Comparing the Energy Expenditure of Riding the ElliptiGO to Conventional Cycling and Running
In October 2011, the Exercise and Physical Activity Resource Center (EPARC) at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) completed a metabolic testing study to determine and compare the energy cost of riding an ElliptiGO with conventional cycling and running. The ElliptiGO elliptical bicycle was engineered to emulate the running motion as closely as possible and while any rider will tell you that it requires an effort level much closer to running than cycling, until now they didn't know exactly how the ElliptiGO stacked up.
For the study, 6 male and female subjects between 30-41 years old completed multiple laps around the flat inner skirt of the San Diego Velodrome while wearing a heart monitor and a Cosmed k4b face mask with a portable metabolic unit. They rode a traditional bike, an ElliptiGO, and ran at intensities ranging from easy to very difficult to capture data across all three exercise modes.
The study found that riding an ElliptiGO required, on average, 33% more effort than cycling at that same speed. There are many factors that affect the energy expenditure of a given ElliptiGO rider or cyclist including rider size, weight, riding experience, and overall fitness. During flat riding conditions at speeds above 10 mph, as was investigated in this study, the most significant factor is a rider's size and the corresponding frontal area that they have to push through the air like a sail. The upright riding position of the ElliptiGO has a much greater frontal area when compared to the more aerodynamic hunched over position of cycling thus resulting in a higher effort for the same speed.
It was also found that heart rate responses and perceived exertion levels were very similar between the ElliptiGO and running. It was determined that riding an ElliptiGO at 16 mph was equivalent to running at 7.5 mph (8 min/mile), and riding at 18.5 mph was equivalent to running at 8.6 mph (7 min/mile).
The results of this study have allowed for the construction of a model for comparing the caloric burn rate of riding an ElliptiGO with cycling and running. Click here to try out our online calculator. These numbers will enable cross-training athletes and fitness enthusiasts alike to incorporate the ElliptiGO into their training and workouts with more specificity.
I love my ElliptiGO and really have experienced being able to get my heart rate up to the same bpm as I do during a run. In my opinion, this is one of the best ways out there to crosstrain and supplement training bar none! Here's a link to the article on the ElliptiGO website: http://www.elliptigo.com/elliptigo-vs-cycling-and-running.html
New Research Suggests Extra Pounds, Large Waists Undermine Perceptions of Leadership Ability
Being fit matters.
New research suggests that a few extra pounds or a slightly larger waistline affects an executive's perceived leadership ability as well as stamina on the job.
While marathon training and predawn workouts aren't explicitly part of a senior manager's job description, leadership experts and executive recruiters say that staying trim is now virtually required for anyone on track for the corner office.
"Because the demands of leadership can be quite strenuous, the physical aspects are just as important as everything else," says Sharon McDowell-Larsen, an exercise physiologist who runs an executive-fitness program for the nonprofit Center for Creative Leadership.
Executives with larger waistlines and higher body-mass-index readings tend to be perceived as less effective in the workplace, both in performance and interpersonal relationships, according to data compiled by CCL. BMI, a common measure of body fat, is based on height and weight.
While weight remains a taboo conversation topic in the workplace, it's hard to overlook. A heavy executive is judged to be less capable because of assumptions about how weight affects health and stamina, says Barry Posner, a leadership professor at Santa Clara University's Leavey School of Business. He says he can't name a single overweight Fortune 500 CEO. "We have stereotypes about fat," he adds, "so when we see a senior executive who's overweight, our initial reaction isn't positive."
CCL staff detected the correlation after collecting hundreds of peer-performance reviews and health-screening results from the CEOs and other senior-level managers who participate in its weeklong leadership workshops in Colorado Springs. A pair of university researchers, using data from 757 executives measured between 2006 and 2010, found that weight may indeed influence perceptions of leaders among subordinates, peers and superiors.
Tim McNair, a general manager at Nazareth, Pa.-based guitar maker C.F. Martin & Co., says he was inspired to make some changes after spotting his "gut" on camera during a recent public-speaking exercise while attending the CCL workshop.
He wondered whether his colleagues had the same reaction to his appearance, he says, adding: "Would they think, 'If he can't keep his hand out of the cookie jar, how can he do his job?'"
So the 44-year-old, who says his peers' evaluations were somewhat harsh, recently rejoined the local gym, where he heads after work at least three days a week to run on the treadmill, cycle or stretch. He has also given up double cheeseburgers, steak, ice cream, Coca-Cola and Tastykakes, opting for a healthier diet of grains and vegetables. In four months, he has shed about 25 pounds.
The fitness imperative for executives is relatively new, says Ana Dutra, the CEO of Korn/Ferry Leadership and Talent Consulting. Time was, a company chief spent every waking minute at work, sacrificing exercise, vacation and kids' soccer games in the service of the firm. Employees were expected to admire and emulate this devotion. Now, executives are expected to take time off to "revitalize themselves," Ms. Dutra says.
