Marathon Nutrition & I Am Funny Running Shirt GIVEAWAY

Need to get this off my chest but in about 9 weeks I will be running the NYC MARATHON! I can’t believe how little time there is left and how fast its all going. I could not be more excited for the rest of my training and for November, but this is seriously making me want to bite all my nails off due to my nervousness… 66 days?!!

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As we get closer to marathon day, I’ve been extra careful about what foods I’m putting in my body. Nothing fried or processed, whole grains only, and a healthy mix of carbs, protein, and healthy fats. I’ve also upped my salad quota and have really cut back on sweets. I have a deadly sweet tooth so this has been the hardest part, but I found that a few graham crackers or some Talenti sorbet are satisfying my cravings as much as chocolate did.

Now, I’m not totally depriving myself but I’m being smarter. If I want a slice of pizza, then the rest of the day I am eating extra smart and healthy because I know I’ll be eating the pizza (which I LOVE for nights before a long run). Also, with all the running and cross-training, its not the calories I’m so concerned with as the quality. I’m eating REAL food and eating clean, and feeling SO much better inside and out (i.e. my skin has been wayyy better since dedicating myself to this)!

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Source: Natalie Dee

 Another point on clean eating, really read the ingredients in the food you eat. If you can’t pronounce it, don’t eat it. If there’s more ingredients listed than words in that Game of Thrones book you are reading, don’t eat it. An example is the beloved Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks, which just made its comeback (way before fall, I might add. But I digress..). I hate to ruin it for you but this drink is FILLED with sugar and artificial/harmful things, but if you are like me you still want to drink this deliciousness. Anything can be made with real ingredients, so here’s the healthy way to make your own PSL..

Source: Food Babe

Source: Food Babe and 100 Days of Real Food

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I AM FUNNY RUNNING SHIRTS REVIEW & GIVEAWAY

 Disclaimer: I received this shirt free of charge. All opinions expressed are 100% my own. I really, really love this shirt.

One thing you may know about me is that I pretty much wear exclusively workout gear and have more running shoes than all my other shoes combined. My regular people clothing is lacking in comparison, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. So cue my new absolute favorite running shirt made by I Am brand (I Am Funny Shirts).

I Am Funny Running Shirts

I Am Funny Running Shirts

Not only is this shirt a perfect ode to one of my favorite movies, Pitch Perfect, but it could not be more appropriate for someone who is training for a marathon. I mean really, PLEASE put be down for cardio.. I’m addicted :)

Some great features of this shirt (and all shirts by this brand):

-Made of a tri-blend fabric of 50% cotton, 25% polyester, and 25% rayon. Its truly the softest running shirt I own, I could wear it all day long and sleep in it. SO comfortable.
-The ink is dyed into the fabric (instead of on top), so it doesn’t feel like a giant, stiff sticker on your chest like other printed shirts can. It is one with the shirt due to their unique hand-printing process. They also hold up in the wash amazingly (didn’t shrink or get stiff!).
-Comes in variety of styles (racerback, t-shirt, etc) and colors.
-There are SO many varieties to chose from, and all of the running shirts are hysterical. You really can’t go wrong.
-They are printed in the USA.

Some other shirts

Some other shirts

I have worn this shirt just around, during crosstraining like cycling and lifting, and also on several runs (short and medium length runs). Don’t worry I’ve washed it in between wears, I promise ;) It is amazing to work out in and doesn’t hold in sweat that weighs you down like other shirts. The tri-blend is great at doing this but maintaining the softness of the material, which I really love. So feel free to sweat it up in this top! I wore it recently on a 85 degree run at the beach with NO shade, and it was amazing.

I also love the length of the racerback top. Its not too short or long, its actually just perfect and the length that I love. I really hate short shirts for working out, and I am super thrilled with the length of this.

Post-workout!

Post-workout!

**I have hopefully shown you how much I love this shirt, so here’s a surprise for all my readers. I Am Funny Shirts is offering all readers a 20% discount with the coupon code: RUNLIKEAGIRL (note: spelled with an “i”). ***

But the fun doesn’t stop there. The great people at I Am Funny Running Shirts has offer to give away one reader a shirt of their choice! There are so many funny, unique shirts to choose from so it won’t be easy for the winner to pick! Enter below via Rafflecopter. The giveaway will be open until 11:59pm EST on September 2nd and then I will chose a winner! Good luck :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I Am Brand social media:
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Filed under 2014 NYC Marathon, food, product review, TCS NYC Marathon

Marathon Training: Week 8 Recap

Its already week 8 in marathon training for the 2014 NYC Marathon! Ah, I really can’t believe its going so fast.. although to be honest theres still lots of time (and running, sore muscles, sweating, and early mornings) to go. As you can tell in my weekly recap, I’m also really dedicated to crosstraining and strength training, for the whole body because lets face it everything in the body is connected. You can’t just work out your legs and forget your upper body and core.. it all needs to be strong to finish 26.2! Plus, its helping me to keep the motivation to get this body wedding ready :)

