Dear Body: Prepare to Run

Last spring, after a couple of years of sporadic jogging stints, I decided to take the plunge and run my first 10k. Training was a challenge at first, but by race day, I had really come to enjoy running. As summer turned to fall, the weather became, let’s just say, less jogging friendly, and I didn’t have the guts, really, to continue.

Now, the cherry blossoms are in bloom, and again, I’m getting the itch to hit the road. Today was my first run, and damn did it hurt! Legs, lungs, abs. Everything that could hurt, did. So, in an attempt to preempt these ailments next time and hopefully get back in to fighting shape sooner, here are some tips for half marathon training.

1. Build mental stamina…I’m only laughing because, even with a goal of more than 13 miles, this tip will probably be most challenging for me. This is advice on a lot of peoples’ lists, but music is key for me to keep pushing – I will publish my play list later this week.

2. Get on a schedule. This is one of the most important aspects of my success last year. Having mini goals to reach and time scheduled on my calender was key to me reaching my goal. Here’s the schedule I’m following this year from the same site that I used for the 10k. TIP: for those of you who are often over-scheduled, remember, even if happy hour followed by running seems like a good idea, it’s not. Trust me.

3. Get some good gear. (guy readers, feel free to skip to #4) workout clothes can be a great motivator to get you up and running – literally. Although I’m not usually a fan, Old Navy actually has some amazing running pants that are reasonably priced ($12 on sale!) and super comfortable. You’re going to be needing several pairs and although LuluLemon has some really cute ones, I’m not in love with spending $86 a pop. Good shoes are clearly essential – try a place like Portland Running Company instead of heading down to Nordstrom. Running stores have trained professionals to determine the best shoes for your foot shape and gait. Also, make sure to have a supportive sports bra¬† to protect the ladies.

Welcome back boys!

4. Take a break. Finally! A legit excuse to watch reruns of ANTM, sorry guys, I mean COPS, after work. Rest is key to recovery and rejuvenation. Without a day off between runs, you could put your body in a tough spot. So just do it.

5. Drink water. Pretty simple. If you’re tempted to try another libation in place of good ole’ H2O, just remember what happened to Tiger after one too many Gatorades… too much endurance. Really, you’ll avoid needless calories and sugar, if you just stick to the clear stuff.

Alright, that’s all I’ve got for now. Keep an eye out for more posts about my adventures in half marathon training.

Got a tip about training I missed? Have a recommendation about great running trails or killer capris? Let me know!

Ps: sorry Tiger. I couldn’t resist.

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March 22, 2010. Tags: , , , , , . Life-in General. Leave a comment.

My First Real Job? I Think I Need To Sit Down.

So, as you may have read, I landed the job of my dreams. Although I couldn’t be more excited to enter the work force once my two-month, post-college hiatus ends, I find that whenever I think about beginning my job, wait, no, GASP, starting my career, I get a more than a little short of breath.

Luckily for me and anyone else experiencing a similar panic-attack expresspersonnel.com‘s blog offers 9 Tips to a Smooth Start at a New Job.

Here we go:

1. Ask Questions. You just started your job. You don’t have all the answers. So, don’t be afraid to ask someone.

2. Take Notes. You’re going to be a little stressed out. Jot down seemingly simple things like how to operate the phone system or which login passwords to use.

3. Avoid Surfing. Don’t check your personal email or surf the net on company time. Having company materials around to study when you have a spare second can help you from being temped to Facebook stalk the guy you crushed on in business class.

4. Turn Off Your Cell Phone. We’re all attached at the hand to our cell phones, but getting fired for chatting on your phone at work may just mean you’ll instead be attached at the hand to a burger flipper. Think about it.

5. Complete Your Tasks. Doing your best work and staying on top of your responsibilities is key to impressing your boss and doing well at your new job.

6. Listen and Observe. Listen more than you talk, and you may learn something.

7. Be Positive. Enthusiasm goes a long way. Being friendly and eager to help when it comes to your coworkers will get you far.

8. Earn Respect. Everyone knows that you only have one chance to make a first impression, so prove your work ethic and give 110% all the time. Be humble about needing help and make sure to say thank you – your mom would be proud. Need more info? Check out my R.E.S.P.E.C.T. Find out what it really means for more tips on earning respect from coworkers.

9. Be a Team Player. Take time to work with your coworkers, if they need help. Don’t feel as if you’re in competition with your peers – you’ll get more work done working with, not against, your coworkers.

