Race Report: Wild Dog Triathlon 2016

Race Report: Wild Dog Triathlon 2016

Wild Dog Triathlon ready! (RunKarlaRun.com)

The Wild Dog Triathlon in Bristol, Rhode Island was my first time participating in a triathlon on a relay instead of on my own. The takeaway? Being part of a team is so much fun!

I participated in the Wild Dog Triathlon in 2013, and loved the event. (You can read my Race Report here.) The course was gorgeous, it was well-organized, and low-key at the same time. Perfect for a summer tri on vacation.

Race Report: Wild Dog Triathlon

Coming out of the water at the Wild Dog Triathlon in 2013. (Phil Hospod)

I debated doing the race on my own, but I honestly wasn’t even remotely trained. I’ve been on a bike exactly once this year—a solid 26 miles, but still—and have swum just a handful of times. Throw in the fact that race week was my first week back to exercising after being sick for three full weeks, thanks to the flu and bronchitis. Sure, I could have “jogged” it. But I know myself; I’m totally able to do that during a half-marathon where I’m taking in the scenery or having fun. But during triathlons and shorter races, I get too competitive.

It just so happened that my husband, Phil, and I were spending the weekend with a friend who’s done a few triathlons, so I recruited them to join a team with me. Enter team KAP’n Crunch—aka Karla, Adam, and Phil. It was a last-minute affair. We registered just two days before the race.

Race Report: Wild Dog Triathlon 2016

Yay team! (RunKarlaRun.com)

Sorting out who would do which leg was pretty easy. Phil is hands down the fastest runner among us, with his 18:37 5K PR. That’s a 5:59 pace, folks. A ringer on the run? You, bet!

Adam and I are both strong swimmers—and faster than Phil—but Adam is a much better cyclist than me. He can knock out 20 mph in his sleep, whereas my fastest overall racing speed was 17.2 mph at the 2015 Boston Triathlon. So biking it was for him.

That meant I would swim. We managed to cobble together a team where each of us was competing in a strong leg for us. A recipe for success. Read the rest of this entry →

17

Aug 2016

The Dark Side Star Wars Half Registration Opens

The Dark Side Star Wars Half Registration Opens

R2D2 greets runners at The Dark Side Star Wars Half Marathon. (runDisney)

Registration for The Dark Side Star Wars Half Marathon 2017 Weekend at Walt Disney World opens at 12 p.m. Eastern on Tuesday, August 9, 2016. The Disney half marathon race weekend themed to The “Dark Side” will take place April 20-23, 2017 in a galaxy far, far away. OK, it’s really in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, but you get the idea. I ran the inaugural race in 2016, courtesy of runDisney, and had a blast(er)!

More than 18,180 runners finished The Dark Side Star Wars Half Marathon and another 12,173 flew through the Star Wars 10K in 2016. Among them all, 6,795 runners completed the Star Wars Dark Side Challenge by finishing the 10K and half-marathon on consecutive days. All those races will be back for 2017, along with the Star Wars 5K, runDisney Kids Races, and free runDisney Health and Fitness Expo—the only place where you can buy shoes in the coveted New Balance runDisney Collection.

The Dark Side Star Wars Half Registration Opens

Star Wars Half—The Light Side runs at Disneyland (runDisney)

The Walt Disney World race weekend also has a companion event at Disneyland. The Light Side Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend will take place January 12-15, 2017 in California. Runners who complete both Star Wars Half Marathons receive an extra medal for completing the Kessel Run Challenge in this special edition of the Coast to Coast Race Challenge. Registration for The Light Side Star Wars Half Marathon is open.

I ran the The Dark Side Star Wars Half Marathon at Walt Disney World in 2016 as a media guest of runDisney, and absolutely loved the race. You can read about my experience at Shape.com and RunKarlaRun.com: Read the rest of this entry →

09

Aug 2016

A Disney Cruise Bachelorette Weekend

A Disney Cruise Bachelorette Weekend

Disney Cruise Line’s Disney Magic cruises from New York City. (Disney Cruise Line/Matt Stroshane)

Happy Anniversary to my favorite runner, Phil! It’s been four + four years of running love (dating + married). On another anniversary, I shared photos from our 1930s and 1940s themed wedding. This year, I thought I’d share highlights from my bachelorette weekend…on a Disney cruise!

