Wednesday, February 28, 2018

6 Reasons It's Hard for a Runner to Take Time Off

I feel like I always hear from sports doctors and therapists that runners are the worst when it comes to taking time off to heal. I can't disagree because I might be the runner that made people think that. Ok, I'm not, but I can relate because I am exactly that way.

I don't know what is so hard for runners when it comes to taking time off. For some reason we just really hate it. There are a lot of reasons for me to want to pick it back up right now even though I know I can't. Here are a few reasons I find it hard to take time off running.

- I feel like I need cardio to have a good workout. You don't need to have cardio in order to call it a good workout. Strength training of any kind is awesome exercise.  There are a ton of great workouts out there that aren't cardio workouts. But because I'm a runner and the majority of my workouts (all of my workouts?) have some form of cardio, it can be a little bit hard for me to let that go.

- I feel lost when it comes to cross-training. Especially this time of year. When it's warmer outside I can justify a good walk with the kids as a workout, or playing at the park, or a bike ride. But right now none of us want to be outside and I don't have access to a stationary bike, the treadmill makes me want to run so I'm trying to talk myself into using the indoor pool and walking home in freezing temps afterward. Although I am sneaking in a little strength training along with all of the stretching and foam rolling too.



- I feel my body getting weaker. This is just a game my mind is playing on me because you won't lose your fitness that quick. But my body feels lazier and weaker and I feel more bloated and I just don't like it.

- I envy others who can workout too much. For example, my husband's work has an amazing gym that they can use. He gets a good workout every day that he's at work, and he goes to play basketball in the mornings. I feel so lazy! It makes me want to get moving. And when you see a runner outside?....Forget it! I die. This quote applies to me on a regular basis, but it's worse when I'm taking time off.



- It's hard for me to see the numbers of my mileage getting smaller than normal at the end of the day. I'm used to having lots of miles added up by the end of the day but right now I'm lucky to get 2 miles by the end of the day.

- Thinking about upcoming races and my race goals make me antsy to get back to work. I've made sure to give myself enough time to be ready for my race when I can get back at it but right now it feels I'll never be ready.

If you're a runner who has taken a break for any reason, especially for recovering from an injury, you'll understand all of this! So to the doctors who have to deal with us: we are sorry! We are trying to get better, we just don't like the feeling of taking time off.

What is the longest you've had to take off from running and why?

What is your least favorite thing about a break from your normal workout?

What is your favorite way to keep yourself sane when you can't workout?

Monday, February 26, 2018

The Difference Between What Kids and Parents Remember

The other day we got a ton of snow.  The kids also happened to have the day off of school so I wanted to do something fun. My house was already not clean- it wasn't all that messy, but I couldn't call it clean, and I didn't want to sit home and have the kids spend the day sitting around in the messy house either. So I decided to call my sister and my sister in law (I'm super blessed to live close to my family) to see if they wanted to go sledding.

We met at a park that has a small hill. I got my kids ready and we started sledding. I wish I got more pictures than this.



I'm going to tell you all the "behind the scenes" stuff that happened during our sledding trip and you'll figure out why more pictures didn't happen.

Before we left, I tried to get V to take a nap and no nap ended up happening. I loaded the kids and our gear into the car and drove to the park where we waited for the others to show up.  My sister had the sleds so we sat in the warm car and listened to music until they showed up.

I got my kids and myself already (the other's came ready) and then I carried 25lb, probably close to 30lb with all his snow gear, V to the hill while I pulled our one baby sled behind me.  We started sledding. And then we noticed ducks. Two ducks burrowed down in the snow. The ducks noticed us too. And then they wouldn't leave us alone. They started following us and pecking at our boots. So we decided it was time to try a different sledding spot. The duck followed us all the way to the car though and J was scared about it biting her and the other kids were worried about it being run over. We finally loaded up in the car and drove to another park.

By this time V was exhausted.  We didn't have very good gloves for the poor kid and even though I'd doubled up on gloves he was freezing! So the kids went down on the sleds a few times and then we loaded up and headed to my mom's house for hot chocolate.

