May 2018 Challenge: Strong, Tough & Fierce!

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Summertime is a time for swimming pools, cookouts, & killer workouts! We are strong, but at the end of May we will be stronger, tougher and oh so fierce!

This month’s workout challenge is all about getting our legs, arms and abs into shape for bathing suit weather and summer training. If you’re thinking about pulling back and taking some time off, I hope you will reconsider because runners who train in the summer are the ones who put up shiny new personal records in the fall!

Don’t start all over later…keep going now! It’s up to you to stick with the program but if you do, you will come out tougher and stronger. Don’t give up on yourself…kick it into high gear and show the world what you’re made of!

May Challenge Detials:

In May we are switching things up a bit and following along with workout videos that will whip us into shape and will be easy to follow along with. This will also give us a little break from counting reps and sets and allow us to know exactly how long the day’s workout will take. Some days will be a little less strenuous to get us ready for days that will test our fitness and our dedication.

Tuesdays and Thursdays will be our BEAST MODE days with longer workout that will take 20 – 30 minutes each. Monday and Friday will take less time at around 10-15 minutes each. On Friday, we are attempting a short but tough ab workout that will test our strength. We will work our way up to being able to complete the full workout by the end of the month.

On Wednesday we are steering away from mental health day just a tad and adding in the oldy but goody Quick Morning Workout! This will only take a few minutes and is best done first thing in the morning to get your metabolism revved up for the rest of your day.

If your schedule doesn’t match up for Tuesday and Thursday, you can move things around but try to keep the legs and hips/glutes early in the week and arms and abs late week to avoid tired and sore legs for long runs.

Buddy System: As always, partnering up with a buddy is a great way to stay accountable. If you have a buddy team that is working and you want to stay together, that is great. If you are ready to switch things up that’s fine too. Totally up to you! If you would like help finding a buddy, please reach out and let us know and our Strong to the Core family will get you a great partner!

Below is our May Challenge Calendar. We start Tuesday, May 1st, with a “brutal hip and butt workout” so plan ahead to make sure you have time to get in this 30 minute burner!

It will be important to check our pinned post for the daily workout video, especially for the first week so you know which workout we are doing. You are welcome to save these videos and check back in with our calendar for the rest of the month but don’t forget to post and let us know how you are doing. As well as keeping you accountable, it may also inspire someone else to get it done too!

Don’t see our Strong to the Core May 2018 Challenge? In oder to be a part of our Core Crew family, get our daily workout plans, and get the accountability, motivation and support you need to reach your goals, you have to join Strong to the Core!

Find our more about our group and how you can be a part of our community here.

When you’re ready, we’re here and looking forward to meeting you and helping you reach your goals!


April 2018 Challenge: The Will To Work

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Summer is coming and this means warm days (just plain HOT days for some of us) and less clothing to hide what we’ve neglected to work on through the winter. It means less racing for us in the south and more racing for those in the north. It means bikini weather is on the way….and that can be a little nerve wracking!

For those of us in the south whose long distance racing is coming to an end for a while, it can mean we’re logging fewer miles. Some people even take the summer off. In my opinion, this is a mistake. Especially if you want to pick back up in the fall. You don’t have to push as hard as you do during racing season, but keeping a good mileage base will help you transition smoothly into the fall without having to start over again.

Instead of hanging up your running shoes for a few months, pull back on your mileage or choose times of day when the heat is less intense like early mornings or late in the afternoon when the humidity starts to burn off. Find your BRFs and make a plan that will keep you running through these warmer days. And remember that as the temperature starts to rise, your pace should slow down.

It takes several weeks to acclimate to warmer temperatures. Don’t get down on yourself if you can’t run as fast, or as long as you have been recently. Give yourself a break and know that as you get used to it being warmer, your body will adjust and it will get easier again. Be patient!

For those in the North who are still waiting for the snow to melt, you are probably itching to log more miles outside and your chance is coming! Now is the time to have your training plan ready and ramp up your miles to get ready for those summer racing where the weather is perfect!

No matter if it’s getting hot or still miserably cold, you must find the will to keep working. Are you willing to put in the time? Are you willing to work out in less than ideal conditions?

Do you have the WILL to work hard for the results you want?

I know this Crew has the will. And if you are part of our Strong to the Core family, you have a strength plan laid out for you. Get that running plan ready too and let’s work on that summer body and strong legs for race day!

