Runner's Web Digest - February 1, 2002
- Runner's Web Digest - February 1, 2002
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New This Week:
We have no personal postings this week.
The winner of our last "Heroes in our Midst" contest was:
Brian McDonald of West Vancouver, BC, correctly identified the photo as that
of Jerome Drayton, Canada's marathon record holder.
The February Running Trivia and Pegasus Quiz are available from the
Also available today is an interview with Canadian triathlete, Natasha
This week's new poll is:" Do you carry any special ID while training?"
Our poll this past week was: "How long have you been an active athlete?"
The results at publication time were:
You can access the poll from our FrontPage as well as voting on and/or
checking the results of previous polls.
If you feel you have something to say that is worthy of a Guest Column
on the Runner's Web, email us at
or leave your comments in one of our Forums available from our FrontPage.
Our Photo of the Week, which was being updated several times during the
week, has been replaced with the Photo Slideshow which will have a
random number of photos you can cycle through. Check it out from our
The FiveStar Site of the Week:
Our FiveStar site of the week for next week is:
Barb Lindquist's web site. Barb is one the top ranked triathletes in the
Check out her site at:
Send us your suggestions for our Five Star site. Please check our list of
previous Five Star Sites available from the Five Star Window under the link
"Previous Five Star Sites" as we do not wish to repeat a site unless it has
undergone a major redesign.
Be sure to check out our Flash Page where we list all recent additions
to the Runner's Web. This page is updated before Monday morning each
For Eastern Ontario and Western Quebec Athletes Only:
The City of Ottawa has recently completed a "Feasibility Study for a
Multipurpose Sport Development and Training Facility" .
The Health, Recreation and Social Services Committee meeting which will
consider this report is scheduled to meet at 9:30 AM on February 7th in the
Champlain Room at City Hall.
The proposed facility would be used by athletes from a number of sports
including track and field and running.
The Runner's Web has created a petition for athletes to express their
support for this City initiative.
For more information on this issue and to sign the electronic position,
click on the "Indoor Facility" graphic on the Runner's Web at:
Running Finally Proves Its Worth:
A fad that survived the skeptics turns out to have extended lives, lowered
risk of heart illness and diabetes, and given people a sense of well-being.
If you are not yet a runner, [this book] will show you how to become
healthier and happier than you have ever imagined you could be. It will do
so no matter how out of shape or fat or old or ungraceful you are, and no
matter how many times you have tried other exercise regimens and failed."
So begins "The Complete Book of Running," the 314-page bestseller by Jim
Fixx that first appeared 25 years ago, kicking off a mass movement of legs
and arms that would later be described as a fitness revolution.
Tens of millions of Americans began running in the late 1970s, and they soon
felt lean and strong and more physically confident than they could remember,
just as the book promised. And though Fixx never claimed that jogging was
guaranteed to lengthen their lives, he implied as much, writing that--with
running--"the heart becomes a distinctly more efficient instrument, capable
of doing more while working less hard." His very tone appalled many doctors.
Whatever the benefits of jogging, they argued, the repetitive pounding alone
could damage the spine, the uterus, the stomach; would, over time, ruin
hips, ankles and knees prematurely; and surely would cut short the lives of
those with weak hearts who pushed themselves too hard.
As if to confirm their fears, on July 20, 1984, Fixx himself collapsed and
died of heart failure--while jogging. He was 52 and seemingly in the best
shape of his life.
"Those who were naysayers at the time said, 'Look, Jim Fixx did all that
running, and it sure didn't do him any good,'" says Dr. William Haskell, a
professor of medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine who studies
the effect of exercise on health. "How good could it be?"
A quarter of a century after it all began, doctors now have some good
answers to that question--because millions of the men and women who started
running as young or middle-aged adults have never stopped. These people have
been running regularly for their entire adult lives, and researchers have
been watching to see what has happened to their bodies and minds.
More...from the LA Times at:
In Fixx's Case, Genes Overtook Exercise:
In the summer of 1984, Jim Fixx appeared very much in his prime. The author
of the 1977 bestseller "The Complete Book of Running" had transformed
himself from an overweight, chain-smoking young man into an exemplar of good
health--and inspired millions to do the same. He was running 10 miles a day.
He was playing tennis. He was 52, famous and very fit.
