Give 2015 A Running Start

I originally shared this post January 1st, 2015 on the Toronto Waterfront Marathon Blog. View the original version here!stwmlogo_printWith a new year comes opportunity for a fresh start and new fitness goals. For you that might mean finally lacing up those sneakers and experiencing for yourself what all this run buzz is about. To help you kick off 2015 on the right foot, here are my five tips every new runner should consider.

  1. Get Proper Shoes.

Wearing the correct running shoes for your feet is key for both comfort and injury prevention. Visit a running specialty store and chat with a professional about your foot type, gait, and style of running. Running in old or worn out shoes will only lead to pain and injury. With a variety of price points, consider this expense an investment in your health!

  1. Don’t Worry About Your Pace.

As a beginning runner consider your pace goal to maintain an easy or “conversational” pace for the duration of your run. You should be able to breathe easily and carry on a conversation with those you are running with. As a new runner you might also consider starting with a run/walk program, where you run for a certain amount of time, followed by a brief period of walking. This is a great way to get active while building your fitness level and endurance.

  1. Learn Proper Form.

While I often encourage new runners to move in a way that feels most natural to them, consider these points for a pain free upper body.

  • As your elbows pull back, keep your arms bent at 90 degrees with your hands at waist height, where they might brush your hips.
  • Keep your spine tall with your head up, your back straight, and shoulders away from your ears and level.
  1. Sign up for a Race.

One of the easiest ways for me to get motivated (besides tip #5) is to spend money and commit to a race. As a new runner, be sure to set a realistic length goal and give yourself enough time for proper and safe training. Once your race is on your calendar or in your phone, you’ll have something to motivate you on a daily basis. Wondering where to start? I suggest Harry’s Spring Run Off.

  1. Join a Tribe.

Company. Accountability. Speed. Fun. Toronto has an amazing number of run crews each adding something unique to our growing and evolving run scene. Check out the crew’s online presence – can you see yourself with them?, shop around giving each one a test run, and find a crew that works for you, where the runners have similar goals and the workouts fit into your busy schedule. Looking for a place to start? #JoinTheTribe


My Goals for 2013

a year from nowWith nearly a full week of 2013 under my belt, I’m already loving what it has to offer.

On Jan 2nd I started the year off with my first morning show appearance on CHCH Morning Live. It’s been something I’ve wanted to do for a while, but a goal which had fallen to the back burner until post NYC Marathon where it seemed to be in my face all the time, after a last minute guest appearance on the evening news. While this opportunity is set to be a bi-monthly opportunity, I’m hoping to can be something even more frequent. (Update, following the creation of this post I was emailed to make it a monthly deal and to give consideration to a “regular schedule” – yippie!)

If only all my goals would be that easy 😉 So here they are, I share them in hopes that you can hold me accountable and we can celebrate together on December 31st when they are done!

make things happen

My Official Goals of 2013:


  1. I have a consistent strength training program which allows me to live and run hip pain free
  2. I run two marathons.
  3. I qualify for the Boston Marathon at Road 2 Hope on November 3rd.
  4. I race the Olympic Distance Triathlon at TTF
  5. I cook 1 new recipe a week
  6. I can do this arm balance:

    arm balance

    I see it everywhere, but no one seems to know it’s name. If you do please leave it in the comments so i can more easily search the lead in postures. Picture from


  1. I am a fun, loving, and supportive wife, sister, daughter, and friend
  2. I continue to surround myself with people who support my life vision
  3. I complete my Masters in August
  4. I return to being student loan/debt free
  5. I take a family vacation somewhere warm!
  6. I run a destination race with my NYC Marathon crew (Disney?)
  7. I (finally) buy my own Stand Up Paddle Board and use it at least twice a week from July to September

 do more of what you loveCareer

  1. I post blog content at least three times a month
  2. I continue to build my personal brand through revisions to my blog/website and use digital tools to become a more effective user of social media
  3. I continue to support lululemon ambassador program through mentoring new ambassadors
  4. I lead a lululemon run event connected to the SeaWheeze half marathon
  5. In September I take a business course at George Brown and by the end of the course have a business plan for my indoor cycling studio.
  6. I am a certified Yoga instructor through the teacher training program at 889yoga
  7. I am a certified TRX instructor by September
  8. I continue to teach at least one day a week (two + courses) through Brock University’s Fac. of Ed. starting September
  9. I will provide a minimum of 15 professional learning opportunities through Ophea and write at least three health & physical education resources

By far the goal that scares me the most is Boston. Likely because it is the biggest unknown. So, here’s to a year of setting a vision, creating goals, crushing the goals, and repeating!

What’s one of your goals for 2013? Become accountable and share it in the comment section!