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kaylamunterJust eight months after being diagnosed with Lymphoma, 61-year-old Kayla Munter  is training for the Aramco Half Marathon.   "Running has helped me realize that cancer can't take away who I am," she says. 

Name: Kayla Munter

Major milestone:  I completed my first half marathon at the age of 56 in 2013 with much better time of 2:10:57 thanks to Runcoach.

What is the secret to your success? Put everything you have into your training and stay on track, when race time comes you will be ready. Determination and hard work pays off.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it? Right now I am training for the Aramco Half Marathon in January. My biggest obstacle is the fact I am 61 now and I was diagnosed with Lymphoma in March of this year. After my first doctor's appointment I knew I had to get back to running so I could stay strong physically and mentally to beat cancer! Running has helped me realize that cancer can't take away who I am!

What is the most rewarding part of training? This training season has been hard because of my illness, but every time I complete a run even if I can't do as well as I did a few years ago, I have a feeling of accomplishment. I will complete this half marathon even if my time will never be better than it was in the past.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community? Stick to your running schedule. If you do, the race will be so much better. But you must also listen to your body. If your schedule has you running 9 miles and your body just can't go more than 8 miles, pay attention and stop. Maybe you are just tired that day. You want to push yourself, but not to the point of doing more harm than good.

Never stop moving and never give up no matter what life throws at you.  Runcoach has been absolutely great for me. I do not like to be on a group schedule, so this works perfect for me. I could never have done as well with my previou races without Runcoach.
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Two years ago, Yateesh Mallya would have laughed hard if anyone suggested he run even a half marathon. But he’s come a long way. Last year he ran his first marathon. This year, he ran 3 marathons and 3 half marathons, and completed a duathlon, a 100-mile bike ride, and countless long runs to push through 26.2 on race day. At the 2017 California International Marathon, his courageous pursuit of the most unlikely goal paid off with a 3:27 personal best, ever closer to achieving his goal of someday qualifying for the Boston Marathon.

 His advice?

“Believe in your training, trust your efforts. Hard work does pay off at the end no matter what your goal is.”

yateesh_useName: Yateesh Mallya

Major Milestone: I set a PR of 3:27 at the 2017 California International Marathon, beating last year’s time by 11 minutes. This was my fourth marathon—the third one I’d run this year.

What is the secret to your success? Pacing. I went into the race and stuck with the 3:22 pace group for first half of the race. I pushed ahead for another 10k, slowed a bit for the next 5-K and pushed the final stretch to the finish strong with a chip time of 3:27.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it?  I felt some stomach cramps and slight leg cramps during the race. I took 30 seconds to one minute to let it relax a bit. Then I got back on the course. There hasn't been a race this year where I had a great run without any issues along the way. I’ve been having stomach issues the entire year. I pushed through it just to toe the line and achieve my goal.

What is the most rewarding part of training? The most rewarding part of this training has been to get the results despite all odds. I've had great support from Runcoach with their amazing training plans which are custom made to suit your specific needs and races for the year.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community? Stick with the training. Follow it through. There will be days when you feel under the weather and don't want to do it. Thinking of the journey you have endured so far will help you achieve your goal.

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ashley perrott_familytri_smallOne of the most challenging parts of getting fit is staying healthy and injury free.  Dr. Ashley Perrott  is an Ironman finisher, busy mom, and family medicine physician at Novant Health Salem Family Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. (See photo, left, of Ashley with her parents and brother Brett Miller, our Director of Business Development, at the start of Ironman Florida, which the whole family completed together!) Dr. Perrott is answering some of the most-common questions our users have on staying on track.

One of the biggest mistakes runners and athletes make is that they rush back from injury, and don't give their bodies adequate opportunities to heal, repair, and gradually build back to the level of activity they did before the injury.  This prolongues the healing process, and in some cases, it can cause chronic pain and discomfort. Some athletes, trying to stubbornly run through the pain, end up altering their gait patterns to compensate for the discomfort, and end up with new injuries.

