Tuesday, June 12, 2012

TinkerBell 2013: I'm In!!

Today was the opening of registration for the second annual TinkerBell Half Marathon at the Disneyland Resort on Martin Luther King, Jr. Weekend in January 2013. The craziness has been building for the past few weeks amongst us Tink veterans hoping for legacy status in 2016. Countdowns started weeks ahead of time, I personally posted two hour, one hour and "x" minutes posts on the TinkerBell HM Facebook group this morning.

A couple of us found that registration actually opened just a few minutes before the scheduled 10am MT start time and posts of "I'M IN" started popping up on the group. Discussions of where everyone is planning to stay, people (including me) changing hotel reservations to be closer to others in the group. Planning beginning 6 months ahead for the group meetup. A few discussions on costumes popping up. Who knows what other craziness will ensue in the next few months?!

What race have you been ├╝ber excited about and to what extent??

I Didn't Know About This...Why?

WARNING: Product review for ladies only!! Unless you guys are just really curious...don't say you haven't been warned! ;)

Measures approx 2½" in diameter;
approx 3½" in length when compressed for insertion.

OK, so this alternative to other feminine products...it's call the Instead Softcup. There are two different kinds of Softcups. There is the original that is meant to be used once then disposed of and typically changed every 12 hours or so; then there is the new reusable type that can be washed and reused for a whole cycle. Now, when you look at the picture on the package and open the package what you see looks similar to a diaphragm (you've all see one of those in sex ed class in grade school, yes?) that has a light pink for the daily use type/dark pink for the reusable type and a clear cup. The rim is fairly flexible with just a comfortable amount of rigidity and is easily compressed for insertion.

Pink packaging is the disposable daily use. Green package is the reusable.

Insertion is pretty straightforward and Softcup even has an animated video showing you how to do this. Now, this can be a bit messy depending on at what point in your cycle you are...expect insertion to be a little bit messier the heavier the flow is.

Softcup Challenge - Day 1
So, today is a light flow day...the first day in my very irregular cycle...thank you peri-menopause. The initial insertion went smoothly but yes, it was a little messy but at least I was at home and could easily reach the sink to wash up. I used a panty liner just in case I didn't get the placement just right and thank goodness I did because I noticed some spotting a few hours later. So, to correct this problem I removed, emptied and rinsed out the Softcup and reinserted it plus applied a new panty liner. Now some six hours later just one small spot on the liner and that's it. I can't even tell that I have the Softcup inserted...very comfortable compared to my hatred of tampons which I only use when running. Also, no icky sweaty feeling from wearing a pad especially in this hot weather we're having. So far, so good.

8:35pm - I just changed the Softcup to prepare for the night. No noted leaking, although it is a light day. Easy to remove, just remember to bear down when trying to reach it...makes life much easier. One thing that hit me though is that I keep my nails fairly short...I wonder how comfortable this would be for someone who has longer nails? I think in that case it might be advisable to have some non-latex gloves handy (just in case you have an unknown latex allergy...if you know you're not allergic to latex then go for the cheaper latex gloves).

Softcup Challenge - Day 2
Woke up a little before 6am and changed out the Softcup. No leakage at all, but it's still early in my cycle so I'm still at a fairly light flow. No discomfort overnight...in fact, almost forgot that I was on my cycle. Cool!

7:30pm - Looks like this whole cycle is gonna be light. Still, no leaks and it's much easier/quicker to insert the Softcup now...kinda like second nature.

Softcup Challenge - Day 3
Still a light flow, looks like it's gonna be that way for this whole cycle. Still no leaking at all even with some strenuous manual labor in the backyard this past weekend. Very pleased so far with the products performance.

7:40pm - Hmmm...looks like this may be a short flow. Still no problems, no leaking, no discomfort. I think I've found a new best friend!

Softcup Challenge - Day 4
Well, looks like last night was the last time for me to use the Softcup for this review. Wow, that was a really light cycle! Still no leakage, no pain and no problems.

So, that was my experience with the Instead Softcup. I didn't do any running while using it so I can't attest to how it works during that kind of activity, but like I said I was doing some decent manual labor in our backyard lifting bags of paver base, paver sand and pavers to build some paved pads in front of our gates. If the cup didn't budge while doing all that heavy lifting (which did involve some straining to lift things) then I don't think it would move during a run. Additionally, since my flow was light for this whole test I can't really state how it works with a heavy flow...thanks to peri-menopause I never know if my cycle will be light, moderate (lucky enough I've never been a heavy bleeder) or even have a cycle each month. I never had to rinse out the cup other than the first day when I had to readjust it...it's fine doing at home, but I think it would be kinda gross and rude to rinse it out in a public restroom.

