RWS Features #10

 

Good morning friends! Tomorrow morning I leave for Baton Rouge to run Rouge Orleans! I will have more fun info for you about the race and how to follow me during it via Twitter, etc. tomorrow, but today I am busy grocery shopping and packing, as well as getting last minute work done since I won’t be available much this weekend for clients.

Today I want to tell you a little about a blogger named Stephanie. Stephanie blogs at Athlete At Heart, and shares a love of Disney with me. Be sure to add her to your Twitter Followers and check our her blog! Let’s support each other in the blogging community!

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1.) How/Why did you start blogging?

My first blog idea came from a conversation with a friend about actively seeking out new experiences. I called it Random Acts and wrote about 35 new experiences I had in 2010. It included everything from going vegan for a weekend to doing my first century ride (100 mile bike ride) to canning my own pickles.

It was a fun experiment but by the end of the year I wanted to try something else. I am almost always training for races and I love being athletic so a blog more focused on those topics seemed to make sense. I started my current blog, Athlete at Heart, in early 2011.

2.) Sum up your blog in a couple sentences

Athlete at Heart is my journey to a healthier, happier, more active life. It covers topics like running, triathlons, training, gear, workouts, weight loss, motivation, nutrition, family, friends, and fitting it all in.

3.)What do you wish to accomplish/achieve by blogging?

I hope to use this blog to connect with like-minded people. I want to share my experiences and provide others support on their own journeys. I hope the blog can be a place for people to give and receive advice, ideas, and inspiration. I’ve always loved writing and the blog also provides a much needed outlet for my thoughts.

4.)What is your biggest healthy living accomplishment?

This would have to be running two half marathons last year. Running has always been so hard for me, it just doesn’t come naturally! It took 9 months to build up the mileage slowly and without injuring myself (well, only one injury!). I had to work incredibly hard to cross those finish lines and the feeling of accomplishment was amazing.

 

QOTD: What is something new you haven experienced so far in 2012?

Weekly Recap January Week 4

 

I am doing something I rarely ever do, and that is post twice in one day. I realized I forgot to do a run down of last weeks training in today’s post so this week it gets a post all it’s own!

Week of January 29-February 4:

Sunday: rest

Monday: 1 hour yoga class, 4 miles running, 40 minutes of weights (upper body/back and bi’s and abs)

Tuesday: 20 minutes elliptical, upper body weights (chest tri’s) and legs

Wednesday: ran 5 miles with my mom

Thursday: upper body weights (back, bi’s) and legs

Friday: 1 mile walk on the beach

Saturday: 3 mile run on the beach

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(more beach pictures and recap to come tomorrow!)

Miles run: 12

Yoga taken: 1 one hour class

strength training: 3 x’s

cross training: 2 x’s

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Ok, must go DVR the Bachelor before I made supper then head to the gym with Bobby. Have a great evening everyone!

QOTD: Who is your favorite Bachelor girl now that we are a few weeks in? If you don’t watch, would you ever participate in a reality show of any kind?

Back Home

 

I love going back to my hometown to visit my family. It’s always like I never left, and and hanging out with my parents is always a treat. I came to get the dogs groomed and bring them for a visit to grandma and grandpa’s house (my parents, of course).

I dropped my babies off at Petsmart and met my mom for some shopping. We also hit up the brand new Steak N Shake in town. I will admit, I have never been to one of these bad boys, and wow was it good!

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I haven’t had a milkshake…or a cheeseburger for that matter…in months! So I happily dug in to this heath bar shake and my mom and I split a burger and fries. It was just one of those days where calories just didn’t matter. Everyone needs to splurge sometimes!

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We were pleasantly surprised and will have to be back when we are wanting to splurge!

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It was raining while we were eating, but finally let up so we could go for a run. But first, we had to pick up the babies from Petsmart.

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Look how precious these bows are!

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Look how fun, mom and daughter running skirt duo.

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We ended up running five miles, which went by quickly with good conversation. I can’t wait until we run the Disney Princess Half together! Today I am headed back to Mississippi but it was great to see my family for a short visit.

QOTD: Do you run with anyone in your family or are you on your own?

Follow Me!

 

So, did February sneak up on anybody else? We are officially in the month of love…and my least favorite month of the year. February is usually gloomy and cold, and I am always itching for March. This year though, February is a FUN month because I am running Disney’s Princess half marathon! (blogger meet up plans here.)

