Runner's and Triathlete's Web Digest - May 6, 2011
- 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
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1. Emilie's Run - The Emilie Mondor Memorial 5K Race for Women - Canada's Fastest Women's 5K Emilie's Run is over for another year.
Emily Tallen of Kingston won the race in 16:36.2 after finishing second twice and third once in the past three years. Race reports,
photos and a video are available at the race website. The 2011 race will be run on June 25th. For more on the race visit the website
Athletics: Somersault Sports and RunnersWeb.com Announce Changes to Emilie's Run -- The Emilie Mondor Memorial 5K Race for Women
2. Road Runner Sports, the world's largest running store at:
3. Toronto Waterfront Marathon, October 16, 2011
The fastest men's and women's marathon on Canadian soil!
4. Goodlife Fitness Toronto Marathon - May 15, 2011
*Note the date change to the spring starting in 2011*
Set a PB!
Registration is now open for May 15th, 2011! Our first spring event! Great Karbon shirts, our huge medals, and one of the best carbo
dinners around. Our course is scenic, fast, and with a net downhill ensures a fast time. You'll be supported by over 1500 volunteers
of spectators as you run the streets of Toronto.
We've reduced our entry fees until the end of this month so don't miss this great opportunity by registering now! Click here.
5. Training Peaks
The Runner's Web has partnered with Training Peaks to provide online
coaching from experts such as Hal Higdon, Joel Friel and Matt
Fitzgerald. Sign up at:
6. iRun Magazine
iRun is Canada's highest-circulation and most popular running magazine. With a total distribution of 50,000 and more than 9,000
subscribers, iRun is leading the market in the rapidly growing and highly desirable demographic of Canadian runners.
iRun Magazine is a sponsor of Emilie's Run
8. Canadian Running Magazine: Subscribe at:
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RUNNER'S AND TRIATHLETE'S WEB CONTENT PARTNERS
ROAD RUNNER SPORTS
We have partnered with Road Runner Sports, the world's largest online running store, to provide a shopping portal. Check it out at:
* 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:
* 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:
Visit the PPO site at: Peak Performance Online:
* 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
Check out the Peak Running article index at:
* Running Research News: RRN's free, weekly, training update provides subscribers with the most-current, practical, scientifically
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News, please see the Online Article Index and "About Running Research News" sections below or go to RRNews.com. Check out the
article index at: http://www.runnersweb.com/running/RRN_index.html
THIS WEEK'S PERSONAL POSTINGS/RELEASES: We will only post notes here regarding running and triathlon topics of interest to the
community. We have NO personal postings this week.
THIS WEEK'S DIGEST ARTICLE INDEX:
1. Dr. Gabe Mirkin's Fitness and Health E-Zine
2. VO2max - The monthly newsletter of RunCoachJason.com
3. First Steps
A Handful of Female Marathon Pioneers Inspired a Generation of Women Runners.
4. Running Free: Marathon Training Without Injury
5. Serious Recovery: Take Your Time
How much time post race do you really need to recover?
6. Carbs, Protein & Performance
7. Sun Sense for Runners
8. Performance Page: The Marker Workout
A layperson's test of aerobic development.
9. Nutrition and Supplements
10. Eliminate these training errors for distance running and reduce your chances of getting hurt
11. Energy Drinks Vs. Sports Drinks
12. Four Tips to Stay Motivated on Your Long Run
13. Exercise Protects the Heart Via Nitric Oxide, Researchers Discover
14. Mid-Race Tweaks: How to Handle Race Day Conditions
15. Digest Briefs
THIS WEEK'S POLL:
How long a warm-up do you do before a race?
Depends on the race distance
> 30 minutesPREVIOUS POLL RESULTS:
When will Paula Radcliffe's marathon world best of 2:15:25, set in 2003, be broken?
Answers Percent Votes
1 2011 5% 7
2 2015 21% 32
3 2020 23% 35
4 2025 or later 39% 60
5 Never 12% 19
Total Votes: 153
You can access the poll from our FrontPage (http://www.runnersweb.com) as well as checking the results of previous polls.
Our Photo Slideshow is updated on a random basis. Check it out from our FrontPage.
FIVE STAR SITE OF THE MONTH:
Web Site Founder: Alex Coffin (CIAU Champion UVic Vike)
Web Site Designer: Steve Roderick
The marathon distance has a mystique about it that has attracted many runners (both elite and recreational) across Canada. The
World Wide Web includes many sites devoted to running, running clubs, and even marathon races themselves, but there didn't seem to
be a site serving the needs of Canadian marathoners.
Seeing an opportunity to fill a void, Alex Coffin came up with the idea of Canadian Marathoning Ltd. and MarathonCanada.com.
MarathonCanada.com is a web site devoted to promoting marathon running in Canada. The goal is to create a web site that can serve as
the definitive source of information on marathon running in Canada.
Through features such as a calendar of events, a discussion room, marathon pro tips, and comprehensive rankings, it is hoped that
this site will provide a one-stop information source that will help to spur continued involvment by both recreational and elite
marathon runners. The most exciting feature of this site will be a detailed marathon ranking to allow running enthusiasts to follow
a national list, as well as regional and age-class break downs. The regional breakdowns, in particular, will be an exciting area to
develop to give runners from rural locations an idea of where they rank compared to others in their area.
