Weekend Challenge

Friday, November 29, 2013

This weekend challenge is a bit of shameless promotion.  :)

Please tune in on Sunday to the Zero Calorie Advent Calendar.  It is the 2nd year I have put this on with Beeca (From Snickers to Marathon) and Christine (Diary of a Dashing Fashionista).  We have upped the anty this year by having a launch party and several in person events.

To make this an even bigger challenge, commit to doing 5 of 7 video workouts each week during December.  Every day there is a new video, so your body will enjoy constantly being pushed in new ways.

The other part of this weekend's challenge is to follow @RODS_Euro on Twitter please.  As the European Regional Direction of Rod's Racing, I am actinvely recruiting people to run, bike, swim, dance, bake, (anything really) for this worthy cause.  We raise the adoption fees for one orphan at a time.  These orphans are special as they all have Down Sydrome.  In about 2 years, we have placed 10 orphans into loving homes and raised $250,000 (~£153,000).  

Want to be challenged even more?  Join us for the London to Cardiff 24 hour race on 31 May, 2014.  We need 8-12 runners and 4 crew member for this 160 mile race.  We are still working on sorting the race entry details for the team members.  You will be commiting to fundraise £160 for Rods (one £ for each mile) before the race too.  The great thing is the £ go a long way in $!  :)  There are  many benefits to being a team member.

I can also use any help I can get with the European Rod's team so if you'd like to be more involved or have some ideas, please get in touch (mollie at rodsracing dot com).  We are currently looking for corporate sponsors too (for exmaple: airline partnership, sport coaching, fitness products for triathlon disciplines, marketing and design services, etc).

Product Review: FlipBelt

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Whenever I go out for a run, I always need to sort out what I want to bring with me versus what I need to bring with me.  (Kind of like packing for a vacation).  Basics are keys, Oyster card, tissues, and my phone in case of minor or major emergencies. I am not the best with technology so if I can I bring my iPod with me too (one day I will learn how to put my iTunes music on my Android phone). Others might might to have water, gloves, gels, or a rain jacket.  Runners will sympathise that once you have figured out what you bare bringing with you, then you have to sort out how you are going to carry it all without getting a cramp, chaffing, or loosing your form.  

FlipBelt is a simple unobtrusive way to carry a few flat, light items with you.  It is simply a tubular band that goes around your waist or hips.  It has 4 slits that allow you to store items easily.  The belt folds over (if items permit) or you can flip it to 'seal' the slits and prevent your stuff from leaving a trail behind you.  There are 8 colors to choose from.  The material is soft and slightly stretchy (a machine washable Spandex-Lycra blend), so it feels comfortable as soon as you put it on.  When my phone, keys, and Oyster card are in it, I can't get the band to flip in half so I was conscious of whether or not anything was falling out of the slits.  In retrospect, I could have turned the belt over so the slits were on the inside (against my body) and therefore less likely to let anything slip.

Running with the FlipBelt was easy.  I barely noticed that I was wearing anything at all.  Nothing was bouncing or pressing into my skin.  It didn't ride up from my hips during my runs either. This might be different if you are wearing slippery material, such as Lycra.  Not only could I wear the Flip belt on runs, but any other time I didn't want to carry a wallet- hiking, skiing, traveling (note: a passport won't fit in the Flipbelt), or at the beach.

It is a simple accessory but sometimes those are the most versatile. Lightweight and machine washable, it is easy to keep in your gym bag or suitcase for your next trip or race.  If you are struggling on how to easily carry what you need on a run or while travelling, give FlipBelt a go!

Flipbelt did not pay me for this review. They graciously sent me this product and all opinions are honest and my own. If you have a product you would like me to review, please contact me: mollie@ptmollie.com.

Quickie Workout #76

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Remember to go for QUALITY over quantity. If you are unclear what the exercise is I am describing, please look for a video or arrange for an in-person tutorial with me.  Please consult your doctor before engaging on any fitness regime.

