New Year’s Day Fitness Events

Come celebrate the New Years with some very special events.

1. New Year’s Day Trail Run and Yoga

Come start off the New Year with a beautiful trail run on the hills of Palos Verdes followed by a yoga session overlooking the ocean led by Gary. ($5 Donations accepted.)

Run will be about 1 hour in length (perfect for Beach Runners). A great introduction to trail running for everyone else.

Starting off your New Year with a run and some yoga sets the tone of health and fitness for the rest of the year.

Time: 8:30 A.M
Location: Trump National Golf Course

Then after the run/yoga bring your bathing suit for…

2. The 56th Annual Polar Bear Swim

Brrrrrrrr! Join Gary and hundreds of other Polar Bears for a short swim in the chilly Pacific Ocean. This is the first time I’m doing this….so I cannot tell how cold exactly the ocean will be but…lets just say you should bring some warm clothes for after.

Every swimmer will get a cerfificate and there will be ample hot chocolate after the swim. Or so I am told.

Time: 11:30 A.M.
Cost: I think the parking is $5.
Location: Cabrillo Beach, San Pedro (look it up on Google)

After you get all warmed up and watch the Rose Bowl then come back to San Pedro for

3. CandleLight Yoga at Yoga Bindu

After enjoying the day’s warmth, trails, ocean, and football…come back to the cave for a very special yoga class in honor of the Divine Light and the purity of the New Year.

The class will include extended time for meditation so that you may come up with some divinely inspired New Year’s resolutions.

Level: All levels are welcome.
Time: Tuesday 6:15 p.m January 1st
Cost: $14
Location: Yoga Bindu in San Pedro
718 S Weymouth Ave
San Pedro, CA 90732

(There will be no 7:45 class)

So come join me for one or all of these events and enjoy the gift of fitness to start off the New Year.

America’s Fattest Cities

The average American had purchased fast food 16 days of the month between January and September of this year, according to Quick-Track research conducted by the consumer tracking group Sandelman & Associates. Thirteen cities on our list, including Memphis, Austin, Texas, and Indianapolis, met the national average or higher. Residents of San Antonio eat fast food 20 days of the month, and had the highest frequency of the cities on our list.

America’s Most Obese Cities – Yahoo! Real Estate

Interestingly enough, this study did not mention that fast food consumption is a major factor leading to obesity.

Wait a second…

You eat In and Out 16 times a month and it doesn’t make you fat?

If you want to see what Fast Food really does to your body just rent out the movie SuperSize This, where a guy eats nothing but McDonalds for a month.

In one week he gains like 10 pounds!!!!! In two weeks 17 pounds. By the third week, his doctor tells him his liver is turning to pate due to the excess sugar and fat in his diet. He loses his libido, has no energy, and skin problems pop up like teenage zits.

Well Long Beach and San Pedro skipped the fattest list.

But San Bernadino/Riverside did not. They are now the fourth fattest city in America with 30% obesity amongst adults. Interestingly enough 30% also said they do not exercise at all during the week. Simple correlation if you ask me.

Overall this obesity crisis is costing America $93 billion a year in medical costs. 112,000 people die from obesity every year.

Kids are starting to emulate their parents. If you saw the size of urban junior high school kids nowadays you’d freak out.

Yeah. I’m going to keep on writing on this topic. I’m not going to watch America kill itself through the sloth of a leather couch, HDTV, and fast food.

I’ll make a difference.

And each and every one of you that puts on some running shoes and gets out the house to walk, jog, run, chirun, do intervals, a tempo run, or even better…

train for a marathon or half marathon is setting an example for your whole community to notice.

God Bless you everyone for making running a part of your lives.


btw In and Out in Carson has now expanded their drive thru to two lanes.

That’ll help.

Great Run in Palos Verdes

An inpsirational blog post from Bernice, a Beach Runner and member.

I love this post as it shows a process orientated apporach to accomplishing running goals.

Merry Christmas From

Steve Snow
Snow Feels Like Christmas and it is the Only Snow Picture I Had


On this day, I will be grateful for all the people and gifts in my life. On this day, I will send positive intentions for all who need them. On this day, I will pray for world peace. On this day, I realize that my life is a choice and every moment is a choice. I choose love.

Train Focused, Steve Mackel – Urban Yogi

Palos Verdes Beach Runners Getting Tough


Top of one tough hill in Palos Verdes this Saturday Morning. Really proud of everyone and
their grit to accomplish this hill.

I’m Not Really Running, I’m Not Really Running…

Karla provided this on the “Community”  site and Gary talked about it on the MarathonTraining.TV RunCall last Monday. I practice it all the time.

Filip Kwiatkowski for The New York Times


Published: December 6, 2007

BILL MORGAN, an emeritus professor of kinesiology at the University of Wisconsin, likes to tell the story, which he swears is true, of an Ivy League pole vaulter who held the Division 1 record in the Eastern region.

His coaches and teammates, though, noticed that he could jump even higher. Every time he cleared the pole, he had about a foot to spare. But if they moved the bar up even an inch, the vaulter would hit it every time. One day, when the vaulter was not looking, his teammates raised the bar a good six inches. The man vaulted over it, again with a foot to spare.

When his teammates confessed, the pole vaulter could not believe it. But, Dr. Morgan added, “once he saw what he had done, he walked away from the jumping pit and never came back.”

After all, Dr. Morgan said, everyone would expect him to repeat that performance. And how could he?

