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DON’T FORGET THIS IMPORTANT ITEM FOR YOUR BIG RACE!

DON’T FORGET THIS IMPORTANT ITEM FOR YOUR BIG RACE!

Ok. Race day is here! You’ve been training and you’re ready to set a new PR. However, in your hurried excitement, you discover you forgot to pack the right shoes! Aaahh!

To prevent a race-day packing mishap, we’ve prepared a handy New York Race Day checklist. Set your mind at ease, knowing you’ll have all the essentials covered, and focus on enjoying the run.

Once you’re all packed, be sure to check out our music playlist for the Big Race, so you can have the right high-energy tunes to power through all 26.2 miles.

BECAUSE IT’S A TRIP

These are the most commonly forgotten items when preparing for an out-of-town trip:

  • Sunglasses
  • – Medications
  • – Money
  • – ID
  • – Anti-inflammatories
  • – All chargers and cords
  • – Power adapter (if traveling internationally)
  • Extra shoes/sandals

BECAUSE YOU’RE RUNNING A LONG DISTANCE

The obvious necessities are proper clothing and shoes. Running a marathon requires a bit more equipment preparation that a jog around the block. Here’s what you’ll need:

BECAUSE IT’S A RACE

Organization matters. Whether this is your 1st marathon or 50th, make sure you have these items to get properly checked-in and starting-line ready:

  • Running outfit
  • Race shoes (duh)
  • Gear bag
  • – Lock
  • – Any paperwork required for race check-in
  • – Plastic sandwich bags
  • – Race chip
  • – Race number
  • – Safety pins
  • DON’T wear brand-new socks, shoes, or shorts that you haven’t run in before
  • DON’T experiment with new foods, drinks, or supplements

BECAUSE IT’S NEW YORK

Weather can be fickle and you may be waiting for a while before you hear the starting pistol. To maximize your comfort both before and during the race, learn for our experience, and have these items handy:

  • – Sleeping bag or mat to lay on
  • Hat and gloves
  • – Extra shirt
  • – Jacket
  • – Toilet paper
  • – Trash bags
  • – Old blanket
  • – Throw-away gear that you can shed during the race and are okay with never seeing again

SHOP MARATHON ESSENTIALS


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CELEBRATING NATIONAL YOGA MONTH

CELEBRATING NATIONAL YOGA MONTH

FIVE BEST YOGA POSES FOR RUNNERS

Celebrate National Yoga Month in September with five yoga poses for runners that will keep you feeling long and strong as you race into fall.

Yoga is so much more than just a physical practice. Not only does it help build strength and increase flexibility, it also does wonders for mental toughness and maintaining focus. Not to mention it’s a major game-changer for runners with tight hips, pelvises and hamstrings.

Even by carving out just 10-15 minutes a day, you’ll start to feel the benefits.

1. DOWNWARD FACING DOG

This is one of the easiest and best poses you can do for a good post-run stretch. Not only does it stretch the arms, shoulders, hamstrings, calves, arches and wrists, it also creates length in your spine, builds core strength, calms the mind and gives you a boost of energy.

Start on your hands and knees and place your palms on the floor beneath your shoulders. Tuck your toes under, lift your knees off floor and pull your hips up and back, focusing on lengthening your torso. Press down into your hands and create a long line from your head to your tailbone and you reach your heels back and down.

Engage your quads by pulling your kneecaps up and drop your shoulders away from your ears. Let your head hang heavy with no tension in your neck and shoulders. There’s a lot going on in this pose, so you should feel activated and relaxed at the same time. Hold for five to 10 breaths and then lower back down to your hands and knees.

2. TOE STAND

Get into your hip flexors, psoas, chest and spine with this pose. It’s also a good idea to do this stretch on a mat to save your knees from the hard floor. Start in plank position and bring one foot forward placing it on the mat in between your hands. Lower into a lunge by bringing your back knee to the floor and release the back foot so your toenails are on the floor.

Lean into your lunge and raise your arms above your head, concentrating on gently pushing the opposite hip forward and opening your chest.

Let your shoulders melt down your back and drop your shoulders away from your ears. If your balance isn’t great, you can always put your hands on your lunging knee for extra support.

Just make sure to engage your core as you lean forward in order to protect your lower back. Hold this pose for 60 seconds and then switch sides.

5 Yoga Poses for Runners

 

3. LOW LUNGE

We hold a lot of tension in our feet, especially runners. Toe stand helps release pressure points in the toe joints and under your feet for increased mobility and better posture. Start standing, then lower to your knees and sit back on your heels with your toes still on the floor.

Settle into the pose and allow your toes to open as you stretch our arch. This can feel very intense, so if it’s too much come back up on your knees with your toes still on the floor.

