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Triathlon Swimming: Challenge Accepted

Posted by | Posted in Events, SportsCare | Posted on 20-06-2016


In central Illinois, most athletes are familiar with running and bicycling. Often though, tackling the swimming leg of a triathlon can cause anxiety or even discourage participation. Registration is now open for the first Dan Adair, MD, Memorial Triathlon on Aug. 28 at Memorial SportsCare, so let’s squelch your hesitation and understand what to expect when hitting the water at this inaugural event. Read the rest of this entry »

Improve Your ‘Fitness Age’ with Over 40 Fitness

Posted by | Posted in Exercise, SportsCare, Testimonial | Posted on 26-04-2016

SportsCare-Older-Athlete-TrainingScott Phillips was experiencing the usual aches and pains of growing older. The sixty-plus-year-old knew he was out of shape, but didn’t fully realize the extent of his condition until he attended a Memorial SportsCare “Over 40 Fitness” class.

“The toughest part of the class was seeing the biometric testing results and ‘fitness age’ calculation,” he said. “While I knew I was out of shape, these results provided actual numbers that I could no longer ignore. That information continues to provide me with an ongoing source of motivation to exercise and improve my health.” Read the rest of this entry »

Don’t Let Race Day Jitters Spoil Your Biathlon Fun

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, SportsCare, Women | Posted on 16-09-2015

Jill Heffernan imagines her bike tire going flat or a shoe coming untied mid-race. Half marathoner Julie Barth is a “bit nervous” about adding a 12-mile bike ride to her race-day routine. And Margarita Martin? She’s more excited than jittery—she’s come a long way in four years. All three women are patients of the Memorial Weight Loss & Wellness Center, and prove that race day jitters can strike whether you’re a beginner or a veteran athlete.

Fortunately, there are mental strategies that help alleviate anxiety. Jill works to keep her mind focused on the finish line and not the “what if” questions that pop up occasionally.

“In order to prepare myself mentally and push those jitters aside, my thoughts will be focused on moving forward,” Jill said. “I plan to just keep moving until the end of the race. My goal is to reach the finish line!” Read the rest of this entry »

Staying in Shape When you Join the Over-40 Club

Posted by | Posted in Classes, Expert Tips, SportsCare | Posted on 07-07-2015

SportsCare-Older-Athlete-TrainingMaintaining an active lifestyle becomes even more important as you grow older. Physical activity can help you stay strong and keep your mind alert so you can do the things you want to do in your later years.

For adults over 40 years old, whether you’re active or formerly active, Memorial’s SportsCare offers Everyday Athlete, an adult fitness program that provides exercise and nutrition help. The next 10-week class is scheduled to begin Aug. 11.

Classes are held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. every Tuesday in the multipurpose room (109A) of the Kerasotes branch of the Springfield YMCA at Iles Avenue and Archer Elevator Road.

Check out the website for more details. And take a look at this video featuring Gabe Stinson, a sports enhancement specialist at SportsCare, and his work helping older adults stay fit. Read the rest of this entry »

Trying to Lose Weight? Find Out What May Be Missing From Your Workout Routine

Posted by | Posted in Biathlon, Events, Exercise, Expert Tips, SportsCare | Posted on 23-06-2015

Young-Woman-JoggingYou’ve probably been on the weight-loss roller coaster a time or two. You vow to start a healthy routine by working out an hour every day while living on 1,200 calories. However, three days later, you’re on the couch with a pint of ice cream wondering what happened and promise to start the whole unrealistic regimen again the next day.

Sound familiar? According to Gabe Stinson, Memorial SportsCare sports enhancement specialist, we set ourselves up for failure by taking the all or nothing approach. Turns out, more time off from working out and the occasional burger and beer may be just what you need.

“For optimal results, you need to have three to four rest days in your weekly workout,” Stinson said. “More advanced athletes need one to two days of rest. And if one meal a week or one day a week you want to splurge on eating, go for it. It’s not going to derail all the changes and improvements your body is undergoing.” Read the rest of this entry »

How Older Adults Can Stay in Great Shape

Posted by | Posted in Events, Exercise, Expert Tips, SportsCare | Posted on 07-04-2015

SP004808A serious health threat will lead to premature disability or death for more than 2.5 million Americans over the next 10 years. Ironically, most of them have the medicine for the cure but they’re not using it.

The threat is physical inactivity; the medicine is exercise.

“There are a multitude of common diseases that are made worse if people are physically inactive, including diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke,” said Daniel Adair, MD, co-medical director of Memorial’s SportsCare and a board-certified orthopedic surgeon with Springfield Clinic.

Keeping up an exercise routine becomes more challenging as you get older. Read the rest of this entry »

Are You Fitter than a Fifth Grader? Take the Presidential Physical Fitness Test

Posted by | Posted in Exercise, Expert Tips, SportsCare | Posted on 11-12-2014

Erica-V-SitPut on your polyester gym uniform and call your friends for a game of crab soccer…it’s time for the Presidential Physical Fitness Test!  It doesn’t matter which U.S. president signed your certificate in grade school; everyone knows bragging rights went to whomever could run the mile the fastest, do the most sit-ups and complete the pull-up challenge.

