Embracing Heat and Humidity Running

August 11, 2015

TiaOur guest blogger is Tia Pettygrue, a USATF & RRCA certified running coach. She works with our friends at Florida Road Races. These races along Florida’s west coast were created to promote a healthy lifestyle and showcase their coastal communities.

Let’s face it, much of the US has been sweltering recently. Most people would probably rather jump in a pool than run in this kind of weather. But here are some tips to make the most of running in the heat.

  • Know that it will not last. If you’re training during the heat of summer, you’re probably training for a fall race. So chances are, your race may be in the fall when temps will be milder.
  • Don’t expect to run your goal pace. Running in temperatures over 80 degrees (especially in humid areas) can have a 12-20% impact on your pace. So don’t beat yourself up if you struggle to run your goal pace. If you normally run a 10:00 pace and the weather is 85 degrees, your adjusted pace would be around 10:23. So if you’re doing a race and you don’t hit that PR, don’t be too hard on yourself.
  • Dress accordingly. Wear a hat or visor and make sure you put a Sports Sunscreen on before you head out. Wear light colored clothing. I’m jealous of the guys like my husband who can go shirtless when they run.
  • Remember your hydration. Even for a quick 3-mile run, I will wear my hydration belt. I’ll fill my bottles full of ice and then pour water in them. This way, the water stays cooler longer. And, if you’re running at least 45 minutes, add some electrolytes to the water. You need more than ever to hydrate every 15-20 minutes. If you’re running longer than an hour, make sure you have a place on your route to refill if needed. Where I run there is a park every 1 ½ miles with water fountains and restrooms. So look for routes that offer these type of options. Most parks with walking or running trails will have water along the way.
  • Don’t feel guilty about taking walk breaks. It’s hot out there and that sun can zap your energy, so if you need to take a break during your run, take it to refresh and re-energize. Better to take a break than to overheat. Sometimes I’ll incorporate a walk break to take pictures of the beautiful scenery or a sunrise.
  • Become an early bird or a night owl. Find a friend or a group and plan a pre-dawn run or or a run after the sun goes down. Where I live in Florida, it’s very humid even at 5am, but at least the sun beating down. Use caution if running alone – it’s always better if you can have a buddy with you.
  • Heat running will make you stronger. I used to take the summers off from running because of the heat. Then one year, I did a summer marathon up north so I had no choice but to train in the heat. I found I felt more accomplished after each run because it was so hard. When I did the race, it was 45 degrees, and I easily hit my goal pace. So consider heat running a challenge that you can conquer. Stay safe out there!


June 1, 2015

Local Man To Donate Profits to College Fund For Young Daughter of Terminally Ill Runner

Reaper--MaleWASHINGTON, D.C. – We all know how easy it is to let fitness slip, especially at a certain age, but the threat of the Grim Reaper can be a strong motivator to stay or get in shape. With the goal of creating a college fund for the now 8-year-old daughter of a terminally ill fellow runner, MakeHimWork t-shirts advocate the importance of sticking to an active and healthy lifestyle to make the Reaper’s job just a little bit harder.

Created by Potomac lawyer turned legal headhunter and longtime runner, David Landau, 60, the shirts depict how close the Grim Reaper is to catching up to each of us. The design promotes the value of exercising and eating right, while also reflecting a sense of humor, as it shows a hardworking runner leaving the Reaper, a representation of mortality, in the dust.

Reaper_Female“I created the MakeHimWork t-shirts for the community of athletes who share my love for fitness and who celebrate life and want to make it last with vitality and meaning for as long as they can,” said Landau. “A healthy lifestyle is essential to achieving happiness. None of us will ever beat the Reaper, but we should all make our best effort to make him work to maintain his undefeated record.”

