Tag Archives: athletes

#EliteAthletes at Risk for #Death @skyyogastudio .com

Did you know an ultra-elite athlete has a greater chance of suddenly dropping dead than the average person?

We shudder when we hear or read about an athlete dying young and yet it continues to happen every single year. Hank Gathers, Reggie Lewis, and Olympic athlete Claire Squires are some famous examples. But could their deaths have been prevented with a simple electrocardiogram screening (ECG or EKG)?

For one mother, it’s too late. On April 2, 2000 Maruchi Mendez’s 20-year-old son Ramiro “Toti” Mendez dropped dead of Sudden Cardiac Death (SCD)- the #1 killer of elite athletes under 30. Toti was an All American, college-baseball star headed to the Major Leagues.

Maruchi Mendez, author of the forthcoming book Finding Home (Sept 2012, Reedy Press) is available discuss a number of topics including:

· How and why this continues to happen?

· Could we be screening or preventing these deaths?

· Should all young American athletes be mandated to get an ECG or EKG?

· Why the International Olympic Committee strongly encourages screenings.

· How big of a threat is SCD to current and future Olympians?

· Why the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology are against mandatory screenings for young athletes.

· Maruchi’s never-before told story about Toti’s life and why she’s on crusade to unmask her son’s “silent killer”

· Anything else you’d like to discuss.

Her son’s sudden death became national news.

Now Maruchi Mendez tells her side of the story: on her remarkable son’s life, an untold secret and her tireless crusade to unmask her son’s “silent killer”


A Memoir of a Mother’s Undying Love and an Untold Secret


Maruchi Mendez

Finding Home: A Memoir of a Mother’s Undying Love and an Unknown Secret, is a mother’s letter to a remarkable son, her golden child, the one who left her too soon. It is the true story of Ramiro “Toti” Mendez, an All-American college baseball player who starred at Florida International University and Miami’s Westminster Christian High School. Toti, who’s athletic endeavors graced local headlines died from an undetected heart condition, without knowing the most important story of his life.

This honest memoir is also about untold secrets. Maruchi Mendez never had the chance to explain to Toti about his birth. Toti was born in Asturias, Spain, and illegally adopted by Maruchi and her husband Ramiro, who brought him into the United States.

Finding Home is refueling the controversial debate over whether or not all young athletes participating in organized sports in the U.S. should be mandated to get an electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) and eloquently raises questions such as: “How much is the life of a college athlete worth?” Mendez asks. “Who is watching out for them?” Every year, the college scouting system monitors performance, speed, and GPA’s but it fails to do the same when it comes to their health. Meanwhile, athletes continue to drop dead in tracks and fields by the hundreds across the country. The strides Mendez has achieved in her son’s name are marked by memories and tears. But they reinforce a mother’s love each day and her resolve to tell his story to the world.

Finding Home, takes you through one woman’s transformation from loss-stricken mother to full-time activist as she challenges the status quo for increased medical screenings, fights to protect young athlete’s health and eloquently raises questions about Sudden Cardiac Death and the state of young athlete’s health in this country.

Maruchi Mendez lives with her family in Miami, Florida, and is a co-founder of JunTos Foundation, a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to help young patients and their families who fall victim to terminal or life-threatening illnesses.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Maruchi Mendez lives with her family in Miami, Florida, and is a co-founder of JunTos Foundation, a non-for-profit organization, whose mission is to help young patients and their families who fall victims to terminal or life threatening illnesses; with the many needs that can arise due to monetary hardship.  After the tragic and untimely death of her son, she has spearheaded several attempts to pass a bill that would protect young athletes by assuring proper medical screening and testing while engaging in the lucrative business of competitive High School, College and University Sports.  Her quest “How much is an athlete’s life worth?” is still a very controversial subject, and remains an unanswered question. Visit the website at: http://maruchimendez.com/

Toti Mendez grew amongst the elite baseball players in Miami. His childhood dream of becoming a professional baseball player was about to come true. Heavily scouted by the leagues, he was a 1998 All American Pitcher, with an era of 1.34, and batting average of 444.  Unknown to all a silent killer struck and took his life during his sophomore season at Florida International University, leaving his family and the baseball community devastated.  His death could have been prevented by proper testing during his high school and college physicals.  The tragedy in question is: How much is one life worth? NCAA and other entities do not impose these rules. There are not enough deaths to warrant the expense that proper heart testing would incur on these institutions. However, numerous athletes in different sports keep dropping in the fields with sudden cardiac death syndromes.

