Sunday, July 29, 2012

Long Runs - My Nemesis

Saturday was my long run. I had an 11 mile run and I was not feeling it when I woke up. I originally planned to go at 6am, but didn't end up actually going out the door until 8am. Luckily, it stayed a little cooler temperature this morning than it had been the last few weeks. My run started out well, but I was soon feeling all the miles I have been running catch up with me. My legs were heavy and I wasn't sure how far I could go. Luckily, quitting was not an option and I finished my 11 miles at a 9:06 minute mile pace. Not bad for really not feeling the run. Next Saturday's 13 miler is going to be here much too soon. But I'll be ready this time! I am going to be visualizing success all week long.

As a special treat for making it through my first month of Nike Women's Marathon training I went on a new Nike gear shopping spree! When the tennis season ended I was given a Macy's gift card as a thank you for all my hard work. With it I was able to get the softest long sleeve running shirt, a new sports bra and a brand new running tank! With the way I have been going through laundry recently these will all come in handy. I'm so excited to test them out on my next run!

My new Nike training gear! I love the bright blue and purple hues!

Today I also have some tips to share about running outdoors. Here are a few things to remember before every run.

Hydrate: When you are going for a long run, anything over 6 miles, it is important to stay hydrated. Either carry a water bottle with you, plan a stop along the way at a drinking fountain, or stash a bottle along your route. You do not want to be dehydrated coming into those final miles.

Sunglasses: Yesterday I walked out the door and the sun blasted into my face. I turned around and ran into the house to get a pair of sunglasses. I have one really old pair of sunglasses that I run with and am looking for a new pair. I was so glad I had eye protection since I was running for over an hour and a half, but I'm ready for something new. I went online after my run to look up running sunglasses and came across this pair. These glasses were made for running and tennis and provide maximum sun protection. They are going on my wish list.

Nike Miler Sunglasses

Sunscreen: With all the research and data we have to show just how damaging the sun can be it is just not smart to go outside and expose yourself to those risks without proper protection. You can get spray bottles of sunscreen so you can even reach those hard to reach places, like your back. Don't go out into these sun without this.

Fuel: For any run over 10 miles you should be fueling properly with some sort of energy food. Fruit snacks or energy chews and gels can give you that extra energy you are craving and help you power through those runs. It's easy to store one or two bite size energy snacks with you in a zipper pocket on your shorts.

Music: My energy and the speed of my runs increases drastically when I have music pushing me along.  It's amazing how much of a difference and a push that good music can give. I never leave home without my iPod.

What are some running essentials you use every day? Let me know!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Find Your Greatness - Nike Style!

Nike just launched a great new campaign called "Find Your greatness." It is basically a campaign that is promoting the ability of each person to strive for their own personal best. Greatness is not reserved for the select few, it is accessible to everyone. The movie is incredible and will make you want to reach for your goals and train harder every day. It shows how anyone can become great with hard work, perseverance and belief.

This year I feel like Nike Women has given me the opportunity to find my greatness. They have given me opportunities that I never thought possible and pushed me beyond my limits. I am running faster and longer distances than I thought possible and I still have a lot to improve on. With an individualized training plan from Nike Trainer Marie Purvis and motivation from the ladies at Nike Women, each day is a new adventure. I don't want to waste a minute of my opportunity and will continue to train to be better every day.

My Sisters In Nike have created their own greatness as well and have reached for new goals. They are amazing and supportive. Athletes come from everywhere, in every sport and in every shape. My Sisters In Nike have taught me that no matter how I am feeling, with their support I can get through any workout. Together we will finish the Nike Women's Marathon stronger than we were six months ago. I hope that we will be able to run many races together in the future and my dream is to be able to run the Hood to Coast race together in Portland with my Sisters In Nike and with Nike Women! One step at a time, but a girl can dream right? Check out our new Facebook page at for more updates!

Today I found out that I was the third place finisher in the Nike Heel Kicks Challenge! All of my training is paying off. I loved seeing my Twitter handle @superwomankw on the leader board. Thanks Nike Training and Nike Women!

