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Go Big Or Go Home: September

Friday, July 31, 2015 8:36:00 AM America/Chicago

The Spartan Race

"Spartan Race was created with a simple, yet important, mission in mind. That mission is to get people back to their primal roots. To do what they were designed to do: run, jump, climb and sweat." Taken straight from the Spartan Race website. The race itself was founded in 2010 and is now present in over 10 countries. Most Spartans are available in 3 different segments: the Sprint (3+mi, 15+ obstacles), the Super (8+mi, 20+ obstacles), and the Beast (12+mi, 25+ obstacles). There are even races available for children! It all depends on the location.

SPARTAN COLLEGE CLASSIC AT CORNELL UNIVERSITY • SEP 05 • ITHACA, NY
TRI-STATE NEW JERSEY SUPER WEEKEND • SEP 12-13 • VERNON, NJ
FORT BRAGG SPRINT • SEP 19 • FT. BRAGG, NC
VERMONT BEAST, SPRINT, AND ULTRA BEAST WEEKEND • SEP 19-20 • VERMONT, VT
SOCAL BEAST AND SPRINT WEEKEND #2 • SEP 26-27 • TEMECULA, CA
STAMFORD KIDS RACE • SEP 26-27 • STAMFORD, CT




The Biggest Loser RunWalk

"The Biggest Loser RunWalk is a non-intimidating race series designed to challenge America to get fit." Much like the Spartan, the Biggest Loser RunWalk is compromised of 3 different series: the Six Flags series, the Premier Destination series, and the Off-road Challenges. The Premier Destination series is their featured half marathon & 5k races. The Six Flags series is.. well, basically their Premier Destination series hosted at Six Flags amsusement parks. And the Off-Road Challenges are just set on trail runs with obstacle courses (and hosted at Spartan Race locations!).

BUFFALO HALF MARATHON/5K • September 6 • Buffalo NY
RACINE, WI - HALF MARATHON/5K • September 13 • Racine, WI
LAS VEGAS, NV - HALF MARATHON/5K • September 20 • Las Vegas, NV




The WipeOut Run

Inspired by the hit TV Show, the WipeOut Run was design to be a fun yet engaging (NOT BRUTAL) 5k experience, encouraging people to enjoy the challenge of physical activity. Run the 3.1 mile course yourself, taking on the 12 obstacles alone, or race your team mates to the finish line for an added layer of challenge.

September 5 • Sacramento, CA
September 12 • Toronto, ON
September 19 • Brooklyn, NY
September 26 • Austin, TX




The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun

The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun was created to encourage women to embrace athleticism and the outdoors. As such, it was the first of now only a handful of national races exclusively for women. While obesity is just as likely to occur in men as it is in women (36% of adults are considered obese), women are twice as likely as men to be considered extremely obese.

September 12 • Copper Mtn, CO




The Warrior Dash

Warrior Dash is one of the largest international races at only 6 years young, located on 4 continents across the world. The able few who are can conquer this grueling course are rewarded with Tshirt, Warrior Helmet & Medal, and revelries to celebrate their accomplishment!

September 12 • North Plains, OR
September 19 • Walker, MI




The Color Run

The Color Run is a newly-created 5k event, forming only in 2012! It was founded to encourage novices to join the running community, and serves as a fun introductory event! The shower of color was inspired by Holi, an ancient Hindu Festival of love.

September 09 • Tacoma, WA
September 05 • Colorado Springs, CO
September 05 • Central Jersey, NJ
September 07 • Penn State, PA
September 12 • Toledo, OH
September 12 • Manhattan, KS
September 12 • Portland, OR
September 12 • South Bend, IN
September 19 • St. Louis, MO
September 19 • Pittsburgh, PA
September 19 • Richmond, VA
September 20 • Duluth, MN
September 26 • Huntsville, AL
September 26 • Burlington, VT
September 27 • Washington, DC
September 27 • Providence, RI
September 27 • Green Bay, WI




The Color FunFest

The Color FunFest is more or less the Color Run but run by a different company, although the Color FunFest puts more emphasis on the availability of evening running. Like with any great idea, multiples will popup! Choices are great, though, as that makes variety and availability much more widespread. While the Color Run may not be present in a certain city, The Color FunFest (or any other comparable color 5k) will most certainly be there!

September 12 • Norwalk, OH
September 19 • Noblesville, IN
September 26 • Papillion, NE




DIVAS Half Marathon & 5K Series

Another Girls' Club 5k run! This time without the mud. The DIVAS Half Marathon & 5k series offers something for newbies and veterans alike - all from the comfort of a nicely paved race course.

