Saturday, June 25, 2011

10 Hot Tips for Summer Runs!

1. Acclimatize
It takes time for your body to adjust to hot and/or humid weather. Just because you can run a 10-miler at an 8-minute pace, doesn't mean you can do the same when the dog days of summer approach. The American Running and Fitness Association recommends that on your first run in the heat, you should cut your intensity by 65 to 75 percent. Then over the next 10 days, slowly build back to your previous level.

2. Check the Index
Before heading out on your run, it's a good idea to check the air quality index and the heat index. If the air quality index is code orange, and you're sensitive to air pollution and/or have upper respiratory problems, you may not want to run. If it's code red, it's not suitable for anyone to run.

The Heat Index tells you what the temperature feels like when combining the air temperature and the relative humidity. For example, if the air temperature is 90 degrees and the relative humidity is 70 percent, then it's going to feel as if it's 106 degrees. Ouch! These are not good running conditions.

The weather section of your local TV station's website usually provides air quality index and heat index information for your area.

3. Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate!
Many runners remember to rehydrate after their run and some consume water or sports drink during the run, but it's even more important to be well-hydrated before you run. As a rule of thumb, drinking 16 oz. of water two hours before your run will ensure good hydration levels and give the water time to pass through your system so you don't have to make any pit stops during your run.

Hydration during your run depends on the temperature and the length of your run. If you're running 4 miles or less, you probably won't need to carry any water with you. If you're running longer than 4 miles you may need to wear a hydration belt or stash some water/sports drink along your route, especially if it's hot and humid.

Don't wait until you feel thirsty to drink. If you're thirsty, that means you're already low on fluids. Also, as you age, your thirst mechanism isn't as efficient and your body may in the early stages of dehydration and you may not even feel thirsty.

For the first 45 to 60 minutes, water is fine. After 60 minutes, you'll need to start using a sports drink or supplementing with a sports gel or a salty food such as pretzels. After 60 minutes (and sometimes sooner if it's really hot and you sweat a lot), you begin to deplete vital electrolytes (i.e., sodium, potassium, etc.). Sodium is needed in order for your body to absorb the fluids you’re ingesting. Ever get that sloshing feeling late in a run? That's probably because your body is low on sodium and not able to absorb the fluids you're drinking, so it just sits in your stomach and sloshes around not doing you any good. Depleted potassium levels can increase your chances of experiencing muscle cramps.

After your run, you need to replace the water you've lost. A good way to check this is to weigh before your run and then weigh after your run. Drink 16 oz. of water for every pound lost. After you do the weigh-in a few times, you'll get a feel for how much rehydration you need depending on how much you sweat on your run.

On a hot long run, pack an extra bottle of water. Don't drink this one. Instead, during the run periodically pour a little of the water on your head. This actually helps increase the evaporation-cooling effect.

Go to to read the rest of my tips!

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Power of Potassium!

Bananas are a staple in most runners' training diets. They're a great quick source of nutrient dense carbs and they're a great source of potassium. Potassium is one of the 5 key electrolytes (potassium, sodium, calcium, magnesium, and chloride). As we sweat, we deplete the levels of electrolytes in our bodies and it's vitally important to replace them while we run as well as after we run.

While most Americans tend to ingest about 1000mg more sodium than recommended each day, we fall short in our potassium intake. Sodium plays a key role in hydration and potassium helps keep muscles from cramping. Potassium also helps regulate heart functions, helps to reduce blood pressure, and plays a role in converting glucose into glycogen (your fuel for running). The muscle cramps I mentioned early are usually a result of the lack of potassium for the glucose conversion to take place. The muscles simple run out of gas. Potassium also plays a role in eliminating carbon dioxide from the lungs (another key function for runners). If you're running more than 45 minutes (especially if it's hot and humid) you need to make sure and drink a sports drink containing electrolytes or add electrolyte tablets to plain water in order to keep from depleting your electrolytes to dangerously low levels.