Here is my video doing Heel Kicks for my third place finish! What a fun time. I just got this Nike Women's Running dress and I LOVE it! So lightweight and you don't have to worry about it riding up while you run. Perfect when paired with a pair of dry-fit capris. 

Happy training everyone. How do you Find Your Greatness? I'd love to know, share it in a comment below or tweet @nikewomen, @niketraining and me @superwomankw! Now go out there and show the world what you are made of!

Monday, July 23, 2012

I'm getting faster!

We got to meet Sam Querrey! 

These last few weeks have been crazy and I have one more week to go. Between training for the Nike Women's Marathon, working for the Sacramento Capitals World TeamTennis, coaching basketball and working full time I haven't had a spare moment to myself. Remarkably, I have been able to stay somewhat sane and even was able to run my tempo run at a 7:30 minute mile pace! Progress!

This last weekend was extremely eventful. I played some tennis and went on a great nine mile run on Saturday morning. I met a 93 year old man on my run and he stopped me at around mile four. He wanted to congratulate me on running and told me to keep doing it and I would live to 93 like him. He did a little hop in the air and heel tap to show me how agile he was. Then he mentioned that he walks ten miles a day! I think he has found the secret to staying active...don't ever stop to begin with. 

My long run went really well. I was able to keep up a steady pace of 8:43 per mile and felt strong. I was glad to be home when I hit those last few miles. My legs were starting to get a bit tired. Then on Saturday afternoon we headed out for our backpacking trip. The hike was tortuous, straight up climbing up boulders for a few miles and my legs were screaming at me to take a rest. I resisted the urge to stop and kept telling myself this is great marathon training. When we finally got to the top of Horsetail Falls we were surrounded by pristine lakes fed by rushing water, it was one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. I couldn't resist doing a bit of yoga there! 

This is one of my most active weekends to date. How was your weekend and what did you do to stay active? 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Challenge Results and Week 3 of Training

Today was a day of many challenges and successes. I made it on the leader board in the Skip Knee challenge from Nike Women and Nike Training! I was so excited. It turns out I didn't do the correct form, I was doing high knees instead of bringing my knee across my body, but I redid them tonight and really felt the difference. Follow @nikewomen and @niketraining on Twitter to participate in their upcoming challenges. I'd love to compete against you!

Today was also my first tempo run. I had a three miler with each mile needing to be 1 minute to 1.5 minutes faster than my normal pace. I warmed up for one mile and then started running. I was able to keep up a pretty good pace, much faster than I usually do and was able to get a few negative splits in! Woohoo! All my training is finally paying off. I felt like I broke through a bit of a wall tonight with what I felt like was my average running pace. If I can do this once, who is to say I can't do it again? I only had 40 minutes to run so I had to really push my pace. I had taekwondo class immediately after and did not want to miss it. I had to skip my cool down mile, but was able to make taekwondo my cool down time. Tomorrow I have another 3 miler and a tough #NTC workout, but I am ready!

Taekwondo class was very informative. We had a guest instructor tonight from the police force and SWAT team that showed us some great moves to help us in any situation. The most important thing to remember is to never show weakness and to fight an attacker until you escape or you die. Your chances of survival go down significantly when you go with them or are taken into their car. The last thing an attacker wants is for you to make a scene, so make noise, fight back and survive. 

Today was a great training day and I enjoyed every minute of it. I am looking forward to tomorrow and the weekend! 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

I'm a Lucky Girl!

Nike Women have struck again! Friday afternoon another package dropped on my doorstep. I was so excited to open it. Inside was another batch of incredible Nike gear. New items that I can mix and match in my ever growing training apparel collection. There is something about getting new gear that seems to push me to run harder and stronger the next day and this morning my 7 mile run was run at a great pace and I felt stylish the whole time. This package was full of bright colors and really made me feel excitement for summer training. 

