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Happy LOLA New Year!

    The LOLA New Year Poem 2014 

Eat more whole grains and get off your fanny

So this year you won’t feel like such an old granny.

Out with the old habits and in with the new

LOLA coaches will motivate you to run a mile or two.

Come join us in this new year and in 2014 have a happy new rear!  

                               

                             Best wishes for a happy, healthy & prosperous new year 

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The Other Side

I made it! To the other side of the marathon finish line. Whoot! Whoot!

After months of training and new lessons learned, I finished my 4th 26.2 miler on my feet with a smile on my face. I could not have done it alone and want to congratulate my fellow Team LOLA (www.teamlola.com) teammates who also got to the “other side” with smiles and personal bests. With over 4 hours of conversations with myself during the race, I began to think about all of the gear I was using that day. The places our minds go when left to converse with ourselves just to fill time. Talk about brand awareness…I believe I represented over 10 different companies that day. They say it takes a village.

So, like a bad game show host, I’d like to thank my sponsors….Nike, Brooks (favorite running shoes/bra of all time!), Balega (socks), Sugoi (tights), Ice Breaker (wool run shirt..love!), Apple (Ipod), Headsweats (LOLA visor), Garmin (watch/GPS), GU (fuel), Clif (fuel/drink), Road ID, SPI belts and Nathan fluid systems.

I’d also like to thank Skippy Peanut Butter for always being there for me.  Skippy is my BFF (best food friend.)  You have been my foundation for every important day in my life…don’t know where I’d be without you. Ok, it’s getting weird now when I start talking to peanut butter. How many brain cells did I lose over those 26.2 miles?!

As I mentioned in my previous post, Waiting for the Marathon, running a marathon is much like having a baby. The first words that came out of my mouth after crossing the finish line were ” I NEVER need to do that again!” ( I said this to my husband at some point after the birth of our FIRST baby) and within 24 hours I knew I would do that again. The amnesia of marathon running takes over ( just as it did after the first birth) as the joy and feeling of accomplishment sets in. I really did cover 26.2 miles on my feet. That is a long bleeping way!

Now it’s time to move on to the holidays, running trails with my friends, enjoying regular food and drink and just chilling. I call this the “fat and happy” stage after a big race. Time for recovery and reflection on a job well done. New goals can be set for 2014…begin to think about what is on your bucket list and go for it! Life is right there outside of your comfort zone. Thank you to all that have followed me along this journey from Day One.

Buddah's garden

fat and happy

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Waiting For The Marathon

trotonbye_138Waiting for a marathon is kind of like waiting to have a baby.  I am less than 48 hours away from the finish line and it feels likes a lot of “hurray up and wait” at this point. Brings back memories of being 9 months pregnant waiting for the big day to arrive with excitement, nervousness and dread. And having to navigate through my days with pre-marathon brain is a challenge in itself. Having pre-marathon brain is much like having baby brain…hard to focus on anything except the task at hand, forgetfulness  with emotions swinging from “I am strong! I can do this” to “oh no, I can’t do this, it’s gonna be way too hard.”  And yet, when having a baby you have no choice in the matter…it’s happening whether you want it to or not. But at least there are some good meds:)  In running a marathon, I do have a choice and there are no meds that I have found which make this any easier each time I step up to the start line. Being well-trained, rested and well-fueled makes all of the difference but it still really comes down to….wait for it…wait for it…..poop. Also just like approaching labor, it’s all about the poop.

Anyone that has ever waited for a race to begin (or labor for that matter) knows all too well that the very first thing you think about that day is when & where nature will take it’s course. (Of course, in labor…you are hoping it’s not on the delivery table for all to witness. I’ve had 4 kids, no comment.)  We know by now that running and exercise is good for maintaining regular habits. ( you know which habits I’m speaking of.)  There is even a theory that regular running may decrease the incidence of colon cancer. All good but when you gotta go and it’s wrecking your game….it’s horrible. I have been caught many times with my game wrecked…making deals with the devil, god, my deceased ancestors and anybody that will listen…to let me find a bathroom of any kind asap! And you know that good feeling when you see there in the distance, shimmering like a pot of gold…an outhouse! Never are you so excited to see that blue paneled loo or pot-o-let, words that sound much fancier especially when said with an english accent.  I pray, “just please don’t be locked. I promise to floss 7 nights a week instead of only 4.”  Relief at last!

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An estimated 60-100% of runners have “runner’s trots” that can occur during or after their exercise.  As a Sports Nutritionist, my family…especially the teenagers, loathe the fact that I get to lecture to large groups of people about peeing and pooping! I explain that is an important part of being an active person and as you age things change. This is when they tell me they have heard enough and leave the room. The reasons for runner’s trots are not known for sure but may be due to the up and down motion of running along with the flow of blood being diverted to your legs and away from your intestines. Add in some dehydration and too many sugary sport drinks/foods and you too will be looking for the next port-o-let. 