A Disney Cruise Bachelorette Weekend

Gathering on deck (RunKarlaRun.com)

That’s right. I love running Disney races and Phil and I got engaged at Walt Disney World. So I thought it fitting to take a Disney cruise with 10 of my BFFs in lieu of a traditional bridal shower and bachelorette party. We wrapped it up into one fun-filled weekend on the high seas. A Disney cruise proved to be a surprisingly perfect getaway for a group of nerdy gal pals that just wanted to have good, clean fun.

A Disney Cruise Bachelorette Weekend

With my girls at dinner. (RunKarlaRun.com)

Disney Cruise Line’s “Cruise To Nowhere”

On Friday afternoon, we boarded the Disney Magic for a two-night “cruise to nowhere” leaving from New York City. Read the rest of this entry →

04

Aug 2016

Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Medals Revealed

Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Medals Revealed

Disneyland Paris Half Marathon medals (Disney)

In nine weeks, runners will storm Disneyland Paris in Val d’Europe, France for the first time: the inaugural Disneyland Paris Half Marathon takes off on Sunday, September 25, 2016. I’ll be among them as a media guest of runDisney. Now, we’ve got a glimpse of the medals we’ll earn.

Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Medal

For the main 13.1-mile event, Mickey Mouse is, of course, the main man. He runs around Sleeping Beauty Castle, the iconic heart of Disneyland Paris, just like runners will. Flourished with the French fleur-de-lis, the gold medal hangs from a blue lanyard. It’s the official color of Disneyland Paris.

Disneyland Paris Half Marathon Medals Revealed

Disneyland Paris Half Marathon medal (Disney)

Disneyland Paris 5K & runDisney Kids Races Medallions

The runDisney Kids Races medallion also features Mickey Mouse in living color, while the Disneyland Paris 5K medallion stars another rodent—Remy of Ratatouille fame. Both hang from blue and gold ribbons. Read the rest of this entry →

17 Ways To Prevent Knee & Running Injuries

17 Ways To Prevent Knee, Foot & Running Injuries

Prevent running injuries with these 17 tips. (RunKarlaRun.com)

Running injuries are public enemy no. 1. Unfortunately, they happen to most of us. After 10 years as a mythical injury-free runner, I spent a chunk of 2015 sidelined by two different running injuries in the same foot—a stress fracture (that was later downgraded to a bone bruise) and persistent plantar fasciitis.

Now that I’m back on the road and running well—I ran a 10-mile PR in April and my second fastest half-marathon in May—I’m more motivated than ever to keep running injuries away. How? Strength training is key, along with tools like ye olde foam roller, KT Tape, and stretching. I got specific advice from top experts about the most common running injuries and the sneaky ways we injure our knees for Shape.com.

17 Ways To Prevent Knee, Foot & Running Injuries

Running Central Park in NYC (RunKarlaRun.com)

5 Beginner Running Injuries & How to Dodge ‘Em

From plantar fasciitis to runner’s knee and iliotibial band syndrome to tendonitis, don’t let these common discomforts sideline you.

The five running injuries included here are among the most common that physical therapists see. And no, they’re not just for beginners. I got one after 10 years of running.

Here’s how to avoid and relieve them once they strike. Read the entire story at Shape.com

17 Ways To Prevent Knee, Foot & Running Injuries

Running Rhode Island (RunKarlaRun.com)

7 Things You Don’t Realize Are Killing Your Knees

Guess what? Running doesn’t ruin knees! Numerous studies and top docs agree.

What will do your knees in? Injuries from running hills, yoga, boot camp style classes, and even simple lunges—lunges!—where you might get sloppy with your form. Proper technique is key, and so is—you guessed it—strength training.

Avoid these seven common training pitfalls with doctor-approved tips on how to avoid injury for each. Check out more at Shape.com

Read the rest of this entry →

Disney Princess Half Marathon 2017 Registration

Disney Princess Half Marathon 2017 Registration

Disney Princess Half Marathon 2017 Registration opens July 12. (Walt Disney World)

Registration for the 2017 Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend presented by Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals opens Tuesday, July 12, 2016 at 12 p.m. ET. The women-focused race weekend will take place at Walt Disney World in Florida from February 23-26, 2017. The race is the second largest women’s running event in the U.S. with 20,138 finishers in 2016.

