Loving Fall Running In New York City

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       Fall foliage @ The Mall, Central Park

If ever there was a time it’s now, if ever a place it’s here, and if ever a reason it’s Fall. Maybe I’m biased as I live here, but there is something essentially beautiful about this city amidst the bloom of Autumn; It’s in the smell of the air – the musky yet sharp scent of the foliage, the kalidescope of colors dotting the trees and sweeping the ground, the gentle brush of the wind the almost-there kisses of sunshine and of course the abrupt arrival of early sundown and the subsequent coolness. I liken early Fall in New York City (NYC) to one of the most stimulating assault on your senses you will ever experience. The setting is ideallic and brings out the runner in just about all of us.

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           TCS NYC Marathon, Finish Line

The true NYC Fall experience calls us to embrace Fall fashion and trends, its colors, its shopping – fall fashion meets running wear, its fitness, exercise and the marathon fever that permeates the air leading up to the NYC marathon in early November. There is an expectation in the atmosphere that fills the parks and spills out into the streets; running is everywhere.

15126805808_a582f5e3f6_mRunners welcome, should be our tag line because truly the city embraces runners like it does tourists. It is what New York does. And so it’s easy to fall in love with running here; you have a community of runners that is easy to become a part of and the access to many different courses and routes from bridges to parks and trails and beyond. Be a part of the city running community, the outer boroughs, or, head to the outskirts and get closer to the mountains and more hilly terrain; there it gets even more scenic and if you’re a nature-lover like myself, you’re sold. NYC boasts views, sunsets and snapshots and photos to run for.

808c919cef9194c11828e1701181e186Just a small disclaimer, don’t be surprised to see yourself starring in a famous shot. Central Park is just about the most popular park and boasts many fabulous photo and movie spots. But better than that, it is a beautiful green oasis in the midst of the concrete jungle of New York City, and, my running home. It embodies the beauty of Fall for six miles all the way around and among its many hills, trails fields, playgrounds and various other scenic spots.

Central Park

       Bridge over the Lake in Central Park

It’s easy to see why running is easy here in marathon city. We have all the trappings to make a great runner out of you. Your only responsibility is to bring your enthusiasm and willingness to give it a go. Despite what the corporate people may say, of which many are runners, it is us..runners who run this city. I promise.

Chicago Marathon for the Kids of St Jude

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I’ve always maintained that running is not for the fainthearted. If you’re looking for easy, effortless, comfortable and safe then I posit that running won’t work for you. In the years that I have been on the roads, trails, track and treadmill, I have never not been challenged, called out, exerted, pushed and stretched beyond my limits. Through it all, I’ve experienced excitement, sadness, anger, disappointment, success, and every other emotion except boredom and the desire to quit. What I’ve discovered though is that nothing gives me greater satisfaction than running to make a difference in the lives of others.  While I’m all into PRs, racking up medals and destination marathons, these all fall short of a transcendent purpose (and I really do not mean to sound lofty) which adds meaning and value to life. Running for a worthy cause adds true meaning to my miles, it removes me from the center and places focus on the always worthy cause.

I never take this opportunity and gift lightly; opportunity because here is where I get the chance to use the running platform to highlight something close to my heart and do my bit in transforming our world, as I like to say, one step at a time, gift because as long as I understand that I have been blessed with this ability to in turn be a blessing, I will continue to find meaning and value in running. Additionally, it will continue to fuel my passion to get out there; to defeat the hurdles, overcome the obstacles and cross the finish line time and again. In running, motivation works side by side ability to ensure success. I’m convinced that those runners who are in their eighties and still going strong must have buckets of it.

Choosing a cause or charity to run for is relatively easy though not so much at the same time. You’d think, there are tons of them, what’s the big deal? Well for one thing, too many choices can make for difficult decision-making. I try to keep it simple by sticking to causes for children and then choosing those that I feel some connection to. Truth is, that’s the hardest part because almost everything affects us whether directly or indirectly these days. It’s the price we pay for the global village we live in.

