12.31.02 - Washington Resolution Run
01.19.03 - San Diego Marathon
07.13.03 - Tri For Real #2
10.23.05 - Nike Women's Half Marathon
11.23.06 - Sparks Turkey Trot
05.05.07 - Marathon de Mayo (Half)
05.13.07 - Moms on the Run
10.??.07 - Nike Women's Half Marathon
05.10.08 - Moms on the Run
06.21.09 - Pleasanton Spirit 5K
07.29.09 - San Francisco Half Marathon
10.04.09 - SJ Rock 'N Roll Half Marathon
10.18.09 - Nike Women's Half Marathon
11.01.09 - New York Marathon
11.26.09 - Spark's Turkey Trot 10K
02.20.10 - Bay Breeze Half Marathon
03.14.10 - Shamrock 'N Half Marathon
03.21.10 - LA Marathon
03.27.10 - Scheel's Fanatic 5K
04.25.10 - Marin County Half Marathon
05.02.10 - Reno Rock 'N River Half Marathon
06.05.10 - See Jane Run Half Marathon
07.25.10 - San Francisco Half Marathon
09.05.10 - Pier to Peak Half Marathon
10.10.10 - Chicago Marathon
10.30.10 - Healdsburg Half Marathon
11.07.10 - U.S. Half Marathon
11.25.10 - Scheel's Turkey Trot 10K
02.06.11 - Surf City Half Marathon
03.13.11 - Dublin Shamrock 5K
04.18.11 - Boston Marathon
05.01.11 - Big Sur Marathon
06.11.11 - Lake Tahoe Relay
07.31.11 - San Francisco Half Marathon
09.11.11 - Walnut Festival Run 5K
09.18.11 - NorCal Half Marathon
11.24.11 - Scheel's Turkey Trot
12.03.11 - Las Vegas Santa Suit 5K
12.04.11 - Las Vegas Half Marathon
03.11.12 - South Bay Duathlon
03.25.12 - Oakland Half Marathon
05.20.12 - Morgan Hill Sprint Triathlon
06.24.12 - Silicon Valley Intl. Triathlon
07.15.12 - Ironman 70.3 Vineman Triathlon
03.09.13 - Lucky 13 Half Marathon
04.28.13 - Eugene Half Marathon
05.11.13 - Folsom International Triathlon
06.23.13 - Ironman Coeur d'Alene
11.02.13 - Silver Falls Half Marathon
11.15.13 - Mt. Tam Half Marathon
11.28.13 - Scheel's Turkey Trot
5k:19:17 @ Dublin Shamrock 5k 2011
10k: 41:01 @ Scheel's Turkey Trot 2010
Half:1:30:07 @ Oakland Half 2012
Full: 3:31:44 @ Boston Marathon 2011
70.3: 5:20:07 @ Vineman 2012
140.6: 12:14:21 @ Ironman Coeur d'Alene 2013
Tag Archives: Two Cents
If you’ve seen me in the gym, you’ll probably notice that I’m checking my phone frequently. No, I’m not checking Instagram (well, maybe), but I’m most likely following along with the Nike Training Club app. To this day, I haven’t found a strength training app, or any fitness app for that matter, that has beat or even matched it…and trust me, I’ve tried A LOT.
Well, that was until this month. There I was, scanning health and fitness apps like any normal person does (right?) and stumbled upon “Yoga Studio.” The name may lack creativity, but maybe they went for SEO instead of quirkiness. Whatever, I don’t really care because after one use I knew…this is right up there with NTC status. Yoga Studio is literally like having my own, personalized yoga studio in my pocket. Ready for me, anytime, anywhere, all personalized to whatever I’m after. Let’s talk about why…
Yoga Studio is a paid app (I can’t tell how much it is because I already bought it and now it won’t display the price, but I think it’s $1.99). Once you launch the app for the first time, click “Classes” an you can choose from any of the 30 pre-made yoga classes (I checked their dev site and apparently that’s more than 16 hours of FREE yoga), or create your own (more on that later).