Disney Princess Half Marathon Registration Opens

(runDisney)

The Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend includes the titular Disney Princess Half Marathon, Disney Princess Enchanted 10K, Disney Princess 5K, runDisney Kids Races, and Disney Glass Slipper Challenge.

The Challenge asks runners to complete both the 10K on Saturday and the half marathon on Sunday for a total of 19.3 miles. They’ll earn three medals total: one for each race and one for the Challenge. To qualify, runners must register for the Challenge, not each race individually.

The free runDisney Health & Fitness Expo at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex also takes place from Thursday through Saturday. The Expo is the only place runners can find shoes in the New Balance runDisney Collection.

During race registration, runners can also purchase the VIP Race Retreat Package with access to a suite of pre- and post-race amenities.

The Disney Princess Half Marathon takes runners from Epcot to Magic Kingdom and back, including a run through Cinderella Castle. The 10K and 5K courses traditionally run through Epcot and the Disney BoardWalk area. Read the rest of this entry →

Ampla Fly Carbon Fiber Running Shoes Review

Ampla Fly Running Shoe Review

The Ampla Fly carbon fiber running shoe. (AMPLA)

AMPLA compensated me for the time it took me to test their product, write about it, and share it on this blog. Compensation I receive from any company is not compensation for my good opinion. I only share products I think readers might find interesting.

Ampla Fly, the first shoes from nascent running company AMPLA, are so far outside the proverbial (shoe)box that I had to try them for myself. I put them to the test on the road and the treadmill.

When I first heard of the new Ampla Fly carbon fiber soled shoes, I assumed they were cycling shoes. Carbon fiber soles are de rigueur in the cycling and triathlon world. Simply, the stiffness of the soles helps transfer more force from your legs to your pedals than a softer material that loses energy when it flexes. The result? You pedal farther and faster with the same amount of effort.

But au contraire mon frère. The Ampla Fly are not cycling shoes. They’re running shoes. Yes, you read that right: carbon fiber running shoes. Predicated on the idea that “Force is your friend,” Ampla Fly aims to use force to train you to become a more efficient runner. They sell for $120 in men’s and women’s sizing and in two colors, red and black. If you want to try a pair, use code RunKarlaRun for 10 percent off at AmplaSport.com.

Ampla Fly Running Shoe Review

The Ampla Fly running shoe collection (AMPLA)

Ampla Fly Design

Why carbon fiber? “When a runner lands on the ground the force can equal upwards of 8x their body weight; we needed a material that could handle that weight, absorb that force and return the energy. Carbon fiber was our only choice.”

Folks not familiar with carbon fiber cycling shoes might worry that a “plate” in the midsole might make them heavy. Worry not. Carbon is both stiff and lightweight. Weighing in at 10.1 oz. in the men’s shoe and 9.8 oz. in the women’s shoe, the Ampla Fly are comparable to the Asics Gel-Nimbus or Brooks Glycerin weight wise.

This isn’t a minimalist shoe; it isn’t a maximalist shoe, but something wholly different. The 4 mm drop might lend itself more toward the minimalist end of the spectrum. But when you consider that drop comes from a 20 mm heel to a 16 mm forefoot, you realize this is an elevated shoe.

The seamless mesh and micro-suede upper are pretty standard. The Ortholite sockliner, EVA sub-sockliner, and EVA Lite top midsole provide a nice, but not overly soft, amount of cushioning.

Ampla Fly Running Shoe Review

Ampla Fly’s design (AMPLA)

The Amply Fly midsole, however, is what makes this shoe unique. The carbon fiber plate stretches the full length of the shoe, sandwiched between the single piece top midsole and EVA foam bottom midsole. But it’s not just a uniform piece. The plate includes a tab or tongue that moves with each footfall—effectively, a spring.

The EVA foam bottom midsole is then split into two pieces to cover the plate. The foam heel is fixed in place to cover the rear of the plate. The foam forefoot covers the toe off and tab of the plate.

What does it all add up to? The design promotes a midfoot strike, gathering the force of your step, and then channeling the energy into your forefoot at push off, AMPLA says.

No, heel striking itself isn’t bad. But studies show that overstriding—often a result of heel striking—might lead to more injuries. That midfoot strike encourages runners to shorten their strides and land with their feet beneath, not way in front of, their bodies.

Does the Ampla Fly work? I slipped them on to find out.