4. HALF SPLIT

Balance low lunge with a half split to stretch opposing muscle groups. From your low lunge (above) with the back knee on the floor and hands on the ground framing your front foot, press your hips back and hinge over your straight front leg.

The key with this pose is to keep your back straight and hips level to get a good stretch in your hamstrings and calves rather than curving your upper back and letting your forehead drop below your heart.

For an extra stretch, flex your front toes toward the sky.

5. RECLINED PIGEON

Target your piriformis muscle and outer hips with this floor stretch.

Lie on your back and bend one knee so that the opposite ankle rests on top of the straight leg with the knee out to the side of the room.

Bend the straight leg toward your chest and grab the shin. Pull the shin toward your chest until you feel a stretch.

Make sure to keep both feet flexed so you can really feel this stretch in your glutes. Hold for 60 seconds and then switch sides. This stretch can feel especially awesome post-run.


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THE DEFINITIVE NEW YORK PLAYLIST FOR THE BIG RACE

THE DEFINITIVE NEW YORK PLAYLIST FOR THE BIG RACE

WELCOME TO NEW YORK

Experiencing the music, food, and people of a particular location are crucial to understanding the culture. Without this foundational triad, it’s just another point on a map. The local sounds can transform a simple visit into an experience.

To achieve this experience while – say running 26.2 miles through the Five Boroughs – be sure to equip your ear buds with the musical tunes from New York City’s most popular artists. To make this task easy for you, we’ve compiled 26 songs from some of The Big Apple’s finest, into a Spotify playlist.

This quintessential collection of high-energy jams is designed to enhance the experience of running 26.2 miles in the City That Never Sleeps. Enjoy the stylings of hometown heroes, as well as a few clichéd topical tunes peppered in the mix, while your feet propel you through the city’s streets!

JACKRABBIT NYC RACE DAY PLAYLIST:


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THE REAL RUNNERS OF NEW YORK CITY

THE REAL RUNNERS OF NEW YORK CITY

The big race in New York City is upon us. Runners are finishing the last weeks of training and starting to think about their race day shoes and gear. They’re writing a list and checking it twice. For many, they’re packing their passports and flying to NYC from far shores to run the boroughs.

We all know the headliners, the pro athletes, the masters of their sport. Then there is the rest of the field, who might be many paces behind, but in turn, bring their own personal stories to the streets and avenues of The Big Apple.

Read on and meet a handful of athletes heading to New York. JackRabbit will be cheering for them all the 26.2 miles.

Gaye Beckman - NY Marathon Runner

 

GAYE BECKMAN: DENVER, COLORADO

Gaye is a labor and delivery nurse, Ironman and badass mother; she knows about endurance. As a two-time Ironman finisher, Gaye is packing her running shoes and heading to New York City with her son, Tyler.

GAYE: This will be my second time running the NYC marathon, and my fourth stand-alone marathon (I’ve done two Ironman races, as well, to date). I ran NYC in 2013, having won a guaranteed (non-complimentary, lol) entry in a contest for the 2012 race, which was cancelled due to Hurricane Sandy.

Running the marathon in 2013 was such an AMAZING experience that I continued entering the lottery each year, even though I really don’t love running marathons (I’m slow and the training takes SO long to get those long runs in!). That said, I had very low expectations of actually getting IN through the lottery, so when I opened that email as I was walking through King Soopers in March, it was totally an “oh, shit” moment.

I already had my destination race for the year planned (Ironman 70.3 Coeur D’Alene) and I REALLY wasn’t planning on running a marathon this year! But, when you get into NYC, you RUN NYC!

It’s truly one of the most incredible experiences I’ve ever had. It’s kind of like the Bolder Boulder on steroids, for 26 miles, and through one of my favorite cities in the world. The support from the people of NYC is just unbelievable. People who have probably never done any more running in their life other than to catch a bus or subway train give up their Sunday to go out and cheer for complete strangers.

It’s almost kind of a surreal experience to be running across the Verrazano bridge, through the streets of New York, and down Fifth Avenue into Central Park and the finish line. The wall of sound as you come off the Queensboro bridge onto First Avenue in Manhattan is absolutely deafening, with people lined up 5-7 deep, cheering and partying for hours.

I feel very lucky that I have a dear friend who was able to convince her husband to let her come with me. She was coincidentally along for the aborted trip in 2012 that became a girls weekend in NYC instead of a marathon weekend. This is allowing me to bring my 11 year old son. She’s bringing her daughter, as well, so I’ll have my own little cheer squad at the race. I’m so excited to take Tyler to NYC for the first time and show him the sights and sounds. We’ll do a couple of Broadway shows, the Statue of Liberty, and more than a few other iconic NY experiences.

