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rc success_haroldpizzettaName: Harold Pizzetta

Major milestone: I qualified for the Boston Marathon!

What is the secret to your success? Using Runcoach took away the need for me to stress over how to and how much to train.  Runcoach allowed me to focus on enjoying running and racing.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it? Like many, self-doubt and an injury along the way creates a real risk that i would give up on the marathon distance.  My IT band required me to ramp down my running twice while transitioning from half to full.  During the second episode, I was sure that I was not going to achieve marathon distance.  Following the Runcoach schedule brought me back and fully prepared me for the marathon. 

What is the most rewarding part of training? I think back to the transition from half- to full-marathon training.  I was absolutely intimidated by the thought of several 20+ mile Saturday runs.  But, little by little, Runcoach added miles and I held on for the ride.  Reflecting on how far I have come keeps me motivated.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community? Rest days and easy runs are requirements, just as much as hard workouts and long runs.  The easy runs helped my up my miles per week without serious injury or over-training. 

Anything else you would like to share? As much as I hate to admit it, I think the speed work suggested by the training plan made a great deal of difference.  Those workouts are the most difficult for me, but worth the effort in the end. I have emailed Runcoach for support and suggestions on a few occasions.  Each time, the support was terrific.  In particular, I got some good advice on adjusting my schedule to deal with an injury.



In addition to helping your company reach its Challenge goal, you can provide a powerful example of how moving more can benefit the mind and the body. Invite your coworkers to join the Movecoach Challenge. Once 5 coworkers you invite join, we’ll send you your Movecoach Ambassador gear.

On your mobile device:

1. Tap the Me icon (on the bottom-left corner of your phone screen).
2. Select "More."
3. Select "Invite Coworkers."
4. Send your coworkers an invitation to join Movecoach.

From the web, on a computer:

1. Login.
2. Click on the arrow next to your profile photo on the upper right-hand corner of the screen.
3. Select "Invite Coworkers" from the drop-down menu. 

Click here for tips on how to help a coworker start exercising regularly and stick with it. 

Any questions? Contact us.



Tips for Race Week

September 28, 2017

 

After sacrificing so much time, energy, and sweat to train for your race, the stress in the days before the event can feel overwhelming.

It is easy to get caught up in worrying about what you can’t control—factors like the weather, or how well your training went. But that’s not a good use of your emotional energy.

Focus instead on the many other factors within your control that can make or break your race.

Take the steps below to stress less on race week and arrive at the starting line feeling fit, fresh, and ready to run your best.


Hydrate. Dehydration can sap your performance, and make any pace feel harder. Prevent dehydration by consuming plenty of fluids  in the days before the race.  Aim to consume half your body weight in ounces each day. So if you weigh 160 pounds, try to drink 80 ounces of water or other calorie-free drinks each day. If you weigh 120 pounds, aim for 60 ounces. Sip fluids in small doses throughout the day. Pounding drinks right before a workout, or the race, could cause GI distress.

Eat well. Stick with the foods that have worked well during training and given you a boost without upsetting your stomach. Avoid any new foods or meals with spicy foods in the day before the race—you don’t to risk GI distress. There’s  no need to carb-load for a 5-K or a 10-K. But to ensure that you have plenty of fuel when the starting gun fires, in the days before the race make sure that there are plenty of wholesome carb-rich foods in your meals.

Review the course. Review the race course online, or better yet drive or run on stretches of the course in the days before the race. Take mental notes on where you’ll have to push and where you can cruise. Visualize yourself crossing the finish line feeling composed, strong, and exhilarated.

Get your gear out.  It’s tempting to try something new to honor the special occasion of the big day. But it’s not a good idea. A gear or wardrobe malfunction before or during the race can throw off your focus and end up derailing the day you’ve been preparing so hard for. Plan to race in the shoes, apparel, gear, and gadgets that have been reliable in training.

Review your logistics.  What are your plans for picking up your race packet? How will you get to the race in the morning and get home afterwards? Where will you park? Make a plan, write it down, and stick to it. Spending time to nail down these logistics will help relieve stress on race morning.

Get some rest. Avoid the temptation to cram extra miles or intense workouts in the final days before the race.  Your fitness on race day is the result of the cumulative effect of all the workouts you’ve done over weeks and months. It’s unlikely that any workout you do in the week of the event will propel you to a PR. And by pushing the pace or the mileage right before the race, you risk getting injured, and sidelined from a goal you’ve worked so hard and long to achieve. Use the days before the race to rest, run easy, and get plenty of shuteye. Aim for at least seven hours of sleep per night.

