EARN YOUR CANDY RUNNING/WALKING, THEN GIVE SOME TO OTHERS We usually overbuy candy for giving to Trick-or-Treaters on Halloween night. I am the one who selects and purchases the brands and sizes that we will have ready in a large bowl near the door. Every year we really, really, hope that there are lots of little ones that come by, with parents standing off a bit, holding flashlights.
And we enjoy the older kids who don’t need the company of moms or dads. They are more mercenary about the holiday and go to neighborhoods that will give up a large haul of candy. Each year a few teenagers will show up on the doorstep, without costumes, somewhat shy but also a little defiant. As if ready to proclaim they are not too old, but at the same eager to see what loot is being given out. We're so happy they still want to participate in this tradition.
That is why I buy the full or king-size candy. Snickers, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, KitKat Bars, Sweet-Tarts. I want us to get the reputation of being a top house for Trick-or-Treating. HOWEVER, the weather sometimes changes the habits of the parents and children. If a rainy and cold evening, everyone seems to pack into vans and head for high-density subdivisions. I just learned that now there are official ‘safe” trick or treat nights organized by some townships. Parents pull into a parking lot, open the hatch or trunk, and the kids go from car to car, collecting candy from people they know. Or the fire stations host a night for providing games and treats.
Which means there are fewer and fewer ghosts, witches, pirates, and princesses ringing our doorbell and going away with candy. Which means it stays in our house. A problem arises because I’ll keep eating it unless it’s given away. Some can be taken to work, but everyone else has their own leftovers to unload somewhere, so it's not always appreciated there.
Cindy Ma, the nutritionist who calculated how much walking or running would be needed to burn off fun and snack-size Halloween candy (see previous BLOG post), suggested another more generous way to make our home a candy-free zone. DONATE IT!
Ma says, “If the sugar cravings hit too hard, the safest route is to avoid a scenario with you left alone with a bucket full of candy. Bring the leftovers to the office, your dentist, a local charity (think: nursing home, food pantry, homeless shelter) or send it overseas! Sharing is caring!”
The link the Ma article provides to “Operation Gratitude Blog” which, in turn, links to a page that maps the nearest drop-off location for the sweet stuff is not active (here is the active link).
Upon reading her piece, I recalled a Christmas season years ago that we “adopted” a soldier as a chartable activity. I contacted him and asked what our family could send to make his tour overseas in the Middle East a bit easier. He wanted snacks and candy. After the night’s duty-watch there was nothing to eat; the canteen was closed. Being a mom, I sent candy but included granola and protein bars, peanut butter and cracker snacks, and other items I thought were more nutritious too.
The Ma article provides a link to “Operation Gratitude Blog” (here is the updated active link), which has a link to a page that maps the nearest drop-off location for the sweet stuff. Another organization with similar activities is OperationShoebox.com.
If donating seems to be an ideal way to avoid having Halloween candy in close reach for days and weeks after the big night, plus do good, THINK & PLAN AHEAD. Buy healthy items a soldier might like, a dentist would think are good for young teeth, or the needy staying at a shelter could find comforting.
Now that our home isn’t likely to be welcoming very many trick-or-treaters on Halloween night, my purchases are PLANNED IN ADVANCE to donate to these alternative recipients. It’s a wonderful way to feel included in the holiday and show our generousity.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
“Sumo Squats Are the Best Squat Exercise for Your Inner Thighs” In this article for SHAPE.com Lauren Mazzo describes an exercise that might be easier than traditional squats for some to perform. The biggest benefit to this squat variation is that it targets the adductor muscles of the inner thighs, which often are not worked in moves that activate the frontal (quadriceps) or outer (abductor) muscles of the thigh.
According to the expert quoted in the article, the “sumo squat is a great lower body strength exercise that emphasizes the muscles of the inner thigh, as well as the glutes, quads, hamstrings, hip flexors, and calves.”
The wide spread-leg stance with toes pointed outward helps take stress off the knees, which is why I prefer them to traditional squats. Also, the basic version can be done anywhere, if only a few minutes are available to accomplish a mini-workout. Although not ideal, comfortable streetwear can be worn if athletic attire cannot. This exercise can be performed beside the desk at work or in a relatively quiet stairway landing.
The article then recommends progressions in which weight can be added; a dumbbell or kettlebell, then barbell. Looping a mini-resistance band around each thigh, just above the knee, is another method of increasing the work performed.