I don’t really have any pre-race rituals. For this race specifically, we got matinee show tickets for Saturday so that I’ll be off my feet and relaxing instead of walking all around the day before the race. After the show, we’ll get dinner and head back to the hotel for an early-ish bedtime. One of the nice things about NY is that it’s not a super early race (I work nights and I am NOT a morning person), but it will still feel early, with the time difference from Colorado. But daylight savings time ends the night before, so you always get an extra hour of sleep!

My advice for first-timers in NYC is to just embrace the experience. NYC is a somewhat tough course (there are a lot of bridges = hills), and most people will say it’s not really a PR-type of course, although it is mine!

Leave the headphones behind and soak in the atmosphere as you run through all 5 boroughs – from the noise of the street drummers to the silence of the Orthodox Jews in Queens. Remember to look up and look around you and take in the views, especially as you start off across the Verrazano. There’s just nothing else in the world like the NYC Marathon!

David Cho NY Marathon Runner

 

DAVID CHAO: TEXAS

David is a Texan who loves NY! He’s run the 5th Avenue Mile five times, and this pilgrimage to the New York race will be his second marathon. David’s training is guided by a Stryd power meter that gauges the power output of the runner.

DAVID: I love New York! So first it’s the people – all the folks lining the route, plus the friends and family I’ll get a chance to see while in the city – including our daughter’s future-in-laws!

I’m not anxious about the race – if anything, I want to make sure that I enjoy the race. I’m really looking forward to it, and don’t want to take away from the experience by starting out too fast and ending it with a painful slog into Central Park. My hope is for a moderate jog from start to finish.

My first and only marathon was the first year they did the Half Moon Bay Marathon – a beautiful course! But I have done three races in NYC so far – all 1/26th of the November race! I’ve run the New Balance/NYRR 5th Avenue Mile.

Maybe my advice to other runners is only worth 1/26 as much given my race history but … enjoy the city! Catch a show, walk Central Park or the High Line, or see a site you’ve always wanted to see.

This marathon is really different from my first. When I raced a marathon in 2013, that was “the race”. This year, my focus was actually the New Balance Mile, and then I switched gears to marathon training as soon as I finished that, leaving me only 8 weeks of real marathon training.

My hopeful saving grace is a really cool gadget I picked up (a Stryd footpod) that helps me maintain a very even level of effort, even when I’m going up and down hills. I’ve found it hugely helpful on the big hills in Austin in terms of running relatively hard and not burning too many matches, so to speak, on hill climbs. I think it’ll be super handy on all the bridges.

This year it’s different. Taking inspiration from a great new book by Steve Magness and Brad Stulberg, I’m going to meditate on the ferry to Staten about the the “greater goals” of this race. Things like encouraging my kids and friends to stay healthy, and get the most enjoyment out of physical activities.

Walking 1/2 mile to my rental apartment and collapsing. Then trying to hunt down some tasty delicacies like culatello (if they have it) at DiPalo’s.

I would love to PR. But even more than that, I’d love to run the race on my terms, which means: soaking in the experience, being mindful of the amazing course and maintaining a sustainable pace from start to finish.

Lindsey and Trevor Parry NY Marathon Runners

 

LINSDEY AND TREVOR PARRY: SOUTH AFRICA

Running is a lifestyle, and there’s no more true a statement to describe Lindsey and Trevor Parry. A father/son team from South Africa, the Parry’s are coming to New York to run together.

This is far from the end of the story. Trevor knows all about finish lines. He is a three times Gold Medal winner at the world-famous Comrades Marathon in his native South Africa. Don’t let the word ‘marathon’ fool you, Comrades is an epic run of 56 miles. His son Lindsey is the official Comrades Marathon run coach as well as coaching the National Triathlon Team of South Africa.

LINDSEY: We are coming to race. It’s my Dad’s 68th Birthday while we are in NY so we will both celebrate with a hard run!

I enjoy running international marathons, mostly because they are flat, at low altitude and temperatures are moderate to cold which all allow for fast running! Then there’s the sheer number of fast runners to share the road with and the unbelievable spectator support.

It’s the crowds and spectating that inspired the trip to New York, with the qualifier option. I’ve heard from so many people how amazing the crowds of New York are and so I’m coming to experience it myself.
When it comes to running with my dad, there was a brief period when my Dad was in his early 50s where we could race together. Before that my Dad was too fast and more recently it’s swung around!
We still try to do a few training runs a year together.

My advice for a marathon newbie is pace yourself! With the excitement and type of the start, it’s easy to be swept up and feel really good! Hold back and save yourself for the last 10k.

TREVOR: It has my life-long wish to visit America and friends in New York, so when a friend offered to sponsor me to run the marathon, I would be able to combine going over with my son.

