The Do’s and Don’ts of Running this Summer

It’s mid-June and those summer races you signed up for are coming up soon! Whether it is the Falmouth Road Race, the Max Triathlon series or any other race you registered for this summer, it’s coming up quicker than you may think! If you haven’t really been training for your race yet, it’s time to hit the ground running! The sooner you start the better. Before you do that though, there are a few things to keep in mind to guarantee your success and your safety!

All In One Day!

 

This past Saturday was a busy and exciting day for the Run Tri Ride Department!  Not only was it the Tri Mania Expo hosted by MIT, but it was also the Charity Long Run, the last long run before the Boston Marathon. We divided and conquered to be able to get it all done! Both events were great opportunities to showcase the Alzheimer’s Association and create awareness.

We attended the expo with the help of a couple of our great volunteers! We arrived on scene and set up our area. Our Run Tri Ride banner and the name Alzheimer’s Association drew people in and we told them about all of the opportunities we have coming up to get involved. We had our new 2015 posters/brochures for the Run Tri Ride department as well as the Association and its free programs. We also had gear to purchase (http://www.alzmass.org/run/pdfs/2015_gear_flyer.pdf).  It was a great turnout! Most of the athletes present were triathletes so they were very interested to hear about both our run options, and the RIDE this July. We were located right next to Max Performance, our wonderful partner for our triathlon program. This was great because we could interact with each other and it was a very natural progression for people to hear how they can get involved with us and then hear more about the specific races right next door! We had everyone fill out an interest form so that we can see who wanted more information on what. It was a great experience to show everyone how they can MOVE towards a world without Alzheimer’s! We had a great amount of people we were able to meet and talk with either about their personal connection to the disease or what they would prefer to do athletically.

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A few miles away, our Marathon runners were running their longest run thus far, from Hopkinton to Boston, all the way up and over Heartbreak Hill. They were joined by thousands of other runners all running on behalf of a charity. Despite the snow and cold weather, all of our runners present completed the run and felt great! Some even wanted to keep going! We had our purple presence with our water stops there for our runners manned by more of our fabulous volunteers. This is such a special run because it almost feels like the real thing, complete with Police detail! Everyone is out there that day for the same reason and there is a real feeling of comradery. The countdown to the Marathon has officially begun and that excitement is present. From here on out the runners will begin to taper their runs until the 20th. Then we will all be out on that route again at our Cheering Station  with our hearts full for all of our runners and their families.

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Workouts You Can Do Anywhere!

The key to exercise is 1) to have the motivation to get the work done and 2) to have it fit into your busy schedule. Sometimes going to the gym is just not feasible on your busiest days, Run Tri Ride knows that and we are here to help! We are going to let you in on a secret about how you can do a few key exercises right at home and still get a full body workout. All you really need is a room in your house. No excuses!

Let’s start with push-ups. This is a great way to work not only your chest muscles, but your core muscles as well. All you need is your bed and you can make it as easy or as challenging as you would like. If you are beginning, place your hands on the edge of your bed and your toes on the ground. You can perform these push-ups at an incline. For a more challenging push-up, switch into a decline position with your hands on the ground and your toes on the bed.

Next, all you need is a chair to accomplish a squatting exercise.  Stand a few feet in front of the chair and then start to lower yourself into the chair as if you’re going to sit, but just tap the seat lightly. Then use your hamstrings and core to pull your body back into a standing position.  If you want to take this exercise to the next level then try standing on one foot as you squat down. The chair just acts as a guide for your form. This exercise can really be done anywhere!

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For this next exercise all you need is a floor! Lie down and stretch your arms and legs out into a big X shape. Lift your chest and thighs off the floor and then open and close your arms and legs quickly, similar to a jumping jack. By doing this movement you are working out your back, thighs, glutes, core, and shoulders!

Since you will already be on the floor you can do mountain climbers next. This will get your heart rate up and your core burning! Get into a plank position on the floor and then lift your knee up to your chest, then switch legs. Keep doing this as quickly as you can!

