Sunday, December 30, 2012

Product Report: Fresh Wave - your stinky shoe solution

By: Colleen Moyer

One question I get often at FootZone is "How do I get rid of the smell coming from my husbands shoes". Sorry guys. I really never had a good answer. Well, now I do. Fresh Wave!

We have two choices for you, a spray or a bag of 4 packs. The spray can be applied to shoes, stinky workout clothes and even pet odors. The bags can be placed in shoes, lockers, gym bag or wherever there is an odor.

It's an all-natural odor eliminator that actually works. The ingredients are water, lime, pine needle, aniseed, clove and cedar wood. It's that simple. Spray sales for $6 and the packs are $12.

Fresh Wave is perfect for non-sock wearing, old shoe loving, extra sweaty or just plain-old stinky feet people (we know that’s not you). Not everyone has this problem, but if you do, you have to give Fresh Wave a try!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Surviving the Holidays

By: Stephanie Howe, doctoral candidate, ACSM

Ah, holiday season is upon us. Snow. Family. Food. Parties. Stress.

The holidays are a time for celebration and enjoyment, but they can also be challenging. Especially if you are trying to stay in shape. Finding time to fit in a run or eat healthy despite all the holiday temptations, can be difficult.

So, how can you stay motivated to keep active during such a busy time? With a little planning and preparation you can successfully get through the holidays and stay sane. Here are some simple tips to help you start planning: 

1. Take some time for yourself each day. It can be as little as 10 minutes. Use this time to unwind, clear your mind, and de-stress.

2. Be active as a family. The holidays are a time to spend with family, but who says you can’t be active? Plan something fun, such as going for a walk to look at Christmas lights, building a snowman, sledding, etc. Crummy weather? No problem. Get active indoors! Try out one of the athletic facilities in town, check out a yoga class, try out the Bend circus center or the family fun center- the choices are endless.

3. Indulge mindfully.  Allow yourself to enjoy a few of your favorite holiday treats in moderation. Remember that the holidays do not give you permission to gorge yourself on sugar. However, that doesn’t mean you have to avoid all seasonal goodies. Just pick some of your favorites and savor the taste.

4. Mix it up. Instead of trying to force a run out in the snow, try something different. Seasonal activities like snowshoeing, cross country skiing, ice skating, sledding, alpine skiing, etc. can be really fun in the winter.

5. Take it easy on the alcohol. Drinking lots of wine/beer/cocktails on top of all the extra holiday sweets can make you feel even worse. For every alcoholic drink try to drink a glass of water in between. Drinking lots of alcohol can easily (and sneakily) increase your calorie consumption. Sip alcoholic drinks and don’t be afraid to say no!

6. Relax and let yourself enjoy the holiday season! This is maybe the most important thing. The holiday season should be enjoyable, not stressful. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Give yourself permission to get out of your normal routine for a couple days. It’s ok if you don’t get a run every day or you eat more Christmas cookies than you planned. Just get back on track the next day.

7. Set Goals. Now is a good time to start thinking about the upcoming year. Maybe you want to run a half marathon? Or start eating healthier? Whatever it is you want to improve upon, setting a goal is the best way to hold yourself accountable and make progress.

Want to learn more about surviving the holidays or goal setting? Check out for individualized coaching and healthy lifestyle plans.

Monday, December 17, 2012

The Gift of Running: Learn to Run with Connie Austin

By: Connie Austin
‘Tis the season to give …  the gift of running!
Why not give yourself, a co-worker, your employees, or a loved one the opportunity to make running a healthy habit in 2013?   Learn to Run! 
When I tell someone I teach the Learn to Run program at the FootZone, I often see their eyebrows furrow, and with a scrunched up face reply, “What do you mean you TEACH running?  Isn’t it just natural?” Yes, running is a natural motion for humans.  Yet most people run inefficiently and end up frustrated, injured, or so discouraged they quit and declare, “I can’t run.” 

By learning a few running and walking fundamentals, people in the Learn to Run program are often surprised beyond belief with their newly found competence on the first day! Soon, they can run farther than ever before, be free of pain or injury, and accomplish goals like finishing a 5k or losing weight!   Most important of all, we make sure to HAVE FUN!  This isn’t a boot camp or a training group.  Everyone practices at their own pace either walking, running or a combination of both.  Any speed is welcomed and given plenty of encouragement and support.  

