Training Tuesday: 10 Reasons Why I LOVE The Treadmill

Ok so probably if you’ve followed me on any of my social media platforms, you know that a fair share of my training has been done on the treadmill. Thank you Mother Nature! Between the ice, below 0* temperatures, and insane amount of snow we’ve gotten this winter- I don’t think I’d be able to get in half of my morning runs unless I had the treadmill to run on! I LOVE to run outside, but when I have no other viable and safe option —> I go to the good ole ‘mill. I thought it would be fun to share some of my favorite reasons why I LOVE this as a training option!

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-It builds up your mental strength. There’s nothing like knowing that you can just hop off at any time, but you focus your brain to be able to withstand that temptation over time.

-You can really hit your paces. I know that if I want to hit ‘x’ pace during a mile repeat or marathon paced miles, I just put the treadmill at that speed and hang on.

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-It builds up your leg strength with those incline options! There’s nothing else better (in my opinion) to get in an absolutely killer hill workout that won’t quit. I also love these treadmill hill workouts from RunFarGirl.

-It’s a safe option when you don’t have someone else to run with or know where you are. I LOVE to explore new cities on my own two feet, but sometimes it’s not always the safest option (especially if I’m traveling solo). I know that I will be able to get my workout in and be safe —> the most important part!

-It’s a nice change of pace, when you’re tired of your usual running routes. Sometimes I get in a rut of running the same ‘ol roads/trails. The treadmill helps me switch it up and I get the feeling like I’m taking a “break”.

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-It saves you from running outside when the weather is just AWFUL. Snow? Sub-zero temperatures? Insane amounts of ice? Blizzard? Extreme heat? The treadmill is really a gift when the weather outside is not the best.

-It keeps your easy runs honest. While the time goes by slower, I like to utilize the treadmill to keep my easy runs truly easy. There’s no downhill segments to speed up your legs- I just pop it on a really slow pace and completely ‘zone out’ for those miles. Sometimes they’re my favorite runs of the week.

-Netflix and treadmill? It comes in waves of sheer-boredom with the ‘mill and gratitude, but I (most of the time) love to catch up on one of my new shows (that I save specifically to watch on the ‘mill) OR zone-out to a show that I’ve seen a thousand times. I also really love to watch the news on the treadmill. Total geek, yes I know. If it’s the Today Show —> even better!

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-Simulate your upcoming race course. I live in a super hilly area (i.e. I don’t believe I’ve ever gained less than 400’ on a run no matter how ‘flat’ the road looks), so when my legs are absolutely trashed from running hills or long the day before - I honestly do not want to look at a hill ever again and driving to a flatter road isn’t in the question —> the treadmill at .5% incline feels incredible. I also know that training for Mt.Washington Road Race, I’ll need to really work on a pretty steep incline (12%-22%) - there is no hill around here that spans out for miles at that incline so the treadmill the BEST option.

-There is no traffic to worry about. Sometimes I get really frustrated with cars on the road not paying attention to me or plow-trucks coming straight at me. The treadmill is a really nice change of pace where I can feel SAFE and really zone out without having to worry about Mountain Lions mauling me, getting run over by a distracted driver, or being plowed up by a snow plow. <— one of my biggest fears right there!

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Tell ME some of your favorite reasons why you love the ‘mill!


Weekend Recap

Happy Monday! I have been in such a funk lately and hoping it passes soon. I’ve been congested for over two weeks now and it’s really starting to wear on me. Nothing like not being able to breathe out of your nose when you’re trying to drink some water (OR RUN!!). Hoping it passes soon. We got something like 14” OF SNOW YESTERDAY?!? Yeah and I decided to go outside and run in it. It was so beautiful, but I didn’t wear my traction spikes and had a really hard time in a few spots where I kept slipping on ice/ unplowed dirt roads.  

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My legs were also so tired from our skin up the mountain by our house on Saturday.  

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We ended up going higher than we had before and making our own ski tracks on the way down (which was SO AMAZING!), but wow did my legs feel it on Sunday!  

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And yes, it basically snowed here all weekend.  

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Saturday I got so many of those “little things done” that I normally don’t get to- I.e cleaning the humidifier, my bras, cleaning our duvet, throwing out all those useless items under our bathroom sink etc. Since none of that is interesting, here’s a pretty cute photo of Brady asleep in a very odd position.  

