Runner's and Triathlete's Web Digest - September 1, 2006
- A FREE WEEKLY E-ZINE OF MULTISPORT RELATED ARTICLES.
The Runner's and Triathlete's Web Digest is a weekly e-zine dealing with the sports of running and triathlon and general fitness and
health issues. The opinions expressed in the articles referenced by the Digest are the opinions of the writers and not necessarily
those of the Runner's Web. Visit the Runner's Web at http://www.runnersweb.com The site is updated multiple times daily. Check out
our daily news, features, polls, trivia, bulletin boards and more. General questions should be posted to one of our forums available
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1. RunnersWeb5K.com Race for Women
The first RunnersWeb5K.com Race for Women was held on June 24th at Ottawa's Aviation Museum. Canada's #2 ranked marathoner, Nicole
Stevenson, won the race in 16:28.
Thirty-five women ran under 20 minutes. For a race report and photos go to:
The 2007 race date will be Saturday, June 23, 2007.
The prize money will be increased from $3,000 to $5,000 for open and masters runners. The team competition will be expanded to
include Open, Club and University Teams.
More information will be posted at:
2. Runner's Web Online Store:
Through a partnership with HDO Sports, the Runner's and Triathlete's Web has opened an online store. Check it out for your shopping
requirements. The new Garmin 305 is now available with FREE shipping.
Through a partnership with HDO Training, the Runner's And Triathlete's Web now offers Interactive Training.
4. Road Runner Sports, the world's largest running store at:
5. Toronto Waterfront Marathon. September 24, 2006.
6. The Toronto Marathon, October 15, 2006
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RUNNER'S AND TRIATHLETE'S WEB CONTENT PARTNERS
* Sports Nutrition by Sheila Kealey.
Sheila is one of Ottawa's top multisport athletes and a member of the OAC Racing Team and X-C Ottawa. She has a Masters in Public
Health and works in the field of nutritional epidemiology as a Research Associate with the University of California, San Diego. Her
column index is available at:
* Carmichael Training Systems
Carmichael Training Systems was founded in 1999 by Chris Carmichael.
From the beginning, the mission of the company has been to improve the lives of individuals we work with through the application of
proper and effective fitness and competitive training techniques. Whether your focus is recreational, advanced, or you are a
professional racer, the coaching methodology employed by CTS will make you a better athlete. Check the latest monthly column from
* Peak Performance Online
Peak Performance is a subscription-only newsletter for athletes, featuring the latest research from the sports science world. We
cover the whole range of sports, from running and rowing to cycling and swimming, and each issue is packed full of exclusive
information for anyone who's serious about sport. It's published 16 times a year, including four special reports, by Electric Word
plc. Peak Performance is not available in the shops - only our subscribers are able to access the valuable information we publish.
Check out our article archive from Peak Performance Online at:
* Peak Running Performance
Peak Running Is The Nation's Most Advanced Running Newsletter. Rated as the #1 Running Publication by Road Runner Sports (Worlds
Largest Running Store) , Peak Running caters to the serious / dedicated runner. Delivering world class running advice are some of
running's most recognizable athletes including Dr. Joe Vigil (US Olympic Coach),
Scott Tinley (2 Time Ironman Champ) Steve Scott (3 Time Olympian) and many more. This bi-monthly newsletter has been around for over
13 years, and in the past two it has been awarded the "Golden Shoe Award" in recognition of it's outstanding achievements.
Check out the Peak Running article index at:
Lance Watson is "Just The Winningest Coach in Triathlon". He has been coaching triathlon and distance running since 1987. Over the
years, Lance has coached some of the most successful athletes in the sport of triathlon and duathlon.
Check out the Lance Watson Online Article Index at:
Running Research News:
RRN's free, weekly, training update provides subscribers with the most-current, practical, scientifically based information about
training, sports nutrition, injury prevention, and injury rehabilitation. The purpose of this weekly e-zine is to improve
subscribers' training quality and to help them train in an injury-free manner.
Running Research News also publishes a complete, 12-page, electronic newsletter 10 times a year (one-year subscriptions are $35); to
learn more about Running Research News, please see the Online Article Index and "About Running Research News" sections below or go
Check out the article index at:
THIS WEEK'S PERSONAL POSTINGS/RELEASES:
We have NO personal postings this week.
THIS WEEK'S DIGEST ARTICLE INDEX:
1. Nutrition: Top Ten Foods For Athletes
2. Triathlon: Brain FartsMental Hang-Ups That Hold Triathletes Back
3. Science of Sport: How Optygen Works
4. Joe Henderson's Running Commentary - Long Live LSD
5. Distance Events: The risks of going long: when the super-fit endurance athlete turns into the heart attack victim
6. Band Aid
Running's your thing. Pumping iron isn't. Still, strength training does a runner's body good. So here's an innovative solution: A
fast, easy-to-follow routine that'll improve your running--no iron required.
7. Cyclist Who Refused to Stay in the Gutter Loses Court Case
8. A Serving of Exercise After That Saturated Fat
9. Message To Older Adults: Embrace, Don't Fear The Effects Of Sensible Exercise
10. Learn to chill on occasion if you tend to train hard
11. Dr. Mirkin's e-Zine
12. From Runner's World
13. Warm Up Activity : The dynamic alternative to static stretching
14. More intense workouts better at keeping kids slim
15. Cross-training helps the body efficiently use oxygen, avoid injury
16. Excessive exercise common in anorexia
17. Live Long? Die Young? Answer Isnt Just in Genes
18. Making the iPod's BPM work for your BMI
19. Protect Your Liquid Assets
Use the CTS Hydration Calculator to minimize your risk of dehydration and over-hydration.
20. Dealing with Piriformis + Hamstring Tightness
21. Urban Exercise Has Its Hazards
Air pollution causes more harm than good for health seekers, expert says.
22. Garmin Forerunner 305 Review
23. Exercise and effective salt replacement
24. High-speed running tests are excellent predictors of marathon finishing time
25. Digest Briefs
RUNNER'S WEB WEEKLY POLL:
"Which sport has the greater drug problem, athletics or cycling?"
You can access the poll from our FrontPage ( http://www.runnersweb.com) as well as checking the results of previous polls.