You can scan the “Studio Classes” section based on ability (hello, beginner!), focus (balance for me, please) or duration (everything from 15 minutes to an hour).
What’s that you say? You’re a yoga pro? Well ok then…go ahead and make your own class. I’m not skilled like that so I’ll just go with pre-made classes for now.
BUT, if you are that enviable yogi, go ahead and make your own classes based on poses, type, ability or focus.
Or maybe you’re just looking for a pose, or a block of poses, click “Poses” and try one on for size.
And if you’re like me, each training cycle you vow to do more yoga because we ALL know the benefits. But then before you know it, that yoga goal has been forgotten. Fear no more! Yoga Studio actually syncs with your iPhone calendar to schedule classes.
WAIT! I haven’t even told you my favorite part: VIDEOS! Yup, all of this is in HD video! There are plenty of yoga apps that have photos and instructions, but for yoga, I need video to see the flow. Ask and you shall receive!
To top it all off, you can choose the music, if you want the instructor to guide you everything or just a single bell. I’ll admit, the instructor’s voice kind of creeps me out, but you get used to it.
Two Cents Review: 5 out of 5 stars! Worth every 199 of those pennies that I spent on it.
Tell me, because I’m an addict, what are your new favorite apps?
No, not the type that you cringe thinking about how it’s going to cost you a race entry fee just to fill up your car. I’m talking about the fuel that keeps you moving better, faster and stronger throughout training.
Fuel and I have had some serious issues in the past (e.g. in the med tent after the NYC marathon because I didn’t fuel properly). I’ll admit, I used to be the person that “wasn’t hungry” or thought I “felt fine” and thought that I could do long runs without fueling. Did I mention how dumb that was? I’ve since learned that you shouldn’t think about fuel as calories in the sense of your normal diet, but rather fuel to keep your car running smoothly. But unlike a car, you can’t wait until the last moment to fuel – instead, you must constantly be consuming for optimal performance.
Throughout Ironman training, I’ve adopted the following two fuel intake guidelines:
Running: ~100 calories every 45 minutes
Cycling: ~200 – 250 calories every hour
I’ll talk about what I specifically take in another post, but Gatorade reached out to me to try their new G Series Pro Carb Energy Chews. I am an avid fan of what we’ll call “gummy energy” as they are compact and generally an easy source of fuel. Plus, it tastes like I’m eating candy – so we’re already winning.
I tried the chews on a trainer ride and an outdoor ride – let’s get down to the pros and cons:
- You can tell that Gatorade wanted to focus on one of athletes’ biggest complaints about chews: sometimes they are difficult to chew in the middle of activity. Thus, the G Series Pro Chews are definitely easier to chew and swallow. They are a bit larger, but that’s because they are flatter than others.
- The chews come in two flavors: fruit punch and orange. Both were tasty, but I’m a fan of the orange! Nom nom nom.
- The package team was smart and made it extremely easy to rip open the top of the package with your mouth. I did it on the bike and BOOM – seamless and easy open.
- I consumed the chews per my normal fueling schedule and felt fueled and great through the 50 minute trainer ride. So far, so good.
- The chews come in a vertical package with four chews per package. It’s shorter than other packages, meaning I can shove them in my bra easier (if you look at the majority of my finish photos, you’ll likely see chew packs shoved down my bra – it’s the most secure place and easiest to access for me).
- First ingredient: corn syrup. I’m no dietician and I know that syrups are needed in all of these crazy endurance fuel products, but I’d love for an organic brown rice syrup option like other chews.
- As I mentioned above, the team did a great job at the easy rip top. However, because these chews are “gummier” than others, it was hard to get the final two chews out of the package (I usually just put my mouth over the package and slide them up, but I couldn’t easily do that). Thus, if the team can make the easy rip package on BOTH ends of the package, then we’d be in business!
