Archive for Featured Blog – Page 2

giving tuesday

December 2nd, 2014

A note about runhers women’s association and the hers projects on #givingtuesday

Private funding has funded the runhers experiment and the associated research projects over the past few years. We recently became a 501c3 non-profit organization under the umbrella name “the hers projects.” Headquartered in Oklahoma City – runhers, walkhers, bikehers and Designing a Safer Woman are all projects under the umbrella.  With having so much more significant work to do, and so much farther to grow these and other projects, and other projects in design, the non-profit organization choice was the best way we could pursue to move up to new levels.

December 2nd is Giving Tuesday; and we’d love to have your support.  Any level of support is welcomed. We are looking for collaborating partners, corporations, and other like-minded organizations to partner with.  For individuals and/or small organizations, anything from $5 to $500 or more can help – everything adds up.  We’d love to have any/all in-kind donations that support our runs, walks and overall goal of helping as many woman as we can find their version of healthy and happy – through our programs and uniquely designed programming.  (Note: we will have our donate buttons up on the runhers and hers projects sites soon. You can direct your giving specifically to any program, i.e. runhers women’s association, by including that in your note. For now, you can also send any checks made out to “the hers projects” to P.O. Box 720627 – OKC, OK 73172)

Our goal is to significantly increase outreach and connectivity in each community we have a presence in. We will initiate and train more groups, design and hold more creative forums, as well as design immersive entertainment, education, and events (we currently have 9 significant events in design).  

We intend to further our already amazing research in women’s health and lifestyle with more collaborators and funding. Lastly, our women’s imagination lab and headquarters design is taking shape on paper.  Right now, some of the world’s most creative companies/people are offering design support, cultural ideas, and advice.  

We believe we are designing/developing a bold, audacious, one of a kind organization that can impact many, many women through “the hers projects.”  Below is our “about” the projects.  2015 is our year to kick off all the work we’ve been doing, behind the scenes, for the last few years!  Please help by getting involved with others in this culture changing, always evolving experiment!  

Mission

To be a creative force that empowers women to discover, design and activate their version of a healthy and happy life.  We create partnerships and experiences that engage, entertain and inspire women everywhere.

Vision

By eliminating boundaries between cultures, organizations, disciplines and artistic expressions, our passionate people will create programs, products, entertainment and life solutions that engage the imagination and drive a new culture of wellness and health for women.

Our Core Values

  • We value each person as a unique individual
  • We believe in the power of creativity and imagination
  • We are unwavering in our commitment to authenticity, quality and amazing service
  • We are a creative force in unifying and enriching our communities
  • We believe in team work and collaboration at every touch point of the organization
  • We are a model organization on environmental and sustainability issues

Our Headquarters and Imagination Lab:

The hers projects headquarters and lab will serve as a one of a kind, multi-purpose, multi-function environment designed to advance our mission of serving women and communities.  The lab will be the estuary region where collaboration, talent, imagination and design come together to create powerful new tools for women in their pursuit of happiness and healthier living.  Stay tuned.

 

 

 

how to have a better attitude at the pool (or on the run)

Editor’s Note:  Running and swimming have a lot in common, with the main thing that both are “lifetime” sports.  You can do either at a very young age, through adult life and on through the golden years.  Running, like swimming, you can do just for fun, or to compete.  As far as burning off stress and staying fit, both are excellent choices. So with that, here’s an article that we found on a swimming site, that serves its purpose just as well with running!  Enjoy!

by: Olivier Poirier-Leroy – via swimswam.com

It’s crazy how much of an impact our attitude has when it comes to the way we perform in the pool.

On days when we are riding high, with life seemingly bending to our will, even the toughest of workouts is met with an optimistic and determined front. And yet, when we feel bummed out, or pessimistic, the tough stuff in the pool becomes even tougher.

“Excellence is not a skill. It’s an attitude.” – Ralph Marston

Being positive-minded when you are going through those heavy bouts of training, where exams and assignments are piling up, can help make the challenging stuff easier to handle. When we are optimistic we are able to better brace ourselves for the difficult chapters in our swimming career, and perhaps most importantly for the team, you contribute to developing an environment where everyone – and especially you – are primed for success.

1. Get better at failing. If you look at the way you take and handle setbacks as a skill, something you can actively work on, than you are light years ahead of those swimmers that take every failure – large and small – as an indictment on their abilities. Look, setbacks are gonna happen. From the age grouper, to the multi-Olympic, multi-gold medal winning athlete. What separates those from who allow failure to define why they quit and those who choose to make failure a re-direction in their journey is the outlook they have. Decide to work on improving the way you handle failing.