September 12 • Peachtree City, GA
September 25-26 • DC's Wine Country, VA




Tough Mudder

The Tough Mudder is by no means a novice event - though that doesn't mean you cannot try! It is roughly 3 times the length of a 5k, coming it at about 18-20km (10-12mi), and it doesn't stop there. The whole course is littered with obstacles specifically designed to play into basic human fears (fire, deep water, electricity, and heights.) Not for the faint of heart, or the financially challenged! Tickets start around the $100 mark.

September 5 & 6 • ADrumheller, AB, Canada
September 12 & 13 • Plymouth, WI
September 12 & 13 • Snowmass Village, CO
September 19 & 20 • Black Diamond, WA
September 26 & 27 • Westbrook, ME
September 26 & 27 • Brooklyn, MI

Posted in Get Fit Get Active By Ro Luckey

Top 5 Hiking Spots Wordwide

Friday, July 17, 2015 11:32:16 AM America/Chicago

So maybe hiking isn't your thing. Maybe there isn't anywhere scenic to hike or the hiking trails are boring and uneventful. We believe that you're just not thinking outside the box. Hiking is about getting out of the city and into nature. Try a nature preserve or a local patch of forest to stimulate your interest. We promise that hiking is an amazing adventure with very little cost.

With that being said, hiking is a great motivator for travel! There are tons and tons of great places in the world to see by foot. Many are urban-scapes but many more are in the wild (although never too far from the comforts of civilization!) Here are our top 5 places to hike in the world:


#5) The Grand Canyon | Arizona, USA

The Grand Canyon is one of the gems of natural wonder in the US. Thanks to President Theodore Roosevelt, the Grand Canyon has been under protection as a National Monument for over a century. Hikers and casual tourists alike flock to its natural and awe-inspiring beauty. The canyon side is littered with accommodations and tour opportunities, in addition to several hiking trails.


#4) Mt. Fuji | Kanagawa Prefecture, JAPAN

Mt. Fuji - or Fujisan - is the highest mountain in Japan. It's located roughly 60 miles south of Tokyo and can be seen from the city on a clear day! Mt. Fuji is lauded for its symmetrical cone shape and is one of the iconic symbols for Japan. There are 4 trails leading to the summit of the mountain. Each are color coded for ease of use, and cabins are dotted along the mountainside for over-night stay. It is recommended to stay 1 night in a cabin both on the ascent and descent to help cope with altitude adjustment.


#3) Uluru/Ayers Rock | Northern Territory, AUSTRALIA

Ayers Rock - or Uluru as the indigenous people call it - is an iconic sandstone formation, located centrally in Australia. The indigenous people Anangu are the traditional owners of Uluru and regard it with great reverence as a place of spiritual power. Because of this, they do not climb Ayers Rock, nor do they encourage tourists to do so. Still, people from far and wide scale the steep rock-face for an incredible view of the surrounded area.


#2) Trolltunga (Troll's Tongue) | Hordaland, NORWAY

Trolltunga is one of the most iconic tourist spots in Norway. Translated to English, Trolltunga means Troll's Tongue, as it is a thin, jutting mountain-side precipice overlooking lake Ringedalsvatnet. It is located approximately 100 miles from Bergen, Norway's second largest city. The hike through the mountains to Trolltunga itself is about a 9 hour roundtrip walk.


#1) Machu Picchu | Urubamba, PERU

Machu Picchu is heralded as one of the greatest hiking destinations of the world. Known to the world for over a century, Machu Picchu has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site for over 30 years. The trek itself takes 4-days round trip but features a lovely view by foot (some by bus!) of the wonderful Cuzco countryside and jungles.

Posted in Get Fit Get Active By Ro Luckey

Go Big Or Go Home: August

Friday, July 3, 2015 8:36:00 AM America/Chicago

The Spartan Race

"Spartan Race was created with a simple, yet important, mission in mind. That mission is to get people back to their primal roots. To do what they were designed to do: run, jump, climb and sweat." Taken straight from the Spartan Race website. The race itself was founded in 2010 and is now present in over 10 countries. Most Spartans are available in 3 different segments: the Sprint (3+mi, 15+ obstacles), the Super (8+mi, 20+ obstacles), and the Beast (12+mi, 25+ obstacles). There are even races available for children! It all depends on the location.