And one Friday, while traveling in Vermont, he decided to go for a run. On
the afternoon of July 20, Fixx set out from a motel where he was
staying--and never returned. A motorcyclist found his body lying beside
Route 15 in Hardwick later that day. Soon doctors had determined the cause
of death: heart failure. The autopsy exam showed that three of Fixx's
coronary arteries were damaged by arteriosclerosis, and one was almost
More...from the LA Times at:
Heart disease deaths plummet:
The number of people dying from heart disease has fallen by a record amount
in a two-year period.
Figures from the British Heart Foundation show that the number of fatalities
has dropped by 10%.
A staggering 13,000 less people a year died from the UK's biggest killer,
according to figures up to the end of 2000.
It means the UK is on course to reach government targets to reduce the
number of deaths by heart attacks two years earlier than the expected time
But the British Heart Foundation says the number of people actually
suffering from coronary heart conditions is not falling. An estimated 2.6
million people are still living with the disease in the UK.
More...from the BBC at:
Dispelling the Myths of Exercise-Induced Asthma:
By Joanna Zeiger
"Asthma is psychological; it's all in your head." Unfortunately, the 12
million Americans with asthma have heard this false rhetoric all too often.
For all of us who work hard every day to bring our asthma under control,
these declarations are off base, insulting and often the result of
mis-education. Asthma is a disease. More specifically, it is an inflammatory
disorder of the lungs that causes obstruction, due to narrowing, of the
bronchial tubes in the lung, and because that is not enough, there is an
added bonus of mucus and fluid production. These characteristics lead to the
classical symptoms of asthma, including: wheezing, coughing, chest
tightness, and sputum production. Many factors act as triggers for asthma
and they consist of: allergy causing materials (pollens, danders, and
molds), irritants (tobacco smoke and pollution), viral infections (the
simple cold), and for me, particularly exercise. Medical professionals
theorize that exercise-induced asthma is due to the cooling and dehydration
of our lungs that occurs with the more rapid breathing that we experience
during training and racing, especially the harder workouts.
More...from Joanna Zeiger's web site at:
What Are the Specific Benefits of Exercise?
There are many health-related benefits of regular exercise, as this article
Longevity and Aging
Exercise, even after age 50, can add healthy and active years to one's life.
Studies continue to show that it is never too late to start exercising and
that even small improvements in physical fitness can significantly lower the
risk of death. Simply walking regularly can prolong life in the elderly.
Moderately fit people, even if they smoke or have high blood pressure, have
a lower mortality rate than the least fit. Resistance training is important
for the elderly, because it is the only form of exercise that can slow and
even reverse the decline in muscle mass, bone density, and strength. Adding
workouts that focus on speed and agility may be even more protective for
older people. Flexibility exercises help reduce the stiffness and loss of
balance that accompanies aging.
More...from WebMD/Lycos at:
Technology Cures Bad Heartbeats:
(HealthScoutNews) -- A sophisticated technology can wipe out the rogue cells
that cause life-threatening irregular heartbeats, a new study shows.
In a condition called atrial fibrillation, extra heartbeats disrupt the
normal rhythm of the two upper chambers of the heart. These erratic
heartbeats can cause blood to pool inside the chambers. Clots can form and
block arteries, causing strokes or heart attacks.
About 2 million Americans have atrial fibrillation, according to the
American Heart Association (news - web sites) (AHA). In most cases, the
condition can be controlled by drugs such as digoxin or by an implanted
defibrillator that delivers shocks to restore normal beating. However, the
condition can worsen over time.
Now, cardiologists at the University of Michigan report the successful use
of a technology called radiofrequency ablation to find the cells responsible
for the abnormal beats and destroy them with pulses of electricity.
More...from Yahoo at:
Record-breaking feats in Antarctica:
January has been a record-setting month in Antarctica, with the running of
the ultimate southern marathon and completion of the longest circumpolar
An Irishman won the first marathon to finish at the South Pole. Richard
Donovan broke the nine-hour barrier, covering the 42.2km in 8 hours 52
minutes 3 seconds.
Americans Dean Karnazes (9hr 18min 55sec) and Brent Weigner (9hr 20min 5sec)
were the only other competitors to complete the full course.
More...from the Canberra Times at:
Following the gene map:
Scientific advances could spawn more doping by athletes
For Dr. H. Lee Sweeney, 2001 was the year of the rat. Now, 2002 will be the
year of the dog.
