Runner's Web Digest - March 1, 2002
- Runner's Web Digest - March 1, 2002
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New This Week:
Our March Runner's Trivia Quiz and Pegasus Quiz are available from the
We have already had a winner in the Pegasus Quiz. Jeff Platt of Calgary, AB
correctly identified "Steve Smith" as not belonging in the list as the other
"Steves" are all runners. Smith was a pole vaulter.
We have no personal postings this week. Personal Postings (when
available) are located after the Upcoming Section towards the bottom of the
This week's new poll is: "What is the highest race entry fee you have paid?"
Our poll this past week was: "Which of the following sports should be thrown
out of the Winter Olympics? "
The results at publication time were:
Figure skating 44
All of the above 28
Total Votes: 165
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:
the European Indoor Athletics Championships which are being held in Vienna,
Austria March 1-3.
Visit this site for live results, photos, news and more.
Check it out 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
Boomers With Bad Knees Need to Slow Down:
(WebMD Medical News) The nation's largest group of orthopaedic surgeons
has some bad news for the legions of fitness-conscious baby boomers
literally trying to outrun middle age. Those with knee problems may need
to hang up their jogging shoes and find more age-appropriate forms of
Giving up body-punishing sports like running and weekend basketball is
better than surgery for boomers with knee problems caused by arthritis,
the experts say. That is because active people in their 40s and 50s are
not ideal candidates for surgical treatment.
"Middle-aged patients who've had knee surgery recommended to them should
try less aggressive alternatives first," says orthopaedic surgeon Arlen
D. Hanssen, MD, of the Mayo Clinic. Hanssen moderated a symposium on
knee surgeries in baby boomers Thursday at the 69th annual meeting of
the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, held in Dallas.
More...from Medscape at:
Busy roads increase wheeze risk:
Living near busy roads increases children's risk of developing wheezing,
a symptom of asthma, a study has found.
University of Nottingham researchers said the risk increases for
children living within 150 metres of traffic-filled roads.
The study, funded by the National Asthma Campaign (NAC), looked at the
health of 9,700 children aged four to 16 in Nottinghamshire.
It found proximity to major thoroughfares increased the risk of
developing wheezing by 8% among primary schoolchildren and by 16% among
secondary schoolchildren with each 30-metre closer to the street.
More...from the BBC at:
Sports, Pollution Linked to Asthma:
(WebMD Medical News) The frequency of asthma in children continues to
rise, and pollution has been linked to asthma in previous medical
studies. Now, a new study shows that kids who play outdoor sports in
cities with high levels of pollution are more than three times as likely
to develop asthma.
Asthma is the most common long-term disease of childhood, according to
researchers in the medical journal The Lancet. Prior medical research
has pointed to several possible reasons -- early-life infections, diet,
exposure to indoor allergy-causing substances, and indoor and outdoor
More...from Medscape at:
Five ways to expedite muscle repair:
There are a few ways in which runners can hasten muscle repair. Our online
coach tells you more in this article.
1. Proper tapering off of exercise
Proper tapering off of exercise at the end of a training run or race will
prevent pooling of blood in the lower extremities due to the sudden
stopping of the pumping action of the muscles to the veins. Jog slowly to
finish off any strenuous run you do. Standing around after a run to talk
to your friends may be social, but can add to the soreness you will feel
the next day.
More...from World of Endurance at:
Kitchen holds an arsenal of disease-fighters:
Eat your fruits and vegetables. Sip your tea. Make sure your diet includes
seafood such as ocean-caught salmon. And don't forget whole grains and olive
These aren't just foods. They're health-boosters, touted by scientists and
proved by researchers to do more than just satisfy your hunger.
Scientific evidence is mounting on the extraordinary benefits of many
ordinary foods, and health-conscious consumers are scrambling to keep up
with the latest news. Studies have shown potential health benefits of
oatmeal, garlic, tea, broccoli, blueberries and other foods. Much of the
research has focused on plant foods that are rich in phytochemicals, a
va-riety of compounds that in-cludes antioxidants.
More...from USA Today at:
Scientists reverse aspects of ageing in lab rats:
'Those old rats got up and did the Macarena'
A set of experiments on ageing lab rats has shown that two common dietary
supplements, when taken together in the right proportions, restore the
animals' youthful vigour and mental clarity.
The scientists who did the research at the University of California,
Berkeley, describe their cocktail of an antioxidant and an amino acid as the
chemical fountain of youth, which may one day improve quality of life in
Their research, which they present today in a series of three articles in
the peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,
describes how acetyl-L-carnitine and alpha-lipoic acid offset the declining
performance of mitochondria, the tiny bodies inside cells that process fat
with oxygen and are the source of cellular energy.
