2015 Personal Best Initiative Rolls Out
The Personal Best health and wellness initiative enters into its third year with the introduction of new athlete profiles this month. The stories of inspiring athletes illustrate our alternative definition of “personal best” with a mission to show how everyone can “get into the game” and enjoy a higher quality of life. Efforts to date have resulted in some great regional and national media exposure.
This month, NSGA introduces a group of four athlete profiles to kick off the 2015 campaign. In coming months we will visit several states and share more great athlete stories. Two have already been placed on the Personal Best page, our Facebook page and through Twitter:
“Of Mentors, Mountains and Marathons” shares the amazing life journey of 80 year old Della Works of Casper, Wyoming. She began running at age 48 and hasn’t stopped. In addition to her 25 years of competing in The Games, she has also climbed mountains and run marathons in some very interesting places on four continents.
“A Different Kind of Fish Story” is a different kind of Personal Best story with a nutrition theme. Last fall we asked Louisiana senior athletes to submit healthy alternative recipes to the traditional cuisine of the region. Best selling cookbook author and healthy nutrition expert Holly Clegg assisted in the selection process. The resulting feature contains a simple yet elegant recipe provided by badminton player Alexandra Stafford of Metairie. As a bonus, the Recipe Page at NSGA.com also shares this along with three of Clegg’s favorite Louisiana style “Trim and Terrific” dishes. Bon Appetit!
Watch for more Personal Best profiles and tour news to come this month and throughout the year!
Demonstration Sports Add Variety to The Games
In addition to our permanent array of 19 sports, the 2015 National Senior Games Presented by Humana will also offer Team Baseball, Disc Golf and Judo as demonstration sports. Spread the word to your friends who participate in them that they can be a part of the action!
NSGA standards for qualifying in the state games are not required for these sports, so tell your friends who enjoy these sports to come play and get a taste of the unique atmosphere of The Games. Please note there are certain guidelines and requirements for participation that differ by sport. Visit theDemonstration Sports Page and select the individual sport for details.
Flame Arrival Ceremony and Fireworks on the Fourth of July!
When the torch appears at the beginning of each National Senior Games, two years of anticipation explodes with
emotion as athletes reunite and celebrate the opening of The Games. This time, it will be punctuated with pyrotechnics on the banks of the Mississippi River.
The Flame Arrival sponsored by AstraZeneca Diabetes will be a featured event within the annual Red, White and Boom! community event. The festive free program begins at 8 pm at Father Hennepin Bluffs Park, located on the river across from downtown Minneapolis. The cauldron will be lit just before the “oohs” and “ahhs” that follow at 10 pm. It will be a spectacular Minnesota-style celebration to welcome and kick-off the 2015 Games. For more information visit the Special Events page.
Minneapolis Welcomes 2015 Senior Athletes
Welcome to Minneapolis! Along with our friends in Saint Paul and Bloomington, we know you will have an outstanding experience competing and visiting our cities.
Aside from athletic events at the Minneapolis Convention Center, University of Minnesota and other local venues, we hope you will take the time to experience all we have to offer in this, the City by Nature. Minneapolis’ unique blend of urban sophistication and natural beauty are unparalleled. From walking or biking along our riverfront parkway on the mighty Mississippi River to the trails and parkways along the Chain of Lakes in our number one-ranked Minneapolis Parks, to taking in arts, theater, shopping, dining and nightlife in our vibrant downtown, you will find a city that has something for everyone.
Volunteer Opportunities for Athletes
We are always pleased to see that some of our athletes (and/or those who travel with them) offer to help out when they are not competing at the National Senior Games. Volunteers are the lifeblood of any major event. If you are among those who like to get involved in this way, it’s always better to let the local host committee know about your interest early. The local host organizes and manages volunteers for The Games.
Click here to go to the “Volunteer For The Games” page for detailed information and an easy to use online registration link to select where and when you would like to help. Thanks!
HUMANA Heroes: Athlete of the Month
People not familiar with the Senior Games Movement often assume that all of the athletes have been active in sports for their entire lives, or at least were once elite athletes who returned to compete as seniors.
While this is true for many who participate, especially for those who qualify for the National Senior Games, the truth is that a significant number are people who have seized the opportunity to take up competitive sports in midlife and pursue fun, fellowship, and a higher level of fitness for life. Some “newbies” also discover they are more talented and medal-worthy than they ever imagined. New Yorker Vicki Fox is one of these.
