The rain I could do without (yes, I know the grass needs it), but I am enjoying the cooler weather! We were able to run after work today and it was only 66 degrees!! A-mazing! :)
Dinner was Pepper-themed tonight, with Quinoa Stuffed Peppers (Peas & Thank You) and Callaloo with Hot Pepper Vinegar (Vegetarian Times). I subbed Habanero Peppers (2) for the Scotch Bonnet Chile in the Callaloo recipe.
First, a glass of Bell’s Oktoberfest to enjoy while cooking. This was the perfect Fall beer to start the evening. Just a bit spiced, but still clean and refreshing. Not a full-bodied beer, but enjoyable!
Finally, the finished product – look how beautiful this turned out! I was out of guac (oops, used all that up yesterday), so we used Nacho Mmmm Sauce to make this even better. So filling and very low-calorie for those watching their weight.
Tips for Beginner Runners
One of my favorite things as a Run Coach (my fun, side job) is to work with beginner runners! I remember being in their shoes and having no idea what I was doing. Simplicity is one of the things that attracted me to the sport, but there are a few things that can make getting started a lot easier (and pain-free!).
There are a million questions you might have, but let me start with my favorite tips and the most common questions I have heard.
1. Good Shoes, not Cute Shoes – You have a pair of running shoes in your closet from a few years ago, those will do just fine – right? Probably not! There are several things to consider when choosing a pair of shoes to run in. How does your foot strike the ground? Do you have high arches or low arches? Are you a heavier or lighter runner? These are important things to know to determine which shoe is best for you. Best advice: head to a specialty running store (not your local sporting goods store) and have the runners there help you pick out the best shoe for you.
2. Start Slowly- You’re excited about starting something new and you want to be good…NOW! What you don’t want to do, is too much too soon and end up with shin splints, knee pain, or worse. Like most things, you want to start adding mileage slowly – there is plenty of time to run more as your body gets used to this new activity. 5 or 6 miles of running AND walking might be just what you need to get started. That’s right – it’s okay to walk! A good rule of thumb is to increase your weekly mileage by no more than 10% per week. If you’re first week was 5 miles – next week try 5.5 miles.
3. I Can’t Breath When I Run - Assuming you’re not dealing with allergies or asthma, the next suggestion would be to slow down! You should be able to hold a conversation with a friend while running, so slow down until you feel you could. Running uphill? Take small steps and take your time up the hill.
4. Keeping up with your Friends – Your friend at work is a runner, so you decide to tag along for a run. Pretty soon, you’re out of breath, can’t talk, and hoping you might trip over the next curb so you have a good excuse to stop. :) Hopefully not that extreme, but it’s an easy trap to get sucked into and you’re just starting out. Find a friend who’s the same speed as you or enjoy the quiet time while you run for a while.
5. Water Feature – Are you drinking enough water? Most people are not, so when you add running on top of your normal activities you are digging that water hole a little deeper. A good rule of thumb? Take your weight (in pounds) and divide by 2 – that’s the number of ounces of water you should be drinking. You’ll want to add more to that if you’re adding running to the mix. One trick that has helped me recently (especially in warm weather) is to chug a glass of water before heading out the door. :)
6. No Pain, No Gain…right? - That depends. Are you just tired and pushing through the “I wish I was sitting on the couch” feeling? Keep pushing – it will get better! Is your knee hurting and you’re having the limp a little to keep moving? STOP! Running shouldn’t actually hurt – if there’s real pain, stop. Still hurting after taking a day off and trying again? Might be a good time to see a doc and see what’s wrong. Best advice: If you’re having to limp (or otherwise change your running stride), it’s time to stop.
So there you have it – my favorite tips to share with beginner runners.
Question: What other questions do you hear from newer runners – or maybe questions you have yourself?
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