If you’re not a member of Strong to the Core, what are you waiting for? Click here to find out more about our group and how to join! Below is how our April Challenge is laid out…just to give you an idea of how we get our strength in. Each day takes from 10-20 minutes and will help you build the strength you need to run faster and stay on the road longer injury free.

April layout:

  • Sunday – Plank & Wall Sit + Active Recovery & Yoga for Runners
  • Monday – Legs & Abs
  • Tuesday – Hips and Abs
  • Wednesday – Plank & Wall Sit + Mental Health Day (great day for speed work! 🙂 )
  • Thursday – Arms & Abs
  • Friday – Abs & Abs
  • Saturday – Warm up, Long Run, Wall Sit & Plank, Legs Up the Wall, 7 Key Stretches for Runners + Pigeon Pose

Have questions? Reach out to me and let’s chat! You can reach me here.

September Challenge: Earn Your Body


We are runners! But we know that running alone isn’t enough. In order to get faster, fitter, and healthier…we must also get stronger!

Adding a strength routine to workout regime will help you put up faster times, avoid injuries, and tone those areas that running doesn’t reach. Ready to commit and make September your best month yet?

With everyone back to school and busy lives…we’re going back to the basics and revisiting  some familiar exercises from challenges of the past. But just because we’re going back to basics doesn’t mean you don’t have to work hard….

It’s time to Earn Your Body!

Let’s get healthy and reach our running goals by working towards overall health AND have the added benefit of looking better too! It takes hard work, commitment, and dedication to have the healthy, fit body you want!

If you’ve been with us for a while, this month might resemble a past challenge…and you’d be right! We are going back to a popular month from 2015…with a few small changes. These exercises are perfect for runners who want to build strength in our arms, shoulders, back, abs, glutes, and legs…but you have to be willing to work for it!

As always, we will have daily bonus workouts but this month they will be a single move that will hopefully be new to you. I will work hard to find new exercises to keep things fresh so if you find one you like and want the group to try, please send it to me.

Here’s the September nitty gritty…

No rest days this month. Each day we will be working hard towards that healthy, fit body we all want AND that will get us closer to our running goals. Even though we won’t have a “rest day”, we will still have our dedicated long run day which will include our 7 Key Stretches for Runners and planks but no other strength exercises. The rest of the week will consist of just 3 exercises + planks each day making it time sensitive and doable for each of us.

  • Monday: Abs / Shoulders
  • Tuesday: Legs / Stability
  • Wednesday: Arms / Back
  • Thursday: Legs / Stability
  • Friday: Abs
  • Saturday: Long Run + Stretches & Plank OR Arms / Back
  • Sunday: Arms / Back OR Long Run + Stretches & Plank

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This month we are doing less exercises per day…but we are doing more sets. We will start with 2 sets of 10 for the first week, but will start moving up quickly. Set aside the time to get it done each day and commit to eating healthy, working hard, and staying consistent. It’s the only way to earn the body you want and to reach the goals you’ve set for yourself.

As always, I will continue to harp about stretching and adding in some Yoga for Runners, rolling, eating well, avoiding overtraining, consistency, and probably a bunch of other stuff. But I promise it will be in the nicest way possible.😉  We are runners…so everything we talk about centers around being better at what we love.

I will never claim to know everything. I’m far from perfect…I’m not an elite runner and I am always striving to improve too. As you get to know me, I hope you’ll see that my harping comes from love, and from the desire to help you be your best! Don’t be shy about calling me out or adding in your voice…I need motivation and accountability as much as you do and am always ready to learn new things about the sport I love!

Racery: This month we are breaking into teams again and running the Blue Ridge Parkway! This is a fun, free virtual race that will encourage you to run a few more miles than you normally would and help your team cross that finish line! The race is 466.3 mile race from Waynesboro to Cherokee and we have 120 days to complete it. But with teams of 5, we should be done in no time! Here’s how it works:

  • Sign up by submitting your name and email.
  • The race will start the day after at least 20 people have signed up (the quicker you get people to sign-up the quicker it starts!). Hopefully we will be able to start Thursday, September 1st.
  • Run anywhere (seriously, anywhere).
  • You track your activity by a GPS watch, app, sundial, change in the tides, or any other means.
  • Reply to a daily email with your activity (yea! you’re smokin’ fast!).
  • Your place on a map is plotted instantly (you get a really cool avatar!).
  • Your total mileage, runs/week, and miles/week will be tracked.

