Tag Archive: healthy-living

Safety First

On a day earlier this week, my husband arrived home from work which meant it was time for a run. I told him that I was only aiming for a three mile run. As it turned out…

I lied.

As I have done many times in the past I started out on a run only intending to get in three miles or so but if my legs and lungs felt good I kept going. So that three mile run turned into a seven mile run. Quite a big difference in terms of not only distance but time. I don’t carry a phone on my run. I don’t run with a partner or dog. On this particular night since I thought I’d be back before nightfall I wasn’t even wearing anything particularly reflective or bright. I run mostly along rural roads and facing traffic. Almost every one of the handful of cars I saw that night gave me more than enough of a safety cushion when driving past, after which I give the “courtesy nod” or the “courtesy wave”. The “I recognize that you are not an ass-hat and you don’t want me to fear for my safety” nod/wave of appreciation. If there’s enough of a shoulder I run in the grass off of the road because you never know when someone is going to veer a bit because they’re looking at their phone or radio. If there is a sidewalk, I use it. So not to worry. I’m not a completely naive runner who likes to throw caution to the wind.

On this particular run it was completely dark by mile 5. I had been gone for about 50 minutes and honestly expected to see my husband roll around the corner in his vehicle with our son strapped in his car seat for a “let’s go find mommy” joyride at any moment. At mile 6.2 is when it happened. A truck slowed and I knew. My husband had given in to his worry and hunted me down for fear I was in a ditch somewhere and he needed to contemplate how to continue working as a single parent. I think he was overreacting a bit but it’s nice to know he cares.

I apologized and told him I was fine and that I wanted to finish up the last mile or so and I’d see him back at home. Our son was happily along for the ride probably wondering where the final destination would be. I’m sure he was super bummed when they arrived right back where they had started a minute ago. Being in running mode, I immediately cursed myself for not stopping my watch when I stopped to converse with my worry wort husband and knew my pace numbers would be all messed up.

Upon reaching home and acknowledging that I was no longer a lonely spinster bachelorette, but a wife and mother who had responsibilities and a family that needed me, I made a deal with my husband. On my long running days I would bring my phone on an arm band and I would purchase hi-vis yellow gear or wear his military glow belt (because nothing says special like wearing one of these…) if I ran close to sunset or thereafter.

I see what you did there, Army. Touche.

Because, really, runners should do their best to be safe on the roads or trails.

  • Invest in RoadID, or a similar identification tag to alert someone of your identity, emergency contact, and pertinent medical information.
  • Run against traffic; bike with traffic.
  • Lift your knees higher when running on uneven terrain like trails or broken pathways due to roots. This will avoid trips and spills that can lead to rolled ankles, sprains, and breaks.
  • Wear reflective clothing in the evening and early morning.
  • Make sure that if you run with earphones on that they are sensitive to ambient noise, or don’t wear them at all and just let your phone’s speaker be a mini stereo.
  • Make sure you’re adequately hydrated. Nothing messes up a run/ride like lack of water flowing through your system.
  • Buy some runner’s mace and avoid known unsavory neighborhoods. Heck, take some self-defense classes while you’re at it. Probably a good way to burn some extra calories.
  • If you have the opportunity, run with a buddy or your pet. But if your pet is a short legged basset hound please let him just bask his floppy ears in the sun rather than make him accompany you on a 5 mile trek and because his intimidation factor is probably a -2 anyway.
  • ALWAYS make sure someone knows what neighborhood/trail you are running.
  • BE VIGILANT. I don’t mind zoning out on a run because it makes the miles go by faster but that’s not necessarily great for my safety. Make sure you’re looking around if something catches your attention. I always make note of where law enforcement officers live along my routes

Does anyone else have any tips to remain safe while going for a run? Or better yet do you have a story of a close call but you were grateful that you had a safety item that helped you?


Heart & Soleus Review

My new Soleus FIT 1.0 GPS watch came in the mail last Wednesday… just in time to figure out how to use it before marathon training.


My first impressions…


The watch itself is pretty big which is helpful when looking down to see your pace or distance but looks pretty ridiculous on my small wrist. On the bright side, it is adjustable enough will fit very small to pretty large wrists. Straight out of the box it was already charged 50%. If you are really impatient you could head out for a run right away but I couldn’t leave my kiddo so I attached the charging cable (came with the watch) and in 5 hours we were all set to go. I took the time to read the manual and become acquainted with all of the bells and whistles.


