Thursday, April 9, 2009

Spring Ski Conditions is Good GO Time!

Short and sweet it will be this week. I have lots of things in the hopper or jumbling around in my brain, but as we are slowly approaching the transition period...end of ski season beginning of the warm weather activities I will keep this week's short and sweet. Plus this Easter Bunny is in the middle of packing the SUV because "of course kids the Easter Bunny knows we will be at Tahoe."

(Photo: Beautiful Morning, Homewood)

Spring ski conditions is a wonderful time to get the child on the go for the 1st time on skis. The days are generally nice & sunny or "Bluebird" as we like to call them. The winter winds have calmed and the snow by mid-late morning is nice and soft...even becoming sticky and slow, therefore making it a bit easier to stop using that pizza, wedge, triangle or whatever lingo you use for it. It seems that spring is when all the elements align for your child to have a good day on the slopes.

Just because the temps are above freezing and the sun is out ensure still to dress your child appropriately and lather on the sunscreen. The sun bouncing off the "diamonds in the snow" as my 4yo calls them can lead to a very fast and very bad sunburn.

(Photo: Ice Bar, Alpine Meadows, CA)

And with spring generally comes lots of slopeside activities to give your child the full ski day experience. There are competitions, outdoor concerts, festivals, barbecues, etc.. Lots of things to keep your child in awe of the snow-capped mountains ambiance and the aire of fun and camaraderie alpine sports bring when their little legs are wearing out. And for Apres or after hours late in the season you will find incredible deals on lodging + lift either by cruising the Internet or calling the resort's central reservations number.

(Photo: Bungee-Trampoline, Squaw Valley)
(Photo: KT22 Sundeck, Squaw Valley)
Also with spring comes season end sales. So if you think your munchkin and you are going to leap into this sport now is a good time to hit the sales and buy things for next season. Discounts can be 50% or more. We just picked up my daughter her first pair of poles at 50% off, but we got them a couple of cm too long in case she grows over the summer and we will just cut them appropriately at the beginning of next season. But you have to move fast...size, styles, etc are very limited.

(Photo: Genetian Cafe, Adaptive Ski School, Alpine Meadows)
So with the ski season end looming larger, especially this year with the obvious pain of the economy impacting the alpine industry, get your child our their for either their first or final go on the slopes!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Child Gets Intro to Go by Run

In the late 1990's when the tech companies were booming I got to travel a lot on an expense account. In fact 1999 is the year I not so proudly claim I ate my way around the world. After Europe, the Middle East, and Far East I had ballooned to nearly 190lbs. I'd like to think I carried it well...all be it a brick house, but it was a New Year's Eve photo that year that spoke the truth in volumes. Turns out I wound up being one of those rare people who take on the New Years Eve resolution to lose weight and did it.

I spent 2000 on a very popular group diet plan and in a gym with a personal trainer. But one part of the regimen there was no getting around was (drumroll please.....) CARDIO. Now I have always been athletic...skiing, basketball, etc.. But I noticed most of my cardio I got in sports were short bursts until a whistle blew or I reached the bottom of the mountain. If I really wanted to lose it...I would have to RUN.

I started out where I was comfortable....doing, then fast...medium....until I was fast all the time. By the end I was running sub 8 minute miles and had lost 60lbs. The summer of 2001 I even started running competitive races...and to my surprise finishing very well. Then in 2004 came the breaks...that would be pregnancy breaks. I actually ran well into my pregnancy. But after the child it was harder and harder to re-establish a routine. Then add a second child in '06...and it was really tough.

But last week when there was a warm afternoon and I took my kids for a walk on our private road and my daughter announced..."I love to run!..." and took off and before I knew it had run over a good quarter mile and was yelling at me to "Move it!" I knew it was time. Time for me to restart the run. Not only for me, but for my kids and to show them what healthy living is about.

So with spring also begins the myriad of running events available. You can find most of them listed at Active.Com And some really neat points to running is you get to go some really cool places to do it. So to get back in the groove April 1 registration opened for the Big Sur Half Marathon on Monterey Bay which will be held November 15. We have entered it with 2 other sets of parents. Not only is it in an amazing location with tons of things to do before and after the race...the Aquarium will take us the full day before for sure, but this event also includes a Kids Race.

Most kids races start at age 5. Some are timed...this one happens not to be and generally these are called "fun runs." It is generally the day before or before/after the main event race so a parent can participate with the child. Of course your child should be in good physical health to participate in any sports activity. But what a great way to introduce your child to new places and good health by going by running.