions and new businesses.
Beyond waiting for a large goal, there is the satisfaction that comes from working toward a goal. When the goal you set truly matters to you, the...
Gratitude is an incredibly important quality to carry with you throughout the day. It frames how you perceive everything around you and tilts the day in a much more positive direction.
In our busy lives, one of the things that is very easy to skip past is the feeling of thankfulness and gratitude. Angie and I both like to start the day bringing to mind 1-3 specific things that we are thankful for. She actually takes the time to write them as part of her journaling practice. Maybe I’ll get there next year.
When the day starts with gratitude and then is followed by a to-do list, this list becomes a series of blessings or challenges that require a solution. When you open just with the list of items to check off, then each item can become one more thing that you must get through or endure.
From a running perspective, it is a much nicer experience when the run, or the few minutes before you start, can call to mind your thankfulness for...
The holidays can be so busy, with holiday parties, Christmas concerts, gift exchanges, and family and friend get togethers.
Where does running and health fit in?
First, let’s think about the benefits of fitting in running
Running and healthy eating during the holidays are ways for you to take care of yourself PHYSICALLY. Running builds strength, helps to control the balance between energy input/output (aka calories). Eating healthy allows you to get the nutrients that your body needs to give you energy and avoid stomach upset and that sluggish feeling you get after eating highly processed or heavy foods.
Running through the holidays is a way to care for yourself MENTALLY. It is a huge source of stress relief for many people. It releases those good hormones called endorphins, which help us to feel happier and more stress-free. It helps to decrease that guilty feeling. You know that you always feel better knowing you got...
The best gifts are something that the recipient wants but does not want to buy for themselves. The gift is removing the barrier of spending money on something they they could live without, but don’t want to.
Here are some of our favorites. Find most of them at this link.
The treadmill. I have heard it called many things. The dreadmill. A winter refuge. A shelter from stifling heat or powerful thunderstorms. A human hamster wheel. The long road to nowhere. Cardio. Personally, I like to think of the treadmill as cheap therapist that I can occasionally visit on a long lunch break or while the team heads out for a distance run.
Whatever your relationship with this gym staple, there is one aspect we can all agree upon, it can get really boring. Mile after mile of not actually going anywhere gets a bit tedious. On this episode, besides some basic tips on safety and general treadmill guidelines, we are going to provide some workouts that you can add into your training when you end up trapped (or blessed) on a treadmill.
First, let’s get some basic safety out of the way.
Life moves fast and sometimes we need to step back and enjoy the moment or expand our point of view and look at the big picture. That is not the point of this episode. That was last week.
Sometimes we need to move fast. We need to get in a speed workout to test our physical potential. We need to get four lunches packed, get in a full day of work, shuttle the kids to four places at the same time, and have a healthy dinner on the table. That is this episode.
Running at a relaxing pace is great. It serves some major benefits and is most ideal for runners just starting out or coming off of a break. But let’s be honest, easy running day after day can get dull really fast. Also, you will not truly come near your physical greatness without some speed work.
Speed work physically helps you with strength and range of motion, but not to the level that you should skip strength days or mobility exercises. It can also help your...
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