Don't forget to breathe! Please email me if you want tips on how to make the quickies easier or more challenging (mollie@ptmollie.com)

Warm  up- 1 min Hop-hop-squat, 1 min walking lunges, 30 sec run in place,30 sec run in place with high knees
1 min- Walking side squats-keep bum low and stay in 1 direction.
1 min- Wall sit
1 min- Walking side squats-keep bum low and walk in other direction.
1 min- Push/Press ups
1 min- Russian twists
1 min- Toe touches
30 sec each side- Side plank
1 min- Prisoner squats
1 min each leg- Arabesques- Keep toe pointed and leg straight
1 min- Jumping jacks/Star jumps
1 min- Lateral raises

Weekend Challenge #onebigfatrun

Friday, November 22, 2013

One Big Fat Run in November is on Sunday.  All you need to do (no matter what you size) is to go for a 5K run.  Then let the world know with #onebigfatrun.  It is the brainchild of The Fat Girl's Guide to Running (aka Julie).

I'll be running my 5K Sunday morning around SE London.  Feel free to cheer me on!

Quickie Workout #75

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Remember to go for QUALITY over quantity. If you are unclear what the exercise is I am describing, please look for a video or arrange for an in-person tutorial with me.  Please consult your doctor before engaging on any fitness regime.

Don't forget to breathe! Please email me if you want tips on how to make the quickies easier or more challenging (mollie@ptmollie.com)

Warm  up- 1 min grapevine with arms lifted above head, 1 min mountain climbers, 1 min jump squats
1 min- Burpees
1 min- Plyo lunges
1 min- Supermans
1 min- Tricep push/press ups- bend elbows so they point back to your bum and arms are in alignment with your body
1 min- Jumping jacks/Star jumps
1 min- Reverse lunges
30 sec each side- Side crunch- lay on back with knees bent and feet on ground. Drop knees to one side while keeping shoulders flat on the ground.  Place fingers on your temple with elbows wide.  Crunch up while looking at ceiling to avoid pulling on your neck.
1 min- Leg lifts
1 min- Plank- lift one foot 6 inches off of the ground and count to 10. Then switch.
1 min- Bicycle crunches
1 min- Mountain climbers

Weekend Challenge: #Challenge38

Friday, November 15, 2013

Over on Facebook, I have a public group that challenges member to get in 38 minutes of exercise a week. It breaks down to:
30 min cardio (any form)
4 min of ab exercises
4 min push/press ups

This weekend, take it up a notch by getting in your 38 minutes of exercise over the next weekend.  Feel free to divide it up so it works for you.  Or set aside an hour, and get it over and done with.

Tweet me (@PTMollie) post-workout photos with #Challenge38.  Let's get the community inspired and show 'em how it is done.

#bikepledge Live and let live (for cyclists and drivers)

Thursday, November 14, 2013

This morning I was saddened and outraged to hear about yet another cyclist's death in London. The incident brings the tally up to 5 people in 9 days to have perished on London's roads.  What is frustrating is the lack of details in news reports of the conditions that lead to the accidents. Was the cyclist wearing a helmet? Bike lights. Reflective gears? Headphones? Was the driver on their mobile phone? Turning? Was the accident at a junction? Roundabout? How can we possibly learn from these tragic mistakes without knowing the probable cause?

Applies to any vehicle, but especially lorries
As a cyclist who has been in an accident or two (all my fault, none involving cars) it petrified me that my husband rides his bike to work now.  He is very conscious and had been. Riding the streets of London for nearly 10 years. But over the last 2 weeks I hate to sen him wheel the bike out of our flat.  The world needs bikes though. Bikes free u p traffic and ease public transport demand.  They release no CO2 and are relatively inexpensive to purchase and maintain. But how can we put a price on the lives of people? Drivers behind the wheels of these cycling accidents have to live each day knowing that they were involved in the death of another human being. 

