How much protein do you need?

New research suggests that many of us may need more protein than we realize. The current RDA is 0.8 gram of protein per kilogram of body weight, but several studies have found that 1 to 1.2 grams may be more protective against age-related muscle loss. Use this formula from Caroline Apovian, MD, to determine the minimum amount of protein you should eat daily to offset muscle loss—and protect your metabolism—while you lose weight.

STEP 1: Estimate your ideal weight. “If you’re a woman, start with 100 pounds for the first 5 feet in height, and add 5 pounds for every extra inch,” says Dr. Apovian. “For men, it’s 106 pounds for 5 feet in height, plus 6 pounds for every additional inch. However, if your ideal weight is less than 120 pounds, don’t eat less than 82 grams of protein daily.”

STEP 2: Ideal Weight (in pounds) / 2.2 = Ideal Weight (in kilograms)

STEP 3: Ideal Weight (in kilograms) x 1.5 = Daily Protein Goal (in grams)

Now that you know how much you need, check out these metabolism-boosting, protein-packed foods!

Avocado

Protein content: 2 grams per half avocado. The protein in this fruit contains all nine essential amino acids, plus heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.

Cheese and Milk Protein

content: 6 to 7 grams per ounce; 9 to 10 grams per 1 cup
Go for low-fat options—they generally contain more protein than fattier alternatives.

Tempeh
Protein

content: 15 grams per 1/2 cup. Its nougat-like texture makes tempeh a smart stand-in for meat. Sauté, or crumble cooked tempeh over salads.

Asparagus

Protein content: 4 grams per 1 cup (chopped)

This tasty veggie is a nutrient powerhouse. Enjoy it steamed or grilled, or toss chopped spears into salads.

Legumes

Protein content: 7 to 9 grams per 1/2 cup (cooked)

Pair dried beans (think black beans, chickpeas and lentils) with rice or quinoa for a complete-protein meal.

Greek-Style Yogurt

Protein content: 18 grams per 6 ounces

This thick and creamy treat packs nearly twice as much protein as other dairy sources; it’s great with fruit.

Tree Nuts

Protein content: 4 to 6 grams per 2 tablespoons

A small handful of walnuts or almonds is great as a snack, mixed into yogurt or oatmeal, or on a salad.

Edamame

Protein content: 8.5 grams per 1/2 cup (shelled)

A single serving packs nearly every trace mineral your body needs, including iron, magnesium and zinc.

Whey Protein

Protein content: 24 grams per 1 ounce

Add a scoop to smoothies or water for a quick protein hit. Avoiding animal products? Try soy protein powder.

Spinach

Protein content: 5 grams per 1 cup (cooked)

Of all the leafy greens, spinach boasts the highest protein content. Try it sautéed with a bit of garlic

Tofu Protein

content: 12 grams per 3 ounces. Made from soybeans, this low-cal, versatile protein will take on any flavor, from Asian to barbecue.

Fish and Shellfish

Protein content: 28 grams per 4 ounces. Whether it’s salmon, halibut or tuna, seafood is a great catch. Aim for 3 to 5 servings a week.

PseudograinsProtein content: 5 to 9 grams per 1 cup (cooked)
These hearty, grain like seeds (quinoa, amaranth and buckwheat) have more protein than traditional grains.

Eggs

Protein content: 12 grams per 2 eggs; 14 grams per 4 egg whites. However you prepare them, eggs and egg whites are smart fuel for muscles.

Poultry and Pork

Protein content: 28 grams per 4 ounces. Family favorites like skinless chicken and pork make it easy to score plenty of protein at each meal.

Hemp Seeds

Protein content: 10 grams per 2 tablespoons. Great for soups and salads, these seeds have eight of the nine essential amino acids that build muscle.

Cottage Cheese

Protein content: 14 grams per 1/2 cup. Eating a scoop doesn’t mean you’re on a diet—it means you’re muscle savvy. Try adding it to smoothies.

Beef Protein

content: 28 grams per 4 ounces. Look for the absolute leanest cuts, like round roast or top sirloin. Try bison for a leaner red-meat alternative.

Kona Marathon supports troops in Qatar

The Kona Marathon and Family Runs is honored to announce that for the third year we have sponsored a Kona Marathon Military Shadow Run. Support of our Service Members putting themselves in harm’s way to protect and ensure our freedom is very important to our management team.

