My Essential Piece of Running Gear: The Running Tank

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Jul 25

Steph tanksOne very important aspect of making running enjoyable is having the right running gear. Not only do you want to look good but you want to choose things that are practical. Let’s face it, many of us have a long list of things we want…and those of us with kids often have to put those things at the end of the list. So when it does come time to buy running clothes you want to spend your money on things you can get the most use out of. Without a doubt what I have the most of are good, longer length, dri-fit type running tanks.

First let me address the longer description. Luckily almost all running tanks are longer than they used to be. This is good because at 36, I am past the age where I want my torso hanging out! Also, the longer length is much more slimming, it elongates the look. The dri-fit of course is essential because it pulls the sweat away from your body and prevents your shirt from getting too heavy. Another reason why I could never have too many tanks is because I actually wear them all year long. They are always the first layer I put on even in the dead of winter. I do this partly because they are longer and they will prevent my torso from being exposed to the cold in case my pullover rides up. Because they are fitted it helps keep me warm by preventing cold air from sneaking in. I also wear them to the gym all year round. So unlike many pieces of running gear such as tights and pullovers, you can use them twelve months out of the year. For years, anytime I have shopped they are the very first thing I look at. Brand wise I have the most luck with Nike and Under Armour. Here are a few of my favorites.

The Nike Touch Breeze Tank is probably one of the thinnest and most breathable tanks that I have ever worn. With this humidity and heavy sweating that is a huge bonus. It also comes in a lot of great colors! Another one I love is the Under Armor Victory Tank.  It has a flattering neck line and also comes in good colors. I could list so many Nike tanks that I love but I will just mention one more, the Nike Flow Tank is also one that is light weight and breathable and doesn’t get heavy.

There aren’t many articles of any kind of clothing that you can invest in that you actually wear all year long. So for that reason I like to have plenty to choose from. After all, it always helps you feel good when you look good. There are so many great, bright and happy colors now and the style is flattering on so many body types. Sport Seasons has a great variety of styles and an awesome selection of color! They make great gifts also. These are all reasons why the running tank is my most essential-can’t have too many of-go to buy when it comes to running gear!

Under Armour Victory Tank

Under Armour Victory Tank

 

Nike Dri-FIT Touch Breeze Tank

Nike Dri-FIT Touch Breeze Tank

 

Nike Flow Tank

Nike Flow Tank

 

 

Under Armour Boxerjocks – Product Review

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Jul 24

Under Armour Boxer Jocks We wanted to poll a few wearers of the Under Armour Original Boxerjocks to see what they would say about their unmentionables. Here is what they had to say.

“More comfort than the compression shorts, not quite as tight, especially the waist band. The mesh fly front lends more of an underwear feature, and more comfort as well. The 3 inch inseam is short, almost a brief, but then there is no riding up leg of the fabric and the 6 inch inseam is comfortable, I really like the weight of the fabric, it is not heavy and manages moisture well, keeping comfortable in hot weather. Haven’t tried the 9 inch. But, I imagine it would be comfortable over the quadriceps, especially in rough denim pants that drag on the leg.”

“I loved the boxers! Going to buy more ASAP. They have a nice firm fit and kept me in place. I also liked how they dried out quickly from sweat. I would give them 9 out of 10.”

“Seriously they’re great. No chafing, light weight, keeps everything in place. Will definitely continue to wear them during my softball games and plan to buy more soon.”

 

Running the Race Across the Spectrum 5K

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Jul 18

This past weekend I participated in the Race Across the Spectrum 5K at Crockett Park in Brentwood.  It was a benefit for The Brown Center which is a non-profit organization that helps children with Autism. The community support and sponsorship was amazing!  Several companies including Sport Seasons, Pure Protein, Lindell Jewelers, and Vanderbilt University made donations to this race.  There was just shy of 300 participants. It is a newer 5K so hopefully the turnout will grow each year.  It is definitely a race that you could walk, run, or even push a stroller.  It was definitely hot and sunny, so I just had to remind myself that my time out there was going to brief in comparison to a marathon.  I tried to use that mentality to push myself a little harder.

Brown Center Fast Fact 1Brown Center Fast Fact 2

The organization was great at the race and the water bags that they had at the Franklin Half were there as well.  I loved seeing the support of another local company! I also was pretty impressed with the post race snacks! Sometimes at a smaller race and a shorter one like this, there isn’t really ant post race food at all!  There was tons of fresh fruit, some amazing and huge muffins (the double chocolate chip was my favorite, of course!), and there were tons of Pure Protein bars as well!

Brown Center MuffinsBrown Center Postrace FoodThis was my first 5K in quite some time.  I finished in 21:31, which was a 6:56 pace and I was actually the first girl to finish!  The first guy to finish was a crazy fast finishing in 16:16 which is a 5:14 mile!  We both won gift certificates that were donated by Sport Seasons and Lindell Jewelers!  That was a fun way to start the Saturday!  I hope this race continues to grow because it supports such a great place and such a great cause.