WASHINGTON DC SPRINT • AUG 01 • MECHANICSVILLE, MD
PAC WEST SPRINT • AUG 08 • WASHOUGAL, WA
HAWAII TRIFECTA WEEKEND • AUG 15-16 • KANE‘OHE, HI
CHICAGO SUPER WEEKEND • AUG 15-16 • MARSEILLES, IL
VIRGINIA SUPER • AUG 22 • WINTERGREEN, VA
ASHEVILLE SUPER • AUG 29 • BLACK MOUNTAIN, NC
HBOSTON SPRINT WEEKEND • AUG 29-30 • BARRE, MA




The Biggest Loser RunWalk

"The Biggest Loser RunWalk is a non-intimidating race series designed to challenge America to get fit." Much like the Spartan, the Biggest Loser RunWalk is compromised of 3 different series: the Six Flags series, the Premier Destination series, and the Off-road Challenges. The Premier Destination series is their featured half marathon & 5k races. The Six Flags series is.. well, basically their Premier Destination series hosted at Six Flags amsusement parks. And the Off-Road Challenges are just set on trail runs with obstacle courses (and hosted at Spartan Race locations!).

Chicago Half Marathon/5K • August 2 • Chicago, IL




The WipeOut Run

Inspired by the hit TV Show, the WipeOut Run was design to be a fun yet engaging (NOT BRUTAL) 5k experience, encouraging people to enjoy the challenge of physical activity. Run the 3.1 mile course yourself, taking on the 12 obstacles alone, or race your team mates to the finish line for an added layer of challenge.

August 1• Foxborough, MA
August 8 • East Hartford, CT
August 15 • Commerce City, CO
August 22 • San Jose, CA
August 29 • Kansas City, KS




The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun

The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun was created to encourage women to embrace athleticism and the outdoors. As such, it was the first of now only a handful of national races exclusively for women. While obesity is just as likely to occur in men as it is in women (36% of adults are considered obese), women are twice as likely as men to be considered extremely obese.

August 1 • Wyoming, MN
August 8 • Flushing, NY
August 15 • Waukesha, WI
August 22 • Clarksburg, MD
August 29 • Batavia, NY




The Warrior Dash

Warrior Dash is one of the largest international races at only 6 years young, located on 4 continents across the world. The able few who are can conquer this grueling course are rewarded with Tshirt, Warrior Helmet & Medal, and revelries to celebrate their accomplishment!

August 01 & 02 • Mt. Morris, MI
August 01 & 02 • Johnson Creek, WI
August 08 & 09 • North Lawrence, OH
August 08 • Millville, NJ
August 15 • Frisco, CO
August 29 • Long Pond, PA




The Color Run

The Color Run is a newly-created 5k event, forming only in 2012! It was founded to encourage novices to join the running community, and serves as a fun introductory event! The shower of color was inspired by Holi, an ancient Hindu Festival of love.

Buffalo, NY • August 01
Denver, CO • August 01
Sacramento, CA • August 01
Grand Rapids, MI • August 01
Erie, PA • August 08
Tacoma, WA • August 09
Bellingham, WA • August 16
Terre Haute, IN • August 22
Atlantic City, NJ • August 22
Salt Lake City, UT • August 22
Bangor, ME • August 23
Grand Forks, ND • August 29
Tuscaloosa, AL • August 29
Boise, ID • August 29




The Color FunFest

The Color FunFest is more or less the Color Run but run by a different company, although the Color FunFest puts more emphasis on the availability of evening running. Like with any great idea, multiples will popup! Choices are great, though, as that makes variety and availability much more widespread. While the Color Run may not be present in a certain city, The Color FunFest (or any other comparable color 5k) will most certainly be there!

AUGUST 1 • Harrison, NJ
AUGUST 1 • Tulsa, OK
AUGUST 8 • New Britain, CT




DIVAS Half Marathon & 5K Series

Another Girls' Club 5k run! This time without the mud. The DIVAS Half Marathon & 5k series offers something for newbies and veterans alike - all from the comfort of a nicely paved race course.

None In August




Tough Mudder

The Tough Mudder is by no means a novice event - though that doesn't mean you cannot try! It is roughly 3 times the length of a 5k, coming it at about 18-20km (10-12mi), and it doesn't stop there. The whole course is littered with obstacles specifically designed to play into basic human fears (fire, deep water, electricity, and heights.) Not for the faint of heart, or the financially challenged! Tickets start around the $100 mark.

August 1 & 2 • Andover, NY
August 15 & 16 • Coldwater, ON, Canada
August 15 & 16 • Old Bethpage, NY
August 29 & 30 • Slippery Rock, PA

Posted in Get Fit Get Active By Ro Luckey

Go Big or Go Home: July

Friday, June 5, 2015 2:07:00 AM America/Chicago

The Spartan Race

"Spartan Race was created with a simple, yet important, mission in mind. That mission is to get people back to their primal roots. To do what they were designed to do: run, jump, climb and sweat." Taken straight from the Spartan Race website. The race itself was founded in 2010 and is now present in over 10 countries. Most Spartans are available in 3 different segments: the Sprint (3+mi, 15+ obstacles), the Super (8+mi, 20+ obstacles), and the Beast (12+mi, 25+ obstacles). There are even races available for children! It all depends on the location.

