Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Just a little faster...

Navin on Track at his Ecstasy 8
It's Navin's fault! He's totally responsible for helping me to run faster this year.

If you've followed along over the past few years you know I've been hobbled with some nagging foot injuries.  From Plantar Faacitis to broken bones.  All related to the challenge of trying to run faster.  With a few more years on the chassis along with more than a few pounds on my frame, it was an unreasonable expectation.  But that didn't stop me from trying...and injuring myself multiple times in the process.  And although I've enjoyed the friendly ribbing for my last place finishes at the last two Reggae Runners Challenges, I'm determined to change that this year! Once again I'm working on running faster and this time it's Navin's fault!

Back in Negril at Reggae Marathon last December Navin burned up the Full Marathon course.  He told us his target time which was aggressive. Then with a really simple mental technique, he beat his time by nearly 20 minutes!  And that got me thinking...rather than going out and purposefully trying to injure myself with specific workouts that I attack with foolish abandon, let's try the 'Navin Way'.  And it's working!  What's his Jedi mental technique?  Talking to himself:  "Just a little faster, just a little faster, just a little faster...".

My immediate race goal this spring is to run the Sporting Life 10K with a negative split.  Challenging on the best day; extra difficult for this race as the first 6km is downhill.  I've been training hard through the cold and snow, following a great leg strengthening exercise routine from Olympian Carrie Tollefson and using Navin's Way to run 'just a little faster'.  So far so good.  Race day will tell.

When you see me running along the Kingsway in Etobicoke this Spring listen out for 'Just a little faster, just a little faster, just a little faster..."

Until next time...

Sunday, February 23, 2014

B2B Social Selling

I went to an informative session last week put on by Edelman Digital in their Toronto office.  The topic, "The Case for B2B Social" caught my attention personally as an Executive Recruiter in Digital Marketing and professionally on behalf of my Clients in the B2B space.  A key insight:  even though it's B2B, people are having conversations about your business in Social Media.  Not having a presence is ignorance and ignorance in this case is not bliss!  Social Media Marketing is an effective tactic in creating awareness, preference and consideration...and in the case of business owners looking for results Social Selling can drive sales and revenue.

Recently I connected with a company operating in the B2B space.  They are a leader in their business sector and have been in business for many years.  Their success traces back to a culture that is puts customers first. They use technology to empower their entire operation;  they use Social Media technology to connect with their customers.  Think Zappos.  

So how does Social Selling work in the B2B space?  The Infographic below outlines the Social Selling Anatomy of a B2B Decision Maker.


Chris Morales

647 393 3855

Linkedin:  Chris M Morales 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Let it snow, let it snow...

View from our Balcony
Jetola in Houston was freezing cold last week as the "MegaStorm" or whatever it was called swept through the US South from Texas through Virginia.

Larry in New York and Deb in Boston were dealing with the massive snow dump that shut down the US North East for a couple of days.  At one point I was speak to someone in Baltimore and he said it was snowing so hard he "could almost hear the snow falling!"  That some serious Snow!

North of Toronto in the 'Snow Belt' (Barrie up to the Muskoka Cottage Country and across Georgian Bay to Collingingwood and beyond) it's snowed so much that they'll still have snow on the ground in July!  A slight exaggeration but not by much.  When we lived in Wasaga Beach on the shores of Georgian Bay we had 10 foot high snow banks on both sides of our driveway and it was early June before it all melted.  Now that we've been apartment dwellers in Toronto for the past couple of years, I can honestly say I don't mind winter.

That was until this past winter.  Even though we haven't had quite the same snow fall in Toronto, it's screwed up my outdoor running.  From the home owners who don't clear the sidewalks in front of their homes, to the ridiculous amounts of salt and Calcium Chloride dumped on the roads in the city of Toronto, it's been messy running.  Plus with the ridiculously cold temperatures, I've been using absolutely all my winter running gear this year.

But thorough it all...the snow, the cold, the ice, we've all been running.  I've seen more runners on the roads around our home while out running before dawn. We grunt greetings as we pass.  It's a great feeling to know that we won't let winter defeat us. so a Salute to Jet, Larry, Deb and all my fellow running friends affected by the crazy winter:  Let it snow, let it snow...!

