Run Recommendations

I’m no expert at this whole running thing, but based on my conversations with runners of all kinds (from novice to marathoners) here’s some info that may be helpful to you if you’re a beginner runner like me. There’s a lot of information to sift through out there, and I feel like I’m just skimming the surface. Here’s a smorgasbord of what I’m come across so far.

Running Plans
A Plank client told me about Couch to 5K. (Great name!) It was this schedule that taught her how to run as an adult.

I came across the Runner’s World Plan when I was reading their Newbie Chronicles. Here’s their very detailed beginner plan.

Pilates for Runners
If you’ve ever taken a class at Plank you know these exercises! Thanks Jack Rabbit!

New York Races
Once I get my 3 miles under my belt (which should be in about a month, I’m hoping!) I’ll start signing up for these. I’ll let you know which ones I sign up for so we can go as a Plank team!

This site lets you narrow down the exact kind of race you’re looking for. Here are all the ones for NY.

This may be a stretch, but I’d love to register for the Revlon Run/Walk for Women on May 5. If all goes to hell at least I can walk, right?

Another Plank client told me about this race and now I’m dying to do it. Check out the Color Run. Best t-shirt souvenir ever.

Running and Fitness Apps
My personal favorite is MapMyRun with Running Map as a close second.

My dad (ex runner) sent this article my way. I haven’t tried all of these apps, nor do I think I have the time to input all the information some of them require, but one may work out well for you. They sound great!

In the past I have used the Livestrong app and enjoyed it. It’s incredibly detailed.

My friend recommended Fooducate, and I love it! If you have some time at the grocery store, start scanning bar codes. This app will help you make healthier choices by giving a letter grade to your scanned food and comparing those letter grades to that of similar products.

Running Clothes
These are the new shorts I got at Lululemon, so I’m quite partial to these.

I’ll again recommend Runner’s World’s What To Wear page where you put in the weather, and it tells you how to dress for your run. No brainer.

Please send any other recommendations my way, and I’ll share them with everyone. Plus, Plank has an exciting running announcement coming soon. We’ll all need the tips then!

Happy running (and reading!),

The Run Around Girl

Run Day 7-Daunted No More

I woke up motivated and excited for my run. Yesterday’s you-can-do-better feeling was still eating at me. I did two hours of Pilates self practice in the morning (lots of jumpboard—hello thighs!), so I had to wait until the afternoon to run. All this extra leg work made me nervous for the run, but it went better than expected.

Running in the West Village on Easter Sunday afternoon was definitely a bad, bad idea, but I did my best maneuvering around crowds. My legs held up fine, but I had terrible cramps throughout my entire abs. So focused on getting past it, I ran 1.4 miles until the cramps were too bad to continue. Still! 1.4 miles! Certainly better than yesterday! My breath didn’t feel that labored, but I think the cramps were worse because of the lunch I had about an hour before.

The best part of my run—the MapMyRun app. I’m in love with this thing. When I was solely relying on RunningMap.com, I would have to remember every street I went down so I could track it later at home. With MapMyRun, all you do is press Start when you begin your work out, and it calculates your route, mileage, minutes per mile and calories burned. You can even share all the information through social media or email. I’ll start sharing soon!

I’ve also had a great time reading Runner’s World Newbie Chronicles. If you’re learning how to run like me, they have a story that applies to everyone. Check it out!

This run made me a lot less daunted about adding this second mile into my training. It helps that I got some new running shorts yesterday (that show a lot less thigh) and am trying to embrace this as part of my lifestyle. Today also made me sure that I’m more of a morning runner, so I’m going to try to keep on that track.

Can’t wait for the next one to see how far I go! Leave your comments and tips here or on Facebook or Twitter!

Happy Running!
Run Around Girl

Run Day 6-Good Run/Bad Run

I had a terrible night’s sleep and was cranky and lethargic when I woke up. But alas, I am the Run Around Girl so I better, well, run around.

I haven’t done laundry in about two weeks (my disdain for laundry is only rivaled by my disdain for dishwashing), so I really didn’t have much active wear to choose from. The only clean item for my bottom half was a pair of too-short shorts from freshman year of college. My boyfriend even called me out on the <absence of> length of the shorts before I left. My apologies to the West Village who saw a lot of white thigh that morning.

It was too cold for my little hot pants, so it was motivation to start running and warming up right away. I have to say, it was definitely my best and worst run yet. I felt my side cramp, but it came on slowly and was more subdued. More like an after thought. I really focused on my breathing and stride. I saw a runner the other day who had a toe-ball-heel stride like my former self, so I decided to try it out again for about a block. Yuck, not comfortable at all. I was glad that I had fully converted to heel-ball-toe way of life.

The run felt hard, but not as hard as it has before. I stopped in front of my apartment building, finished with my mile loop, and instantly realized I could’ve kept going. I was annoyed that I didn’t push myself. It was a good run because I felt like I had made progress with the side cramp and breathing, and I didn’t feel like I was going to keel over and die at the end of it. But that makes it a bad run too—I should’ve pushed myself until I felt like I was going to keel over and die. I would’ve liked to see what my mile count was then, even if it was just a couple tenths of a mile more.

I’m enjoying the MapMyRun app on my phone, but I’ll give you even more details about it when I have more runs logged in the system.