Ampla Fly Running Shoes Review

Karla tries Ampla Fly (RunKarlaRun.com)

Ampla Fly Performance

Wearing the women’s size 9, I took the Amply Fly on the road and treadmill.

Fit & Feel

First, the toe box is on the snug side. This is a common complaint of mine about many of the running shoes I try, and the Ampla Fly is no exception. Overall, I’d call this a close-to-the-foot fit. The heel is locked in place and ball hugged, even if the toes are a bit squished. Sizing is comparable to Nike or ASICS. Read the rest of this entry →

CardioGlow Fit Fashion Giveaway

CardioGlow Fit Fashion Giveaway

Fit Fashion: Courtesy of CardioGlow (RunKarlaRun.com)

It’s giveaway time, thanks to CardioGlow! CardioGlow is a new online boutique filled with stylish, curated, and affordable fit fashion, brought to you by none other than my sister, Kathleen.

You’ve seen CardioGlow curated looks all over my Instagram feed. And now you can nab some too.

CardioGlow Fit Fashion Giveaway

Running in CardioGlow curated gear. (RunKarlaRun.com)

To celebrate the opening of her online shop, we’re giving away four full outfits—including top, sports bra, bottoms, and hoodie—to four lucky winners. I’ll choose two winners at random from here on the blog and two winners from Instagram. The giveaway is open now through July 4, 2016.

Winners will pick between these two looks.

CardioGlow Fit Fashion Giveaway

CardioGlow capris look (RunKarlaRun.com)

CardioGlow Fit Fashion Giveaway

CardioGlow Skirt look (RunKarlaRun.com)

Read the rest of this entry →

24

Jun 2016

Race Report: Star Wars Half Marathon—The Dark Side

Race Report: Star Wars Half Marathon 'Dark Side'

The Star Wars Half Marathon ‘Dark Side’ Finish. (runDisney)

The inaugural Star Wars Half Marathon—The Dark Side at Walt Disney World in Florida had 18,182 finishers on April 17, 2016. I was among them as a media guest of runDisney, with my husband, Phil, running by my side. Another 12,172 runners finished the Star Wars 10K the day before.

I had one goal for the race: run a PR. I wrote about the attempt for Shape.com: Should You Ever Give Up On A Fitness Goal?

“Do. Or do not,” Yoda famously says in Star Wars:The Empire Strikes Back. “There is no try.”

Yoda obviously wasn’t a runner.

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, I first tried to break two hours in a half-marathon. It was 2010 in Montreal, Canada, and I failed. Six years later, I’m still trying. I’ve run more than 25 half-marathons, gutting out 2:00:30 at my fastest. (What Makes You a Runner?)

At this year’s Star Wars Half Marathon at Walt Disney World in Florida, I channeled the Force for yet another attempt. Dressed as Rey from Star Wars: The Force Awakens, with my husband as Chewbacca by my side, I set out on a 13.1-mile—or, you know, 6.83 parsec—quest.

In running and in life, goals and dreams keep pushing us forward. What keeps us chasing them? In a word: Hope. It’s true in Star Wars, running, and in life. But when is it time to say enough is enough? Should we ever let hope fade into resignation?

You can read the entire essay, full of Star Wars wisdom, at Shape.com.

Race Report: Star Wars Half Marathon 'Dark Side'

We did it! (Disney PhotoPass)

I’ll admit: I’m not the world’s biggest Star Wars nerd. Yes, I’ve seen all the movies and enjoy them. I even had an Ewok stuffed animal as a kid in the ’80s and wanted Princess Leia buns in my hair. But I’m not as into it as I am Disney animated films. After all, my dog is named Cinderella, not Princess Leia.

Why? Leia seemed to be the only female in a galaxy entirely populated by men, much like the Smurfs. Weird. As a little girl, it just didn’t speak to me. I didn’t see myself anywhere on screen, except in Leia.

Enter Star Wars: The Force Awakens. I loved it, largely and not-so-subconsciously because women were everywhere. You have your latent Jedi in Rey, your military leader in Leia, your villain in Captain Phasma, your female fighter pilots. Even Rey’s “Yoda”—Maz Kanata—is female. The movie brought me a new love and appreciation for the Star Wars franchise.

