Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Run + Chocolate Milk = Runner's Recovery

Drink Chocolate Milk after your runs and train like there's no finish line.  Running is a part of your life.  So should refueling with chocolate milk.

Just like stretching, it can be pretty easy to forget to refuel after your workouts.  The kids are waiting for you, the laundry needs to be folded and your spouse probably has things they want to scratch off of their to do list, too.  However, just like MAKING the time for your workout, you really need to MAKE time to refuel (and stretch!) after your runs, too.  Your body will thank you later.

An easy way to do this, is prepare your refueling beverage beforehand and have it cold and readily available after your workout.  Keep single servings of chocolate milk in your refrigerator.  This makes them easier to grab and also involves less dishes to load in the dishwasher later!  Pop single servings of chocolate milk in a cooler to enjoy after a "destination run" away from home or for after a race.  Prepare a chocolate milk smoothie in the morning and keep it in the refrigerator, so all you'll need to do is grab it to enjoy when your run is complete.  

Refueling with chocolate milk will also satisfy your sweet tooth and keep you from getting post-run hunger after a grueling workout or long run.  It will keep you satisfied and help you feel fuller longer.  You will be less likely to search the pantry later or raid your kids' snack stash.

How it works:
After a tough workout, chocolate milk helps restore muscles quickly to their peak potential and helps replenish what your body has lost – including fluids and critical nutrients lost in sweat. 
Chocolate milk is a natural choice when it comes to electrolytes, providing many of the same electrolytes that are added to commercial recovery drinks (calcium, potassium, sodium and magnesium) along with fluids to help you rehydrate. In fact, some research suggests milk may help you stay hydrated after exercise, more than some commercial sports drinks.
  • Replacing muscle fuel (glycogen) after exercise is essential to an athlete’s recovery. A recent study found that drinking 16 ounces of fat-free chocolate milk with its mix of carbohydrates and protein (compared to a carbohydrate-only drink with the same amount of calories) led to greater concentration of glycogen in muscles at 30 and 60 minutes post-exercise.1

  • In a study of 13 male college soccer players, post-exercise consumption of lowfat chocolate milk was found to provide equal or possibly superior muscle recovery compared to a high-carbohydrate recovery beverage with the same amount of calories following a four-day period of intensified soccer training.2

  • Drinking lowfat or fat-free milk after exercise could restore hydration better than other popular post-exercise beverages, according to one study. The study compared the rehydration effectiveness of four beverages: lowfat milk, lowfat milk with added sodium, water and a sports drink. After exercise in a warm climate, participants were given one of the four test beverages and the researchers measured hydration status. While all beverages restored hydration status equally, the researchers found that milk may be more effective than water or sports drinks at maintaining normal hydration status after exercise, likely due to milk’s electrolyte content and energy density.3

  • In a second study, the same researchers found that drinking fat-free milk after exercise-induced dehydration restored fluid balance better than a commercial sports drink. The researchers concluded that “milk can be an effective post-exercise rehydration drink, with subjects remaining in net positive fluid balance throughout the recovery period.”4
Drinking milk after exercise can also help replace essential electrolytes that are lost in sweat. These essentials include potassium, sodium, magnesium and calcium. The loss of calcium is of particular concern since research suggests rigorous exercise may cause substantial calcium loss, which could increase the risk of stress fractures.5-7

I'll take a double ...

Marathon training is all about fitting it in - around life!! I got up early on Friday morning morning and drove my car to the restaurant where I was meeting a friend for breakfast. I ran six early miles around two neighborhoods. 

I then enjoyed a nice light breakfast of oatmeal and an english muffin while we had a good chat.  Come to find out that my friend also split her at-home workout in half as well. Great minds think alike! I knew there was a reason we are such good friends!

After breakfast, I headed out from the restaurant for another fourteen miles around town.  I did seven miles out and back, taking the connecting paths through town and parks.  I stopped at the same park twice to refuel with water and used a gel mid-way.  I was starting to chaffe half way through my run and now remembered why I had headed back upstairs to the restroom before I left home ....