It's also important not to just replace what you've sweated out on a run, but it's good to include potassium in your everyday diet. Adults need about 4,000mg of potassium each day. You'll need more if you're exercising and sweating heavily. No, that doesn't mean you have to eat bananas at every meal. There are lots of other foods to choose from that are rich sources of potassium.
Here's just a few..
Raisins                                   1 cup              1089mg
Baked Potato                         1 medium       1081mg
Lima Beans                           1 cup                 955mg
Winter Squash                      1 cup                 896mg
Dried Prunes                         1 cup                 828mg
Raw Bananas                       1 cup                594mg
Plain Yogurt                          8 oz                   579mg
Tomato Juice                         1 cup                 535mg
Cooked Beets                        1 cup                 519mg
Baked Sweet Potato w/skin   1 potato            508mg
Cooked Brussels sprouts       1 cup                  504mg
Orange Juice                         1 cup                  496mg
Cantaloupe                            1 cup                  494mg
Skim Milk                             1 cup                  407mg
Dried Apricots                    10 halves              407mg
Strawberries                          1 cup                  240mg
Pears                                      1 whole pear      208mg
Dry Roasted Peanuts             1 oz                    187mg

Hypokalemia is a metabolic disorder that occurs when you have lower than the needed amount of potassium in the blood. There are lots of things that can cause low levels of potassium. One is simply not eating enough potassium-rich foods, but some medications (especially diuretics) can effect the levels as well as having diarrhea, eating disorders like bulimia, diseases such as Cushing Syndrome, eating large amounts of licorice, and sweating. It's the last one (sweating) that runners have to be cognisant of. A small dip in your potassium level isn't going to cause you to experience the symptoms of hypokalemia (abnormal heart rhythm, decomposition of muscle fibers, fatigue, muscle weakness, constipation, paralysis) but a large enough dip certainly can. If you're not getting the needed potassium in your everyday diet and then you're sweating profusely on your runs, you may be putting yourself at risk.

Recently a Johns Hopkins study showed low levels of serum potassium might be a potential diabetes risk factor and that low levels of potassium might be a factor in why African-Americans (who tend to have lower levels of potassium) are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than whites. Black or white, upping your potassium intake may very well help decrease your chances of developing diabetes.

So do yourself a favor, grab a handful of raisins and take advantage of the Power of Potassium!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Enter to Win an Ultra Pocket Hat by RunTECHNOLOGY!

CONGRATS to DAVE MERCER, winner of the Ultra Pocket Hat!
And a big THANKS to Gone for a Run for providing such a great prize!

Gone for a Run is one of my favorite sites for running gear and running gifts. They're such great sports, that they're doing a give-a-way drawing for one of their Ultra Pockets Hats. This awesome hat is the runner/triathlete hat featuring outer pockets for carrying energy gels, keys, money and ID. The pockets feature a velcro closure and holds contents securely and comfortably.

The Ultra Hat has been road tested and is a top choice for quick access of Energy gels on long runs. Its aerodynamic construction, ventilated mesh side panels, reflective safety piping, moisture wicking material along with these patented outer pockets make this hat a top choice for athletes.
The Run Ultra Hat Features
  • Two side pockets holds gels, ID, keys, money etc.
  • Pockets measure 6" wide and 3.5" depth (in deepest and widest section)
  • Ultra lightweight
  • Moisture wicking polyester performance fabric
  • Side mesh panel for ventilated cool comfort
  • Adjustable velcro closure for perfect fit
  • Reflective piping for enhanced night visibility & safety
  • One size fits all
  • Embroidered Gone For A Run logo on back
To Enter, simply email RunnerDude at by midnight (EST) Sunday, June 26th. Be sure to put "Ultra Hat" in the subject line and then include your full name in the body of the email. Next, Like Gone for a Run on Facebook Each email received will receive a number in the order that it's received. The True Random Number Generator will be used to select the winning email number. The winner will be announced on the blog on Monday, June 27th.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

RunnerDude Chats with Zola Budd

Excitement doesn't do justice in describing how I felt when I found out a few months ago that Zola Pieterse (better known by her maiden name, Zola Budd) agreed to do an interview with me. I was elated. I've followed Budd and her story ever since the '84 Olympcis. You see, 1984 was the year I started running. It was also the year I ran my first 10K. The 1984 Olympics were very motivating to me as I began to experience my budding new love for running. Zola intrigued me during those games because of her barefoot running. Today barefoot running is all the rage, but back in the 80s it was pretty much unheard of (in the states that is). In South Africa, Zola's birthplace and childhood home, barefoot running was a way of life. Not only did her barefoot running captivate me, the fact that she was about my age was pretty cool too.

