I call Joy my “running mom.” She is my second mother when it comes to all things health and wellness. Since the very beginning of my running career Joy has always looked after me, inspired me and been a role model for me. And it just so happens that she is my best friend’s mother. My first memory of Joy was when I slept over at her Manhattan apartment. I was around 17 years old and had just begun running and that night we spoke briefly about it. The next morning I woke up at around 8 am to find that Joy had just finished a 15 mile run, had showered and was ready to head to a Knicks game with her husband. I was in total awe of her discipline, her strength, and her passion for running. Joy has been running for years and years and has so much knowledge to share.
When I was 18 I decided to bake healthy vegan desserts and sell them locally to my cousins and their friends as a kind of pseudo-summer job that I would also enjoy. Once Joy got wind of my new little business she became my number one supporter and customer. Joy would order every week and encourage me to make and try new recipes. She would give my desserts out to her running friends and genuinely wanted to share what I was doing with the running community in New York. Joy’s name says it all. She truly brings joy to all those she meets. It is my honor to feature on my blog as she just created her own beautiful website called thejoyfulapproach.com is a great resource for runners or anyone interested in health and wellness. Take a lesson from Joy – with 15 years of running under her belt and a holistic lifestyle to boot, we can all learn a thing or two from Joy’s everyday life.
My name is Joy Dushey. I’m a certified holistic lifestyle coach, a mom, and a passionate distance runner.. I was always athletic in nature but after I suffered a stroke 15 years ago, I took up distance running for empowerment and fell in love with the sport. My favorite distance is the marathon in which I have a PR OF 3:08 (I PRed at the age of 40! just a reminder to never limit yourself because of your age), Half marathon of 1:29 and 5k 19:30. These days I’m more concerned with the longevity of running/fitness and staying injury free but I like the idea of keeping a goal somewhere in reach.
I am a big believer in dedication and continuity while embarking on a holistic path .. I don’t believe in “diets” nor any fast fixes, yet I believe in living a “whole” life means day in and day out doing your best, eating whole foods, exercise, recovery and finding the balance that works best for you without comparison to others.
Whether I’m competing or not,my routine never lacks dedication and I try to keep my fitness maintained always. I run an average of 70-75 miles per week throughout the year, and strength train twice a week.
6:00 am Wake Up
Make coffee and prepare Breakfast. I start my day with a glass of cold water with lemon. I use natural fruits and high quality salt and honey as natural sources of electrolytes.
I can’t live without my morning cup of coffee. I use organic coffee, in a large mug with two tablespoons of whole milk and Vanilla Stevia. Along with my coffee I have a bowl of gluten free cereal and almond milk or Gluten free oatmeal and berries and half of a banana with organic honey drizzled on top.
As I’m having my breakfast, I do some journal writing. I started making two columns in my journal entries, one where I list gratitude (a few things I feel grateful for) and in the other column, my intentions for the day. I do some work for my website TheJoyfulapproach.com I write my own content and since the morning is a time I feel my most creative, I like to spend some time writing in the morning.7:00 am stretch,warm up,hydrate
I no longer wake up and run out the door….
After years of injuries with running distance, I learned the importance and value in taking my time to stretch and warm up properly, and hydrate enough to support endurance during running.
I prepare about 20 oz. of water with Nuun Energy for added caffeine and sip it while I’m doing my stretches and warm up.I do a short sequence of yoga poses and stretches that are specific for my running. Hip openers and Psoas openers are key for me.
Once I feel more open, I do a quick core and Glute activation. This is really important because its teaching the body to use the core and Glute muscles when running rather to compensate from other muscles that will eventually weaken and could be prone to injury. I do 2-3 sets of planks and side planks, Glute bridges, alternating lunges making sure I’m in good form and leg swings.
I feel fortunate to have learned from the best of chiropractors, Pt’s and trainers throughout my years in running about my mechanics, the way my body is built and restricted. I try to be mindful about what my body needs as far as mobility, activation and strength to compliment the demand I put on my body with running. Tuning in to the body and keeping the connection of mind body spirit has also been something vital with my maturity in the sport.
8:00 am 10 miles easy
I run most of my miles in Central park and try and take advantage of the softer surfaces and trail. I listen to music occasionally (my husband d-jays as a hobby and has over the top playlists drlovemusic on sound cloud) otherwise there is nothing I love more than to hear the sound of my feet hitting the dirt and the rhythm I get into with my running.Post run
Quick stretch/foam roll and have a protein shake I make from coconut water berries half of a banana and Vega vanilla proteinI download my Garmin to Strava and am now enjoying the new feature where it tracks my heart rate without wearing a strap, so that I can make sure I’m recovered for tomorrows Fartlek workout.
30 minute meditation
Meditation has been one of the best things Ive done for myself ..I used to suffer from anxiety which led to insomnia. Its helped me so much with all aspects of my life and definitely feel so much more ease and enjoyment in my running.
Lunch with my daughters: My daughters are 22 and 18. They’re both at school downtown but since they both have ample time for a lunch break they come home and I prepared lunch to have catch up time with one another.Both my daughter’s are active and incorporate running into their exercise regime but they enjoy more variety such as barre classes and pilates spinning and dance.They are very conscious about their diets but like me, we LOVE food.
Yoga at Yoga Maya : I try to get to a yoga class 2-3 times a week. I enjoy Vinyasa flow and classes that are complimentary to running without anything too strenuous or “fancy”5:30 snack /hydrate snack would be something like fruit or date/nut ball. Hydration : I try to have at least 2-2.5 liters of water with electrolytes a day)
Work ..Continuing workout entries or answering emails etc../ or relaxation depending how I feel.
7:00 dinner : Sushi .. Sushi is my favorite meal especially the night before a workout or a long run.. My theory is the ratio of rice to protein is perfect for the carb/protein ratio we need for hard workouts and long runs. Ill either do 3 rolls or if I go to a really high quality restaurant I’ll order Omakase which means its the chef’s choice of 10 pieces and a few hand rolls. I normally order a green salad for fiber before hand and a glass of white wine.
8:30 light snack treat ; I stay away from processed or packaged foods so typically my snacks are raw truffles or date balls/bars banana/oatmeal cookies…..
Read /Answer emails/
10:00 bedtime.. Getting to bed before 10:30 has been one of the best habits Ive incorporated many years ago. Our body needs to rest and recover and especially for athletes putting demand on our bodies and wanting to preform and recover properly.