PENNSYLVANIA SUPER • July 11 • Palmerton, PA
PENNSYLVANIA SPRINT • July 12 • Palmerton, PA
PENNSYLVANIA SPRINT #2 • July 18 • Palmerton, PA
AT&T PARK SPRINT - SAN FRAN (STADIUM) • July 18 • San Fransisco, CA




The Biggest Loser RunWalk

"The Biggest Loser RunWalk is a non-intimidating race series designed to challenge America to get fit." Much like the Spartan, the Biggest Loser RunWalk is compromised of 3 different series: the Six Flags series, the Premier Destination series, and the Off-road Challenges. The Premier Destination series is their featured half marathon & 5k races. The Six Flags series is.. well, basically their Premier Destination series hosted at Six Flags amsusement parks. And the Off-Road Challenges are just set on trail runs with obstacle courses (and hosted at Spartan Race locations!).

Premier Destination • July 26 • Killington, VT




The WipeOut Run

Inspired by the hit TV Show, the WipeOut Run was design to be a fun yet engaging (NOT BRUTAL) 5k experience, encouraging people to enjoy the challenge of physical activity. Run the 3.1 mile course yourself, taking on the 12 obstacles alone, or race your team mates to the finish line for an added layer of challenge.

July 11 • Portland, OR
July 18 • Seattle, WA
July 25 • Chicago, IL




The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun

The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun was created to encourage women to embrace athleticism and the outdoors. As such, it was the first of now only a handful of national races exclusively for women. While obesity is just as likely to occur in men as it is in women (36% of adults are considered obese), women are twice as likely as men to be considered extremely obese.

July 11 • Killington, VT




The Warrior Dash

Warrior Dash is one of the largest international races at only 6 years young, located on 4 continents across the world. The able few who are can conquer this grueling course are rewarded with Tshirt, Warrior Helmet & Medal, and revelries to celebrate their accomplishment!

July 11 • Hastings, MN
July 18 • Bonney Lake, WA
July 18 • Barrie, ON, Canada
July 25 • Windham, NY




The Color Run

The Color Run is a newly-created 5k event, forming only in 2012! It was founded to encourage novices to join the running community, and serves as a fun introductory event! The shower of color was inspired by Holi, an ancient Hindu Festival of love.

July 11 • Cincinnati, OH
July 11 • Des Moines, IA
July 11 • Lansing, MI
July 11 • Milwaukee, WI
July 12 • Twin Cities, MN
July 18 • Omaha, NE
July 18 • Columbus, OH
July 25 • Asheville, NC




The Color FunFest

The Color FunFest is more or less the Color Run but run by a different company, although the Color FunFest puts more emphasis on the availability of evening running. Like with any great idea, multiples will popup! Choices are great, though, as that makes variety and availability much more widespread. While the Color Run may not be present in a certain city, The Color FunFest (or any other comparable color 5k) will most certainly be there!

July 11 • Allentown, PA
July 18 • Washington, DC
July 25 • Richmond, VA




DIVAS Half Marathon & 5K Series

Another Girls' Club 5k run! This time without the mud. The DIVAS Half Marathon & 5k series offers something for newbies and veterans alike - all from the comfort of a nicely paved race course.

None In July




Tough Mudder

The Tough Mudder is by no means a novice event - though that doesn't mean you cannot try! It is roughly 3 times the length of a 5k, coming it at about 18-20km (10-12mi), and it doesn't stop there. The whole course is littered with obstacles specifically designed to play into basic human fears (fire, deep water, electricity, and heights.) Not for the faint of heart, or the financially challenged! Tickets start around the $100 mark.

Jult 18 & 19 • Hudson, WI

Posted in Get Fit Get Active By Ro Luckey

Happy Memorial Day!

Friday, May 22, 2015 2:31:00 AM America/Chicago

Memorial Day. A day marked by office & school closures, long weekends, grilling, and the start of swim season. It is so much more, though.

Memorial day is an honorific holiday even older than its inception - it is a day used to commemorate those who laid down their lives in battle. This has been a practice for centuries, and was formerly known as Decoration Day in the Pre-Civil War South. Decoration Day added focus to the commemoration of fallen soldiers by cleaning and decorating their graves - hence the holiday's name. The date varied from state to state, but was definitely more common in the South than the North.

