Guest post: Hungry Runner Girl

Hey guys! We’re enjoying the California beach, seals, shopping and sunshine for a few days, so I invited some blogger friends to guest post while we’re away. I’m taking lots of pics for a fun re-cap when we’re back!

Summer Shape Up friends, don’t forget to check in at the end of this post when you’ve finished workout 4 and/or your HIIT for the day. The July calendar can be found here, too. 

I’m really excited about today’s guest post because while I’ve never had the chance to meet this girl, I’ve been lurking her blog forever (I’m not a very good commenter but there are a lot of blogs that I adore and read on a regular basis). I emailed Janae to step out of lurkdom and tell her I’m crazy about her blog, even though I was pretty sure she would think I was a random creeper 😉 I hope you enjoy her post and take the chance to check out her amazing blog <3 xoxo


If you are reading this blog you obviously love fitness (or delicious recipes and pictures of the cutest baby ever).  When it comes to exercise there are a lot of HIGHS and a lot of LOWS.  The highs are easy, we continue to exercise and we feel like we are the It is the during the lows where we struggle to keep positive about exercise and stick to it.

One of my all-time favorite quotes that can apply to fitness setbacks and how we have the choice to overcome them is by Martin Seligman:

“My definition of optimism is simply the belief that setbacks are normal and can be overcome by your own actions.”

It is common to think that YOU are the only one that experiences fitness plateaus and setbacks but in reality we all struggle with these at different times throughout our training.  I wanted to talk about 3 of the fitness setbacks I have experienced and how I overcame them (hopefully you can help me out in the comments with more ways to overcome different fitness setbacks).

Setback #1:  Injuries.  I love running so stinking much but a lot of times it doesn’t love me back.  I have had everything from Plantar Fasciitis to Femoral stress fractures.  Injuries are huge setbacks in terms of fitness both physically and mentally.

(I know, I know, I am amazed that Gina didn’t have me write a guest post for her fashion page with outfits like this one)

How to overcome an injury setback?

-Something that really helped me was reading about other athletes that had injuries and came back better than ever.  Almost every elite athlete has gone through some type of serious injury.  They allowed their body to recover, learned from their injury and came back stronger and more determined.  It is so helpful to learn about people that have gone through what you have and then overcame it.

-Talk to other fitness freaks that understand.  Most people in the world are not going to understand why you are so sad that you can’t get up before it is light out to hit the pavement anymore because you are injured.   Talk or vent to people that truly love fitness as much as you do and can be sympathetic.

-Find other passions.  If you have always gone to spin classes for your work outs but you are having a knee problem then try out swimming or something else that you can do without pain.  Don’t give up.  If an injury prevents you from doing your favorite activity then get out of your comfort zone and try something new.

Getting into swimming was definitely out of my comfort zone when I was injured and posting pictures like this REALLY get me out of my comfort zone:

Setback #2:  Burn-out.   You are mentally and physically spent.  You are tired, your stress levels are high and you are dreading your workouts.

-Sometimes our body is screaming to us that we need a break.   Listen to your body and take a break, your fitness level will not go down over night.   Every now and then you have to just lay on the floor, eat chocolate cake and relax.

-If you are mentally bored with your workouts then it is time switch it up.  I find that getting outside to work out, making a new playlist, setting new goals and working out with a friend helps me with mental burn-out.  I also like to force my husband to come run with me while I do awkward poses.

Setback #3:  Life getting in the way of your fitness… Don’t bosses know that our workout is much more important than some silly deadline?

-I was a teacher for the last 3 years and so during the school year I would wake up at 5 to get my workout in because I knew that was the only time I could run.  You have to make fitness a priority because I swear life just gets busier and busier.

-Sometimes life really does get too busy for you to do your normal workout.  Sometimes somebody needs you to be there for them and that is way more important than getting your sweat on.  That is okay. Don’t worry because running/working out will ALWAYS be there for you when you are ready to come back to it.


What fitness setbacks have you had and how did you overcome them?

Check in by leaving a comment when you finish Workout 4! How did it go?

Week 4 check in

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  1. Racheal @ Running with Racheal on July 2, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    Two of my favorite blogs combined! Love it! 🙂

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:35 pm

      Thanks so much Racheal!

