15 ways to be a FASTER RUNNER + OUR day!

HEY!! I’ve got my 34 week pregnancy update HERE today!

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My ‘day after Halloween run’ usually doesn’t feel great but it did yesterday which was fun!  I’m guessing that is because we somehow still got the kids into bed at a good time and we didn’t eat ALL OF THE CANDY ON THE PLANET this year = a much better feeling the morning after.

4.5 miles with some gorgeous sights along the way.

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I don’t think I’ve EVER mentioned this to you, but I’m a big fan of Utah;)  (Please note: my tune changes a bit once we hit the really cold months and I’ll talk about how I’m ready to move to Hawaii)

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Andrew was out getting some things done (like more shots before his next shifts this weekend) and he brought me home a donut.  Apple fritters used to be my number one for everything but now I am all about the buttermilk bars.  The baby started kicking me like crazy after the first few bites!

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Flat tire= discount tire.  Thank goodness for their play areas!

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Halloween lives on.

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Lots of biking and exploring while we can before snow.

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We held an important Costco survey last night—>  Which of these two soups from Costco is better?  We both decided the Broccoli Cheddar Soup wins BUT both are really good!

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I think Brooke has seen me so much with my huge pregnancy pillow that she now wants her unicorn to  be her pillow whenever she is laying down!

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I left for a few hours last night to work with the teen girls in my area (I do this one night a week).  Then I came home and joined Andrew on the couch to watch GAME!

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My affirmator for the week:)

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PS Beyond excited to wear a new tank that rabbit sent me!  Look at those emojis!

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Currently I’m getting slower and slower and have been for the past 30something weeks but outside of pregnancy I truly enjoy working towards getting faster.  Yesterday on my run I was thinking about what things I think truly help people to get faster (and what I want to do in 2018 to get faster).  I love thinking about what little changes help us to reach that potential of ours.  Getting faster definitely doesn’t have to be your goal with running and for many people it isn’t and that is awesome.  If it is your goal, I thought I would share 15 (of the million possible) things that I THINK help people to get faster if that is what you are going for!

*Mentally, you’ve got to believe in yourself.  What you look for… YOU WILL FIND.  Our brains are smart and it will focus on the things that we search for… so search for your potential.  You have the potential to get faster, we all do.  Don’t tell yourself that you can’t get faster or that it will be too hard.  LOOK for your potential, focus on the positives and what you are capable of.  If you want to get faster, focus on the fact that you can and that you are strong.  You can do hard things!  Look for your strengths and potential and you will find it.

*You can’t have it all (right now;)!  This is one that I need to work on!  I want a marathon PR and at the same time to maybe train for a trail race and a faster mile time with a side of running 4 different half marathons (and getting PRs in those too) within one training cycle;)  Okay, that is a little dramatized but we’ve really got to choose one goal (that we are doing for ourselves, and not for social media or for anyone else) and focus on that goal.  If we are trying to do too many other goals all at once, we might end up injured/overtrained.  Focus on one distance/time goal at a time (PS remember these are just my opinions;) because those specific goals require specific types of workouts to get there!

*LEARN YOUR fuel.  This is another one where experimenting really makes a big difference!  For some reason I used to fuel before races with pb because that is what other runners did.  Running fast + pb = not fun for Janae.  Testing out different fuels leading up to a race, during a race and for your recovery will make a big difference in your performance and recovery to get back out there again and keep working.

*Be consistent.  It’s not going to happen overnight.  Speed doesn’t just pop into our lives (wouldn’t that be nice?!)… stick with it.  Don’t get discouraged if it seems like it is happening for everyone else and not you.  It will.  Give it time and just like anything else that is hard in life… it will take a lot of work, sweat and tears:)

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*Intervals.  Want to run fast?  You’ve got to practice running fast!  Starting small is key and slowly building up is necessary along with proper rest and recovery afterwards but intervals/speed work is going to be key for your training.  Need interval workouts—>  go here!

*Rest!  Know the warning signs of over-training.  Follow your plan and add in more rest if your body is telling you to do so.  More is not always more:)  We all have different sweet spots (amount of training that our body and brain handle well) and going above those levels is a recipe for injury (which takes us backwards and definitely slows us down)!  The goal after a hard workout is to let your body rest and rebuild in the best way possible so that you can go out and do it all over again and get stronger over time.  Give your body the rest it needs.