Based on some reading I've done of other bloggers who've done the Challenge, for heavy bleeders there may be some light leakage when urinating or having a bowel movement simply due to the process of bearing down. Some women say that this was the only time they experienced any leakage. Some even went so far as to say that they appreciated this leakage because they had very heavy flows and this allowed some of the contents to escape from the cup and extending the time that the cup could remain inserted since there was more room for new content. However, do be aware that if you do have a heavy flow you may not get a full 12 hour use out of the cup.

Now just some facts from Softcup (please note, all the images used in this post are directly from Instead Softcup)...

So, would I recommend using this product? Yes!! At the very least, try it for one cycle and check it out for yourself. You can purchase a sample 2 pack of the original style on the Softcup website store for the price of shipping (currently $2.50) or you can check your local drug store to see if they carry the product (Walgreens and SuperWalmart seem to carry them). Do be aware that the reusable type is really fairly new so you may not find them in many stores yet but you can also purchase them on the online store. Or if you are a blogger, check out For the Love of the Run to see how you can participate in the Challenge and get a free sample and some other goodies. The online Softcup store even sells a little case that you can carry 2 Softcups in so that you have them handy at all times...as long as you carry a purse or pack of some sort. Really, give them a try!

Case that holds two Softcup packages so you're always prepared.

DISCLAIMER: I received one or more of the products mentioned in this post for free to review. Regardless, these opinions are 100% mine and solely mine.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Race Recap: Wounded Warriors Half Marathon

Today was my first half marathon since 5/19/12. I had gone on a self-imposed total rest for 2 weeks after running 12 or 13 halves in a 9-10 week time frame (sorry, I've lost count and don't feel like figuring it out again). I did do 2 pseudo trail runs that turned into more hiking than anything since I totally suck at trails and the altitude killed me! I did get in a 5K run yesterday just to try out my new Mizuno's but that was it as far as running. I did however, get 2 Aqua Zumba classes in though. Anyway, I left home at around 8am yesterday for the 8 hour drive to Flower Mound, TX where my cousin lives and where I would be staying for the next couple of days. All in all the drive went pretty smoothly although I ended up taking a 5 Hour Energy Shot that only seemed to last 3 hours or so. Since I was driving across the Texas panhandle and would be going through Wichita Falls, I decided to stop for a late lunch at Napoli's...my usual carb loading restaurant when I'm in/going through Wichita Falls. After a lunch serving of spaghetti with meat sauce and two garlic rolls I made a couple of quick stops at Academy Sports & Outdoors to see if they had any cooling bandanas and at PetSmart for some no bark items for our male Chihuahua. I was back on the road in less than an hour after all three of the above stops.

The remaining 2½ hour drive was pretty uneventful until I hit Ft. Worth and the Speedway. Apparently there was some kind of race going on because there was constant traffic turning into the parking area which only made traffic worse that was already slowed due to construction. I arrived at my cousin's house at about 5:30pm. We hung out and caught up for a bit then went out for a carb loading dinner at Bari's Pasta & Pizza. As soon as we got back to the house it was pretty much time to go to bed since it was around 9:30 and we'd be having to get up early for the race on Saturday.

Race Day - 6/10/12
I was up at 3am to get ready for the race. Showered, taped up and had my typical breakfast of whole wheat Bagel Thin, peanut butter, banana, orange juice and some G2. I saved a second banana for just before the race. My "pipes" were pretty well cleaned out by the time we headed for the race at about 5:30am. My cousin was prepped to run her very first 10K and I was pretty much over my jitters about not having trained and felt that I was ready for the half.

Today's camo themed outfit.

