Where Have I been? + How to Make Your Run Feel Amazing After Taking Time Off:

Hello friends!

As I posted on my Instagram last week, I’ve been very sick and that basically meant having to take time off from running and blogging. I had a very bad cold and one emergency visit to the dentist to find out I needed a root canal. I also got my root canal done later in the week. So yeah, last week was tough.

With all of the pain and discomfort I went trough, I honestly couldn’t even think about blogging or creating new content. Thank God I’m feeling way better now, and I’m missing running more than ever. My last few runs before being officially sick were tough. Maybe because I was about to get sick. Now I feel like my comeback is going to feel good, because it’s always like that.

This year I’ve been forced to take a time off from running (stomach issues, injury, end of my graduate program), which sucks a little bit. The positive side about it has been my comebacks. Whenever I go for my first run after one or two weeks of no running, it feel strong and freshly motivated. So, I’m looking forward to come back this time around:)

I do have my “ritual” for these types of runs to make them even more amazing.

Here are some tips on how to make your run feel amazing, after being off for a while:

– Create a Running Playlist: Music is my favorite source of motivation when I’m running. Some other people prefer audiobooks or podcast. If that’s your case, reserve some material that you are looking forward to hear for your run.

– Wear your favorite outfit: I seriously feel there are outfits that make me run faster than others. For example, running in shorts is way comfortable than running in leggings. Plus, coming back to running is something very special so make sure you dress for the occasion.

– Go to a special place: To me, a run in the trails is a thousand times better than a run in the treadmill. Treadmill runs are good if that’s the only option you have in order to get your run done. For this special occasion, go to a place that really motivates you. In my case, I get extremely motivated in the track, and extremely inspired in the trails.

– Postive attitude: Positive attitude is everything. Remember it’s been a while since the last time you ran, so take it easy. It is very likely that you will feel out of shape. So keep in mind that even one mile is better than nothing. Whenever you go on a run with no expectations, chances are that you end up having a positive surprise. Open yourself for the positive experience, and don’t set goals that might be unrealistic for you at the time.

– Finish it off with planks: I don’t know about you, but planks make me seriously stronger. Even though they feel incredibly hard sometimes, doing planks after my runs take my entire training session to a whole new level. They can also add that the extra endorphin touch that all runners need. Wether you love them or hate them, you won’t regret it.

Hope these tips are helpful if you are coming back from some time off from running. I’m certainly starting this ritual for my first run after being a week off. I’ll report back tomorrow;)

Have you had to take time off from running?

Any special routine you do when you’re coming back to running?

IT Cosmetics CC+ Airbrush Perfecting Powder SPF50+ Review

Ever since It Cosmetics launched their Your Skin but better CC cream with SPF 50, I wanted to give it a try. I love makeup as much as I love running, that is why I’m in the constant search for new beauty products that could please my preferences. However, I don’t like to buy more products than what I actually need. Therefore, when I buy something I need to be 100% I’m going to like it and use it until is completely finished.

After hearing amazing stuff about this CC+ cream, I was seriously considering to purchase it. But then in March, Ulta released their 21 Days of Beauty where the powder version of this product was going to be 50% off. That was a deal I could not pass. This face powder originally retails for $35 and that day I got it for $17.5.

The major benefit I noticed from this powder was that is basically like having three products in one =  SPF 50 + Foundation + Setting powder. Even if I was paying the full price for it, I think is worth it. Plus, is very convenient to apply in my rushy mornings. Just one step and my face would look like If I had applied foundation and set it with powder. Two steps in half of the time, not bad for me.

The coverage of this Airbrush Perfecting Powder could be light for everyday use, or could be built for a full coverage foundation. I myself would use this powder for every type of occasion. I have combination skin so this product suited me pretty well. The medium shade was also the perfect tone for my complexion. My face skin can get pretty sensitive sometimes and some foundations and SPFs can give me crazy breakouts. This wasn’t the case for this powder, which also contains collagen and anti-aging peptides.

The only downside to this product is the sponge that comes with it. It would apply the product too heavy in my face and it ended up looking cakey. I also tried to applied it with a Real Techniques Stippling Brush but wasn’t really pleased with the coverage. I finally used a thiner and porous sponge (that I had from another powder) and that worked perfectly for me.