*Gear!  Experiment.  My favorite shoes may not be your favorite shoes.  You might feel your best running in a specific short and that needs to be your go-to!  Try out different pieces of clothing, shoes and gear to find what helps you to move those legs fast and feel comfortable.

*Hit the HILLS!  Whether it is hill repeats, trail running or rolling hills on your long run (or on the treadmill).  Hills will make a big difference with your speed!  “It’s the worst kept secret in running:  If you want to improve strength and speed, run hills… Running up hills forces the knees to lift higher, one of the most desirable developments for any runner, because this governs stride speed and length.”  (source)  I’ve got some hill workouts in this post:)

*Write it down!  Writing down your workouts each day (along with how you felt, what helped you and what was holding you back) will help you to really learn about the best training techniques for you.

*Surround yourself with positive people (at least in regards to your running)!  This is something that I LOVE most about my running friends and the girls I’ve run with in the past.  They are positive.  They cheer each other on and they want the best for each other.  I talk about in this post an article that really helped me to see how important this is for our training!  Talking about what went well together, laughing, smiling, encouraging each other… not only will it help you recover better so you can train hard again (this article talks all about that) but you will help build each other up and see your strengths!

*Along with positive people, run with faster people.  I was scared to death for many years to run with people, let alone faster people.  It took a friend dragging me out the door to finally do it and guess what, it wasn’t scary like I thought it would be.  If I fell behind their pace, it was okay.  If I needed to stop to get a drink or tie my shoe, it was okay.  Chasing after my faster friends is something that really helped me to get faster… at the same time though, remember to do what is right for you!  If your fast running friends are doing a speed workout the day after your long run, stick to your plan.  Join them for the warm-up and cool-down but don’t skip your recovery days etc to join in on their fast days.  Stay with your schedule but on your fast days, try chasing after them.

(Picture from a day where I was chasing these girls and talking about 5 thoughts that help me through speed work)

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*Fast finish long runs.  I am a huge believer in these.  I think that they really are one of the key workouts and one that I noticed helped me to take my racing to the next level.  I talk more about how to do them and why they are so great in this post!

*Experience!!  With each race you will learn more about yourself and what works best for you.  Some people may do best with having even splits throughout a race while others do best with negative splits or even positive splits.  You’ll learn over time how your body responds to different racing strategies, different fuels and hydration, what gear works best for you and what shoes feel the best… this is something I need to practice a bit more with next year.  I need to re-learn what strategies work best for me and what feels the best.  The more races I do, the more I know about what works well and what doesn’t… and one of these days, the perfect marathon day will come around for me;)

*Educate yourself!  If getting fast is your goal, then learn everything you can about it.  Not only did I want to become a running coach to help other runners, I wanted to take the courses for it so I could learn more about running and help my own running too!  Study, read, listen (thank you podcasts… so many great ones) and talk to other runners.  Absorb everything you can to learn about the sport and in my opinion, that can help you to get faster whether it helps you to learn about how to prevent injuries or the best training methods.  Learn it!

*Get a running coach.  I noticed my BIGGEST improvements with speed were when I had a coach.  It is so nice to have an outsiders perspective on your running.  Someone (that is trained) to tell you when to push harder, when to rest and how to fit in the workouts that you need to each week.  It changed my running to have someone that saw the problems in my training and how to fix them (because it’s hard to see them ourselves)!  Having someone to encourage you, challenge you and someone to report back to helped me to get faster!  ALSO KEY for this one… make sure you find someone that matches well with your personality.  Feel free to ‘interview’ a few different coaches and talk to them to get a feeling for their coaching style to find someone that you will mesh well with!  (PS I will be adding to my coaching up in 2018 ((I work with two people currently but will be adding more once we get into some sort of routine with the new baby)).  I talk about in this post how I found my coach and the comments include great ways to find one:)

*Bonus—>  Strength training.  I need to repeat the importance of this one to myself 59283 times because it is the hardest for me but I will and I can this time around:)

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Another reminder that I’ve got a new pregnancy update HERE today!

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What are your tips to get faster as a runner!? What has worked for you?  What hasn’t worked for you?

Have any goals for November?  I want to hear them!!

Do you decorate where you live for Thanksgiving?   

Absolute favorite type of soup (recipes are welcome with open arms)?