Will we be racing or taking it easy? I would say would depend on how fit we are relatively. We’ve run a few races together but I know Lindsey will be much faster on the NY marathon.

For marathon newbies, there is so much information available I always tell runners to follow the advice of a reputable coach and be wary of advice from club mates especially concerning medication and nutrition!

Tony Fuller NY Marathon Runner

 

TONYA FULLER: DENVER, COLORADO


It all comes down to Power Bar for Tonya. With 15 of her soon-to-be-closest snacking pals, Tonya is headed to New York thanks to a winning a contest!

TONYA:In 2015 I was training for the California International Marathon with the intent to qualify for Boston. I was fully trained and had done well. 2 weeks prior to the race, I began having IT band issues. I did what I could to treat the problem, but it did not fully go away before race day. I started the marathon, but the pain was so unbearable by mile 19 that I could not finish and decided to walk off the course.

This was my first ever DNF and I was devastated. I worked so hard to get to that point and then was sidelined by IT band issues.

At the beginning of this year, PowerBar began a Clean Start program. They opened up a contest asking for entries to discuss a time that they were unable to start or finish a race because of injury, or something that has prevented them from reaching a goal. I decided I would enter (as NYC is my favorite marathon of all time), and told them of my DNF from 2015.

Surprisingly, I won an entry!

Initially, my expectations for this race were to qualify for Boston, but I have been plagued with a foot injury that won’t fully heal. So, knowing what a fun race this is (completed in 2004 and 2007), I’m going with the expectation of enjoying the amazing crowds and the awesome day I know I’ll have. I’m looking forward to spending time with the other 15 PowerBar winners as their stories of comeback and clean starts is incredible!!

NYC is my absolute favorite race and I’m honored to be able to participate in 2017!!


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JACKRABBIT EVENTS IN NYC DURING RACE WEEK

JACKRABBIT EVENTS IN NEW YORK
DURING RACE WEEK

This is your guide to all the events JackRabbit will be hosting during race week in New York City. Our stores are ready to welcome all runners and their support crews! Welcome to The Big Apple.

Be sure to bookmark and check back regularly as we add the final details to each event. This is your chance to celebrate your hard work; the training is done, and now is the time to enjoy the taper and your time in New York City.

JACKRABBIT NEW YORK EVENTS

Events will take place in our JackRabbit stores around the city and in other select locations. We’ll have time with athlete guests, shake ‘em up runs and events for your support crews on race day.

November 1st 2017

11/1: Shake it out with Shake Shack
Details: We’ll take runners through Central Park on a 3-mile route that will pass by the finish line (woo hoo) and some scenic areas before exiting the park on the Upper East Side. We’ll finish at the Shake Shack on 86th & Lexington, where we will have all you need to recover with Zion PT before the big day. The first round will be on the house, and there will be some great swag items for you to win.
Location: JackRabbit Time Warner Store, 10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019
Time: 6:30 PM
Sign up: Register for the Shake It Out with Shake Shack event

November 2nd 2017

11/2: Saucony Fun Run with Molly Huddle
Details: Join us for a truly exclusive night with Molly Huddle, one of the strongest female runners in the game. She’s the winner of the 2017 New York Half Marathon and a huge advocate for female athletes everywhere (you can thank her for the runner girl emoji!)
Location: JackRabbit Time Warner Store, 10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019
Time: 6:30 PM
Sign up: Register for Saucony Fun Run with Molly Huddle

November 3rd 2017

11/3: Morning Miles with Nike
Details: We’ll meet at the JackRabbit store in the Time Warner Center at 7:00 AM. We have pacers, lockers and refreshments for all participants. All paces welcome and the run will be between 4-5 miles.
Location: JackRabbit Time Warner Store, 10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019
Time: 7:00 AM
Sign up: Register to join us for Morning Miles with Nike

11/3: New Balance and BOA Event
Details: This evening will be filled with DJ music, fun runs, and delicious snacks to give you the athlete treatment you deserve. The first 100 attendees to arrive at the event with their tickets will received a special good luck package courtesy of New Balance. We’ll be running a 3-mile course for the last time in the park before the big day.
Location: JackRabbit Time Warner Store, 10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019
Time: 5:00 PM
Sign up: Register for the New Balance and Boa Event

November 5th 2017

11/5: Brunch, Viewing Party & Cheer Zone with Brooks & Shake Shack
Details: Join us for NYC marathon viewing party, lunch and cheer zone with our Brooks Running partners and Shake Shack!
Location: JackRabbit 3rd Avenue Store, 1051 3rd Avenue New York NY, 10065
Time: 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Sign up: Confirm you’re in for the Brunch and Viewing Party