I wanted to be sure you were aware of some of the changes here on RWS. In case you haven’t stopped by recently or are new to my blog (hello!)  I added some drop down menus (still a work in progress) and also a page to shop! I will be adding more to it, but you have to start somewhere, right? I have had the account for several months but haven’t had the time to actually put any product up.

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In the fun land of blogging and health/fitness, there are a LOT of awesome people. I have written a post about getting involved, and I really really encourage you to read it if you have not. I am always looking for new people to follow on Twitter, new blogs to read, and trying to make new friends and connections. With that being said, I wanted to share with you some great companies I think YOU should be following on Twitter and/or Facebook:

Running Skirts: @Running_skirts: I work for Running Skirts so I may be a bit partial, but they make a great product and have excellent customer service. The new spring line is coming out SOON! If your local running store doesn’t carry the line, ask them if they will!

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Drink Chia: @DrinkChia I first met the fabulous people behind Drink Chia at the Healthy Living Summit. I am all about start up businesses and supporting growing small businesses. These are great people with a great product. You can very soon order Drink Chia from Amazon!

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110% Play Harder: @110PlayHarder Super sweet people with great Twitter interaction. Not to mention great products!

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Nuun: @ministryofnuun The nuun team is made up of great giving and caring people. Great interaction, and of course love all the flavors!

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GNC: @GNCLiveWell We all know about GNC. The Live Well Now slogan is amazing, and they have been hosting some awesome Twitter chats! (#Livewellnow)

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Go Sport ID: @GoSportID Very interactive on Twitter, and they of course make a great, life saving product! These folks are also very generous. Another family start up business I love to support.

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FitFluential: @FitFluential is another company I am affiliated with and it isn’t even a year old, but already doing amazing things! Kelly and the rest of the team are amazing and great to work with. AMAZING Twitter interaction, and all about health and fitness.

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Newton Running: @NewtonLab  I blogged last week about how I was loving my new Newtons. I have had a couple of questions about the shoes since I bought them and they happily and quickly replied to me on Twitter. They are always sharing great new information and videos with their followers as well!

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There are PLENTY of other great companies to follow, these are just a few I am loving right now. As a blogger, I look for companies who actually interact with people on Twitter of Facebook. Not ones that just have an account to spit out information. I love well done customer service, and it goes a long way with me when someone is willing to answer my questions.

QOTD: What is a brand/company that I should be following on Twitter?

Weekly recap and Giveaway Winner

 

Good morning! Yesterday was absolutely BEAUTIFUL. Not a cloud in the sky, low 70’s. It was perfect. Well, perfect for walking, laying out, etc. NOT perfect for running. it was a bit too warm on our six miles and I got a little overheated. After we ran, we lifted weights at the YMCA then did some yard work. (Cutting back bushes, cutting grass, raking leaves.) We also took the dogs for a walk and sat outside in the sun with them. Quite the productive morning!

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Time for my weekly workout recap! I think I did rather well this week. It was the first week back where I felt “normal” since my injury. My runs are still way slow, but I am getting the miles in.

Sunday: Ran 9 miles at the beach with Kristyn.

Monday: One hour yoga class, weights (chest, tri’s, legs)

Tuesday: ran 2 miles (sprints), later that day did upper body weights, ran 2.5 more miles

Wednesday: 25 minutes elliptical, upper body weights and legs/abs

Thursday: ran 1.5 miles, lifted upper body weights and abs, 20 minutes stationary bike

Friday: upper body weights and abs

Saturday: ran 6 miles, upper body weights (chest, tri’s)

SUMMARY:

Miles run: 21

yoga: 1 hour long class

weights: 6 days

cross training: x’s 2 (elliptical and bike)

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A big thank you to everyone who entered my Ultra Immune giveaway! It sounds like a lot of you need to go buy this product anyway! Lots of busy schedules and germy children. I have been taking it myself during this hot/cold weather swing and so far so good. The winner is:

Elle from Eat Run Sail!

Please e mail me at [email protected] with your mailing address and I will make sure you get your prize!

Also a big thank you to Ultra Immune!

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QOTD: What is the “perfect” running temperature to you?

Friday Favorites: Newtons

 

Since I was cursed with a stress fracture in my foot back in November, I have been doing a lot of research of running shoes. I knew I had poor form due to scoliosis and rotated hips, and that I was a heel striker. I am also fairly confident that these variables had something to do with my stress fracture (on top of running three half marathons in 22 days.).

