Thursday, June 27, 2013

Need some input

Ok runners, I need some input. As you well know by now, the cross-country move is quickly approaching. Like, approaching faster than a newbie off the start line of a 13.1. My life-while-moving is a series of lists. Lists of lists. One such list is called "Things To Take by Car" aka "Things I Shouldn't Put on a Moving Truck." So here's the question: would you trust your race medals to a moving truck? Arguments to put them on the truck: they are durable and they are not, by any market standard, worth a fortune. Reasons to put them in my car (which I'm driving across the country): they are irreplaceable and they are relatively small. What do you think??

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Book winner, blogger meet-ups, and tips for humid weather running

First up, winner of my National Running Day/400th blogiversary book giveaway: Life as a Running Mom. Please email me at with an address to ship it to! I hope you enjoy Matt's story.

Next up, Blogger Meet-Ups! I finally got to meet the lovely Raquelita of The Running Historian. Somehow we failed to capture this run in pictures (blogger fail!). We ran Forest Park, the great Mecca of STL runners. She is just as lovely in person as on her blog, and I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know her a bit. It was fun to share stories of travel gone wrong, academia, and running.

And finally, it's official: summer is here. The last two weeks or so have been much sweatier than the many months before them. A few times lately I've been struck by how much easier it is to face this weather now than it was even just a few years ago--experience makes a world of difference. So, I thought, why not put together a list of things learned? Hopefully this is helpful! In no particular order:

  • Getting up early is worth it when hot weather is in play. It might take a while to learn to go to bed earlier (I'm still not great at this), but it's worth it. Someday you'll feel sorry for that guy out running at 9am. 
  • Buy some appropriate hydration gear, like a Nathan Handheld or something similar and get comfortable with using it. I used to rely on water fountains in the park. With a handheld, I decrease stops, and I can venture into new areas that might not have fountains. Also, it provides another pocket for Gu, keys, ID, whatever.
  • Acquire 2-3 changes of non-cotton running clothes, including shirts, shorts, and absolutely socks. 
  • Ladies, this also means getting a real, non-cotton sports bra. Yes, they can be expensive. But of the maybe 5-6 women who I've coerced/encouraged/helped to get a real sports bra, almost all have come back to tell me what a huge difference it made for them. If you need suggestions, Runner's World keeps a good, current set of reviews by body type. REI Outlet sometimes has good sales. 
  • Drink something cold before heading out. Runner's World reported on this a year or so ago, that by cooling your core temp before a hot run, you can endure the heat better. I believe them.
  • This isn't specific to heat, but while I'm at it, I will remind you all to PLEASE always run with identification and, if possible, insurance and emergency contact information. I rely on this, though there are certainly many options. Whether you are facing heat stroke, a run-in with a car, or other issues, this can be a life saver. 
Certainly there are other tips, but I think those are the ones that I've relied on the most. Go run strong as summer brings the heat!