Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Top 3 Running Essentials

I've considered myself a "runner" for a little over two years now, and boy have I loved every second of it. I remember when I first started getting into running January of my freshman year of college. I was training for my first half marathon and during my first couple of weeks of running, my calves were so sore. As the months passed, I found muscles I didn't even know I could have, like in my calves and my thighs. Now, I'm training for my second half marathon and I already feel so much more prepared than I did the first time I ran one. 13.1 miles? No problem.

Throughout my journey of running, I have found there are three things that are a must in my running life…

Brooks Running Shoes
I have had three pairs of Brooks running shoes, and I would not trade them for anything in the world! Not only do they come in super fun colors (I've had two pink pairs and one turquoise pair), but they are extremely comfortable. I used to get charlie horses like it was my job when I first started running in cheap Nike shoes, but ever since I started wearing Brooks, no muscle cramps for me! Also, they last such a long time! My last pair lasted about 8 months of continuous running, which is a pretty long life for running shoes! I recently got the PureCadence 2 Running Shoe and I am seriously in love. I can't wait to run in them during the half marathon in May!

iPod shuffle
Have you ever tried running long distances without music? Well I have. And it sucks. During my first half marathon, my iPod died about 15 minutes into my run (shame on me for not checking the battery), so I had to run the remaining hour and 45 minutes with no music. It was awful! For me, music is a way to distract myself, pump me up, and make my run go by so much faster. My playlist is full of Jonas Brothers, One Direction, Paramore, Backstreet Boys, and N'Sync. What an awesome combination, right? Haha, well it works for me! My shuffle is pink (of course) and I've had it for over three years now and it still works like a charm. I use it almost every day and the battery lasts so long. Even with my long runs, I think I have to charge it every 3-4 weeks. And, it clips right on to my shorts so that I don't have to worry about carrying it and getting it all sweaty, or buying an annoying armband to hold it in place. It's perfect!

Running Log Free App
As a New Year's Resolution, I wanted to track the miles I run everyday. I found Running Log Free on iTunes and have been using it to log my miles everyday since January 1st. Since it's free, it's nothing fancy, which is exactly what I wanted. All I have to do is log how many miles I ran, how long it took me, and what time of day it was. The app tells me how many miles I've run every month, as well as my average pace. Yeah, it has some ads when you first enter the app, but it's totally worth the free app. There's a version you can pay for in order to log multiple runs a day, but since I only run once a day, the free version was perfect for me. In the past 17 days, I have run 81.27 miles! How crazy is that? I love how motivated this app keeps me and how I can compare how far I run month to month. According to the app, since the beginning of the year, I've run 308.48 miles. Yeah, I'd say I'm officially a runner :)

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