Here are three of the Presidential Physical Fitness Award benchmarks for fifth graders. Are you up for the challenge? We’ve also included a few fitness-related tips for those who haven’t been in fifth grade since President Reagan’s signature was on certificates, but would like to get in better shape. Read the rest of this entry »

Eat Your Way to the Finish Line: 5 Nutrition Tips for a Successful Race Day

Posted by | Posted in Biathlon, Exercise, Expert Tips, Nutrition, SportsCare | Posted on 10-09-2014

Finish-LineYou’ve made the decision: You’re going to run a marathon, a half marathon, a 5K, 10K or any other major fitness event, like the upcoming Memorial SportsCare Women’s Biathlon. Good for you! That’s a huge undertaking. And, while training, you might hit hurdles or hard times. You might feel like giving up. But, with the right training and some healthy efforts, you can do it. Go you!

One aspect of training that gets lost in the shuffle but is an important, necessary part of your preparation is food. Nutrition training is as important as physical training–it can make or break your experience. Angie Sebree, a registered dietitian with Memorial Weight Loss & Wellness Center, offers her top five tips for training nutrition.

1. It’s not what you eat, but when you eat.

Sebree offers this tip to those in training: Figure out what time your event will be. While training, eat two hours before that time every day.

“Train your gut,” she said. “Treat every training day like it’s race day. If you plan to eat one or two hours before the event, eat that way when you train in that timeframe so you will feel the same way when training as you will on race day.”

2. Make sure what you’re eating is substantial.

If you have the ability to eat a meal two hours before the event, do that. Sometimes, however, that may not be feasible.

“If the race is at 7 a.m., you might not want to eat a large meal at 5 a.m., so eat a snack an hour before,” Sebree said.

Sebree’s rule of thumb for race day nutrition: About an hour to an hour and a half before the race, eat 20-30 grams of carbohydrates and 10-15 grams of protein. You can hit these numbers with a serving of chocolate milk, a Luna bar, a Nature Valley protein bar or a hardboiled egg with two pieces of toast.

3. Decide if you’re training for speed or weight loss.

You will need to choose, as both might not be possible.

“If you’re training for speed, you shouldn’t be losing weight,” Sebree said. “But if you’re training for weight loss, you should know your speed might not be your best.”

Either way, it is still important to eat within that structured schedule. You might simply need to adjust your calories. That said…

4. Be sure you get enough calories.

“If you don’t eat enough calories or get adequate nutrition, you’re going to get very fatigued,” Sebree said. “Your weight loss might stall. There is a fine line between eating and physical activity.”

Sebree suggests tracking your caloric input and output using MyFitnessPal or a Fitbit device.

5. Hydration is everything.

“About a week before your event, make sure you’re very hydrated–overly hydrated even,” Sebree said. “A standard 64 to 80 ounces per day plus what you’re losing during your workout.”

Not sure how to quantify how much water you’re losing? Here’s a good rule to follow: For every 30 minutes of physical activity, give yourself 10-16 ounces of fluid.

The day of the race, two hours before event, drink about 16-24 ounces of fluid, with 12 of those ounces within an hour before the event.

“After an hour of physical activity, start using Gatorade or other electrolyte replacing fluids,” Sebree said. “Shoot for 10 to16 ounces every 30 minutes.”

Biathlon Participant: ‘I want to finish strong’

Posted by | Posted in Biathlon, SportsCare, Women | Posted on 14-08-2014

Deb Whitson, left, with her friend Deb Kerley, preparing for a ride on the Centennial Bike Trail in Springfield

Deb Whitson, left, with her friend Deb Kerley, preparing for a ride on the Centennial Bike Trail in Springfield

Deb Whitson had thought about doing the Women’s Biathlon before. But she didn’t.

“I always thought I couldn’t,” she said. “I thought you had to be a top-class athlete or something.”

This year, thanks to the invitation of her friend Deb Kerley (the two friends refer to themselves as “Deb Squared”), Whitson plans to participate in Memorial’s SportsCare’s annual Women’s Biathlon on Sept. 21. Biathlon participants will bike 12 miles and then complete a 5K (3.1-mile) run/walk.

Since December, Whitson has been working to get in better shape. With the exception of a few weeks this summer when she was directing a show at Theatre in Park in New Salem, she has gone to the YMCA several days a week. As a result, she has lost 30 pounds and increased her activity, strength and endurance.

“I thought about Deb Kerley’s suggestion, and I wanted a way to maintain a structured workout routine – which I can easily fall out of with work and other activities. And I thought it would be really cool to finish a biathlon,” Whitson said.

Deb Squared signed up for the Biathlon Brigade, a new 12-week training program SportsCare introduced this year to help participants train. Athletes meet twice a week and receive direction on how to safely and effectively get in shape for the event. Read the rest of this entry »

How to Improve Your Results Before Surgery

Posted by | Posted in Memorial Medical Center, Orthopedics, SportsCare | Posted on 10-06-2014

Rambach-05Before receiving knee replacement surgery, Libby Rambach took advantage of Memorial Medical Center’s patient optimization program to improve her outcomes.

“Everything was tailored to what I wanted to do and what my outcomes were,” she explained in the video below. Read the rest of this entry »