This year, I latched on to St Jude Children’s Research Hospital. They are such a prominent force for good in this world with the amazing work they do through providing care and conducting research in childhood cancer and other life-threatening illnesses. Words fail me when I think of the suffering and pain of so much of our children, we cannot continue to live unaffected lives; at some level, at some point, we must get involved and take a stand. However we choose to do so is our decision, it’s only important that we do.

In that spirit, here is the link to my fundraising page on St Jude’s website with a lot more information on what they do and the impact your gift can make.http://fundraising.stjude.org/site/TR/Heroes/Heroes?px=3992776&pg=personal&fr_id=57054

Please support the cause and share. There are only a few more days left for donations for Chicago Marathon and helping get me to the finish line. I’m thrilled to be a part of Team St Jude Heroes!

Life Happens; Incidentally there’s Training, Marathon Fever, Boston Registration and 9/11 Memorial Tributes

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blisstree.com

Last weekend after two weeks of endless pain from having oral surgery done, I ran away to Georgia. I’ve always been able to retreat to the peachy state to re-establish a measure of peace and some semblance of balance in my life. Why run? Well.. figuratively speaking of course, since it was all I could do to get my thoughts together and I was on the verge of freaking the hell out considering my Chicago run coming up early next month. I tell you, not being able to eat and run nor sleep is no fun, but especially sucks when you’re smack dab in the middle of training. So here I am freaking out, wasting away ( losing weight), and I take off to Georgia to primarily attend a wedding and get a run in during my short stay. Sunshine, peace and quiet, friends, big roads and less traffic, wide open spaces, the Savannah River and the blanket of nature provided the necessary salve to my aches and pain. Returning to New York I find myself in Marathon city in the thick of training, Boston registration looming and Sept 11 memorial tributes.

Not surprisingly I came back on the mend after discovering the miracle of wine – I’m of the view it preserved my sanity. Back home, back in running form, and really I just dive in, back to the gym and back to getting Chicago ready. I’m working on bumping up my diet even though my mouth is still tender and eating is such a pain; but a runner has to do what she has got to do. Quite a bit on my agenda in the next couple months, there’s the Chi marathon, registering for Boston 2017 and volunteering at NYC marathon and of course training doesn’t stop as.. hopefully Boston’s up. All this as the weather cools down and we enter the training period I like the least. I will try not to anticipate that at this time.

We’re sweltering a bit these days but I’m not complaining, I’m gonna squeeze as much sunshine as I can out of these last fall days with the hope that it’s not gonna be too bad moving forward. So steamy days aside, where I just hunker down at the gym, it’s good getting back in the game and enjoying the vibes of the city. This is Marathon season and no city does it like New York as New Yorkers prepare for the largest running event of the year. It’s an exciting time to be in the city and to be a part of the New York City Marathon. But before that, I run Chicago and past experience does not lie. It was a phenomenal run and I plan on making that happen again.

While Marathon fever is in the air, New Yorkers are very somber this weekend with remembering the attacks on the World Trade Center and the City of New York 15 years ago. It’s a sad but also strong time for the city that will go down in history as a time when the state of New York rallied together to foster hope, community and support to all those affected that tragic day. We remember and pay tribute to all those who lost their lives then and subsequently in relation to those events. While all this is going down this weekend, I have my long run planned for later, which I always do in remembrance of the victims of 9/11. I’m reminded that I have the opportunity to run, which is more than they will ever have. I am thankful.

Run Faster Still with Better Form

The Olympics games are over. Bummer of course, but life goes on as must we. As promised, taking up where we left off last week, here are some practical tricks/tips, if you will, to speed up your everyday runs and help with better form. As you will see not all of running is hard work, there are various ways we can tweak workouts to make allowances for a bit of fun.