One other issue that has been addressed is non-citizens training in Canada and Canadians training abroad. I feel it is important to
recognize newcomers to this country. So, as this is a non-sanctioned site we will be displaying non-citizens as unranked
participants allowing our Canadian runners to feel the heat to improve but to also protect their rankings from potential temporary
residents. I also recognize the necessity for many elite Canadian runners to train abroad. Therefore, results by Canadians racing
outside of Canada will be included in the rankings, but will be displayed as unranked.
Canadian Marathoning Ltd. would like to thank Connie Coffin and Rob Harmsworth for their initial support of this project. A special
thanks to site builder Craig Odermatt and the Running Room for providing the initial technical expertise and the funding to get this
site going. Sylvan Smyth and Steven Shelford took over the technical website work and the PIH Club in Victoria extended web-hosting
Presently, Steve Roderick has taken over the technical planning and I hope you find the new format exciting and informative. From a
data standpoint, our rankings should get more diverse and comprehensive but loyal to the long distance road-running format. We are
also introducing a retail system to offer "hard to get" performance shoes and gear. It's an exciting time and I appreciate your
Visit the website at:
BOOK/VIDEO/MOVIE OF THE MONTH:
Racing Weight Quick Start Guide
By Matt Fitzgerald
Most endurance athletes are concerned about their weight. They know that every extra pound slows them down. Yet normal dieting and
fad weight-loss programs dont work for athletes who need to fuel their training.
Cyclists, runners, triathletes, and swimmers need Matt Fitzgeralds Racing Weight Quick Start Guide, the first weight-loss training
plan for endurance athletes. By applying all the principles of his best-selling book Racing Weight, endurance athletes will
accelerate their season goals and race leaner and faster than ever before.
Athletes will devote 4 to 8 weeks to starting a weight loss of 5, 10, or 20+ pounds. The weight will come off quickly by following a
schedule of high-intensity workouts, strength training, and a menu of calorie-restricted, high-protein meals and snacks. Low-volume
and high-volume training plans help athletes maintain fitness even while they focus on weight loss.
With the Racing Weight Quick Start Guide, endurance athletes can lose weight quickly and get a jumpstart on reaching their
Buy the book at:
For more publications on running and triathlon visit:
THIS WEEK'S FEATURES:
1. Dr. Gabe Mirkin's Fitness and Health E-Zine:
** Dear Dr. Mirkin: What should long distance runners and bicycle racers eat to help them recover faster?
During their recovery periods, they should eat huge amounts of foods loaded with protein and carbohydrates. Since the 1930s,
athletes have known that they can recover faster from hard workouts by eating extra carbohydrates: fruits, vegetables, and whole
grain bakery products and pastas. The carbohydrates refill their muscles with glycogen (stored sugar). Sugar requires less oxygen to
fuel muscles during exercise than fat or protein. Anything that reduces oxygen requirements during exercise allows the athlete to
move faster and stronger, and have greater endurance.
Recent research from the University of Birmingham in the UK shows that athletes can recover even faster if they also take in extra
protein (Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, April 2011). This is the first study to show that several days of high-protein
feeding hastens recovery during several days of high-intensity training. It doesn't make any difference if they get their extra
protein from dairy products, meat, fish, chicken, beans, seeds or nuts. The study showed that trained male cyclists could ride
significantly faster time trials on their very intense days when they were given a diet with extra protein. The high- protein diet
contained 3 g protein/kg/day) and the normal diet contained 1.5 g protein/kg/day.
All athletic training is done by stressing and recovering. The athlete takes one or more intense workouts, and then when he feels
very sore, cuts back on the intensity of his workouts for a while. Anything that will help him recover faster will allow him to take
his next series of intense workouts sooner and he will become stronger, faster, and have greater endurance. Previous research has
shown that taking extra protein soon after finishing an intense workout can hasten recovery (Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2004;287
(4):E712-20). This is explained by the fact that a high carbohydrate load immediately after finishing the intense workout causes the
pancreas to release large amounts of insulin which drive the extra protein (amino acids) into muscle cells so they heal faster (J
** Low Salt Diets May Be Harmful
A new study from Belgium found that low-salt diets increase the risk of death from heart attacks and strokes and do not prevent high
blood pressure (JAMA. May 4, 2011). The investigators found that the less salt people ate, the more likely they were to die of
3,681 middle-aged Europeans with normal blood pressure and no heart disease were followed for 7.9 years. The researchers measured
urine excretion of salt to prove how much salt each person took in. Virtually all salt intake during a day can be measured by how
much salt ends up in the urine. This study is one of the first to measure a person's salt intake directly, rather than using
dietary history which is not very dependable. However, Dr. Walter Willett of Harvard thinks that the study is flawed because
investigators based their findings on a single measurement of sodium collected at the start of the study.
HOW COULD A LOW-SALT DIET CAUSE HEART ATTACKS?