MensHealth.com highlights a “4-3-1 sumo squat”, which describes the tempo/timing in seconds of the descent, hold, and ascent steps of the move (lower body in 4 seconds, pause at the bottom of the move for 3 seconds, and return to start position in 1 second).
If you need an exercise to add the list of lower-body strength moves in a training program, consider the sumo squat.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
WEEK 8 TURKEY TROT 2018 TRAINING STARTS
Monday is the first day of Week 8 of the 10-week+ plan that ends the weekend before Thanksgiving. There’s a partial 11th week, but is a buffer to help those who need to spend a few days traveling or have a difficult time wrapping up pre-holiday plans. It can be considered a little taper in which you run or walk to stay active before the race.
This Monday you may be recovering from early Halloween celebrations that began over the weekend. If you raided a child’s “trick-or-treat” bag, dipped into the supply you plan to give on October 31, or indulged at a party, enjoy the memory of good times. Try to get back to a normal eating pattern that includes nutritious meals and snacks.
RUNNERS: Those who partied the weekend and who plan to perform the optional track day schedule on MONDAY will have an opportunity to test how a change in diet can affect the way you feel and run! If the traditional October 31 day will be your "'All Hallow's Eve" and night to enjoy treats, the track work on October 29 will get you in shape for the Wednesday night fun and help you earn them.
The longest runs of the plan are scheduled during this week and week 9, your PEAK training effort. After week 9 you will be decreasing mileage prior to the Thanksgiving Day race. When I am struggling through intervals or hills, the second to last effort always happens to be my best. I know I only have one more after it, so I give it all my concentration, and power through it.
Try to power through week 8, knowing week 9 will involve your biggest effort. Enjoy looking back during week 10 at the progress you’ve made.
WALKERS: You will still be increasing your mileage to the end of the 10 weeks, per the Hal Higdon 10K plan. If you are not intending to cover a 10k distance in your TURKEY TROT event, consider these last weeks as time to build endurance. You’ll be able to finish a 5k or 8K stronger and possibly a bit faster.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
OCTOBER COMES TO AN END SOON, THERE’S STILL TIME TO RUN/WALK/BIKE TO RAISE BREAST CANCER AWARENESS, HONOR AFFECTED LOVED ONES.
I walked rather than ran my annual event, which does triple duty of memorializing my Mom and aunt, supporting my ‘niece’ (“Cookie Strong”), and others, and raising awareness. It’s an early morning effort that starts before the sun rises, on my home lakeside course, where all is quiet after the summer crowds have left. Boats are being hauled out of the water at the marinas and prepped to withstand the winter in dry dock. A few campers are still roughing it at the state park.
The setting is especially conducive to remembering and reflecting. This year the weather was clear, cool, and crisp. Perfect. Instead of a 5k, I race walked an 8k distance in preparation for the upcoming Turkey Trot in November. It’s just one month away. My finish time was not great, as the main purpose was not to speed train. Rather it was to contemplate on the strength and courage of beloved women with breast cancer in my life and be thankful for their survival. My sister walked her event yesterday.
Good luck, Steph and family, and all others, with your solo or group walks, runs, and biking events!
RUN AND MOVE HAPPY!
THE NUMBER OF DAYLIGHT HOURS ARE DEFINITELY DECREASING as the calendar days lead us closer to the solstice December 21, the shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. Whether you exercise outdoors in the morning or late in the day, it’s likely getting darker. Visibility is poorer and it’s time to take action to address safety concerns.
Today’s post highlights a product tested by me for Earned Runs, Noxgear’s Tracer 360. It totally fits the safety needs generated by my early morning habit of walking/training before the sun rises.
The Tracer 360 was tested because the measures I had previously taken for higher visibility did not seem adequate for either dark rainy or snowy conditions, soon to be rather regular occurrences. My heel flashers might be hidden from the view of vehicle drivers, coming from either direction, by piles of fallen leaves or plowed snow mounds. The high-intensity white headlight that I carry in hand shows the path ahead but cannot be seen simultaneously from all directions.
This quick personal safety inventory indicated that the heel flashers need to be replaced or augmented. The intense, white-light, hand-held device remains useful for showing the way forward and for deterring would-be attackers (shining the blinding light into the eyes of someone intending harm can be a deterrent).
