Army Ten-Miler Race Playlist

Army Ten-Miler Race Playlist

So story time after a two-month hiatus from posting. Sorry about that.

Anyway, I created the *perfect* Spotify playlist (located at the bottom of this post!) for the Army Ten-Miler Race in D.C. last October. And guess what? The race “rules” online said headphones and electronic listening devices weren’t allowed on the course.

Say whhhaaaat? Run 10 miles without any music?!?!

Inside I was like “Well sh** sh** sh**. I don’t know how well I’ll run it now…”

I had only ever run 2 miles without music a handful of times for the Army’s PT test. And with that run, I never think about music. For PT test runs, I’m always waaaay too focused on not dying or puking since I’m running full throttle. So I’m kinda like this photo minus the sitting down and hammock part.

As you already know if you’ve read my previous posts, I finished the Army Ten-Miler Race, and I ran it really well for me (an 8:16-per-mile pace). And now with this story, you know I did it without any music whatsoever. Just me and my thoughts for 1 hour and 22 minutes. Good times.

To be honest, although music would’ve been nice, I didn’t need it. Racing past the monuments and the thousands upon thousands of other runners gave me such a cliche runner’s high that I didn’t even think about music. It’s a really unique, patriotic experience that I encourage runners and non-runners to do at least once. It’s definitely a bucket-list type item. 🙂

So after hearing my story about how I didn’t need music for the race, I’m sure you’re ready to listen to this playlist!

Army Ten-Miler Race Playlist from Hungry Gator Gal

Just kidding. I really do prefer running with music, and this playlist contains some recent hits and really solid motivational throwbacks. <— I’m talking to all of you 90s kids.

So if you’re doing longer runs for race training or if you’re running distance just for fun, feel free to give this playlist a try. I still use it when I feel like doing a long run. I’m on a more strength-focused routine and have turned to cycling and swimming lately more so than running for cardio. But the reason for that switch is the topic of an entirely different post.

More to come on (1) preparing for a ten-mile race and/or a half marathon, (2) workout playlists, and (3) my favorite workouts lately (cardio and strength). Stay tuned!

P.S. Follow me and my playlists on Spotify here. Oh, and did I mention how everyone on the course had their phones, headphones and music? So much for “rules.”

Also, early registration for the 2016 Army Ten-Miler Race opens May 11 for service members and for persons who have run the race seven times or more. Mark your calendars!!!

 

Questions:

  1. Do you prefer to run with or without music? <— With music for me, for sure.
  2. What’s your current favorite running song? <— Mine has been any remix of “Roses” by The Chainsmokers for like a solid 6 months now, haha. 

 

Related Posts:

Running, Surprising People and Surprising Yourself

 

Fast-paced Fall with SOS Rehydrate

Running, Surprising People, and Surprising Yourself

Running, Surprising People, and Surprising Yourself

immerse yourself in the art of surprising People.

I came across this quote a few months ago, and it really stuck with me. At first, I read it literally as “Make sure others can’t guess what you’re next move is.” But then it hit me – I’m one of those “people” the quote refers to, which means I should be surprising myself.

So I started thinking. Do I surprise myself? What IS the fun in completing a task you know you can do?

For me, the most fun adventures are the ones I never thought I’d have. The risks I never thought I’d take. The gambles I never thought would pay off. The physical feats I never thought I’d overcome.

So I started on a mental list of things I never in a million years thought I’d do but did: ROTC and law school at the same time, living and interning in Washington, D.C., having my own business/blog (!!!!).

So what had I written off as impossible and not yet faced? Number one on that list . . .

Running.

 

Why had I given up on it? For one, I always told myself and others that I “just wasn’t a runner.” As a kid, it was because I lacked any type of athletic ability to run. When I reached ROTC in August 2014, it was because I was obsessed with training purely for strength and not endurance. Cardio was a no-go.

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Photo by Brianna Kolota

So when another cadet in ROTC asked if I wanted to run the Army Ten-Miler Race in Washington, D.C. in October 2015, I was hesitant. I thought, “There’s no way I could run 10 miles straight. That’s too far. I feel like I’m going to die on the APFT’s 2-mile run.”

But I stopped myself. Sure, running 10 miles is a challenge, but I like challenges. And I knew I could find a “beginner’s” running plan that worked me up to 10 miles while avoiding injuries and over training.

So I said yes to the race. I was a little overwhelmed, but I was in.

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In the 6-7 weeks prior to the race, I miraculously fit three runs in per week (one speed, one tempo, one long) despite my insane schedule. I ate well. I slept as much as I could while still fulfilling my responsibilities. I sacrificed some “down” time along the way, but it paid off.

