Discover Whitewater Series

Discover WW Series Photo1By: Mary Marren
This week I’d like to talk about the Discover Whitewater Series that took place in Whitewater on Sunday September 22nd, 2013. The event was put on by The Greater Whitewater Committee, Inc. and was open to the public to participate. The event was held according the official website, “To promote tourism to the city and show participants all that Whitewater has to offer.” Let me tell you, they pulled it off. Hundreds of people came out to participate in the half marathon, 5k, or Fit Kid Shuffle, and had a blast doing it.

Although I didn’t get the opportunity to participate this year, it was such a thrill to be able to go and support local members of the community! If getting to know your city better wasn’t enough incentive, the event also gave medals to all of the participates, as well as prizes for the top finishers. So my challenge to you is to sign up next year and rise to the occasion of competing in a local race. If you “like” the group “Run Whitewater” on Facebook, you can get updates on next year’s race and general running information. 

The races began at the Whitewater high school and led the participants through a scenic route of Whitewater including The University, Fairhaven’s Prairie Village, the Whitewater Industrial Park and Whitewater University Technology Park. This route allowed the participants to see more than just Main Street and really appreciate the beauty of Whitewater!

Discover WW Series Photo2If you have ever thought about signing up for a race but have felt a little bit too intimidated (like me), let me assure you that it is not intimidating at all. The whole event is filled with music, laughter, and you are greeted at the finish line with cheerful, clapping volunteers who hang a medal around your neck. People of all ages came out to the event to rise to the challenge, and when I say all ages I mean anywhere from 3 years old to 60+ years old. So do yourself a favor and don’t let fear hold you back. Give it a try; there was never any harm in trying!

The event donates all of the proceeds to “five local organizations in an effort to build a stronger community.” The Bethel House, UW-Whitewater Field & Cross Country, W3 (Working for Whitewater’s Wellness), Whitewater Unified School District and the Whitewater Aquatic Center.

Feeling interested and want to check it out for yourself? Visit their website today! http://runwhitewater.com/about/

Stay Healthy, Stay Strong,
-Mary Marren

Ready…Set…RUN!

Ready set run photoBy: Kenzi Weidman

Have you ever wished you could be one of those people that can run a 5K or even a marathon every other weekend? Personally, running was something I never thought I could do until I took the initiative to try it and stick to it. I read a million articles; a couple were from WomansHealthMag and Runners World. They all gave me the confidence to try it out and see what became of it! Here were some easy tips I followed that got me to running almost 3 miles a day:

Tip #1: Find some music that gets you motivated. Everyone has that song or artist that makes him or her want to dance and go crazy! Try running to that genre and it will keep you going. My favorite is sappy country music. There is something about hearing how a man lost the love of his life that keeps me thinking and running a couple miles! I also enjoy a little Basshunter or any kind of techno music. Sometimes I catch myself doing a little jig while running, but there is nothing wrong with that, right?

Tip #2: Get a light and comfortable pair of running shoes. Don’t think you can throw on any old pair of shoes and it will be comfortable to run a couple miles. I mean maybe it would be, but odds are a light pair of actual running shoes allows you to run further, keeps your feet comfortable and helps prevent injuries. My favorite pair of shoes, which I have had now for over 2 years, are my Nike Free Trainer’s. It is important to understand though that you should not wear the same pair of shoes forever. I read the article When Should I Replace My Running Shoes? and it really opened my eyes about getting a new pair. It’s hard to give up on your favorite pair and go to a new pair because you are use to them. Sadly though, it has to happen in order to maintain good form and prevent injuries.

Tip #3: Find a friend. No one wants to start a journey alone, or at least I don’t. I grabbed a good friend of mine and asked her to go with me. She of course was not a runner either and said “no” the first time but after a few too many times of asking her, she gave in. It is nice to have a buddy by your side because not only will your body want to keep up with them, but also you can help encourage each other to keep going and remind each other of your goals.

Tip #4: The last and final thing that I reminded myself every day; It may be hard, but don’t give up. Side ache after side ache along with shin splints and foot cramps. Running was not my thing, and I wanted more than anything to give up and get some McDonald’s. Persistence is key and I stuck through it! Just remind yourself that a little struggle now, will give you so much more strength later.

The point is, find what works for you and stick to it. Running is not everyone’s favorite thing, but once you get started, it can show just what you are capable of. Being able to tell your friends that you have ran multiple 5K’s or are about to do your first 10K or half marathon would feel like such an accomplishment and something to be so proud of. I sure am not there yet, but I hope many of you will start the journey with me!

“Always remember that it doesn’t matter how slow you go, as long as you keep on going.”

~Kenzi Weidman

Sources: When Should I Replace My Running Shoes? Runners World WomansHealthMag