 2. Journal some gratitude. By now there is no doubt that at least one of your friends on Facebook (perhaps even you) have taken some form of the gratitude challenge. (For the uninitiated, you write out 3-5 things you are grateful for on Facebook each day for a few weeks.) Research has shown that this actually works, and that redirecting your thoughts to the good stuff in your life that you have in your life increases happiness and decreases stress. You certainly don’t need to post it online for the world to see,   spending a few minutes at home logging it into a notebook or log book works just as well.

 3. Celebrate the victories. Especially the small ones. If you are like me, you tend to undervalue the impact of your small wins. Because they aren’t the big, life-altering victories that cause massive change, we gloss them over, ignore them and bypass them. Which is too bad. Although having three really good practices in a row, or doing bilateral breathing for the full workout, or doing every meter with awesome technique isn’t a world record or gold medal, it’s still worth recognizing and celebrating.

 4. Be solutions oriented. It’s easy to point out the faults and shortcomings of not only ourselves, but of those around us. When things aren’t going our way the quickest route is to latch on to the problem and dwell on it. Rather than piling on to yourself (or others) seek a solution, a path forward and offer constructive criticism. When we seek solutions we are moving forward, making progress. Making excuses and offering criticism without guidance keeps us stuck in place.

 5. Remember that attitude is a choice. We make a metric ton of choices on a daily basis. What we are going to eat for breakfast. Whether or not we are going to pay attention in class. Whether or not to unfollow or fully unfriend the chronic meme-poster friend on Facebook. The mental approach we take on, the attitude we carry around with us, is dictated by us as well. Simply thinking about having a better attitude can often be just the thing to have it improve. Being conscious of the fact that our chosen attitude is our prerogative is better than allowing our attitude to be influenced by others and left up to chance.

 6. Don’t let the negativity of others infect you. This one is a little more sneaky. We don’t often notice how the people around us influence us until much later. Hang out with a complainer for the course of a day and you can’t help but latch on to some of that negative energy, catching yourself complaining by the end of the day. Hang out with positive-minded people, however, and you will find their optimism to be infectious. If, according the law of averages, we are the average of the five people we spend the majority of our time with, what does that make you?

 7. In the words of Ghandi, be the change. When you are positive with others around you, supporting their goals, making for a more positively charged training environment, caring about your teammates, you cannot help be become more positive with yourself. Seeing the positive within you comes with seeing the positive in others. The effects of this may seem simple, but they are profound. When you choose to be the catalyst for creating a positive environment in training, and when you and your teammates encourage one another and foster an environment that pushes everyone to succeed, everybody wins.

NYC Shakeout Run with Ryan and Sara Hall…and Meb

By: Laura Mullins, director, Norman runhers
 
While most runners slept in on the cold, rainy Saturday morning before the NYC Marathon, my Norman RunHers crew got up early for a very special event. We had been invited to attend an intimate “Meet and Greet” with husband and wife Ryan and Sara Hall, followed by a shakeout run in Central Park. Unsure of what to expect at this event, we packed lightly, dressed in our rainy weather running gear and hopped on the subway to Midtown. I was told the event was limited to 100 people and we were thrilled just to be in the mix and have the opportunity to share a room with these running sensations. But upon arriving, we discovered only about 30 people battled the cold, wet weather and turned up for breakfast with two of America’s top distance runners.

As my group of seven runners grazed the delicious continental breakfast, we were nervous about how much to eat. We really wanted to run with the Halls, but we had no idea how fast they would go and if we could even keep up. Determined to enjoy the moment, we grabbed some coffee and bagels and introduced ourselves to a few other runners who were also waiting anxiously for the guests of honor to arrive.

We were all enjoying a friendly banter when the lovely couple quietly glided through the door and right into the middle of our breakfast. They were kind, humble and soft-spoken. They patiently fielded all of our running related questions about nutrition, training as well as specific advice for the NYC Marathon that was less than 24 hours away. The weather forecast was not looking good for race day with highs in the upper 30s and winds between 20-30 mph. Ryan offered great advice that I truly took to heart. “It’s up to you when you wake up in the morning to decide how you’re going to deal with the conditions. Make the decision to embrace the challenge and focus your energy on being thankful for the opportunity to race.” So true. No amount of cursing the weather was going to change it. It was up to me to accept it and save my energy for running, not ranting.

Later, the Halls graciously chatted with us as we ran a few miles through a rainy Central Park. The crew of men surrounded Ryan while us girls vied for Sara’s attention. I enjoyed two amazing miles chatting about faith, life and running with Sara (all between my gasps for air as I tried to keep up with her “easy” pace). Despite the fact that Sara is a professional runner and I am merely a recreational super-fan, I found that we both were learning how to focus more on the pure love and passion for running rather than only the race results. In the past, I let my insecurities get the best of me and allowed my self-esteem to be dictated on the results I did NOT produce. Does it make me less of a marathoner if I don’t break 4 hours or ever qualify for Boston? If I am feeling this kind of pressure as a weekend warrior, I can’t even begin to fathom what elite athletes like Sara and Ryan must feel when they don’t meet a certain expectation! Running with joy truly is a goal every runner strives to achieve.