I was supposed to meet some/another Half Fanatic for pictures at the mustang statue at Williams Square but I didn't see her. I did however meet another Half Fanatic (T.O. #305) before the race and took a picture with him afterwards. We hung out and people watched, made our last minute visit to the port-a-pot lines and eventually lined up for the start. After the gun went off (which I didn't hear) the half marathoners made the slow progression towards the starting line and eventually got started running just after crossing the timing mat. We started off on the street before making our way to a paved trail in a park. Everyone was basically in one big pack until we hit mile 2 when things started to spread out again. It was at this same time I started seeing the speedsters from the 10K come flying through and against us. With the addition of the 10K crowd things were a little crowded until the 10K turn around point when the half marathoners started spreading out. The course followed the trail that apparently followed a river (I was many "River Viewing" signs) and I was feeling fairly good through mile 6 or 7. I was doing okay with a 5 minute: 1 minute run/walk interval after having done the first 3 miles at a 3:1 interval. The temperature by then was in the high 70s and humidity probably in the low 80%. By mile 3 I had already started pouring water all over myself in an effort to keep cool. They had also set up a few misters, that actually were more like light showers since there wasn't enough pressure, that I took full advantage of. At mile 8 I could feel myself starting to tire but I managed to keep going at a 3:1 interval again. I probably should have had some of my Honey Stinger Chews, but it was just so warm that I thought I would tolerate them very well, so I just kept sipping on my G2 and water.

Fellow HF, T.O. #305.

My cousin, Ausa, her husband Larry and their girls.

My usual issues with mile 9 cropped up again...slowed way down, did more walking than running. The remaining miles were done pretty much "freestyle" just running when I felt I could and walking when I felt the need. I don't know why that last 5K or so is always such a challenge. I just can't seem to push myself to get to that finish line faster. Anyway, up we went over the largest "hill" which really wasn't much of a challenge. I was less than a mile from the finish. As I kept plodding along and checking my MotoACTV to see exactly how much distance was left I started to feel the twang of a cramp coming on in my left calf. I shook the initial  feeling off and continued on but at less than 1/10th of a mile, fairly close to the finish another wave hit that was a little harder to stave off. I did manage to get across the finish line without having a full blow cramp, but my calf was spasming slightly as I walked around. I'm not sure why I had the cramping issue...whether it was related to lack of training or electrolyte loss so I'm confused. I had used 2 Endruolyte capsules prior to the race and had taken 1 for each hour that I had been running. By doing that and topping off with G2 in between, I should have had the electrolyte situation well in control even though I was sweating heavily. Oh well. Maybe I should've worn the compression socks after all...

Still in the first mile.
Most of the course was on trail like this.

You've gotta love athletic supporters! LOL! ;)

Thank goodness...the finish line! :)

Once across the finish line I quickly downed two of the sports drinks they offered...I think it was Powerade Zero, but I'm not sure. In the search for food, I could't find a single banana so I got in line for pancakes and oranges. I also managed to get stretched out by the chiropractic team that was providing free massages. My cousin finished her 10K in 1:19, which is not bad at all for her first effort and she didn't train much either. I finished the half in 2:51, pretty much in my usual timeframe.

My cousin with her first piece of bling ever!


New bling!

We headed back to the house and have been chilling for the rest of the day. I ended up taking a nap and we had BBQ for dinner. Just waiting for the other cousin to show up with her family and then bedtime after the visit. I'm hoping to get back on the road by 6:30am before it gets too hot.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Why do I fundraise?

Those of you that know me know that I've done different fundraisers for different organizations. I'd just like use this post to share why I raise funds for them and introduce a new organization that I'm fundraising for.

American Cancer Society Relay for Life
I first began participating in Relay for Life in 1996 when the VA clinic that I was working at decided to put a team together. We were all fairly new at fundraising and didn't do such a spectacular job that first year but as we continued to participate we got better. When I left the clinic I began participating with the medical group team on base where I was then working. Military precision and great people with fundraising  know how made the experience great. After I left that position after 4 years I was out of the scene for a couple of years during which I had to have a breast biopsy for a mass that turned out to be benign. That experience amped up my participation in the Relay again. A few years passed and my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer which is now in remission. The same year a dear friend was diagnosed with colon cancer. That year I became a team captain and led a group of my nursing students and friends raising $1,600 and shaving my head for the cause. In late 2011 I found out another friend was diagnosed with lung cancer and my other friend had been diagnosed with metastasis to the lungs. So it was for them that I raised over $2,000 this year and again shaved my head bald. It is for these people, my former patients and total strangers that I will continue to participate in Relay for Life as often as possible to help fund the research and advocacy to finally find a cure for all types of cancers.

