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Saturday, July 30, 2011

Shake It Off and Step Up

Shake It Off and Step Up
July 30, 2011 by Joni I got this off of Facebook posted by the Rock

If you feel sometimes that the adversities of life are getting the best of you, this short story will change all of that.

Shake It Off and Step Up If you choose to think negatively by panicking – becoming bitter or letting your self pity swallow you whole, well chances are, the decisions you make in life and business become that much more difficult for a successful outcome.

Now on the other hand, if you choose to “Shake It Off and Step Up” your results will be very different…

One thing I know for certain is that all entrepreneurs face many challenges on a daily basis. Doesn’t matter if you’re just starting too get your feet wet or you’ve been around the block many times.

Sadly, many entrepreneurs call it quits after an uncomfortable challenge strikes. Lots of excuses are made – the blame game starts or they just don’t think life’s fair for them…

Now what if they would of decided to “Shake It Off and Step Up” instead???

If you find yourself in a similar situation…don’t quit. Reflect back to this parable and move it forward.

Read this short old farmer’s parable that will give you a little – innocent insight on how to change your circumstances when life’s adversities rear their ugly head…

Shake It Off And Step Up

A parable is told of a farmer who owned an old mule. The mule fell into the farmer’s well. The farmer heard the mule ‘braying’ – or – whatever mules do when they fall into wells. After carefully assessing the situation, the farmer sympathized with the mule, but decided that neither the mule nor the well was worth the trouble of saving. Instead, he called his neighbors together and told them what had happened…and enlisted them to help haul dirt to bury the old mule in the well and put him out of his misery.

Initially, the old mule was hysterical! But as the farmer and his neighbors continued shoveling and the dirt hit his back…a thought struck him. It suddenly dawned on him that every time a shovel load of dirt landed on his back…HE SHOULD SHAKE IT OFF AND STEP UP! This he did, blow after blow.

“Shake it off and step up…shake it off and step up…shake it off and step up!” he repeated to encourage himself. No matter how painful the blows, or distressing the situation seemed the old mule fought “panic” and just kept right on SHAKING IT OFF AND STEPPING UP!

You’re right! It wasn’t long before the old mule, battered and exhausted, STEPPED TRIUMPHANTLY OVER THE WALL OF THAT WELL! What seemed like it would bury him, actually blessed him…all because of the manner in which he handled his adversity.

THAT’S LIFE! If we face our problems and respond to them positively, and refuse to give in to panic, bitterness, or self-pity…THE ADVERSITIES THAT COME ALONG TO BURY US USUALLY HAVE WITHIN THEM THE POTENTIAL TO BENEFIT AND BLESS US! Remember that FORGIVENESS–FAITH–PRAYER– PRAISE and HOPE…all are excellent ways to “SHAKE IT OFF AND STEP UP” out of the wells in which we find ourselves!

- Author Unknown

Friday, July 29, 2011

Disney News And Updates

Submit "A Splash of Disney Memories" and You Could Be Featured!

During August, we're making a splash with water-related Disney memories!http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif

From water parks like Disney's Blizzard Beach to the nighttime spectacular World of Color to fun times at our Resort pools, water makes everything more fun and brings out the kid in all of us.

Share "A Splash of Disney Memories" at Disney Parks' Let the Memories Begin and you may be featured. Remember to check back every day during September to see if your memory was selected as the Memory of the Day!

Submit your memory today!

Chiquita and Disney Announce Multi-year Alliance

Chiquita Brands International and Walt Disney World Resort announced an agreement this week that will bring premium, healthy Chiquita and Fresh Express products to a number of retail points at Walt Disney World and Disney Cruise Line. This new strategic alliance represents the commitment of both companies to provide consumers with healthy food options. “We are pleased to work with Disney to offer healthy, nutritious Chiquita and Fresh Express products to the millions of Guests who visit Walt Disney World Resort and Disney Cruise Line,” said Fernando Aguirre, Chiquita chairman and chief executive officer. “This alliance joins two companies with the shared commitment of providing quality experiences to consumers.”

