On Saturday, September 28 at Citifield in New York City, an exceptional young student athlete experienced a moment she said she will always remember.
Last fall, Erin Bundy was the leading medalist for her high school golf team, setting the women’s course record (69) at Royal Hylands Golf Club in her hometown of Knightstown, Indiana, among other accomplishments.
She also mobilized a wide variety of community service teams – and led by personal example and with a winsome spirit and smile.
This fall, the Knightstown High School alumnus has been selected as the winner of The 2013 Gold M Award, which recognizes high school student-athletes who are exemplary role models in their communities. The Gold M Award includes a scholarship and charitable grant presented by The M Foundation. This year the award was again sponsored by Mission Athletecare, which was joined by LRLRFM, a non-profit foundation that champions the efforts of politically diverse Americans to promote the common good.
The journey has been anything but a chip shot for Bundy, now in her freshman year at Butler University. As an athlete, she suffered four concussions. But this remarkable student-athlete was committed to a come-back, and is committed to serving and giving back. Projects and initiatives that Bundy was involved in over the course of her high school career include:
- Speaking out about concussion awareness with Seeing Stars Foundation, and establishing a baseline testing program at her local school.
- Launching the service project, “Step Forward for Haiti,” which collected thousands of pairs of new shoes for victims of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti.
- Volunteering for the American Health Network to help provide free physicals to students at her school.
- Leading a school supply drive and delivered items for children at the Red Bird Mission in Tennessee.
- Collaborating with Aeropostale on their "Jeans for Teens" project, helping to collect and distribute jeans to kids in need.
- Serving as class president all four years, and as a freshman mentor and vice president of the National Honor Society.
For her exceptional leadership and dedication to community service, Bundy received a $5,000 scholarship plus a $5,000 donation to the charity of her choice.
New York Mets All-star 3B David Wright was on hand for the pre-game ceremony to present Bundy with the $10,000 prize on behalf of The M Award sponsors, athletes and staff. The on-field festivities were complimented by shout-outs from Mia Hamm, Carmelo Anthony, Hunter Kemper and others – created a social buzz that day alone of more than 5 million tweets.
"We are extremely proud to present Erin Bundy with our second Gold M Award for her exceptional leadership both on and off the field, and for her outstanding commitment to give back through community service," said Josh Shaw, co-founder of MISSION Athletecare, which conceived of the idea of The M Award. "Erin is a leader, a role model and a shining example of what it means to be an ‘Athlete on a Mission.’”
What the stars are saying about Erin
“It’s worth celebrating accomplishments like Erin’s. These are the kind of student leaders that give us all hope for a bright future.” —Olympic triathlete Hunter Kemper
“Erin reminds us that you can’t start too early to think about and work for things that are important.” —Olympic swimmer Amanda Beard
We are solidly into August now, and for many athletes, that means they are enduring long, hot practices in the brutual sun and heat. If you are the parent of an athlete, you are likely looking for some information on how to help keep your kid safe as he or she heads into pre-season practices.
At MISSION we work with leading scientists, trainers and athletes to help athletes protect their bodies and perform their best. Cooling is top of mind among our partners, as they continue to work to help keep you cooler, so you can go harder. This year we have introduced our Enduracool Instant Cooling Helmet Liner and the Enduracool Instant Cooling Hoodie, developed for Football and other team sports to specifically address the sideline and in game needs of players who experience overheating.
But, cooling the skin is one of several important prevention practices to combat overheating. So,while we have been talking about staying cool during the summer in several blog articles; today we wanted to specifially address athletes and ways to help them stay cool at practice. To that end, we wanted to share information that was published by the Korey Stringer Institute and Gatorade www.ksi.uconn.edu in the 2013 Gatorade Heat Safety Kit.
They have given 10 tips for staying cool. Check them out below and let us know if you have any other recommendations that have helped you or your kid out in the past.
Good luck with pre-season and stay cool!