11/5: NYC Marathon Finish Meeting Point & Physical Therapy
Details: Join us at the finish line with On, Oofos and Zion Physical Therapy for some well-deserved run recovery and refreshments.
Location: JackRabbit Upper West Side Store, 140 W 72nd St, New York, NY 10025
Time: 11:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Sign up: Visit the Finish Line Meetup event page on Faxebook

November 6th 2017

11/6: Marathon Monday Medal Engraving with Nike
Details: Get your marathon medal engraved for free by downloading (and using!) the Nike + Run Club mobile app during the race on Sunday! The cost for marathon finishers who did not use the Nike app is $10 at the door.
Location: JackRabbit Time Warner Store, 10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019
Time: 8:00am – 7:00 pm (note: 8:00am – 9:00am is for JackRabbit Run Rewards Members only – sign up and come down early!)
Sign up: Register for Medal Engraving with Nike


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JACKRABBIT MONTHLY PRIORITIZER

JACKRABBIT MONTHLY PRIORITIZER

YOU HAVE TO MAKE TIME

Time is… like… weird, man.

As a completely human construct, it technically doesn’t even exist. Nevertheless, the passing of time can cause anxiety, obsession, and a feeling that it is going by much too quickly. It seems to be something we never have enough of, and something we can’t get back.

So if time is something we made up, why can’t we get a grasp on it? Prioritization is the issue. We get bogged down by appointments, daily agendas, and kowtowing to other’s schedules so much, that we never “have time” to do the things we want to, or need to, get done.

Most people tend to overestimate what can be accomplished in the short term, and underestimate what can be accomplished long term. Therefore, to truly be effective – not “efficient”, not “productive”, definitely not “busy” – and actually accomplishing the things that are important to us, we need less micro-managing of our own hour-to-hour days, and more focus on overall goals we are trying to achieve.

Let’s change our mindset to treat our schedules the same way we might treat training for a race. Let’s keep sight on the desired outcome rather than the specific minutia.

To do so, we’ve created a Monthly Prioritizer™ that will keep your eyes on the prize all year long. I’ve personally been using this Prioritizer for the past year and a half, and have simultaneously accomplished more, while decreasing stress, and increasing overall satisfaction. The reason being, is by having a constant reminder of what matters, you naturally stop wasting time on the things that don’t matter.

USING THE JACKRABBIT MONTHLY PRIORITIZER

Using the JackRabbit Monthly Prioritizer™ is relatively straightforward. To clarify, I’ll quickly run through the sections here:

  • Monthly Focus: From 1 singular word to a short sentence. This is your guiding star for the month. Do not list multiple items. Stay focused.
  • Week 1 – 4: This is your roadmap to achieving your primary monthly goal. List the key steps you need to get you from point A to point B.
  • Exercise & Nutrition Goal: Being healthy and feeling good supports every other thing you wish to achieve. No matter your goal, this is your foundation, align accordingly.
  • 30, 60, & 90-Day Priorities: Bullet point the items you wish to achieve, for both immediate and longer-term projects. Don’t forget to include lots of fun!
  • Happiness Is: Not so much something to “check off”, but rather a current inventory of what is bringing you happiness.

Next Month: Keep moving forward. What do you hope the future brings?

As you take action on your newly-organized priorities, we hope you do so with enhanced clarity, confidence, calmness and joy. We wish you great success in wasting less time, accomplishing more of what matters, and spending your months getting back to YOU!

About the Author:
Lance has previously been fat, weak, and injured. Lacking any real innate athletic ability, his application of data and science has produced some pretty awesome personal results, such as bench pressing over 500 pounds in competition. As a professional Strength & Conditioning Coach he’s helped enhance the performance of NFL athletes, olympians, ironmen, and improved the race-day performance of hundreds of runners.


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RECOVER LIKE AN ATHLETE

RECOVER LIKE AN ATHLETE

GET BETTER, NOT INJURED

We could do well to learn from how professional athletes train and prepare for competition. In many cases, yes, they are genetically gifted. Sometimes, pro athletes are simply herculean demi-gods, birthed with literal mutations that allow them to perform feats 99% of us could never reach, no matter how meticulous or committed our training was. However, most of the time, they just consistently bust their butt, train smarter, and recover better than you. This article focuses on the latter part of that statement.

Chances are if you are reading this, you’re putting in the work. You may even have a strategic plan in place, detailing your entire training schedule in preparation for a race, or other competition. You may even go as far as to have specific elements of intensity levels and appropriate strength training in your routine. If so, good for you! I don’t doubt your ability to work. What I can almost guarantee that you suck at though, is your ability to recover.

First, let’s get the Webster-y stuff clarified: What exactly is recovery and why is it important enough to have a dedicated section of this website? When we talk recovery, we are NOT talking about rest. Rest is simply when you’re not working. A day you don’t train is a “rest day,” but that doesn’t necessarily mean it qualifies as a “recovery day” until you perform elements of recovery (which we’ll get into later). Recovery is crucial to your improvement towards any goal because it’s where changes actually take place.