It was a short trip with lots of really cold wind and lots of crying. I started worrying about how my kids would probably hate playing in the snow for the rest of their lives. And then I realized that what moms remember from trips like this is quite a bit different from what the kids remember.

My mom used to take all of us kids skiing in the winter time on her own. I thought I was a good skier, but I was pretty lousy and my mom spent a lot of time picking me back up off the bunny hill's snowy ground instead of skiing down the bigger hill herself.  And she probably thought it was a big fail of a trip sometimes. But here's what I remembered:  Waking up and going to the store to rent our gear, getting to the slopes early and spending a lot of time with my sister and my mom (my brothers were good enough and old enough to go off on their own) playing, laughing, and trying really hard to stay up. Loading back up in the car cold, wet, and tired while we snacked on treats and listened to music all the way home. I don't remember many very stressful, frustrating, bad times doing that. And while I don't care much for snow skiing now, I loved it then.

Once I'd remembered those things, realizing that there were probably a lot of times that my mom questioned her sanity while loading us all up in that wet, smelly car after a day of sledding or skiing, I realized that as long as my kids were having fun, even if I wasn't having that much fun, they would remember it as a fun thing that we did and not something I made them do that ended up being stressful or frustrating. That made me want to do more things like that.

What is one thing you loved doing when you were little that you think is more of a pain now?

What did your family do often growing up?

How do you be a fun parent for your kids?

Friday, February 23, 2018

Fast Friday

Happy Friday! Who has some fun plans for the weekend? I honestly have no clue what the weekend has instore for us, but here are a few things we did this week.

Last Saturday started out with a treadmill run for me. It felt really good. By the afternoon though I was wishing that I'd waited and run outside instead. The weather was pretty amazing.


After running some errands, we went to my mother in law's to celebrate her birthday.  We had lunch and sat around visiting which is always nice and low key.  On the way back home (she lives down the street from me) Trevon was bear crawling up the grass hill and V decided to give it a try.


Saturday night Trevon took the girls to a basket ball game and V was supposed to go down early (he skipped his nap) for bed so I could have some me time, but then I heard that Al's Sporting Good store was having a massive shoe sale. So I decided to load up on lots of treats to keep V happy while I went to look for some shoes.  One of my goals this year was to dress a little nicer.  A big part of that for me was shoes. I usually wear my old running shoes as every day shoes, but I noticed that they are looking so worn down and I needed something that looks nicer. I found two shoes I liked. One of which (the blue one) was a size 4.5 in youth. I have tiny feet.  I decided to go with the brown shoes instead because I knew there would be enough arch support in them for me. I have really high arches. 



The nice weather didn't last long and Utah got dumped on hard at the beginning of the week. I guess it decided winter would happen after all.  If the weather wants my opinion, it's that it should start warming up now. It's a little late in the game for it to start snowing, but a rainy spring would be just fine. 



Along with the snow, it got really really cold and stayed cold all week. When I got up to run one morning it was 8 degrees outside! By the time I walked almost a quarter mile to the clubhouse my ankles were so cold that they were going numb.  Thank heaven for treadmills, I do not want to run in that cold!



I've been having some tight muscle/pain by my knee and so I've decided it will be best to take some time off. I'm not sure how long yet, but I told Trevon about it so that he can help me stay away from running for a while. He asked me what kind of cross training I was going to do...I have no idea. I wish I had access to a stationary bike. But maybe some water running and strength training. It's a little funny that this happened right after listening to Monica's Run Eat Reapeat podcast all about how to avoid injury.  I'll be listening to that one again and make sure I do some good cross training now. 


Milage this week:

Saturday: 4 mile long run 

Monday: I took the kids sledding and called that my workout. I think I got somewhere around 2 miles of weighted walking up hill. 

Tuesday: 5X2:00 Intervals with 2 minutes of recovery in between to make for 3 miles

Wednesday: Strength Training. I did a 20 minute full body weight workout

Thursday: 2.5 miles in a tempo run.  And then I decided to do some stretching for a while 

Friday: Recovery day. I'm foam rolling, walking and stretching.