Construction Crews at Disney's Art of Animation Resort Celebrate "Topping Out"
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., July 21, 2011 – The hundreds of people who are building Disney’s Art of Animation Resort from the ground up gathered to mark the project’s “topping out.”

The “topping out” is a special moment that typically occurs in the construction and engineering industry when the highest piece of structure, either steel or concrete, is placed on the building’s frame. The tradition dates back to the Vikings, who would place an evergreen tree on the top of a building to celebrate and bring good luck.

At the construction site for Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, a crane helped lift the traditional evergreen to the roof of a building that will soon be part of the Lion King wing of the resort hotel.

“The hundreds of people we have working on Disney’s Art of Animation Resort are doing an amazing job helping us build a resort hotel that will really delight our guests,” said Gary Hoffmann, senior project manager for Walt Disney Imagineering. “The traditional topping out is an important milestone on a project that continues to run on schedule for an opening just ten months from now.”

In size and scope the construction of Disney’s Art of Animation Resort is a major project at Walt Disney World Resort, creating upwards of 800 construction jobs. Once open in 2012, Disney’s Art of Animation Resort will also create 750 permanent resort hotel jobs.

Walt Disney World Resort features 25 uniquely themed, Disney owned-and-operated resort hotels with more than 26,000 guest rooms – something for every taste and budget. Disney’s Art of Animation Resort will likewise be unique, with themed building exteriors and room interiors that bring to life The Lion King, Cars, Finding Nemo and The Little Mermaid.

Finding Nemo, Cars and The Lion King buildings will be entirely family suites, with 1,120 suites between them. The Little Mermaid buildings will feature 864 rooms in the “value” room category.

The construction of family suites at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort is an innovative approach to a changing marketplace. Today more and more multi-generational families are traveling together for various celebrations, including family reunions. These families not only want to play together, they want to stay together, which has created tremendous demand for family suites.

The first wing of Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, Finding Nemo, is scheduled to open in May 2012.

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Saturday, July 23, 2011

Just a Hello...

Hi everyone it's Rae. I wanted to let everyone know that we had raised another $50.00 from our Mid Summer 5k. Thank you everyone who donated.

Tomorrow one of our Members is headed out to do their first triathlon. Please go over and visit and send Pixie Dust!! Blog'n Right Along

Have a great weekend!!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Sports Nutrition Tips for Marathon Training

Sports Nutrition Tips for Marathon Training
By: Christopher D. Jensen, PhD, MPH, RD
Nutrition & Epidemiology Researcher
You are training to compete in a marathon. Regular workouts will get you in shape for the challenge ahead. This article provides cutting-edge sports nutrition tips that will help you maximize the benefits of your workouts and be at your very best on the day of the race.

Practice makes perfect
The sports nutrition tips that follow are based on the latest information from authorities such as the American College of Sports Medicine. But your job during training is to use these recommendations as a starting point and to refine them to determine what works best for you. That means regularly tuning into how your body feels and keeping notes in a training log. Use the information that you gather in order to make adjustments on how you hydrate, fuel, and recover during training, so that weeks from now, on the day of your event, everything you do is dialed in and well practiced. No surprises on the big day. Instead, you want a proven sports nutrition regimen that is tailored specifically for you.

Start each workout fully hydrated
Dehydration will make your workouts demonstrably harder and put your health at risk, so don’t carry fluid deficits from one workout to the next. You can make up for any previously incurred fluid deficits by consuming 14–20 fl oz (400–600 mL) of water or sports drink about 2–4 hours before your workout. If you are well hydrated, this should lead to urine production that is light in color (like the color of lemonade). If it doesn’t, or if the urine that is produced is dark in color (like the color of apple juice), drink another 8 fl oz about 2 hours before you start pounding the pavement. Keep hydrating as needed prior to your training session, especially when conditions are hot or humid.

Start your training sessions with a full gas tank
The harder and more intense your training sessions, the more you rely on carbohydrate reserves (glucose in your bloodstream and glycogen in your muscles and liver) as muscle fuel. But these reserves are in short supply and can be significantly depleted during long and intense workouts. If you don’t replenish these carb reserves on a daily basis, deficits grow from one workout to the next, and you’ll end up running out of carbohydrate muscle fuel. When this happens, you become fatigued and you’re forced to curtail your training.