On a personal note, I also feel that, if anything, it is the duty of the American Athletes who have been fortunate enough to live their dreams, to utilize their resources to help.” – Mike Lowell, Major League Baseball World Series MVP and 4 x All Star.

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Finding Home: A Memoir of a Mother’s Undying Love and an Untold Secret

By Maruchi Méndez

Reedy Press, On Sale: September 2012

ISBN: 9781935806301, softcover 6 x 9, 272 pages, $16.95

It’s #Bananas for #Athletes #Energy #Kids and Others @skyyogastudio .com

A compelling new study that was just published within the last hour in the 5/17/12  issue of PLoS ONE, an international, peer-reviewed, open-access, online journal published by the nonprofit Public Library of Science (PLoS). 

Bananas vs. Sports Drinks as Energy Source for Athletes:  First-of-its-kind study finds that bananas provide equal performance, more nutrients and no artificial ingredients versus the most popular sports drinksat about 1/3 of the price!  The study was funded through a grant provided by the Dole Food Company of Westlake Village, Calif.

SUMMARY: A new study published today from researchers at the Appalachian State University Human Performance Laboratory at the North Carolina Research Campus concludes that bananas consumed during exercise provide the same amount of energy as sports drinks, but at just a fraction of the cost. The average sports drinks costs about $1.25 for a 20oz bottle, while bananas cost just 45 cents per pound.

Plus, the study reinforced that bananas provide what sports drinks don’t:  the added boost of improved blood antioxidant capacity and the vitamins, minerals and fiber needed by athletes to maintain their performance.

Coming out on the heels of the May 15 New York Times story highlighting the soda industry’s recent push to replace declining soda sales with sports and energy drinks, the banana study shows that there are still healthy alternatives to salt and sugar filled drinks for athletes and parents around the country.

For details, go to http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0037479.

With Skin Care for Athletes Your Skin Wins @athletesskin

I was recently given the opportunity to review a great new line of natural skincare products formulated for athletes.  Skin Care for Athletes, a line by Morning Indigo, has as unique a beginning as it does products. Founder Taylor Sparks 923(right) describes the company’s start on their site as, “a business without plans for a business. The original line was developed purely out of necessity after a  tumultuous year. I loved natural body products but due to the “tough” year couldn’t afford to buy my favorites, so I opted to make them! With several years of training and experience from skin care companies such as Estee Lauder and Artistry Skin Care, I went onto the internet and started searching for the raw ingredients, in small quantities, to make my necessities – soap, body butter, hair oils.”

This line expanded to include the amazing samples I received: Tri-Facial Toner, Tri-Facial Blemish Wash for all skin types, Tri-Body Wash, Tri-Body Spray, Tri-Facial Serum, and a 12-count bag of Wysi Wipes.

How did a small family product become a line carried as far as Singapore?

“While researching the numerous products that existed in the market and understanding the necessities of an athlete and fitness enthusiast, I realized that there is very little available to them by the way of natural products. What started as something for the family grew into what you now see before you, products made with the athlete and fitness enthusiast in mind and that feel as good as they are for you. We use only the finest essential oils, organic oils, pure castille and floral waters for all of our creations” relates Taylor Sparks, Holistic Aromatherapist at Morning Indigo.

