FIVE FRIDAY FAVES 11/22: the WSJ runner’s debate, a better night’s sleep, and the best stretch in town

by Meghan Bruce

Happy Friday! It’s time for week three of Five Friday Faves!

1. Opinion article: A couple weeks ago, Chad Stafko wrote an article in the Wall Street Journal titled “OK, You’re a Runner. Get Over It.” It got everyone all up in arms, and some writers struck back. One such response came from WSJ writer Jason Gay: “OK, You’re a Runner. Tell Me More.” He has a lot of good things to say here, in response to the first article that started it all, which basically equates runners to elitists and shuns runners for having such an attitude. Basically. Gay says it best himself, so do yourself a favor and read his article NOW! Here’s a paragraph from it, in case you’re not going to listen to me:

It’s true that fitness has a way of transforming a life in such a way that the newly fit have a habit of becoming shameless and talkative, but this shamelessness is essentially benign, and I haven’t even gotten to the part where we talk about the obesity rate in this country and how we should be encouraging anybody who breaks a sweat more than twice a month. Want to toot your own horn about it? I say knock yourself out. To share is human, and reasonable sharing has its place. We’re talking about exercising! We’re not asking you to watch a three-hour slide show of a trip to the Galápagos Islands.

And best of all, this:

 

2. Recovery beer: As Thanksgiving nears, fall beers on tap can become harder to come by. However, Triumph Brewing Company is still catering to those of us who much prefer the taste of autumn to winter by keeping their Oktoberfest in the house! It is truly one of their best, regardless of the season. If you’re not near Princeton, don’t forget that Triumph has two other locations, in New Hope and Philadelphia. If you want it, you’d better hurry though…I doubt it will be on tap much longer. Second best: Pumpkin Ale.

 

3. Smartphone App: Want your own personal sleep lab? Download the free Sleepbot app for the next best thing. Place your phone anywhere on your bed where your movement is likely able to be sensed (I haven’t experimented very much with the distance but up to a foot away tends to be fine), hit “going to sleep,” and your movement will be tracked all night. Why is this useful? You can set a wake-up time and select “smart alarm,” and the alarm will go off when you are likely to not be in a period of deep sleep; that is, when your movement patterns are highest. Theoretically, this means that you will wake up and not feel like someone is dragging you out of bed from a deep sleep. I’ve been using it for about a month now, and it can really tell you a lot about how tired you are and why you may be well rested (or not). I think I feel better most mornings when I use the smart alarm…except the mornings when no alarm can make up for the hours of sleep I just didn’t end up getting. Oh, and it tracks sound too! Haven’t tried that yet….

[Source: Huffington Post]

[Source: Huffington Post]

4. Recovery product: Move over, foam roller. We received Moji recovery products about a month ago, and they’ve been flying off the shelf. The most popular has probably been the Mini Massager. Personally, I don’t think there has been a day go by when I’m working and haven’t picked up our store sample to work out some kinks in my shoulders. It’s awesome. Come try it out for yourself!

We partnered with Moji at the NYC Marathon expo.

 

5. Yoga studio: Ever since I attended her free class at a local store over a year and a half ago, I’ve considered Lara to be one of the best yoga instructors ever. When I found out she was opening her own studio two blocks away (give or take…I cut through too many parking lots and alleyways to know exactly) from the store, I was so excited. Thus, YogaStream was born. I’ve attended other teachers’ classes as well, and it seems she recruits only the best, because everyone has been great. I like when a yoga class gives me exactly the kind of workout I was hoping for, and YogaStream does that every time! Whether we do a stretch that targets the very muscle group that has been feeling tight, or focus on a part of the core most important for runners, I have always left satisfied. BONUS: If you ran a big somewhat-local race recently – the Princeton Half Marathon, New York City Marathon, Trenton Half Marathon, or the Philadelphia fall or Half Marathon – bring in your bib for a free class with Lara! (Psssst: I am hoping that we can team up with YogaStream and do a yoga class for runners at the store, so stay tuned for that.)

 

It’s the weekend before Thanksgiving…have you chosen a Turkey Trot yet? Here are some good ones to choose from, if you missed our post last week.

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Previous FIVE FRIDAY FAVES:

November 15: A fruity beverage, Trenton Half, cords & cut-throughs

November 8: caps, coffee, and a 10-miler

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