After an exhausting week that filled my head with self-doubt about my ability to run the NYC Marathon on Sunday, the Halls’ encouragement lifted my spirits and helped me find my gratefulness for the amazing opportunity before me to participate in the world’s largest marathon. I thanked Sara for running with me, because her short time with me truly impacted my heart when I needed it most. I appreciated her sincerity and her genuine nature. Those with less integrity would not have even bothered to ask my name. I felt so empowered after spending time with both Ryan and Sara that I could have not run the race and been completely fine with it. There was no way my day could get any better.

But then it did. As I helped myself to a second cup of coffee, I heard the organizer ask the runners to move to one part of the room because he had a surprise for us. Cool. Maybe a free shirt or a water bottle?  Well, the surprise turned out to be a whole lot better than any gear I could have imagined.

In. Walked. Meb.

Every runner in the room shared a collective gasp “Ohmygod!” “No way!” “Are you serious?!?”, followed by a hushed silence as the 2014 Boston Marathon champion raised his hands up to speak. What words of wisdom would Meb bestow upon us mere running mortals?

“It’s going to tough out there for all of us tomorrow. Be prepared to run 10-15 seconds slower per mile than you had planned. And enjoy every mile.”

Us? Did he just say us, as if he and I and this small group of super fans are somehow similar?!? Yes. He did say us because, as he explained, “We are all running the same race and sharing the same miles.” Well, the course may be the same, but as most runners know, the race is different for each and every runner. Keep running your own race, my friends, and I will see you at the finish.

Best shakeout run ever.

balance: the teeter totter of life

Balance is the one thing in my life I am constantly working on and shaping. Just like a teeter totter, it shifts back and forth. Sometimes the sway is every minute, while other times it is much larger and requires more attention to get the balance closer to the neutral point.

Life balance is not the same for everyone. For instance, an extrovert needs more social stimulation for an energy boost, while its counterpart, the introvert, recharges their battery by having some solo time. Knowing what you need in your life is crucial in the dance to find your balance.

I am currently at a place where my balance would physically exhaust most people. This fall I am doing three half-marathons, getting BODYPUMP certified, and teaching three PILOXING classes a week. Plus my normal workout schedule. It also includes adequate nightly rest, regular food prep at home, taking care of my clients at the salon, running a business, and my weekly run with my runhers ladies. I do still have time to catch up on my favorite shows, see my friends and family, and have an occasional nap in there, too!

One area I am making a conscious effort to work on is not telling others what their life balance looks like. Is it not always easier to dissect someone else’s life instead of taking a hard look at our own? Yeah, I have been there, too! The truth is I have no idea what keeps another person feeling more in balance. I walk in my shoes on my journey, and you walk in your shoes on your journey. All I can hope for is that you are mindfully working on creating and finding what your balance is.

Why is life balance important? Simple. Life runs smoother. Personally, I am less stressed and frazzled, which keeps me more rational and lighthearted. I also have time to breathe, really admire, and give gratitude to my surroundings. Have you taken the time, or even noticed, the colors of fall happening around us? Or, the bright orange and pink sky early in the morning, and at sunset? Just take a minute to stop, take a deep breath, and reset. Balance.

Some ideas that have helped me:

  1. On Sunday, plan out your weekly to do’s on a paper calendar and give adequate time for all things. Include work, sleep, workout time, “me” time, friend and family time, home maintenance, etc. This will help you manage your time and will show you in advance what kind of flexibility you have for the week. Feel free to make it colorful and fun! It’s your calendar.
  2. Know what your heart and soul need to stay centered. Life balance includes your mental health, emotional well-being, and your physical self. Do not apologize for making those needs a priority. You will be the best version of yourself and able to give to those around you more when you are more in balance. If you are craving a Netflix binge, but the house needs cleaning, by all means … watch a little Netflix. The house will still be waiting for you when you are ready!
  3. Know that perfect balance is not the goal or something to achieve. Life balance is like yoga: it’s a mindful, daily practice. You get better at it. It will evolve as your life evolves. Make adjustments as needed.

My balance right now has included new challenges. I have been in my career for twelve years, and wanted a change, so I have stepped into the fitness industry on the side. It has not taken away from my time in my business at the salon; however, it has added another level of fulfillment to my life now. I don’t know if this is a lifelong venture, but it’s in my today, and I am embracing it 100%. 

Live. Life. Beautifully.