The Tri-Body Collection will have your skin ready for the next game as it:

  • Improve motivation, endurance and stamina
  • Enhance circulation, relieve muscular aches and inflammation
  • Moisturizes and relieves dry, dull skin
  • Eliminate the smell of chlorine from your hair and skin
  • Assists in healing minor wounds, scrapes and insect bites
  • Diminish appearance of fine lines
  • Relax and decompress the mind
  • Reduce instances of Staph infections, Athletes Foot and Bacteria
  • Will not block pores

Did you know that up to 60% of what you put on your skin is absorbed into your bloodstream?

Skin Care for Athletes products are made without:

  • Bismuth Oxychloride
  • FD&C and Lake Dyes
  • Fragrance
  • Mercury
  • Mineral Oil
  • Parabens
  • Petro-chemicals
  • Phthalates
  • Synthetic Preservatives

I have been dealing with a great deal of muscle soreness not just from pregnancy but from all of the classes I have been teaching.  I have cramps and aches in muscles I have never been bothered by before.  When my sample pack was received I decided to use it right away.  I was immediately hit by the delicious smell of the Tri-Facial Blemish wash. It is made with moisturizing Jojoba beads that exfoliate and polish the skin leaving it looking refreshed and renewed. Although I have checked the ingredients and there doesn’t seem to be citrus – it had a clean almost citrus smell to it. After using my skin was noticeably softer and the bumpiness by day two was lessened.  The Tri-Facial Toner was not what I expected having long frequented large company toners I am used to alcohol based mists (which dry the skin out) – the Tri-Facial Toner was a spray, but also emollient which I assume is due to the aloe vera.  The Tri-Facial Serum was also a delight and smelled faintly of carrots, just enough to remind me it was all natural but not too much to make me feel like a rabbit.

With my face taken care of I moved on to pampering my body with the Tri-Body Wash.  It had a very organic, earthy, grassy smell which I attribute to the lemongrass and sandalwood.  These are two smells I normally love but seemed to disagree with me during the end of this pregnancy but it was no fault of the product which can be used as:

  • 3-in-1 Body wash, shampoo, facial cleanser
  • Foot or body soak – eases muscle aches and pains
  • Anti-septic and anti-fungal properties
  • Removes chlorine, dirt, grease and body odor
  • Sooth skin injured by mild road rash, irritations, cuts and insect bites
  • Marathon training
  • Swimmers shampoo and body wash

I got out of the shower and sprayed the Tri-Body Spray all over my tired and edema ridden legs.  If you have ever suffered pitting edema you know how tight and painful it can be.  Within a few moments my legs felt a lot lighter and less likely to split in half. I was impressed so I shared the spray with my husband who recently suffered a chemical burn after mixing two different deodorants. His raw, red, chapped skin has been in need of relief for at least a week but nothing helps the stinging and itching.  I sprayed it all over him and had him rub it in (I love him but I’m not touching his scabby pits!).  He’s not big on words but I’m going to take it as a testament to the spray’s ability to do what it advertises,”This stimulating blend has antibacterial properties and is recommended to relieve cracked, dry and chapped skin” since several times while trying not to scratch the area he has blurted, “I’m going to use that spray stuff” and heads upstairs – plus the fact that a decent amount is now missing.

If you are looking for a great holiday gift to pamper the athlete in your life, or you love a little pampering yourself, head over to  www.skincareforathletes.com and use code Sky Yoga11.  It gives a 25% discount, no minimum purchase necessary and expires on December 16th. Don’t miss the exciting contest to win over $300 worth of products you can enter online or via FB

Tri-Facial Coll large



Tri-Facial Collection ($35.00)






TravelSetTri-Facial Collection Holiday set which also includes a beautiful gift box, the Tri-Facial  Serum and 3 soft exfoliating facial puffs. ($52.00).

Holiday Fitness Gifts: Words to Sweat By

I have decided to post some great holiday fitness gifts that I have received for review.  I know it can be hard to buy for the fitness enthusiast in your life and getting them another gift certificate to their favorite athletic store or apparel shop may be too impersonal for some.  So each review that would make a good holiday gift will be entitled so, starting with Words to Sweat By.