Here are a few facts about Autism that you may not be aware of:

  • The CDC indicates that approximately 1 in 68 American children are on the Autism spectrum.
  • Autism does not discriminate against cultures or ethnicities
  • It is the fastest growing developmental disability in the United States today
  • It costs a family on average $60,000 a year for Autism treatment and therapies

If you would like to find other ways to support The Brown Center, you can contact them with the information below:

The Brown Center

2702 Greystone Road

Nashville, TN 37214

www.thebrowncenter.org

Happiness is a Good RunFirst Lady Finisher Race Across the SpectrumSport Seasons Race Across the Spectrum 2014

 

 

If Everybody Ran – The Emotional Benefits of Running

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Jul 15

workout

“Running is about finding your inner peace, and so is a life well lived….Run with your heart.”

-Dean Karnazes

If you have read even a few of my blogs, then you know what a big fan I am of sweets.  It doesn’t take me long to get enough points at the yogurt place to score a free one.  That is one reason I have always kept up with my running. I eat healthy, but I believe in living, so when I want ice cream, I eat it!  The truth of the matter is however, that what running has done for me emotionally is so much more important than what it has done for me physically.  As it is for many, life is a series of ups and downs.  During those down times, getting out of bed in the morning can be a big challenge.  It’s hard.  I’m tired when the alarm goes off, sometimes I’m flat out beat down and exhausted. I may be physically drained, and lately a little emotionally drained.  There are mornings I actually lay there and have an internal conversation with myself about how much worse I will feel if I don’t go. (Sometimes I lie at the end of the bed and discuss it with my dog, who by the way is no help!) I can tell you this, there is not a day I have gone running that I have come home and thought, “wow, I regret that”.  Instead I always feel a thousand times better than I did the moment my eyes popped open.  In reality, for me that is where the addiction to running comes in, I guess that’s why they call it the “Runner’s High”.

The great thing about the mental benefit of exercise is that it is an instant payoff.  You did it, you come home, you feel better.  The health, cardio, and visual benefits take time to see.  So if you start and you realize the good feeling that you get, you may very well have the desire to do it again. (or at least that’s the hope!)  Some people have glanced through some of my playlists and found it odd that a few of my songs are slower.  Usually though those slower ones have meaning to me, it’s therapeutic.  It’s an emotional release when I have something on my mind.  As I listen I let it out and I actually speed up.  So I guess for me you can definitely say running is my therapy.  (and it’s a lot less expensive than a real therapist!) A friend of mine sent me a quote when I first started this blog that I loved. It read “It’s easier to wake up earlier and workout than it is to look in the mirror every day and not like what you see.”  I couldn’t agree more.

So today I thought I would share some actual proven facts about the emotional and really anti-depressant effects of running and exercise in general.

dont ask me why i run

  • Running releases endorphins which actually trigger a positive attitude and a happy feeling.  In fact there are several studies that show that 30-40 minutes of moderate exercise 4-5 times a week had the same effect on the brain as a low dose of an anti-depressant.
  • Moderate exercise can also help you sleep better.  Lack of sleep can lead to all kinds of other problems such as depression, lack of energy, and poor nutrition. (So really it’s a domino effect)
  • Running boosts your self-esteem which in turn builds confidence. Confidence is a key to happiness and success.
  • Exercise of all kinds reduces stress.  Everyone has things in their life that add stress.  Whether it’s work or kids, whatever it may be, take at least 30 minutes most days and it will lower your stress level.
  • Good moods are contagious.  Putting yourself in a good mood will trickle down to your kids, your spouse, your friends, and even your co-workers.

 

I once had a doctor I worked with tell me that she thought the world would be a better and happier place if they put anti-depressants in the water.  I say the world would be a happier place if everybody ran, or found an exercise that worked for them.  I can tell you without a doubt that there have been many times running has prevented me from falling into a state of depression.  Through family stress, financial stress, and even recently coping with the loss of a loved one, running has saved me.  I know it sounds strange, but I truly believe that running is a gift you can give yourself.  Remember happiness is a choice, it is a direction, not a place.  So why not choose the direction that leads you to happiness? #ifeverybodyran

“The only workout you will ever regret is the one you didn’t do.”

 

Still Time to Sign Up: Race Across the Spectrum 5K

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Jul 01

Race Across the Spectrum 2014

Even before the starting signal goes off, the runners’ heart rates pick up with anticipation. What motivates them varies as much as the runners themselves but the single event that brings them out this particular Saturday: The 2014 Race Across the Spectrum 5K benefitting the Brown Center for Autism.

This year, the Race Across the Spectrum 5K will be held Saturday, July 12th. Proceeds from the race go to the Brown Center which provides service for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and their families, including assessment, counseling, education and therapy services.

Sign up for this year’s race is available at Active.com till July 11th.

New to the 2014 Race Across the Spectrum activities is an online auction, Bidding for Good, with 100% of the funds raised going to the Brown Center. Auctioning will begin July 6th and close on the 19th.

For runners and walkers wondering about this year’s packet pickup, the NEW Cool Springs Sport Seasons location (MAP) will be hosting the event.

PACKET PICKUP INFO:

539 COOL SPRINGS BLVD, STE 120 (moved near PF Changs)

FRANKLIN, TN 37067

Friday, 7/11/14 at 11am-1pm and again from 4-7pm