Post your views in our Forum at:
[Free Registration Required]
LAST WEEK'S POLL RESULTS:
"What is behind the recent rash of positive drug tests?"
1. More athletes are taking drugs 33%
2. The testers are getting smarter 34%
3. The drug users are getting dumber 33%
FIVE STAR SITE OF THE WEEK: Desiree Fricker, Professional Triathlete.
Hometown: Potomac, MD
Current Residence: Austin, TX
Parents: Annette and Robin Ficker
Younger brothers: Robby and Flynn Ficker
Staple foods: sushi, chicken, spinach salad, potatoe and egg breakfast tacos, rice bread, grapefruit, ketchup, soy milk, coffee
Interests outside of training: snowboarding, vintage shopping, camping, sewing, traveling, photography, reading
Favorite movies: Life is Beautiful, Amelie, Napolean Dynamite. Black Stallion
I began running at a very young age under the guidance of my father. My parents were avid track and field fans and my childhood
family vacations were centered around the World Track and Field circuit. I was fortunate enough to travel to Switzerland, Germany,
France, Italy, Yugoslavia, Spain, Korea, and Japan all before I turned 16. I began competing in cross country/track and field Junior
Olympics at the young age of nine, often times traveling all over the US to go to these races.
I continued running through high school and college, attending the University of Alabama on a track and field/cross country
scholarship. After completing my degree and running collegiate career in December of 1998, I was eager to entertain my curiosity in
the sport of triathlon. Watching the Hawaii Ironman broadcast on television had piqued my interest. I attended my first masters swim
practice (torture session!) in March of 1999, bought my first triathlon bike and qualified for the Hawaii Ironman that summer.
During this time I refused to wear a swim cap or bike shorts, thinking they were too nerdy and would ride century rides in running
shorts. Little did I know how the joke was all on me!
I went on to compete for two years as an amateur, completing the Hawaii Ironman both years (1999-11:15, 2000-10:45, 2nd age group).
I was also working as a teacher and a track and cross country coach in Maryland. In 2001 I accepted a spot on the resident team at
the Olympic Training center, turned professional and spent a year living and training at the center in Colorado Springs, CO. From
there I went on to live in Boulder, CO where I trained and raced under the tutelage of legend Dave Scott and have since moved to
Austin, TX where I currently and happily reside.
Visit her site at:
Our Photo Slideshow is updated on a random basis. Check it out from our FrontPage.
BOOK OF THE WEEK: Road Racing for Serious Runners
by Pete Pfitzinger, Scott Douglas, Bill Rodgers
Improve your racing performance through multispeed training! Whether your distance is 5K, marathon, or anything in-between, this
book tells you how to train smarter and run faster.
The authors present a training and racing plan for competitive runners to excel in the full spectrum of road racing distances,
telling how to individualize programs for 5K-, 8K-, 10K-, and 15K-races. 60 photos.
Buy the book from Human Kinetics at:
THIS WEEK'S FEATURES:
1. Nutrition: Top Ten Foods For Athletes:
By Kimberly J. Mueller, MS, RD, SDTC Sports Nutritionist
Whether you are training for a marathon, getting dirty riding a muddy single track, or surfing some beautiful waves, the food you
feed your body will dictate how well you will perform. While supplements seem like an easy solution, research supports the notion
that whole foods are still the best source of the nutrients you will need for optimal health and peak performance. Below, I have
listed the top ten foods for runners. Eat up!!!
1. Go red!!! Lycopene, a vitamin-like substance that makes tomatoes and watermelon red, has potent antioxidant qualities that help
reduce some of the cellular damage that occurs to activated muscles during exercise. Lycopene has also been shown to reduce the risk
for prostate cancer and cardiovascular diseaseand other cancers, too, particularly breast and cervical cancer. The highest dose and
best absorbed form of lycopene is found in processed tomato products, such as tomato sauce or tomato soup. So the eating of
spaghetti and pizza should be encouraged in the name of good health. Extra sauce please!
2. Get into the swim of seafood! Seafood is high in protein and zinc. Zinc is important for immune function and also helps clear
carbon dioxide out of our muscles to help enhance recovery from intense exercise. Cold-water fish, including salmon, herring,
mackerel, and sardines, are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids which are effective in lowering risk for heart disease and may help
boost fat burning. Most health professionals recommend at least 2-3 fish meals each to reap the benefits of seafood! If you dont
like seafood, omega-3 fatty acids can also be found in canola, flaxseed, and soybean oils, as well as walnuts.
More...from the Runner's Web at:
2. Triathlon: Brain FartsMental Hang-Ups That Hold Triathletes Back:
Almost every triathlete has a funny (in retrospect) story about a bonehead rookie mistake they made in their first triathlon. But as
you become a veteran of the sport, are you still making mistakes that are holding you back? Lets look at common mental hang-ups
that hold triathletes back and how to free yourself of themincreasing your success going forward.
Fear of Resting
You have probably heard it a million times: It is not your workouts that make you better. Workouts only provide a specific stress to
your body. While resting, your body adapts to this stress and grows stronger. It is the combination of workout stress and rest that
results in improvement.
Workout Stress + Rest = Improvement
But yet, you still fear resting. You fear not doing enough in your workouts each day, you fear taking rest days, you fear taking
rest weeks, you fear easing up as you approach your peak racesyou fear resting at all! For most triathletes, since life is so busy
with work and family responsibilities, resting simply means working out less for a day, week, or other period of time. Triathletes
generally fear resting for two reasons. Most commonly, you are afraid that you will lose all of your hard-earned ability. The best
way past this hang-up is to give rest a try. Most triathletes when they actually give rest a try (or when we force them to take
it) experience a gradual learning curve. At first, they resist the change, saying that they really dont like it, but theyll keep
trying it. With a bit more experience resting, they start to see themselves performing better in their workouts and races. They
start to see the benefit. With even more experience resting, they begin to ask for rest at appropriate timesthey have come full
circle at this point. They understand that working out and resting are of equal value to them. If you are resisting resting for fear
of losing all that you have worked for, give it a shot and you will find yourself performing better than you thought possible.
Some triathletes have more than a surface-level fear of resting. These athletes cant stop working outthey are addicted to the
process of training or simply to exercising, usually the latter. These athletes typically refuse to rest when a family member,
friend, or coach suggests it. They also become very upset and agitated when something in their life forces them to miss a workout.