We know that salt restriction can raise blood sugar and insulin levels, while salt loading lowers them (American Journal of
Hypertension, July 2001). *A low-salt diet can cause salt
deficiency which blocks insulin receptors. *This prevents the body from responding to insulin. *This causes the pancreas to release
huge amounts of insulin. *High levels of insulin constrict arteries leading to the heart to cause heart attacks.
SALT DEFICIENCY CAN CAUSE THE SIDE EFFECTS OF DIABETES
Blocked insulin receptors *prevent insulin from removing sugar from the bloodstream to cause *high blood sugar levels. *This
causes sugar to stick to cells. *Once sugar is stuck on a cell, it can never get off, and is eventually converted to a poison called
sorbitol that destroys the cell, to cause all the side effects of diabetes: blindness, deafness, dementia,
heart attacks, stokes, impotence, nerve damage and so forth.
WHO SHOULD RESTRICT SALT?
Most doctors feel that non-exercising North Americans should restrict salt, particularly those who already have high blood pressure
and/or heart problems. Extra salt can raise blood pressure slightly and cause fluid retention that can stress the heart.
Therefore, it is reasonable for doctors to prescribe a low-salt diet to non-exercisers, provided that also recommend that their
patients follow the DASH Diet: http://www.drmirkin.com/heart/8614.html
WHY DOCTORS SHOULD ALWAYS RECOMMEND THE DASH DIET WITH SALT RESTRICTION:
Most people cannot stay on a low-salt diet and many researchers have shown that salt restriction lowers high blood pressure only a
little, while the DASH Diet (high in vegetables and fruit) lowers high blood pressure dramatically. Reducing salt intake a little
does not lower high blood pressure (JAMA May 21, 1996) and reducing salt intake a lot can raise blood pressure even higher (JAMA May
Severe salt restriction causes your adrenal glands to produce large amounts of a hormone called aldosterone, and your kidneys to
produce large amounts of another hormone called angiotensin. Both constrict blood vessels and raise blood pressure. People on on
severe low-salt diets have a higher death rate, and severe salt restriction can raise blood pressure and blood cholesterol, and even
cause heart attacks (American Journal of Hypertension, October 1994).
Obese people are the ones most likely to be able to lower blood pressure with salt restriction. However, being overweight prevents
your body from responding adequately to insulin and raises insulin levels. Since insulin causes the body to retain salt, salt
restriction raises blood levels of insulin which make a person hungrier and fatter. Eating white flour and sugar makes your body
much more sensitive to salt, and restricting these food products decreases salt's ability to raise blood pressure. Changing your
lifestyle is far more effective in reducing high blood pressure than just taking drugs.
HOW CAN YOU REDUCE YOUR CHANCES OF SALT HARMING YOU?
Many different co-factors increase your risk for heart attacks, strokes, and diabetes. You can reduce your susceptibility to these
diseases by losing excess weight, exercising, avoiding refined carbohydrates (particularly sugared drinks and foods and bakery
products and pastas made from flour), avoiding red meat, raising your blood vitamin D3 level above 75 nmol/L, not smoking and taking
no more than one alcoholic drink a day.
WHAT IF YOU ALREADY SUFFER FROM HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE OR HEART DISEASE?
If you have high blood pressure, you may be able to lower your blood pressure to normal by going on the high-plant DASH diet. If
you suffer heart disease or fluid retention, you may also benefit from salt restriction. Salt restriction plus the DASH diet is
more effective in lowering high blood pressure than just the DASH Diet alone (NEJM, January 4, 2001).
WHO SHOULD THINK TWICE ABOUT RESTRICTING SALT?
Intense exercisers can be harmed by salt restriction. During my residency training, I had the good fortune to hear lectures on
fluids and electrolytes given by Dr. James Gamble of Harvard Medical School. He performed the definitive studies on minerals and
exercise during World War II. Some of my instructors had been Harvard MedicalSchool students who were paid by Dr. Gamble to lie on
a raft in his swimming pool, take various amounts of fluids and salt and have blood drawn to measure salt and mineral levels.
Dr. Gamble showed that you have to take a lot of salt when you exercise for several hours, particularly in hot weather. For many
years after that, every student at Harvard Medical School heard Dr. Gamble give his lectures on minerals and exercise, and today,
most serious students still read the Gamble lectures published in 1958 by The Harvard University Press. Now, more than sixty years
later, nobody has improved on his research.
WHY SO MUCH FUSS ABOUT SALT RESTRICTION?
After Gamble published his studies, people who worked or exercised in the heat were given salt tablets. Then doctors became
concerned because they thought that a person could have his blood pressure raised by taking in too much salt, and some people
vomited because of the high concentration of salt (from salt pills) in their stomachs. So they recommended restricting salt, causing
people to suffer heat stroke and dehydration during hot weather exercise.
A low-salt diet does not lower high blood pressure for most people. A high-salt diet causes high blood pressure usually only in
people with high blood insulin levels. Eating salty foods and drinks when you exercise for more than two hours is unlikely to raise
blood pressure. We don't recommend salt tablets because they can cause nausea and vomiting.