  2. Claire @ Live and Love to Eat on July 2, 2012 at 12:31 pm

    Great guest post – Janae is amazing and is going to have equally adorable baby! I had a torn tendon in my ankle last year and am currently fighting with IT band syndrome on and off – great advice though!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:35 pm

      Thanks Claire:) TORN TENDON…OUCH!! Billy feels your pain with your IT band, not fun!! Keep me updated with how you are doing!

  3. Jess on July 2, 2012 at 12:35 pm

    Great post! And great pic of you in your swim wear! haha

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:36 pm

      Thanks so much Jess, it is my husbands favorite picture of me;)

  4. Katherine @ The Fit Lady Sings on July 2, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    Thanks for the guest post, Janae! I usually get in a rut when I finish an event I’ve been training for… it always takes me a while to figure out what the heck I want to do after that, and I’m just unfocused and unproductive for a while. I either try a new class/workout plan or sign up for a new event!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:37 pm

      Thank you Katherine! I am the exact same way after I finish a race that I have been training hard for, I lose motivation but once I make a new goal I get that motivation back!

  5. Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed on July 2, 2012 at 12:56 pm

    Haha! Love the pics 🙂 I had a couple of times during my half training when I had some pain and I thought I was going to get seriously injured, so I just took a few weeks off. It’s always frustrating, but it really worked out for me in the long run. I also love lifting weights, so I’d work on my arms when my legs needed a break!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:38 pm

      Thanks Amber! GOOD call on taking a few weeks off, you are smart. Better to play it safe than being forced to take a few months off. Teach me to love lifting weights:)

  6. Mollie on July 2, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    I LOVE this post! I needed to read it more than ever. I have been battling a knee injury for almost TWO months now. NOBODY gets it except those who share the passion for working out like me-so nice to hear someone else say that. How did you get into swimming? I have tried the pool a few times and am struggling-I need to get over it and just do it. Any advice? Any good workouts to suggest? Thanks so much!!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:41 pm

      HEY MOLLIE! I am so sorry that you are struggling with a knee injury. Non fitness freaks don’t understand that TWO MONTHS feels like forever to us when we can’t work out. I didn’t know a thing about swimming before I started so I just kind of went for it (ps underwater headphones are the greatest things in the world and will allow you to not get bored as fast). I used this website to help put together workouts. Hope this helps!

      Good luck and keep me updated with how you are doing.

  7. Suz on July 2, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    Thanks for the post Janae, this is totally what I needed to hear today. Some renovations at my house have derailed my workout schedule for the past month, and I feel so guilty about it. You are right – the workouts and classes will be there when I return!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:42 pm

      HEY SUZ! You are welcome. Exciting about new renovations:) Yep, those classes will be there for you when life slows down and your body will be more ready than ever to get in a killer workout!

  8. Irene on July 2, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    Yay, two of my favorite bloggers are blog friends! Janae, your blog really helped me get through 6 months of recovering from a nagging knee injury! I wish I had tried harder to keep up my fitness during that time, because it is so hard now. I’m crazy weak. But it is coming back and I vow I’ll be stronger than ever some day!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:43 pm

      HEY IRENE! Thank you so much for your comment. 6 MONTHS for a knee poor thing. Way to get through it and you WILL be stronger than ever and more thankful than ever for your workouts.

  9. Annette @ FitnessPerks on July 2, 2012 at 2:23 pm

    I JUST met Janae on Saturday!! She’s awesome 🙂

    THis is so true–that mindset does matter during injury time! Great post!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:43 pm

      I just met you on Saturday and YOU are awesome:) Hope you are having a great day!

  10. Talia @ Bite Size Wellness on July 2, 2012 at 3:01 pm

    #3 makes me laugh! Whoever set the rules that a work day had to be 8 hours in A ROW is ridiculous! Why can’t we just work out midday and then come and finish up? Boo!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:44 pm

      Seriously! WHY….8 hours is 7 hours too many:) I used to get so jealous of friends that had super long lunch breaks and could work out during the day! Hope you are having an amazing Monday!

  11. Amanda on July 2, 2012 at 4:04 pm

    Yay a new blog to read! Making working out a priority is tough and something I’m struggling with right now. I have a four month old and a 15 month old and life literally is crazy with my Husbands work schedule so I’m all over those excuses for not working out.

