Do & Do Not

A while back, Grace was talking about some of the things she does and doesn't do when running or training for racing. I found it interesting to hear, because you do read about so many different things that you are supposed to do, should do, should wear, should have, should eat, shouldn't eat, etc when running, racing or training.

I found that some of the things she did do, I have never done and some of the things she DIDN'T do, I do all the time. It was just fun to see the differences. So, I thought I would list a couple of things  that I do and do not do.This in no way means that what I do is right or wrong or what you do is right or wrong. I just find it fun to compare and contrast!

I do:

- Eat breakfast before running/racing. Usually this is done 1 to 2 hours before my run. This can also be a snack, depending on the time of day. Generally, I run in the mornings, so my go to meal is cheerios or oatmeal with fruit and almond milk. And a cup (or two) of coffee. Without fail, I will have that. I tried toast with PB and let's just say the PB was not my friend. I even carry Cheerios with me when I travel.

- Yasso 800s. I was introduced to these by Lisa, who is in a running group, so I sponged off her training plan and tried them. Before I ran my first Yasso, I didn't think I would ever get faster than a 9 minute mile. I don't know if the Yassos actually do anything physically, or if they are just a great confidence booster. Either way I am sticking with them.

- Take rest days. I know sometimes it's hard because I feel like I am being lazy and should be doing something, but I do believe that rest days are important. I usually take one day where I do nothing and one to two days where I take a walk with a friend or do yoga/weights.

- Wear my running clothes twice in a row without washing them. Yes. I will be honest with you, the clothes get worn, get hung up and get worn again. Unless it was a particularly sweaty run, which doesn't happen to me very often, I use them twice. I am saving the environment, one stinky shirt at a time.

I do not:

- Eat fuel during runs/races that are half marathon or less (only for marathons or training runs of longer than 15 miles). I know this is not what they say to do, but I seem to get along fine without it, plus I am not a fan of Gu and all those other sweet nasty things. I will take it if I have to (like at mile 23 of the marathon) but I really don't like it. (side note: I did eat some gummy bears at my last trail race, and those weren't bad.)

- Get pedicures (I am afraid of losing my calluses!) My friend asked me the other day if I wanted to go get a pedicure with her and I turned her down. It's taken me a long time to get these feet in perfect running condition (aka ugly and hard) and I am not going to have some lady scrape off all my hard work in mere minutes.

- Buy new shoes every 300-500 miles. I know the drill, the advice. I sold shoes, athletic ones even, for 7 years. But I don't care. My shoes are still comfortable; my knees and feet don't hurt. I see no reason to change my shoes as often as they say to. I think, like Valentines Day, it is a marketing gimmick. Plus I am cheap. Plus I hate the new shoe break in period.

- Drink Gatorade before, during or after a run/race. Like Gu, I am not a fan of Gatorade. Or Poweraid or Clif whatchamacallit. I like water. I probably would have more energy if I ate and drank all the electrolyte/caffeine/sugar items, but I really feel fine without them.

Are there things on my list that you think are strange? What things do you always do when running or training? What things do you typically avoid?


  1. Well you clearly have it figured out, so there is no reason to adjust what you are doing! Like the shoe thing - you feel good and haven't had trouble w/ injuries so your body just must not need new shoes as often.

    I do take rest days - one full day, and more more active rest day. I do drink gatorade and eat gu's, but I tend to only use gu's when I hit the 15+ mileage mark. I don't wear my running clothes multiple days - except I will wear running pants twice before washing.

    Fun post! It's so interesting to see what works for others!!

  2. Yay I'm famous :D
    I agree with the new shoe thing (although I do love some new shoes); mine have always lasted a good while longer than they're "supposed" to although the one pair of Nike's I bought completely fell apart at around 475 miles (and they were expensive, too). I go by the knee ache - I only replace once my knees start feeling achy after a run.
    I do drink gatorade during hot races or if I've hit the point where a gel would be difficult to keep down; I don't like it though. I sometimes get free Gatorade and it sits in my fridge forever until I finally bring it as fuel for a long run; it's actually a good idea in the summer since I sweat so much. I'm so tired of the sickly sweet taste by the time I get home.

  3. I've tried pretty much everything over the past two years. Well, except speedwork...still don't do that and never run on a track. Reading lots of running blogs makes you want to try lots of different things though! I think I'm getting close to the point where I know what truly works for me but it definitely takes some experimenting. I usually don't wear running clothes more than once between washing but I have sometimes. Usually mine are fairly disgusting with the sweat smell.