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Also had steak & cheeses Friday night.... it was Sooo good!  

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How was your weekend?! 

Favorite dinner you had? 

Tips for uncongesting yourself?!?!  

Eugene Marathon/50 Miler Training Week 9: 2/18-2/24

Happy Hump Day! I’ve felt a bit of a cold coming on, so I’ve opted to get the majority of my runs this week in the afternoon (so I can get more sleep). I was still on the fence on whether to get my 8 miles at marathon pace in the morning (on the treadmill) or try to get it in this afternoon (it could be sleeting)- so still up in the air as of last night! I WILL be getting it in regardless though. I’m also getting my haircut today! I was still trying to decide if I should get some bangs (they looked so cute on me in High School, but are also a super pain-in-the-butt!), but I’m definitely excited to get some fresh highlights (it’s been since October!) and shorter hair again. Photos to come tomorrow ; )

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Last week really tested my patience with the weather. It was in the negatives every.single.morning and a high of low 20s the entire week. I had a crazy busy work/personal life week, so mornings were the only time I could run (for the most part), so I was on the treadmill a bunch (hoping to only be on it ONCE this week!). Not ideal- but do what you can right?

Monday, 2/18: 5 miles easy on the home treadmill while catching up on the news.

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Tuesday, 2/19: 1.5 mile warm up / 8 miles at goal marathon pace (8:15) / 1.5 mile cool down. 11 miles & strength. Felt really good even after getting kicked off the treadmill for 10 minutes. Gotta love the 6AM treadmill rush that lasts 10-15 minutes. Sigh.

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Wednesday, 2/20: 6.5 miles on the ‘mill. Normally I try to break up my goal marathon paced miles & speedwork, but this week was funky and this is when I had time. SO I did the repeats mainly on an incline (same benefits as a faster pace, but less strain on your body).

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Thursday, 2/21: 13 miles in the morning on the ‘mill & then had a unexpected free afternoon, so decided to just go for the remaining 7 miles to get 20 for the day! Happy to get some afternoon miles outside : ) Plus some strength afterwards.

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Friday, 2/22: 9.37 miles in a BLIZZARD in the morning (I didn’t think it was supposed to snow?!?). I took it slow because I was TIRED and it was icy (didn’t have my spikes). I ended up cutting it short in the morning and then got in the remaining 6.63 in the afternoon on the treadmill (still super icy out), which felt MUCH better. 16 miles for the day.

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Saturday, 2/23: REST DAY! Completely lounged and it was amazing.

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Sunday, 2/24: REST DAY! Went snowshoeing, did some strength, and a bunch of stretching.

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Total Mileage: 58.5 miles!

Total Elevation: 2, 122’ up

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Also LOVING this new shirt I got from Oiselle.

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THIS cream cheese (almond milk!) tastes amazing.

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It’s finally warm enough here to wear just ONE layer on top & bottom! YAY! Does this mean Spring is coming?!?

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How’s your week going?

What’s the weather where you are?

Favorite ways to pass the time on the ‘mill?

Post-Run Recovery And Why It's So Important

Happy Tuesday! SO we’re officially back to winter this week (or well until at least probably March it looks like…). Mid 20’s are the high and negatives/ very low single digits until infinity. This is also my last PEAK mileage week before recovery next week. So while I know I’ll be super busy (and also on the treadmill more than usual), I know that spring is just around the corner AND that it doesn’t matter where I get my runs in, just that I still put in the effort. I’m ready to tackle the challenge. Just hoping it stays remotely warm-enough on Friday morning for my first 20 miler of this training cycle! Wohooo. I’ll be getting 36 miles over Thursday/Friday and am switching up my rest day to Sunday this week (normally I have it on Wednesdays) because it just works better with my work schedule this week. Here’s to hoping I don’t need to be THIS bundled up for my run on Friday!

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With my increased mileage, I’ve really been focusing on recovery. Whether you believe in active recovery days or complete rest days (I’m somewhere in between normally- I like to do something, but nothing that requires much effort). Some of my favorite ways to spend a recovery are swimming, getting a massage, or doing yoga.

When you train hard, your body begins to breakdown to adapt to the continual stress. When you recover, it gives your body time to repair those muscles. When you don’t take recovery seriously, you put yourself at an increased risk of injury, illness, or burn-out (among other things). Luckily there ARE things you can be doing to help speed-up that recovery process (and help your body get ready for your next run or big workout)! I also found a lot of great information in this article by Runner’s World.