Zola's name became a household word in 1984 when at 17 she broke the women's 5000m world record. Her time was 15:01.83. Unfortunately because the race took place in South Africa, which at that point was excluded from international athletics competition due to its apartheid policy, the IAAF (International Amateur Athletic Federation) did not acknowledge Zola's time as an official world record. But in 1985, Zola came back officially claiming the title while representing Great Britain with a finishing time of 14:48.07. Zola also has two world cross country titles and numerous other track victories.

Zola's running achievements are often overshadowed by an incident during the '84 Olympics when fellow runner Mary Decker-Slaney collided with Zola during the 3000m race resulting in Mary falling and being unable to finish the race. While originally in the lead, Zola, finished the race 7th. Zola was initially unfairly blamed for the incident, but the IAAF jury found that Zola was not responsible for the collision and years later Decker was quoted as saying, “The reason I fell, some people think she tripped me deliberately. I happen to know that wasn’t the case at all. The reason I fell is because I am and was very inexperienced in running in a pack."(reference)
Today Zola (45 years-old) is a volunteer coach at Coastal Carolina College near Myrtle Beach, S.C. She married Michael Pieterse in 1989 and they have three children (a daughter and twin sons). All the while, Zola has continued to run.

Read on to learn more about this amazing woman.

RD: Your birthplace is South Africa. Where are you located now?
Zola: We now live in Myrtle Beach, SC, USA.

RD: Many know of Zola Budd, the young barefoot runner of the 80s who at 17, broke the women's 5000meter world record with a time of 15:01.83. Others remember the Apartheid era of South Africa, during the time you first began to make a name for yourself in the running world. And still others remember the incident with Mary Decker. I’d like to know more about the young Zola growing up in South Africa. What was life like as a youngster?
Zola: I grew up on a small holding surrounded by veld (grasslands of South Africa) and lots of space to play outdoors. We had all sorts of animals and I spent most of my time outside playing games with the local black kids. We lived out of town and my only friends were the farm workers’ kids I grew up with. It was a life close to nature and I loved it.

RD: Your older sister, Jenny, played a big role in your early life and if what I’ve read is correct, you started running as a child, because Jenny was a runner. While in your early teens, Jenny died from melanoma. Tell me more about this special older sister. How did she impact your life?
Zola: When I was born, my mom was very ill. Jenny took care of me and I called her mom before I called my real mom, mom! She had a profound influence on my life. She was a very strong willed person but with a lot of compassion. Her absence left a big void in my life. I still think of her every day.

RD: Your father often got criticized for pushing you too hard in your running. You’ve many times described how your father wanted you to do well, and succeed as a runner, but that he wasn’t what the press made him out to be. What kind of man was your father? How would you describe your relationship with him?
Zola: When I think of my dad I always have fond memories of us spending time outdoors with the animals. He loved chickens and had all these cages with chickens. He loved nature and we would talk about anything and everything while we were together.

My dad never pushed me in my running. I was the one who had to wake them up in the morning to take me running, otherwise I wouldn’t have got to training. It was an unwritten rule in our house, that I decide if I want to train or not. My father did interfere with the business side of my running and that is where our relationship went sour. It is a valuable lesson I learnt not to repeat with my own kids and that is to give them enough freedom to be who they want to be.