If you have any tips on starting a new job or common mistakes to avoid, let me know. I can use all the help I can get.

photo from istockphoto.com

July 10, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Career Advice. Leave a comment.

Tiger’s Tips FORE Life.

I can’t think of anything better than getting life advice from Tiger Woods. Anyone who knows me is all too aware of my passion for golf (both the game and the adorable outfits). And although I haven’t been playing long, I think that there are a lot of life lessons that we can learn from golf. My buddy Tiger agrees with me. Tiger Woods Rulebook to Being a Huge Success from the blog Dumb Little Man offers some of the golf great’s tips for life. Before I hyperventilate from excitement, let’s continue.

1. Constant and never ending improvement. Never settle for good enough, not when you can always be better tomorrow. That’s what keeps life exciting.

2. A bigger plan. Try to look at the bigger picture – this is often bigger than your own success and accomplishments.

3. Embrace defeat. And move on. Don’t hold on to your mistakes. Pick yourself up and face your next challenge.

4. Take life lightly. “If you can’t laugh at yourself, then who can you laugh at?” -Tiger Woods

5. Don’t stop. Clearly Tiger took his own advice at the Open a couple of weeks ago.

6. Live your own expectations. Don’t get tied up with what other people want.

7. Do what you love. You’re going to spend your entire life working, so why not find something that you love to do.

8. Focus. Have a goal, focus on what’s important and put all your energy toward reaching it.

9. Pay it forward. Give your time and talents to others.

10. Learn from all mistakes. Life’s challenges are there for us to learn from, so take advantage.

11. Celebrate your victories. Positive reinforcement comes when you treat each of your successes as special. Don’t feel bad when you feel good about your accomplishments.

12. Pay no attention to naysayers. What do they know anyway?

adorable picture of Tiger from news.bbc.co.uk.

June 26, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , . Life-in General. Leave a comment.

Your Most Important PR Client: Yourself

PReparing for an interview can be a stressful and taxing process. From your shoes to skirt to blouse to blush, dressing for an interview leaves many job seekers, like myself, more than a little nervous.

There are a lot of websites, books and articles that offer advice on this all important day (or days). Almost all of them provide the same information, but wetfeet.com’s “Dressing for Success in Interviews” is the best I’ve found.

Some of the basic rules for women are a well-tailored, neutral suit, minimal makeup, understated jewelry and pumps.

But one of my biggest concerns about interviewing for a job in PR is how to look polished in a basic suit while also showing some personal style. And wetfeet.com agrees that you’re less likely to make a distinctive impression if you stick to a simple, sapless suit.

How do you look stylish and chic while also following the basic rules of interview attire? Most articles agree that the level of acceptable personal style varies based on the company, but that expressing who you are within the guidelines of basic interview style is important.

As a future PR practitioner, it is important to cultivate your personal image, performing PR for your most important client: yourself.

photo from jcrew.com

February 7, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , . Career Advice, Life-in General, PR. 1 comment.

What “They” Want You to Know

You have the PR job of your dreams, but what now? Take a look at Todd Defren of SHIFT Communications’ personal list of things he wished his new PR hires would know. “What I Wish My New Employee Knew” provides an often overlooked perspective on success in the PR workplace.

In “The ‘X Factor'” post from January 30, the advice from Cori McKeever to new PR hires was to burn the midnight oil. Defren disagrees, however, writing that working late, rather than impressing the big wigs, could make your boss question your efficiency.

They may disagree on some things, but both McKeever and Defren agree that slaving late or not, having enthusiasm, self motivation and a willingness to work is the best way to demonstrate your worth.

photo from pr-squared.com

February 4, 2008. Tags: , , , , . Career Advice, PR. 1 comment.

The “X Factor”

I’m just beginning to realize the wealth of information out there about getting a job in PR. And although each firm or company is probably looking for something different, “The Public Relations Career X Factor” by Cori McKeever offers some valuable insight on starting in the PR industry. What is the X factor according to McKeever? It is more like the X,Y and Z factors.

1. Exude confidence, not arrogance.

2. Identify a mentor.

3. Realize that mistakes will be made, but do not make the same ones twice.

4. Burn the midnight oil.

5. Commit to being a student of the industry.

6. Recognize there is much to learn.

They seem pretty obvious, but sometimes the simplest things are the hardest to remember.
photo from office.microsoft.com

January 31, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , . Career Advice, PR. 1 comment.