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Monday: 4 mile run

I was on Staten Island for a bit so I decided to take advantage of it and run in a place I don’t usually get the opportunity to. So, I stopped at the boardwalk and set off for my 4 mile run. As it turns out, it was HOT out that afternoon and there is pretty much not a tree in sight on the boardwalk to give you a sliver of shade. So, basically this was brutal and I may or may not have run through the children’s sprinklers as I mentally convinced myself to finish this run :) Overall though it was still worth it to suffer in the heat to run in a different place, and to seriously get my sweat on. Plus the views aren’t too shabby either and get me REALLY excited to run NY!

Staten Island Boardwalk

Staten Island Boardwalk. Hello to the bridge I’ll run over in November!

Tuesday: Strength/crosstraining

As I said, crosstraining and I have become friends. I did a total of 45 minutes of cardio between the elliptical and stationary bike while catching up on reading the third book in the Game of Thrones series (these books are totally getting me through all this training). I also decided it was leg day so I broke out the sliders and did more squats and lunges than I have in quite some time. I also use resistance bands and weights to try and build muscle to help me improve my running up those hills!

Wednesday: 3 mile run + 2-3 mile walk + core workout

I met up with the lovely Katherine (who got married this weekend!) for a 3 mile run around downtown Manhattan. The run went well and its always great to have some company. After the run we decided to chat a bit and walk around the neighborhood, followed by me walking home over the Brooklyn Bridge. Since I don’t go back to work until Sept 2nd, I figured why not?! What else am I rushing home to do. So I walked and it was lovely. When I got back I also decided to throw in a quick ab/core workout just for the cherry on top of such an active day!

NYC view.

NYC view.

Thursday&Friday: Strength/crosstraining (Plus 5 or so mile walk Thursday).

These two days was another workout day filled with elliptical and cycling. Thursday after cardio and a quick back/chest workout, I met up with Katherine again for a nice long walk. We walked across the Brooklyn Bridge and then around the neighborhood for 2 hours or so , and then I walked the Brooklyn Bridge home again from Manhattan. It was such a nice day out, not too hot at all, so I really enjoyed the walk. A mild summer = a happy Megan! And on Friday after cardio I threw in an intense arm/upper body workout and some more core/abs. It was a really good workout on both days.. thankful for the sunshine!

Brooklyn Bridge view from my walk.

Brooklyn Bridge view from my walk.

Saturday: 12 mile long run + 2 mile walk

On Saturday it was long run day, and I was nervous to say the least! I am still sorting out my fuel for long runs (this day I tried raisins.. not bad!). I met up with Katherine for a few miles of the run, but since she was getting married THAT DAY I excused her of any further distance ;) I ran across the bridge and then up/down the West Side running path which I always enjoy. Luckily it wasn’t too sunny so the heat didn’t kill me. But for some reason this run was tougher than my 11 miler last weekend. I really had to will myself through it and I just felt more sore/tired than any previous run. But I pushed through and took inspiration from the other runners out there.. thanks, whoever you all are for getting me through the run! After 12 miles, I really needed to loosen up my legs so I walked back to Brooklyn from Manhattan. It was definitely a good decision and my legs appreciated the walk.

12 miles!

12 miles!

Locks and ribbons on the Brooklyn Bridge

Locks and ribbons on the Brooklyn Bridge

Sunday: Rest!

Last week was a fun one for training and I am feeling stronger every day. I really can’t wait to run in cooler weather not only because I am not really a summer runner (not surprising!), but it also means marathon day is getting closer which is SO exciting! On to week 9!

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Saturday night I also got to go to the wedding of my very very good friend (and running buddy I talked about above) Katherine! She made the most beautiful bride and I couldn’t be happier for her. I could not have gotten this far in my training without her and I am thankful to have such a great friend. Also the dancing at her party was like a second workout for my legs after my long run.. so awesome! Congrats Katherine (who is also a personal trainer, NYC!) and her  husband Jesse.. amazing couple!

Katherine and I at her wedding. SUCH a beautiful bride :)

Katherine and I at her wedding. SUCH a beautiful bride :)

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What races are you training for?
How did your workouts go last week?