So I was pleasantly surprised by how much I loved this race and totally geeked out over all the Star Wars characters. Any time one of them—like Stormtroopers or Captain Phasma—talked to me though a thoroughly convincing voice modulator, I felt giddy as a kid completely transported to another world. Both Phil and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

Here’s the scoop, including running in costume, the course, where I stayed, and the race itself. Read the rest of this entry →

Star Wars Half Marathon 2017 Disneyland Registration

Star Wars Half Marathon 2017 Disneyland Registration Opens

Star Wars Half Marathon 2017 registrations opens June 14. (runDisney)

Registration for the Star Wars Half Marathon 2017 “The Light Side” Weekend at Disneyland opens at 12 p.m. Eastern on Tuesday, June 14, 2016. The Disney half marathon race weekend themed to “The Light Side” will take place January 12-15, 2017 in a galaxy far, far away. OK, it’s really in Anaheim, Calif.

More than 20,600 runners finished the Star Wars Half Marathon “The Light Side” and Star Wars 10K in 2016, with another 6,250 runners registered for the non-timed Star Wars 5K and runDisney Kids Races. Among them all, 4,550 runners completed the Star Wars Rebel Challenge by finishing the 10K and half-marathon on consecutive days. All those races will be back for 2017, along with the runDisney Health and Fitness Expo—the only place where you can buy shoes in the coveted New Balance runDisney Collection.

Star Wars Half Marathon 2017 Disneyland Registration Opens

The Kessel Run Challenge Medal (runDisney)

Disney has yet to release the 2017 course maps, but last year’s races ran through Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Park, Downtown Disney and the streets of Anaheim, Calif., with Star Wars characters and cos-players along the route.

The Disneyland race weekend also has a companion event at Walt Disney World. The Star Wars Half Marathon 2017 “The Dark Side” Weekend will take place April 20-23, 2017 at Walt Disney World in Florida. Runners who complete both Star Wars Half Marathons receive an extra medal for completing the Kessel Run Challenge in this special edition of the Coast to Coast Race Challenge. Registration for the Star Wars Half Marathon “The Dark Side” opens August 9, 2016.

I’ve never run the Star Wars Half Marathon “The Light Side” at Disneyland. But I ran the Star Wars Half Marathon “The Dark Side” at Walt Disney World in 2016 as a media guest of runDisney, and had a blast. You read about my experience here:

Race Report: Star Wars Half Marathon—The Dark Side

Race Report: Star Wars Half Marathon 'Dark Side'

Escape time! (RunKarlaRun.com)

Read the rest of this entry →

10

Jun 2016

Happy Global Running Day 2016!

Happy Global Running Day!

Happy Global Running Day!

Happy Global Running Day! Are you one of the more than 2,445,300 (and counting) people in 171 countries who have pledged to run on June 1? Me too!

If you haven’t, get on it! Take the pledge at globalrunningday.org and find an event near you.

Global Running Day started in 2009 as National Running Day in the U.S. For the first time, it’s expanding into an official world-wide celebration. This year will debut the first Million Kid Run, with the goal of getting kids in on the fun on Global Running Day.

Best of all, there are group runs, activities, and running-industry sales taking place all over the globe from New York to New Zealand, Texas to Turkey.

Here are just a few way to celebrate:

* Find an event near you at the Global Running Day Facebook Group.

* Run with Brooks Running, Fleet Feet Sports and other stores at 180 locations nationwide.

* Join the Strava Global Running Day Challenge by running at least 1 kilometer on June 1.

* Twitter chat with @runnersworld, @BartYasso, @NYRR, and @RunningDay at 2 p.m. EDT. Read the rest of this entry →

01

Jun 2016

Summer Running Tips, Tricks, And Mantras

Running in Rhode Island (RunKarlaRun.com)

Summer running  is here! (RunKarlaRun.com)

Memorial Day Weekend is here, which means the unofficial start of summer running. As the mercury climbs, runs can become challenging and even demoralizing. I have a mantra for the occasion: “Hot summer runs lead to cool fall PR’s.” Mid-run it might sound more like, “Hot! Runs! Cool! PRs!” But you get the idea.

What’s the best temperature for a run? I did the investigating for Shape.com, along with digging up seven expert-approved tips for throwing down even when the mercury climbs. And if you do happen to get demoralized out there, I’m re-sharing a few oldies but goldies that will help you push through the toughest summer running.

