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Runner's Web Digest - June 6, 2003

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  • Ken Parker
    Runner s Web Digest - June 6, 2003 The opinions expressed in the articles referenced by the Digest are the opinions of the writers and not the Runner s Web
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      Runner's Web Digest - June 6, 2003

      The opinions expressed in the articles referenced by the Digest are the opinions of the writers and not the Runner's Web

      Visit the Runner's Web at http://www.runnersweb.com/running.html
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      New This Week:

      The editor will be on vacation from June 11th to 18th inclusive, conditional on Air Canada staying in business and the Air Traffic Controllers staying on the job. There will be NO Digest on Friday, June 13th and the Runner's Web site will not be updated during that time. Access will be provided to a page of auto-updated news from a number of running and triathlon related sources. It will be available from our FrontPage under the link 'Headlines".

      The latest training column by CTS Sports has been posted.
      Cycling: An Interview with Chris Carmichael is available at:

      Jeff Platt of Calgary, AB won our June Pegasus Quiz by correctly identifying the photo as that of Patti Lyons, or Catalano or Dillon.

      We have NO personal postings this week.
      Personal Postings are located after the Upcoming Section towards the
      bottom of the newsletter.
      This week's poll is: "What is the most you would be willing to pay for a pair of running shoes?"

      Cast your vote at:
      Post your views in our Forum at:
      [Free Registration Required]

      The previous poll was: The current mile record for women is 4:12:56 set by Svetlana Masterkova of Russia in Z├╝rich in 1996.
      "When, if ever, will women break 4 minutes for the mile?"

      The results at publication time were:
      1 -2 years 14
      3 -5 years 24
      6 - 10 years 14
      10 + years 27
      Never 26
      Total Votes: 105

      You can access the poll from our FrontPage as well as voting on and/or
      checking the results of previous polls.

      Book of the Week: Tour De France: The Illustrated History
      by Marguerite Lazell
      From the opening photograph of four breakaway riders on the road to Luchon in 1921 to the closing shot of Switzerland's Rolf Graf staring sadly out of the broom wagon in 1957, TOUR DE FRANCE: The Illustrated Centenary History, is a superb book.
      A complete review by the Evening Times:
      Buy the book here:

      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 Slideshow is updated on a random basis. Check it out from our

      The FiveStar Site of the Week:
      The FiveStar Site of the Week for next week is: TriFuel.com.
      "We scour the web to find the best triathlon training articles, gear, and information"
      This is a great resource site for everything related to the sport of triathlon.
      Check out the 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

      This Weeks News:

      Resurgent Lessing storms Bellingham:
      June 3, 2003, Bellingham, Washington
      Simon Lessing doesn't like the ITU format, because he's a good cyclist. One way to overcome the draft-legal format is choose a course with hills. That's what the Bakers Breakfast Cookies course offered, and Lessing took full advantage of the law of gravity, in besting Kiwi Matt Reed and American Olympian Hunter Kemper.
      Lessing left the swim among a large pack of men, but found his way into the lead pack on the bike along with countryman Chris Moffatt and Reed. The ITU specialists had to face Bellingham's "Alabama Hill," a long, steep grade they had to cycle over six times
      "Once you've been up there once, you fall into a rhythm," Lessing said. "You know what to expect next time."
      More...from SlowTwitch.com at:

      A Simple Blueprint for Effective Training:
      The Four Rules of Running
      You've probably figured out by now that running isn't like other sports. For one thing there aren't a lot of rules to follow. There are no "out-of-bounds" or "offsides" or "celebrating too much after finishing." But since it's human nature to want at least a few rules, runners have made some up! These "Four Rules of Running" should become the foundation of your running program. They will ensure your continued enjoyment and improvement as a runner and help keep things fun and interesting as well.
      Rule #1: Stress and Rest Your training program should consist of a combination of training stresses followed by recovery. In other words, "hard" one day, then "easy" for a day or two. Then hard again. This "hard/easy" approach allows you to continually improve your fitness level-and stay motivated. "Hard" doesn't mean that you're sucking wind at the end of your run. Maybe it's just a run where you increase the distance or speed slightly. "Easy" can mean a day off or a shorter, slower run that allows your body to refresh itself. Using this method from workout-to-workout, week-to-week and even month-to-month, will help you avoid the beginning runner's #1 Mistake: Doing too much too soon. It'll be easier to get out the door when you're not sore or tired all the time.
      More...from RoadRunnerSports at:
      Click on Running Advice, Super Dave University, and scroll down...