If you think you may be addicted to exercise, you should seek professional therapy to help you get to the roots of your addiction
and move past it. (Typically exercise addicts do not see their own addiction, so if you have a loved one who you think could use
help, encourage them to seek it.) Exercise addiction is far too common in triathlon, and because of this, unfortunately is sometimes
far to accepted as being normal. It is important that you do not shrug exercise addiction of as a good addiction just because it
is an addiction to a generally life-enriching behavioran addiction is an addiction and an addiction is destructive.
More...from the Runner's Web at:
3. Science of Sport: How Optygen Works:
The mechanism behind this powerful endurance formula:
Intro: Optygen works on three different levels all working synergistically with the goal of increasing endurance. In 2004 four new
clinical studies were published which directly support the use of Optygen in Endurance (1-4). Endurance is defined your ability to
perform work over a period of time where there is sufficient oxygen delivered to the muscles. There are three critical components
necessary to increase your endurance capacity.
1) Efficient Glucose Metabolism
2) Efficient Oxygen Transfer
3) ATP production
Optygen targets all three of these components:
More...from the Runner's Web at:
4. Joe Henderson's Running Commentary - Long Live LSD:
In the mid-1960s I was starting to see that books could be read for pleasure and not just as school assignments. The first novelist
to speak truth to me through his fiction was John Steinbeck.
Steinbeck wrote in the early 1950s a paragraph that I read in the mid-1960s and still remember 40 years later: "Looking back, you
can usually find the moment of the birth of a new era, whereas when it happened it was one day hooked on to the tail of another.
There were prodigies and portents, but you never notice such things until afterward."
In 1966, August 19th seemed nothing but a Thursday following a Wednesday. But recent hints of change were leading me away from my
old short-and-fast running ways for good.
Long-and-slow was first an escape from speed, then a way to train for a marathon, and finally a system with a rationale. I first
explained it in article for Distance Running News titled "The Humane Way to Train." (A typo there made it "Human.")
Later the article grew into a booklet that acquired the title Long Slow Distance, or "LSD" for short. (The original material plus
updates now appear on the web at http://www.joehenderson.com/lsdbook.)
LSD, the term, wasn't my coinage. Browning Ross introduced me to it in his magazine, Long Distance Log.
The practice of LSD wasn't my invention either. I borrowed and blended ideas that Arthur Newton, Arthur Lydiard, Ernst van Aaken and
Bill Bowerman had already promoted.
I wasn't alone in adopting this practice. The five other runners featured in the LSD booklet (Amby Burfoot, Bob Deines, Jeff Kroot,
Tom Osler and Ed Winrow) all came to the same conclusions independently and simultaneously. Others surely did too at a time when the
training pendulum had swung too far toward short and fast.
Neither the name LSD nor the practice of it were my inventions. But as the earliest writer on this subject I became its focus of
praise and target for blame.
I deflect most of the praise to others who are at least as deserving. My only role with LSD these days (besides running it) is to
define and defend it.
More...from Joe Henderson at:
5. Distance Events: The risks of going long: when the super-fit endurance athlete turns into the heart attack victim:
About 1 in 50,000: if you run marathons or participate in other forms of exercise which last for three hours or more, that's your
approximate risk of suffering an acute heart attack or sudden cardiac death during - or within 24 hours of - your effort. For every
50,000 athletes, one will be stricken during such prolonged activity(1). Running a marathon or cycling intensely for three hours is
riskier than taking a commercial airline flight, even in these troubled times!
You might think we shouldn't make such a claim in a newsletter which appeals to serious competitors, including a large number of
marathon runners. But at Peak Performance our job is to provide you with all the facts about your sport, not just the pretty ones.
The truth is that marathon runners, ironman triathletes and long-distance cyclists, swimmers, rowers and cross-country skiers are
all in the same boat. In fact, any athlete who participates in a strenuous test of endurance lasting about three hours or more has
an increased chance of dying during - and for 24 hours following - the exertion, even when the athlete's chance of a death-door
knock is compared with the risk incurred by a cigarette-smoking, sedentary layabout who spends the same 24 hours drinking beer and
watching TV. The reasons for this are not entirely clear, but the heightened risks of a visit from the Grim Reaper are unsettling to
most athletes, especially those who exercise in the hope of improving cardiovascular and overall health.
To find out why strenuous exercise temporarily increases the risk of death, researchers at the University of Innsbruck in Austria
recently studied 38 male participants in the 1999 Tyrolean Otztaler Radmarathon, a cycling race which covers 230k, with an altitude
change of 5,500m. The Radmarathon is often said to be comparable in difficulty to the hardest mountain stages of the Tour de France
More...from Peak Performance Online at:
6. Band Aid:
Running's your thing. Pumping iron isn't. Still, strength training does a runner's body good. So here's an innovative solution: A
fast, easy-to-follow routine that'll improve your running--no iron required.
Strength training is a bit like flossing: We know it's good for us, but we don't do it as often as we should--or at all. But
successful runners do more than run--they lift and lunge to build strong muscles for climbing hills, maintaining perfect form, and
preventing injuries. Those of us who don't strength train certainly have our reasons. It can be hard to run well when you're
recovering from a weight workout. Plus, squeezing running into your schedule can be tough enough. And you might not be keen on
joining a gym; after all, one of the reasons you're a runner is that you can do it wherever you are.
Well, enough excuses: Tommy Sheehan, director of strength and conditioning at Columbia University, has designed a resistance-band
program for runners that provides all the benefits of lifting weights with none of the hassles of traditional plans. Those who have
swapped their dumbbells for these bands have gained strength and stability in less time with less soreness. You can, too, and you
won't have to leave home to do it.
Get Started You can set up your own home gym with MTS Performance bands, which are available in varying resistance levels ($25 to
$30 each at liflineusa.com), and a bench. Two or three times a week, put in your miles first, then do one of the sample workouts
below, alternating between workout 1 and workout 2. Each takes 20 to 30 minutes. Except where noted, do three sets of 20
repetitions. Increase the number of reps each week until you get to 50 reps. Then increase resistance: Add another band or use a
band with more resistance.