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:45 pm

      HEY AMANDA!! Oh girl, you are incredible to have a 4 month old AND a 15 month old and having a busy husband. I will be coming to you for advice in August when I have my baby:)

  12. Elle on July 2, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    Great post! As an ex-ballerina I’ve dealt with a lot of injuries in my life time.

    Oye there is no way I’m making it to the gym today. I just calculated it and I’ve spent over 24 hours driving in the last week..Just got back from a 9 hour clinical shift at the nursing home and I’m in dire need of a nap. I’m doing todays workout tomorrow, tuesdays on wednesday and picking the week up from there. So sad this is the last week of the shape up, its been so much fun!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:46 pm

      Hey Elle. I bet you have had to deal with a ton of injuries in your life. 24 hours of DRIVING, you poor thing! Hope you have an amazing workout tomorrow!

  13. Mandy M on July 2, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    Great post! Thanks for that.
    Speaking of taking time off workout out, I just skipped all last week for vacation. I was really freaked out at first, but guess what, I didn’t die! Anyhow, got in SSU workout 4 today, and it was rough. Those walking plank combo things were way harder than I thought they would be. Did two rounds of tabata along with it and I am through for the day.

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:50 pm

      Thanks so much Mandy! I am so happy you gave yourself a break while on vacation, good for you! Way to do Gina’s killer workout today!

    • Fitnessista on July 2, 2012 at 11:11 pm

      whoo hoo!
      haha and you’re right, it’s amazing how life goes on when you get a break- and you can get back into things refreshed and rejuvenated 🙂 I’m so happy you liked the workout!

  14. Meghan @ After the Ivy League on July 2, 2012 at 5:29 pm

    Great post! I’ve been struggling a lot lately with number 3. During the summer my friends and family always are making plans to hang out and always suggesting fun things to do during my normal workout time. It makes it really difficult to stay dedicated to hitting the gym when everyone around you is skipping workouts to head to trivia night or some other hot spot. Working out in the morning seems to be the only way around it!

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:49 pm

      HEY MEGHAN! Summer time really can be so hard to stay dedicated to your workouts. Winter can be a lot easier because everyone is boring and doesn’t want to go outside ha. You can do it and I agree, getting up early seems to work best for me too!

  15. Ellie @ healthy belly ellie on July 2, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    Great POST! A fitness set back of mine had been physical and mental burn out! As much as I thought I needed to go to the gym, I just physically or mentally could not put my energy into it. It was frustrating at first, but I just took a few days to recenter myself and regain my inner and outer energy – then I felt like it was right to go back and hit the gym. It’s hard though sometimes to listen to your body when your brain tells you something else. But I know that my body is pretty darn right most of the time! 🙂

    • Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:47 pm

      Hey Ellie! I love that you actually listened to your body and realized you needed a break. You are a smart girl!

  16. Janae@hungryrunnergirl on July 2, 2012 at 6:34 pm

    THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR HAVING ME GINA!! I hope you and your beautiful family are having an amazing time in San Diego!!

    • Fitnessista on July 2, 2012 at 11:10 pm

      thank you again for posting, lovely friend! xoxo

  17. Graham on July 2, 2012 at 7:29 pm

    Great post!! You are so right, injury is one of the worst things to overcome mentally!!

  18. Katie @ Talk Less, Say More on July 2, 2012 at 7:43 pm

    I recently had something called Costochondritis which is basically inflammation of the cartilage in your chest that causes chest and spinal pain. It was pretty awful but thankfully I only had to take a little over a week off from exercise. Before that it was pain from female related issues that required surgery. Hopefully I’m on the up and up now! 🙂

  19. Holly on July 2, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    My favorite runner lady! Loved your guest post…and right now I would actually just like to lie on the floor & eat chocolate cake. I think my little lady would like that VERY much 😉

    • Fitnessista on July 2, 2012 at 11:10 pm

      haha that’s the first thing i thought when i saw that pic, too. i was like “hmm, i want to eat cake and lay on the floor now” 😉

  20. Rachel C on July 2, 2012 at 8:20 pm

    I did my HIIT workout today. I tried the Turkey Treadmill workout (under the Fitness tab) and it was a great workout. I can’t wait to try Workout 4 tomorrow!

