When Running Does More

If you read this blog regularly (ok let’s face it, even if this is your first visit here – Welcome!) you know I’m a runner and I do it because I love it. It’s a great way to keep in shape and to release that competitive spirit. But sometimes, you can do a little more with all those steps on the pavement, trails, track, or treadmill.

This past week I finally participated in the Mizuno Baton project. Have you heard of it? It’s an app you download on your phone (both for iPhone & Android users). You run with your phone for a week and it tracks your mileage. For each mile you run, Mizuno is donating a dollar to Back on My Feet. Back on My Feet gets homeless people running:

Back on My Feet (BoMF) is a national for-purpose 501(c)3 organization that uses running to help those experiencing homelessness change the way they see themselves so they can make real change in their lives that results in employment and independent living.

The organization’s mission is not to create runners within the homeless population, but to use running to create self-sufficiency in the lives of those experiencing homelessness. The program’s success is measured by how many Members obtaining independence through employment, job training and housing.

Through dedication and hard work, Residential Members (those experiencing homelessness) earn the opportunity to create a new road for themselves.   Running leads to personal transformation and dedication to the program leads to access to training, employment and housing resources.  Through community and corporate support, the program strives to change the perception of homelessness.

I love that Mizuno is doing this. And after your week, you can “pass the baton” to another runner – spreading the charitable love!

My week with Baton is just about up!

My week with Baton is just about up!

And of course, there are others ways to do something charitable with running. The most common is to fundraise for a race. Team in Training is probably the most well-known way to do this. If you’ve run a race, you have seen these awesome guys and gals in purple who have raised a significant chunk of cash to benefit the  Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. But there are other ways too.

For example, for the third year in a row, The SF Marathon has opened 100 spots for runners to run 52.4 miles (yep, that’s the equivalent of two marathons, runners run the marathon course backwards before the actual marathon and then join in to run it again!). Those who participate in this extra long race, raise at least $1000 for the charity of their choice. No, I’m not doing this but I know someone who is and is donating to a cause that is near and dear to my heart: helping animals! Pavement Runner is a dog lover like me and is raising money for the San Francisco Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. And not only is he doing this, he’s making it fun for those who help him along the way. You can win a HALO belt or pair of ProCompression socks if you donate. Pretty awesome right? To donate & enter the raffle go HERE. To just donate to the cause go HERE.

Photo courtesy of TSFM website

Photo courtesy of TSFM website

Do you run for charity? What other ways do you think runners could help support causes important to us?

 

Fit Friday: Checking in with Goals

You might recall back in the beginning of the year, I wrote in my first Fit Friday of 2014 about some of my running goals. Mostly, I wanted to include more trails and more hills in my runs. So I thought now that we are in Spring and just about done with the third month of the year, it would be a good time to check with those goals.

Hills: I’m proud to say that I have really been rocking this goal! I have included hills on least one (usually more) of my runs each week. I’ve been adding the run up to UCSC as part of my track workout as well. (And you know what hills are good for? Training for the SF Marathon! don’t forget to register and save $10 using this code: DSC10TSFM2014A59)
So hills – check!

Elevation from my weekly track workouts

Elevation from my weekly track workouts

Year to date stats, I love seeing all that elevation gain (I know it pales in comparison to my ultra runner friends, but I'm still proud!)

Year to date stats, I love seeing all that elevation gain (I know it pales in comparison to my ultra runner friends, but I’m still proud!)

Trails: Ok, I haven’t been as successful with this goal. My last trail run was at the beginning of February (eek!). So gotta get back on that goal for sure. I am running in the Wilder trails a bit tomorrow so that will be a good thing. Trails can be a little tough when all your training buddies are focused on Boston (or until last weekend LA), and are looking to get in MP miles. And I don’t run trails by myself. But I’m not letting this goal go, so don’t you worry!

Requisite motivational quote :)

Requisite motivational quote :)

How are your running goals coming along as we move into the second quarter of 2014?

Fit Friday: Valentine’s Day Edition

Happy Valentine’s Day!

I love the heart day. I realize that it can be a little silly for people to be told what day to celebrate love – but I say, heck why not celebrate? That doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate other days too :) I’ll be celebrating the holiday with the hubs in Tahoe, the place we spent our first heart day 10 years ago. How fun!

shoeheart

Well, I also had to celebrate my other love – running. So at 5am this morning, I headed out to pound out 14 (easy peasy) miles on the 14th (thanks ladies who joined me for the first part and Gaylia for being my long-run-Friday partner in crime).

