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      Blog — Fitness

      Which Running Race is Ideal for Your Style?

      Which Running Race is Ideal for Your Style?

      The sport of running has been on a steady incline for the past decade. Thanks to fun and themed races, the sport has become more appealing to a broader audience of people than ever before. Dangle a carrot like cool medals, rockin’ music, and costumes in front of people who may not otherwise be inclined to seek out a starting line and the result is something trendy that’s actually really good for us.

      In a report from Running USA, “fun” is one of the primary motivators for runners, as is health and stress relief. And that’s the key to any workout, really. Choose an exercise you love and you’ll never workout a day in your life… is a pretty fair interpretation of Confucius’ philosophy. The sport can be as fun, challenging, or intense as you want it to be, and fortunately, there are many, many outlets for you to explore.


      Races are kind of the crowning achievement for runners, but no runner ever started with a marathon. Find the race that’s right for your style, speed, and goals and use that to keep you motivated and focused on the days you love it least.

      letter F

      One-Mile Fun Run

      This is exactly what it sounds like — a one mile race that’s usually more fun than it is competitive. These races tend to open or close bigger event races so that everyone feels welcome, including kids and strollers. These one-milers are ideal for newbies, families, run-walkers, non-competitives, or those who like the souvenir shirt with the least amount of effort!



      This is a 3.1-mile race that has become the gold standard for training new runners, thanks to theCouch to 5K (C25K) and similar programs. Three miles is an achievable distance and starts to give you a taste of what all of that finish line excitement is about! This race is ideal for newer runners ready for their first race or who are working on pace. Also, “those with a need for speed and those prefer a shorter race distance with less training time,” advises Coach Alison Heilig, a runner, triathlete, and all-around fitness enthusiast at AcaciaTV.



      This is a 6.2-mile race where you’ll start to feel like a “real” runner. This is a popular distance for bigger race events that are focused on time and competition, as it can help weed out newer or slower runners. These races make great practice runs for anyone with half-marathon plans. This race is ideal for “Those who’ve run a few shorter races and are ready to take it up a notch but not yet ready for a longer-term training commitment,” said Heilig.

      letter h

      Half Marathon

      As the name implies, this race is half the distance of a full marathon. Just 13.1 miles of pavement lie between you and a finish line medal. At this distance, cross training and nutrition become just as important as pace and form.This race is ideal for seasoned runners who’ve properly trained for at least 12 weeks. Heilig picks this race because “This is the most popular race distance now and is perfect for those with a little more experience running who are looking for a challenge and love the idea of putting in the work for a memorable finish down the road.”

      letter m

      Full Marathon

      A full marathon is a distance of 26.2 miles, a storied length with roots in Ancient Greece and the 1908 London Olympics. Running in these races can be an all-consuming “hobby,” one that is competitive and intense. Training schedules and nutrition plans rule your days for the 12-20 weeks of training ahead of you. This race is ideal for the most experienced runners, which Heilig describes as “Those who’ve run a few half marathons and are now ready to make a bigger time commitment to training and are prepared to make sacrifices to get the training in.” She warns that improper training doesn’t just result in a miserable race, but can be very dangerous for the runner.

      letter u

      Ultra Marathons

      Any distance longer than the standardized 26.2 miles is considered an ultra. At this stage, you’re no longer running for “fun,” running is your life and your body is a machine. You should also have a penchant for adventure, as ultras tend to take place over a lot of trails, too. Save these races for the die-hard veteran, well-seasoned runners. Heileg saves ultras for  “Those who’ve completed several marathons without injury and recovered well, those with substantial trail running experience, those who prefer endurance over speed, those looking to experience something life-changing, and those with a good amount of time to train on the weekends.”

      letter t


      For the multi-talented runner, a triathlon is another badge of sporting honor. The race distances vary based on the type of tri you may be competing in, like a sprint or Olympic triathlon. However, the standard is the International-Distance Triathlon which includes a 1.5-kilometer swim, 40-kilometer bike ride and a 10-kilometer run. Ideal for experienced athletes with proper training across the three disciplines.

      letter i


      What a half-marathon is to a full, a triathlon is almost to an Ironman. This intense event may be the most physically demanding of them all. While a Half Ironman exists, the full requires athletes to complete a 3.86-kilometer swim, 180.25-kilometer bike ride, and 42.4-kilometer run (that’s a full marathon after a 112-mile bike ride, in case you’re keeping track!). Ideal for experienced athletes who want the ultimate endurance test.