More...from Runner's World at:
7. Cyclist Who Refused to Stay in the Gutter Loses Court Case:
A cyclist who was prosecuted for obstructing the highway, whilst cycling in accordance with the National Standard for cycle
training, has today been found guilty by a District Judge in Telford Magistrates Court and fined £100 with £200 costs.
CTC member Daniel Cadden was cycling fast downhill on a single-lane approach to a roundabout when he was stopped by police who
believed that the position he had taken in the centre of his lane was forcing cars to cross the solid white line in the centre of
the road illegally in order to overtake. But rather than stop the cars that had broken the law, the officers decided to charge
Daniel Cadden with obstructing the highway.
Cyclecraft, the book published by The Stationery Office on skilled riding techniques, states: "The primary riding position (the
centre of one's lane) should be your normal riding position when you can keep up with traffic, or when you need to prevent following
drivers from passing you dangerously."
CTC Director, Kevin Mayne, said "The police at the scene said that Daniel should have been cycling well over to the left -
effectively in the gutter - but the judge felt that Daniel should have crossed three lanes of busy traffic and used a segregated
cycle track to save fractions of seconds off the journey times of a few motorists. CTC continues to fight a re-draft of the Highway
Code, which says cyclists 'should use cycle paths where provided', in order to tackle the attitude, held by many people in the
judiciary, police and public alike, that cyclists should be out of the way of motorists."
Daniel Cadden was supported in his defence by the Cyclists' Defence Fund (CDF), the independent charity which was founded by CTC to
provide cyclists with support in legal cases. The CDF paid for John Franklin, author of 'Cyclecraft', to appear as an expert witness
for the defence.
More...from TriSport News at:
8. A Serving of Exercise After That Saturated Fat:
Newswise Physical activity after a high-fat meal not only reverses the arterial dysfunction caused by fatty foods but improves the
function of these same arteries compared to before the meal, according to new research from Indiana University.
The findings, reported in the European Journal of Applied Physiology, are part of a growing focus on the effect food has on the body
after the meal -- also known as the postprandial state. After a fatty meal, arteries lose their ability to expand in response to an
increase in blood flow, with the effect peaking four to six hours after eating -- just in time for the next meal.
"What happens four hours after that high-fat meal is that your artery looks just like the arteries of a person who has heart
disease," said co-author Janet P. Wallace, professor in IU Bloomington's Department of Kinesiology. "What our study showed is that
when you exercise after that meal, it doesn't look like a sick artery anymore."
The postprandial state is an important period to study, Wallace said, because of the amount of time people spend in it throughout
their day, and its influence on conditions such as diabetes and heart disease. The research examined whether physical activity
lessened the well-documented impairment of vascular endothelial function -- the ability of the vessel to expand in response to an
increase in blood flow -- after a high-fat meal.
"The impairment of endothelial function after a fatty meal is a key factor in the development of atherosclerotic cardiovascular
disease, which is the leading cause of illness and death in Western society," said lead author Jaume Padilla, a doctoral student in
IU Bloomington's Department of Kinesiology. "Results from this study suggest that physical activity may be effective in reversing
the adverse vascular effects observed following the consumption of a high-fat meal."
More...from Newswise at:
9. Message To Older Adults: Embrace, Don't Fear The Effects Of Sensible Exercise:
A Johns Hopkins study should ease the concerns held by many older adults with mild high blood pressure about the strain or harm
exercise could cause their hearts. Results of the research on 104 men and women age 55 to 75 showed that a moderate program of
physical exertion had no ill effects on the heart's ability to pump blood nor does it produce a harmful increase in heart size.
In this study, moderate translated to sustained exercise for about an hour, three times a week. Researchers say that people's
concerns stem from the fact that during each workout, blood pressure can on average rise from 40 millimeters to 60 millimeters of
mercury. The Hopkins study is believed to be the first to evaluate the effects of exercise on the heart's ability to function, to
pump and to fill up with blood.
While having high blood pressure at rest is a well-established risk factor for heart problems, older people should not fear the
effects of moderate exercise on the heart, despite short-term bump-ups in blood pressure during their workout, says lead study
investigator and exercise physiologist Kerry Stewart, Ed.D., a professor of medicine and director of clinical and research exercise
physiology at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and its Heart Institute. Exercise is a highly effective means of
increasing the heart's efficiency and reducing body fat, factors that may ward off future health problems, such as heart disease and
A report on the Hopkins study, published in the July issue of the journal Heart, showed that after six months of aerobic exercise on
a treadmill, bicycle or stepper, plus weightlifting, participants showed no overall ill effects in 11 measures of diastolic heart
function, when the organ's main chamber fills with blood between beats. They also found that exercise produced no increase in eight
measures of heart size, including left ventricular mass and wall thickness. In contrast, a long-term effect of hypertension, even
when the body is relaxed, is hypertrophy, an enlargement of the heart that eventually stiffens and weakens the muscle.
More...from Medical News Today at:
10. Learn to chill on occasion if you tend to train hard:
Oh ye who fear the wrath of Bruno the Megatrainer, today we bear a gentle message: Exercisers who favor moderate to high intensities
should take one day of rest per week to allow the body to rejuvenate and consolidate the gains of exercise.
"But wait," you protest. "I thought we were in daily battle against inertia. Now you're saying take a day off? Won't my body wither
or bloat or something?" Ah, grasshopper, so much to learn.
Exercise causes microtrauma to muscles, which get stronger when they repair themselves during rest. The same applies to your general
physiology, which must "ramp up to meet the demands of exercise," says Conrad Earnest, chief exercise physiologist at the Cooper
Institute in Dallas. He and others recommend one full day off per week.
Without proper recovery time, areas of wear and tear become weak links and are more prone to injury and, importantly, less likely to
show strength gains. So, while you might burn a few extra calories by not taking a day off, your body will be less efficient in
capitalizing on the work you do.
In most cases, you'll only become cognizant of this accumulated stress if you exercise at a relatively high level. For example,
maybe one day you can't beat a regular foe to the hoop like you did a couple weeks ago, or you bonk on a big hill climb that you
recently handled with vigor.