1. Run Hills – whether as part of speed work training or as part of  your long run, at least once a week, hill repeats are bound to make you faster as it develops aerobic capacity, leg strength and running economy.

2. Sprints – weekly sprints can add variety and fun to your workouts while increasing stride power and running economy, even better if you can get on the tracks to do so.

3. Proper Arm Movements – can power your runs and ensure running efficiency. The forward and backward motion of the arms should remain short and to the side while running and should increase in power and momentum with increase in gradient and speed.

4. Core Exercises  – strengthens the core which allow runners to tap into more force and speed out on the road. Core work can also be fun and easy to do as it can be as easy as a crunches in front of the television or a Barre or Pilates class.

5. Good Breathing Technique – allows for better oxygen distribution through the body which ensures you’re able to run at aerobic capacity longer. As such, using the nose and mouth while inhaling and exhaling will get the maximum amount of oxygen to the muscles.

6. Staying Focus by Looking Ahead – staying in the zone by keeping your eyes ahead while running/ racing and giving oneself small goals to reach will keep you pushing the pace and elimate the chance of getting distracted.

7. A Hot Running Playlist: songs that make you sing out loud, shake and get your adrenaline flowing will add a boost to your step and some sparkles in your eyes maybe?

8. Forefront Running – runners who land on the forefront of their feet and not the heel has a faster step turnover which translates into a faster pace.

9. Stretching and Yoga – practicing good stretching techniques before and after runs guards against injuries but practicing specific yoga poses for runners increases flexibility and fluid, limber movement, which boosts speed and  has the added benefit of aiding recovery post workout.

10. Less is Better – when all is said and done running efficiency can be achieved with as little as possible in the way. Do away with all the extra layers and embrace the minimum in terms of running gear to get a faster time or pace.

I’m sure there are lots of other ideas on this topic so please take the time to share whatever has worked for you as we’re all in the business of getting better at our running game. And please, give some of these a go, you’ve got nothing to lose but time off your last run.

 

 

Team: Run Faster

Usain Bolt, 3x Olympic champion 100m, 200m

Usain Bolt, 3x Olympic champion 100m & 200m

Which runner do you know that doesn’t want to run faster? Who wouldn’t want to do a better time or run a faster PR? No one I know. Rarely will you find a runner who is contented with just being average; and if you think you have, then I’d go so far as to say, they’re visitors ( for want of a better word) and not really runners at all. Runners are a mostly competitive lot. Whether we’re competing in races or among each other or even with ourselves, the goal is always to improve. While improvement can vary to include better form, more endurance and/or strength, it ultimately translates to becoming more pace efficient or a faster runner.

One can never be too run savvy, not unless you’re an élite or pro and even then, I’m sure they keep up with relevant and new information as it pertains to the sport. They must in order to stay on top of their game and so too should we. As such, here are a few pointers I have found that ishelps with increasing speed and can make you a faster runner:
  • Speed work: tempo runs, hill repeats, interval and fartlek training increases your anaerobic capacity. It’s important to keep these speed workouts short and focused to avoid over-training.
  • Racing: 5ks and 10ks are good for cultivating a competitive spirit and encourages you to put your best foot forward each time through establishing PRs and pitting yourself against others.
  • Rest and Recovery: Just as important as training is resting. The body needs time to recover and heal itself after racing and training hard (reducing inflammation and joint pain and speed up healing times when you’re injured), it’s why any good training plan includes rest days. Sleep is also very important for this reason as well as to improve performance.
  • Cross-training: builds strength, develops complimentary muscles and fosters all-round better performance ( breathing, flexibility, endurance) which translates into increased speed.
  • Protein and Muscle Recovery Supplements: provide a faster turn around and an added energy booster pre and post workout.

In essence, there really is no magic to faster running. While there is such a thing as a natural fast runner, he or she still has to work to harness that ability. For the rest of us, we simply have to work harder. Practice really is everything. As is the case with anything, so it is with running; the more you do it, the better you become. Next week I’ll touch on some approaches to proper running form that can also help improve your pace; but for now, let’s stick to the standard methods above that has worked for me and many other successful runners.

