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Racing Issue

T HE OCR! TRAIL! ULTRA! Find your perfect race SPRING SHOE REVIEW What kicks to buy now for road and trail MARCH 2018


Race Day Mistakes and How to Avoid Them



CON T EN T S March


Spring's Fresh Kicks Women’s Running has tested the spring 2018 shoe offerings to help you find the best fit for your training and racing needs this season. By Rebecca Warren

52 Find Your Perfect Race There’s a race for everyone. Here’s how to find the right one for you. By Susan Lacke

58 The Fastest Woman in the World Three years ago, Tori Bowie decided to give sprinting a try. The success that has followed—driven by one especially influential figure—is nothing short of shocking. By Julia Beeson Polloreno




COVER STORIES 58 The World’s Fastest Woman 15 Race Day Mistakes and How to Avoid Them 52 OCR! Trail! Ultra! Find your perfect race 44 Spring Shoe Review: What kicks to buy now for road and trail

CON T EN T S March


7 From the Editor

8 64 Parting Shot


9 We’re Obsessed Race-day essentials we put in our gear bags 12 #trending Running the numbers of Strava users in 2017; three new runner reads; how WR readers like to recover, and more 14 Your Voice How one runner learned to race without fear 15 Run Talk Runners share their biggest race-day mistakes—and how to avoid them in the future. 16 We Tried It The best non-slip headbands for runners 18 Travel How to “do” a destination race 22 Run Life Hacks How to find your perfect pair of run shoes

15 4


37 Fuel Your Run New sports nutrition products to fuel you to the finish 39 Nutrition Notes Race-day fueling strategies for every distance 40 Clean Plate A meat-free, sheet pan recipe with very little cleanup 42 Weeknight Winners Five quick-and-easy recipes with energy-boosting ingredients


25 Shoe of the Moment Nike’s new foam goes high tech. 26 Stride Strong Use a rowing machine to build whole-body strength and improve your running. 28 Calendar What’s going on in the world of running in March

40 32 Running at Every Age How to set a PR every decade 34 Where It Hurts The best strategies for fixing and preventing IT band syndrome 35 Take a Breath Shift your racing mindset with power phrases.

29 Run Safe Four products to keep you safe on outdoor runs 30 Meet the Elite Allie Kieffer PRed at the New York City Marathon by 26 minutes and is a World Half Marathon Championships hopeful. 31 Ask the Coach Our expert offers advice for timing your pre-race warm-up, which shoes to wear for which distance and how to stay warm on race morning after checking your gear bag.

Tori Bowie was photographed by Heather Fulbright in Atlanta, Ga. Hair and makeup by Erikka Hart with The Spin Style Agency. Wardrobe provided by adidas.


23 Community Run Club Profile: Black Girls RUN! leaves no woman behind.


Get the


IT’S TIME TO STOP THE CRUNCHES, protein shakes, and boring cardio. Acclaimed personal trainer and exercise physiologist Allison Westfahl reveals a better way to tone and sculpt to get the strong, sexy core you want. Her Core Envy program shares a balanced approach— high-intensity cardio, functional sculpting routines, and a diet makeover—to show you real results in about three weeks.

LE V EL 1 LE V EL 3 LE V EL 2 V EL 1



What’s your race-day mantra? Editor in Chief


“The result is worth the effort.”

MANAGING EDITOR Bethany Mavis ASSOCIATE WEB EDITOR Meghan Roos “Just keep going—this is what you’ve trained for!”

ART GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Oliver Baker, Lisa Williams


“Smooth and steady.”

CONTRIBUTING FEATURE WRITERS Julia Beeson Polloreno, Susan Lacke CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Lauren Antonucci, Jessica Cerra, Hannah Hartzell, Mackenzie L. Havey, Hillary Kigar, Marty Munson, Nicole Radziszewski, Sarah Wassner Flynn, Eileen Weber


ADVERTISING CHIEF REVENUE OFFICER Rob Wood, PARTNERSHIP AND MEDIA SALES Gordon Selkirk, “You got this! You’ve put in the hard work with training, and now it’s time to accomplish what you’ve worked so hard for.”

CHICAGO Mark Baba, Bill Pesta, LOS ANGELES Mark Cosby, Xochilt Llamas, Joy Lona, NEW YORK Kristina Larson,

ACCOUNT SERVICES Kat Keivens Nicole Carriker Emily Nolen Nicole Christenson

Off-road running can bust you out of a running rut and make you a stronger all-around runner. Get a head start with Trailhead, a fun, illustrated guide that dishes the dirt on all things trail running.

AVAILABLE NOW! See a preview at



Women’s Running issue MARCH ISSN 1548-2413, a publication of Pocket Outdoor Media, 3002 Sterling Circle, Suite 100, Boulder, CO 80301, is published monthly (10x per year with combined issues in Jan/Feb and Nov/Dec). For subscription inquiries, please call 800-336-5653 in the U.S., 386-246-0108 outside the U.S. or email womensrunningmag@ For reprints, permissions and licensing, please contact Wright’s Media at or (877) 652-5295. Periodical Postage Paid at San Diego, California and additional offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Women’s Running, PO Box 430235, Palm Coast, FL, 32143-0235. All contents of this publication are © Pocket Outdoor Media and Women’s Running magazine, 3002 Sterling Circle, Suite 100, Boulder, CO 80301. U.S.A. All rights reserved. Warning! It is not advised that you participate in the sports and activities described in Women’s Running unless you are highly knowledgeable about the risks involved, are in proper physical condition and are willing to accept all risks associated with these sports and activities. Women’s Running disclaims any responsibility for injury or death incurred by any person or persons engaging in these activities. Use the information in this magazine at your own risk and always consult a doctor before attempting any exercise program. Women’s Running makes no warranties of any kind and expressly disclaims any warranty regarding the accuracy or reliability of information contained herein. The views contained in this magazine are those of the writers and advertisers and do not necessarily reflect the view of Women’s Running’s ownership.



Coming in Like a Lion THIS MONTH’S ISSUE IS ALL ABOUT PUSHING YOURSELF to your limits and seeing what lies beyond them. For many of us, one way we do that is racing. Whether you are training for your first race or you’ve lost count of the races you’ve entered, we’ve got tips and advice on how to dial in your body and nutrition to make the most of the next race on your calendar. And we also go deeper, taking a look at how your mental preparation plays into your performance in training and on race day. On page 35, Mackenzie L. Havey dives into the importance of creating—and more importantly, believing in—power phrases to help train your brain to go to places of positivity and strength in times of stress or fatigue. Our very own Bethany Mavis has spent a considerable amount of time researching and trying out the newest fueling products on the market. Read about what she discovered in the sports nutrition world (including beet chews!) on page 37. Susan Lacke tells you how to find the perfect pair of running shoes on page 22 and then—in her uniquely witty way—breaks down all of the racing genres on offer in “Find Your Perfect Race” (starting on page 52) so you can put those kicks to good use. We were fortunate to get to spend time with one of the world’s premier sprinters this month, the talented and delightful Tori Bowie, who talked about her unlikely path to the world of track and field and the profound impact that her grandmother’s love has had in guiding her life both on and off the track. Read about her early years and the beginning of her athletic career in rural Mississippi in Julia Beeson Polloreno’s insightful profile starting on page 58.

March means the arrival of spring, the season of beginnings. And what better way to kick off racing season than with a new pair of shoes? We’ve reviewed 15 of this season’s running shoe offerings to help you find your perfect pair for whatever you have planned this spring—training, racing or a mix of the two. Flip to page 44 to peruse the best shoes of the season and make your picks. This is a month that traditionally heralds change—from winter to spring, from hibernation to reemergence. However you choose to mark this turning of the seasons, we hope it involves you taking some time to set goals, clear your schedule for self-care and see where running can take you this year. Keep on running,

Rebecca Warren INSTAGRAM: @rebecca_g_warren TWITTER:@rebeccagwarren

Join in on the fun! Use #TeamWR on Twitter or Instagram to share questions, pics, tips and brags!


Way to go, #TeamWR! You all are powerful women, just like...

@runfargirl, who prioritized base training with timed track workouts at the start of the winter season.

One of the Best Sprinters of Our Time We’ve been watching Tori Bowie’s career closely since she earned a medal sweep during her 2016 Olympic debut in Rio de Janeiro, and her dramatic lean to secure the 100-meter gold during the 2017 IAAF World Championships confirmed what we already knew: Bowie is one of the greatest sprinters of our time. In our cover feature, Bowie walks us through her journey, from the days she spent growing up in Rankin County, Miss., to securing her first college title in 2011 and the Olympic and world titles beyond. Read our feature on page 58 and find behind-the-scenes photos from Bowie’s photo shoot in Atlanta, Ga., by visiting

@ashevillemotherrunner recognizes that not every workout is going to be fantastic and can tell when the thing her body needs most is a break.

All Runners are Real Runners


@abusby34 and her dog Zeus showed that the greatest runs are those logged with best buds. Use #TeamWR in your Instagram photos for a chance to be included in our next issue!

Socialize With Us! Rebecca Warren @rebecca_g_warren Bethany Mavis @bethanymavis Meghan Roos @mroos_runs



Women’s Running



Women’s Running Magazine


Help us celebrate you by submitting your running story to editorial@ We would love to feature you as one of our #realrunners— like Jessica McBride, who found the strength to place in a 50-mile race with help from a stranger who turned out to be her perfect pacing partner. See all of our incredible reader-submitted tales at womensrunning. com/realrunners.

At the 2017 TCS New York City Marathon, 30-year-old Allie Kieffer was the second American woman to finish, placing fifth overall and nabbing a 26-minute PR along the way. A former Olympic dreamer, injuries made Kieffer pack her racing shoes away for good—or so she thought, until she tried the marathon distance for the first time in January 2017 and won. Turn to page 30 for our Q&A with Kieffer, and visit to read our interview in full.

@bitesandstrides endured negative temps and snowy paths to log her miles this winter.

>Warm Up



You need run-specific clothes and shoes to comfortably get to the finish line of a race, but runspecific accessories can help you take your race to the next level by freeing your mind from worrying about any gear malfunctions. Here’s what we put in our race-day gear bag. // BY THE EDITORS


Are you the proud owner of a sweet tooth? We’re giving you the green light to satisfy your cravings before a tough race or workout with sportspecific jelly beans. Jelly Belly Sport Beans ($7.99 for six-pack, sportbeans. com) are like small energy chews, filled with electrolytes and carbohydrates to fuel your race. Pick a favorite flavor or go with the assorted packs, and on those extra exertion days, up the ante with Sport Beans’ Extreme beans, which pack a kick of caffeine. 왘




When you’re waking up in the dark for your race, it’s easy to forget sunscreen, but it’s so important! We love Endurance Shield SPF 45 Sunscreen ($24 for 4 oz., not only for its broad-spectrum sun protection, but also because it’s a light moisturizer (it feels just like lotion!), it has anti-aging properties thanks to its antioxidants, it’s safe for sensitive skin and it has a fabulous cucumber scent—you won’t smell like sunscreen! Bonus for runners: This product was developed by two pro triathletes, so it holds up to sweat and even a cup of water poured on you mid-race.


Blisters on a training run can cut it short, but blisters on race day make for a miserable experience. Enter KT Performance+ Blister Prevention Tape ($10, kttape. com), super-thin woven synthetic fabric strips that help prevent blisters and chafing. Made with a strong adhesive, you simply stick them over any potential hotspots (like your heel or big toe), and you can race without fear of blisters.


We all know it’s important to stay properly hydrated while running—whether you’re on a training run or during your big race—but finding the perfect vessel can be a chore. Meet the pleasantly squishy and ultralight HydraPak SoftFlask 500ml ($20, The TPU container shrinks as you drink to keep water from sloshing in your hand, and the wide 42mm opening makes filling up and adding nutrition mixes a breeze on the go.

4 This Vermont-based sock company makes this promise to consumers: If you wear a hole through your sock, the company will replace it—guaranteed! The Darn Tough Vermont Vertex Tab No Show Ultra-Light running socks ($16, have no uncomfortable seam along the toe and are easily washed with just water, since they’re made with Merino wool. The familyowned company also makes hiking, biking and lifestyle socks, so wearers have options on their cross-training and rest days. OLIVER BAKER




After your race, treat your feet (and the rest of your body!) to a soft and restorative pair of Oofos OOlala Sandals ($60, to help your body recover from all the miles you’ve logged. The proprietary foam absorbs 37 percent more shock than traditional foam footwear and helps relieve the sore muscles from the bottom of your feet up into your lower back. The design also provides arch support along with room for your toes and foot to move in a natural motion.



It’s not attractive to talk about, but chafing really does happen to most athletes. We deal with chafing on our feet, under our arms, beneath our sports bra bands…basically, any uncomfortable area is open season. To beat the chafe, we call products like Body Glide ($10 for 1.5-oz. stick, into action. Slick a little on over whatever patch of skin is bothering you, and it’ll prevent your skin from rubbing raw.

Don’t be intimidated by technology on your runs—the slim Garmin Forerunner 35 GPS run watch ($200, is super simple to use with its four-button interface. The built-in GPS, wrist-based heart rate tracking and easy-to-read display help you stick to your goal speed on race day. It also features activity tracking (including step counting and sleep tracking) and connects to your phone for smart notifications so you can wear it beyond race day. Also, the battery lasts close to a week, so you don’t have to charge it every night!


This is not the bottled Gatorade you pick up at gas stations! Designed for longer workouts and races (read: half marathons and longer), the recently reformulated Gatorade Endurance Formula Powder ($29 for 38-serving canister, is easy on the gut, as it now utilizes a multi-carbohydrate blend, and won’t overwhelm your palate with sweetness—it has a cleaner ingredient list with no artificial colors or flavors and a much lighter taste. To meet the needs of endurance athletes, it also has almost double the sodium (300 milligrams) and more than triple the potassium (140 milligrams) of traditional Gatorade.