Five years ago, the resident of Huntington on Long Island had never set foot on a track. “I initially began running for fitness in early 2010 at 51 when my kids became independent in high school,” she recalls. “My daughter, then 16, decided she wanted to train for an Ironman and convinced me to start running too. So we began training together.” By the end of the year Vicki had run 24 road races and was surprised to discover how fast and competitive she really was. She joined theNorthport Running Club and learned about opportunities with masters track meets and senior games on Long Island and beyond. Her first meet was in July 2011 at a USA Track & Field Long Island meet that offered masters age divisions. By year’s end, she completed 37 races and began racking up the awards and setting several USATF Long Island records for her age group.
“I researched other opportunities to run track meets and set my sights for the Empire State Senior Games upstate in Cortland, and to do well enough to qualify for my first National Senior Games,” she says. “The senior games became a catalyst to my drive for excellence in fitness and competition.”
She easily qualified and continued her learning curve with training and blazing track performances. In March, 2013, Vicki tested her mettle at the USATF Masters Indoor National Championships in Landover, Maryland. In seven events, she gathered two individual third place finishes, and then celebrated a first place 4×400 win and a second place in 4×200 with her relay team. On to Cleveland for the 2013 National Senior Games.
At the 2013 National Senior Games presented by Humana, Vicki captured Gold in both the 400 and 800 meter events and took Bronze in the 1500 meter race. In the process, she etched her name in the NSGA Top Ten Performance records, placing #6, #2 and #6 rankings all time respectively. Back home, Vicki would later be named USATF Long Island’s 2013 Female Masters Athlete of the Year – and earn the same recognition again in 2014.
Vicki is eager to go for more gold in Minnesota this summer. She has also become a passionate ambassador for senior fitness and is now USATF Long Island Masters Vice-Chair. “I want nothing more in this next phase of my life than to encourage older adults to start exercising, pick a sport or two, and simply get active. You can start anything at any age with desire and determination. I’m proof of that.”
We’re always looking for great athlete stories. Submit yours or nominate a fellow athlete who inspires you at our Athlete of the Month page at NSGA.com!
Senior Health and Wellness
Starkey Hearing Technologies Encourages Proactive Approach to Hearing Health
Starkey Hearing Technologies is proud to be the Official Hearing Partner of the 2015 National Senior Games presented by Humana.
Did you know your hearing health can directly affect your overall health and well being? Being proactive about your wellness is important not just for athletes but for everyone at any stage of life. When you hear better, you live better.
Recognizing the causes of hearing loss can help you maintain your hearing health and as a result, your overall health. Hearing loss can occur for a number of reasons. Some causes can be natural and others may surprise you.
As people age, they may begin to lose their hearing as a result of the natural aging process. One of the most common causes of hearing loss is exposure to loud noises.
Be sure to visit the Starkey Hearing Technologies booth #218 at The Village sponsored by AztraZeneca Diabetes to learn more about hearing loss and take charge of your hearing health today.
Dr.Pam Peeke Blog: An Olympian Inspiration
“The Doc who walks the talk” has developed a fan base for herself as an author, speaker and expert on senior fitness and nutrition. In this month’s blog entry, Pam pays tribute to a role model and mentor of hers: Olympic and marathon legend Joan Benoit Samuelson. Read her Senior Games blog Speaking of Inspirational Heroes here.
NSGA Online Merchandise Store
Get a Warm Summer Feeling in 2015 Logo Gear
Spring is in the air and in your step. Time to get serious with training for The Games in Minnesota this summer. Need some extra motivation? Order something to wear that displays the logo for the 2015 National Senior Games Presented by Humana!
Visit The NSGA Store at NSGA.com where you will find a wide variety of gear in your choice of sizes and colors. Get in now and wear it proudly!
You Never Know What You’ll Find on Facebook
We usually stick to information about The Games, athletes in the news and helpful fitness and health links, but we also like to have fun and share a smile from time to time on our Facebook page.
Want to see more cool stuff like this that may not appear in the newsletter? LIKE us on the National Senior Games page on Facebook, and follow us @seniorgames1 on Twitter!