Friday, May 1, 2009

What's next?

Well, the name of my blog means I either need to stop posting, change the name, or start training for Boston 2010. I've decided on the middle path.

Although training will still be the focus of the blog - I want to explore a topic that interests me - group training. I have a masters degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology and my thesis was on how status of people within groups affect performance within that group. Also, I work for OptumHealth (sister company of UnitedHealthcare) - a company that delivers disease management, wellness programing, online wellness content etc. - basically we are trying to improve the health of our clients and consumers. And finally, I've been lucky to be a part of several groups/teams as a runner - these affiliations have always helped me as a runner.

All of these experiences have led me to believe that group training is a very powerful tool in maximizing performance and fitness. In fact, I think it's the key to improving the low levels of fitness that we see in the US. We need to help people to form groups that meet regularly and support each other as they find out how to live healthier lives. I first started working in the health management field at the University of Michigan, at a research center directed by Dee Edington - who is one of the most respected people in the field. One concept that he discussed often was that improving health isn't just about lowering healthcare costs - it's about improving the "vitality" of our country.

I just found out about an interesting program that Baltimore is starting a program to reduce cardiovascular disease in Baltimore - part of the program is reaching people in the community through churches and barbershops - which seems like an interesting idea. If anybody knows more about this program please let me know.

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