Life’s Too Short to Go So F*cking Slow By Susan Lacke VeloPress, $19, Read it: For a humorous, touching and inspiring memoir from an Ironman athlete (and WR contributor!) about how sports and friendship can change lives. Her mentor helped her turn her life around before he faced his own grim diagnosis. Snapshot: “Suddenly, the Carlos Nunez sadistic approach to training made some sense. I was starting to discern that being a badass didn’t mean performing well when conditions are just right. It was all about keeping your cool when everything goes wrong. And in Ironman—as in life—a lot of things can go wrong. You can complain and quit, or you can make forward progress. Carlos Nunez made forward progress, no matter the conditions, a daily habit. It was sadistic and smart all at once.”

Mindful Running By Mackenzie L. Havey Bloomsbury, $14,

Running Rewired By Jay Dicharry VeloPress, $25,

Read it: For a mix of scientific research, expert analysis and advice from elite athletes on how meditative running can improve your performance as well as provide a boost to your emotional, mental and physical health. Snapshot: “I have found that I don’t get so easily pulled into my own neurotic misadventures, ruminating about the past or obsessing about the future. Most runs I’m simply able to focus on my breathing and the rhythm of my stride and accept the fact that there will be moments of discomfort and suffering. This has made me a happier and healthier runner, but also a more switched-on human being in general.”

Read it: For 15 simple strength and mobility workouts—all based on the cutting-edge biomechanical research of a leading endurance sports physical therapist—that can reinvent your running form and make you a faster, more durable runner. Snapshot: “Medals adorn the necks of those who nail the fundamentals, which in turn allows them to train consistently and successfully. You’ve got to put in the miles to get fit, but how can you be sure that your training is setting you up for success? Put simply, there are things that all runners of all abilities should be doing outside of running to improve their running. If you want to run better, you need to move better.” —BETHANY MAVIS

Runger Recovery



40% Post-race meal with friends 33% Take a nap 12% Netflix binge 15% Obsessively check results



The 2018 IAAF World Half Marathon Championships could easily become a race for the history books. Taking place in Valencia, Spain, on March 24, this year’s elite field welcomes Joyciline Jepkosgei of Kenya, a 24-year-old athlete who twice smashed the halfmarathon world record last year and owns the current world record time of 1:04:51. Allie Kieffer, who scored a 26-minute marathon PR to place fifth at the TCS New York City Marathon last November, plans to compete against Jepkosgei for the title in March. Check out our Q&A with Kieffer on page 30, and look for our interview with Jepkosgei in our April issue. —MEGHAN ROOS



Strava, the ubiquitous activity tracker app loved by athletes, released its annual report on its users, and the running numbers tell an interesting story. The data is gathered from millions of Strava users running in 195 countries around the world.

Morning rules among runners, with

Runners who trained with others saw a

of athletes preferring it to other times of day for exercise.



Those who joined a running club saw a

46% average increase in workout-related activities. Users logged approximately





699 million

miles worldwide over the course of




average increase in workoutrelated activities.


Those who commuted to get their training in saw a


forty-three percent


increase in weekend workout-related activities.


Goal-setting was a strong motivator for athletes, with


ninety-t wo percent

of athletes remaining active 10 months after setting an initial exercise-related goal.


logged of those runs recorded in 136 million runs, with 30 million the United States alone.

RUNNING FOR THE COLD GOLD The Winter Olympic Games begin on Feb. 9, and though competitive running has no part in these festivities, our favorite sport still plays a role in many athletes’ training. Visit to read our interview with Meagan Duhamel, a Canadian pair skater who has earned gold, silver and bronze medals with skating partner Eric Radford at the World Figure Skating Championships and at the Olympics in years past. Alongside nutrition, Duhamel cites running as a vital part of her training and an important key to securing past wins. Speaking of figure skating, the 2018 Winter Olympics inspired a new question among our editors: If we weren’t runners, which winter sports would we choose to pursue? When we asked you, our readers, to vote for your favorite of four sports that included figure skating, curling, biathlon and luge, the overwhelming interest in the Games’ popular figure-skating program wasn’t surprising! —MEGHAN ROOS

In which Winter Olymic event would you compete if you had a chance?

24% 20% Biathlon




Figure skating






The pressure to succeed got the best of me—until I learned to race without fear. // BY HANNAH HARTZELL


hen I was a kid, I found every opportunity I could to run races. Whether it was against my mom, my brothers or the neighbor’s cat, I relished the thrill of competition. But somewhere along the line, things changed. After an extended hiatus and two collegiate injuries, I found myself utterly terrified to race. I would try to get excited, but as soon as the gun went off, I would panic. “Crap,” I’d think. “I don’t want to do this anymore!” The pressure to succeed was



too much to bear, and I would crumble before I even found my stride. Fear, it turns out, isn’t a healthy motivator in the longterm. I quickly realized that. As frustrated as I was, though, I couldn’t seem to change it. In fact, it wasn’t until this past September that my mindset finally shifted. At that point, I had completed some solid workouts and was in decent physical shape. Yet I was on the verge of tears before my first cross-country race of the season—so much so that my coach pulled me aside. “What would it be like if you

raced like you couldn’t fail?” he asked. “What would be different?” The question both inspired and annoyed me. I was inspired at the possibility of enjoying competition again. I was annoyed because it seemed impossible. But it did get me thinking: What is failure, anyway? Was it failure when I derailed my running career for two years? How about when I ran three terrible races in a row? Or when I gave up halfway through a race? Ultimately, I decided none of that was failure. The only true failure, in my view, is letting fear win, and I was ready to stop doing that. So I did. I separated my worth from the outcome of races and said sayonara to my precious goals of perfection. Instead, I began focusing on training hard and savoring each race—reflecting, refining and genuinely having fun. And guess what? It’s working. I’m racing with more speed and audacity than I ever have. And as I do, the results take care of themselves. The anxiety flees. So how would you race if you knew you couldn’t fail? Most likely, your experience would change. If that’s the case, I encourage you to lay down your definition of “failure.” Failure is not a moment of weakness or a fractured dream. Those are simply bumps in the road that, although painful, don’t define you. You’re still here, so as far as I see it: You haven’t failed. I have a row of neon-green sticky notes plastered to my bedroom wall— five in total. Each one holds a different message, scrawled in pink pen with dogged determination the night after that first September race. “I am a fierce competitor,” one says. To its left: “The joy of the Lord is my strength.” The middle sticky note, the one I see most often and inked with the most vigor, is written large, in all caps. “I am victorious over fear,” it says. And I believe it.


From gear mishaps to nutrition miscues, we’ve all had something go wrong on race day. The most important thing is to learn from it! Here, five runners share their biggest race-day mistakes—and how to prevent them in the future. // BY BETHANY MAVIS “It is super important to be prepared for any type of weather, especially if you are traveling for your race. Tracking the weather doesn’t guarantee anything, and I learned that on race day. I traveled to Utah for a 50-miler, and it was supposed to be sunny and beautiful, but come race day, it was windy, cold and it even rained! I was definitely not prepared for that type of weather, and it impacted my performance and my result. Now I pack for every type of weather.” —Lulu Martinez, communications manager, ultrarunner and two-time 100-miler finisher

minutes, so I prefer to be as light as possible on my feet and not be bogged down by a full bladder. At a recent event on a hot day, my pre-race fluids consisted only of coffee, which tends to act as a diuretic, and my body felt depleted after the second mile.” —Patricia Fall, owner of Fall Media Group, former collegiate runner, 5K runner and triathlete

“I ran in a costume for my first half marathon, and I had nearly every element of my costume perfected—except for the leggings. I’d heard a thousand times over to run in your full costume before the race, but I procrastinated and bought a pair of leggings from Target the night before the race because they seemed to fit. I discovered the waistband was actually way too big, and I spent the first four miles praying my leggings didn’t fall! I definitely won’t be using my next half marathon (or any race) to break in another item of clothing.”


“The aspect of racing that proved most detrimental during [my years as an elite distance runner] was comparison. Spending too much time or energy seeing who else will be in the race brings unnecessary worry and pulls you away from your true power. I learned to focus on my path, where I am at, trusting in me and the overall process. Sure, you have to be aware of your surroundings, but literally staying focused on your own lane and power are the big keys!” —Alyson Charles, TV host, conscious lifestyle expert, former elite distance runner

—Shelby Rogers, content marketing strategist, freelance writer, runner


“When I first started distance running I didn’t know what I was doing, and I ran one of my first half marathons in regular non-sweat-wicking socks. I ended up with huge blisters on my feet during the humid race and never made that mistake again. Now I’m super picky about my running socks!” —Heather Montgomery, fitness and running blogger, half-marathon and marathon runner “My mistake has been not being hydrated enough. I run relatively short races (5K) in less than 20 MARCH 2018 | WOMEN’S RUNNING 15





We tamed those unruly flyaways and managed second-day hair with dozens of headbands to find the five best for runners. // BY BETHANY MAVIS 1. BEST ADJUSTABLE: Daph Daph BonBunz Using a pull bungee cord for easy adjustments and a rubber lining, these neoprene headbands stayed in place on both long and short runs without causing a headache. The bungee cords weren’t bothersome during the run, but they do tend to catch the little hairs on your neck if not adjusted carefully. $14 (City Plan pattern pictured), 2. BEST WIDE: Bondi Band Wicking Headband In order to keep this stretchy headband from slipping, testers had to wear it lower on their foreheads than the other headbands, but that also meant it helped keep away sweat. Available in threeinch or four-inch widths, they can be folded to a thinner width, but that seems to make them slip off some testers’ heads. $12 (On the Fritz pattern pictured),





4. BEST NON-SLIP: Sweaty Bands How has no one else thought to line headbands with velvet till now? The WR editors were pleasantly surprised— shocked, even—at how well these stretchy headbands, which feature anti-microbial and moisture-wicking fabric, stayed in place and kept sweat out of our eyes, even on the sweatiest runs. $26 (BE fit 2-inch Blue pictured),

5. BEST THIN: BUFF USA Senna Hairbands We like the sleek look of these narrow, stretchy headbands, sold in a three-pack of fun, colorful prints. They feature a silicone grip, polyester fabric and snug fit, which keeps them from slipping. Best for shorter runs if the tension tends to cause you headaches. $12 for three-pack,


3. BEST REFLECTIVE: Under Armour Reflective Headband The reflective all-around taping on this polyester headband is only one of its praiseworthy features—it also received high marks from testers for its adjustability. The adjuster at the back of the head slides easily, doesn’t get caught in your hair and then stays in place, partly thanks to a silicone interior. $15,


STRONGER FASTER TOUGHER IN RUNNING REWIRED, America’s leading endurance sports physical therapist and coach shares a program that will make you stronger, faster, and more durable. Jay Dicharry distills cutting-edge biomechanical research into 15 Rewire Workouts that will transform your running within one season. Dicharry’s self-tests and exercises fit seamlessly into your training to help you shed old injuries, fix mobility problems, strengthen imbalances, and rewire your movement patterns—all for better movement and better running. From 5K to ultramarathon, running places incredible SEE A PREVIEW AT VELOPRESS.COM/REWIRE

demands on your body. Dicharry’s Running Rewired will upgrade your body for better running.




Travel, race, repeat. (We save you the learning curve.) // BY MARTY MUNSON


eople who think running is so great because “it only requires a pair of shoes!” have never packed for an out-of-town race. You’ll likely need your favorite socks if it’s hot, favorite socks if it’s cold, race nutrition, expo clothes, expo-if-it’s-cold clothes, airplane snacks, favorite cap, favorite-cap-if-it’s-raining option…and then there’s the whole thing about how to manage getting there healthfully and what to pack to eat before the race. We turned to pro and everyday athletes to help you nail what to take, eat and do to have your best and most hassle-free “away” race ever. Their tips:


Carry on, friends. Yes, that bag that you clutter up the overhead storage bin with should absolutely include your race apparel and your raceday shoes. “Lost” is not a good place for your dependable race gear. While you could buy more clothes, you know the “nothing new on race day” rule, right? Mile 5 is a bad time to find out that cute new top that seemed so soft chafes like crazy. Keep your sports drink powders in their original containers. Heather Wurtele, a pro athlete who’s earned six Ironman titles, knows a few things about travel and packing. In addition to spending plenty of time on airplanes, she spent years traveling with her triathletehusband around Canada and the U.S. in a 23-foot RV. For air travel, she says, “I doublebag nutrition and electrolyte powders in zip-top freezer bags. If I put them in a carry-on, I save myself the hassle of a bag search by leaving them in the labeled canisters because a Ziploc baggie of white powder generally elicits questions at security. I take them out of my bag and put them in a bin to go through the X-ray machine.” Gels should be TSA-friendly, but pack extras in your checked luggage in case they get confiscated.




Roll with it. Tuck a foam roller into your bag, recommends runner, nutritionist and personal trainer Carrie Burrows, Ph.D. No, not the giant ones— numerous companies make travel-sized rollers (like the Trigger Point GRID Mini Foam Roller, $25, tptherapy. com). Or pack a lacrosse or tennis ball to minimize space but maximize your ability to keep muscles loose. Go beyond snacks. Airplane snacks are a given—of course you’re going to have nuts or fruit with you; maybe even nut butters and rice cakes, dried edamame, string cheese or some kind of healthy cereal. But if you’re headed to a place with a dodgy food or water supply—or even a location where stores don’t stay open past 9 p.m. or you don’t have a way to get around town—consider bringing dinners, too. “I’ll pack those tear-open packages of pre-cooked rice, and some salmon, instant oatmeal and hemp hearts,” Wurtele says.