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
This year was the first year I've worked with the LLS. I have to admit that it was kind of a selfish reason that I started working with them...I wanted to run my first half marathon but I needed coaching. I was hesitant at first due to the sizeable fundraising requirement but once I got going (and thanks to a significant donation from an old friend) I was able to raise more than my required $2,900...I raised more than $3,400!! I didn't personally know anyone affected by leukemia, lymphoma or myelodysplastic syndrome other than former patients of mine, but in the course of my training I have become friends with several survivors who were running with LLS or whom I simply met online in other running groups. My goal is to do a fundraising race with LLS at least every other year so I'm going to have to choose a race in 2013 to accomplish that goal. As chemotherapy drugs become harder to obtain and more expensive the LLS has been a leading institution in advocacy for better access to meds, has provided research that has found medications not only significant to their own specific organization but to cancers in general and providing financial support to those in need affected by leukemia, lymphoma and myelodysplastic disorder.

Team Red, White & Blue
This is my newest fundraising cause. In fact, I just joined today! Being a veteran with a disability I feel that I need to give back to other veterans and their families. In my runs I try to do races that benefit veterans in one way or another. Now, not all races do that but with this organization I can choose my races that have no such component and still raise funds for our wounded vets and their families. The goal of Team RWB is to help smooth the reintegration of the wounded warrior and the family back into the general community with one-on-one support/relationships, community level activities and advocacy programs. I'll begin getting the word out about Team RWB by wearing a running shirt/tank emblazoned with their eagle logo at races (no, I'm not giving up my Half Fanatic shirts...all my different teams/club shirts will just get rotated), fundraising and whatever I can think of to help the cause. So, check out their website by clicking on the title for this paragraph and please consider donating by clicking here. I'll be completing the Bataan Memorial Death March in March 2013 to benefit Team RWB. If you're a vet or simply a concerned citizen/athlete please consider joining the team!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Recap: Women's Trail Running Clinic

Well, a few weeks ago I got a email from Active.com (the site where I register for the majority of my races) and it was an announcement for an all women's trail running clinic up in Red River, NM at The Enchanted Forest Cross Country Ski Area there. Since I had been thinking about signing up for a trail half marathon (which was really stupid now that I've done this clinic) and I have a quite substantial amount of fear/reservation about doing trail runs I decided that I'd check on attending. I wrote to Ellen, the coordinator for the clinic, and warned her that I was slow, had ankle and hip issues and a fear of trails and she told me that not to worry the class was for all levels and speed. So once that was cleared up I went ahead and checked with my local running friend, Teresa, to see if she might be interested in joining. After a week or so she decided that she was going to go and so we got registered and worked on logistics.

Day Before the Trail Clinic
Last Friday finally arrived and it was time to head out to Red River. Now, I'd never been up there and I didn't do any research other than finding a place to stay. It is about a 5 hour drive from home and the drive is pretty boring until you get up to the mountains. I'd say an hour or so out of town I started coughing for no reason, like I had something in my throat...this is something that would hang out for the whole weekend. It was just a cough...I didn't feel ill or anything so I think it had something to do with the altitude. When we arrived in town and got settled, we walked up and down the main road and stopped at some of the gift shops, candy shops and knick knack shops before hitting up Texas Red's Steakhouse for a bison rib eye. Now, if you really know me you know that I usually take pics of my food especially if I'm traveling but I'm not sure why I didn't this time around. The bison  rib eye was good, but too lean for my taste. At least now I can say that I've tried it, but I'll stick with beef rib eye thank-you-very-much. After dinner we headed back towards the hotel stopping at several other shops on the way. Teresa found a map that showed the elevation in town to be 8,672 feet. I thought that was great because I wasn't feeling tired or anything so I was taking it as a good sign for my Madison Half Marathon in July where the race starts at 9,200 feet elevation. About the only thing, aside from the cough, that I could attribute to the elevation at this point was my skin becoming very dry and itchy. We got back to the hotel and turned in for the night to rest up before the big day on Saturday.

Trail Clinic - Day 1
I ended up waking up at 3:22am on Saturday. Not a happy camper especially since I couldn't fall back asleep and my phone signal was sporadic. We headed out to a light breakfast (just some donuts and coffee/hot chocolate) at T Buck's Hole Thing since we knew there would be some breakfast at the class. Then we headed down to the town grocery store so that I could get some lotion because my skin was just itching terribly. While I was picking up my items, Teresa met Laurie who was going to be our primary instructor for the class. Laurie looks like she has zero body fat and has so much energy it's crazy! Here's a little bit of her bio:
"Laurie Lambert has been a lifelong runner and racer. She's an avid trail runner and cherishes long mountain runs with her favorite four-legged running partner. Laurie has raced road and trail extensively all over the U.S. and the world in 10K's, half-marathons, and marathons and is a three-time member of the U.S. National Snowshoe Team."
Since we had a little time before the class started, Laurie said that there had been big horn sheep near where we were going to go check out a mining area. So we decided to search for some big horn to take pictures of as well. After we got the last of our stuff ready for the class, we packed up and headed west to go check out the mine and look for those sheep. As luck would have it...there were no sheep to be found! The closest we got were a few rocks we thought may be sheep. So, with our photo hunting mission failed we headed back to town and checked out the car show before over to the ski area for the clinic.