Here are this week's most looked at  posts:







I hope you all have a great weekend! See ya Monday

Tell me 3 things you have planned for the weekend.

What is the weather like where you are?







Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Core Exercises to do Instead of Planks

Want to work on your core, but hate doing planks? It seems like that is the go-to exercise to do for your core. And for good reason. Planks target your whole core in one exercise instead of just specific sections. But I get it, planks can get boring, and it's nice to mix things up a bit. Plus, sometimes planks are not much of an option. If you have back issues or you're recovering from certain surgeries, even pregnancy, planks aren't always the best option. So what are your other options?

I was asked a little while ago what kind of core workouts to do instead of planks. And to be honest, I wasn't quite sure how to answer. There are a lot of options out there, and I think a lot of this depends on what you are working on personally. So I decided to use this as an opportunity to work a little bit more on my own core and share a few of my favorite exercises to do instead of planks.



Your core muscles are more than just your abs. Anything from your chest down to your pelvic muscles are part of your core. And they do a lot of stuff for us. Core muscles are in charge of holding our bodies up, our posture, bowel movements, labor and delivery, movements that involve pushing and lifting, which we use all day every day. So it's important to keep these muscles strong and working. Here are a few of my favorite ways to work my core that aren't planks (even though I like planks too).



Bridged Knee Lifts:

These work your glutes, thighs, lower back, and spinal muscles. Lay on your back with your knees bent and feet on the floor.  Raise your bum off the groud, keep your belly button sucked into your spine and raise one foot off the grown at a time.



Supermans:

They work your lower back muscles.  It's much easier to think of ways to work your upper back, so giving your lower back a little good attention is a smart thing to do now and then.  Lay on your stomach and raise your arms and legs off the ground a few inches. You can hold it there, flutter your legs, raise one side at a time...there are a lot of different ways to make this workout work for you! So many options. Switch it up when you need/want to.


Leg raises:

These work your pelvic muscle and lower abs. Lay on your back. Suck your belly button to your spine. You can put your hands under your bum or straight out to your sides for support. Raise your legs up so that your body and legs make a 90-degree angle and then down again but don't drop them to the floor. You can also do one similar to this but instead of raising your legs up and down, you lower them side to side like windshield wipers. 



V Sit: 

These are awesome because it targets all of your abdominal muscles, and inner abdominal muscles as well as your obliques, which is why this is a great option for replacing planks. These are also really easy to modify if you need to. It's completely fine to modify when you need to, just make sure that you're always working to get better at it and not staying stagnant in where you're at.

Sit straight up with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Rock back on your sit bones a little bit so that your feet are off the floor. Extend your feet out and lay back as far as you can without touching the ground and then come back up. Keep your back as straight as you can and only go down as far as you feel like you can. The more you do this, the further you'll be able to go down. 



Oblique reach:

I'll be honest I'm not sure what this one is really called haha. But this sounds right. It targets your oblique muscles which help your back and glute muscles. I know this well because I pulled my glute muscle in high school and it bothered my back for a long time and part of my recovery for this was to work on my obliques. Lay on your back with your knees bent at 90 degrees. I like to cross my ankles when I do this because it's more comfortable but I don't think there's a big difference in the results. Someone correct me if I'm wrong. You're going to twist your hips and reach for the outside of your foot at the same time. While you're doing that, focus on your oblique muscles and using them to get the right movement. 


Standing Abs:

This works your obliques and back. This is one that I don't do all that often and I don't like to do quite as much. They are great, but my hips pop out of place sometimes when I do them and I just don't love that feeling. But it is basically the same as the oblique pinch but you're standing up. Put your hands by your ears and stand with your feet hip distance apart. Suck your belly button into your spine and then raise one leg up and lower the same elbow down, again focusing on your oblique muscles, then lower your leg back down. 


