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Coolibar Athletes

Coolibar Athletes Kaitlyn Price

Pro Golf Dream is on Hold – For Now

Kaitlyn Price - Golf

What does a Coolibar 2014 Sponsored Athlete do when injury temporarily takes her out of the game? Switch sports, of course!

By Kaitlyn Price

Unfortunately, this summer hasn’t gone exactly as planned. As most of you know, injuries are a part of living an active lifestyle. While they never seem to come at a good time, they can, in the long run, make you stronger. This summer has been frustrating to say the least.

It started on a high: graduating college, playing well in my first events, and preparing for Q-school [the annual qualifying tournaments required for membership in pro golf tours such as the LPGA]. But sadly I have sustained a shoulder injury that will keep me from attending Q-school this year. While my dream of playing professionally is on hold for the moment, I am taking this time to rehab my shoulder and get back into fighting shape to give it a whirl again next year.

Since I have been taking a break from playing in tournaments and practicing I have had more time to do some other activities. One of the activities I have taken up is fishing. My brother is an avid fisherman and he takes me out on his boat to fish the Intracoastal Waterway.Kaitlyn Price - fish

Much like golf, fishing takes a lot of patience as well as long periods of time in the sun. The Marina Sun Hat and the Quarter Zip Long Sleeve Fitness Pullover have been great assets to a day on the water. The picture shows a black drum I caught while wearing my Quarter Zip Long Sleeve Fitness Pullover!

Although I was skeptical at first of wearing long sleeves in the summertime, I have been amazed at how well the Coolibar clothing keeps you cool and protects your skin from the sun. Coolibar clothing has definitely enhanced my wardrobe and keeps me looking good while staying cool and protected.

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Coolibar Athletes Valerie Stewart

The Athlete Within

Valerie Stewart - Kayak

By Valerie Stewart

In fourth grade I ruled on the four square court. NO one could knock me out of the server’s square. My family didn’t know and I didn’t receive any blue ribbons, but I knew and it made me feel great.

Thinking back, I realize that I took no specific pleasure in beating the other kids. The payoff was the sense of power that being the best gave me. In an era when parents and teachers didn’t constantly stroke and support children, it was up to us to find a sense of identity and pride. I see now that it was incredibly satisfying to beat all the boys at a time when girls weren’t encouraged to be athletes.

As an adult, what I don’t like about competition is making the other women feel badly when I beat them. What I do like is the sense of power and personal accomplishment that winning gives me. Many athletes say that they are really competing against themselves. Which is why timed competitions are so much more satisfying than judged ones; the former are not subjective, and athletes can accurately measure their own progress.Valerie Blog2 A

I define “athlete” as a person who has decided to commit to a physical activity, while working to improve their skills.  In other words, anyone who chooses to can be an athlete. You may be drawn to a sport, or you may want to try out various activities to find the right fit. Don’t worry about your age or past experience or what you “should” do;  if you don’t enjoy it, you won’t do it.

I joined several kayaking groups last summer as a newbie, and am thrilled to have found another sport that I love. I’ll compete in some casual Class 1-2 kayaking events, but kayaking is primarily my safe and peaceful sport. A chance to discover the rivers, lakes, and bays of Northern California, while meeting lots of men and women over 40 who like to do the same thing. We share the delight of seeing eagles, herons, egrets, osprey, pelicans, geese, seals, otters, sea lions, turtles, even sharks and whales in their natural habitat as we float by. A year ago I didn’t realize that these experiences existed.

When I started snowboarding, I was totally unaware of snowboarding competitions. I hadn’t competed in anything since I was a kid in Horse 4H. But my willingness to try a new sport at an “old” age opened up a whole world of unforeseen experiences. I found myself competing on a national level against other women my age who also loved the sport. I produced two award-winning snowboarding videos, and interviewed pro boarders from around the world as they competed to qualify for snowboarding’s historic entry into the Olympics. I competed alongside Shaun White as he evolved from a promising nine-year-old into a multiple Olympic gold medalist. And I found a sport that expresses exactly who I am.