RD: I was just about a year older than you when you came onto the running scene. I think because of all the politics that surrounded much of your early career that many think you were older than you were at the time. I think of my 15-year-old daughter and 19-year-old son and can’t even fathom either one of them having to deal with the normal stress of world-class competitive running much less being the focus of so much attention, much of which really had nothing to do with you as a person, but just the situation and the politics of the time. What do you think helped you persevere though that time period?
Zola: I think my faith. I realized early in life that nothing is as important as your faith in God. It was and still is a rock to my life. The other factor is the way I perceived life. I still think of myself as that little barefoot girl growing up on a farm surrounded by animals. That is who I am and not the runner per se.

RD: Looking back upon your running career? What if any might you change or wish would have happened?
Zola: I would not have competed in the 84 Olympics. Maybe the World Juniors first before moving up to the big league.

RD: You were a barefoot runner well before the recent barefoot craze. You’ve mentioned many times that running barefoot was the norm growing up in South Africa and that it was just the natural thing for you to do when running competitively. What do you think about the recent focus on barefoot running? Do you run in shoes today?
Zola: I do run in shoes today. I got injured in 1986 and started wearing orthotics in my shoes and stopped running barefoot. I am slowly getting back to training barefoot on the grass and track again. Running barefoot is great, but you have to be careful. Growing up in SA we went barefoot all the time so our foot muscles were very strong. Living in the US where kids are forced to wear shoes, their foot muscles do not develop as they are supposed to so when you try running barefoot as an adult, it can cause serious injuries if you're not careful.

My advice is to be very conservative in your approach to barefoot running. I never ran barefoot on the road and don’t know how one can do that with all the glass and other dangerous objects around.

RD: Are your children runners? What kind of advice do you give your children in regards to running? Do you coach them or are you just Mom?
Zola: My oldest daughter runs cross country and my youngest just for fun. I will encourage them to be busy but never to be competitive runners. Life is too short and there are just too many other things to do than running. I encourage them to use running as a tool to stay healthy and promote a healthy attitude to life, not to be competitive.

RD: You have so many running accomplishments, but which one or ones to you consider your biggest running accomplishment? Why?
Zola: Probably the European Cup in Moscow in 1985 which I won and out-sprinted Zaitseva, the Russian.

RD: You are still a very competitive runner. In 2009 you ran and won the women’s division of the Dasani Half Marathon in Myrtle Beach, SC a time of 1:20:41. What’s ahead on your running calendar?
Zola: I want to do the world Masters cross country this year and a marathon at the end of the year. Next year I would love to do the Comrades in SA, just to finish, not competitive. And I am thinking of something completely different, like the Ironman.

RD: What do you enjoy now most about running? Is this different from your youth?
Zola: I love being outdoors in nature. I love running in the woods in Myrtle Beach, as well as on the dust roads around my home town. I just love being outside and smelling the different seasons and hearing my own footsteps on the dirt. It is very spiritual. I have seen amazing nature scenes when running.

RD: Are you a lone runner or do you run with a group?
Zola: I mostly run on my own. Because of my kids’ schedule and my work, I have to squeeze in time between travel and kids.

RD: What are your favorite training foods?
Zola: I have never been on a special diet, but I love tea and toast with peanut butter and apricot jam.

RD: What’s the funniest or oddest thing that’s happened to you while on a run?
Zola: While on an early morning run I ran past a truck next to a road close to our house. It was an out and back route. I greeted the guys very friendly but I noticed they were a bit tense. When I came back on the same route they were still next to the road. When I got home my neighbour phoned and asked if I heard the shots. The guys in the truck just robbed a van from the bank which I had just passed a few minutes back. That is South Africa.

RD: Do you have a favorite brand of running shoe? Which model? Why?
Zola: I love my Newtons, the reason being that they simulate barefoot running. I love the Gravity the most because it really gets you on your forefoot and the fact that I can get about 1500k’s out of them!

RD: What’s your favorite race distance(s) today? Do you have a favorite race you run each year?
Zola: My favourite distance is an 8k. That’s why I love cross country so much. I would love to run our Free State Cross Country Champs every year back in Bloemfontein, SA, but alas it is not always possible.