Now I’ll start by saying that I think these are such a cute idea I would purchase some for my fitness studio but they are $9.95 each for the Original Words to Sweat By line and I buy the same sized towels for a fraction at Ikea and we go through a lot of them in a week, about 90-100 total and monthly have to turn a percentage into rags due to overuse so mass purchase of Words to Sweat By just isn’t an option for me, though I wish it were.

These are perfect as a thoughtful gift for the weekend warrior or fitness enthusiast in your life as a birthday, holiday or pick me up gift.  Everyone sweats and everyone needs a little motivation in their lives.  There are a bevy of sayings and each one is printed on colorful cotton and sewn on to the towel – I love the Cupcake and the Cookie Towels, click to find out what they are.  I used my Practice Towel yesterday during Power Yoga and Zumba Class – I thought the saying may be scratchy or get in the way of wiping sweat, but it did not.

WTSB_Practice In yoga, the practice is everything. This towel is therefore a spin on the well-known “practice makes perfect” that instead reminds you to continue in your practice. Instead of searching for perfection, find your center in your practice instead.

This towel is 100% cotton and measures 16 x 24.

It is packaged in a white drawstring organza bag, not only for zero-waste packaging, but also to allow for easy gift giving.

What I found most interesting after perusing the Words to Sweat By website is that they also have a premium line World-Class Words with phrases and signatures from world class athletes and Olympic hopefuls.  Our town has a lot of triathletes in it so how cool would it be to give your friend a World-Class Words towel from Laura Bennett to take on rides and runs? $15.95 is the retail for this unique gift and they have other athletes too, just click to view. The athletes directly benefit from their signatures.

WTSB_Bennett_300dpiHow many times have you been on the last leg of a race and you can see the finish line on the horizon but you feel yourself crashing? World-class triathlete Laura Bennett knows how to push through these moments and offers her mantra, “endure one moment longer” as a way to help you through those trying moments.

The towel is 100% cotton and measures 16 x 24 inches. It is packaged in a drawstring organza bag for zero-waste packaging.

By purchasing a towel, you are supporting Laura in her quest to take home the gold in the 2012 Summer Olympics.

Also available are Tee Shirts and Tanks, Reusable Snack Bags and Zipper Pulls.

Words to Sweat By™ (WTSB) products are designed, developed, and predominantly manufactured by Whimsical Walney in San Jose, CA.

Each towel is appliquéd with an original mantra that is meant to motivate you while you strive to reach your health and fitness goals. The snack bags offered in some of the most popular mantras are a 100% cotton outer shell with a rip stop nylon inner lining.

Each WTSB towel or snack bag is packaged in a drawstring organza bag both to create zero-waste packaging as well as allow for easy gift giving. We recommend that you reuse the bag as a holder for some sweet-smelling potpourri, for small travel goodies, or a for a child’s treasure keeper.

The New Words to Sweat by holiday packages:

– The “To Health and Happiness!” package. A vibrant assortment of Words to Sweat by motivational accessories all packaged in a fabric, baby blue tote for easy gift giving. Items included: Healthy mantra t-shirt, work out towel, reusable snack bag and key chain. Price: $35-$40 based on selection of shirt-style.

– The “Body in Motion” package. A colorful collection of Words to Sweat by motivational accessories all packaged in a fabric market tote in lime green – perfect for gift giving and for taking to your weekend farmer’s markets. Items included: Exert mantra t-shirt, work out towel, reusable snack bag and key chain. Price: $35-$40 based on selection of shirt-style.
See at: http://www.wordstosweatby.com/words-to-sweat-by-2011-holiday-gift-packages

New Words to Sweat by T-shirts and Tanks: The t-shirts are a soft, lightweight (4.3 oz) form-fitting cotton and the tank top is ribbed and also lightweight but just a little thicker at 6.0 oz. Available in sizes small to XXL depending on style. Featured in baby blue, black and navy color fabrics. 100% cotton with screen-printed motivational mantras in these styles below. Priced $19.99 to $24.99. See at:http://www.wordstosweatby.com/shop/tees-and-tanks-new