1.Brooks Aurora-BL Performance Review:
What You Need To Know
Weighs 8.5 oz. (240 g) for a US M9.0 / 7.6 oz. (215 g) for a US W7.5
Newest shoe out of the Blue Line accelerator lab
Decoupled heel and high-stack nitrogen-infused midsole
Actually pretty f**king fun to run in
Releases 6/17 for $200
ROBBE: Do you want me to be real? I’ll be real. I don’t get super excited about Brooks shoes these days. Aside from the Hyperion line (and maybe the Catamount), it’s been a little bit ho-hum for me. Does it matter what I think? Of course not, because they still sell more running shoes than any other company out there (I’m just still sour that the Launch used to be good and now it sucks).
So when we were told they had something new and exciting coming from the Blue Line lab (their innovation department), I had some healthy skepticism. I was even more skeptical once they sent spec sheets over for the all-new Brooks Aurora-BL, a shoe that looked like an antagonist from a 1980s B horror film. A decoupled heel unit that looks like Mr. Stay Puft’s carcass after a battle royale with the Ghostbusters. A silhouette design reminiscent of the Brooks Neuro from five years ago. Was I looking at the future or just a lame attempt at imagining it?
More...from Belive in the Run.
2. Effect of Advanced Shoe Technology on the Evolution of Road Race Times in Male and Female Elite Runners:
The influence of advanced footwear technology (thickness of light midsole foam and rigid plate) on distance running performances was analyzed during an 8-year period. Analysis of variance was used to measure effects of time, gender, shoe technology, and East African origin on male and female top 20 or top 100 seasonal best times in 10-kilometer races, half-marathons, and marathons. In both genders and three distance-running events, seasonal best times significantly decreased from 2017, which coincided with the introduction of the advanced footwear technology in distance running. This performance improvement was of similar magnitude in both East African and non-East African elite runners. In female elite athletes, the magnitudes (from 1.7 to 2.3%) of the decrease in seasonal best times between 2016 and 2019 were significantly higher than in their male counterparts (from 0.6 to 1.5%). Analyses of variance confirmed that the adoption of the advanced footwear technology significantly improved the top 20 seasonal best times in female half marathons and marathons and male marathons, with the improvements being more pronounced in females and in long-distance running events. The adoption of this new shoe technology improved female marathon time by ~2 min and 10 s, which represents a significant increase in performance (1.7%).
More...from Frontiers in Sport and Active Living.
3. Adidas and Allbirds Team Up to Make Sustainable Running Shoes:
The high-performance Futurecraft.Footprint shows the key to a lower carbon impact might lie in collaboration, not competition.
When it comes to sports, running's carbon footprint is relatively small. Going for a run doesn't require ripping up grasslands to build a court or burning gasoline to drive to a faraway lake. You don’t need to buy a lot of equipment, either. You can even run in the gym shorts you owned in the seventh grade (although most of us don’t).
But running still leaves a mark on the Earth. Manufacturing a pair of running shoes can be an environmentally taxing enterprise. In 2013, a team led by Randolph Kirchain, the principal research scientist at MIT’s Materials Systems Laboratory, and research scientist Elsa Olivetti discovered that making one pair of running shoes releases about 30 pounds of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. High-performance sneakers in particular have an energy-intensive manufacturing process, with steps ranging from cutting and sewing tiny pieces of fabric to generating, molding, and heating foam.
4. Is Blood Flow Restriction Training the Secret to Faster Times and Recovery?
Blood Flow Restriction training, a new fitness trend, could boost your muscle strength, endurance, and help you recover from injury faster.
Blood Flow Restriction training, a new fitness trend, could boost your muscle strength, endurance, and help you recover from injury faster.
You may have heard that Blood Flow Restriction (BFR) training, also known as KAATSU, is poised to become the next big fitness trend. It has certainly caught fire in some fitness circles, promising a way to build muscles stronger in a shorter amount of time.
And while it might sound like more fitness snake oil, according to a substantial amount of research, it does seem to deliver.
More...from POdium Runner.
5. How Exercise Affects Pregnant Women:
A new study looks for adaptations in the placenta, and finds positive effects from exercise during pregnancy
When you’re giving exercise advice, the stakes are usually pretty low. If you get it wrong, someone ends up either less fit or more tired than they should be, both of which are easily rectified. But that’s definitely not the case with exercise during pregnancy: nobody wants to be on the hook for advice that ends up being associated with a negative outcome.