I purchased this product on April 1st and have been using it every single day, multiple times a day and for multiple types of looks, for the last couple of months. I think it seriously worth the price. If you’re considering getting it, I would recommend having a beauty consultant at Ulta suggest which is the best tone for you. I would also suggest you to try another method of application, if you’re not pleased with the sponge either.

I hope this information has been helpful for some of you who are interested on getting a new foundation at a considerably affordable price.

Thanks for reading!

N.

 

I’ve Transitioned From Brooks To Asics And Here Is Why.

Hello friends! I hope you’re having a wonderful week so far.

Today I’ve came to make a confession. I’ve transitioned from my Brooks neutral shoes to my Asics stability shoes. That is a huge deal to me because Brooks seems to be the most popular brand of running shoes (at least here in the US), and I’ve been wearing them since the past year. Not that popularity matters to me. But in this field, if something is popular it’s because is high quality. My Brooks Ghost 8 ran with me for many miles that it was kind of hard to make the decision of transitioning.

The problem started when I got horrible shin splints at the beginning of this year. I went ahead and got a Gait Analysis done. If you remember the results, you’ll know that I wasn’t really happy about it. Even though the video clearly showed I was over-pronating in every single food strike, the lady suggested me to wear the Brooks Ghost 9 and that I’d be fine. I’m not an expert on running shoes but you can’t tell me that the solution of a problem is to keep doing what you’ve been doing so far.

So I went ahead and got another Gait Analysis at another Running Store and their verdict was that I absolutely needed stability shoes. As the video clearly showed, I do have over-pronation and falling with the balls of my feet was not helping me much with my shin splints. They recommended me to correct my foot strike and to switch up my neutral shoes for stability shoes. The main shoe suggestions were the Asics Kayano or the Brooks Adrenaline. They said that the Asics Kayano were on a the softer side compared to the Brooks.

Two months went by and I implemented two changes for my pronation issue:

  1. Correcting my foot strike so that I don’t keep falling with the balls of my feet. That really seemed to help me a whole lot on not feeling shin splints, until I started running 15 miles a week again. As little as that, and I was already having the slight sensation of shin splints again. Then I knew I needed to go ahead an implement my second change.

  1. Getting stability shoes. It was hard to take a decision between the Asics and the Brooks. At the end, I went back to Asics because I just wanted a softer shoes.

This morning I went for my first run with them. Three miles and my foot strikes felt extremely soft, this made my run faster and easier than it normally is. Hours later has passed since that run and my legs feel like if it is rest day. That never has happened to me before. Now I can evidence how important is to wear the proper shoes for you.

These shoes were on the pricy side, but I’m starting to get the feeling that they’ll worth every penny. Once I’ve put more miles on them, I’ll write a full review on them.

What running shoes do you wear?

 

 

 

Friday Favorites and Least Favorites.

Hello friends! 

It’s been a week full of school projects and hustle. I was about to post my favorites from last week but at the end I don’t know what happened. I decided to just post them this week because, why not?

But before, I want to take a few minutes to talk about my least favorite thing happening this week: The situation in Venezuela. Well, this is actually something that affects me everyday. Witnessing how the country that I grew up is turning into the latest version of Cuba and the USSR it’s devastating. 

I remember one time when I still lived there. I needed to get my ID card renewed and the government agents were so humiliating (to me, and the rest of the people there) throughout the entire process, that I ended up crying and feeling completely infuriated. This is only a small example I can bring right now, but the perfect one to explain how does socialism really feels. That’s the problem of being aware of your rights as an individual and the concept of liberty. Whenever somebody goes above them, it affects you even more.

This week has been particularly rough because of all the totalitarian attributions that the executive power has been taking. This only confirms (once again) the presence of a dictatorship in Venezuela. Of course, the protest on the streets had turned the situation more tense. The lack of food and medicines is only making things worst. 

If you wish to know what’s going on down there, I suggest this article and this one as well. 

There you have it. Please excuse the fact that this is not what you’re used to read in this blog, but I have to get this out of my chest. 

Now, on to nice things. 

Throwback picture: Mom send me this pic of me and my brother the other day and my heart melted. He was so little and I might have been 6 or 7 years old. I think is so funny that he was so blonde and I was so brunette.