Run Rio-Inspired


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The Olympic games are here! It’s the only other time beside the World Cup, when I log enough television viewing time to be compared to a couch potato. Better still, track and field, my favorite part, is on. I cannot pretend not to be extremely awed by those runners in Rio; their speed, agility and determination is something that we, runners, would love to be able to bottle up and save for ourselves. It’s no wonder they are the best in the world. I, however, can dream. And that’s what the Olympic games bring to us: the dreams of ordinary people finding within themselves the fortitude, determination and commitment to make extraordinary happen.

The most awesome thing about these games are that athletes come from everywhere with their stories of hope;many overcoming adversity to get a few brief moments to show the world a small piece of why they matter. Few will make it through the first rounds, fewer still will medal, but all will have been changed by the process of qualifying to get there. This, if nothing else, makes the sacrifice and hard work worth it in my view and, I wager, most runners agree.

Living in the United States gives one the opportunity, while being from anywhere in the world, to support any athlete or country and feel right at home doing it. Too, it’s totally cool to be seen supporting multiple teams; that’s one of the beautiful things about this country and its rich and diverse population and culture. You can bet that Team USA is a melting pot with athletes hailing from every country under the sun but who now call the United States home and thus for all accounts and purposes are deemed American.

Don’t be surprised to see my tweets featuring Americans, Trinidadians, Jamaicans, Italians, Portuguese, Brazilians and Australians. I throw a lot of support into the ring when it comes to swimming, gymnastics, soccer, track & field, basketball, cycling and tennis and who I’m supporting varies depending on my favorites at the time. I must say, I love it; the excitement, looking forward to watching the games and meeting up with friends to enjoy some Olympics hanging-out-time. It’s all about celebrating sports, athletes, and their journeys to the Olympic world stage; inspiring, encouraging, celebrating and rewarding those who have given their best to the sporting world in true Olympic-spirit-style.

The Thrills of Hills: A Recap of The San Francisco Marathon


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I’ve heard it said often enough, “Learn to love hills, they’ll make you a stronger runner.” After last Sunday’s run, I believe it. It’s hard to know when you register for a race online what you’re really signing up for? You can’t know, not with any degree of certainty, what you’re getting into – the run of a lifetime or the challenge of a lifetime? You can only research the course, maybe suss out a few runners who have done it before and get some feedback, but really just hope and pray for the best. I suppose that’s what makes it challenging and exciting to begin with – the unknown factor, the anticipation of discovery – in the end, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