For the same reason, rigorous research on the topic is relatively rare—which makes a new study in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise worth exploring. The study, from physiologist Daniel Hardy and his colleagues at Western University in Canada, takes a look at the properties of the placenta immediately after birth in a group of pregnant women assigned to mild, moderate, or no exercise. It’s already pretty clear from previous research that exercise is good for expectant mothers, but the new results add to growing evidence on the trickier question of whether it’s also good for fetuses.
More...from Sweat Science on Outside Online.
6. 5 Simple Recovery Tips:
Use these easy recovery strategies to rejuvenate your mind and body so that you can perform your best.
I was recently on a Facebook thread where someone asked whether people enjoyed taking rest days. There was, of course, the usual playful banter and outpouring of love for rest days, which was great. However, a fair few athletes also made somewhat brash claims about how they never rest or take down weeks. I deliberately stayed out of the conversation, but I really wanted to ask the tough guys about their injury histories and race performances. Why? Because recovery is NOT a dirty word.
You will not lose fitness if you take a rest day, or two, a week. You will not forget how to swim, bike, or run. You won’t even DNS or DNF. In fact, the opposite is true — if you allow your body to periodically take rest days, and have recovery weeks built into your plan, you will progress as an athlete.
More...from Globe and Mail.
8. The power of habit:
Louise Rudd talks us through the importance of our habits and how they can impact our running
Habits – we all have them both good and bad. When you woke up this morning what did you do first? grab a coffee, go to the toilet & check social media (you know you all have so stop pretending to be horrified), did you brush your teeth before or after your shower?
Back in 1892 William James who was an American philosopher & psychologist stated “All our life, so far as it has definite form, is but a mass of habits”. This was backed up by a paper published in 2006 by Duke University that found more than 40% of actions people performed each day were not actual decisions, but habits.
I’ve bitten my nails for as long as I can remember, I remember starting to race at Trafford AC (then Stretford AC) 36 years ago and each week the same starting official coming over and taking my hand from my mouth in an effort to stop me biting my nails on the start line! It’s not a pleasant habit but it’s clear that my habit for exercise started young and that’s not a bad habit.
More...from Fast Running.
9. Personal training should be declared an essential service:
Last year, right around the time COVID-19 was beginning to work its way around the world and into our daily lexicon, the comedian Marc Maron released a stand-up special called End Times Fun. It’s a fine performance, lots of laughs to be had. However one joke in particular left me licking some minor emotional wounds.
He starts things off by mocking the supplement industry (“Turmeric? That spice you buy once to make an Indian recipe and you never use again and it stains your wooden spoon? That turmeric?”) and health advice in general (“What happened to cholesterol? Turns out that’s good for you! What?? When did that happen?”), before skewering my very profession with a series of barbs that are as accurate as they are hilarious (“Most trainers, this wasn’t their life’s goal. They had other plans. They didn’t make the team, they were already at the gym a lot anyway…”).
When it comes to comedy, personal trainers are an easy target. There are very few barriers to entry into the profession, which means for every superstar who knows their stuff inside and out, you have at least a dozen walking punchlines. Do you know how many clients I’ve told to take turmeric? All of them! Still, I love my job and think personal training is an important, dare I say even essential, service.
More...from the Globe and Mail.
10. Plyometric Training Benefits Include Getting Faster at Shorter Distances, Per New Research:
Here’s why jump training helps you run more efficiently.
Jump training—or plyometrics—creates improvement in sprinting, reactive strength, and running economy in shorter distances from 2K (1.2 miles) to 5K (3.1 miles), new research shows.
High knee skips, step-ups onto a box, jumping in and out laterally, and using an agility latter are all effective plyometric moves.
If you’re just getting started, ease into this type of training gradually to avoid injury.
If you want to become a better runner, running needs to be a part of your regular routine, of course. But, according to new research in the Journal of Sports Sciences, you can benefit from jump training, too.
Researchers looked at 21 studies that included 511 participants total, encompassing different strategies for improvements in time-trial performances—specifically, what helped in boosting effectiveness in shorter distances from 2K (1.2 miles) to 5K (3.1 miles).
They found that runners who consistently engaged in jump training saw improvement in sprinting, reactive strength, and running economy—which all led to better fitness and performance.
More...from Runner's World.
11. Killing Cyclists Is As American As Mass Shootings:
There are easy ways to prevent both, yet we carry on as if nothing is wrong
First, a thesis: Americans driving cars kill Americans riding bikes for the same reason that Americans in pandemics refuse to wear masks, and Americans who love assault rifles get panicky at the mention of gun control, and Blue Lives Matter types freak at any suggestion that cops should try to kill fewer Black people.