I took it on a week’s worth of workouts. And even my husband was brave enough to sport the fluorescent pink watch on one of his runs. Let’s just say it’s easy enough to use that I explained how to get the GPS up and running (so punny) so that my husband was out the door in literally 15 seconds.

The only thing that tripped me up is that if you utilize the back light during the evening hours you can press any button to provide the light, but then you have to press the button you want again to say…. start the chronometer. Yeah, so needless to say there was a run where I had to estimate my mileage because I ran a good distance without realizing that my timer was not… well, timing.


Overall I’d give the Soleus Fit watch an A-. Ease of use: A-. Functionality: A. GPS Accuracy: A- Durability: time will tell. I wish they included the USB upload cable instead of the USB cable since the upload cable also charges the watch (or at least give the option to have one versus the other included in your order and just pay the difference). So now I have to order the upload cable separately and have both. I wish I could compare it with similar watches by Garmin or Nike but I’ve never used them. From what I can tell the Soleus watch shares very similar functions but the Soleus has a lower price. It definitely fits my needs and accurately depicts the information I need for my type of workouts. It doesn’t, however, have an interval timer. Soleus does sell watches that have that function but it’ll cost you a bit more.

I’m definitely happy with my purchase because it’s really helped me keep focused on my trainings and it highlights my improvements. I really love knowing what my pace is so that I can make adjustments during my run rather than realize it after the fact. I feel like I should have hopped aboard the GPS watch train a long time ago! Does anyone else out there have a healthy love affair with their GPS watch or is it just me?

Logging in the miles

I am definitely a person who prefers written communication… take this blog for example… or the fact that I LOVE making lists… so it should come to no surprise that I have found that keeping a log of my workouts, nutrition, and even sleep and mood very beneficial to my training. I recently (like four days ago… yeah, that recently) began using MapMyRun.

Map my Run Dashboard

Map my Run Dashboard

It really gives me a great overall look of how my day looks with an “exercise filter” on. I think it also helps to be more accountable for your exercises and what goes into your body when you have to log it in and see it staring back at you. It gives me an opportunity to be competitive with myself or even competitive with friends since it allows you to connect to social media and posts the details of your run. It stinks seeing days where you haven’t logged a workout or you went slightly overboard on your caloric intake because it was someone’s birthday at the office. This definitely contributes to my daily motivation.

Any other people who use a log to help keep track of what they do? What other ways do you keep yourself accountable?

We’ve all been there. That rough patch in our daily routines where you don’t do what you ought to. And the habit sticks around like a bad cold.

For the last week, I’ve been eating horribly. More sugar than normal. More processed foods than normal. The only reason I can think of is that I’ve been a bit more stressed out lately. We’ve been on the search for a new place to live (kind of important) and some other personal stuff. It seems to be piling up and I should be out using running as my therapy instead of stuffing my face and holding on to the frustration and anxiety. I’ve never been a “stress eater” before. I’ve always been more likely to do the opposite. Barely eat at all. That’s just as bad as eating a lot of cruddy foods. I haven’t gained a bunch of weight or anything but I definitely feel sluggish. At least I keep the portions low. That counts for something right? (I am completely aware that I’m kidding myself with that rationalization.) I’m such a sucker for cheese. And carbs. Last night, we ate London Broil (healthy) and broccoli (healthy) with  a little bit of cheese sauce (crud.) So close to having a totally healthy meal.

Let’s continue on with more evidence of my unhealthy eating. I very rarely eat breakfast. I’m just not hungry in the mornings. Generally, I eat two larger meals throughout the day. Not good.

The one bright spot of my eating is that I don’t drink a lot of calories. I usually have water throughout the day. But lately in my phase of non-healthiness I’ve been throwing back the occasional Yoohoo. Yep. It’s official. I’m a 29 year old with the eating habits of a 10 year old. It’s better that I change this now so that I can properly provide my body with the energy required for marathon training.

I continue to chug along with my revamped push-up challenge. I’m up to 55 push-ups today working towards 100 within the next 10 days. No injuries or even soreness right now and I feel like there is a difference. I feel stronger and I swear my biceps are slightly more defined. I’ll do a before and after reveal when I’m all done. It’s not as dramatic as the before and after of say a house or room, but just humor me.

With that, I ask any of my readers if they have any go-to healthy breakfast recipes. I have no allergies so pretty much anything is game. Except cauliflower, but that’s only because I can’t stand the taste. I’ve never tried beets and I hear those are really good for you. Perhaps a smoothie? I’ve never been much of a chef so be gentle. Help me be adventurous! I have a feeling I’m going to be spending much of my day on pinterest looking for recipes.

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