She pegs the shift to the sudden deaths of high-profile CEOs, including McDonald'sCorp. MCD +0.90% chief Jim Cantalupo, who died of a heart attack in 2004, 16 months after taking the post. His successor, Charlie Bell, died less than a year later of cancer at the age of 44. In 1997, Coca-Cola Co. Chairman Roberto Goizueta, a smoker, died weeks after being diagnosed with lung cancer.
The CEOs of today are also more visible than their forebears and must be camera-ready at a moment's notice, composed while courting investors and ready to respond in a company emergency. Excess weight can convey weakness or a "lack of control," says Amanda Sanders, a New York-based image consultant who has worked with senior executives at Fortune 500 firms.
"It's the leadership image you project," says Mark Donnison, 47, a senior executive director at Canadian Blood Services who has lost 25 pounds since starting an early-morning workout rotation of cardio, weights and yoga last summer. "Folks do see how you live."
Companies seek leaders with physical endurance, the better to manage global businesses and solve complex problems, says Mr. Posner, who advised Dow Chemical Co. DOW +0.44% on training high-potential global leaders in 2010 and 2011. Those leaders were instructed to build in regular time for exercise to help them withstand the constant travel and the demands of an overseas role. The training even incorporated such classes as Zumba, Pilates, tai chi and yoga, says Dawn Baker, Dow's global director of talent management.
Panera Bread Co. PNRA +0.26% founder and co-CEO Ron Shaich says he began working with a trainer about five years ago, in part to stay energized while running a growing company. Two to three times a week, he gets up for a 5:30 a.m. appointment with his trainer, and on Sundays he opts for a 90-minute run. The workouts have boosted his energy levels and helped him focus, he says.
In general, the executives in the Center for Creative Leadership study were healthier than the average American. They drank and smoked less and were more likely to exercise regularly. About half were considered overweight or obese, defined as having a BMI of more than 25. By contrast, more than 60% of Americans fit this description, according to a Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index last year.
The sample's leaner executives, defined as having a BMI under 25, were viewed more favorably by peers, averaging 3.92 for task performance on a five-point scale; heavier leaders averaged 3.85. Similarly, members of the leaner group rated higher on interpersonal skills.
The study controlled for factors such as age, race, gender, job level and personality traits. Results were similar across industries, says Eden King, one of the study's researchers and an associate professor of psychology at George Mason University.
To be sure, the perception of competence isn't the same as measurable leadership success. Executives who were part of the study say it's difficult to say how much of the perceived bias stems from their physical weight and how much from their own projected insecurity.
Weight Watchers International Inc. WTW -2.45% CEO David Kirchhoff, 46, recalls feeling painfully self-conscious when his weight was at its peak a decade ago, around the time he first took up the post. At six-foot-two and 245 pounds, he tried to hide his girth with oversize sweaters and pleated pants.
"I sucked in my gut a lot," says Mr. Kirchhoff, who has since lost 40 pounds. Now, he says, "I probably carry myself with more confidence and authority.
To say that I am excited about what Brooks plans are this next year would be a HUMONGOUS understatement!! I feel incredibly blessed to be backed by such an amazing company, made up of people who care about supporting the running community and sport of Track and Field. Having full time training partners is something that will keep me challenged and Running Happy!!
Here is a link to the press release from FloTrack:
Brooks Running Company Pledges Continued Commitment to Developing Athletes and the Sport of Running
Brooks Renews Support for Hansons-Brooks Athlete Program, Champions New Middle Distance Seattle Team
Bothell, Wash. – Jan. 17, 2013– Brooks Running Company is going the distance in 2013. The leading running brand today announced it will deepen its commitment to the sport through continued support of the Hansons-Brooks Original Distance Program (ODP) and the creation of a Seattle-based middle distance team. Brooks, currently in Bothell, Wash., will relocate its headquarters to Seattle in 2014.
Brooks’ increased dedication to the Hansons-Brooks ODP will allow the program to continue to develop up-and-coming talent and recruit rising stars. It will also expand its support of internationally successful athletes like Desi Davila, who qualified for the 2012 Olympics after training with the Hansons-Brooks team since 2005. The renewed commitment comes just shy of the program’s 10th anniversary.
“Brooks’ support is helping to usher in a new era for Hansons-Brooks,” said Kevin Hanson, Hansons-Brooks’ coach and co-founder. “When we started this program in 1999, we thought we had an idea of what success looked like. Each year we continue to stretch that goal further and further. We’ve had two Olympians on the past two marathon teams, but feel that is just the beginning.”
