Safety Running Tips For Beginners + HipZIPP Review

…And another work week in the books. Despite knocking out a cold, long work days, and disappearing sunlight, the days seemed to fly by.


Too soon? NEVER.

We’re just about a week away from the Power of She 10k, and about the point where I regret the decision for signing up for a race, and can’t wait until it’s over phase of training.




Until I actually finish, and am completing my registration for the next one while crossing the finish line. It’s a love/hate kinda thing.

Besides my cruddy run on Tuesday, the cooler temps are gorgeous to run in, and are the reason I always sign up for Fall races.

Now that I’ve trained for and run a few races (you can find the recaps on my running page), I’ve learned a lot about what to do and not do on a run…mostly by making terrible mistakes and declaring never to make them again. And now to make sure you never have to.

Whether your just starting out, or having been around the block (literally) a few times, it’s never a bad idea to play it safe. Here’s some of my best running tips for beginners, plus a sweet GIVEAWAY at the end!

The tips that I wish someone told me when I started running!

Let someone know when & where you’re going.


IMG_2152(from my painful long run on Tuesday)


Maybe it’s the fact that I watch way too many crime and mystery shows, but I’m a bit paranoid when it comes to safety. If you recall my rookie running mistake, aka ending up running on the shoulder of a main road in the pitch black, all I could think about was being that stupid bimbo blonde in a horror flick that asks “who’s there?” when entering a decrepit barn. DEAD.

But since I let MJ know my route, she came and picked me up, right after the fact that I thought she was a psycho killer coming to kidnap me. Thanks Mom. :)

Lesson learned, either leave a note or text someone to know where you’ll be before you head out, and let them know when you get back. Even though I (now) run with my phone, it never hurts to have someone out there who knows you’re out there if anything should happen.

Change up your route and/or times.




This one may or may not be to attributed to my strong procrastination skills and/or internal battles with lazy Emily. Either way, it makes for a safe and stalker-free Emily as well.

Running the same route, the same days, at the same time, makes you predictable. You need to Lady Gaga that run, wear a meat suit one day, and sing with Tony Bennett the next.

So if you can literally accomplish those tasks during a run, you have far less problems that chafing and blisters. What I’m trying to say is change up your routine. Try a new loop, or run your usual loop backwards. Go Sunday morning instead of at 5. Not only does this make you a stronger runner, but also a smarter runner. How do you like THAT combo meal?!

Be aware of your surroundings.




Now I’ve had my runs, where I look back and think..”WTF was I thinking?!”

Like running around the dirt roads of France. At dusk. With no phone. And barely speaking the language. IN A FOREIGN COUNTRY.

Or on a mountain road at dusk (see a trend?) with the threats of a Mama moose and her baby barreling out of the woods, and the threats of a thunderstorm above. Doh.

So as my running child, I ask you to do as I say not as I do. My favorite way to explore a new place is to hit the streets for a run. There’s simply nothing like it. But I play it as safe as possible when I do.

This means going without music, trusting my instincts, staying near well populated or well lit areas, and taking it easy. Being totally aware of your surroundings not only maximizes what you get from exploring a new place on foot, but puts YOU in control of whether or not you have a great run, or star in the next Hostel film.

Bring the  important stuff.

This goes back to my rookie running mistake. At the time, I didn’t have any fancy gadgets, or fun running gear. Just a bright colored shirt (thank God), a beat up $15 pair of sneaks, and ipod shuffle, and a stopwatch.

Now that I’ve learned my lesson, and watched too many more episodes of Homicide Hunter, I bring a little more heat with me.


pepper spray.jpg


I asked for some pepper spray for my birthday last year, after a girl who was running got kidnapped in NH. A little too close to home for me. I bring it along with me if I’m testing out a new route, or am running really early or late in the day.




I may not have upgraded my running ensemble very much, but the gear department has definitely seen some improvements. When I connected with the folks at SLS3 to write a review in exchange for my very own HipZIPP, it was actually perfect timing. I was already on the hunt for a new way to carry my stuff aside from cramming them into the much too small pocket in my shorts, or in the sweat valley of my sports bra.

I love the fact that it has two pockets, one in the front and another in the back so I can easily store “long-term storage” items aka things I don’t need right away like keys or my phone in the back, and the things I may need to get easily like my ipod, chapstick, or fuel items in the front.

I actually forgot I had it on the first time i tried it until the end of my run, where I was convinced I dropped my phone since I couldn’t feel it tucked away in my “long term storage” pocket. I got the size small in turquoise since it’s my favorite color, and it fits like a charm. Not too constricting. Not too slippy. Juuusst right. :)

Listen to your body.

At the end of the day, if you’re running, you should be enjoying it..for the most part. You’ll have crappy runs, but you’ll also have days when you could run forever. The important part is to listen to your body, and give it what it asks for. That might be taking a walk break or two…or five. Or cutting your run short when it is just too darn hot. Or pushing a little harder to show that hill who’s boss. Trust your gut, show up, and as Sara says, embrace the hill.




And now it’s time to win your very own HipZIPP!

Just enter with the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win!

Or if you’d rather get your hands on one now, you can get $10 off your order with the promo code “HZ10” AND get 99 cent shipping! You can order yours on the SLS3 website.