A few tips on prevention: 

* Try to avoid eating for at least one hour before you exercise – the presence of food in the stomach will make things worse or contribute to the problem. Get to know your own digestion, see what works best for you & how much time you need pre-run to digest.
* Try to avoid the intake of caffeine and warm fluids as it is possible for this to speed up the movement of waste through the intestines.
* Make sure to limit your intake of dairy products, particularly if susceptible to diarrhea.
* Limit high-fiber foods in the days before a long race/run.
* Avoid the foods that you know cause problems.
* Drink plenty of fluids. It is best to drink a full 16 oz. of water an hour before your workout, giving the excess fluid time to pass through, and start off well-hydrated.

Design your training routes to include a restroom. And of course, consider a medical check-up and be open in discussing your problem with your medical practitioner. Remember, poop happens. At some point, EVERY runner experiences these problems. They are usually easily solved with a few adjustments in your habits.

And just like waiting to give birth, I am looking forward to being on the other side of this race. I can’t wait to eat & drink what I want again, run a quick hour with friends and have my brain back in one piece. Unlike giving birth, once you have that baby…the job just begins. At least I know, the night after the race I will sleep like a baby. I will see you on the other side.

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Bites, Sips and Tastes

English: A pile of Goldfish Crackers, made by ...

Who can eat just one, handful?

It’s that time of year. Kid’s activities in full swing between birthday parties, sports banquets and playdates, you try to grab a bite of something reasonably healthy to get you through. Yet, even with the best intentions, we come up short and soon…very soon, the kid foods at these events become your staple. By the end of day, week, month or year, you end up feeling like an overstuffed goldfish cracker.

 

We have all been there….at yet another kid event telling ourselves “I am  not going to eat the pizza or birthday cake this time.  Well, okay maybe just one bite because my daughter isn’t going to finish her slice of pizza and I am alittle hungry. It is lunch time afterall and one bite will hold me over until I get out of this party and home for some healthy adult food.”  We know what happens next. A very slippery slope that has us topping off 2 slices of pizza with the “oh no, I couldn’t birthday cake.” Leaving the party we vow to never do that again.  We tell ourselves “at least I didn’t have the ice cream with my cake,” which makes us feel better and we promise to plan better next time. And then it happens again and again.  Not because we love kid’s party food ( although I do love Safeway birthday cake frosting or any frosting for that matter:)  but because we, as women & moms, put ourselves on the back burner when it comes to planning and taking care of our own needs. In my case, it happened for about 10 years, guess I’m a slow -learner.

 

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I witness countless women making a day of waffle bites from their kid’s breakfast, lattes, finishing off  kids ice cream after school , a glass of wine or two, followed by a few french fries and crusts of grilled cheese sandwiches the kids left on their plate. I even had a friend tell me her dinner consisted of goldfish crackers from her son’s high chair and wine every night because her husband worked late, so why cook? Any of this sound familiar?
And yet, women with young children are some of the biggest calorie burners out there ( read, constant motion) and still struggle to lose or maintain their weight. Those bites, sips and tastes add up quickly over time and sadly, we hardly realize we ate them. They are not satisfying, do not fill us up and leave us nutritionally out of balance. This scenario on a regular basis will leave you even more fatigued and looking around for the quickest pick me up..more sugar please?
Ladies, take advantage of this time in your life with your revved up metabolisms. Don’t waste all of that bonus calorie “burn” on things like goldfish crackers and pizza you have tasted 1000 times before…save the bites, sips & tastes for the special occasion great homemade food that is worth every bite.
Eating well takes planning.  Plan ahead before heading out to these events….eat BEFORE you go (even it means you will arrive 15 mins late), bring an apple for the car or stick with the fresh veggie platter or cheese stick at the party. NEVER show up hungry…you know what will happen.
Put yourself first. Take care of your health and your family will forever benefit.Apple with white background

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Tutus and Running Shoes

Image    I love this picture. I took it of my youngest daughter, Lola, as she watched her older sister compete in a school track meet.

She was complaining of being too hot and went to the car to see what she could find. Forgetting, I had hidden these very special hand-me-down tutus for her from a dear friend in the trunk, I said, “sure go ahead and see what you can find.” As she dug through the trunk..her eyes darted straight to the bag of tutus the same time as mine. Before I could distract her…she said, “what are these?!” with her eyes as big as saucers. Darn, I thought, the surprise was now ruined. Or was it?  Without hesitiation, she ripped off her other clothes and jumped right into this pink tutu with sequins and all. I had to go with it.  I figured if she was confident enough to walk around a track meet in just her tutu and running shoes, then far be it for me to list my reasons why she may not want to wear that….“are you sure honey, might get kinda of itchy in the heat?” “do, you really want to wear that…now?”  Of course she did! So, off she went watching the rest of the meet in her new comforatble and cool clothes. As you can imagine, when my teenage daughter saw her sister in all of her glory watching from the fence…she rolled her eyes and ran the other way....teenagers, what do they know?