I really need to make myself a checklist for things NOT to forget before I endure a long run like that.  The damage didn't end up being terrible.

My last mile-and-a-half ended being along the busiest highway in town.  I had to endure a few stop lights, crossing traffic, running in place like THAT crazy runner, hot sun .... and drivers staring at me.  I always feel like they are gawking and saying "Oh that poor girl looks like she's in pain".  Sometimes, I just want to wear a sign that says "18 miles done - and 2 to go" or something like that. 

Regardless, I got back to my car and felt pretty darn good.  I stretched and enjoyed a cold bottle of water that I had stored in my cooler. 

20 miles done ... and my first ice ice bath, too!  My ice bath was awesome (not terrible!) and I didn't feel the least bit sore the next day.  Amazing - it works!!  This was my third twenty miler for this training sequence and I have just a bit over one month to go until race day.  I also have tons of 10 and 12 milers under my belt and a 14 miler.  I'm feeling confident.

I also refueled with a chocolate milk smoothie.  It made two huge glasses and was my lunch and form of refueling for this run.  It kept me full (even after twenty miles!) all afternoon!

1 cup ice
1/2 cup chocolate milk
1 scoop protein powder
2 small bananas

Learn more about refueling your runs and your workouts with Chocolate Milk.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

CEP Compression Run Socks 2.0 Review & Giveaway

CEP Compression (HERE) sent me a pair of their fabulous Run Socks 2.0 to review.  I have loved wearing CEP products in the past and I love wearing compression socks.  I have a particular pink pair that have been used for long training runs and races and make me feel great.  They've also washed up really well year after training year.  I especially love wearing compression socks this time of year - when the weather is a little cooler.  I love pairing them with a cute running skirt.  I wear them on all of my longer runs and also enjoy the benefits of wearing them after long runs or races.  My legs, feet and ankles always thank me later.

Since I have so many other brightly colored compression socks in my wardrobe, I opted for the black/grey Run Socks 2.0 from CEP.  I wear a womens size 10 running shoe and was sent a size IV (large).  Womens sizes are offered in three sizes.  

I love how you can select men or womens sizes online.  And I really think it's great that the socks define your left sock from your right sock by L and R on each.  It really helps provide additional comfort in all of the right places.  It also prevents bunching in your running shoe.  I know a few of us have suffered from that.

I chose the neutral black pair, but they are also offered in red, pink, blue, and white.

Quality characteristics of the Run Socks 2.0 include:
Filament fiber for extreme durability
Wide top band for a perfect fit

Extra-flat toe seam
Prevents pressure points
Anatomical designs

These socks seem heavier than your average low-cut sock, but they aren't too heavy or bulky.  They also breath really well.  However, I would not sport the black pair on my humid, hot runs during the summer.  The air channels allow the foot to ventilate inside your shoe and the sock wicks moisture away from your body.  I love how the structure of the sock seemed to help support my arch during my runs.

I love how my legs felt fresh each time I wore these.  I really feel they give me more energy for a longer distance event and keep my legs from getting tired, as they improve blood circulation.  Some of my clients have reported a drastic reduction in shin pain when they've worn compression socks as well.  The socks help activate the flow of blood to your muscles.
  • Increased coordination by activating the muscles for a sense of stability and se

One lucky winner will win a pair of
CEP Compression Socks
1 – Become a follower of my blog or already are?!  LEAVE ME A COMMENT
2 – Follow Running Diva Mom on Facebook HERE.  LEAVE ME A COMMENT
3 – Visit the CEP Compression website HERE and tell me what you think is fabulous.  LEAVE ME A COMMENT
4 – Become a fan of CEP Compression on Facebook HERE (and let them know Running Diva Mom sent you!).  LEAVE ME A COMMENT
5 – Post about this giveaway on your blog, Facebook or Twitter (@RunningDivaMom @CEPCOMPRESSION #RunningDivaMom) account. LEAVE ME A COMMENT FOR EACH.
Enter now though Thursday, September 25

[If you would like YOUR product or website featured on Running Diva Mom, please email me at ( runningdivamom at yahoo dot com ) ]

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Sometimes ... all you need is ...