Review your training log. Add up all the miles you logged to train for this big event. Take note of all the times you pushed yourself out the door for a tough workout when you would have rather stayed in. Draw confidence from all that you accomplished on the way to the starting line. Anyone can show up on race day. But it takes months of dedication, sacrifice, and hard work to train for it and get your body and mind into shape to give that race your all. Take some time to reflect on some of the major milestones and highlights of your running life so far—say the first time you completed a mile, ran five miles, broke a new personal best, or hit a pace that once felt impossible. Savor that success. Use those memories, and that pride to fuel your confidence heading into race day.

Review your goals.  Have a few time goals in mind that are realistic based on how your training went. Consider the miles you logged, how healthy you feel, and any aches or pains you may have accumulated along the way. If you set a goal at the outset of training, but work, life, illness or injury got in the way, save that goal for another day. It is far better to go in with a conservative goal and surprise yourself than to go into a race with vaunted unrealistic expectations that ultimately lead to disappointment. In addition to setting time goals, be sure to set consider objectives that aren’t so tied to the numbers on the finish-line clock. You might aim to run up the hills you previously walked, try to perfectly execute your fueling plan, or run each mile within 10 to 20 seconds of the previous mile. Or you might try to do a negative split—that is, finish the second half the race faster than the first half.





Mike Portman ran a blazing 2:53 in his first marathon this year. Now, he's using Runcoach to train for California International Marathon and the Boston Marathon. And he's set his sights on a sub-2:50 finish.


Mike PortmanName: Mike Portman

Major milestone: I finished my first marathon in 2:53 at the 2016 Chicago Marathon. 

What is the secret to your success? To treat training like it is a 24/7 job. That means running, strength, good nutrition, hydration, sleep, and trying to keep your life as stress free as possible.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it? Trying to prioritize what in my life is important that can be delayed till the training program is over. When the volume gets very high I focus on the big things that always need to be taken care of (such as work and family). Other things (like my social life), I push back till my racing has calmed down.

What is the most rewarding part of training? The satisfaction of getting the work done day in and day out.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community? Stick to the plan, but don't be religious about it. The plan itself is solid but training is organic. If you can't hit certain splits, distances, or times once in a while don't be too down on yourself.  Just do what you can day to day and the results will follow.

Anything else you would like to share?  I’m training for the California International Marathon and then the Boston Marathon. Hopefully both will be solid PR's from Chicago! This plan for CIM has been lot harder than Chicago's but that's probably because now I know what I can do and so far my form is coming along. I’m definitely way more prepared than anyone I know currently training for that race. I’m hoping to go sub 2:50 and right now I think that's doable with 10 weeks to go.




In the spotlight: Visa Moves 300,000 Miles Challenge
Stephen Tsoi-A-Sue
Stock Plan Analyst/Human Resources

mc_success_stephenFavorite Fitness Activity: Rock Climbing and Bouldering

What is the secret to your success? Finding an active hobby. That way it feels like you're having fun and not exercising.

What is the biggest obstacle to moving more and how do you overcome it? The biggest obstacle to moving more is finding the time. It's easy to get caught up with work and life in general. I consider my future health and see my actions now as the foundation for a long happy healthy life. With this in mind it's always a priority to get out and do something.

What is the most rewarding part of this challenge? Running more often. I started running again around April of this year, and usually run two to three times per week. I was really into distance running in the past but stopped for some years. It feels good to get back into a rhythm again. I was training for the San Francisco Half Marathon. I was doing runs on my own but the Wednesday runs hosted by Movecoach kept me on track and motivated me to keep training.  I am not training for any events right now but I would like to do another half marathon next year.


Share your Movecoach success story here! 

Click here to join the Visa Moves 300,000 Miles Challenge!

Download the Movecoach Moves Visa App for iPhone or Android.



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chasechallenge2Check out our final tips to run your best at the J.P. Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge San Francisco. (Be sure to look for the Movecoach Team on race day!)

Race day is almost here! Remember to lay low and stay off your feet the days before the race. Your reward is race day itself and
the challenge of running. . . .

Arrival

We recommend arriving to McCovey Cove at least one hour prior to the start of the race. This will allow you enough time to park, find your team and warmup. Go for a 10-20 minute walk or jog 30 minutes prior to the start to prepare your body for the race ahead.