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50 comments

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Well, some thoughts about getting faster. First of all, my biggest weakness is what you listed as #1. After some injuries, I’ve struggled with the mental aspect of the running game more than anything, but it’s so huge. I think consistency and having a GOOD coach are my two keys. I love my coach (the fabulous Mary Johnson!) to death as a person and as a coach. I respect her and her guidance, but at the same time she’s completely open to my feedback. OH, and strength training—I actually love this :) OH, and YOGA! Yoga is awesome!!!!! Sometimes those Bikram classes are harder than 10 milers, but they help so much with flexibility and stretching those muscles!
Still debating the lash extensions………I analyzed and drooled over yours in these pics. ha ha ha ha

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HAHA I say go for the lash extensions (I’m a big help ha… I just love them:)! I am SO glad you have such an amazing coach Jen… that makes the biggest difference! Oh I can’t even imagine doing a Bikram class… those sound hardcore!

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I love ham and potato soup! I have been dying for the weather to get cold so that I can make it. I have the recipe printed at home that I will be more than happy to provide if you’re interested :)
I decorate for fall which kind of counts as Thanksgiving right? Living in an apartment doesn’t lend itself to a ton of storage so I try to decorate for seasons instead of holidays with a few holiday pieces thrown in.
Getting a coach really helped my running. I went from not running to running 4 days a week with her. For November, my goal is to actually strength train and be consistent with my runs and diet. Since there’s so many get togethers in November including my boyfriend and his twins birthday (which I’m making a cake for) and Thanksgiving, I’d rather eat healthy leading up to them so I can really enjoy all the treats during the parties.

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Love those tips! My goal for November is definitely to get faster. I haven’t raced since last Thanksgiving (thanks, kidneys), but I signed up for a 10K that’s in December, so I’m officially training toward a race!! I had my first speed workout Tuesday and my first tempo this morning, and I clearly have A LOT of work to do!

I’m honestly not a huge soup person, but every once in a while I like a good potato soup or broccoli cheese soup or chicken tortilla soup (as long as it isn’t spicy).

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Your photos make me love Utah too! I want to plan a ski trip there with my kiddos but the youngest is only two. Thoughts on whether there is enough fun non ski stuff in park city for a toddler plus mama to have fun while the big kiddos ski?

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HEY ELIZABETH!!! Oh I am so excited that you will be coming out to park city! I am not positive about a ton of things going on in PC for toddlers in the winter BUT if there isn’t… you are not far from SLC which offers a LOT of awesome activities for little ones and moms:) It is like a 20 minute drive I think. I’m so excited for you guys! Keep me updated on your plans!

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From your photos I too love Utah! I live on the east coast and have been telling my husband now for a year (how long I’ve been reading, but this is my first comment!) that we need to move there, just need to find new jobs.

My goal for November is to start getting back into a regular running schedule. I had my daughter 6 weeks ago and was only able to run up through about 31 weeks due to ligament pain. I enjoy following your pregnancy particularly since I was just there!

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THANK YOU for reading and for your comment:) Yep, I’ll start finding jobs for you guys and you start packing;) Congrats on your new little girl, that makes me so happy! I am sorry you had the ligament pain so bad… that sounds awful! Keep me updated with how it is all going (and send any newborn tips my way:)! Thanks Abby!

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Love all your insights! My favorite soup is my mom’s chicken corn soup. So easy that even I cooked it once. :) Happy Thursday!

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I need your mom’s recipe! That sounds amazing Nicole!

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Couldn’t agree more with the intervals. I love the winter to work on speed because it forces me to the treadmill which is the best tool for speed work! I like the half mile repeats the best. Put a good playlist together and enjoy!

November/winter running goals – Work on speed
November/winter non-running goals – Work on my skincare routine. Summer destroys my skin .. All sorts of sun spots/etc. and I really want to be better about taking care of it!