Sometimes ... all you need is ...
to listen to your body
to listen to your aches
to listen to your pains
to allow yourself a break
to take a step back
to enjoy the little things
to appreciate your body
to embrace each step
to enjoy the journey
to miss the run
It will miss you back.
After a hobbling 5K run around my neighborhood on Sunday afternoon, I took a couple of days off.  Twelve minute miles while hobbling on a bum right ankle, forced me to listen to my body.  I rested.  I iced.  I relaxed.  And when I felt better.
I ran ...
and it felt friggin' FANTASTIC!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Foam Rolling: It Hurts So Good

Within the past few years, foam rolling has begun to increase in popularity.  It seems as if every fitness club that you set foot in has multiple foam rollers, from long ones to short ones to the rollers with those weird bumps on them.  How are you supposed to know which one to use? And once youve selected your roller, how do you even use it? 


Before we go into the specifics about foam rolling, its important to understand why foam rolling is beneficial for runners or any active person.  Its all about the adhesions. 

Muscle fibers are intended to be parallel fibers bundled together.  In a normal state, these fibers glide across each other, resulting in muscular movement.  However, when the body overuses certain muscles, small tears begin to accumulate in the muscle.  This is also known as micro trauma.  Your body is always searching for ways to be stable, so it lays down irregular connective tissue where the micro tears are.  The irregular connective tissue, called adhesions, help support the injured muscle quickly but it also comes with its own set of problems.  Adhesions can shorten and weaken the muscle, along with cause pain and restricted range of motion.  An example of this might be those knots in your shoulder that you feel after a long day of computer work.  Adhesions can occur all over your body, especially in the glutes, IT Band and calves for our runners out there!

The good news is that you can break down these adhesions and your body can reabsorb the scar tissue.  But I have to warn you: Stripping down those adhesions can be uncomfortable.  Thats where foam rolling comes into play; the more efficient you are at it, the sooner you can get back to running pain-free.

You might be wondering how someone could possibly need instructions on foam rolling.  But you would be surprised at the amount of people I see at our gym that are actually doing more harm than good with their rolling.  Dont be that person.

Here are some tips for proper foam rolling:

-Apply moderate pressure to a specific muscle/muscle group using the roller and your bodyweight.

- Roll SLOW (about 1 inch per second).  When you find a tender spot, pause for a few seconds and try to relax.  You should feel the muscle release after about 30 seconds.

-Pain isnt always a good indicator.  If a certain area is too tender or doesnt feel as if it is releasing, then roll the areas around it.

 For example: The IT Band should be indirectly treated by rolling the outside of the quads and hamstrings.

- Do not spend more than a minute on each tender spot.  This is not a pain tolerance contest.

- Do not roll on bones or joints.

- Lastly, avoid rolling your lower back or neck.  It can cause your spinal muscles to spasm and then youll have to come see me.

Other than that, foam rolling is a pretty simple concept.  Pick a muscle group, roll it, then move onto the next group.  Be sure to drink plenty of water after, too. 

If youre wondering which foam roller to purchase, just try them all! If youre new to it, then pick a softer one and progress to a denser foam.  If youre looking for more of a massagerather than breaking down adhesions, then go ahead with the rumble rollers. 

If youre local to Sun Prairie, we do sell two types of foam rollers at Noble Choice Chiropractic and we dont mind if you try them out here.  If youre looking for some foam rolling instruction, we can help you out with that too.

Have fun rolling! 

