Tag Archives: new runner

5 Tips to Help You Recover From a Half Marathon

Running a half marathon is no easy task. It takes a lot of training, prep & dedication to get across that finish line. Whether it was your 1st or 50th half marathon, a good race or a bad race, the fact that you crossed the finish line is a huge deal! Congratulations are in order and now it is time to start RECOVERY! Here are 5 tips that have helped me recover after each of the half marathons I have run. 

half marathon recovery25 Tips to Recover from a Half Marathon 

1. Compression Gear

If you own any compression gear, now is the time to wear it! Compression tights or socks are great for training in, but they are also excellent for recovery. Compression gear increases the blood flow to your muscles, eliminating soreness and helping you recover faster. I love to wear compression tights post race as they take care of all the leg muscles, but compression socks are helpful as well. compression benefits

My favorite compression brand: 2XU. You can read more here

2. Hydrate!!

Drink water like it is your JOB! Hopefully you were hydrating before the race, and it is just as important to keep up the hydration after. Plain water works, but I recommend a combination of plain water and an electrolyte drink. You sweat out a lot and you need to replace those electrolytes. Many sports drinks are full or sugar and unnecessary ingredients so you want to be careful which one you choose. Look for one that has no sugar & no artificial ingredients.IMG_0308

My favorite is Ultima Replenisher. It’s tasty, has nothing artificial & no sugar. It is really low calorie too, so you don’t have to feel bad about drinking it. It has gotten me thru countless races and training runs. To learn more about Ultima & why you should really consider training with it, click here.  

My favorite electrolyte drink: Ultima Replenisher. Use the code below for 35% off. This is not an affiliate code, it’s a discount I get to pass on to you!Ambassador_coupons_v3_Sarah Martinez

3. Foam Roll

If you are not familiar with foam rolling, a foam roller is ” a tool used by runners and athletes to target overworked muscles”. If uses a technique called myofascial release. Essentially, this helps eliminate muscle pain by applying gentle & sustained pressure to the muscles when rolling over them. Foam rolling is not always fun because it’s uncomfortable, but the benefits are amazing. The discomfort you feel while rolling helps you feel much better later. 

For tips on how to use a foam roller, check out this great article from Runner’s World

My favorite foam roller: Trigger Point GRID – available in 3 sizes 

4. Strech

Seems obvious, but you would not believe the amount of people who don’t stretch! This will help get reduce any soreness and stiffness that you have. It is best to stretch once your muscles are warm, so walk around bit before stretching.

Another great option is to take a Yin or Hatha yoga class a few days after the race. Yin and Hatha yoga are slower, more gentle forms of yoga and will give your whole body a great stretch. IMG_0269


It doesn’t matter if you were running, walking or crawling, you crossed the finish line! Make sure you celebrate!!!dean-karnazes-quote

You can reward yourself/celebrate in any way that you see fit. It could be a massage, a trip to the mall, a night out with friends, a day off work… the list could go on and on! Take time to celebrate your accomplishment because like I mentioned earlier, no matter how the race went for you, you did NOT give up & that is worth celebrating. 
Read about what I did after my first half marathon.

bonus tip: review your race on bibrave.com ! BibRave is the perfect place to share your race experience. You can find and write race reviews there & revel in your accomplishment even more! 

Congrats again on completing 13.1 miles. Cheers to recovery & to running more miles!!

Let’s chat: what races do you have planned?  What is your favorite recovery technique?

Stay Strong!

How I Became “a Runner”

The subject of running has been coming up quite a bit lately. In conversations, social media and at get togethers. Because I have kept running, and enjoy it, I have now been classified as “a runner”.

994871_425146534266985_317336452_nThe races I have been signing up for have been longer distances, at least longer than 5K (3 miles). This leads people to believe that I have been running for a long time and that I have always loved running, but the complete opposite is true! This time last year I had just signed up for my first race that I planned on running, and I wasn’t even sure I’d be able to run the whole thing! 
That race is really what started it all.

To hear my whole story on how this “running thing” started, check out my video. I tell the whole story from why I even wanted to sign up for my first race and how that turned into running a half marathon. I even share a bit from my past and where I am now. It’s about 6 mins long, I hope you will watch it 🙂 If you don’t feel like watching  video, it’s cool. Keep reading…

Finally, check out this screen shot from my Nike+ app — this was my VERY first run with the app! 

  That 4.83 mile run was the longest I had ever run and that was the first race I actually ran. Running 9:49/mile felt amazing to me! The run on the bottom on 5/13 was my first run ever! 