    • Fitnessista on July 2, 2012 at 11:08 pm

      definitely let me know how it goes!

  21. Natalie Rae on July 2, 2012 at 8:31 pm

    Finished wk out 4! Holy feelin’ it in the tush- Did froggy countdown and pilates swim for the abs part 🙂 Wish I could have HIIT with baby today but the heat outside was killer!

    • Fitnessista on July 2, 2012 at 11:08 pm

      AMAZING job!!

  22. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on July 2, 2012 at 8:44 pm

    Great post! I’ve definitely struggled with the last one. It’s so easy to find time to workout when I’m at school, but when I’m on summer break and working at a job, it can be really hard to fit it in. Last summer I worked from 9-6 on four days a week, so I only exercised on the other 3 days. I was used to working out 5x a week before that, so it was a weird change, but I learned that cutting back on exercise wouldn’t kill me!

  23. Lindsay @ prettylittleparadise on July 2, 2012 at 8:53 pm

    gina & janae, i love you both oh so much!! my top two favorite bloggers, no question!! i am also a teacher and training for my first marathon (and half marathon) and i love how you mentioned both time and burnout… i know that both of those things are going to be obstacles for me in the next few months and it’s just nice to know that everybody deals with these things!! now with the summer off, it’s more the heat that is taking up my running time and making me wake up early to get out there and run… me and mr sunrise will be doing some serious bonding 🙂

  24. Mallory on July 2, 2012 at 8:58 pm

    It’s my 2 favorite blogs! I feel like my 2 besties were just like “hey we’re friends too!” haha. I love this post so much though. I have only been for about a year and am just coming out of my first bout of “maybe I can’t/don’t want to do this forever” after some minor injuries. Your blog really helps me keep going though because it makes me realize I run to ENJOY myself!

    • Fitnessista on July 2, 2012 at 11:07 pm


  25. Diana on July 2, 2012 at 9:16 pm

    AHH a wonderful hybrid of two of my favorite blogs! Janae’s outlook on life and dedication to running (and race times!) are so inspiring – this post just encapsulates that!

  26. Kate @katemovingforward on July 2, 2012 at 9:21 pm

    I definitely face burnout and real life getting in the way of fitness! When I’m feeling burned out I cut myself some slack and go for chilled out walks. And family time is definitely a must–I just try to convince my family to work out with me! Haha!
    Also this evening I rode my bike over to the library (20 minutes) and just worked my butt off in workout 4!! That was tough! I’m riding high on endorphins! Lol!

  27. Amanda on July 2, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    hi Janae! (and thanks, Gina for introducing me to yet another awesome blog – gah, so many to read! hehe) Love the post and can definitely relate (on all fronts except the swimming – I’m a runner and swimming is TOUGH for me). Anyway…for me, when I’m in a rut or injured I do whatever I can to make whatever I do F.U.N.! It’s really really easy for me to get caught up in numbers, distance, etc etc and totally forget to have fun and enjoy what I’m doing (usually running or biking). Sometimes, I just say screw it, I’m going for a nice long walk with my ipod, madonna, JT, rihanna blaring and get my groove on. Eventually, I’ll start to miss [enter exercise of choice here] and will return to it, rearin to go!

  28. Jessica on July 2, 2012 at 11:08 pm

    Thank you do much for this post. It was exactly what I needed to hear.

    Last January I was given an ultimatum by my doc. Take the month off and rest or suffer a stress fracture. I had stress reactions in both legs. I stuck to low impact cardio and came back better then ever setting new personal bests and reaching milestones I only dreamed about. It was hard but I just kept saying its only 30 days of my life. I can do it.

  29. Jess on July 2, 2012 at 11:44 pm

    I hear you on the injury setback front. I have had oh so many- including major back surgery! Swimming is a godsend when you are injured. Switching things up and taking breaks- lying on the floor eating cake are all important when training to help avoid injuries! 🙂

  30. Amy on July 3, 2012 at 11:18 am

    Workout 4 was a tough one!! The plank walk and plank jacks kicked my butt. I had to cut the HIIT short because of reason #3 above – had to get back to work 🙁

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