Consider a kettle. Don’t find out the hard way that not every hotel room has a coffeemaker. When you see an empty space where that cup of joe should be in the morning…well, that’s no way to start any day, much less a race day. “I’ve gotten into the habit of packing a small electric kettle after having several hotel rooms without a kettle or coffee maker. I’d rather spend time with my feet up than figuring out a way to boil water in my room,” Wurtele says. Consider one of the many nifty, small, collapsible silicone kettles on the market (like the CXAK Outdoor Portable Collapsible Silicone Tea Kettle, $20, After you boil that water… numerous athletes say they won’t travel without their AeroPress ($30, aeropress. com) to brew the perfect coffee. “It’s very compact, easy to use and quick,” says runner, personal trainer and Ironman athlete Rob Jackson, founder of Minimal FIT in the UK. “I’ll also take ground coffee beans I’ve had before so I know they agree with me. I put them into a resealable bag and have enough to last all the days before, during and after my race.”


Compress. Several athletes swear by their compression gear (socks, tights) for the airplane ride there and back. It keeps your blood from pooling in your ankles and, at the very least, helps you avoid swollen ankles and feet (which means no blisters when you put your shoes back on and take the long walk to baggage claim). Go early. “Build extra days into your itinerary for acclimation to the destination and for jetlag recovery,” says coach and ultrarunner Sarah Lavender Smith, author of The Trail Runner’s Companion: A Step-by-Step Guide to Trail Running and Racing, from 5Ks to Ultras. “Ideally, you’ll want one extra day per time zone change.”




Aim high. “It can be worth paying for a room on a higher floor to avoid street noise,” says runner and wellness and nutrition counselor Sarah Schlichter, M.P.H., R.D.N. “You can’t always control the environment you’re in, but you can prepare the best you can to make it as quiet and relaxing as possible.” Tuck a sleep mask into your bag, too, she says, in case the curtains don’t cut out the light that’s outside your room. Befriend the bartender. “I’ve had bartenders blend up my protein shakes,” Burrows says. “Hotels are usually really accommodating.” Make sure you can get back to the hotel after the race. Figure out your route and, more importantly, check

beforehand to be sure you can go back into the room and shower after the race, says Greg Drach, co-founder and crew chief of Midnight Runners, Europe’s largest run crew (based in London). “There’s nothing worse than flying back home without having a shower,” he says. And that’s not even from the perspective of the people who have to sit around you.

Christine Diven, who’s run marathons on numerous continents for charity (including races on the Great Wall of China and in Antarctica). “If they leave you a voicemail, you can turn it into an mp3 and add it to your playlist. It’s incredibly uplifting to hear your bestie’s voice at mile 22 when you’re halfway across the world and want to quit.”

Use the ice bucket’s plastic bag, recommends Burrows. That plastic bag + that ice machine down the hall + the tendon that started bothering you = aaah.

Stay clean. “It doesn’t make sense to put a ton of time and effort into your training only to have it derailed by catching a cold during travels,” Wurtele says. “I’m a total germaphobe, and I go to town on the hand-washing and use a paper towel to shut off the faucet afterward, and I use hand sanitizer obsessively; I avoid touching my face and generally try to be aware of germs. I also


Play it again. “Ask your friends to leave you a voicemail with well wishes for your big day,” says

wipe down eating surfaces and re-sanitize my hands after touching common utensils at, say, a hotel breakfast buffet.” Bring extra outfits. It may have been gorgeous in your race location all week, but that doesn’t mean it can’t take a sudden dip, like the windchill during the 2014 New York City Marathon that made temps in the 40s feel like it was in the 30s. Put some just-in-case clothes in your bag, too, recommends Erika Lee, a Los Angeles– based performance coach and consultant. Go direct. “Try to book direct flights to minimize the chance of your bag getting delayed by not making a transition during a flight change,” Lavender Smith says.

5 Cool Races Worth Traveling To With Your Girl Pack Thelma and Louise Half Marathon & Relay Moab, UT June 2, 2018 Participants have called this half marathon and relay (each runner does 6.55 miles of the marathon course) “all about having fun.” After all, you get to choose which name (Thelma or Louise) goes on your bib, and the original convertible from the movie leads the race. Last year, nearly 400 women turned out for the half along with 40 relay teams. More info:


If You Love National Parks Grand Teton Half Marathon Jackson, WY June 2, 2018 While you don’t run through the national park proper, “it’s about as close as it gets,” say race organizers—but total elevation gain is less than 600 feet. Bring your camera; the finish has some stunning views of the mountains. The organizers, Vacation Races, hold other races near national parks throughout the summer, including Yellowstone, Yosemite and Zion. More info:


Wine, Anyone? Napa to Sonoma Wine Country Half Marathon July 14, 2018 Napa, CA You’ll experience a whole different kind of “cheers” after running through rolling hills and vineyards. Cross the finish line, and you and about 3,000 other competitors get to salute yourselves with a glass of local wine. More info:

Do a Classic Virgin Money London Marathon London, UK April 22, 2018 Run this marathon majors race and sightsee at the same time—you even get to run across the Tower Bridge and finish near Buckingham Palace. It’s so popular that the only way to still race it in 2018 is to enter as a charity runner (all other slots are full), but it’s a great one to plan ahead for in 2019. Be prepared to have your finger on the “enter” button in early 2018 for the 2019 race—for this year’s race, the entry window was last May. More info:

Because…Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon and Half Las Vegas, NV November 10–11, 2018 Run on the famous Vegas Strip in the marathon and the half; the weekend also offers a 10K and 5K that start and finish on that famous bit of roadway. The event happens in the evening, so you can take in the full power of the lights that turn a Vegas night almost into day. More info:



You probably don’t need more than one pair. Running shoes are expensive, y’all. Don't buy into the hype that you need different (pricey!) pairs for different kinds of runs. For your first pair, a neutral shoe that falls in the middle of the cushioning spectrum should suffice for daily training and racing.


FIND YOUR PERFECT PAIR E Once you find your sole mate, never let it go. // BY SUSAN LACKE




If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Some shoes make big promises, like mega-cushy shoes that claim to protect your joints from shock. But your body is already built to absorb shock, and recent studies suggest cushioning doesn't really make an impact on injury rates in runners. “Most brands have options that run the gamut from maximal cushioning to minimal,” Horan says. “The sweet spot for most people falls somewhere in the middle.”


Snag ’em all. Shoe brands update their styles annually. Sometimes, these changes are cosmetic; other times, major changes to sizing, width or breathability render your favorite shoe completely foreign. To avoid this fate, Horan says to stock up when your perfect pair is on clearance. “Most stores have sales on previous models throughout the year, as brands tend to update their shoes. The majority of updates occur at the beginning of the year and the end of the summer.” If you’re unsure of when your faves will be discounted, ask a store employee—they’re likely to tell you when you can save the biggest bucks (and may even be able to offer the discount before the official sale).


nter a specialty running store for the first time, and the endless shoe options are staggering: Maximal! Neutral! Stability! Energy return! Trainers! Racers! With so many choices, it’s enough to send any new runner…well, running. Shouldn’t we just pick shoes based on what fits and looks good? Yes…and no. Paul Horan, owner of GEAR Running in Edina, Minn., says many new runners pick the wrong shoe their first time, likely because they’re not sure what they want, what they need and how to wade through the options to find their perfect pair. Don’t let that happen to you! Your shoe-store cheat sheet:


High heel size & running shoe size Feet swell when running, so a shoe that fits perfectly in the store will likely be constricting at the end of a workout. “Most people should size up to a half to a full size—roughly a thumb’s width—in running shoes. This allows your feet to expand for a more natural running experience.”

Your running shoes are not your grocery-store shoes. If you want to have a long and happy relationship with your shoes, you’ve got to show them some TLC. “Generally, it’s best to use running shoes for running, as that is what they are designed for,” Horan says. “One should avoid excessive wear outside of running, as they break down the shoes prematurely.”



ALL TOGETHER NOW Black Girls RUN! leaves no woman behind. // BY SARAH WASSNER FLYNN



o for a run with Adina Crawford, and she’ll promise to stay by your side, no matter what pace you’re running. And she’ll stick to her word. “It’s hard to get rid of me,” jokes Crawford, a Washington, D.C., ambassador for Black Girls RUN! “If you want to walk, I’ll walk. Crawl if you have to. The last thing I want is for someone to be out there feeling alone.” It’s this message of “no woman left behind” that defines Black Girls RUN! (BGR), a community of more than 225,000 members across the country. Born out of a desire to offer a welcoming environment for all runners—African-American women, especially—BGR has grown from a fledgling Facebook group to a powerful movement in just nine years. And it’s not just about running together: BGR is also focused on reducing the rising rates of chronic obesity among African-American women, one mile at a time. “I do think we’ve galvanized black women to think about their health in ways they haven’t before,” says BGR co-founder Toni Carey, explaining that some 80 percent of African-American women are overweight, according to the Centers for Disease Control. “I’m so proud of all of these women who are owning our message and improving their own lives and the lives of others.” Carey and co-founder Ashley Hicks-Rocha formed

BGR in 2009 after they themselves felt ostracized at a group run in Charlotte, N.C. “We weren’t acknowledged; they took off and we were on our own,” Carey recalls. “It was such a terrible experience. I never want any other runner to ever feel like they don’t belong out there.” Today, with nearly 70 chapters across the United States, BGR offers national meet-ups at major events like marathons as well as regular runs among the local crews. There, ambassadors like Crawford divvy up the groups to ensure that every member has someone to keep pace with. And they extend their inclusivity beyond the weekly runs. “If a member is running a race, we’ll be sure to have someone there for her and to be at the finish line when they cross,” explains Crawford. “Whatever their goal is, we will carry it through.” Crawford says she’s seen women who had never run more than a few miles become marathoners, and those who once considered themselves “too fat and too slow” discover soaring self-confidence through running. “They’re starting at zero, and we’re giving them a foundation on which to build,” she says. “To watch that progress is so rewarding.” Granted, Carey admits that BGR still has plenty of building left to do. “We’ve had a tremendous impact so far, but the reality is that the obesity rates among black women aren’t declining,” she

BGR By t he Numbers 32,900 Number of @officialblackgirlsrun followers on Instagram

18 The age of BGR’s youngest member

40 Average age of a BGR member

explains. “We are hoping to make generational changes— that women will pass on their healthy lifestyles and love of running to their kids and beyond that, and we’ll continue to make a difference down the road. That will be our legacy.”

319 Number of virtual finishers of the 2017 Sweat With Your Sole 5K/10K, an annual BGR event

35 Number of states, including Washington, D.C., offering BGR meet-ups




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> SHOE OF THE MOMENT Rubber in high-abrasion zones is 2.5 millimeters thick.

Nike’s new foam goes high tech. // BY REBECCA WARREN undreds of iterations in the making, Nike introduces React, a brand new proprietary foam that will deliver the shoe legend’s liveliest and softest ride yet. React foam offers 13 percent greater energy return than the company’s previous best foam, the EVA used in its Lunar shoe. The first shoe to feature this next-generation foam is the Nike Epic React. The silhouette is designed to give a nod to the popular Nike running shoes of the 1980s, including the Internationalist.

Heel pull tab for ease of entry

One-piece, fulllength Nike React foam provides an ultra-smooth transition and enhanced underfoot sensation.

The Flyknit upper features a bootie construction that offers a socklike feel with elastic yarns in the vamp and tongue area to allow for breathability and better fit. The TPU heel clip provides more stability. 

EPIC REACT $150 (available Feb. 22),


9mm offset for a neutral ride



ROW THIS WAY Take advantage of your gym’s rowing machine to build whole-body strength and improve your running. // BY EILEEN WEBER


utdoor running in late winter or early spring can be treacherous once you add a little snow and ice. Sure, there’s the treadmill, but day in and day out, any other kind of workout is a welcome retreat from inclement weather. That’s where rowing can come in—it’s an intense workout, building muscles that can help you run better and faster. One of the first Olympic sports and the oldest intercollegiate activities, rowing is a pastime with

origins dating back to ancient Egypt. But you don’t have to hop in a boat to get the benefits of this exercise. A rowing machine, or ergometer (often abbreviated to “erg” or “ergo”), provides the same whole-body experience. Michelle Jarc, a high school teacher in Ohio, incurred a stress fracture in her pelvic area after having twins. An avid runner, she had to find an alternate exercise regimen while in recovery. That’s when she dusted off her gym’s rowing machine

and got hooked. “It’s such a good workout,” Jarc says. “It’s the best cross-training you can do—it uses 80 percent of your muscle mass.” When she returned to running, Jarc noticed an immediate improvement in her leg strength, endurance and speed. Now, she regularly uses rowing as part of her workout—she runs four days a week and uses the rowing machine once or twice each week. Jarc highly suggests hiring a trainer or watching how-to videos to make sure you're using the rowing machine properly. Too often, people get back pain because their stroke is inaccurate. Esther Lofgren, an Olympic rower who won the women’s eight in the 2012 London Games, agrees, adding that there are plenty of instructional videos on YouTube. “Rowing is a strength and endurance sport,” Lofgren says. “You can jump in and

start doing it, but it’s helpful to know what you’re doing.” Lofgren has been rowing since high school and comes from a rowing family (both parents trained for the U.S. rowing team). While running was always part of her workouts, rowing is her passion. She even got her husband to give it a try. Simply adding a 10-minute erg workout before jumping on the treadmill took several minutes off his overall time and gave him better leg rotation. “[Rowing] is something you can improve in really rapidly,” she says, unsurprised by her husband’s pleasant discovery. “It’s the machine that will burn the most calories in the gym.” Sandra LaFlamme was a rower in high school and college. As a mother, running became an easy way to stay fit. There's no need for a boat when all you have to do is slap on your sneakers and go.