      What’s your favorite type of race?


      Running isn’t Bad for Your Knees; Bad Running is

      Running isn’t Bad for Your Knees; Bad Running is

      Runners hear it all the time and novices try to warn others off of the sport for this one perpetuated myth. So let us clarify that running, as a sport, is not bad for your knees.

      Do you know what is? Bad running.

      “If you train properly and run with good technique, running does not have to be bad for any joint,” clarifies Holly Perkins, CSCS, author of Lift to Get Lean.

      It’s true, you can hit the bricks running any ‘ole time your heart desires. But like most things, there is a right way and a wrong way, especially if you don’t want to bang up your knees and other joints, get shin splints, or any of the other side effects that result from bad running.

      Proper Training Requires Strength Training

      Holly describes proper training as at least 4-6 weeks of full body strength training before you ever run a single step. Strength training can reduce the risk of injury, including aches and pains, substantially by improving joint mechanics. Her recommendation includes complex, compound moves each week:

      • Deadlifts

      • Squats

      • Walking Lunges

      • Single Leg Deadlifts

      “I have had massive success with my runners by making them have an off-season where they don’t run at all, and instead focus on strength training to correct muscle imbalances and joint misalignments,” she said. “Once you experience what’s it’s like to run with a strong and resilient body, you will never make [the knee] comment again. It’s incredible.”

      Good Technique is All in the Cadence

      Holly goes on to explain that good technique the next complement to proper training, and it is mostly related to improving your running cadence.

      “One mistake many runners make is to spend too much time with their foot on the ground, striking with their body mass behind the foot. A running cadence of 90 cycles per minute (180 foot strikes) significantly helps to decrease joint issues and general fatigue from running,” she explained.

      Good Technique is in the Shoes

      The other side of the good technique two-headed monster is on your feet. Runners love to talk about shoes as much as they love to post a sweaty finish line picture… but it’s not without cause. Shoes are serious business. Holly recommends keeping them fresh and using the right technology for your body.

      “It’s critical that you determine your foot strike style and select a shoe that supports your needs. Then, it’s important to keep your shoes fresh. If you run more than three times per week, it’s a good idea to have two pairs of the same shoes that you can alternate during the week. Then, replace your shoes every 3-4 months, or at the first sign of new joint aches.”

      Don’t Swap Accuracy for Speed

      “Nearly every runner I have ever worked with automatically emphasizes running speed over running technique. The speed/accuracy tradeoff rule states that the faster you move, the less accurate your movements are,” reminds Holly.

      She says that in order to become a good runner, you’ve got to slow down a bit. Ensure you’ve got the training, mechanics, and cadence in place before working to increase speed. Holly has corrected many of her clients’ knee issues by simply having these runners slow down for a month to just focus on technique.

      Why More Women Should Go Mad for Basketball

      Why More Women Should Go Mad for Basketball

      Ladies, it’s time to take back the court! Shooting hoops is a fantastic total body workout that comes with a host of other mental and physical benefits. But not enough of us are playing.

      Basketball is the most played sport in the U.S., true for adults and kids alike. The sport is responsible for getting more than 26 million Americans up on their feet, with women accounting for 6.5 million of those participants. It’s one of the most popular sports played by women, but falls behind tennis, golf, softball, and volleyball.

      So why the fall off for this particular sport? It’s what women cite for most things they love and walk away from.

      “They say career, parental responsibilities, and injuries have made it harder to play,” according to NPR.

      Once women leave high school, and especially college, their days on the court are usually behind them. NPR reported that female athletes give up basketball at a much earlier age than men.