Should we blame society and big city living for needing to rush everywhere? Run reds lights and text on our phone while driving? Ride between cars and run red lights to get to work 39 seconds faster? How many more people need to DIE before we realize in the grand scheme of things, being a little late is ok as opposed to an ambulance ride or trip to jail?

Today, I am asking you to make a pledge.  Pledge with me that as a cyclist you will:
  • Wear a helmet (important in low speed accidents but can't hurt you in case of something  more severe)
  • Invest in good lights and reflective gear. And then use it.
  • Not wear headphones, text, or make calls while riding your bike no matter how quiet the road is
  • Assume the driver never knows you are there. Be cautious at junctions and in blind spots
  • Say in the cycle lane and not ride between cars
  • Not jump lights
  • Dismount bike and walk on pavement when you feel nervous or confident.
  • Get first aid certified to help out others in need
  • Not to ride at Bow roundabout, Holborn, or Kings Cross until these areas are made safe for cyclists

In order for is to work, we need a partnership with drivers too. No matter what size vehicle you drive please join us in pledging to:
  • Not texting or making calls when driving
  • To accept you are running late rather than jumping amber/red lights
  • Always look for cyclists in your blind spot before turning left or changing lanes, even if there isn't a cycling lane
  • Not driving or parking on bike lanes/cycle super highways
  • Giving oncoming cyclists the right of way when turning right even if you have to wait a few extra seconds
  • Realizing that your vehicle gives you much more protection in an accident than what cyclists have if the same situation were to occur
  • Get first aid certified to help others in need
  • Turn off your radio and pay extra attention at Bow Roundabout, Holborn, and Kings Cross for cyclists to avoid even more deaths
Together we can make the roads safe.  Pledge by leaving your name and city in the comment below.  Share and re-tweet this post to raise awareness. #bikepledge

If these deaths also shake you to the core, you can become more active by following these campaigns for tips on sharing the road, riding/driving safely, and getting the government to take action to keep its citizens safe. 

Sky Ride (guided rides)
Breeze Network (guided rides for women)

Quickie Workout #74

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Remember to go for QUALITY over quantity. If you are unclear what the exercise is I am describing, please look for a video or arrange for an in-person tutorial with me.  Please consult your doctor before engaging on any fitness regime.

Don't forget to breathe! Please email me if you want tips on how to make the quickies easier or more challenging (mollie@ptmollie.com)

Warm  up- 1 min plank (on elbows or on the palms of your hands), 1 min Spiderman crunches (in push/press up position, bring knee to outside of elbow), 1 min mountain climbers
1 min- Extended arm crunch (lay on back with feet on ground. Extend arms above your head on the ground. Crunch up keeping arms next to your ears)
1 min- Russian twist
1 min each side- Side plank (if easy try keeping top leg in the air)
30 sec each direction- Sit on knees/heels.  Raise bum 2 inches off heels.  Make tiny circles clockwise.  Then next 30 sec the other direction.
1 min- Push/Press ups (on knees or toes)
1 min- In press up position on your toes, jump feet it so they are just outside your hands.  Jump them back to starting position.
1 min- Boat pose
1 min each leg- Kneeling on all four's, raise one knee out to the side in a comfortable range of motions, keeping it bent at 90 degrees.  (Think of a male dog and a fire hydrant)
1 min- Roll back and reach
1 min- Plank
1 min- Leg lifts

Weekend Challenge

Friday, November 8, 2013

This week I have been talking to a few people about dietary theories and the different ways people have tried to loose weight.  One common theme in some theories that people have found most successful is 'clean eating.'  For those who don't know, clean eating can be defined as avoiding processed and refined foods.  Some people might only eat food that had less than 5 ingredients.  Others will only eat food that doesn't come in packaging.

