Running And Safety: Why We Need To Talk About Harassment Runners Experience Outdoors

In the fall of 2013, I was training for my second marathon – my first one since I went vegan. I was documenting every week of my training here on the blog, sharing my ups and downs so that other female vegan runners had something to relate to. Yet there was one incident that I didn’t write about. I was doing my weekly 10+ mile long runs in a quiet neighborhood across the street from our apartment complex in our then-home of Daphne, Alabama. The neighborhood funneled into a long, scenic road that was even quieter but oh so beautiful, with old live oak trees forming a tunnel over the roadway. Running along that road, with not a soul in sight, was very peaceful, and always cleared my head from busy day-to-day thoughts. There were also plenty of challenging hills, which I found beneficial for my marathon training. So one day, I … Read the rest of the post

Seattle Hot Chocolate 15k Race Recap: Hills, Amazing Views, and Chocolate Fondue

It’s been a while since the last time I participated in a running race, but last Sunday I finally put my fears and doubts aside and took part in Seattle’s Hot Chocolate 15k. Today I’ve put together a detailed race recap to show you exactly how I managed to exceed my expectations and have a successful run this past weekend. Not going to lie, it felt great to finally add another medal to my collection of race bling! As you may know from my previous posts, I’ve been in a full-on training mode for my 3rd marathon coming up this June. The marathon is also taking place in Seattle, so I knew that running last week’s 15k race would be helpful in at least two ways: it would show me what racing in Seattle felt like, and teach me what running a bigger race was all about. All of my … Read the rest of the post

How to Beat Treadmill Boredom and Stay Focused on Running: 5 Workouts That Keep Things Interesting

It’s been a while since I wrote about running and fitness in general, so today’s the day for an update! And yes, you’ve read it right – my running as of recently has involved a treadmill. The good ol’ ‘dreadmill’, as it’s known among the running folk for its ability to induce epic boredom. Why have I decided to start using it? Read on – and you’ll find out how I manage to keep my treadmill runs fun and challenging. (The Naturally Nutty giveaway winner is announced at the end.) In fact, it all started with me stopping running for some time. In the past five weeks or so, I made a conscious decision to avoid running so that to give my injured foot some long-deserved rest. You may remember me mentioning plantar fasciitis that’s been bothering me since a couple weeks before I ran my marathon last November – that’s a … Read the rest of the post

3 Easy DIY Tricks for Runners that Don’t Cost Anything and Help You Run More Comfortably

It’s been a while since I last wrote about running. Truth be told, I haven’t had that many runs in the past couple months due to an injury – plantar fasciitis, a true runners’ nemesis! – but things are slowly getting better. I’m back to running 3-5 miles a couple times a week. On top of that, I was running to the gym and back (2.5 miles total) a couple times a week while we were in Alabama, so I can’t say that I’ve been slacking in the exercise department. As I’m trying to get my running edge back while painfully massaging my foot with a tennis ball, I’m looking forward to the time when I become brave enough to sign up for races again. This time it’s going to be in our new home in Washington state where we’ve just moved. New races! New PRs (hopefully)! And one more … Read the rest of the post

First Light Marathon Relay, Mobile, AL: How It Turned to Be the Most Inspiring Race I’ve Ever Done

As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, I participated in First Light Marathon relay race in Mobile, Ala., on Sunday, January 12th. A few weeks ago, our local running store was looking for people interested in joining this relay, so I decided to sign up. I figured the relay would be a perfect way to combine the joy of running with a new kind of race experience: lately I’ve had very little motivation to participate in a solo race of any distance because they seem too ‘been there, done that’, so teaming up with 4 other people to cover a marathon distance sounded like fun. Now that the race is over, I am so glad that I made a decision to sign up for it! To top that, this relay turned out to be one of the most inspiring races I’ve ever participated in! How so? Read on! Bienville Square in Mobile, around 6 am. Our bus … Read the rest of the post

Holiday Running Streak is Over: What I’ve Learned from the Experience of Running Every Day through the Holidays.