And, if all goes well with his canine experiments, he hopes to be using
human guinea pigs just two years from now, replicating the genetic
engineering that created bulked up rodents that others have dubbed
Sweeney, a researcher at the University of Pennsylvania, is hoping a
synthetic gene that tells muscles to produce more insulin-like growth
factor-1 (IGF-1) will eventually help humans with muscular dystrophy and
strength loss due to aging. He said his mice didn't lose their whopping 20
percent strength gains as they grew older.
More...from the Austin Statesmen at:
Police advise joggers: Carry ID, map out a safe route:
For six hours Monday, authorities tried to identify a Haverford Twp. woman
badly hurt during a run.
Most joggers like to travel light. No driver's license, no keys. Maybe just
a Walkman and the open road.
But such freedom can turn problematic if a car accident occurs, as the
search for the name of the Haverford Township jogger identified yesterday as
Cynthia Neary proved.
Neary, who police said ran into the path of a car on busy, windy Darby Road,
was listed in stable condition at the University of Pennsylvania Medical
Center yesterday. She suffered a broken leg and severe head trauma,
More...from the Philly Inquirer at:
For more information on a running ID bracelet visit RoadID at:
The new face of the Olympics... Mr Clean:
Jacques Rogge has been head of the International Olympic Committee - the
most senior sports job in the world - for just six months, yet he has
already established a vastly different style of presidency to that of Juan
Antonio Samaranch, who reigned for 21 years.
Where Samaranch was a Machievellian autocrat with a Fascist background,
Belgian surgeon Rogge is straightforward, consensus-driven and politically
moderate. Samaranch, a resident of the chandaliered Lausanne Palace Hotel,
immersed himself in luxurious surrounds. Rogge is more restrained.
More...from The Age at:
Stand with Your Legs Shoulder-Width Apart... (Moskovsky Komsomolets):
Will the president make Russia jog in the morning?
Good morning, my name is Vladimir Putin. For starters, let's warm-up." The
president's shrill calls to start morning exercises could very likely wake
Russians up in the morning.
The State Council is due to have a meeting in the Kremlin today. The theme
is rather light: sports in the lives of Russians. In fact, the matter is of
extreme importance, considering that only one-tenth of the population do
morning exercises and that our average life span is lower than that in
Haiti, Burma and Somalia. Besides, Vladimir Putin is an inveterate athlete
But many ordinary Russians who are used to starting their day with 50 grams
of vodka or a cigarette will not be moved by their leaders' concern for
their health. Moskovsky Komsomolets has learned that the State Council has
invented some tricks to persuade them to take to sports.
More...from the Russian Issues.com at:
Peter Horvath of SUNY Buffalo recruited 25 competitive runners (minimum
40miles/week), spanning ages 18 to 53. Each cycled through three four-week
diet regimens. The first included 16% of its calories from fat, the second
30%, and the last 45%. The total number of calories they ate was held
constant. At the end of each four-week session, Horvath tested their
endurance. Duration of peak output was increased by 7%, overall endurance
increased 14%, and exercise-induced muscle fatigue decreased. Blood tests
showed the highest fat dieters used their stored fat more efficiently during
exercise as well. In addition, Horvath's colleague Jaya Venkatraman
determined a better immune response with the higher-fat diets, specifically
higher white blood cell counts and reduction in production of
inflammatories. In a more recent experiment, Horvath worked with nine female
soccer players, varying their diets by 450 calories daily, either increasing
fat (from peanuts) or carbohydrates. No change in total calorie intake was
made. At the end of each of the three one-week sections of the test (normal,
high carb, high fat) each woman ran a 90 minute treadmill test, simulating a
soccer game, with the highest intensity reserved for the end. Horvath found
the higher-fat diet increased the ability to sustain peak output (about 14
kph, or sub-63 15K) for about a mile longer than the control or the
increased carbohydrate diets. Horvath speculates that there may be a
selective advantage in this dietary strategy for women, since women use fat
about 50% more efficiently than men. For those taking this to heart, recent
research by many finds that the monounsaturated fats in nuts, notably
almonds, is especially beneficial to overall health.