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Filed under 2014 NYC Marathon, crosstraining, exercises, NYCM, summer running, TCS NYC Marathon

Mini Summer Vacation & Eating Clean {Matcha Powder}

I love summer, and now that the school I work at is on break, I have off of work until September which is just a beautiful thing. My plan with all this free time includes lots of running, crosstraining, and strengthening (just exercise in general), continuing to read the “A Song of Fire and Ice” series aka Game of Thrones, and exploring new recipes and foods. I’ll get back to food in a bit at the end of this post. In addition to everything else, relaxation is on the list for the rest of the summer! So to celebrate, we went for a 4 day weekend to Lake George, NY last weekend for some R&R. And a third “R” for running, for me :)

Lake George, NY

Lake George, NY

Lake George NY

Lake George NY

It ended up being cooler up in Lake George than we would have liked and we didn’t really have any true warm days, but it was just so nice to be away that I didn’t even mind that much. We just had to nix some of the bead lounging that we had planned because of the weather. Oh well! Its warm in NY now so I can get plenty of that. But in Lake George there was plenty of mini golf. I mean, we went to town with mini golf and played an embarrassing amount of games.

Mini Golf

Mini Golf

Now, running is more my sport and softball was when I was younger. I am not a golf person nor do I have the patience for putting. But these mini golf courses were super fun and I even got a hole in one! I know people do this all the time but I NEVER do, I really stink at this game. So it was kind of a big deal and I may or may not have celebrated way too much.

Hole in one!

Hole in one!

In addition to mini golf, one day we also rented a speedboat and spent the day riding around on the lake in it. Karl drove for the most part and I held on for dear life. About mid-day we had to stop at the dock and buy some sweatshirts because it was freezing out there on the lake, I totally did not expect having to bundle up on my summer vacation. But that didn’t stop us from hooking up a tube to the back of the boat and doing some amazing tubing! It honestly was warmer in the lake than it was outside of the lake on the boat so that part was fun. But I’m a baby so I thought tubing would be too much for me, but it was SO much fun I went on several times.

I'm on a boat!

I’m on a boat!

Me on the tube!

Me on the tube!

During my stay in Lake George, I also had an 11 mile long run on my NYC Marathon training schedule. The cooler weather turned out to be a blessing for my long run. It was a cool, damp morning with a mist in the air so I got to wear running capris, which I always prefer to shorts. I ran through the town and then down local streets around the lake. Since I was in the Adirondacks it was quite hilly throughout the run but I figure that’s good preparation for all the bridges during the marathon. It was also nice to run in a new place, take in the scenery, and stay cool from the mist in the air!

There weren’t too many other runners out that day so it was me and the roads. Everyone was so polite, too on the streets and the cars stayed out of your way which was a nice change from Brooklyn and Manhattan drivers:)

LG5

It was a nice trip up to Lake George but I’m happy to get to spend some time now in Brooklyn just relaxing and enjoying the rest of the summer. I also have a Brad Paisley concert coming up and another wedding which I know is going to be a ton of fun. So Summer 2014 still has lots in store for me :)

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In addition to lots of exercise and running in prep for the NYC Marathon, I’m also dedicating to eating clean and eating smart. Yes I will occasionally enjoy a hamburger from Shake Shack or some chocolatey dessert, because lets be real those things are awesome. But most of the time I’m sticking to healthy eating and making smart decisions. Recently, I was presented the opportunity to try out Matcha Green Tea powder from Kiss Me Organics to include in my smoothies and I decided to give it a try.

All you need is 1/2-1 tsp a day to get the benefits that are similar to green tea but really amped up, because it is the whole leaf that you ingest rather than green tea where you just brew the water. So just one bag of this stuff will last quite a while since you only need a little bit for a serving.

Matcha Green Tea

Matcha Green Tea

Some of the benefits reported to come for Matcha include:

-Very high in antioxidants
-Loaded with catechin, which has cancer-fighting properties
-Can boost memory and concentration
-Increases energy levels and metabolism (“It was found that consuming green tea increased thermogenesis (the body’s rate of burning calories) from 8-10% to 35-43% of daily energy expenditure.”). Hey runners, don’t we all need more energy?!

And with all these benefits, why not try it in your morning smoothie. You don’t need much to get the benefits and there is no weird taste, since it mixes right into your drink. You don’t even taste it but you get all those antioxidants!

I tried out match in a few of my simple smoothies and have been including it every since. I usually have a smoothie with some milk, Vega protein powder, Kiss Me Organics Matcha, a green such as kale or spinach, and some fruit, either a banana or some cherries depending on what I have in the house. These smoothies are SO quick and easy to make, and are very delicious. I love the energy that the Matcha gives me before a workout or to rebuild after a workout. I don’t use it every day just because I don’t make smoothies every day, but I do a few times a week and so far its great! I feel like I get my energy back and honestly you just can’t beat all the antioxidants. If I start making daily smoothies, I think the benefits would be even that much more prominent.

Here’s to clean eating and marathon training…

Smoothie ingredients!

Smoothie ingredients!

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Are you training for a race? How is it going?
How do you eat clean?

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Filed under 2014 NYC Marathon, food, NYCM, product review, summer running, weekend