Move It Monday | Running Outdoors Part 1

Marathon Male Runner's Legs Outdoor running forms Younfolded blog

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous down here in South Florida so I finally set time aside to exercise outdoors.

It has been over 1 year since I have gone for a run on the pavement and it was a little grueling, but it felt so good!

There are various ways to change up your running to make the most out of the exercise and to keep it exciting.

Let’s run this week! (Don’t let it run you)

Day 1

Many experts do not recommend stretching before a run, however they all highly recommend warming up to reduce the risk of injury.

The following is a warm up I always turn to prior to getting out there:

For my first day of running I was a bit ambitious and started with an interval run. Interval runs involve alternating between a short, intense pace and then an equal or slightly, longer time with a recovery pace.

For example, I did equal intervals of 1 minute running followed by 1 minute of jogging. I did a total of 14 minutes, which equaled to 1.36 miles for me.

The most popular work-to-rest interval ratio is 1:2, where your rest period is twice as long as the work period until you can either decrease your rest period or increase your work period as you build endurance.

According to Runner’s World, interval running helps to improve “running form and economy, endurance, mind-body coordination, motivation, and fat-burning”.

I always follow with a stretch to reduce tension in the muscles and this is one of the videos I use:

Day 2

I like to give myself at least a day in between runs to allow my muscles some recovery time. During days of “rest” I like to either cross train or stretch.

I was very sore from running because I have not been out there in a while so I decided to go with the following stretches:

Blogilates Stretch Project on Pinterest Younfolded blog

I held each stretch for 20-30 seconds and actually worked up a sweat with these!

Day 3

Today I decided to do fartleks (yea I laugh every time LOL). Fartlek is Swedish for “speed play” and let me start off by saying this is not for the faint of heart!

Fartleks are where you alternate between various speeds and distances and it is unstructured compared to interval running. I used light posts, street signs, and trees, as my cues to either start running, sprinting, jogging, or walking.

The goal with fartleks “is to keep it free-flowing so you’re untethered to the watch or a plan, and to run at harder efforts but not a specific pace.

I did 2.13 miles in 25 minutes with 47 seconds, which is a lot slower than my interval run from day 1. The various speeds had my heart pumping really hard and the unstructured method really increased the intensity for me.

Unfortunately, I got stomach cramps towards the end of the first mile and really slowed down the pace during the second mile. I also walked for 1 mile after my 2 miles of work just to get my heart rate steady and to cool down.

It is very important to pay attention to our own body and decrease the intensity if needed. There is no shame in slowing down because the fact is that you are still moving it!

The benefits of fartleks include improved “mind-body awareness, mental strength, and stamina.

Make sure to stretch afterwards:

Try to hold each stretch for at least 20-30 seconds and making sure to keep breathing.

Let’s get the Move It Monday party running! Here is how you can join the fun:

  1. Introduce yourself and link a Move It Monday related post, e-book, or giveaway in the Thoughts section below. Must be fitness-related and it may include pre workout and post workout recipes, exercise tips, workout sequences, etc. Please do not link to your homepage.
  2. Don’t link and run! Check out at least 2 other links listed in the Thoughts section below and comment on their respective blogs to spread the encouragement.
  3. You may link back, reblog and/or share the link to party with others every Monday to keep us all motivated and continue on the road to great health! Plus, the more you share the more exposure you get for your blog 😉
  4. Party starts from the moment the Move It Monday post is up until Thursday 11:59 PM EST of that same week.
  5. You may follow and/or Subscribe to YOUnfolded to be a part of the party every week:





*All links are subject to approval and may be deleted if not deemed appropriate or if rules are not followed.

Each Monday I will feature a blog, blogger, and/or post to help keep us moving!

Featured Blog

Fix is a lifestyle blog that provides expert information on a wide range of topics, including health and exercise, amongst other things.

The following is an awesome infographic for runners, like myself, that do not have beautiful scenic trails and mountains in their surroundings.

Click here to access the full article and check out more from Fix.