      Women who still play say basketball is an escape or release, liken to runners who herald their sport as an escape. It’s a tremendously social sport, which can be a valuable outlet for women. Rather than count calories over wine and tapas, consider counting the calories burned during an hour of basketball with your girlfriends. For a 165-pound adult, you’ll burn around 600 calories!

      enell basketball

      A social outlet like basketball becomes a stress reliever. One woman told NPR that basketball is her beach. “It's the one time that my mind can actually just not think about anything else but ... but playing."

      Plus, there are a host of physical benefits to be gained by routine basketball play. The game develops cardiovascular endurance, balance, and coordination. You’ll build lean muscle, increasing both upper and lower body strength. The jumping and other physical demands of the game can develop and improve bone health and strength. All of this contributes to a woman’s vitality as she ages.

      If you loved playing basketball in your youth, and don’t have an injury preventing you from playing, schedule a pick-up game with your friends. It could be the escape from life’s madness your body has been craving.

      The Sexiest Valentine’s Gift is Working Out With Your Partner

      The Sexiest Valentine’s Gift is Working Out With Your Partner

      If you think all of those hours in the gym or miles pounded on the pavement are really good for you… imagine how great they are for your relationship! Couples who sweat together are better together, says a review of research at Psychology Today.

      “Nonverbal mimicry helps people feel emotionally attuned with one another,” says one of the studies. People who engage in this feel more emotionally bonded, something you can put to the test when you match a running or walking cadence, align rhythm while lifting weights, or coordinate breath during yoga. And then, who knows what other rhythms you may find yourselves coordinating!

      So much of our romantic relationships rely on this shared pace in life. A constant relationship complaint can be that you aren’t on the same wavelength or don’t seem to live in parallel. If you feel like you’ve tried everything else, scheduling workouts together could improve your fitness as a couple. When talking about it, reading about it, or even counseling over it may not have worked, take it to the gym. 

      Just think about the end of a workout — heart is racing, body is sweaty, breath is short, and all of your endorphins are elevated. It doesn’t look that dissimilar from a good romp in the sheets!

      “People can easily mistake the two and misattribute physical arousal for romantic attraction,” which could work to the advantage of your sex life. And when that’s hitting on all cylinders and you find yourselves in sync, what else can’t you do together?

      As a couple you’re constantly working toward common goals in your life, be it with finances, career, or family. If you can achieve all of that together, consider what you can achieve when you’re striving toward shared or similar fitness goals? For some couples that may be losing weight, for others it may be training for and completing a race together. Maybe it’s a particular hike, or simply meeting a number of days or miles per week. It could also just be a shared, overall sense of wellbeing.

      This year, as you shop for the Valentine in your life, consider a gift that keeps on giving! The jewelry will stick around, the chocolates will certainly taste great, but a gift of each other’s time and the reaped benefits, well, that’s pretty priceless!

      7 New Moves Your Body Actually Needs in 2016

      7 New Moves Your Body Actually Needs in 2016

      Anyone else ready to roll their eyes and point down their throat if they see one more new year, new you reference? Your body has no idea that the calendar turned, it’s just another day doing what it does best -- keeping you upright!

      Your heart and your mind know that the last digit in the year has changed and you may be hung up on making some larger than life commitments to yourself and the corresponding body. Messages to try this new diet or these new exercises or to join a new gym can be overwhelming. But what if we told you that the moves your body really needs have been right in front of you all along?

      It’s nothing you haven’t tried before… it’s just probably been awhile since you let yourself.

      STRETCH the boundaries of your comfort zone. That could actually be trying one of those new workouts you saw on a magazine cover. Maybe it’s tasting new foods or testing out a new recipe. Perhaps you’re stretching your mind into a new way of thinking or a new approach to loving yourself.

      SQUAT down at your kids’ level and play. Have a conversation. Meet them eye-to-eye in their world and see how easy it is to melt out of the chaos of yours.

