The Long Run - April 2016
Humana Video Wins Gold Medal!
A Humana video entitled "2015 National Senior Games: Inspiring Generations of Better Health" has won the large company category at the 2016 Boston College Corporate Citizenship Film Festival (BCCC). NSGA asked athletes and fans to go vote to nominate the video, and your voices were heard! THANKS!
As the presenting sponsor of the 2015 National Senior Games, Humana highlighted that staying fit and athletic after age 50 is not only possible, but achievable - at all ages and abilities. Humana, a health and well-being company, works toward helping people achieve lifelong well-being; this includes encouraging people to stay physically and socially active as they age, and this video illustrates that.
The mission of the Film Festival is to honor excellence and recognize the hard work of corporate citizenship programs. See the gold medal video below.
Two Athlete Features Added to Personal Best "Class of 2016"
The Personal Best profiles grow with two new athlete features in April. More will come during the year as we hit the road to share new stories in Colorado, Tennessee, Wisconsin and Delaware.
Cheryl Cherry - "The Great Awakening"
You would not know from her smiling face and upbeat personality that Cheryl Cherry has endured challenges that include a harrowing battle with one of the deadliest forms of breast cancer. The turning point in her life came in 2011 when she vowed to lose weight for good and took up cycling at age 63. Last year, Cheryl earned gold and silver medals in the women's 65-69 time trials. Read about how she got there, and check out the "Charity Miles" phone app she told us about that allows anyone to donate to a favorite charity simply by walking, running or cycling.
Harold Bach - "Catch Me If You Can"
The wiry North Dakotan has been running in National Senior Games since 1993, and last year set NSGA all-time speeds in the four sprint events for men 95-99. Not bad for a guy who ran his first race at the age of 72. See if you can keep up with Harold as he recounts his life experiences from the Great Depression and World War II and offers some simple but sage advice.
When athletes descend on Birmingham for the 2017 National Senior Games presented by Humana, they will find more than they expected. Certainly, "The Magic City" will not disappoint those who anticipate Southern hospitality and traditions, but the largest city in Alabama will surprise some with its diversity of cultural attractions and amenities.
The keyword for Birmingham in recent history is "progress," in every sense of the word. It is a vibrant city, proud of its growth and development over the past decades and eager to welcome and share its story with visitors. Athletes will find excellent sport venues first and foremost, and then be pleased to discover great restaurants, museums, shopping and other attractions during their visit. Follow the link below to start getting to know the host city for The Games.
Upcoming Qualifying Games
Activity is peaking as summer approaches with more qualifying games on the calendar. May has games going on in Alabama, California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Indiana, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, South Carolina, Vermont and Virginia. Additional states offering games in June include Colorado, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont and West Virginia. Whew!
Many state games' schedules extend over two or more weeks, so check the specifics for the sport(s) you are interested in. The State Games Information page at NSGA.com is kept up-to-date as information comes in. Follow the link below to find dates and contact information.
HUMANA Heroes: Athlete of the Month
Author Finds Athlete Within
You often hear how writers express the desire to be immersed in their subject, but usually it's not taken literally.
Barbara Bradley Hagerty, a best-selling author and career journalist who reported for National Public Radio from 1998 to 2014, had no idea she would be competing in the 2015 National Senior Games presented by Humana when she contacted a senior cyclist to include in her latest book about people making midlife changes.
Mike Adsit, a four-time cancer survivor and competitive cyclist who was selected by NSGA as a Personal Best profile in 2014, is one of a variety of people over 50 whose stories are shared in Barbara's just-released book Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife.
Barbara had been a lifelong exercise runner, but developed arthritis in her right knee in 2012. "I could hardly walk up the stairs, and the doctor said 'you can't run,'" she recalls. Riding a bicycle became her rehab and exercise option, and she shared this background with Mike when she contacted him in 2013. She brought her bike along to the interview to take a short ride with him afterwards and get a better feel for his story. The ride turned into a 20-mile loop, which she covered faster than she had ever done. The seasoned cyclist looked at her and said, "We're going to get you qualified for the National Senior Games, and I'm going to be your coach."
