It’s the end of January… How are you doing with those New Year’s resolutions?

I think, those of us who struggle with the holidays season shouldn’t even think ahead to the New Year until the end of January. We really need about 3-4 weeks to get our feet back under us and do a lot of loving self-care to re-calibrate.

So whether you made some resolutions or are just now thinking about your healing in 2015 I want to encourage you to get off the couch this year and do a 5k. It might be your first ever, your first since your loss, or your 100th 5k! We only get what we plan for – so let’s plan to move this year.

Why You Should Go From Couch to 5k

Moving your body is an essential part of healing from grief. Notice I say ‘moving’, not exercise. This is because I want you to think outside the box of exercise, I want you to think of all the ways you can add movement to your life beyond simply 30 minutes in the gym…. but I’ll take that too!

Grief is a little bit like cement in the back of a mixer truck. Thick and heavy and when the barrel stops turning it dries up, hardens and becomes impenetrable concrete. If you don’t move grief through your system this same thing happens to your body, mind and even your heart!

Stop me when I lie! I imagine you can think of a time in your healing journey when you felt just like a cement mixer.

Movement allows us to shift our grief at a cellular level. It physically and emotionally breaks up our thought patterns and allows us to refocus on something else for a period of time. Movement, in the form of exercise, produces the feel good hormones called ‘endorphins’. These feel good hormones support our emotional processing and helps reduce the amount of depression we feel. I could go on for a long time about the benefits of moving, but I want to give you my favorite apps to inspire you to move now!

My Favorite Couch to 5k Apps (most are free)

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c25K is the most popular couch to 5k app and is available for free on both iphone and droid phones. By far my favorite feature is that is syncs with My Fitness Pal (my fav online food tracking tool) so that you can seamlessly align your nutrition and exercise goals. They have amazing customer service and great inspirational stories!

 

Another freebie for both iphone & droid phones.  This is compatible with Nike+ and most all music apps (Pandora, Spotify). It also has a human voice that will coach you through walk/run intervals. You can join their Facebook community for support as well.

Another freebie for both iphone & droid phones. This is compatible with Nike+ and most all music apps (Pandora, Spotify). It also has a human voice that will coach you through walk/run intervals. You can join their Facebook community for support as well.

 

Ease into Running promotes themselves as the 30min 3x/week program. I believe anyone can complete a 5k with that commitment, so it's not an empty promise.  Like the others, it's free to iphone & droid users BUT only for short test period, then you have to upgrade to the paid version...boo!

Ease into Running promotes themselves as the 30min 3x/week program. I believe anyone can complete a 5k with that commitment, so it’s not an empty promise. Like the others, it’s free to iphone & droid users BUT only for short test period, then you have to upgrade to the paid version…boo!

 Want to be entertained while you train? Try these!

It's a game, story and training program all wrapped up into one! So fun to escape evil monsters and have lots of adventures while, in 9 weeks, you get ready to run a 5k - Yay for fun! In the 9 weeks you go through 9 stages that put you in the action of an amazing adventure - and it's FREE!

It’s a game, story and training program all wrapped up into one! So fun to escape evil monsters and have lots of adventures while, in 9 weeks, you get ready to run a 5k – Yay for fun! In the 9 weeks you go through 9 stages that put you in the action of an amazing adventure – and it’s FREE!

Did someone say Zombies? During your 8 week program you will be trained to help protect your town from a zombie invasion. I love that it integrates with Runkeeper (a great app for runners)  which will give you a place when you outgrow zombies and 5k's.  It is $1.99, but that's just cheap fun if you ask me!

Did someone say Zombies? During your 8 week program you will be trained to help protect your town from a zombie invasion. I love that it integrates with Runkeeper (a great app for runners) which will give you a place when you outgrow zombies and 5k’s. It is $1.99, but that’s just cheap fun if you ask me!

 

My Personal Tips To Get You Off The Coach

I love the 5k distance because everyone can do it AND now there are so many race formats to choose from. You can find 5k that drag you through the mud, cover you in paint, get chased by zombies, and just about anything you can think of. 5k’s aren’t about being a runner, they’re about fun, but they can build the perfect foundation to excavate your inner runner from a long dormant sleep.

Top 10 Tips For Success

  1. Choose a race that is 8-12 weeks away and use a training plan like the the apps I’ve shared in this blog.
  2. Schedule your workouts like they are appointments with a VIP – that’s you my friend, a VIP!
  3. Always drink an extra 24 ounces of water on the days you exercise & take water with you.
  4. Buy good walking/running shoes. They don’t have to be expensive, but healthy feet are #1.
  5. Check the weather before you go and make sure you are dressed appropriately.
  6. Train with a friend or join a group or club. Your dog is the best training partner!
  7. Register early (to get discounts) and check places like ‘Living Social’ for additional discounts.
  8. Do not assume you need to eat more because you are training for a 5k. You are only burning 100-300 additional calories per workout.
  9. You do not need Gatorade/Powerade or any other sports drink for 5k training – it’s just empty calories. If you do want something, coconut water or plain water will do the trick!
  10. HAVE FUN –  and tell me all about it! I want to hear about your plans, training and success!

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