Here are my stats now in this May:  
If you want to start running, or anything for that matter, just start. You aren’t going to be perfect at first, but you will improve and get better. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else, your journey and experience will be unique. Since last May I’ve had plenty of runs that were not fun and many that were not perfect. There will be days like that and you just have to keep on being consistent and you will reach your goals!!!

Stay sweet


Wanna Turkey Trot???

Thanksgiving is getting close and while some people like to start focusing on Christmas as soon as November rolls around, I really like to take time for Thanksgiving. I usually try not to do any Christmas until the day after Thanksgiving, but since we are going to be gone this year, I have given myself permission to start Christmas slightly early 🙂

My  favorite part about Thanksgiving is the time with family. I love that almost everyone has that day off from work. I’m not super tempted by the food, it’s not even the highlight for me, I just love being with family and hanging out.

While Thanksgiving is a day off from work and time with family, that doesn’t mean it is a REST day as far as exercise goes! I stay active on Thanksgiving and be sure to make time to do some sort of exercise that day.untitled

WHY?! The reasoning is simple

1)      I am a nicer and happier person when I work out. I wrote about all the benefits to working out in a previous post. I just feel so much better when I exercise, so why not be happier and nicer on a day you are going to be around everyone that you love?

2)      Usually there is little bit of extra time this day so fitting it in isn’t too hard (even if you are hosting and have tons to cook, wake up early and workout. The cooking with go much more smoothly & you will have more energy – trust me on this!)

3)      If you are tempted by food, it’s much easier to make better food decisions when you have gotten exercise in. Indulging is totally okay, but I find that exercise helps you keep control and not get too crazy.

Because of this, a tradition of a morning turkey day workout has been born. Now pair this tradition with my new love of running…. the obvious outcome is a TURKEY TROT right?!?untitled

So I decided to see if there was a Thanksgiving Day run that I could do here in the PNW. Here is what I found. There are 2 turkey trots, one the weekend before Thanksgiving and one on Thanksgiving. One is a route I run a lot, so I didn’t feel like paying to run it, plus that is the weekend before. I really wanted it to be ON Thanksgiving day. I looked at the course, and I wasn’t overly impressed, it’s not super close and I really didn’t feel like paying that much to run. I think really what is boils down to is I don’t want to have to deal with the crowds and be on someone else’s schedule that day…

SOOOOOO I thought, why not do a virtual turkey trot???? Two options, either a 5K (3.11 miles) or a 10K (6.2 miles) — you find a route in your area that is that amount of miles and you walk or run it on Thanksgiving day — heck, you could even do it on a treadmill…. you pick the time and place and there is no entry fee!! We’ll connect about it virtually over twitter, instagram and even FB if you want  what do you guys think?:? Would you do it with me??

Comment on this post and/or tweet me

— if there is enough interest we will make this an official thing! Picture-33Also – this year I am going to post a post-thankgiving (black Friday) workout, so be ready for that!

Stay Sweet!


Success is in the preparation [Half Marathon Recap – Part 1]

Success is in the preparation. Preparation requires dedication. Dedication requires discipline.  

Those 3 things I learned on my journey to running the half marathon. It was quite the learning experience, not only in never giving up, but also in perseverance and looking at the big picture. I trained for 3 months to get ready for this race. I had to put in the work early on and then got to watch it all unfold during the race. It was pretty cool.

I have told some of this story here before, but I have not always been a runner. I actually just started running in May 2014, that was 5 months ago! (watch the end of this video below where I talk about how I got into running & my anticipation of the half marathon – its like 10 minutes long FYI)





I ran the Portland half marathon. I chose this race because it gave me enough time to train, they had some sweet finisher swag and it has been voted the best race to run in Fall. 🙂  We drove down on Saturday morning and went straight to the Expo so I could pick up my race bib and packet.

Photo Oct 04-5
says “entering Portland” – it was SO sunny the WHOLE weekend
Photo Oct 04-2
officially in Oregon!

The city was READY for the marathon, see the below pic, they had all these posters on the light poles…. it made it that much more real!

Photo Oct 05-3
heading into the packet pick-up – I was ready to explore Portland for the day with my beach babe cooler haha 🙂

When we got to the packet pick up I was so intimated because there was barely any half marathon bibs, there were WAY more people running the full marathon! I was like “I’m over here trying to run 13.1 miles and these peeps can run 26.2!??” – woah just woah. Very inspiring to be around so many dedicated athletes and runners considering I have only been at this for 5 months. 