The Army Ten-Miler Race pace below was my 2-mile pace a year prior to the race. It was a complete surprise to myself and at least two other cadets who ran that race. They knew I did NOT consider myself a runner.

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But now, I do call myself a runner.

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I’m a runner not because I run every day (because I don’t).

I’m a runner not because I have two long-distance races under my belt as of February (Army Ten-Miler Race and a half marathon).

And I’m definitely a runner not because I love running (because some days I loathe it).

I’m a runner because I surprised a lot of people by running the Army Ten-Miler Race and running it well. But more importantly, I surprised myself.

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So whether you consider yourself a runner or not, ask these questions: “Am I immersed in the art of surprising others? Am I surprising myself?”

If the answer is no, find a challenge, big or small, and commit.

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With work, take on a project that you’ve been hesitant to dive into for fear of failing or doing a “bad” job.

With food, meal prep on Sundays so you can finally stop making excuses for eating takeout every day.

And if you’re willing to tackle running like I did, set a goal.

As a newbie, run once per week. If you’ve only run for fun in the past, train for a fast 5k. Or if you’re finally ready to tackle a long-distance race, stay tuned for my next few posts.

In the coming weeks, I’ll post a program for a speedy 10-mile race and a program for your first half marathon. Expect workouts, sample meals, and rest day activities/mobility work.

I’m excited to share what I’ve learned, and I hope you stick around for it. 🙂

Questions:

  1. How do you surprise yourself?
  2. What’s a recent race/fitness goal you accomplished that you never believed you’d be able to do?
Fast-Paced Fall with SOS Rehydrate

Fast-Paced Fall with SOS Rehydrate

Steve-Prefontaine-Cross-Country-Running-Poster

Fall 2015 was a combination of being exhilarated, terrified, happy, and overwhelmed . . . and I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything.

Despite the suicidal pace of my life at times, I realized this fall that if you’re afraid of how fast you’re going, you know the journey is a good one.

With that said, I can’t thank my friends, family, teachers, and classmates enough for being a part of this insane journey that is law school, ROTC and my personal life. And on the fitness front, I have SOS Rehydrate to thank for keeping me and my teammates hydrated while training for and competing in two fun, challenging events: the Army Ten-Miler race and my second Army ROTC Ranger Challenge competition.

So here’s a recap of my fast-paced fall. More to come in 2016 about journeys in running, racing, competing, fueling and life as a officer candidate and law student. 🙂

August

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My 2-mile time in August was 15:50. After a season of training and racing, my time is currently around 14:30, give or take a few seconds based on the day. Stay tuned for more on the simple program I used to shave those 80 or so seconds off my time.

September

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If I remember correctly, it was about 90 degrees with what felt like 100% humidity when I took this photo, hahaha. Long training runs in Florida heat and humidity are awesomely awful. Give me my IV drip of electrolytes stat.

October

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The Army Ten-Miler Race – SO MUCH FUN!!! The energy of the thousands of runners during the race was insane. Racing through our nation’s capital was one of the best moments of my life . . . and I came in 7.5 minutes under my projected finishing time! Here are my stats (out of about 30,000 runners):

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2015-10-10 14.07.34
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This photo was taken somewhere in of the middle of the 10-mile ruck, which was the final event at the Ranger Challenge competition. Other events for the competition (which started at 3am!!!) included 1,000 ruck lifts & 1,000 sit-ups (total for the team of 9), a triage lane, a rope bridge lane, a shuttle run and a 5-mile relay run. Needless to say, we were TOAST by the end.

November 

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Army-Navy ROTC annual football game! I have no idea why my tongue is out. Maybe I was focusing? I’ve been told I do this when studying intensly. . .

December

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Here’s to 2016 and all of the hope, excitement, challenges and fun it will bring. I wish you and your family the best in the new year! 🙂

Note: SOS Rehydrate provided me  with electrolyte packets in return for me writing this post, promoting their products and wearing their gear. However, all opinions are my own. The US Army is not supported by nor does it endorse SOS Rehydrate.

Stadium HIIT Workout

Stadium HIIT Workout

Alternative names I considered for this workout . . . “90 Aisles of Pain” and “Death by Intervals.”

This workout is consistently difficult. It never gets easier. You just learn what your pain threshold is before your legs completely give up and you’re gasping for air.