Written by:  Dr. Steph Pinnow of Noble Choice Chiropractic
2410 Montana Ave
Sun Prairie, WI 53590


Noble Choice Chiropractic on Facebook

Business Hours:
  • Mon: 9am - 1pm, 3pm - 6pm
  • Tue: 3pm - 6pm
  • Wed: 9am - 1pm, 3pm - 7pm
  • Thu: 3pm - 6pm
  • Fri: 9am - 1pm

  • Wednesday, September 3, 2014

    Running + Yoga - Starts Sept 18


    Running + Yoga

    30 minute run/walk lead by Running Diva Mom followed by 30 minutes of yoga lead by Gail Konop


    You can
    register for one session ($20) or all three for ($49).
    Thursday, Sept 18, 6-7pm - Thoreau Park, Sun Prairie 
    Thursday, Sept 25, 6-7 pm - Burke Park, Burke 
    Thursday, Oct 2, 6-7 pm - Olbrich Park, Madison

    Register by Sept 15th by email: Jamie Adcock at
    runningdivamom@yahoo.com (via check) or via Eventbrite (via credit card).

    Registration is now open for Fall programs in Sun Prairie!

    Registration is now open for Fall programs in Sun Prairie!
    Ladies Couch to 5K - Starts Wed, Oct 8, 6pm (9 weeks)

    Stroller Couch to 5K - Starts Fri, Oct 10, 9am (9 weeks)

    Speedwork for Runners - Starts Sat, Oct 4, 8am (3 weeks)

    Friday, August 29, 2014

    Little Diva's Dash Fundraiser - a Huge Success!

    Little Diva, Little Dude and I had made a summer bucket list.  We've enjoyed pulling slips of paper out of the sand bucket throughout the past couple of months.  Some things were new experiences for ourselves, some were places to visit, some were free activities and some would require some planning.  But, one item in the bucket wasn't for us - it was for others.  Little Diva stated that she wanted to donate or fundraise for an organization of her choice.

    We chose two organizations together - Girls on the Run of Dane County and the American Family Children's Hospital.  I suggested that I could help her coordinate a family fun run/walk at the end of the summer.  She loves organizing and planning things - just like her mother - so we quickly started working on the details and putting together a Facebook event page.
    We called the event Little Diva's Dash and chose to host it at Orfan Park in Sun Prairie on Sunday, August 17.  This is our favorite park to run an play.
    We suggested a $10 donation for adult participants and encouraged them to bring their children along for free.  We were amazed by all of the cars coming from near and far that morning.  She was ecstatic for the fourty-or-so adults and children that came out for her event.  She accepted their donations at the park shelter (she received many mail in donations as well) and offered raffle tickets to each of the participants. 
    After her effortless speech I teared-up with pride.  We then headed out for an out and back route - some ran, some walked, but all had fun.  It was awesome seeing  so many friends, family, clients - and even strangers - come together to support my Little Diva.

    When we returned back to the shelter, we stretched and enjoyed cupcakes that were purchased by her stepdad.  We also raffled off three prizes.  We would love to make this an annual event, because it was such a positive experience for our family.

    Little Diva's goal was to raise $75 for each organization - $150 total.  She ended up raising a total of $400 after the event and was so proud to deliver these donations in person. 
    A few days later, we visited the Girls on the Run of Dane County headquarters to deliver $200 to Sara, the Executive Director.  Sara mentioned that one or two girls would be able to participate in the program this fall because of Little Diva.  Girls on the Run guides girls through a running program, as they train their body for a local GOTR 5K.  They also share a curriculum with these elementary-aged girls that focuses on social issues, such as:  body image, self-esteem, bullying, and many other topics that I wish I would have had an outlet for years ago.  Little Diva went through the program two years ago herself.
    Little Diva was so excited to receive a beautiful thank you note from the GOTR organization as well as a GOTR t-shirt.  She has been wearing it with pride!
     We then traveled over to the University of Wisconsin Campus to deliver her donation to the American Family Children's Hospital.  She received an overview of what kind of patients stay at the hospital, how long their stay may be, how it effects their school work, their family life and so much more.  We received a tour of the charming, main level of the children's hospital.  We learned that the children's hospital has several teachers employed full time to help long-term patients stay current with their school work.  Little Diva asked a few questions and gave an overview of the event she had organized.  And then she handed over her donation.
     I am so proud of my little girl and her fundraising and organizational efforts this summer.  We want to thank everyone that attended, donated or expressed an interest in her fundraising efforts.