RD: If you were speaking to a group of kids, non-runners, or runner wannabes and trying to encourage them to run, what would you say?
Zola: I would encourage each and everyone to find their own special reason why they want to run. Not everybody is competitive or want to be the best. A lot of kids enjoy the friendships that develop during running, for others it is the fact that you do not have to worry about your weight, etc. It is important for every kid to have his/her own goals and reasons to run and you as a coach should accommodate this and help the kid grow in his/her goals.

RD: We’ve covered a lot. What’s one more thing you’d like to say to the readers and your fans?
Zola: What I am most proud about my running is that after 30 years I am still active and running and competing in my age group. I started running seriously at the age of 14 and I turned 45 last month and I am still looking forward to running and racing.

RD: Zola, you’re an amazing woman and athlete and a true inspiration. We’ll be rooting for you as you achieve your goals of world masters cross country, a marathon at the end of the year, and possibly Comrades!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Running and Breathing: A Lesson in Oxygen Intake and VO2 Max

When first starting out, many runners struggle with running and breathing. Many have probably heard the term VO2Max. And many know that having a high one is good, but most aren't quite sure what it really represents. The term broken down actually stands for V (volume per time), O2 (oxygen), Max (maximum).

Sometimes VO2 max is referred to as maximal oxygen consumption, maximal oxygen uptake, peak oxygen uptake or aerobic capacity. Never mind all that fancy and technical lingo. It basically stands for the maximum amount of oxygen your body can take in and actually utilize at max exertion.

Made even simpler, if you increase your O2 uptake, you'll run faster, bike faster, and/or swim faster. Your performance in any aerobic endurance activity would improve with an increased or high VO2Max.

Simply breathing faster or heavier won't increase your VO2Max. We've all seen runners huffing and puffing who look like they're about to hyperventilate (and if we're being honest, we can all probably include ourselves in that group at one point or another).

Breathing for New Runners
New runners often experience rapid heavy breathing. As a new runner's heart rate increases, his/her body automatically knows it needs more oxygen, so the most natural thing to do is to breathe faster. The reason this isn't helpful is because the breaths are usually shallow and even though the runner is breathing rapidly, he's not getting the oxygen deep into the lungs where it's taken by the blood stream to the muscle to make energy. A new runner needs to concentrate on a deep inhale and a big exhale to clear the lungs of CO2. Focusing on belly breathing (seeing the abdomen expand with each inhale rather than the chest) will help new runners get more oxygen deep into the lungs.

Tidal Volume
The amount of air inhaled and exhaled with each breath is your tidal volume. It increases from .4 to 1L at rest to as much as 3L during aerobic exercise. An aerobically unfit person's tidal volume is going to be less than that of an aerobically fit person. Also, a person who's aerobically unfit isn't going to have a very complex network of capillaries (the smallest blood vessels woven throughout the muscle fibers) at the muscle level. A person who has a higher tidal volume and a more complex system of capillaries at the muscle level is going to be able to get more oxygen into the lungs which will diffuse into the pulmonary blood and make its way down to the capillary level to the many mitochondria in the muscle. Mitochondria are found inside the cells, and they're the power producers. The mitochondria is where cellular respiration occurs, which produces fuel for the cell's activities.

The good news is that you can increase your tidal volume, expand your capillary network, and increase the number of mitochondria you have. By doing consistent aerobic exercise (running, cycling, swimming, etc.), you'll increase all of the above. The more you run, your body will actually increase and build that important network of capillaries in the muscles and when that happens, you'll actually increase the number and size of the mitochondria in the tissue. When that happens your body will be more efficient at extracting oxygen from the blood and getting it to the muscle where it's needed for energy production. For experienced runners, more intense workouts such as intervals, hill repeats, fartleks, and/or tempo runs will help up their VO2Max.

New runners will see the dramatic increases as they work to improve their VO2Max. Once you reach a certain level, the athlete will plateau and it will be harder to make increases, but continued VO2Max training will help more experienced runners maintain their VO2Max level for longer periods of time. This will help them become even more efficient runners and help keep fatigue at bay for longer. Genetics does play a role with VO2Max. So, if you can't seem to get past a certain level no matter what you try, you can blame mom and dad. Also, as you age, your VO2max will naturally begin to decrease a little each year.