***Warning: Use of science-sounding terminology to build credibility coming up***

Work, defined as an intensity level performed beyond homeostasis, provokes a stimulus response which the body must recover from, in order to increase work capacity, as a delayed effect, to more efficiently perform future work.

In other words, your body doesn’t get better/faster/stronger when you train, but rather, during the recovery from training. Allow me to use all-caps to fully get this point across: TRAINING BREAKS YOUR BODY DOWN, RECOVERY BUILDS IT BACK UP.

Thank you for giving me that opportunity to yell at you, it was very cathartic. So what happens if you stubbornly keep training hard, without prioritizing recovery? Bam! Pow! Other Batman Noises! You get injured! A recovery routine is not only essential for seeing results improve, but also – and maybe more importantly – to prevent any potential injuries.

Now that we’re nice and warmed-up on the topic, ready to jump into the numbered list?

I assumed you yelled “YES!” at your digi-screen, so let’s proceed. I break the essential elements of recovery into 4 primary categories:


1. Active Recovery
2. Sleep
3. Nutrition
4. Bodywork

ACTIVE RECOVERY

Active Recovery can be summarized as low-intensity movement for the purpose of getting your “blood moving.” Hopefully, your blood is always moving (if not call a doctor NOW), but performing low-intensity exercise in between high-intensity training, helps speed along the recovery process by delivering a higher rate of oxygenated blood and clearing toxins. This allows your body to repair muscular microtears more efficiently. Perform activities you enjoy.

WHAT: Light jog, leisurely walk, or cross-training sport that leaves you energized, not exhausted.
WHEN: As many times per week as your schedule allows, optimally the day after your most intense workout(s).

SLEEP

You know this one. You’ve been told to get more sleep since you were a child. You don’t need me to tell you how important it is, or how much you need. What you do need to know is how much it affects your body’s ability to recover.

The majority of the body’s healing and immune processes happen in our sleep. Remember, when we workout, we are creating micro-tears in our muscles. A lack of quality sleep means the tears won’t properly heal, and you wake up feeling sore. If you then go to workout before you’re recovered, you start in a deficit, and may begin to plateau towards your goals.

Anytime someone complains to me about not reaching, or stalling towards a fitness goal, my first question is always, “Are you sleeping enough?” The answer, 100% of the time is, “No.” So next time you feel tempted to binge just-one-more-episode on Netflix, put down the remote and pull back the sheets instead.

WHAT: Uninterrupted deep sleep in a cool, dark room.
WHEN: 6-10 hours every. single. night.

NUTRITION

Guess what your body uses to produce energy? Food. Guess what your body needs to recover properly? More food. There are times when a caloric deficit is desirable, i.e. weight loss. If your goal is anything other than shedding pounds, such as improving performance, you better be eating enough. See: Michael Phelp’s 12,000 calorie training diet. Under-consuming calories can slow your metabolism, taking you into a dreaded catabolic state, where your muscles continue to break down after your workout.

Also in this category is water. Water is the essential life – and recovery – ingredient. Simply put, when you are dehydrated, it’s akin to pulling the emergency brake on your body’s metabolic processes. We’re made of so much water, we’re basically cucumbers with thoughts. Always Be Drinking Water© and stay anabolic my friends!

WHAT: Eat enough and drink more water than you think is enough.
WHEN: Time your meals to have your heaviest carbohydrate intake sandwiched around your workouts…. mmmmm sandwich…. The more intense your workout, the more calories you need to fully recover and regrow.
REMEMBER!: Drink plenty of water before and during exertion. Once you feel thirsty, you’re already dehydrated.

BODYWORK

Different from your body doing work, this is work done on your body. Professional bodyworkers include massage therapists, chiropractors, arrosti practitioners, or other professionals that perform work that helps speed along your body’s recovery process. Understanding budgets and schedules don’t always allow for professional appointments, much bodywork can be performed solo, referred to as self-care.

Sometimes, dynamic or static stretching is enough to get the job done. I strongly suggest adding recovery tools to really target and effectively heal the body. Luckily, a wealth of great products (rollers, etc.) exist that allow us to perform consistent bodywork on ourselves.

WHAT: Manipulating the body’s tissue to alleviate specific pain points or general tension.
WHEN: At least 5 minutes of self-care on a daily basis. Professional assistance as-needed.

EAT. SLEEP. RUN. REPEAT

Nearly every runner I’ve met loved to sweat. We love the feeling of endorphins released, the feeling of accomplishment, and the all the other wonderful benefits that come from getting our bodies moving. Even when the training gets tough, we love the challenge. While we want to train like an athlete, we typically don’t recover like one.