I realized quickly that I had never been part of such a big race. Not only mileage but also number of people. There were like 12,000 people who ran on Sunday!! Once I picked up my bib, I was like “OMG THIS IS REALLY HAPPENING!” 

Photo Oct 05-2

The expo itself was not huge, there were several running companies there and some other random stuff. I was worried that my finishers shirt was gonna be too big (my shirt size has changed since I registered for the half way back when) so I bought a cute pink Portland Marathon shirt as a memory of the weekend. I was so overwhelmed by everything I didn’t take as many pics as I wanted 🙁

 We looked around the expo briefly and then headed over to the Portland Saturday Market. I was really excited for this as I had heard so much about it. 

Photo Oct 04
ended up in front of Voodoo Donuts and didn’t even realize it until we saw the line haha

We got to the area where the market was and ended up in front of Voodoo donuts. The line was insane. We didn’t have any donuts. We did stop at Stumptown Coffee though…. OMG YUM. You have not had good cold brew until you try the Stumptown Cold Brew 😀

Photo Oct 04-4
they had these Mexican coffee beans, I wish I would have bought some as you don’t see coffee beans from Mexico very often… oh well next time.

Photo Oct 04-3

I wore my “I Hate Running” shirt around Portland all day on Saturday. Most people got the joke, but others were like “really you hate running?” or “you are brave for wearing that on marathon weekend” –  I was like come on people! 😛 The funny thing as you guys know, I haven’t always liked running, but now I do like it – so this shirt just seemed appropriate for the day. As my sister pointed out, many people were looking at it or laughing about it thru out the day. 

Screen Shot 2014-10-09 at 6.29.48 PM
this is what the tank looks like. Unfortunately it isn’t available from VS Pink anymore 🙁

 I was filled with nerves… as the day passed I started getting more and more nervous. I thought to myself “why are you so nervous, you know how hard you worked to prepare for this”…. I think the nerves came from having no idea what to expect. This was something I had NEVER done before, that is intimidating! 

After exploring the Saturday Market, we went to get something for dinner.  My sister and her BF went to his BBQ place, I didn’t see anything on the menu that seemed like something that would sit well with my stomach. So we headed over to whole foods to get some grub from their salad bar and hot food section. YUM! 

Photo Oct 05-6
my outfit, ready to go! complete with skittles for #beastmode (seahawks fans will understand)

I set like 10 alarms because I didn’t want to feel like I was rushing in the morning. Well I kept waking up all night haha. So I got up at 445am and ate GF pumpkin protein pancakes, some almond butter and an oatmeal for breakfast (carbs anyone? haha). I downed a black coffee (my favorite pre-workout) and met up with my sister at 6am. 

Photo Oct 05-5
part of my breakfast

It was HILARIOUS because we did not talk about what we were going to wear or anything and we ended up basically matching! Obviously we are sisters!  We did our shopping separately and ended up with the exact same running shoes – model AND color! HAHA. We also both ended up wearing a Nike burn out tank in pink and black bottoms. It was so ironic and funny. I loved it! 

Photo Oct 09
matching and not even on purpose! Obviously sisters!

I started this tradition back in May that when I run a race I like to wear a BOLD lipstick – like HOT pink or red. At first she made fun of me but now my sister shares this tradition with me. It adds a little boost of confidence, try it out! For the half marathon we wore “Girl About Town” by MAC. So not only did we have matching outfits on accident, we also had matching lipstick! haha.

our matching shoes! haha

  We walked over to the starting area…. it was still dark outside!  We were in separate starting corrals (due to different mile times) so we took one last pic together and parted ways… 


 I was in corral E, the 5th group to start the race. There were a total of 8 corrals. You put in your estimated time when you registered. Since I was still new to running, I was pretty generous with the time. I could have been a faster group, but you were not allowed to move up. I wasn’t too worried about it, but later on in the race I was wishing I had been with faster runners. I will explain why later. 

Photo Oct 05
waiting to start!

As we approached the starting line, I was like OMG THIS IS HAPPENING! I was so excited I could barely stand it!

Photo Oct 05
my Nike app ready to go! waiting for the start

Our group started the race and crossed the starting line at 7:10am… 

Photo Oct 05-4
about to cross the starting line!

Tomorrow I will finish my recap of the race & tell you how the race went and what my finishing time was! Stay tuned!