Friday, October 28, 2016


I’m tapering. Bringing the story of the last three months to a fine point. I’ve got my eyes focused (softly) on November 6th.

This is the time to look back at the training and find all the silver linings. To remember the strong moments. Really remember how they felt and why. Channel those. To find the mantra to pound out.  Channel that. Not to dull the point with wouldacoudashoudas. Dismiss those.

On the other side of the finish line we can talk pros and cons, what went wrong and right, how to get better. But right now is a time to look at only the pros, and build up ourselves mentally and physically. To remember to how lucky we are to get to run for fun, what a wonderful privilege to be able to spend hours of weeks sharpening our bodies to see how fast we can run the miles.

Breathe in, breathe out. And hand me a F$%&ing bagel.

Thursday, October 20, 2016


It was a dark and rainy Sunday morning. I'd just finished a long workout on the Foothills Trail. I took a sink shower in the cold, grimy trail bathroom and pulled out the best change of clothes from my backpack. Fresh Oiselle, still in the bag. The Tall Classic Lesley Tights. Yesss.

I pulled those tights up, and hello, tights! Like actual ankle covering tights. Tights are typically long crops on me. (Humble brag?) Not so with the Tall Classic Lesley Tights. In fact, I usually size up as far as possible to get my tights longer. But in Lesley, I'd somehow ordered a 2 (I'm a 4) and they were still long enough

Quick stats: I'm just under 5'10", I'm not 'all legs' but have to buy long/tall in all my pants (J.Crew, Topshop, Gap...).

I got in my car, and texted Sally immediately. I believe the text was... "this season's Lesley Tights are sexy AF!!" Because they are. They have this smooth, svelte feel to them. A very all business, technical fabric feel. They have a secure hug and are so beyond opaque you could squat all damn day and never see through. They come up high, hitting right where I personally find pants to be most flattering. Plus they come in tall, petite and regular for a perfect fit.

Honestly, I didn't even notice the stitching was reflective until maybe the third time I wore them. But of course Lesley would have that saucy little after dark secret. 

Does a booty good too...accidental gratuitous butt shot

Despite their debut as my post-workout pants, these are my business tights. These are the tights I wear when I want to feel my toughest before a workout. These will be my go-to running tights in the winter. They aren't my errand running pants (Moto), they aren't my yoga pants (Flow), and they aren't my cross-training pants (Black Widow) these are my BA running tights. 

I will say to fully maximize the reflective seam, you need to wear a shorter top or tuck it in in the back. That booty U gets covered by most shirts, but when you need that max reflection it's dark anyway, so no one will judge you for your weird backwards shirt tuck.  


Note: if you're unfamiliar with Oiselle Straight Scoop check out this origin blog and links to other Straight Scoops.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016


This July I lobbed a wish at the universe, could I run NYCM as a sub-elite? And the universe (or David Monti) replied with a hell yes, and I'll do you one can run NYCM as a pro. Shaking, sweating, solo happy dancing ensued. Followed by the biggest imposter syndrome battle of my life so far. Just who did I think I was?

Everyday this training block I've had to stop from comparing my training to the Olympians and legit profesh runners... "easy" tempos at sub 5:30s?? Naps? Massage? Actually practicing water stops? All that teff?! I know I'm not alone. Who hasn't wanted to train like a pro? (Just for the naps and massage, let's be real.) To ease my twisty, butterfly tummy over the lack of time/resources I have to train and recover, I have found making lists of things I can and can't control to be helpful. I can't get a massage every day, but I can use a roller every night. I can't have a nutritionist whipping up eggs and muffins while I do my long run, but I can plan ahead and have quality fuel ready.

I'm on the other side (knock on wood) of a hamstring issue. And it gave me that crystal clear perspective that only a setback can. So with that, I present the in-progress guide...



Kara has Lottie, Shalane has Elyse. And I have Eat Slow Run Fast (for $4.99!) on Kindle and my trusty copy of Nancy Clark's Sports Nutrition Guidebook. Try to make as much of your fuel from whole foods while being realistic about your schedule/budget.

And cheat where you need to! I'm sorry, I can't make bone broth. I just can't. But I can buy it.

Also spy on what pros are doing, like Lauren Fleshman swearing by tart cherry, or Sara Hall and those Muscle Milk Teff Pancakes...and see what works for you


Massage is part of a professional runners job. Speaking from the other side of a level one hamstring strain I will say this it's not cute that I hadn't had a massage in 7 months. If your mileage is increasing that sh*t will catch up with you. Invest in one massage a month if you can. Find out where the elites in your area get work done. Then book it. Better yet, get a doctors note and charge that to your insurance if you can. 

But daily or even weekly massage aren't feasible for non-pros. So get your hands on a roller, and don't let that thing gather dust in your living room. It doesn't count if you can only see if out of the corner of your eye while you watch OITNB. 

