Congratulations on your commitment to participate in the inaugural A2A Race for Mercy! Give yourself a quick pat on the back for taking your first step toward the finish line in Ardmore. Training for an event like this is not something to take lightly. As with all exercise programs, it is recommended that you are in good physical condition and have been cleared by your physician to participate in a vigorous exercise program.
At the age of 42, I began running. Why did I start at that age? Simply put, it was convenient to run while I waited for my children to complete their afterschool run. I started with 2 miles (I had to walk in the beginning) and progressed to longer mileage as I became more fit. Two years later, I began to ponder whether I could run a marathon - 26.2 miles of constant running seemed practically impossible.
In January 2002, I ran my first full marathon. Three years ago, I helped four friends run their first marathon. The entire experience was worth every step.
My name is Sandy Lackey. I am a Certified Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Educator for Oklahoma Cooperative Extension. My goal is to motivate you to set your mind to a goal and stick to it. Whether you plan to walk or race a 5K or run a marathon, I want to help you achieve your goals.
There are 6 basic nutrients the human body needs to survive. Carbohydrates, lipids (fats), protein, vitamins, minerals, water. The phrase I use to remember these six nutrients are “Camels Love Packing Volumes of Mineral Water;” where the first letter of each word matches the first letter of each nutrient. Three of the six nutrients supply energy - carbohydrates, protein and lipids (fats). The remaining three; vitamins, minerals and water do not supply the body energy on their own but are vitally important to the energy process.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, an estimated 129.6 million Americans, or 64 percent, are overweight (roughly 10 to 30 pounds over a healthy weight) or obese (roughly 30 or more pounds over a healthy weight). For a person who is trying to lose weight or maintain weight, there is always a temptation within reach. Not only are there high calorie temptations everywhere, consumers also are bombarded with advertisements claiming quick weight loss.
Many people will buy into those claims because they want to lose weight before a holiday party or before visiting family they haven’t seen in a while. Keep in mind that the weight didn’t pile on overnight, so you won’t be able to lose it overnight.
Only a small percentage of people manage to lose weight and keep it off. For a person to lose weight and keep it off, he or she must make permanent lifestyle changes.
For years, health professionals have been telling the public that being overweight or obese can have serious health consequences, including heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, gallstones and some forms of cancer.
Losing as little as 10 percent of your body weight can have a very positive effect on your health and reduce some of those health consequences. Before starting any weight loss program or exercise progam, check with your physician first. He or she may have some recommendations for beneficial exercises and can suggest a healthful diet. The only sure way to lose weight is to burn more calories than you take in. Losing weight takes hard work and dedication, but the long-term effects are priceless.
On average, Americans gain a half pound to a pound a year. A typical man gains 18 pounds from age 20 to 50 and women gain about 26 pounds. It takes an excess of about 3,500 calories to gain a pound. Break that down further and you’ll see that 100 extra calories per day will add about 10 pounds a year (100 calories x 7 days x 5 weeks = 3,500 calories x 10 five-week periods in a year). The good news is that losing 10 pounds in a year can be as easy as eating 100 calories less each day for a year.
Let me introduce you to the Small Steps to Health and Wealth™ program. This program provides information to help you take charge of your future. It was designed to motivate participants to take action to improve their lives. Each of the 25 behavior change strategy fact sheets has health and wealth “action steps” and one or more worksheets that provide an opportunity to apply the strategy to your health and wealth goals and life situation.
Just for fun, try Iowa State University’s H20 race. Test your knowledge of hydration as you race to the finish line.
Following are additional links you may find useful.
Oklahoma State University
Food and Nutrition Fact Sheets
Oklahoma State University
Your Health: Taking Control Fact Sheets
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans
The President’s Challenge
Adult Fitness Test
Alabama Cooperative Extension
Sports Nutrition For Young Adults: Hydration