There are a few guidelines…

  1. We rely on the honor system… you don’t have to use a device to prove your miles — a good map suffices.
  2. No step counting, please use intentional miles
  3. Only running miles please! (NOTE: miles on a racer’s personal log are for all races they are in, over all sports)
  4. Please attribute your mileage to the appropriate day — don’t combine mileage from multiple days.
  5. Please only backdate mileage for a race up to two weeks in the past.
  6. Miles submitted after the race ends will not count toward race leaderboards.

Ready to sign up? Click here and let’s get the teams ready! We need at least 4 teams of 5 before the race can start.

Below is our September calendar. Questions? Ask away! You can tag me in our Facebook group, Strong to the Core, or you can private message me here. You can find a PDF copy of the calendar in our FB files if you’d like to print it out and keep it handy.

Let’s get started! It’s time to earn our body and get stronger, faster, fitter, and healthier!🙂

***If you have made the commitment to become a Core Crew member, you will directed to our Strong to the Core site and Facebook group where you will find out September calendar and be granted entry into the group. Ready to commit?

Click here for all the info!

July – Day 1: New Month…Join Us!

Are you still sitting around thinking about joining our Core Crew…knowing that you need to add strength work and speed drills to your running routine?

What are you waiting for?!? Summertime Madness is here and now is the perfect time to jump in! Below is a sneak peak at what our July Challenge will look like. Friday (Day 1) is arms day… don’t wait…join now! Click here for all the info you need on how to join our fabulous crew and get stronger with us!

Day 1: Let’s Get This Party Started Right!

Let's get this party startedReady to get this party started right? I could waste time spouting off a bunch of inspirational stuff…or I could just say…


Day 1 exercises: Arms – 2 sets of 10

  • Reverse Curl
  • Hammer Curl
  • Kettle Ball Squat + Overhead Press
  • Air Punches – :30
  • Burpees
  • Plank – :30 (2X)

If you haven’t done it yet…check out our “how to arms” videos page to see how to do each of these exercises correctly! Make modifications when needed but don’t sell yourself short. You are strong and you can do this!

Yes..2 sets of 10 burpees….and yes we are doing them 5 days a week this month. Break them into sets of 5 if you need to and click here for a reminder on how to do the perfect burpee.

Bonus: #CountUpCountDownWorkout Count Up Count Down Workout

Looking to do a little extra work before the holiday debauchery begins? Try this Count Up Count Down Workout!

It’s quick, will fire up your metabolism, and get you headed the right direction for our long weekend!

All these exercises should be familiar but here’s a reminder of what the bird dog should look like.

Bird Dog exercise

Remember to think about your water intake, decide on a daily glass commitment, and make yourself accountable by including your goal in today’s post. Download the MyFitnessPal or Waterlogged app and team up with with other Core Crew members by adding them as friends so you can keep track and cheer each other on!

Before this weekend’s long runs…don’t forget to take time to stretch and get ready for the road. Our muscles need to be limber and relaxed to avoid injuries so don’t skip this important part of your training. Here are our 7 Key Stretches for Runners.

There is no day dedicated to rest or yoga this month, but I will continue to talk about it ALL the time…don’t get annoyed…just get to stretching and get to relaxing your mind and your body. Click here for Yoga for Runners. You can throw this is any day of the week and I would love to see Yogi Runners coming out this month!

No more time to waste…get to work Core Crew and make it a fabulous Friday!:)

Have a fabulous Friday

April 2016 Challenge…Let’s Go!

abs in april challengeOne year ago we started a group to help us get ready for Summer. 30 Days to a Stronger You was born with the April 2015 Core Plank Challenge! One year later we are going stronger than ever and our new group, Strong to the Core is going back to the beginning and crushing this month with a killer ab focused challenge!

A sneak peak of this month’s challenge is below. Join our group to get the April 2016 Challenge Calendar and to be a part of an amazing, supportive group that will keep you accountable and going strong all month long.

April 2016 Challenge Sneak Peak

We will still work our legs and arms…can’t let those gains be lost…but every day we will put some effort into toning our abs to get ready for those teeny bikinis!

The basics stay the same….daily strength exercises, running drills, speed work, AND to go along with our ab work we are going to start a 21 day No Junk Food Challenge…are you ready? It’s going be a crunch crazy, killer workout month!

