Saturday, April 23, 2016

7 ridiculous ways to slow down your runs

Yeah, the title is classic clickbait, I know.  But it’s also true, kind of – at least 3 of the 7 I’ll list below are a bit absurd and, I’d argue, fairly unknown.  The background here is, I’ve struggled to slow down my running for years.  I was a high school distance runner who raced the 400m and 800m races, which are essentially long sprints, and in the following years, my inconsistent training has encouraged a misguided philosophy of short and fast runs – I’m a fast runner who struggles to get the pace down and the miles up.  This may sound like veiled cockiness, but I’d guess most runners would benefit from slowing their pace on a majority of their runs – it helps reduce injuries, allows muscles to recover better, and staves off general burnout.  And if your aim is to race longer distances (half marathon or further), then your long runs become more and more critical, and it’s harder to do them if you don’t drop the pace a bit, at least to start.  Thankfully, I have many great friends who are also serious runners, and their advice, along with an injury, has guided me to better running habits.  Along the way, I tried out a few of my own, more ridiculous, ways to slow down my pace.  Maybe they’ll help you too.

Friday, April 8, 2016

for the love of the trail

I've always been a runner: I was that obnoxious sixth grader who was excited to run the mile during the Presidential Fitness Test (do they still do that?); I ran cross-country in middle school and was part of a record-breaking relay team in high school; and in college I ran to burn off the beer and the mental misery of bluebook exams.  But after college, it became harder to get a consistent schedule.  Like many, I was too busy - too wrapped up in work, social activities, and netflix.  I would run every other day for 2 weeks, feel great, and then a new project or a long weekend would blow a hole straight through my resolve.  It always felt good to lace up the shoes and get out the door, and the post-run endorphin rush was amazing, but the runs themselves were uneventful and monotonous - it's hard to motivate to do anything when you're not actively enjoying it.  And then I fell in love.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

i'm basically nuts - a chart

As someone who tries to consume a decent part of their calories by fat, I eat a lot of nuts.  I spent some time on and compiled a list of popular nuts, and their nutritional content.  While I expected to see more of a difference between varieties, most of them have a similar caloric ratio.  Not as enlightening as I had hoped, but maybe useful to a few of you.

green smoothies - a basic guide to daily goodness

Each morning, I use roughly the same process to make my green smoothie: water -> chunks -> bitter greens -> base greens -> extras.  It’s different every day depending on what is in-season, on sale (sometimes the same as in-season), or whatever sounds good that particular morning.  I make 32oz each morning (or the night before) to be drank at some point the same day, and it typically takes 3-10 minutes depending on how much prep the morning’s ingredients require.  Keep it simple and quick so you don’t give yourself an excuse for not making it any given morning.  Here's the basic process, explained a bit further.