1. ALLOW FOR ACCLIMATION - While it can take 10-14 days for an athlete's body to adapt to the heat, acclimation should start two weeks before team practices begin. An athlete should start with 15-20 minutes of continuous exercise outside in the heat, and add 5-10 minutes each day.
2. ADOPT REHYDRATION STRATEGY - Hydration helps reduce an athlete's risk of heat illness and can help the athlete maintain a high level of performance. Proactive steps athletes can take to avoid dehydrat ion include:
• Weigh in and out before and after activity
• Drink enough fluid to minimize weight loss -for each pound [16 oz.) that is lost , he or she may need to consume 20 ounces after athletic activity to fully rehydrate.
• Check urine. If ifs li e pale lemonade, thafs a sign of good hydration.
3. DRINK UP - Athletes should drink enough fluid to prevent dehydration without ove r-drinking. Flavored, cold, lightly salted sports drinks (ie Gatorade) are important because sodium helps maintain the physiological desire to drink and helps retain the fluid consumed.
4. BUDDY UP AND KNOW THE SIGNS - Encourage athletes to buddy up with a teammate and watch out for each other when ifs hot and humid. They should know the signs and symptoms of heat illness which can include:
• Poor concentration
• Personality change
• Flushed skin
• Loss of muscle coordination
• Light headedness
5. COOL THE BODY - If experiencing heat illness, an athlete should take steps to cool the body , including lying in a cool place with legs elevated , applying cool towels (ie Enduracool!) to the body and drinking cool fluids.
6. BE FLEXIBLE -An important step in avoiding heat illness is adjusting practice or game length and intensity to the environmental conditions. If possible , athletes should avoid strenuous and high intensity activities during the warmest time of day [10 am- 4 ptn).
7. DRESS FOR THE WEATHER -Keeping cool in hot weather means being mindful of appropriate clothing and equipment that can help evaporate heat from the body:
• Wear light-colored clothing
• Wear t-shirts and shorts, not pads
• Remove helmets when not active
• Avoid wearing excess clothing
• Change sweat-s oaked clothing frequently
8. FIND TIME FOR RECOVERY - Rest and recovery are an essential part of avoiding heat illness. Athletes should work in times for breaks when active throughout the day, attempt to get six to eight hours of sleep a night and sleep in a cool environment, if possible.
9. MAINTAIN A HEALTHY DIET - Athletes need to think about fueling before, during and after physical activity. He or she should be fully hydrated with fluids and fueled with foods that contain electrolytes to maintain fluid levels. Fluids lost through sweat and breathing should be replaced by fluid consumption including during workouts, practices and games [physical activity).
10. HAVE AN EMERGENCY PLAN - Have a plan to contact medical professionals in an emergency. Also keep a "cool pool, or ice bath nearby so medical personnel can choose to immerse athletes suffering fro m heat stroke if necessary.
At MISSION, we love to hear stories about how our products make a difference in people’s workout, training and life! This week, Ashley Baratian, was nice enough to share her story and how she discovered her MISSION to become a certified Zumba instructor....
My Mission, by Ashley Baratian
Have you ever wondered what it would be like if you could find an exercise ritual that you actually looked forward to completing every day? Sounds too good to be true, no?
Well, MISSION accomplished- I found a solution. If you enjoy music, enjoy having fun and being in a room filled with high energy and a vivacious atmosphere, this will work for you too.
After playing my role as a highly athletic high school student, I gained the miserable “Freshman 15” when I got into college. The 15 pounds then turned into 20 pounds which made me realize that I need to start getting back into shape- I needed to start endorsing a healthier lifestyle for myself,
I signed up for the gym and just wasn’t motivated enough to make a routine out of it. To me, going to the gym and spending 45 minutes on the Stairmaster sounded more like a dreadful chore, rather than a compelling stimulant to help me lose the weight I gained.
