Footlocker Cross Country National Championships 2012

The national championships of high school cross country took place today in San Diego, CA. The best 40 girls and best 40 boys from across the country who individually qualified through their respective regional meets raced hard! It was truly inspiring to watch and I recommend everyone watch the taped web casts from the event. You see it all: hard racing, endurance, mental strategy, toughness and speed. Often these races show us who the future stars of cross country and track and field will be.

2012 Footlocker Cross Country National High School Champions!

Congratulations to the winners as well as everyone who qualified. Learn more about the event here.

The Dreaded Shin Splits!

In running and coaching, you hear it a lot. My shins are hurting! In fact this past year my fellow coach and I heard more times than not. Most of the kids experience it because of increasing their distance too fast, not doing enough summer running to build up their bones and muscle in the legs, and so on. Unfortunately there is never much I can say to our athletes…the most common answers being: ice with dixie cups (running up and down the shins) and stretching. Other than that, running on the grass/dirt rather than concrete and/or roads can help. And as a last option if it gets that bad doing cross training. Ideally though we hope the kids can run through it and have the pain/swelling go away and not get any worse.

However, I just came upon this video from a chiropractor that I highly recommend watching. Every runner should! It’s straight from Runner’s World Magazine. Take a view…

WATCH VIDEO

Shinsplints are a common ailment that afflicts many runners. In this video Dr. Jordan D. Metzl, a New York City based sports medicine physician, shows you how to recognize the difference between Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome, Tibial Spine Pain, and Exertional Compartment Syndrome as well as techniques to effectively treat each problem and how to prevent them from returning.

In addition to his medical practice, Dr. Metzl is an accomplished marathoner and triathlete. His newest book, The Athlete’s Book of Home Remedies, has more than 1000 tips to fix all types of injuries and medical conditions.

What have you done to remedy your own shin splints?!

Boca Raton 2012 Holiday Mile!

Who is going to tomorrow night’s Boca Raton 2012 Holiday Mile?! It’s a very cool and unique event – involving just that, a straight mile race on the streets of Boca Raton. It takes place just before the Holiday parade down Federal Highway in front of thousands of people (fans?)!

I participated last year and it was definitely an experience. Usually, road races are 5Ks so to get out of the gate in what felt like an all out sprint and run down the streets of Boca was an experience! And I also quickly realized how terrible I am at judging distance. I mistakenly did not take a minute to check out the course…and as a result assumed the finish was nearly 400 meters before it actually was! Wow, what a painful mistake!

Here are some pictures of last year’s event. I ran it with my former high school cross country team and close friend Angela Morando Singer and her husband Phillipe Singer. They were in from France!

Let me know if you run tomorrow night! And send me your pictures if you do!

What: 11th annual Boca Raton PAL Holiday Mile

When: Wednesday, December 5, 2012 at 7:15pm

Where: 777 S. Federal Highway, Boca Raton, FL

REGISTER

 

Healthy, Delicious Smoothies!

I just purchased a Vitamix blender from Costco and I am super excited to get my juicing going! I started this morning with the following for brunch: Whey protein power, almond milk, half a banana, carrot and orange juice, flax seeds, Chia seeds and kale leaves! I was in luck because I spent the day yesterday shopping with a good friend at Whole Foods, Publix and Costco. Needless to say, my fridge is packed with good, healthy stuff!

In honor of my new Vitamix, I am including a post I recently read with some great recipes. (I will include more directly from the recipe book that accompanied my new high-tech blender!) Thanks Nicole McDermott from Greatist.com.

54 Healthy Smoothies for Any Occasion
By: Nicole McDermott 

It’s darn near impossible to screw up a smoothie (fine, avoid the anchovies). Throw any combination of milk, fruit, nuts, and other goodies into a blender and presto, you’ve got a handy-dandy drinkable snack. The beauty of these five-minute recipes is that there’s free reign with ingredient amounts. And if the fridge or pantry isn’t fully stocked with each, it’s easy to pull together a winning combination by popping just a few things in the blender. We’ve rounded up 54 of our favorite smoothie recipes to sip pre-and-post workout, plus dairy-free varieties, ones loaded with greens, and others perfect for breakfast and dessert.