    Thursday, August 28, 2014

    Weekend Miles = Lots of Smiles

    On Saturday, hubby and I had ten miles on tap.  I had taken Friday off to rest and was up for the challenge.  It was EXTREMELY humid (again) and you could see and feel the moisture in the air.  There was a dense fog as far as you could see and everything outside was wet and damp.  I loaded up my handheld water bottle with ice, hoping that it would keep me cool and hydrated for the next hour and a half.

     I had a bowlful of Life cereal before I left the house, and some greek yogurt.  This tends to be the best pre-run breakfast for me.  A little bit of cereal and some yogurt keeps me full, fueled and doesn't give me a sloshy stomach.  We left from home and zig-zagged through Sun Prairie, heading east on an out-and-back course.  I was feeling great and continued to sip on water the entire way. 

    I love running with my husband.  He is one of those friendly runners that says hi to everyone and waves and folks that we pass by.  He waves a runners, walkers, cyclists, folks sitting on their front porch, cars that let us pass at intersections.  It has really made me more conscious of interacting with other people we cross paths with on our routes.  It doesn't take much to smile when you are pushing it hard or give a friendly wave while out on a run.

    On the way home, I put on the Mumford & Sons portion of my playlist and kicked it into gear.  I was feeling so much better than my painful run on Thursday evening.  I didn't encounter any lack of energy or side aches and my breathing was under control.  As I increased my speed the last couple of miles, I really focused on the beat of the music, timed it with my footwork and then focused on my breathing.  I keep my posture high and tried to relax my shoulders and my elbows.

    We clocked in at just under a 9:45 min/mile pace after ten miles was all said and done.  My slowest mile was a 10:14 and my fastest was the last mile of 8:42.  I was pushing it and love seeing those negative splits at the end of a long run.

    It was more humid than ever, and our clothes were drenched.  I was so glad that I wore a tank top.  And I was appreciative that the sun didn't come out for our run.  That could have been brutal.

    We spent the rest of our day enjoying a family dinner and cupcakes, in celebration of both of our mothers who happen to share a birthday on Monday.  My mother in law was staying at our home on Saturday evening.  So we weren't sure what time we would get out for our twenty miles on Sunday.  We really looked forward to turning in early, sleeping and having some coffee with her on our deck on Sunday morning.  The run would follow when time allowed.

    We got up around 7:00 on Sunday morning and enjoyed a pot of coffee on our deck.  The forecast changed from 91 degrees to the lower-to mid 80's.  However, the humidity was going to be at 75%.  There was a nice breeze outside, while we enjoyed our coffee and the sun was still behind the clouds.  It was a beautiful morning, though the humidity was still there.

    Before we were ready for our run, I enjoyed a small bowl of cereal, a piece of toast with honey and a greek yogurt.  I also enjoyed an Advocare Slam, to give me some energy for the twenty miles ahead of me.  We enjoy the power punch flavor and it gives us tons of energy when we needed it.  It also tastes so much better than some of the other energy shots we've tried and goes down smooth.

    I opted for another running skirt, passed on the compression socks (because of the heat, humidity and tan lines) and looked forward to wearing a tank top.  I skipped the Bondi Band and just through my hair in a ponytail and went sans makeup.  I can't seem to wear a Bondi Band when my hair is up.  They only stay in place on my head, when my hair is down.  I wanted my hair up and to be as cool and comfortable as possible.  I also looked forward to going without makeup, because I knew that I as going to be sweating like a sweaty betty and would be constantly wiping my face and the salt out of my eyes. 

    We left from our home and headed to the west side of Sun Prairie.  We had to cross some traffic lights the first couple of miles and hubby had to retie his shoe.  So we lost a few seconds here and there.  We got into a rhythm as we headed out to the Wyndham Hills subdivision.  We conquered some significant hills in that area and then enjoyed a nice down hill the rest of the way.  We stopped at the park to use the restroom around mile five and wiped off, took an energy gel, drank some water and filled up our handheld water bottles.