WHY INTENSE EXERCISERS NEED EXTRA SALT:
The only mineral that you need to take during prolonged exercise is sodium, found in regular table salt. Potassium, calcium and
magnesium deficiency do not occur in healthy
athletes (Medicine and Science in Sport and Exercise, October 1999).
HOW CAN YOU TELL THAT YOU MAY BE SALT DEFICIENT?
If you are a regular exerciser who is on a low-salt diet and you feel fatigued, or develop muscle aches or injuries, get a blood
sodium test. If your blood sodium is low, you need to take in more salt before you harm yourself more seriously.
HOW I ALMOST DIED FROM A LOW SALT SYNDROME:
In 1967, Tom Osler, a virtually unknown math professor at Glasssboro State, won the United States National AAU 30-Kilometer running
championship in 100 degree weather in Rockville, Maryland. This was incredible because he had no basic speed, yet he beat many of
the best runners in the country. He was a mediocre runner in cold weather and attributed his phenomenal success in hot weather to
restricting salt from his diet. The theory seemed reasonable. When you compete in the heat, you lose tremendous amounts of water
and salt. Could restricting salt and water teach your body to conserve salt and water during competition? I tried it and suffered
heat stroke in a road race in July in Washington, DC.
Research shows that restricting either salt or fluid during training will not increase endurance. It tires you earlier so you can't
train. Furthermore, salt deficiency causes a syndrome in which your muscles hurt all the time, and you suffer cramps, headache and
The most crucial factor in preparing your body for competition in the heat is exercising in the heat (Aviation Space and
Environmental Medicine, August 1995). Restricting fluids does not help your body to acclimatize better. Several studies show that
water loading and salting your food to taste help you to compete. Markedly increasing your intake of fluids for a week before
competition can increase your endurance. The extra salt helps your body to hold the extra water.
HOW CAN YOU MEET YOUR NEEDS FOR SALT WHEN YOU COMPETE IN ENDURANCE EVENTS IN VERY HOT WEATHER?
Just about everyone agrees that you need to take in drinks and foods containing extra salt during extended athletic competitions in
hot weather. Not everyone agrees that athletes need to take in extra salt at rest. If you don't take salt and fluids during
extended exercise in hot weather, you will tire earlier and increase your risk for heat stroke, dehydration and cramps. You can
drink special electrolyte drinks, or eat salted foods along with any fluid during competition.
** Interval Training and Lactic Acid
To compete in sports that require speed, athletes use a technique called interval training. They exercise for a short period at a
very fast pace, rest until they recover and then repeat these fast bursts until their muscles start to stiffen and hurt.
Interval training teaches your brain to coordinate muscles at a very fast pace. The principle behind interval training is to move so
fast that lactic acid accumulates in muscles, causing burning and hurting.
Your muscles get their fuel from fat and sugar that are broken down by chemical reactions that release a little energy at a time. If
there is enough oxygen in your bloodstream, the sugar and fat are broken down into carbon dioxide and water. If you exercise so
vigorously that you can't get enough oxygen, the sugar cannot be broken down and the reactions stop, causing a chemical called
lactic acid to accumulate in your muscles. This makes your muscles hurt. When you rest, lactic acid levels drop and the discomfort
disappears. You run hard again, causing lactic acid to accumulate, rest, and repeat these hard intervals until your muscles start to
How intervals train your muscles to use lactic acid: http://www.drmirkin.com/fitness/lactic_acid_intervals.html
Lactic acid is good for you: http://www.drmirkin.com/fitness/lactic_acid_good.html
From Dr. Gabe Mirkin at:
2. VO2max - The monthly newsletter of RunCoachJason.com:
Enzymes function as biological catalysts that speed up chemical reactions. In the absence of enzymes, chemical reactions would not
occur quickly enough to generate the energy needed to exercise. The amount of an enzyme also controls which metabolic pathway is
used. For example, having more aerobic enzymes will steer metabolism toward a greater reliance on aerobic metabolism at a given
submaximal intensity. Enzymes are also activated or inhibited (i.e., their effectiveness in speeding up chemical reactions can be
either increased or decreased), determining which metabolic pathways are functional during certain cellular conditions. Thus,
enzymes essentially control metabolism and therefore control the intensity at which you fatigue.
A number of studies have documented an increase in enzyme activity in response to aerobic training. One of the first among these
was published in 1967 in Journal of Biological Chemistry, in which aerobically trained rats increased mitochondrial enzyme activity,
increasing the mitochondria's capacity to consume oxygen. More recently, a study published in Journal of Applied Physiology in 2006
found that citrate synthase (a key enzyme of the Krebs cycle) activity significantly increased by 37 percent in novice runners after
13 weeks of training during which weekly mileage increased from 15 to 36.
Similarly, sprint training induces changes in the anaerobic enzyme profile of muscles and also increases aerobic enzyme activity,
particularly when long sprints or short recovery between short sprints are used. For example, a study published in Journal of
Applied Physiology in 1998 found that sprint cycle training three times per week for seven weeks using 30-second maximum-effort
intervals significantly increased both anaerobic and aerobic enzyme activity. Research on changes in enzyme activity with sprint
running is currently lacking.