Rowing The Workout You Didn’t Know You Needed

Shane Farmer, founder of San Diego, Calif.'s Dark Horse Rowing and an avid CrossFit trainer, says rowing is one of the greatest workouts you can do without incurring much impact. It adds the element of upper-body control and midline stability work that doesn’t necessarily happen in running. “I usually start with a good warm-up and some ‘pick drills,’” he says. “That’s where I pick a stroke apart into smaller pieces and then put it all back together in one big movement.” He offered a few staple workouts to try: ƒ 6x500 meters: Row 500 meters with a 2-minute rest between each rep. ƒ 3 minutes on/3 minutes off: Row for 3 minutes, strength train for 3 minutes off the machine, and repeat for 6 rounds. ƒ 10x250 meters: Row 250 meters with a 1-minute rest between reps. ƒ Add sandbag work for posture, which builds core strength more than any stifflegged plank.

Doug Welling, founder of The Sustainable Athlete in Brunswick, Maine, says rowing focuses on strength more than running does. That’s one of the reasons his company offers indoor rowing classes that run from early December through March. Winters in Maine can be pretty brutal, so there has to be some way to keep fit during those frigid months. Welling has a few goto regimens that work best for his clients: ƒ Shorter chunks: A 10-minute row with a 1- to 2-minute rest. Repeat 3–4 times. ƒ Rowing “fartleks”: 1 minute row as hard as you can, then 2 minutes easy. Repeat 8 times. ƒ 8x500: Row 500 meters, which takes about 2 minutes. Repeat 8 times. ƒ Bust it out: Set the machine for 2,000 meters and give it all you've got.

“I’ve been running a lot of marathons,” LaFlamme says. “Rowing is a steady workout and helps you with endurance.” Even so, LaFlamme points out that a rowing machine can only simulate what it’s like to row on water. Since the machine doesn’t have the instability of a boat, the rocking motion of any fluctuation in the water is missing. There are essentially four basic moves in proper rowing technique: the catch, the drive, the finish and the recovery. The catch involves sitting with your feet in the stirrups, legs bent, arms fully extended, gripping the handle. The drive means pushing your legs back while the seat slides, maintaining a tight core. The finish comes when your arms are pulled back with the handle at your lower ribs, your core is still engaged, your back has moved from a one o’clock position to an 11 o’clock position and your legs are straight. The recovery—the opposite of the drive—involves your body pulling back to the catch position. Jenn Junk, executive director of ROW, or Recovery On Water, co-founded the program that teaches women surviving from breast cancer to row. Junk says that exercise has been shown to clinically reduce the recurrence of cancer in survivors. “Most of these women weren’t around for Title IX,” she explains, “so this is their first experience being on a team.” Junk, a rower who recently ran the Chicago Marathon, says rowing on a machine is more accessible than rowing on water because it

typically requires more than one person. Fitness facilities often have ergometers, but if you wish to purchase, the price range can be anywhere from a few hundred dollars to well over a thousand. “Rowing is really great because it has minimal joint impact,” Junk says. “It’s a great way to cross-train and a great HIIT tool.” Like these women, Shane Farmer, founder of Dark Horse Rowing in San Diego, Calif., caught the rowing bug in college. He'd dabbled in every other sport imaginable, eventually becoming a CrossFit competitor and certified rowing coach. But rowing’s intensity stuck with him. “I’m seeing more rowing studios popping up worldwide,” he says. “It’s certainly not a sport that’s exploding, but it’s definitely got steady growth.” Doug Welling, a rowing coach at Bowdoin College, founder of The Sustainable Athlete in Brunswick, Maine, and an avid triathlete, acknowledges the steady increase in popularity. “I’d say it’s growing,” Welling says. “We’re starting to see more indoor rowing gyms popping up everywhere.” Welling cautions that those who only run can lose upper-body and core strength by not working out those areas. Rowing addresses those weaknesses. Like cycling, the push-off of the drive in rowing is similar to running and gives phenomenal aerobic stimulation. The next time you run into a rowing machine at your local gym, stop, sit down and give it a try. You’ll be glad you did. MARCH 2018 | WOMEN’S RUNNING 27


march 8

It’s International Women’s Day! Around the world, we’re celebrating the achievements of women in all ways. We’re especially proud of how far women have come in our sport— just 40 years ago, women were barred from distance running, and today we make up the majority of finishers.

10 Coffin racing—yes, it’s a thing. At Frozen Dead Guy Days in Nederland, Colo., racers commemorate the bizarre story of Bredo Morstoel, a cryogenically frozen sarcophagus stored in a garage. In this quirky athletic competition, teams race with a coffin and “corpse” in tow through a course full of obstacles, mud and snow—all for a cash prize and the world’s strangest bragging rights.

15 Want to be a part of the world’s largest 10K? Visit the Atlanta Track Club website, ASAP! There, you can put your name in the hat for the Peachtree Road Race Lottery to be one of 60,000 runners to tackle the historic race on July 4.

5 marathons, 5 days, 5 states—could you do it? The Dust Bowl Series kicks off today in Dalhart, Texas. After runners finish their 26.2 there, they’ll drive just over an hour to repeat the feat in Oklahoma the next day, then again in Kansas, Colorado and New Mexico.




Don your greenest gear and test your PR luck at a Shamrock Run. St. Patrick’s Day is the third most popular running holiday (behind Thanksgiving and July 4), with dozens of races across the country. Distances vary, but odds are good you’ll find a green beer at the finish line of them all.









It’s officially spring! With the passing of the spring equinox, we move into longer days, more sunshine and warmer weather—all our favorite ingredients for a perfect run. (Did you take a hiatus from running over the winter? Here’s how to spring back into it:



tories of women like Kelly Herron fending off attackers while out for a run bring to light an important issue: personal safety, especially for women runners. It’s not something that should ever be taken lightly, and more and more brands are popping up to help women return home from their runs. Here, we highlight four products that will give you and your family a little extra peace of mind.

SAFETY ON THE GO Four products to keep you safe on outdoor runs // BY BETHANY MAVIS

ALARM: Run Angel This simple-looking wrist-worn device does much more than you’d expect—press the center button and not only does it emit a 120-decibel alarm (tuned specifically so it can travel as far as possible), but it also sends an SMS text and email with the time, date and location of the activation to loved ones via your smartphone’s Bluetooth. The made-in-the-UK device requires you to pair it with the Run Angel app, and within the app you can designate your “guardians” and enter their information. The lightweight device is rechargeable via a USB cord, and the charge can last up to two weeks (but it can be switched on and off to save battery between runs). $100,

APP: RunRaegis Combine your favorite fitness app with all the safety features you could dream up, and you get RunRaegis. The free version of the app includes fitness tracking in addition to a “panic” button that alerts your loved ones when you activate it. If you pay for the premium features, your predetermined safety contacts can watch your GPS location in real time, will be automatically notified if you don’t return from your run by the time you should, and connect with your local 911, even from the other side of the globe. While you’re on the run, too, this app is the “Waze” of safety, allowing other runners to report potential dangers along your route. $4.99 per month for premium subscription,

PEPPER SPRAY: SABRE Red 3-in-1 Runner Pepper Spray When you think of safety tools for women, pepper spray is the first thing that comes to mind, but this lightweight device is more than just pepper spray—it also features tear gas for extra burning (!) and UV marking dye to help identify the person. Many women may worry about being able to protect themselves in the heat of the moment without spraying themselves, but the company provides free training videos, and you can also purchase a pepper irritant–free practice canister for an extra $5. The spray has an easy-to-adjust hand strap and is lightweight and easy to carry on runs. Note that pepper spray sales are restricted in several states. $13,

CLAWS: Tiger Lady Self-Defense Claw Drawing inspiration from retractable cat claws, Tiger Lady allows you to exercise your catlike reflexes in the event of an attack. A relatively discreet and lightweight handheld device with a wrist strap, it’s made of two pieces of high-impact plastic with foam in between, which are exposed between your knuckles when you squeeze your fingers together. Handmade in the U.S., it’s a relatively simple-to-use product, though you could run the risk of scraping yourself on the claws if it’s not well-aligned in your hand. Of the personal safety tools in this roundup, this is the only one that can actually collect your assailant’s DNA. $35,

Visit for a slew of advice to help you protect yourself on outdoor runs.



ALLIE KIEFFER She PRed at the New York City Marathon by 26 minutes and is a World Half Marathon Championships hopeful. // BY MEGHAN ROOS


hile many cheered Shalane Flanagan’s historic New York City Marathon victory last November, another pro athlete was busy setting an entirely different kind of record—a 26-minute PR, to be exact. Allie Kieffer, the 30-year-old woman from Long Island, N.Y., who ran sans coach or sponsor, had Olympic aspirations as a high school and college student athlete until injuries got in her way. In the years that followed, Kieffer became a coach to stay involved in the running world but didn’t expect to seriously compete again herself until she won her very first marathon in early 2017. Ten months later, she was racing on one of the largest marathon stages in the world, finishing in 2:29:39 as the second American woman and placing fifth overall.

How did you expect the New York City Marathon to go? I ran with the New York Athletic Club [before the race], and I remember asking one of my teammates, “How long is it going to take to catch the top group?” He was like, “The best people take the longest time to break. Wait until 35K to actually catch up.” I thought it would be really late; I had this idea that I could get into Central Park two minutes behind. In years prior, people had tanked at the end and ran a few slow miles. It went completely differently. I caught people sooner; even in Brooklyn I didn’t feel that far out of contention. 30


What changes did you make to your training, fueling and racing mindset? The biggest change I made [last] year is that I started lifting. I joined a CrossFit gym in January [of 2017]. I’ve been doing Olympic lifts, which help me. For the marathon, I did a lot of tempo-specific long runs. In the past, I’ve done long runs, but not while shooting for a specific pace. I like the in-and-out runs, where you go at marathon pace, then a 10K or half-marathon pace. What does it mean to you to rejoin the professional racing circuit?

How do you work through those physical or mental barriers that many athletes face while racing? I’ve been lucky because I didn’t hit a wall in the [NYC] marathon. I’ve been steady in my pacing, so I don’t think I’ve dealt with a really negative patch. I’ve read a few books on mental training leading up to New York City. I just keep saying, “I can, I am,” all the positive mantras. I’ve read from Deena Kastor that your mind takes out the negatives; if you’re like, “Don’t get dropped,” your mind really hears “get dropped.” What advice would you offer new runners? A lot of times when I’ve been injured, I haven’t worked on the problems. I’ve been like, “I have a stress fracture, so I’m just going to take six weeks off.” There’s probably a reason why I got a stress fracture; maybe I’m landing on the wrong spot or something’s tight or weak, and so I’ve just waited for things to heal. Bones heal with rest, but the cause doesn’t heal. You need to continue to do all of the little things. What races are you looking forward to in 2018? I really want to make the world championships team for the half marathon. Then I’m going to move down in distance and focus on 10Ks and 5Ks for the track season.



THE RICH ROLL PODCAST Kieffer counts herself as one of the thousands of listeners who tune in to ultrarunner Rich Roll’s weekly conversations about health and wellness. “One of the things I want to do is continue to be a better person. He’s a really good influence, helping people be more aware of other cultures, people and things—to not be so entitled and to be more grateful.”

THIS AMERICAN LIFE Kieffer enjoys listening to podcasts on easy training days, when she typically runs alone. The ever-popular “This American Life” is one of her two favorite podcasts to zone out to during workouts. “I love all the serials too, but those are gone so quickly!”


I had success in high school, and dreams were born. You think, “I need to enter the Olympics, that’s the next step, and then I’ll be All-ACC [Atlantic Coast Conference] my first year, be Freshman of the Year…” None of those things happened. I was angry about it. It took me leaving the sport to really find the love again. I don’t have to go out and run every day—I want to, I get to.

RACE SMART > ASK THE COACH How should I time my pre-race warm-up?


Which shoes should I be wearing for which distances? Most simply…the shorter the race, the lighter the shoe. For longer races, like half marathons and marathons, most runners (other than elite athletes) will be just fine wearing their normal training shoe or potentially a slightly lighter-weight training shoe that is very similar in design to their usual running shoe. For shorter distances, such as a 5K or a 10K, racing flats are a good option when looking to maximize speed. However, it is important to spend some time training in your racing flats before racing in them for the first time. Try them out in a few workouts before you bring them out for a race. When racing cross-country on the trails, look for specific trail shoes or trail racing flats depending on the distance of race and surface. Likewise, for races on the track, consider wearing road racing flats in workouts or races. And be sure to pick out a fun, bright color so you stand out in the crowd!

Depending on the race, you should give yourself 30–60 minutes of time to properly warm up. Your warm-up should start with an easy jog. For longer races or days when it is very warm, spend around 10 minutes jogging at an easy pace. For shorter races or on days when the temperature is cooler, spend more time getting warm, more like 15–20 minutes of easy jogging. Follow your warmup jog with 10–15 minutes of dynamic stretching and drills such as high knees, A-skips, B-skips and other active drills. The idea is to wake your legs up with various drills that get your main muscles (glutes, quads, hamstrings and calves) firing. In the 5–10 minutes before the race, be sure to shed any remaining layers of clothing that you have on and get in several quick strides. Remember a stride is just a tad slower than a sprint. This will help get your heart rate up and prepare your legs for the start of the race. If you find that you need to go to the restroom several times before the start of the race, be sure to add in 5–10 minutes to factor in portapotty line time!