Do you celebrate the day of St. Valentine? Did you get in your workout too?

Why I am Exhausted

Ok, I’m not really exhausted but my current Monday/Wednesday schedule sure does make me tired. I’m usually ready for bed at about 8pm. So I thought I’d share my insanity with you all :) (I know you really care about my daily schedule and all). So here is a step-by-step set of instructions to feel completely exhausted at the end of the day (for the moms out there – you are amazing! I’m pretty sure adding kids to this schedule would result in permanent zombie status):

Screen Shot 2014-02-13 at 8.12.38 AM

  • Step 1a: Wake up (but really, really want to go back to sleep)
  • Step 1b: Really wake up (yep, that early morning run so did not happen)
  • Step 2: Teach not-awake students about the Gilded Age
  • Step 3: Grade/prep (devour Picky Bar, #teamgreen, here)
  • Step 4: Teach slightly more awake but hungry students about the colonial period in America
  • Step 5: Race home to eat lunch/walk the pups
  • Step 5a: Convince self to take the pups on the walk after making the grave mistake of sitting on the sofa
  • Step 6: Lecture at UCSC
  • Step 7: Run (because oh yeah, that early morning run did not happen)
  • Step 8: Starving (late day runs make me so hungry) – eat whatever I find as I make dinner, eat with hubs.
  • Step 9: Finish grading whatever didn’t get finished in step 3.
  • Step 10: Watch Olympics with hubs. Oh hello crazy ice skating costumes
  • Step 11: Drag self up to bed to avoid falling asleep on the sofa (or wake up from falling asleep on sofa)
Tried out my new Skechers Go Rides on Monday's run - LOVE them! Can't wait to run in them at Ragnar :)

Tried out my new Skechers Go Rides on Monday’s run – LOVE them! Can’t wait to run in them at Ragnar :)

 

I like to think that surviving Mondays and Wednesdays mean I’m pretty hardcore. I’m not sure if that’s true, but I saw this BuzzFeed link on FB this morning and it was definitely inspiring/reassuring.

Thankfully this will only last until mid-March, when the UCSC quarter comes to an end. But still.

Ninja-ing with SFM Ambassadors (and friends)

Yesterday I drove up to San Francisco to meet up with some super cool people – SFM Ambassadors and their friends/significant others. Eleven (twelve if you count Penny the Pup) of us met at the Marin Headlands to run what’s been named the Ninja Loop. It’s about 11 and a half miles of trails with some serious climbs (according to Strava we climbed 2069 feet), a few steep downhills, amazing views, and lots of photo ops. Since I had run 12 miles the day before, I took this route super easy, spending time to catch up with Chris, Alisyn, and Paulette. I also got to know Matt and  Erin. I had never run in the headlands before but I CANNOT wait to do it again! I mean seriously:

up, up, up

up, up, up

Paulette, Alisyn, and I take a break up the hill

Paulette, Alisyn, and I take a break up the hill

Group photo!

Group photo!

Chris, Erin, and I

Chris, Erin, and I

Heading back down the hill required more photos

Heading back down the hill required more photos

Just before we finished our last mile :)

Just before we finished our last mile :)

After our awesome run, we cleaned up and headed into the city. We met at Southern Pacific Brewing for some food and brews.

No photos of food - I ate that WAY too fast!

No photos of food – I ate that WAY too fast!

After running in the sun all morning, the patio felt mighty chilly – so I had to break out the super warm jacket!

brr!

brr!

Those who conquered the headlands were joined by several other ambassadors and their friends/siblings/etc: Becky, Andrew, Tricia, Taylor, and Scott. It was so fun to chat with old friends and meet some new ones as well, especially those who I have chatted with over Twitter and finally got to meet in person.

Food, brews, and runners - what could be better?

Food, brews, and runners – what could be better?

Overall it was a great day! Thanks Chris for organizing such a fun day!!

Good looking group of ambassadors!

Good looking group of ambassadors!

Want to get in on the fun? Register for the SF Marathon (marathon, 2 half marathons, and a 5k) and save with discount code: DSC10TSFM2014A59.

(Thanks to Paulette, Alisyn, Chris, and Erin for some of these photos)