Interview with a Runner

We met this week's runner, Roxane Bennett, during an RRCA training course in Portland this fall. Now she kicks our butt in her Full Tilt Cycling and Pyrolates classes at Firebrand Sports. Roxanne is a native New Yorker living in Portland, OR since July 2013. Her husband of almost 22 years is active duty Air Force while she is a certified personal trainer, RRCA certified running coach and group exercise instructor and the Studio Manager at Firebrand Sports in downtown Portland. Roxane loves to travel, read, drink wine and barbecue - and run!

When did you start running?
I started running track in Jr. High because I thought it would be fun. I competed in the 100M & 400M hurdles, 4x100 Relay, 200M and discus over the course of my high school career.

Who or what inspires you to run?
My husband inspired me to run my first road race back in 1995. It was a 10K. I’ve never looked back.

What is your favorite running route? Why?
Behind Camelsback Park in Boise, Idaho is my favorite place to run because it’s off road, has rolling hills and is quiet. I make a point of hitting the trail every time I’m in town.

Favorite post-run meal?
Homemade protein smoothie with spinach, banana, strawberries, blueberries, almond butter, apple juice and protein powder. YUM!!

Best piece of running advice?
The first time I ran Robie Creek in Boise, ID I was about a half mile from the top of the hill when an older gentleman looked over and told me it would be faster for me to walk than to keep trying to run to the top. He was right and I’ll be thinking about that Easter weekend when I run it again with my husband, sister and brother in-law.

Are you running for fun or sport?
I run for both. I enjoy running, but I also enjoy competing in various distance races as well as triathlons.

Favorite way to sweat other than run? 
Spinning and Pyrolates (Megaformer). I teach and take both. I love how the classes push me to kick my own ass!

Strength Move of the Week: Pyrolates at Firebrand Sports

Holy cow! Last night I took one of the harder strength classes I have ever been to. It's called Pyrolates at Firebrand Sports in Portland, OR. The name actually explains it all. It felt like my entire body was burning most of the time, but in a controlled, Pilates-like fashion that's safe, effective and insanely hard! Normally, I am not a fan of burn until you die workouts, but this class is an exception. 

Picture from Firebrand Sports' website of its Pyrolates class

Portlanders, if you're looking for a strength class that gets results, I HIGHLY recommend checking out Firebrand's Pyrolates class. Like most Pilates workouts, this class is especially great for runners because it targets hip stabilizers and abdominals in a way that will seriously benefit your running form and running strenght. Not to mention, a glute, hamstring and quad workout that crushed me the second half of class. Legs and core are happy, but very spent.

When you do show up for your first class, don't be shy about modifications - the instructor in my class was amazing at providing them on both ends of the spectrum.  Here's the machine that you use for this class. It reminds me of a reformer on steroids.

A word of caution for any runner: don't plan a hard running workout for the day after one of these classes. You're going to need a recovery run day.