The San Francisco Marathon (SF Marathon) was a dream hills course, that is, if you ever have such dreams or nightmares. Lol. Truthfully, I wouldn’t describe it in nightmare terms because despite the hilly terrain, I enjoyed it and thought it was quite scenic and interesting. My favorite part of the course was running on the golden gate bridge (big thrill)..about three miles out from the Bay area into Marin and back to the tune of perfect San Francisco-type weather, overcast and drizzly with a cool breeze. I was in my element at tempo pace with a slight incline to relatively flat run in the company of thousands of runners and spectators lining the bridge; a perfect run setting if there ever was one, if only it could have stayed that way. But it was San Francisco, you would think I didn’t know it as I really didn’t expect it to be quite as hilly; suffice to say my expectations were surpassed. I especially wasn’t thrilled with the downhill portions of the race as it was hell on my lower back and butt cheeks but on the other hand, the variance kept the race interesting. What I knew of the law of gravity kept me sane and pushing forward on the hills and if you know anything about running downhill, then you know the momentum pretty much carries you; only there needs to be some sort of control to your running, which was the hard part, since there was no traction.
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Running along the bay area was another thrill. Starting from around mile 3 to 6, it was beautiful, cool, and calm around 6am looking out over the bay to the boats as they floated on the still water. The heavy fog surrounding us like a cocoon made as if to seclude us in a space where only running existed. One could feel the immense hush settling over us as we dug in and psyched ourselves for what lay ahead. Of course nothing in my training on those very miniscule hills (in comparison anyway) in Central Park, New York could have prepared me for what must have been mountains (or so it seemed at the time) I had to run. However, it was encouraging to see the locals running with slightly less effort, it gives me hope that mastering those hills is possible after all; I only have to incorporate it into my training. Only, right.
In hindsight, I should have made more of an effort to tame my pace in the first half, and to be fair I tried, but with the early ups and downs and stronger muscles to play with, pushing it kind of just happened and I was able to keep up a more or less steady 8:15 min p/mile. It was the steady decline of mile 13 that saw my decrease in pace which just about summed up the rest of the race. Getting past the historic residential areas and closer to the city provided a bit of a reprieve in terms of a flatter landscape and difference in scenery but it was a case of too little too late, as I was already heading toward a 3:50 finish. Not much that could have been done at that point and not for a lack of anything not provided on the course.
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The 31st running of the SF marathon ran pretty smoothly. Lots of fluid and energy gels strategically placed along the course made sure we were ready to take on the hills right up to the finish line. Crossing under the merciful covering of an overcast sky was a blessing I did not take for granted, for San Francisco’s glorious sunshine soon appeared as if out of no where. Boy was I grateful to have finished and was especially heartened to see the streams of runners that kept pouring in despite the damnable heat. 27,000 runners found their strong last Sunday, which I think speaks a lot to what determination, perseverance and the right attitude can do when coupled with a runner on a mission. That said, it’s a course I’d love to run again; maybe I’m a sucker for punishment after all.
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26 Running Terms You Should Know

thefightandflightresponse.com

   thefightandflightresponse.com

There is a jargon – a technical language applicable to every subject and/or occupation under the sun. The world of academia, sports, medicine, theater and the arts along with various other practices and their many subsets each speak a language of its own. Most of us are quick to point this out when we find ourselves at a loss to understand the various technical terms that are often leveled at us when we come across a subject foreign to us. I, for one, am always quick to ask for layman’s’ terms or explanations in a language I understand. I suspect that’s why we have so many books written “for dummies.” We can all relate at some level.

Running is no different. Runners and people in the field relate just like any other and often find themselves speaking a language known only to them. If you’re a new runner, the following are a few terms you should get comfortable with, for those of us who have been in the game a while, this is a good time to pick our brains and see how we fare. Don’t be surprised if you’re a bit out of the loop, I had to look up a few.

