Friday, April 13, 2012

Skinny Jeans are Actually Functional!

I don't have classes on Thursdays or Fridays this quarter, so because of that, Friday no longer feels the same. But regardless, I'll keep this up (because "Thursday Five" just doesn't have a nice ring to it).

Things I Realized on My Runs This Week

1. Skinny jeans actually have a purpose!

When you bike, you risk getting your pant leg caught in the gears. To avoid this, you could roll up your pant leg, buy fancy and inexpensive reflective Velcro straps (which wrap around the bottom of your pant leg), or wear biking/running tights. Or option #4: wear skinny jeans. We all know that they cling to your legs (they, like tights, contain spandex), so there's little (if any) excess fabric to get caught. So why not use this to your advantage? (Though please don't use your mode of transportation as an excuse to wear these all of the time.)

2. Despite any flavor labeling, Honey Stinger Energy Gel tastes like honey.

I normally use the Clif Shot Gel on my long runs. I have no problem with the taste, they're easy to open (even in the cold -- just use your teeth), and can be consumed while running. Whole Foods seems to be the only store around here that stocks them, so you can imagine my disappointment when I went there and saw that they were out of stock. However, they happened to have Honey Stinger on sale, and after looking at the ingredient list, I decided to give it a try (they're all natural ingredients). I figured that since I like bananas, the banana flavor would be a good one to try. After trying it, I thought that there was too much honey flavor and not enough banana flavor. Don't get me wrong, I love honey. But that much honey is too sweet for my liking.

(Note: I recently found the Clif Gels at Fred Meyer. Back in business!)

3. The hardest step is the one out the front door.

Yesterday, I was lacking motivation to do my training run. I just wasn't feeling it. Not to mention that I just want this marathon to be a distant memory (between the IT Band, piriformis, and Achilles tendonitis). Once I got moving, it was better (well, after I warmed up), but getting myself outside was tough (even though the weather was fine).

4. Perhaps training in tights and extra layers helps one race faster.

Extra layers means extra weight. And extra weight has been shown to make runners slower. By my logic, extra layers would cause one to run slower. But correct me if I'm wrong.

5. If I run the first loop counterclockwise and run the second loop clockwise, it'll all balance out.

I finished a loop around the waterfront and thought to myself, "Why don't I switch it up and run the second loop in the opposite direction? That way, each leg will have some time being on the outside, and that'll prevent the muscles in one leg for being stretched/extended more than the other one." While I'm not sure if that actually helped (in terms of muscle extension), it helped to add some variety to the run.

Here's a bonus one (that didn't make the cut for the Friday Five because I didn't realize it while running). I think that because of the magnitude, Chicago is overshadowing Eugene, which is helping make me feel more blasé about Eugene. But it's only 16 days away! Gah! So close!

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