So be open, and ignore your doubts. And the doubts of others. You never know what life may bring if you’re ready to let it in.


Valerie’s Product Pick:

Valerie Stewart - Coolibar Swim Tights

If you thought you could never swim in public again because of your “imperfect” legs, you were wrong. Coolibar has introduced a new age of swimwear – the Active Swim Tight.  It comes in two styles; with or without an attached skirt.  And it’s offered in three lengths; above the knee, below the knee, and above the ankle. The SUNTECT® fabric is UPF 50+ and resists chlorine and saltwater. I own three of these, and will buy more when they’re offered in more colors.

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Coolibar Athletes Jim Webster

The Spirit of Competition Includes Sun Safety

Jim Webster "Web"

Coolibar continues highlighting our Sponsored Athletes for 2014. Here, long range marksman Jim Webster talks about striving for excellence and staying safe at the same time.

By Jim Webster

If I were to wager, I’d bet most of you have probably heard the phrase, “you have to burn before you tan”.  That was a favorite quote around my house.  We heard it every year from relatives when the family would go to VA Beach during the summer.

Vacation was always the last two weeks in August; right before school started when the sun absolutely baked the sand every day. You left for the beach first thing in the morning and didn’t come home until dinner. Umbrellas – not a chance. If you got too hot you just jumped in the water. That’s just the way it was 35 years ago.  And bake we did, then peel, then eventually the pink would turn brown by the time we were ready to head back to NY.

I am fortunate that my father’s side of the family is from the St. Kitts, a small island in the Caribbean about 200 miles southeast of San Juan.  This heritage means I tan quite easily, and over the years I have spent more than my share of time in the sun. So far I have been lucky. I will turn 49 this summer and have only had one spot on my arm that needed to be checked. It turned out to be nothing.

But that wasn’t the case for a friend of mine. Crockett, as he was known, was 50 years old in October of ‘99 when the doctor examined what he thought was a mole on his shoulder. It proved to be melanoma, and a short time later my friend lost his fight with skin cancer.

Jim Webster - Long Range Shooting

Long-range shooting competitions are one of my passions.  Events are held in wide-open areas.  They have to be for safety purposes. Picture an area that is 10 football fields long by five football fields wide.

Shooting begins early in the morning and runs until evening (e.g. similar to the days at the beach), and the only shade is what you find under the brim of your hat. Take in too much sun during the day and not only will your performance suffer, you could find yourself in a fight where the odds are not in your favor.

In my mind, what makes me an athlete it is what makes us all athletes: a willingness to push ourselves through whatever adversity life presents. Whether it is parenting, being a good friend, or success in work or competition, inherently we all want to do well. It feels good to perform well, and even better to win. Being able to harness this drive separates an average performance from an exceptional one.

Am I different than most? I don’t view it that way.  I am fortunate to have a supportive family and good friends. I do everything I can to make each day and each experience the best possible.

The bottom line: I enjoy spending time outside with my family and traveling to competitions. I enjoy the beach, and can’t wait to go back.  Simply stated, I don’t want to miss out on any of those opportunities. If being smart about my exposure to UV makes those things possible, then it is worth my time and effort. Coolibar makes is easy with comfortable active wear for every sport.

Have fun and stay safe,

WEB

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Coolibar Athletes Kaitlyn Price

For Aspiring Pro Golfer, Long Days in the Sun are Par for the Course

Kaitlyn Price - Golf

Coolibar highlights another 2014 Sponsored Athlete.

By Kaitlyn Price

As a competitive golfer, there aren’t many days off. The summer months are the heart of the competitive season, and I am taking advantage of the plethora of events to prepare myself for LPGA Qualifying School in August. It is important to have all aspects of your golf game in shape because each tournament brings a new challenge.

While each day is a little different, my general routine consists of getting to the course in the morning and working for about three hours on chipping/pitching, putting, and full swing drills. I then go home, eat lunch, and cool off for a little before either going for a bike ride or heading to the gym. In the afternoon (if it’s not raining), I like to go back out to the course and play as many holes as I can.