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After doing a few of these exercises you will see how your whole body was engaged and how you didn’t even have to leave your house! This is a great alternative on a day where you maybe can’t get a run in or that trip to the gym. What are your favorite workouts to do at home? Share them with us!

Connecting the pieces to the FUNdraising puzzle

Fundraising is a great thing to do! It is usually because someone wants to give back and support a specific cause or charity that they may have a personal tie to.  Fundraising for a cause and passing along that monetary support enables the organization to be able to further develop research or support offered. Have you been thinking of registering for one of our events recently?! Make it really count by starting to think about your FUNdraising now!

All of our Run Tri Ride athletes that participate in any of the opportunities  we provide (Boston Marathon, Max Performance Triathlon Series, Run to Remember, RIDE to End Alzheimer’s etc.) are fundraising for the Alzheimer’s Association which the association uses to try to help better the lives of everyone affected by the disease. It is so greatly appreciated and necessary so we want to make it hopefully a little easier on you! We want to give you some tips and tricks on fundraising!

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  1. The best way to start is by making your own fundraising page which you can do through our website! This makes it convenient for people to donate and easy for you to manage. You can donate to the page yourself which shows others how committed you are to the cause! The best part is that you can personalize your page! Don’t underestimate what your individual touch through your posts, or a video can bring to your fundraising, your donors are interested in you!
  2. Reach out to your closest core first. Send out an email to them explaining what you are doing. Be yourself, include the link to your fundraising page, and say thank you!! This is probably more in your comfort zone and it is a great way to get the ball rolling. You can pace it out every day or so, but start with all of your family and friends. Then you can reach out to coworkers, distant relatives, and any contacts you may have.
  3. The next big ripple is social media. Give anyone who is interested the chance to get involved! When using Facebook you can tag people who have already donated and thank them. This will show up in other people’s newsfeeds and get the buzz going and let them know that other people are donating! Also, use Facebook to share stories or information about the cause too, it doesn’t always have to be asking for money.

It may take some time to get comfortable, but you will be a successful fundraiser if you believe in the cause, you commit, and you put your own creative spin on it. Own it, we know you can do it!

 

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GET THE FACTS about Nutrition

Having the knowledge of the “do’s and the don’ts” about nutrition is vital in the success of our health management. There’s so much information out there about different diets, but we like to keep it simple! Here are some good old fashioned facts about nutrition that can positively help us better our health when used correctly.

1.Keep the Omega-3 fats coming!

Omega-3 fats are very beneficial to our bodies and most people don’t intake enough of them. The human body can’t fully function properly without enough Omega-3.Omega-3 deficiency can lead to a variety of mental diseases and depression. Some great ways to incorporate more Omega-3 fats into your life are to eat more fish, grass-fed meat, and pasteurized eggs!

2.Skip the artificial Trans Fats!

We all know that anything with the word artificial in it can’t be good! Artificial trans fats can raise the bad cholesterol we have in our bodies and cause insulin resistance. Long term intake can even cause obesity, among many other bad side effects. These chemically processed fats can do nothing but hurt us. Don’t let them!

3.Pass the vegetables please!

Vitamins, minerals, fiber, oh my! Not to mention antioxidants and nutrients which can all be found packed in the veggies you love. There are so many choices as well. Switch it up and mix your greens every day. This way you don’t get bored and are adding a healthy variety to your diet. You can’t go wrong. Your mom was right when she told you to eat all your veggies! Pair these veggies with a healthy helping of protein and you have a great meal!


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4. Vitamin D all day

Vitamin D is more important than you might realize. It acts as a steroid hormone in our bodies.  Our skin makes vitamin D when exposed to the sun. The problem is what if the sun isn’t out or (hint hint) it is Winter in Boston it can be hard to obtain. The best thing to do is to take a vitamin when it is not possible to get out in the sun. See your doctor to have your Vitamin D blood levels checked. It is important to keep an eye on because if you are deficient in Vitamin D, because it is a big hormone, it can have a negative impact on our health.