Because outdoor exercise apparel can change depending on weather conditions, it seemed that the best safety device would be worn on the outside of clothing. Preferably it would affix to the upper torso and shoulders, so as not to be blocked by low shrubs/plants, waste receptacles, parked cars, and snow banks.
The Noxgear Tracer360 promised to fit my ‘darkest hour’ safety requirements. As the name indicates, the wrap-around tubing insures visibility in all directions. The tubing light is intense and flashes one or multiple colors, slow or faster speeds; it can remain one continuous color as well. The adjustable fit waist-band (safety neon green with a reflective center stripe), and tubing fits snugly. The entire apparatus is lightweight.
The one issue I encountered was annoyance; the flashing of the frontal tubing was too bright and distracting in the dark. The solution was to change it to a red/continuous setting. Red light is allowed at dark sky parks so it is also environmentally friendly. I can still easily be seen and enjoy the beauty of a quiet morning outdoors.
The device is not ‘cheap’ (see GEAR LOVE PAGE, ~ $60 on Amazon.com) but is less expensive than some other options, and completely accomplishes the job of making wearers highly visible from all directions.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
FOUR ITEMS THAT MAY BE OF INTEREST + ONE THAT CAN INSPIRE
MEB IN 2020?
Is Meb Keflezighi considering an attempt to run in the 2020 Summer Olympic Marathon! Maybe not yet ready for retirement…
WHAT RUNNERS ARE SAYING...
2017 National Running Survey results conducted by Running USA. Mostly women participated (63%). Some interesting data from those who provided information.
FOLLOW UP ON RUNNING /WALKING HALLOWEEN COSTUMES
Be prepared to explain what you’re supposed to be, however; for example the metal straw, matcha latte, digital detox, and keto ‘flu’ outfits won't be easy to identify as such immediately. Might be conversation starters at post-Halloween race parties. Very creative ideas!
FOLLOW-UP ON BENEFITS OF SLEEP REGULARITY
What if sleep regularity is jeopardized by difficulty falling asleep? This article recommends journal-ing. All it takes is 5 minutes, the author indicates.
DIFFICULT TO COMPLAIN ABOUT DIFFICULTIES IN FOLLOWING THROUGH ON TRAINING COMMITMENT These Saudi women are running, starting a “Running Revolution”, according to a Runner’s World Tweet. Inspiring piece! https://twitter.com/runnersworld/status/1050084042689765376
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
"CHECK OUT FREE RESOURCES ONLINE", IS ONE BIT OF ADVICE GIVEN! “Fitness is for everyone, and though costly classes and memberships may work for some, they aren't necessary for getting–and staying–in great shape” says the expert quoted by Jackie Veling in an article for ACTIVE.com, “Creative Ways to Get and Stay Fit that Don’t Cost a Dime.”
The excellent advice given in the article is similar to what you’ll find on the Earned Runs blog. Investigate nearby public parks with benches or playgrounds, community swim and fitness centers, and high school or college athletic fields/track for personal use that don’t require a membership. Map out courses on which to run/walk/hike safely in your own neighborhood, or locate one elsewhere that fits your work schedule.
Earned Runs also feels that participating in organized events is not necessary to achieve fitness. To join the broader community of runners, walkers, hikers, and other exercise buffs who regularly take on challenges to achieve fitness goals there is no spending requirement. Training and competing are physical and mental commitments which need not be tied to financial commitments.
As the article suggests, free clubs can be a place to start if you desire company and the motivation of others while exercising and training. Specialty stores that carry gear for running, hiking/walking, cycling, exercising, and water sports are a good place to begin looking for such groups. Contact information is likely to be available at the brick-and-mortar store or on the website.
It also is not necessary to set competition in a big-name organized event, 6 months to a year in advance, as a goal. Plunking down a high registration fee to participate raises the stakes and the cost of not following through on a goal activity that must take place on a specific date, in a set location. However, unforeseen circumstances can disrupt the best of plans. Being a no-show at an event, for reasons beyond your control can be especially discouraging. As an alternative, committing to a personally designed challenge that don’t bust a tight budget can provide motivation as well. Custom events can be rescheduled in the case of bad weather, family emergencies, or injuries.
You don’t need Earned Runs online support and bibs and to create a personal challenge or event. But the bibs and resources are free, and might help you stay and get in shape without spending a dime.