During tournament rounds, I am usually in the sun for about seven hours straight. This consists of an hour of warm-up, five hours to play, and then another hour after the round to work on my game. On these days it is very important to be smart about the sun, because not only is it important to protect your skin, but the sun is also mentally draining.

Since I am in the sun anywhere from three to nine hours a day, sun protection is extremely important. Hats, sunglasses, and sunscreen are all imperative for long days in the sun.  Before the day gets started, I apply sunscreen to all exposed areas and I have to reapply a few times throughout the day. Coolibar clothing has been a great asset to my sun protection routine. The Swim Skort, although not created for golf, is my new favorite piece of clothing for the golf course!

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Coolibar Athletes Jerry Leonard

Discipline, Dedication…and Sun Protection

Jerry Leonard, Football Coach

Coolibar highlights another 2014 Sponsored Athlete.

By Jerry Leonard

I began playing sports as a child growing up in New Orleans to occupy my time and keep me out of trouble and off the streets. I realized I love competition and the discipline and dedication required to be successful.

Jerry Leonard - Coolibar 2014 Sponsored AthleteThat discipline and dedication began to carry over into many other aspects of my life. This helped me in the classroom as a student, in my own classroom as a teacher, and on the field as a coach. Being a multi-sport athlete I was and am still able to compete in a variety of ways, as a coach and as golfer and power lifter.

Sun protection is extremely important to me as a football coach to stay safe in the sun. We are outside conditioning all summer long in the Louisiana sun. It can be brutal. It is very humid in the south and sweat easily washes off the typical sunscreen. Wearing protective clothing provides the additional protection I need to feel comfortable in the sun without the worry of skin cancer.

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Coolibar Athletes Leslie Jackson

Bringing the Love of Stand Up Paddleboarding to Every Part of Life

Leslie Jackson - SUP

Coolibar highlights another Sponsored Athlete for 2014.

By Leslie Jackson

Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP) is a new sport to me, and one that makes both my body and mind feel good.  The sport itself is a great core strengthener and one that allows you to push yourself to your limits.

It’s fun to test your speed and balance and practice little tricks that make you faster. What I really love about the sport is the ability for everybody to enjoy it. I can go out with my kids or I can go out with a friend and I know I am going to have fun and get a really good workout. That to me, is what exercise is all about!

On days when I paddle, my routine starts well before I make it to the water, but it’s all part of the sport and nothing I complain about. I get dressed in my Coolibar workout attire and lather up in sunscreen, then throw on a hat and sunglasses and am ready to begin. If only I could walk out my door and into the water, but that is not the case.

So, I walk out the door and load my gear.  I drive a big SUV and have a nice SUP rack on it, but it is still work and part of my routine. I grab my paddle and put in the car, then take my board out of the bag and hoist it over my head.  Once I get it on the roof racks, I tighten it down and away I go.

I generally paddle with at least one friend and we meet at the water’s edge ready for a workout.  Somedays we go for a long easy paddle where we just enjoy the water and feel the glide under our feet and other days we do fast intervals with a beach workout.

Whatever it is we decide to do, it is always nice to be out on the water and to enjoy the Southern California weather!

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Coolibar Athletes Trey Seibold

A Tennis Pro, A Teacher…And That’s Just the Start

Coolibar continues to highlight our 2014 Sponsored Athletes. For a look at all of this year’s sponsored athletes, go here.

By Trey Seibold

I am a tennis professional and have been teaching tennis in Florida for the past 27 years.  Growing up swimming and playing tennis competitively I have continued with both sports as an adult.  In 2012 I competed in the U.S. Masters Swimming in Omaha, Nebraska, where I finished 5th in the 800-meter freestyle. Once a month I do Sprint Triathlons and race my surfski (kayak), and I have finished on the podium in both!

I love to compete and to teach, both of which I do outdoors. On top of teaching tennis I also teach sailing, personal training, and pursued my certification in kite boarding.

Performing all of these activities outside obviously requires lots of sun protection.  I have tried so many types of clothing to keep me protected but nothing has worked as well as Coolibar.