My favorite item is the Nike+ Sportwatch GPS! Nike Women must have seen my wish list when they sent me this one. It is such a great tool for running and tracking pace and distance. I love using the watch when I don't want to have a heavy armband with my phone for GPS. The watch is perfect, lightweight and simple to use. Plus the colors are great! Grey and blue are my favorite colors and it matches my new shirt and capris! I'll be rocking my new watch all week. 

The Nike Loose Tri-Blend T-shirt is very soft and lightweight. I think the only downside is the extremely loose fit. I think I could get away with an extra small, not the medium I have. It is meant to be loose, but if you like a tighter fit like me, I would order a size or two down.

The Relay Women's Running Capris are amazing! They fit so well and are super soft fabric. The back pocket to store your keys or phone in is on the side which is a great place to put it. I can reach it better when it is on the side instead of the back and it's the perfect size. These will get a lot of use. I already tried them during my NTC Yoga session and they will soon be taken out on a run!

The Nike Twisted Tempo Shorts are so cute! I love Nike's tempo shorts and these put a great twist on their original design. The colors are great, green and grey, and are perfect for keeping me cool. They make me think of cool breezes in spring even when it is 100 degrees outside. These shorts will have many miles logged soon. As Nike Women's Marathon training picks up they are going to be one of my top picks for training gear.

The Nike Epic Crew Sweatshirt is another staple in my growing Nike wardrobe. It is lightweight and fits a bit loose, perfect for cool early morning workouts, to wear during yoga class and for slipping on post workout and lounging around the house. I put it on last night after being out a a tennis match till 11pm. I was freezing and this top helped to warm me up, plus it is so soft. I didn't want to take it off. 

I love my new Nike Overdye Women's Racerback Tank Top. It has a mesh back and a loose fit so it is perfect for long runs. It is just light enough to wear and not feel weighed down. I have already looked in to more colors. I love it! I took it out on a 7 mile run this morning and it did not let me down. I kept cool the whole time! 

The Nike Victory Shape Bra is so supportive and a great color. Perfect for wearing under my new tank or by itself. I also wore it this morning and loved the bright color and fantastic fit. Great product! Check it out!

Nike knows how to please and they hit a home run with these new products. Thanks to them I will be training in style. What are your favorite training products and gear?

How I felt on my run this morning! 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

I'm Back!

Wimbledon history in the Making

I have been MIA for a few days and I have desperately been thinking about what to blog about. Seems like life has just gotten busy this last week. This weekend was one involving many great changes in my life. One of which will make blogging much easier. My new computer finally arrived! I spent a lot of time setting it up, transferring files, and getting prepared to reach computer blogging bliss. I can't wait to see how much more I can do with a computer that actually works 100% of the time (as long as I keep it charged). 

We also finally got couches for our apartment! Living for almost a year with only one chair and one very large bean bag, also know by it's brand name of "love sac" just wasn't cutting it. It is so nice to come home and have a place to sit, relax, and blog. Plus, it will be great for all my plans to camp out in the living room in front of the TV while watching the Olympics. Needless to say I won't be getting much sleep those few weeks. I live for the Olympics and the rush I get from all the competition. 

Also this weekend was the end of my first week of Nike Women's Marathon training and the Wimbledon finals! I have made a commitment to myself to run mainly in the mornings to avoid the 100 degree days in California heat, but with the Wimbledon finals starting at 6am I had to push my runs to the evening. The early mornings and loud cheering were worth it when Federer clenched his seventh (7th) Wimbledon Crown! Way to go Federer. You never cease to amaze me. 

My runs were pushed to the evenings and I could feel the heat draining my body of energy. Especially the 6 mile run I had scheduled for Saturday. The interesting thing about running outside in the heat is the smells that are more enhanced (though not in a good way). I would take running in the rain anyway over running in the heat. I can always wear a jacket in the rain, and Nike makes some amazing ones, but escaping the heat is near impossible. Even with my busy weekend I DID NOT DEVIATE from training and am happy to say that I am well on my way to a successful PR at NWM 2012!

It's getting late and I have an early 5 mile run in the morning so I will sign off for now but look forward to more exciting fitness and running posts in the future!

Thursday, July 5, 2012


NTC in the park!