- At first I was a bit shocked by the outside texture as it wasn’t as smooth as others, but you get used to it and inside texture is smooth as it should be.
For those that are curious, here’s some additional info on G Series Pro Chews:
Usage Times: Consume within one hour before the start of your training or race and during prolonged activities.
Nutrition Information (per 4 chews/38g)
> Calories: 120
> Electrolytes: 105mg Sodium, 50mg Potassium
> Carbohydrate: 31g
BUT WAIT…THERE’S A GIVEAWAY!
Remember how I mentioned that Gatorade sent me a sweet package? Well, IT CAN BE YOURS! Here’s how you can enter to win a G Series Pro Carb Energy Chews kit:
- Leave a comment describing a win from within moment – this could be a time when you hit the wall, PR’d, or pushed to achieve something (mandatory entry).
- Tweet @Page and @Gatorade how you #winfromwithin (second entry option) then leave a comment saying you tweeted (both handles must be in the tweet).
- Send a messenger pigeon that wears running shoes with a special message.
The contest will close Friday, August 10th @ 11:59 p.m. PST and the winner will be announce Monday morning.
Good Luck and Happy Running!
First and foremost, I wanted to say thank you for all of the amazing comments, emails and tweets you sent for my last post. Each time I read them it instantly picked me up in a way I so desperately needed. I ended up taking two days off of running and got in six miles today. Still tired, but making progress! So thank you so much for all of your kind words and support. What would I do without you guys?!
Now, where were we? Oh, yes, yes. In case you weren’t aware, FALL is right around the corner. Let’s pick our jaws up off the floor from utter disbelief and relish the cooler temperatures and all of the fantastic gear that comes with running in this season. Specifically, let’s gush about arm warmers!
The first time I saw arm warmers, I wondered what coo-coo would wear these when they probably just need to man (or should I say woman) up and bear the cold. However, when Oiselle reached out to me last fall about trying them out, I’m never one to turn down a new experience and I asked for a “fun” color. Perhaps it’s the ginger in me, but when a pair of orange arm warmers arrived in the mail, I was stoked.
So are arm warmers worth all the hype? What about the Oiselle ones specifically? Well, let me count the ways I love thee:
- The Oiselle arm warmers have thumb holes. I want to make sure you heard that right…THUMB HOLES! I have a slight addiction to anything that is miniature and has thumb holes so as soon as I saw this, I knew we were off to a great start.
- Since there are thumbholes, that means that the sleeve is longer and goes over your hands. No more need for gloves on those quasi-warm, quasi-cold runs.
- Don’t need the the thumb holes? Just role them up. Easy shmeezy.
- These specific arm warmers were perfect for my gangly-armed self. The length was long enough, covered a significant portion of my arm and fit snugly without feeling like a stuffed sausage.
- The elastic at the top of the arm warmers was the Goldilocks of all arm warmers…not to tight, not too loose, juuuuuuuust right.
Can you tell how much I love these lengthy, thumb hole arm warming gift to female runners of the world?! But, I always want to be honest with you, so here are my two other “eh” pieces of feedback:
- There’s a bit of reflective design on the sleeves, but honestly, I’m not too sure how much these actually “reflect.” So don’t base your entire early morning/late night running safety off of these “reflectors.”
- The thumb holes are FANTASTIC, but they also proved to be part of my Garmin catastrophe in Boston. The morning started out frigid and windy, thus, I brought along my arm warmers. But as soon as the gun went off, the sun gods lets their power be known. Because my Garmin was hooked on TOP of my arm warmers (I was using the thumb holes), trying to rip the warmers off along with my Garmin sent my baby flying backwards causing unnecessary frustration and backtracking. The lesson here is just to be sure to check the weather. If it’s going to heat up, DON’T use the thumb holes and just fold them over so you can simply slip them off.
TWO CENT RATING: 4.5 out of 5 stars! For $20 these arm warmers are not only cute, but smart and functional. Add a bit more “reflective” striping and you’ve got yourself a 5!
