Thank YOU so much for stopping by. Uta’s Insights is for all who believe in getting fitter, living longer, and being happier. I hope you enjoy the fitness, health, and training advice as well as inspirational stories and updates of my training, speaking and charity events. I am excited to share these insights and I invite you to Take The Magic Step® with me.
Welcome to Uta’s Insights
By Uta Pippig
As I run through peaceful mountain trails in Colorado, my thoughts are with my grieving friends and fellow runners in Boston. For me, growing up behind the Iron Curtain in East Germany, the Boston Marathon was always a Marathon of Freedom, held in a far-off country I could only dream of, where I knew people were free to speak their minds and live their lives. Then the Berlin Wall came down and in 1990, I finally and exuberantly stood on the starting line in Hopkinton to begin my own personal freedom run.
In these days, I remember that magical time and I experience a profound feeling of strength that counters the confusion and disbelief of witnessing the wicked violence of the terrorist attack in Boston.
This cynical and sinister act of aggression against a peaceful and good-hearted people—runners, friends and spectators—happened during a 26.2-mile race renowned for friendship and camaraderie, and which, by its special nature, normally offers up the most inspirational stories of endurance and courage.
Instead, we were witnesses to unfolding stories of stunning heroism as doctors, nurses, other medical personnel, law enforcement officers, additional First Responders, runners, and spectators rushed into potential danger to help the injured. We watched marathoners lifting up fallen fellow runners and spectators carrying friends to safety even as the threat of more destruction loomed.
A terrorist’s cruelty did deprive us of our freedom to run on that afternoon. But only for a moment in time, because we all united and rushed forth to help our fellow citizens, defying danger to stand up for our hard-fought principles of freedom. Rather than being weakened, we gained strength from this act of terror. We stood united and vowed to not have our freedoms compromised.
As I grew into adulthood in East Germany, I longed for the liberty that others enjoyed. And I found this in Boston—a truly charitable and sports-loving community. On this past Patriots Day, that great city greeted runners from 92 countries with open arms. Participants from dozens of different cultures and religions came together, united in their love for the sport of marathoning, under the flags of freedom and competition.
No one could guess our freedom would be so vulnerable again. What began in Boston as a nascent struggle for liberty continues as our ongoing labor of care to keep living free and in peace despite those who would deny it. We likely will experience more senseless acts of violence but, so far, we have never let them define us and we never will. The glory of the human spirit prevails.
Long ago, we began an ongoing marathon of a different nature—a marathon of freedom, one we all can pursue. After April 15th, we feel an even deeper appreciation for what we, as Americans, have and what we accomplish each day—the ability to live our lives as we choose. And this is a marathon we should do with our partners from other countries around the world.
People today are looking forward to running together. And with each step, we can be inspired by the stories of heroism we witnessed. Fearless and united, we will gain strength because we know that good ultimately will overcome. The people of Berlin demonstrated this almost a quarter century before the devastation in Boston when they tore down the Berlin Wall.
In the end, freedom should and shall win.
Uta Pippig (@utapippig) has run the Boston Marathon seven times and won it three consecutive times. She is the President of www.TakeTheMagicStep.com, which promotes health, fitness, and lifestyle changes.
© Copyright 2013 by Uta Pippig and Take The Magic Step. All Rights Reserved.
My Dear Friends,
I am heartbroken and terribly sad. I am thinking of all of you and I am with you. My thoughts and those of my entire team here at Take The Magic Step go out to the victims, their families and the city of Boston.
Thank you for all your concern, love and care. I spoke with Kathy Boyer and Randy Rechs, and all reports indicate Dick and Rick Hoyt and all 2013 Hoyt Foundation team members and their families are safe.
Further, I spoke with Pat Lynch from the John Hancock team and he assures me that all my fellow elite runners are OK.
The loving atmosphere of this beautiful race is still too near and dear to me to say more. Please stay calm and be strong. Much love to you all.
Copyright 2013 by Uta Pippig. All Rights Reserved.
You have prepared well and trained so hard for your marathon. Now you can look forward to rewarding yourself very soon with a “Day of Celebration” you will never forget. Keep a “Cool Focus.” And I hope you will not only have a wonderful race, but also one of the most memorable experiences of your life.
You are finally in your “tapering” period and counting down to the marathon. Time to build your “cool focus” by running shorter distances faster. Tapering allows your body and mind to recover properly so that you are the best you can be on YOUR Marathon Day.
The most effective approach for tackling the Boston Marathon course is to stay relaxed within your own unique stride and cadence. The frequent alternation of uphill, downhill, and flat sections will tempt you to break from your pre-race strategy and training, but you will have more success if you stay with your plan.
Nutrition: A Vital Element of Your Marathon Preparation. Part II—Post-Exercise Nutritional Routine and Hydration
A well-planned and nutritious post-exercise routine will help speed up your recovery after working out and give back important nutrients your muscles devour during strenuous activity. Also, be sure to hydrate well before, during, and right after your workout—especially during and after your longer runs.
You are almost there—and the upcoming weeks will partly determine how well you run in your race. I hope you can stay focused and take advantage of your training during this second build-up period, with the highest mileage and your longest runs, so you can be best prepared for your marathon.
The overall approach of staying healthy combined with the ability to listen to your body and learning to understand the signs it gives you, will help you to determine the make-up of your next workout and to be the best you can be. But what are those signs our body would like to tell us? And how can we listen cautiously?