From the Santa Barbara Athletic Association at:
Master the Marathon:
It's the little things that count, especially in the longest races. With
these 40 quick tips, you're sure to run better in your next Big One
You've been training for weeks. Gradually increased the distance of your
long runs. Paid special attention to recovery days. And monitored your fluid
balance on an almost hourly basis. What more can you do to make sure you're
fully prepared for that upcoming marathon?
Plenty. The yawning marathon distance is way too vast to master with just a
few basics. You need sophisticated strategies--marathon secrets, if you
will--from marathon veterans with years of successful races under their
belts . . . er, on their running shoes.
To help you enjoy your best possible marathon-whether your first or 100th,
whether you're aiming for a sub-3-hour effort or merely to finish-we've
talked with a group of marathon experts and assembled their collective
Then we put the most important stuff first, where you can give it the
attention it deserves. Later, we share even more marathon information to
help you have the kind of race you've been dreaming about.
More...from Runner's World at:
Triathlon: The Appliance of Science:
Marc Jenkins exploded onto the world triathlon scene in 2001, notching up a
string of personal bests as he broke into the world's top 20 for the first
time. In July he beat the reigning world champion, proving his form by
finishing seventh at the ITU World Cup in Lausanne before stealing the
limelight at September's Home Countries Championship. And it looks as if
there is plenty more to come from the Welsh 25-year-old as he focuses on the
Commonwealth Games in Manchester this summer.
Jenkins boarded the Sports Council for Wales' Elite Cymru programme while
still a teenager and the services he now receives from UKSI Cymru, the Welsh
element of the UK Sports Institute, complemented by British Triathlon's
Lottery-funded World Class Performance Programme, are having a massive
impact on his career.
"The major thing for a triathlete is finance," he explains. "The three
disciplines mean a lot of equipment and as with most sports we have to
travel a lot. I wouldn't be where I am today had it not been for Elite
ANOTHER KEY factor in Jenkins' rise up the rankings last year was his new
partnership with coach Chris Jones. Now working alongside Jones and the
sports science team based at the Welsh Institute of Sport in Cardiff, weak
areas in his training have been pinpointed.
More...from UK Sport at:
Athletics: Pensioner shows a clean pair of heels:
A fleet-footed pensioner ran a faster 100m on Saturday than many people a
third her age could manage.
June Jacobs, aged 71, ran 18.9s in the athletics meeting of the South
Pacific Masters Games at Hamilton's Porritt Stadium, but she was
philosophical about her effort.
"I did 18.3 in Geelong a few months back," she said.
More...from the New Zealand Herald at:
Arthritis Foundation Seeks Marathon Participants; Marathon Training, Travel
and Triumph Help Americans with Arthritis:
NASHVILLE, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 28, 2002--The Tennessee Chapter of
the Arthritis Foundation is recruiting novice and seasoned athletes who
share the common goal of participating in world-renowned nationally-ranked
marathons in Alaska; Dublin, Ireland; Honolulu; and Orlando for its Joints
in Motion Training Team. Runners and walkers are being recruited to join the
team and train for the marathons to help the nearly 43 million Americans
with arthritis - 1.5 million live in Tennessee!
As a member of the Joints in Motion Training team, participants receive free
round-trip airfare and hotel accommodations to the marathon of their choice;
a comprehensive 18- to 20-week personal training program developed and
monitored by expert coaches; race entry; pre-race pasta party; Joints in
Motion apparel; and team motivation. In addition, team members will support
arthritis research and community-based programs by raising funds and
participating in the marathon in honor of someone with arthritis.
If you are interested in joining Tennessee's training team or would like
additional information, contact your local branch or Lou Anne Dulaney at
800/454-4662 ext. 22 or mailto:ldulaney@....
The mission of the Arthritis Foundation is to support research to find the
cure for and prevention of arthritis and to improve the quality of life of
those affected by arthritis. For arthritis information, call the toll-free
Arthritis Foundation Information Line at 800/454-4662, or visit the
foundation's Web site at http://www.arthritis.org
For Athletes With Injuries, These Treatments are a Work of ART:
Headaches, back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, shin splints, shoulder pain,
sciatica, plantar fasciitis, knee and tennis elbow injuries are but a few of
the maladies that can be quickly and permanently solved by using ART
Mike Leahy piloted jets. An Air Force Academy graduate, Leahy, 52, flew
fighter jets while based in Florida and Korea. In Texas, Leahy tested jets
after they had been repaired. The man is not lacking in the nerves
Today, Leahy is a healer. He makes people swim, bike and run faster. He is a
triathlete's best friend, getting them to the starting line when they
wondered if their body would cooperate.
