Quest Fitness Mud Run returns to Milton in April
The third annual Quest Fitness Mud Run is returning to Milton, scheduled again for the last Sunday in April - this year it's April 28 - beginning at 9 a.m. I will try to keep my readers updated on this fun event that attracted 400 last year and 300 in the opening year. Mail-in applications can be picked up at Quest Fitness at Five Points, or visit the Seashore Striders at www.seashorestriders.com and register online. This year there will be five categories: Individual, Male Team, Female Team, Coed Team and Youth Mini-Mudders. Last year my partner Matt Carter and I commented several times to each other about the participants who were not regular runners who gave it a try and had a blast. What a great way to build team unity in the workplace and have some fun at the same time. So come on, all you popular businesses like Surf Bagel, Schell Brothers, County Bank, Dogfish Head, CrossFit Rehoboth & Lewes, Liquid, Big Chill, Rehoboth Beach Running Co., Nike, New Balance, Bethany Blues and lots more - form a team and sign up for the third version of the Mud Run and get dirty with us. More to come - stay tuned!
Keeping your feet warm during winter miles
I love reading and taking bits and pieces from Christine Luff of the About.com guide, which I look for when trying to stay up on the latest trends of running tips. When training in college, my cross-country team wore thin wool socks on our winter morning long runs when the Dover temperature fell under 30 degrees. Keeping your feet warm in the winter is the key to making your run much more pleasant, especially if you are pounding the pavement for an hour or more. As a race director, I try to mark and warn my field of racers about water on the course because I know they will be unhappy with the event if they get to the finish with wet, blistery feet. Here is some informative advice from About.com that I think will be beneficial to my readers:
"Wear the right socks. Be sure to wear a good pair of wicking socks made of fabrics such as acrylic, CoolMax or wool. Never wear cotton socks (that applies to cold or warm weather) when running because they won't wick away the moisture, leaving your feet wet and at risk for frostbite.
"Warm up inside before you head out. Your feet will obviously be the coldest at the beginning of your run. To avoid that uncomfortable feeling for your first mile or so, try marching or slowly jogging in place for a few minutes inside before you head out. If you're at a race, you can do that same thing at the race start. Keep flexing your feet or jog in place, on your toes, to keep the blood flowing to your feet.
"Use two pairs of socks. If it's really cold, you may need to wear two pairs of socks - one thinner (synthetic material) pair close to your feet and a thicker (wool) pair over them. The one caveat for this strategy is that you have to be careful that your running shoes still fit properly with the extra layer. You may want to purchase another pair of running shoes that are a 1/2 size bigger than regular running shoes, so you have some extra room. To help prevent your feet from sweating too much, spray antiperspirant on them before you put your socks on.
"Put hand warmers in your running shoes. They're easy to use: Just take them out of the package and put them inside your sock, on top of your toes. Once your feet warm up, you can take them out so you don't overheat.
"Try to avoid puddles, slush, and snow. This may sound like common sense, but steer clear of wet ground. It may seem like fun to run in the snow for a little while, but your feet will get wet and cold quickly.
"Choose the right shoes. For cold-weather running, look for a running shoe with as little mesh as possible, since that's where the cold wind or water will get through to chill your feet. If you can't avoid running in the snow or slush, you may want to think about buying trail running shoes, which are somewhat waterproof and will give you a little more traction in the snow.
"Wear a hat. This may sound strange as a cold feet prevention tip, but you can lose as much as 10 percent of your heat from your head. So, in order to help keep the rest of your body warm, you need to make sure your head is covered. Wear a wool or synthetic-blend hat that will wick away sweat."
Middle school track & field
The Mariner Middle School and Beacon Middle School track teams kicked off practice this week just in time for a storm named Saturn to move through Delmarva and cancel all after-school sports. March is one of the worst months for bad weather, and I tell all my athletes if they can get through the cold-weather training of March, they will love April. April is known for some rain, but it is usually much warmer for training. Julie Jackson will lead the Mariner team in her second year as head coach, and if the school’s undefeated basketball team decides to come out, she will have a tough team to beat. Julie told me she has about 60 athletes signed up. I will coach the Beacon Middle School team with my sidekick Gilbert Maull, former hurdler for the Vikings in the late '70s. Beacon had 114 athletes sign up for the team, and we are sitting just over 100 athletes at practice this week, which is the largest sports program in the district. The middle school meets are fun to watch as you get to see a wide range of talent in throwing, jumping, hurdling, sprinting and running distance. The middle school events are as follows: 55m hurdles/110m hurdles; 100 meters; 1,600 meters, 400-meter relay, 400 meters, 800 meters, 200 meters; 800-meter relay, long jump, triple jump, high jump, shot put, discus for 13 total events. Both Cape teams will kick off racing at 4 p.m., Friday, March 22, at Cape Henlopen High School. Come out and show your support or - a better idea - come out and volunteer your time to help run the meet.
9 a.m., Sunday, March 10, Third Get Pumped for Pets 5K & 10K, Cross Island Trail, Chester, Md., www.seashorestriders.com.
Noon, Sunday, March 10, inaugural The Lucky Leprechan 5K, Milton Irish Eyes Pub & Restaurant, Milton, www.races2run.com.
9 a.m., Saturday, March 16, Sixth St. Patrick’s Day 5K Race, General James F. Fretterd Community Center, Denton, Md., www.seashorestriders.com.
9 a.m., Saturday, March 23, Seventh Shamrock Shuffle 15K & 5K, Junction & Breakwater Trail, Rehoboth Beach, www.seashorestriders.com.
8 a.m., Saturday, March 30, Second Bunny Palooza 5K & 10K Run & Walk, Bethany Beach, www.bunnypaloozarun.com.