As you warmup, think about what you did, not what you didn’t do in your training. When you go to pick up your race number and run into old friends, family etc. everyone will want to ask about your training so they can tell you about theirs. Forget about theirs and don’t compare yourself to anyone. You followed a terrific training schedule and are well prepared.

Night Before, Day Of

Have a full meal the night before. Try and consume some complex carbohydrates (pasta). Do not over eat, but make sure you fill up.

The Chase Challenge is an evening race, so you’ll want to stay fueled through the morning and taper your intake during the afternoon. If you have a normal pre-race breakfast and lunch, then stick with it. Don't try any new foods before the race. Eat a light lunch of 200-300 Kcal Drink Gatorade (or any sports drink that doesn’t include protein) and/or water frequently to assure you are hydrated (clear urine is a good sign). You should stay well-hydrated throughout the day before the race. At some point prior to the race stop drinking so you can empty your bladder before the start. It is important to refrain from over-consumption of water alone, as that will drain your body of needed electrolytes.

Take a bottle with gatorade/sports drink to the start with you and right before (less than 5 mins) the gun goes off drink 4-8 ounces. This is your first water stop. If you drink close enough to the start you shouldn’t have to pee – the fluid should only drip through your kidneys because most of your resources (blood) will be in your legs and out of your gut as soon as the gun goes off.

Early Miles

We suggest that you start 5-10 seconds per mile slower than your goal pace. By the 2nd mile you should be running at around goal pace while listening to your body. We recommend this approach as it may activate (and utilize) a higher percentage of fat fuel over the first couple miles. Remember we are trying to conserve glycogen and muscle for as long as possible.

Stay on top of hydration. Fluid stations will be located at 4 stations throughout the course. Take note of these opportunities to rehydrate and plan to drink 4-8 ounces every 20 minutes. It is better to consume enough fluid early and sacrifice the later stops if necessary.

Remember the 3 ‘C’s’

Confidence: Have confidence in your ability and your training. Remember all those hard workouts you did. Remember those early mornings, late nights, sore calves, tight hamstrings etc. - they weren’t in jest.

Control: You must relax yourself early in the race. You absolutely must go out under control for the first half of the race. We want to save a little bit for the final miles.

Collection: Keep your thoughts collected and on your objective. There will always be lots of distractions on race day. The further you get in this race the more you need to focus on yourself, goals and race strategy. Don’t let the fans and competitors into your zone.

The Ebb and Flow

We said before that we can’t guarantee anything about the training or the race itself. Well, I can guarantee this: you will feel good at some point and you will feel bad at some point within the race.

Races usually ebb and flow, runners rarely feel terrific the entire way. We always hit little walls. If you hit one just focus on the next mile, don’t think about the end of the race. If you take each difficult moment one mile at a time you will usually feel better at some point. It always comes back because. . .

You Always Have One Cup Left

That’s right – you always have one cup of energy left. The difference is that some people find it and some don’t. Remember what normal, untrained people do when they feel discomfort – they slow down and feel better. You are not a normal un-trained person.

You are a running machine!

You are programmed to give your personal best so. . .

Go get that last cup!

Don’t forget to come see us after the race! 
Swing by the Movecoach tent in McCovey Cove after the race to refuel, hydrate, and celebrate with the Movecoach team!




stepsrunnerWhen you’re pushing your body farther and faster than it’s gone before, details matter. Neglect the seemingly small things—nutrition, recovery, and sleep—and you could set yourself up for a setback. As you prepare for the J.P. Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge, here are some tips to help you stay healthy, get fit, and ready to run your best when the starting gun fires.

Sleep. Sleep deprivation can impact performance and raise your risk of injury. Studies have shown that sleep provides a critical opportunity to recover and heal from tough workouts, and get stronger. It’s the time when the body repairs strained tissue and regenerates bone and muscle so you get stronger. Plus it helps stave off weight gain. Sleep deprivation signals the body to produce more ghrelin—the hunger hormone—and less leptin—which signals that we’re full.

Warm up, cool down, and stretch. Take time before your workouts to do a dynamic warmup routine—watch videos of the moves Movecoach recommends here—to increase running efficiency and range of motion, and decrease risk of injury. These moves will help make you stronger, and prepare your muscles, bones, and joints to push on the final stretch to the finish line.

