Thursday, January 16, 2014

My Love/Hate Relationship with Running

I have a love/hate relationship with running. I love the health benefit, the community and how I feel during and after a run. I hate the fact that I always seem to have a nagging injury. This year it seems to be my hamstring. In reality, I have no one to blame but myself. I have been neglecting doing stretching, yoga and physical therapy exercises on a regular basis. Sometimes it is just so hard to fit it all in! Before we moved I was taking taekwondo classes, going to a regular kickboxing class, playing tennis and running. I had a crazy full schedule, but I was fit! I also did not get injured. I was cross training more than I ever have before and it felt good. 

Since the move, I have found a running group, but have yet to find the same community I had when I was in Roseville, CA and training at The Studio. If by chance you live in the Roseville or Sacramento area, you should really check them out. The instructors are amazing and you can really find a sense of community there. I haven't had the same experience in Ukiah and that's ok. I just need to focus more on fitting in cross training on my own. 

This week has been all about cross training. I went to a spin class, did Nike Training Club strength and yoga workouts and lifted weights at the gym. Today I focused on Kettle Bell training and doing planks. If you want to do one of my favorite ab and shoulder burners do the workout pictured below. Hold a plank for two minutes and every 30 seconds alternate between mountain climbers and leg lifts. Work up to being able to repeat the drill three times in a workout. 

Plank to Mountain Climber and Leg Lift

This weekend, along with cheering on the Seattle SeaHawks (Go Hawks!), I plan on going for another run. I'm testing the waters on my hamstring. I thought I was better a week ago, but after pushing myself a little too hard on my first three runs back and running back to back days, I have been feeling a tight muscle again. I have to officially start training for my first half marathon the first of February so I have two weeks to build a base. 

Being an athlete is never easy but I am enjoying the benefits and path my journey is taking. In April, I will be a Road Runners Club of America certified running coach and hope to add personal trainer and Nike trainer to my resume soon. For now I am focusing on making myself a better athlete and a better runner through cross training.