      SIT and breathe. Reflect. Think. Soak in the tub. Lay under the stars. Read a book. Rest by the fire. Snuggle five minutes longer. Stay in shavasana until they make you get up. Just sit and be for a few extra minutes or even hours. Sometimes we do need the stillness. Sometimes fighting ourselves to reach some thousand-step goal isn’t actually necessary.

      JUMP for joy! Actually do it. The next time you get great news, succeed at something, reach a new goal, or want to celebrate an A+ on a spelling test, actually thrust your body into the air and jump! Why not? Put your entire self into living the smaller moments, and you’ll feel a rush to live more fully in every moment.

      PULL yourself in for a hug. We mean it -- take your right arm and wrap it around your left shoulder. Take your left arm and wrap it around your right shoulder. Squeeze. While you’re there, rub your neck and shoulders. Release the pressure. Love yourself harder. Give back to the body that gives you so much.

      PRESS the off button on your phone. Do it for five minutes, do it for an entire weekend -- you decide! There are a lot of pros to our always-on world, but there are a lot of downsides, too. See what it feels like to just step away from the push notifications, bells, and reminders for a block of time now and then.

      RUN head first into this new year. There’s no map, there’s no forecast, there’s just this moment and this day, and with any luck we’ll get another one tomorrow. Live hard, loud, big, fully in each day this year. When you do, flipping that calendar this time next year will be welcomed with energy and enthusiasm.

      Tech Rules Fitness Trends in 2016

      Tech Rules Fitness Trends in 2016

      Trackers have been on a steady incline in popularity over the last several years, as devices provide personal analytics of every step you take and every workout you complete. The wristbands adorn our outfits like jewelry, providing positive feedback, important data, and digitized motivation to reach active goals. That popularity has reached fever pitch as “wearable technology” takes the top spot on the ACSM’s annual fitness trends list.

      For their purposes, wearable technology includes fitness trackers, smart watches, heart rate monitors, and GPS tracking devices. Odds are, you are wearing one yourself and can probably name a few people who are. That’s because one in six people are sporting a fitness tracker, the watch-style being most popular.

      It's Good Business

      It’s no secret that these wearable tracking devices are fueling a more tuned-in fitness populace, but they’re proving to be good for business, too. Corporate environments are embracing a BYOW philosophy — Bring Your Own Wearables —, with 76 percent of adopters reporting improved business performance.

      “Healthy employees affect the bottom line, ultimately costing a company less money in the long run than unhealthy employees,” according to a report in the Harvard Business Review.

      Workplaces are seeing increased productivity of 8.5 percent and job satisfaction increased by 3.5 percent where employees are using Fitbits to track and manage fitness. Fitbit users who have at least one other friend with the device get 27 percent more steps than those who don’t, making it even more advantageous for companies to outfit their staffs with the device, which start as low as $30 for a stripped down, basic version into a couple hundred dollars a piece.

      These devices make it super easy for HR to manage a corporate wellness program. Rather than dealing with analog recordings and paperwork, they can just download and analyze the data output by each employee’s device.

      Trends That Last

      It’s easy to scoff at a trend, but one with a proven lifespan and an industry earnings projection into the billions by 2018 is hardly a trend. Wearables made their debut on ACSM’s 2016 forecast, but a few other items also stand the test of time:

      2. Body Weight Training

      3. HIIT Training

      4. Strength Training

      5. Educated and Experienced Fitness Professionals

      6. Personal Training

      7. Functional Fitness

      8. Fitness Programs for Older Adults.

      9. Exercise and Weight Loss

      10. Yoga

      Start Small and Slow Because Harvard Says So

      Start Small and Slow Because Harvard Says So

      We are a culture of all or nothing and instant gratification. The go hard or go home mentality pervades many facets of our lives. Getting caught up in that space leaves no room for mistakes, no flexibility for real life, no option to just be you.

      That’s why this news from Harvard is so exciting. They say you can improve your health with just one simple change at a time. It’s a novel idea that rings of What You Can, When You Can familiarity.

      “There is a lot of power in starting slow and small. The little changes add up,” says Dr. Michael Craig Miller, an assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.

