ACT – Adventures in Cross-Training: Free up!

Those who know, know that We RUN Tings is about more than running. It’s also about our Adventures in Cross-Training, the different things that we do for healthy fun when we’re not running. And our most popular ACT event is on the horizon: We Wuk Up and Wine Tings Weekend at Toronto Carnival.

11807147_10153405701410465_1889507108391477477_o

This year promises to be another spectacular year. Carnival culture brings with it so many benefits. It’s about loving our bodies just as they are, dressing those bodies up in celebration, and dancing in the streets with friends and strangers alike. It’s exercise seemingly without effort — last year one of our members reportedly clocked over 20KM while “chipping down de road,” singing, laughing, and socializing for hours. It’s about “freeing up” — letting go of stress and just having a great time, which is very healthy. It’s self-love and stress-relief in the sunshine to a soca soundtrack.

As the weeks go by leading up to the Carnival, we hope you’ll check our website for valuable information for how you can get involved, whether it’s playing mas with our crew, watching and waving on the sidelines, or getting healthy wherever you are so that you can have the stamina for your own adventures.

If you are interested in signing up to be in the Carnival parade on July 30, or you just want to ask some questions about it, please email weruntingsworld@gmail.com or call 647.772.6244.

So you want to have an awesome body?

It’s January. And you might notice that this time of year is totally overwhelming with all kinds of information on how to lose weight, look good, eat right, live right, do more, be more, and basically Make All Your Dreams Come True. Blah blah blah.

Me, I don’t have a problem with it…within reason of course. I’m all for suggestions and well-meaning advice but it has to be rational, doable, inexpensive, and convenient. I don’t want to spend too much. I don’t want to drive too far. I don’t want to study for it or think too much about it. I don’t want complicated instructions or extra equipment or special-order materials. That’s just me in a nutshell.

With that in mind, I’m here to share my own rational, doable, inexpensive, and convenient technique for people who want to have an awesome body.

Instructions:

  1. Get up every day (Every. Single. Day) and look at your body in the mirror (nakedness is optional but recommended).
  2. Tell your body that it is awesome.
  3. Treat your body accordingly.

It’s that simple. And it works.

At first your body may not believe you, especially if YOU do not believe you. That’s OK. Keep going. Every. Single. Day.

Treat your body as though it is some new love interest, that guy or girl that you really really like and you really want to get down with. Compliment your body. Tell your body amazing things about itself. Spend time with your body. Think of new fun things that you can do together. Take your body to nice places. Feed it with the best food, like you’re trying to impress it. Don’t give your body anything that would make it sick or sad. Pleasure your body, unapologetically. Pamper your body. Buy or make nice gifts for you and your body to share. Play music to your body. Sing to it. Yes, I said it. Serenade your body and sing LOUDLY.

Do the things for your body that you know are really good for your body. Take your body for a walk. Take your body out dancing. Take your body to the gym but do the classes that you and your body really enjoy. If it’s not fun, if your body is not having a good time, be flexible and invite your body to do something else instead.

Take your body out on the town on the regular. Don’t hide your body…the world deserves to see that awesomeness that is truly you. When you believe it, others will believe it. And if they don’t, well they just don’t know very much. That’s their problem. You and your awesome body are very happy together, thank you very much.

Awesomeness will not happen overnight. It takes time to build a solid relationship with your body. But I think you’ll find that your body is worth it and will show its appreciation. There is no feeling quite like waking up every day with someone who truly loves and appreciates you. It makes you glow and look forward to every new experience. Treat your awesome body like it deserves to be treated and your body will respond accordingly.

Now this approach will not work for everybody. Unfortunately I speak from personal experience when I say that sometimes the hardest thing you could ever do is to say nice things to yourself about your body. We have not exactly been trained to do that, whether because we don’t want to be vain or we just don’t see our own awesomeness. Whatever. Drastic times call for drastic measures. And if having an awesome body means that you have to throw caution to the wind and actually say good things about yourself, well, that’s a sacrifice you’ll just have to make. And no criticism. Nobody likes to be picked on all the time, constantly told what is wrong with them and what they must do to fix it. Your body is no exception.

So get up every day (Every. Single. Day) and talk nicely to your body. Marvel in the amazing things that it can do. Admire the miracle of how all the pieces fit together. Tell your body that you love it more than ever before. Smile at your body. Make kissy noises at it. Get silly with it. Throw yourself completely into the awesomeness that is you. The rest will follow.

It may take months. It may take a year. It make take years! But treating your body right and feeling good about your body relationship is habit-forming. Once you are fully addicted to having that awesome body, there’s just no turning back.

Let me know how it goes.

— Nicole OzJam

No diggity, no doubt

I’m no Blackstreet (Come to think of it, lately I’ve barely been Black on the street!). But if I had to pick four words to describe my running these days, those words wound be: No discipline. Self-doubt.

