Alex Lee will be a junior at Grace in the fall of 2013. He has joined the ranks of those who have discovered how wonderful running is. He will be joining the cross-country team this next fall. He is currently in the worship arts program at Grace. Originally from St. Louis Missouri, Alex now lives in Buchanan, Michigan. He is the worship arts leader at Crystal Alliance Church in Grand Rapids, and will be leading worship at Life Action Camp for nine weeks this summer. He plays the guitar, the piano and sings.
Ally Rackley from Tri-County will be joining the Grace Cross Country team for the 2013 season. Ally has competed in high-school cross-country, golf, track, competitive cheer, band, jazz-band and musical. Ally joined the cross-country team her senior year and was very much improved over the season. She finished with a best 5k time of 23:25. Coach Stowers is looking forward to a great season with this energetic, multi-talented and gifted young lady.
Runners face so many possible injuries. Sadly one injury can lead to another. How can you recover, but continue to work out and prepare for your race or season? How do you know if you should completely stop, or if you can cross-train and try to stay active.
If you are injured, you should defiantly get yourself checked out with a professional who is familiar with runners, runners injuries and runners mind sets. If you do get the news that you can keep working out but that you should cross-train, then what should you do? Will your cross-training be as beneficial as your running?
Research has found that biking with sprints and resistance such as spinning in a spin class can improve your 10k times. It has also found that weight training can improve running economy. In other-words, after weight training runners can run faster with the same oxygen uptake. For a beginning runner, or one who wants to increase their distance, walking can improve endurance until the individual is able to run as far as they need to.
Information found at: http://www.active.com/running/Articles/The-Best-Cross-Training-for-Runners
There are also many plyometric exercises that can build strength and prevent injury. Go to this site and watch this video for some ideas: http://www.runnersworld.com/workouts/body-shop-dont-get-hurt. Or do some more research and find a plyometric workout you enjoy.
With today’s access to the internet, ideas and programs are easy to find. Research is constantly being done. You can do your own research too, use yourself as a guinea pig. Cross train with intensity, and see how well you do in your next race!
Today was a gorgeous day to run outside at Grace. It was sunny, 39 degrees and no major windchill. Maybe you are a brave winter runner and you run outside everyday, even if it is -5 with a windchill of -20 and 3 feet of snow. Or maybe you are an indoor winter runner, opting for the treadmill or an indoor track. Some might “cross-train” in the winter, playing a different sport, jumping on the exercise bike for a spin, or turning to a winter sport like snowshoeing or skiing. Hopefully you are not a couch potato just because it is winter time and the weather isn’t cooperating. But no matter what you have been doing this weather, today was a day to run outside! You still need to dress for the weather, but the sun and milder temperatures will lift your spirits and give you hope that spring and summer are on their way. The longer number of daylight hours are also proof that it is time to start running outside. So if you live in a cold weather climate, like Grace in Michigan, don’t let these perfect outdoor running days go by without taking advantage of them!
Today on facebook, Coach Stowers was reminded of a runner she coached from Tri-Unity Christian High School, Justin Voorhees, class of 2004. Justin who is in Rio de Janeiro during the Carnival, was almost mugged. He commented on facebook that he was thankful for two things, “1) That I run really fast” and secondly that his attackers were only able to throw something at him and he was able to get away. As a coach, it is always interesting to see where your runners go in life, but this was a story that really caught Coach Stowers attention. Who would have thought that being a runner could come in so handy!?! Hopefully this type of incident won’t be common, but it is good to know that if you need to run away, you can! So what does the Bible say about running? Proverbs 18:10 “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.”
“The Seven Pillars of Health” by Dr. Don Colbert names the following pillars for good health: Water, Sleep and Rest, Living Food, Exercise, Detoxification, Nutritional Supplements, and Coping with Stress. The format of the book offers 50 days of informational, inspirational entries. Two of those days are dedicated to the Benefits of Exercise. This is what is says, “Exercise prevents cancer.” “Exercise prevents heart attacks and heart disease.” “Exercise improves lymphatic flow.” “Exercise lowers stress.” “Exercise promotes weight loss and decreases appetite.” “Exercise may help prevent diabetes and help control blood sugar in diabetics.” “Exercise increases perspiration.” “Exercise slows down the aging process.” “Exercise builds strong bones.” “Exercise improves your digestion and promotes frequent bowel movements.” “Exercise gives you restful sleep.” “Exercise helps prevent colds and flu.” “Exercise reduces depression.” “Exercise improves memory retention and reaction time.” “Exercise slows Alzheimer’s disease and may help prevent Parkinson’s disease.” “Exercise increases lung capacity.” “Exercise alleviates pain.” And lastly, “Exercise increases your energy level.”
The Bible says in I Timothy 4:8 “For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come.”
If you look at this long list of benefits, and then realize that this is considered little compared to godliness…. just imagine the long list of the benefits of godliness!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Grace cross-country team. We hope that you are blessed as you celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. As you look back at 2012 and forward to 2013, may you find joy in all the blessings, hope in all your trials and peace in the future. Enjoy your time with friends and family and give thanks for every good and perfect gift that God has blessed you with. May you sing with the angles, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.” (Luke 2:14)
Break out the winter running gear, it is time for an adventure. Winter running can be very energizing if you dress for the weather. Layers are the key. Check the temperature and wind chill factor before deciding how many layers you will need. Everyone has a different tolerance level for the weather, so you may need to experiment with your runs to determine at what temperatures will require more layers. Don’t forget to cover your ears! You may want a scarf over your face if it dips too far below freezing. If you are toasty warm when you first start out, you are probably over dressed! As you run you will heat up and the many layers you thought you needed may become too much. If you don’t have running tights, windbreaker pants and jackets and a thin pair of gloves, you might want to add them to your Christmas list. So don’t let they cold weather scare you off the roads, winter running can be enjoyable if you are dressed appropriately. If you are a crazy high schooler like Coach Stowers’ son, Eli Stowers, who attends Grandville High School in Grand Rapids, Michigan, you might have a tradition to run in your shorts on the last day of school, (December 21, 2012), but don’t do it everyday!
Another semester has come and gone at Grace Bible College. This week holds final exams for all students and then Christmas break. A word of encouragement to all students, study hard, come out for food relief, and take a break by getting some fresh air and exercise. Yes, a run would do you well. Always a great stress reliever, it can clear your mind, give you a chance to reflect, and find solutions to problems you may not be able to figure out otherwise. So have a great week and break. See you next semester!
Congratulations to Elizabeth Pedersen for being awarded the scholar-athlete award by the NCCAA. Elizabeth is a junior at Grace and has maintained a GPA of 3.75 during her years at Grace. She is majoring in human services. Elizabeth currently works on campus, at Pine Rest and at Kohl’s Department Store. She has juggled all these jobs, her classes and her first year in cross-country with amazing grace this past fall. Congratulations!