Tomorrow morning I’ll go for it again, running for that keel-over-and-die moment.

Happy running,
The Run Around Girl

Tips for Plank’s Run Around Girl? Leave them here or on Facebook or Twitter!

Run Day 5-Double Duty Cardio

Look at me! I get one mile under my belt, and I’m ambitious enough to run two days in a row. Not only that, but I combined my run with another type of work out, something I’d been nervous to do in the past. (I know, running a mile isn’t exactly a killer, sore-for-days work out, but I wanted to be careful to not do too much too soon.)

I did some research and found that my apartment to Plank is just under a mile. So I got myself together, inhaler in my pocket in case things went terribly wrong, and was on my way. I chose to run along Houston since the sidewalks are wider there than on Prince, but my only complaint was that I definitely breathed in more exhaust than I clean air. My breathing was a bit interrupted because of this, but I still made it to Plank in about 8 minutes. Not too shabby, I thought.

I got to Plank with enough time to rest, then took Julia’s Plank360. I have to say, I certainly enjoy that kind of cardio so much more, but I think running to the studio before a class could be a nice way to intensify the workout for me. In the future, I’ll try to time it so I have a shorter resting period between the run and class.
If I was really ambitious, I would’ve run home too, but I instead called my mom and enjoyed the sunshine. My legs felt a strong but heavy after all those P360 lunges, so window shopping at the Prince Street boutiques was a nice treat.
I’m pretty depressed by this next stage. Running a mile isn’t exactly easy for me, but it has to become easy soon so I can start improving again. I need to be able to run 2.5 miles by the end of April to be in line with my goal of completing 4 miles by June. That’s a little daunting to think about. I hope I can do it!
Here are some sites I’ve been using to track my running routes:
Running Map
I like this website better than MapMyRun. I didn’t get the app for my iPhone because the MapMyRun app was free. There’s less fuss with the map for this site, since I’m really just curious about my distance.
MapMyRun
This website’s a little more complicated and seems to be for a more serious runner. I got their app for free, so I’ll test it out on my next run. I think it will be helpful to have in the moment since I already have my phone with me for music and in case of an emergency.

Let me know what you think! Leave your feedback here or on Facebook or Twitter.

Happy Running,
Run Around Girl

Run Day 4-Hallelujah, It’s Raining Miles

It had been a long, busy day for me, and I really needed to do something for myself. I ate a late lunch, let myself digest in front of some Food Network shows (duh), and got dressed for a run.

I stepped outside, and crap. It’s raining.  You can’t bring an umbrella on a run.

I wasn’t wearing anything water resistant, so within a couple of blocks I turned into a soggy mess. My zip-up jacket, shorts and sneaks were soaked through, but when I got into my rhythm I fell into a zen-like, one-with-the-elements state. I had a new route through the residential West Village, and it was all quiet streets and falling flower petals. Very pretty. I stopped only once, and it just for a 5 second shoe check. I was almost certain I had stepped in dog crap, but it just must’ve been a particularly smelly street corner. Rain and excretion are not welcome on my sneakers. That would’ve been too much for me in these new conditions.

You’ll get tired of me saying it, but my cramp of course stabbed my side. I worked through it (running a continuous 1.15 miles!), but it wasn’t easy. Thank god the streets were semi-deserted in the rain because I was grunting and growling my last couple blocks. I felt like I was running through molasses with this intense side pain; it made every deep breath shorter and caused my legs to go heavy. I stopped a block away from my apartment with a life-as-a-runner-is-tough look of pain on my face (running has made me such a drama queen!), but the short stroll home and my dreaded walk-up worked out my side stitch enough where I didn’t loathe the experience. I was very proud of myself for running <over!> a continuous mile, and I was only able to do it because of Julia’s advice.  Now let’s see if I can do it again….and move onto my second mile. Oh my god, it hurts just to think about it.

Thanks for your support! Leave me some tips on how to get my second mile under my belt here or on Facebook or Twitter.

Happy Running!

The Run Around Girl

PS–Check out this cool website I found while searching for water resistant running clothes. You put in the conditions, they tell you what to wear! I wish I had a site like this for regular clothes! 

Plank’s Kick Butt Boot Camp

It’s our affordable and effective way to get in the best shape ever! This four-week program will change your body and your habits for long lasting results.

Unlike any other program, our Boot Camp offers private coaching, a month unlimited of classes and nutritional guidance. You tailor it to fit your schedule.

You’ll see these results

  • Lose weight or lower your body-fat percentage
  • Tone and strengthen your entire body
  • Obtain a better understanding of long-term physical fitness and nutrition
  • Improve your cardiovascular endurance
  • Look and feel great in your bathing suit 

Program Includes

  • Two one-on-one meetings with fitness and nutritional goals
  • Schedule planning and monitoring throughout the program
  • One Month UNLIMITED Plank360 classes and 5 Tower Classes

Program Fees
Regular Program $429 for the entire month or
Premium Program $529 for the entire month*
*Includes 2 Private sessions with Studio Director Julia Fouts

Email Julia@plankpilates.com if you’re interested or have any questions. 

This is just another way Plank is making it easy for you to get fit this spring. Can’t wait to see you at the studio!