At Prehab, our passion is working with runners and athletes to help them achieve their goals and stay injury-free doing it. Today, we’re shining our spotlight on Sharon Armstrong, aka The Pineapple Yogi.
Sharon and her fiance, running coach Kai Ng, joined the Prehab family of runners last fall. She’s been working with our team to improve her performance and prevent injury as she kicks up for her Boston Marathon training. With the race coming up on April 15th, we’re helping Sharon through our Running Analysis, Air Recovery Boots, targeted strength training, and more so that she can bring her best to Boston.
Between yoga retreats and training runs, Sharon took the time to share more about herself as this month’s athlete in our Spotlight:
Annie: Where are you from, and how did you wind up in New York City?
Sharon: I’m from upstate – Albany, NY. I spent a phase of my life living in the Caribbean in St. John US Virgin Islands, and after living on a remote island with a 4,000 person population, I realized I was ready for something different. That led to my desire to immerse myself in the polar opposite of remote – moving to the Big Apple! I moved here to focus on growing my health and fitness career.
Annie: Did you always want to be an athlete?
Running 45 or so miles per week!
Sharon: No, but I always cared about my health and fitness, and I started to really focus on it about 10 years ago. I used it as a way to be productive and do something good for myself while also releasing stress. I never actually truly considered myself an athlete, more so just someone who worked hard and therefore was able to see rewarding results.
Annie: What’s the next big goal you’re chasing in your sport?
Sharon: For running, it is running the Boston Marathon this April and PR’ing. I’m aiming for a 3:20 marathon. After that, my goal is to do a Tri, which I’ll absolutely have to get into a swimming regimen for, as living in NYC it isn’t as easy to just swim. And doing a press handstand/holding a handstand for 1 minute or longer can be considered a goal…I never really time mine but…that’s definitely a goal!
Annie: Who are your inspirations and role models?
Sharon: So many – it depends on the sport. Instagram is always feeding my soul with inspirations and motivation. For running I find constant inspiration from Stephanie Bruce, Olymian Brenda Martinez, Karina Elle, Bethany Myers. For yoga: Erin Kelly Art, Tamar Levi, and Morgan Tyler. Also my fiancé, Kai (Coach Kai) is a running master. He is always inspiring me and showing me how to believe in myself. Sounds biased (it is) but it’s still true!
Annie: What are the biggest obstacles you’ve had to overcome on your journey to peak performance?
Sharon: Mental strength. Learning the power of my mind and mindset has been the biggest thing for my all around.
And as of recently, leaning that my body isn’t perfect and that it, too, will fatigue, causing troubled areas in my hips and aches and pains that I didn’t have until just recently. This is an eye opening, humbling experience. Overcoming those challenges when my body physically has aches and pains, pushing through and doing so safely are the things I am working on today!
Annie: What does an average week of training look like for you?
Sharon: As of right now? Training for the Boston Marathon looks like this right now—:)
Mondays- Rest Day
Tuesdays- Speed work (or hill repeats) + Yoga
Wednesdays- Recovery Run
Friday-Speed work #2 with higher mileage
Saturday-Rest Day + Yoga
Sunday- Long Run (14-22 miles
Physical Therapy 1x per week and on my own once or twice (if i’m really disciplined!)
Because I am in peak training times here, my strength training and yoga has taken a backseat to accommodate for all of the running and time needed for that!
When not training for a marathon, my focus is strength training, aka lifting heavy! Yes – heavy! Getting strong(er). And focusing on yoga, which is my passion and first love (sorry to my fiancé).
Annie: Where is your favorite place to run?
Sharon: In nature or parks! Brooklyn Bridge Pier is a favorite also, due to proximity and views/terrain!
Annie: What are your most important off-the-track habits, and have you added any new ones since working with Prehab?
Sharon: SLEEP, fueling with proper nutrition (and enough of it!!), staying hydrated, and giving myself true proper rest. Meditation really helps me stay focused and build mental clarity and strength. Also taking time and creating more patience by incorporating the tools Prehab has given me to maintain my health!
Annie: What is the most helpful tip or insight you’ve learned by working with Prehab?
Sharon: I think it’s all about creating habits. I really have enjoyed how Prehab focuses on runner specific things. Their knowledge is beyond helpful and I am grateful to have them as my PT’s!
Annie: How would you describe the Prehab team?
Sharon: Amazing! Professional yet personal, knowledgeable and super helpful for athletes.
Annie: What are your favorite pre and post race meals?
Sharon: Pre race-usually races are super early. I am a breakfast person and need a full meal before racing. Classic American breakfast if I could pick it! (doesn’t typically happen BUT!)
Post race – Smoothies! I devour them every time, my body craves the hydration!
Annie: What’s your favorite movie?
Sharon: I don’t really watch TV or movies….if I had to pick one it’s likely Wedding Crashers?
Annie: Who is singer or band?
Sharon: This is always changing every few years – right now I’m digging R3hab in any song!
Annie: What’s your favorite sports team?
Sharon: Don’t have one!