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Is it safe to run outside, trail running gear guide, and referral program launch.

Minute 1: Is it safe to run outside?

We have tried hard to share ideas that are not Coronavirus-related at Six Minute Mile. Unfortunately, that’s a little like a grade-schooler challenging a friend with: “Don’t think about a red fire truck for the next 5 seconds.” Even the most mentally disciplined won’t be able to block that thought just as we can’t stop pondering how the pandemic affects our desire to pursue a healthy lifestyle. So we thought we would at least bring you a small bit of optimism in Minute 1. Vox just published a well-researched piece entitled “Why you’re unlikely to get the Coronavirus from runners or cyclists.” The story helps refute some quick research conducted in Europe that had recommended social distancing of 33 feet for runners and 65 feet for cyclists. More considered research points to closer distancing and precautions like wearing a facemask, as the Mayor of Boston just recommended for local runners. For additional reading, NPR offers How Runners Can Keep Themselves Safe During the Pandemic. Runner’s World provides advice on “How To Run Safely Amid Coronavirus Concerns.” Finally, the NYT offers a primer on “Exercising Outdoors with a Face Mask.” #BreathingHard

Minute 2: Our second gear guide – Trail Running Edition

Our Six Minute Mile product guides left college early and turned pro last week. We recruited our friend Brian Metzler to launch a series of gear reviews that have humbled the quaint “staff favorites” gear lists that pre-dated Brian’s arrival. While that was bad news for our egos, it was good news for our readers. You responded by making our 8 Top Running Shoes for Spring the most-clicked link in SMM history. Um … thanks? Brian is back this week with a guide to “Trail Running Gear That Will Keep You Healthy and Sane.”  As Brian writes, running on trails is generally a less stressful, less crowded and more energizing experience. You should still follow social-distancing protocols, keep your mouth and nose covered when passing other people and, for the time being, run trails close to where you live without venturing too deeply into the wild. As we never tire of pointing out, Brian literally wrote the book on running shoes as the author of the very well-reviewed “Kicksology: The Hype, Science, Culture & Cool of Running Shoes.” #TrailOfGears

Minute 3: Pantry lines

We are all cooking at home more often than an 18th-century pioneer family these days. While that spells relief for our restaurant tabs, many of us have now tapped out our standard rotation of meals. Maybe your sautéed chicken and brown rice was good the first 3 times, but… To help stir things up and stay healthy in the kitchen, a few good ideas whet our appetite this week. At the intersection of mental and physical health, Quartz offers up the best foods for mental health during quarantine. (Spoiler alert: the Mediterranean Diet gets high marks for promoting emotional well-being.) We are adding a few of these ideas to our daily home menu: “9 Recipes to Make with the Food You Bought for Self-Quarantine.” In the vein of staying healthy, before you go shopping, here are 7 Precautions You Must Take Before Going Grocery Shopping. If you’re looking to avoid Kroger’s altogether, check out Livestrong’s article: “Skip the Grocery Store and DIY These 5 Foods (From Yogurt to Bread) at Home.” #TableTalk

Minute 4: Six Minute Mile Ambassador Program Launches. Recruit friends. Get cool stuff.

What's better than sharing the joys of Six Minute Mile with your friends? Sharing with your friends and getting rewarded for it, that’s what. This week we launched our official referral program. Head over to our referral page and sign up for your custom link. Share that link with all your friends. Actually, they don't even need to be friends -- acquaintances with email addresses count too. Email it, text it, put it on social. We'll keep track of all the referrals that sign up using your link, and you'll earn sweet swag rewards when you hit milestones. Refer 6 friends, get a Six Minute Mile sticker for your computer (sorry, Macbook not included). Hit 12 referrals and enjoy a collector’s edition SMM water bottle. Become an all-star and you'll get a rare not-available-for-purchase Six Minute Mile t-shirt or sweatshirt. Start here to get your link and start reaping those rewards!  #ReferralMadness

Minute 5: Quick Intervals

  • One of our favorite athleisure shoes, Allbirds, announced they have expanded their line into performance running shoes. The brand earned a cult following by producing beautiful shoes with environmentally-friendly materials. Leonardo DiCaprio’s investment helped propel their meteoric rise from 2016 start-up to $1 billion unicorn. (The fascinating back story is available on NPR’s podcast “How I Built This.”) If you’re wondering how a favorite of Hollywood elite and still-got-it suburbanites can produce “real” athletic gear, consider that co-founder Tim Brown enjoys some legit athletic chops. He earned a degree on a D1 soccer scholarship at the University of Cincinnati before returning to his native New Zealand to play professionally.

  • Competitive running isn’t really much of a spectator sport in North America. Sure that’s a little different every 4 years at the Olympics (every 5 years? 6 years?), but by and large even most dedicated amateur runners would be hard-pressed to name 10 pros. That’s why we were pleased to see some recognition for two American legends in a recent poll from LetsRun. Following a tournament bracket-style poll of its readers, the two GOATS of American running were miler Jim Ryun and marathoner Deena Kastor. Check out the long list of accolades for each runner here. If you’re a history buff, you may also enjoy this vintage video of Ryun breaking the world record in the 1,500M in 1967. 

  • We see more face masks on the streets and trails every day as runners and cyclists try to stay safe while seeking their endorphin-induced mental therapy. It’s a little hard to look cool – not to mention avoid facial chafing – wearing masks that evoke dental hygienist rather than committed athlete. That’s why we like this line of performance face masks from our friends at Gone for a Run. We particularly like their “Running Is Not Canceled” version that perfectly blends safety and defiance. They contribute $5 from every sale to the American Red Cross.

Minute 6: Daily Inspiration

While flipping channels in search of a family movie this week, we came across Lone Survivor. Fortunately for the young ears in our house, it was the PG version so their vocabularies did not expand inappropriately. It’s not exactly a Disney-formula family flick, but it was a good reminder to our housebound crew that their current stresses and sacrifices should be kept in perspective. It also reminded us that we are less than 4 weeks away from one of the most legendary CrossFit workouts of all time. The “Murph” honors LT Michael P. Murphy, a Navy SEAL who was killed in action in Afghanistan in 2005. He was awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously. Every Memorial Day, CrossFitters, members of the military and ordinary fitness enthusiasts honor Murph by performing his favorite workout. This is one CrossFit workout that favors runners, as you’ll see in the workout description and inspirational video below. (There is no shame in breaking the workout into smaller pieces if you don’t think you can do 100 pull-ups consecutively.)

  • 1 mile run

  • 100 pull-ups

  • 200 push-ups

  • 300 air squats

  • 1 mile run


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