To prevent this early onset of muscle fatigue, top off your muscle glycogen fuel stores before working out. You can do this by consuming a meal 2–4 hours before exercise. The goal is to start exercise fully fueled but also feeling comfortable. Choose familiar high-carbohydrate foods and beverages and avoid slow-to-digest fatty and high-fiber foods prior to running. Carbohydrate-rich foods include pasta, rice, bread, cereal, vegetables, fruit, and sweetened dairy products such as flavored yogurts and milks. And if you get hungry again as the workout approaches, or if your training session is early in the morning and time is running short, have an easy-to-digest, high-carbohydrate snack. Good snack examples include a fruit smoothie, a meal replacement drink, a PowerBar® Performance Energy bar, a PowerBar® Fruit Smoothie Energy bar, PowerBar® Energy Bites, a PowerBar® Gel, or PowerBar® Gel Blasts™ energy chews.

The best time for a snack is generally about an hour before exercise. If you don’t have much of an appetite or you tend to experience gastrointestinal distress when training, try liquid carb sources, such as a fruit smoothie or a meal replacement drink, in place of solid foods.

Finding the right pre-exercise meal and snacks — and the timing for each that works best for you — may take some experimenting. So try different approaches during training to identify which ones leave you feeling your best.

Now is not the time to skip meals
A word to the wise if you are carrying a few more pounds than you’d like: Skipping meals before a workout won't necessarily help you burn significantly more fat. In fact, it may cause you to burn fewer total calories because you get tired sooner and may not be able to train at your usual intensity. Keep in mind that after a night of sleeping, you’ve been fasting for hours. You need breakfast, or at least a high-carb snack to help fuel the exercise you plan to do. Skipping breakfast can make it harder to maintain your blood sugar level and can deplete your limited stores of carb muscle fuel (glycogen) even faster. This can hamper your ability to get in a full workout and may reduce the effectiveness of your training. So don’t be in such a rush to lose that extra weight that you compromise your ability to train. As you continue to train, the pounds will gradually drop off.

Match your hydration and fueling plan to the workout challenge
For training runs up to the half-marathon distance, your existing fuel stores should tide you over, and your focus can be on staying hydrated. Try to consume fluids at a rate that keeps pace with your sweat rate. This generally requires 13–26 fl oz (400–800 mL) every hour of exercise, preferably in smaller amounts taken every 15 minutes or so. However, your fluid needs can vary based on factors such as the intensity of your workouts and weather conditions. Therefore, calculate your sweat rate for the various conditions in which you train, using the PowerBar® Sweat Rate Calculator at PowerBar.com.

Over-hydration is the flip side of dehydration. Both can impair your ability to exercise and can have serious health consequences. To monitor how effectively you are hydrating when training, weigh yourself before and after workouts. If you find that you tend to gain weight when training, it’s a sign that you’re consuming too much fluid during exercise, so cut back a bit on your fluid intake during exercise. Conversely, if you find that you pretty consistently lose more than 2% of your pre-exercise body weight — about 3 lbs (1.4 kg) for someone weighing 150 lbs (68 kg) — that’s a sign to take in a bit more fluid when training.

Water is usually fine for workouts of less than an hour in cooler weather. For longer training sessions and anytime you’re exercising in the heat and humidity, a sports drink that provides carbohydrates, fluids, and sodium, such as PowerBar® Endurance sports drink, is a much better option than plain water. The advantages are many. A sports drink provides carbohydrates to help sustain your blood glucose level during exercise. And athletes typically consume more fluids when their hydration beverage is flavored, as is the case with a sports drink. Also, the sodium and carbs in a sports drink cause the fluid in the beverage to be absorbed more quickly. And the sodium also helps maintain your drive to continue drinking fluids during exercise, which is crucial to meeting your fluid needs. Finally, the sodium also helps you retain the fluid that you’ve consumed.