Before I sum up my Holiday Running Streak today, I’d like to share great news with you: the story of how I decided to become vegan has been published on Forks Over Knives site! I am beyond excited to receive recognition from Forks Over Knives – the amazing documentary that was the key inspiration for me to go plant-strong back in the day. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend watching it: you can get it through FOK site, buy a DVD on Amazon, or find it on Netflix. Thanks Forks Over Knives for giving me a chance to tell my story! (You can read it here.) Right before Thanksgiving 2013, I decided to commit to a new running challenge – to run every day, from Thanksgiving Day to New Year’s Day, for at least a mile. I was hoping to achieve a few goals: 1) To stay motivated to run after all … Read the rest of the post

More Holiday Running Streak: Weeks 4 & 5 (Days 19-32), Plus How I Managed to Keep Running Every Day and Eat Vegan While Traveling

Christmas morning in Huntington, NY Wow, I can’t believe how fast the last couple of weeks flew by! As I continued my Holiday Running Streak making sure to run daily for at least a mile (usually more), I also got a chance to get out of my comfort zone during our trip to New Jersey and New York for Christmas to visit my husband’s family. What was so “out of my comfort zone” about our trip? Well, I’ve gotten very used to my daily routine at home where I could go for a run in the morning in fairly warm South Alabama winter weather, and then follow it with the enjoyment of playing around in my own kitchen fully stocked with plant-based vegan ingredients to make whatever foods I felt like… yep, quite an enchanted lifestyle indeed 😉 . During our six-day out-of-state trip, I wasn’t the one making the rules about our … Read the rest of the post

Holiday Running Streak: Week 3 Recap, Days 12-18

Week 3 of the Holiday Running Streak is over, and I’m officially in the uncharted territory, at least by my own standards: I’ve never before in my life run every single day for 18 days straight! Okay, I’ve got to be honest – this doesn’t really feel very challenging since I’ve been running anywhere from 1 to 6 miles per day during this time, so it’s not like I’ve been pulling a full-length marathon daily! Also, it helps that by the time the streak began  I was already in decent running form coming off my marathon training that lasted for 16 weeks and ended on November 10 (with the marathon, naturally). At the beginning of this running challenge, my main concern was to take it easy on the daily mileage in order to avoid getting injured – or, to be more precise, to make sure that the almost constant mild aches and … Read the rest of the post

Holiday Running Streak: Week 2 Recap, Days 5-11

What started out as an experiment on Thanksgiving Day turned for me into a never-before attempted commitment by the second week of my Holiday Running Streak. That’s right: I’ve never run every single day before, even for a week, so embarking on a challenge to run daily from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day has thrust me into an uncharted territory. The best part: by the time the second week rolled around, I learned to enjoy my daily runs and to look forward to them! Holiday Running Streak: Week 2 Breakdown This week turned out pretty busy for me: on top of my running and fitness efforts, I also was heavily occupied with my handmade toy line, The Monkey Village (hey, Christmas is coming!), had to go to New Orleans for half a day on Thursday (a 2.5-hour one-way drive from where we live), plus running this blog and writing posts regularly … Read the rest of the post

Holiday Running Streak Begins! Week 1: Thanksgiving through Sunday.

When I announced my intention to participate in Holiday Running Streak this year, I still had about a week and a half to go before the official start on Thanksgiving Day. As it always happens, the big day rolled around in no time, and here I was, embarking on a new running challenge: to run every day, from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day, for at least a mile. I was a little nervous because we were supposed to travel to our friends’ house in Panama City Beach, Fla., to spend Thanksgiving and the following couple days. Would they think that I was weird with all of my running feats? Thankfully, everything turned out just fine, and our friends were very cool about everything. I used to live in Panama City Beach a few years ago, and while I’ve never wanted to go back all that much after leaving, there’s been at least … Read the rest of the post