Being deployed in foreign countries and combat zones does not normally present our troops the opportunity to run in organized races. The Kona Marathon feels it is very important to promote these Shadow Runs in order to help build and maintain moral.

This year the Kona Marathon Shadow Run was held in Qatar. There were 39 participants from four U.S. Military Units:

  • Joint Communications Support Element (JCSE)
  • Special Operations Command Central (SOCCENT)
  • United States Forces-Afghanistan (USFOR-A)
  • Central Command (CENTCOM)

The Kona Marathon Military Shadow Run was held in May in order to avoid the intense Middle East desert heat in June. Our men and women in uniform participated in all four Kona Marathon events; Marathon, Half Marathon, 10k and 5k and were awarded finisher medals and t-shirts for their respective races. In return, we were sent an U.S. Flag that was flown over the skies of Afghanistan in a combat refueling mission in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. This flag will be proudly flown over our race finish line on June 23.

For details on the 20th Anniversary Kona Marathon and Family Runs being held on June 22-23 and the entire week of events, visit konamarathon.com.

Marathon Goddess, Julie Weiss

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Marathon Goddess, Julie Weiss

Fifty-two marathons in fifty-two weeks? Seems nearly impossible. But not for one Los Angeles resident.

Julie Weiss’s road to “52 in 52” started in 2008. With encouragement from her father, Maurice, she decided to train for the Boston Marathon, one of the oldest and best-known racing events. Maurice was her biggest supporter, determined to see his daughter qualified for the race. “We were going to go to Boston together and he was going to cheer me on,” Julie recalls. “I called him after every marathon.”

Over the next two years, Julie ran nineteen marathons in preparation for the Boston Marathon qualification. But In October 2010, Maurice was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

Undeterred by his illness, Maurice insisted Julie pursue her dream. “I told my dad, ‘You’re going to go to with me and I’m going to qualify!’”

Unfortunately, Maurice passed away one week before the qualifying race, only 35 days afterbeing diagnosed. “I had no idea about pancreatic cancer, or how severe it was. But on race day, I knew he was there with me. He had the best seat in the house…my heart.”

After completing the Boston Marathon, Julie knew there was something more to be done. Researching pancreatic cancer, she discovered it is the fourth leading cause of cancer death in the United States, but also the least funded for research.

Through her research, Julie found the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. The number one charity for pancreatic cancer, Julie met with the organization and was thrilled by their excitement and support. It was here the idea for “52 For You” was born. The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network was able to support and fund travel expenses, in part through their Team Hope Marathon Program.

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Julie took the name “Marathon Goddess,” but she’s quick to point out its true meaning. “It’s not about me!” she assures. “It’s a name that allows me to encourage others to find their inner god and goddess. People will see me running and say, ‘Hey, it’s the Marathon Goddess!’ and I say, ‘No, you are a marathon goddess!’”

With the help of her fiancé, David, Julie’s first marathon of 52 started in Rome, Italy on March 18, 2012. It was here that the documentary Spirit of the Marathon II was filmed, featuring Julie and her story. The film will be released in June of this year.

After Rome, it was one down, 51 to go. And it hasn’t been easy, especially considering Julie continues to work as a fulltime real estate accountant in L.A. “It’s a rigorous schedule: I leave my office on a Friday or Saturday morning; travel to a different city or state or even country; run a marathon on Sunday; get home Sunday night; be in the office by 9 a.m. Then the rest of the week is all about recovery. I get to sit at my job, which is nice, but it’s about eating good food, stretching, surrounding myself with positive people to get my spirits up.”

Image“But I do get tired!” she’s quick to point out. “I suffer some aches and pains, but I have a fantastic sports physician. I go to the spa a couple times a week to recuperate. I also mediate; it keeps me balanced.”

It’s also the people she encounters that keep Julie’s spirits up and gives her journey perspective. Dedicating each marathon to someone affected by pancreatic cancer, Julie makes sure to never lose sight of the everyday fighters. “When I’m running my marathons, my battle is nothing compared to these people who are fighting for their lives.”

Many of these fighters have left a lasting impression. Julie met Paul Perkovic during a race in her home state of California. He was suffering from Stage 4 pancreatic cancer. “He was very high-energy, a fun guy,” Julie remembers. “He was so excited about my journey. He ran the last 0.2 miles with me; we crossed the finish line together. It was a moment I’ll remember forever. He passed away three months after that marathon. But for that moment, we had created some hope and light in this dark world of pancreatic cancer.”

