The day started out like any productive day should. An obnoxious alarm going off at an ungodly hour for a Saturday morning. Regardless of this, I still managed to drag myself out of bed and force my running shoes on my feet. Ever have those days where you know you should run or go get your work out in and you try to tell yourself that you will feel so much better after you do it? Sometimes that just isn’t enough! The one trick that almost always works for me is to tell myself “I get to run. I get to go to the gym. I get to go to yoga.” Think about those days when you are too busy to go work out and you can’t even squeeze a run in. Or think about what it would be like if you suddenly became incapable of being physically active and how much more challenging it would be to do so. 99.9% of the time, this works for me. And as for the .1% when it doesn’t, I figure that means that my body really does need the day off.
Today was included in the 99.9% where once I got myself out the door, my feet hit the pavement, and I began moving in a rhythmic manner, I was good to go! Since I had the morning off, I decided to go a little farther than I typically do. Towards the halfway mark, I had a woman come up beside me and pass me. Now, I have a slightly competitive personality. Especially when a woman passes me who appeared to have spent an adequate amount of time putting up her nicely done pony tail (I hadn’t even brushed my hair yet and I could feel my hair falling all over the place as it stuck to my sweaty face), looked like she walked right out of a Lululemon catalogue, and had killer calves that could even give Kelly Ripa a run for her money. So I decided to kick it in gear and keep up with her. What started out intentionally as a good idea so I could push myself, ended up being a not so good idea as I realized this woman wasn’t only gorgeous at 7:30 am on a Saturday morning run, but she must have been a marathon runner on a mission. Bonus, I did keep up for about 11 minutes before feeling like I was going to hurl my stomach out of my nose (that’s seriously exactly how it felt) and added an extra couple miles to my run. Not such a good bonus, I felt like I was going to hurl my stomach out of my nose. Not a comfortable feeling. Just as I needed a breath of fresh air, literally, I saw the most random thing I have seen while running in a long time. An older couple passed by me on their bikes matched in black and white striped attire. As they passed I read “Department of Corrections” on the back of their outfits. It was just the laugh I needed to get me through the last few miles.
I ended up having a pretty fantastic run, despite the fact that I wanted to keel over halfway through. It also didn’t help that I had not just one, but two Charlie Horses the night before. One in each calf so my calves were incredibly sore. Best ways to prevent this from happening?
1. Hydrate! Keeping our bodies hydrated helps prevent our muscles from cramping. Especially if you are active, you should be drinking plenty of water. I try to shoot for 3-4 Nalgenes a day because I am active and live in a very dry climate as well. This is about about 96-128 ounces a day. But 64 ounces is a good starting point as well. Carry around a water bottle so it’s easier to remember and try drinking roughly 8 ounces every hour. If you can’t take just plain water, try switching it up by putting cucumbers, lemons, blueberries, or a low-sugar drink mix to make it more bearable. Eventually, you’ll grow to appreciate the natural taste of water and you’ll enjoy the benefits of a hydrated body including clearer skin, a healthy complexion that glows, a drop in your water weight, cleansing of the body, feeling fuller longer, and it helps your kidneys to function.
2. Stretch! Try using a pole or wall and place one foot in front, bending your knee with your back foot placed flat on the ground. Place your weight on your front foot and press up against the wall with your hands. Hold until the pressure starts to release or for about 20-30 seconds then switch.
3. Potassium is your friend! Potassium helps prevent muscle spasms and cramps as well. Bananas have a high source of potassium and give you extra energy. But you can also find it in avocados, yams, spinach, seeds, dried figs and apricots, and several other foods.
As far as goal progress for this week, I think I came up with a couple challenges! Now I’m just narrowing them down, but I’ll probably need some help from my Facebook friends and readers! I’ll keep you posted with my 31 day challenge I will be starting next week!
I’ve got a fun blog entry on it’s way, and I hope it brings a little inspiration your way!
Much love and hugs!