~ Staci

domestic abuse/unhealthy relationship/dating violence


Editor’s Note:
Our Designing a Safer Woman Guide is built to cover many issues relating to women’s safety. And it does cover some basics on domestic abuse and unhealthy relationships. This section is especially timely given all the attention in the media these past weeks on domestic abuse. We must continue to raise the bar, and the awareness on this issue that affects so many women. Violence against women is serious, even deadly. We must do all we can to support each other and find solutions within our communities. If you are part of an organization that deals with these issues, and have tips and/or resources you’d like to share, please contact us: info@runhers.com

One in every four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime. Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior perpetrated by an intimate partner against another. It is an epidemic affecting individuals in every community, regardless of age, economic status, race, religion, nationality or educational background.

Violence against women is often accompanied by emotionally abusive and controlling behavior, and thus is part of a systematic pattern of dominance and control. What might have begun as an intense show of affection can quickly turn ugly if boundaries are intentionally crossed and you see the signs of abuse listed below.

BEHAVIORS THAT MAY INDICATE A PROBLEM

  •        Checking your cell phone or email without your permission
  •        Constantly putting you down and making unflattering comments
  •        The presence of extreme jealousy and insecurity
  •        Anger control issues and explosive temper
  •        The process of isolating you from your family and friends
  •        Making false assumptions and accusations
  •        Wild mood swings and acting emotionally imbalanced
  •        Any physical abuse whatsoever
  •        Possessiveness and intimidation
  •        Telling you what to do, where to be, how to act, etc.

POTENTIAL ABUSER STRATEGIES TO BE AWARE OF

  •        They might use an Intrusion Test where the perpetrator subtly checks out your boundaries by physical proximity, comments or demands on your time and attention.
  •        They might use Desensitization Tactics.  You become accustomed to these intrusion tests, and no longer notice when your physical/social/emotional boundaries are crossed.
  •        They might use Isolation Tactic. The perpetrator isolates you, or waits for a situation where you’re isolated, to provide an opportunity for an assault/rape/attack.
  •        They may have frequent angry outbursts.  These outbursts are meant and intended to intimidate or control you.
  •        They ignore you or don’t believe you.  They keep testing and discounting your “NO.”
  •        They intrude or continue to intrude your personal space and are almost always too close or try inappropriate touching or other body contact.
  •        They frequently interrupt you and/or make intrusive or insensitive remarks, such as about your body, other women, etc.
  •        They use Forced Teaming which is making it seem like you have a mutual problem that you jointly have to resolve.
  •        They use Loan Sharking, which is doing you favors so you may feel like you owe him something or give him the benefit of the doubt.
  •        They use Typecasting which is calling you a name (snob/racist/lesbian, etc.) which they want you to try to disprove.  

 

how to fall in love with running in 5 steps

by: Marie Wreath Editor’s note:  We’re happy to have guest author Marie Wreath let us repost her article.  Whether you run (or walk) a mile, or thirty miles, there are some great perspectives in here to think about! Like so many things in life, it’s about your own personal health and happiness, so take what you need.  Enjoy the article!  

How to fall in love with one of the most beneficial things that you, all by yourself, can do in this life.

    • Give it a fair shake. Brand new to running and already convinced you hate it? Please wait. Do not sell yourself short by struggling through one awkward, wheezing mile then declare running just isn’t for you. You know the millions of physical and mental benefits, right? Why did you start? Don’t you believe people who say that running makes them happier overall? Just get past the weird beginnings, trust me. My beginnings were extremely weird. And still I often need three miles to warm up for a five mile run. Even well-seasoned ultra-runners are known to say “Never judge a run by the first three miles.”Three miles. That is about half an hour of warm up, and it is SO worth it! If you are even a little bit interested in this amazing new chapter of life, then please give it a fair shake. Nibble at it. Seek support. Try different methods. Get the long view and grow a funny bone, because you will make yourself laugh … a lot.
    •  

    • Find your own running buttons and push them.Everyone is different. Running may seem painfully routine looking in from the outside, but there is a deep inner world there, a vast ocean of thought and feeling that you get to explore every time you lace up. (Maybe that’s why so many writers are also runners … huh.)And there are a hundred thousand variations for runners to discover. Do you listen to music, or keep the rhythmic silence? Run alone or with friends? Trail, track, or treadmill? Cold weather or hot? Morning, noon, or night? Try lots of different combinations until you discover your sweet spot, then max out! Enjoy yourself. Then shake things up again, enjoy some variety. Then go back to your reliable routines again. My favorite running blogger The Monican has lots of fun ideas to offer but always goes back to this smart mantra: You do YOU. Amen.
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    • Stock up on inspiration for a rainy day. Even deep into your own running obsession, far past your first big runner’s high, you’ll have dry days. You’ll have mornings when you had planned to run but WOW something else sounds better. Or you question the benefits. Or you just need new ideas. Be ready for those days by making little collections of motivational words, images, and info-graphics.
    • Ever heard of Pinterest? I have like three boards that revolve around fitness, but one in particular serves running alone. I refer to it when I can feel my feet dragging or my thoughts going negative. Maybe you’d rather have an old-fashioned vision board, complete with cork and push pins and glossy magazine pages! Know thyself, and motivate thyself.


