“I am basically the healthiest fat guy you have ever seen in your life”
-Governor Christie-

This past February while serving as a guest on The Late Show with David Letterman, Governor Chris Christie stated, “I am basically the healthiest fat guy you have ever seen in your life.” In response to that, former White House Physician Dr. Connie Mariano stated, “I’m worried about this guy during in office.” Recognizing the brevity to which the governor devoted to the topic, the issue still begs for a solution.  Health begins on the inside and while Christie is obviously not a  picture of health, there is more to the story.

This past March, New York State courts halted Mayor Bloomberg’s policy of banning over-sized sugary drinks. Mayor Bloomberg stated, “If we are serious about fighting obesity, then we have to be honest about it and courageous about tackling it.”

Somewhere between these two politicians rests a very necessary campaign to improve the health of our country. On average, Americans are eating out a minimum of four to five times a week. The problem is that virtually no one knows what goes into your food. We don’t know if the restaurant used some dairy product as a binding agent, or if a gluten product was used as filler. We don’t know if the chicken’s feed was grown on a farm that violated EPA compliance for animal feeding operations. Short of having your own chicken coup, it is difficult to ensure a “healthy” chicken. However, we can take certain steps to improve what we put in our bodies.  It’s our responsibility.

Athletes who train for performance recognize the value of quality nutrition and how that improves the body’s output.  If a person wants to simply lose weight, caloric restriction can be an effective means but weight loss and a number on a scale are not necessarily reflective of a person’s overall health.  It is for these reasons that what you put into your mouth in terms of quality and quantity are critical to a person’s long-term health and well-being.

In short, you are what you eat.

Want to learn more?  Sign up to receive FREE recipes from Spartan HQ.  Click HERE.

 

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by Carrie Adams

Robert Duyos /Sun-Sentinel 

Even as Hurricane Sandy continues her rampage, the damage already done is staggering.  Forty deaths are being attributed to Sandy in the US, but 108 are reported dead as far south as Haiti and as far North as Canada.  Hundreds are being evacuated from New Jersey, the shore is devastated, almost seven million are still left without power in 15 states, and transportation has come to a standstill.  The Holland tunnel is still flooded, La Guardia, one of the busiest airports on the planet remains closed.   The people of the east coast are suffering and at HQ, we recognize that the immediate need of the people of New York, New Jersey and surrounding areas, not to mention the rest of the coast and as far inland as Wisconsin who are feeling the effects of the super storm.

In light of that, Spartan Race HQ has made the official determination that we will not be holding our Times Square Demonstration event November 1st as scheduled, rather, we will have a “Super Storm rain check” and hold the demonstration at a later date when New York is well on its way to recovery from the devastation.

Spartans are resilient, and we have a storied history with hurricanes and overcoming obstacles, but the decision to continue in light of the circumstances would not put the safety of the citizens of New York and the participants of the challenge at the forefront and that is unacceptable.  Furthermore, to detract media attention from so many people in need would not be in the Spartan code.

We look forward to announcing a new date in the near future but we want to help the situation NOW.

Photo from redcross.org

How we and YOU can help:

The Spartan Code avows, “Spartans Give Generously” and with so many of our staff,  fellow Spartans, and friends affected and so many Spartans worldwide wanting to help we’ll be directing donations to the Red Cross to ease the suffering and lend a Spartan hand.  It’s easy to donate, simply click HERE or you can Text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief.

According to the Red Cross, blood donations are needed.  PLEASE GIVE BLOOD The storm has already caused the cancellation of Red Cross blood drives in the region, and more cancellations are expected. This has resulted in the loss of several hundred units of blood and platelets so far. The Red Cross has shipped blood products to hospitals in the affected area in advance of the storm as patients will still need blood and platelets despite the weather. If anyone is eligible, especially in places not affected by the storm, they are asked to please schedule a blood donation now.  To schedule a blood donation or get more information about giving blood, people can visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). To give blood, someone must be at least 17 years of age, meet weight and height requirements and be in general good health.

Every little bit helps and the most important thing we can promote right now at HQ is the safety and security of all those, up to 60 million who have been and continue to be in the line of Sandy’s fire.

More details on an upcoming “Super Storm rain check” date coming soon.

To the people waiting out the storm, picking up the pieces of the aftermath, or still waiting in harm’s way, we’re thinking of you at Spartan HQ, and with operations out of Boston and Killington, VT we’re also weathering the storm by your side.

Stay strong and safe, Sparta.

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by Carrie Adams

I received an email from Jen Rosant, the team captain of Gaspari’s Team Braveheart, and I wanted to share it with the Spartan Race community for a few reasons.  First, I know Jen personally and she is one of the most remarkable women I’ve ever met.  A survivor in every sense of the word, a motivator of the masses, and a living embodiment of the best of what Spartan is about.  Not new to Spartan Races, Jen has brought a team with her, her beloved Bravehearts, in bigger and bigger droves race to race.  When the weather was falling apart in New Jersey, when the hills were breaking the toughest of Spartan competitors, and when the miles weighed long and hard on the competitors last weekend, Jen was still powering forward, still motivating, still inspiring her team, many of whom were racing for the first time that day.