I somehow managed to walk into a ZUMBA fitness dance class that the gym was holding shortly thereafter. After walking in late to the class, I found that I was not able to properly follow the instructor; I had two left feet and was nearly five steps behind everyone. The instructor would go to the right and I would go to the left, she would go forward and I would go back. But for some reason, it didn’t matter to me. I still managed to sweat buckets and because of everyone’s support, I had so much fun that I didn’t really care about how badly I messed up the dance moves. Before I knew it, the hour was over and I couldn’t wait to go back to class.
One thing led to another and I realized that although lifting weights, going on the elliptical machine and running miles upon miles on the treadmill is an appropriate fit for some, ZUMBA was the right fit for me.
After the first two weeks, my waist dropped two sizes and I started to lose the weight that I gained and I couldn’t be more ecstatic about the results. I became a ZUMBA addict- going to class religiously and slowly making my way from the back of the class to the front.
Soon enough, my instructor recognized that I had the potential to become a ZUMBA instructor myself. She took me under her wing and she trained me for months until she thought that I was ready to go get certified and become an instructor myself. I rationalized the logistics of becoming an instructor and realized that it only makes sense to get paid doing what I love.
Now, as a certified ZUMBA instructor, my goal is to have my students enjoy working out without having to feel the pain of strenuous and monotonous physical activity that takes place in the gym. I want to be able to help those students that want to lose weight but have trouble doing so because they are not really motivated to work out in the gym. With a brightened studio, vibrant energy and smiles all around, the ZUMBA workout can potentially become an addictive and healthy hobby rather than an obligatory chore.
As an instructor, I create exercises that aim to work out the main “problem areas” people tend to find. Namely; abs, waist, biceps, triceps and thighs. Additionally, make sure all my students keep their heart rate up by making the entire class a combination of cardio exercise and muscle toning.
In class, students tend to get pretty hot relatively quickly and release endorphins faster than they normally would because of the intensity of the class. Therefore, they start sweating profusely very quickly even though they don’t feel it.
So, when I came across Mission’s Enduracool towel, it immediately became a must-have for class! An amazing product that was going to help my class be fun, not painful, and help people feel cooler and not overheat. It is so easy to use… I just soak it in the water fountain before class and snap it a few times before class starts. Within a minute this towel is unbelievably cool, but not soaking wet, so you don’t have to worry about getting your shirt dripping wet. I use it for a quick burst of cool in between songs on my face and arms, and to cool down after class around my neck. Fun colors like neon green and bright pink fit my outfits perfectly!
ZUMBA helped me realize how good it feels to leave the comfort of my home to enter the comfort of a studio and enjoy other people's company while getting my daily exercise. The fun atmosphere along with the vibrant attire makes my experience as an instructor much more enjoyable.
I never expected to burn up to 1,000 calories in one hour of a dance class. So, if you are looking for the right exercise fit, try it out! Make it your MISSION to push yourself outside of your comfort zone and try alternative forms for exercise. Dance off the pizza you ate today, get to Zumba and it will brighten your day!
Just look online to find classes near you and go see for yourself what all the hype is about. Remember to stay hydrated and listen to your body throughout class!
This week, we are lucky to have Janna Clare Weaver guest blog for MISSION to share her Enduracool experience... here she shares the ups and downs during her quest to study Yoga in the jungles of Thailand. You can follow her @embodily......
My adventure began in Frankfurt as we boarded our Thai Airways flight to Bangkok. It began to dawn on me then that I was in for culture shock. This was my first trip to Asia, and first time eating "authentic" Thai food. The chicken satay appetizer was so spicy I needed plenty of wine with it. When we transferred to a smaller plane in Bangkok to go to Koh Samui I immediately noticed the difference in aircraft and quality. As soon as we touched down in USM airport I realized I was in a third world country that had not yet been developed, at least by Western standards. The jetway was partly dirt. You could see sewers with murky brown water lining the strip. The open air airport was hot, humid and muggy. As we piled into a taxi to the hotel where we planned to recover from jet-lag, I was shocked at what I saw along the winding roads lined with shanty towns. I had never seen poverty like this. While we waited for our room to be ready at the hotel we became drenched in sweat. Thankfully I had thought to pack my Mission Enduracool towel in my carryon bag. I needed this towel to wipe away the huge drops of sweat as we waited for three hours on the patio. We were unfortunately sunburned due to the serious intensity of the sun, my boyfriend had major mosquito bites that were swelling up and we were exhausted. Thus began our month+ in the jungles of Thailand, the islands.