My favorite car at the car show...lover the pearl paint job!
This would've been the hub's favorite car...he drools over '69 Camaros!
The night before we had wondered how many of us there would be attending the class but when we met Laurie she told us about 8 total. Not bad...not so many that you get lost in the crowd and not so few that it feels like a private class. As everyone started arriving we found out that we had ladies from Denver, Albuquerque, Los Alamos, Taos and ourselves. Most had done some kind of trail running in the past and only myself, Teresa and Stephanie (from Denver) were the trail newbies. We hung out in the shop at base camp for a while eating some more breakfast before heading outside to talk about some more technical aspects. The class wasn't structured and we could discuss whatever came to mind but some of the things that came up were gear (specifically hydration), downhill running, how trails were marked and most important...how to pee without being noticed if there was nothing to hide behind!

Pre-run discussion & introductions

I want to say that around 10:30 we packed up and started onto the trail. It was then that I found out that we were already up above 9,300 feet in elevation in base camp and would be heading up to over 10,000 feet if you did the full 10K course. I had thought that the 10K would be fine, but we didn't get much more than a quarter mile up the trail before I was huffing and puffing and trying to catch my breath. Somewhere around 3/4 of a mile my head started pounding...no head ache...just pounding to my pulse (which was pretty quick...my stupid MotoACTV failed to charge overnight for some reason). All I could feel in my head was: boom-boom, boom-boom, boom-boom...Between that and my breathing, which in turn made my chest feel like it was going to explode I changed my goal from the 10K to hopefully the 5K. Much thanks to Ellen who hung with me and got me down to the base camp...she told me in our initial email that she was slow...she didn't know the meaning of slow until she met me!! lol! Anyway, as I slowed down and headed back down the mountain things seemed to start settling down but I began second guessing my choice to participate in the Madison Marathon in July in Montana because that race would be starting at about 9,200 feet and going up to nearly 9,700 feet in elevation. The rest of the day was spent having lunch (salads from Trader Joe's), and a yoga class by one of the other coaches, Kimberley. Here's a little of her bio:
"Kimberly Ritterhouse is an avid fitness and nutrition enthusiast. After being diagnosed with a gluten allergy Kimberly had to rethink fueling and adjust to new ways to conquer "bonking" on long hikes and runs. She has a passion for teaching and sharing her joy in the beautiful Sangre de Cristo mountains. Kimberly has a level 3 Yoga-Fit certification and has run several half-marathons and the San Diego Marathon. She has also been a two time snowshoe racing national qualifier." 
Wheeler Peak
The others went on another 5K run in the afternoon before the clinic let out for the day, but I was so worn out by my short jaunt I decided to sit it out and try to take a nap in the truck. After everyone got back we made plans to go to dinner with a could of the girls and ended up at Sundance Mexican Restaurant where I ended up with a nice 12 oz beef rib eye (yay!) with a side of cheese enchilada. What a combo right? It was great, but again no picture and I did enjoy this steak much better than the bison since it had more flavor (read "fat"). After dinner we headed back to the hotel for a shower and turned in for the night.

Trail Clinic - Day 2
We were awake and packing everything up by 6:30am. We decided against breakfast since there was going to be breakfast at the clinic so instead we packed up and went to look for the big horn sheep again. Strike 2. Apparently the sheep either 1) did not want to be found or 2) got chased off by the rally that was in town the weekend before. For both my friend and I our luck with finding some of the unusual wildlife is pretty much nil. (However we did see a female bedded down on the side of the road on the way to the clinic and on the side of one of the hills the night before). Since we struck out again, we headed back into town and made one last check of the room before checking out. As we drove through town, we noticed that The Pied Piper's Pastry Shop was already open so we stopped and picked up some goodies. I had an apple turnover which was seriously yummy...yet again no picture. Wow, I'm really lacking on my foodie pictures!