For the past year I have been wearing Coolibar’s UPF 50+ Cool Fitness Shirts and Fitness Pants.  Not only have they worked better than any other clothing that I have tried, but also better than any sun block.  I wear Coolibar 10-12 hours every day and these clothes are very comfortable to wear; with their side mesh panels, they produce nice moisture wicking capabilities!

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Coolibar Athletes Valerie Stewart

Learning to Win: Coolibar Athlete Does It Her Way

Valerie Stewart - Coolibar

BValerie Stewart MAINy Valerie Stewart

Snowboarding is the sport that makes me feel truly alive. I’m fully present when flying down a mountain on a race course, or carving powder in the trees. My thoughts are not cluttered or stuck in past or future; I am completely in the moment. For me, snowboarding creates an ideal state of mind.

I’m a self taught boarder because snowboarding teachers didn’t exist when I started 21 seasons ago. The first few days were tough, but then it clicked. I decided to compete in the Lake Tahoe division of USASA (United States of America Snowboard Association) when I heard I could win a snowboard.  I had no idea that it would lead to years of competing on the national level. USASA has an Open Class category which any age can enter if they are good enough and brave enough. Olympic medalist Shaun White was in that group as a very young teenager.

Intently observing the Open Class compete is how I learned to win. I watched the racers with laser focus. What was their body position in the start gate?  Their angle out of the gate? Where did they land, and what happened – did they hit a rut or patch of black ice?  When did they initiate their turn around the first gate? Did they fall in the trough formed by all the previous racers, or did they cut the gate a little wide to avoid the trough – losing a hundredth of a second, but still standing to charge the next gate? Observation is a marvelous teacher. My other “teacher” is simply time on the hill, always pushing myself to go faster and carve like a pro.

Valerie StewartWhen I’m boarding, the only skin that is exposed is part of my face. I always wear a helmet and goggles, so the big issue is my nose and mouth. Zinc-based sunscreens are definitely the best protection. Blue Lizard is a great brand, because the zinc disappears instead of making me look like a ghost. I also apply it to the back of my hands for when I take my gloves off.  To cover my neck, I wear Coolibar’s Sun Gaiter, which comes in a rainbow of colors. If it’s cold out, I pull the gaiter up over my nose and can still breathe without fogging my goggles. My other protective strategy is to do some stretching before and after boarding to avoid injury.

The Waterfront Pullover is ideal for a spring day on the slopes, or over a swimsuit in the summer. It’s super stylish, with ruching at the shoulders and wrists, as well as very technical. The aqua SUNTECT® fabric resists chlorine and saltwater, stretches four ways, dries quickly, and is super breathable. The half zipper allows for temperature adjustment, and the thumbholes protect hands from the sun. There’s even a hidden zipper in the side seam for money and keys. The fabric doesn’t wrinkle, and doesn’t shrink when machine washed and dried. I’m lovin’ this shirt, and own it in three colors.

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Coolibar Athletes Rich Early

Age, Opposing Team – But Not Sun – Are My Biggest Adversaries

Rich Early - Coolibar 2014 Sponsored Athlete

By Rich Early, 2014 Coolibar Sponsored Athlete

I play for a Senior Softball age 65 tournament team that travels throughout Oregon and Washington, and will also play in Reno, Nevada and St. George, Utah this year. To play competitive tournament softball I work out at home five days a week at 6 am. I may not be the fastest player on the circuit but I work out hard in order to at least be in the conversation.

Working out at home has several advantages besides not having to go out into the cold and drive 10-15 minutes to a gym. Not having to share equipment and deal with distractions is a plus.

I primarily do multi-jointed exercises for a full body workout which I perform using a three-day rotation. This rotation consists of chest on day one, back on day two, and shoulders on day three. I do three sets of two exercises for these muscle groups along with core work and lower body exercises. On the next three-day rotation I select different exercises to perform for each muscle group, along with changing core and lower body exercises. I rotate between strength days and endurance days by altering the weight and the repetitions. Using the three-day rotating system Monday through Friday creates different days during the week I perform the exercise. It’s not as complicated as it sounds and I’ve found it eliminates boredom and training ruts.