Another option for rehydrating and refueling, especially during longer training runs, is to consume an energy gel and chase it with water. Make sure to select an energy gel that provides sodium along with carbohydrates, such as PowerBar Gel. These gels are designed to be consumed every 20–45 minutes during exercise, and they provide the carbohydrates and sodium of a sports drink. Energy bars, bites, and chews, such as the Performance Energy bar, PowerBar Fruit Smoothie Energy bar, Energy Bites, and Gel Blasts Energy chews can also be used to increase the hourly intake of carbs during longer training sessions.

Promote rapid recovery
Recovery after exercise will begin in earnest as soon as you provide the nutritional components, including carbs, protein, fluids, and the key electrolyte sodium.

To speed recovery, consume some easy-to-digest carbs as soon as possible after exercise (within about 30 minutes). This will jump-start rebuilding your depleted glycogen stores. Eating high-carb meals and snacks over the next 24 hours will generally fully replenish your fuel stores.

In addition to carbs, taking in protein after a workout provides the amino acid building blocks needed for repairing muscle fibers that get damaged during exercise and to promote the development of new muscle tissue. Although protein requirements vary between individuals, in general look to consume a minimum of 15–25 grams of protein within an hour after exercise to maximize the muscle rebuilding and repair process.

Weigh yourself before and after exercise to gauge the extent of your fluid loss. Replace this fluid by gradually drinking 16–24 fl oz (475–700 mL) of a recovery beverage, sports drink, or water for every 1 lb (0.45 kg) of weight lost. Consume sodium sources such as crackers and pretzels along with your fluids, as rehydration will be more effective when sodium is included. Remember, if your loss of fluids consistently exceeds 2% of your body weight, try to increase your fluid intake a bit during exercise. If you find that you tend to gain weight during exercise, cut back a bit on fluid intake.

PowerBar® Recovery beverage is a fast and convenient option for jump-starting the recovery process. Just pour the Recovery beverage powder into your sports bottle, add water, and shake. In seconds you’ll have the carbs, protein, sodium, and fluids to start reloading, repairing, and rehydrating. Go to PowerBar.com to learn more about other recovery product options.

Know the buzz on caffeine
Coffee is a beverage of choice worldwide, but will that caffeine kick be a help or hindrance to you as a budding endurance athlete? So far, the scientific consensus seems to be lining up on the side of helpful. Caffeine may help you work out at a higher intensity without actually feeling like you’re working harder. Also, concerns about caffeine’s causing dehydration haven’t panned out. So if you want to see what impact caffeine has on your ability to perform athletically, use it during training first. Stick to a moderate intake of 0.45–1.36 mg caffeine per lb body weight (1–3 mg per kg). For a 150-lb (68-kg) athlete, that equates to a dose of approximately 70–210 mg of caffeine per event or workout, taken in the hour before exercise or in a single or divided dose during exercise. Too much caffeine may detract from your athletic performance by leaving you feeling uncomfortable, jittery, and anxious. Also keep in mind that the caffeine level that’s beneficial for your training partner may be too much for you, or vice versa. Individuals vary in their ability to metabolize caffeine. If the caffeine dose you’ve been trying leaves you feeling too buzzed, cut back or skip it altogether. For more information about caffeine in foods and beverages, see the article “Using Caffeine to Improve Athletic Performance” at PowerBar.com

Consider carbohydrate loading
All else being equal, the more carbohydrate muscle fuel (glycogen) you start with, the better you will be able to perform in a marathon. Carbo-loading is the term used for maximizing your stores of glycogen muscle fuel before a big endurance event or a particularly difficult stretch of training. If you’re planning on walking the marathon at a comfortable pace, carbohydrate loading is unnecessary. But if you plan to go all out over the 26.2 miles, you might want to consider it.