5. This is a lifestyle

Being serious about our health and practicing just a few of the many tips and facts on nutrition every day is a lifestyle. This is not a fad diet or an easy way to lose weight. This is about living a long and healthy life, physically and mentally. Start small. Introduce a few of these tips into your lifestyle and reap the benefits later on in life. If you have already begun looking into some of these tips, research further! The possibilities are limitless!

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Top 10 Ways to Prep for the Triathlon Season

 We have a celebrity writer this week! We are so lucky to have Coach Jean Gillis of Dreamfar Triathlon share some tips with all of us in preparation for the upcoming triathlon season! Thank you Jean!

 

“ 1. Attend the Tri-Mania Expo – This expo at MIT in Cambridge, Sat, March 28th, is a fun, educational, energy-packed day designed to help you get ready and excited for the new season (plus it’s FREE). Attend great clinics, pick up gear at discount prices and come visit us at the Dreamfar booth! More info and registration here: http://trimania.com/boston/overview/

2. Set Goals – Choose fun goals to motivate and challenge yourself, survive your first triathlon, do a longer distance, improve in your weakest sport. Pick goals that are exciting and push you a bit out of your comfort zone, but also consider the time you’re able to commit.

3. Pick Your Races – Choose your race or races and don’t wait to register, most of them do sell out. Dreamfar’s team races will be the Mass State Olympic https://maxperformanceonline.com/massstaterace/ and the Pumpkinman 70.3 http://www.pumpkinmantriathlon.com. For sprint & olympic distance races, Max Performance https://maxperformanceonline.com directs awesome, safe races. If you have questions about a race or would like a recommendation, email Coach Jean jean@dreamfartriathlon.org. You can find other triathlons on these sites:          http://www.trifind.com/        http://www.active.com.

4. Get a Training Log - Whether you prefer the old fashioned pen on paper, or you want to enter it all online or in an app, a log is a useful and important tool. When it comes close to race time, reviewing all the training hours you’ve put in will boost your confidence. If you get injured often, reviewing your log could show where you’re overdoing it.

5. Prep Your Bike – If you don’t have a bike, buy one and get it professionally fit to you at the shop where you buy it. If you already have a bike, get it tuned up. The tune-up is essential for safety, they’ll replace worn brakes, chains, cables and tires, and it will give you a much smoother ride. If you already have a bike, but you were never professionally fit on it, it’s a must for avoiding injury from bad positioning; especially if you’re training for a longer distance.

6. Deal with Injury - If you have a nagging injury that’s been hanging around for a while, visit a professional and get it taken care of. Waiting until it gets worse could mean being side-lined from training in the middle of the season. We only have a few months of tri-season in New England, so you want to make the most of it. Two professionals we highly recommend are:

 Dr Kate Kelly, Active Recovery                                  http://activerecoveryboston.com

Dr Matt Penny, Advanced Sports Therapy http://advancedorthopedic.net/Clinics/advanced-sports-therapy-wellesley.html

7. Focus on Drills – Logging lots of miles will improve your cardio endurance, but it won’t do much for your technique or efficiency. Although drills may not be the sexiest part of triathlon, they’re what’s going to help you to exert less energy on the swim and have more in you for the run. Here are USAT recommended swim drills http://www.usatriathlon.org/about-multisport/multisport-zone/multisport-lab/articles/swim-drills-for-triathletes-032613.aspx Beginner Triathlete recommended bike drills http://www.beginnertriathlete.com/cms/article-detail.asp?articleid=1030

8. Strength Train – Strength training is critical to preventing injury, improving power and helping you maintain good form when you’re fatigued during training or racing. Unfortunately, with all the different things to focus on during the season, strength training typically gets lost in the shuffle. Now, before the season kicks off, is a great time to focus on building strength. Training Peaks recommend off-season strength training http://home.trainingpeaks.com/blog/article/year-round-strength-training-for-triathletes,-part-1-the-off-season

