Training for the Boston Marathon, like anything out of your comfort zone, is the greatest metaphor for life. From the ups and downs and expecting the unexpected to appreciating the successes and learning to dust yourself off and keep moving forward. It all counts and it’s all important.

This past week, I ran the coveted 20 mile long run. Most marathon plans call for at least 1 to 2 of these with the idea that if you can achieve a strong 20-miler, you can finish 26.2 on race day. I had great workouts during the week, including swimming, which is such a fantastic mid-week break from the pounding on the legs that still keeps the cardio up (especially if you’re not the most efficient swimmer, like me).

I also controlled all of the variables I could in the days leading up to this important run including:

  1. Eating my tried and true clean meals with emphasis on complex carbs (Wholesome Goodness oatmeal) for fuel
  2. Tapering off workouts a bit towards the end of the week
  3. Hydrating- aiming for at least ½ my body weight in ounces per day
  4. Getting some extra sleep
  5. Drinking coconut water before and after the run to provide electrolytes and sodium (it beats sports drinks any day!)

The weather in Phoenix got a little warmer than expected this past weekend and I almost ran out of water during the big run. I carried 34 ounces in my water belt and stashed an additional 16 ounces on my route.

Since weather conditions and plans can change (and our bodies don’t always cooperate like we want), I was reminded to over-plan and bring more than I think l’ll need. It’s better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. This goes for snacks and gear for road trips, hiking, and our daily lives too. Pack extra and be prepared. Man, the Girl Scouts were right!

One last thing for this week: I got on the ball. The stability ball. It helps ease the soreness in my glutes and legs as well as works the core, keeps me more alert if I’m sitting for a while, and is just really fun! In the picture, I am at Bashas’ corporate office where I health coach a couple of times a month. When I’m gone, employees borrow the ball to use too. I highly recommend getting one!

 

**JAIME HOLDS A PH.D. IN EDUCATION AND IS A HEALTH COACH WITH THE WELLNESS COUNCIL OF ARIZONA AND A NATIONALLY CERTIFIED PERSONAL TRAINER AND GROUP FITNESS INSTRUCTOR THROUGH NETA.. THOUGH SHE IS NOT A MEDICAL DOCTOR, SHE DOES HOLD CERTIFICATES IN NUTRITION FUNDAMENTALS AND HOLISTIC FITNESS IN ADDITION TO HER 20 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE WORKING WITH PEOPLE AS A PERSONAL TRAINER AND FITNESS INSTRUCTOR.