Bicycle:

One that most people have heard of and done at least once in their life. This works your abdominals and, actually, your thighs and lower back too. Lay flat on your back with your hands behind your head, elbows sticking out, and legs at bent off the floor. Twist your shoulder toward your opposite knee while you straighten your other leg out. Then switch bringing your other shoulder to the opposite knee.  Be sure not to hold your breath.  And remember to focus on bringing your shoulder up to your knee instead of your elbow. When you do this, it helps you keep better form and not kink or strain your neck. 



There are a lot of other really great options for good core workouts out there.  I really do like to add planks into my workout where I can too because it works your whole core at one time so I feel like I don't need to spend as much time targeting individual areas. No matter what kind of core work you do, it's important for everyone to do exercise for their core muscles. Every person uses them. It doesn't matter the sport or how athletic you are, if you're breathing, you are using your core muscles. So let's get to work on them! 

What is your favorite/least favorite core exercise? 

How often do you spend time working on your core muscles?









Monday, February 19, 2018

Losing Your Fitness Progress During a Break

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a fantastic weekend. Have you ever wondered how long it takes to get out of shape?  This is something I used to worry about all the time. Every time I was on a running break I was always worried that I'd fall so much further behind.

There are a lot of reasons we need breaks from running once in a while. Sometimes we are just super busy and have to find another way to workout for a while. Sometimes we are burned out. Sometimes we get injured or we are taking a break to prevent injury. The list can go on and on.  Taking a break is a good thing to do once in a while whether it's a break because of injury or of choice. Sometimes taking a short break now and then even seems to help me a little bit with my running.



Depending on how long of a break you're taking, you can lose some of your progress that you've made, though. And that can be really frustrating. Keep in mind, though, that you won't lose your progress all that fast. Especially for those who are lifelong runners. For example, when I was pregnant with J, I had an older doctor who encouraged me not to run during my pregnancy. I still did a little bit or working out, mostly elliptical here and there, but I took a break from running and from exercise in general for the most part. Then I didn't pick back up for around 9 more months after she was born.  I kind of felt overwhelmed and scared to start running again because I knew I'd lost a lot of my training.  And I did. The first few times I ran, it was hard for me to get past 2 miles. But because I've been running basically my whole life, it started to come back fast.  Within a month or so I was running 3 miles again at my high school pace (which wasn't really fast, but it was something I could measure off of). And the better shape you are in when you take your break, the easier it is for you to come back.  Every time I had a baby, and took the time off that I needed to recover from childbirth, the better I came back.  I bounced back faster, I had better endurance and faster pace once I got back to where I was before my break. Once a runner, always a runner, even if you've taken a lot of time off.

Taking a week or two off won't change your running as much as you might be worrying that it will.  You might feel it on that first run back, but it will most likely come back quickly. Longer breaks are where you're going to start seeing more of a decline in your fitness. When taking a break from running, it's important to do something to help you maintain your structural fitness. Those muscles you've gained with all that running will start to decrease and that can lead to injury if you jump right back in where you left off from a couple of months ago.  So making sure that you're getting some kind of cross training (biking, swimming, walking, strength training...) is a huge help when it comes to getting back at it.  It won't feel as challenging and you won't get injured as much if you keep something up while you're taking your running break. Your first few runs might feel amazing after a short break, but they might feel really hard after a long break, and if that's the case, the trick is not to let those first few runs scare you off or discourage you from doing more.


Breaks are important for runners. When you start feeling lots of nagging pains, feeling tired or burned out, or like you just need a break from it (it happens and it's ok), that's a sign that you need to take a few days off. Sometimes more. While you're taking a break from running, just make sure to find another goal to focus on and move as much as possible.  Running is something that will never go away. It's there waiting when we are ready to pick it back up. When you do decide to get running again, just remember to be patient with yourself and give it some time to gain back what you missed. Don't stress or worry that you're forever going to be slower, or that running will always feel harder from now on. It won't. Your fitness will come back and you'll be faster and stronger than before as long as you give yourself the time that it will take.


What is the longest break from running that you've taken?

What is your biggest worry when it comes to taking time off?

When do you know it's time for a break?

