With my car packed to the roof, and only my side mirrors to look out
of, I started to watch all of that was known to me fade away in the
distance. I was about two hours into my drive when it finally hit me…
“Wow! I am moving to the happiest place in America.” No, not Disneyland.
As the freeway signs start counting down and I make my way down the
now known “nasty grade”, my mind is still filled with the slue of post
college grad thoughts. The typical. “What am I doing with my life?”
Starting out at college is a time of excitement, anticipation, and oftentimes, extreme nervousness. There are a whole host of prospects that can leave any freshman filled with anxiety, from making friends to maintaining good grades to knowing which classes to take. One of the biggest sources of anxiety for students, however, is unrelated to academics: A large percentage of students greatly fear the famous and dreaded freshman 15. The truth is, this isn’t an irrational fear: Most college students will gain between 15 and 25 pounds by the end of their sophomore year. One of the main causes of the freshman 15? Lack of exercise: Not only do the majority of college students not get the recommended amount of exercise, one in three just don’t exercise at all. To be fair, finding time for exercise in the midst of busy college life can be challenging, but there are some great ways that that particular hurdle can be side-stepped. Today’s infographic takes a look at the best ways for college students to stay fit—even in the middle of a dorm room. From cardio to strength training to flexibility, there’s a myriad of ways in which even the biggest of couch potatoes can beat the freshman 15.
I heard numerous stories about triathlons as I was growing up. Stories of the places my dad traveled to, the people he met, the races he lost, and the races he won. However, his Wildflower story was one of the few that left a lasting impression on me. Maybe it was his tone of voice, or that hidden smile behind his words, or the fact that my dad, Dean Harper, won the inaugural Wildflower race. Whatever it was, I knew someday I would have to see for myself what this race was all about.
My first Wildflower was 30 years after my dad's. That Sunday morning on May 5th, 2013, I raced my heart out for myself and for my team (Cal Triathlon--GO BEARS!), but mostly for my dad. When things got tough going up Lynch Hill or battling the headwinds on the bike, I looked down at the words I write on my hand before every triathlon, our father-daughter mantra, "Power Through." It's something we established back in 2008 when I was competing in my first collegiate swim meet and my dad was competing at the Ironman World Championships in Kona. Those two simple words brought us together despite being thousands of miles apart.
My experience at Wildflower exceeded all my expectations. I will never forget my dad getting to start my swim wave with the blow horn, seeing him for a brief moment on the bike course, and being there for him when he crossed the finish line. I will never forget getting to start the swim next to triathlon legend Michellie Jones, battling the winds and hills on the bike, and smiling at every aid station on the run from the amazing support of all the volunteers. I will never forget the multiple "Go Bears" I got from competitors riding up Lynch Hill as I sprinted down on my way to the finish. It's these little moments of amazing support that makes me already excited to return next year to Wildflower to race my heart out yet again. While in the end I didn't get to break the finishers tape like my dad did at his first Wildflower race, I know that when I tell my kids about my experience I will have that same hidden smile behind my words as my dad did when he told me his.
Shelley Harper, Cal Triathlon
As triathletes, we pride ourselves on coordinating all aspects of our
kit, from shoes and visors to handlebar tape and water bottles. Jesse
Thomas has his signature aviators, and whether you are a FOP or BOP
athlete, we each have our own “style”. Sunglasses are an integral
accessory to any kit, but aside from looking stylish, they are extremely
important to your safety and performance in races. Less than an inch
behind the lenses are two of the most important organs in our body that
allow us to navigate the course from start to finish. Protecting your
eyes and utilizing the correct eye wear can give you an edge on your
competitors, if you understand how to incorporate lens technology in
with your racing and training.
It’s funny to think it was only 2 years ago. Most of you are probably
sick of the story (if so, skip the next paragraph), if not, here’s a
A bright eyed, bushy haired first year pro out of Eugene drives the
ManVan with his buddy Matt last minute down to the historic Wildflower
Triathlon. The kid doesn’t have a clue. He uses a borrowed bike (his
broke 4 days prior), a borrowed helmet (also Matt’s), a hand me down
race kit & of course, $8 drug store aviators. But, he lines up, has
the race of his life, and while the announcers literally don’t know his
name, crosses the finish line to win.