No Junk Food Challenge

First things first…food. This is going to be a BIG part of the first 3 weeks of our Challenge. No Junk Food…that means no cookies, cake, donuts, muffins, candy, pastries, chocolate, white bread, ice cream, chips, soda….and NO fast food. Can you do it?

Here’s the thing…I believe in moderation. So cutting out everything for the entire 3 weeks is going to be hard. If there is one thing on this list that you absolutely must have….take one day a week and treat yourself. That doesn’t mean gorge on it…it means have a small treat. ONE DAY ONLY!! And only something small to keep you in check. Doable? YES!

Some of this month’s exercises include:

  • Leg Raises
  • Dumbbell Side Bends
  • Squat Jacks
  • Curtsey Squats
  • Cossack Squats
  • Frog Sit Ups
  • Oblique Crunches
  • and lots more!

The calendar is ready to go so what are you waiting for? Click here to find out how to join and get started today!

Day 15: Arms, Strength & Power

Running formGood overall running form is something we haven’t talked about before, but certainly something we can all work on. Since it’s arm day…let’s talk about arm form and swing.

Good arm form is an important part of good overall running form. Proper arm form will give us better efficiency and performance.

Do your arms cross your body? Do you arms move from the elbows instead of the shoulders? Watch the video below for some great tips on arm form and swing.

When you have the right arm form, you are able to propel your body more efficiently during your runs…and stronger arms means more power when the rest of our body is feeling fatigued.

This week when you go out for your runs…think about your arm movement and about how much those arms can help make you a better runner.

It’s never too late to join the madness and get stronger with us! Click here for more info and reach out to me with any questions or concerns. If you want to join…but missed the 3/10 price change…I will honor that for all 30 Day Challenge members till the end of March. Once you’re in for $5/month your price will never change. You can opt out for months when you’re not feeling it…then come back for $5/month whenever you are ready. Make the leap…I promise you will LOVE IT! 🙂

Hope you’re having a great month Challengers! 🙂

Be Smart…and Think Negative

Good morning Challenges! It’s Day 10 of our March Challenge and if you haven’t joined Strong to the Core you are missing out! But I miss you and wanted to share my thoughts for the day anyway….so if you’re racing this weekend…please take a few minutes to read. 🙂

Be Smart…and Think Negative

pass peopleRace weekend is fast approaching for many of us so I wanted to talk a little about race strategy today. We’ve all done it…excitement and nerves high…the pulse of the crowd vibrating through you….the gun goes off and runners surge forward taking you right along with them.

You feel great…for a little bit…then realization sets in. You started out too fast and your fading….even faster.

It’s so hard to ignore everything going on around us and stick to our plan to go out at a comfortable pace. Depending on the length of your race…this is a make it or break it moment. Running a 5K, 10K or 15K? If you ignore the need to warm up…your plan better be a slow first mile warm up…and I do mean slow…conversation pace. I know I know…it’s race day…so if you don’t like that idea. Get out for a warm up mile and get this muscles limber and ready.

Running a half or full marathon? I don’t suggest adding more miles to your day…but that first mile should be your slowest mile of the race. Think about me being that little voice inside your head…because if you are racing this weekend….I’m gonna want see those splits! What will I say to yours….?

I can’t physically be with you on race day…but I can be that voice of reason telling you to be smart…and think negative splits! Be the one with the knowing smile as you pass all those runners who went out too hard in the first mile. 😉

If you are racing this weekend….I do not want to see running over the next 2-3 days! This means you Jose Javier Soto! And everyone else too…Ginny, Chad, Amiee, Chris, Diane, Melissa, Catherine, Lisa, Paula, Jennifer, Tiffany….and everyone else I’ve missed.

In fact, if you’ve put in some work this week and your legs are sore…I’m giving you a pass today. No leg workout! If you’re feeling good…throw in the legs but go easy and be safe. I want your legs fresh and ready for the big day!

So what do you do when you can’t workout? REST! Eat well, sleep a lot, drinks lots of water, stretch! I can’t wait to hear about all my awesome Challengers kicking some serious butt this weekend. Whatever your goal is…reach for the stars. There’s no better feeling then leaving everything you’ve got on the road on race day.

Not racing this weekend…Go Run! Time on legs remember??

Want to see more inspiration and get daily strength workouts for runners? Do you need accountability to make sure you get it done? Do you workout from home and want a community where you feel safe and can find support? Check out our Strong to the Core group and get started today!

As always…never stop being active…and make it a great day Challengers! 🙂