How do I stay warm before a race starts after I’ve checked my gear bag? Throw-away sweats are the secret! Before your next race, stop by your local thrift store and pick up a cheap pair of sweatpants and a sweatshirt. After you check your gear bag, keep the $2 sweats on right up until the gun goes off. Alternatively, if you have old sweats at home that you have been meaning to donate, bring those for race day. Don’t worry about littering near the start line, as most races have a great clean-up crew and know that runners need to ditch their last-minute items. Consider using a garbage bag with holes cut in it over the top if it is a wet day so that your cotton sweats don’t get soaked and keep you cold rather than warm. If it is especially cold, bring some cheap gloves as well as hand warmers to hold while you are waiting for the start of the race. The idea is to stay comfortable and relaxed as long as you can. Racing is stressful enough without being freezing cold! Have a question for Coach Kigar? Email editorial@ or tweet @womensrunning with the hashtag #AsktheCoach.


Develop Your Racing Toolbox No matter if you finish toward the back or the front of the pack, there is always that moment in a race when you feel like you have hit the wall—like you can’t go any faster, and you may wonder if you can even finish at all. The answer is YOU CAN! At that moment, you need to go into your toolbox and start pulling out the mental tricks. Just like the old saying “mind over matter,” with running, it is “mind over legs”! The power of the mind is incredible. Some people like to get angry during those rough moments. Others find their happy place as they try to ignore the pain. I suggest coming up with a word, a phrase or an image that fills you with strength. Maybe you are running in memory of a loved one, or maybe your favorite Earth, Wind and Fire song fires you up, or maybe you imagine a lion roaring with ferocity. Whatever it is, keep it right in the forefront of your mind and let it carry you through the toughest moments! (And turn to page 35 to learn more about creating a raceday mantra.)



HOW TO SET A P.R. EVERY DECADE In Run Strong, Stay Hungry, Jonathan Beverly finds that lifelong runners often stay committed to the sport by constantly resetting their expectations and goals. In this section from the new book, Beverly shares an unusual tip.

Republished with permission from Run Strong, Stay Hungry by Jonathan Beverly. See more at 32


TRAMPLE ON THE PAST How do we step away from patterns that worked? How do we move away from the emotional attachment to paces and totals that have told us what is “good” and motivated us to greater accomplishments? One strategy that emerged as I talked to lifetime competitors was to work to forget. It is a strategy echoed in the world’s great literature. “What makes old age hard to bear is not the failing of one’s faculties, mental and physical, but the burden of one’s memories,” W. Somerset Maugham wrote in his memoir, The Summing Up. How do we deal with those memories and move on? “We have to learn to trample on the past,” V.S. Naipaul wrote in his novel A Bend in the River. He was talking about major movements in history, transformations of

from running and given himself perThe act of throwing out the logs freed mission to try new patterns. him to create new training patterns and Several lifetime competitors set new goals. “I started new, and everyexperienced a similar reset around thing I did was a PR,” he said. injuries. Following several strong Sperandeo did the same thing when running years in his 40s, where he he turned 50. This time, he was recoverran nearly the same times every race, ing from cancer and radiation treatnear the top in the world for his age, ment. Throwing out everything from his seven-time U.S. national masters 40s, he started over again. champion Kevin Paulk’s feet fell apart He thinks every runner should throw at 48. He tried everything to get rid of out his or her logs at the start of a new his plantar fasciitis, including surgery, decade. “Your first workout when you while still trying to do the same trainturn 50, you do 400s, that’s your PR,” he ing he had always done. He finally said. “See if you can break that next time.” had to drop back to Other lifetime competitors zero and restart. “It talked about trampling My interest is took years of injury, on the past by no longer to run what I can surgery, rehab to tracking miles or keeping logs at all. run and be happy finally get really frustrated, to say, ‘This is “That’s fantastic inforwith it. not just a once-in-amation to have if you’re while thing; it is going training to race,” mountain —DANIEL GRIMES to keep reoccurring runner and three-time unless you do something different. Olympic Trials qualifier Daniel Grimes It is not going to go away unless you said. “But for now, my interest is to run change,’” Paulk explained. what I can run and be happy with it— Today he’s working on finding a and not worry about what I was doing new pattern of training, the right last week and not compare to what I was volume, the right density and all the doing a year ago.” extras needed to keep him healthy It’s intentional self-delusion, but and rebuilding. “Some people don’t perhaps easier than keeping the past get to the reset. I got to the reset; I’m close and constantly trying to separate in the reset mode,” he said. emotions from the times and totals. Dr. Mark Cucuzzella calls it doing Those can exist in the past and in our a “Ctrl/Alt/Delete”—the process of minds while we run today and enjoy the rebooting and starting at zero. A 2:24 feeling without having to quantify it. marathoner with recurrent injuries, “Obviously I care—I don’t want to he had foot surgery at age 34 to repair get slower,” Grimes admitted. “But if I chronic arthritis in his toes and was don’t keep track, then I don’t know how told he would not compete again. much slower I’m getting.” He used the occasion to rediscover how to run again, this time without CTRL/ALT/DELETE shoes. He started with walking, then Many masters runners described disslowly running across the driveway, tinct resets in their running life. Most then down the block, learning how are not as drastic as Sperandeo’s, but to move and building new strengths. these moments often did involve injury Today, at age 51, he’s able to run marand a time of rebuilding from zero. athons in the 2:30s. Coach Pete Magill, five-time USA At some point, many runners reMasters Cross-Country Runner of the quire a reset back to zero. They need to Year and multi-American and world ditch their current routine—not try to masters record holder, has had several maintain a certain mileage, not hit cerreboots. A few were lifestyle driven, tain splits or perform tried-and-true where he got away from the sport and workouts—and start over, unburdened had to start again. Others were smaller by old expectations and habits. resets, when he has taken time away

and cultures, but his advice applies as well to the changes in one’s lifetime. “It isn’t easy to turn your back on the past,” he warned. “It is something you have to arm yourself for, or grief will ambush and destroy you.” Leonardo Sperandeo, winner of the mile at the 2001 USATF Masters Championship, trampled on the past in dramatic fashion. At age 37, he was hit by a drunk driver while running and broke his femur at the knee and hip. It took him over a year to walk and longer still to be able to run. So when he turned 40 and felt ready to start running competitively again, he needed to start over. “First thing I did, [I] took all my old diaries and threw them away,” he said. “I didn’t box them up, didn’t pack them for later. I threw them in the garbage can.”



IT BAND SYNDROME The best strategies for fixing and preventing this common running injury // BY NICOLE RADZISZEWSKI

W 34


a dense band of fascia that runs along the outside of the thigh, starting just above the hip and attaching just below the knee. Scientists are still exploring its role in the body and why it is so susceptible to injury. ITBS has been deemed a “friction syndrome,” with symptoms occurring when the IT band rubs against and runs back and forth over the lateral epicondyle of the femur (bony protrusion on the outside of the knee) when the knee is bent at about 30 degrees.

Sidestepping with resistance band Secure a flat resistance band just above your ankles. Stand with your feet at about hip width (there should be slight tension in the band) and toes pointing forward. Keep a soft bend in your knees and weight in your midfoot to heel. Step your right foot to the right, keeping toes pointed forward. Maintain the tension in the band as you step your left foot slightly to the right. Continue stepping laterally, switching directions after about 10 steps. You should feel this in the side of your butt. Stop when you are fatigued or start to feel the load somewhere other than your glutes.





ith some injuries, it’s tempting to push through the pain when symptoms flare up on a run. With others, you might as well just stop and call for an Uber. Iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS)—characterized by lateral knee pain that strikes during a run and worsens if you continue—definitely falls into the latter category. Despite being the secondmost common running injury, ITBS is in many ways a mystery. The IT band is

But this theory has yet to be proven, says Kevin Maggs, D.C., a running injury specialist and chiropractor in Gainesville, Va., and director of The Running Clinic, USA. “We really don’t know what causes IT band syndrome, but we know that it’s a repetition injury. It tends to occur in distance runners and is more common on longer, slower runs,” Maggs says. As with most running overuse injuries, training errors (doing too much, too soon) are a risk factor for ITBS. For this reason, Maggs recommends following a training plan that involves gradual increases of speed, mileage and terrain. “Everyone is different, but it is probably safe to increase your total mileage by no more than 10–20 percent per week and keep your long run less than 50 percent of your total weekly mileage,” he says. If you suspect you have ITBS, first rest and allow the sensitized tissue to calm down. Once you can perform daily activities pain-free, Maggs recommends starting with run-walk intervals to avoid the repetition that comes with longer distances. If the pain returns, take a bit more time off and then return to the run-walk protocol, but with even less time exposure. ITBS is often misdiagnosed, so if your pain doesn’t go away, consult with a healthcare provider to rule out other possible sources of pain, such as a stress fracture, meniscus tear or other pathologies.

Recommended exercises for treating ITBS often involve strengthening of the muscles around the IT band, based on the theory that having weak hip abductors (muscles that move the leg laterally) lead to more strain on the IT band. Maggs’ approach is similar, but for a different reason. He suggests performing hip abduction exercises that involve loading the IT band and its surrounding musculature—not to overcome a strength deficit, but to increase tolerance of the sensitized tissue. Maggs also cautions against squats and other movements that involve knee flexion beyond 20 degrees, as this is where symptoms can start to present. Whichever approach you take, the following exercise will set you in the right direction.


THE VOICE INSIDE YOUR HEAD Shift your racing mindset with power phrases. // BY MACKENZIE L. HAVEY



ake the most of every step.” “Regret hurts more than the race.” “Courage and trust.” These are the mantras, or power phrases, that run through professional runner Heather Kampf’s head during races. A four-time national champion in the 1-mile road race and a prolific competitor, she knows a thing or two about the importance of controlling your inner narrative. In fact, she says that practicing this type of self-talk is just as essential as other aspects of her training. “I think once you get deep into a race of any distance, everyone is just battling the temptation to slow down and make it feel better,” she says. “These mantras help me combat those thoughts, to stay in ‘the now’ and to remember that embracing the pain and the moment will likely lead to worthwhile results and memories.” Research published in the journal Perspectives on Psychological Science backs up Kampf’s experience. In examining 32 sports psychology studies, researchers discovered that motivational self-talk can help boost confidence and readiness to compete, particularly in endurance events. How does this work? The key is to be intentional about the way you’re directing your thoughts. While this can take some practice, over time and training, these positive mantras will dominate your brain’s mental script.

“You have to ask yourself: ‘How do I race my best?’ ‘How do I want to feel?’” explains Cindra Kamphoff, Ph.D., a certified mental performance consultant, coach and author of the new book Beyond Grit. “Sometimes runners will just let the thoughts and feelings come to them, but you can be in charge of how you feel when you intentionally talk to yourself in a particular way.” Kampf agrees, saying, “Most of my mantras are about staying present and mindful. They help build resolve to get the most out of yourself and can almost meditatively get you through the tougher parts of a race.” “It can be the difference between surviving and thriving and really reaching your potential,” adds Kamphoff. So how do you come up with your own mantras or power phrases? Here’s a step-by-step guide. 1. Check in with your thinking. In order to be more intentional about the direction of your thoughts, you must first tap into your current mental chatter. The next time you’re out running, figure out where your head is at. Is your thinking positive, negative, distracted or focused? 2. Acknowledge and accept. Accept the thoughts you noticed in step 1. Even if they are less than productive, it’s not worth wasting energy trying to eliminate them. It’s better to focus on intentionally steering your mind in a more positive direction.

3. Choose your mantra(s). You might choose one mantra to get you through an entire race, but you’ll more likely benefit from having several options in your arsenal. Kamphoff advises that your phrase be process-oriented, rather than outcome-oriented. Something like “smooth and fast” or “light and strong” will be more effective than “I’m gonna win today!” 4. Make sure you believe it. “If you don’t believe the self-talk, it’s not going to work,” Kamphoff says. As such, be sure you choose mantras or power phrases that you truly buy into. 5. Practice, practice, practice. Be sure to utilize your phrases in training so they are ready and waiting when you need them most in a race. It can be challenging to call up positive thoughts in the heat of competition, so training your mind to default to this line of thought is important. 6. Write it down. Writing something down helps commit it to memory. You can write down your mantras in a training journal, on a notecard you put in your gym bag or on a Post-it note you stick on your bathroom mirror. You can even write them on your hand the morning of a race—then when the going gets tough, you’ll have them right at your fingertips. MARCH 2018 | WOMEN’S RUNNING 35

>Eat to Run FOR A FASTER FINISH New sports nutrition products to fuel your races // BY BETHANY MAVIS



he global sports nutrition market accounted for $28 billion in 2016, according to a report released by Zion Market Research, and it’s expected to grow to more than $45 billion by 2022. With so many brands, flavors, supplements and products out there, it’s no wonder runners get overwhelmed by the options. Gel? Chew? Drink? Tablet? Rather than risk an upset stomach, sometimes it’s easier to skip the nutrition altogether, which is okay for shorter distances (like 5K and 10K), but won’t work once you start longer runs, such as half and full marathons. “The half marathon and marathon are the only distances that require calories, and the half is dependent

on finish time,” says Brooke Schohl, M.S., R.D., a board-certified sports dietitian at Fuel to the Finish in Scottsdale, Ariz. If you’re going to finish a half marathon in less than 2 hours, you can get away with using no fuel during the race; if the race will take you 2–3 hours, you’ll probably need to fuel just once. And for a marathon or longer, you’ll always require fuel, she says—the number of fueling sessions just depends on your estimated finish time (see page 39 for a more specific guide to race-day fueling based on your distance). As far as what you should be using to fuel, Schohl says the key is to practice in pre-race workouts. “There are so many sports nutrition products out there, the choice you make really


depends on the length of your race and how your body handles the nutrients,” she says. “Many of the questions surrounding race-day fueling—calories per hour, type of product, electrolytes, etc.—are highly variable and should be determined using a trial-and-error approach during training. I reserve protein- and fat-containing products for longer races—the marathon distance and longer,” she says. But above all, make sure you follow the golden rule of sports nutrition: “Nothing new on race day!” To find the right products for you, start with doing some research—read reviews online, ask your running buddies what brands, products and flavors they use, or ask your local running store for its most popular products. If you’re having a particularly tough time finding nutrition that your body can handle, Schohl recommends recruiting a sports dietitian for help. “The choices are overwhelming, and unfortunately many of the options out there are not healthy and lead to a variety of gastrointestinal issues,” she says. But once you do find products that work for your body, “then sports nutrition will provide energy, boost performance and lead to a more successful race!” Schohl says.