  • Aerobic Running: running at an intensity that’s sufficiently easy for your respiratory and cardiovascular systems to deliver all or most of the oxygen required by your muscles, and slow enough that lactic acid doesn’t appreciably build up in your muscles.
  • Anaerobic Running: running at an intensity that makes it impossible for your respiratory and cardiovascular systems to deliver all or most of the oxygen required by your muscles, and fast enough that lactic acid begins to build up in your muscles, thus producing a tired, heavy feeling (unsustainable pace.)
  • Aerobic Capacity or VO2Max: The maximum rate of oxygen utilization by a person that is transported and used in the body’s tissues.
  • BQ: Boston Qualify/Qualifier
  • Cross training: Engaging in other physical exercise such as swimming, biking, weight training etc.
  • vVO2max: The velocity or pace at which a person reaches VO2max.
  • Lactate Acid: A substance which forms in the muscles as a result
    of the incomplete breakdown of glucose. Associated with
    muscle fatigue and sore muscles.
  • Lactate Threshold/ Anaerobic Threshold/ Threshold Pace: The transition phase between aerobic and anaerobic running and the point at which your muscles start fatiguing at a rapid rate (5-20 mins slightly slower than 10-K pace)
  • Resting Heart Rate: Your heart rate before you get up in the morning.
  • Ultra: Any race event longer than a marathon or 26.2 miles.
  • Tempo Run: Sustained effort training runs, usually 20 to 30 minutes in length, at 10 to 15 seconds per mile slower than 10-K race pace.
  • Taper: A period of reduced running or cutting back mileage (depending on the distance event) leading up to a race.
  • Intervals: Training in which short, fast “repeats” or “repetitions”
    often 200 to 800 meters, are alternated with slow “intervals” of jogging for recovery.
  • Fartlek: Variable Pace Running; a mixture of slow running, running at a moderate pace and short, fast bursts.
  • Splits:  Your times at mile markers (eg. 5-k, 10-k etc.) or other pre-planned checkpoints along the way to the finish line.
  • Pyramids:  A combination of a ladder and a cutdown (opposite of a ladder), such as 200-400-600-800-600-400-200 meters.
  • Ladder: An interval workout of increasing interval lengths, such as 200-400-600-800 meters.
  • PR/PB: Personal Record or Personal Best.
  • Pace: The rate or speed at which you run.
  • Recovery Run: An easy run meant to help with recovery to muscle soreness after a marathon or a distance race.
  • RICE: A method of treatment for common running related injuries such as sprains – Rest, Ice, Compress and Elevate in that order.
  • USATF: USA Track and Field
  • WMM/ The Abbott World Marathon Majors:   Six of the largest and most renowned road races in the world – the Tokyo, Boston, Virgin Money London, BMW Berlin, Bank of America Chicago and TCS New York City Marathons – make up AbbottWMM.
  • Bonk/Wall: A feeling during
    a race when your muscle glycogen stores become depleted and a feeling of fatigue engulfs you.
  • Negative Split: The ability to run the latter half of a run or marathon at a faster pace than the first half.
  • Running Economy: How much oxygen you use when you run.

Sources: runnersworld.com, hillrunner.com, marathontrainingacademy.com

Overtraining: How to Identify it and its Effects

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dignityhealth.org

If you’ve been running for any period of time, chances are you have either succumbed to overtraining or only just been able to head it off. It is posited that more than half of all runners will overdo it at least once in their running career (competitor.com). After much debate and analysis, I believe overtraining was the reason for my underperformance at the Boston Marathon earlier this year. Overtraining or Under Performance Syndrome (UPS), according to Dr Mark Wotherspoon, Sport and exercise Medicine Consultant, develops on a continuum with the initial stages being that of ‘overreaching’ – fatigued but being able to recover and continue training with a few days rest – to developing full blown overtraining, a persistent, unexplained performance deficit, despite two weeks of relative rest – if sufficient rest is not gained. The main difference between the two is the recovery period.

It’s difficult for the average runner to determine at what point they’re in the overtraining zone since it can be confused with basic fatigue from training or overreaching. This unawareness poses more of a threat as a runner is more likely to rest inadequately and train harder if he or she feels as though they are underperforming, which can then propel them over the edge into an overtrained state. Despite this, some coaches agree that there are subtle signs to help you recognize when you’re in danger of falling victim to overtraining.

Continuous Elevated Resting Heart Rate: it is recommended that you check your heart rate every morning before getting out of bed for a period of time to determine its elevated state, ani dictator of overtraining.

Decrease in training capacity, performance, and continuous feelings of fatigue and lack of energy.

Moodiness and Depession coupled with feelings of increased anxiety and irritability.

Prone to sickness and infections: many of us know this as having a low resistance, which can be brought on by stress, fatigue and overwork.

Increase incidences of injury: tired, overworked muscles coupled with feelings of stress and fatigue can make the body susceptible to injury  more so recurring ones, which never get the time to heal properly.

Disturbed Sleeping Patterns or Insomnia: overtraining affects the body’s ability to rest well causing you to wake up earlier and or have trouble falling asleep.

Prolonged bodily aches and pains and muscle soreness.