Friday, February 16, 2018

Fast Friday Favorites

Hello! I feel like these Fridays come faster and faster every week.  I hope you all had a great week and a fun Valentines Day. Here are a few things from our week.

This boy is starting to talk a lot more. Which is super nice now that he's communicating a lot more, there's a lot less screaming.



We spent some time at the beginning of the week watching the Olympics while M gave us all makeovers with her makeup kit.



V is getting to be quite the ham.  He randomly pretends to be asleep anywhere now. Sometimes I wish it was really that easy to get him to nap.



I got some miles in this week on my parent's treadmill and some at home workouts in.  I took it easy last week because my foot was bothering me. So it felt really good to get moving again.



We did a lot of Valentines prepping for family night.



And I took the girls on a date Tuesday.  We went to see The Greatest Showman (it was my second time) and we all loved it!



For Valentines day, we gave the kids each a little gift. V got a tie and the girls some stick on earrings.  The tie was from Target, but we got the earrings from Girlie Glue. They are awesome and work just like the bows that you put in their hair. You can get these earrings HERE or on their website.



Tonight Trevon and I plan to put our kids to bed early to celebrate with ordering dinner in for us. Then tomorrow Trevon gets his date with the girls (taking them to a ball game) while I get my one on one time, probably watching baby bum, with V.

My miles/workouts for this week:

Monday: Leg day workout with M

Tuesday: 3 tempo miles

Wednesday: Rest day

Thursday:2.5 miles squeezed in while my mom was able to entertain V.

Friday: 5x2 minute sprints

And now for some Friday Favorites.

I already shared a little bit about Girlie Glue but I want to tell you a little more about it. This is the stuff I used to keep bows in J and M's hair. I've also used Girlie Glue to finish off Halloween costumes and for spirit days at school like mustache day.  It's all natural and honey free so it's perfect to use on babies! I love Girlie Glue!





One of my goals this year has been to drink more water and this bottle from Blender Bottle is a good tool to help me with that! It's like a game to see how much I can drink before the time marks on the bottle. It tells you how much you should be drinking by a certain time. You can find one HERE if you're competitive and feel like this would help you stay hydrated too!




I saw this quote somewhere on the internet this week and I felt like that pretty much sums up my feelings by the end of the week. I never realized how much food was involved in parenting. I'm almost doing something with food from the time the kids wake up until the kids go to bed.



Have a great weekend! We will talk on Monday

What was your Valentines highlight?

What is helping you reach your goals so far this year?


Wednesday, February 14, 2018

How To Finish Your Workout When You Start Feeling Tired

You were excited to head out on your run, but halfway through you started to feel yourself drag. You struggle picking your legs up, your breathing feels more labored and uneven and your brain starts to tell you to stop running. We've all had this happen. Getting tired during a workout can happen for a lot of different reasons.  And a lot of those reasons are avoidable (think hydration and fueling right, getting enough sleep, pacing yourself...) But what happens when you're already on your run and your feeling that way?  Here are some of the ways that I like to keep myself moving and finish my workout.




- Take a deep breath.  Sometimes we just need to pay a little extra attention to our breathing. I make sure that I'm not holding my breath.  I take a big deep breath in, let it out and try to refocus and clear my mind of negative thoughts (like how much more I still have).

- I have a special playlist that I turn on. I usually run without headphones outside, I almost always still take my headphones just in case though.  I have a special playlist on my phone for running so that when I need a little bit of a push I can turn it on and the beat can carry me the rest of the way. 



- I make smaller goals with myself for that run. I'll pick a point and say "I'll run to that fence post (or whatever) and then I can stop and walk". Once I make it to that point I pick another point to run to. I know a lot of runners who do this one too. It tricks your mind and then by the time you get to that spot you feel like you can keep going.

- I smile! Running is way easier if you smile. Sometimes we don't notice how much our facial expression tells our body.  You will be so surprised how much smiling will help.



- I check my form. A lot of times when you start to feel tired, your form is the first thing to go. And that just makes your run feel heavy and sluggish. So I like to stretch my back out, reset my shoulders and make sure my form is right. Doing this also gives you something else to think about so that your mind isn't thinking about how tired you are.