Fuel Finds

Our most recent editor-approved finds for race-day nutrition

MUIR ENERGY These whole-food energy gels are made with no more than six ingredients—all of which are organic and vegan. They’re sorted into slow-burning flavors (made with nut butters) and fast-burning (made with fruit, coconut palm nectar and blackstrap molasses). The favorite flavor in the taste test was the fast-burning Red Raspberry, thanks to its concentrated, sweet yet tart taste. Each gel packet contains 115–150 calories and 290–350 milligrams of potassium. If you’re looking for an extra kick, the gels are offered in Mate flavors, with 90 milligrams of caffeine derived from Yerba Mate extract. $30 for 12-pack,


MAURTEN DRINK MIX 160 The simple black-and-white design of this carbohydrate-packed sports drink matches its simple ingredient list—it uses only five. Each 160-calorie packet, when mixed with water, provides your body with high concentrations of maltrodextrin and fructose, adding up to a whopping 39 grams of carbs (13 grams of which are sugar), which, through the brand’s patent-pending technology, transports water to your intestine by converting to a “hydrogel” in your stomach. The clear drink dissolves easily when mixed with the recommended amount of water, and we loved the light yet sweet taste—it doesn’t have a “flavor” per se, but rather tastes like sugar water. Available in both a 160 version and a 320 version (referring to the number of calories per packet), you can use either, depending on the intensity of your workouts or races. $42 for box of 18 packets,



BEET’UMS Research has confirmed in recent years that beets can boost endurance performance—the deep-red veggie is especially helpful for enhancing the body’s ability to create nitric oxide, which improves blood flow, leading to things like increased oxygen delivery and higher energy. These beet-infused sports performance chews are a simple, cost-effective way to reap the benefits of beets without the mess of beet powders or juice. Each chew is individually wrapped and provides a quick hit of calories (35 per chew) and carbs (6 grams), and the chocolate pomegranate flavor is candy-esque, with a Laffy Taffy–like texture and a very subtle beet flavor. We like them taken with water, and they’re great for a pre-race boost or mid-race pick-meup (though the sticky chews are tricky to remove from their wrappers while on the move). $34 for 30-chew package,


GO THE DISTANCE Race-day fueling strategies for every distance // BY LAUREN ANTONUCCI, M.S., R.D.N., C.S.S.D.



any of us have pre-race rituals that we have followed for years, and we stick to them no matter the weather, distance or location. While some rituals are great (hydrating before a race is always important, and lucky socks can never be wrong!), some rituals should be adjusted according to your race distance. Nutrition and hydration are two such rituals! Of course it is important to toe every starting line well hydrated and with glycogen stores and blood glucose topped off, but how much and what you’ll need on race day will vary. Here are some easy-to-follow fueling guidelines from 5K to marathon. d

5K Race-day breakfast should be high-carb, low-fiber and very easy to digest. Aim for about 200 calories of simple carbs 1–2 hours before your race. Try 1 cup low-fiber cereal (think Cheerios, Rice Krispies and the like) plus almond milk (many runners have trouble digesting cow’s milk pre-race) plus half a banana. Hydrate with 8–12 ounces water 60–90 minutes before the race start. Final fuel for a 5K is not generally necessary. However, if you race longer distances and want a final boost, take ½–1 gel or a few crackers 10 minutes before the gun goes off. During-race fuel is generally unnecessary. You won’t want to spend time visiting aid stations and will barely be able to sip if you try. When it’s really hot or humid, grab one cup of fluid 1–2 miles in as needed. Your best bet is to hydrate before you take off!

10K Race-day breakfast increases to 250–350 calories, eaten 2–3 hours pre-race. Try 1–2 packets of instant oatmeal (it can be flavored—you need the carbs for energy to race) plus a choice of cow, soy or almond milk and one banana. Hydrate with 12–16 ounces water 2–3 hours before start time. Final fuel: Experiment with 4–8 ounces sports drink 10 minutes before the start. During-race fuel: If racing for more than 60 minutes, consume 100 calories (of sports drink/gel) after 45 minutes. When it’s hot or humid, drink 4–6 ounces of fluid every 2 miles.

HALF MARATHON Race-day breakfast increases to 400–500 calories, and should now include protein due to the longer duration of the race. Try half a bagel with peanut butter and jelly plus a banana 2–4 hours prior to the start. Hydrate with 12–16 ounces water or sports drink 3–4 hours pre-race. Note: It’s okay to omit the banana if you’re choosing a sports drink because those carbs/ calories count too. Final fuel: 6–8 ounces sports drink, or one gel plus 6 ounces of water 10 minutes before. During-race fuel: 30–60 grams of carbohydrate per hour after the first hour. For example, 1 gel or 16 ounces sports drink (4 ounces every few miles) for a half marathon less than 2 hours, or 1 gel plus 16 ounces sports drink for a 2:30 half. Total fluids should match sweat rate, averaging 24–32 ounces per hour.

Whatever your race distance, remember to fuel well to race well! Once finished, don’t forget about your recovery nutrition. Choose carbs and 15–20 grams of protein. Examples are a half to whole sandwich plus fruit, or two eggs with toast and fruit or pasta with chicken.

FULL MARATHON Race-day breakfast should now be in two parts, totaling 600–700 calories and including carbs and protein or fat. Four hours prior to the race, eat a whole bagel with either PB&J or two eggs. Then 1.5 hours prior, eat oatmeal or a granola/energy bar. Hydrate with 12–16 ounces fluid 3–4 hours prior, then another 7–12 ounces 1.5 hours prior. Final fuel: Take one gel with 4–8 ounces water or 8 ounces of sports drink or about 100 calories of any fastacting carbs. During-race fuel: Up to 60–90 grams of carbs per hour! Experiment during long runs to find your “sweet spot” of fueling. Examples are 4–6 ounces of sports drink every 2 miles plus gel with water every 40 minutes (4–5 miles). Try adding 1–2 energy chews every other mile as well. Lauren Antonucci, M.S., R.D.N., is a board-certified sports dietitian and the owner/director of Nutrition Energy in NYC ( She has fueled thousands of marathoners and fueled herself to more than 12 marathon finishes. MARCH 2018 | WOMEN’S RUNNING 39


Recipe excerpted with permission from Sheet Pan Magic by Sue Quinn, published by Quadrille (October 2017, $19.99 hardcover,




his meat-free recipe, from the new book Sheet Pan Magic, makes meal clean-up a snap—the entire meal is cooked within a sheet pan. Curry powder sometimes raises eyebrows among purists, but there’s nothing wrong with a shortcut now and then, as long as you layer other flavors into the dish. Seek out a good-quality hot curry powder, and you won’t look back.




6 Tbsp canola oil or other flavorless oil, plus extra if needed 1 medium eggplant, about 10½ oz. ½ tsp sea salt 2 medium onions, coarsely chopped 10½ oz. cauliflower florets, cut small Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper 4 garlic cloves, crushed 1 heaping tsp grated fresh ginger 2–3 Tbsp good-quality hot curry powder 2 14-oz. cans chopped tomatoes 14-oz. can garbanzo beans (not drained) 2 tsp sea salt flakes

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Pour the oil into an 8x12x2-inch sheet pan and place inside the oven to heat. Meanwhile, chop the eggplant into ¾-inch cubes, place in a colander and toss with the ½ teaspoon of salt. Set the colander over a bowl or sink to drain for 20 minutes. Spread the eggplant out on paper towels, pat dry and squeeze out any excess moisture. Carefully place the onions, eggplant and cauliflower into the hot oil in the sheet pan, season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Roast for 20–25 minutes (shaking the pan occasionally) or until the vegetables are almost tender and a little browned at the edges. Add the garlic, ginger and curry powder to the pan and mix in well, adding a little more oil to moisten the spices if too dry. Return the pan to the oven for 5 minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes, the garbanzo beans with the can water and the sea salt flakes to the pan and stir. Return to the oven for 30 minutes, stirring once or twice, or until the sauce is bubbling and slightly reduced, and the vegetables and garbanzo beans are very tender. Serve with a squeeze of lemon, a spoonful of yogurt on top and a generous sprinkling of mint.


Squeeze of lemon juice 1 cup Greek yogurt Large handful chopped mint

YOU CAN HAVE IT ALL MARIALUZ ARELLANO Editor-Director Revista Vidactiva Magazine

Work, Life, Family, Friends—and Triathlon


HALF 7-10

IN FAST-TRACK TRIATHLETE, Matt Dixon offers his

plan of attack for high performance in long-course triathlon— without sacrificing work or life. Developed for busy professionals HRS/WK with demanding schedules, the Fast-Track Triathlete program makes your PR possible in Ironman®, Ironman 70.3®, Rev3, and Challenge triathlon in about 10 hours a week. Includes a 14-week comprehensive raceprep training program and 24 weeks of key workouts. Available in bookstores, tri shops, and online. See more at


NEED A BOOST? Track season brings intense workouts that require attention to recovery and boosting energy for effective repeatability. These five quick-and-easy weeknight recipes keep your busy schedule in mind while also packing in energy-boosting ingredients. // BY JESSICA CERRA



Preparation: Heat a small amount of oil of choice (coconut oil rocks in this recipe) in a large skillet. Add 1 diced shallot and 2 diced carrots, season with salt and pepper, and sauté 5 minutes. Add 1 16-ounce package 93% lean ground turkey and cook until browned, about 10 minutes, breaking apart with a wooden spoon. Stir in 1 tablespoon fresh ginger puree, 1 tablespoon fresh lemongrass puree (found in squeeze bottles next to the herbs in your grocer’s produce section), 1 tablespoon honey and ½ tablespoon Sriracha during the last 2 minutes of cooking. Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup finely diced jicama, 1 cup cooked quinoa and ¼ cup fresh chopped cilantro. Serve in butter or romaine lettuce cups.

Preparation: Over medium heat on a grill or grill pan cook 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (5–6 ounces each, seasoned with salt and pepper), about 5 minutes per side, or until cooked through. Let rest 5 minutes before slicing. In a large bowl, toss together 8 heaping cups chopped fresh chard (any type), 1 cup, each, red and golden beets (steamed and diced), 2 cups cooked farro (or barley or wild rice), ¼ cup julienned fresh basil and ¼ cup toasted pumpkin seeds. Divide these ingredients into four bowls or storage containers (for leftovers), and top each with one sliced chicken breast and ¼ avocado. Drizzle with goddess or tahini dressing before serving. Makes 4 servings.


Ginger-Lemongrass Turkey Lettuce Cups Ginger is known to decrease inflammation, muscle pain and soreness, aid in digestion and help fight infection, all integral parts of recovery between workouts. When you recover smarter, you will renew your energy faster and be more prepared for the next training session.

Mighty Beet Bowl Beets and chard are two of the most nutrient-dense foods to incorporate into your weekly nutrition plan. Both provide anti-inflammatory and detoxification support, and mighty doses of vitamins A, C and K. Red beets contain nitrates, shown to improve blood flow to the brain and muscles, and energize you. Steam beets before cooking to save time, or check your specialty grocer for pre-steamed beets in the produce section or salad bar.

Kale Power Salad T This salad is loaded with nutrient-rich ingredients such as marinated kale, toasty almonds and sweet pomegranate seeds. Pile your plate high with this nourishing meal to power up for all of your training. You can substitute any of the veggies in this recipe with veggies you have on hand that need to be used, or you can customize it by adding more veggies, seeds, nuts or avocado. Preparation: Zest 3 limes and 3 oranges into a bowl. Combine the juice with ¼ cup olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Toss 6 packed cups (6 ounces) chopped kale into this dressing until well coated. Let marinate in the fridge for 30 minutes, or up to overnight. In another large bowl, toss 2 cups cooked quinoa, ⅔ cup shredded carrots, ⅔ cup diced cucumber, ½ cup diced bell pepper (any color), ⅓ cup pomegranate seeds, ½ cup whole toasted almonds and ¼ cup chopped fresh mint. Once the kale has marinated, add veggie and quinoa mixture to the bowl with the kale, and toss until everything is evenly combined and well coated with the dressing.

Almond-Chia Overnight Oats Having a breakfast with whole grains and protein will keep blood-sugar levels stable in the morning, preventing an energy crash. Overnight oats are an easy way to have a grab-and-go option for your busy schedule. Almonds are also loaded with healthy fats, antioxidants, calcium, magnesium, iron, protein and fiber. Preparation: In a bowl, whisk together 1½ cups almond milk, ½ cup plain Greek yogurt, ¼ cup almond butter, ¼ cup maple syrup, 1 tablespoon chia seeds, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract and ¼ teaspoon salt. Stir in 1 cup rolled oats until thoroughly combined. Separate into four mason jars or cups and let sit in the fridge overnight. Top with chopped almonds, bananas or fruit of choice.