After the Civil War and rejoining of the Union, Decoration Day spread across the northern part of the reunified United States of America. Decoration Day became a day of memory for soldiers from both sides - Union and Confederate. As the years passed and the 1800s passed into the 1900s, the holiday evolved and began commemorating all soldiers who had laid down their lives; Naturally, Decoration day became known as Memorial day.

The years continued to roll by and the 1900s became the 2000s. Memorial day continued to shift and adapt and the modern era arrived. It became commonplace where only the graves of soldiers who had family left to mourn them were decorated, whereas at its inception, Memorial day was meant to remember all soldiers and - in Decoration day tradition - to decorate the graves of all soldiers, regardless of their familial ties and legacy.

So this Memorial day, remember those who had made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure that you can grill whenever or whatever you want, spend time family and friends and your leisure and discretion, and that swimming can be enjoyed regardless of location, time, and gender.

Our office will be closed on Monday, May 25 in observance of Memorial Day. Thank you to all the men and women who have served, are serving, and will continue to serve our country.

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Ro Luckey

The History of Skateboarding

Friday, May 22, 2015 2:19:00 AM America/Chicago

Skateboarding has a long and tricky history. It actually started over 50 years ago on the West Coast as an alternative for surfers when the waves were flat. The very first skateboard remains as mystery since a cluster of first generation boards popped up around the same time between the late 40s and early 50s.

By the 60s, skateboards were being manufactured across Southern California and mostly resembled mini surf boards with roller skate wheels. The early 60s ushered in the first golden era for Skateboarding. It's popularity grew rapidly and even saw one of its earliest Exhibitions in 1963. The following year, the first skateboarding magazine was published - The Quarterly Skateboarder.

Skateboarding began to decline around the late 1960s when claims began popping up about the sport being unsafe. Shops stopped selling them because parents stopped buying them. It wasn't until the following decade that skateboarding would see a resurgence in popularity.

The 70s saw another spike in skateboarding growth when Frank Nasworthy replaced traditionally metal or clay wheels with polyurethane. The new wheels improved traction and performance and led to a direct increase in skateboarding popularity. Skateboard manufacturers began to design and produce components specifically for skateboarding, which also allowed for greater maneuverability.

1975 saw the historic Del Mar National Championships, the largest skateboarding competition of its time. Up to 500 competitors were said to be present, among them the Zephyr Team. Later known as the Z-Boys, the Zephyr team introduced a progressive and radical skateboarding style heavily inspired by surfing. Their presence revolutionized skateboarding styles and solidified their place in skateboarding history.

With new technology improving maneuverability, traction, and performance, skateboarders were able to experiment, pushing the limits of conventional styles. In particularly, you saw the branching of street skating and vert skating. Vert coming from the word vertical, popularized by the increased use of empty swimming pools as skating grounds after the 1976 California drought.

Skateboarding did not lose steam as it rolled into the 80s. The majority of skateboard companies were owned by skateboarders, fueling the passion and innovation for gear and boards. This decade also saw the birth of the kickflip and the no-hands aerial (later known as the ollie) as skateboarders continued to experiment with tricks and styles.

The 90s were dominated by street skateboarding, and growth in popularity declined somewhat. The skateboard of today was finalized this decade - extremely hard but relatively small wheels, lighter boards, narrow and symmetrical. But by the time the new century rolled around, more minors were involved in skateboarding than baseball.

The 2000s began to see skateboarding as more pop culture than counter culture, utilizing this activity as a means to compliment academics. Much like sports, skateboarding programs were a non-traditional method to encourage physical activity, self-discipline, and confidence. Skateparks also experienced a resurgence in attendance and growth because of this. In 2003, Go Skateboarding day was founded on June 21"to define skateboarding as the rebellious, creative celebration of independence it continues to be." Three years later, there were 2400 skateparks established globally.

Skateboarding is now an internationally enjoyed recreational activity strongly associated with rebelliousness and independence.

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Ro Luckey

School's Out!

Friday, May 15, 2015 2:07:00 AM America/Chicago

It just so happens that it is now SUMMER VACATION! At least for those lucky seniors here in the US. Then, in about a month, all students (maybe even teachers?!) will be enjoying their summer break. At least here in the US. Across the globe, even across the nation, summer vacation does not mean the same thing! Some schools are off for 6 weeks. Some? Over 12 weeks. We'll take a closer look at the differing summer breaks - here in the US, with our neighbors Canada & Mexico, and then finally abroad.

