How common spices can improve your health

Minute 1: Masks, vaccination, and the state of gyms in 2021

The stop-and-go ride on the Covid train seems to produce as many jerks as a college fraternity party. Just when we thought it was over, new cases are popping up faster than back acne on a 1980s East German swimmer. Even though deaths from Covid have not risen as quickly as new infections, some locales have imposed new restrictions on gym usage. Check out: “New York becomes first U.S. city to order COVID vaccines for restaurants, gyms.” If you want to understand some of the science behind mandates like these, you can find more info in this story from Men’s Health: “This Is How Safe It Is to Go to The Gym Right Now.” We learned early on in the pandemic that the gym can be a dangerous place -- lots of people in a tight space, exhaling heavily for long periods of time. Given the rise of Covid variants with higher transmission rates, should you go back to wearing a mask at the gym? The answer depends, says Dr. Edgar Sanchez, as areas with higher vaccination rates will pose less of a threat. If you and those around you are all vaccinated, the risk is greatly mitigated. Many experts suggest visiting your gym outside the peak usage hours of early morning and right after work. It is also important to seek a facility that is well-ventilated. Ideally, the gym’s HVAC system should trade out the air every 10 minutes. If your gym owner can’t answer a question about their facility’s air exchange rate, it’s a good bet that they are not well-ventilated. #HealthyClub

Minute 2: Short on time for marathon prep? We’ve got you covered

An optimistic single person is one who believes their bed is half full. An optimistic runner is one who believes their half marathon will indeed take place this fall. Based on feedback from the race director’s conference we attended this week in Chicago, the optimistic runner is probably correct about fall racing and has also likely been preparing accordingly. 100% of the event production professionals we interviewed this week said that the big fall races we’ve all been waiting for will go off as scheduled, albeit with safety precautions in place. While that’s good news for all runners, it also means that pessimistic athletes may have failed to train properly, believing they wouldn’t be racing again this year. Fear not, according to Podium Runner, there is still time to prepare with this “8-Week Marathon Training Plan.” It’s got long runs, fartleks, and everything in between so you can build endurance and get up to race pace. It goes without saying, the plan is geared toward more experienced runners, and if you’ve been couchbound for the last year, consider other options, like a half-marathon. Not sure what to do? Read “