When You Go for a Real Run After Weeks of Not Going

You take multiple run selfies.

First one is disguised as stretching in case anybody walks or runs by.

Mom vs. Marathon Blog

The next one I wanted to show that it was cold. We had frost that didn’t melt all day because, while it was clear, it only got up to about 34 degrees. In this one, I forgot to smile because I was worries about people thinking I was weird.

Mom vs. Marathon Blog

But it is weird taking run selfies, so yeah.

It’s been weeks since I went for a real run.

Sure, I did sprints on the treadmill a few times, but I haven’t been outside for a run since I don’t know when.

Maybe I just needed a break. I have been enjoying lifting weights and HIIT workouts, but I just haven’t felt like running. I can feel it coming back, though.

This week, I’ve been thinking about running a lot.

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Probably because I’m scheduled to run Santa Runs Tacoma (2 weeks) and My Better Half Marathon (12 weeks).

BTW I have some race discount codes for you:

Use the code “MOMVSMARATHON” to get $10 off your My Better Half Marathon entry.

Use the code “CyberMonday20” to get 20% off the FitFam Challenge, Nuun Year Dash, or both! This one is TODAY ONLY (Cyber Monday).

 

Who Wants $10 Off a Half Marathon?

Happy Thanksgiving! I got you a race discount. Oh, wait. Do we not do gifts on Thanksgiving? Don’t care.

You get $10 off! YOU get $10 off! You all get $10 off!

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Holy shit, everyone gets $10 offff!

You know what I’m thankful for? Race discount codes.

Anyway, it’s Thanksgiving, so you know that means: time to start thinking about Valentine’s Day.

The My Better Half Marathon is a fun new Valentine’s Day race in Seattle. And I’m not just saying that because I’m a race ambassador.

My Better Half Marathon Discount Code from Mom vs. Marathon

It’ll be at Seward Park in Seattle, which in case you aren’t aware, is one of the easier places to get to in Seattle for a race.

The idea is you can run the race with your “better half.” That could be your runner BFF, your significant other, or you can just run by yourself because Valentine’s Day is just a made-up Hallmark holiday anyway, amIright?

Better Half Marathon Discount Code from Mom vs. Marathon

Here are the four categories: Bromance (two guy friends), Besties (two girl friends), Lovers (romantically involved) and Lonely Hearts (self-explanatory). There’s also a relay option, so you and your partner can split up the distance, then meet at the end for a delicious hot post-race meal.

And check out the race swag!

  • A half-zip jacket! Yep, not a shirt. And it’ll have gender-specific sizing.
  • One long stemmed red rose. For me?
  • Free professional race photos. F-R-E-E.
  • Custom finisher medal.
  • Professional chip timing.
  • Post-race HOT MEAL (supplied by Mama Passarelli’s–dude!).
  • A portion of your entry donated to Habitat For Humanity of King County. Awesome.

All that for $75. And, actually, since you get $10 off, it’s only $65! Use the code: MOMVSMARATHON

Click here to register for My Better Half Marathon now!

Prices go up in January and the race is capped at 650 runners, so get to signin’ up. I’m basically telling you guys that you have to do this race. So start picking out your outfits.

(Oh and let me know if you’re going in the comments, so we can meet up!)

 

How to Lift Weights Like a Mom

How to Lift Weights Like a Mom | Mom vs. Marathon
My little space to lift that was available today.
  1. Find a 3-foot-by-3-foot area of the floor that is clean.
  2. Use rest periods to fish toys, balls or Legos out from underneath chairs, beds, treadmill, etc.
  3. Practice patience as you lift 25-pound dumbbells over your head while your child repeatedly asks you if you can get their ball for them…AGAIN. Do not try to talk to your child as it will come out as a poltergeist-esque scream.
  4. Pretend to not feel the dog biting your ponytail during push-ups.
  5. Tell yourself that lifting weights with a billion and six distractions exercises your mind, too.
  6. Go about your day feeling like a super hero.

