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Category Archive: Fitness

Million Kid Run

In the spirit of Global Running Day, people of all different ages and abilities are encouraged to pledge to run. With these different age divisions comes one for the kids. The Million Kid Run is an aspect of Global Running Day that aims at getting one million kids from all over the globe to participate in running. The whole idea behind it is to get kids moving and keep them active. In 2016, there were over 600,000 kids who pledged to run (672,030 to be exact). Not bad for the first year the idea was introduced! This year, our goal is to increase that number even more.

While the concept of the Million Kid Run is one that was just recently introduced during Global Running Day in 2016, the initiative of getting kids to be more active was introduced years ago. In 2010, the campaign that aimed at reducing childhood obesity rates for the younger generation was introduced by President Obama. Leading this Let’s Move movement was first lady, Michelle Obama. The overall goal of this campaign sought to diminish obesity rates as well as raise awareness to this growing problem in a generation that our country was faced with. The health, fitness, and lifestyle of our youth is something that Michelle Obama has set out to improve.

“The physical and emotional health of an entire generation and the economic health and security of our nation is at stake.”

Obesity and health problems go hand in hand. A person who is obese faces the increased risk of chronic health problems including diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure, and heart problems. The Let’s Move initiative seeks to encourage a healthy and active lifestyle for kids all across the world in order to ensure that they are able to live their lives to the fullest potential. The Million Kid Run is no exception to this campaign. The Million Kid Run reinforces what Let’s Move stand for: a healthy and active lifestyle for all children.

Our event at the Grant Park Plaza is located in a family-friendly area, where we encourage people of all ages to come out and run. This day emphasizes the importance of running and staying active in a fun and carefree way. There is no winner or loser and no specified pace in which participants must run. This ensures that there is a simplified purpose behind the run: to see the fun side of fitness and a healthy lifestyle. We aim to inspire kids to celebrate a healthy and fun lifestyle with people from all around the world!

                          CK

 

“Global Running Day.” Global Running Day. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 May 2017.
National Archives and Records Administration. National Archives and Records Administration, n.d. Web. 31 May 2017.

Getting Back at It: How to Start Running Again Without Injury

Running has a reputation for being a high impact activity that can cause significant stress on the body. The risk of an overuse injury especially applies to those athletes preparing for longer distance events. Becoming more conscious in the training approach and taking certain preventative measures can assist with minimizing this risk.

Here are a few tips to consider when your runners’ high takes over:

Increase mileage gradually:

Amateur athletes are often overwhelmed by the distance. As an attempt to put their mind at ease before the big day, many will start running high mileage in training, months before their body is prepared to handle a lot of volume. Although this level of will and ambition is quite admirable, this strategy may lead to more harm than benefit.

Whether you’re a newbie, or are returning to your long-lost love for running, a slow progression will be the key to a successful season. To absorb the workload safely, you want to make certain the distance or intensity does not increase by more than 5-10% from one week to the next. For example, if the long run in week eight of a training plan was 10 miles, then in week nine it should not surpass 11 miles.


Hydrate ahead of time:

Unless you’re a sleep walker on a mission to keep your H2O levels in check throughout the night, chances are you will have fasted for at least 6 to 8 hours prior to waking up. This usually means that you’ll be in a slightly dehydrated state first thing in the morning. Even if you have a quick sip before heading out, this deficit is difficult to recover from, putting an additional stress on the body during your morning run.

Keep a glass of water within reach of your bed so that you can sip on throughout the night and another instantly upon waking up. Take in 6-8 ounces every 15-20 minutes of running, plus an additional 20-24 ounces within two hours of completing your workout.


Don’t just wait for your soreness to go away:

Running is a repetitive motion. Stressing the same muscle without much variation can cause uninvited soreness. A good way to reduce it is a simple rest and a full night’s sleep, but there are other helpful ways to enhance recovery:

  • Foam rolling to release tension and buffer out lactic acid buildup.
  • Taking a yoga class to help improve flexibility and increase range of motion.
  • Going for a bike ride to circulate the blood without the added impact.
  • Swimming laps to balance out strength deficiency and increase lung capacity.

Running Tip: How to Warm Up Properly

We can go back and forth about the pros and cons of stretching, undulating between necessity and pointless. One thing we can agree on is that stretching makes your body feel better – before and after! Here are some tips on how to warm up your body before your routine!

Don’t just jump out of your car and start stretching your legs. To minimize the risk of injury by activating the right muscles start with a walk or easy jog for at least 5 to 10 minutes and follow that with set of at least five full-body dynamic drills. This simple routine will allow your muscles, tendons, and ligaments to be more pliable (like a rubber band, not a brittle rope) when surging or putting out effort.

For an extra edge give the following a try:

LEG SWINGS (FRONT/BACK)
While standing tall on one leg, swing the opposite leg front to back while keeping it as straight as possible. Maintain a good posture while increasing range of motion of each swing. Use one arm extended to the side and hold on to a post or a tree for stability. (10 each)

LEG SWINGS (SIDE)
Face the post or tree and hold on to it with both arms for stability. You will swing one leg high across your body and using the momentum on the way down allow it to swing up in the opposite direction. (10 each)

BUTT-KICKS
Walk forward with a brisk back-kick so that your heels come up to your glutes. Alternate the kick with each step. (20 total)

WALKING LUNGES
Take a long stride forward keeping the front knee just behind your toes. Lower your body by dropping your back knee toward the ground, but just shy of touching it. Maintain an upright posture and keep your abdominal muscles tight with each step forward. (10 total)

LATERAL LUNGES
Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Step to the right and shift your weight toward the right foot, bending your right knee and pushing your hips back. Your left leg should be as straight as possible. Reach for your right foot with your left hand. Push off with your right foot to return to starting position and repeat in opposite direction. (10 total)

 

Photo courtesy of POPSUGAR Studios