Summer Running Tips, Tricks, & Mantras

Hot dog! (RunKarlaRun.com)

7 Running Tricks to Help You Speed Up in Hot Weather

The dog days of summer can be a tough time for running. The hotter it is, the harder it becomes to push yourself. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make the most of your sweat sesh if you do it right. Heck, you can even use this time to build your speed for the months ahead.

Cooling techniques like pre-chilling your body can actually help you run harder and keep you cool longer during a sweltering workout, according to a study in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports. But that’s not the only way to beat the heat and build running speed this season. From workout tweaks to form drills and on-the-run chill-out methods, here are seven science-tested and expert-approved ways to cool down and speed up. Yes, you’re going to need a few more ice trays. And maybe a Snoopy Sno Cone Machine. Who said summer running can’t be fun? → Read all 7 tips at Shape.com

Summer Running Tips, Tricks, & Mantras

“Just keep pushing…” (RunKarlaRun.com)

Running Mantras For Racing And Training

I didn’t always have a running mantra. In fact, it took me years to hone in on a few that really work for me. When I’m struggling and need to dig deep, I turn to two phrases that somehow spur me on. One is just perfect for summer running.

85 degrees and humid? “Hot summer runs lead to cool fall PRs.”

Mile 6 of an 8-mile tempo workout in the sun? “Hot. (inhale) Summer. (breath) Runs. (gasp) Cool. (wheeze) Fall. (gasp) PRs.” It’s my go-to summer training mantra. → Read more at RunKarlaRun.com

Summer Running Tips, Tricks, & Mantras

Spring and fall brings the best temps of all (RunKarlaRun.com)

What’s the Best Temperature for a Run?

When researchers from the University of Tulsa examined the 25 fastest performances at different distances, along with the temperature that day, they discovered that perfect running temps hovered between 73.4 and 49.4 degrees depending on the distance.

Basically, the farther or longer you run, the cooler you want it to be. “When it’s warmer, your body’s ability to dissipate heat can be compromised,” says Angela Hillman, Ph.D, an exercise physiologist. “The cooler the temperature, within reason, the more heat your body can give off to keep you from overheating.” Read the rest of this entry →

27

May 2016

5 Tools That Helped Heal My Plantar Fasciitis

5 Tools That Helped Heal My Plantar Fasciitis

Running plantar fasciitis free in Central Park (RunKarlaRun.com)

Oh, plantar fasciitis. It’s real pain the foot. Many runners will deal with it at some point in their careers. In fact, it’s so pernicious that 1 million people seek treatment for plantar fasciitis every year. Plantar fasciitis accounts for nearly 8 percent of all running injuries, making it the third most common running injury behind patellofemoral pain syndrome, aka “Runner’s Knee,” and iliotibial band friction syndrome, aka “IT Band Syndrome,” according to a study from the University of British Columbia.

I struggled with plantar fasciitis for four months—October through January—missing training, missing races, running through it, and then missing training some more. I’ve now been well-heeled (get it?) for 3.5 months, ran a 10-mile personal best at the Cherry Blossom 10-Mile Run in April, and ran my second fastest half-marathon ever (and an age-group personal best!) at the Tinker Bell Half Marathon in May. These are the tools that helped me get back into fighting shape by giving plantar fasciitis the boot.

Of course, I’m not a doctor, and you should always consult with yours, preferably as soon as possible. I saw a podiatrist to diagnose and treat my plantar fasciitis right away.

5 Plantar Fasciitis Fighters

 

5 Tools That Helped Heal My Plantar Fasciitis

WalkFit Platinum Inserts (RunKarlaRun.com)

WalkFit Platinum Inserts, $20

I truly believe wearing orthotics is what helped me turn the corner. After months of trying (at various points) rest, massage, stretching, taping, and a night boot, I still couldn’t shake plantar fasciitis. It would get better, then return same as before.

I finally bought these over-the-counter shoe inserts while taking 17 days off from running. Why did it take me so long to try an orthotic? My doctor told me try all the other things first. I finally bought the inserts that worked for my mother when she had PF. I figured we have the same feet, so why not?

I wore them whenever humanly possible. I work from home, barefoot. No more, I wore shoes with the inserts all day long. Bye-bye plantar fasciitis. It only took a few weeks. Wish I had tried them from Day One. I still wear them much of the time when I’m out and about, except when I’m running, to keep the old PF away. I’ve never been so thrilled with an “As Seen On TV” product.