Learning to perform any task correctly takes attention to form, technique, and proper use of equipment.  You may drive a car, but are you driving it with efficiency?  Is the emergency brake off? Are you shifting at the right time? You may fancy yourself as a great cook, but are you using your kitchen knives correctly?  Running properly takes some practice and knowledge of the tricks of the trade. 

Footzone ‘s Learn to Run class, now in it’s fourth year, is the perfect place for people who have tried and quit running, don’t like to run, want to begin a walking/running program, are fearful or skeptical about starting, or who need the camaraderie of a group to get up and go for it.  Over 1,000 people from age 7 to over 70, in the past 3 years bear witness to its success.  

The beauty of this program is the power for personal change within the context of a non-competitive, nurturing group environment.  Learning a life changing habit in community with others, brings support, confidence, and accountability for each individual. Research and experience show that people demonstrate greater success with guided repetition in a group environment, much better than in isolation.  Sure you can read a book about running correctly, and try it out on your own, but meeting with your running buddies and coach on a regular practice schedule will bring better returns for your effort. 

Another critical component to our success comes from the helpful FootZone staff and our running mentors.   Our mentors in the group are former Learn to Run students who have previously taken the class and know how the beginners feel.  They can share their success through telling their own story, or by example of being the runner they are today. 

January brings the beginning of a new Learn to Run session, and like all successful programs, after some evaluation, we’re tweaking it a bit to make it even better.  This year the class runs for 4 weeks, meeting one hour twice a week.  This allows more weekly group practice and time for outside presentations from local experts.

I love teaching this class, and implementing my Run Ready Formula to make learning to run fun and meaningful.  Often, prior to the first week of class, I receive phone calls and e-mails from nervous and curious folks with these common questions:

I’m overweight, is this class still for me?  Yes! You will learn all the fundamentals to apply to your fitness level as you are ready.  Most likely, you’ll begin by walking, then start running for 30 seconds, take a walk break, then run again in short intervals allowing your breath and body to be your guide.  Eventually you will increase your running spurts, seconds, steps or minutes at a time.  This is how some people started who went on to run half marathons and marathons. 
I have an old injury (knee, hip, head, ankle etc..) and am afraid I’ll reinjure myself if I run.  Can I still take this class? Yes!     We take great care to be sure your body is moving efficiently and you are pacing yourself correctly so you do not reinjure yourself.  Chances are, once you learn how to run properly, and you become stronger, your injury will bother you less and less. 

I’ve never run before and I’m a total beginner, is this class for me? ABSOLUTELY!  Your experience, age, size, shape, gender, or any other trait won’t hinder your ability to learn to run if you are willing!  80% of SUCCESS is just SHOWING UP!

How does the Learn to Run class differ from the Good Form Running clinics?  Good Form Running (GFR) emphasizes form only in a one-shot lecture, video, and practice format.  The class is free and offered each month. 

The LTR program is a series of classes designed for in depth, step by step (no pun intended) lessons that include proper running form, coaching, nutrition, hydration, injury-prevention,  hill running, keeping a running journal, and more.  The other big bonus for participants is a bunch of cool running gear and a store discount to jack up your motivation.
I look forward to meeting the new runners at our next class beginning Monday, January 14th at 5:30 at the FootZone!   
For more information, attend the quick LTR information night, Wednesday January 9th from 5:30 – 6:00pm. I’ll be there to answer any questions and help people sign up.

Register now at FootZone or contact Connie Austin.


Coach Connie Austin developed the Run Ready program and has been an educator, runner and coach for over 30 years.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Why Run A Road Half Marathon In Training For A Trail Ultra?

By Ian Sharman
Sharman running in Lake Tahoe
A lot of ultrarunners focus on mountain races and therefore mainly train by running trails and mountains. That’s certainly important as training needs to be specific to whatever your goals are.


However, as an ultrarunning coach I’ve seen both in theory and in practice that this often leads to a runner slowing down. Yes, the ability to climb and descend gets better, but the pace on easier trails goes down. And most ultras have a lot of faster running in there as well as some climbs to slow things down a bit.