Today’s workout was from Lose Weight Here. I did a traditional-style weight lifting workout. I used 25-pound dumbbells for shoulder presses, 25-pounders for dumbbell squats, 30-pound dumbbells for rows, and did bodyweight pushups with my feet elevated.

3 Popular Running Pins on Pinterest

Is there a show for people who hoard running information?

Because I could be the star!

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I have a Running Board on Pinterest where I hoard all the running tips, and there are a few pins that get “re-pinned” all. the. time. So I thought I’d do a roundup of those few pins because there must be a reason they keep getting pinned.

I guess everyone is injured and wants to get stronger while wearing Wonder Woman running accessories.

12 Strength Training Moves for Runners

Written by Michelle from NYC Running Mama and posted by Women’s Running, this is the most popular one on my board. Love that. Strongerrrrrrunners!

Learn the ONE Stretch That Relieves Plantar Fasciitis, Shin Splints, Achilles Pain, Heel Pain and Compartment Syndrome

This one from Mobility Mastery has a nice video, and the article isn’t long despite that headline.

Wonder Woman Accessories for Running

An obvious must-pin.

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Click here to follow my board Running on Pinterest.

All About Metabolic Effect’s New Book Lose Weight Here

I have been trying to write a review of Lose Weight Here for weeks, but I don’t feel ready to review this book yet.

I read it. I did well following the advice for the first week and then something happened: Chloe. Since we got our puppy, Chloe, my schedule keeps changing. Just when I think I have it down, Chloe has to eat lunch at a new time. Or Chloe needs to go to the vet for her shots. Or Chloe has explosive diarrhea…all over my bedroom carpet.

So I never seem to be able to get in a workout groove. I’m constantly just trying to fit it in, and that is not sustainable. I’ve always done better at being consistent with my workouts if I consistently do them at a certain time. But I haven’t been able to find a certain time.

Lose Weight Here Overview | Mom vs. Marathon
From left: Chloe, Bennie and Lucy

So I don’t feel like I’ve given this book a fair shot. Instead of a review, here are some of my thoughts on the book so far, plus what it is…

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After I read Lose Weight Here (I got the Kindle version), I thought, Why did I put off buying this book for so long?

I loved what the authors of The Metabolic Effect Diet had to say in that, their first, book. And I got results after following the philosophies in the ME book, so why did I wait so long?

First, I was thinking it might be the same information I’d read in The Metabolic Effect Diet. And some of it is, but there’s more. In my opinion, Lose Weight Here (LWH) is the next level of The Metabolic Effect Diet (ME).

Second, can I address the title? Because it really turned me off.

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I feel like Jade and Keoni Teta are either really good at naming their books or really terrible. It depends on your camp. If you are looking at the titles from a health POV, then they are terrible. If you are looking at them from a marketing POV, then they’re geniuses.

I don’t like “fixes” or “weight loss plans” or “detoxes” or any of that stuff, so the title Lose Weight Here did not appeal to me.

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Luckily, I already trust the authors. The Teta brothers are both natural doctors (they earned their degrees from the highly respected natural health institution, Bastyr University, which is right here in the Pacific Northwest).

But let’s get over the title of Lose Weight Here? Because the book is actually totally awesome.

Who is Lose Weight Here For?

Before I talk about my experience following LWH’s fat-loss ideas, I want to note that the book’s philosophy is not for everyone.

LWH is probably not for you if you are training for long-distance endurance events, such as half or full marathons, and Ironmans.

LWH probably is for you if you:

-have trouble getting motivated to work out at all,

-feel out of control with your eating habits/nutrition,

-are tired of doing workouts, but not seeing results, and/or

-want to build a leaner body.

And here’s a quick reminder that you don’t get anything you want in life without a little work. You get out what you put in, and that applies to your health and this book, too.

My Weight Loss Background

If you’ve been reading this blog for a few years, then you know I started working on being healthier in 2009 after gaining post-pregnancy weight and dealing with a back issue.