The home gym workouts also allow me to get the most out of practice on the ball field. Since we are able to use a synthetic turf field, we are out two days a week for hitting and fielding practice as long as it’s not too rainy or cold. At this time I am able to work on increasing running speed and strengthening my throwing arm. At our age we have to keep working on our abilities to hold off their decline.

Even on the cloudy and rainy days at practice I have to be aware of UV exposure and make sure that I’m protecting myself. When the sun is out in its glory I have to cover up as much as I can to block out the UV rays.

Before I discovered Coolibar clothing I envisioned I would burn up and explode like a vampire if the sun touched me. Ok, a little exaggerated, but that is how I felt.

Now with the Coolibar Sun Gaiter, the ZnO Long-Sleeve shirt or the new Cool Long-Sleeve Fitness Shirt I’m covered up and confident in my sun protection. I have to admit that I was self-conscious the first time I wore the gaiter to cover my entire head, neck and ears. It was short-lived, after playing a weekend of softball and not having any of the problems that come with too much sun exposure. It may sound silly but now I want the other players and fans to notice me wearing Coolibar sun protection. It makes me want to play better!

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Coolibar Athletes Mekia Earle

Deadlines! Even in Hawaii, Being a Mom, Teacher & Athlete Requires Planning (and Stamina)

Mekia Earle - Coolibar Sonsored Athlete 2014

Another Coolibar 2014 Sponsored Athlete…

By Mekia Earle

I know that the parents out there will relate to my morning frenzy. Some may call it a routine, I suppose, but I prefer to call it “somewhat controlled chaos.”

As a teacher, I need to get to work by 7:15 am to prepare for the three hundred-plus other keiki (Hawaiian for children) in my life. This means that I am up by 5:45 am and am making the fruit and kale smoothie for the whole family by 6:00. And that’s the relaxing part. The craziness starts with my own two kids up a few minutes later, out of PJs, into clothes, breakfast, and out the door by 6:45. Deadlines!

Yes, my wonderful husband helps in this process, too.  He uses the double stroller and runs our son to day-care and then continues his trek taking our daughter to preschool.  He needs the exercise.

Because both kids will be outside playing in the tropical sun, my last two duties as morning mom are applying a thick layer of sunscreen to each and then sending them off running up the hill with two, make that three, kisses. My husband usually deserves one, too.

Then I head to school, but not before I also lather up with sunscreen as I, like my kids, will be outside for most of the day. My sunscreens of choice are Elta MD and Neutrogena – both highly recommended by the best dermatologist on the island.

Upon arrival at school, I set up the necessary equipment for the day’s lesson, which could range from gymnastic equipment to basketball hoops to obstacle courses. Teaching physical education is my dream job for many reasons.  I am lucky enough to play most of the day with eight- to ten-year-old girls, spreading the love of movement to the keiki. This is a built-in light workout; I don’t even have to make the time.

On my coffee breaks I get my heavier workout in.  I either hit the road running or do some kind of crossfit – a high-intensity workout in the school weight room.  These heavier workouts are my training for 10ks, which I hope I’ll feel ready for by summer.

As I tell my students, husband and children, it is very important to reapply sunscreen every two hours, or even sooner after a very sweaty workout.

Also integral in sun protection is clothing. I prefer Coolibar fitness long sleeve shirts and have found that these are the best, most cost-effective and most comfortable way to keep cool and protected at the same time.

As you can tell, I wear multiple different hats in a day, literally and figuratively, and depending on the time of the day, I can be seen around the campus wearing anything from visors to large rim straw hats to Super Sport Hats. My all-time favorite hat would be the Ultra Sun Hat, which keeps my neck protected as well.

After school, I pick up the kids, although I hate to say, I drive. My muscles would revolt if I even considered doing the kid pick-up running. Once my family is all back home, the fun chaos starts all over (although it is much different than the morning chaos).

The only true deadline in the evenings is kid bedtime and depending on what book we are all reading together before bedtime, we can cheat a bit with that.

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