After a few days of shock and adjusting to totally different surroundings we switched from what we discovered was the relative comfort of our hotel to a new island, Koh Phangan. This was considered less developed; mostly jungle; only accessible by motor boat or in our case a longtail boat. We had intended to study yoga on this island but after only three days in the jungle, in conditions that were unsanitary, unhealthy, and not at all as advertised, I fell ill with extreme heat exhaustion. My towel was invaluable in the jungle. We had a 30+ minute hike over a mountainous path from our accommodations to the neighboring beach where the training was held. The temperature was over 100 degrees Fahrenheit and there wasn't clean water available. By the time we arrived at the next beach I would be drenched with sweat and had trouble cooling off my body. My Enduracool towel, worn around my neck over my shoulders, offered the cooling I needed to help my core temperature calm down.
Even after we escaped Koh Phangan, I carried my Enduracool towel everywhere. It was perfect for keeping comfortable while sightseeing. I wore the pink towel like a scarf in Paris and didn't get overheated despite hours of trudging on hot pavement. I'm using the towel now in the yoga studio back in the US, as it wicks away moisture so effectively and doesn't look dingy at the end of a session.
While it was the perfect towel for the jungle, you don't need to go all the way to Thailand to benefit from Enduracool!
A few photos from the trip.....
Training, running, competing in hot environments can be grueling. Your body temperature runs higher, you sweat more, you work harder to perform.
The skin is the body’s natural radiator. Sweating and vascular dilation - having your blood vessels carry blood closer to the skin - helps your body maintain the proper temperature. On average, your body stays within a range of 96.4 and 99.1 degrees, but exercise makes this more difficult, with variations up to 103 degrees for especially hard workouts. And as temperatures continue to rise, the demands on the body challenge the efficiency of your natural radiator; leading to decreased performance.
Emerging science shows that cooling key areas of the skin (namely the neck, wrists, elbows and temples, also known as “pulse points”) can help stimulate thermoregulation signals to the brain, delaying fatigue, and making you feel less discomfort from those grueling hot temperatures. Now, who wouldn’t want to feel less discomfort from the heat, especially if it helps you feel like you could go harder, and longer in your workout?
Here are some helpful insights into how pulse point cooling works, and some gear recommends that can help you harness pulse point cooling to maximize your training.
How Pulse Point Cooling Works:
Ever wonder what is exactly happening when you get that "flushed" look as you overheat? Well, here is how it breaks down. As your temperature rises, the body opens up the capillaries near the skin. Your natural cooling system circulates blood to move heat from inside of your body to the surface of your skin. Your sweat then helps cool you, by releasing some of that heat as sweat evaporates. The blood near the surface of the skin then recirculates through the body and absorbs more heat to be released. The process continues...
So, how can cooling pulse points help? Simply, it helps your body continue that natural process more efficiently. Cooling your pulse points (those points where you blood travels closest to the surface of the skin) with water, cool fabric or towels provides a greater heat differential to allow for a greater amount of heat to be lost through evaporation of sweat.
In other words, if the goal is to help your body be a more efficient radiator, concentrate this effect on the parts of the body where the most good can be done... the neck, the temples, your wrists... where the most blood travels closest to the surface.
In one study by the National Athletic Trainers' Association, using pulse point cooling on the neck during exercise helped athletes to lower heat strain, exercise five minutes longer, tolerate higher temperatures internally and increase performance by six percent. In a separate study from Stanford University, athletes who practiced the same pulse point cooling technique were able to delay fatigue, train harder, gain muscle more rapidly and most importantly, train longer than competitors.