At the base camp we were the first to arrive so we helped set up while we waited for the others to get there. After allowing some time for everyone to eat we broke up into groups...one the ones that wanted to go faster (yet slower than the day before) and one that preferred a slower pace on easier trail/forest roads (this was where I was). This run/hike, while even slower than yesterday, was still hard for me with the elevation. I was still lagging behind but at least the head pounding was less than the day before, the breathing situation was just a little bit improved but my heart rate monitor was maxing out at 168-178bpm with almost minimal wogging (walk/jogging). I usually don't get into the 160 range until the middle to late portion of my half marathons and even then my heart rate recovers pretty quickly when I start walking...no so at elevation. It seemed like it took forever to get my heart rate back down into even the 150bpm range! I do have to admit that the trip was worth it with some of the views that we got to see. We did a couple of  staged action shots of everyone and managed to finish about a 4 mile loop. I almost thought I'd come out of this clinic unscathed, but I ended up spraining my ankle about an hour into the jaunt...then it slipped another 3-4 times as we were returning to base camp. Luckily (or unluckily) my ankle has been sprained many times before although this time I did hear it pop; I was still able to mostly walk on it with just a slight limp and as soon as we got to camp I put some ice on it. It only ended up swelling to about twice it's normal size without any bruising.
Wheeler Peak in the background.
Full group except for Ellen who is taking the pic.
Wheeler Peak/Gold Hill/East Red River View
9,960 feet in elevation at this point.
Aspen Grove
Latir Wilderness with view of Red River
Since it was the end of the clinic, the awards were given out. One of the leaders wrote up the calligraphy slips and found off the wall prizes to go with the awards. The day's run was supposed to be an unofficial "race" but that idea was set aside for a more relaxing activity. Each of the awards was tailor made for each participant. For me it was the "Least likely to become a vegetarian" award with a bar of chocolate. This award transpired because during the first day when we were talking about how to eat we got off on a tangent when I started discussing my recent experience with deep fried/chicken fried bacon and my love for all things meat! lol! You've got to realize I was with a bunch of women who probably ate way more healthy than I do. :)  After a little while just chatting and laughing it was time to say goodbye and leave for the 5 hour trip home.

Concentrating too much on my feet!

"Most likely to never become a vegetarian Award
(and bravest newcomer to trail running!)
All in all it was a great weekend even though it confirmed what I already pretty much knew...that I am not a trail runner. If I do decide to do any trail runs they'll be short 5Ks and at much lower elevations! I'm just wondering now how I'm going to deal with the elevations at the Madison Marathon in Montana next month which has the start at 9,200', maxing out at 9,675' and finishing at 8,850'. I'm thinking that since I have a race in Wyoming on July 14, then Idaho July 21 and finally Montana on July 22 that I'll just have to take the travel trailer and head up to Montana on Tuesday or Wednesday prior to the race to start acclimating and drive back down 3 hours for the race on Saturday before heading back up to Montana. I had even entertained the idea of taking the trailer up to Red River and staying up there for a week before leaving for Wyoming but I'll be in Oregon and Washington for three races during the July 4 week. At least it's a road race rather than trails...granted, not paved roads but as long as I can have pretty sure footing I'm good with that! :)

If you have an opportunity to do a trail running clinic at The Enchanted Forest Cross Country Ski Area in Red River, NM I'd recommend that you do!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Chi Running and Marathons

About a month ago one of the local trainers brought in an instructor from Albuquerque who teaches Chi Running techniques. Now, if you don't know what Chi running is think of it as a technique that incorporates the balance of Tai Chi, natural movement and rhythm and balance as a whole when running. They can explain it better to you at their website. Anyway, the husband was able to attend the group and apparently enjoyed it (although he hasn't started running again yet) and he brought home DVD of the technique as well. I do way better viewing new techniques rather than just reading about them, mainly because I don't like to read much. So I just happened to view the DVD last week and even tried incorporating some of the technique into my trail runs this weekend...so not a good mix...new running technique and being a newbie to trail running. Anyway, I'll try to incorporate the Chi techniques into my upcoming half marathon on Sunday.

Anyway, this morning I found out that the founder of Chi Running has come out with a brand new book, Chi Marathon, directed at running marathons using the Chi technique. Since I'll be training for my first full marathon in January very, very soon I'd love to see what he has to say so that maybe I can integrate some of the run-walk-run intervals that I use (Galloway or Higdon training) with the Chi running to keep from causing so much discomfort to my hips and knees. So that's it. I'll let you know how it goes once I do start my marathon training. And if you're just curious about the book check it out here or win one from Running Diva Mom.