      Start Slow and Small when it comes to Health

      All too often we make the decision to commit to a lifestyle change — be it weight loss, a dietary change, or a fitness goal — and go all in at the start. It’s a common trend at the new year, when we make lofty goals for ourselves and burn out before Valentine’s Day. Humans aren’t conditioned that way; our brains like the change to come slow and steady. Fortunately, some brainiacs at Harvard concur.

      Waking up one morning and demanding your body to change habits is tough. When you suddenly want to wake up earlier, hit the gym, throw away all the junk, and skip your usual fast food lunch — your body wants to scream Whoa! However, when you wake one morning and ask your body to make this one little change -- taking a 10-minute walk every day or swapping potato chips for fruit at lunch -- then the body and brain get on board together.

      “For example, if you go for a 10-minute walk, then the 10 minutes becomes easier, and maybe you’ll feel good about going for 15 minutes, then 20. You’ll enjoy it, and before you know it, without overwhelming yourself, you’ll feel better.”

      Once you’re comfortable with one change, the next one comes a little easier. Soon enough, you’ve made a lot of impactful changes without completely disrupting your life or burning out.

      Give Yoga a Second Chance

      Give Yoga a Second Chance

      Yoga seems to fall somewhere in the love it or hate it zone for just about everyone. It can carry a bit of a stigma and has a perceived sense of perfection, but it’s all a veritable cure all. Coming in a number of different forms, styles, and methods, there’s seemingly a yoga to fit every mind and body out there.

      Search around and you’ll find yoga for seniors, yoga for kids, yoga for pregnancy, yoga for back pain, yoga for arthritis, yoga for first responders, yoga for bloggers, yoga for runners… the list seriously goes on, and on, and on! So surely there a yoga for… you!

      yoga dog

      The practice is a health benefit boon, with experts espousing the myriad ways in which yoga benefits the mind, body, and soul, including aches, pains, diseases, and more. The American Osteopathic Association calls yoga “a healing system of theory and practice. The purpose of yoga is to create strength, awareness and harmony in both the mind and body.”

      Yoga improves flexibility, muscle strength, and muscle tone. It contributes to a balanced metabolism, weight loss and/or maintenance, and overall improved athletic ability. Cardiovascular, circulatory, and respiratory systems all positively benefit from a routine yoga practice. Injury prevention and recovery are improved. The ability to focus, cope, sleep, and enjoy overall more positive mental health are also part of yoga’s benefits.

      “Because there are so many different kinds of yoga practices, it is possible for anyone to start,” promotes the AOA.

      So why haven’t you?

      You don’t have to be perfect.

      You don’t have to be bendy.

      You don’t have to make a serious commitment.

      You don’t have to have the clothes.

      Yes, you may fart.

      Yes, you may fall over.

      Yes, you may giggle.

      Yes, you’ll get sweaty.

      Yes, you may feel things.

      No, you won’t be judged. Remember, everyone else in the room is just as preoccupied with getting it right as you are. They don’t have energy or focus to waste looking to see how awkward your first-ever attempt at a sun salutation looks.

      (They also don’t care!)

      Yoga is a single-player sport. You may join a few others in a room and share that kinetic energy, but ultimately, it’s you and your body coming together in an experience meant to strengthen and heal.

      So if you’re looking for yoga for better sleep, yoga for better sex, yoga for depression, yoga for anger, yoga for cyclists, yoga for single moms, yoga for working moms, yoga for families, yoga for grandparents… yes, even yoga for dogs… it’s out there.

      Try a class, give it ten minutes when you need a break, or test the waters with YouTube videos at home. Just show up and you’re already half way there.

      The 7-Minute Workout You Really Do Have Time For

      The 7-Minute Workout You Really Do Have Time For

      Do you avoid working out because you simply can’t make the time? Well, we are about to squash that excuse!

      Any workout is better than none — and that comes straight from Harvard!

      “Some research suggests that Americans could avoid weight gain by burning just 100 more calories a day—an extra 15 minutes of walking would do the trick,” Harvard Medical School reported.