    Then we were off again.

    We then headed east along Hwy 19 and crossed some more traffic.  We headed out on the paths that connect across town and then towards Orfan Park.  Hubby had a contact problem before we hit the park and we had to stop (and stopped our watches) while he found the contact that was stuck in his eyes.  The sweat and salt didn't help much with this issue.  We got that worked out and then headed through Orfan Park, Liberty Station Park and then on to Stoneridge Park.  At mile 8, the sun came out and was hot - humid as heck - and was beating down on us.  We were slowing down little by little and I was starting to feel warm.  Since I had that bought of heat exhaustion during our last twenty miler, I felt a moment of panic in my head.  We talked about cutting the run short, but then decided to just keep heading out on our planned route.  We would continue to be safe, find shade when we could and do lots of stops for refueling, water and ice.

    We stopped at the nice gas station at Liberty Station and they gave us ice and water from the soda fountain and we toweled off with paper towel in the restrooms.  This really seems to help me.  We headed out refreshed.  I chewed on ice, enjoyed ice cold water and rubbed ice cubes on my neck and arms.

    We ran through Stoneridge Community Park and then out through the Sun Prairie business park.  I started to feel like I was falling apart at this point.  There was no shade and the scenery was - well, boring.  I think we will be avoiding that area for our long runs in the future, as we both agree it was unmotivating.

    We headed through the east side of town and up the hill at Musket Ridge.  We saw a lot of familiar faces out-and-about, from our Saturday run through the same neighborhood.  I chugged up that hill, pumping my arms, and embraced a nice breeze that cooled me down as I neared the top.  We stopped at Carriage Hills Estates Park to refill on water again.  We also consumed another gel.  My husband was starting to feel water logged from all of the water we were consuming to stay hydrated.  

    We continued our run through the neighborhood and then crossed Hwy 19, to stop at a gas station near Angell Park.  The attendant was kind enough to allow us to fill up on more ice.  This was REALLY needed at this point.  We chewed on more ice and then did a slow walk to the stop light.

    We headed again up the boring 3.5+ miles from Cannery Grill to our neighborhood.  This uninspiring route is always pretty boring, but it had to be done to get home.  We encountered rolling hills and more heat and sun.  My legs were not buckling like they normally are on long runs.  Though my right ankle was starting to feel sore (and remained sore for several days after).  My husband was starting to feel really tired, as we stopped at Sheehan Park for even more water and took a break for a minute or two.

    We then ran the last couple of  miles home at our own pace.  We had a non-verbal agreement to just make it home at our own time.  I cranked my tunes and got my breathing and footwork in a rhythm.  He wasn't far behind me.  I calculated that I would need to make an extra mile up somewhere, to get an even twenty miles in before arriving at our back door.  So, I took a turn on a local bike path, while he opted to head home and run/walk the last mile home - to finish with nineteen miles.  My music helped me pick up my pace and my last miles were some of my quickest of the day - 10:51, 10:20 and finally 10:09 miles.

    Twenty miles done for the day.
    Thirty miles done for the weekend.
    I took Monday as a rest day!!

    Friday, August 22, 2014


    It was THAT HUMID last night during our 8 mi run!  STEAMY!!!  I would have quit if it weren't for my hubby - and Mumford and Sons - pushing me!!  I brought out the Lamaze breathing techniques for the second half, too. If I can endure childbirth without pain medication, I can do anything.  Pain is pain ... and pain will go away.  It's temporary. 
    Clothes were soaked, hair was drenched, stomach cramps endured, but somehow I ended with significant, negative splits!  Sometimes I doubt myself, when I'm feeling like ICK during my runs, but then part of me says, "I KNOW I can do it.  I've done it before.  I will do it again.  I can push myself.". 
    Never judge a run by the first mile or two.
    You've got this ...