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HEALTHY HAPPENINGS JULY 2012

Moonflower Market: Energy drinks

Moonflower Market logoI was looking for a challenge, something outside of my normal outdoor activities to revive my spirit and engage my adventurous mind. It presented itself in the form of a bright green shirt worn by one of our colorful patrons who frequents the market. The Gran Fondo, or the Long Ride in Italian, is a 65 mile road race that follows the Colorado River through Castle Valley and then climbs through the majestic La Sal Mountains.

Having spent several years commuting by bicycle, I thought why not? In my naïve state of mind, I began telling friends of my grand plan and the responses varied. My co-workers were my biggest fans, encouraging me to plan and train properly for the ride. Thus began the four month long process that would determine how well I would physically perform such a feat.

But first... the bike. Like any sport the equipment that you choose is specific to your abilities, goals and budget. I found myself overwhelmed with the options while trying to decipher the lingo of cyclists. I engaged Scott Newton, the owner of Poison Spider bike shop. We discussed my goals and began the process of elimination. I have always just walked into a bike shop and picked one off the floor, usually based on aesthetics rather than functionality. However this time I realized the importance of choosing the right bike. This process took weeks. I wanted something versatile and everlasting. I consulted many friends who encouraged me to question my overall goals as a cyclist. It became evident that a road bike was not in my future, instead, I choose a hybrid touring bike. With the help of the mechanics at Poison Spider, the olive green Fargo would be my trusty steed on this long ride, and every on/off road ride after that.

image 1Jumping back on the horse is never easy. It’s a humbling experience that reminds you of your immediate physical limitations. The Fondo would require physical and mental endurance, thus began the training process. I started out with timed rides. I would ride out an hour, and return. This suited my re-entry needs for the first month. By the second month, distance became my focus. I rode two to three times a week, alternating a 15-20 mile ride with a 50 mile ride. I found that I was comfortable with the physical exertion, but the recovery periods were difficult for my body. At this point in the process I realized that I was not meeting my nutritional needs.

Sports Nutrition is key when training for an event, whether you’re a professional athlete or a weekend warrior. I began to research the latest and greatest in sports nutrition. Electrolytes, protein, pre-work out endurance fuel, chia seeds, and an increase in my vitamin intake all became a part of my daily intake. I became a bottomless gas tank, constantly craving protein.

Matrix Meal protein powderLuckily for me, I work at Moonflower Market, the local health food hot spot. I consulted Aleta Edinger, the supplement manager of Moonflower. Together we discussed the pros and cons of the various brands that stocked the shelves. After researching all the protein blends that Moonflower had to offer, I believed that NuLife Herbs Matrix Meal was the ideal blend for my needs. It offers an abundance of nutritional benefits such as whole green foods and herbs that would aid my body in performance and recovery. The whole green foods would supply my body with vitamins and minerals that would boost my immune system, support my liver, and aid in detoxification among other things. The herb blend of maca, licorice and cinnamon would help to increase my metabolism, provide me with calcium, vitamin C and K, and reduce inflammation. Ready!

Now back to the training… after three months of riding rolling hills and small sections of steep hills, I realized that the La Sal Mountain loop road would need to become my primary training. My first attempt was the most memorable, due to the fact that the weather was wicked. I ran out of food and bonked on the first accent of the climb. It became evident that I was not considering my nutritional needs for the ride itself. So, I found myself perusing the shelves of Moonflower Market once again. The answer came in a medium sized container by Vitalyte, a sports nutrition company out of San Diego, CA. Vitalyte became my primary choice for endurance and electrolyte supplementation, based simply on the fact that the sugar content was low. Don’t let the lack of sugar fool you, it does not lack in flavor or performance. The Tri-phase endurance fuel by Vitalyte combined amino acids, electrolytes and a blend of fast and slow acting carbs that helped to combat lactic acid build up in my legs, as well as provide a potent dose of B vitamins.
image 3 moonflower market
Having ironed out the wrinkles in my training regimen, I began to add other super foods to my diet. Chia seeds, which are rich in omega 3’s, antioxidants and mineral, help slow the break down of carbohydrates, making it a great endurance food. I also increased my Vitamin C. You need vitamin C for the growth and repair of tissues in all parts of your body.
And then the day came… and all that I had learned about myself and my body was to be put to the test. The Gran Fondo had been my main focus for four months. I had bruised and torn many muscles, ate twice my normal food consumption. I had questioned my self and battled physically for a chance to challenge and enliven my soul.

I awoke three hours early of the 8am start time, stretched, ate more then my belly could hold, and sipped tea in the early spring morning hours. The time had come, I rode out fifteen minutes early and found my place at the back of the start line. There was a six hour time limit, every cyclist set their pace.

The views and smiles I encountered along the way were priceless. Six hours on a bike is a long time, a true test of patience that I was happy to experience. I would like to tell you that I came in first, but the fact of the matter is I didn’t. As I climbed the last section of the route, a bright red clock counted down the final minutes of the six hour block. I focused and pedaled. Two minutes and thirty six seconds remained on the clock as I passed the finish line. Words of encouragement echoed in my ears as I cruised down hill to the park.

That was the end of this adventure, but it has paved the way for many more. It revived my excitement for a life on a bike and the places that you can go if you just decide to go there. Trust in yourself and provide proper nourishment along the way, and your body will reward you in performance and everlasting health.