This song. 

 

 

This video of Prager University about the Progressive Income Tax. 

The article “Why I run in Prison” immediately caught my attention. 

Quality time with college friends: Andrea’s visit in town really encouraged my friends to meet way more often than we usually do. We share so many incredible memories. And needless to say, I love them so much and feel so happy when I’m around them.

And last but not least…This little guy right here. I love him so much.

What are your plans for this weekend?

Something that has particularly bothered you throughout this past week?

How Running Makes You A Better Person.

When people ask me why I love running so much, my answer is always something like running makes me a better person. However, by judging at people’s faces I don’t think they still get what I’m saying. So, I decided to create this post trying to explain how is it that running can make you a better person.

Hopefully, Runners can agree to this or add their own thoughts in the comment section. Non runners can maybe take the courage to start running.

Now, “becoming a better person” through running is not something that happens holistically. I would resume that as a compilation of lessons that will change your attitude towards yourself and the world. Let’s say you experiment these in real life and compile them together, then you could potentially become a better person in many other aspects of your life.

This is how running made me a better person:

Adopt a resilient attitude: How many times have you started to run feeling completely miserable and then ended up feeling way happier? This happens to me like 90% of the time. If I decided to honor this negative stage and stop, I wouldn’t be able to complete any of my runs ever. Plus, I wouldn’t be able to feel that happy stage afterwards. So instead I decide to adopt a resilient attitude, meaning that I don’t think about the negative stuff and just keep running. When dealing with tough situations in real life this helps me to not think about the negatives and just keep doing what I need to do. Eventually, I’ll se the light at the end of the tunnel.

Be patient when things are not feeling good: Seeing the light at the end of the tunnel requires resilience (because you need to go through the darkness before you can even see the light). However, resilience also requires patience. I remember when I started running it didn’t feel good at all. Everything hurt, and breathing was so difficult. I remember thinking “Ok. I want to run for five more minutes. I’ll be patient. In 5 minutes this will be over” Later on, five minutes turned out to be 10, and then 20 and so on. Being patient has now become a virtue for me.

Let go of control: The only things I can control when running is my training plan and my mind. However, I can’t control how my body is going to feel. I can’t control the weather or many other external factors. Therefore, when my runs don’t come up as I planned I just don’t have any other option than let go of control. When I get sick the day before the race, it’s ok. When I didn’t run that last mile at my goal pace, it’s ok. When I didn’t wake up early that morning because I was too busy studying for my finals, it was also ok. Because there’s will be always a tomorrow to try again. There’s always a way to get around things and solve our problems.

Believe in yourself: I’ve always been a very confident person. But if two years ago I though I was going to be able to run as much as I run today, I would’ve laugh instantly. Now, I believe I’m capable of running so much more and accomplishing many other things I used to see very far in my life.

I can’t say I’m the same Nathaly I was two years ago, and I’m incredibly grateful for that. These life lessons that running has taught me could go on and on. I think I learn a new one every day, but overall these ones made a huge difference in my life.

Tell me about you: how running made you a better person? 

 

 

My Running Fears And Friday Favorites.

Hello friends!

As I told you a few days ago, I’m following the Run Eat Repeat’s Run Camp in which every day we do/learn something different to become better runners. Today, we need to overcome our running fears. Running fears? Really? At the beginning I though I don’t have any fears, but thinking more about it I realize I do have a few.

One of them is pretty silly and the other one should not represent the end of the world. But anyways, I though I could talk about them here because I’m supposed to write them down and talk about them with someone.

My first running fear is to have an encounter with an alligator while I’m running. I know. I know. This sounds really random and very unlikely to happen. However, I live in Florida so it is common to see alligators crossing the street like nothing is going on. This happened just a few miles away from my school.

Once I heard this story about a runner who was attacked by an alligator when she was running around a lake. I totally freaked out after that. Conclusion for Floridian runners like me: Never run around water. In case you have an encounter, run in zig zag. Apparently, alligators are not able to run in zig zag. 

My second running fear is to get injured and therefore not being able to run for months. Have you ever had something you like so much that you get afraid of loosing it? Well, that is basically my case. If you read my post from yesterday you could understand how afraid I am of this.

