If you’ve been to practice in recent weeks, you may have noticed an uptick in the number or runners between the ages of 8-11. In the coming weeks, as middle school and high school XC/TF seasons conclude, we will certainly see runners between the ages of 12-17 returning to practice in preparation for the start of Winter Training. In addition to the regular dose of off-season running the kids will experience, the off-season is also a great time to reset the body and mind. The lack of regular races on the calendar reduces stress, and the kids can then put focus on other aspects like cross-training, homework, sleep, and just as important, healthy eating habits.
Just as resistance training increases muscular strength and helps reduce the risk of injury, a healthy diet, one which prioritizes Organic foods, colorful produce, seasonal veggies, and iron-rich foods, can keep kids running at an optimal level. Like resistance training for the body, iron-rich foods may help protect runners from an all too common ailment – anemia.
“Anemia is a condition in which you lack enough healthy red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen to your body’s tissues,” (2022, Mayo Clinic). It effects approximately 5.6% of the U.S. population, and in a sport that depends on oxygen transport, the percentage of runners, particularly female runners, this percentage skyrockets to as much as 35%, with female athletes. Endurance runners, vegans, and vegetarians may be at even greater risk.
For families new to Whisper, Winter Training is a time runners from all around Clark County gather together in preparation for the 2023 track and field season. It’s speed season, and Winter Training is merely the party that paves the way to fast performances. During Winter Training, seminars will be offered to our runners (and their parents), with topics being:
Educational Consulting – for those seeking information on post-high school education options.
Sports Medicine Topics – 2022 topics included Sleep & Mental Health, Social Media & Emotional Health, and RED-S. 2023 topics undecided at this time.
Nutrition – 2022 Presenter Kristen Myklebust, highlighting whole foods, iron-rich foods, and eating healthily.
While Winter Training begins January 16, the time between the fall season and the new year offers a resetting of sorts. For more information, and perhaps some light reading for your children in preparation for the seminars ahead, as well as taking a role in meal planning and food choices, check out the following articles for the betterment of not only ones running health, but personal health as well.