US summer vacation can last anywhere from 2-3 months. These are typically the summer months with two distinct timelines: Early June to Early September, or Late May to Late August. This break is often believed to be due to the alignment of the academic calendar to the traditional agrarian calendar - children were needed at home to help plant and harvest craps. This does not seem to be the case as the major harvest seasons are spring and fall, and often times classes would resume after long harvest breaks. The leading theory to explain this long period of school-less-ness seems to be the growth in the population of urban areas - and the subsequent desire of families to escape the sweltering cities during the summer.

Canada experiences a similar summer break from scholastic endeavors, yet their summer starts at the end of June, lasting through to Labour Day in September. The difference in summer vacation days seems to be made up in longer breaks during the school year, for example a longer Christmas Break or spring break.

Mexico seems to have an even shorter summer vacation at only about a month long, starting in July. Much like Canada, holidays and breaks seem to be longer and occur more often during the school year.

In Japan, however, Summer Break occurs from July to September, and happens in the middle of a school grade/level (vs. Western schooling where the summer break is taken between school grades/levels.) Japan also offers a longer spring break towards the beginning of summer (April or May) and also ends the school year in Winter with another smaller break to separate school grades/levels.

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Ro Luckey

Mother's Day - A History

Friday, May 8, 2015 1:42:00 AM America/Chicago

Mother's day is this weekend! Sure, we all know WHAT mother's day is - the day we celebrate our Mothers (and their mothers, too!) and Mother-figures in our lives and society - but very few of us know the history behind this decades old celebration.

While there have been many celebrations honoring mothers and mother-like symbols around the world for centuries, we're going to take a closer look at the Mother's Day celebration most commonly celebrated in North America - particularly the US. Mothers day started in the early 1900s, and is usually celebrated in the springtime (either March or May - This year is May 10!)

The very first Mother's Day was celebrated on in 1908 by Anna Jarvis. She held it in honor of her mother, Ann Jarvis, who had died 3 years prior. To quote Wikipedia, "Ann Jarvis was a peace activist who cared for wounded soldiers on both sides of the Civil War and created Mother’s Day Work Clubs to address public health issues."

Though Jarvis (the younger) was successful in inaugurating a new US Holiday honoring not just her mother but mothers nationwide, her joy soon turned to bitterness at the quick commercialization of what was intended to be an honorific holiday. Jarvis was so embittered that she tried to do away with the Holiday she once fought so hard to create.

As the Holiday grew in the US, it spread across the known world with neighboring and other countries adopting Mother's day into their Calendar. For Example, Mothering Sunday in the UK - which existed before Mother's Day's conception - now shares its day with Mother's day, although both holidays are not related. Again, in Catholic countries, Mother's Day was reassigned to better tie in with major events in Catholicism, particularly those pertaining to the Virgin Mary. Ex-communist countries, however, will remain loyal to celebrating the socialist International Women's Day (vs. the capitalism heavily associated with Mother's Day).

Regardless of the religios affiliation (or the lack there of), it is clear that nations across the globe can agree on one thing: Let's celebrate the Mother we all love. Be sure to get her a great present - Mama Nees A New Pair Of Shoes!

Posted in Employee Spotlight By Ro Luckey

Go Big or Go Home: June

Friday, May 1, 2015 4:25:00 PM America/Chicago

The Spartan Race

"Spartan Race was created with a simple, yet important, mission in mind. That mission is to get people back to their primal roots. To do what they were designed to do: run, jump, climb and sweat." Taken straight from the Spartan Race website. The race itself was founded in 2010 and is now present in over 10 countries. Most Spartans are available in 3 different segments: the Sprint (3+mi, 15+ obstacles), the Super (8+mi, 20+ obstacles), and the Beast (12+mi, 25+ obstacles). There are even races available for children! It all depends on the location.

TRI-STATE NEW YORK SPRINT #2 • June 6 • Tuxedo, NY
MONTEREY SUPER • June 6 • Monterey, CA
BOISE SPARTAN SPRINT • June 13 • Payette, ID
BRECKENRIDGE BEAST • June 13 • Breckenridge, CO
BRECKENRIDGE SPRINT • June 13 • Breckenridge, CO
BOSTON SUPER • June 20 • Barre, MA
AT&T STADIUM SPRINT - DALLAS (STADIUM) • June 20 • Arlington, TX
SALT LAKE CITY SUPER • June 27 • Midway, UT
MINNESOTA SPRINT • June 27 • Welch, MN




The Biggest Loser RunWalk

"The Biggest Loser RunWalk is a non-intimidating race series designed to challenge America to get fit." Much like the Spartan, the Biggest Loser RunWalk is compromised of 3 different series: the Six Flags series, the Premier Destination series, and the Off-road Challenges. The Premier Destination series is their featured half marathon & 5k races. The Six Flags series is.. well, basically their Premier Destination series hosted at Six Flags amsusement parks. And the Off-Road Challenges are just set on trail runs with obstacle courses (and hosted at Spartan Race locations!).