Typically, athletes interested in carbohydrate loading gradually taper their training a week to a few days before the event. In the 2–3 days before the marathon, plan to increase your carbohydrate intake. For optimal glycogen reloading over this period of time, you need to consume about 8–12 grams of carbohydrates daily for every 2.2 lbs of body weight. For someone weighing 150 lbs (68 kg), that equates to 545–818 grams of carbs each day. Men can usually achieve the higher carb range simply by substituting carbohydrate-rich foods for other foods that tend to be higher in fat. For women, it’s not so simple because they generally consume fewer calories than their male counterparts. Effective carbo-loading for women may require adding foods to the diet for those few days. In fact, they may need to increase their total caloric intake by 30–35% in the 2–3 days before the event in order to boost their muscle glycogen stores. The bottom line is that the plate of pasta the night before your marathon should be the finishing touch on your carbo-load, not the entire plan. Late in your training, you may want to experiment with carbohydrate loading prior to one of your long distance runs.

Plan ahead for race day
As the big day approaches, start finalizing your race-day plan. Think through your sports nutrition and hydration strategy for before, during, and after the marathon. Utilize your long training runs as an opportunity to put your race-day plan into practice. That means doing during training exactly what you hope to do on race day. Assess how you feel at each stage of a long training run as if it were the actual marathon. Fine-tune your approach by making adjustments one step at a time, and then testing those tweaks during training. Allow yourself adequate time to dial-in a regimen that works for you.

When the marathon is a week away, make final preparations for the big day. Remember to stick to the routine you’ve worked so hard to fine-tune — nothing new. Find out the marathon start time, and review your pre-race meal or snack and hydration strategy. Also make sure that it works relative to your transportation arrangements. Confirm the number of aid stations on course, and plan your consumption of sports drinks and/or energy gels with plain water accordingly. If you are using gels, set aside the number you will need, and devise a plan for carrying them comfortably or resupplying on course.

Good luck with your training and on race day!

American College of Sports Medicine; American Dietetic Association; Dietitians of Canada. Joint Position Statement: Nutrition and Athletic Performance. American College of Sports Medicine, American Dietetic Association, and Dietitians of Canada. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2009; 41: 709–731.

American College of Sports Medicine, Sawka MN, Burke LM, Eichner ER, Maughan RJ, Montain SJ, Stachenfeld NS. American College of Sports Medicine Position Stand. Exercise and Fluid Replacement. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2007; 39: 377–390.

Burke L. Preparation for Competition. In: Burke L, Dean V, eds. Clinical Sports Nutrition. McGraw-Hill Companies, Australia, 2006; 355–384.

Burke L. Fluid and CHO Intake During Exercise. In: Burke L, Dean V, eds. Clinical Sports Nutrition. McGraw-Hill Companies, Australia, 2006; 385–414.

Burke L. Nutrition for Recovery After Training and Competition. In: Burke L, Dean V, eds. Clinical Sports Nutrition. McGraw-Hill Companies, Australia, 2006; 415–453.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Ironman Mental Strength: the Fifth Discipline

Ironman Mental Strength: the Fifth Discipline
By: Alex M. McDonald, MD
Medical Doctor and Professional Triathlete

Making the commitment to train for and race a triathlon is commendable, regardless of whether it is the local sprint or an Ironman. Many of the driving factors (commitment, mental strength, desire, time management, goal setting, etc.) that motivate you to sign up, train, and get to the starting line of the race are valuable tools not only for triathlon, but also for life in general. However, many people who see these qualities as important underestimate their importance on race day, particularly the mental strength required to complete an Ironman triathlon.

Many people say that an Ironman is really four events: swimming, biking, running and nutrition. Well, I would argue that there is a critical fifth discipline — mental strength. Some feel that an Ironman triathlon is a test of strength, speed, and endurance like no other on Earth; these skills are certainly put to the test on race day. However, it is possible that an athlete’s mental fortitude or strength is tested to an even greater extent. Some people get to the starting line in peak physical condition, while others may not have trained as much as they would have liked or needed to. The difference between finishing an Ironman or not, whether you set a PR or not, is often all in your head — literally.

Having the mental fortitude and strength to make it through one of the world’s greatest endurance events is not simply a matter of chance. Some athletes are naturally better at these mental skills, while others are not as well versed. Mental strength and conditioning are indeed skills, and while some individuals are naturally more gifted at utilizing them, you can train your mind, much like the rest of your body. Everyone can benefit from working on and exercising their mental skills, regardless of whether you are an Ironman World Champion or training for your first Ironman.