The moral of the story? No matter how high you jump, how fast you run or swim, how powerfully you row, you can do better. But sometimes your mind gets in the way. To read more click here


Angela – A "Community" Member

picture-2.pngNinja Warrior

Watch this great video from a Community Member. Watch Now!

WOW! With members like this you better join and it is free.

writing a research paper

Please take a second to check out the “Community”  button on the Navigation Bar above and join. It gives you a chance to post and check out what other runners out there are doing. And we have members across the country.

Live Focused, Steve Mackel Co-Founder

I’m not as smart as you might think…

So last Friday, or was it the Friday before, I go for a trail run after it had been raining all day here in Southern California.

But I ended up not running too much. I just felt like walking. The sun was setting. The views of Catalina were spectacular.

So I ended up walking up the same hill that we run with the Beach Runners.

With an inch of mud on the bottom of my shoes I come around a big bush to see…


sitting on a big rock no more than two feet away from me.

I find out later he is a North American Grey Horned Owl. A formidable predator. Even known for attacking snakes, porcupines, and even skunks. There are rumors of them attacking humans.

But this one seemed mild enough.

So I looked this fantastic creature in his big “owl” eyes and felt that sense of companionship one would feel in the presence of a fellow intelligent animal.

And thought was the owl quite as intelligent as people make them out to be?


Owl, wise though he was in many ways, was able to read and write and spell his own name WOL, yet somehow went all to pieces over delicate words like MEASLES and BUTTEREDTOAST. (Winnie the Pooh)


After snapping this photo. This creature of the night didn’t take too kindly too a digital flash from my camera and flew across the canyon.

Elated as Pooh with honey, I skipped up the rest of the hill all chortled with my bit of luck.

Or was it really luck?

See the owl has had a bad rap throughout history.

The Egyptians would draw Hieroglyphic Owl with broken legs so they would not return to life. The Hopi believed they would bring sorcery and death. The Aztecs and Mayans thought Owl brought death and destruction.

The Japanese see the horned owl (gulp!) as a demonic figure. The Romans considered the Owl as funeral bird.

Good thing the Owl did not “hoot” at me.

But there’s some positive traditions with the Owl also.

The Greeks pictured Owl as companion of Athena, goddess of wisdom. Somehow that Owl stored all the secret knowledge that never gets taught to you in school. That’s why you’ll see Owl around Washington D.C. And there’s a hidden owl on a dollar bill. You’ll have to look hard to find him…(hint look in the right hand corner).

Amongst the Hindus, Owl is a Vahana (a vehicle) for the prosperity and wealth of Lakshmi, wife of Shiva. Okay now we’re talking. This is the kind of myth I like to think about…untold riches showing up at my doorstep…no more commuting…a new car….

Back to reality.

As I was thinking all these professory thoughts, Owl flew over my head again and landed up the hillside from me. Checking me out. Maybe he wanted another photo. I asked and he must have felt one was enough as he flew away again.

So a tradition goes that when we are in nature, the animals we see are symbolic.

Yet all I could think of was Owl from Winnie the Pooh.


Owl explained about the Necessary Dorsal Muscles. He had explained this to Pooh and Cristopher Robin once before, and had been waiting ever since for a chance to do it again, because it is a thing which you can easily explain twice before anyone knows what you are talking about.


You see because I always liked Owl. He was the smart one. The one that actually read books. Well maybe Christopher Robin did also.

He was filled with somewhat useless knowledge. But it sounded real smart. And the other animals looked up to this.


He could spell his own name WOL, and he could spell Tuesday so that you knew it wasn’t Wednesday, and he could read quite comfortably when you weren’t looking over his shoulder saying “Well?” all the time, and he could –
“Well?” said Rabbit.


Okay, maybe except for Rabbit. Rabbit had a different type of smarts. This idea is also supported by Rabbit’s comment to him, “You and I have brains. The others have fluff.”

And that is a whole other story which I am way too tired after grading student essays all day and lecturing to possibly go into this time of the evening.

See let me tell you a secret about Owl.

He wasn’t quite as smart as people made him out to be.

But someone had to be “book smart” in the Winnie the Pooh Stories. And Owl always had a bit of facts from a book. Or maybe even a long going nowhere story to add to the escapades.


“The atmospheric conditions have been very unfavourable lately,” said Owl.
“The what?”
“It has been raining,” explained Owl.
“Yes,” said Christopher Robin. “It has.”
“The flood-level has reached an unprecedented height.”
“The who?”
“There’s a lot of water about,” explained Owl.


So what does all of this have to do with running?

You might be asking.

Not much.

Actually not much at all.

But it sure made for a good owl story.

Another Beautiful Night of Yoga for Runners at Lululemon in Pasadena

lululemon yoga
One Last Pose After Our Yoga for Runners Class

Last Thursday 13 of us practiced yoga at the Lululemon store in Pasadena. It was a beautiful night for this urban yoga class. We practice outside and the weather had a cool sense of autumn, yet we stayed warm through our practice. Steve taught his Yoga for Runners class which focuses on building strength and flexibility for the demanding requirements of running.

Yoga for Runners is every Thursday night at 6:30 PM on the back patio of the Lululemon store in Old Town Pasadena, at 110 W. Colorado Blvd. Since it is outside dress in layers. Lululemon sells some cool clothes for your yoga and running practices.

Practice Focused, Steve Mackel Urban Yogi

RunCast 22 Breakfast With Steve

Ok everyone assumes I eat healthy, not always the case, yet to round out the bad days watch this video on my favorite morning meal. And it is RAW food.

Eat Focused, Steve Mackel – Head Coach MarathonTraining.TV