Me, after about 3 months of running.
Me, after about 3 months of running.

I did this by running because I wanted to “get in shape” and, ultimately, wanted to run a marathon. It worked…for a little while. I lost weight, but my body didn’t really change much. I just got to be a smaller-puffy version of the bigger-puffy one.

Lose Weight Here Review - Part I | Mom vs. Marathon
You can see how my shape hadn’t changed that much even though I’m a little smaller here in this photo from March 2013.

But I did become a better runner, and that’s mainly what I was after. It’s all about your goal. What is your goal? Mine was to run a marathon, which I did in 2011 (and again this fall). Mission(s) accomplished. Now, my goal is different.

Fat Loss and Weight Loss

After I ran my marathon in 2011, I started to get really annoyed with the fact that I would run and/or bike for hours and hours every week and would actually gain weight. I tried eating less and less. That didn’t work either and (now I know) that was really unhealthy and wrecked my metabolism.

A couple years later, I read The Metabolic Effect Diet (ME) and it. changed. everything. Suddenly, I understood why I had such a hard time losing weight: It wasn’t all about how much I was eating, it was also about what I was eating. It was also what I was doing: Eating less and exercising more was not the solution.

ME taught me that lifting weights (gaining muscle) was the key to fat loss for me. Oh, and I figured out it was fat loss I was after, not just weight loss. I didn’t know that muscle burns fat until I read ME.

I also learned that while no food is necessarily “bad” for me, different foods affect me in different ways. There is a fat and carb tipping point when it comes to my metabolism—too much carb and/or fat, and I gain weight. Too little, and I don’t feel well.

LWH is similar to ME in that it explains the science behind fat loss. You’ll learn about the metabolism and hormones. If you didn’t read ME, then definitely read this information in LWH. If you did read ME, you can probably skim or skip it in LWH. I read it because I felt I needed to brush up on the science.

The heart of LWH is two fat-loss philosophies that were introduced in ME, but that LWH takes to the next level: Eat Less, Exercise Less (ELEL) and Eat More, Exercise More (EMEM).

What you don’t want to do is Eat Less, Exercise More or Eat More, Exercise Less!

(Pro tip: Nutrition should always be your first priority when it comes to fat loss.)

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I don’t want to give away too much because the authors went to school for a long time, and they worked hard writing this book, so they deserve to get paid for the information. But here’s a little taste:

For two weeks you Eat Less, Exercise Less. This is not a popular philosophy, but (spoiler alert), so far I have felt best during the ELEL weeks. My stomach got flatter and I lost weight.

Nutrition during ELEL is 3 meals: high protein and veggies for both breakfast and lunch, and for dinner it’s the same except you add some whole food carbs (such as sweet potatoes).

I thought I would have a hard time transitioning to only three meals a day (since I was eating like 6-8 times a day before), but since the meals are higher in protein and satisfying, I only struggled with craving habits (when you’re in the habit of doing something, such as eating junk when you get home from work…*ahem*). And that only lasted a couple days.

I found I was less hangry and mean during ELEL. I was less crunched for time, and I was able to get in all my workouts.

Working out on ELEL is easy. LWH suggests walking about an hour a day, and then two traditional weight lifting workouts (heavy weights; lots of rest between sets). That’s it. I adored this, but was excited by the end of the second week to get my sweat on in the Eat More, Exercise More weeks.

Nutrition during EMEM is not a whole lot different from nutrition during ELEL, except you eat one more meal–after your workout. Unfortunately, my EMEM phase fell during the same time we were going through some nutrition difficulties with puppy Chloe. I was stressing and snacking a lot more than I would like–I even made myself sick a couple of times. So, I don’t feel like I gave these weeks a fair try at all. I did not follow the nutrition advice.

Note: LWH gives you tips and advice on how to deal with cravings, and how to manage your HEC (Hunger, Energy, Cravings).

