October 17, 2014

Athletes on the Move with Raw Protein

Filed under:Inflammation — Tags: , , — BethInman —

by Rhonda Price in Extraordinary Health Magazine Vol 16

Thomas has also added Garden of Life supplements to his rehab effort, including Wobenzym N, RAW Protein, RAW Meal and Vitamin Code RAW ONE for Men multivitamins.

New York Giants’ cornerback Terrell Thomas may be one of the hungriest players in the NFL this year, even though his mother regularly throws down massive Sunday buffet dinners that can feed a small army. Instead, he’s salivating at the chance to reclaim his spot as the Giants’ starting cornerback after missing the entire 2011 season with a torn ACL and suffering an injury to the same knee this summer in training camp.

Watching his team win the Super Bowl last year was bittersweet for Thomas, who could only cheer from the sidelines. Impatient to get back on the field this year, his fluke injury during a routine drill in training camp threatened to send him back to the injured reserve list once again. The possibility of having a third surgery to repair his right Photos by Rich Jackson knee loomed large, until a team of doctors and orthopedic surgeons determined that only rehab would be necessary.

“I believe this is a minor scare more than anything,” said Thomas, who described his ACL as “stretched and aggravated” rather than “torn.” He said that tightness in his lower back had likely contributed to the problem and that he would be working on building up his glutes and hamstring to help strengthen his knee.

Depending on how his rehab goes, Thomas could become a part of NFL history, thanks to the NFL’s new rules on injured reserve players. In years past, injured reserve players were not eligible for the season, but under the new ruling, teams can place one player on a list after the roster is decided and then elect to bring the player back later in the season. Thomas definitely wants to be the chosen player for the Giants, but first, he’ll have to prove he’s back to his winning form.

Prior to his setbacks, Thomas was a rising NFL star who was regarded as one of the league’s elite cornerbacks, leading a Giants’ defense in 2010 that was ranked ninth against the pass. In 2011, the team’s coaches scrambled to fill the void left in his absence, but there was no one on the depth chart who could match his skill level or rack up 85 tackles and five interceptions as he did in 2010. Even though the Giants won the Super Bowl, at the end of the 2011 season, it was clear that he was sorely missed as the team finished a dismal 29th in the league against the pass.

In addition to an intense rehab program, Thomas opts for a healthy diet of lean meat, chicken, fish and salads. He avoids pork (except for an occasional piece of bacon) and says his only weakness is sweets. Represented by Octagon Football, Thomas has also added Garden of Life supplements to his rehab effort, including Wobenzym N, RAW Protein, RAW Meal and Vitamin Code RAW ONE for Men multivitamins.

The Giants’ medical staff is optimistic that Thomas could return to the lineup in three to eight weeks. While it’s sometimes tough for Thomas to remain patient and positive, he said that his beautiful two-year-old daughter is all the motivation he needs to keep going.

“The silver lining is being around my daughter,” he said. “Whenever she’s around, I can’t feel sorry for myself. She doesn’t care if my knee is hurting or if I’m on crutches, so regardless of how I feel, she always helps take my mind off the injury!”

Katie Mackey’s love affair with running started at the tender age of five, when she would slip on her favorite pair of neon pink tennis shoes and run around a local park with her father. It wasn’t long before she was racing in high school and college, where she loved the thrill of competition and became serious about the sport. This year, Katie’s passion carried her all the way to the U.S. Olympic Track & Field trials in Eugene, Oregon, where she qualified for the finals in the 1,500-meter race. Although she fell short of making the cut for the summer Olympics, the experience motivated her to keep running.

The Olympic trials were the most memorable moments in my career,” gushed Katie. “Competing in a stadium full of animated and energetic fans was such a wonderful vibe!”

A Garden of Life® sponsored athlete, Katie is consistently ranked in the top 10 nationally in the mile, the half-mile and the 5K. Her arduous training schedule includes running 80 to 85 miles per week during the fall months and 60 miles a week in the spring when she competes in several races. Her morning routine begins with 10 minutes of stretching to warm up, followed by a 10- to 40-minute run. Breakfast is usually a “power smoothie” with plain yogurt, frozen mixed berries, a banana and Garden of Life’s Perfect Food RAW. Along with the smoothie, she eats a steamed sweet potato and two free-range, omega-3 enriched eggs. For many reasons, she says her favorite “superfood” is beets.

“My sister worked in a science lab and told me that beets are a good source of iron, can boost immunity and have a high concentration of nitrates that can help the blood carry oxygen better throughout the body,” she said. “I’m hooked, and I love to eat them steamed with a little salt!”

Katie’s lunch is typically a colorful salad with baked chicken or salmon and spinach, strawberries, grapes, bell peppers and cherry tomatoes. For a quick snack, she enjoys carrots and hummus, apples with almond-seed butter and Garden of Life’s Fruits of Life and Super Seed Organic whole food bars. She also likes to drink a RAW Meal recovery shake immediately after a workout or competition.

