Thursday, July 3, 2014

Calling All Runners!

I have decided to run a 10K coming up in the middle of August. It sounds awesome; Extraterrestrial Full Moon Midnight Marathon.  It is located out by Area 51. It sounds fun and the prediction of 60 degree temperatures sounds incredible. I will also need to get a headlamp. Cool!! I have run a few 5Ks.  I enjoy the feeling of victory at the end. Now I am excited to check 'run a 10K' off my list. However, I could really use some advise from seasoned runners.

I used to run at the gym almost on a daily basis. I burned out on running and have not stepped on a treadmill in months. I
did a very short run yesterday, 1.5 miles. I would have gone longer, however I left my headphones at home and I couldn't get in the zone without my music. I will admit that even 3 miles has been known to bore me and I just want to run it as fast as possible and be done. This has me worried about training for the 10K.

I am seeking the advise of seasoned runners. I want to pick your brains. I have a list of questions. If you can answer one of them, a few of them, or all of them I would be grateful!

Ok, here goes....

1. What is the best brand of running shoe? How do you know it is right for you?
2. Does anyone use the inserts made to absorb impact? Do you like them? Do they slide around in your shoe?
3. My ankles tend to get sore. Any recommendations?
4. I tend to get a cramp under my right rib. I am careful to not drink water before my run however it doesn't seem to make a difference and it also makes me afraid to drink water while I'm running.
5. What are the best foods to eat before and after a run?
6. I do not like t-shirts when I work out. I have found that I develop a rash around my arms when I run. What can I wear or apply to avoid this?
7. How do you keep yourself going?
8. How do you keep your headphones from slipping out or bugging you from sweat?
9. What is your favorite music to run too?
10. How do I build up my first try at running a 10K on the treadmill? (No outdoor training for me, Las Vegas is dangerously hot.)

Please leave answer below. This will create a great reference place for myself and other readers.

Thank you for your time and advise. I will check off a 10K and I'll do it without killing myself or never wanting to do another one again.


  1. First things first: I LOVE your blog, and I am thrilled to be leaving a comment, it's like meeting a celebrity!. Secondly: congratulations! It sounds like you've caught the running bug, and a 10K is a great goal to set. You're going to have a blast!

    I started running almost 20 years ago, when I embarked on recovering from my own eating disorder, and it changed my life. The best part was shifting my focus onto the amazing things my body can DO instead of how my body looks.

    Now for answers to some of your questions...

    1. There is no one "best brand" of running shoe. The right shoe for me (currently Brooks Addiction 10) may not be the best shoe for you. I strongly recommend that you visit a store dedicated to selling running gear; a quick Google search for Las Vegas brought up the Red Rock Running Company, which looks like a good bet. What you want to do is talk to a sales associate and ask for a personalized recommendation. Red Rock's website sucks, but they've got yelp reviews that indicate they'll check your stride on a treadmill to help you choose the right shoe. There's a whole science to determining whether you need correction for overpronation, supination, blah blah blah...the main thing is you want a shoe that will support YOUR feet and YOUR stride so you don't get injured as you start adding more miles to your runs.

    2. After running my first marathon, I went to a sports podiatrist and had very expensive custom orthotics made (made from plaster casts of my feet, totally crazy...and totally worth it), but for running a 10K distance you don't need anything so fancy. Ask the running store associate what they think, but remember they want to sell you stuff, so take that with a grain of salt! Most people don't need cushioning, but rather more stabilization to correct overpronation, but again, your feet are unique. In short: start with a shoe recommendation and see how that works for you, then go from there.

    3. I think getting a better shoe will help with sore ankles, but no guarantees. Anyone else want to weigh in?

    4. Side cramps/aches suck! But don't skimp on water, that definitely won't help. Are you eating before you run? Difficult foods to digest could definitely cause a cramp, but in my experience you just have to run through it.

    ...continued in next comment, sorry for the long-windedness...

  2. ...continued:

    5. I run first thing in the morning, so I don't eat beforehand...but on the rare occasion that I run later, I usually just eat an energy bar before running. Bananas are also easy to digest. As for what to eat afterward...whatever you like!

    6. By "rash" do you mean chafing? Kind of like a rug burn? I get that, too, especially on long runs. Before your runs, you can apply vaseline to any areas that tend to get chafed -- my biggest problem spot is the tender skin on the back of my upper arms, but I also get chafing around my sports bra -- and that should do the trick. Cotton t-shirts are notorious for causing chafing, so I'd recommend microfiber shirts, but I still get chafing without vaseline. :-\

    7. How do I keep myself going? This is a hard question to answer. For me, running is a means to an end: an efficient workout that doesn't require lots of equipment, but helps lift my mood. I have a wonderful running partner who often gets me out running when I don't feel like it, but for days when it's just me...I like to listen to audiobooks. That may sound weird, but listening to a story definitely helps distract me from not wanting to run.

    8. I haven't really had this problem, but I use earbuds so maybe that's the difference?

    9. See #7: I love audiobooks! Or podcasts, like This American Life. Anything to keep my mind off being bored and wanting to quit.

    10. There are lots of great training programs for a 10K! I can't remember which I used, but it was either Hal Higdon or Jeff Galloway. Both are great. And if you have a smart phone, I'm sure there are great apps for training. The main thing is not to add mileage too quickly; add a bit more each week so you don't get injured.

    Good luck! And feel free to let me know if you have more questions.

  3. Addendum to answer #1: it looks like there's a Fleet Feet in Las Vegas, which is another good bet for finding the right running shoe.