Premier Destination • June 7 • Erie, PA
Premier Destination • June 20 • Rockford, IL




The WipeOut Run

Inspired by the hit TV Show, the WipeOut Run was design to be a fun yet engaging (NOT BRUTAL) 5k experience, encouraging people to enjoy the challenge of physical activity. Run the 3.1 mile course yourself, taking on the 12 obstacles alone, or race your team mates to the finish line for an added layer of challenge.

June 6 • Baltimore, MD
June 13 • Wilmington, DE
June 20 • Washington, DC
June 27 • Stillwater, MN




The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun

The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun was created to encourage women to embrace athleticism and the outdoors. As such, it was the first of now only a handful of national races exclusively for women. While obesity is just as likely to occur in men as it is in women (36% of adults are considered obese), women are twice as likely as men to be considered extremely obese.

June 6 • Indianapolis, IN
June 13 • Pittsburgh, PA
June 26 • Chicago, IL




The Warrior Dash

Warrior Dash is one of the largest international races at only 6 years young, located on 4 continents across the world. The able few who are can conquer this grueling course are rewarded with Tshirt, Warrior Helmet & Medal, and revelries to celebrate their accomplishment!

June 6 • Huntersville, NC
June 6 • Tekamah, NE
June 13 • Channahon, IL
June 27 • Crawfordsville, IN




The Color Run

The Color Run is a newly-created 5k event, forming only in 2012! It was founded to encourage novices to join the running community, and serves as a fun introductory event! The shower of color was inspired by Holi, an ancient Hindu Festival of love.

June 06 • Indianapolis, IN
June 07 • Chicago, IL
June 07 • Madison, WI
June 13 • Los Angeles, CA
June 13 • Louisville, KY
June 13 • Youngstown, OH
June 20 • Cleveland, OH
June 27 • Amarillo, TX
June 27 • Anchorage, AK
June 27 • Ypsilanti, MI
June 28 • South Portland, ME




The Color FunFest

The Color FunFest is more or less the Color Run but run by a different company, although the Color FunFest puts more emphasis on the availability of evening running. Like with any great idea, multiples will popup! Choices are great, though, as that makes variety and availability much more widespread. While the Color Run may not be present in a certain city, The Color FunFest (or any other comparable color 5k) will most certainly be there!

June 13 • Atlanta, GA
June 20 • Nashville, TN




DIVAS Half Marathon & 5K Series

Another Girls' Club 5k run! This time without the mud. The DIVAS Half Marathon & 5k series offers something for newbies and veterans alike - all from the comfort of a nicely paved race course.

None In June




Tough Mudder

The Tough Mudder is by no means a novice event - though that doesn't mean you cannot try! It is roughly 3 times the length of a 5k, coming it at about 18-20km (10-12mi), and it doesn't stop there. The whole course is littered with obstacles specifically designed to play into basic human fears (fire, deep water, electricity, and heights.) Not for the faint of heart, or the financially challenged! Tickets start around the $100 mark.

June 6 & 7 • West Dover , VT
June 13 & 14 • Truckee , CA
June 13 & 14 • Doswell , VA
June 20 & 21 • Whistler , BC , Canada
June 27 & 28 • Sparta , KY

Posted in Get Fit Get Active By Ro Luckey

Go Big or Go Home: May

Saturday, April 11, 2015 1:25:00 AM America/Chicago

The Spartan Race

"Spartan Race was created with a simple, yet important, mission in mind. That mission is to get people back to their primal roots. To do what they were designed to do: run, jump, climb and sweat." Taken straight from the Spartan Race website. The race itself was founded in 2010 and is now present in over 10 countries. Most Spartans are available in 3 different segments: the Sprint (3+mi, 15+ obstacles), the Super (8+mi, 20+ obstacles), and the Beast (12+mi, 25+ obstacles). There are even races available for children! It all depends on the location.