While each injury is as unique as each athlete, most strains, sprains, and soft-tissue injuries follow predictable patterns of recovery and healing. If you have any pain or discomfort that persists or worsens as you exercise, and continues even with two to three days of rest, be sure to see a medical professional to get guidance on the nature of the injury, and the collaborate on a plan for rehabilitation and return to running and other sports you do on a regular basis. 

Below are the typical stages of injury.  Respect each stage, take time to complete it and give your body the opportunity to properly heal so you can come back strong. Remember: you only get ONE chance to recover from an injury.  Don't rush it and end up chronically injured. Here are the general stages you can expect to go through on your road to recovery.
Phase 1: Protection/Acute Inflammation
With a soft-tissue injury, such as a pulled muscle or a twisted ankle, initially the pain, bleeding, and swelling continues through the first two to four days after the initial injury, depending on what type of injury it is. To help reduce discomfort, try over-the-counter NSAIDs and RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation).  Ice the injured area for 10 minutes at a time to decrease the blood flow to the injury, which will decrease the inflammation and pain. Talk with a medical professional about what sorts of precautions—if any—you’ll need to take with daily activities, like walking, taking stairs, etc., and what types of exercise you can do to keep up your cardiovascular health (and sanity!) while you recover.
Phase 2: Transition
This is when repair of the injured tissues gets underway. This can last up to six weeks. During this time, the body is generating new soft tissue to replace what has been damaged. It’s important to avoid NSAIDs at this stage, as studies have shown that this can interfere with the healing process.  To facilitate healing during this time, talk with your doctor about the types of range-of-motion and gentle stretching exercises you can do without interfering with recovery. Inflammatory response and pain should dissipate during this phase.  If chronic or acute pain continues, consult your doctor.
Phase 3: Remodeling
At this stage, new soft tissue stretches and strengthens, but it may not be sufficiently strong enough to return to your normal volume and intensity of activity. Talk with your doctor about what kinds of activities you can safely do to keep up your cardiovascular fitness without interfering with the healing process. 
Phase 4: The Functional Phase.
This phase typically begins about two weeks after the injury, and can it can last up to six months, depending on the severity of the injury, and the success of the previous stages. This is the time that you can start returning to your regular level of activity. At this stage, you can start to work on returning to the sport—without risking re-injury as long as you have clearance from your doctor. Work on increasing strength, endurance, speed, agility, and flexibility under the guidance of a medical professional. Stop if you have any sensations of pain or strain.



marathonEven if you’re not competitive or you’ve never raced, a Turkey Trot is fun way to get the holiday season off to an exhilarating start. Most Thanksgiving day events are fun, non-competitive community events that benefit worthy causes. If you’re a more seasoned runner, you can use the Turkey Trot to test your fitness, or in lieu of a quality workout. Either way, you’ll be able to enjoy all the holiday treats much more knowing that you’ve already made an investment in your health.

  1. Make it a Family (and Friends) Affair. Whether you’re spending the day with family members or friends, a Turkey Trot is something loved ones of all ages, and levels of fitness and experience can savor. After the race, you’ll all have plenty of time for prepare the meal, catch the sports, and relax. The companionship from family and friends can ease any pressure you might feel about the event. And having a family outing helps reduce the stress and the focus on the holiday meal. Some exhilarating outdoor time can ease holiday stress and relieve any guilt you might be feeling about missing out on training.

  1. Dress Well. Wear shirts, shorts, and pants made of technical materials that wick sweat away from the skin. Avoid cotton, which can cause painful chafing. Dress in layers that you can shed as you warm up. If you’re racing in wintry conditions, it’s especially important to cover your fingers, ears, and head.

  2. Set Realistic Expectations. If you’ve been running on a regular basis, look at your training log and consider the paces of your recent workouts to figure out what a realistic finishing time be. If you haven’t been working out regularly, or you’re recovering from hectic travel, don’t sweat the outcome. Consider doing the race as a run/walk or running without your watch. Alternate between walking and bouts of running so that you can sustain an even level of effort from start to finish..  