Recent Hansons-Brooks signees include Neely Spence, the first American woman to win the Zatopek 10,000m run; Jake Riley, who recently won the USA Track & Field Club Cross Country Championships; and Colby Lowe, whose impressive college running career makes him a strong addition to the team. The most recent addition, Bobby Curtis, is the 7th fastest U.S. male ever in the 10,000m with a 27:24 personal record (PR). Riley, Lowe, and Curtis all hope to add to the history and growing success of the Hansons-Brooks team.
In 2013, Brooks will deepen its commitment to the sport of running by creating a Seattle-based middle distance team. This team will be modeled after the successful Hansons-Brooks ODP. While the Seattle program is in its infancy, four high-caliber athletes have already signed on to participate. Current Brooks’ athlete Katie Mackey and longtime runner Matt Scherer will join the team, along with former Seattle Pacific and Colorado-American Jessica Tebo and Mark Wieczorek, who placed seventh at the 2012 Olympic Trials in the men’s 800m.
“Investing in running and supporting athletes is part of the DNA at Brooks,” said Jesse Williams, Brooks’ sports marketing manager. “Our hope is to inspire people to run longer, faster, farther, and in order to do that we must help provide opportunities for athletes to practice and develop their talent. We hope that our professional athletes will help inspire other runners to set goals, push themselves and keep running.”
The Hansons-Brooks ODP is a cornerstone partnership in Brooks’ growing support of competitive running. In addition to the elite program, Brooks also invests in future stars of the sport by sponsoring 50 of the top high school track programs in the U.S.; recognizing the fastest high school runners from around the country in the Brooks PR Invitational; and paying tribute to exceptional coaches at the high school level through the Brooks Inspiring Coaches program.
About Brooks Brooks Running Company designs and markets a line of performance footwear, apparel, and accessories in more than 60 countries worldwide. A subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., Brooks was founded in 1914 and is headquartered in Bothell, Wash., near Seattle. The company’s mission is to inspire everyone to run and be active by creating innovative gear that keeps them running longer, farther, and faster. Visitwww.brooksrunning.com for more information, and follow frequent brand updates on Twitter (@brooksrunning) and Facebook (www.Facebook.com/brooksrunning).
With the New Year getting started I've been
making resolutions and setting goals for 2013, as I'm sure many of you have! I
wanted to share an excerpt from Michael Johnson's "Slaying the
Dragon" on goal setting, and also an article from Portland Running Company's Christina
Overbeck Crawford. I thought they both had a great way of outlining specific ways to achieve your goals.
With the New Year here and the start of the racing season approaching, many of us runners are starting to think about our goals for 2013. This last year I competed in the Olympic Trials marathon, a goal that I worked towards for two years! I learned a few valuable lessons on setting and attaining goals through that process.
Lesson No. 1: Set an Ambitious Goal
It sounds obvious, but I hear many people setting goals that they are too certain that they can meet. Although guaranteed success, a goal that is too easily attainable is not exciting and thus less motivating. See if you can fill in the blank with your goal, “I don’t know If I can do _____, but that would be SOO sweet if I did!” The goal should be something that you can daydream about on long runs, something that gets you out of bed in the morning, and something you are just plain pumped about!
Lesson No. 2: Set Little Goals along the Way
While important to have a tough goal, having little attainable goals along the way is also important. It provides you with confidence and fuels your motivation for the larger goal. In addition, small goals like a short strength routine or adding strides to a few runs a week, give you an opportunity to tweak your training, keeping you fit and healthy.
Lesson No. 3: Be Open about Your Goal
This has been the most important thing I have learned. Like many runners I tend to quietly pursue my goals, crushing speed workouts alone while most are still sound asleep in their beds. But the first time I openly spoke about a running goal was when I decided to try to qualify for the Olympic Trials. It was uncomfortable having others know my my goal. This is a common feeling among runners. It is risky and uncomfortable to openly share your goals to others, knowing that you may not succeed. I found, however, that this openness led to accountability, camaraderie, and most importantly, it was FUN! By being open about your goals, it allows others to participate in your quest with you. Friends will start asking how your training is coming and it may inspire others to set goals of their own. Having others involved also helps you push through those tough days or weeks in your training. By being open about your goal you will likely meet others with similar dreams offering opportunities to train and encourage each other.
Lesson No. 4: Have Fun!
You won’t reach a goal if you don’t keep it fun. Having a secret goal, working alone, relying on your own inner strength and dedication gets tiresome and mundane. Dreaming big, working hard with a purpose, supporting friends and having them supporting you...now that's fun, and probably fast!
Michael Johnson, who won gold medals in the 200m
and 400m 1996 Olympics, writes:
"Imagine your life as a series of races, a
strand of goals on the way to some larger accomplishment (usually far off and
unfocused at first, like the Olympics). Connecting those smaller goals are
training and plans, and the more refined you become, the closer you move to
your ultimate goal -to fulfilling that core desire inside of yourself- the more
you realize that the plans are the really important part, more important even
than the goals.