The advice given in the LAST SLIDE of Veling’s slideshow piece suggests, “Check out free resources online”.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
WEEK 7 TURKEY TROT 2018 TRAINING STARTS Monday October 22 is the first day of Week 7 of the 10+week plan. It’s also only 1 month until THANKSGIVING DAY!!! Aren’t you glad you started preparing so early? By giving yourself the extra weeks to build up aerobic capacity and endurance, and at the same time stretching, strengthening, and foam rolling, you have decreased your risk of injury and increased your chance of competing on that huge running holiday.
ANOTHER BONUS: you are building a solid base on which to train for other races in 2018. When, you formulate NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS, you will already have a strong training foundation. The challenges you set for yourself in the coming year will seem less daunting. What would have seemed nearly impossible on January 1, 2018, now may seem like ‘upping your game’ for 2019. Perhaps you’ll want to run or walk a longer distance race in the spring or finish your next 5K with a faster time. Or take up another activity that requires an improved aerobic capacity.
Regardless, congratulate yourself on your accomplishment thus far, of perseverance…
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
SUGAR SKULLS, ALTARS, CEMETERIES, MESOAMERICAN CULTURE AND RUNNING!
Have you heard of the central and southern Mexico festival, “El Dia de los Muertos”, or “The Day of the Dead”, celebrated November 1 and 2 of each year? The festival coincides with the Roman Catholic feasts of All Saints Day (11/1) and All Souls Day (11/2) which follow Halloween on October 31 (All Hallows Eve). According to the website MexicanSugarSkulls.com, the holiday is a combination of ancient beliefs about honoring the dead and the Catholic feast days, celebrated by the indigenous people living in that part of Mexico.
As a young girl I remember celebrating the ‘Saints” and “Souls’ Days of November in church praying with my mother. As an adult I try to continue the tradition because it’s a reminder of the Polish-Catholic culture of my childhood, a throwback memory.
Given the current appetite in the USA for the undead of all types and origins, this festival seems an ideal occasion to enjoy another good scare. Like the delicious fright generated by virus-induced zombies of “World War Z” movie, post-apocalyptic, pathogen-born “Walking Dead” of Netflix fame, and the White Walker-created wights in the “Game of Thrones” HBO series based on George RR Martin’s literary invention.
Alternately, it seems likely that some would come to embrace a festival celebrating the beloved deceased whom we dearly miss.
These tradition-rich Latino holy days have the inherent mysticism, beauty, and heart to bring people of all cultures together in many ways. Some will prefer to center their activities at altars and in cemeteries in the time-honored ways. Other will march in parades, enjoy delicious food, dress in costume, or express themselves artistically. And runners and walkers will create races!
In October 2015 I scoured the internet for Dias de los Muertos-related races; there were a few. In 2016, I noticed an attempt to raise awareness, outside of the ethnic communities, of celebrations that included foot races. In 2017, the number of events increased. This year, Active.com is managing a series of events in several cities (Chicago, Hammond IN, Los Angeles).
I think this celebration, a holy day for some, is becoming a holiday celebration for many more, which promises to generate additional run/walk events. Images on race organization websites show there are opportunities to run in costume and face-paint; runners are famous for wanting to express their creativity and sense of style in this manner. In some instances, prizes are promised for those judged “best”.
My prediction in 2016 that there would be an increasing number of novel, Dia de los Muertos-themed competitions in the coming years seems to be trending true. Cities in Texas, the southwestern USA, and in the north with large Latino populations have lead the movement, by establishing annual events years ago.
Some endurance races may eventually be planned that extend over several days to encompass the entire October 31 - through- November 2 time period (or more convenient weekend dates preceding or following the exact days, like the 4 day series in Las Cruces NM that starts October 25 and ends October 28, 2018 ). https://www.deadrunning.net/day-of-the-dead-series/
The DDLM event in South Beach OR has been changed from a 5k fun run to a serious endurance event that can extend to a period of 2, 4, 6, 12, or 24 hours.
Prior to starting, participants can visit an ofrenda (altar) at the start/finish line to “honor their ancestors and loved ones passed on” and leave “flowers, fruits, trinkets, and written messages”, providing a “unique layer of depth, gratitude, and purpose to their endurance run from start to finish.”
The website indicates that the “run's finish will be celebrated with an interactive performance of traditional Aztec dance by Huecha Omeyocan, a McMinnville-based group who shares the rich cultural practices of prehispanic Mesoamerican peoples through dance and music.”