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Oh my gosh… this post is just what I needed! I’m in the “in between” stage of running. I had a half marathon in October, and marathon training won’t actually start for a few weeks yet (I’ll be running the LA marathon for the 4th time in March :) ). I am really hoping for a specific time, so I know these tips are important and they work! I always have a faster race when I do more hill running! And, when I am consistent with strength training and cross training (yoga, pilates, elliptical) that keeps me from having issues/injuries from creeping up too! Perfect timing for this post :)
I love soups! All kinds. But I think my favorite would have to be chicken tortilla soup! And, now that it finally feels a little like fall out here, I can start making soup again :)
I love seeing your all of your pictures this time of year! Utah is so beautiful!
Have a great day! :)

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Oh I am so excited for you to run the LA marathon… that is definitely on my bucket list! Keep me updated with how your training is going Wendy (and way to go on your half last month! I need to have some chicken tortilla soup asap! THANKS WENDY and I hope your day is great too!

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Got faster: Strengthened my glutes and core. Unlocked my hips.

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Posts like this are my favourite HRG posts, thank you so much for the real and so very useful tips (I spent the last ten mile of a half marathon in October imagining Janae yelling at me to pump my arms and it helped, lol!).

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Oh, and HRG Mom’s pre-race pep talk, I read that over and over and even showed it to the hubs and told him that this is what I want you to say to me when I’m freaking out before a race. :0)
(Sorry for the serial posts, I’m new here.)

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Oh thank you!! CONGRATS on your half marathon this last month… wish I could have been there cheering you on. SO GLAD my mom’s pep talk helped too! Thank you for the comments, I really appreciate it! I hope you are having a great day!

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I’m on week 2 of speed goal, and all of these tips are things I’ve followed so far. They definitely help. Having an experienced runner write out a plan for me based on MY current paces/fitness was so much better than just finding any plan online. Plus, it’s so nice to have her encouragement!

My other goal for November is to have a a#thankfulnovember and tell someone different everyday how thankful I am for them! Gratitude totally changes perspective!

I live in Florida so…it’s still in the 70s here, and will be 80s for the pumpkin race this weekend. #blah. So that means no soup for us right now!

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Way to go on WEEK TWO of your speed goal! Can I join you on your thankful November?! I love that! Enjoy the ice cream Eleanor… that is toasty! Enjoy your pumpkin race this weekend!

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I think my main goal in November is to do 4 runs a week and 2 strength training days. No matter how short or quick, just doing something. My motivation drops around this time of year. I’m also doing a 10k training plan so that’s been fun.

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Those are all such amazing tips for getting faster! Just what I need!! I seem to get stuck running the same pace and lack the drive to push myself for tough workouts! I really need to do more hill repeats for sure! They’re so tough but I always feels 100% more accomplished when I finish them! I’m adding speed work/hill work to my November goals! I’m also working on daily gratitude journaling too! Nothing turns my perspective around as quickly as being grateful! :)

Broccoli and cheese soup is the BEST!! It’s what I order 95% of the time at Panera Bread!

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One of my goals for November is to do some form of self care each day. I’m going through a really stressful period right now, so I figured it would help, even if it’s just a little bit.

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Amen to strength training! I’ve noticed the biggest differences in my running and racing when I’ve been good about strength training. And fitting in those speed work outs. So definitely doing different types of workouts instead of just going out on the same run every day.
Goal for November: go to yoga at least once a week. My work has a yoga teacher who comes in twice a week but I haven’t been as consistent since I hurt my shoulder earlier this year. I went last week for the first time in months and was reminded what a good workout it is. Plus since running and strength stuff tightening me up, it’s nice to add in some good flexibility and stretching (in addition to the strength workout it is. This teacher is HARD! I always end up dripping in sweat at the end of the workout.)

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Great tips! I hope to get faster!
I have a race this Saturday! A half marathon I have never run before, so excited!
And I LOVE the chicken noodle soup from Panera!

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GOOD LUCK LORIBETH!! Let me know how it goes:) Love doing new to me courses!

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Thank you for those tips. I’m struggling with so much of what you said and while i know some of the things you pointed out, i haven’t done them. Fast finish long runs. ok i’m going to do that going into my next race.

What are your tips to get faster as a runner!? What has worked for you? What hasn’t worked for you?
i do not have tips i NEED all the tips b/c i’m kind of getting faster b/c i’m putting more miles in but not really. so far i have added repetition and interval track work but it’s not enough.