 

Avoid Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke
When Enjoying the Summer

Summer is a season best spent outdoors, and many people anxiously await their opportunity to soak up some sun in the warm, summer air. But the summer heat can be relentless, posing a potentially significant threat to those who aren't careful when the dog days of summer arrive.

Heat exhaustion and heat stroke are two of the biggest concerns for those spending time under the summer sun. Differentiating between the two and understanding the causes and symptoms of each can help revelers survive the summer heat.Sun Graphic

What is heat exhaustion?
Those who work or exercise in humid or hot conditions might have experienced some level of heat exhaustion. When a person is suffering from heat exhaustion, their body is losing its fluids through sweat, and that loss causes dehydration. The body will also overheat, with its temperature rising as high 104 F.

What is heat stroke?
Heat stroke can be life-threatening. When a person is experiencing heat stroke, his or her body's cooling system stops working, and the body's temperature can rise to 105 F or higher. The cooling system is controlled by the brain, so heat stroke can even damage the brain and/or additional internal organs.

What causes heat exhaustion?
Many people who suffer from heat exhaustion are not used to exercising or working in hot or humid environments, an unfamiliarity that makes them susceptible to heat exhaustion. Gardeners, for example, might be able to work in the garden in late spring and feel no ill effects. However, once summer arrives with its humidity and higher temperatures, those same gardeners are not accustomed to such conditions and might develop heat exhaustion as a result. Especially humid days make it difficult for the body to properly evaporate sweat, and the body will lose fluids and electrolytes. As this is happening, people who do not adequately replace those lost fluids are more likely to suffer from heat exhaustion.

What causes heat stroke?
Unlike heat exhaustion, which is largely caused by external conditions, heat stroke can result from an existing medical condition or medications. People with certain conditions or on medications that hinder the body's ability to sweat may be predisposed to heat stroke because their cooling mechanisms are already impaired or compromised. But heat stroke can also be caused by anyone exerting themselves in a hot environment, even if those people do not have a preexisting medical condition.
What are the symptoms of heat exhaustion?
Heat exhaustion symptoms vary but can include:
* sweating profusely
* feelings of dizziness
* muscle cramps or pains
* fainting
* dark-colored urine (dehydration)
* nausea
* pale skin
* rapid heartbeat
* headache

What are the symptoms of heat stroke?
A body temperature of 105 F or above is a telltale indicator of heat stroke, but additional symptoms may include:Thermometer graphic
* throbbing headache
* flushed, hot and dry skin
* slightly elevated blood pressure
* dizziness and light-headedness
* nausea and vomiting
* rapid, shallow breathing
* lack of sweating despite the heat
* rapid heartbeat that is strong or weak
* unconsciousness

What do I do if I suspect I am suffering from heat exhaustion?
If heat exhaustion is suspected, get out of the heat immediately, ideally into an air-conditioned room but under a tree in the shade if that's the only option. Call a doctor if you cannot keep fluids down or if you seem incoherent.
Those who can keep fluids down should drink plenty of noncaffeinated and nonalcoholic beverages, and remove any tight or unnecessary clothing. In addition, take a cool shower or bath, but ideally only do so if someone is around to monitor you.

What should I do if I suspect I am suffering from heat stroke?
Heat stroke is potentially life-threatening, so immediately dial 911 if you feel you have heat stroke. If you suspect someone else has heat stroke, administer some first aid while waiting for an ambulance to arrive. Move the person to an air-conditioned room, and try to get his or her body temperature down to a more manageable 101 F or 102 F. Wet the person's skin and apply ice packs to the armpits, groin, neck, and back, as these areas have an abundance of blood vessels close to the skin, and cooling them can help lower body temperature.


Moab Regional Hospital Promoting Strategies to Maintain Health and Wellness
by Jennifer Sadoff
Moab Farmer's Market logoUntil the late-1980s, Type 2 diabetes was considered a disease of the middle-aged and elderly, developed after years of poor diet and lack of exercise. Unfortunately, a diet heavy in sugar and a decrease in physical activity have led to a dramatic increase in diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes in adolescents and children as young as five. Recent sobering research indicates that Type 2 diabetes progresses much faster and is harder to treat in children than in adults. Physicians are calling for communities to get proactive about addressing the problem of obesity, as this is clearly not an issue that can be addressed in the doctor’s office alone.

This summer at the Moab Farmers’ Market, Moab Regional Hospital will begin introducing a new campaign of eight healthy habits that will help address the epidemic of obesity and obesity related diseases. Led by Janel Arbon, certified dietician at MRH, the hospital’s tent will focus on hands-on education and fun Picture of a female vendor at the Moab Farmer's Marketinspiration to get fit. It will be set-up at the first Farmers’ Market each month. Cooking demonstrations that introduce new ways to prepare vegetables, educational displays about the content of sugar in different beverages and cereals, and services such as blood pressure tests, will help community members monitor their health and make healthy changes in their diet and lifestyle. To find out about the different activities that will be offered throughout the summer, visit the Moab Regional Hospital Facebook page, or call Jen Sadoff at 435-719-3514.
The Moab Farmers’ Market is held at Swanny City Park every Saturday from 8am-Noon from May through October. For more information on the Farmers’ Market, visit the Youth Garden Project website at www.youthgardenproject.org.
 
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