     

  • Set a fun goal (or two or three) and make them known to loved ones. This is pretty standard advice offered for all kinds of new endeavors, and it almost sounds cheesy, but cheesy stuff tends to work! My advice for new runners who want to build enthusiasm? Look for a snazzy 5-K or a half marathon and register. Pay the money so you’re committed. Then on your calendar count the necessary training weeks backwards from the event date and pencil in your workout plan for every week. (Hal Higdon is a great source of advice for training.) And record what miles you run against that plan. Get consistent. Blab about it to your friends to the point they are mildly annoyed.Last March I was close to burnout for different reasons, and had I not made my goal of “running my first full marathon at forty” so public to people who really love me, I might have backed out. I am SO GLAD I didn’t back out. What a sad thing that would have been. Concrete goals made public are effective!
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  • Always go one more. One more mile, one more song, one more lap, one more day. However you’re measuring your frustration at any given point, try going just one more past where you want to. Remember that running is largely in your head, maybe more so than in your body; so take every opportunity to strengthen your mind. It will improve your life in so many ways. Do more than what you think you can do. Over and over, bit by bit, you will be amazed.  So that’s my advice if you are thinking of a wonderful new running obsession but need the final nudge. If you do these five things: Give it a fair shake, find a groove, stay inspired, set goals publicly, and go beyond your own expectations… I am pretty sure you will fall in love with running. And running will always love you back. And then we can grab some miles together sometime! Now you tell me. If you’re a runner already, what advice would you give a newbie? If you need some nudging, what’s on your mind? What’s holding you back from starting, or what’s slowing you down?Run while you can.~ Marie XOXOXOXO Marie Wreath’s blog can be found at “The (Not Always) Lazy W” here: http://lazywmarie.com/hi-im-marie-welcome-to-the-lazy-w/ and on Twitter @thelazyw

train and run a 5K with us

Editor’s Note: For OKC Metro area women; we are happy to partner with Metro Family Magazine for another #StrongTogether project using our sofa2success 5K program. The goal race will be October 18th Komen Race for The Cure 5K. We provide all the training and as much motivation/inspiration as we can, you provide some time to come out and get started. They say the first step is the most difficult, but we provide a happy, safe and structured environment to get you going! Hope to see you soon. All details will be on our Facebook.com/runhers page.

The question, what is preventing you from being healthier and happier? Maybe you just aren’t sure how to get started … or re-started? Sofa2success can help you get that ‘feel good’ energy back. Taking that first step can transform you and restore your confidence/energy to live happier and healthier. Truth is, a healthy you is the best you! You’ll be in good company as well, with about 13 million women regularly hitting the road, trail, or treadmill, according to a report by the Sports & Fitness Industry Association.

The supportive women at runhers are here to help you get started or back on track toward a more rewarding lifestyle. We can help train you to run or walk in a 5K (3.1 mile) event. It’s easy to get going – we provide a plan, a certified coach, all the education you may need, and lots of motivation. You provide the first step by coming out and following the plan… and as we move ahead together, your confidence, energy and spirit will grow! Completing a 5K is a great accomplishment and you can continue on your journey to a healthier, happier you. The best you!

You may be asking… why should I be thinking about taking up running or walking in this training group?

  • The accountability and camaraderie: You’ll get to know many other women in the training group and be able support and encourage each other! We are all in this together.
  • The simplicity of it! It’s so simple to start! All you need is some comfortable clothing you can move in and some decent athletic footwear, and your off and running! You can run or walk any day and time you want.
  • Everyone can participate! Running is the most inclusive of all activities. You don’t have to have a special athletic talent to do it. You just lace up the sneakers and get moving at your own pace. Want to get faster or go longer? We can help you with all of that – safety tips, training schedules, group runs and all the support you need are all here at runhers women’s association. You can run or walk for fitness, to socialize or even compete in races.
  • Anytime – anywhere – any duration: You can be just about anywhere and get a run and/or
  • Fun Events – Worthy Causes: The beauty of running and walking is that you can run in solitude one day, with your training/social group the next and then run an event with anywhere from 300 to 40,000 other participants on any given weekend! How exhilarating!
  • Before Starting

    Before starting a 5K training program, it is highly advised that you should make sure you are healthy enough to undertake the training. This 5K training should not be taken lightly. Consult your medical professional to ensure you are ready for this important next step!