9. Start a Routine - Getting into the routine of triathlon training, and having your gear ready, can take a while; especially if it’s new for you. If you don’t already have one, find a place to swim. We’ll send out training plans for sprint/olympic and 70.3 distances that start in April, but for now you can start getting into the routine of the following schedule. If you’re not up to these amounts of time, start with less and gradually add a few minutes each week. The point is to get into the routine of the workouts. Sprint/Olympic: Monday 15 min swim/strength train, Tuesday 20 min bike, Weds 15 swim/20 min run, Thurs 20 min bike/strength train, Sat 45-60 mins your choice (ex. 35 min bike, 15 min run). 3: Monday 20 min swim/strength train, Tuesday 25 min bike, Weds 20 swim/25 min run, Thurs 25 min bike/strength train, Sat 50-65 mins your choice (ex. 40 min bike, 25 min run).

10. Mark Your Calendar - Save the date for Saturday, April 11th! Dreamfar will kick off the season with our first group training. More details to come! Join Dreamfar on Facebook to be part of all the fun.” https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dreamfar-Triathlon/155924154444596?ref=hl

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TRI Your Best!

Triathlon season is coming up! With our Max Performance Triathlon Series you have 5 chances to get on board. Will it be your first triathlon? Or are you a veteran biker, swimmer, and runner? Either way come prepared and have your best race day yet!

We want you to start off on the right foot (pun intended!) With any race, arrive early and get settled. Rushing in, or being late, can shift your focus and be very distracting before the race. Grab your registration packets/info and familiarize yourself with your surroundings. You want to be comfortable! If you get there early enough you can warm up too. Start in reverse order of the event so begin with running and end with swimming.

When you begin with swimming start off with an even and controlled pace. Take a few seconds in the beginning if you have to and this will give you more space as well. Every couple strokes raise your eyes to make sure you are still going in the right direction. If you can, stay behind someone who is going around the same speed as you to conserve some energy. As you get out of the water try to calm your adrenaline. Unzip your wet suit to your waist and you can finish taking it off in the transition area.

When you get to the transition area finish taking off your wet suit and dry your feet before putting on your cycling shoes! Put on your helmet and you are good to go. On to the bike ride!

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Be smart. Don’t kill your legs because you still have the run ahead of you. “Even accomplished runners can end up run/walking the last leg because they didn’t gauge their effort right,” says triathlon coach Lesley Mettler. Also, take this time on the bike to refuel. Eat or drink something while it is easiest. Stretch your legs when necessary by standing up on the bike. Your calves and hamstrings will thank you later! Stay on the right hand side as you ride, unless you are passing someone, and keep a healthy distance between you and the rider in front of you.

As you transition after the bike ride, take off your helmet, switch shoes, rack your bike, and you’re off.  Hit the ground running.

This is the last 1/3 of the race. You are almost done! Use your arms effectively here to help your legs out. Swing those arms and give your legs a little break. Keep your eye on the prize. Although this stretch will feel longer than it is because odds are you are going to be tired, glory awaits you at the finish line! You will officially be a triathlete if you haven’t already been one! Congratulations! Keep these tips in mind as motivation as you are training this Winter!

Cycling with the Snow

The Winter weather sure is not giving up! We have seven feet of snow piled up on all sides of us and have braced the Winter wind. This is definitely a New England winter to remember! We will not just sit back and let it keep us from our training! We know that you want to keep up your routine and motivation for the days of sun and warm temperatures that will be coming, believe it or not!

We want to help you and give you some ideas on how you can keep up the cycling that you love in a safe way during this winter season! You won’t be sorry come spring! One of the best and safest things you can do is to train indoors. Try cycling inside for an hour or two every couple of days. You can vary your intensity and speed to still get in the intense workout that you want. Try joining a spin class!