5 Tools That Helped Heal My Plantar Fasciitis

KT Tape (RunKarlaRun.com)

KT Tape, $13-$25

KT Tape, how do I love thee? There is no way I would have made it through those four months, including the Honolulu Marathon in December and GORE-TEX Philadelphia Half Marathon in November, without KT Tape on my foot. It’s pretty simple: Without KT Tape, my PF hurt—a lot. With KT Tape, it either didn’t hurt at all or hurt much less.

Will KT Tape cure your PF? No, but it’s a great tool to give you extra support when you need it. I’ll continue taping my foot for long runs. Seriously, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: this stuff is like voodoo.

They even have a bunch of new products I learned about and sampled at a press event in March. KT Tape Pro Extreme is for wet, humid, or ultra hot conditions. You can even swim in it. Hello triathlon! KT Flex has targeted support specifically for knees, and is also water resistant. KT Recovery+ is a drug-free patch to reduce swelling and inflammation. The new KT Recovery+ Ice/Heat Compression Therapy System includes a microwaveable heat pack, freezable gel pack, and adjustable wrap for use throughout your body. And if you want to get in the Olympic spirit, Pro USA KT Tape in red, blue, or black screams “USA.”

5 Tools That Helped Heal My Plantar Fasciitis

Zensah PF Compression Sleeve

Zensah PF Compression Sleeve, $25

Zensah’s PF Compression Sleeve is the newest tool in my plantar fasciitis kit. I received it two months ago at a Zensah media event and I’ve been absolutely blown away. I wear it Every. Single. Day. I’m wearing it right now as I type. The second I feel any arch ache, I pop the sleeve on for instant relief.

Much like KT Tape, it gives your foot that extra bit of support. The sleeve uses compression to stabilize the fascia. And the squeeze? Oh so good! It’s way more comfortable than my night boot, which I never wear any more because it didn’t really seem to do anything for me. (And notice: the boot is not on this list.)

Plus, the sleeve is much more packable when you travel. I carried my darn boot for nearly three weeks around Hawai’i. Wish I’d had this sleeve instead! I brought it with me to Florida in April and California in May. So convenient, easy, and comfy. I also love that it really, truly stays stink-free thanks to silver ions woven into the fabric. Read the rest of this entry →

Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016 By The Numbers

Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016 By The Numbers

Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016 is the 5th anniversary of the event. (runDisney)

The Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016 Weekend presented by PANDORA Jewelry from May 5-8 at Disneyland in California celebrates its fifth anniversary in 2016. I’m returning to the race for the first time since the inaugural event to celebrate Mother’s Day with my mom.

The women’s focused running festival includes the title half-marathon, Tinker Bell 10K, Never Land 5K, Pixie Dust Challenge (running the 10K and half-marathon), runDisney Kids Races, and runDisney Health & Fitness Expo, where runners can buy shoes in the coveted New Balance runDisney Collection.

I’m flying through the Pixie Dust Challenge, courtesy of runDisney, and pacing my mother through her first 10K at the Tinker Bell 10K. She did her first 5K with me at the Walt Disney World 5K in 2014.

Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016 By The Numbers

Pausing for a pic in Epcot with my mom during the Walt Disney World 5K. (Photo: RunKarlaRun.com)

Two years later, she’s upping the distance before she turns 70 in just four months.

Tinker Bell is the perfect race. My mom was Tinker Bell for Halloween when she was a little girl, not once, but twice. The movie came out in 1953, when she was just 7 years old.

On top of it all, she hasn’t been to Disneyland in 38 years. What a way to celebrate Mother’s Day and usher in a new decade!

Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016 By The Numbers

We’re ready to run! (RunKarlaRun.com)

I even bought her the New Balance runDisney Tinker Bell Boracay shoes last year. She’s wearing them for the race, naturally.

Good luck if you’re running this weekend! Here’s a look at every fairy’s favorite race by the numbers.

Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016 By The Numbers

2nd star to the right and straight on till morning! (runDisney)

Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016 By The Numbers

24,000 total race registrants for the Tinker Bell Half Marathon 2016 Weekend

15,000 runners from California

10,700 participants in the Tinker Bell Half Marathon

4,600 runners in the Tinker Bell 10K

4,300 registrants in the Pixie Dust Challenge

4,200 participants in the Never Land 5K

1,500 kids in the runDisney Kids Races

950 runners who have tackled the Tinker Bell Half Marathon all five years Read the rest of this entry →

The Ultimate Running Prince Playlist

The Ultimate Running Prince Playlist

Baby You’re Much Too Fast: Running Prince Playlist

Oh, Prince. I don’t normally wax poetic when celebrities die, but this one hits close to home.

I’m a bona fide Prince fanatic. Apparently, I’m the first person my friends and family think of when they think of Prince, as I learned upon the news of his death. His music is the soundtrack to my life. I’ve followed him through vinyl, cassette, CDs and digital downloads, often rebuying his music in each new format. I still own Purple Rain, 1999, and Parade in vinyl. I could never bring myself to part with them.

The Ultimate Running Prince Playlist

My Purple Rain record

Prince first came on my radar in 1982 with “Little Red Corvette.” I loved the song for one simple reason: I was a kid and my dad happened to have a red Corvette. Listening to the song in his red Corvette? I thought it was the coolest thing in the world.

Of course, I had no idea what the song was really about, but it was the beginning of a love affair that would last my entire life. 25 years later as an adult in an ’80s cover band, I insisted we cover The Purple One, adding “Kiss,” “Raspberry Beret,” and “Let’s Go Crazy” to the set-list.

Prince was my first crush, the first man I wanted to marry. I was 6 when Purple Rain came out and I thought we were MFEO because we both loved purple. Purple Rain was the first album I picked out for myself. I even got in trouble in Catholic school for adding “When Doves Cry” to a picture of the dove of peace that I printed on a school dot-matrix printer. It’s still my favorite color and Prince is still my favorite artist.

Ultimate Running Prince Playlist

My fave: Sign ‘O’ The Times

Purple Rain still holds a special place in my heart, but my favorite Prince album is probably Sign ‘O’ The Times. Every song just crushes it.

I saw Prince in concert twice, and wore purple each time. He remains the most electrifying performer I have ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot of the legends—Frank Sinatra, Madonna, Robert Plant, Billy Joel, Neil Diamond, Whitney Houston, George Michael, and more—and contemporary artists like Lady Gaga, Beck, Wilco, and more.

So in honor of His Royal Badness, here is my Prince playlist for running in the Purple Rain. I’ve also included a Warm-Up and Cool-Down set to sneak in all of my faves.

So slap on some purple and hit the road with Prince. After all, he did sing: “I wanna be the only one that makes you come running.”

The Ultimate Running Prince Playlist

  • Soft and Wet, For You, 1978
  • I Wanna Be Your Lover, Prince, 1979
  • When You Were Mine, Dirty Mind, 1980
  • Uptown, Dirty Mind, 1980
  • Controversy, Controversy, 1981
  • Little Red Corvette, 1999, 1982
  • 1999, 1999, 1982
  • Delirious, 1999, 1982
  • When Doves Cry, Purple Rain, 1984
  • Let’s Go Crazy, Purple Rain, 1984
  • I Would Die 4 You, Purple Rain, 1984
  • Raspberry Beret, Around The World In A Day, 1985
  • Kiss, Parade, 1986
  • Girls & Boys, Parade, 1986
  • New Position, Parade, 1986
  • I Could Never Take The Place of Your Man, Sign ‘O” The Times, 1987
  • U Got The Look, Sign ‘O’ The Times, 1987
  • Housequake, Sign ‘O’ The Times, 1987
  • Alphabet St., Lovesexy, 1988
  • Batdance, Batman, 1989
  • Thieves in the Temple, Graffiti Bridge, 1990
  • Get Off, Diamonds and Pearls, 1991
  • Sexy M.F., Prince logo.svg, 1992
  • Pope, The Hits/The B-Sides, 1993
  • Hot Wit U, Rave Un2 The Joy Fantastic, 1999
  • Illusion, Coma, Pimp & Circumstance, Musicology, 2004
  • Musicology, Musicology, 2004
  • Chelsea Rodgers, Planet Earth, 2007
  • Art Official Cage, Art Official Age, 2014
  • Funknroll, Plectrumelectrum, 2014
  • Stare, HITNRUN Phase Two, 2015

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Apr 2016