AUG 13, 2022
Minute 1: If you’re facing fear, you need to S-T-O-P
Whether your daily life involves climbing mountains or career ladders, everyone is going to face some kind of fear from time to time. Many psychologists believe that fear is actually a good thing when handled properly: “10 Reasons Why a Dose of Fear Is Good for You.” Survivalist Bear Grylls says that fear isn’t an enemy to be defeated, but rather nature’s way of keeping us sharp at our most trying moments. To learn his strategy, read “Bear Grylls on how to S-T-O-P fighting fear in everyday life.” The S-T-O-P method stands for step back, take a break, observe, and plan. When you feel fear or anxiety, you often need to resist the urge to go with your gut reaction: a fight or flight response based on emotion. Instead, pause and step back from the situation to gain clarity. Once you’ve removed yourself from the thing that’s causing the fear, observe it, and only when you’ve developed a greater understanding can you create and execute a plan to solve the problem. Phobias are probably a lot more ubiquitous than you realize, and these are “10 of the Most Common Phobias” we all face. In more extreme forms, social phobia can be classified as Social Anxiety Disorder, but most of us experience some of the characteristics related to that condition on a smaller scale. Things like a fear of public speaking are practically universal, especially if it isn’t an ordinary part of your routine. Give yourself permission to take things slow, follow S-T-O-P, and you’ll face the fear like a pro.
Minute 2: Marine Corps Marathon Bib Giveaway
Oorah! After a two year hiatus, the Marine Corps Marathon returns to action on October 30. This is one of the most iconic races in the world, finishing at the Marine Corps War Memorial adjacent to Arlington National Cemetery. Thanks to our sister company, MarathonFoto, we have two bibs to give away for "The People's Marathon" and two more for the 10K. To enter the giveaway, just follow the simple instructions on our Instagram post. Winners will be picked at 5:00 pm EDT Monday and announced in the next issue, so don’t delay! While many big races like the MCM, NYC Marathon and Chicago Marathon are sold out, some of our favorite smaller events still have bibs available for the fall, including these:
Twin Cities Marathon October 2
Baltimore Running Festival Marathon October 15
Columbus Marathon October 16
Philadelphia Marathon November 20
Seattle Marathon November 26
St. Jude Memphis Marathon December 3
Minute 3: Runners, you should know this about heart rate
Running at varied paces is a critical component of any training plan. No one should go out the door seeking to run at the same min/mile metric on today’s 10-mile run as yesterday’s hill repeats. Without planning out hard and easy days, and then using metrics to make sure you’re on track, you may wind up doing your hard days too slow, and your easy days too fast. Tracking pace according to distance is useful, but not very personalized. It doesn’t provide a holistic account of your effort that accounts for fluctuations in your energy level. That’s why heart rate zone training is typically more productive than just pace training. Many athletes swear by it, but it is an often misunderstood metric. Polar has been measuring and analyzing heart rate data for decades and just came out with this simple, but informative piece: “Heart Rate When Running: What is Normal?” The story includes a useful sliding scale showing what your max heart rate should be. From there, you can break down your training days into target percentages of your HR. For endurance athletes, a lot of your volume should be performed in zone 2, or 60-70% of your max. Every once in a while, you’ll want to get up to zone 5, 90-100%, but only for short periods at a time. If you’re just getting into heart rate monitoring, you’re in luck: there are lots of tools available to take your measurements on the go. Try one of “The Best Heart Rate Monitors, According to a Running Coach.”
Minute 4: Ditch the toxins, and eat these foods instead
In a recent issue, we examined the myths around detox diets. Most of the products that claim to strip away toxins were ineffective, or worse, downright unhealthy. If they’re no good, what’s the solution to detoxing your body? The best method might be to try and avoid them altogether. Here are “6 ‘Toxins’ in Food That Are Actually Concerning.” The news keeps getting worse and worse regarding microplastics, and if you’re still using any products that contain BPAs, it’s time to switch to a metal or glass container. BPAs can disrupt hormone function and insulin levels, among other things. Next on the list is trans fats. Trans fats are made by adding hydrogen to unsaturated oils to turn them into a solid, which is then used in products like margarine and junkfood. They’ll increase your inflammation and risk of heart conditions, so look for less processed sources of fat instead. In a similar vein, added sugars contribute to developing obesity, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, fatty liver disease, and cancer. Watch out for foods containing fructose. Now that you know what to avoid, it’s a good time to recommend this list of “The Best Foods for Men Awards 2022.” It’s branded as a list for men, but make no mistake, these foods are good for everyone. It’s got recommendations for antioxidant packed blueberries, fibrous oatmeal, and more.
Minute 5: Quick Intervals
We know that in this summer heat, buying a new blanket is the absolute last thing on your mind. But don’t sleep on this idea, because it could be a real game changer for your sleep quality. Weighted blankets have become increasingly popular, and new research supports the claim that they can reduce anxiety. If you’re curious, take a look at “The 5 Best Weighted Blankets for When You're Craving Comfort.”
Everyone’s body is different, and that means the stress of running is going to hurt differently for each individual. If you’ve got a heavy heel strike, you might experience pain in the foot or knees from time to time. If you’ve got muscle imbalance, your hips may act up. For others, the weak point may be your back, and there’s nothing like lower back pain to take the fun out of your run. If that sounds familiar, you should read “Why Does Running Hurt My Back? A Guide To Lower Back Pain.”
We don’t think fiber gets the attention it deserves. Yes, we knew that nutritionists encourage ample fiber in your diet, but we did not understand there are multiple kinds of fiber. To dive into the nutritional nuances of fiber and discover the best sources, read “The Differences Between Soluble vs. Insoluble Fiber and Why You Need Both.”
Minute 6: Daily Inspiration
We are suckers for a good sports movie with an underdog theme. And if a football movie can somehow manage to throw in a magically-filmed trail running scene, well, that’s destined to be near the top of our all-time favorites list. Remember the Titans is set in the early ‘70s and based on the true story of a newly-integrated Virginia high school football team struggling to find team chemistry. The head coach, played by Denzel Washington, leads the team in a pre-dawn run through the woods to Gettysburg National Cemetery where he delivers a moving and prescient speech. We get chills every time we watch the clip below.