    We will be issuing a schedule with locations for the 8 week program. We are meeting up every Saturday morning with Coach to do the miles/minutes as a group. Coach will be providing education and answering any questions before the runs/walks; including proper warm-up, running/walking drills stretching techniques, some laughs and motivation.

    Notes:

    XT means to cross train. This could be any other activity to help body, mind and spirit! You could do some core work, or light stretching, upper body workout, yoga or any activity you enjoy. Mix it up, experiment and listen to your body.

    Easy Runs and Walk/Runs

    This means running totally comfortable and controlled. When running alone or with your runhers training partner or group, you should be able to converse easily. You’ll likely feel as if you could go faster. Don’t. There is always time in the future to go faster or longer if that becomes your goal. For now, just building a ‘base’ level of running or run/walking fitness is what you are after. You can also do walk/runs where you may start with 1 minute of easy running with 2 – 3 minutes of brisk walking; repeating this for the duration. Experiment with the mix of walk/run minute until you feel comfortable with it.

    Rest

    Rest is always important. Make one day a rest day where you really are resting up from training. You need to make sure your muscles are well rested as you progress and grow though the training program. Rest and recovery doesn’t always mean doing nothing, you can do some like stretching or other light physical activity. Your body will begin telling you what it needs as you develop a better relationship with it!

    About sofa2success

    sofa2success© is being developed into a complete series for women that will include the 5K training and other fitness programs, nutrition tips, easy to prepare healthy recipes, other lifestyle tips, as well as a guide to balancing all the things that can make life very stressful. All in all – we will use the sofa2success program as a lifestyle guide that you can use as a reference anytime you need it. Our website and Facebook and Twitter feeds will offer daily lifestyle tips, food and nutrition news, shopping, events and forums of all kinds to help keep you active and happy! We have an advisory group of accomplished people from many disciplines to ensure that we provide you with the best evidenced based information. We also have humorists, to keep the scientists/professionals from getting too serious! We have to have fun!

    a body in motion…

    Editor’s Note:  We all know that too much sitting and/or inactivity is dangerous for our health.  Inactivity is being referred to as an epidemic that can lead to disastrous long term health issues.   The hers projects are researching all around the US and other countries who are taking the issue on, and we are finding some very promising things we can share soon.  For now, we know that even short bursts of movement (5 minutes) are helpful for mood and your body!  This article is interesting on reducing your cancer risks, by moving more!  Read on:  

    By: Peter Janiszewski, Ph.D.

    You’ve heard it here more than once: sitting too much is bad for you. Unfortunately, much of our everyday life is comprised of prolonged sitting – from your car, to your desk, to your dining table, to your couch. There’s just no escaping the temptation to sit. Sometimes, despite your best efforts, sitting is the only socially acceptable option. (Ever tried standing in a movie theatre or at dinner in a restaurant? This guy has!)

    Sitting too much increases your risk of a variety of diseases and early mortality even if you are at a healthy weight and you regularly exercise. For instance, as Travis previously summarized, a “longitudinal study from Australia reports that each hour of daily television viewing is associated with an 11% increase in the risk of all-cause mortality regardless of age, sex, waist circumference, and physical activity level.”

    Some have gone as far to suggest that sitting is the new smoking. How is that for an ominous metaphor?

    In case you needed more proof that excess sitting is, in fact, killing you – here it is, courtesy of a new study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute: too much sitting is also associated with an increased risk of certain cancers.

    In the study, the authors analyzed data from 43 individual studies including a total of 68 936 cancer cases (a study or studies, or a meta-analysis in science-geek parlance). Across all these studies they compared the risk of a specific cancer in the most versus the least sedentary group.

    Comparing the highest levels of sedentary behavior to the lowest, the study observed a significantly higher risk for three types of cancers of the colon, endometrium, and lung.

    Specifically, for each 2-hr increase in daily sitting time, the risk for colon cancer, endometrial cancer, and lung cancer, increased by 8%, 10%, and 6%, respectively.

    Similar observations were reported for the specific behaviours of TV viewing time and occupational sitting time as well as total sitting time.

    As has been described in other similar studies, these associations were true regardless of how much individuals exercised. In other words, not only do we all need to try to be physically active, we have to ensure we’re not falling into the category of an active couch-potato. That is, one who exercises for an hour a day, but spends the rest of his/her time with their butt firmly planted in a chair or couch.

    As always, we have to keep in mind the limitations of this type of study. One of the first lessons we all learn in an entry statistics class is that correlation does not equal causation. An increased risk of certain cancers with increased idle time has been observed consistently across many studies, but this does not definitively prove that sitting causes cancer.

