Birthdays Are a Good Time to Renew Your Resolutions and I’m Reducing My Refined Sugar Intake

refined sugar

Yesterday was my birthday. I ran, gave ChiRunning® lessons, went out for lunch, received some cool gifts. It was special and low key, just the way I wanted it.

I finished the day by going out to one of my favorite restaurants with a few friends. It was a night of indulgence. Great food, some wine, dessert and I finished it off with a cappuccino. I don’t drink a lot of caffeinated drinks and they usually don’t keep me up. When I got home I was exhausted. I went straight to sleep.

Around 12:30 AM I woke up and couldn’t get back to sleep. The caffeine was working now. So I got on my computer and started reading an ebook on natural and barefoot running.

I was reading the section running injuries, specifically about Plantar Fasciitis which I have had a lot of runners asking me about lately. I can relate, I had it and it took a while to finally heal. I tried everything and I don’t have a great answer on how to heal it without trying everything. So, I started searching Plantar Fasciitis articles.

There are many methods and lots of interesting information. I’ve read most of it before but then I read an article on nutrition and Plantar Fasciitis. I started searching more on nutrition. This wasn’t new information either but it seemed the universe directed to these articles and it was time to reevaluate my nutrition.

As I read these articles one thing kept popping up as an inhibitor to healing and top performance, Refined Sugar.

I am addicted to refined sugar! There I said it.

I mean, I can’t imagine a day without cookies, ice cream, chocolate, tasty blended drinks…sugar. And, that doesn’t even include the foods I eat that are not “Sweets” that are made with refined sugar. I crave sugar, especially at night.

Waking up last night seemed to be a real “Wake up call.” I need to reduce my refined sugar intake and see how I feel.

I am also going to focus on increasing my intake of anti-inflammatory foods. Foods high in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids. Foods high in Probiotics, more green vegetables, more juicing and more water. I’ll also be using some supplements to help my diet.

As an athlete and coach, I am always learning about improving performance. The training seems to be the easy part for me. Nutrition has been the difficult piece of the puzzle. Cleaner fuel has to improve performance. It’s time to make some different decisions.

To be honest, I’m not completely cutting out all refined sugar, but I am going for a major cut-back.

Today, the day after my birthday, is going to be like the day after New Year’s Day. It’s time to work on this new resolutions and renew my old ones. It’s time to refocus and “Begin Again” as my coach, Steve Ilg like to say. I am going to write down my goals and begin again. Let’s see what happens. I will keep you updated along this journey.

Train Focused, Steve Mackel – Endurance Athlete

Product Review – Phiten Power Sleeves

What’s in this stuff? Aqua Titanium, I’m not completely sure what it is, but it works for me and a lot of others. I’ve been able to try a new Phiten product, the X30 Power Sleeves. They weren’t really made for

the legs but the large fit my lower legs. They are X30, they have 30 times the Aqua Titanium then the regular Phiten tape I was using. This product worked great and I will be running the Ragnar Relay with them on. They aren’t compression socks and I will have to review some compression socks soon but the Phiten Power sleeves kept my claves and shins feeling great and that was running hilly marathons and training runs, very demanding on lower legs.

At a price of $19 each or $38 for the pair and a month of runs, no slippage and my lower legs feel great with them on. You can find them a Take a look.

Train Focused, Steve Mackel – Certified Massage Therapist

Smoothie Shopping with Coach Steve


Long Beach One of the Fattest Cities in the U.S?????

Top 25 fittest and fattest cities in the U.S. – Healthy Living on Shine

Sure, obesity is a problem in this country, but when you think fat, you probably don’t think Miami. So you may be surprised to find Men’s Fitness magazine ranks Miami as the nation’s fattest city in its annual survey. The fittest? Salt Lake City.

You’d never believe the rankings I found.

Two huge surprises I found on the fattest cities list.

You’ll have to check it out.

Fitness is Not an Overnight Sensation

Personal Best – Fitness Isn’t an Overnight Sensation –

“To make a change in how you look, you are talking about a significant period of training,” Dr. Kraemer said. “In our studies it takes six months to a year.” And, he added, that is with regular strength-training workouts, using the appropriate weights and with a carefully designed individualized program. “That is what the reality is,” he said.

Changing your body and getting in shape takes time.

This is a good article to remind you of this.

It’s not going to happen within a couple of months.

But day by day you’ll make little changes that will add up.

Keep on the journey…you’ll make it.

Gary Dawson Smith

Steve Teaches ChiRunning® Posture Techniques

ChiRunning® is hot with all the marathons coming up and people getting started for their fall marathons, I thought I treat you to a quick lesson on finding the proper ChiRunning® posture.