Blame it on the crushing winter we just barely survived. The cold and dark took a serious toll on my adrenaline storage. When Spring finally showed itself, I was beyond help. I’d faithfully set my alarm every night…then hit the snooze button every morning without fail. Our weekly group run was consistently shelved for a variety of reasons: spring cleaning, end of year activities at my kids’ school, late nights with a bottle of red moscato, making plans for summer camp, a barrage of social commitments, Good Times on Netflix (Dynamite!), you name it!

To be honest, my most strenuous activity was running my mouth, with the same enthusiasm that I once used to hit the track. Probably more, since it’s a lot easier to find someone to gossip with than it is to find someone to run with.

Sure I still took on the occasional run event, usually running on fumes between not enough breakfast and not enough sleep (again: Netflix). I was devastated in April when I failed at my first 10k — a late start and a wrong turn led me, well short of my goal, to the 5k finish line. Boo. I succeeded in my second attempt at a 10k in June but with a half-hearted effort, walking more than half the course when I knew I could do much better. I planned to run stretches of 15 minutes but I kept giving in after 2 minutes and just started strolling. My mind told me I was too tired, too old, too stupid to even try to do something like this, and I believed it. I didn’t challenge myself. I just didn’t “feel like it”.

Then, a small spark was lit under the heavy cloak of laziness I wore. What was the catalyst? A great sale on capri running tights. These tights are so good (wicking, strong seams, zip pocket) and the price was so right… Yes, it sounds superficial but when it works, it works. And the lure of the comfortable fit of new running tights? I was unexpectedly rejuvenated.

So I went to bed early and set my alarm clock for 5:35AM. In the morning, I jumped out of bed with gusto. I geared up and hit the sidewalk like I was high-fiving a good friend. The goal? Just run. Don’t think. Don’t make excuses. Don’t do intervals. Don’t stop til you get enough.

To my surprise, I finished 4.07 km in 33 minutes without stopping. I amazed myself, recognizing that the energy, the ability, and the enjoyment that I used to have was still stored away somewhere in my mind and my body. It just took a little digging. Or should I say, no diggity!

New motto: I like the way I worked it. Self-discipline. No doubt.

NOJ

Reasons to Run: Fun with friends at the Mercedes-Benz Oakville 10K

We RUN Tings invites you to join us the Mercedes-Benz Oakville 10k on Sunday, April 27, 2014. Presented by New Balance Oakville, all funds raised through this popular race will be donated to the Oakville Hospital Foundation. Participants will enjoy pituresque views of Oakville’s lakeshore and a variety of fun events for all ages, including a 5k High School Challenge, a 1k Junior Jog, and a 300m Toddler Trot! But wait, there’s more! One lucky winner will drive away in a brand new 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA.

971410_10151789214270465_831301863_nFor Barbara H., it’s worth a four-hour drive from across the border — even longer, if she stops at every Timmy’s! Here, Barbara shares her reasons for running, and tips for newbies.

Why did you start running?

I was always a runner off and on from the age of 13. I was inspired by older brothers who all were cross country runners. As an adult, I always dreamed of running again, but I didn’t fully pursue it again until last year. I was inspired by a group of my friends who had started running and that ignited that spark in me once again.

I started out on the track at first, running one lap and walking one, then running two and walking one. I did this until I could run a mile non-stop. Then I moved my track training to the treadmill. This is where I worked on building my distance. Before I knew it, I had built up enough endurance to run longer distances.

1174590_10151789216845465_409063980_nWhat different places have you gone to run (cities, countries)?

I run most often in Detroit [Michigan, USA], my hometown. However, last summer, I ran in Toronto [Ontario, CANADA] with We RUN Tings. That was my first international running experience.

Why did you decide to do the Mercedes Benz 10K in Oakville?

I had so much fun with We RUN Tings in Toronto last year. Having a group of runners that support you to become better and provides opportunities to see the world through running is great. I look forward to the positive energy that We RUN Tings gives me as a runner. They are really an amazing, supportive group.

Have you run a 10K before?

In November of 2013, I ran my first 10k at the Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot in Detroit.

What advice do you have for other runners who may be just getting started?

I’d tell new runners these few points:

  • Don’t pressure yourself
  • Just take it one day at a time
  • Do your best, not anyone else’s best
  • Listen to your body
  • Oh yeah, and join a great running group!

Big Tings: WRT featured on Community Central radio show

Put away the cape.

The solution? Put away the cape.

This month, We RUN Tings is featured on Community Central radio. The topic is Walking the path of life. The host Shaquilla speaks with WRT co-founder Nicole about why it’s so hard to live a healthy lifestyle, how to get started and stay motivated, and how to get involved with the WRT movement. Click here to listen… (29:02)

Speak up!

Why do YOU think many people struggle to exercise and live a healthier lifestyle?

How can we motivate ourselves to meet our fitness goals?

What worked for you? Or what do you need to make it happen?

Your comments are appreciated (below), or visit our Facebook page. You can also email us at weruntingsworld [at] gmail.com.