Every October, we think pink.

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For 31 days (or more), we stand up to cancer. We have telethons. We have fundraisers. We see pink products on all of the shelves and pink tape covers football players uniforms and cleats. In the CrossFit world, we hold Barbells for Boobs. Breast Cancer Awareness. It’s an extremely important cause and the attention brought to it during these few weeks is invaluable. We come together to fight.

However, the number one killer, number one, only gets one week in February. It gets one ‘National Day’ that most people don’t even know about. What is this silent killer I speak of?

Heart disease.

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That’s right. Heart disease is the number one killer of women.

For the next several months, I will be putting up some info for you on heart health. Not only do we lack a focus on women’s heart health, but the nutritional information we are given about how to keep our tickers healthy leaves much to be desired. Low fat, low calorie, high in refined grain and industrial seed oils. It’s CLEARLY not working. I will be bringing you some real food ways to help keep your heart healthy and strong as we approach February and Women’s Heart Week (Feb 1 -7). Unfortunately not only are we seemingly in the dark about the insane prevalence of heart disease in American women, we’re also grossly misinformed about the nutritional routes to take in order to protect our hearts. Heart-healthy diets promoted, even by those with the best of intentions, are often very wrong and not up to date with current science. 

In November 2006, heart disease came into my life with a fury. My mother was a healthy person by all accounts. She ate the low fat, whole grain based diet that her doctor suggested. She spent an hour on the elliptical most days. Sure, she had been feeling a little tired lately but what working woman isn’t?  We would later find out that this ‘normal fatigue’ was the sign we missed. On Nov 17, she went to bed, and my family changed forever. Dilated Cardiomyopathy resulted in sudden cardiac arrest and my fascination with women’s heart health began. In looking into the thing that silently and suddenly killed my mom, I found that not only was this something that was playing a role in my life, but played a role in the lives of millions. Why had I never heard this before? Why had no one told me about it? How is it possible that we were never told that it was heart disease that was going to be our most likely battle? How could we be left so in the dark? 

Heart disease kills more women than anything else every year: 8.6 million worldwide to be exact.

Almost 300,000 women in the US die each year from heart attack (267,000+) or heart failure (32,000+).
Just to put it into context: That’s SIX TIMES the number taken by breast cancer.

Heart attack and disease is often thought of as a men’s health issue. The facts, though, tell a different story:

– Almost 32,000 women die from congestive heart failure each year. This accounts for over 60% of heart failure deaths.

– 8 million women in the US are currently living with heart disease.

– Under age 50, heart attacks are twice as likely to result in death in women than in men.

– 43% of women who suffer a heart attack will die within one year, compared to 24% of men.

Why don’t we pay attention?  How did we miss this?

Every year I think to myself, how I want to do something to bring more attention to this. We see streets, stores, NFL Teams, all turn pink for a month every year…yet heart disease gets maybe a few people wearing red one random day in February. It doesn’t add up. When I tell people that it’s heart disease that causes the most death – they’re shocked. Nobody seems to know about this. It needs to change. We need to stand up and fight for our hearts.  I want to do everything in my power to make sure that heart disease does not enter my life. That I do what is necessary to keep my heart healthy.  Learning about what foods I can eat to support it, exercising in a way that strengthens it, educating myself…it’s all great for me…but I want to, need to, spread the word.

This will be the year. I am beyond excited to announce Girls With Heart: A Team Competition.

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From myself here at EatDrinkWOD, along with Absolute Strength Gym, we bring you ‘Girls With Heart‘. A team competition day where we will wear red, work together, and raise not only awareness but much needed funds.

Proceeds will benefit The Women’s Heart Foundation. More details will be coming in the coming weeks. Right now, (NJ and Tri-State Areas) simply SAVE THE DATE, February 7, 2015. You can get more information at the Girls With Heart Facebook Page. OR Register your team here.

Teams of 4 – 2 men and 2 women, competing in WODs we all know and love to hate – the girls (with a twist, of course).

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WORKOUT 1: NANCY WENT ROWING

One male and one female athlete from each team will alternate rounds of:

300m Row
15 OHS (95#/65#)
On the 5th and last round, one team mate completes the row, and tags teammate in to complete the OHS.

WORKOUT 2: WHAT’S YOUR FRAN TIME?

The other male and female pair from each team will complete ascending Fran as a team:

9-15-21 Thrusters/Pull Ups (105/75)
Male Completes Round of 9
Female Completes Round of 9
Male Completes Round of 15
Female Completes Round of 15
Duo completes round of 21 as a team, one partner working at a time

FINAL WORKOUT: GIRLS RELAY
ALL TEAM MEMBERS

 

Team Isabel
30 Snatches (125/75)
Women go first, pair must reach 30 snatches before men can go
When women finish 30 snatches, the team changes the weight and the men complete their 30.
When 30 are complete, weights change back to women’s weight for…

Team Double Grace
60 Ground to Over Head (135/95)
Women go first, pair must reach 30 C & J before men can go
When women finish 30 snatches, the team changes the weight and the men complete their 30.
When 60 are complete…

Team Karen (16 @ 10’/9’)

150 Wall Balls broken as needed. One teammate works at a time


The winning team will receive prizes from The Natural Grip, Fashletics, Whole Life Challenge, Exo Bars, MMM…Coffee, and more to be announced!

In health,

Kristin

*Numbers via WomensHeart.org, TheHeartFoundation.org, and World-Heart-Federation.org.