But first, we have some pro tips to get your smoothie-making off to an award-winning start:

  • Make sure to pour in liquids first (it’s easier on the blender).
  • Start from the lowest speed and work up to higher speeds once the mixture smoothes out. Add ice last, and use as much or as little as you’d like. We suggest three cubes for each smoothie, but it’s perfectly okay to add more and make it a little slushier to achieve a creamier texture.
  • Some of our smoothies use cow’s milk, or dairy free subs like almond, soy, hemp, and rice. Pick your favorite, or make a mixture of your own!
  • If you’ve got leftover smoothie hanging in the blender, divvy it up into an ice cube tray for easy blending the next time.
  • Top smoothies with fresh fruit, seeds, chopped nuts, or shredded coconut for a texture change.
  • Freeze fruit for a thicker consistency. Chop it up for easier blending.
  • If you’d rather not sip it, try your smoothie from a bowl, with a spoon.

Now it’s time to get blending!

*All recipes serve one.

With Greens

Whoever said it’s not easy being green never met a green smoothie. The hue of these blends may be startling at first, but popping some spinach, kale, or chard makes these smoothies extra good for us.

1. Black and Blue
Though this smoothie has a misleading name (it’s because of the berries!), it’s got a hearty dose ofspinach which can actually help speed healing (because it’s a great source of vitamin K).

2-3 cups organic spinach
1 cup milk (or juice) of choice
1 banana
¼ cup blueberries, frozen
¼ cup blackberries, frozen
3 ice cubes

2. Thin Mint
Sure, this one sounds like it should be in the dessert section, but sneaky, sneaky it’s got spinach hiding inside. Just a cup of spinach contains over 300 percent of our daily-recommended amount of vitamin A. Plus, peppermint adds a refreshing zing.

1 cup spinach, frozen (or 2 cups fresh)
1 cup almond milk
2 scoops chocolate protein powder
¼ cup rolled oats
 teaspoon peppermint extract

3. PKB (Pumpkin, Kale, Banana)
Mmmmm, pumpkin. The delicious fall favorite has nearly no fat, but adds a creamy thick consistency anything it’s added to. It’s also loaded with antioxidants, like alpha- and beta-carotene, which convert into vitamin A in the body. This harvest drink also uses cinnamon, which can help fight inflammation.

3 leaves kale
½ cup vanilla soymilk
1 tablespoon flax seed
1 banana, frozen
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup pumpkin
3 ice cubes

4. Spinach Flax
So we know spinach is great for us, but this smoothie has the benefits of flax, too. The high fiber seed has a heavy concentration of omega-3s, which are good for the heart because they may help lower blood pressure and reduce blood clotting. Tip: Slice the banana before freezing for easier blending.

½ cup vanilla yogurt
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon natural peanut butter
2 cups spinach
1 banana, frozen
3 strawberries
1 teaspoon flaxseed

5. Dark Chocolate Blueberry
While the color of this tasty potion isn’t exactly desirable, the taste and health benefits certainly make up for it. The spinach provides a good dose of iron and fiber, and the blueberries and cocoapowder throw antioxidants into the mix.

2 cups spinach
1 cup blueberries, frozen
1 scoop chocolate protein powder
2 tablespoons dark cocoa powder
½ cup unsweetened almond milk

6. Killer Kale
Kale can definitely be a bit bitter, so this mixture will taste best with a very ripe banana. The leafy green is a great low-cal source of fiber, calcium, and iron. Hemp is one of the highest plant-based sources of complete protein.

1 ½ cups unsweetened almond milk
1 ½ tablespoons almond butter
1 banana, frozen
2 cups kale
1 tablespoon hemp seeds

7. Carrot-Berry
Not only does this guy have some greens, it’s got all sorts of other colors too. (Warning: It may not look as pretty as it tastes.) For a thicker smoothie, let the chia seeds soak in the water for ten minutes before blending (they absorb up to ten times their weight in water!).

½ cup almond milk
½ cup water
1 carrot
2 cups spinach
½ cup frozen berries
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 tablespoon hemp protein
½ teaspoon stevia

8. Minty Swiss
We’re not talking swiss miss for this smoothie — we mean swiss chard, a great source of calcium and potassium.

1 bunch swiss chard
½ cup raspberries, frozen
½ cup pineapple, frozen
½ cup peaches, frozen
3 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
¼ cup orange juice
3 ice cubes

9. Coconut Kale
This list of ingredients produces the prettiest, brightest green smoothie ever. The coconut extract is a must, and the coconut milk makes it super creamy. Feel free to nix the honey if you’d like to take the sweetness down a notch, since a little goes a long way.

1 cup chopped kale
1 banana
1 ½ cups coconut milk
1 tablespoon flaxseed
1 tablespoon honey
¼ teaspoon coconut extract
3 ice cubes

For all 54 great smoothie recipes — pre-workout , post-workout, dairy-free, breakfast and dessert options — go to Greatist.com.