      Interview with Dr Mat Brick, former world duathlon champion:
      By Coach Brendon
      Dr Mat Brick became only the second athlete over the age of 40 to break the 9 hour barrier at Ironman. Being a former 2 times World Duathlon Champion and also a respected doctor, Mat was always known for his through approach to training and racing and certainly did a lot to bring science into the sport of triathlon in the early days. Here is what he had to say.
      When did you start your training for Ironman New Zealand? How many weeks of training did you do?
      I sat my orthopaedic finals in June 2002. At that time I was less fit than I have been at any time since 1987. I started trying to do a bit more from that time. I could squeeze in a couple of training sessions during the week and tried to do a 2-3 hour bike on the weekend. I started swimming twice per week with former World Triathlon Champion Rick Wells squad in Auckland New Zealand. I couldn't run for some time because I had surgery on my Achilles tendon in June. I then started training harder in December and I built up to about 25 hours per week by the end of January.
      More...from EnduranceCoach.com at:

      Keys to efficient uphill running:
      Efficient running technique can make an enormous difference in running economy on flat terrain, but optimal technique can play an even greater role on hills. Last September I wrote about downhill running; in this issue I will discuss keys for uphill running.
      Maintain turnover: When hitting a hill on the bike, a good cyclist shifts gears to maintain cadence. Runners need to do the same. Maintaining turnover on hills is even more important in running than cycling. Take exaggeratedly short, quick steps and do not try to push off the ground hard. Follow these tips when you hit a hill and you will run faster and more efficiently.
      More...from Active.com at:

      From Running Times:

      Doing Speedwork on the Roads:
      Many runners head to the track when they think speed, but Running Times Senior Writer Bill Rodgers says he does most of his speed work on the roads. "The convenience aside," he writes in his Lifetime Running Plan, "I think doing some of your speed training on the roads is a good idea for most runners, because it's likely most of your races will be on the roads. By mixing hard and easy running over your road courses, you're learning how to run fast and recover over a variety of terrains, as you do in a road race." Rodgers advises starting with five to seven pickups one-minute long at a "relaxed hard pace," interspersed with one minute of easy recovery between each pick-up. Eventually, "most top runners aim for two to five miles of hard running in a speed session, and they do a variety of types of intervals with a variety of rest intervals between."
      Check out the book at:

      Back Pain - Follow-Up
      Last month, we discussed the things runners can do to prevent and alleviate back pain. One of our readers responded by offering the following advice that back-pain sufferers might find helpful:
      As an ACE certified personal trainer AND a runner I'd like to offer this tried and true stretch to alleviate back pain associated with long (and often hilly) runs. My clients love this one. We call this stretch "over the moon". Cheryl Soleway who is the strength and conditioning coach for the Detroit Red Wings calls it the "stretch of the century".
      Using a large stability ball you simply drape your body over the ball in a supine position. However, I caution my tight runners to start out in what we call "squat and arch". This means begin by sitting on the ball and then gradually (and very slowly) moving into a partial squat and slowly arching your back over the ball.
      The nice thing about the ball is that it allows tight, tired runners to make tiny little increments and gradually make the arch bigger as the spinal column relaxes and loosens. It feels great and is a great injury prevention tool too. My runners report complete relief of back pain as well as a feeling of general relaxation that they have never experienced after a long run before.