It is evident that overheating is not something to be taken lightly. And there is no replacement for hydration and prevention (see TIPS TO PREVENT OVERHEATING in our previous post) But as athletes continue to look for the extra edge, understanding the science behind pulse point cooling can inform training regimens and gear considerations.
Enduracool Instant Cooling Gear:
Building on the science of pulse point cooling, MISSION has launched a new collection of Instant Cooling Gear to target pulse points and help you feel cooler.
MISSION’s new EnduraCool™ Instant Cooling Gear is powered by patented Coolcore™ technology, and offers innovative, intelligent and sustainable cooling solutions to athletes across all sports – from individuals to teams, casual competitors to professionals. The new EnduraCool™ Instant Cooling Gear lineup includes: Instant Cooling Hoodies, Instant Cooling Sleeves, Instant Cooling Skull Caps, Instant Cooling Helmet Liners and Instant Cooling Headwear. The line builds upon the research and thermoregulation technology that originally produced the Mission EnduraCool™ Instant Cooling Towel, and offers instant cooling benefits in lightweight and breathable textiles that also include UPF 45+ sun protection.
A simple process activates the cooling technology in all EnduraCool products. Athletes simply wet it, wring it out, and allow air to circulate into the fabric. The fabric cools to approximately 30 degrees below the average body temperature in under a minute, and the cooling effects – easily reactivated by re-wetting the fabric (with water or sweat) and re-introducing air flow – last for hours.
Feel Cool and Go Harder.
Memorial Day… the “unofficial” start of summer for many. While we love much of what summer brings, it can also bring blistering heat, and the challenges to keep yourself and your kids cool. However, as long as you take a few essential precautions, breezing through the summer heat can be easy. Let’s face it. Our kids aren't familiar enough with the symptoms of overheating to let us know when they need to take steps to stay cool. Children also sweat less than adults, making it harder for them to cool off and putting them at greater potential risk. Preventing dehydration, overheating and sun damage are essential for families in the summer. Balancing time in and out of the sun will help everyone enjoy summer more. So if you are out there this weekend, kicking off your family’s summer of fun, follow these 5 simple tips to prevent sun and heat-related illness.
1. Hydrate: Drink water. Stay fully hydrated by drinking water with other caffeine-free liquids. When you drink liquids with salts, sugar and minerals, you replace what you sweat out. Alternate drinking water with sports drinks and juices. Drinking water-rich fruit such as grapes or watermelon will also help kids replace fluids, nutrients and minerals. Kids old enough to eat whole grapes might enjoy them even more while frozen.
2. Stay Protected from the Sun: Play in the water, but remember to reapply sunscreen frequently. Playing in water, whether in the ocean or the pool, helps prevent overheating. But even water resistant sunscreen will wash off eventually, so reapply frequently and after leaving the water. If you kids are sweating while playing pick-up games with friends or at organized sport camps, re-application is critical here as well. General rule of thumb is that water resistant sunscreen like MISSION’s Kids Continuous Play Sunscreen SPF 70 has up to 80 minutes of water/sweat resistance.
3. Dress Cool to Feel Cool & Protected- Light, breathable clothing keeps everyone cool. Pastels and whites aren't just fashionable for summer: they help reflect light away from the body. Loose, lightweight, breathable fabric will keep kids cool. Sunhats for kids help protect their face and eyes, which can be crucial protection for kids who won't wear sunglasses. And now, there are more and more wearable accessories that have Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) that block the majority of harmful rays that kids are exposed to when in the sun. MISSION’s new line of Instant Cooling Gear will not only help your kids stay cool, but the fabric has UPF 50 protection from the sun! A two-in-one product to defeat the sun and heat this summer.
4. Bring Down Skin Temperature & Cool Pulse Points - Pulse points are essentially areas where you can feel your pulse because your blood vessels are close to the surface of your skin. Because they are so close, you can help cool off your blood by getting the area in contact with cool water or fabric. Your neck is arguably one of the most effective pulse points to try to keep cool. Other pulse points include your wrists, the insides of your elbows and knees and your temples. When kids exhibit symptoms of heat exhaustion parents can help cool them by running cool water on their pulse points. Jumping in a cool pool will also help, but let’s be honest; a cool body of water is not always readily available. When you need a portable solution that will cool down the skin, but not soak your kid’s clothing at the same time, try MISSION’s Instant Cooling Towel. A quick burst of cool anywhere that will give your budding all-star relief.