Plans are the string holding the pearls together.
Your goals will become closer and closer together
as you improve in your chosen area. I don't play very much golf, but I am told
that lowering your score becomes progressively harder the more you play the
game. It is that way with everything. When you begin to perform at higher
levels, the only difference between winning and losing, between succeeding and
failing, is the precision and preparation of your plans.
So, at the beginning of the season, I sit down
with my coach and with other people whose opinions I value. And I think about
what I want to do that year. When I've identified specific goals, I write them
down on a sheet of paper. Then I ask myself the old Paul Johnson Sr. question,
'How are you going to do that?' That's when I connect the dots, stringing plans
between these goals. This year, of course, my goal was to win Olympic gold
medals in the 200 meters and the 400 meters, so I wrote that down.
But to get that far, I had to convince the
Olympic committee to change the schedule so that heats for both races weren't
held on the same day. I wrote that down as well. But first, I had to qualify
for both events at the Olympic Trials. And before that, I had to be at peak
sprinting performance and have increased stamina. And to get that far, I had to
adjust my training schedule, sharpening it to improve my training to be able to
run two very different races. And to do that...It goes on and on.
The point is that to improve incrementally, you
must plan incrementally. And the best way to do that, to think it all through,
to make sure you've missed nothing, is to write it down. A written goal is a
contract with yourself and a constant reminder of all you have to do. Having a
record is vital; it's the first step in learning to put yourself on the hook,
to being responsible to yourself.
It is also important to be specific and realistic
when you set goals. I had been the number one- ranked runner in both the 200
and the 400 at different times in my career, and although I'd only run both
races in the same meet twice, I was in a better position than anyone else in
the world to try winning both. That's being realistic.
I could easily have set more unrealistic goals.
For instance, I have also run the 100 meters a few times in my career, and to
have won all three races would have been incredible and unprecedented.
It would also have been impossible. Being
realistic isn’t settling for less than you’re capable or doing; it isn’t
throwing away your dreams; it’s simply acknowledging that, right now, you are
incapable of doing some things. And it only works if you are able to take pride
in the things you can do. My mother
and one of my sisters are teachers and another sister is a school counselor. I
admire them deeply and I imagine they dream of improving the lives of every
student they come in contact with. But they are also realistic and know that
they might not reach a few. Those are the times to revel in your successes, in
the kids who make it.
The ability to set realistic goals only comes
with experience and with the intimate knowledge of yourself that you acquire
when you’ve worked hard and tested yourself. When in doubt, scale your goals
back a little bit. If the aim is realistic, you’ll get there soon enough.
Being specific is also key. At the beginning of
the season, I charted out the days, weeks and months before the Atlanta games
and figured out where I needed to be at each step along the way. That work is
what tightens the focus on the dreams and turns them into goals. I set my
pre-Olympic goals breaking 44 seconds in the 400 meters and breaking 20 in the
200. That way I knew I would have running times that would give me great
chances of winning gold medals in both events (assuming everything else went
according to plan). The importance of specificity can’t be overstated. If I’d
just set goals of running well in the
400 and the 200, the string connecting my goals would have been weakened and I
might have settled for less.
That doesn’t mean that if you don’t reach each
interval, each intermediate goal, you should give up on your larger goals. I
never did break 44 seconds in the weeks before the Olympics. But I didn’t panic
and I didn’t beat myself up. I just kept going, and in the end having a
sub-44-second 400 as a goal- even an unachieved goal- helped me sharpen my
training and win in Atlanta- where I set an Olympic 400-meter record of 43.49
In all of this, I believe, the first step is
knowing yourself. Cars are built now with on-board computers, small processors
that constantly check and recheck the status of every operating part, that tell
you when your door is open and even provide guidance systems to help you get
where you’re going. The on-board computer that you’ve been blessed with is a
far more refined and impressive piece of machinery. However, in some people the
computer has lost power through inactivity or its flashing messages have been ignored.
I think that most of us have an innate sense of what we want and how to get
there. You owe it to yourself to constantly check and recheck your computer, to
assess the information coming from your mind, your body, your core- the place
where your dreams and ambitions lie. Your ambition may be an education. It may
be getting your body in shape, losing weight, falling in love, battling cancer.
It may be sculpture, poetry, or the 200-meter run. No matter what it is, you
owe it to yourself to figure out what you are chasing.
Today was my perfect idea of "Run Happy"! One of my favorite things to do while on vacation is use running as a way to explore a new place and in the process inevitably end up doing something unforgettable. This week I am in Maui for my long-overdo honeymoon, and today I ran the Pipiwai Trail in the Haleakala National Park.