Before I elaborate, a word about where I’m coming from: progressive politics, obviously, but also climbing. Cycling only entered my life ten years ago when I trained for the Escape from Alcatraz triathlon in San Francisco, where I live. Triathlon training involves a shocking amount of cardio—12 hours a week of swimming, running, and cycling—but I loved the endorphins and got hooked. For years after, I spent summer Saturdays on long rides through coastal redwoods and wine country. I took up other cycling disciplines, too: did most of a century ride as triathlon-training, flew to Oregon to race in Cyclocross Crusade at Alpenrose Dairy, mountain-biked clear around the Big Island of Hawaii by linking dirt roads from beaches to country inns.
Like every avid cyclist, I started noticing articles about riders maimed or killed by people driving cars and trucks: a father of two out for a toodle near Laguna Beach, California, when a driver ran him down from behind; a young woman commuting to work in a bike lane when a trucker made a hard right and ran her over. I heard stories from friends: a middle-aged dad cycling through vineyards when somebody swerved onto the shoulder for no apparent reason and killed the guy; a friend of a friend in D.C. who was commuting to work when an inattentive driver left his children fatherless. I noticed also that people who killed other people with cars or trucks rarely got so much as a moving violation unless they were drunk or high.
More...from Outside Online.
12. E-Bikes Can Provide a Good Workout:
Pedal-assisted electric bikes provided a faster and more “fun” commute while raising breathing and heart rates enough to contribute to fitness.
Does riding an electric bike to work count as exercise, and not just a mode of transportation?
It can, if you ride right, according to a pragmatic new study comparing the physiological effects of e-bikes and standard road bicycles during a simulated commute. The study, which involved riders new to e-cycling, found that most could complete their commutes faster and with less effort on e-bikes than standard bicycles, while elevating their breathing and heart rates enough to get a meaningful workout.
More...from the New York Times.
13. 7 Health Benefits of Endurance Sports:
At ACTIVE, we're firm believers in the power of endurance sports.
We've seen firsthand how swimming, cycling and running (sometimes all three) can make a lasting impact in the lives of those who participate—not just for physical health, but mental and spiritual health as well.
But what exactly are the benefits of endurance sports, besides catching a "runner's high" and being able to eat your way through the day?
Grab your tablet, lace up your shoes and hop on your stationary trainer or treadmill, and get ready to feel good about feeling good.
Remember, these are general benefits about cardiovascular exercise. Please consult a health care professional to see if endurance sports are right for you.
No matter if you're just getting off the couch and running for the first time or you're an IRONMAN triathlete, there's something to be said about setting a crazy fitness goal, working hard and pushing your limits to reach it. The daily mental gumption it takes to train (and race) and overcome physical discomfort helps train your mind to challenge perceived limitations. This is a skill that bleeds into everyday life, whether it's in work or business, forming new habits, or any other aspect you can think of.
14. The Amount of Leafy Greens You Need to Keep Your Heart Healthy:
The answer is probably a lot less than you think, according to this new research.
Eating one cup of raw, nitrate-rich vegetables such as leafy greens and beetroot—that’s just a half a cup cooked—can improve many markers of heart health, new research shows.
Nitrate-rich vegetables have also been shown to improve cardio performance as well.
Beetroot, arugula, pak choi (a.k.a. bok choy), endive, and radish greens, as well as your typical dark leafy choices are all great options to regularly add to your diet.
One of the most repeated pieces of nutrition advice for cardiovascular health is to eat dark, leafy greens like kale, chard, and spinach regularly. But how much do you need to eat in order to see benefits? According to a new study in the European Journal of Epidemiology, the answer is: probably a lot less than you think.
Researchers looked at data from over 53,000 people who took part in the Danish Diet, Cancer, and Health Study, which tracked health outcomes and food consumption over a 23-year period.
More...from Runner's World
15. Amazon Prime Day 2021 Is Coming, But They Secretly Dropped Some Amazing Fitness Sales Early:
Now’s the time for deep discounts on Beats and Fitbits
Amazon Prime Day has historically been every sale lover's favorite holiday. It's the best time of the year to restock on your essentials or finally grab those wish-list items you've been thinking about for months. Even better: Some of the best deals in past years have been on fitness gear. (Last year, deals included $50 off AirPods and 30 percent off Fitbits and Core10 Leggings, just to name a few.)
Though the exact dates for Amazon Prime Day 2021 have yet to be announced, it usually occurs in July. But hey, why not start preparing early?
That being said, Amazon just secretly dropped some insane early deals (more appropriately called "steals"), including $50 off a stationary bike, 35 percent off Adidas x Pharrel Williams sneakers, and almost 20 percent off Alo Yoga leggings.
More...from Runenr's World).