The mind-body connection is fascinating, and it has been the subject of numerous research projects over the years. For example, there has been a lot of research examining the effect of laughter and joy on sick patients and how the resultant endorphins and neurotransmitters released by the brain can alter the course of disease. There has been specific research into how world-class athletes ready their minds and their bodies for competition — how mind and body must be in sync for an athlete to be best prepared for peak performance. Yet, despite all this research, very little is truly understood about the mind-body — or psychosomatic — connection. All we do know is that the mind can have a powerful influence over the body: As the mind goes, so goes the body.

The following are some mental exercises that will help get you through training — as well as race day.

Most athletes are very good at self-talk; the problem is that most athletes are very good at the destructive, negative self-talk and not the beneficial, positive self-talk. Every athlete has been in the middle of training or competition and had thoughts that begin with “I can’t” or “I’m not.” These negative thoughts are often self-defeating, and the body tends to fulfill whatever the mind may be feeling or thinking. As a result, the body feels worse, causing more negative self-talk, and a downward spiral can quickly ensue.

Getting rid of these negative thoughts can be very difficult. The key is to become aware of when you are having a negative thought, and then replacing it. Often, replacing these thoughts with “I can” or “I will” or “I am” will make the body feel better, and positive thoughts, energy, and motivation will follow. Doing this will become easier with practice.

Some athletes find it challenging to do away with negative self-talk and almost impossible to replace it with positive self-talk. If this is the case, simply focusing on something else can help. Some athletes like to count arm, pedal, or foot rates while racing; others like to look at the scenery. Find your own focal point.

Regardless of what strategy you use to combat negative self-talk, the most important aspect is to recognize it and simply be aware of its presence. Many athletes are surprised when they begin to keep track of the number of negative thoughts they have while training and racing. Recognition is the first step to changing your behavior.

Checking in:
Whether you finish an Ironman in 8 or 17 hours, it is a long time for anyone to be in motion. Over extended time periods, your body becomes fatigued. Your form may suffer or you may expend energy inefficiently. For example, after several hours of riding, you may be tensing your shoulders and wasting energy. Or after several miles of running, as you fatigue, your form may deteriorate and become less efficient. Also, small or chronic injuries or a strain may become irritated over the course of a long day.

Take care of things before they become problems — nip them in the bud. Again, awareness is often all that is required. Performing a self-check or physical assessment every once in awhile can help you become aware of these potential problems. Just take a moment to try to sense any unnecessary tension in the shoulders or faltering form while you still have the energy to correct it. Or briefly stretch and relax a muscle to avoid having to stop later in the race.

A self-check can be mental and/or physical. I recommend performing one at least once an hour over the course of an Ironman to keep you moving efficiently and effectively towards the finish line.

This too shall pass:
At some point, perhaps several points, over the course of an Ironman, you are going to feel bad — very bad. It is not a matter of if but of when this will happen. It is important to know that it will happen, and to have a plan to handle it when it does. The key is to keep moving forward, even if this means walking, spinning the pedals, or swimming breast stroke. Be aware that this sense of misery will pass and that you will feel better. Often, the physical and mental anguish will subside within 5–10 minutes, and you will be able to resume your effort and pace and to continue towards your goal.

Stand down:
Although it’s less of a mental strategy, standing down can help you avoid mental struggles and mind-body conflicts later in the race. If pain or a mental low point does not seem to pass after a few minutes, an old or chronic injury starts to act up, or cramps begin to take hold, it is all right to stop — momentarily. One of the benefits of having all day to complete a race is that taking a minute or two early in the day will not make much of a difference in your overall finishing time. In fact, taking a minute to stop and take care of yourself may allow you to finish faster and more comfortably than if you had not taken that moment to nip the problem in the bud.

Manage the pain:
Pain is part of the Ironman experience, and no matter how long an athlete takes to complete the race, suffering will happen. Working through and conquering the pain is part of what makes Ironman finishing-line emotions so special. So don't ignore or fear the pain; embrace it and manage it as part of the Ironman journey, knowing that ultimately it will make you stronger and your sacrifices and victories all that much sweeter. Your mental approach to pain can be the difference between a finish, a PR, and a DNF. Have a plan of what to do or think when the pain seems to be too much, and practice this in training and on race day.