If you're ever in Maui, I highly recommend checking it out! It's only about 4 miles rountrip and the footing sometimes turns your pace into more of a hike, but the climb is fairly gradual. The highlight of the run is the gigantic 400 ft. waterfall, Waimoku Falls, and running through a dense bamboo forest! The grass trails surrounding the camping ground below are a wonderful soft surface and the view of the coastline is a feast for the eyes- it's an easy way to add minutes on. When you're done, the reward is jumping in any of the Ohe'o Gulch Pools (7 Sacred Pools). And that ladies and gentlemen, is what happens when you read guide books all day;-)
This Saturday I raced for Club Northwest at Club Nationals in Lexington, KY finishing 3rd overall in the Open Women's Race behind Boulder Running Companies Mattie Suver and Brianne Nelson. It was a fun weekend with a great group of people, reminding me why I love this sport so much- it brings people together of every age and ability level. I had a blast getting out there in the mud with 1/2 inch spikes and digging into a typical midwest country course!
Fun day hanging with Club Northwest and previewing the course here in Lexington, KY!! I'm excited to race on a true midwest country course again, and anytime I get to put 1/2 inch spikes in I feel pretty tough!! The course kind of reminded me of Terre Haute's national course...complete with mud and hills.
This Saturday, December 8th, I will race the 2012 USATF National Club Cross Country Championships in Lexington, KY with Club Northwest. I'm excited to put the cross country spikes on and charge some grass hills!!
(Last year's race at the Jefferson Golf Course in Seattle, WA where I was 3rd overall in 19:59.)
(My brand-spanking-new cross country spikes for Saturday, the Mach 14, that I broke in today during my workout. They feel great!!)
Here is a description of the race, map of the course, and a link to pictures of the course:
The USATF National Club Cross Country Championships will feature the top clubs from across the United States as they vie for honors and bragging rights as the nation's top cross country team. More than 100 teams and 1,200 competitors are expected to compete.The women's 6,000-meter course consists of two 2.5km loops, plus a 1km section that runs from the completion of the third loop at the start line to the finish.The course is contested on a primarily grass surface and is hilly, with each loop including three hills plus the final 1km section also includes a significant uphill.
While in San Jose I was finally able to meet Valerie Weilert, and see her first round prototype of the spike she has been working on! Hearing her logic behind the spike's design and getting an insight into the process of producing one was extremely interesting, and we were also able to get a run on the trails in together. (Valerie was also the overall women's winner of the SV trot, in 18:36!)
It's fitting that on thanksgiving day, I was able to lace up to do one of the things I am grateful for: run. Whether you choose to go alone or with loved ones, running brings people together, teaches you about yourself and is an avenue through which God has showed me His constant love and support regardless of anything I achieve or don't achieve. The Silicon Valley Turkey Trot was a great way to celebrate being thankful! The weather was beautiful and it was a fun way to kick off "turkey day", here's a highlight video from flotrack and some pictures from the race:
I'm excited to race the Silicon Valley Turkey Trot in San Jose, CA on Thursday! It's one of the largest races in Northern America on Thanksgiving Day, and in the first seven years of the races history, they have donated more than $2.2 million to three great local charities meeting the needs of local residents and communities within Silicon Valley.
Here's a picture from last years race:
And here's the race website along with a description of the race:
"In just six short years, the Elite Invitational 5K (formerly sponsored by Seagate and Synaptics) has become one of the two or three fastest, and most competitive, 5K road races in the world. In 2008, twelve men broke 14:00 minutes, by far the most of any 5K in the world. In 2010, the Association of Road Race Statisticians ranked the elite men’s race as the third most competitive 5K in the world, and the fourth most competitive in 2011.
Our pancake-flat and fast four-loop course, deep competition, and athlete-friendly amenities have attracted some of the planet’s most talented distance runners. Numerous Olympians have competed here. They include U.S. marathon standouts Ryan Hall and Blake Russell, middle distance stars Shannon Rowbury and Alan Webb, and talented young U.S. standouts such as Scott Bauhs and Galen Rupp. In addition, numerous international elites—World Championship medalists, national champions, and national team members—have toed the starting line."