I get it. It’s easy to think, “Oh, I just need to train harder, ” thinking only the ‘doing’ brings results. It can seem contradictory to think, what you really need is not more work, but better recovery. A current trend in the world of fitness is to talk about over-training. I’m here to tell you “over-training” is a myth. The human body was made to move. The real issue is under-recovery.

Let’s start these good habits now, so that injury doesn’t slow us down later! Hopefully, I’ve gotten your gears turning about how to approach and implement your own recovery routine. Until then, stay hydrated, sleep well, and go get a massage. Your body will thank you.

About the Author:
Lance has previously been fat, weak, and injured. Lacking any real innate athletic ability, his application of data and science has produced some pretty awesome personal results, such as bench pressing over 500 pounds in competition. As a professional Strength & Conditioning Coach he’s helped enhance the performance of NFL athletes, olympians, ironmen, and improved the race-day performance of hundreds of runners.


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ADIDAS ADIZERO PRIME PARLEY

ADIDAS ADIZERO PRIME PARLEY

ADIDAS PARTNERS WITH PARLEY TO CREATE IMPACTFUL RUNNING STYLES

A brand-new style from adidas, the Adizero Prime Parley is an elite running shoe following the same cutting edge design of adidas’ marathon world-setting models. It’s a creation that is trend-setting in design, cool to wear, but even more impressive, because of what it is made from.

The upper of each pair of adidas Adizero Prime Parley running shoes is fashioned from upcycled plastic waste, intercepted before it reaches the ocean. To get straight to the numbers, each pair of Parleys saves 11 bottles being dumped into the ocean.

ADIDAS ADIZERO PRIME PARLEY: HELPING SAVE OCEANS ONE BOTTLE AT A TIME

You cannot keep repeating the same things, and expect the results to be different. This statement is true on so many levels, and more than applicable to how we as a world are consuming resources and the impact upon its most delicate ecosystems.

Adidas and Parley have teamed to put the ocean front and center.


WHAT IS PARLEY?

The mission of Parley is precise; give creative industries the power to lead, then let the consumer make the right choice.

“Parley for the Oceans addresses major threats towards the oceans, the most important ecosystem of our planet.
We believe the power for change lies in the hands of the consumer – given he has a choice – and the power to shape this new consumer mindset lies in the hands of the creative industries.

Artists, musicians, actors, filmmakers, fashion designers, journalists, architects, product inventors, and scientists have the tools to mold the reality we live in and to develop alternative business models and ecologically sensible products to give us earthlings an alternative choice, an everyday option to change something.”

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE IMPACT OF PLASTICS

Read more about Parley and their collaborations, the designs and the concept behind their mission. Will you commit to take the Parley pledge to A.I.R.?

AVOID PLASTIC WHENEVER POSSIBLE

INTERCEPT PLASTIC WASTE

REDESIGN YOUR LIFE

Certainly, the adidas collaboration with Parley is a chance for us all to take a stance. Holidays are coming and what better way to say, ‘I love you, world’ than a thoughtful gift; an impactful, high performance shoe so the runners of tomorrow can enjoy the ocean breathing lifeblood into the world, just as we have.

 

SHOP ADIDAS ADIZERO PRIME PARLEY



Adidas Adizero Prime Parley


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6 FITNESS TIPS YOU’RE DOING OUT OF ORDER

6 FITNESS TIPS YOU’RE DOING OUT OF ORDER

“ONE WEIRD TRICK TO BURN BELLY FAT”

Ok Champions, take shelter and avoid windows if you can, because I’m about to start dropping knowledge bombs. Brace yourself for a Tornado of Truth™ that will turn some of your worlds upside-down. Most of us want to be as healthy as possible, or at least healthier than we are now, that’s why a lot of us incorporate running as a part of our lifestyle. The problem is that most of us have our priorities completely out of whack.

We desire to be healthier, but our actions are not aligned with that goal. In fact, most of the things we think are making us healthier, are actually roadblocks – disguised as shortcuts – on our path to fitness. The majority of Americans are fed magic formulas to fitness, emblazoned on magazine covers in the grocery store checkout line, or through internet clickbait falsehoods: Take a sh*t ton of supplements. Try some new exercise fad. Eat this unknown Peruvian root and you’ll instantly morph into the high-performance athlete of your dreams. For most of us, not only is this wrong, it’s flat out backwards.

I’ll spare you the beat down of how we got our priorities so out of alignment, and focus on the solutions instead. What follows are the top 6 tips for improving your fitness that actually produce sustainable results. Most importantly, they are presented in the order in which they should be followed. In other words, don’t even worry about making changes at the bottom of this list, until you have a grasp on implementing the foundational items first.