Jen Rosant

Jen Rosant, team leader of the Bravehearts is a 35 year old from Cliffwood Beach, NJ was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis ten years ago while in college and received the devastating news that her colon was in danger of rupturing or she would develop cancer that would ultimately kill her.  She suffered from kidney stones, received blood transfusions and had major surgery that showed she had developed PSC or Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis.  She had a colostomy bag and a promise of a liver transplant for over three months until they could finally reverse the process.  She took painstaking visits to the hematologist for over two years every week spending hours in a chair getting IVs of chemotherapy and injections for cancer-related anemia. She ultimately faced a new diagnosis of Chrohn’s disease and despite the trauma, she’s been lucky enough to NOT need a liver transplant.

Jen, a member of Team Gaspari alongside her Bravehearts, has been taking Gaspari Nutrition products herself and has never felt better or been in better shape.  She’s able to do upwards of 35 events in one year – that’s pretty impressive for someone who weighed in at 100 pounds a few short years ago.  It’s just one of the many reasons why we love our partnership with Gaspari Nutrition.

They conquered the Spartan Race course that day, led by Jen, committed to one another and committed to finishing the course they’d been training for and they found their Spartan finish line.  We honor them, their accomplishment on race day, their dedication to training and to one another and we thank them for being an integral part of the fabric that makes up the tapestry of our Spartan community.

Here is her email:

Hello Carrie.

I cannot even begin to explain the impact that Spartan Race has created for Team Braveheart.  I have been contacted by each individual. They laughed, they cried, they shared their stories of triumph.  More importantly, we changed their lives.  They are making new goals, registering for more Spartans and they are begging me for more workouts in my Braveyard. The energy is high, the smiles are large and right now Team Braveheart feels like they can accomplish anything. Really, your team put together a challenge I couldn’t even imagine. Even with a few handfuls of events under my belt, this was one of the most difficult challenges to date. Yes, pinch me, I’m living a dream. I feel fantastic and so does my team. It’s contagious. Our posts, pictures and videos have not only inspired all of us but the people around us are ready to make changes too. Today, 4 people asked me about Spartan Race.  The words on the street, the fire is in their eyes, people are ready, and they are ready for real results and happiness.  The amount of letters, calls and texts are unbelievable.  I promise you this, you will see Team Braveheart again, you will see them at many of your events, but next year’s Tri-State you better get us a bigger tent, I plan on bringing 100+ Bravehearts with a larger drive than this year.  “If you don’t believe us, try and beat us” 

Jen Rosant.  

Jen’s Motivational Speech

Read Jen’s post about their experience HERE: Team Braveheart comes LOUD.

 

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by Carrie Adams

Team Braveheart, a Team Gaspari crew, is heading to New Jersey for yet another Spartan Race.  When Team Braveheart shows up, you KNOW it’s going to be a good time!  Rolling 77 deep this time around, they are one of our largest teams in 2012 and we’re excited to have them take on our super course, that in recent days has had several black bear sightings!  Yikes!  Talk about being brave!  They’ll have company in their ten o’clock heat, UFC fighter Jim Miller will also be taking on the Spartan course.  We told you all about his home state appearance in a blog post earlier this week.

Gaspari has been a sponsorship partner for Spartan Race throughout 2012 and Official Gaspari Nutrition® has handed out over 50,000 FREE drawstring mesh bags to our racers throughout the year with samples of their products. We’ve seen people fill these bags with sand or rocks and use in their workouts. We’ve seen Spartans use them as a place to carry their gym clothes or muddy shoes after a race!  They’ll be on hand as a title sponsor in the Tri-State and we couldn’t be happier about it.

Here Jen Rosant, coach of Team Braveheart talks about how they are feeling going into this weekend’s Super Spartan event.

With only one day remaining before the Spartan Race, Team Braveheart is fired up and more lively than I have ever seen them!  For many, we have been training for over a year.  For some, this will be their first obstacle race.  The excitement and anticipation in the air is thick, but the real magic lies in our enthusiasm. It’s the difference between mediocrity and accomplishment. This team is ready for one of the biggest challenges of our lives!  We are ready to take on our fears. We are ready to conquer the mud, fire and extreme ice cold mountain water. 

The Spartan folks are creative and we know they will design the most intense battlefield. We have been working extremely hard and we are ready to test our physical strength and mental resolve. We come large. We come loud! We come as a beast of a team!  Boasting a squad of 77+ Bravehearts, I plan on leading them through an experience which will only improve their vision, patience, persistence, courage and confidence.

Braveheart Danielle said, “I’m so ready for this Saturday, I’m a little scared but I know my team will pump me up and get me through this. I’m doing every obstacle, I don’t care if I fall, I’m getting back up and finishing!”

