Water. Be well-hydrated. Without sufficient hydration you will tire out quicker, be completely preoccupied like an alcoholic craving his next drink, and your tongue will adhere itself to the roof of your mouth (true story). Fruit juices and sodas – baaad idea – can lead to bloating and abdominal cramping, and there is nothing worse than running with the sensation of carrying a giant, fragile, bouncing balloon in your shorts. So – water!!! Water, water, WATER!!!
Attire. Speaking of bouncing, it is essential to wear attire designed to contain your parts. All of them. There is nothing worse than being hit in the face by your own breasts, or constantly pulling your shorts out of your ass crack. Sports bras, ladies!! They’re inexpensive, do their job, and are so comfortable you may find yourself wearing them even when you’re not running. Try the attire on before purchase! Don’t buy the size you want to be, buy the size that fits, and if you think your neighbors won’t notice – then you deserve to get stuck in that spandex. Also – running shoes! Don’t run in Vans – if you don’t have the proper support your feet will suffer, and so will the rest of you. There’s also a little “law” out there about replacing your sneakers after 300 to 500 miles – because shock absorption tends to wane as sneakers get older.
Music. It makes the run. Although I do like the sounds that nature offers in the right environment, I will push myself harder with tunes in my ear. Radio stations are great if you’re a gambler; however, a run can start out great with BonJovi’s Runaway, but your pace will quickly nosedive if the next selection features a lonely, whiney Sam Smith. Angry white boy music (Linkin Park) will keep me running for hours. Today I gambled and got the tired top 40 songs like Uma Thurman, and all I could think of was John Travolta in Pulp Fiction looking all greasy and gross – that stupid song, Can’t Feel My Face, which actually was quite apropos under today’s humid conditions – and Ed Sheeran’s Photograph, which I love but not for running. It was bad. (Note to self: Must download running tunes to my borrowed iPod – which is really my iPod, but that’s a whole other story.)
Dogs. Know where your furry terrorists are. I’ve been told that dogs will give chase to runners because they inspire the dog’s natural predatory impulses but, while I understand that, I have the right to have my run without bruises and a broken iPod. Still, forewarned is forearmed. Knowing where the dogs live and staying alert is the difference between a friendly reminder to the owner and an unplanned trip to the ER. My mom asked, aren’t most trips to the ER unplanned? Not unless you’re my grandmother, who is in great health but likes the attention.
Imagine. If all else fails, imagine you’re being chased. I stole this idea from my neighbor, who stopped her SUV on her way out last week to ask me what was chasing me, and told me that’s the only thing that would make her run. Imagine being chased by a dog – except not when there’s actually a dog chasing you because I think the right thing to do in that case is to STOP running. Imagining zombies chasing you would definitely get the blood pumping, but seeing as zombies don’t run anyway, I guess you wouldn’t have to run that fast. Unless you were being chased by Vincent Vega – who, with the pallid complexion of a heroin addict, looks like a zombie, but is clearly well-armed and dangerously dancy. Running from Jason would definitely be inspiring, but we all know that no one has ever outrun his measured pace and we don’t want you giving up before you’ve finished. Alternatively, if you’re aiming to impress, imagine your neighbors are watching you from their windows…then you will at the very least rev your pace while passing their house.
Bonus… Stretch! A no-brainer but don’t be lazy and think you’ve done your part by running so now it’s time for Real Housewives and a cocktail. Stretching warm muscles after a run will minimize soreness and you won’t wake up tomorrow morning feeling like you’ve been wrestling a Rottweiler.
** None of the above should be taken as medical advice. These tidbits are gleaned from personal experience. I am not a professional anything. Well, unless being arm candy for my husband is considered professional, but then again that sounds like some other kind of professional - which I am NOT - because I give my love for free. Um, well, free to him. Because I love him.Wait - did any of that come out right? I mean - oh damn. Nevermind. I'm not an expert and I don't play one on TV. That's Dr. Oz's job. Oh no - I've said too much.
There will be a day I can no longer run. Today is not that day.
When someone tells you, "you can't," turn around and say, "watch me."
Just do it! ~ Nike