6 TIPS TO BALANCE YOUR HIERARCHY OF FITNESS

1. Sleep More Humans need to power down regularly to repair muscles, properly metabolize bodyfat, and maintain proper immune function, among many other things. The body needs more sleep than the brain, even if you feel awake. This is especially true if you are demanding a lot from your body during waking hours, or are trying to make changes in how your body performs. Even if you are doing everything else “right”, if you’re not allowing your body sufficient time to rest and repair, any progress in your fitness will be halted.

2.Drink More Water Water is so crucial to your health, I wrote an entire blog about why we should all drink more water here. Long story short, drink more than your are now. Much more.

3a. Consume Enough Calories Simply put, consume more calories than you burn = gain weight. Burn more calories than you consume = lose weight. This is called the Law of Thermodynamics. However, consume far fewer calories than you burn = somehow gain a lot of fat due to starvation. Ok, so maybe it’s not so simple.

It’s important to note that “burning” calories doesn’t directly equate to exercise. In fact, you’re not really burning calories at all. You’re utilizing them. They are your fuel source. Most of your calories are utilized just by being alive, for your organs to function properly. Your brain consumes roughly 60% of the calories you utilize. Undereat and you will literally be dumber.

3b.Macronutrient Balance Provided you’re in that sweet spot of eating enough without overeating, the quality of food you put in your body matters. Macronutrients are the three primary colors your metabolism paints with, and your body uses each for different things. You’ve heard their names before, but might not know what they do. They are Protein, Carbohydrates, and Fat.

Protein most likely had eyes at some point in it’s lifecycle before you ate it, and is used as the building blocks of skeletal muscle. Carbohydrates grow from the ground, and are used to provide quick energy-on-demand. Fat tastes delicious, breaks down slower, and is therefore used for time-released energy. Consume too many of any of these in one sitting, and the surplus will be stored as bodyfat.

To grossly oversimplify: Eat protein at every meal, eat carbohydrates when you need energy (before/after activity), and eat fat because life should be fun.

4a. Stress Reduction: When you’re stressed, your body releases the hormone cortisol, which stores fat. When you are feeling good, your body releases testosterone which metabolizes fat and builds muscle. Being stressed out doesn’t just feel mentally taxing, it takes a toll on your physical body.

Whether it be daily meditation, a yoga practice, listening to your favorite music, or just improving your organization, what’s good for the mind is good for the body.

4b. Human Connection: This is a favorite of mine, as I have yet to see it included in any ‘fitness tips’ list. Humans are social creatures. By spending quality time in the company of others we relax our parasympathetic nervous system. Doing this provides a wide swath of benefits – covering the gamut from improved digestion to better hormone regulation.

5. Exercise: That’s right, this is all the down at #5. Yes, your body needs to move. A lot. This doesn’t mean exercise isn’t important, it means the 4 items above it are even more important-ter to your overall health. You can’t out-train an unhealthy lifestyle.

6a. Micronutrients: Otherwise known as vitamins and minerals. You need these in trace amounts, and usually only when you have a natural deficiency, or your regular diet is so crappy that you’ve created an artificial deficiency. Unless you need to take a micronutrient for a very specific reason, as prescribed by a medical professional, you’re better off just eating more green veggies and cutting out as much sugar as possible.

6b. Supplements: Okay, this should bring us full circle as this is where many people start on their fitness journey. In reality, this category should be either your lowest priority, or completely unnecessary. This may ruffle some feathers, but ONLY THREE supplement categories have been consistently tested and proven to work by multiple regulatory agencies: Caffeine, Protein powder, and Creatine Monohydrate.

If you’re an American, you’re probably already consuming enough daily caffeine to make up for your lack of sleep (priority #1). If you are already eating a protein source at every meal, you don’t need to add protein powder. If you don’t know what creatine monohydrate is, you probably don’t need to take it.

I hope this list helps you reframe what actually matters as you prioritize your own health. So next time you’re ringing up your groceries, or browsing the word-wide-web, instead of being tricked by a glossy image marketing a magic pill, you’ll remember that getting back to the basics is what helps you get back to you.

THE HIERARCHY OF FITNESS PYRAMID



About the Author: Lance has previously been fat, weak, and injured. Lacking any real innate athletic ability, his application of data and science has produced some pretty awesome personal results, such as bench pressing over 500 pounds in competition. As a professional Strength & Conditioning Coach, he’s helped enhance the performance of NFL athletes, olympians, ironmen, and improved the race-day performance of hundreds of runners.


FOLLOW JACKRABBIT AND OUR RUNNING CREW

Follow JackRabbit and our running lives on Facebook where we share training tips, interviews and gear guides for every runner’s lifestyle.