So, even though most people are unlikely to hit their half marathon road speed in a trail ultra, by working on the uncomfortable pace close to your lactate threshold (as a half marathon does), you force your body to adapt and be able to sustain a higher pace when on long runs. Your lactate threshold is basically the exercise intensity where lactic acid starts to accumulate in the blood, when lactate is produced faster than it can be removed. Effectively, this causes a runner to slow down so the higher this boundary can be pushed, the higher his or her sustainable pace becomes.


If you can make 6-minute/miles feel easier (or 7s, 9s, 11s etc) at the high end then it really helps to make cruising speed more efficient too in a really long run.


So why is a half marathon particularly good for this type of training? There are two main reasons for this:


1. Half marathon pace is fast enough to get close to your lactate threshold and push that boundary out so you can run faster, plus it is a long enough race that you have to push hard for a sustained period.


2. It's short enough that it doesn't take too long to recover from for a regular runner, certainly less time than a marathon.


Admittedly, guys with incredibly fast sub 2:20 marathon times haven't generally done as well in 100 milers as their speed would suggest. But it's the combination of the flat out speed and trail fitness that counts. Put a Kenyan Olympian on a mountainous 100-miler without specific training and they'd obviously not be bad, but they wouldn't automatically be the best unless they trained well for and adapted extremely well to the specifics of a mountain ultra (the same applies in the other direction but is more obvious to people and has been more tried and tested).


Speed training can be done on trails and hill work is similar in many ways, but if you like roads then they can really help as part of trail ultra training.
Ian Sharman is a local Bend ultrarunner and coach, best known for running the fastest trail 100 miler in US history in 12h44m. His blog includes training tips, photography and race reports from around the globe at"

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Tuesday Performance Group: why you should be going.

By Liz Fancher

Liz Fancher & Dave Webster at The Dirty Half
A few years ago, my “speedy runner guy” husband Dave Webster joined TPG – the Tuesday Performance Running Group.  Every Tuesday evening, he spent an hour doing “speed work” or “running hills” with a group of dedicated runners.  He ran in Drake Park, on Overturf Butte and at the track.  In the winter, he’d run after dark in Farewell Bend Park!

About half a year later, my husband asked me to join him at TPG workouts.  I told him “I am not a speed demon runner.  My body does not have a single fast-twitch muscle.”  I thought: “Why would I want to humiliate myself by running with a group of speed demon runners in the cold and dark?”   

I agreed to try running with TPG once in a while.  I thought I would hate it but that it would be “good for me.”  Once I went, I discovered that I really like TPG.  I enjoy challenging myself.  I like running with a group of nice runners.  I like running with the TPG group every week.   The time flies by.    

Over the last few years, I’ve continued running with TPG.  Here is what TPG has taught me:

·        I am stronger than I think.

·        I run faster when I run with a group. 

·        It is OK to be one of the slowest runners.

·        Running with faster runners encourages me to push harder and to run faster.


Coach Max
Here is what TPG has done for me:

·        I’ve taken 10 minutes off my half marathon time in the period of one year.

·        I can run races at a steady pace, without crashing.

·        I can pick up my pace at the end of a run or a race.

·        I’ve started to enjoy racing.

·        I feel uplifted after most workouts.

·        Best of all, I can tell folks that Max King coaches my running group.  This makes folks think I run fast!

TPG is filled with a lot of nice, supportive people.  Kari Strang even brought cupcakes to TPG to celebrate my birthday!  TPG allows me the fun of cheering for other TPG runners at our regular workouts and races.  I’ve enjoyed following the progress and successes of other TPG runners over the years. 

Max King is a great coach.  He is a thoughtful, intelligent man who offers interesting, varied and “do-able” workouts.  He offers a “short” workout and a “long” workout so you can pick the one that works for you.  So, if you are interested in running stronger and a bit faster come join us on Tuesday.  TPG is free so what do you have to lose? 

The Tuesday Performance Group meets every Tuesday at 5:30. Locations vary, for more information email

Stay informed and hear from local runners at the FootZone Blog.