      Well, we’ve found a really simple way to rack up those 15 minutes each day. Not only will you bank some cardio, but it incorporates some pertinent strength training, too. Oh, and it’s really fun!

      It’s an app called the 7 Minute Body Fitness Exercise. That’s right, it takes seven minutes to complete this workout. And if you still grapple with when and where you’re going to fit it in — it’s available on your iPhone and iPad so it basically goes anywhere with you.

      7 minute workout

      Its eight-bit design is whimsical and a total throwback to our old Mario Bros. days. The eight-bit, animated character demonstrates the moves so you can follow along while the light, playful music will keep your head in the game for those long seven minutes.

      You’ll do 12 different exercises for thirty seconds each, with a ten-second break in between. The moves include jumping jacks, wall sits, push-ups, ab crunches, triceps dips, planks, and high knee runs. There is a pause button if you feel the need to take a brief breather, but the goal is to keep your heart rate and body moving for the duration.

      You can choose between three coaches, each mimicking a different celebrity voice: Arnold (Schwarzenegger), Matt (McConaughey), and Kate (Beckinsale). They toss out encouraging, motivating comments throughout the workout and quippy phrases that may throw off your balance with a giggle.

      Tackle this seven-minute workout once in the morning and once in the evening on each weekday and you’re up to 75 minutes. Couple that with a 15-minute walk, jog, yoga, swim, skip, or other exercise once a day, five days a week, and you hit the recommended 150 minutes of minimum exercise. Those 150 minutes are what you need to lower risk of heart disease, per a study by the American Heart Association that corroborates federal fitness recommendations.

      “Ten minutes at a time is fine,” per the CDC.

      The point is, don’t bypass any movement at all because you don’t think you have 30 minutes, an hour, or longer to commit. Give seven minutes, ten minutes, or fifteen minutes anytime you can spare. As they say in What You Can, When You Can, it all adds up!

      6 Tools Every Fitness Beginner Should Use

      6 Tools Every Fitness Beginner Should Use

      Fear is the biggest hurdle in fitness. You don’t know how to use the machines, or you feel like you won’t fit in at a class. Maybe you’re worried that you’ll look ridiculous at yoga class… or worse… fart! It could be a daunting goal that feels insurmountable. Perhaps you have no idea where to start and the thought becomes so overwhelming you just scrap the idea of exercise altogether.

      Every single person you see at the gym who appears to have it so together was standing in your exact same shoes at one point. Everyone was a beginner and they all felt the same sense of trepidation that you do now. The difference is that they moved forward and continued in spite of that feeling. Will you say the same?

      Being a beginner has its advantages — everything is new, fresh, and interesting. It’s an opportunity to try exciting new workouts and find your groove. What suits your style, personality, and goals? You’ll never know until you try a few things first.

      Here are a few beginner tools to help give you that extra push to get started…and stick with it!

      fitness tools

      C25K — This free app has produced millions of new runners. The Couch to 5K accomplishes just what the name implies — moving otherwise sedentary couch potatoes through an effective training program to complete a 5K race. Through audio coaching on your phone, you’ll develop strength and endurance through a walk/run program that lasts eight weeks. You’ll workout three days a week for about 30 minutes. During that time you’ll grow from a non-runner to a 5K finisher. Once you complete that goal, why stop there?

      MapMyRun — Now that you can call yourself a runner, keep growing in the sport. The MapMyRunapp joins you with a global running community where you’ll not only find support and encouragement, but plan your own routes or select from their curated routes. Track your activity, log nutrition, and even post your progress to social media.

      Charity Miles — If you won’t run for yourself, do it for the betterment of someone else. For every mile you run, walk, or bike, 25 cents or 10 cents (respectively) will be donated to one of their partner charities. Your effort becomes real cash donations to groups like the ASPCA, Wounded Warrior Project, (RED), Autism Speaks, Feeding America, and many others. Use the app to track your progress and let Charity Miles do the rest.