Hydrate. Studies have shown that even mild dehydration has been shown to make even easy runs feel difficult, and and impair your ability to run at an even pace. Sip small amounts of water throughout each day so that you start each workout well hydrated. Be sure to rehydrate after tough workouts to help aid recovery. When it’s hot outside, or if you’re a particularly salty sweater, reach for low-calorie sports drinks to help replenish your carbs and electrolytes. How do you know if you’re well hydrated? Do the bathroom test. If your urine is pale yellow, then you’re well hydrated. If it’s darker – say the color of apple juice – drink more. If it’s clear, back off. Use thirst as your guide; experts have established that thirst will guide you to water when you need it.

Listen to your body.  Training for a race should help push you out of your comfort zone, but it shouldn’t feel like torture. Some muscle soreness and achiness is normal after pushing yourself farther or faster than you’ve gone before. Rest and cross-train with non-impact activities when you need to. It is far better to take one day off of training to give your body a chance to recover, than to run through pain and turn a minor irritation into a full-blown injury that sidelines you for weeks. If you have pain that persists or worsens as you run, see a medical professional for an evaluation.

We’re looking forward to taking the J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge SFO with you on September 7. You can see more training tips here. And be sure to look for us on race day.  Click here to get to know the Movecoach Team!



runningbuddiesWithout a doubt, one of the best parts of regular exercise is discovering that your body and your mind are stronger, fitter, and more capable than you ever imagined.

Naturally, we want to share those mental and physical benefits with our coworkers, friends, and loved ones.

But if you’ve ever tried it you know—helping someone else move more can be tricky, especially if they’re not already exercising on a regular basis.

Here are 4 tips on how to make help a coworker, friend or loved one start exercising on a regular basis.  

It’s easy to Invite a Coworker to join the Movecoach Challenge. Click here to learn how.

Start with small successes. If you’re well into your fitness journey, it can be easy to forget how frustrating, intimidating, and physically difficult it can be to start an exercise regime.  Try to remember how you felt on those first classes, walks, runs, and trips to the gym. From the gear to the special lingo to the feeling of pushing your muscles and joints in ways they haven’t moved in awhile, there are a lot of emotional and mental barriers to getting started. To increase the chances that your colleague will stick with it, set them up for success. Start with small goals—say a 10-minute walk, or by tracking movement with a step counter—and suggest that they increase their activity goals in baby-step increments. As the person accomplishes these goals, he or she will gain confidence and comfort with the exercise, and soon be eager to start pushing themselves farther and faster.

Start where they are. You didn’t get to where you are now overnight—no one else will either. While you may see that your colleague or friend has the potential to run for 30 minutes, finish a marathon or bike commute to work, understand when saying so that may feel intimidating to to that person. You also don’t want the other person to feel like if he or she starts exercising, that person has to run a marathon, or walk for an hour. Even small levels of effort and periods of exercise have big health benefits. Start with small goals. Once the other person has the experience of exceeding his or her own expectations, he or she will be eager to start raising the bar.

Keep ‘em company. One of the scariest parts of any new experience is going it alone, and not knowing what to do. Offer to keep your friend or colleague company on those first trips to the gym, lunch-break walks, or after-work runs. Let the other person set the pace. Take your workout with your own goals at another time.

Be careful about unsolicited coaching. So many pieces of game-changing advice can make or break your exercise routine—it can be tempting to pour all your good advice on the other person.  But you want to avoid overwhelming the other person with too much information all at once. You also don’t want the person to feel like he or she is “doing it wrong,” or being corrected. Obviously, you want to help the other person steer clear of injury risk—say, by running on the wrong side of the road, or attempting to exercise in old, worn-out, inappropriate shoes. But beyond that, let the other person’s questions lead the way. And when you do share advice, be sure to do it in the context of how you experienced similar struggles and got over them.

Any questions? Write to us at coach@movecoach.com.



Have active friends at your company or know coworkers who want to move more? Invite them to join the Movecoach Challenge.   Here's how:

On your mobile device:

1. Tap the Me icon (on the bottom-left corner of your phone screen).
2. Select "More."
3. Select "Invite Coworkers."
4. Send your coworkers an invitation to join Movecoach.

From the web, on a computer:

1. Login.
2. Click on the arrow next to your profile photo on the upper right-hand corner of the screen.
3. Select "Invite Coworkers" from the drop-down menu. 

Click here for tips on how to help a coworker start exercising regularly and stick with it. 

Any questions? Contact us.



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