  4. I haven't yet found a gu that I like, so I use kids fruit snacks and that seems to work just fine! Also? I wear my running clothes more than once (especially shorts) and I think it's actually better for your clothes not to be washed so much! At least that's what I tell myself.

  5. Yep, I say you have to do what works for you and it doesn't really matter what people say you should or shouldn't do. I had to laugh at the pedicure one. As a dancer I feel the same way- I often dance barefooted and without those calluses I'd sure be hurting!

  6. No pedicures?! You know you can get a pedicure and just ask them not to do the pumice stone. Just get the massage and pretty toe part. I don't like GU either so I have been experimenting with other options for fuel. So, now we know we shouldn't run with you on day 2 of your running clothes cycle:) Have a great day!

  7. I stopped getting pedicures too. I just trim and paint them myself. So much better than getting nasty comments from the manicurists. I like my caluses and thick nails, thank you very much.

    I do fuel on runs over 8 miles. I take water for over 6. But, I'm slow so 8 miles on a long run is an hour and a half.

    I haven't done Yassos. I'll do tempo runs and speed intervals, I just haven't sat down to do the math for what my speed should be for Yassos. I do want to get faster, so maybe they should become a part of my routine.

    Nice list. You obviously have your body figured out. Awesome!

  8. I avoid too much "tech" clothing. I like the same running shorts I've been wearing for years and a plain cotton or cotton-blend t-shirt. I don't care what people say about wicking -- synthetics make me sweat more and make me smell terrible!

    I buy shoes whenever I'm in the U.S. and then save them until my knees tell me it's time for a new pair. I don't even pay attention to how many miles I've run in them. I like water, but I hate carrying it with me so I only bring a water bottle for runs over an hour. The thought of GU or any other gel makes me a little nauseous, so luckily I don't run long enough to need it! :) I only listen to music when I'm on a treadmill -- never on trails or on the road.

    I've come around to pedicures! Sandals are worn year-round here and I like my feet looking a little fancy.

  9. Haha, my mom is the opposite about pedicures. Since running has, like, totally killed her toenails, she gets pedicures so her toenails don't look so nasty anymore. ;) It gives her some confidence, I suppose! And the people where we get our pedicures are SUPER NICE about it. No nasty looks or comments at all. To each their own!

  10. If I ever get back into a consistent running routine...er...I mean WHEN I get back into a consistent running routine, I'll be able to answer this question better. But it's really fun to see what other people do and how what works for one runner doesn't work for the next.

  11. yeah I am very anti eating during races too- I did it during my triathlon just because I was having stomach issues and I needed some food in there but I had a banana haha gu freaks me out!

  12. I couldn't live without pedicures. I can't stand looking at my black toenails. :) I change my shoes when my knees start to hurt, usually that is around 300 miles. I am also heavier so I think I break them down quicker. I like to eat jelly beans or chews when I run. I just like it - I think its a mind game for me that it is helping. I like a carb before and after a half. But afterI can't eat much for a while because of stomach issues. Chocolate milk and water are my friends.

  13. I Do-have a manicure for every race-i might look crap while running-but atleast my nails will be pretty and when i look at them i smile!

  14. I love this post - because it's fascinating to see how every body (not everybody) works independently and differently from every other body! I remember a good friend of mine always had to use the bathroom, even on 5-6 mile runs. It would kill me that she had to stop all the time. I couldn't imagine having to break whatever momentum I had during a marathon to pee! =)

    I always felt like such an outcast, because I hated Gatorade before and during long runs (afterwards was always ok). I'd power up with Gu (hated it, but it did the trick) and if I had to drink Gatorade at water stops, I'd dilute it with a lot of water. It was just too strong and my belly would ache otherwise!

  15. I love reading about what others are doing since I'm SO new. It's good to read about what others suggest. Thanks!

  16. I normally can't eat before a race. I think if I ever ran anything longer then a 1/2 I would have to figure out how. I am probably the poster child for all the things that you should not do for running!

    Interesting about the shoes. I try to keep track of how old mine are that way when my legs start giving me new pain I can tell if it's time for new shoes or not. I don't really go by miles but I do go by how many months have I been running in them and how they look on the bottom.

    Happy Friday!!!

  17. Nothing too strange. I inevitably end up buying new shoes at about the 400 mile mark. A do not for me is Gu. I'd love to use it for the convenience while running but I can't stomach the sweetness or the texture.

    Interesting post. Now you have me thinking about my dos and don'ts.

    Have a great weekend!


Thanks for commenting! Any suggestions, tips or praise you have is always welcome!