I just got word that the Oiselle arm warmers are out of stock (shows how much people love ‘em), BUT, you can win a pair right here! Entering the contest is easy:
- Like the Oiselle Facebook Page and leave a comment letting me know you did so.
- Like the Twenty-Six and Then Some Facebook Page and leave a comment letting me know you did so,
- Follow me on Twitter (@Page) and leave a comment letting me know.
Note: Oiselle graciously provided me with a pair of complementary arm warmers. But as always, I would never promote something I am not truly excited about or do not believe in. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
There’s no shame in it: I love gear. What do I love even more than gear? High quality gear. When Columbia reached out to me to check out their Peak Power Jacket with their “Omini-Dry technology,” I said, “SIGN A SISTER UP!” However, I received the jacket and the poor thing was left alone, just hanging in my closet as the summer sun blistered away and the thought of putting on a jacket would equate to putting a fork in my eye.
With the potential of a hurricane on our honeymoon, I thought that our trip to the Dominican Republic might be a perfect opportunity to put the blue beauty to work. So that’s exactly what I did: I put the jacket in some of the most extreme conditions I could find while facing hurricane Irene. Including…
Extreme rock climbing!
But in all seriousness, this jacket is extremely amazing…
I’ve never had gear quite as nice as this…there are so many small features that if you were to look at the jacket on the rack, you would never notice all of the finite details that make this jacket a keeper. Columbia will claim that the best part of the jacket is “an ultra-light laminate membrane that’s over 50-percent air, making this jacket insanely breathable and lighter than other 3-layer shells like it.” Here are a few of my favorite features:
These bungee-things (I have no idea what they’re called) pull to fit the jacket perfectly around your waist. While this isn’t an innovative feature, they pull tight without the rest of the jacket poofing up like you’re in third grade. There is also an innovative bungee-thing around the hood. Pull it just right and the hood literally stays on your head – even in a hurricane. It was amazing.
The zippers! They’re everywhere and amazing. Under your arms for extra ventilation and two-way zippers with a silicone seal (keeping me absolutely dry in the hurricane).
The front of the jacket hits right around my waist, but the back goes a bit below my booty, which is perfect for my long torso. I also have abnormally long arms, so a jacket that didn’t make me feel like I was shoved in a junior jumpsuit is a win for me.
There are a ton of other specs that make this jacket great, but you can check them all out here.
But I’m not going to lie to you…the price tag of this jackets is pretty dang steep ($350!). As someone who loves high-end gear, that doesn’t necessarily mean I have much of it and it’s usually because I’m a cheap ass. I don’t know if I could bring myself to drop $350 on a jacket (even if it is as amazing as this).
So tell me, am I crazy? Do you have high-end gear? How much would you pay for an amazing piece of gear that would last you forever?
TWO CENT RATING: 4 out of 5 stars. The jacket is amazing. The price? Not so much.
I’m going to take the liberty and say that anyone in marathon training (or just addicted to running) lives in their workout clothes. Don’t get me wrong, I’m fashion obsessed, but with the majority of my money going to races and my time spent working or at the gym, it’s natural that I spend most of my time in spandex and dri-fit clothing. One of my all-time favorite pieces? My Lululemon Wunder Under Crops that I splurged on when I got a promotion last year. Since then, I’ve found myself wandering into Lululemon, dreaming of the day that I will find a killer sale rack. In reality, it’s tanks and tempos the majority of the time…that is until I found Target’s best kept secret.
We all know that Target has workout clothes. I’ve tried some on in the past and sure they fit, but I found my self pulling up the capris, overly hot and the stiching rubbing my sides raw. But given that Target is my secret lover, I gave him a second chance earlier this month with two new bras and two new shorts.