Until next time...

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Nutrition to aid running injury recovery

I had an epiphany:  I am what I eat!  That is a 'Duh' moment for sure.

Over the past few years as Sally and I 'Cleaned up' our eating (Sally is gluten and lactose intolerant...we prepare and eat really tasty and -good-for-us meals that include lots of fruits and vegetables) I've been lax in paying attention to what I eat.  In fact even though I know they are good for me, I don't like vegetables and would completely forget about adding them to my diet if I had my way.  And if you've followed me on this blog for a while you know that I have a weakness for salty snacks and diet soda. As a long-time runner I've managed loose weight and keep it off while staying relatively injury-free even while not eating particularly well for many of those years.

And then the epiphany!  I've gained a few pounds.  My joints ache.  I get injured and I don't spring back from these running injuries as quickly as I used to.  Time to start thinking about nutrition more seriously. Specifically what nutrition can help with injury recovery. There's a lot of talk and discussion about this subject online.  Oxidation, lactic acid, free-radicals ... all confusing and in many cases contradictory.  Given my personal experience in eating without gluten and lactose, I've come to understand the value of this 'fruits and vegetables' thing.

The benefits of Vitamin A Vitamin C, Omega 3 Fatty Acids, Zinc and Protein are laid out in this article from RunnersConnect.   like this article as well because it also includes the specific meat, fruits and vegetables that contain high levels of the specific vitamin, mineral and food.  Yes, most of these are available in food and there are many supplements to choose from to top up on the specific vitamins...we came back from our local Costco where we passed a product display wall 8 feet high with bottles of Omega 3 capsules!

Check it out here:  Diet for the Injured Runner.

"All of the above" are discussed in length in this article from Runner's World.  They go further though and talk about adding supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate which have been shown to decrease inflammation and improve mobility.  Read it here:  Food Rx   

Fruits and vegetables and nuts and supplements...all are essential in speeding up recovery from an injury. Now on to protein and the role it plays not only in injury recovery but in building muscle.  Is there such a thing as enough protein?  Chicken, beef and my favourite pork are all excellent sources of protein which has been shown to aid in muscle recovery. 

In this article, lots of information about Protein for Runners.  
And then there's my personal experience with injury recovery.  Back in 2009 when I was training for the Reggae Marathon I added JuicePlus+ to my nutrition regimen.  I started about 6 months before the race and continued on after of course.  It's not a magic pill but with the concentration of fruits and vegetables it was a convenient way to 'top up'.  The result?  The post-race recovery was much shorter that I expected...I was running regularly again within a week (and I had a tough race that day).  Check out my experience at Reggae Marathon here.  Go to this link to find out the benefits of JuicePlus+ at this link:  S-P JuicePlus+ (purchase directly online as well).

Yes I'm eating better:  more variety and smaller portions.  I still have a weakness for salty snacks but I've managed to cut out the diet sodas.  Raw vegetables are still not my favourite so I take supplements.  I watch my runs and treat any small injuries right away. The 'Duh' moment finally sunk in.

Until next time...

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Plantar Fasciitis and other Running Injuries: Yuck!

Running injuries suck.  Plantar Fasciitis sucks even more!

I got thinking about the running injuries that plagued me for nearly three years after I started the transition from heel-strike to forefoot/mid-foot running.  I was a classic case of do-it-yourself itis.  I Googled the topic and read countless articles on how to make the transition successfully.  I'm pleased to say that those injury-prone days are behind me since recovering from the broken foot in late 2012.  I'm running comfortably and I actually like running again.  But dam I wished I could get those three years back!

Running injuries go beyond those that I've experienced.  Knees, hips, calves...everything below the waist can and will get injured at some point.  While Googling the topic of running injuries recently I came across the infographic below that does a nice job of identifying most of the common running injuries.  What I especially like are the suggested remedies:

You're a runner.  I know running injuries will only slow you down.  Good luck with your recovery.

Until next time...

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