      MyFitnessPal — It’s one of the most heralded nutrition apps on the market, and it’s free! Millions have lost weight, maintained weight loss, or just held themselves more accountable using this simple app that replaces traditional food journaling. With a database of 5 million foods, and the ability to add anything yourself, nutrition tracking has never been easier or more effective. View reports, set goals, and manage broader nutrition than just calorie counting with MyFitnessPal.

      AcaciaTV — Get a hard-hitting workout anywhere you are…and anywhere with internet. Home, office, hotel, or soccer practice, AcaciaTV‘s online database of hundreds of workouts by professional trainers goes where you go. Talk about eliminating excuses! A nominal monthly fee gains access to their video library from your computer, phone, tablet, or even Roku! Yoga, strength train, cardio, barre, kettlebells, and more are just a click away.

      Personal Trainer — There’s still something to be said about working with a personal trainer, especially if you’re just starting to work on your fitness. Take advantage of free sessions with a new gym membership, or find a trainer in your budget and justify three or four sessions. Make sure they teach you the fundamentals so that you can work on your own, not just hold your hand through a workout. This will help you avoid injury, overcome fears, and get more out of every minute you’re working out.

      It’s Time to Skip Your Workout! Skipping is Better Than Walking and Running

      It’s Time to Skip Your Workout! Skipping is Better Than Walking and Running

      There’s a workout out there that doesn’t feel like exercise. It’s considered a total body workout, exercising major muscles and your heart. Its minimal impact makes it easy on joints. People of all ages can do it, and they generally finish with a smile on their face. So why aren’t all of us skipping?


      Yes, skipping. It’s the activity you picture in your mind with little pig-tailed schoolgirls tra-la-la-ing across a field of daisies.

      Sarah Sanchez, an accountant in Denver, hasn’t been a schoolgirl for quite a while but recently took up skipping when she learned it was better for you than walking. She now leaves her desk a few days each week to go skipping over her lunch break. She skips around the 3-4 mile path at her office park and is loving the effect so far.

      “It makes me feel happy, like a kid again,” she said. “It’s a nice bonus in the middle of a stressful work day.”

      Who couldn’t use that kind of mid-day pick-me-up?

      Trainer Corey Smallwood not only echoed the euphoria that Sanchez is experiencing, but backed up the benefits, too.

      “In 19 years of training, I’ve seen more people than I can count finish a workout consisting of walking, running, or jumping rope looking miserable,” said Smallwood, a programming developer for popular workouts on AcaciaTV. Smallwood has been a certified trainer for 19 years and owns the goPerformance gym in Clarksburg, MD.

      “Skipping, on the other hand, will instantly put a smile on your face.” As soon as his clients remember how to skip, something we seem to lose over time, the care-free smile returns to their faces.

      And that, he says, is one of the biggest differences between more popular cardio exercises (likewalking, running, and jumping rope) and skipping — people actually enjoy it!

      “When skipping is performed properly, you work just about every muscle from your big toe to your ears,” explained Smallwood. While skipping, he says you’ll use your legs, hip flexors, glutes, core, arms, and shoulders. He added that “with a powerful skip, you’re activating the muscular and nervous systems as well as elevating the heart rate.” So there’s cardio, too! When you utilize all three systems as Smallwood has described, skipping allows you to burn a lot of calories.

      Skipping is arguably a better exercise than walking, running, and jumping rope. Smallwood clarifies that marathon runners will still need to log their running miles, but that you get all the aforementioned physical benefits of the sport without the impact.

      “Skipping is certainly less impact on your joints and works more muscle groups [than running],” he explained. Because of the flow of a skipping movement — taking off and landing on the balls of the feet as opposed to heel strikes — you minimize the impact, making it safer and more effective.

      So again, why aren’t all of us skipping around like schoolgirls? Sanchez noted an air of paranoia when she first started. “I only did it until I saw another person and then I would stop,” she recalled. “Then I just decided that I don’t know any of these people I see on the street and I shouldn’t care what they think!” Let the inhibitions go and you’ll be fitter than the rare person who might find your actions silly.