Have any goals for November? I want to hear them!!
i have a half marathon PR goal. i’ve only run them twice now – and each time i fall apart mentally at mile 10. my aerobics are fine, but my legs also give out and i mentally come apart. my long runs are never longer than 10 – and i’ve had several strong 9-10 mile runs. but i think i have to do a 12 mile long run. both my husband and ultramarathon friend say i don’t have to. So i’m thinking maybe i just need a fast finish 10 mile run?

my husband also says in at least one of my short runs per week i should be falling apart in pain. pushing myself that is on a tempo. i thought i was doing tempo but maybe i’m not doing it hard enough…?

Do you decorate where you live for Thanksgiving?
no, i do not! we do a bit of Halloween and Christmas, but not Thanksgiving.

Absolute favorite type of soup (recipes are welcome with open arms)?
we also have that same broccoli cheddar soup from Costco. our daughter hates it. it is a little salty and heavy but it’s fine. just not maybe everyday. i’m more into the brothy soups, not thick soups.

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i should also mention i didn’t fuel during the race the first time – and the 2nd time i mistakenly threw away my fuel when i threw away my jacket at the start. whoops. and augh… i hope i don’t make that same mistake in Nov.

3rd time’s a charm?

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Intervals every week definitely helped me get faster. I also started riding my bike on easy days – that kept me from running hard.

I pull out my Fall decorations (pumpkins, leaves, scarecrows) in October and they stay out until I decorate for Christmas.

I like to add tator tots to potato soup – so good that way!

I’ll be thinking of you and your Utah weather next week – we’re on our way back to Hawaii for 2 weeks ;)

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AHHH Back to Hawaii for you… that makes me so happy! Enjoy every second… I want to come visit you this time:) Brilliant idea about tator tots + potato soup! I need to try that. I hope you are having a beautiful day!

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Broccoli cheddar is the best soup ever but I had the squash soup from Panera the other day and it was so good!
That donut looks huge…I’m craving one so bad right now!
Intervals are the best for improving speed in my opinion. When I want to know how my speed is doing, I usually throw a mile time trial in there somewhere – so hard but it’s over quickly!

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I love your tips – and many of them have worked for me. It is so true that consistency and having one run goal at a time does wonders. And yes, it is going to hurt. I ran with my crew for the first time in awhile and I thought I was going to die but on the upside it was my fastest run in 6 months and I didn’t die. For me, I would add that you should be having fun (sometimes it is less fun ) but overall I run because I love to and it brings me joy. If you take a bit of the pressure off yourself and trust that the results will come, they will. The most important thing I learned (and am still learning) is not to compare myself to other runners but against the progress I want to make. Everyone’s running journey is unique.

November running goals – it is my off season – but just to run, to enjoy it and to be consistent. I signed up for a trail race next July already because races sell out quick!

Favourite soups – Butter nut squash soup, carrot ginger and then also clam chowder. Sadly no recipes as sometimes I just get these from Whole foods.

Canadian Thanksgiving was in October – we didn’t decorate – it’s onto Christmas in our retail stores now.

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I LOVE what you said about taking the pressure off of ourselves… SO important! And also what you said about everyone’s journey being unique–> 100% YES!
I need to get to Whole Foods to try these soups, they sound amazing! I hope you are having a great day Kristine!

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I think the thing that has made me faster is running the hills/trails. My house backs up to a park which backs up to the mountain. There is a great switch back, about 1/2 mile long, that goes up the mountain to the Bonneville Shoreline Trail, aka fire break road. Then just running the trails when I get up there which have a lot of rolling hills. I LOVE being up there first of all, and I know that those hills are what have improved my speed. I also do my own fartlek, at the beginning of a song I sprint for 20-30 seconds and then run the rest of the song at regular pace. I know that both of those have improved my speed, but I really enjoy the switchback/hills, not the fartleks so much :)

I love creamy white chili!!!

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“you can’t have it all (right now)” that’s a big one for me too. I love so many different fitness activities whether it’s zumba, yoga, weight training or swimming. Since moving to a smaller town it’s hard to find all those things in one gym and therefore I have also decided to focus on weight training, specifically power lifting. I still do yoga a couple times a week too which helps my weight lifting, but I have definitely noticed as I have put my focus on weightlifting, I am seeing better results.

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PB before a run kills me and banana has started becoming offensive as well. Sunflower seed and almond butters stay down nicely without heartburn.

I’m going to work on swimming this November. I want my cardio up, my body strong, and to stop feeling beat up.

I just made Skinnytaste’s Slow Cooker Butternut Squash Soup and it’s really good. I added more nutmeg than called for. Black bean soup and chicken, white bean, and escarole are some other go-to soups.