Running is my dose of relaxation and happiness. It is also my time for nothing else but myself. I don’t know what I’ll do without it. Besides, I care about my body and I don’t want to hurt myself/get injured. Conclusion for hypochondriac runners like me: Injuries are common in runners and that is something we can’t control, so you gotta deal with it. However, something you can control are the chances of getting injured. Take care of your body, stretch, slow down when you feel like you need to, do whatever you have to do to prevent injuries.

Ok. That was really a catharsis. I think I’m doing a good job overcoming my running fears. Now I need to talk about nice stuff –> Here are my Friday Favorites of this week:

1. Power Crunch Bars. I’m not really into counting macros or analyzing every single ingredient in food labels. I don’t know if these are the “cleanest” out there. I eat them because they fill me up when I’m really hungry and is not time to eat yet. Plus they taste delicious which is not common in protein bars.

2. TJ’s Greek Yogurt in Coconut Cream flavor. I’ve tried all of their flavors. This is just the best.

3. A Runner friend recommended me to wear compression sleeves for recovery. I never though about it but it feels so good and relieving. Specially on my tight calf, which is not tight anymore but just sore.

Do you have any running fears?
Are you into protein bars? Which one is your favorite?
What do you think about compression gear? When do you consider it’s best to wear it? 
Thanks for reading and hope you have a wonderful weekend!
N.

When My Calf Is Upset With Me…

Yesterday was just one of those crappy days. I was so tired and didn’t want to exercise AT ALL. However, I recently joined a gym so I decided to force myself to go for the very first time. I immediately started feeling different as I walked in.

I looked up at the huge equipment selection, and of course decided to go to the treadmill instead because #RunningAddiction. I made a tempo run of 4.5 miles. God! that felt so good. Isn’t it amazing how exercise can change your mood and improve your perception of bad stuff in your life?

Anyways. I was cooling down at my last mile when I started feeling something in my calf. It was painfully tight. I decided to continue because: Hi my name is Nathaly and sometimes I have a hard time knowing my limitations.

I thought everything was going to feel normal afterwards but no. When I finished I really could feel my calf being really tight. I stretched and it felt good, but I still couldn’t walk normally.

Despite that, I stayed at the gym exercising my arms and core for another hour. I was feeling pretty enthusiastic with the new gym experience so I didn’t think too much about my calf.

When I walked out, I could feel it again. It was my calf complaining. An hypochondriac Nathaly though: Oh my God, am I injured? I don’t know about you but whenever I suffer from a non-familiar ache, I freak out and tend to think I’m injured.

Got home to take a warm shower, which made me feel better. I woke up the next morning to feel my calf tight again. I think she’s upset with me! (I don’t if its a she or a her, but I refer to her as a she)

I don’t think I would be able to run today. The good thing is that I don’t think I’m injured. It seems to me like is just muscle fatigue.

Any advice on what to for my calf to forgive me?

Friday Favorites.

Happy Friday everyone!

I really hope the first week of 2017 has treated you well. For me it has been a stressful week. It always seems like you have a lot to catch up after the holidays. But everything comes together just with the right attitude, right?

I really love reading Friday Favorites out there. Somehow, it is kind of fascinating to know about what people with the same interests that you is loving. Today I realized I have collected a few favorites throughout this past week. So why not to do a Friday Favorite Post in here?

This Old Navy dress is everything. So easy to put on, so cute, and so comfy. I got this dress a week ago and I’ve already worn it like three times. Yup, I’m like that when I fall in love with a piece of clothe.

I’m not a huge fan of sweet potatoes. I don’t know what was going on in my mind when I picked these up at Starbucks. I think I was craving something crunchy but didn’t want regular potato chips. Anyways. As soon as I tried the first chip, I was surprised on how incredibly good these taste. I think I like sweet potatoes being salty and crunchy much more than being sweet and soft. Indeed, I will be having these chips again very very soon!

This Trade Joe’s Salad is LIFE. They have a very large selection of pre-made salads at my local TJ. The only reason why I decided to try this one in particular was because it had many ingredientes that I normally wouldn’t add to my salad. To adjust it a little bit to my taste, I added some chicken and took out half of the amount of  the cranberries. I ended up loving it.