      A runner's guide to knee safety:
      How do I protect my knees and still maintain my marathon-training regimen?
      It's true; running can be tough on our knees. They bear the load of the rest of our body, serving as shock absorbers and soaking up the impact of several times our weight with every stride. Shoes, running surface, hills, weak muscles and over-pronation (feet rolling inward) can affect our knees' health; women may be more likely to have knee trouble than men. If your knees hurt while you run, stop running immediately, ice them, then consider the following checklist for running health.
      * Shoes. Worn-out shoes have less than half of their original shock-absorbing ability, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Also if your feet pronate (roll inward) too much, and your shoes don't compensate for it, you could be setting yourself up for a host of problems. Sometimes motion-control shoes aren't enough, however. You may need orthotics, custom inserts that keep you from over-pronating.
      * Running surface. A hard surface, such as concrete, is the worst thing you can run on because it has no give. This puts additional stress on your knee joints, especially going downhill. Stick to soft, flat surfaces such as grass, dirt, even asphalt (roads are better than concrete sidewalks) or use a treadmill.
      * Weak muscles. Strong, flexible quadriceps are important, especially the vastus medialis (the big muscle that ends just above your knee toward the inside of your leg). You can strengthen it with leg extensions or leg lifts in the gym.
      * Especially for women. A wide pelvis, more common among women than among men, can put more stress on the quadriceps above the knee and result in a greater chance of knee injury. Men can experience stress on this muscle too, though not as often. Strengthening your quadriceps will help minimize knee stress.
      * Cross-training. I always advise cross-training to avoid injuries, no matter the sport. Repeated high-impact exercise does take its toll on the body. Consider swimming and weight-training sessions to balance your fitness routine.
      From the LA Times
      Stephanie Oakes is the fitness correspondent for Discovery Health Channel and a health/fitness consultant. Send questions by e-mail to: mailto: stephoakes@.... She cannot respond to every query.

      Moderation Keeps You Moving:
      SAN FRANCISCO (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- Lower amounts of high-intensity exercise may be the key to sustaining an exercise program, says Duke University Medical Center researchers. They presented their findings this week at the Annual Meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine in San Francisco.
      Researchers randomized 87 "couch potatoes" to one of three supervised exercise programs differing in amount and intensity over nine months. Participants in the low-intensity group exercised on average 187 minutes per week at an intensity of about 11 miles per week of walking. The moderate-intensity group exercised 123 minutes per week at an intensity of brisk walking or jogging 11 miles per week. The high-intensity group exercised 180 minutes per week at an intensity of brisk walking/jogging 18 miles per week.
      More...from Ivanhoe at:

      A little bit of blood, a whole lot of sweat and a few tears:
      By Peter Sage - The "Marathon des Sables" is widely recognised as the world's toughest footrace. Its translation literally means "Marathon of the Sands" and it's both a name and reputation that is well deserved. For seven days competitors from all over the world will attempt to run over 151 miles (nearly 250 kilometers) across some of the hardest, difficult and inhospitable terrain on the planet, the Sahara desert. Running the equivalent of a marathon a day, the rules state that all competitors must complete the race "self-sufficient" meaning that all food and equipment needed for the entire duration of the race must be carried while running. Add to that temperatures in excess of 120 degrees, violent dust-storms, freezing nights and large scorpions and you may ask who in their right mind would even think of competing in such an event? It was a question I had asked myself many times. This is what happened...
      More...from Run the Planet at:

      Swimming Pool Chlorine Linked to Asthma:
      BRUSSELS, Belgium (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- A new study demonstrates an association between chlorine used to disinfect indoor swimming pools and the surge of childhood asthma in developed countries.
      Researchers say trichloramine -- or nitrogen trichloride, a highly concentrated volatile by-product of chlorination -- seems to be the culprit. It is readily generated and inhaled during contact between chlorine and organic matter such as urine and sweat.
      Researchers from the Catholic University of Louvain in Brussels, Belgium, measured levels of lung proteins, associated with cellular damage, in the blood of 226 healthy primary school children. The children had all been regular swimmers at indoor pools since early childhood.
      Researchers assessed the prevalence of childhood asthma, using data from a survey of almost 2,000 children between ages 7 and 14.
      More...from Ivanhoe at:

      Antioxidants save brain cells from alcohol damage:
      An artificial antioxidant appears to protect brain cells from the damage caused by alcohol, according to research on rats by an international team.
      The study by scientists at Cornell University in New York and the University of Valencia in Spain, worked with groups of rats, keeping some of them drunk for six weeks. The results appear in this week's issue of the journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
      The scientists, led by Dr Daniel Herrera of Cornell, were testing the theory that neurogenesis - the formation of new brain cells - is disrupted by oxidative damage from alcohol.
      More...from ABC Australia at:

      Achy Back? Studies Say No Single Therapy Stands Out:
      NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Spinal manipulation, the back pain treatment most commonly offered by chiropractors, is no better or worse for treating low back pain than conventional treatments, such as exercise, pain killers and physical therapy, a team of doctors announced Monday.
      Massage appears to be effective for persistent back pain, researchers report, but they say that more study is needed to determine what benefit, if any, acupuncture offers for treating back pain.
      All of the methods seem to be relatively safe, the authors say.
      More...from Reuters at:

      Yet Another Gender Difference
      (HealthScoutNews) -- Exercise prompts different responses in the skeletal muscle capillaries of men and women, says a Duke University Medical Center study.
      While women seem to start out with a lower density of these capillaries, this density seems to increase at a greater rate in women than in men when they exercise. Capillaries are tiny blood vessels that carry oxygen-rich blood to muscle and other body tissue.
      The study also found overweight men and women had similar increases in exercise capacity after 24 weeks of supervised exercise training.
      The Duke researchers believe their findings indicate the skeletal muscles in men and women respond differently to exercise. They also suggest that improved skeletal muscle capillary density may play a greater role in women than men in improving exercise capacity.
      The study was recently presented at the annual scientific sessions of the American College of Sports Medicine in San Francisco.
      "Based on the results of our study, it appears that the skeletal muscle of men and women may adapt differently to exercise and therefore rely on different mechanisms to increase their peak exercise capability," researcher Brian Duscha says in a news release.
      Here's where you can learn more about exercise:

      Now on the A-list: vitamin D:
      Americans need to boost their daily intake to maintain strong bones. Calcium on its own isn't enough, experts say.
      If you're one of the millions of Americans who pop a calcium supplement each day to maintain strong bones, you're on the right track: Calcium helps ward off osteoporosis, a disorder that contributes to more than 1.5 million bone fractures annually. What you may not realize, however, is that if you're not getting enough vitamin D - and chances are you're not - that extra calcium you're taking may not be helping your bones as much as you think.
      Scientists have known for years that bones need calcium to stay strong. They've been passing that message along to Americans, who have been diligently drinking milk and eating yogurt and swallowing calcium pills. They've also known that adequate levels of vitamin D are crucial for bone health, because the body uses vitamin D to help shuttle calcium across the intestinal wall into the blood.
      More...from the LA Times at:
      [Long URL]

      From Runner's World:
      Eat healthy this summer
      For a healthy summer diet, remember that sun-ripened fresh fruits such as berries, melons, peaches, plums, and nectarines are loaded with carbohydrates - about 15 grams for every tennis-ball-sized serving - and packed with vitamins and antioxidants.

      Hard work brings success: Put in the time and effort necessary to achieve your goals. Morning runs, intervals, tempo runs, fartlek workouts, hill repeats, long runs-whatever it takes. A veritable smorgasbord of work opportunities awaits. And with completed work comes great satisfaction. -Ed Eyestone

      Steer clear of shin pain: Consider these five strategies to avoid shin splints and compartment syndrome: Stay well hydrated, be wary of creatine supplements, stretch regularly, lift some weights, and don't run through severe pain.