Mitochondrial dysfunction is the only aspect of ageing that can be
successfully targeted, effectively treated and ultimately cured -- for a
while, at least -- said Dr. Tory Hagen, a co-author on the reports. It is
the "Achilles heel" of the ageing process, he said.
More...from the National Post at:
Faster physiques: Going for the gold:
Fine-tuning the body and mind boost performance
Each Winter Olympics, it seems, athletes skate, ski and bobsled a little
faster. In the summer, runners shave seconds - well thousandths of a second
anyway - off their times and high jumpers raise the bar a bit higher. While
high-tech equipment has contributed to the record-breaking feats, that's
just part of the story. Better nutrition and training programs - fueled by a
new understanding of how to fine-tune the body and the mind - have also
boosted performance over the years, sports medicine experts say.
More...from MSNBC.com at:
Coffee: Filtering the facts
"I have 2 cups of coffee in the morning. How bad is that...???
"Should I drink coffee before I exercise?"
"Does coffee count towards my daily water requirement?"
Coffee is a universally loved beverage. Every culture the world around
enjoys some type of caffeinated beverage, be it tea in England and Japan,
espresso in Italy, or a "coffee regular" in America. Questions abound about
the role of coffee in a sports diet: Is coffee good, bad or irrelevant? The
purpose of this article is to answer some of the questions athletes commonly
ask about coffee as it relates to their daily diet as well as to their
Is coffee bad for me? That is, will it hurt my health?
Because coffee is so widely consumed, it has been extensively researched. To
date, there is no obvious connection between caffeine and heart disease,
cancer or blood pressure. Hence, the general answer, according to leading
medical and scientific experts, is normal coffee consumption produces no
adverse health effects. (The average American consumes 200 milligram
caffeine per day; the equivalent of about 8 to 10 ounces--an average mug--of
coffee.) For the 10% of Americans who ingest more than 1,000 milligrams
caffeine per day and sustain themselves on the cream and sugar in coffee
plus a few cigarettes alongside, heart disease is indeed more common--and
linked to the poor diet and unhealthful lifestyle.
More...from XterraPlanet.com at:
Expect to see new Olympic smiles in ads soon:
The XIX Olympic Winter Games are over. Now the real competition begins - for
endorsement bucks on Madison Avenue.
Becoming an Olympic champion changes your life. Fans want to touch you.
Agents want to sign you. Win gold and often you get gold.
Figure skating gold medallist Sarah Hughes could earn more than $10 million
from endorsements, personal appearances and speeches through the next Winter
Games in 2006, estimates Rob Prazmark, president of Olympic sales and
marketing for sports agency IMG.
More...from USA Today at:
From Runner's World:
Shoe Control: "Heavy motion-control shoes work well for some runners.
For others, the natural rolling (pronating) motion of your foot is
exactly what nature intended. It's a natural shock-absorption system
that dissipates energy. Antipronation shoes or inserts may reduce
pronation, but they merely transfer the forces up the lower leg and can
result in shinsplints or lower-leg injury. If you suffer from chronic
lower-leg pain, you might try a lighter, not a heavier shoe." - Ed
Eyestone, men's cross-country coach at Brigham Young University
Clearing the Hurdles
Hurdle: Your hamstrings are tight, causing your lower back to tighten.
Solution: Stretch the 'strings. And make sure to do it after all of your
workouts. A great way is to lie on your back with your feet up toward
the ceiling. With your hands on your inner thighs, gently push your legs
apart in a V shape. Hold for 15 to 20 seconds.
Words That Inspire
"Keep the right attitude and keep exercising. Even if you have a health
problem, that's no reason to stop. In fact, that makes it more important
to keep going. And certainly don't stop running just because you're
80-plus." - Rose Steward, 81, America's oldest female triathlete, is
"Discomfort or pain is always a strong signal that something is wrong.
Whether it's a sore toenail or a pain in a muscle, tendon or joint, pay
attention to it. It will only get worse if you keep running. Even
something as minor as a hot spot on the bottom of your foot can lead to
Is Your Weight Your Fate?
I read that you are born with a certain number of fat cells, but that you
can produce more by overeating. I also read that once you have those fat
cells, they never go away. You can empty them, but they are still there,
like insidious little sponges just waiting for you to trip up so they can
refill themselves. The article said that the only way to really get rid of
them was through liposuction. I wonder if this article was factual or not.
You're born with a predetermined number of fat cells, with women generally
inheriting more than men. The number of fat cells then grows through late
childhood and early puberty, after which it is pretty much set. Fat cell
number increases more rapidly in obese children than in lean children. The
amount of fat someone has is a reflection of both the number and the size of
the fat cells.