  3. Fuel Well. There’s no need to carb load for a short race like a 5-K or 10-K. But have a carb-rich snack of foods that give you a boost without upsetting your stomach. Aim for foods that are low in fat and fiber. Bananas, oatmeal, and toast are all great choices. If you’re running in a 5-K, aim for 200 to 300 calories. Drink plenty of water, as dehydration can make even an easy pace feel difficult. Leave plenty of time before the race to hit the bathrooms.

  4. Start Slow, Finish Strong. When everyone around you is running as fast as they can, it can be tough to focus on running at a comfortable pace that feels sustainable for you. It’s easy to get caught up in the adrenalin of the race pack. But if it’s your first race, it’s important to focus on a strong finish that leaves you feeling positive, confident, and excited about racing again.  When the starting gun fires, think about taking the first 5 to 10 minutes of the race to warm up your muscles, shake out any stiffness and pre-race stress, and ease into your own personal feel-great pace. As the race continues, think about gaining strength with each step closer to the end, and finishing feeling strong.

  1. Adjust your schedule. Add your race to your Goals and Results feed, so we can make sure you have the proper spacing between this effort and your next challenging tasks, and “Adjust Schedule” if necessary. Use the unique flexibility of our training platform to stay on track!


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ashley perrott tri mediumOne of the most challenging parts of getting fit is staying healthy and injury free.  Dr. Ashley Perrott  is an Ironman finisher, busy mom, and family medicine physician at Novant Health Salem Family Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. (See photo, left, of Ashley with her parents and brother Brett Miller, our Director of Business Development, at the start of Ironman Florida, which the whole family completed together!) Dr. Perrott is answering some of the most-common questions our users have on staying on track. 

How do you know which aches and pains you can keep exercising through, and which ones should send you running to a doctor?

 


Joint pains are more concerning than muscle pains in general.  Muscle soreness can be expected for 1-2 days after a more intense workout or more intense week of training.  This soreness should improve daily.  Recovery with rest or light workouts after an intense workout can help muscle soreness and stiffness.  Muscle injury lasts longer than this, and may prevent the ability to complete a light workout or even regular activity.  Rest will generally help this pain and soreness.  Any pain that gets worse with activity should prompt the athlete to reduce speed/intensity to avoid injury.  Muscle pain or weakness that persists despite rest is a reason to see your MD.

Joint or bone pain, swelling, or redness may represent more significant injury.  Certainly a specific episode of injury (rolling ankle, falling, tripping) that causes deformity should prompt an evaluation at the MD in some fashion.  Joint pain is worse with pressure on that joint even at rest.  Patients may complain of pain with standing, sitting, or laying down.  Instability is another concerning sign/symptom.  if a joint “gives out” or “catches” with activity it’s something that we would like to see.

In general an increase of more than 10% mileage or intensity per week can be associated with more injury.   

Have a question about staying healthy and injury free? Contact Us. 






workermountainJoyful as the holiday season can be, the weeks between Thanksgiving and the New Year can be a challenging time for anyone who is trying to make healthy lifestyle changes. With the raft of holiday parties and the onslaught of indulgent treats, it can be tough to keep your healthy eating habits on track. And with less daylight, tough weather conditions, and a tornado of holiday-related errands and festivities, it gets tough to find the time for regular workouts. Luckily there are things you can do to keep yourself on track, and emerge triumphant by the time January 1 comes along. 

Use these 4 tips to set yourself up for success this holiday season.

Embrace the mini-workout. With the ever-growing to do list it can be tough to find the time for regular exercise you do at other times of year. But you don’t have to make exercise an all-or-nothing proposition. Moving every day—even for a few minutes—will give you the energy and clarity you need to stay on track. You can split up your workouts into shorter sessions and still get the benefit. Research has shown that splitting a 30-minute workout into three 10-minute sessions delivers the same benefits.

Challenge yourself. You don’t have to set an audacious goal to keep yourself on track. Start small by tracking your steps on a daily basis, and challenging yourself to move just a few steps more each day. Just download the Movecoach app and sync your favorite training device, and your daily steps will automatically upload into the Movecoach app. As the steps add up, you’ll be earning milestones and cool rewards in your company challenge. Learn more about syncing here.