With the rise in popularity of grueling obstacle course and “sufferfest”-like events, organizers may begin to incorporate punishing elements In DDLM competitions. Early November weather may be cooler, wetter, and inclement but not yet wintery in the northern hemisphere, and thus perfect for completing a toughing workout.
Mostly, as the trend shows, there will be short, happy, family run/walk races held to celebrate a beautiful cultural feast, as more of us are given a chance to gain understanding and appreciation of another ethnic tradition.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
THE EARNED RUNS WEBPAGE, “BONE STRENGTH FOR ATHLETES” was established recently to organize information about this health topic on one place. Why might athletes be concerned with this body tissue?
IMMEDIATE RISK OF BONE INJURY
With over-training it’s well known that endurance athletes risk all types of injury that can prevent participation in sport, including high stakes competitions. Elite marathoners have been forced to pull out of races due to bone injury. Shalane Flanagan left the field of the 2017 Boston Marathon because of a “back fracture”. Jordan Hasay decided not to compete in Boston in April 2018 because of a heel “stress reaction” detected by MRI. She dropped out of the 2018 Chicago Marathon later in October, because of a new fracture in the same foot.
Common sites for stress fractures include the ankle and foot bones, the femoral neck, the and pelvic bones.
Stress fractures of the sacrum, a pelvic bone, have sidelined top elites, famously Kara Goucher in 2014, and athlete and coach Mario Fraioli. Some may recognize the name, as Fraioli developed some of the training plans that Earned Runs has adapted for use. Elites are not alone in suffering bone stress fractures. Recreational athletes can incur this type of injury as well.
General risk factors include: repetitive, high-impact exercise; significant increase in training volume or intensity; low bone density; “female athlete triad”, and poor nutrition.
The first item on the list pretty much includes all endurance runners and high-impact sports lovers
The introduction of a small retrospective scientific study published in early 2018 indicates, “Bone stress injuries occur in sport activities with the highest prevalence of injuries in track and field (10-31%)”. Within this group the authors say, “endurance athletes sustain significantly higher bone stress injuries than all other track and field athletes” with most (~78%) occurring in the lower extremity. The study sough to identify a way to predict which athletes might be at risk for long bone (fibula tibia, femoral shaft, and femoral neck) stress injury by examining the relationship between bone and body composition, which had not previously been explored, they claimed.
The scientists developed and tested a model utilizing data collected from Caucasian male NCAA Division I athletes. The model took into consideration factors that have been associated with stress injury, like bone mass density and body composition measures (low body fat percentage, low muscle mass, and low body mass index), and total upper body mass.
The authors felt that study results did not allow their prediction model to be put into practical use without further evaluation and in a large study. However, the aim and outcome of this research emphasizes that there is much to be learned about the potential relationship between bone composition and other factors that appear to increase or decrease stress fracture risk. Not just in long bones of the leg, but other sites. Not just in white, male, college endurance runners, but in competitive and recreational athletes of both genders, and in multiple age and racial/ethnic groups.
IMPACT ON FUTURE BONE HEALTH
We learned from the article featured in the blog post “SCIENCE FRIDAY: BONE HEALTH BASICS II” [“MECHANICAL BASIS OF BONE STRENGTH: INFLUENCE OF BOME MATERIAL, BONE STRUCTURE AND MUSCLE ACTION” by N.H. Hart, S. Nimphius, T. Rantalainen, et al]
“Accrual of bone takes place most rapidly in the teenage years, culminating in the third decade of life to achieve peak bone mass.” After that peak point, bone mass is maintained or potentially lost.
Its seems logical that athletes in the critical years of bone accrual (the teens and 20’s) would be helped immensely by taking steps to lessen the effects of specific training, dietary, and other life practices which are identified as being detrimental to the building of bone.
Beyond this period, harmful practices that contribute to bone loss can be avoided to preserve bone health into future decades, with the purpose of preventing stress fractures and the medical conditions of osteopenia/osteoporosis and, ultimately, frailty.
Key to building and preserving bone is learning what is currently known about these processes. It’s clear there is much for science to discover, including the best methods of measuring and models for predicting .