Metabolism is also regulated by its patriarch-oxygen. The availability of oxygen determines which metabolic pathway predominates.
For example, at the end of the metabolic pathway that breaks down carbohydrates (glycolysis), there is a fork in the road. When
there is adequate oxygen to meet the muscle's needs, the final product of glycolysis-pyruvate-is converted into an important
metabolic intermediate that enters the Krebs cycle for oxidation. This irreversible conversion of pyruvate inside your muscles'
mitochondria is a decisive reaction in metabolism since it commits the carbohydrates broken down through glycolysis to be oxidized
by the Krebs cycle. However, when there is not adequate oxygen to meet the muscle's needs, pyruvate is converted into lactate. An
associated consequence of this latter fate is the accumulation of metabolites and the development of acidosis, causing your muscles
to fatigue and you to slow down.
The more aerobically developed you are, the more you'll steer pyruvate toward the Krebs cycle and away from lactate production at a
given pace. That's a good thing, because the amount of energy you get from pyruvate entering the Krebs cycle is 19 times greater
than what you get from pyruvate being converted into lactate. While pyruvate will always be converted into lactate given a high
enough intensity, the goal of training is to increase the intensity at which that occurs.
Periodization is a method of maximizing fitness and performance by structuring training programs into periods or phases using
programmed variation of training loads and recovery in a cyclic fashion. It involves focusing the training stimulus to one or two
variables at a time and manipulating and systematically changing those training variables over the course of the training program.
By varying the training, you change the stimulus so you continue to adapt. A number of studies have shown that training using a
programmed variation of volume and intensity produces better results (e.g., greater strength gains and greater decrease in percent
body fat) compared to training without variation, although the research is limited to strength training. While variation is vital
to preventing plateaus, you should make all changes to your program with concrete training goals in mind and never on a strictly
random basis for the sheer sake of variety. The training emphases and sequencing should be guided by your strengths and weaknesses,
spending more time on aspects of fitness that attend to your strengths.
There are a few different ways to schedule and organize the variation of training stimuli. The traditional way is called linear
periodization, during which the training program initially builds in volume before decreasing in volume and increasing in intensity.
The opposite structure, reverse linear periodization, begins with higher intensity and progresses to lower intensity and higher
volume. Finally, with non-linear, or undulating, periodization, the volume and intensity change from week to week or even from day
to day throughout the program. Which method is best is hard to say. Studies have shown mixed results. One study found that linear
periodization increased muscular strength more than did reverse linear periodization, while another study found that undulating
periodization increased strength more than did linear periodization. However, another study found no differences in strength,
percent body fat, and chest or thigh circumferences between linear periodization and undulating periodization using daily or weekly
variation. When testing muscular endurance rather than muscular strength, one study found that reverse linear periodization
increased muscular endurance more than did linear periodization and undulating periodization. Thus, it seems that, to increase
muscular strength, undulating or linear periodization are most effective, while reverse linear periodization is most effective to
increase muscular endurance.
Want to know more about periodization? I have two DVDs on the topic: Chasing Mercury, Battling Hercules: Getting Fitter and Stronger
with Periodization Training and Periodization Training for Distance Runners. To order these or any other of my popular DVDs, go to
3. First Steps:
A Handful of Female Marathon Pioneers Inspired a Generation of Women Runners.
Can you imagine being stopped by police during a marathon-training run simply because you're a solitary female? Being tackled,
threatened, and cursed at by a race director while running your first marathon? Setting a marathon world best at age 38, winning the
New York City Marathon, yet still being ashamed of your body? Entering your first marathon because women weren't allowed to run more
than 1,500 meters in international track competition, and setting a world record by more than two minutes? Winning the first women's
Olympic marathon, then running an American marathon in a record time that still stands after 16 years?
I can't imagine doing any of these things.
Every time I contemplate the obstacles women marathoners have faced and what they have done in spite of them, I'm overwhelmed by
their athleticism, courage, and vision. I consider it a privilege to know personally several of the women who pioneered the
marathon. It is the great fortune of us all that they are accessible, articulate, personable, and possess tremendous insight into
the sport of marathoning.
More...from Marathon and Beyond at:
4. Running Free: Marathon Training Without Injury:
Wouldn't it be great if we could all run with our own personalized crystal ball, one that gave us a window into the future, where we
could see when there was an injury waiting to happen? Then we would know how far to push the envelope: increasing our mileage and
our intensity in our pursuit of a fast marathon time, and also, when we should back off, take some rest, make some minor changes to
our training and avoid all injuries. In reality, all too often, injuries come upon unsuspecting runners suddenly and take us by
surprise, derailing our marathon plans.
While crystal balls are the stuff of fantasy, cultivating experience and training 'smarts' can help make running a smooth process,
one where you learn injury predictors and avoid mistakes, all the while running free of worry. Injury free running is a combination
of having a good training plan and learning to train with intuition: increasing your awareness and 'feel' for how your body is
doing. While training with a GPS watch, heartrate monitor and along a progressive training schedule is a sure bet way to get faster,
nothing can replace intuitive human intelligence when it comes to staying healthy.