First, let’s talk about the bras. I’ve actually worn these bras for a while now and they work really well for me. They are the C9 by Champion Women’s Seamless Sports Bra – on sale for $14.99 (I scored mine for $9.99 each…long story). These bras are perfect for us small-chested folk. Just the right amount of snugness, without cutting into your side. Plus, they are seamless, wick the sweat pretty well and come in some really bright and obnoxious colors – I love it! The down side is that the colors fade and that snappy neon orange you’ll be so excited about will soon turn into a subdued pumpkin that is a little stretched out. But for only $14.99, I’m cool with looking a little less than peppy.
TWO CENT RATING: Definitely a 4.5 out of 5 stars. If only they didn’t fade and stretch…
Next, the SHORTS and what I’m most excited about. Why did I buy two pairs in one trip? I have no idea…it’s Target…it has a way of doing that to you. Let’s start with my new favorite lounge, lift, yoga, too hot to put on anything else shorts.
The C9 by Champion Women’s Seamless Roll-Over Waist Yoga Shorts (wow, what a mouthful) are like light-weight, stretchy butter. Not too tight to cause unnecessary “rollage” and lightweight enough to feel like your soul isn’t being sucked out by the spandex. The top gray part rolls over so you can make them as high or as low as you want. The only down side? I wouldn’t wear these running. They have a tendency to ride a bit and I found myself pulling the legs down so I wasn’t a total hooch.
TWO CENT RATING: 4 out of 5 stars. These are a gals perfect cross-training spandex shorts. But don’t run in them as you will surely be showing more than what is necessary.
Now for the big one…as mentioned above, there is nothing like slipping into a pair of Lululemons and I haven’t found anything that rivaled it’s snug yet comfortable fit…until now. These C9 by Champion® Women’s Premium Reversible Shorts are the closest thing I’ve found to Lululemon and at half the price ($25). The fabric is thick, yet breathable, and holds the jiggle in all the right places. Not only does it have the same hidden pocket in the thick top band of the shorts as Lululemons, but they are also reversible (changes to an all black short). If you were thinking about buying a pair of Lulus but couldn’t bit the bullet, go buy a pair of these STAT, but just make sure it’s the Champion Premium line.
TWO CENT RATING: 5 out of 5 stars. The same fit and feel of Lululemon at half the price? I’m in!
So there you have it folks, my two cents on some of my latest gear from Target. Tell me, do you have Target workout clothes? What ones? Love or hate?
P.S. Please note that I was not sent these products to review. I just love ‘em so much I wanted to share them all with you!
I’d like to believe that part of the reason why I run is for the runs when I cry. Not crying out of pain, but out of the pure, overwhelming joy of a cathartic run. The run where my legs are orchestrating their own symphony without any help from my head, the run where you get lost in the miles, the run where you are smiling ear to ear for no apparent reason. These are my favorite types of runs and one that I had on Friday while running 21 miles…on the treadmill.
This past weekend I went out of town for a slew of wedding planning events and I knew the ability to get my long run in would be minimal. Thus, I opted for a Boston simulator run on the treadmill (it’s still too dark at 5 a.m. and I’m not about to run alone. I’ve learned my lesson). After a quick Google search, I found this handy guide that would help me simulate the Boston hills on a treadmill:
With my elevation tips by my side, I plugged in my iPhone and chose to watch “Spirit of the Marathon” on Netflix instant streaming. That’s when everything changed.
At that time I didn’t know what I was getting myself into – I thought that the documentary would be just what it was described as, “…the first film to capture the passion, drama and essence of the famed 26.2-mile Chicago Marathon. Intimate, fascinating portraits of six runners from all walks of life unfold as the film follows seasoned athletes and amateurs alike in their preparation for the big race.”
What I didn’t expect was to be enraptured the way I was and be crying out of pure happiness for 21 miles. Not only does the film chronicle marathon pros like Deena Kastor and Daniel Njenga, but also the marathon journey for the everyday runner. From training, to injury, recovery and beyond, anyone who has ever run feels an intimate connection with the individuals in the film as they each share their personal stories. You find yourself cheering on their accomplishments and feeling the pain of each set-back.
