‘The groundwork of all happiness is good health.’

– Leigh Hunt

Today’s fast pace life has caused us to shift our focus from what matters the most – our health. The best gift we can give ourselves, our family and even our work arenas is a healthy body and mind. This World Health Day let’s promise to move towards a healthier self with ‘steps’ both big and small.

 

What is World Health Day?

Every year, we recognize April 7 as World Health Day.  This day is one of eight global health campaigns championed and sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO). It celebrates the establishment of the WHO and is an occasion to spread health awareness and bring worldwide attention to global health.

Every year, WHO assigns a theme for World Health Day. Universal Health Coverage is the theme of World Health Day 2019. The objective is to provide quality health care to everyone. As Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General WHO puts it, “Health is a human right. No one should get sick and die just because they are poor, or because they cannot access the health services they need.”

People running a marathon.

Shop LC Health Initiatives

‘The man who earns a million but destroys his health in the process is not really a success.’

– Zig Ziglar

Shop LC is committed to great health for our employees. Not only do we provide free health care for full-time employees, we also encourage active and healthy lifestyles. Our Employee Assistance Program provides resources for building healthier lives. We actively participate in Austin running events every year. And, on a regular basis, we encourage our team of employees to participate in yoga and meditation by conducting workshops.

 

How do I prepare for my first marathon?

Sometimes running can feel like a love/hate relationship. Most of the hate is during the actual process of running. The love comes a little later—after you start to see and feel the benefits. Running a full marathon of a 26.2-mile race (just reading that number makes us sweat) can be overwhelming, but if you prepare for it and do it right it becomes a thrilling and memorable experience. Here are a few running tips to help you start preparing for your first marathon ever!

The No-Pressure Early Start 

Give yourself at least a year to prepare for your marathon. Your body needs to get accustomed to running long distances and this cannot happen in weeks. Accelerating this initial time period may cause injuries. Beware of your limits and consult your physician before committing to the training process.

Find the Right Shoes

When you want to run several times a week, running longer distances or running on tough terrain, then you should invest in a pair of running shoes. Running shoes that fit you well and support your feet make all the difference. Asking a clerk at a running store is your best option. They will assist you in finding the right pair of shoes based on your specific running goals and plans.

Increase Your Intensity

Whether you’ve only been running for a few weeks or you’ve been running for several years, you can always increase the intensity of your running. Add another mile (or five), run up a hill or do intervals.

Hydrate and Recharge Yourself

Ensure you’ll have the best run possible by drinking enough water. Lack of water before and during a run can cause fatigue, cramps and a high pulse. Even if you’re not a runner, drinking water is imperative to your health. While training carry your water with hydration belts or practice long runs on short loops with a hydrating point. Running depletes your glycogen, replenish it with small doses of carbs like energy bars.

Sign Up for a Race

Start small. Before the big marathon, participate in 5K or 10K races to get the hang of things and to better prepare mentally. Knowing that you have to run ‘X’ number of miles in ‘X’ amount of days will definitely build your determination to create a training plan and to stick to it.

Race Day Tips

  • Before the Race: Hydrate well the night before the marathon and also during the last few days leading up to the final day. Have a high-carbohydrate breakfast several hours before the race starts.
  • During the Race: Start slow. Starting too fast is a rookie mistake which will cause you to wear out sooner.
  • After the Race: After you finish, nourish your muscles with several cups of water or sports drink. Try to walk a little and do gentle stretches to cool down your muscles. Eat some simple carbohydrates (whether you feel like it or not).

Have Fun with It

When it comes to running, it’s important to remember to have fun. There will be some days that you just don’t want to run, but that doesn’t mean you should give up entirely. Rest and get back at it with a positive attitude. Whether it’s finding a running buddy or having a kick butt playlist, it’s important to find ways to keep things fun and interesting, so you don’t give up!

 

Have you ever run a marathon or 5k? How do you like to exercise? Tell us in the comments!