I knew a good bit about Newtons since Running Skirts sells them, but I did some more digging and decided these were exactly what I needed to slowly train myself to run properly. Under doctors orders, I was to gradually add back my mileage, so the timing was perfect since you are supposed to gradually add mileage in the Newtons because of the low heel drop.

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Huh? Ok, let me back up. Regular running shoes have a cushioned heel. When you run, your calf cannot fully extend in them. they push you forward then you arch your back (typically) to compensate. Newtons have a much much lower drop so it is more comparable to barefoot running, but with the sole of a regular shoe. They also have lugs on the forefoot that stick out further than the rest of the shoe that practically force you to run more on your forefoot.

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Because my calves can now fully extend, I have been experiencing some (normal) soreness but it has gotten better. I have run 4.5 miles as my longest run in my Newtons and will up the mileage each week until I feel comfortable racing in them. So far, I really like them and while I have to concentrate to run properly, I can already tell a difference in my form. I don’t feel as if I have to put as much effort into each stride to get the same result (pace).

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You can purchase Newton’s through the Running Skirts store. They have racing, stability, and trail shoes in a variety of colors and styles. Be sure to get on Running Skirts mailing list so you can be alerted when new arrivals come in and when sales are going on!

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QOTD: If you could design your own running shoe, what colors would it be?

*Enter my Ultra Immune giveaway!

Passionate

 

You can tell when you are reading an article or blog written by a person passionate about their subject matter. The joy and excitement overflow onto the page, and is woven into each sentence or idea. Having a desire to share, motivate, and inspire is evident in their work, making each new story exciting to read.  It’s not just about writing, but about the fire that burns within the author, desiring to get their point across to help inform and share with others. Running With Sass is my baby, and I deeply enjoy sharing stories, tips, and motivation with my readers everyday. To be able to do so on an even larger scale would be a dream come true.

True, I am just an average girl, but that is part of my draw. I attract a lot of readers that are new runners, bloggers, and those just starting out on their fitness journey. I have received countless e-mails from readers thanking me for being real and honest, and for showing them that anyone can be fit and healthy.  They enjoy my message of not having to be the fastest, the strongest, or the best…but just striving to be the greatest version of themselves.

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Growing up, I played multiple sports, and even moved on to coaching after college. I have coached basketball at the middle school level, and volleyball at the high school varsity (6A) level. I am very knowledgeable of both sports, and fitness in general. Running is my most recent passion of three years, and I recently have added weight lifting and yoga to my always growing fitness practices.

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My job allows me to travel to several races throughout the year, so I believe having a fresh perspective on the health and fitness of different cities would be a great benefit to readers. Not only have I learned a lot working at health and fitness expos, but also in partnering with several companies to review and share their products.

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Other passions of mine include putting a stop to childhood obesity, and furthering cancer research. I shared my thoughts and experience in a vlog last month on the matter of childhood obesity. As a former teacher, it broke my heart to see so many children struggle with their weight and be bullied by other students.

Don’t forget about my 6 second “fail” that went along with the above vlog. Oops! At least I can laugh at myself, right? (I’m saying “fail” at the end of the video).

I also love social media, and spend a lot of time each day interacting on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, as well as several forums, message boards and other blogs. I have a large twitter following, and a fan page for my blog on Facebook as well as a personal Facebook page. Participating in Twitter chats and social media conversations is something I really enjoy. Meeting new people, reaching out and making friends is an encouragement and inspiration.

My mother is a stage three non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma survivor. She is an amazing woman with a lot of fight, and a great inspiration to many. I have learned so much watching her, and as a family we have all taken steps towards a more healthy lifestyle to help prevent certain types of cancer. My husband and I ran a half marathon this fall with Team in Training benefitting the Leukemia and Lymphoma society. It was a great experience and I was thrilled to be a part of raising money for cancer research and treatment.

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In closing, I think the name of my blog says it all. Yes I run, and yes I try to live an active, healthy life…but I do it all with a touch of sass. Who says healthy living and fitness have to be boring and bland? Spicing up your fitness and health as well as your life in general, can help you to be a success story. I have faced obstacles, criticism, injuries, mental defeats, and trials. Through it all, my husband and I are dedicated to a healthy and fit lifestyle, against all odds.

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Below is a video I put together last summer documenting my healthy living journey. I hope you enjoy following along.

QOTD: What are you passionate about?