More...from Pioneer Press at:
11. Dr. Mirkin's e-Zine:
* Slower Pace or Rest Between Races? It's Your Choice
If you compete in sports that require repeated short bursts of very fast running, such as in basketball, soccer, or football, will
you recover faster by standing still or by continuing
to move at a slower pace? A study from Brooklyn College in New York showed that it doesn't make any difference (International
Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism,
February 2006). Researchers asked fit athletes to perform multiple bouts of exercising to exhaustion. Between the bouts of
vigorous exercise, one group spent 12 minutes staying
completely still, while the other group continued to exercise at less than 20 percent of their maximum workload. Athletes in both
groups showed equal recoveries and performances.
However, those who stayed still between all-out efforts had blood that was more acidic than those who continued to exercise. Many
athletes believe that lactic acid buildup in
muscles hinders their performance, but this study shows that blood acidity has little to do with recovery from hard exercise. When
you exercise so intensely that you cannot get all the
oxygen you need, lactic acid starts to accumulate in your muscles and spills out into your bloodstream to make your blood more
acidic. This can make your muscles burn and hurt, but it will not delay your recovery for your next bout of all-out effort.
* Dear Dr. Mirkin: You recommend replacing salt after exercise; won't this cause osteoporosis?
Athletes must eat large amounts of foods to take in enough calories to fuel their muscles during exercise. A high salt intake in
athletes does not cause osteoporosis because they eat so much food that contains calcium and potassium that the amount of salt they
take does not cause blood calcium levels to drop, so calcium does not leach out of bones.
As a general rule, taking extra salt causes the body to retain extra fluid, which expands blood volume and increases blood flow to
the kidneys to increase loss of calcium in the urine. This lowers blood calcium levels, so calcium has to be taken from bones for
replacement. Sodium salt also causes the kidney tubules to lose more calcium. However, potassium blocks the exchange of sodium for
calcium in the kidneys and prevents calcium loss. Eating calcium also prevents blood calcium levels from dropping so there is no
need for the bones to release extra calcium into the bloodstream (Journal of the American College of Nutrition, June 2006). All
fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans and other seeds are loaded with potassium. Most varied diets contain adequate calcium, but
if you decide to take a calcium supplement, be sure you are also getting plenty of vitamin D. Because calcium blocks the conversion
of inactive vitamin D to active vitamin D, extra calcium increases your needs for vitamin D.
* What Causes Muscle Soreness:
Your muscles should feel sore on some days after you exercise. If you go out and jog the same two miles at the same pace, day after
day, you will never become faster, stronger or have greater endurance. If you stop lifting weights when your muscles start to burn,
you won't feel sore on the next day and you will not become stronger. All improvement in any muscle function comes from stressing
and recovering. On one day, you go out and exercise hard enough to make your muscles burn during exercise. The burning is a sign
that you are damaging your muscles. On the next day, your muscles feel sore because they are damaged and need time to recover.
Scientist call this DOMS, delayed onset muscle soreness.
It takes at least eight hours to feel this type of soreness. You finish a workout and feel great; then you get up the next morning
and your exercised muscles feel sore. We used to think that next-day muscle soreness is caused by a buildup of lactic acid in
muscles, but now we know that lactic acid has nothing to do it. Next-day muscle soreness is caused by damage to the muscle fibers
themselves. Muscle biopsies taken on the day after hard exercise show bleeding and disruption of the z-band filaments that hold
muscle fibers together as they slide over each other during a contraction.
Scientists can tell how much muscle damage has occurred by measuring blood levels of a muscle enzyme called CPK. CPK is normally
found in muscles and is released into the bloodstream when muscles are damaged. Those exercisers who have the highest post-exercise
blood levels of CPK often have the most muscle soreness. Using blood CPK levels as a measure of muscle damage, researchers have
shown that people who continue to exercise when their muscles feel sore are the ones most likely to feel sore on the next day.
Many people think that cooling down by exercising at a very slow pace after exercising more vigorously, helps to prevent muscle
soreness. It doesn't. Cooling down speeds up the removal of lactic acid from muscles, but a buildup of lactic acid does not cause
muscle soreness, so cooling down will not help to prevent muscle soreness. Stretching does not prevent soreness either, since
post-exercise soreness is not due to contracted muscle fibers.
Next-day muscle soreness should be used as a guide to training, whatever your sport. On one day, go out and exercise right up to the
burn, back off when your muscles really start to burn, then pick up the pace again and exercise to the burn. Do this
exercise-to-the-burn and recover until your muscles start to feel stiff, and then stop the workout. Depending on how sore your
muscles feel, take the next day off or go at a very slow pace. Do not attempt to train for muscle burning again until the soreness
has gone away completely. Most athletes take a very hard workout on one day, go easy for one to seven days afterward, and then take
a hard workout again. World-class marathon runners run very fast only twice a week. The best weightlifters lift very heavy only once
every two weeks. High jumpers jump for height only once a week. Shot putters throw for distance only once a week. Exercise training
is done by stressing and recovering
From Dr. Gabe Mirkin at:
12. From Runner's World:
* Coach's Corner
"To develop your kick, finish each repetition faster than you begin it. For example, if you're running 6 x 400 meters on the track,
start off at a steady, controlled pace, then subtly shift gears in the last 100 or 200 meters."
-Robert Vaughan, Ph.D., coach and exercise physiologist
* Injury Prevention
"Unless clumsiness is to blame, injuries rarely just happen. When you look at what led to an injury, you can almost always find
indicators that it was coming. Pay attention to subtle and not-so-subtle warning signs: tightness, soreness, sluggishness, cramping,
sharp pains, aching, sleeplessness, fatigue, and moodiness."
-Jim & Phil Wharton
* Performance Nutrition
Popping fresh berries into your mouth is one of summer's greatest pleasures. But they deliver more than just a juicy burst of
sweetness. Brightly colored power packs of nutrition, berries continually impress researchers with their ability to prevent disease
and promote health.
* Editor's Advice
"One of the best bits of planning you can do for yourself during a marathon is to round up as many friends and relatives as
possible, and station them at various points along the race course). Seeing and hearing those friendly faces may just be what you
need to get you through the final stages of the marathon."
-Sean Downey, RW managing editor
* Training Talk
"In the United States, heart disease kills 10 times more women than breast cancer does each year. One of the best weapons for
fighting heart disease is exercise."