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Here are some of my favorite ways to boost recovery (whether post-run or ON my recovery days)!

-Drink a lot of water and replenish any electrolytes. Think of water as the means to turn your muscles from ice to snow. It gives them their fluidity after you’ve been running with them for an extended period of time.

-Refuel with real food. 4 to 1 ratio of carbs to protein. I’ve been focusing more and more on refueling immediately after my run and I think it helps so much. You really need to plan-ahead post-run, but doing-so will help your body recover and decrease your risk of any sort of injury or illness. Dark Chocolate Almond Milk is one of my favorites or PB on Toast with Honey and blueberries or bananas.

-Epsom Salt Bath or Ice Bath. Ice baths are amazing to decrease the inflammation in your muscles, but honestly I have such a hard time taking one (I’m always SO cold). So, I generally apply ice to any problem areas I have (normally my plantar & knee) and will then hop into a hot Epsom Salt Bath after stretching.

-Stretch! I used to overlook stretching (I know, I know…shame on me), but now I take a few minutes to stretch post-run (no matter whether I’m running late or not!) and also stretch before going to bed every night. I haven’t had one niggle this training cycle thus far, so I think it’s helping!

-Yoga. I love JasYoga (they have a few free videos on YouTube that I love) and their running-specific videos.

-Get out for a walk. Ultrarunner extraordinaire, Karl Meltzer, takes his dogs for an hour long walk every morning (even post 100 mile races!). I think that says the importance of getting out and moving everyday even for an hour.

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What are some tips you’d add?

What are YOUR favorite ways to spend a recovery day?

Training Tuesday: Marathon Fatigue

Happy Tuesday! I’ve got another 7 miles at goal marathon effort on the ‘mill this morning (it’s just too cold/ icy out to do this in the early mornings on the roads in the winter, so I’m building up my mental stamina) and some strength. I’ve come to really look forward to my early morning Tuesday alarms (4am), although when it first goes off I definitely look something more-so like this:

I’ve been wanting to do a post about marathon fatigue for a while now because it’s something that I honestly always forget about (and I’ve ran 6 marathons). It’s those first 4 weeks or so of training (for me, anyways), where everything feels terrible. Your legs feel dead, speed is just not happening, and anything surrounding marathon pace is plain ugly.

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Your almost always tired and the fatigue in those easy recovery runs is 100% REAL. I always equate those recovery runs to running through mud, with weights on your legs. Which is honestly how these runs should feel like. They’re getting the blood flowing, your main goal is to NOT work your cardiovascular system too much (save it for those speed/long/tempo runs in your week!), and it’s just working out all those kinks. Which is why it should feel hard/terrible/aweful.

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Your body is also adjusting to a new schedule, which is one of the hardest things for me! Getting into a new routine is CHALLENGING. Until I make it a habit, it’s a struggle to get up early, find a good time each week to fit in my strength/ yoga/ rest day/ long run day etc. After those 4 or so weeks, I’ve finally adjusted (mentally AND physically) to training. I know how I’ll feel after certain runs and by trail and error (many marathon training cycles to go off of), and also when running/training works best for you. Unfortunately, if it’s your first or second marathon you may not yet have this down.

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Marathon training takes a lot of time and energy. FIguring out how it works into your schedule and ADJUSTING to it takes PATIENCE. It’s not going to magically feel good overnight (or rarely will you ever feel great until after race day) and it takes a few weeks to adjust to ANY new training plan/schedule/routine (like anything in life, right?). I think getting over that 4-5 week training hump is hard with every new training cycle I begin and sometimes I find that it isn’t working and something needs to change. I did this for my goal Fall marathon (LV Rock n Roll) and found that switching to the half would be best for me where I was in life at the moment. That’s OK and sometimes it’s harder to acknowledge where you are versus where you want to be and make adjustments from there. Give yourself time, patience, and grace.

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I’d love to know your tips when beginning a new cycle (marathon or something else!)- do you find to have an adjustment period? How long does it take for you?

Favorite day of the week? —> Almost always Thursdays. You’re on the cusp of the end of the week and by then I’ve got my long workdays behind me!

Where are you able to train right now ? Roads? Trails? Treadmill?