More...from Yahoo at:
A Hundred Years Young:
Some people sit and wait for old age. Not Everett Hosack. He's got his track
A voice sings above the morning din of the Hamlet Manor Nursing Home,
cutting through the drone of televisions and vacuums, the clatter-clearing
of breakfast trays, the occasional moans of age. The voice may be a bit
ragged around the edges, but the song is unmistakable.
"When I get older, losing my hair, many years from now/Will you still be
sending me a valentine/Birthday greetings, bottle of wine?"
Everett Hosack grins in the middle of the song and shuffling soft-shoe dance
he's staging bedside, where his wife, Elsa, is recovering from cataract
surgery and pneumonia. "That's an oldie, a Beatles tune," says the longtime
devotee of barbershop harmonizing, as he smoothes any music-mussed hairs in
his dapper white mustache.
Not bad for a guy who'll be 100 years old on Thursday.
More...from Cleveland.com at:
OSU study: Marathon running may be damaging to health:
CORVALLIS, ORE. (AP) - Marathon runners may actually be damaging their
health with a buildup of a highly reactive form of oxygen, a new study
Oregon State University researchers say that runners outpace their ability
to detoxify the buildup because their muscles use oxygen at 100 to 200 times
the normal rate.
"Everyone knows that there are many health benefits of exercise, but fewer
people understand that it can also cause some metabolic damage," said Maret
Traber, an associate professor of nutrition and food management and one of
the nation's leading experts on the role of vitamin E in human health.
Traber and doctoral student Angela Mastaloudis studied the effects of
exercise on ultramarathon runners, people who have competed in races of more
than 30 miles.
The results suggested that intense exercise increases stress on the
oxygen-processing system in the body and depletes levels of vitamin E.
More...from KATU TV News at:
Congrats to Newlyweds-to-Be as They Start on Marriage Made at Marathon:
The guests at the wedding of Maureen Kennedy and Brian Gillespie should
douse the couple with water, not rice, on Sunday. That's because Kennedy and
Gillespie are running in the L.A. Marathon, and the marriage will take place
when they reach Mile 6.
The Moorpark couple met at that point during the 1998 marathon. Right from
the start, they learned the give-and-take of relationships. Gillespie had
trouble keeping up with Kennedy in that race, so she slowed down.
After the two take their vows, they'll run the remaining 20 miles of the
race--possibly the longest dash any newlyweds have ever taken to their car.
More...from the LA Times at:
Simple Blood Test Could Predict Risk of Heart Disease:
(HealthScoutNews) -- A simple blood test that tells you if you're at risk
for heart disease may well be the wave of the future.
Researchers from the University of California at San Diego have found that
when proinsulin levels rise, so does the risk of heart disease for both men
and women. The good news is a blood test is all that's needed to make the
One of the newest "buzz" words in medical circles is proinsulin, a hormone
that helps the body make insulin, which clears sugar from the bloodstream.
In the current online edition of Circulation, scientists present the newest
of several studies showing the importance of proinsulin as a predictor of
"This is a relatively new area of study and we don't know a lot about
proinsulin, but what we do know seems to indicate that it is in some way
connected to cardiovascular disease," says study co-author Dr. Elizabeth
Barrett-Connor, a professor of family and preventive medicine at the
University of California at San Diego.
Indeed, the study found men and women with increased levels of proinsulin
had double the risk of heart disease than those who had normal blood levels
of this hormone.
While previous studies believed it was high levels of insulin that increased
the risk of heart disease, those findings only proved true in men.
More...from Yahoo at:
Study seems to put sleep adage to rest:
8 hours isn't magic number; you may live longer with 5 to 7
In the largest study of sleep habits to date, researchers reported Thursday
that Americans appear to live longer when they average five to seven hours
of sleep a night.
As a group, people who slept moderate amounts were least likely to have died
in the six-year period in which the study was conducted. People who slept
eight or more hours a night, or less than four hours, showed an increased
risk of death, although the study could not explain why.
"We're just saying it's safe to sleep five, six or seven hours a night,"
said Dr. Daniel Kripke, a psychiatrist at the University of California at
San Diego and the study's lead researcher.
More...from the Dallas Morning News at:
High tech aims to make athletes measure up better than ever:
When J.P. Shilling is on the ice, his churning arms and legs pushing him to
speeds of up to 35 miles per hour, he appears to be the embodiment of raw
Then you look closer.
A tank strapped to his back feeds him pure oxygen. A tiny monitor affixed to
his chest makes sure his heart is working hard -- but not too hard. And his
shiny suit, the product of thousands of hours of research, gives him the
aerodynamics of an airplane.