Being a part of Team Braveheart has been an amazing experience for many members.  “To be a Braveheart means that not only do you have the fortitude to try something new and challenging, but it means that you have a family of support right behind you to give you that extra push, high-five and that extra drive when you hear the Braveheart chant,” said Braveheart Jared.

Braveheart Greg says, “Being a Braveheart means to have an attitude and strength like no other. It has changed my life for the better. I see so many Bravehearts who never accept defeat and they always finish. I have learned so much.” Braveheart Manda said, “Being a part of Braveheart makes you a better person, not just athletically, but because you cannot help but be a kinder, gentler, more determined individual. Positivity radiates throughout this amazing group and anyone who encounters us is moved and affected in a way that has been described as life changing.”

Bravehearts push each other, motivate, inspire and genuinely care for each other. It reads in their eyes but most importantly you can see it out on the course. The Super Spartan Race is a challenge we have prepped for and are anxious to accomplish.  Braveheart Dave B said, “This race is another chance to push the limits, to change the routine and up the ante.” Team Braveheart faces daily challenges every day and they do not let anything get in their way. Braveheart Bryant was told he may never walk again after he was attacked by a metal baseball bat in college and spent 2 months in a coma. He has 14 plates in his head and many other terrible ailments, but today his perseverance and involvement with Team Braveheart has given him the extra drive to compete in his 2nd Spartan Race.  He told me, “I’m excited for Spartan; I can’t believe it’s been a year, I’m stronger, faster and I get the chance to race against younger, stronger and faster athletes. I’m looking forward to testing myself against the best and break through my own walls.” Braveheart Jeanette said, “Defeat is not an option, not for myself or any of my teammates, it means I will give more than I got.”

Just to cross the finish line is the main goal for most of the team.  To wear the finisher medal proudly will mean the world to most.  Braveheart Ivette said, “This Spartan Race will be my first race and definitely not my last.  I am excited and anxious to put my physical abilities to the test. I am doing this for me because I want it and because I can! I want to inspire my kids to be active, fit and healthy.” Braveheart Mechelle said, “The greatest challenge for me this year at Spartan will be those obstacles challenging my upper body strength but I’m confident with our Braveheart trainings and Gaspari Nutrition’s amazing products I will improve and finish with a higher level of achievement than I did last year. I can’t wait to run with our team, the energy is going to be ridiculous.”  Braveheart Jayson said, “The Spartan Race is the one race I look forward to every year.  I can’t wait to be with my team, my family!  I’m excited for the atmosphere, the challenges, the uncertainty and of course the beer!”

Team Braveheart is coming fierce! Together, we work towards creating positive change in one another every day of our lives. It’s not just about fitness. It’s about self-worth, integrity, passion, inspiration and the drive to live strong.  We were born to take on The Spartan and blessed to have found one another to take on the battle with!  You’ll see us Saturday braving our red and black proud… and when you hear that Braveheart warrior cry, find security knowing you are surrounded by some of the most incredible people you could ever encounter! We’ll see you out there!  Be brave enough to recognize your strengths and take on your challenges!  Go Team Braveheart!

Team Braveheart will be warming up and cooling down at the Official Gaspari Nutrition® tent which will be located near the Finish Line. Be sure to stop by their tent, meet their team and check out some of the products available at the Gaspari tent! See you this weekend!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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by Carrie Adams

Stepping Up

We’ve heard a lot of trash talk on the Facebook page and at races about Hobie Call being beatable.  There have been idle threats filled with over-the-top bravado and little else from wanna-be competitors, but we have yet to see someone officially step up and challenge Hobie… until today.  We launch our official Challenger Series with a former Dartmouth College and University of Texas track star from New Jersey, Michael Carmody.

The Challenger: Michael Carmody

Age: 25

Occupation: Advertising

Current Home: Austin, Texas

Profile: Michael Carmody has never shied away from a challenge and he’s always pursued excellence on the track.  Running middle distance at Dartmouth and U Texas Austin was an opportunity for Carmody to race and train alongside the best.  “Even getting beat up at practice every day was part of the reward of running with the best,” says Carmody.

He’s out to dethrone current Spartan phenom Hobie Call and his amazing pursuit of $100K in the Spartan race series.  Regarding Call, Carmody says, “I’ll give him a run for his money.  I’ll push him.”  His credentials are pretty solid – in 2008 he set an indoor school record at Dartmouth for the 800.  He qualified for the US Nationals in his fifth year in Texas and had a PR of 1:47 in the 800m.

On sizing up his competition, Carmody says, “Hobie seems like he’s fit and he’s doing a good job, but I think I’ll perform well in the 5K distance.”  A recent Tough Mudder finish where he crushed the other runners in his wave has given him some additional confidence.

“I’ve always tried to push myself and run against the best and not hiding away from the best athletes out there.”  Well, Michael, here’s your chance.

Watch more video of Mike Carmody on flotrack.org

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