While living in my hometown of Fort Collins, CO I worked at the local running store "Runner's Roost" and loved helping runners of every level find the right shoe. I strongly encourage each runner to visit a specialty running store where someone with knowledge of how to properly fit running shoes can watch your gait, inspect your arches and help get you into the correct shoe! Getting into the correct shoe (there are 4 main categories: minimal/natural, neutral, stability and motion control) can help prevent injury and relieve the stress on your ankles, knees and hips. Here is a useful chart I came across on the REI website explaining the basics:
About 90% of the time I follow a "Paleo" way of eating, it helps me to get more fruits, veggies and lean meats in my diet as opposed to the processed foods I often crave. Check out this useful website for "Practical Paleo tear-outs" like the ones below, I think they're nifty to take along to the grocery store or for a quick reference:
This last week I visited the Brooks headquarters for their “Team Day”, along with Beasts Amy Lia and Falesha Ankton. "Team Day" celebrated and showed off all that they have done with their high school team events in 2012! Check out the stats and uniforms below, pretty cool:
The supplement I am most passionate about, especially for young female runners is iron. While in high school, I had a devastating experience my last two years of high school cross country. I would start out the season strong, even winning a couple large invitationals. But by the time the state meet rolled around I would be seeing black spots and could barely muster the strength to crawl across the finish line. My senior year was the worst season, I went into the cross country state meet with the fastest time and barely finished the race in 159th place. It would not be until my freshman year at the University of Washington that I learned what "blood ferritin levels" meant and discovered I was severely anemic. Ferritin is a protein in the body that binds to iron, and so the amount of ferratin present in your blood shows how much iron is stored in your body. Oxygen binds to iron for transportation throughout the body. Anemia develops when the red blood cells in your blood lack the ability to bind oxygen (low iron), and consequently organs throughout the body are not getting the oxygen they need to function optimally. According to WebMD, "Anemia is the most common blood condition in the U.S. It affects about 3.5 million Americans. Women and people with chronic diseases are at increased risk of anemia." I personally have seen teammates and running friends affected by anemia over the years, with similar heartbreaking races at the end of the season and general symptoms. This is why iron is the #1 supplement I recommend- especially for high school and college female athletes!!
I take Garden of Life's RAW Iron, because it is made up of raw food-created nutrients and comes with a probiotic/enzyme blend, organic fruit/vegetable blend, and Vitamins B12, C and folic acid to enhance absorption:
"In nature, individual vitamins and minerals rarely work alone to accomplish their tasks. Instead they rely on the help of other vitamins, minerals and co-factors. Our Vitamin Code RAW Iron is formulated to include these additional nutrients to more efficiently perform its vital functions in the body. Vitamin B12 and folic acid work together in the production of red blood cells and complement iron’s function in the formation of hemoglobin, all of which support healthy blood and a healthy heart. Taking vitamin C along with iron enhances iron absorption. Additionally, vitamin C is integral to building and maintaining collagen, a protein that holds the body’s cells in place, including blood vessels, supporting healthy blood and a healthy heart."
I've always been susceptible to lower leg aches and pains, especially my achilles. I've recently started using this innovative new cross-training device, the Elliptigo! It helps me to keep my aerobic volume up, making it so that I never have to miss days because of the impact running places on my body. Using my heart rate monitor, I've been amazed at how easily I can get my heart rate up to the threshold effort that I have previously only been able to achieve through tempo runs. My motivation to cross train using the Elliptigo is much higher than other forms of cross training because I'm outside covering distance like an actual run and it's less of a mental struggle to stay engaged and push the envelope. Plus, the mechanics are different from an indoor Elliptical machine, because you're actively engaging core muscles to balance while riding. I am loving the Elliptigo and incorporating it into my training, here's some more information off their website:
TheElliptigo Website: http://www.elliptigo.com
The Elliptigo Project Website: http://theelliptigoproject.com
I raced for the first time in awhile at PNTF's this morning at Lower Woodland Park, on a hilly 6k cross country course that consisted of 3 x 2k loops. I'm very excited to be racing for Club Northwest, next race with them will be in Lexington, Kentucky on December 8th! It was nice to put racing flats on (I wore the new PureDrift because portions of the course were cement, they worked well and felt great) a get a solid racing effort in!
Interesting article from Runner's World's "Sweat Science":
Good Coach, Bad Coach: Motivation, Hormones, and Performance
From my column in today's Globe and Mail, a description of three very interesting experiments about how watching the right (or wrong) video or hearing the right (or wrong) words from a coach can instantly change your hormone levels and instantly make you faster and stronger (or slower and weaker):
EXPERIMENT NO. 1: Motivation boost
The set-up: A dozen volunteers watched six four-minute YouTube clips, one at a time, then hit the gym after viewing each film to test how much weight they could squat in three repetitions. The videos each displayed a specific emotion: sad, erotic, aggressive, “training motivational,” humorous or neutral. Saliva samples were collected before and after each showing of the videos to measure testosterone levels.
The payoff: The aggressive video (a montage of big rugby hits) and the motivational video (a mixed martial arts fighter in training) caused testosterone levels to spike, and produced an average increase of nearly five per cent in squat performance. The sad video (“starving children in Africa”) actually lowered testosterone and workout performance, while the erotic and funny videos were somewhere in between.
EXPERIMENT 2: Supportive vs. cautionary
The set-up: Two hours before a professional rugby match, 12 players received a 15-minute video session. They were either shown clips of great plays they’d made in a previous game, with the coach providing positive feedback, or they were shown clips of their opponents making great plays, with the coach saying things like, “Don’t let him get away with that today.”