Especially enlightening was the segment on women’s running and Kathrine Switzer’s story (the first woman to ever run the Boston Marathon). I couldn’t properly share the story as movingly as the film did, so ladies – I charge you to check it out.
In the final stretch of the film, the music heats up and you watch Deena and Daniel battle it out for their respective marathon champion titles. I couldn’t help but to shout at my screen, “Go…run…go….push it…” as if the race was happening on live TV. I won’t give anything away, but I will say that I cried at least three times while watching this documentary and “inspired” doesn’t even begin to describe the after-effect. I smiled, I laughed, I shouted, I cried…people at the gym must have wondered what in the hell I was watching.
Two Cent Rating: 5 out of 5 stars! If you’re a runner, or ever thought of runninng, I highly recommend checking out “Spirit of the Marathon.”
Day 85: 21 miles
Day 86: Rest
Day 87: 5 miles + hills
If you ask me to do anything other than run, you’ll usually get this: a not so happy camper.
But today, ladies and gentleman, I present to you my two cents on what may be the best exercise tool since the treadmill. Whoa…bold claim? Indeed, but one I’m happy to back. Here’s my two cent review on the new Nike Training Club iPhone app.
Full disclosure: while I am a Nike ambassador, they did NOT ask me to review the app. Instead, it was something that I happened to stumble upon and fall madly in love with. So here goes…
Unfortunately, I don’t have $200+ a month lying around to pay for a personal trainer. As much as I’d like one, I think that the free Nike Training Club app (yes, FREE) is the next best thing. Their site describes the app as follows:
“Nike Training Club is a full-body training app designed for you to make yourself whatever you want to be…Inspired by world-class athletes and developed by a Nike professional trainer, each one of the 90+ drills builds on the fundamentals of strength, cardio, interval and core training.”
Not only is the user interface clear and beautiful to look at, without reading any instructions it was easy to figure out how the app works:
Step 1: Drag Yourself Out of Bed
Awesome. We’re off to a great start.
Step 2: Choose a Goal
This ranges from “Get Lean,” “Get Toned,” “Get Strong,” or “Get Focused.” All of the different workouts have a handy description do you know just what you are getting into. “Get Lean” focuses on high interval cardio drills while “Get Focused” is comprised of a variety of 15 minute workouts to target specific areas.
Step 3: Choose a Level
Within each workout you can choose beginner, intermediate or advanced. This wimpy, no-upperbody-strength-gal will stick with beginner for upper body, thank you very much.
Step 5: Get Your Sweat On
I think we know what happens next…
Ok, so this all sounds fine and dandy, but it’s the extra bells and whistles that really make me never want to workout without the app again. Throughout your workout, the app has an interface that features a clock counting down to the end of the workout in its entirety, a clock counting down until the end of that drill, a photo of the exact drill that you are on, and options to read instructions or what a video tutorial on how to do the exercise. You’ll also want to make sure that you are wearing your headphones while using this app as you can choose your own playlist to accompany the workout (no more cheesy workout DVD music) and there is a women who talks you through the routine, updates you on your time and gives helpful tips throughout the workout. You know what this all equates to? PRACTICALLY A FREE PERSONAL TRAINER!
Once you’ve had your butt kicked, you can track your progress, earn badges and sync them to the Nike Women’s site for additional rewards. I consider it digital bling-blang!
Two Cent Takeaway: In earlier posts, I’ve confessed my love of workout DVDs and my desire for a personal trainer. However, this handy app is everything that a runaholic who knows she should be cross training could ever dream of. No more cheesy DVD instructors, no more awful music, and finally the helpful motivation to ensure that I get my strength training sweat on. The workouts are envigorating, challenging and definitely easy to mix into marathon training (which I will be doing). Cherry on top? It’s absolutely free…need I say more?
Two Cent Rating: 5 out of 5 stars (and that’s the first 5 I’ve ever given)!
Day 49: Woops, overslept
Day 50: Three mile repeats at 10k pace plus NTC ab ripper!