“RAW Meal and RAW Protein are important recovery tools because the faster I can get nutrients to my body post workout or after a race, the faster I can recover and be even better at my next workout†,” she explained. “Sometimes it’s impossible to get home or back to a hotel quickly enough, so having an amino acid-dense recovery shake in my backpack is a great solution. I think RAW Meal or RAW Protein mixed with almond milk is delicious!”

Katie lives in Portland with her husband, Danny, and is currently training for several upcoming races. For more information about her workout regimen and schedule, visit www.katiemackey.com

When it comes to running on different surfaces, Joseph Gray has mastered just about every type of terrain on earth. A champion mountain, trail, cross country and road runner, he’s even been known to participate in snowshoe races on occasion.

Competing throughout the world, Gray has racked up an impressive string of accomplishments, including winning the USA 50K Road Running National Championship this year and securing a #1 ranking. A force to be reckoned with on any continent, he’s also ranked 11th in the world in mountain running and is the three-time reigning champion of the North American Central American and Caribbean (NACAC) Championship. He’s been a professional runner for four years, and the secrets to his success include a disciplined training regimen with precise diet, exercise, supplementation and relaxation routines.

When he’s training for a big race, Gray starts off his mornings with Garden of Life®’s Wobenzym N as part of his program to manage his joints and inflammation from training. He prefers a small breakfast of free-range eggs, cereal, oatmeal or kefir, followed by a Garden of Life fücoPROTEIN bar or RAW Protein shake. After a strenuous workout that frequently includes running on some of the mountain ranges near his home in Lakewood, Washington, he refuels with a nutritious, calorie-packed lunch.

“Lunch is very important to me, as this is usually the meal where I need to collect a large amount of carbs and protein to help recover from my morning session,” explained Gray. “Following hard workouts, I also like to get a RAW Protein shake into my system as quickly as possible to speed up recovery and help build muscle tissue.”

Workouts vary depending on what kind of events Gray has coming up, but one of his favorite runs is ascending the two summits of Mount Si near his home, where he runs 16 miles with more than 8,000 feet of vertical gain. After a hard session when he’s pushed his body to the limit, he relies on “power foods,” such as pasta that can be broken down and easily absorbed by the body. Typically, he logs up to 90 miles per week, so he’s not afraid to take a day off when he feels he needs to rest or to take a mental break.

“I think it’s important to also do things that relax me,” said Gray. “I feel that getting massages, chiropractic help and adjustments are crucial for anyone competing in high-level sports and events.” Although Gray is widely known in running circles throughout the States, he says he’s recognized more in Europe where mountain and trail runners are idolized.

“In Slovenia, I was treated like a rock star!” he laughed. “The fans go nuts for runners just like they do for football or basketball players in the States!”

You’d almost have a better chance of spotting a rare Banded Ground cuckoo bird than a vegetarian basketball player in the NBA. But, planted squarely on the roster, alongside the “Big Three” super stars Dwyane Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh, is the Heat’s three-point specialist James Jones. A reserve small forward who often makes appearances in games when Wade is nursing an injury, Jones has a shiny 2012 NBA Championship ring just like the rest of his teammates. The only difference is that he doesn’t go out and celebrate with a steak dinner. “I’m the weird guy,” said Jones, who shrugs and prefers to stick to a special diet for health reasons.

A vegetarian since 2007, Jones was inspired by former teammate John Salley, who has continued to promote a vegan lifestyle since he retired from the league in 2000. It wasn’t as difficult for Jones to give up his favorite foods, such as barbeque chicken and macaroni and cheese, as it was to figure out what to order from pricey room service menus when the Heat were traveling on the road. Instead of finding a suitable entrée, many times he’s gobbled up five orders of steamed broccoli, a baked potato and some beans. On a good day, he occasionally finds a hotel that has tofu or a special dessert.

Photos by Rich Jackson Jones is generally a good sport about his diet, though, and didn’t complain when he was asked to be a celebrity chef and to prepare carnivore-lovers’ pizza on Gordon Ramsay’s reality television show Kitchen Nightmares last year. Tasked with just three minutes to make the perfect pizza, Jones piled on enough pepperoni, sausage and bacon to clog the arteries of a Sasquatch, but he didn’t even think about eating his creation when the show was over. His own version of pizza is usually crust and sauce with a few veggies on top.

No one can say if it’s his vegetarian diet that enables Jones to launch more three-pointers than two-point field goals. But due to his impressive three-point shooting percentage that has been as high as 53 percent with the Heat, Jones has something that none of the “Big Three” can brag about. Last year during the NBA All-Star break, Jones won the league’s Three- Point Competition in Los Angeles at the Staples Center.

Since Jones helped the Heat win the 2012 NBA Championship, he rarely ever gets razzed about eating oatmeal for breakfast. If he doesn’t decide to retire now that he’s wearing a championship ring, he’ll join newly acquired Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis along with sharp-shooter Mario Chalmers to give the team one of the best three-point arsenals in the league next season.

Opinions expressed on this blog are those of the writer and have not been reviewed by the FDA, CDC or other 'medical authorities'. Therefore, any products discussed are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, but rather are dietary supplements intended solely for nutritional use.

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