      "I was too fat. The doctor said I needed to exercise, so I began to run." -Elijah Lagat, men's winner of the 2000 Boston Marathon

      Feel Fatigued? Try Iron: Try dark-meat poultry, beef, beans, lentils, wheat germ, green leafy vegetables, and figs with vitamin C-rich foods to boost iron absorption

      Knots Landing: Double knot your shoes before a race. There's nothing more frustrating than having to stop in the middle of a 5-K to tie a loose shoelace. You can lose valuable seconds or even up to a full minute by getting sidetracked due to loose shoelaces. -Beth Moxey Eck, senior editor

      Father's Day Gift Ideas at Nashbar.com!
      If Dad is a cyclist, we've got the gifts your customers are looking for! There's always a great deal at Nashbar.com, and we've got hundreds of great gift ideas at unbeatable prices!
      Visit the site at:
      [Long URL]

      Ten Mistakes Endurance Athletes Make:
      First, over hydrating... Too many times endurance athletes fall for the "if a little is good, a lot is better" myth. Nowhere is this truer than when it comes to hydration. All it takes is one race where you've had to DNF due to cramping and you start thinking, "hmm, maybe I didn't drink enough". Next thing you know, you're drinking so much fluid that, while your thirst is quenched, your belly is full beyond the point of comfort; and you're still cramping. What's happening is that over hydrating causes what is known as "dilutional hyponatremia", or a state of over-diluted blood serum sodium. This is almost as bad as under hydrating. The results are similar: cramping with the added disadvantages of stomach discomfort, bloating, and extra urine output. It is now believed that about 24 ounces of fluids per hour is the most your body can absorb. If you feel it is necessary to consume more, remember that you will need to consume even more electrolytes to offset what is being flushed out of your system prematurely.
      More...from ARExtreme.com at:

      How to Train Smarter and Run Faster:
      Source: Ben Wisbey
      When you set yourself a goal to complete a particular event or do a particular time for a given distance, it is not just about getting yourself to peak physical fitness to compete in the event. There is another side to completing your goal.
      Have you ever watched somebody doing a race? I have seen so many people miss their time goal because of poor pacing; aiming to break 25 minutes for 5km for example, by doing the first kilometer in 4:30, and then quickly fading because they spend their energy too early.
      Then there are injuries. Injuries don't just happen. They are generally a result of poor training technique or lack of recovery, stability and flexibility.
      This article will hopefully give a head start to all beginning runners, and even answer some of those mysteries for the so called experienced runner.
      More...from TriFuel.com at:

      This Weeks Events:
      *Please verify event dates with the event websites*

      June 7, 2003:

      Mazatlan ITU International Triathlon - Mexico
      ITU Site

      Minnesota Distance Classic - St. Paul, MN

      New York Mini 10K - New York, NY

      Oracle U.S. Open - Palo Alto, CA

      Standard Life Marathon - Montreal, PQ

      Steamboat Classic 4 Mile - Peoria, IL

      Sunburst Marathon - South Bend, IN

      Tongyeong ITU World Cup - Korea
      ITU Site

      UMKC Hospital Hill Half-Marathon - Kansas City, MO

      June 8, 2003:

      Carlsbad Triathlon - CA

      Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon - San Francisco, CA

      Half-Max Triathlon - St. Louis, MO

      Harry Jerome Track Classic - Burnaby, BC

      Litchfield Hills Road Race 7-Mile, Litchfield, CT

      Lung Association Half-Marathon - North Bay, ON

      Rincon International Triathlon - Puerto Rico
      ITU Site

      San Juan Island Marathon - Puerto Rico

      Swansea International Triathlon - UK
      ITU Site

      June 9, 2003:

      Victoria Trackfest, BC

      August 1 - 17, 2003:

      Pan American Games - Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

      August 23 - 31, 2003:

      9th IAAF World Championships in Athletics - Paris 2003 St-Denis, France

      Check our Upcoming page for more events at:

      This Weeks Personal Postings/Releases:
      We have NO personal postings this week.

      Television and Online Coverage:
      [Check local listings as event times are subject to change]

      Check out our new Runner's Web Television Links page at:

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      Have a good week of training and/or racing.

      Ken Parker
      Runner's Web
      runnersweb@... <mailto:runnersweb@...>
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