What is your experience with these different forms of running?

Much Love,


About Yentl 184 Articles
Welcome, Beautiful! I'm Yentl. A holistic dietitian & inner beauty coach dedicated to inspire you to live your passions, love yourself & others, and savor the journey along with deliciously nourishing treats for the ride...

24 Comments on Move It Monday | Running Outdoors Part 1

    • I am so glad to hear that the post helped you:) It had been a while for me as well so starting off slowly, with a shorter time and distance as well, helped my motivation and to ease back into it. Hope you have a great and safe first run back!

      • Hi Nena (and all you other runners): Be aware that comments like this…

        According to Runner’s World, interval running helps to improve “running form and economy, endurance, mind-body coordination, motivation, and fat-burning”.

        … are very misleading. RW is stating the truth, but not the whole truth. Intervals will do all those things however, so will long distance runs at an easy pace (known as “Easy Mileage” runs). In fact Intervals (Speed work) is not very efficient at burning fat! Long “Easy Mileage” is!

        Intervals can be fun and serve a purpose in that context however, Intervals are designed to create a peak performance at a designated race. If you were consistently following a solid program of Intervals, then your performance would increase up to around 12 weeks, and would then plateau or fall off.

        One normally establishes a specific race as a goal, and then starts interval workouts 12 weeks prior to the race date. 🙂

        • Thank you for the clarification, Colin! It helps a lot to make sure we have the right info and understand our exercises better to achieve any goals we may have.

    • Hi Lori – Just remember that the hardest part of any run (especially in inclement weather), is getting through your front door. Once you have overcome the front door challenge, the rest of your run will be fine! 🙂

      • Not a problem. Running, like life in general, is rarely a “black and white” situation. There are so many variables, a major one simply being the person doing the running. What “build” are they? What condition are they in? Do they have a running background? How old are they? What are their goals? Any medical conditions to consider? etc. etc. etc.

        If approached intelligently however, it can be such a rewarding experience. I cannot remember how many problems I solved, or potential solutions that came to mind, during a long run. I also loved the time “with just me”.

        There is a very interesting saying in running “circles” – “Put the miles in now, and the speed will come later.” It’s good to keep that in mind.

    • LOL You’re not alone! I laugh every time I see it. When I told my husband I was going to do a fartlek run his expression was priceless!!

  1. Hi Nena – As a certified running coach, I want to expand on your comment about pre-run stretching. The generally accepted “don’t stretch” before a run is simply based on two factors – 1. cold muscles do not stretch too well. 2. many runners are idiots.

    I do stretch before every run but then I stretch very gently (especially my lower back). It gives my warm up period a head start!

    Ballistic stretching (when you “bounce” on a muscle to stretch it) is not generally recommended under any circumstances now, but “bouncing” a cold muscle is a recipe for disaster. This is simply because if you “bounce” a muscle beyond its limit of flexibility at that time, then it will be damaged before you can stop the motion.

    I would also recommend that once your running muscles have warmed up, then you stop and do a thorough stretch of all of them before continuing. As in every active sport, flexibility is everything!

    Keep running… and smiling.

    • Yes, you are a absolutely right! Thank you for providing the very much needed tips on properly warming up and stretching. “Many runners are idiots” lol! Unfortunately, there is so much wrong info out there about exercise in general that it leads to people doing some very idiotic things without realizing.
      That’s awesome that you are a certified running coach! I appreciate all the extra information that would be extremely helpful for our readers:)

      • Then note that when stretching those quads, do not grab your left foot with your left hand, but rather use opposites (left foot with right hand etc). Pulling “through” your knee in a straight line is contrary to how your knee pivots. You may well get away with pulling straight through but, if you ever seek medical help for a knee problem, the first thing they’ll probably tell you to do is use opposite hand – foot connection. Your knees will thank you for it! 🙂

        • That’s really great to know especially since most workout videos have the same leg-same hand concept. I would switch around just because opposites felt better but didn’t know there was a really good reason behind it. Awesome??


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