But just like anything else, the more you run stadiums, the better you become at it. Then it’s time to raise the stakes. In Florida, add in 93-degree weather plus 90 percent humidity, and you’re in for complete exhaustion because when you gasp for air, it’s hot, thick and humid.

Fun times.

So have I convinced you to try my Stadium HIIT Workout below yet? If it’s good enough for Tim Tebow, it’s good enough for me. 🙂

Stadium HIIT Workout from Hungry Gator Gal

Note: I usually warm up for this particular workout by running one lap around the stadium or completing this Stadium Workout Warm-up. Don’t forget to stretch afterward too.

Fun facts: I ran up/down every step in Ben Hill Griffin Stadium (a.k.a. The Swamp) in 2013 as a senior in college, and my calves felt like they were on fire for three days afterward. But despite the torture, the Swamp is my favorite place to workout, and running stadiums is my favorite workout of all time.

Questions:

  1. Do you ever workout in a stadium?
  2. What’s your favorite way to complete HIIT? Cycle? Running? Running stairs? Etc.
  3. What’s your favorite workout of all time?

 

More About HIIT Workouts:

What Is the Best HIIT Workout?

3 Quick HIIT Workouts for Beginners 

HIIT Workout: What It Is and Why It Works

Related HGG Posts:

Stadium Strength Circuits Workout 

Quick Cardio Tabata Sets

Quick Cardio Tabata Sets from Hungry Gator Gal

26-Minute Boredom Busting Treadmill Workout

26-Minute Boredom-Busting Treadmill Workout from Hungry Gator Gal

Take a Hike with a Friend (A #NationalGirlfriendsDay Post)

Take a Hike with a Friend (A #NationalGirlfriendsDay Post)

Warning – this post is going to be a photo dump of one of the most fun and physically active vacations I’ve ever taken.

Let me show you why spending a vacation hiking with your best friend is the best idea ever, even if your BFF isn’t the most athletic person in the world. 🙂

1. You can escape your crazy schedules and spend some quality time together, for once.

 

No emails. No jobs. No school. No responsibilities. Just you, your BFF, and nature.

Not to mention, you may have spent the last year living hundreds of miles away from each other and can’t wait to take 5 million selfies to show that you were actually together for once, albeit in a beautiful place.

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Photo by Brianna Kolota

2.  You take in some incredible views.

 

When you’re 90 and sitting in your rockers next to one another, you’ll be able to tell your grand kids about all the places you’ve visited together.

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Photo by ???

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Photo by Melissa K.

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Photo by Melissa K.

If you’re on a trail in the middle of the woods and find a huge fallen log, why not climb it and test your balance with some yoga poses?
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Photo by Melissa K.

 

4. You remember why you love your best friend, and get a pretty good leg workout in the process.

 

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Hiking up and down the side of a VERY rocky, VERY steep mountain for 3+ miles just to reach an overlook probably wasn’t my BFF’s favorite way to spend a Saturday afternoon, but she did it for me anyway. And that’s one of the reasons I love her –  she always puts others before herself.

P.S. My BFF is deathly afraid of heights!

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Photo by Brianna Kolota

 

Closing Thoughts

 

On a more important note, as I get older, I realize more and more how influential you can be in the lives of those around you.

If you’re a physically active person by nature <— hello me, the adult with ADD, you probably don’t need someone to motivate you to be active, even if you’re on vacation. But for others, motivation is the problem.

That’s where I’ve realized I can make a difference. Suggesting “active” plans like hikes, runs, or stadium dates makes exercising something your friends look forward to rather than something you do because you should.

Endorphins make people happy. Sharing endorphins make for some happy, healthy friends and relationships.

Taking care of each other can be more than working out together too. Be accountable to one another for eating healthy, going to the doctor, getting checked for diseases, not smoking, driving safely, etc. I know females already talk about everything. It only takes a few seconds to send a text to remind your friend to eat her veggies, make that yearly check-up, get that mole checked out, or slow down on the roads.

If you’re like me, you probably have NO idea what appointments and check-ups to make each year. But have no fear, here’s a handy infographic about what you need to do each year throughout your life from my friends at Oscar Health Insurance. I know I’ll be using it when I make my doctor’s appointments this year!

Oscar Girlfriends DayLRG

You  can find more info about #NationalGirlfriendsDay and Oscar Health Insurance by following@OscarHealth on Twitter and checking out the CDC’s Women’s Health page. If you’re interested in more on Oscar, check them out only to find out more about their health insurance in NJ and NY.

Until next time,
Brianna 🙂

 

Question:

  1. Have you ever taken an “active” vacation with friends or family?