Colorado Sprint • May 2 • Carson, CO
Citi Field Sprint • May 9 • New York, NY
Montana Beast • May 9 • Bigfork, MT
Austin Super • May 9 • Burnet, TX
Montana Sprint • May 10 • Bigfork, TX
Austin Sprint • May 10 • Burnet, TX
Indianapolis Sprint • May 16 • Lauren, IN
Austin Sprint • May 16 • Burnet, TX
Austin Super • May 17 • Burnet, TX
Miller Park Sprint • May 23 • Milwaukee, WI
Tri-State New York Sprint • May 30-31 • Tuxedo, NY
Ohio Beast • May 30 • Cumberland, OH
Ohio Sprint • May 31 • Cumberland, OH




The Biggest Loser RunWalk

"The Biggest Loser RunWalk is a non-intimidating race series designed to challenge America to get fit." Much like the Spartan, the Biggest Loser RunWalk is compromised of 3 different series: the Six Flags series, the Premier Destination series, and the Off-road Challenges. The Premier Destination series is their featured half marathon & 5k races. The Six Flags series is.. well, basically their Premier Destination series hosted at Six Flags amsusement parks. And the Off-Road Challenges are just set on trail runs with obstacle courses (and hosted at Spartan Race locations!).

Premier Destination • May 3 • Crown Point, IN
Premier Destination • May 31 • Plattsburgh, NY




The WipeOut Run

Inspired by the hit TV Show, the WipeOut Run was design to be a fun yet engaging (NOT BRUTAL) 5k experience, encouraging people to enjoy the challenge of physical activity. Run the 3.1 mile course yourself, taking on the 12 obstacles alone, or race your team mates to the finish line for an added layer of challenge.

May 9 • San Diego, CA




The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun

The DirtyGirl 5k MudRun was created to encourage women to embrace athleticism and the outdoors. As such, it was the first of now only a handful of national races exclusively for women. While obesity is just as likely to occur in men as it is in women (36% of adults are considered obese), women are twice as likely as men to be considered extremely obese.

May 2 • Scranton, PA
May 17 • Virginia Beach, VA
May 30 • Greensboro, NC




The Warrior Dash

Warrior Dash is one of the largest international races at only 6 years young, located on 4 continents across the world. The able few who are can conquer this grueling course are rewarded with Tshirt, Warrior Helmet & Medal, and revelries to celebrate their accomplishment!

May 2 • Amity, AR
May 2 • Inola, OK
May 16 • Mechanicsville, MD
MAy 16 • Millfield, OH




The Color Run

The Color Run is a newly-created 5k event, forming only in 2012! It was founded to encourage novices to join the running community, and serves as a fun introductory event! The shower of color was inspired by Holi, an ancient Hindu Festival of love.

May 2 • Ft. Lauderdale, FL
May 2 • Shreveport, LA
May 10 • Seattle, WA
May 16 • Austin, TX
May 16 • Medford, OR
May 16 • Savannah, GA
May 16 • Central Jersey, NJ
May 17 • Eau Claire, WI
May 17 • Washington, DC
May 23 • Rochester, NY
May 23 • San Jose, CA
May 23 • Baltimore, MD
May 23 • Fayetteville, NC
May 23 • Fort Wayne, IN
May 23 • Nashville, TN
May 23 • Queens, NY
May 23 • Racine, WI
May 30 • Birmingham, AL
May 30 • Charlotte, NC
May 30 • Hershey, PA - Sold Out
May 30 • Kansas City, MO
May 30 • Fairbanks, AK
May 31 • Hershey, PA
May 31 • Boston, MA




The Color FunFest

The Color FunFest is more or less the Color Run but run by a different company, although the Color FunFest puts more emphasis on the availability of evening running. Like with any great idea, multiples will popup! Choices are great, though, as that makes variety and availability much more widespread. While the Color Run may not be present in a certain city, The Color FunFest (or any other comparable color 5k) will most certainly be there!

May 2 • Miami Gardens, FL
May 9 • Tulsa, OK
May 30 • Madison, IL




DIVAS Half Marathon & 5K Series

Another Girls' Club 5k run! This time without the mud. The DIVAS Half Marathon & 5k series offers something for newbies and veterans alike - all from the comfort of a nicely paved race course.

May 17 • Branson, MO
May 31 • San Fransisco Bay, CA




Tough Mudder

The Tough Mudder is by no means a novice event - though that doesn't mean you cannot try! It is roughly 3 times the length of a 5k, coming it at about 18-20km (10-12mi), and it doesn't stop there. The whole course is littered with obstacles specifically designed to play into basic human fears (fire, deep water, electricity, and heights.) Not for the faint of heart, or the financially challenged! Tickets start around the $100 mark.

May 2 & 3 • Smithville, TX
May 2 & 3 • Fairburn, GA
May 9 & 10 • Richmond, IL
May 9 & 10 • Lexington, OH
May 16 • Okemah, OK
May 16 & 17 • Pulaski, TN

Posted in Get Fit Get Active By Ro Luckey
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