Build in recovery.
Don't wait until you are exhausted, sore or injured to take a rest. Planning for recovery is as important as planning your long
runs. Without recovery, the body cannot absorb the training load or adapt by getting stronger. Conversely, training without
recovery is like training along the law of diminishing returns: the runs get progressively slower and slower as you tire over time;
your form breaks down as you compensate for tired muscles, the runs get slower as you run less efficiently and on and on. Hard and
or long workouts also reduce hamstring strength and power in runners and if recovery is not complete they must perform their next
workout with diminished hamstring strength and therefore cannot perform to full potential. Generally, every third week should be a
lighter week, or a recovery week, where the volume and intensity are reduced, allowing the body to regenerate and recover. During
the recovery week, you can focus on cross training, getting massage, seeing a physiotherapist, stretching more and eating well
More...from LifeSport at:
5. Serious Recovery: Take Your Time:
How much time post race do you really need to recover?
In my new book, The Athletes Guide to Recovery, I include in the appendix a post-race recovery chart. This chart lists the number
of days an athlete should plan to recover, based on the race distance and other factors (such as whether the race was an A race or
simply a stop en route to another goal race). Based on a fantastic table that Olympic coach Gale Bernhardt designed, available on
Active.com, the chart clearly lays out the effect of training, race plan execution, and post-race care on the length of your
These life factors, which include your training progression, your daily stress, and your nutrition, play a critical role in your
recovery. A foam roller or compression socks are not going to make up for deficient rest and stress management. But the most
powerful factor of all is simply time. You must give your body time to repair itself, not only between workouts, but especially
after a peak event like a long-course triathlon.
Only time can heal the wounds that racing inflicts. Physiologically, your body must repair the trauma done to muscles and joints,
moving through a natural inflammatory phase that encourages tissue rebuilding. Come back too soon, and youll carry this
inflammation into your next training cycle and grow more susceptible to injury. Psychologically, you need a break. Whether you are
seeking to build on a strong race or to redeem one that didnt go as planned, it can be tempting to rush back into structured
training too soon. When you do, you are beginning the next cycle with a psychic deficit youll have to work hard to overcome.
More...from Lava Magazine at:
Buy the book from Amazon at:
6. Carbs, Protein & Performance:
Carbs, Protein & Performance
(first of a two part series)
What percentage of my diet should come from carbohydrates? Should I exercise on empty? How much protein should I eat after I
lift weights? Is whey the best source of protein?
These are just a few of the questions addressed at the 27th annual meeting of SCAN, the Sports And Cardiovascular Nutritionists
practice group of the American Dietetic Association (www.SCANdpg.org). Over 400 sports dietitians gathered to learn the latest news
from prominent sports nutrition researchers. I hope this information will help you choose a winning sports diet.
Louise Burke, PhD, Director of Sports Nutrition at the Australian Institute of Sport, addressed the following questions:
What are the best percentages of carbohydrates, protein, and fat for a sports diet: 40-30-30 or 60-25-15?
Neither! A better approach is to define nutrient needs in terms of grams per kilogram (or pound) body weight. For example, the
International Olympic Committee developed these guidelines:
More...from the IAWR at:
7. Sun Sense for Runners:
You may have thought it would never happen, but the warm weather has finally arrived.
Running in Summer heat poses a few new physical challenges to athletes. As the thermometer rises, our bodies have to work harder to
moderate our internal body temperature and supply our muscles with oxygen. All the energy spent on keeping cool forces our heart
rates to elevate.
Here are five steps to ensure smart Summer running:
1. Increase Fluid Intake.
Our bodys first line of defense to battle the heat is to sweat. Sweating is a natural cooling process that allows the body to
internally regulate its temperature. When sweat evaporates on the skin, it effectively removes body heat. Its vital to replace the
fluids lost through sweat. Dont wait until after youve completed your first mile to start drinking water. Try to adhere to
these three guidelines.
~ Drink 16 oz. of water in the two hours prior to your workout.
~ Drink 3 to 6 oz. of water every 15 minutes during your workout.
~ Follow-up with 8 oz. of water 30 minutes post-workout
If you find that much water hard to swallow, mix in some flavored sports drinks (research by the Gatorade Sports Science Institute
(GSSI) has shown that athletes are more likely to stay hydrated with a lightly flavored drink).
More...from Running4Women at:
8. Performance Page: The Marker Workout:
A layperson's test of aerobic development.
Most competitive runners include a base phase once or twice each year. The purpose of the base phase is to further develop the
aerobic system and to prepare the body and the mind for future training phases that will become increasingly more race-specific as
the goal race or season of races nears.