      Smallwood thinks we should all be skipping as part of our daily routines. He does it, his mom does it, and his twin daughters do it, each gaining something different, but positive, from the experience. He refines a sprinting technique, his mom uses it for exercise, and his twins make it to their swing set a little faster. It’s a versatile activity that suits everyone!

      “One day, while I was skipping in the office park, I looked across the street and saw another lady skipping! We smiled and waved at each other, like we knew something no one else did.”

      Are you going to get in on the secret?

      Wearing the Enell Lite ensures you’re ready to skip anytime the mood strikes!

      Where to Wear Your Enell This Summer

      Where to Wear Your Enell This Summer

      There are a few things you should never leave home without. Sure, there’s your cell phone, wallet, and in the summer add to that list sunblock and an ENELL. Sure, it’s a sports bra — one thatWomen’s Health Magazine just named as one of the best out there! We’re biased, but yeah, we agree!

      Enell is also a lifestyle bra. For well-endowed, large-chested women, the standard lingerie-style bra doesn’t always (let’s be real: rarely) gets the job done when we need it most. Sitting at a desk working or making dinner at home? Sure, your regular ‘ole bra is just fine. The moment you need to chase after a kid or get down to tend your garden, an Enell can offer the support and stability your chest needs.

      bra comic

      This summer, really put your Enell to the test and see how it can help you enjoy summer activities in a totally different — and liberating — way!

      Summer Concerts. Running up and down the amphitheater stairs or jumping up and down when your favorite song comes on, it’s all going to require an Enell.

      Canoeing and kayaking. Keep your breasts out of the way so you can paddle like a pro. Rowing sports engage your entire body, so don’t wrestle with your bra and instead get more out of each stroke on the water.

      Hiking. There’s a lot of shift and a lot of bounce when you’re out on a hike, so stop it in its track so you can enjoy the trail.

      Moving day. Climbing stairs, moving in and out of the truck, lifting, squatting, and running around like a crazy person — and that’s if your moving day goes smoothly! Stay ten steps ahead by wearing your Enell. Not only will you not forget to pack it, but you’ll be more comfortable on a really trying day.

      Garage sale. Be prepared to move a lot of boxes, a lot of stuff, and jump to help your customers with anything they need. Skip the lawn chairs and see how many steps you can take during your big sale. An active salesperson is bound to make more than the one lurking in the corner in a lawn chair.

      Play dates. You’ll have no fear keeping up with the kids all summer as you move from the playground, to the hopscotch court, to chasing the ice cream truck! Don’t let your breasts hold you back from having a good time! They’re a barrier to entry for 17 percent of women.

      Fun Runs. Join the race this summer — be it glow, color, mud, or tutus — and make some fun new memories with friends and family. Which ever summer fun run is headed to your town, feel confident about your place in the race when you wear an Enell. The quality of sports bra you wear is as important as what’s on your feet.

      Horseback riding. Think a little giddy up is going to leave your hips and hiney hurting after a ride? Try mounting up without the right bra! Enell is a preferred sports bra for horseback riding professionals, so why shouldn’t it be part of the gear when you go for a ride on vacation?

      Cycling. Have you ever taken on a pot hole on your bike without a sports bra? Don’t let it happen again. It’s not pretty. Whether going on family bike rides this summer, or touring vacation spots via a bike share, an Enell will ensure you’re more comfortable.

      Camping. Part moving day, part hiking, and all adventure! Camping is a total body experience from setting up the tent and unloading gear to hovering over the fire. Feel secure throughout the weekend when you strap into your Enell.

      Gardening. All of that tilling, weed pulling, planting, and watering requires a lot from your body, so give it the support it needs in a proper bra. You’ll feel more comfortable managing this year’s harvest!

      Amusement parks. When standing in line is taxing your back, a well-supported set of breasts can actually help your posture and reduce the likelihood of back pain from all that front weight you’re carrying. Not to mention how you could enjoy a little more support flying through all those long drops and loopty-loops!