To read the rest of my article and find out how to calculate your VO2max [click here].

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Great Gift Ideas for the Running Dad

Father's Day is just around the corner! If Dad is a runner, be sure to check out the running gift ideas below!

Knuckle Lights—For $39.99 you get two lights that provide 45 lumens per light, a wide beam, included batteries, free shipping, a 5-year warranty, and a money back guarantee. What more could you ask for? I've tested these lights and they work great. I was worried that them beams may move too much and bother me, but what I got instead was a wide steady beam. They fit securely over your knuckles in a way that you don't have to "hold" them. They just stay in place. They are also very light weight and you forget they are there once you begin your run. So, if day is running in the dark, keep him safe and get him a pair of Knuckle Lights.

Long May You Run—Is Dad a new to running? Long May You Run by Chris Cooper, is a lighthearted book that will motivate and inspire Dad with inspirational quotes, basic training tips, and info on great destination races. He'll also learn "how you can win a race even when finishing last." The book also provides some pretty uplifting stories about "real" runners who've overcome some monumental personal challenges through running.

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Barefoot Running—From the best-selling Idiot's Guide® series comes the newest release, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Barefoot Running by Thomas Hollowell and Dr. Craig Richards. This book is perfect for anyone contemplating taking up barefoot running. Starting from page one, you'll learn how to successfully transition to barefoot and minimalist shoe running as you perfect your running form and reduce injury from the ground up. Written by a renowned doctor along with a prominent barefoot running coach, it is filled with the latest scientific research and cutting-edge training methods. Like having a personal coach by your side, you'll discover how to gradually transition into barefoot running, develop efficient running form, engage your "natural springs" and core strength, perfect your landing, stride, and gait, run faster with less impact and more endurance, prevent injuries that plague most runners, use minimalist shoes like Vibram FiveFingers, navigate a variety of terrains with or without shoes, enhance your training & racing experiences, and fuel the barefoot way.

Warrior Training Bracelet—These bracelets are made to wear while running, cycling, working out, sweating, racing...or all day long. Each features a positive and powerful keyword or phrase to help you train, perform and live with greater strength of body and mind. Available in multiple sizes to fit both women and men.

Halo Headbands and Hats—Halo headbands and hats are one of my favorite products. If your dad sweats like I do, then he's probably often annoyed by the constant stream of salty water running into his eyes. Halo Headbands are technically designed to keep sweat and sunscreen out of your eyes and off your glasses while training, working out, racing, or just working hard. He can choose from headbands, caps, and visors!

Arnica Muscle Gel—Arnica Muscle gel is a great remedy for sore or overworked muscles joints. You can use this lightweight gel as a spot treatment wherever you have pain or swelling. The key ingredient, Arnica extract, is known for its natural wound-healing, anti-inflammatory and soothing skin properties, which are excellent for treating bruises and sprains. It also contains willow bark extract which is a natural source of Salicylic Acid and rich in tannins which helps to exfoliate skin and improve its appearance. The menthol in the gel works to instantly cool inflammation. A multi-mineral cocktail of zinc, copper, and magnesium supplies the necessary elements for healthy skin function. It has an immediate heating and cooling sensation that works to repair damage, helping you to recover so that you can hit the trails once again.

Roo Hydration Bottle—The ROO Hydration Bottle is the 1st choice for athletes. It’s foldable, reusable and so portable!  When filled with water it stands upright and it is easy to hold – perfect for runners!  When empty it rolls up and fits easily into pockets, belts or bags.  The ROO bottle holds 16oz of liquid and is safe (BPA –free), washable, reusable and even freezable. We also include a carabineer and a writable area for identification.  The reusable ROO is very earth friendly.

