Now that I’ve stuffed my tent, sleeping bag, and running gear into a suitcase and giant, old duffel bag (thank god for Southwest Airlines!), I’m officially en route and ready for Ragnar Trail Los Coyotes (which is good, considering it starts tomorrow morning).
Since sharing my packing journey on Insta Stories last night, I received a lot of condolences for my headlamp but also a surprising number of questions from all of you about how I trained for this particular race. And to be honest, I didn’t really know how to answer the questions at first. I kept thinking, did I actually train for this relay? What could I actually share to help someone else train for a Ragnar Trail relay? Am I just kind of winging this?
As I went through your questions, struggling to answer them, trying to figure out what to say, I started to realize that I absolutely trained for this relay. The more questions I answered, the more I realized how much hard work I’ve actually been doing.
I put in miles, I ran in the dark (and on very little sleep), I did yoga daily to keep my body limber, mobile, and strong, and I worked hard to find my post pregnancy stride again.
Like my Sweat Pink Ragnar Los Coyotes teammate (and team captain), Jenny, I also trained in a more unconventional way. But unlike Jenny, I didn’t race every weekend leading up to the race; in fact, I’ve completed only one other race since Colby was born and that was nearly 4 months ago now. I didn’t run an obscene number of miles, or log multiple runs in a single day, but I did train. And here’s how:
Weekly trail runs.
I stayed consistent with my weekly trail runs – completely dedicating myself to that time, to my running group, and to myself – I have shown up every Wednesday and Saturday morning ready to run no matter how much sleep I got (or didn’t get) the night before.
Daily yoga practice.
I have also stayed on top of my yoga practice, and have fit in a class or home practice nearly every single day since Colby was about two months old.
Bobbin’ with Colby.
My other unconventional (and also highly effective, perhaps most effective) training tool has been running with my little man in his new BOB Blaze jogging stroller. Even though we’re Bobbin’ around on the roads and city sidewalks, it’s probably some of the best trail run training I’ve ever done in my life, without being on an actual trail.
Anyone who has ever run with a stroller will tell you that merely pushing a stroller is hard work. Add in maneuvering the stroller over city sidewalks – which in Portland are uneven, cracked, and don’t always have curb ramps – and you get hard work combined with agility and responsiveness training. It’s a great way to work harder while you run, and the perfect way to train your body to use your core more efficiently while you run (especially useful for climbing hills!).
And the best part about training with my BOB Blaze is that it’s not only challenging from a physical aspect but also even more surprisingly, it’s a great mental challenge as well. To run and keep pace with my BOB, I find that I have to be way more alert and aware of my surroundings (and the ground beneath me), which is a skill you need to master for running on the trails.
In short, I’m pretty sure my new BOB Blaze is the best training partner I’ve ever had. And it’s hands down the best jogging stroller I’ve ever run with. It’s fast, maneuverable, lightweight, and absorbs all the bumpy sidewalks Portland has to offer. Plus, it has ADJUSTABLE handlebars so it fits my height when I need it to and can easily adjust to my husband’s height as well.
So while I might not be crushing the same race training plan as everyone else, I feel confident in saying that I crushed some serious race training for this weekend’s Ragnar Trail Los Coyotes relay. And I’m pretty excited to get out there and run this thing, alongside all of my favorite Sweat Pink runners!
Are you a stroller runner? What’s your favorite jogging stroller? How has it helped you become a better, faster, stronger runner? Or has it? Tell me more!
Stay sweaty (and keep running!),
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Ragnar Relay as I’m running in the Los Coyotes event with a sponsored team due to my partnership with Fit Approach. I also received a BOB Blaze jogging stroller for review purposes. That said, all opinions, thoughts, words expressed, and late night Instagram Story ponderings are my very own. I truly appreciate all of the brands that support the Sweat Pink community.