Today marked day four of marathon training. So far I have run two days and done Nike Training Club (NTC) Get Lean drills the other two days. Today was a tough routine that reminded me of a boxers workout. It consisted of a lot of jump roping and plyometric work to really increase endurance and leg strength. I was wiped after the 45 minutes of challenging drills. Tomorrow I have an easy 3 mile run and I could not be more excited to relax a little bit and have the time to watch the semi-finals of Wimbledon! 

Today Nike Women challenged me to try out a Bikram (hot) yoga class. Up to this point I have steered clear of all things hot yoga because I am not a fan of exercising in the heat. My whole life I have been an evening exerciser and a night owl. Training for the Nike Women's Marathon and working directly with a Nike trainer and the Nike Women team has opened my eyes to many different opportunities and ways to train. They have turned me into an early riser and early exerciser and shown me that I can accomplish what I set my mind to. Looks like I will be hitting up a Bikram class in the next few weeks. Stay tuned for my recap on whether it is torture or pure bliss!

Over the next few months I will be challenging myself in many ways and working towards a huge goal. I will be having biweekly checkins with Nike and working directly with them to improve my training, find out what works and give them feedback on how I am progressing. I can't wait to look back on this week and see how far I have come in the next few months. 

Monday, July 2, 2012

Make It Count

Day one of Nike Women's Marathon training went incredibly well. I woke up at 6am as planned, grabbed a quick bite to eat and headed out for my 4 mile training run. The route I ran was along the road and through a park. This run was one of the shorter ones I will have in the next few months and by the time I had ran the two miles to the park I had to run back home to get ready for work at 7:30. 

I was able to keep up a decent pace of 8:22 per mile. I hope to get that down to 7:30 or 8 minute miles for the Marathon. Luckily I have a few months to train for that. With many Nike Training Club (NTC) workouts in the future, sprints, hill sprints, and speed work I know I can accomplish what I set out to do. 

I am doing all this training so that I can run along the coast of San Francisco next to thousands of other runners sharing my passion. With majestic and breathtaking views like this one I can't imagine a better place to run my second marathon and record my PR. 

I am training to make myself a better person, stronger athlete and fearless competitor. I am training with women like me who have a passion for Nike, fitness and NTC. I am training with Nike Women and get to experience this race in an amazing capacity as a Nike Women's Training Ambassador. Marie Purvis, aka @nikegetfit, is supporting me and training me along the way. I get to see my name posted on the wall at Nike Town San Francisco and be a part of something bigger than myself. I get to #makeitcount in more ways than one. Through the journey, the race and after I cross that finish line, everything I do will be focused on this moment. I plan to #maketherules in a big way over the next few months and beyond. This marathon journey is just the beginning. 

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Preparation Breeds Success

Marathon training officially begins tomorrow. I have a 4 mile run in the morning and then I will have officially begun the journey. Today was spent in a frantic flurry of wrapping up final details. I had no idea how much I had on my list today. This is everything that I felt was important to finish before training began so I would have no distractions or excuses. 
  • I finished my "Marathon Bible," a collection of recipes, meal plans, workouts and my training schedule so I never have an excuse not to go on my run or eat a healthy meal or snack. 
  • Created a training plan for one of my friends to complete their fastest 12k
  • I washed 5 loads of laundry
  • Went shopping for healthy, vegan food
  • Weight lifted
  • Cleaned my apartment from top to bottom
  • Packed my workout bags (yes, that is plural, I have an insane amount of things I take with me to the gym)
  • Baked a berry crisp 
  • And treated myself to a new pair of jeans

I now have no excuse to fail and everything prepared for this week. Right now I am prepared to push forward and am excited to begin. I know there will be ups and downs but I am ready. I have been gearing myself up for this day for the last few weeks. None of the excitement at being chosen to train with Nike Women has worn off yet and I am even more excited to see what the next few months bring. I am officially living my dream. Watching the Olympic Trials for Track at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon this weekend just spurred on my desire to compete and train. 

Stay tuned for my race training updates!