Welcome back, sports fans. I hope you made it through March Madness unscathed and are now settled in for my favorite time of the year — baseball season. While it’s tough being a Cubs fan, it’s exciting knowing there are two Major League Baseball players who officially trust their health to USANA. More on them later in this blog post.
But first, some very exciting news. Earlier this week the International Olympic Committee officially approved women’s ski jumping for inclusion in the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia!
This is huge! Not only does it mean incredibly deserving athletes get to realize their dreams of competing on sport’s grandest stage, but it also means a giant step forward for athletic equality. Did you know ski jumping (and Nordic Combined, which includes ski jumping) was the only discipline in the Olympic Games that didn’t allow women to participate?
USANA, as you may know, is the official health supplements supplier of the Visa U.S. Women’s Ski Jumping Team and is excited to add yet another Olympic team to its highly successful Team USANA!
“Personally, this means a lot to me,” said Lindsey Van, the 2009 world champion. I started ski jumping when there were no international women’s competitions. Women’s ski jumping has been growing over the past 10 years, but inclusion in the Olympics is what our sport needed to take the next step. We’ve worked really hard as athletes fighting for our sport, so this feels like a big success.”
Here’s what Dan Macuga, USANA’s vice president of marketing, public relations, and social media, said last November when the sponsorship was announced: “We hope our financial support of these tremendous athletes will help get them the resources and recognition they deserve. We wholly support the inclusion of women’s ski jumping in the Olympics and we will do our part to get them there.”
Here’s a video from the press conference:
If you’re unable to view the video, please click here.
We have several updates for our boxing fans. First, congratulations again to Mike Lee on his big win in late February. He’s back in the ring again on May 6 at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada. It’s scheduled to be televised on ESPN2. Contact John Lee at (630) 400-6380 for tickets and tell him you are with USANA Health Sciences to receive a special price on ringside seats (and a Team Lee t-shirt). Room blocks are also available.
By the way, did you pick up a copy of the March 21 issue of ESPN magazine? It featured a great photo of Mike!
Our friend Siju Shabazz, who we introduced you to here in March, recently won another bout in Clovis, New Mexico, at the Golden Gloves State Championships and sent us the following update:
“Some people ask me why I am competing in the Golden Gloves, considering I have a bye into the USA National Championships in June, where the top 4 boxers qualify for the US Olympic Trials. Well, for one it is a very prestigious tournament and winning it two times will look very good on my resume. Second, the winner of the Golden Gloves earns one of the other 4 spots into the Olympic Trials. So I’m competing because I love to box and want to take advantage of every opportunity I have to get on that podium in London (at the 2012 Summer Games).”
Now, Siju is focusing on staying in shape with a lot of running, bike riding “hard gym work and lots of sweating.” He reports that he is ordering USANA Nutrimeal as he continues to train. “I want to say thank you again to Dr. Wentz and every single one of my USANA family members,” Siju says. “Now that i have joined one of the strongest, healthiest families in the world my journey to the Olympic podium in London seems a whole lot easier!!!”
A professional boxing event was held at Southampton Arena last week. “The majority of the people pictured are using all the USANA products,” he writes. Matty Tew, Mark “Kid Kurylak” Coombs, Floyd “Pacman” Moore, Jon Fernandes, and Tony Hill.
No losses since starting USANA, Justin writes. Way to go!!!
Finally, we wish all the best to Jose Antonio Rivera on his impending comeback, which is now set for May 20 in Worcester, Massachusetts.
Back to Baseball
As mentioned earlier, two Major League Baseball players are now USANA-sponsored athletes. Keep an eye on Kevin Kouzmanoff, a third baseman for the Oakland A’s, and D.J. Carrasco, a pitcher for the New York Mets. Here’s what they have to say about USANA:
“USANA’s vitamins are my favorite — I’ve been taking them since 2009 and they help me stay on top of my game,” Kevin says. “I also enjoy the Peanut Butter Crunch Nutrition Bars, which are nutritious but also delicious and great to have on the road.”
“Through the course of a 200+ game schedule and the rigors of travel, I demand a lot from my body,” D.J. says. “With the help of USANA, I can count on being healthy and know my body is receiving the best vitamins and minerals possible. In turn, I know I can compete at the highest level possible.”
We wish them the best this season!
- Congratulations to water ski jumper Ryan Dodd on being ranked No. 1 in March by the International Water Ski Federation. He recently finished first in two events at the Moomba Masters and grabbed first in the Night Jump in Perth.
- George Bovell was named the 2010 Male Swimmer of the Year at the Amateur Swimming Association of Trinidad & Tobago’s Award Ceremony. He also took first place in the 50M Freestyle at the Spanish Long Course Nationals in Madrid, Spain. He is now ranked seventh in the world for the Men’s 50 Free.
- Speed Skating Canada has posted some strong results recently in Europe, led by Charles Hamelin who captured two silvers at the ISU World Short Track Championships in Great Britain. For the women, Christine Nesbitt won gold in the 1,000M at the ISU World Distances Championships in Germany. Check out Speed Skating Canada’s website for updates.
- Keep an eye on the Utah Grizzlies, who opened the ECHL playoffs against Stockton on Tuesday.
- Here’s a great interview with champion triathlete Melanie McQuaid.
- Saw this note on Facebook: US Speedskater Rebekah Bradford will be singing Take Me Out to the Ballgame on April 13 during the 7th-inning stretch of the Minnesota Twins game. Nice!
- Race car driver Billy Johnson finished second at the Kia 200 in Homestead, Florida, in early March.
- Check out the results from the 2011 World Luge Championships Presented by USANA Health Sciences. Plus, take a look at USA Luge’s new logo at the right, as well as the organization’s new website.
- Steer wrestler Todd Suhn is set to compete tonight in Longdale, Nevada, and tomorrow in Pocatello, Idaho.
- Congratulations to Biathlon Canada on its recent successes in the Biathlon World Championships and the Biathlon North American Championships.
- Did you follow the WTA at recent events in Indian Wells, California, and Miami, Florida? First-class tennis! Here’s a link to the schedule for the rest of the year so you can keep updated on everything WTA, including the latest from USANA’s Brand Ambassadors.
We created a specific Twitter list that includes several USANA Athletes. This is a great place to read about what our athletes are up to between these posts (and much more that won’t fit here). Check it out…
Many of the mentioned athletes are either distributors or dedicated users who have received compensation for their partnership and/or complimentary USANA products.