    Nevertheless, limited lab studies in humans and animals have provided some insights into the mechanisms by which this might happen. The authors of this paper suggest a number of ways in which sitting may lead to cancer – with the mechanism potentially differing based on the type of cancer in discussion. At this point, however, the picture remains blurry.

    What is less unclear is the fact that we’d all likely do ourselves a favour by spending less time on our ischial tuberosities (sitting bones).

    Reference:
    Daniela Schmid, Michael F. Leitzmann. Television Viewing and Time Spent Sedentary in Relation to Cancer Risk: A Meta-analysis. Journal of National Cancer Institute. 2014. DOI:10.1093/jnci/dju098

    Published at: http://blogs.plos.org/obesitypanacea/2014/06/19/too-much-sitting-increases-cancer-risk/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+plos%2Fblogs%2Fobesitypanacea+%28Blogs+-+Obesity+Panacea%29

     

     

     

     

     

     

    runhers to host Free 5K in OKC Metro


    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
    OKLAHOMA CITY – JUNE 2, 2014
    Contact: Sheila Kidder – (405.659.2852)
    info@runhers.com

    Celebrate National Running Day June 4th!

    Oklahoma City based runhers women’s association is hosting a free, timed 5K to celebrate national running day. The event will begin at 7pm, at Elite Feet Running at 1237 E Danforth Road in Edmond. All ages and abilities are welcomed. Experienced runners are encouraged to bring a friend to hopefully get them introduced and excited about all the benefits of a running lifestyle. There will be festivities following the run. Additionally, there is also an organized and timed 5K run produced by the Norman, OK, runhers women’s association. That event will start at 6:30pm from OK Runner in Brookhaven Village.

    runhers Director of Special Projects Sheila Kidder states, “We’ve already had over 100 people commit and say they are going to be out running with us! Our hope is to continue spreading the happy and healthy virus everywhere we go, and create fun experiences that drive more people towards active lifestyles!” Kidder adds, “If we all encourage and support one person to begin taking those small, daily steps towards a healthier lifestyle, the ripple effect can have dramatic impact on our future.”

    About National Running Day

    Created by the New York Road Runners (NYRR), National Running Day, held annually on the first Wednesday in June, is a day when runners everywhere declare their passion for running. Since 2009, the country’s foremost running organizations have worked together to celebrate our sport with thousands of participants on the first Wednesday of June. We encourage runners to join in by planning a run, spreading the running bug to a friend, signing up for a race, or setting a new goal. www.runningday.org @runningday #runningday

    About runhers® women’s association

    We are a creative force that empowers women to discover, design and activate their version of a healthy and happy life. We create partnerships and experiences that engage, entertain and inspire women everywhere. To connect, please visit us at www.runhers.com or facebook.com/runhers – twitter @runhers – email info@runhers.com

    face the fear

    by: Emily Boecking

    Blank. Sheet. Of. Paper.  Yes, paper, not laptop, or desktop monitor, or tablet device.  After dropping my laptop one too many times, any sort of word processing software no longer exists on that 200 GB of memory, and I really haven’t had the patience to schedule an appointment with an Apple Genius (or Apple Not So Genius) to remedy the situation.  This lack of sufficient computer capabilities is one of the many excuses I have used to put off writing this article; including, but not limited to: I don’t have time, I’m too tired, writing requires thinking and I’ve already done too much of that today, I have several movies in my Netflix queue to catch up on… you get the idea.  So here I am.  Blank. Sheet. Of. Paper. 

    I usually think of myself as the “go getter” type—someone decently good at making “To Do” lists, and then knocking out the tasks relatively quickly.  But this one task, to write a simple article on what it means for me to “face the fear”, stayed on my “To Do” list week after week.  I finally had to ask myself why I kept finding so many excuses, as lame as they were, for procrastinating on this particular undertaking.  Finally I had to admit that my excuses served no purpose other than to distract me from facing my fear of writing this article.  What was so intimidating about this article? 

    Hell, it was my idea to write the article anyways.  Although it is a topic I feel passionately about, I realized I was scared that I might not really have anything of merit to say about the subject.  I couldn’t even fathom how to approach the article.  Maybe I could make the piece anecdotal … possibly relay some examples of obstacles or issues in my life I feared and how I worked through them, whether successfully, or not so successfully.  And yes, I could see where that approach could have some value. Honestly though, if that were the course of action to take there had to be someone grossly more qualified than myself to lead such a discussion. 

