A 5'3 Perspective


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When To Retire Your Running Shoes [Plus a HIIT Workout That Will Kick Your Butt]

Knowing when to replace my running shoes is always a mystery to me. Should I base my decision on kilometers logged? Holes in the toes? Worn tread? After some research, here are my suggestions.

The holes in the toes are making me believe these shoes are on their way out!

The holes in the toes are making me believe these shoes are on their way out!

A general rule of thumb is to change your shoes approximately every 500 km (which is just over 300 miles). Now this distance depends on a few variables. The first is the weight of the runner – the heavier you are, the quicker you will wear out your sneakers. Next consider the efficiency of your stride. If you land hard on your heels with each step, for example, you’re going to wear through shoes more quickly than someone with a lighter technique. Finally, consider the cushioning of the shoes. A minimalist shoe that begins with less padding will wear out quicker than a more supportive shoe.

If you’re not sold on miles logged as an indicator of when you’ll need to replace your runners, there are some other variables to consider. The surface and terrain have a huge impact on the longevity of your shoes. A treadmill trainer will be able to rack up more miles than a concrete runner due to the cushioning of the terrain. Another red flag is worm tread on the soles. If it’s basically flat along bottom of the shoe and the tread is worn out— it’s time.  Some runners may notice an uneven wearing pattern on the soles of their shoes, this doesn’t mean that you should wait for the entire tread to be worn out, it just means that you are a heavier runner on one side.

Personally, I use my body to tell me when I’ve worn through a pair of shoes. If you’re used to pain-frees training – and all of a sudden you experience knee, back, foot, or shin pain – consider that a sign.

To increase the lifespan of your sneakers, try rotating between two pairs. By giving running shoes a day or two off the cushion will relax and keep it’s structure longer, but more importantly, you are changing up the way your foot is stressed based on the design of the shoe. Interchanging between a minimalist shoe and a structured shoe will not only increase the longevity of both pairs, but also help train your feet and improve your stride efficiency.

Now that you’ve got an idea of when to retire your running shoes, here’s a High Intensity Interval Training workout that will put them to good use.  HIIT Treadmill WorkoutFor your sprints you will want to go as fast as you possibly can on the treadmill. After 30 seconds, jump off the treadmill (to the side) or straddle it while the belt continues to move at your sprinting pace. This ensures that you don’t waste any time resetting the pace between each sprint. You may get some funny looks if you do this workout at the gym, but I promise you it is worth it.

Have a wonderful day!

xo Lauren

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The Time That Jillian Michaels Kicked My Butt

Last Friday I experienced the opportunity of a lifetime. I worked out with celebrity trainer [and drill sergeant], Jillian Michaels. It is quite uncommon for me to enter big contests because I always get discouraged when I lose, but when I saw a chance to workout with one of the most iconic fitness professionals, I couldn’t help myself. I just had to give it a shot.

Let’s make a long story short. I won – I was going to workout with Jillian Michaels, and I could bring a friend to torture as well! Off I went to Toronto to get my butt seriously kicked by the most intense trainer I know of. a day with jillian michaels body shred with jillian michaelsSince I was only in town for one day, I packed as much into it as possible; registering for the workout bright and early, grabbing some Starbucks [and a banana] for workout fuel, a quick pit stop at Anthropologie [a quite successful one too], and then finally – the moment I had been waiting for –  a Jillian Michaels “ass kicking” [her words, not mine]. JMWith my best friend in tow, we secured spots near the front of the class. I was in for a surprise – I figured that the room would be filled with contest winners like myself. Boy was I wrong. About half of the attendees were actually fitness professionals… and there we were, right near the front. I wish I could have gotten a closer/clear/one on one picture with Michaels, however, just breathing the same air as someone so motivated and influential in the fitness world was unbelievable!

As soon as Jillian Michaels emerged from backstage things got serious. She began to walk us through the exercises we would be using for the class, explaining the structure as she went. If you aren’t familiar with her workout program I’ll give you a quick run down. Body Shred, which is offered through Goodlife Fitness in Canada, is a high intensity interval training class. It follows a 3-2-1 format, with only 24 minutes of work. Sure it sounds easy when you type it out, but in practice, 24 minutes without breaks, while your heart rate is between 90 – 100% of your max is no laughing matter. During the half an hour class you will warm up and cool down [3 minutes each] and complete 4 rounds of circuits in between which are comprised of 3 minutes of resistance, 2 minutes of cardio, and 1 minute of active recovery [which actually means intense ab workouts – not break time]. I highly recommend visiting a Goodlife Fitness near you to try this class for yourself. You’ll love me and hate me all at the same time! before and after bodyshredWorking out with such an intense instructor [and a huge group of fitness professionals and enthusiasts] was one of the most motivating experiences I have ever had and it allowed me to push myself harder than I thought possible. Although the workout Jillian Michaels led us through was challenging, I must admit that my Tuesday night Rideau Center instructor Sarah, works her class ten times harder – she is ruthless, but awesome. It didn’t surprise me when I found out that Jillian Michaels was one of her idols – they definitely have that drill sergeant thing in common! I loved that options were given so that first time shredders and veterans could choose their levels to intensify [or not] the workout. canfit pro conferenceMy guest, Sarah, had never tried the class before – you can see our pre workout faces here, she was terrified. I however, was on top of the world! Sarah was an awesome sport and made it through the half hour HIIT workout like a champ, she even admitted to enjoying it afterwards. Unfortunately as soon as the workout ended Jillian ran off the stage leaving no opportunities to get a group photo, let alone individual pictures. Not to worry though, a life-size cut out was waiting outside to pose with after we finished the class. If you look quickly it almost looks real!

Working out with the tiny dynamo only fueled my admiration and appreciation for her even more. The entire experience was something I could only ever dream about and I am still pinching myself to make sure it really happened! Thanks again to Goodlife for hosting this contest and giving fitness enthusiasts and professionals the opportunity to meet such an influential trainer in the industry – you better believe my motivation to workout has sky rocketed after this class!

Have you ever tried BodyShred or any other Jillian Michaels workouts?

xo Lauren


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High Five For Friday

Another week has flown by – now it’s time to reflect on all of the awesome things that happened over the past seven days! High Five For Friday

1. This is me. I do silly things because it makes me happy. The amount of times I have created outfits out of garbage bags to stay dry is quite impressive. This one might be my best look yet!
2. I created crack… It may look like oat balls, but I assure you, they are the most addictive treats. Don’t worry I’ll share the recipe next week.
3. After years of abstaining for yoga, I decided to give it another try. It was love at first sun salutation. I’m back my yogi friends, and I’ve got a 30 day unlimited pass to prove it!
4. Nerd Alert – I got new glasses… they might be a bit over the top.
5. My workouts this week have been phenomenal. I finally feel like I have the energy to push myself and give it all. I hope this continues… maybe it is a side effect of adding yoga to my weekly exercise routine.

That’s all for today, thanks again to the lovely Lauren Elizabeth for hosting High Five For Friday!

xo Lauren