• Margaret Webb

    The hardware haul from author Margaret Webb’s quest to get faster, stronger and fitter after 50

#OlderFasterStronger

Think you can out run a 75 year old? How about a 95 year old? Check out this Older Faster Stronger video trailer (available to order now – nudge nudge), featuring the fastest 75+ women on the planet. Feel free to inspire/prod your pals off the couch by posting the video on your social media sites. My goal is to get these super senior athletes on Ellen or Oprah. Please help!

#OlderFasterStronger https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2etE3oDy9RQ

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Yoga for Runners by Christine Felstead

This incredibly handy book let’s you take Felstead’s Yoga for Runners practice anywhere you can take a book – the park, the cottage deck, the beach.

I got hooked on yoga to help me build strength and flexibility for marathon running, but don’t always have the time to get to a studio for the two or three sessions a week I crave. Felstead came to the rescue with her DVD series that took me from novice to intermediate, but saying Namaste to the TV screen wears after awhile.

Now I’m doing sun salutations to the actual sun, thanks to this 200 page book. Felstead packs the last half with yoga sequences (including pictures) of poses you can do post run, to heal hot spot, for tune up, build strength and stamina, or do body part specific tune ups.

Pictures and words illustrate how to do each pose, as well as the benefits.

The first half of the book explains the great benefits of yoga for both running and general health, in easy, precise and pragmatic language.

And the best part of the book? You can take it — and yoga — anywhere. Now I do sun salutations to the actual sun by flipping the book open to a sequence and letting Felstead’s expert advice guide me.

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4:09:43 by Hal Hidgon

The overwhelming sentiment of this year’s Boston Marathon, the first running since the home-grown terrorist attack in 2013, was let’s get the anniversary over, let’s get back to Boston being Boston.

Not so fast, Hal Higdon might say. His terrific book, 4:09:43: Boston 2013 Through the Eyes of the Runners, does much more than take readers inside the experience of running Boston the year of the bombings. He recounts its rich history, the physical challenges of the course and the many legends who have contributed to making Boston the most storied marathon on the planet. But he makes this point most emphatically: the thousands of individual stories that played out in 2013 will be part the larger Boston story, forever.

Higdon shares tales of bravery, extreme acts of kindness between strangers and the thwarted ambition of runners turned back mere blocks from the finish line. Their frustration turned to survivor guilt then a determination to return, not with anger but to run with higher purpose, whether in memory of fans who were injured or killed, with greater zeal than ever to raise money for charity, to give back to the race that has inspired so many runners to reach personal bests or to love more, because that, they discovered, is the way to overcome hate.

Given the amazing potential of that legacy, we would do well to spend some time with the stories in 4:09:43 and not to rush back to Boston as usual.

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2014 Boston: How Do We Make Sense of Our Marathon?

Over its 42.2 kilometres, a marathon is a story. As I prepared to run in Boston a year after the devastating bombing of 2013 – the biggest celebration of running ever, as so many described it – I turned to sports psychologists to help me make sense of my journey.

After months of training for the extreme test of endurance, a runner should expect “capital E emotion” on a regular race day, let alone this particular marathon, Dr. Kate Hays warned me.

See story:

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2014 Boston in Pictures: Older, Faster, #Boston Stronger

Rather than running Boston 2014 hard, my goal was to soak up this greatest celebration of running ever, by speaking to as many people as possible, hearing their stories and reveling in the joyous atmosphere. It was my slowest marathon ever but my finest.

Below, John Young spoke at the Expo. Canadian born, he now teaches high school in Salem Ma and, last year, attempted to become the first little person to cross the Boston finish line — alas the bombs nixed that.  He started marathoning and doing triathlons when his son, who also has dwarfism, told him, “Dad, I always finish last.” John wanted to show his son that “winning is about trying hard, not finishing first.”

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Older Faster Stronger: More speed, less distance?

The fastest 60-year-old woman in the world, Torontonian Karla Del Grande, once thought, like the vast majority of us, that running means distance running. Then, at 50, while trying to boost her speed for a half-marathon, she hit the track for interval training and rediscovered her love of speed.

She ditched the long run, took up sprinting and now considers herself fitter, stronger and more powerful than she’s ever been in her life, including when she did high-school track.

Here’s how she replaced distance with speed and thrived: 

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Older, Faster, Stronger: Going the Distance

Last summer, I was soundly beaten in a 60-metre sprint by a 76-year-old great-grandmother. I expected the trouncing; after all, I was up against the world’s fastest 75-plus female sprinter, Christa Bortignon. The Canadian was named World Masters Athletics Female Athlete of the Year for 2013, after breaking 14 world records over the past two years.

See the story in the Globe and Mail

 

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Celebrate Gay Athletes and Protest Putin

On February 6, between 5:30 and 5:20 p.m., runners and walkers will create a giant flowing PINK TRIANGLE on the walkways of Queen’s Park to celebrate gay athletes, support LGBTQ global equality and tell Putin, we remember 1936 and we say, NEVER AGAIN.

Wear pink, bring a flashlight or pink glow stick to hold aloft like an Olympic torch to show the true spirit of the Olympics and invite everyone along (this will be a family friendly event: we are inclusive not divisive!) to create PERFORMANCE PROTEST ART: A flowing pink triangle of runners and walkers.

Let’s create a stunning visual message for the world that says Canada celebrates the accomplishments of all athletes, including gay athletes, and we stand up to Putin’s horrific hate mongering.

Please join me and hundreds of walkers and runners in the middle of Queen’s Park by the giant horse, just north of Ontario’s legislative building in Toronto at 5:20 p.m., to get ready for that 5:30 start. In the meantime, please post notice of the event to your facebook time line and send to friends far and wide

On the eve of the 2014 Olympics, Putin is trying to steal the show in his efforts to be the big strong man of the world, and he’s trying to do that by scapegoating people, as Hitler did in 1936.

We must say, no, we will not stand for Putin’s demonization of LGBQT people. We will not stand silently while he hijacks the Olympics for his propaganda. United we run.

 

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Older, Faster, Stronger: Fix Your Weakness

At the start of every training year, I commit to doing one more thing to make myself fitter, stronger, faster. Last year I overhauled just about everything in a bid to get in the best shape of my life after 50, for my book Older, Faster, Stronger (coming out in October with Rodale Books).

So what was left to tackle?
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