While Landau’s promotion of good health is certainly commendable, his compassion for—and generosity toward—a fellow runner whom he had never met until a couple of years ago is remarkable. He saw a story in the Wall Street Journal about Iram Leon, a 34-year-old runner with incurable brain cancer—and his then 6-year-old daughter, Kiana. Leon had run a marathon while pushing his only child in a stroller, and ended up winning the race. Landau was so impressed—and inspired—by the story, he reached out to the former juvenile corrections officer from Austin, TX and the two have been close friends ever since. In fact, Leon is expected in the D.C.-area in early June and will be staying at Landau’s home in Potomac.

Reaper_bikerAs a result of Leon’s incredibly positive outlook on life and their newly-formed friendship, Landau made the decision to donate all of the profits from the sale of MakeHimWork’s shirts to a college fund he has created for Kiana. Like Leon, who wears the t-shirt for many of his races, thousands of runners, bicyclists, swimmers and other athletes around the country advocate MakeHimWork’s message and share the belief that being fit is likely to allow them to stay ahead of the Grim Reaper for as long as possible.

Men’s and women’s “MakeHimWork” Dry Fit t-shirts are available online at www.makehimwork.com for $24.95 each. Cost includes shipping & handling.

Alternative to Traditional Chocolate Milk

March 19, 2013

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMarathon & Beyond welcomes guest blogger, ultrarunner, and Wellness Coach, Sparkle Paterson, to our website. Sparkle offers an interesting alternative to traditional chocolate milk as a recovery drink.

Chocolate milk seems to be a popular recovery drink after a race or a long run. I could never really understand it as I am not a milk drinker, nor do I want artificial flavors and loads of sugar after a workout.

Most of the chocolate milks out there are loaded with high fructose corn syrup, some as high as 33 grams of sugar. In addition, most contain lots of sodium, some as high as 230 grams. That is why I started thinking of different ways to have healthy chocolate milk.

Here is what I came up with. I begin with 1 cup of non-sweetened coconut or almond milk and add 1-2 tablespoons of Dagoba organic cacao powder, a super food with great antioxidants. I then add 3 tablespoons of chia seeds which have fiber, protein, and omega-3, which we all know is a super anti-inflammatory. Sometimes, I like to add some honey which is a slow-burning sugar and is high in vitamin B. For a little extra flavor, you can also include a bit of pure vanilla. And, finally, I top if off with a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Did you know that just ½ teaspoon of cinnamon per day can lower LDL cholesterol?  Studies suggest that cinnamon may have a regulatory effect on blood sugar, making it especially beneficial for people with Type 2 diabetes. Its noted qualities include anti-clotting, arthritis relief, anti-bacterial, and it is high in sources of manganese, fiber, iron, and calcium.

Now that you have all your ingredients, it is best to make your chocolate milk sport drink the night before your long run or race. The chia seeds will expand during the night making it a rich, thick drink. This is one of my favorites, and I make it often.  Don’t be afraid to try some of your own special ingredients such as pure maple syrup instead of honey, or you can even blend in a banana. You will love it, and it is a terrific source of energy before a run or after.

You can read more about Sparkle and get lots of healthy recipes by visiting her website.

National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

September 25, 2012

Part of our mission at Marathon & Beyond is to provide practical advice on running or preparing to run marathons and ultradistances. Our readers are healthy and active runners who set an example for both adults and kids. From time to time, we hear of a program that is worth passing along to our readers.

Today, a third of American children are overweight or obese, posing a serious health threat to the future of our kids. This September, in support of National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, Saucony, Inc., a leading global supplier of performance athletic footwear and apparel is issuing a national challenge to runners everywhere to help reverse this trend: Download Saucony Run4Good™, the running industry’s first-ever iPhone app dedicated to battling childhood obesity and inspiring people to run. With every mile, runners will be earning money for community youth running programs, putting kids back on the fast track to health.

Five non-profit organizations were recently awarded a grant from the Saucony Run For Good Foundation™. For the next five months, beginning in September, a community mileage challenge will be set, and one of the recent award winners will be profiled. If the community mileage goal is reached during that month, Saucony will double its contribution to the featured organization.

For more information on how the Saucony Run For Good Foundation™ can help local youth communities nationwide, visit www.sauconyrunforgood.com.

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