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Make it a great day!


*I received free product in exchange for this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

WIAW: The Crappy Long Run Edition

Morning loves!

Here we are for another Wednesday full of eats thanks to Jenn & the gang!





I finally put those Pumpkin O’s to use other than for shoveling into my mouth haphazardly throughout the day.

IMG_2127Mixed with greek yogurt, coconut milk, pumpkin, cinnamon, and stevia overnight and topped with more crunchy O’s and sun butter in the morning. Soggy cereal < crunchy.



I didn’t have to go into work until 2, which let me get some major meal preppage done. That including roasting some sweet potatoes, spaghetti squash, and baked chicken.


IMG_2128Served with some spicy mustard for dippage. I’m a dipper Katie, I’m a dipper.

And an apple for something sweet. Re-awesomed picture.


Then it was off for one of the most painstakingly crappy long runs.

IMG_2129Maybe it was the unbearable humidity, unusually warm temps, too soon after eating, the super moon’s alignment, but I was just not having this run. It was hard. It was anything but enjoyable. I took plenty of walking breaks, and wanted to call it quits by mile two. I probably would have if I didn’t do an out and back kinda run and had no other option back to go back the way I came.

Point is I did it. I listened to my body, and walked when I needed it. And the thing about running is, you have your good days along with the bad, but you never know until you strap on your shoes and hit the pavement.

And the only thing that gets me through 90% of hard runs is how I’m going to reward myself afterwards.




from sinfulnutrition instagram

And that was coffee! It may have been decaf pumpkin spice served black instead of the basic PSL, but I enjoyed every sweat-inducing sip with the windows down. When you find fall, please return it to it’s rightful owner, New England. K thanx.



I never have a raging post-run appetite until about 10AM the next day, so dinner was on the lighter side.

IMG_2131Cottage cheese, quinoa, and broccoli over a bed of greens with a side of Pretty Little Liars. I’m addicted, and still have no effin clue who A is or who killed Alli. Don’t spoil it!

After some bites of dark chocolate, and one too many glasses of PLL, it was time to put this Wednesday to bed. We should do this again sometime. Maybe next week? 😉


Make it a great day!


Did you celebrate National Coffee Day?

What do you do after a crappy run/workout?


Cheddar & Herb Savory Overnight Oats

Unlike any oatmeal you’ve ever had, these savory overnight oats will change your breakfast life forever. World, prepare to be rocked.

Cheddar and Herb Savory Overnight Oats -- A recipe that will change how you thing about this healthy breakfast staple!IMG_2084

Hiyo friends!

And a happy Monday to YOU!

This weekend was gorgeous up here in P-land. The fall air is finally starting to kick in, with the exception of the blanket of sunshine. Which made for the perfect setting for yoga in the park!




Erica of Wise Minds. Big Hearts. lead a group of us through a gentle yoga session with the grass under our feet and the sun in our hair. The way yoga should be.

Then it was off to get my fall on!


IMG_2075One of our employee perks is a free peck of PYO apples (hell yeah!), so I recruited Becky to join me for some orchard-ing. It take a good 20 minutes for us to fill our bags to the brim. And like always, I took a bite of almost every apple they had available for quality control measures. Can someone make that a real job for me please?

After all our hard efforts, we earned ourselves some $5 martinis. A Frenchy for me, which tasted like cotton candy dipped in vodka. My kind of carnival treat.



Sunday I woke up feeling like the underside of a toilet seat after a night of tossing and turning and a terrible sore throat. After a couple gargles of salt water, and chugging Emergen-C and green tea, I decided to take a rest day instead of the training run I had planned. Sometimes you have to just listen to your body and do what it needs.




And Trader Joe’s Pumpkin O’s fit the bill. No bowl or milk even required. Insert hand. Reach end of box. Repeat.

Instead of falling victim to the pumpkin wormhole, a more substantial breakfast is in Law & Order.


Cheddar and Herb Savory Overnight Oats -- A recipe that will change how you thing about this healthy breakfast staple!


Oats are so the black sheep of the grain world. Only allowed to be covered in brown sugar, cinnamon, or anything that resembles a dessert at 7AM. While rice gets to be with beans and pudding. Quinoa? Well it just gets a fast pace right next to acai and spirulina on the superfood express where it gets to be whatever the eff it wants.


Cheddar and Herb Savory Overnight Oats -- A recipe that will change how you thing about this healthy breakfast staple!

Don’t worry oats. Mama Sin’s gotcha back. You sing your savory little heart out. #OatsWins.


Cheddar and Herb Savory Overnight Oats -- A recipe that will change how you thing about this healthy breakfast staple!

Cheddar & Herb Savory Overnight Oats
Recipe type: breakfast
Serves: 1 serving
  • ½ cup oats
  • ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • ¼ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped herbs (basil, chive, parsley, etc)
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl or jar.
  2. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  3. Top with additional herbs or cheddar if desired and serve.


Creamy. Cheesy. A little bit OFF THE CHARTS amazing. I dare you to make your kale and quinoa salad shake in its little Birkenstock boots.
Cheddar and Herb Savory Overnight Oats -- A recipe that will change how you thing about this healthy breakfast staple!

Make it a great day!

What’s your favorite kind of apple?

Overnight or hot oatmeal?