I think I will have to stock up on these before the end of the season. This is the second box of the TJ’s Chocolate Mint Flavored Black Tea that I go through in less than a month. I’m drinking a cup of that tea at this precise moment, so I couldn’t help to mention it. Last year I was obsessed with the TJ’s Green Tea Candy Cane flavor.

This is definitely the song of the week, because I’ve been listening to it non-stop. I tend to discover new music everyday thanks to my Shazam app. Every time I’m at some place or listening to the radio and catch a song I like, I’ll Shazzam-it. The app will recognize the name and artist of the song, and will saved it on my timeline. Later on, I’ll look it up on Spotify and voi la!

I discovered this song by Jimmy Eat World trough this Radio Station, which also one of my favorites.

Hope you’re enjoying the rest of your Friday.

What are some of your favorites of this week?

Love.

N.

 

Getting Sick Before the Big Race + Music Playlist.

Hello! I’m back. I finished my semester (finally) and now have some time to relax and of course, write more in here.

I have nothing much to say more than I’m very sick and I have 10K a race on Sunday. I don’t know exactly why, but I was noticing my body felt weird and tired since I came back from Texas. And suddenly yesterday, boom! I had a very bad cold. What exactly do you do when that happens and you have a race coming up? You just run with the cold?

I’m taking lots of vitamin C and preparing myself “Golden Milk” or Tumeric Tea. I’ve heard it is very good for your immune system. I’ve also heard that you can run as long as your symptoms are above your neck. So if that’s true, then I’m going to pray for the best and keep drinking that tea which is not among my favorite flavors.

If I get better I promise to post the my personal recipe in here.

Now, in music news. I brought a new playlist today with some of the songs I’ve been listening to the most lately. It is so funny that I realize about this just when I post my playlists here, but my music taste is so weird. Not because of the kind of music I listen to but because of the combinations I do on my playlists. I mean, who puts Mariah Carey, Pearl Jam, and Dr. Dre together? Well, that’s me.

Also, I realized that I’m a sucker for 90’s music and I will always be one.

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What do you do if you get sick before a race?

What is your favorite type of music?

Post Hurricane Run + Friday Faves.

Matthew listened to my prayers yesterday. He passed fast and smooth, at least in the South Florida Area(My prayers are with people from Daytona Beach, St. Augustine and all the other affected areas). I thought the weather conditions were not going to be the most ideal ones. However, the weather today was perfect for an outdoor run. It was cloudy but not raining. Warm but not too warm. Windy but not at Chicago levels. Of course that I didn’t miss that chance of going for that outdoor run.

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3.11 miles at 11:50 average pace. I made sure to make this run a really easy one.  I didn’t want to burn my legs since I have a longer run scheduled tomorrow. By the way, I feel like I haven’t had a long run in like forever. So I’m pretty excited about that!

Now on to some of my favorites.

I know that putting together a list of your favorite stuff and post it on a Friday afternoon might sound kind of a cliche. We’re all used to that Friday Faves post from our favorite blogger. But, I do have some favorite stuff that I want to share with you! Cause when you like something too much, you just need to talk about it.

  1. Favorite eat: With time I’ve been realizing that I’m a sucker for Peruvian food. And this Lomo Saltado is something that the most I eat, the most I love. I don’t know how the heck do they cook that sauce but it tastes like heaven. Try one out next time you go to a Peruvian place.Processed with Snapseed.
  2. This week’s read: This is not something that I actually enjoyed reading. I’m putting it as “This week’s read” just because it really caught my attention to the point I stopped doing everything I was doing just to read this. The reality reflected in this article really impacted me and got me thinking about it for a few days now. The fact that this is only one portion of the terrible reality that Venezuela is going through just breaks my heart. So if you’re a believer in socialist ideas, please read this and reconsider your position.
  3. Favorite Music: It’s been a while since I haven’t posted a music playlist here. So when I took all the songs I’ve been listening to the most and put them together, I realized two things: 1. I really really like Drake. I don’t know what it with his his songs but I like every single one of them. 2. From times to times, I systematically listen to old music. Apparently I’m in one of those stages.img_7874

Any long scheduled for this weekend?