Create some accountability. Fitness is funner with friends.  Invite a friend to join the Movecoach challenge (Click here to learn how)  and meet up for regular movement breaks throughout the day. Go on a lunch-break walk, or set up a walking meeting. Plan to meet a friend for a morning workout. It’s much tougher to press the snooze button when you know someone is waiting for you. Use these tips to encourage friends to move more with you.

Eat well. Eating is probably the trickiest terrain during the holidays. So many treasured holiday traditions revolve around meals, dishes, and desserts, and it can be difficult to avoid indulging. You don’t have to endure the season feeling deprived. Just pick your spots. Enjoy the one to two dishes you really love in reasonable portions, and buffer the indulgent foods with whole healthy foods like fruits, veggies, and whole grains, that nourish your health and give you the energy you need to move more.


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maggieflanaganjpgMaggie  Flanagan

Major milestone: I completed my first Marathon—the 42nd Marine Corps Marathon.

What is the secret to your success? Perseverance

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it? Injuries. I spent tons of money on [doctors]! Illness in the last month leading up to the race meant no training and changing my goals. I switched my race goal. I focused on just finishing, instead of the time goal that my training had indicated was achievable.

What is the most rewarding part of training? The workout sessions that I was able to complete with others. Solo training is such hard work!

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community? Train with others.  Complete all your workout sessions - including strength & conditioning.Be realistic about what you can achieve, but don’t be afraid to change if life gets in the way.

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Name: Rosaleen Dillon


rosaleen dillonMajor milestone:
I finished the 2017 Dublin Marathon in 3:57:32. At the end of June I signed up with my 6 brothers to complete the Dublin Marathon. When I entered my 10-K pace, the estimated time was 4:17. I'm glad to say, that with the help of Runcoach , I finished in 3:57:32. (Thank you Runcoach!) So next year, a 3:55 for BQ [Boston Qualifying Time] for Boston is within my reach!

What is the secret to your success? Stick to the plan, be patient and commit to it.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it? Believe you can! One day, something just clicked, I felt terrible at warm up, but the big workout ended up being the best!

What is the most rewarding part of training? Seeing the improvements and knowing you CAN make it through.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community? Get the daily reminders. It helped keep me focused. But knowing my weekly schedule helped me arrange my runs with work, kids, etcI loved when my schedule adjusted when I reached a new level of fitness. It gave me encouragement! Also, the coaches are always there to answer questions and give encouragement.  I signed up for Runcoach so that I can keep training. I'm not able to train with a club and Runcoach has helped me in every aspect.

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rc success mitch gottlieb_smallMitchell Gottlieb

Major milestone: Marine Corps Marathon finisher

What is the secret to your success? Make a plan and stick to it.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it? At 55 years old, it was a challenging age to pick up running and decide to run a marathon. Running in the Marine Corps Marathon helped to inspire me on my runs and having my wife push me out the door Monday mornings really helped as well.

What is the most rewarding part of training and the race? Finishing was very rewarding. Running in snow and rain and the look on people's faces as you run by in shorts with a big smile always pumped me up.  Race day was an emotional day. It was 9 days before my 56th birthday. The Marine Corps Marathon honors all Marines who have served to defend our great nation. During the race we ran through Washington, DC and Arlington, Virginia. Running past monuments and buildings with such history was uplifting. Running through a sea of photos of our fallen soldiers lost in too many senseless wars was heart wrenching. Marines lined much of the course and I tried to shake hands and thank as many as I could.

 It was special to have my family cheering me on from multiple locations along the course. They have supported me for the last six months of training. They motivated me on days when I did not want to run, They worried about me when my long runs ran too long and always tried to get me to stretch. 

The most amazing part of the the race was the final .2 miles. Running up the Marine Corps War Memorial hill with cheering crowds and finally passing the finish line. My medal was presented to me by a Marine and finished off with a salute. I was not sure if I should return the salute but did my best after running 26.2 miles. It was a day I will never forget. I'm already looking forward to another marathon.



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