- I do my best to zone out. I start thinking of funning (or sometimes embarrassing) things that happened, or I'll focus on a project I'm in the middle of. I'll try to think of basically anything except how I'm feeling on my run.

- When my legs feel like they are getting slow and heavy, I pump my arms faster. This is another trick that a lot of runners use. When you move your arms faster, your legs will follow. 



-I repeat "I can do this" or "I can do hard things" over and over to myself. Somehow this helps me find a little more energy to push myself the rest of the way. Half of the workout is for your mind when it comes to running. Breaking down the mental barriers that are telling you that you're not going to be able to finish is a big part of getting stronger.

When none of those things are working (usually I'm done with my run by this point anyway) it's ok to say "today wasn't the best running day" and to walk for some of your workout.  Try to find out why your energy is low. Did you have a bad night's sleep?  Did you hydrate enough? Have you been feeling sick?  Are you running when it's hotter than normal outside?  After you know what is causing the fatigue, try to fix it for next time. If this is an occurring problem, consider going to your doctor for a yearly physical. Some of the things that can cause these problems come from medical issues.


What helps you push through your workout when you're feeling sluggish?

What kind of music is on your workout playlist?

What is your Mantra? (I may end up stealing yours)

Monday, February 12, 2018

Whats for Dinner Tonight? Pizza

I want to start sharing some of the meals that I make throughout the week and make it a little series called "What's for dinner tonight?" Keep in mind through these, though, that I'm not extremely good at what people would consider "healthy eating". We do eat a balanced diet, but we don't follow any kind of special diet and we don't necessarily eat organic. Some of what we eat is but not all of it. That being said, most of what I do make, is easy to alter to your own needs and wants!

The other night I was going to make pizza and I normally make my own bread, but I ran out of yeast.  So I looked around for an alternative and found Rhodes Rolls. I'm sure a lot of you have already tried making pizza dough with this because I looked at the bag and there were instructions on it. The difference was that I didn't have enough time but I tried it anyway. Here's how it went.



I pulled out 7 rolls and defrosted them until they were soft in the microwave. Then I preheated the oven to 200 and then turned it off and put the rolls on a pan with a pan of water underneath it. I let them rise for about 20 minutes until they were double their size.



I heated the oven to 350 and then I rolled the dough into one big ball.



And then I stretched it out so it covered the pizza pan. I covered it with sauce and all of our toppings (We like plain old cheese and pepperoni. If it was just me I'd make it a combination) and put it back in the oven for 15 minutes.




We had fresh veggies for our side dish (at least M and I had veggies for our side, no one else ate them)



It normally takes me about an hour and 15 minutes to make pizza when I make my dough from scratch. With the rolls, it took me a total of 45 minutes. I will probably keep making my dough from scratch but this was nice and easy when I was in a pinch.


What are you having for dinner tonight?

What is your favorite pizza topping?

What is your favorite side to have with pizza?


Friday, February 9, 2018

Fast Friday

It's Friday, which means it's time for our fast Friday updates.

Life update:

V started nursery a couple of months ago (the class for toddlers 18 months to 3 years in our church) and since then he has been extremely clingy! He has a tantrum if I go into a different room. Part of me loves how much he wants to be by me and the other part of me really hates not being able to do anything without him being mad. In time this will change! 


We had the stomach bug around our house. We are glad that's over with and hope it never comes back.


The girls graduated from their RadKids program. If you don't know what RadKids is, it's a program that teaches kids about how nobody has the right to hurt them (including themselves) because they are special. Then they give them to tools that they need to help keep themselves safe. I love this program! 


We had a super bowl party with Trevon's dad and brother. None of us are big Eagles fans, but none of us like the Patriots and we were all happy to see them lose that game.  I mostly just go for the food (but I did enjoy the game). We had Bay City Buns, Wings,  crackers and cheese, fruit, veggies, and brownies. I ate a lot, but most of what I ate was healthy stuff and not so much of the junk.