In the base phase, the focus is less on the intensity and more on the volume of training. A common guideline is to increase weekly
mileage by 10 to 20 percent above "average" mileage level. Intensity is necessarily reduced to keep the stress/rest cycle in
balance, and to let the race-specific energy systems recover from the previous season. Physiologically, the extra training volume
adds components to the muscular system that help deliver oxygen to the working muscles--a critical aspect of racing faster. First,
with a few weeks of adding volume and reduced intensity, the body builds more capillary beds around the working muscles. Think of
capillaries as pipes that deliver oxygen to the working muscles. Adding more pipes to deliver more oxygen-rich blood allows the
muscles to perform better. Second, within the muscle cells, mitochondria are the structures that produce the aerobic energy that
powers muscle contractions.
More...from Running Times at:
9. Nutrition and Supplements:
What is protein?
Proteins form the major building blocks of muscle and other tissues within the body, as well as hormones, enzymes and haemoglobin in
the blood. They are composed of subunits called amino acids. There are about 20 amino acids that we know of. 12 of these are made by
our bodies; the rest we need to get through our diet and theyre what we call essential amino acids. If we dont get these through
our diet, the ability of our muscles to grow or recover from training is compromised.
How much do we need?
"Its important to remember that supplements dont provide everything a healthy balanced meal can and so they shouldnt replace
meals on a long-term basis."
This is an area of considerable debate. Strength athletes need between 1.6 - 2g per kg of body weight per day. For an 80kg athlete,
this means they may need around 130 - 160g of protein. Endurance athletes need protein in their diets as well, to ensure muscle mass
is not lost following training, but they need less (around 1.2 - 1.6g).
Many bodybuilders maintain that they need considerably more than this and Ive seen reports of people taking 6g per kg of body
weight. They cut down on their carbohydrates to remain very lean and so its likely that the extra protein they consume is utilised
as a fuel source, albeit an inefficient one.
Do we need supplements?
I advocate the use of supplements in my job. The reason is because I want to provide nutritional support to the training athlete
within half an hour of them finishing a training session. Using a protein shake is a convenient method to ensure that we hit our
protein targets within this crucial 30-minute window. Equally, though, a protein-rich meal is just as good, if not better, than a
shake; its just that this option is not always feasible in our environment and not everyone feels like a meal so soon after
Downsides and alternatives
Its important to remember that supplements dont provide everything a healthy balanced meal can and so they shouldnt replace meals
on a long-term basis. There is also the risk of a contaminated batch, which can be problematic if you or your athlete is subject to
drug testing. You always need to make sure that your supplements come from a reputable source, preferably one that has independent
batch testing. Finally, they can be expensive. Believe it or not, the same basic job can be done by consuming a boiled egg and
chocolate milkshake! It has the carbohydrates necessary to get an insulin response (necessary for the release of growth hormone) and
the milk and egg also provide the protein you need.
From the Sports Performance Bulletin at:
10. Eliminate these training errors for distance running and reduce your chances of getting hurt:
It is well accepted that one major cause of distance running injuries are training errors committed by the athlete concerned. In one
study, James and colleagues (1978) were expecting to show that anatomical and biomechanical factors were the most likely causes of
running injuries. However, contrary to their hypothesis, they found that some 60 per cent of the running injuries in their survey
were due to training errors. Other researchers such as Brody (1980) and Clement and colleagues (1981) confirm that training errors
are a highly significant, if not the most common cause of running injuries.
If you commit a training error, it doesn't mean that you are doing the wrong type of training. Instead, training errors are
generally associated with high volumes or intensities of training, or any rapid changes in training. This may mean that you are
doing the right type of training but just too much of it, or too much training too soon. For example, two common training errors
athletes commit are periods of high mileage without easy days in between, and sudden major increases in mileage.
More...from Sport Injury Bulletin at:
11. Energy Drinks Vs. Sports Drinks:
No, Red Bull and Gatorade are not interchangeable.
The other day I was interviewed by a reporter for the Detroit Free Press on the topic of sports drinks. One of his questions
concerned the difference between sports drinks and energy drinks. At first I thought it was a question he asked just to hear my
answer, already knowing the answer himself. But a follow-up question revealed that the journalist was genuinely confused about the
difference between the two categories, and even uncertain about whether there was a difference. Figuring he probably wasnt the only
one, Ive decided to answer the question again here.
Sports drinks are easy to define. They are beverages formulated specifically for use during exercise and for the sake of enhancing
exercise performance. Even though more than 99 percent of the two most popular sports drinks are not consumed in the exercise
context, they are in fact intended for that context.
Energy drinks are a more amorphous category. They are a hybrid of lifestyle beverages and functional beverages. Like other soft
drinks, they provide refreshment and flavor at meals, between meals, whenever. But they also contain functional ingredientsmainly
caffeineto provide perceptions of wakefulness and energy for whenever they are needed.
More...from Competitor Magazine at:
12. Four Tips to Stay Motivated on Your Long Run:
Without a doubt the long run is one of the most important parts of your overall training cycle. For months you have been building
your running fitness with the goal of completing the long runs that will ultimately shape your racing fitness. But when the big day
comes and your alarm goes off...you have no juice!
Is your race in jeopardy? Is your mind checking out? Should you give up now?
The answer is a resounding NO across the board. Don't worry...you are not alone. Every weekend countless runners from total newbies
to the most experienced veterans struggle to do the runs required by their training plans. Here are a few tips to keep you motivated
on the hardest of days to start.