The payoff: The positive feedback increased testosterone and resulted in better performance during the game, as measured by several statistical markers and subjective ratings. The cautionary feedback, in contrast, decreased testosterone and increased the stress hormone cortisol, with predictable results: poorer game performance.
EXPERIMENT 3: Positive vs. negative
The set-up: One day after a professional rugby match, 12 players completed a one-hour video feedback session with their coach. The session either showed footage of the player’s most successful moments from the previous night’s game, along with positive feedback from the coach, or it showed a montage of the player’s worst mistakes, with the coach providing critical comments such as: “Why couldn’t you do that right?”
The payoff: A few days later, in response to a physical stress test, the players who had received positive feedback showed dramatically higher testosterone levels compared to the negative-feedback group. A week later, before their next game, the positive-feedback group still had higher testosterone levels and produced better performances in the game.
To me the most surprising and fascinating part of these experiments was that negative coaching feedback after one game could have effects on hormones and performance a full week later. That's incredible. When you think of all the different things that can affect you -- comments from friends or strangers, things you read or see on TV, what you choose to think about, etc. -- there are so many different ways you could be affecting your psychological (and thus physiological) outlook. It really explains why many top athletes go to such extreme lengths to control their entire environment, especially leading up to a big competition. Although I'm a journalist, I can fully understand why an athlete wouldn't want to answer questions about past failures before a big game or race.
As a postscript, to accompany the column, I picked my five favorite sports psych-up movies of all time. The gallery of the five movies is here, topped (of course!) by Hoosiers. One of my favorite sports memories is my very last game of high-school basketball. I went to a very small high-school (the Hickory High of the North, we liked to think of ourselves), and we had qualified 16th out of 16 for the city play-offs, which meant that we would play the top-seeded team in the first round. Almost the entire grade skipped class that afternoon to watch Hoosiers with us before we headed out for the game. (We lost, but I'm sure our hormone levels were optimized!)
People often ask me what vitamins and supplements I use on a daily basis, so over the next several weeks, I will be picking one a week and talking about why I take it and why I think it is important! In addition to eating a healthy diet full of fresh fruits, veggies and lean meats there are several natural supplements I believe are extremely important in supporting optimal health and performance. Here is my first entry on the importance of Vitamin D3.
I grew up in the sunny state of Colorado, and my freshman year at the University of Washington (Seattle, WA) was the first time I had ever heard about Vitamin D3. It's an extremely important supplement, especially if you are living in areas of the country where fall and winter are synonymous with cloudy days and less sun! This is because Vitamin D is naturally synthesized in the body when UV rays from the sun hit your skin, and studies show that about one billion people worldwide are deficient in vitamin D. You can also get Vitamin D from your diet and supplements, such as Garden of Life's RAW Vitamin D3 which is a whole food vitamin D complex that is gluten and dairy-free with no binders or fillers, contains live probiotics and enzymes, and is a raw source of vitamin D3.
As an athlete living and training in the Pacific Northwest, it is critical to maintain healthy levels of Vitamin D in my diet, because it helps me by:
* Maintaining calcium balance- Vitamin D helps the body absorb nutrients like calcium and phosphorus, to keep my bones strong throughout the fall when I'm running close to 75 miles a week.
*Triggering the body's immune defenses- Vitamin D helps the body's white blood cells to function properly, keeping me healthy so I avoid missed weeks of training.
* Aiding in cell differentiation and reducing inflammation- Vitamin D helps the cells proliferate, which is essential to growth and healing and may also help to prevent cancerous mutations of the cells.
*Keeping my digestive system working properly- Vitamin D receptor cells are present all along your digestive system.
Over the last couple months I've been helping Valerie Weilert with her design project of creating a personalized mid-distance spike!! I'd like to share a few sketches from her notebook , it's amazing to have a front seat to such a creative and artistic mind:
Garden of Life is in the beginning process of their next, and probably most
exciting book project: A Cookbook! They will have a variety of sections from drinks/smoothies to
appetizers, main dishes, sides, desserts, etc. and I wanted to share a few of my favorite recipes using their products:
RAW CHERRY BERRY BLEND:
1 cup frozen mixed berries (cherries, blackberries, blueberries, red raspberries) ½ cup nonfat plain yogurt
1 cup Almond Milk or Water, adjust for consistency you want
1 Tbs. Chia Seeds
1 scoop Perfect Food RAW Organic Green Superfood with Cacao
**Optional: 2 Tbs. Peanut Butter, YUM!!**
RAW COCO/DATE BLEND:
½ cup frozen strawberries
½ cup chopped dates
1 cup coconut water
1 scoop Perfect Food RAW Organic Green Superfood with Cacao
GINGER SWEET POTATO STIR FRY:
1 c water 1/2 c quinoa
1 med sweet potato (about 8 oz), peeled and cut into cubes
4 tsp Garden of Life Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
12 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into pieces
1 med onion, chopped
1 med red bell pepper, chopped
1 c sugar snap peas
Grated ginger, to taste
Reduced-Sodium Soy Sauce, to taste
¼ tsp salt
1. Combine water and quinoa in small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, and simmer until liquid has been absorbed, 12 to 15 minutes. Steam sweet potato until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes, while quinoa is cooking.