The reason why athletes should be concerned about bone health is that their immediate and distant future participation and enjoyment of sport, and general good health as well, may depend upon knowing and then acting upon such knowledge. And perhaps asking for more high-quality research that broadly studies all of us.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
ARTICLES FOLLOW-UP PREVIOUS POSTS & INTRODUCE NEW EXERCISE, CONCEPT
LAST MINUTE 'FASTER 5K' ADVANCED TRAINING PLAN FROM MARIO FRAIOLI
Seasoned runners, with moderately high weekly mileage (can handle a 10-mile run and a total of 30 miles in week 1), who haven’t felt the need to train for a Turkey Trot 5K might think about getting competitive on Thanksgiving Day. The majority of runners/walkers are likely to be out for a fun time before dinner and not interested in a personal best. The field might be stacked in your favor to capture a finish near the top of your age/gender group. Mario Fraioli offers a 6-week training plan that should be started this week. https://running.competitor.com/2018/10/training/5k-training-plan-6-weeks-to-a-faster-5k_131571
FOLLOW-UP ON HALLOWEEN EVENTS Unique Halloween event. This is an innovative Zombie 5k, for both runner/walkers and runners. The charity partner is blood donation organization that is part of the National Marrow Donor Program’s “Be The Match Registry”. The only location seems to be Grand Rapids MI on October 20.
FOLLOW-UP ON GLUTEAL ACTIVATION TO BREAK THE 'SIT-CYCLE'.
This article’s length and detail makes it difficult to wade through. The last CONCLUSION section (with Key Points) summarizes and provides a shortcut. Essentially the research work confirms that the side-lying single leg lift is best (of 12 commonly prescribed therapy exercises) for strengthening the gluteus medius muscle and the single leg squat and single leg deadlift are tops for building the gluteus maximus. Add weights, the discussion indicates, for greater benefit. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/26338168_Gluteal_Muscle_Activation_During_Common_Therapeutic_Exercises
SIMPLE INTRODUCTION TO WEIGHT WORK
Afraid to exercise with weights because the routines seem so complicated? Try a Farmer’s Walk, featured in this SHAPE.com article. The instructions call for 45 to 60 second walks, with up to 3 repetitions, carrying weights in both hands. Single-side weighted walks are another option offered in the article, which can be alternated with walks in which weights are carried in both hands. Consider starting with a lower amount than you think is manageable and work your way to a higher total. Be aware that 2 x 10lb weights = 20 lbs; if not accustomed to carrying this total amount of weight, back it down. A heart rate monitor may help determine the best amount, but learning to listen to your body is wise.
Farmer's Walks might be the gateway strength exercise that encourages further work with weights, that provides confidence you can master this part of fitness training. https://www.shape.com/fitness/tips/farmers-walk-carry-simple-exercise-form-benefits
RESPECT, BUT DON'T SURRENDER ALL CONTROL TO GENES
“You can’t change your genes, but you can change your habits,” quotes this article. Those who feel the deck is genetically stacked against them when it comes to inevitable weight gain and body shape are given a bit of hopeful advice. Respect the contribution genes make but acknowledge that 'inherited' health habits might play a role in what gets handed down from our families.
We have control over some aspects of our physical, emotional, and intellectual selves. All is not predetermined by inherited DNA to the extent that we should give up and accept that our futures will be as we have seen them materialize in previous family generations. But, that's not saying it's going to be easy authors say.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
IT’S MONDAY. PERHAPS MOTIVATION TO WORKOUT IS HIGH AFTER A WEEKEND OF SITTING around while watching sports, bingeing on shows, or traveling to an autumn getaway. You indulged in lazy, guilty pleasures and now are fired up to get active again.
The article, “The 5 Most Under-Rated Exercises You Should be Doing,” by Brittany Risher released in 2017 on Under Armor’s MyFitnessPal.com blog, has a handful that can get you started and energized. They are old-school moves, simple to perform, and don’t require much mental effort., Crunches (not sit-ups) push-ups, glute bridges, and squats and jumping jacks for those without knee issues.
Follow through on the impulse to get moving; don’t put it off.
Start with crunches and glute bridges while watching TV tonight; 8-12 repetitions, one set each. Progress on Tuesday to include one more of the remaining exercise, one set of 8-12 reps. Wednesday add another exercise, 8-12 reps, one set. By Thursday you’ll have performed each exercise, in one set. On Friday complete all 5 again, one set each. The following Monday work on completing 2 sets of each. The next week 3 sets. By then you may be ready to change up the routine with other exercises, with the confidence that you’ve built strength since that first MONDAY.