Your challenge this weekend is to eat clean.  Either set yourself a challenge for 1 day or 1 meal.  Cook a meal from scratch.  Only drink water.  Avoid chips/crisps.  Remember that this is a weekend challenge and not the end of the world.  Take note of how you feel without sugar.  Do you sleep better? Do you have more  or less energy?

If you need some meal inspiration, check out the recipes on this site. :)

Running in the dark- Go for it!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Autumn has arrived and runners now have to battle cold temps and lack of sunlight for their outdoor runs.  The change of season hopefully won’t affect your training schedule.  Although seasonal changes are a good reminder to periodize your regime, here are some tips for running in the dark so you feel safe and motivated.

·         Find a running buddy – Not only will this get you out of bed at 6:30am but it also will be more fun to have someone to talk to and compete against.  Take turns planning routes and setting Fartleks to keep your training sessions fresh.
Ignore her earbuds!
·         Wear light colours and/or reflective gear – You want cyclists, pedestrians and automobiles to be able to see you.  If they see you, there is less of a chance they will hit you as you cross the street.  Nobody wants to end a run flat out on the ground.
·         Change up the route – Vary the times you run and the routes you take.  It will make your training interesting and will avoid the locals at the pub to expect you to run by at a certain time.
·         Enjoy the sounds of the city – When running it is best to be aware of your surroundings to avoid collisions with those cyclists, pedestrians and automobiles (it is a two-way street, after all).  Leave the MP3 player at home and have a listen to what is around you.  Although the beat might help you stay on pace, you can take this opportunity to focus on your breathing pattern and technique.
·         Stick to populated areas (not dark deserted parks or canals) – Run along main roads that are brightly lit if you are by yourself.  Avoid dark alleys, deserted parks, and unlit canal paths.  If you think you are being followed, run to a public place, like a shop or restaurant, and have a quick rest.
·         Tell a friend where you are going and when you will be back – Just like a blind date with someone you met on the internet, you want to let your flatmate know where you are going on your run and how long you will be.  If you aren’t back by a certain time, they will be able to use that info to retrace your steps.  Hopefully they will never need to do so but if you have an unexpected injury, you will be grateful!
·         Find a local track – Training on a track is fantastic for speed work as well as endurance training.  You will know exactly how far you ran as well as meet others who are passionate about running.  The UK Running Track directory (http://www.runtrackdir.com/) can help you find one.
·         Run to work or after work or during work – Kill two birds with one stone and run to or from work.  It will save you some money and lessen your impact on the environment.  If you are lucky enough to have a shower at work, squeeze in a run mid-day to relieve stress from your morning meeting.

Just because we are in for a long winter, doesn’t mean you need to quit running outdoors.  Hopefully the tips above will help you stay on track.

Quickie Workout #73

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Remember to go for QUALITY over quantity. If you are unclear what the exercise is I am describing, please look for a video or arrange for an in-person tutorial with me.  Please consult your doctor before engaging on any fitness regime.

Don't forget to breathe! Please email me if you want tips on how to make the quickies easier or more challenging (mollie@ptmollie.com)

Warm  up- 1 min prisoner squats, 1 min walking lunges, 1 min jumping jacks/star jumps
1 min- Push/press ups on a counter or wall
1 min-  Squats
30 sec each direction- Small arm circles 
1 min- Calf raises
1 min- Plank with hips twisting
1 min- Hip raises - lay on back with knees bent. Raises hips to create a straight line from knees to shoulders. Drop hips 2-3 cm. Squeeze bum and raise up.
1 min- Plank with feet jumping together and apart.
1 min each leg- Lunges out to the side
1 min- Skip rope (or pretend by jumping up and down)
1 min- Reverse lunge with lateral raise
1 min- Crab tricep dips

Weekend Challenge

Friday, November 1, 2013

This weekend, I challenge you to not consume any caffeinated beverages.  It will be tough but you can do it!

Instead, get more sleep.

Slow down a bit by leaving your computer off and cell phone on silent.

Take a nap if you need one.