From Runner's World Complete book of Running by Amby Burfoot
13. Warm Up Activity : The dynamic alternative to static stretching:
Strength and conditioning coaches and trainers are engaged in a constant search for the best ways to improve sport performance. All
things being equal, a bigger, faster, stronger, more conditioned athlete will rule supreme on the playing court or field. While
there is constant debate over techniques for boosting sport specific speed, power and strength, I believe we tend to overlook the
importance of a comprehensive warm-up, and the role it plays in optimising performance in each and every workout, practice and game,
writes Alan Stein.
This leads to the obvious question: what is the best way to prepare an athlete for performance mentally as well as physically? For
many years the accepted norm has been to perform a light warm-up followed by some static stretching. In fact, almost anywhere in the
world you will see athletes from schoolchildren to elite competitors starting their practice sessions with a couple of laps
and some light stretching. So ingrained is this type of routine in almost every coachs head that it tends to go unquestioned.
But is this approach really beneficial? Does it adequately prepare an athlete for the workout ahead? Is there a better way? I
believe there is. In my view, an active or dynamic warm-up is an infinitely superior way to prepare for physical activity.
Although this type of warm-up has been used by track and field athletes for years, it is not widely practised within other sports
eg football, basketball and baseball at junior, senior or professional levels.
The great thing about a comprehensive dynamic warm-up is that it doesnt take any more time than the more traditional stretching
method, but is much more focused, effective and productive. Since your warm-up sets the tone for the entire workout, these are just
the qualities you should be looking for.
More...from Peak Performance Online at:
14. More intense workouts better at keeping kids slim:
Sustained, vigorous exercise may be more effective than lower-intensity activity in helping children avoid obesity and stay fit, a
new study shows. Both obesity and poor cardiovascular fitness are growing problems among children worldwide, Dr. Michael Sjostrom of
the Karolinska Institute in Huddinge, Sweden and colleagues note. Physical activity is proven to fight both of these epidemics.
Evidence is mounting that more intense activity may be more effective in preventing excess weight gain, they add.
To investigate how the amount and intensity of activity might be related to obesity and fitness in kids, the researchers looked at
780, 9- and 10-year-old children, measuring their activity levels over four consecutive days using a device called an accelerometer.
The study is published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
The children who engaged in vigorous physical activity for more than 40 minutes daily had less body fat than those who were this
active for just 10 to 18 minutes a day, and also had higher cardiovascular fitness, the researchers found.
More...from Reuters at:
15. Cross-training helps the body efficiently use oxygen, avoid injury:
Despite our intimate familiarity with traffic court, our formal legal education is pretty much limited to laws of physics ("a body
in motion tends to stay in motion," etc.) and, if we finish our homework in time, watching "Law & Order: Fitness Crime Scene" on
But apparently, we've been missing some key classes. In a question we didn't get around to during a recent online chat, a
participant asked: "Why is that I can swim at a reasonable pace for at least 30 minutes at a stretch, but couldn't run a mile to
save my life, while my friend can run three miles with no problem, but gets out of breath after a few laps (in the pool)? We're both
"It's the law of specificity," says Cedric Bryant, chief exercise physiologist for the American Council on Exercise.
When you practice a certain activity repeatedly, two key things happen: The primary muscles used in that task become more efficient
at recruiting and using oxygen for the activity and (assuming your form progresses with practice) your mechanics often improve to
the point where you are exerting less effort per stride, stroke, kick, racquet swing, mosquito slap, etc.
The oxygen-use phenomenon, Bryant says, is called peripheral adaptation. "The runner can more efficiently extract oxygen for use in
(her) lower-body muscles... and the swimmer has more peripheral adaptation in the upper body."
And, of course, each woman likely has better mechanics than her peer at the more-practiced sport, in addition to any advantage she
gains from genetics or body type.
This is one reason we so often urge you to cross-train: By mixing up your workout routine, you not only distribute strength gains
more evenly around your body, which helps protect you from imbalance and overuse injuries, you also stay closer to "in shape" for a
variety of activities.
More...from the Pioneer Press at:
16. Excessive exercise common in anorexia:
Excessive exercise is one of the general warning signs of an eating disorder, but the problem may be particularly common among
anorexic women who vomit or use laxatives to lose weight, a study shows.
Women such as these may be at particular risk of dangerously low weight and potentially fatal consequences, according to the study
authors. Targeting the anxiety and obsessive tendencies so common in these women might aid in treating the eating disorder, they
report in the International Journal of Eating Disorders.
Doctors have known that excessive exercise is a common feature of eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia, but it hasn't been
clear which women are most likely to have the problem.
For the current study, researchers led by Dr. Cynthia M. Bulik of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill used data from three
international studies of women with anorexia, bulimia or both.
The women completed standard questionnaires on eating disorder symptoms, personality traits and exercise habits. Excessive exercise
was defined as exercising more than 3 hours a day or being otherwise obsessed with daily physical activity -- letting it interfere
with other aspects of life, for example, or exercising even when injured or ill.
Although excessive exercise was common regardless of the type of eating disorder, the study found, it was most common among anorexic
women who purged. Of these 336 women, more than half exercised excessively.
More...from Reuters at:
17. Live Long? Die Young? Answer Isnt Just in Genes:
Josephine Tesauro never thought she would live so long. At 92, she is straight backed, firm jawed and vibrantly healthy, living
alone in an immaculate brick ranch house high on a hill near McKeesport, a Pittsburgh suburb. She works part time in a hospital gift
shop and drives her 1995 white Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera to meetings of her four bridge groups, to church and to the grocery store.
She has outlived her husband, who died nine years ago, when he was 84. She has outlived her friends, and she has outlived three of
her six brothers.
Josephine Tesauro as a teenager with her twin, who has not fared as well.
Mrs. Tesauro does, however, have a living sister, an identical twin. But she and her twin are not so identical anymore. Her sister
is incontinent, she has had a hip replacement, and she has a degenerative disorder that destroyed most of her vision. She also has
dementia. She just does not comprehend, Mrs. Tesauro says.
Even researchers who study aging are fascinated by such stories. How could it be that two people with the same genes, growing up in
the same family, living all their lives in the same place, could age so differently?