As I looked at the picture, I realized my planned surprise was not ruined at all. It became a gift. A gift to to see my confident and strong-minded daughter in action with not a care in the world, especially about what other people think. I also get to see myself..growing up as a dancer and now a runner and the huge impact they have had on who I am today. Other than my family, my tutus and running shoes have been the most important things in my life. Thank you Lola for showing me the way and reminding me about what’s really important. That is the best gift of all. 

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Defining Ourselves

 

Sharing this post from a LOLA member as her “tale from the track” make us all think about our defining moments. Thanks Sue!
img_2355Something amazing happened to me last night.  During a track workout, no less. The fact that I even wrote that sentence is so odd, because I don’t usually do track workouts.  Or really run that much.  But this year I’m attempting to do things outside my comfort zone.  Or just try new stuff.  I am attempting to not define myself by what has come previously in my 46 years. Thus why I am even on a track at 6 pm on a Wednesday eve.  The tape in my head says: “I am not a runner.”  But, could I be one?  Might I actually enjoy being one? Last night I worked hard to re-record that tape with a new message.  I pushed it.  When Kim, the coach of Team LOLA , explained that we were going to be running 4 sets of 2 laps around the track, I said to myself, “One at a time.”  When she suggested we try to do a negative split, which is either the second lap faster than the first or the second 2-lapper faster than the 1st 2-lapper, I said, “One at a time.” I watched the disappearing back of a woman who had told us she had just completed her first half Ironman, and another tall gazelle of a woman on that first 2 lapper.  I couldn’t even keep up with them, hitting the last turn as they crossed the finish at the other end of the field.  On the second one, I asked myself to just keep them a bit closer, and to really try on the last straightaway.  I finished right behind them.  On the third one, I encouraged myself to dig a bit deeper, and passed them right at the end. On the last one, the two girls that I had been happily following made me go first.  I didn’t want to do that, because I liked following them.  It felt more comfortable.  I mean, they were runners.  I was just hanging on as long as I could. But the one said (and I’m not sure who, because she was behind me) she didn’t want me to pass her again at the end, because she was giving it all she had and then I would pass her.  And the other one said, “Hell, own it girl.”  Or something to that effect. I ran faster than I thought I could those 2 laps, and it felt great.  And then Kim asked us to do one final lap.  What would it feel like, she asked, to give it all we had?  To turn the dial to 9 at some point, maybe just at the end.  How often do we get to ask ourselves to really dig deep.  She promised we would recover.  She promised no matter how much it would hurt, it would pass.  So on the last sprint lap, I bolted at the beginning, and around that second of three turns, when it started to HURT HURT HURT, the voice inside said, “You can pull up and slow now, Sue, because you’re not really a runner.  You don’t have it.” The voice said, “You can stop.  It’s ok.”

 

 But then I heard the hard breathing of someone coming up behind me, and damn if I didn’t want to give up.

 

If she could, whoever she was, I could.  So I kept going, even though it hurt so much.  And when I hit the straightaway and my breathing was all funky and raw, I gave it all I had left and turned it up to 9.  I crossed the line first. I’m telling you, we are so much stronger than we think.  In all realms.  And today, I can’t use the excuse that I’m not a runner.  Because now I am.  And I wonder where this new recording inside my head will take me.

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“Please Don’t Call Me Skat”

I dedicate this post to all of the women out there training for a Fall race. For those planning their first 5k or their 20th marathon, embrace your body and all that it does for you. You are beautiful, healthy and strong.

I hear it time and time again from woman that I work with, “please don’t call me skat.”  You are probably wondering what “skat” is referring too…other then the obvious definition meaning “too hurry” or animal poop.  Skat, a word coined by friends, means “skinny fat.” Or in more clinical terms, a low level of lean body mass (muscle) and a higher percentage of adipose (fat).

We all have seen or known skat people in our lives. These are the women we secretly envy when we see them all dressed up in their skinny jeans looking oh so fabulous. Wishing we could wear those skinny jeans, if only our athletic bodies with strong muscles and curves would squeeze into those things. Well, no such luck. Even though I will never “rock the skinny jeans,” I can rely on my strong athletic body to support my aging bones, carry me up hills, run miles, swim yards, lift weights, carry groceries, kids & everything else. I would not trade it.

Ladies, our muscles are beautiful while representing hard work and dedication to our health. You know there is someone out there that would love to have your well sculpted muscles ( maybe even your skat friend?). Wear your running shorts with confidence, show off those athletic bodies and be proud! Strong is the new skinny…and please don’t call me skat.

Loly (myWife) in backlight @ Playa Honda, Lanz...

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