Hey everyone, Trish and Toby here. This month we've created a guide to our best seasonal articles to help you maintain a healthy lifestyle throughout the holidays. No matter what your active passion may be, we've got you covered.
With holiday feasts right around the corner and weather that can diminish our motivation to train, it is not uncommon to pack on a few extra pounds this time of year. Active Expert Charles Stuart Platkin’s article, The Diet Detective: Fall Into Healthy Eating Habits, offers valuable tips for maintaining fitness without a compromise in performance at winter races and ensures a return to peak form in the spring.
Have you ever heard the saying, “athletes are made in the off season”? Now's the time to target your weaknesses and build proper technique and habits to lead into a successful racing season. Check out Boost Your Endurance in 7 Simple Steps and get the most from your off-season training.
Basketball season is upon us and it’s time for fundamental workouts with and without the basketball. Mississippi State basketball coach, Sharon Fanning, shares a 45-minute Workout that will developing confidence, coordination, strength, timing, and stamina on the hardwood.
Indoor Climbing Gyms Offer Year-round Fun Fitness and a nice break from the treadmill and stationary bike routine. Don’t let the winter elements take you off belay—utilize indoor climbing gyms to build stamina and confidence in a controlled environment. When the weather warms enough to head outdoors, you’ll be in peak condition.
Activities of Interest:
Check out Sacramento Winter Softball Camp by Olympic gold medalists Tairia Flowers and Natasha Watleyto hone your softball skills at the plate and in the field. Focus will be on increasing offensive power, slapping techniques, defensive fundamentals and pitching development. This camp will also feature practice-structure tips and drills along with valuable college recruiting advice from the pros.
Take advantage of The Classic Y-100, one of the last century rides of the year on November 25 in Ormond Beach, Florida. Crank out 100 in this inaugural ride that promises a beautiful route leading north along the Intracoastal waterway through parks and along the Atlantic coast. This event features a great safe route for beginners as well as 65- and 35-mile routes.
Folks in Southern California have already begun to register for the 2008 Carlsbad Marathon and Half Marathon on January 20. This was Toby’s first half marathon back in 2006 and he recommends it for runners of all abilities because of the fast course and beautiful ocean view.
See your training bear fruit at the oldest Ironman-distance triathlon held in the continental United States. Check out one of five 2008 Vineman events: Ironman 70.3, full Vineman, sprint tri at sundown, women's half or Aquabike during this weekend-long triathlon celebration.
Hey everyone, Trish and Toby here. We’re firm believers that the active lifestyle involves more than just being physically active--it’s about being intellectually and socially active too. We compiled a list of 10 tips for being active in all areas of life. Because no matter what stage of life you are in, you should always strive to be the best version of yourself.
1. Maintain a positive mental outlook. There's a clear connection between living well and having a cheerful outlook on life. Research has found that people who think positively about life live an average of seven and a half years longer than negative thinkers.
2. Avoid processed food. Eating processed, boxed, canned and frozen meals guarantee that you are eating unnecessary chemicals, sodium, sugar and fat. Eat fresh, natural food and eliminate trans fat from your diet.
3. Reduce stress. We're so focused on being go-getters that we often forget to de-stress. Spend 30 minutes a day doing something you like--walk on the beach or in a park, read a book, visit a friend, play with your dog, listen to soothing music or watch a funny movie. Don't forget to take some time to focus on clearing your thoughts and giving your mind, body and spirit a chance to rejuvenate.
4. Invest in a quality pair of shoes and socks. Visit a specialty store that understands that every foot and foot strike is unique. When your feet are happy, so are you. Comfortable, supportive and well-fitting shoes and synthetic socks are worth the investment of time and money.
5. Socialize. Having a social network is important to the body, mind and spirit. People who are socially active tend to be healthier, happier and less likely to become depressed. To stay socially active, make a point of getting out of the house. Make plans with your friends to go out to lunch or better yet, make plans to exercise regularly with a friend or group of friends. Exercising with others is usually more fun than exercising on your own--and it can help you stick with your exercise program. Try joining our online community today!
6. Exercise your brain. The key to keeping your memory sharp is continuing to challenge it. Having a book on hand and discussing what you’ve read with friends or a book club is one way to keep your brain in good shape. Crosswords, Sudoku and puzzles are also excellent ways to keep your brain agile. There is always more learning to do. Find out what works for you.
7. Volunteer. Donating your time at an aid station during a race or soup kitchen over the holidays, puts life into perspective. Be thankful for all you have and give to others who are less fortunate.
8. Omit high fructose corn syrup from your diet. Widespread use of this highly modified sweetener is making us and our children unhealthy. High fructose corn syrup bypasses the digestive process and goes straight to the liver, where it gets turned into fat. Combined with the typical American high-fat diet, the result is increased danger of obesity, diabetes and heart disease. Try using honey as sweetener instead. As an added bonus, ingesting locally grown honey before allergy season helps your body acclimate to some pollen levels in advance.
9. Maintain close relationships. Make a point to strengthen ties with your family, friends and loved ones. Volunteer work, religious ties, even petsanything that keeps you involved with othersreduces stress and enhances health. Having a strong network of family and friends and a broad range of activities will support your health.
10. Give yoga a try. You’ll be amazed at the difference it makes when your body is limber and flexible. Plus, yoga reduces the chances of injury. Try a beginning yoga class to enjoy the wide range of benefits--your mind and body will both thank you.
Comments are encouraged--please share your tips for staying healthy and active with the rest of us.
I just read an amazing and inspiring story. The New York Times ran an article about Brian McKeever, a cross country skier who has his sights set on Olympic gold and who is also legally blind.
McKeever has had his share of success in his career, winning four cross-country skiing gold medals at the Paralympics so far. He made his debut with the Canadian team at this year's world Nordic skiing championships in Sapporo, Japan. This was a first step toward a goal of racing in the Olympic and the Paralympic Games when they both come to Vancouver, British Columbia, in 2010.
Brian's life changed abruptly after he raced in the world junior championships in 1998. He was 19 and noticed that he could no longer make out street signs. He was found to have Stargardt disease, an inherited degenerative condition that causes the loss of central vision. "In one semester at university, I went from being able to read everything from the back of a lecture hall for 400 people to moving to the front row and not being able to read a thing," McKeever said.
Still, McKeever continued to ski, with his brother serving as his guide. However, McKeever's first move toward reaching the Olympics in 2010 was qualifying for Canada's national team at races earlier this season and to do so required skiing without his brother as a guide.
In Sapporo, McKeever's best result was also the Canadian team's best showing. "From a skiing perspective, his goal for 2010 is completely realistic," said Dave Wood, the coach of the Canadian national team and McKeever's coach as a junior.
Levi Leipheimer repeated his winning performance from last year, leading an American sweep Sunday in the Amgen Tour of California prologue. Leipheimer, a three-time top-10 Tour de France finisher, completed the 1.9-mile primarily uphill circuit to Coit Tower on Telegraph Hill in 4 minutes, 49.05 seconds at an average speed of 23.994 mph.
Leipheimer will wear the race leader's jersey in the first stage today, a 97.1-mile road race from Sausalito to Santa Rosa.