Mom on the Run (5)
Mom on the Run - February 2012
This month, Mandy encourages us to be mindful of how our everyday efforts to stay fit can make an impact on others!
Inspire. Be Inspired.
Today as I was heading out the door for my run, my two year old son, put on his “watch” and said to me, “meem (me) go run too.” Obviously it has occurred to me that he was trying to avoid the imminent nap and the fact that he imitates so many of the things that my husband and I do; however it also made me think that maybe I am in a very small way setting an example of the importance of exercise.
I started thinking about the people in my life that inspire me: my husband gets up every morning at 4:30 so he can work-out and be home before the kids wake up, my sister going to boot camp at the crack of dawn every morning, my dad- the fittest 65 year old I know, the guy I see everytime I go for a run- always on the same street, any mom (or dad) pushing a BOB, all the moms at the gym trying to get a workout in while their kids are in preschool, my running fanatic coworkers, my high school friend who constantly posts her runs and races on facebook. None of these people know they are inspiring me. They are just doing what is important to them.
How many people might I be inspiring in the same way? Our nanny recently mentioned she is going to start running again after a long break from fitness (she also watches my kids when I take a run). My friend just mentioned she is going to join the gym (after watching me head to the gym while my son is in preschool). I am not suggesting in either case it was because of me, but maybe in a very small way I inspired them. And maybe when I am on my runs or at the gym I am in some small way inspiring others, people I don’t know.
You should take a minute and think of all the people that have inspired you. And also be proud of all the people you are inspiring, whether you know it or not.
Mom on the Run – January 2012
Here are a few great New Year's tips from Mandy Hale for young and busy parents!
Sometimes I have to trick myself to run faster or simply just run. I play little games with myself, which have proven to be very effective. Here are some examples:
1. One of my favorite ways to trick myself into thinking I am running faster….put one of your kids in the jogging stroller (two if you are feeling really brave) and take a run and time yourself. Do the same run without the kids the very next day and feel proud at how much faster you ran the same course within a 24 hour window.
2. I find my pace is a little faster when I know the babysitter is home with the kids and needs to leave by a certain time. If I have to get home by 1- I can’t take it easy- I have to keep up the pace for the entire run, or I will be late!
3. Tell your partner/friend/mother/etc your plans for running/training…it seems as if someone knows and expects me to work out on Sunday morning, I am more likely to actually make it happen. Also if I add it to our calendar/schedule, I would feel like a complete loser if I didn’t actually run.
4. Get a new pair of shoes…nothing like new shoes to get you to pick up the pace.
Written by Mandy Hale November 28, 2011
December 2011 Mom on the Run: 10:30 - The New 10 Minute Mile
A few weeks ago, I completed my first race, the Marsh Madness 10k in Palo Alto, California. I ran the race with my dad and had a lot of fun - so glad I did it. We finished around 65 minutes, for an average of 10:30 minute miles. Post-race, I have a few reflections.
1. Up until the day of the race I did all my runs by time. If I needed to run 3 miles, I ran 30 minutes, with the assumption I was running 10 minute miles. My pre-baby average run was probably somewhere around 9 minutes (or 9:30) per mile. I know what 10 minute mile feels like, or so I thought. In reality I was probably running slower, maybe even 11 minute miles. What used to feel like 10, is now 11. This is probably true with other things; what used to fit like a size 6 is now a size 10, but we won’t get into that. So because of this flawed assumption, I wasn’t able to make my goal time of 10 minute miles. My main take away is – know your distance, so you know your pace. I started wearing my Garmin again. Running with my Garmin now informs me when my pace is changing. I thought I was in tune with that, but obviously not.
2. Run with a friend/family member if possible. I already knew this, but was reminded of this on race day. I asked my dad to join me so I would have company, but he actually encouraged me to keep on pace (yes, I would have finished even slower if it wasn’t for him). Now I just need to find a way I can run with someone for at least one of my training runs each week.
3. Small races are a great way to check your progress, and give you official timing on your runs. It would have never occurred for me to do that- I thank the FNF coaches for that! And even through the pace isn't as fast as I thought, I feel like I am making significant progress. A half marathon doesn't seem that out of reach anymore.
Written by Mandy Hale October 30, 2011
Like many of our trainees, staff member Mandy Hale is setting a goal to get back in shape after pregnancy. She is chronicling her journey in a new column, Mom on the Run.
After my oldest child was born, I patiently waited for my doctor to give me the ok to start running again. And then I waited a little longer until my husband and I got some type of routine, in which I could be gone for an hour. I remember being so excited to go out for my hour long run. I was planning on going on the same run my husband and I did in the mornings, before I got pregnant. When I started out, I understandably didn’t feel the same. But I was shocked that after 10 minutes, I wasn’t sure if I could run any more. Reality set in. I can’t run 60 minutes, I can barely run 10 minutes. Not good. What happened? I think I was more upset that my one hour break had turned into only 10 minutes, but that is a separate issue. I was disappointed that I wasn’t in shape, and all that hard work training for the marathon was all gone. I basically had to start from nothing. I knew I was out of shape, but that was a little more than I could handle.
So, over the course of months I slowly increased my run time. I eventually started to run 45 minutes. Unfortunately, my time was limited to how long my son would sit in the stroller. And of course running was way more difficult pushing a stroller.
The second time around, I set more realistic expectations and the results were a lot better physically and mentally. I started with longer and more vigorous walks. For my first run, I only planned to be out for 20 minutes, but to my surprise, I stayed out for 30 minutes. I set a realistic expectation and instead of being frustrated and disappointed at the end of the run I felt inspired.
As athletes (regardless of intensity) we train ourselves to constantly push ourselves. To run faster, longer, better. And the power of your mind is important component to overcome many obstacles; however as much as your mind can work to your advantage, I think it can also work against you if you are not realistic about your capabilities and your fitness level.
Like many of our trainees, FNF staff member Mandy Hale is setting a goal to get back in shape after pregnancy. She'll be chronicling her journey in a new column, Mom on the Run.
So here I am, a mother of two. I'm sitting here daydreaming about the days long gone in which I woke up and ran 6 miles before work with one of my good friends or my husband. Those were the days I lived in the city and would run to the Golden Gate Bridge, up the stairs to Coit Tower, or through the Presidio. I so looked forward to those early morning runs. It was such an exhilarating way to start the day. Not only do I miss those runs, but I miss the feeling of being in great shape.
Three years ago, I ran my first marathon. It was a major accomplishment and a major investment of time to train. I was training with my husband so it was easy to find time when the longs runs were a priority in both of our lives. A few months after the race, I was pregnant with my first child. My running quickly was reduced to slow jogging/walking as it became uncomfortable to run. And my daily walking was reduced to weekend yoga when I hardly had the energy to go to work, let alone exercise. After my son was born, I tried to run, and I did, but finding the time was difficult. And running usually involved pushing a jogging stroller which was hard. And then 10 months later I became pregnant with my second, and the same thing happened all over again. And here I am daydreaming about those early morning carefree runs. Now I have even less time, but it has become an even greater priority.
I know it won’t be easy, but I want to regain my condition pre-pregnancy and the only way to do it is jump in full force. I am planning a 10k at the end of October and a half marathon after the new year. My biggest concern is finding the time, but with my husband on board with the plan, we can make it happen.
My first plan of action is to put my goals in the Focus-N-Fly site and get a schedule. And then I have to actually figure out when I have the time to complete the designated work-outs. It will most likely involve running in the wee hours of the morning or after the sun goes down, but it will happen.
So here I am mother of two making a pact to myself (and to you) to return to that feeling of being in great shape.