Tips to Keep Running

Often when I run, the second mile is the hardest. It doesn’t matter how long I am planning on running. It could be 3 miles or 5, but the second mile is ALWAYS the one during which I want to quit. After I make it through the second mile, I usually fall into my pace and really enjoy running.

On one of my last runs I made a mental checklist of things I do/think to just keep running when I want to quit.

It seems to fall into four stages:

1. Avoidance-Instead of acknowledging the fact that I want to quit, I try and distract myself by thinking of other things

-Focus on what I will eat when I get home

-Make a mental list of things I need to do

-Plan my outfit for the day

2. Mantras– These are especially helpful for me when I am running up hills, and I can no longer avoid the thought that quitting would feel really nice

-You quit when you are done-not when you get tired

-This will be the hardest hill

-You have to run for the race

3. Mini Goal making-If a mantra is just not persuasive enough, I try and trick myself into going just a bit further

-Just run to the next stop sign (block, stop light, etc)

-Run up hills and jog down

4. Peer Pressure– When all else fails, the fact that people around me will see me quit (even if they are mowing the lawn and totally not paying attention to me) keeps me going. 

-Why do I want to stop?

I am out of breath? (no), Does anything hurt? (no)

So…there is really no reason to quit

-Those people will think you are a wimp for quitting now, are you even sweating?


Do you have any workout mantras? What do you think about to keep you going when you just want to quit?


200 Rep Challenge

Happy Wednesday!!

Yesterday my mom and I took our bikes out to the Greenway in Raleigh.


The Greenway is a system of bike and walking paths that go through undeveloped parts of Raleigh. According to the Parks and Rec website, the Greenway includes 77 miles of trails! I’m not sure if that includes the parts that are still being developed or not, but still it’s an extensive system.

I rode on the paths a lot while training for the triathlon last summer, and loved being able to do a 20 mile bike ride without too many loops and turn arounds. Whenever I come home, my family and I usually go for a ride or a run on the paths. The weather was amazing yesterday, and it was perfect for about an 8 mile ride.

Unfortunately, this morning was gloomy and rainy. Instead of going outside, I completed a killer workout in my living room.

I love this because it does not require any equipment or much space, but I definitely felt like I got a great workout!

Elliptical Interval Workout

Last night I completed Day1 of Week 4 of the Hundred Push up Challenge. Whew! I really struggled through the second set of 22, but the next two sets weren’t as tough.

Tuesday is traditionally my gym day, and I will usually go to a yoga or spin class. However yesterday I gave short presentations to two classes in the afternoon, so I wanted to look put together and not be wearing workout attire (note: it took me literally five tries to spell “attire” correctly-thank God for spell check). I thought about heading to the gym after my 9 pm meeting, but I just was not in the mood.

Sometimes going to the gym is uninspiring. I look around and wonder why exactly I thought it was a good idea to come and battle it out for a spot at the elliptical (our gyms at UNC are always packed with students in the evenings). So instead of actually working out, I just wrote down the interval workout that I tend to do on the elliptical when I do go to the gym. This workout keeps me so focused on reaching the next level that the miles literally do fly by! I love the fact that it focuses on distance instead of time, so I am not staring at the timer and willing it to speed up. I usually end up doing three to four miles with these intervals, and am sweating like crazy by minute ten. I have only ever done this on the Life Fitness brand elliptical, so you might have to adjust the level to your machine requirements/comfort.

What motivates you to workout?

Sometimes a quick trip to Pinterest can get me going on positive workout vibes, other times it takes a gym buddy (namely Kath)

Thirsty Thursday: Tropical Green Smoothie

Yay we made it to Thursday!

This week was not too busy, but I always look forward to the weekend. 🙂

Yesterday I completed the first of my two scheduled runs of the week

The weather was quite warm, which made the experience a lot more enjoyable. It has been a while since I have run, so it took a while to get back into the groove. The fact that the first .5 miles of my route is a HUGE hill did not help my confidence. Chapel Hill is aptly named to say the least. I my mantra throughout the whole thing was alternately “you just have to make it up this hill” and “just one more big hill to go”. Lying to myself actually helped me a lot 😉 In the end, it wasn’t nearly as bad as I had imagined.

To reward myself for hitting the road, I feasted on this tropical deliciousness:

Tropical Green Smoothie                                  

1 frozen banana

1/2 cup frozen mango and pineapple

1/2 cup of orange juice

1/2 cup water

2 handfuls of spinach

1 scoop protein powder

Blend up and enjoy. If you are not worried about sugar count, go ahead and use a whole cup of orange juice instead of just half.

Spring Break Slimdown

Tomorrow kicks off the first day of Spring Break Slimdown (SBS)!!

Spring break is only four weeks away for me, so I think it’s a great time to really pump up my normal exercise routine. I am so excited to share three different exercises: all-bodyweight and require no equipment, gym, or even much space (so you have no excuse not to participate!). I made three printables that target arms, legs, and abs; you can see them below or check out my new Simply Workouts page.

You can use these exercises however works best for you. The number of reps, times per week, and intensity should vary based on your strength, injuries, and experience working out.

This is what I am going to do:

-I will rotate through the exercises twice each week for six total workouts. For example I might do arms on Monday and Thursday, legs on Tuesday and Friday, and abs on Wednesday and Saturday. That leaves me with one rest day. I can’t overemphasize the importance of giving your body a rest day!

-I plan on completing these workouts as High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). HIIT workouts are great because they get your heart rate up really fast and torch calories. In order to make these exercises into HIIT, I will complete as many reps as I can in 50 seconds and then have a 10 second break between moves.  I will do 2 or 3 sets for a 12-18 minute killer workout.

Some of the moves are self explanatory with the pictures-some are not. I have tried to make everything as clear as I can, but if you ever have questions please shoot me an email at recimplicity at gmail dot com.