More...from IronmanLive at:
Electric secrets of good health:
You may not realise it, but you run on electricity.
Some scientists believe that if a person's naturally occurring electric and
magnetic fields are disturbed, serious health problems and disease like
cancer can develop.
"There are a lot of researchers now carrying out experiments on the activity
of electricity and magnetism in human beings," according to Dr Gerard
Hyland, biophysicist, formerly at Warwick University, Coventry.
But these researchers are not the sort of scientists who would like you to
think they are dabbling in the ancient Eastern study of Reiki and energy
Scientists have known for a long time that all cells in the human body
produce electricity to function and communicate and that the brain itself
can be likened to a sort of electricity generator.
But the effect on health when these electrical impulses are disturbed has
not been widely studied or understood.
More...from the BBC at:
How to Keep the Doctor Away
At the dawn of the 20th century, the roster of illnesses that spelled almost
inevitable death seemed to stretch forever. Cancer, heart disease, kidney
disease, cirrhosis, pneumonia, cholera, diphtheria, tuberculosis and even
the flu were relentless killers. Some victims might hang on to eke out a
normal life span, albeit in disability and pain; some might even recover
entirely. But survival was purely a crapshoot, with depressingly unfavorable
odds. The hospital was a place where people went to die, not to be cured.
Today the medical landscape has been transformed beyond recognition. The
drugs are smarter, the surgical tools more powerful, the diagnostic tests
astonishingly precise. Today most of the deadliest diseases of 1900 are
routinely cured or managed, and it's the choice not to
be hospitalized that's often a decision to give up on life.
More...from Time.com at:
The cornerstones of training:
Welcome to the 'cornerstones of training'. Here you will find the basics
behind the development of a good training regime that will benefit your
running. This article is by Dave Spence - resident coach, Cape Town.
Athletic training and competition are complex activities, with many
variables contributing to success. However, all training principles and
physiological laws of training are based on three very basic rules or
cornerstones. These cornerstones eventually determine how successful your
training will be, whether for the 100m sprint, shot put, middle and long
distances or ultra-marathons. The cornerstones are moderation, consistency
Moderation basically comes down to not going to extremes in any aspect of
training. Inexperienced distance runners, for example, should not attempt to
run the excessive mileage in training that world-class runners often do.
Serious injuries may develop that could bring your running career to an
abrupt and premature end. Extensive volumes or hours of training are not
necessary on a consistent basis and should be done judiciously. Only at the
most advanced levels of the sport (and after 6 to 10 years of training) does
the need for fairly extensive appear.
More...from Time-to-Run at:
February 2, 2002:
Colgate Games Finals - New York, NY
Pomoco Group Running Crab Half-Marathon and 5K - Hampton, VA
February 3, 2002:
Winterlude Triathlon - Ottawa, ON
Las Vegas Marathon - Nevada
International Egyptian Marathon - Luxor City , Egypt
3M Half Marathon and Relay - Austin, TX
Super Bowl Sunday 10K - Redondo Beach, CA
February 15, 2002
Sirius Consulting XC Sprints - Ottawa, ON
For more upcoming races check out the Runner's Web Races,
Marathons and Calendars pages at:
http://www.runnersweb.com/running.html or look at the "Coming Up"
section on our FrontPage.
Also check out the following site:
This Week's Hot Links from Track and Field News at:
There are a number of US indoor track meets and International XC Meets on
this week with links to
the web sites available from the above link.
This Weeks Personal Postings/Releases:
No personal postings this week.
Television and Online Coverage:
[Check local listings as event times are subject to change]
OLN Triathlon Broadcast Schedule:
[2 Line URL]
The Olympic Show
The Olympic Show 4:00 p.m. CNBC
CBC Sports Schedule
Sundays @ 1P.M. EDT
Track & Field: The Running Zone
Yahoo Sports TV Schedule
[2 Line URL]
Runner's World VCR Alerts
USATF summer track broadcasting listing
"A Woman's View of the World"
Bikes on TV.com
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Have a good week of training and/or racing.