Backtracking: Our first day of the full-on RUN weekend in Bethlehem, PA.
During our first full day of the RW Festival weekend, Miss L. Beachy booked our itinerary with the best kind of run-nerd activities. We were in the company of the Icon Fitness + Altra team, Bart Yasso, Summer Sanders, RW staff & of course each other (i.e. 20 run-loving bloggers!).
Things started bright n’ early with a shuttle to the Steel Stacks and a shake-out run with Bart along a similar route that the 5K would take us the next morning.
Quiet today, ready for the runners to come!
Bart led us up to the Bethlehem library, which provides a most beautiful overlook of the self-proclaimed Christmas town.
Photo credit: StuftMama
Three miles was actually just the warm-up. Next on our activity agenda: RunningSkirt Olympics! And don’t think the boys skipped out. Check this video, for your daily dose of entertainment.
During our post-run+Olympics breakfast, Golden Harper (Co-Founder / Brains) & the Altra team got us prepped and ready for the Zero-Drop run clinic:
Golden started his running career at a young age, helping out the ‘rents in their family-owned running shoe store while snatching up marathon PRs at the age of 12 (ahem, 2:45…no big deal). He walked us through some mid-foot strike exercises with and without shoes, reviewed proper posture, efficient ways to use your arms while running (hint: it’s not by swaying them dramatically across your body as you run. Noted.), and a trick for doing a posture-check when you get tired during a run or race (reach for the moon!).
I’d hang out with the Altra team any time, any day. They’re passionate about their shoes for any type of runner, and spread the love of RUN all day…
…which was obviously just fine by all of us.
Now we’re all shaken out and warmed up, so we got in a good stretch with the Icon Fitness Lotus Yoga goods and resident expert trainer, Melanie.
When we sat down to eat again, it was straight from the new Runner’s World Cookbook. And once again, our tastebuds were spoiled in the best way.
On the menu: Caprese Farro Salad, Simple Green Salad (Dressings: Mustard & Cumin Vinaigrette, Nutty Olive Oil), Mushroom Tacos al Pastor (gluten-free), Spicy Fish Tacos with pineapple slaw and Banana Oat Energy Bars (dessert).
All straight from the RW Cookbook pages, and all simply delicious. We all went back for seconds (thirds?) of the banana oat bars. We did need plenty of energy, after all.
Our next agenda item definitely topped my list of favorites for the whole weekend: Summer Sanders came to chat with us about her Olympic accomplishments, life as an athlete and now a mother and (speedy) runner, and just, you know, life. You can’t be in her presence without smiling, and you can’t listen to one of her stories without thinking you’d love to be her neighbor and/or running buddy. She ran all three races throughout the weekend, starting off with a family-affair 5K and finishing up with a fast half-marathon!
If you ever get a chance to meet her, jump on it. Until then, pick up the latest Runner’s World (November) and let her stories inspire you.
By this point it’s 3pm and we headed over to THE EXPO for a ProForm iFit treadmill demo and packet pick-up.
ProForm’s iFit treadmills were set-up and ready for testing, ooh-ing and awe-ing right you walked onto the Expo vendor area.
This is no ordinary treadmill…
First of all, it has a remote that fits right on your finger, allowing you to change your speed while you run without doing the awkward reach/lean right into the front of the machine. You simply tap and go/slow. GENIUS.
Secondly, it takes you wherever you want to go! The screen on the front shows you anywhere from the Grand Canyon trail to the course of the Walt Disney World or Boston Marathon. The treadmill adjusts the incline to mimic where you choose to run, as the screen takes you for a virtual outdoor run. A friend of the treadmill I am not, but this thing? Well, this could convince me otherwise.
It syncs with tablets, smartphones and fitness trackers. They’ve also partnered with the Runner’s World training programs so you can pick your race distance, personal preferences and paces…and bam! Personalized program? All yours.
We were impressed.
We were also pretty overloaded with gear, shoes, yoga accessories, Larabars and race goods. It was a day full of all things running, and an amazing way to kick off the weekend!
THANK YOU to Icon Fitness – specifically Altra, Lotus Yoga and ProForm – and your energetic, knowledgeable and welcoming team of experts and run-lovers!
Full Disclosure: RW provided hotel and food accommodations and race registrations for the weekend. Icon Fitness provided Lotus Yoga accessories and Altra Zero-Drop shoes. All opinions are my own.