I'm in need of some new everyday-walk around shoes. Not that it's not comfortable or practical, it's just not very stylish.  Which I'm working on this year. They are cute to run in but I don't want florescent pink shoes to wear all the time. I want something cute and comfortable that isn't going to be a ton of money!  For some reason, I find it totally acceptable to spend $100+ on running shoes but regular shoes I can't spend nearly that much.  Who has some good recommendations so that I can stop wearing my old worn out running shoes as everyday shoes?





Running Update:

I was able to get out for a 5-mile run the other day! It was great weather and it felt really good to get out. But my foot has been bothering me for the last few days so I decided to take some time off of running.



Instead of running I did a lot of strength training this week.  I focused on a different muscle group a day and then ended with core every time.  It's been a nice mix-up, but I want to get running again. M has been a really great workout buddy this week though.



 I was working out at my parent's house during nap time one day and my mom made cookies. I decided to use those to refuel.



Have a great weekend and we will talk again on Monday! 

Who's had the flu shot this year? Did it work?
We all got the flu shot and 3 out of the 5 of us had a stomach bug, but no fever. So I think it mostly worked for us.

Who has a shoe recommendation for me?

How many miles did you get this week?








Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Transitioning from Treadmill to Outdoor Running

With spring on its way and the warmer temps coming (in Utah we are already seeing high 50s some days!) we runners start moving our runs outside more and more. There are so many reasons I love outside running, but every year I'm still quickly reminded how different running outside is from running inside.



When you're running on a treadmill, you don't have to deal with any wind resistance at all. All weather elements are taken out of the equation. You can control the temperature inside with thermostats and fans so you don't have to worry about the weather at all.

Treadmills have a little give every time you land. Not a ton but just enough to notice how hard the pavement is after running on only treadmills for a few months.

You can control your terrane with treadmills. You get to decide when to incline or go flat. There are no cracks in the sidewalk or rocks on the trail so it's pretty smooth sailing.

The treadmill helps you keep your pace. If you set a pace and don't push any buttons you're sure to know that you're going the same pace for a certain distance, even if you start feeling your body get tired. When you're outside you mentally have to prepare yourself for your brain to tell your legs that it's time to slow down and physically fight wanting to slow down. You also have to pay more attention to your body and make sure it doesn't automatically slow down or speed up on its own.



You use different muscles more on the treadmill instead of outside. When you're running on the treadmill you end up using more of your quads more to push off the belt. But when you're running outside you use your hamstrings more to lift your leg at the end of your stride.

So there are more differences than you'd expect at first. And because of those differences transitioning from fully running on the treadmill to running outside can feel different and needs to be done over time.  Which, I'll be the first to admit, I don't usually take enough transition time between winter running (for me, mostly on the treadmill) to spring/summer/fall running outside.  And because I don't usually take much time to ease into the transition, I usually fight a little bit of injury like shin splints for the first few runs.

I thought I'd give you some tips on transitioning so that you can avoid injury and know what to expect.


Start easy. Just like everything else in running, in order to avoid injury, take your time increasing mileage or speed outside.  Even if you can run 10 miles on a treadmill, start lower outside. The pavement and asphalt and ground aren't as cushy as a treadmill that has a little give to it. The grass is pretty soft but that can also work different muscles. So just start easy no matter where you're running outside. 

Check your running shoes. If you've been running in your same shoes for more than 300 miles check them out to see if it's time for new ones. (I wrote all about how to tell if you need new running shoes HERE).



Safety First! When you're indoors, at the gym or at home, it's easy to tune your mind out with music and shows and all that. But when you're running outside you need to make sure you're being alert to what is going on around you. Try running without headphones in. Tell someone where you're planning on going, or take a running buddy, (it's more fun and safer than running alone) know your surroundings. Just be safer all around.

Dress right for the conditions.  Early spring is always tricky. It looks super nice outside but when you actually get out there it's still pretty chilly.  Make sure to check the weather before you head out and dress accordingly.  I like to dress like it's around10 degrees warmer than it is because once you start going you'll warm up a lot more. Here is an idea of how I dress for running depending on the weather.