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Julie celebrating with Kona Marathon’s Assistant Director, David Ranck after her 52nd Marathon in LA on March 17, 2013

Julie’s eleventh marathon was in Kona, Hawaii. She affectionately refers to this race as “Eleven, like running in heaven!”

“The course is kind of epic,” Julie says. “It makes you feel like a rock star!” Even more than the course, it’s the Aloha Spirit that keeps her coming back to Kona. “It’s in the people who run the marathon, who live there, the support crew. It’s so welcoming. Not to mention the venue, which is breathtaking. Definitely the location, but more so, the people.”

Not only has Julie been running the marathons, she’s also handled most of her own PR and organized fundraising in her spare time. Accepting donations from $5 to $50,000, she’s raised over $175,000 during her journey, relying heavily on the power of social media to connect with individuals and organizations.

Julie’s final marathon was on March 17, 2013, in L.A. How does she plan to celebrate? “Sleep!” she exclaims. “Treating myself to sleeping in!”

Despite the end of this chapter, Julie’s story is far from over. Her new goal: 52 more marathons by 2020. “I am still running alongside Pancreatic Cancer Action Network with our hope to double the survival rate of pancreatic cancer by 2020.”

An inspiring figure, Julie continues to share her positive attitude and sincere spirit. And she encourages others to find a cause of their own. “Follow your dreams; follow what’s in your heart. If it resonates in your soul, then go for it. Life is short. This is our chance to help other people. It may be hard, but don’t give up. It’s a journey. People focus on the final finish line, but the beauty is found along the way, in the journey.”

Follow Julie’s continued adventures and make a donation to the cause on her website: http://marathongoddess.com/.ImageStory by: Dustin Diehl

Copyright Kona Marathon, All rights reserved

3 Ways to Run Through the Heat

Dealing with high temperatures and humidity on race day is a critical success factor: If you can’t or don’t know how to do it, your day could end prematurely and most likely your finishing time will fall outside of your goal.

That said the heat affects many runners long before they reach the starting line. Simply based on where they live and the time of year, these folks spend the majority of their training schedule attempting to avoid the performance-killing effects of high temps.

ImageHot vs. Hard

Increased heat means a distorted sense of perceived exertion (your easy pace feels really hard) and an increased heart rate (your body is working double time to keep cool and keep moving). But while your overall performance deteriorates when temps are above an “optimal” range, your muscles aren’t working any harder just because it’s hot. In fact, the opposite is true: the slower you run, the less stress you are placing on your running-specific muscles.

Less stress means less work, and ultimately less adaptation. To put it another way, it’s like being able to bench press 100 lbs, but on really hot days you only put 85 lbs on the bar because it feels harder. The Marathon Nation focus is on quality, not quantity, and so we need to solve for this heat if the training is to work. So how do you continue to keep the pressure on your body to see progress, yet avoid overtraining?

Suggestions

Here are three ideas you can use to adjust your workouts to compensate for the heat. Whatever you do, don’t train yourself so hard you earn a free hospital journey — it’s just not worth it!

1. Run in the early morning. The temps are not as hot and the air quality is pretty good. This is your best bet if your schedule allows for it. Editors note: the Kona Marathon starts at 5:30am for this reason

2. Run slightly further because you’ll be going at a slower pace for a given effort / heart rate. If you wanted to run 7 miles at 9:00 pace, but you can only muster 9:30s or 9:45s, then extend your run to 8 or 8.5 miles. Just make sure you have means to stay hydrated and stay protected in the sun!

3. Adjust the intervals of your harder runs in order to continue running at your normal paces. You can do this by:

  • Running shorter work intervals. Do 6 x 2.5 minutes instead of 3 x 5 minutes;
  • Taking longer recoveries between work intervals so as to be ready for the next work piece; or
  • Splitting tempo runs into intervals. Make that 6 mile tempo run into 3 x 2 miles or 2 x 3 miles with breaks in the middle to hydrate properly and get cool.

Regardless of which option you chose for your particular workout (or entire training cycle), adapting how you train based on the conditions in which you have to train is critical. You can only ignore the realities of heat and its affect on your body and ability to run for so long; learn to bend like a reed!