W Blueberry Salmon Salmon contains essential omega-3s, which help decrease inflammation and strengthen joints, and blueberries are potent antioxidants that specifically strengthen the cardiovascular system. This recipe will renew you. Preparation: Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Heat a large oven-safe skillet over high heat. Season 4 salmon filets (5–6 ounces each, skin on) with salt and pepper. Place salmon filets, skin side up, in the skillet and sear for 1 minute. Flip salmon over and place in oven for 5–8 minutes, until salmon is just underdone in the middle (timing depends on thickness of filets). Remove from oven and place salmon on a plate (the salmon will continue to cook through; this method prevents overcooking). While salmon is cooking, place another skillet over medium heat. Add 1 pint rinsed blueberries, ¼ cup red wine (pinot noir recommended), juice of 1 large lemon, juice of 1 large orange and a pinch of sea salt to the skillet. Let cook down, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has absorbed and the mixture is slightly thick. Spoon an equal amount of blueberry sauce over each of the salmon filets before serving.


Spring’s Women’s Running has tested the spring 2018 shoe offerings to help you find the best fit for your training and racing needs this season.

By Rebecca Warren



means racing season is here, and training is heating up for many runners. We have been testing the latest shoes from a variety of running brands big and small to bring you the freshest and fastest kicks of the season.



Inov-8 Roc Lite 315 $135, | 10.7 oz.

Minimal cushioning makes these trail shoes grip the ground and give feet a solid feel for the terrain, resulting in a confident run. One reviewer commented that the solid construction and lack of squeaky sole made her feel “graceful” while traversing the trails, which is what many of us love about running—the quiet strength it imbues us with. The waterproof construction was great on rainy runs, but this may limit breathability in warm running conditions. While the minimal construction and light cushioning was a plus for some reviewers, others found it to be too sparse for comfort on really rocky trails.

HOKA ONE ONE Challenger ATR4 $130, | 7.4 oz.


The North Face Flight RKT $150, | 8 oz.

Designed by ultrarunner Rob Krar, these trail shoes have an impressive amount of grip thanks to the specially designed outsole. The fabric is breathable and lightweight, and aids in the overall light feel of the shoe. There is minimal cushioning throughout but enough in the midsole to protect from any discomfort found running over rough trail surfaces. The lacing system lets you adjust adequately for a secure fit. Some testers noted that the shoes ran a bit small, so be sure to check your size. This is a trail shoe that is best suited to middleto long-distance runs.


Our testers were surprised to find that these trail shoes were actually much lighter than they looked, and also offered more agility than expected. The outsole provided excellent grip on trails and made the feet feel nimble and supported at the same time. One reviewer commented that the midsole provided a pleasant amount of bounciness at both slow and fast speeds. Be sure to get fitted for these shoes as testers found that the arch support was too firm and misaligned for some feet. Otherwise, these shoes got high marks for hitting the trail in comfort and style. *All shoe weights are for a women's size 7.



Merrell Bare Access Flex Kit $130, | 7 oz.


This is a multipurpose shoe from Merrell, designed to work on both road and trail. This results in a shoe that isn’t a standout in either category. Testers noted that the arch was high and the midsole was very firm, resulting in discomfort for some. The bungee lacing system allowed for a snug fit, but some testers were unable to get the shoe secured tightly enough to prevent heel slippage. The knit sockliner has a good feel, but it lacks wicking properties, resulting in an uncomfortable and soggy running experience for sockless runners. The zero-drop design will appeal to minimalist runners, and the shoe does offer a fair amount of responsiveness on the road and trail, resulting in an agile feel with good traction on both surfaces.

On Cloud X $140, | 6.6 oz.

Asics GT-2000 6 $120, | 8.2 oz.

These sleek and stylish Swiss-designed shoes were our favorites by far for speedwork in this season’s offerings. The minimal materials used make this shoe feel super light both out of the box and on your feet. The lacing system offers a snug and secure fit that encourages you to push yourself faster, farther. The pods on the outsole offer a bouncy ride with good energy return and grip. The breathable upper material and overall lightness of this shoe make it a great partner for cross-training workouts as well.

This update of the GT-2000 doesn’t offer any new innovations, but it’s a solid shoe that fans of the brand will enjoy running in, especially for longer distances. Some testers found that this model ran a bit narrow compared to the usual Asics fit, and the flexibility of the upper wasn’t as accommodating as expected. The cushioning is great for long runs, but some runners may find the shoe a bit clunky and less agile than desired. This shoe is a solid workhorse for runners who stick to the road for middle to long distances.





Under Armour HOVR Sonic $100, | 9.6 oz.

Altra Superior 3.5 $110, | 8.2 oz.

Adidas Aerobounce ST $110, | 8.7 oz.

Lightweight and flexible, this is a shoe that is well-suited for track and road workouts. The lacing system is well designed for customizing the fit to your foot, and the sole offers enough energy return to make it easy to pick up the pace while running. The ample toe box and responsiveness of the shoe offer an agile feel and let your feet feel connected to the ground at varying speeds. The breathability of the upper and the traction offered by the outsole make this a good go-to shoe for road running.

Altra is one of the few shoe companies that makes shoes specifically for the female foot, with toe boxes designed to allow toes to easily splay when running to promote a natural and comfortable running form. The Superior 3.5 is a new trail shoe that offers exceptional traction control. Getting the fit right is essential in these shoes to ensure a comfortable run, so make sure to be properly fitted. The short lacing system doesn’t allow much room for adjustment. These shoes are light and responsive, making them good for tired feet. They also have gaiter attachments for more intense trail runs. The lightweight design paired with superb traction control and overall agility earned these shoes our award for best trail shoe of the season.

The Aerobounce ST is Adidas’ new offering for those looking for a comfortable, everyday trainer for distance running. With a generous toe box and a new engineered mesh upper, this shoe has good breathability while keeping feet dry in wet conditions. The arch support is noticeable without being overly aggressive. The slim outsole means that runners will feel in touch with the ground without being aware of every nuance in the terrain, making this shoe nimble enough to tackle a variety of surfaces. It provides average energy return for a trainer, but its light feel and adequate cushioning mean that long runs are where this shoe finds its stride.

Ryka Ultimate $60, | 9.6 oz. Nike Air Zoom Vomero 13 $140, | 9 oz. These shoes delivered on all fronts: performance, fit, style. All of our testers found this to be a reliable pair of shoes for middle to long distances, and they were used in races ranging from a 5K to a half marathon. The lacing system provides a secure fit with laces that stay tied, the cushioning is sufficient for long runs without making the shoe feel clunky, and the upper proved to be breathable and comfortable in various conditions. The simple aesthetics of the shoe were also popular with our testing group.

This brand designs shoes solely for a woman’s foot, so expect a good fit. The memory foam footbed is the standout offering of this shoe. It provides a cushy ride great for long runs, and the flexible toe provides enough responsiveness to make running uphill not feel more laborious than it should. The shoe has a snug fit that keeps it from slipping around on your foot, and the laces are long enough to allow for adjusting the fit to your needs. The accessible price point makes this a good shoe for beginners to start training with, thanks to its stability and cushioning.

Saucony Liberty ISO $160, | 8.7 oz. This is a brand-new design from Saucony, and it features a full-length EVERUN midsole, the company’s most advanced cushioning technology. The 4mm drop gives a natural feel while striding, and the addition of some medial guidance provides enough stability to take this shoe out on longer runs. The lacing system offers good adjustability, and the tongue and upper are designed to conform to your foot for a more comfortable fit. Testers found this shoe to be responsive and great for interval training. The roomy toe box and flexible sole made picking up the pace fun instead of laborious.


Brooks Levitate $150, | 9.7 oz. Puma Speed 500 $120, | 7.9 oz.

Mizuno Wave Inspire 14 $130, | 8.8 oz. This stalwart of the Mizuno stable has received an updated upper and sole for the spring season. Fans of this shoe will find all of the familiar design elements here: snug fit, solid lacing system, padding that is sufficient for long runs but not overly cushy and removable soles to allow for custom inserts. This shoe is ideally suited to middle- and long-distance running on roads, although the sole does allow for decent traction on wet roads and trails without intense grades or surfaces.



This is an attractive, speed-friendly shoe from Puma that has an impressive water-repellant fabric, making running in wet conditions much more palatable. The minimal design and heel drop aid the quick and fast feeling of the shoe. It responded well to upping the pace on runs and still had enough cushion to be comfortable for heel strikers. The shoe made our runners feel light and nimble on both the road and trail. The lifestyle design aesthetics were also appreciated by our testers.

Brooks spent a lot of time and energy creating the Levitate, its most responsive shoe ever—and all of the effort clearly paid off. This is the snappiest pair of Brooks we’ve ever tested, and it was universally praised by our testers for its comfortable ride and impressive amount of energy return. The shoe is incredibly soft without being squishy, and the fit is snug in a pleasing way. A good choice for runs of any length and light enough to use for speedwork and tempo runs, these shoes are a current favorite at the Women’s Running office. We are also fans of the aesthetics of this shoe, a departure from the traditional Brooks colorways. The Levitates are one of our top choices for running shoes this spring.

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There’s a race for everyone. Here’s how to find the right one for you. BY SUSAN LACKE

One of the coolest things about running is that there really is no “typical” runner. Our sport attracts everything from supercompetitive Olympians to fun runners who do it for the #selfie. Likewise, there’s no one kind of race—though races started out as fairly straightforward events, taking place only on the track or roads, they’ve evolved into a world that’s as diverse as the people in it. Today, runners can choose from a variety of events over a variety of distances and terrain—so many, in fact, that it can feel kind of overwhelming! So how do you choose your perfect event? Never fear—we’ve got you covered.



Try a military-inspired challenge like the GORUCK Challenge (, based on U.S. Army Special Forces training. It doesn’t have the flaming hoops of other obstacle course races but will inspire you to get in the gym—after all, that 30-pound pack isn’t going to carry itself for 20 miles. YOUR ESSENTIAL READS

Warrior Dash


Who it’s for: The brave and quirky Mud pits! Rope ladders! HOOPS OF FIRE! These blockbuster runs are interspersed with intense challenges to seriously test your fitness. Obstacle course racing is a perfect combination of strength, cardio and mental toughness. The reward is simply survival—most events aren’t timed and don’t rank finishers. This also means most obstacle course races don’t have awards, but who needs a medal when you have epic bragging rights?

Off Course: Inside the Mad, Muddy World of Obstacle Course Racing, $15, Obstacle Race Training: How to Beat Any Course, Compete Like a Champion, and Change Your Life, $17, GET THE GEAR

Reebok All Terrain Super 3.0, $125, Mudgear Compression Race Socks, $30, MadGrip ProPalm Utility Gloves, $12,

Warrior Dash The beginner-friendly Warrior Dash proclaims “anyone can start, and anyone can finish.” That shouldn’t be interpreted as “easy,” however—with obstacles like the Risky Business log bridge or the slippery Upslide Climb, this 3-mile course is no walk in the park. Spartan Race From the 3-mile “Sprint” race to the 14-mile “Beast” distance, the Spartan Race offers a variety of challenges for athletes of all levels. It also has the reputation for being one of the toughest races on the obstaclecourse-racing circuit, featuring challenges like crawling under barbed wire and over steep walls. Tough Mudder As the name implies, you’re gonna get dirty. 5K, 5-mile and 12-mile options await Tough Mudder competitors, who conquer obstacles like Everest 2.0, a slick 15-foot quarter pipe that simply can’t be summited alone. Comradeship is inevitable during Tough Mudders—even if you don’t start the run with a team, you’ll have one by the time you cross the finish line. MARCH 2018 | WOMEN’S RUNNING


TRAIL RUNNING Who it’s for: The mindful runner

If you run for the escape from the daily grind, why not really escape? Trail running gets you out of traffic, out of town and into a state of Zen. Because of the varying terrain, inclines and curves in the trail, your average pace per mile will likely be slower than your pace on paved road, but you’ll be so happy, you probably won’t care.

XTERRA Beaver Creek Trail Run


Apply your adventurous nature to your race registrations with a race-cation. Trails are abundant in almost every state, and many offer breathtaking views. Why not see for yourself? YOUR ESSENTIAL READS

The Trail Runner’s Companion, $22, Where the Road Ends, $22, Trailhead, $19, GET THE GEAR

Salomon S/Lab XA Amphib, $180, Ultimate Direction Ultra Vesta Hydration Vest, $135, The Trail Run Project App, Free,


XTERRA Race Series With runs across the country ranging from 5K to 50K, the XTERRA trail racing series has gained a reputation for well-organized races and an incredibly welcoming atmosphere. The Grand Circle Trail Race Series Featuring races in some of the most stunning scenery— the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley and Zion, to name a few—this race series proudly boasts an environmentally friendly, zero-waste record that benefits you and Mother Nature.



Who it’s for: The speedy and the time-crunched It’s not just for high schoolers anymore—thanks to the explosive growth of USA Track and Field masters clubs, more than 3,000 clubs await your speedy talents. Training for a sprint event requires less time than a marathon, and track club workouts and meets are notoriously family-friendly, making it a perfect outlet for moms. LEVEL UP YOUR RACING GAME

Try the “field” of “track and field”! Sprinting is fun, for sure, but why not learn a new skill from your club? In addition to working your muscles in new ways (key for injury prevention), you may surprise yourself with your mad triple-jump skills. YOUR ESSENTIAL READS

The Ultimate Guide to Weight Training for Track & Field, $17, The Art of Sprinting: Techniques for Speed and Performance, $25, GET THE GEAR

Nike Zoom Rival, $65, Garmin vivosport Smart Watch and Heart Rate Monitor, $200,


Rogue Trail Series Head to Austin, Texas, for a series of twisty-turny races that take you up, over and through some of the coolest trails in the Lone Star State.




Who it’s for: The carrot chasers If you’re motivated by competition, whether against others or your own personal best, road races provide a consistent environment to test yourself. Road races of all distances—from the 26.2-mile marathon to 1-mile throwdowns—are easy to find in just about any city, on just about any weekend.