UTag Sports Bracelet—Make sure Dad has identification on the run. UTag Sport Bracelet is a micro DogTag worn on a nylon strap (included) and is designed to be universally recognizable by both first responders and emergency personnel, it is the first reference in case of emergency. Each UTag micro DogTag is constructed out of durable aluminum alloy and embedded with a mini USB chip. It is weatherproof and water resistant up to 1m. Each mico tag has a Windows compatible program for storing and updating your personal information. In addition, there is a secure “private folder” for storing scanned copies of personal important documents. With the click of a button, UTag switches to your choice of 7 different languages for emergencies abroad. The UTag Sport Bracelet and micro Digitial DogTag is extremely lightweight, weighing only 6 grams.

Feetures! Elite Socks—As soon as you try on a pair, you know Feetures! Elite is special. Thanks to the technically advanced Sock-Lock™ support system, your foot and sock become one. The most extraordinary thing happens: the sock fits so well, it’s almost as if it’s not there. The Power Arch  is anatomically constructed to provide targeted support where it’s needed most. Anatomical right and left foot design enhances fit, delivering maximum protection by helping to eliminate blisters. iWick® fibers wick moisture to keep feet dry and odor-free. The PerfectToe™ provides a non-irritating seam.   Ultra thin construction takes up minimal room inside the shoe. These are RunnerDude's favorite socks!

RumbleRoller—Physical therapists, trainers, and athletes use foam rollers to relieve muscular pain and tightness (often called "adhesions", "knots", or "trigger points"). But conventional foam rollers have smooth, hard surfaces that further compress soft tissue. Rolling on top of them improves blood flow and tissue flexibility, but the effect is limited and relatively superficial, unless you spend a lot of time rolling. The RumbleRoller was created to perform this therapy more effectively. It manipulates soft tissue like a massage therapist. The surface of the RumbleRoller contains specially designed bumps that are firm, but flexible, much like the thumbs of a massage therapist. As you roll over the top of the RumbleRoller, the bumps continuously knead the contours of your body, gently stretching soft tissue (muscle and fascia) in multiple directions. This action erodes trigger points, helps restore flexibility, and brings quick relief to common types of muscular pain.

HydroWorx —Does Dad have a pool? Turn his static pool into a highly functional physical therapy pool and exercise pool and make it the ultimate fitness experience by providing gait training, balance enhancements and confidence building. This portable underwater treadmill offers low impact cardio for enhanced rehabilitation and conditioning. The unique fold-up design takes up a small space in your pool. This underwater treadmill can be easily transported and requires no installation.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Fitness on the Road

RunnerDude's Travel Workout Kit
One of the challenges that many of my clients face is work related travel interfering with their workout routines. Sometimes a hotel will have a great fitness center or provide access to a local gym, but more than not, there is either no fitness center or what's there is comprised of a treadmill and some dumbbells.

Several clients have asked me to create a travel workout plan that they can use on the road. Initially, I created full-body circuit workouts that contained exercises using only body weight, not knowing what, if any, equipment they'd have available to them.

Just recently, I put together a workout for a client (Marie) who is an international flight attendant. Her workout incorporated body weight exercises and some using a resistance band. When other traveling clients found out about Marie's plan, they too wanted a plan to take on the road.

My answer to this need is RunnerDude's Travel Workout Kit. The 10-exercise circuit workout hits upper-body, core, and lower-body and includes three resistance exercise bands (light, medium, heavy).The circuit design let's you get in a great workout without taking up a lot of your time. The great thing is you can just toss it in your suitcase. No need to pack awkward or heavy equipment. It's also great to keep at home when you're just not able to make it to the gym.

The Travel Workout Kit includes
  • 10-Exercise Full-Body Workout (printed on a heavy-duty laminated card for long lasting durability)
  • Pre and Post Workout Stretching(printed on a heavy-duty laminated card for long lasting durability)
  • 3 Exercise Bands (light, medium, heavy)
  • RunnerDude's ABCs of Fitness
  • Information on Exercise and Aging
  • All packaged in a plastic zippered pouch perfect for tossing in a suit case.
To learn more about or to order the Travel Workout Kit [click here]. While you're there, be sure to check out the Beginning Running and Fitness Walking Kits as well as the GYMBOSS interval timer (perfect for the beginning runner and/or for circuit training).