Ultra Immune Giveaway

 

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by the folks at Ultra Immune about doing a review and giveaway of there product. I was intrigued as I have been seeing ads for it all over the place. Plus, with the weather here going from hot to cold, I usually get pretty sick this time of year. Very willing to try an herbal supplement to boost my immune system, I was on board! Not to mention…a RWS reader will win a two month supply for themselves! ($72 value!)

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First, what is Ultra Immune?

Ultra Immune is an herbal supplement designed to support the natural function of your immune system…..

“Ultra Immune combines the best in Eastern and Western philosophies, crosses centuries of practical use and focuses exclusively on well-researched and regarded herbal and botanical extracts.

In addition to combining ten select ingredients, we also work hard to ensure that the original sources and suppliers of those ingredients follow best practices (including sustainability) and deliver the highest quality possible.”

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The basics:

  • Strengthen Immune System.
  • Safe for Continuous Use.
  • 100% All Natural. Vegan.
  • 10 Compelling Ingredients.
  • Gluten & Preservative Free
  • Minty flavor

My personal review:

In the mornings before I eat anything, I put a dropper full under my tongue. The flavor is fine, and it’s easy to take. We will see how I do over an extended period, but so far, no sickness and I feel great! A lot of supplements are not safe to take for extended periods of time, but I like that this one is. As an athlete, a strong immune system is very important to me, especially this time of year. I think a product such as this is great for anyone busy and on the go, and I am happy with the results so far.

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GIVEAWAY:

You can win a 2 month supply which is worth $72!!! Winner will be chosen at random on Saturday, January 28th at 8:00 PM and announced the following day. There are three ways to enter. Please leave a separate comment for each entry.

1.) Check out their Facebook page and tell me you did so

2.) Tell me why YOU need a healthy immune system (busy mom? athlete? race coming up? wedding?)

3.) Tweet about the giveaway (must include link to this post in your tweet and @runningwithsass)

9 Foggy Miles

 

Good morning! Catching up from the weekend? Here’s what you missed:

Saturday in Pictures and Workout Recap

RWS Features #8

Tour of The YMCA Vlog

Remember yesterday when I posted about my workouts for the week, I mentioned I didn’t get to long run Saturday because of our service project? Well, just my luck, my friend and Rouge Orleans teammate Kristyn texted me yesterday morning asking if I wanted to long run with her that afternoon. YES!

After church, we ate lunch, took a quick nap, then I drove down to the beach to meet Kristyn….and the fog.

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I promise the water is there…somewhere…..

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It was a little creepy and so so humid!

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I waited for Kristyn in the parking lot.

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We decided to head out in one direction from the bathrooms then turn around, grab some fuel/water then head in the other direction.  Within a half mile of running, I was soaking wet form the humidity, it was like swimming! My hair was soaked, my eyebrows, it was insane.

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I started out in my Altra’s but an so glad I also brought my other shoes because I got a bad blister at mile two and had to walk/hobble back to the car. We headed out again in the other direction and ended up running nine miles! I took it really slow…I was nervous in jumping my mileage from 5-9 in a week, but I think taking it slow and taking walk breaks made it much more bearable for me, and gave me a little confidence I can do the distance again.

Also, congrats are in order…this was Kristyn’s FIRST TIME to ever run nine miles. WOO HOO!

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Sorry it’s blurry Kristyn…not sure what my problem was there! The miles went by so much faster having a friend to run with, I hope we get to do it again soon!

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So, I took it really slow amping up my mileage for three weeks, and now am at nine, which boosts my confidence for our relay that is coming up in just a few short weeks!

QOTD: Would you rather run alone or with a friend and why?

Tour of the YMCA Vlog

 

Hello friends! I am back to my vlogging today, and this time it’s not just me staring into the camera. Well…the first part is but that’s ok. Below you will find three videos. The first is the introduction to what I am doing. The second is a video explaining our running trails and village green area. The third is a tour of the actual YMCA in my neighborhood.

I am sure you are aware that my state, Mississippi, is the most obese in the nation. However, there are plenty of active and healthy things to do here if you look hard enough. I am going to start showcasing these things, and thought my neighborhood Y would be a good place to start.

(check out the site before the building was built)

Intro to what I am planning to do and why:

Village green and running trails:

YMCA tour: I decided to go in right when they opened as not to disturb gym goers. The only people working out were the other employees, and I got their permission.

Thanks for watching!

QOTD: If you had to do a vlog to share a healthy location in your city, what would you vlog about?