Add a challenge by going for a shorter race. It sounds counterintuitive (after all, isn’t shorter supposed to be easier?), but if you’re used to running half marathons at a 10-minute-per-mile pace, racing a flat-out mile in less than 8 minutes will leave you breathless—literally.


Believe Training Journal, $19, Hanson’s Marathon Method, $19, Build Your Running Body, $23,


Brooks Hyperion, $130, RaceDots magnetic bib clips, $5.10 per clip, TomTom Spark 3 Music GPS watch, $170, Hal Higdon Training Plan Apps, $10,


Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon & Half Marathon Series Running is fun—might as well make it a party! The sport’s largest race series, with dozens of events worldwide, is known for its festive atmosphere—it features live bands, cheer teams and tons of fun at every mile marker. ParkRun USA These free, weekly 5K races take place in communities all over the world as a way to encourage veterans and newbies alike. Gather your training buddies for a little friendly competition—last one across the finish line has to buy the post-race beers.


American Masters Track and Field Championship This track meet for the 25-and-over crowd features 19 events, including track, field and relay competitions. Stick around until the end, when a bonus competition takes place: the tug-of-war. San Diego Summer Nights Competitors of all ages are welcome at this superfriendly track meet that doubles as a fundraiser for the San Diego State Women’s Track and Field program.

Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas

San Diego Summer Nights track meet

Bring Back the Mile calendar These short but intense races are getting a big following in the United States, thanks to the running superfans at Bring Back the Mile. Its events, usually held in high-profile urban locations, bring a hip, fun vibe that draws big crowds of enthusiastic spectators. MARCH 2018 | WOMEN’S RUNNING


Leadville Trail 100


HOKA ONE ONE Challenger ATR, $130, Epson ProSense 57 GPS Watch, $150, Dirty Girl Gaiters, $23, RACE IT


Silver Rush 50 Run

“Ultramarathon” is a catchall term for any race longer than 26.2 miles—and boy, are there a lot of different races. Ultrarunners can tackle anywhere from 31 miles in a 50K race to 3,100 miles in New York City’s Self-Transcendence race! To make it for the long haul, ultrarunners need to be like the tortoise, not the hare—most run at a relaxed jog, not an all-out effort. 56



Running Your First Ultra: Customizable Training Plans For 50K to 100 Miles, $23, Hal Koerner’s Field Guide to Ultrarunning, $19,

Aravaipa Running Events Widely regarded as one of the best ultrarunning organizations in the sport, Arizonabased Aravaipa Running holds a variety of long (looooong) runs throughout the year, including the 100-mile Coldwater Rumble, 54-kilometer Insomniac Night Trail Run and six-day Across The Years race.



Who it’s for: The super-chill

Try a 24-hour race. Instead of following a course of 50 miles or more, runners cover the same loop (usually 1 or 2 miles) continuously for the duration of the race to see how far they can go. If you think that’s crazy, consider this: Some races go for six days.

Leadville Race Series The Leadville Trail 100 is to ultrarunners what the Boston Marathon is to road racers: super-challenging, supercoveted and super-difficult to get into. However, you can get the Leadville experience with its series races in Texas and Colorado, which promise just as much suffering—and just as much satisfaction.


Who it’s for: The injured reserve If you find yourself spending more time rehabbing an injury than you do actually racing, multisport events may be just the fix. The cross-training involved for triathlon, duathlon and aquathlon—specifically, swimming and cycling—are great, low-impact activities that can strengthen your running while minimizing your odds of injury. In fact, most triathletes arrive at the sport because an injury forced them to cross-train—but they stay because they love the challenge of swim-bike-run.


Try a long-course triathlon, which covers a total of 70.3 miles in the half-iron distance or 140.6 miles (!!!) for a full iron distance. The training is intense—some log as many as 20 hours of training per week during peak periods—but if you’re looking for a challenge, this is it. YOUR ESSENTIAL READS

Triathlons for Women, $20, Triathlon Swimming Made Easy, $15,



Saucony Kinvara, $110, Coeur Sports women’s triathlon top, $85, and shorts, $90, Giro Trinity Bike Helmet, $40,

Life Time Indoor Tri Hosted at more than 40 Life Time Fitness gyms around the country, this unique format is perfect for beginner triathletes: Swim as far as you’re able for 10 minutes in the pool, then take a 10-minute break; bike for 30 minutes on a stationary bike, followed by a 5-minute break; run for 20 minutes on a treadmill.


Iron Girl Triathlon Series This race series, created by women for women, is an energetic and empowering environment for triathletes of all levels. The sprint distance (a half-mile swim, 12-mile bike and 3.1-mile run) is often lined with super-supportive spectators, all cheering you to the finish.

Iron Girl

OTILLO SwimRun No bike? No problem! Try a swimrun, where you and a partner work as a team to navigate a course that alternates between land and sea. Events can be found around the world, making swimrun an epic way to sightsee—way better than a tour bus, right? MARCH 2018 | WOMEN’S RUNNING








Three years ago, Tori Bowie decided to give sprinting a try. The success that has followed—driven by one especially influential figure —is nothing short of shocking.





the first thing you’ll see is a Wikipedia link for the town. Click on that, and in the first paragraph you’ll learn three facts, in this order: Sand Hill is an unincorporated community of Rankin County, it is located off Mississippi Highway 25 and it is the birthplace of Frentorish “Tori” Bowie. In becoming a three-time medalist in her Olympic debut in Rio de Janeiro, Bowie not only transformed into a national treasure, but she also put her tiny hometown on the map. The sleepy rural town, so small that it wasn’t even counted in the U.S. Census, now proudly claims one of the best sprinters of our time as its own. Although Bowie’s trajectory to world-class athlete was fast and furious, the glory of Rio was a long, long way from her tumultuous childhood in Rankin County. When Bowie was 2 years old, her mother gave her and her sister, Tamara, who is 11 months older, over to the foster-care system. The rationale behind her mother’s actions is no clearer to Bowie today than it was when she was a toddler. “I never asked her about it,” says Bowie, now 27, “but she was going through her own issues.” Bowie only remembers an abiding sense of unhappiness in those pre-foster-care days, and that “I never wanted my grandmother to leave my side.” When her grandma was awarded legal guardianship of the sisters nine months after they entered foster care, “life changed in a major way,” she explains. There was stability, security. And later, accountability. A tomboy kid, Bowie loved playing outdoors with her squad of cousins. Growing up in a “really country” town that didn’t have a single stoplight, they had to get creative with finding ways to entertain themselves. “We were always trying to create some type of competition, whether it was racing between trees or stacking tires and hurdling over them,” Bowie says. Her first organized sport was basketball, which she started playing in the seventh grade. She immediately fell in love with it, and, despite a requirement that players be at least in the ninth grade to play on the varsity team, she was moved up right away. Bowie’s high school was so small—there were only about 40 kids total—her basketball coach told the team they also needed to join the track and field team. “We didn’t have enough people to make up both a basketball



team and a track team, so that’s how I got into track and field,” Bowie says. But when she received the track team uniform, she threw a fit. “The coach made us wear these short shorts, and I was not at all comfortable with it,” says Bowie, who loved her long, baggy basketball shorts. “We had a little altercation about it, and she kicked me off the team for two weeks before I finally gave in.” Bowie knew that walking away was never an option. “My grandmother’s number-one rule was that once you start something, you don’t quit,” she says. “From a young age, she never let me give up on anything.” Her star rose quickly on the Pisgah High School track and field team, and she captured multiple state high school titles in the 100 meters, 200 meters, long jump and as a member of the 4x100 relay. She also continued playing basketball, making the state team. Her athletic rise continued at the University of Southern Mississippi, where Bowie received an athletic scholarship to compete as a long jumper and sprinter. Her junior year, in 2011, was a breakthrough year, when she won her first college title in the long jump at the NCAA Women’s Indoor Track and Field Championship and was named conference female athlete of the year. After graduating in 2012, Bowie began saving

her money to buy the $500 one-way plane ticket to San Diego, home of the Olympic Training Center. Her goal was to go pro in 2013, and she needed a formal training environment. “I got there and had complete culture shock,” she recalls. “I had nothing and had left my entire family behind.” In San Diego, she met Al Joyner, the 1984

TOTALLY TORI A few of Bowie’s favorite things

Training tool The Bosu ball. “I use it a ton to work on stability and balance.” Music Young Thug and William McDowell Movie “Get Rich or Die Tryin’” Comfort food Hot wings

My grandmother’s number-one rule was that once you start something, you don’t quit. From a young age, she never let me give up on anything.”



FUEL LIKE AN OLYMPIAN Bowie considers good nutrition “the most important part of being a pro athlete.” Here are the two fueling rules she lives— and trains—by. Eat clean. “I don’t count calories but am very picky about what I eat. Try to keep it simple, eat a balanced diet and stay away from junk food and fried foods.”



It, which will offer support and mentorship to children in the foster-care system. “I want to reach out to these kids to let them know that someone is thinking about them,” Bowie says. She’s also designing a line of hair scarves like the ones she wears in competitions, and dreams of one day collaborating with fashion designer Stella McCartney (both are affiliated with Adidas). Bowie also hopes to do some modeling and acting in the future. “I don’t get to show my other sides, my goofiness, and it would be fun,” she says. “I’m waiting for the right opportunity and the right moment.” With Bowie, it’s not a matter of if she’ll realize all her goals; it’s when. For that tenacity, she credits her grandma, whom she lost in January 2017. Her passing shattered Bowie’s world. “My grandmother has always been my biggest fan, and she was my whole life,” she says. “The only thing that kept me living after her death is my commitment to training. I took my pain out on the track.” Bowie believes that her laser focus on her running goals is the best way to honor her late grandma’s sacrifices and continue to make her proud. It’s a fitting and natural tribute by the little girl who became the pride of Sand Hill, Mississippi.


Hydrate, then hydrate some more. “Water is so important, and getting enough fluids is something I pay very close attention to. I’m a little over the top—my friends can vouch for it! I try to get in some type of electrolytes, too.”

Olympic gold medalist in the triple jump and an OTC coach, who helped her develop her confidence and self-belief. “He’s always told me I have what it takes,” she says. “He believed in me before I believed in myself.” That same year, Bowie was a semifinalist in the 100 meters at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships and just missed making the long jump team for the world championships. “I was just as shocked as everyone else by my results in the beginning,” Bowie says. “But at the same time, I was hoping for those kinds of results considering I had made a lot of sacrifices to get there.” After a strong start to the 2014 season, a disappointing long jump performance at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Poland dramatically altered Bowie’s course. “I went into that world championship ranked top in the world [in the long jump] and thought I was so prepared, but I didn’t even make the finals,” Bowie says. “I think I got last place and left the meet feeling so heartbroken. I called my manager/agent, who had been encouraging me for a year to focus on sprinting, and told her I needed to do something different. She said, ‘How about we find you a sprint coach?’” The rest is Olympic history. With her first-place finish in the 100 meters at the 2015 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, she earned a spot on Team USA for the world championship in Beijing, where she won bronze. She went on to place third in the 100 meters at the 2016 Olympic Trials to secure her spot for the Rio Games. “Making the 2016 Olympic Team has meant the most to me,” says Bowie, who is now based at the Olympic Training Center in Clermont, Fla. “I remember sitting at home watching the 2012 Olympics on TV and feeling so hyped about the idea of one day being there. So to actually make the team and live it, it feels like my greatest accomplishment.” In an Olympic trifecta, Bowie went on to win gold in the 4x100 relay, silver in the 100 meters and bronze in the 200 meters. Most recently, she took gold in the 100 meters at the 2017 IAAF World Championships this past August, out-leaning second place by 0.01 seconds and earning the title of “The Fastest Woman in the World.” When she’s not preparing to dominate on the track—her next goal is to make the U.S. team for the 2018 IAAF Indoor Championships in March— Bowie is working on creating her foundation, Live


Racing on the world stage can be a pressure-cooker environment. Here’s how Bowie overcomes selfdefeating nerves. It’s all about perspective, and drawing focus inward: “There have been competitions where I got on the line and psyched myself out before I even let myself compete. I was thinking about the other competitors and not giving myself a fair chance. I had to shift to thinking, ‘Just focus on yourself and doing what your coach has taught you to do.’ I also have a great team—my family, my manager/agent Kimberly Holland, my coach Lance Brauman—behind me, and every time I start to make something a big deal, they always remind me that I’ve already competed against these women, and even though it may be the Olympics, it’s just another competition.”




Two elite competitors take in the Northern Lights as they make their way around the course. Inset: Katrin Davidsdottir, the CrossFit Games champion in 2015 and 2016, takes part in her first Spartan race, in her native country.


he inaugural Spartan Ultra World Championship, a 24-hour ultraendurance obstacle race, took place just outside Reykjavik on Dec. 16–17, 2017. The race series' first event in Iceland offered every possible combination of winter weather for the hundreds of competitors brave enough to tackle this extreme event. The course consisted of a 6.8-mile loop with 20 obstacles, ranging from carrying blocks of ice to crawling under barbed wire to scaling cargo nets and the grip-strength-testing multirig and monkey bar–style obstacles. The idea was simple: The person who completes the most laps in 24 hours wins. As the race stretched into the early hours of the morning, the rain subsided, and those hearty souls braving the course in dark, muddy conditions were rewarded with a stunning display of the Northern Lights. The sky lit up with white, purple and green hues above the racers as their headlamps dotted the mountainside, showing their steady progress around the course. This course demanded a lot from its participants, including enduring every form of precipitation and nearhurricane-force winds, but it repaid those hearty Spartans with spectacular natural beauty and stories of a lifetime.




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