5. Limit outdoor activities during the hottest part of the day- This is either 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. or 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., depending on your location. Kids can still play outside during this time, but make sure that shade and beverages are nearby and check kids regularly for signs of overheating or sun damage. If you are attending a special event like a sports tournament, a fair or going to an amusement park, check the venue map for the nearest food courts or first aid facilities. They often have shady areas where you can cool off when needed.
Play Hard. Have Fun. Happy Memorial Day! Get your MISSION on!
To check out some of the products mentioned, click here
Success in professional basketball is a product of immense preparation. One important aspect of preparing for a game is the concept of “pre-game rituals”, or the routine a player goes through in the time immediately leading up to a game. Not to be confused with locker room superstitions, this routine that a player goes through not only makes for a great show for spectators, but also helps players to become both physically and mentally prepared prior to game time.
There are a variety of customs that players in the NBA today go through just prior to gametime. Although the league recently implemented a new rule requiring starters to be on the court within 90 seconds of lineup introductions, there is still ample time for players to get into their mental and physical comfort zones. Dwyane Wade recently outlined his pre-game ritual here, which includes a “chin-up” on the rim (pictured) www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTy9dAuE1pA
Perhaps the most well known pre-game ritual is associated with the league’s most well known player: Lebron James. At the conclusion of introductions, James heads straight to the scorers’ table and powders up his hands. He then lets the powder fly into the air, almost always eliciting a massive reaction from the crowd. Some players are also now using a newer product called Mission Power Grip, which is a “liquid chalk” that they apply to their hands for a “dry grip” on the ball.
Right before tip off or when checking in, some players will step on a sticky mat to clean the bottoms of their shoes and more and more players are now applying Mission Court Grip to their sneakers for enhanced traction.
Another popular pregame ritual amongst NBA players is the handshake. Many players have developed intricate handshakes with one another. Sometimes these handshakes go beyond just player-to-player, expanding to coaches and even to the officials at the scorers’ table. The Oklahoma City Thunder are the team most well-known for these theatrics. www.youtube.com/watch?v=k6QlkghHHsA
Other players have specific shot routines that they go through, always making sure they take a certain amount of warm-up shots at certain areas of the floor. Some players must touch certain areas of the floor in their warm-up.
However, some routines, like that of the injured Boston Celtics star Rajon Rondo, become a bit more complicated. According to teammate Jason Terry, Rondo’s pre-game routine includes high-fiving the whole team, partaking in layup lines for five minutes, before finally “stand(ing) under the goal and Paul Pierce will shoot every ball on the rack from half court. He will catch four balls at one time and then after that…one pass off the backboard to KG, one bounce pass to Paul Pierce and then he throws it all the way up to the scoreboard and Jeff Green finishes with an alley-oop.”
Ultimately, pre-game rituals have become an essential part of the pre-performance routine and allow players to feel comfortable and ready to take on their opponent. In addition, it is the time when players apply their “tools of the game” that will help them perform to their potential.
So….what is the craziest pre-game ritual YOU have seen at any level, NBA, College, High School, etc.?
In honor of Mission athlete and expectant mom, Sarah Haskins, we asked one of our other Mission moms to write her secrets to keeping on pace...
When you have children, you feel like you’re always running around – to daycare or school, to work, to the grocery store, activities, friends, appointments – it doesn’t stop. But as tiring as it feels, it still doesn’t replace the need for actual exercise. For those busy moms who have considered starting or returning to running as a workout, it may seem impossible – but it isn’t! Here are some secrets that other running moms keep under their hats:
- Quality not quantity: You have a busy schedule, so chances are you won’t be able to leap into running marathons from the get go. So when you run, go for quality, not quantity. Go for long runs when you can, but when you can’t, focus on speedwork or hill work to work your muscles and lungs in a short amount of time. A little goes a long way.