Misery loves company:
Talk to people when you are out there racing. Although you may be competing in an individual event, you are far from alone. I like to think of racing as hard training with 2,000 new friends. Some people have made race-day connections and friendships that last a lifetime. This can also be a welcome distraction from any negative self-talk or pain that you are experiencing.

Have a reason:
Chances are if you have signed up, trained, and made it to the starting line of an Ironman triathlon, you have not just a goal but a reason for your endeavor. Ultimately, the last several miles of an Ironman event are no longer about your fitness; they are about your mental strength, your desire, and your goals. And about that all-important reason. When the going gets tough, everyone needs a reason — not just a goal — to focus on and keep us driving forward. If deep down in the very fabric of your being, you are not 100% committed or do not have a reason to finish these last several miles, it may not happen. Some make the commitment for a charitable cause, a friend or family member, or some other deeply personal reason. What motivates a person is highly individual; I encourage you to find your incentive. The key is to find this reason before the race starts, not at mile 18 on the marathon course. Spend some time in the week leading up to the race thinking about and focusing on this reason, bury it deep, and then bring it out when the race becomes difficult.

Have fun:
Enjoy the process! Be proud of all your hard work on race day. This day is what you have been working toward — and for what you have sacrificed so much for. The psychosomatic connection is very important, but you can also trick your mind into feeling better through physical actions. For example, studies have shown that the physical act of smiling, even without the mental state of happiness, can result in positive thoughts, emotions, and energy. So, remember to smile because even if you don’t think you‘re having much fun, you will be surprised at how much better it can make you feel.

As mentioned before, during an Ironman you are going to feel bad — very bad. Your mind will start to wander, your legs will feel flat, and your body will beg you to stop. But the way that you mentally handle these challenges can make a huge difference in your Ironman experience and in your result. The fifth discipline of Ironman racing — mental strength — is what will get you through these tough times and help you have a breakthrough performance. Regardless of what motivates you, practice these mental strategies in training and racing, and the joy of crossing the finish line will be unlike any other in your life. And that memory will stay with you forever.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Hungry Girl Upside Down Pineapple Cake

PER SERVING (1/8th of cake, 1 slice): 190 calories, 3.5g fat, 298mg sodium, 39g carbs, 0.5g fiber, 26.5g sugars, 1.5g protein
A slice of the original recipe has 380 calories and 16g fat! I cut the calories in half by using no-sugar-added applesauce & pineapple rings packed in juice instead of syrup!

1 tbsp. light whipped butter or light buttery spread
1/4 cup brown sugar (not packed)
7 pineapple rings packed in juice, drained
7 maraschino cherries
Half of an 18.25-oz. box (about 1 1/2 cups) moist-style yellow cake mix
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup club soda
1/4 cup no-sugar-added applesauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a round cake pan with nonstick spray and set aside.
Place butter in a small microwave-safe bowl and microwave for about 15 seconds, just until melted. Add brown sugar and mix well. Spread mixture evenly along the bottom of the cake pan. Set aside.
Blot pineapple rings and cherries with paper towels to remove any excess moisture. Lay pineapple rings in an even layer in the cake pan, and place one cherry in the center of each pineapple ring. Set aside.
To make the batter, combine cake mix with baking powder in a large bowl. Mix well. Add club soda and applesauce, and stir until smooth.
Evenly pour batter into the cake pan over the fruit layer. Bake in the oven until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 30 - 35 minutes.
Allow cake to cool completely. Firmly and securely place a plate over the pan, and carefully flip so the plate is on the bottom. Gently lift pan to release the cake.
Cut into 8 slices and dig in!


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Mid Summer Virtual 5K

In light of it's been a while since a virtual event has been set. Let's do one this Sunday. 5k Keep it simple. Just a 5k ,nothing else if you are doing a long miler on Sunday just give the time for your 5k.

That way we all are doing one together and stuff. Keep it simple and fun!!