The scientific view of what determines a life span or how a person ages has swung back and forth. First, a couple of decades ago,
the emphasis was on environment, eating right, exercising, getting good medical care. Then the view switched to genes, the idea that
you either inherit the right combination of genes that will let you eat fatty steaks and smoke cigars and live to be 100 or you do
not. And the notion has stuck, so that these days, many people point to an ancestor or two who lived a long life and assume they
have a genetic gift for longevity.
More...from the NY Times at:
18. Making the iPod's BPM work for your BMI :
Way back when iPods were a twinkle in Steve Jobs' eye, gym rats sweated to fast-paced music, but generally couldn't tell you how
many beats per minute their favorite workout tunes contained.
In those formative years of fitness training, a song's actual tempo was known to your instructor alone, says Alyssa Shaffer, fitness
director of Fitness magazine.
"The shift has been going from instructor-based routines, to the whole iPod revolution. Now you have the ability to create your own
playlist and your own intensity mixes," she says.
Instructors have always relied on the ability of a song, depending on its "beats per minute," to boost heart rates and return them
Even for the most enterprising of exercisers, though, it wasn't easy to assemble a personal workout tape with the right pulse for
the right moves.
"All of a sudden, the power has shifted to the everyday person," Shaffer says.
For fitness buffs, it's now second nature to know that music in the 115 to 120 BPM range is ideal for walking, while music for
cardio workouts can range from an easy 120 to a nausea-inducing 180 in a spinning class.
Anyone with a computer and an MP3 player can tailor a workout soundtrack according to the desired BPM. With software that
manipulates a song's BPM and BPM-counting gadgets on the market, staying on top of the beat becomes even easier.
More...from the Daily Camera at:
19. Protect Your Liquid Assets:
Use the CTS Hydration Calculator to minimize your risk of dehydration and over-hydration.
When the heat index turns hellish, its time to change your hydration habits when you work out. The fact is youre going to go
through a lot of fluids when Mother Nature turns up the thermostatin extreme cases, you could steam through double the amount of
liquids youre used to sucking down.
The most important step to optimizing your bodys liquid status is to calculate just how much you need to hydrate yourself in any
activity. To do this, go ahead and schedule a one hour workout for the heat of the day. Prior to the workout, strip down, stand on a
scale, and record your starting weight in pounds. Go train. When you get home, strip off your sweaty clothes and weigh yourself
Now plug those numbers into the CTS Hydration Calculator below. Itll tell you how many ounces of fluid you sizzled through during
your exercise session.
[NOTE: If you drank any fluids during your workout, as you should have, add those ounces to the total number of ounces spit out by
the calculator for a revised grand total.]
This number will also protect you from over-hydration which can lead to hyponatremia, a condition where your bodily fluids become
too diluted and there arent enough electrolytes in your body to keep your nervous system operating properly. Armed with this
number, you can strategically monitor your fluid intake and avoid this condition.
Throughout any exercise session, make sure to suck down a sodium-laced sports drink such as PowerBars Endurance or the equivalent
in a energy gel to maintain a healthy balance of sodium and fluids in your system.
More...from Carmichael Training Systems at:
20. Dealing with Piriformis + Hamstring Tightness:
Q: "I just did my first triathlon, a sprint. I am basically a first-time athlete and I'm in my early 50's. My question is how to
deal with recurring pain and tightness in my left hamstring and now also my left piriformis . It has been tight and occasionally
sore for a couple of years but it didn't matter because I wasn't working out much. Now, however, it bothers me after I run/walk and
sometimes after I bike. I treat it with stretching and massage but what I really want is to PREVENT it! Any suggestions for how to
solve this problem?"
A: Coach Patrick: First of all, congratulations on joining the triathlon world! I hope you are hooked for life! Of course, making
the decision to participate in a multi-disciplinary sport such as triathlon places huge demands on your body. That tightness you
used to ignore at your desk is now most likely inhibiting your performance by restricting your range of motion.
When dealing with chronic tightness it's important to go back to the root cause. The most important thing to do is to rule out
trauma - in this case either an accident or a muscle tear. While your case doesn't appear to have either cause, if it did, you would
need to see a medical professional immediately for a full diagnosis and course of action. As your tightness is most likely caused by
overuse / imbalance, then you can certainly take some action on your own.
First: I would suggest you eliminate - for the short term - the activity(ies) causing you any pain in the hamstring / piriformis
area. For most of us, running is the #1 cause of injury...a few days off from running can really make a difference without
compromising too much of your fitness. Think about it.
More...from TriFuel at:
21. Urban Exercise Has Its Hazards:
Air pollution causes more harm than good for health seekers, expert says.
Your intentions may be good, but exercising outdoors in a city may be riskier than you think, one expert says.
Outdoor activity can cause serious damage to a person's health because of elevated air pollution levels. Those especially at risk
are those who exercise by running, bicycling or skating.
According to Dr. Joseph T. Cooke, associate professor of clinical medicine and patient safety officer at New York-Presbyterian
Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center, the danger lies in the components of air pollution. The three main culprits are fine
particulate matter, (the mixture of solid particles and liquid droplets in the air), ozone (a gas composed of three oxygen atoms)
and carbon monoxide.
These components of air pollution irritate the lungs, making it harder to breathe and worsening problems initially caused by asthma,
bronchitis, cardiopulmonary maladies, and emphysema.
"The pollutants affect the lungs by causing inflammation or irritation of the airway lining," Cooke explained in a prepared
statement. "More mucus and phlegm is produced, and small muscles surrounding the airway respond by squeezing down. The work of
breathing increases, and it becomes more difficult to get oxygen into the body," he said.
More...from Health Scout at:
22. Sport Factory Garmin Forerunner 305 Review: (www.thesportfactory.com)
Garmin had made a concerted effort to address the issues of the Forerunner 301, and the new 305 is a leap forward in functionality
From a coaching perspective the 301 promised a revolutionary new tool akin to the power meter. To capture pace, elevation, heart
rate, and distance all on one device allowed a higher level of performance analysis, pacing, and training accuracy. Unfortunately
the 301 did not quite deliver. There were issues with heart rate strap picking up the athlete and the GPS signal was often spotty
Luckily the folks at Garmin addressed most of these issues. The 305 is smaller, more functional, and much more reliable. The heart
rate strap is more comfortable than the hard plastic 301 model. Although the GPS still may loose a signal in heavy cover for
prolonged periods, I was amazed at how well it worked on my trail run. In fact I did not expect to pick up a signal at all and it
mapped my entire route. The software is highly functional and easy to use. I was able to program custom screens with the data I
wanted to view on the bike and run. Docking, uploading, and charging the GPS unit utilizes a better system as well.