Not excited about a general exercise session and want to take a minimalist approach? Target the body part, your ‘butt’ (or bum), that suffers the most from prolonged sitting? An article by Mary Anderson for SHAPE.com can add determination to this plan, “How to Activate Underused GLUTES (Because Yours’ Are Probably Sleeping).”
Anderson encourages several general lifestyle changes that can help “break the sit cycle”, which include the obvious move of standing up and walking between butt-numbing sit sessions. Running is more effective, but walking is more convenient and can be accomplished in an impromptu manner between (or during) conference calls at work, as a quick study break, or to provide brain ‘refreshment’ after catching up on social media. Gradually increase the distance covered, Anderson says, and then try some squats. Anderson’s approach may be too laid back for some, but others may need to start with the most basic of efforts, which is SITTING LESS and walking more.
There are few people who can truly say that they don’t worry about sitting too much. It’s the biggest problem I have EVERYDAY, as I work on my laptop for work, home, and family administrative chores, and then am tempted to sit to watch TV for relaxation. I feel numbness coming on right now….
Time for a simple, old school exercise break.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY
RUNNERS 5K AND WALKERS 5K - 10K PLANS Monday is the first day of Week 6 of the 10-week (plus part of a week) plans. Runners who incorporated the optional track day into their plan, have graduated to running FULL laps only; no more half laps, except when walking, during the remainder of the program.
The reasons and importance of foam rolling and rest days have been discussed recently.
Have you remembered to perform MYRTLs every week? The mobility routine is scheduled only once/week on this beginner 5k plan, but ideally you should be loosening up before each run. Jay Johnson’s video demonstration is no longer available online. However, the pdf on the RESOURCES page contains images that should help you to learn the basic moves.
An excellent YouTube video presented by the Wolf Creek Track Club’s USATF Registered Coach Brandon Wise, does a beautiful job with demonstrations of 12 moves from several angles. Pay close attention to the words superimposed on the video describing the move. Coach Wise progresses so quickly through the exercises that you might miss one as the camera switches views and the coach moves.
Once you master the routine and perform it regularly before runs, you will “feel” ready to move, especially early mornings, or evenings after sitting all day.
Not only do these exercises help you to improve and maintain mobility in the hip girdle (mobility + girdle = MYRTL) some will also assist with hip strengthening when performed as an exercise rather than a mobility routine
The side leg lifts and clamshells included in this set of moves are often prescribed to build the gluteus medius (GMed) muscle. The GMed helps prevent runners’ and walkers’ knees from wobbling, as one leg after the other is alternately set down in a linear forward motion in the act running.
Outside of the scheduled MYRTLs routine for mobility, you may wish to work on gluteal strength. The lateral (side) leg lift is simple, but has been shown by research studies to be one of the most effective at that targeting the GMed. Add light ankle weights to the lateral leg to increase the resistance in this strength exercise, as in indicated in the AAOS Knee Conditioning instructions.
Download the full knee conditioning PDF to find additional lower body strength exercises. The AAOS Hip Conditioning program includes lateral leg lifts too, as well as other exercises you may wish to perform for strength training. Links to both PDFs are posted on the RESOURCES page.
You are more than halfway through the plan. Thanksgiving is approaching. Great work!
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
AAOS Knee Conditioning Stretches and Exercises
AAOS Hip Conditioning Stretches and Exercises
CONSIDER PARTICIPATING IN A FUN EVENT Halloween may not be the most popular of holidays for which running/walking events are organized, according to a 2017 RunningUSA.com survey, but perhaps it should be.
The weeks and months leading up to October 31 are relatively comfortable for training, with the hottest days of summer in the Northern Hemisphere crossed off the calendar. Some race-hopefuls will be preparing for a half marathon in mid-November or a Turkey Trot near month’s end, and could use one of the late-October weekends for practice.
This traditional scary-fun day provides an opportunity for last minute join-ups. On a whim, the party animal in any given circle of friends can issue a challenge for group participation in a costume-themed event. If doing so appeals to your sense of impromptu adventure, better not be caught without something to wear for the occasion. Consider gathering the components of a costume to be ready!