3. Heat 2 teaspoons of the coconut oil in large nonstick frying pan or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, until starting to brown, about 4 minutes. Transfer to bowl.
4. Return pan to heat and add remaining 2 teaspoons coconut oil. Stir in onion and red pepper. Cook until vegetables start to soften. Stir in peas and reserved chicken and cook 2 minutes. Add quinoa and sweet potato. Cook, stirring frequently, until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in ginger, soy sauce and salt.
5. ENJOY!!! (Leftovers are also great for brunch the next day after a long morning workout- just add a fried egg on top!)
I do all of these, they're great (but make sure to focus on your form!!):
Get into the plank position (toes and forearms on the floor, body lifted). Your body should form a straight line (A). Brace your abs and carefully shift your weight to your right forearm. Extend your left arm in front of you (B) and hold for 3 to 10 seconds. Slowly bring your arm back in. Repeat with the right arm. That's 1 rep.
In a right-side plank position (A), brace your abs and reach your left hand toward the ceiling (B). Slowly tuck your left arm under your body and twist forward until your torso is almost parallel to the floor (C). Return to the side plank. That's 1 rep
Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Rest your arms on the floor, palms up, at shoulder level. Raise your hips so your body forms a straight line from your shoulders to your knees (A). Brace your abs and lift your right knee toward your chest (B). Hold for 2 counts, then lower your right foot. Repeat with the other leg.
Lie on your back with your right knee bent and your left leg extended. Rest your arms on the floor, palms up, at shoulder level with your hips about 2 inches off the floor (A). Raise your hips to form a straight line from your shoulders to your left foot (B). Hold for 2 counts, then return to start. That's 1 rep. Do 10 to 15 reps on each side. To make it harder, cross your arms over your chest.
Grab a 5- to 15-pound dumbbell with both hands. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and your arms straight out (A). Take a big step forward with your left foot and, bracing your abs, twist your torso to the left as you bend your knees and lower your body until both of your legs form 90-degree angles (B). Twist back to center, push off your left foot, and stand back up. Repeat on the other leg. That's 1 rep. Do 2 or 3 sets of 10 to 15 reps. Keep your elbows straight but not locked.
Grab a 5- to 15-pound dumbbell in your left hand and hold it up next to your left shoulder, palm facing in (A). Step backward with your left foot and lower your body until your knees are bent 90 degrees (your left knee should nearly touch the floor) while pressing the dumbbell directly over your shoulder without bending or leaning at the waist (B). Lower the weight back to the starting position as you push quickly back to standing. That's 1 rep. Do 10 to 15, then switch sides.
Also at Foot Traffic this morning I met Mike and Heidi, who started "Pocketfuel". I took a taste of their 100% natural energy blends made from almond butter and hazelnut butter- DELICIOUS!! One of my favorite pre-run morning snacks is a little almond butter spread on a banana with a cup of coffee, and they created a convenient "squish and squeeze" almond butter with ground up espresso beans and chocolate?! Or Chia seeds and goji berries?! Amazing. Check them out!!
University of Washington (2006-2010) *Eight-time All-American: 3 Cross country, Indoor Mile,
Indoor 3k, Indoor DMR, Outdoor 5000, Outdoor 1500 *Pac 10 1500 Champion 2008, 2009, Runner-up 2010 *Cross Country National Team Champions 2008 *2008 Olympic Trials 1500 21st *2010 Indoor Mile national runner-up
*2010 Mt.Sac 4:10.66 (Fastest collegiate time of the year) *UW School records: 1500 4:10.66, Mile 4:34.98
Brooks Professional Career (2010-present)
*2011 Payton Jordan 1500, 1st *2011 Oxy HP 1500, 1st *2011 Portand Track Festival 800, 1st
*2011 USATF Outdoor Championships 1500, 8th
*2011 USATF Club XC Championships 6k, 3rd 19:59 pr *2012 Olympic Trials 1500 Finals, 9th
*2012 Kortrijk, Belgium 1500, 1st
*2012 Ninove, Belgium 800, 5th 2:02.23 pr
*2012 USATF Club XC Championships 6k, 3rd
*2013 USATF Indoor 800m Championships, 5th *2013 Payton Jordan 5000 15:23.65 pr *2013 Oxy HP 1500, 1st 4:04.60 pr