"I like to think of all this technology as fine-tuning and oiling up the
gears," said Shilling, 30, a native of Timonium, Md.
As an Olympic speedskater, Shilling's 5-foot-10-inch, 165-pound body has
become part of what is essentially a multimillion-dollar scientific
experiment to create the ultimate athlete. On an almost daily basis, his
cardiovascular, neuromuscular, metabolic, skeletal and psychological makeup
is measured, analyzed and manipulated by a team of specialists.
The modern athlete is a technological marvel, the product of the carefully
measured food he puts in his or her mouth, a training strategy shaped by
medical tests and precision-engineered clothing and gear.
More...from the Post-Gazette at:
Are your hamstrings a pain?
Pain, aches and general discomfort in the back (posterior) of the thigh can
arise from many different problems. One of the most frequently implicated
structures when things go wrong is the hamstring muscle.
The hamstring muscles are a group of three muscles located at the back of
the thigh: the biceps femoris, the semi-membranosus and the semi-tendinosus.
These muscles are extensors of the hip joint and flexors of the knee.
In addition these muscles act to rotate the leg when the knee is flexed,
helping to stabilise the pelvis on the thigh.
Because the hamstring muscles act over two joints they are particularly
vulnerable to injury. This is especially true when sprinting, as the muscle
are stretched at the hip and knee, while at the same time bracing the leg
ready for the point of heel strike.
Injury can also come when running up hill, especially if the surface is
loose or slippery, or damage can arise from direct trauma eg. a kick to the
back of the thigh.
More...from Eventrate.com at:
Genetic enhancements may be on horizon for athletes:
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Doping scandals have become an almost routine part of
modern sporting competitions, including the Olympics. But many sports
scientists warn that performance-enhancing drugs may be a thing of the past
when it comes to illicit ways to win.
Scientists on the forefront of genetic manipulation predict that in as
little as five to 15 years, athletes may be using genetic engineering to get
the edge over their opponents.
For instance, techniques evolved from animal research at the University of
Pittsburgh could potentially be used to heal sports injuries and enhance
athletic performance. Scientists are injecting stem cells into muscle cells
in hopes of helping children with muscular dystrophy.
"The growth factor that we're using, the stem cells that we're using, the
gene therapy that we have been performing, can be used to improve the
strength of a muscle," says Johnny Huard, of the university's molecular
That means if the experiments work safely in humans, the technique could be
used to increase an athlete's strength and endurance, raising a host of
troublesome new issues for sporting officials.
More...from CNN at:
Psychological barriers keep women and girls from staying active:
Laura Robinson, a sports writer and former competitive athlete, points to
the cover of a magazine promoting a photo spread on scantily clad women in
Robinson, speaking at a recent round-table discussion on violence in sports,
said such "exploitation of female athletes" is one reason many girls and
women aren't more active.
"I always thought sport was one place where girls could just be themselves,
and it didn't matter what they looked like," said Robinson, whose book Black
Tights: Women, Sport and Sexuality is due out in the spring. "Now girls are
getting the message that if they want to be successful in sports, you have
to take your clothes off."
Not everyone believes athletes who shed their clothes for media exposure and
money are being exploited, but Robinson's concern that females aren't active
enough on a regular basis is real.
More...from Canoe at:
Exercise may help prevent sudden heart death, but researchers say they still
WASHINGTON (AP) - Researchers suspect exercise can help to ward off the
heart catastrophe called sudden death. The experts concede they are short of
proof, but they think people should exercise anyway.
Cardiac arrest or sudden cardiac death can result when electrical impulses
that govern heartbeat become wildly irregular or chaotic, and the heart
shuts down. Death may occur quickly after symptoms, even instantly.
Sudden death is different than a heart attack, in which a blockage of the
blood supply to the heart muscle kills sections of the heart tissue itself.
The latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report
that 63.4 per cent of all 728,743 known heart disease deaths in 1999 were
sudden cardiac deaths.
More...from Canada.com at:
March 1-2, 2002:
USA Indoor Championships - New York, NY
March 1-3, 2002:
European Indoor Athletics Championships - Vienna, Austria
March 2, 2002:
Ontario Masters Championships - Toronto, ON
Ironman New Zealand - Lake Taupo, NZ
Carolina First Reedy River Run 10K - Greenville, SC
March 2-3, 2002:
Raleigh International Mountain Marathon 2002 - Hong Kong
March 3, 2002:
Seoul Marathon - Korea
LA Marathon - CA
Kapiti Women's Triathlon - New Zealand
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
this week with links to
the web sites available from the above link.
This Weeks Personal Postings/Releases:
None 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.