I recently asked my massage therapist if rolling (or self-myofascial release) could really make a difference. She said yes, absolutely. My favorite rollers are Addaday. They really get in there and break up those stuck fibers and they make a bunch of travel rollers easy to take everywhere. 

This goes hand in hand with massage. And again (points at giant piece of KT Tape and full 5 days off of training) don't save this until you have a come-to-the-running-gods moment. Get ahead of your imbalances, you don't have time to be injured. I have two main life hacks here. 

First, if you can, see a PT in your area before you start a big training block. Again, use elites in your area to vet the best option. Explain that you have :30 minutes a day (or whatever it is) and ask for a plan that outlines the best way to spend that time based on your imbalances, injury history and goals. 

Second, I use Hit Reset with Jasyoga religiously. Now that the HIT RESET book is out, complete with self-tests (also available as videos), you can assess your own imbalances and create a plan that fits into your life. I personally prefer to use the book and videos together. And seriously the video subscription is under $5 a month.I do Jasyoga at least 3 x week. And during peak weeks (and taper peak weeks) once a day and always before a run. 

Yeah, who has the time (or cash) for weekly Cyrotherapy? But I'm guessing you can get your hands on three bags of ice and a bathtub. When you have a huge week, or past weeks have been stacking up, set aside 15 minutes after a long run to hit the ice bath. The first 5 is spent convincing yourself to get in, then soak for 10. Don't use it every week, keep it in your back pocket to hit reset after a big block. 

Eat within :30 of your hard workouts and long runs. This is simple and key. Your muscles are sponges right after the work, feed them! Eat between 100 - 300 calories of 3:1 carbs:protein. And it doesn't have to be elaborate. Seriously, a banana and PB. Or a Picky Bar (they're a Trader Joes)! Check, check. 

Legs up the wall all the time. Toddler watching Daniel Tiger? Legs up the wall. Trolling social media Reading a novel before bed? Legs up the wall. Circulate that blood. Bonus: add mediation. Stress blocks your body from fully recovering, take control of all systems to optimize recovery and repair. And meditation is a great way to invest in your mental game.   
A recovery splurge I make in times of peak or imbalance is Floating (sensory deprivation tanks), but an at home hack is Magnesium spray. Just spray on affected muscle as often as you think of it

This could go under recovery, but I believe in its power so much it gets its own header. It's the cheapest, most accessible form of recovery and the tied with eating and drinking water, the most important. I basically went without it for a year, and as soon as I stacked 5 hours of sleep together I felt like I was on illegal drugs.  

Don't think you have time for more sleep? Ask your family for a nap after the long run when it gets big. And if you don't have familial guilt factor, take. a. nap. I know it sucks, you were already gone 3 hours and now you're going to nap?? But just :30 can make a big difference. 

And at night really look at how you spend your time. Steal from Netflix to give to your recovery sleep. Steal from doing laundry or cleaning the kitchen. Seriously just slob a little during those big weeks of training. Get some sleepytime tea and take a melatonin, rub a little lavender oil into your wrists. For people like me with FOMO, make sleep a treat, not a chore.  

If you follow any pro, fueling is a huge part of their training. They practice ingesting carbs on the run, and during workouts. They practice water stop techniques. They do carb free long runs. Fuel is a huge part of marathoning. 

I didn't used to practice it, or I would practice it separately. Like ask my husband to stand on the side of street holding cups of water out for me. But to really practice you have to do it at marathon pace, and on long runs, and when you're tired. Honestly I noticed a huge difference after practicing this for three workouts. Drinking at your race pace a mile or two in is so hard at first, but as you practice week after week it's easier.

Best case, get a friend to be your water mule on a bike. I've had this luxury twice. It was unreal amazing. Otherwise I carry my own water bottle. And if it's an out and back I drop it on a fence or electrical box or whatever, so I can run by and grab it as practice. I've never tried a fuel belt, but go for that if it works for you.

And of course it's not just about being able to sip water at your race pace, but also practicing for your stomach so that it knows what's up on race day. Best advice I ever got on fuel was take it WAY before you need it. Like mile 3. You're not only trying to get sugar to your muscles, but also to your brain so that it can work at its best and convince you to keep going when you're tired. So on your 20 miler take maybe one less gel then you would race day, but load up and mimic that race day fuel plan.  

It's harder then ever to not fall into the comparison trap, but just like in a race, looking to the left and right and over your shoulder is an energy suck. There's a fine line between being inspired and being deflated. Check in with yourself and make sure you're being kind with yourself. Take yourself seriously and do what you can to set yourself up to crush your goals. Mentally double tap your own efforts and small steps and accomplishments as much as that stranger's post on IG.  

Now go get 'em! Team Faux Pro for life!