- Make the time: It may feel like you’re running around doing something for everyone else, but you need to make time for yourself. Carve out even 30 minutes several times a week to focus on running – someone else can make dinner, fold laundry, or maybe they can even come with you! Maybe you have some time in the morning or during lunch. Slowly work it into your schedule and it will get easier to manage.
- Do what works: The treadmill. A gym. Going around the block. Finding a running partner or group. Listening to great music. Invest in good running shoes, or use anti-chafe cream to keep your skin comfortable. There are many options to get you out and running, so try them all. You need to do what works for you so that you can go for runs and keep at it.
- Keep it enjoyable: Running is hard work, so why make it harder than it needs to be? For example, listening to energetic tunes can help give you motivation. Wearing your favorite shirt can make you feel attractive. Using water resistant sunscreen can protect your skin without slowing you down. Running along pretty routes can keep it interesting. The more you like running, the more you’ll do it.
- Just run: Cross country skiing is a good workout. So is cycling, swimming, Pilates, yoga…but if you want to get better at running, then you just have to run. You can add in other activities, but don’t substitute them for running.
If you want to run, then there’s only one thing you can do – run! For busy moms, it can be difficult to get the motivation to pound the pavement, but with the right attitude, equipment and skin saving accessories like sunscreen and anti-chafe cream, as well as dedication, it can be done. And once you start, you’ll be glad you did.
You want to get yourself in better shape and feel amazing. You’ve heard about the health benefits of running, and so you want to give it a try. Or maybe you used to run and want to get back into it. Whatever your reasons, running can be a great past-time that helps you strengthen your muscles, help your bones, get your heart working optimally, and feel great!
As part of your motivation, you also signed up for a race – goals can be good after all. But there’s more to training than simply running the distance. But with this mindset, many new runners make mistakes that ruin their first race experience. With the tips below, you can avoid these first marathon mistakes:
- Inadequate training time: To run any distance, you need to be able to cover the distance. If you’re running in a half marathon or a longer distance, then typically, you would run most of the distance, such as 11 miles, comfortably during training. The problem arises when you don’t run enough longer distances times during your training. This can cause problems on the actual race day because your body isn’t expecting such a workout. Make sure you get enough longer training runs in before the race date so that your body isn’t left in a state of shock on the actual day.
- Ignoring your body: An important part of training is recovery. Though it may sound like a contradiction, you need to run, and you need to rest. This lets your body recover from the wear and tear that running causes. Insufficient recovery time will simply tire you out, making any subsequent runs more difficult than they need to be, and making you cranky too. Therefore, intersperse slow, short running days and no-run days in between your longer runs.
- Lack of proper nutrients and hydration: You don’t want to weigh yourself down with water bottles or food, but when running longer distances, your body needs fuel. You need water because you will be sweating, and you need food to replace the calories that you are burning. If you don’t get enough of both, you will feel sluggish and slow. During training, try out different foods and drinks to see what you enjoy eating, what your body can handle, and what you are comfortable to carry to avoid first marathon mistakes that many make.
- Not having comfy clothing: You may have a favorite race shirt, but is it comfortable? Your shoes are worn – time to get a new pair? You want to be as comfortable as possible on race day, but to know that, you have to wear your clothes on enough training runs to find out. If you need new shoes, wear them on enough training runs to ensure you don’t get blisters. If your clothes tend to chafe you during longer runs, consider anti-chafing cream. It can minimize the friction caused by the clothes rubbing together, prevent blisters, and even bleeding, while moisturizing your skin.
Learning to train properly for a race is a matter of trial and error – you need to know what works for you and your body, and tweak the areas that don’t. By following the tips above, you can prevent or minimize many of the first marathon mistakes that others make so that your first race can be an exhilarating accomplishment. Good luck!