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You missed the most important tip for getting faster: when you run, make sure the bottoms of your feet are hitting your butt. My five year old gave me this advice. I can’t wait to try it out at my bed half.
If you want a good soup…chicken tortilla is awesome. The bear creek mix is the best. It’s high in sodium so we limit it to a few times a year.
Flat tires stink! I’m glad your repair place has a kid play area. That has to make it a little easier to deal with.
I’m off to read the baby update.

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BAHAHA I’m going to try that tip tomorrow! Tell your little one thank you for me haha! AHHH I forgot about bear creek mix… so so good! I hope you have a great day tomorrow Lee!

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Love reading your posts! I love trail running and being in a quiet area and your pics from your runs make me jealous! Utah looks beautiful-I’m from the PNW and keep wanting to go down there. Anyway, I’ve really found that consistency and repetition have made me a faster runner. I only really started running about 2 years ago and my mile times have gone from 10 to 8 really just by running consistently and throwing in speed work, strength every once in a while and always having a longer run on Saturdays. Its a necessity for my week :) Its true practice makes perfect!

Anyway, I love love love soup especially in the fall and winter. UGH its the best! Some of my favs are butternut squash carrot (seriously so yummy and perfect for fall) a vegetable soup with lentils and spinach, and of course chili!! Its a must in my household especially in football season. If you need soup inspiration head to pinterest.

Have a great weekend!!

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New York marathon is out :( I am so bummed, but my knee is just too sore for it to be safe. I deferred until next year, will just have to make 2018 an epic comeback. Trying not to think of how much money I wasted, sigh. This weekend is gonna be hard…

You had to miss Boston one year, right? What did you do to help yourself get over your regret/disappointment/sadness and move forward? Thanks in advance for any advice!

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so sorry Katie. it happens and good for you for making that call and good luck on that comeback in 2018.

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I really want to focus on eating cleaner this month. I haven’t really seen any progress in my race times or my day to day running… I know you can’t outrun a bad diet, so I need to really stop with all the sweets and focus on getting more protein and veggies! And BTW, that soup sounds delicious! This time of year, chili=the best!

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my husband also goes wild for chili this time of year. he is planning to make batches to freeze and thaw in the coming months…!

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Sweet potato lentil stew from the Kind Life cookbook is ah-mazing on cold days. Highly recommend.

I have a question – have you always been fast and just got faster? Or were you slowish (like me) and really had to work at it? It seems to me that some people have a natural talent for running (as with all other things in life), so it comes easier to them. Interested to know your thoughts.

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i don’t know but i think it is part natural. my husband has long legs and a short torso and when he pushes himself he can run a 6:40 mile with no training ahead of time. his brother who is nearly 2 decades older also runs really fast, even now. i have short legs and a long torso, and i had to train before i could reach that level and even then i can’t sustain it for a 5K like he can. my sister who has the same body as i do runs about the same. i want to guess that it’s physiological but dunno.

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SNOWECHO I would agree with you. I’m not long and lithe. I’m short and hold weight in the trunk area- not “built” for running. I can reach goals but it does NOT come easy.

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Jenee! I NEED that sweet potato lentil stew asap… that sounds amazing!! Would you mind if I answer this question in a post this week? I think it is a great topic and would love to write a post about it. I hope that is okay! Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

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Hey! Here’s the recipe. Let me know if you guys live it:: http://www.vocalvegan.com/lentil-sweet-potato-stew-from-the-kind-diet/

Of course! I’d be really interested to hear your thoughts on it. Hope you’re having a great weekend.

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Um, love it. Lol.

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THANK YOU!!!

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Tips for a faster runner-consistency!!!! My November goal is simply to stick with my training schedule, I have yet to stick with a schedule without skipping more than a few days. Currently I do not decorate because I live with messy roommates but as soon as I have my own place, I am there! Favorite soup……..clam chowder with a million following in second place.

So the BF and I binged Stranger things 2!!! I loved it! I loved the character development but I did see some redundancy with Will being the one to have everything happen to him again (though it flowed with the storyline well) and when the drawings are all over the house it really reminded me of the Christmas lights all over the house from last season, I wish they had found a different way or place to do that so it wasn’t so similar to the first season. But I loved it!!!

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