The Beach Runners Starts This Saturday! We have a ChiRunning® One hour workshop with the Beach runners in Long Beach this Saturday, 7:00 AM

Beach Runners Marathon and Half Marathon Training Program

Beach Runners Saturday Group run meets at Marina Vista Park in Long Beach (on Eliot St. near Colorado St. right by the end of Marine Stadium) Free parking on street or in Marine Stadium parking lot.
Find Location

Train Focused, Steve Mackel – MarathonTraining.TV Head Coach

Short, Stout, Has a Handle on Colds – New York Times

Originally part of a millennia-old Indian yogic tradition, the practice of nasal irrigation — jala neti — is performed with a small pot that looks like a cross between Aladdin’s lamp and your grandmother’s gravy boat. The neti pot made its way into this country in the early 1970s as a yoga meditation device, but even as yoga became mainstream, the neti pot remained on the fringes of alternative culture.

Short, Stout, Has a Handle on Colds – New York Times

Finally the Neti pot gets some mainstream coverage.

This has been a secret health tool of the yogis for centuries.

Now even Oprah is using it.

I like to use it every day. Steve does also.

Your nose will never be the same again.

Blogged with Flock

Four health changes can prolong life 14 years – Yahoo! News

People who drink moderately, exercise, quit smoking and eat five servings of fruit and vegetables each day live on average 14 years longer than people who adopt none of these behaviors, researchers said on Tuesday.

Four health changes can prolong life 14 years – Yahoo! News

Interesting research article from England.

What is important is that even SMALL CHANGES in your lifestyle now have profound effects for the longevity of your life.

This is principle of COMPOUNDING. We’re all familiar with this from debt or interest payments, i.e the more you invest the more money you make.

So what are the four changes you can make TODAY for a longer life?

1.  Quit Smoking. The number one thing you can do to improve your health. Hey it ain’t easy. I smoked for close to ten years. (Bet you didn’t know THAT!). Get some help. Give me a call. Maybe I might even do a teleseminar on this one day. (Email me if you’re interested).

But this has me thinking that maybe the health of our lungs is the most important part of our body. Which means no pot smoking, no cigars, and minimizing exposure to air pollution (no easy task here in San Pedro or Long Beach).

2.  Eat five servings of fruit and vegetables. At a MINIMUM! Gary Null suggests to eat 10-15 servings a day. Which is quite easy to do if you use a superfood green powder and JUICE.

This morning I already had a green juice of Kale, celery, radish, carrot, apple, onion, and ginger. And am eating a grapefruit right now. Will soon eat a pear.

3. Moderate drinking. That’s like 1-2 drinks a day. Preferably red wine. Hey Jack Lelane has one glass of the red vino day, and if Jack at 90 is drinking that, I reckon it’s okay.

There seems to be quite a bit of research that indicates moderate consumption of 1-2 drinks a day can actually be beneficial for your health…lowers cholesterol…relaxes the body…keeps you happy.

Personally I have now gone close to nine months without a drink of alcohol. And feel great.

So it’s clear…either no or light or moderate drinking is key for your health.

4. Exercise. For all of you that are part of the SoCalRunning community that is no problem. You run. You come join us in yoga. You’re keeping the body active.

Keep up these activities for the upcoming year everyone. You can do it!

Declutter your "stuff" and lose that holiday weight

Ms. Johnson says she often sees a link between her client’s efforts to get organized and weight loss. “I think someone decides, ‘I’m not going to live like this anymore. I’m not going to hold onto my stuff, I’m not going to hold onto my weight,’” she said. “I don’t know that one comes before the other. It’s part of that same life-change decision.
”On its Web site,, the group offers a scale to help people gauge the seriousness of their clutter problem. It also includes a referral tool for finding a professional organizer. But since the hourly fees can range from $60 to $100 or more, it may be worth consulting a new book by Dr. Tolin, “Buried in Treasures” (Oxford, 2007), which offers self-assessments and advice for people with hoarding tendencies.Dr. Peeke says she often instructs patients trying to lose weight to at least create one clean and uncluttered place in their home. She also suggests keeping a gym bag with workout clothes and sneakers in an uncluttered area to make it easier to exercise. She recalls one patient whose garage was “a solid cube of clutter.” The woman cleaned up her home and also lost about 50 pounds.“It wasn’t, at the end of the day, about her weight,” Dr. Peeke said. “It was about uncluttering at multiple levels of her life.”

Interesting article on the problems of clutter.

And some of the benefits of cleaning up your clutter.

This is one of my goals the next month. I have bookshelves, a basement, laundry room, two closets, and numerous bins filled with clutter that need to be cleaned up.

I will be giving the clothes away to Salvation Army unless someone knows of a church organization we could give clothes to.

And I have lots of books that I will painfully have to give away.
But the way I see it…as the ideas and books go…there is now room for new fresher ideas.

I urge you all to spend some time this January de-cluttering.

Last year I tried to get rid of fifty things. It’s a wonderfully simple exercise that will immediately feel lighter on this earth.

Get this, lighter means faster, faster means a happier runner.

Happy New Years


ps pics of me freezing my ass off on the polar bear swim coming soon!!!

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.

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