Everyone has a goal this year; whether saving money, spending more quality time with family/friends, quit smoking/drinking, or getting out of debt. When some of those New Year’s resolutions start to fade, we want to help you keep you focused on what’s important. Getting into shape is, and should always be a priority.
If you are looking to stay focused on your resolution to lead a healthier lifestyle here are just a few fitness tips to help you keep while managing your busy schedule:
1. GET MOVING
Engage in fitness activities that will simply keep you moving. Getting in good shape doesn’t mean you have to commit to an intense workout routine. Movement can take place indoors, outdoors and at different paces. Sometimes we underestimate the importance of walking to help get you in shape or even in lowering potential diseases like diabetes and hypertension. People who share the good habit of walking for at least 10 to 15 minutes per day, despite their busy routines, see how beneficial it can be. Check out this article on the secret to losing weight:
2. SIGN UP FOR A RESOLUTION RUN
This gives you the momentum to reach your goals. Resolution runs give you something specific to plan for and to remain committed to.
If you stay focused on achieving smaller goals first, those will eventually lead to larger resolutions throughout the year. Your commitment will also have an effect on building a larger social circle and setting a good example for your family. Take a look at why people are signing up for resolution runs: http://www.active.com/running/Articles/Top-5-Reasons-to-Sign-Up-for-a-Resolution-Race.htm . You can find a race that meets your goals throughout the country by using the following link: http://running.competitor.com/race-calendar.
3. ENLIST SOME HELP
A third important tip to tackle your fitness resolutions is to find a workout that accommodates your budget.
After spending so much money on holiday gifts and trips, the last thing people want is to add another expense to the year’s budget. Luckily, there are options to save cash while taking advantage of free offers, gym discounts, and nutrition tips. If you are willing to spend a bit more on a personal trainer, you will have the privacy and comfort in your home by controlling the temperature, the music, cleanliness, equipment and having no audience around. But you can save money by motivating a friend or colleague to split the costs. There is also a cheaper and fun way to workout from home with DVDs that include fitness videos like Zumba for a variety of levels and interests. Zumba fitness is centered around dance and aerobics, heavily inspired by Latin music. The following links contain valuable information on how you can make the most out of your Zumba workouts :
Tips for Beginners: http://www.livestrong.com/article/259924-zumba-for-beginners/
100 Zumba Workouts Online for Free: http://www.squidoo.com/100-zumba-workouts
Follow the instructor’s steps: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2rvJQUD5XwY
4. FIND INSPIRATION FROM EXPERTS
Mission sat down with company partner and Olympic Triathlete Sarah Haskins during a training session last year, and talked to her about setting goals and living a healthy lifestyle. She recommends you to get out there, follow your passion, eat healthy, and protect your body. What motivates her is to focus on what needs to be done to achieve a specific goal. Check out at what she had to say below:
Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QhrBVgSUzY
Accomplishing goals : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hEybsKNAjc0
Motivation to Achieve Goals: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYbkdsWDWYY
5. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT EQUIPMENT:
You don’t need to “over-gear” with expensive items to make working out a little more enjoyable and less painful experience. Nevertheless, you need to be aware that one of the most important pieces of equipment to any kind of exercise is choosing the right shoe. If you decide that running is your thing, you are better off with a shoe that provides a firm heel, good support, and lightweight. Also make sure you are using a shirt made of wicking fabric, wicking socks, comfortable tights, and for women, a comfortable sports bra. Check this article for more tips on essential equipment for new runners: http://www.active.com/running/Articles/3-Gear-Essentials-for-Newbie-Runners. Products like anti-chafe are must-haves, especially in humid weather, and now you have the option to prevent chafing using silicone-based creams or sticks that stay in place longer than waxed-based anti-chafing products.
Mission Athletecare has developed an Anti-Chafe formula that outlasts the competition: http://www.missionathletecare.com/collections/anti-chafe.
Additionally, having a muscle rehab product in hand will help you get back out there quicker: http://www.missionathletecare.com/products/max-muscle-rehab.
So, get your Mission on, and keep those resolutions going all year round!