More...from Active.com at:
13. Exercise Protects the Heart Via Nitric Oxide, Researchers Discover:
Exercise both reduces the risk of a heart attack and protects the heart from injury if a heart attack does occur. For years,
doctors have been trying to dissect how this second benefit of exercise works, with the aim of finding ways to protect the heart
after a heart attack.
Researchers at Emory University School of Medicine have identified the ability of the heart to produce and store nitric oxide as an
important way exercise protects the heart from injury.
Nitric oxide, a short-lived gas generated within the body, turns on chemical pathways that relax blood vessels to increase blood
flow and activate survival pathways. Both the chemical nitrite and nitrosothiols, where nitric oxide is attached to proteins via
sulfur, appear to act as convertible reservoirs for nitric oxide in situations where the body needs it, such as a lack of blood flow
More...from Science Daily at:
14. Mid-Race Tweaks: How to Handle Race Day Conditions:
Theres just racing, theres racing with a plan, and then theres being able to adapt what youve got to meet where youre at. In
terms of experience level, know that anyone can register and show up on time for the start of an event. Few will actually have a
plan based on their training, as you do by this point. But what really separates the elite crowd from everybody else is their
ability to adapt.
Your race plan requires that everything goes according to your plan, and the odds of all those stars aligning for you are pretty
slim. What happens if the weather changes? If your stomach tanks? If you forget your nutrition? All these things not only can, they
will happen to you at some point in your racing career.
Heres a quick primer on how you can make adjustments to keep yourself on track.
The most important thing is that you dont lose sight of what has brought you to the starting line. Honor the hard work you have
done thus far by striving to stay as close to your original race plan as possible after all, its what youve planned and prepared
your body to do. Changing gears without due cause can lead to some serious (yet avoidable!) race day challenges.
More...from Marathon Nation at:
15. Digest Briefs
This Week in Running:
10 Years Ago- Paul Kosgei Malakwen (KEN) won the Corrida de l'Est Républicain (FRA) 8.9K over a
very strong field (rated at 951 points). Kenyans accounted for the first 12 places.
Patrick Ivuti was 2nd, six seconds back while John Korir Cheruiyot was 3rd, another
six seconds back of Ivuti. Kenyans only took four of the first five women's places
in the 4.7K, led by Edith Masai (KEN) who finished two seconds up on Asmae Leghzaoui
(MAR). Isabella Ochichi (KEN) was 3rd, ten seconds off the pace.
20 Years Ago- Judi St Hilaire (USA) won the Freihofer's Run for Women (NY/USA) 5K by 15 seconds over
Gwyn Coogan (USA), 15:41 to 15:56. Sammie Godowski (USA) was 3rd at 15:57.
30 Years Ago- Brian Morgan (AUS) won the 26th edition of the Vancouver (BC/CAN) Marathon in 2:16:27.
Lawrence Whitty (AUS) was next at 2:17:52 while John Hill (CAN) took the CAN marathon
title with a 2:19:16, good for 3rd. Nancy McLaren (CAN) won the women's race and the
CAN women's marathon title with a 2:48:23. Jessica Brandt (CAN) and Wendy Robertson
(CAN) followed with 2:48:39 and 2:51:56 respectively.
40 Years Ago- Jürgen Busch (GER) won the Karl Marx Stadt (GER) Marathon over Hans-Joachim Truppel
(GER), 2:17:30.0 to 2:17:34.6. Kalle Hakkarainen (FIN) was 3rd at 2:18:01.2.
50 Years Ago- Patrick Clohessy (AUS) won the two mile at the Drake Relays (IA/USA) with a 8:58.6.
John Macy (POL) was 3rd at 9:01.0 and Billy Mills (USA) was 4th at 9:03.1.
From The Analytical Distance Runner, the newsletter for the Association of Road Racing Statisticians with a focus on races, 3000m
and longer, including road, track, and cross-country events.
The ARRS has a website at http://www.arrs.net.
THIS WEEK'S FEATURED EVENTS:
*Please verify event dates with the event websites available from our FrontPage (www.runnersweb.com)
May 7, 2011:
I-Drive 5K - Orlando, FL
(5th) Mother's Day 5K - St. Paul, MN
Run For A wish - Ottawa, ON May 7, 2011
Santa Barbara Wine Country Half - Santa Ynez, CA
Wisconsin Marathon - Kenosha, WI
XTERRA Malibu Creek Xduro - Malibu, CA
May 7-8, 2011:
Volkswagen Marathon Weekend - CZE
May 8, 2011:
Kirkland Half Marathon & 5K - Kirkland, WA
June 19, 2011:
Do It For Dad - Ottawa, ON
June 19, 2011:
Do It For Dad - Ottawa, ON
June 25, 2011:
Emilie's Run - Ottawa, ON
Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon - ON
November 5, 2011
Savannah Rock 'n' Roll Marathon - GA
For more complete race listings check out our Upcoming Races, and Calendars.
Check the Runner's Web on Sunday and Monday for race reports on these events at:
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