EAGLE RIVER - Life as a division one athlete isn't always glamorous. Getting to that level can be down-right demanding.
Just ask future Badger Austin Ramesh.
Ramesh excelled for Northland Pines in football and hockey. Now he's getting ready to train with some of the bigger boys.
Ramesh had his final workout in Eagle River this afternoon.
He's leaving for Madison on Friday.
Ramesh has been working out with Rhinelander native Matt Huebner for the last 3 months. His football career included a stint of indoor pro ball. He also owns Next Level Nutrition.com.
Ramesh will have summer training with the Badgers. He says the reality is hitting both himself and his family.
"I've been trying to prepare for it mentally as much as I can," says Ramesh. "But, I'm sure when I get (to Madison) it will be set in stone the way it will be the next four or five years. I've been pretty nervous a couple of months back. I guess you could say it's more excitement now. My mom is getting pretty emotional now, that's to be expected. But they're happy."
Huebner spent one season the Green Bay Blizzard indoor football team.
He adds, "the closer he (Austin) gets to coming to the goal, the harder he's working. You can't measure his heart. It's getting bigger and bigger."
Austin will not officially join the team until the spring of 2014. That was a condition of his scholarship.
"He's tasting success," says Huebner. "He's getting a feel for it. I think he's ready to explode when he gets on the scene."
ACROSS THE NORTHWOODS - 4.7 might seem like just a random number, but it gives us an idea of just how cold it was this year. 4.7 degrees was the average temperature for this winter. It's the coldest winter in more than a century.
It’s common to see these sights and hear these sounds in a typical winter. But this year, we heard them a bit more. The Northwoods fought through it’s snowiest and coldest winter on record. What made it so rare was the persistent cold.
NORTHWOODS - Home sales fell in the state of Wisconsin, but they're on the rise in the Northwoods.
Real Estate experts say home sales are up 5% in Oneida County. Home sales for the Northwoods are up 4%. Experts say right now it's a buyers market.
“If you're a seller right now you are probably going to be seeing some low ball offers,” says Ashlei Highfill, Century 21 Sales Associate. “We just encourage people to respond to any offer that they get not to just reject it or be offended but these days we are seeing a lot of buyers coming in and offering a lot less than what sellers are asking for.”
Experts say fewer homes are being foreclosed. This allows more families to make first time home purchases.
“It’s great to see that people are obviously getting back to work so they can afford to take that opportunity to put their family in their first home it's exciting for all of us,” says Highfill. “We're always happy to see somebody get that first house for their kids we're seeing some people that are making more money now so they're buying a move up house.”
Overall home sales in Wisconsin fell 11% compared to this time last year.
MERRILL - Hospitals can sometimes scare kids and even many adults.
That's why one Northwoods hospital wants those kids to be comfortable with doctors if they ever need their help.
Merrill kindergarteners visited Ministry Good Samaritan Health Center on Wednesday.
The kids got to see an ambulance, physical therapy and x rays.
"We try to show them that you know what, the hospital isn't so scary. And we bring them through different areas that they may experience when they come in or they have a family member here. And a lot of times children, if they don't know, they're very afraid. A hospital can be very intimidating, says Jane Bentz, Director of Foundation and Community Outreach.
Cooking for people with multiple, chronic health conditions
MINOCQUA - For people struggling with chronic conditions like diabetes or heart disease, cooking can be a challenge.
But being careful with how you cook doesn't mean your meal has to be bland.
One dietician teaches the "Cooking for Multiple Diseases" class at Nicolet College in Minocqua.
People taking her class need help finding the best recipes for their conditions.
"Maybe they have diabetes and their spouse has heart disease. Or other people in the family may have a different disease," said Mary Sikora-Petersen, a Registered dietician. "They want to know, how [to] cook a meal that's going to be for everybody in the family."
Petersen also stresses the importance of using healthier ingredients without losing flavor. One way to do that is by using seed-based seasonings and avoiding too much salt.
"[Add] flavors to food without adding salt. Certainly, salt adds flavor," said Petersen. "But there are other ways to add flavor, such as adding ground seasonings, adding fresh herbs to the foods."
Petersen also recommends using light olive oils and whole wheat products.
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