Weight training, as we have mentioned before, can add to your workout greatly as well. We want you to be able to retain your muscle mass and it is possible to do this through more aerobic exercise so that you are staying strong without necessarily getting bulky. More reps, less weight is the key! Think of it this way, you will have less muscle to push up that steep hill later on. Warming up on a treadmill and then focusing on leg presses, squats, deadlifts, and ending with a cool down is a great way to start.

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Cross training can also be a refreshing way to get that exercise in if biking outside may not be possible in this slushy mess. Try a short jog one day, a swim another. Maybe even cross country skiing! We have got to stay resourceful! You will achieve total body fitness this way.

As we know, winter will eventually end! Keep your spirits up and your motivation even higher. We can’t wait to see you achieve your goals and keep doing what you love so much! Before you know it you will be back outside riding the way you like to. You will be so happy you kept up your training so that you’re ready for different events like the RIDE to End Alzheimer’s this July! Keep pedaling!

Do you lift?

It is much more common for athletes to realize how much better they can perform and avoid injury if they add strength training into their daily exercise routine, especially for new runners and bikers. The trick is to rotate them in your workouts correctly so that you are not taking away from you running/biking or putting too much stress on your body.

A study was done to see how running after a high intensity strength training session earlier in the day affected running. This is helpful for runners to know how they should schedule their workouts to best benefit from them. Overall, the findings concluded that you should not have a hard run planned after intensely lifting weights earlier that day. The study revealed that running at maximal effort can be impaired up to 6 hours after lifting. It is also showed that runners who ran after lifting were more tired the next day. So what can you do?

It is recommended that on days that you are going to both strength train and run or bike that you lift LAST! For example, go running in the morning and then strength train in the evening. You could also spread out these two activities to different days and maybe have an easier day vs. a harder day in your workout.

The same goes for biking! Lifting weights can help you with your time and your training progress. Focus on big muscles like your hamstrings, especially when starting. During the off season start a 10 week resistance program. As you progress and get stronger you will have more power to put to the pedal and have your fastest season yet!

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We want you to stay safe and to be as successful as possible. If you haven’t thought about strength training before maybe think of how it could benefit your routine and make your muscles even stronger. Maybe you are already on a similar schedule to the one stated above or have your own. What works for you? Share here so that other athletes can get some ideas and inspiration. Keep up the good work!

 

 

Sunday Funday for ALZ!

Gearing up for the big game Sunday?  No matter who you are rooting for make the Alzheimer’s Association part of your team. We have some great ideas so that you can watch the game and give back at the same time! Why not do both? It will be fun!

Having some friends over to watch the game with you? We know you are! Have everyone chip in a few bucks at the door or include a donation page with your invite. That way someone could include a donation even if they couldn’t make it to the party.  Let them know that you will be donating it to the Alzheimer’s Association or in support of one of your runs. They will be excited to help out!  Make it themed! $10 = extra point, $50= field goal, $100=touchdown!

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Super bowl squares are always a crowd pleaser. The competition, the suspense, the victory! Why not take the winnings for each quarter and the final score and split it 50/50. Half of the funds will go to the winner while the other half is donated to the Alzheimer’s Association.

You can also organize a prize drawing! Create an opportunity based on who wins the Super Bowl and the final score of the game. Your guests can buy a ticket for a designated price. You can have a small prize for the winner and all the money can go to your cause! You could even get creative and make your own Super Bowl bingo if you wanted to have more games!

Who knew that you could do so much while watching football?

We know that the day is all about football football football and don’t forget the company, food, or decor! Deck your living rooms out proudly in different shades of purple. You can use purple plates, cups, streamers. This is another fun way to show that you are teaming up with the Alzheimer’s Association during your party. We want your party to be great. Dedicate this Super Bowl Sunday to doing what you can to help out the community in some small way. Your guests will love the added thought and maybe you will even start a trend!

Which team will Run Tri Ride their way to the victory? We will have to wait and see Sunday!