While there are varying  life factors that can give rise to any one of these symptoms, experts argree that if a runner is exhibiting three to four of these symptoms  simultaneously then there’s a very good chance of he or she suffering the effects of overtraining. The caveat to this is that there really is no help for it aside from giving the body the rest it needs to recover and heal properly. Rest, an adequate diet with the necessary vitamins and  a lot of sleep is the best prescription. The extent of rest needed will depend on the individual and their body’s recouping ability. For some it might be two weeks, for others four or anywhere up to eight weeks. The important thing is to listen to your body and give it the rests it needs so that you can resume running and training and become a better, faster and more efficient runner.

Sources: competitor.com, runnersconnect.net, mensfitness.com

The ABC’s on Safe and Fun Running this Summer

My mantra for Summer running have always been to run at the sun lowest points of the day, which can be either at dawn or dusk or thereabouts. So many of us get disenchanted when summer comes knocking with its sweltering, humid days but it would be a shame to pack it in and give up on all that spring momentum we have going to a seasonal shift that will soon pass. In fact, given all that we have been through with the preceding cold of a long winter, we should strive to make the best of all this sunshine and try not to complain too loudly of the heat.

With that in mind, I figure we could all benefit from a few tips on taking on this challenge in a safe and enjoyable way.

  •  As noted above, stick to early mornings or night runs; that way you not only avoid the heat and damaging effects of the sun, but you get to enjoy the coolest, quietest and often most picturesque part of the day. I promise there’s nothing quite like running to the tune of a breathtaking sunrise or sunset, it restores your sense of awe and belief in God and His creation. 
  • Discover new trails and the fun of trail running. It’s a favorite of mine, which sadly, I don’t get to do enough of. Trail running adds the benefit of running in the shade and at more convienient times amidst nature. It also challenges your fitness level while adding variety to your runs. Gear up with proper running shoes and get ready to blaze a trail like you won’t believe.
  • We can never be reminded enough in summer time to hydrate daily. This is the one thing that many of us take for granted and it really is that serious. More than eight glasses a day, we should all make a small investment in a “fancy schamcy” water bottle that becomes an appendage of sorts and never leave home without it. Proper hydration will power your runs and safeguard you against heatstroke and other assosiated ills that runners are prone to.
  • Nothing says I’m ready to run like new gear. Around now is a good time to beat out a summer tune to the steps of new running shoes and some fun active wear, and there’re a lot of variety in styles, brand and colors at competitive prices. Gear up and you’ll find you’re actually looking forward to hitting Sumner streets to make that active statement.
  • Lather and Layer up. This sort of sun (90°+) calls for all guns blazing when it comes to sunscreen, putting it on should come second only to what you wear. Being smart and safe demands a sunscreen of at least SPF 70 on exposed areas while running in direct sunlight and even when it’s humid and overcast if you plan on a prolonged run. It is also wise to cover up as much as you can. Where possible, use proper breathable, thin material to shade the the sun from direct contact with your skin and use hats and polorized sunglasses to protect your face and eyes. While beautiful and thoroughly appreciated, the sun can do serious damage to your skin.
  • Another aspect of safety deals with running in numbers when at all possible. Whether in company with other runners or just ensuring that the area you’re running in is populated and well lit is just plain smart. Running with music can also render one incapable of keeping a presence of mind so take care to either eliminate it entirely when the running environment seems a bit iffy or stay focused and present.
  • Keep a charged phone, metro card ( or ticket for bus/train) and emergency money with you on all runs. Most active wear now come with enclosed zippers/pockets to stash stuff such as these. Make your money work for you when shopping to get more for you dollar.
  • New technology has its advantages for night running. There is now active wear with reflective technology that glimmers and glows in the dark and even those with LEDs. This is another good investment to make for night running.

Hope this helps in setting you up for your best Sumner running experience yet. Keep it fun, safe and running!

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