The walking workouts during EMEM are more time consuming. The authors want you to find up to two hours each day to walk if you can. I was able to get more walking in by doing bits here and there–15 minutes on the treadmill until I had to clean up puppy poop, 15 more while my son got ready for bed, etc. I just left the time up on my treadmill and then continued. But I was never able to get to two hours.

During EMEM, the authors also want you to do 3 days of 20-minute metabolic chain workouts (they give them to you), and 3 days of 20-minute rest-based interval training (for example, sprints with rest intervals). I love these types of workouts and enjoyed them very much. I wasn’t making nutrition a priority, though, so I gained weight. But I did lose an inch on my belly.

So, after 4 weeks, I’m in Week 1 of ELEL again. It hasn’t been going that well, honestly, because we are still in a state of craziness here at my house. But, if I’ve learned anything from the Tetas (and Jade’s wife Jill Coleman of JillFit), it’s that every meal is a brand new chance to eat well (and treat yourself well). So no guilt!

The other thing LWH prescribes is rest and relaxation. I did not get enough of that, for sure. But I was more aware of it, and got a few restful moments in here and there.

I really like what Lose Weight Here is about. Nutrition first, then strength and plenty of R&R. And also, I think my arms look pretty good.

Lose Weight Here Book Overview | Mom vs. MarathonWant to see/hear more about how I do using Lose Weight Here’s advice? Follow this blog, or follow me @momvsmarathon for more frequent (but shorter) updates on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

Get Lose Weight Here on Kindle or in Paperback.

Never Wake Up Early for a Race Again Thanks to FitFam

FitFam Launch | Mom vs. Marathon

I have a friend who likes to get to races at the last minute. She is notorious for showing up and running. None of that shivering in the cold at 5 a.m. for her.

I am jealous of that. I’m always more nervous about arriving and parking, than I am about the actual race.

On a side note, I think she’s also been pulled over a couple of times on her way to a race, so…

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Wouldn’t it be nice if you could get up whenever you wanted and run your race? You could run at 7 a.m. or noon or 7 p.m. if you wanted. You could run the race with your son or daughter. With your best friend or man’s best friend. No parking issues or speeding tickets. And no portable toilets!

That’s the beauty of a virtual race. Have you done one before? FitFam is a new company that wants to elevate the virtual race experience.

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FitFam (the name is a combo of “fitness” and “[global] family”) will host virtual races, and organize everything. The events will feature swag, chances to win awards through photo contests and a way to connect with a community of other racers worldwide. They will also be helping benefit non-profit causes.

FitFam Launch | Mom vs. Marathon
Photo contest? Yes, please.

And it’s all done online. Now you can set the time for your race! (You could even run it on the treadmill if you’re into that sort of torture, I mean, thing.)

Why am I bringing this up? Because FitFam is launching today!

FitFam Launch | Mom vs. Marathon
Pretty FitFam logo.

And I am also super excited to be a FitFam Ambassador. As an ambassador I am supporting FitFam’s mission to “empower people to live a more healthy and active lifestyle.” They want you to “Achieve your impossible.”

What seems impossible to you? A 5K? A marathon?! Figuring out what’s for dinner?! FitFam, me and 99 other ambassadors want to help you achieve it! (Although, don’t ask me about dinner because the answer is always tacos.)

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If you don’t already, it’d be super awesome if you followed me on one (or all) of these social media places — Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and even Pinterest! (@momvsmarathon) — for, you know, FitFam fun and other stuff. I post about fitness and running, but I also post pictures of my puppy, so don’t follow me if you hate puppies.

Also definitely follow FitFam on Twitter (@fitfam_com), and Facebook and Instagram (@fitfamhq) to stay up-to-date on virtual races and more.

Isn’t it fun to say? FitFam. FitFam. FitFam.

Wait. Before you go…

You want to mark January 15 on your calendar. The FitFam Challenge will be the first of many virtual events to come. Registered participants will receive: a shirt, a finisher medal, their own bib number, and lots more. Visit http://fitfam.com to sign up!

FitFam Launch | Mom vs. Marathon