Barbara accepted the challenge and opened a new chapter in her own life. "Suddenly, I had little goals every day-a faster training session, or a 50-mile ride. The prospect of these little victories launched me out of bed each morning. Goals force us to think deliberately."
She was delighted to meet the goals to qualify, and then compete in the 5K and 10K Time Trials at the 2015 Games in Minnesota. She recounted her experience there with Mike in a feature for NPR's All Things Considered program that appeared in conjunction with the book release. "It was really fun! It was also inspiring," she says. "I didn't win any of my races, I didn't even come close. There are a lot of other women my age who are faster, and that's actually pretty inspiring for me. It gives me a goal to be a little better next time."
Going through her own transformation was a pleasant outcome of the book research. "The Senior Games experience brings together several threads that weave together to make a really great experience in my own midlife," she explains. "It has brought me new friends, and Mike in particular. There's exercise, which is terrific for body and mind. And setting little goals in training to reach every day gives a sense of purpose. It brings me punctuation, providing the commas, periods and paragraphs to help structure my life."
Senior Health and Wellness
Personal Best Updates: Larry's 100 Mile
On April 9th, 96-year-old cyclist Larry Johnson was joined by well-wishers and other pedalists to rack up 100 miles in the spin room at his Albuquerque gym in less than four hours. As Larry recounted in his 2014 Personal Best profile, he has done it every year for his birthday since he turned 90 based on a suggestion from his grandson.
This year's "century ride" was a particularly satisfying accomplishment for Larry, who had to sit out of the 2015 National Senior Games after breaking his hip in training. "This was my first goal to get back into competitive shape," Larry said afterwards. "I'm looking forward to going to Birmingham next year!"
Texas honors- We also want to congratulate 2013 Personal Best athlete DeEtte Sauer for her induction into the Texas Senior Games Association Hall of Fame this month. DeEtte is as tireless an ambassador for Senior Games as she is fierce as a competitor. The recognition is well-earned!
Humana Wellness Tips: The Benefits of Staying Positive
Recent research has been finding more and more evidence on the health benefits of optimism and positivity. Since positive thinkers generally cope better with stressful situations, the harmful effects of stress are diminished more quickly, in turn, lead healthier lives. NSGA believes Senior Athletes generally exhibit more of these traits than their age peers.
People often disregard frequent headaches, insomnia, or increased fatigue as merely products of everyday life, when all these things can be directly related to increased stress levels. Humana's Jacob Edwards offers a few tips and tricks that you can keep in mind when trying to overcome negativity in your life. Follow the link to read the full article.
NSGA thanks Humana for sharing this article. For more information on a wide range of related topics, please visit The Learning Centerat www.Humana.com.
Athletes, Get Involved in the 30th Anniversary!
Help us celebrate 30 years of National Senior Games in 2017 by sharing your fondest memories and fitness "secrets" with NSGA. Selected entries will be included on a 30th Anniversary web page and newsletter in 2017, plus in special displays and activities in Birmingham. Follow the links to convenient online forms below.
Memories of The Games
The introduction on the online form gives many examples of the types of memories we would love to hear from you, from funny to inspirational. You can even attach a photo to go with your story.
"30 Health and Fitness Secrets of Senior Athletes"
The top 30 athlete "secrets" will be shared with national media in 2017. What's your brief statement? It can be an inspiration, a favorite or your own original expression, or advice you have gathered from others. It can be about exercise, nutrition, keeping mentally active, or staying motivated. Let's hear it!
NSGA Online Merchandise Store
Get Motivated with 2017 Logo Gear
New logo apparel featuring the 2017 National Senior Games presented by Humana is now available on our upgraded online store. Have you ordered yours yet?
The Official NSGA Store at NSGA.com
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