Jacob Meschke provides a number of ideas for Halloween costumes that might be worn in competition in an article for RunnersWorld.com, "Best Halloween Costumes for 2018- and How to Run in Them." Meschke references two runners who established Guinness World Records in Halloween garb. Camille Herron (wor Spiderman costume in the 2012 Route 66 Marathon) and Michael Wardian (ran as Elvis in the Rock n' Roll Las Vegas 2016 Marathon) offer advice on each outfit. Despite the fact that the article is for runners, not all those featured are recommended by Herron and Wardian for wearing with the expectation of earning a PR.
The costumes are not homemade, but “store-bought” from Spirit Halloween (a “BUY NOW” link is included with each costume). The article was released mid-September 2018; a quick check showed that some costumes have sold out. There are lots of others still available, however.
Mr. Incredible (sold out)
Princess Shuri (~$70)
Archie Andrews (~$50 for varsity jacket; ~$35 for jersey)
Tina Belcher (sold out)
Dark Voyager (~$50)
NASA spacesuit (sold out)
Average Joe’s Dodgeball Team (~$40)
Riverdale cheerleader practice uniform (~$40)
Sparkling unicorn (~$50)
Don’t want to take a chance ordering online and trialing a costume for its suitability for competing? Need a last-minute costume to join in the fun but still be competitive?
One approach is to take a “top-down” approach; wear headgear that establishes what you hope to be identified as, then add a few pieces that don’t interfere with movement. Nondescript but regular running apparel can be worn to help maintain speed in the competition. For safety, flashers or reflective strips should be worn at nighttime events.
1. Accident victim
Not to make light of a serious medical situation, but wrapping cotton bandage material (or a strips of a cut-up old white t-shirt) around your head, and using dark lipstick for blood marks on it, is the foundation of this look. Smudging ‘dirt’ on cheeks with brown eye shadow, or black and blue for bruises can further the impression. After that, a ripped shirt to wear over running apparel can finish the look of having survived a traumatic event.
2. Biker or pirate
The base-layer is a classic head bandana! Add a black faux- leather jacket to become a biker and maybe a faux tattoo. One earring could add pizzazz. To be a great pirate, one need only to look to Captain Jack Sparrow of the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise for inspiration.
Start with disposable surgical cap and mask. Tie the lower portion of a mask around your neck, without tying the upper set, if you don’t want to move fast with it over your nose and mouth. It will look as if you just left the operating room! Add a scrub top or lab coat to wear over running clothes if it’s going to be cold weather, or without an under-layer if warm weather.
4. Zombie–up any costume with makeup and a vacant look. Who said zombies can’t be fast?
By the way, for those of you who don’t recognize the names, Wardian and Herron are serious competitors. Both are famous marathoners, and have excelled in ultra-marathon distance races. Wardian recently recorded an FKT (Fastest Known Time) running the C&O Towpath (184 miles). They share the honor of record-breaking runs in costumes!
To run/walk competitively in costumed splendor, think about prepping now for Halloween events. Remember you can create a custom Halloween event with Earned Runs bibs if too late to find an organized event.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
SAMPLING OF PICTURES TAKEN ON RUNS OR WALKS, MORNINGS AND EVENINGS, 2015 THROUGH 2018. (updated from October 14, 2017) The exception is the image of the Mackinac Bridge; to view it from this perspective I needed to be on a tour boat! There are too many memorable images to post them all, but this year's selection shows roughly a progression through the seasons from October to October. They are taken from all the years but not necessarily in chronological order.
It became apparent early on, as the website was being built and the blog posts written, that the need to find images opened my eyes to the beauty awaiting me on everyday runs and walks, both at home and while away visiting. Now, one of the highlights of a business or family trip is the hunt for interesting photo opportunities. There are less people out and about early and late in the day, so there isn't much need to ask permission to use images.
The surprise is that the most familiar places may suddenly reveal hidden visual gems at just the right time. Like the unexpected glint of a rising or setting sun reflected off a natural or structural surface. A prism of color, plume of fog, or a frosty coating created by atmospheric vapor on a hazy or brightening day. Headlights or brakes lights of vehicles. Vibrant colors that don't show themselves in full daylight, best appreciated when the sun doesn't dominate the scene. And glowing light that is most precious because it is momentary, scarce, distant, or small.
Share your pics with Earned Runs.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
BRIDGE TO PHYSICAL SELF
Running, walking, and fitness activities enable us to experience our physical selves in a world mostly accessed through use of fingers on a mobile device.
EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
New! Search Box
Earned Runs is now searchable! Check it out...