The multi-sport function works very well. Gone is the annoying paging through multiple screens to switch sports. It is water proof
to 1 meter for 30 minutes but I would use caution, especially in corrosive salt water. The unit itself is smaller but not
necessarily more comfortable. I like the velcro strap of the 301 better.
My biggest consideration with the 301 was the lack of a cadence sensor. This was the only feature that kept the 301 from being a
true cycle computer. Blessedly this is an option for the 305. It still does not work with Macs, as promised, which is a
disappointment for several of our athletes. If you are looking for a serious training and analysis tool the 305 delivers.
23. Exercise and effective salt replacement:
Advice from the Food Standards Agency of the UK is to limit salt intake to six grams of salt a day, an amount that would not cover
what some footballers lose in an hour according to one study. Pamela Hinton, Assistant professor of Nutritional Sciences at the
University of Missouri-Columbia, outlines the amount of salt that should be replaced during and after exercise and provides a recipe
for a home-made sport drink has the optimum sodium content for sustained performance.
General health guidelines in most countries advocate the reduction of salt intake for good health. However, this advice may be too
simplistic for athletes who lose significant amounts of salt during exercise. A study (commissioned by the Salt Manufacturers
Association) on professional footballers in the UK found that some players lose as much as 10 grams of salt in a 90-minute training
Athletes have higher fluid and sodium requirements than sedentary individuals. For the general population, the recommendation is to
limit sodium intake to 2.3 grams per day, which is equivalent to 5.8 grams of salt. The rationale for this guideline, is that
excessive sodium intake causes high blood pressure in individuals who are 'salt sensitive'. Because most people only require 1.5
grams of sodium per day, it makes sense from a public health perspective to recommend reduced intakes. Athletes, however, need
significantly more sodium than their inactive counterparts; the exact amount varies greatly between individuals, depending on sweat
volume and sweat sodium concentration.
Some athletes may require more than 10 grams of sodium per day to make up for the amount lost in sweat. Athletes also require more
fluid than sedentary individuals - up to 10 litres per day. Both dehydration and sodium depletion adversely affect athletic
performance. However, it is difficult to differentiate between the two because they occur simultaneously and have similar negative
24. High-speed running tests are excellent predictors of marathon finishing time:
How can you predict your performance in a forthcoming marathon? And how can you measure improvements in your fitness if you are not
racing regularly? The answer, dear reader, is to work out your 'critical velocity'! What's that? Another sophisticated performance
variable to deal with - just when you were finally getting comfortable with the intricacies of vVO2max, tlimvVO2max, and
lactate-threshold running speed?
I understand that you're probably not over-keen to learn about another complex physiological parameter, but bear with me: critical
velocity is important and interesting, and I'll make your assimilation of the concept almost painless. In the process, you'll learn
some cool new things about running, including the fact that your capability at high speeds predicts very strongly how you will
perform in a marathon.
So what is this critical velocity - and how do you determine your own? All you need to do is perform four treadmill runs at
different, very high-quality velocities. Make sure that each of the speeds you choose produces complete fatigue (inability to
maintain the speed) within 10 minutes. If your chosen velocity allows you to cruise along for more than 10 minutes before
prostration, go for a faster one.
Complete the four-speed critical velocity test during a single workout. Warm up properly first, and then select the fastest of your
four speeds - one you are confident you won't be able to sustain for more than 90-120 seconds. Once the treadmill is running at this
speed, hop aboard, start your stopwatch, remain as relaxed as possible and try to hang in there as long as you can. When you're
forced to grip the handrails or hop off the treadmill altogether, stop your watch and note how far you ran at the chosen pace.
More...from Peak Performance Online at:
25. Digest Briefs:
* Morning Hydration
By Coach Matt Russ, www.thesportfactory.com
I enjoy training with one of my athletes in particular, since we are closely paced. This allows us to both stay in our heart rate
zones without having to modify our work outs or wait on each other. We recently met on a warm and humid morning and began a tough
brick work out. Right off the bat her heart rate was significantly higher than our normal discrepancy which is about 10 beats, and
her pace was slower. Our disparity only increased as we continued our work out and her performance continued to decline.
After about a half hour I began to question her regarding recovery, sleep, soreness, stress, antihistamines, etc. anything
criteria would affect heart rate. When I got to the hydration question; bingo, it turns out she had not had any fluids to speak of
The longest period we go without hydration is when we sleep. It is not unusual for the average individual to go 10 hours or more to
the next fluid intake; which may be a cup of coffee. We may wake up in a dehydrated state and begin our work outs with a strike
against us. Dehydration means low blood volume. Your heart has less fluid to work with and it has to pump faster to supply working
muscles. A higher heart rate with lower muscular output (speed or power), is not something an athlete desires from their work out.
The good news is this can easily be prevented. On a hot and humid day start your hydration as soon as you wake up with 16-20 ounces
of fluids. Fruit juices and other fluids can count towards this. If you work out is not for several hours consume another 16-20
ounces pre work out. Clear urine output is a good sign, but vitamins, especially B vitamins can affect this. One of the easiest
strategies to ensure hydration habits is to keep a case of water in your vehicle.
Training is not just about getting the work out done; it is about getting the best quality work done. If you are not fueled or
hydrated properly, this quality can not occur. In the case of my partner after 45 minutes on consistent hydration her heart rate
began to fall. By the end of our work out her pace had increased by over a minute, her heart rate was about 10 beats lower. She
was able to train hard once again.
* Question: Im a night owl and I get hungry at night. Can snacking at midnight screw up my energy levels for the next day?
_Todd Leong, New York City
Answer: Snacking late at night wont mess with your energy levels, Brad. However, eating poorly wont let you wake up in the best
shape to take on the day. Late night snacking gets a bad rap becau<br/><br/>(Message over 64 KB, truncated)