    Sure, I’ve been through some stuff, and had my shit, but how does that make me different than anyone else?  Plus, as much as I like to put on a tough exterior, I honestly don’t think I’d make it through the entire article claiming that I am “Fearless.”  Heck, I couldn’t even sit down to write an article about fear because fear was the very thing inhibiting me (suck it irony).  And taking the opposite approach of composing a confessional of how much some shit scares me didn’t sound like too much fun either (I for dang sure didn’t want to reveal all of my gross insecurities to the general public).  So. Blank. Sheet. Of. Paper.  We meet again. 

    And alas, as much as I would like to say the inspiration as to how to give some substance, and content to this matter struck me with a lightning bolt of epiphany, it did not.  Rather, I had to make a truce with the endeavor.  Knowing I couldn’t speak as any so called expert on “how to face the fear”, nor could I portray a self-flagellation of all my fears and woes, I could, however, engage in a discussion in regards to our collective challenges as to how we handle fear, and how we can find the strength from within to face it.

    So here it goes …

    If we ask ourselves how many of our fears are based on reality, and how many are based on our perception of reality, what would the ratio be?  Would we be able to say that 99% of our fears are reality based?  50%?  Or maybe a mere 1%?  If we are honest, most of us would probably confess that the majority of our fears are based on what we perceive reality to be, rather than what it actually is. 

    An Alcoholics Anonymous adage states that FEAR is an acronym for the following:  False Evidence Appearing Real.  As various situations and stimuli arise in our lives, our natural human instinct is to relate the current circumstances we find ourselves in to prior experiences.  Since life happens on its own terms, which are often not in accordance with our own terms, many experiences have outcomes that may be, in our minds, less than we had hoped for, or perhaps an outcome we associate with failure.  And with that association of failure arises emotions that we’d rather just not feel again, or deal with.  Maybe the feelings that are conjured up are just a little uncomfortable.  Maybe they are a lot of uncomfortable.  Or maybe somewhere in between.  Regardless of where that feeling falls on our “uncomfortable” barometer, the bottom line is, given a choice, we’d rather avoid that uncomfortable feeling and just not go there again.

    And yes, we have all read the motivational books and heard the inspirational quotes that instruct us that we can’t hope for anything more out of life other than status quo if we approach life from a stand point of avoidance of failure and uncomfortable feelings.  Once such quote on the subject can be found in Theodore Roosevelt’s The Strenuous Life speech,

    Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat.

    But stuff comes up in life.  Maybe it’s a time to just branch out a little from our comfort zone, or maybe it’s a time where we are asked to really step up to the plate.  And if that stuff, whether it be big or small, invokes that deja vu of some “who, what, where, when or why” from our past that we really didn’t like, our natural reaction is to respond, “Nope.  Been there.  Done that.  Not going there again.” 

    But here is the real reality of the situation: we have NOT been there before.  We have NOT done that.  Of course we are not going there again, because we can’t.  Maybe something similar to the situation we currently find ourselves has happened before, hence our protective instincts flair up.  We get scared and have an impulse to respond out of fear.  And in those moments, I personally often find myself having a little internal conversation in regards to Mr. Roosevelt’s quote:  “Yea, Teddy got it right on it being better to ‘dare mighty things’, but today I’d rather be content to be in that ‘gray twilight’ area.  I may not know victory, but I’ll go with not rolling the dice and instead be able to eliminate that suffering thing from the agenda today.” 

    And some days, this is response is OK.  We don’t need to wage war with the world everyday by any means.

    Yes, we all have major and minor life crises that we are faced with– relationships, careers, the economy, natural disasters, crime, etc. – but none of them are going to be confronted and defeated within a single day. 

    Looking outward at the external battles raging in our lives may not be where we are called to direct our energy.  Rather than outward, maybe the direction to look is inward, at the internal battles we face.  And many of those battles are merely incarnations of fear.  Exactly how facing these fears will look like for everyone, I can’t necessarily speak to, but it might take the form of asking ourselves questions such as:  ” What things, both good and bad, am I avoiding because of my fears?”  “Where am I selling myself short because of what my fears tell me I can and can’t do?”  “Where am I selling others short because of this?”

    Fear loses its power over us when we let go of the outcome.  When our days are no longer governed by our expectation of what we think can happen or will happen or should happen,  all of the “what if” scenarios that fear played out in our minds fall by the wayside, and we can instead be fully present.  And when we are fully present, we are able to take action from a place of personal strength and power.  Whereas before we would have resorted to simply reacting to challenges out of fear, we can now empower ourselves to act mindfully and purposefully in any given set of circumstances when we let go of the power fear had over us. 

    So maybe today we dare that mighty thing anyways, and maybe we risk a measure of defeat, but we also open ourselves up to experiencing a measure of victory.  And whether it’s victory, defeat, or everything in between – isn’t it all experience?  And isn’t experience what life is made of?  Maybe today we take that chance at facing our fear, knowing that if failure does happen, we can still handle it. 

    Face the fear… and do it anyways…