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Runner's Web Digest - August 6, 2021 - Posted: August 6, 2021

The Runner's Web Digest is a FREE weekly digest of information on running, triathlons and multisport activities.
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Runner's Web Digest INDEX

1. Transgender Women in the Female Category of Sport: Perspectives on Testosterone Suppression and Performance Advantage
2. New Research Highlights the Difference Between the Strides of Elite and Sub-Elite Runners
3. Skechers GOrun Speed Freek Performance Review
4. Simplify Triathlon Training With These 4 Tips
5. In search of a level playing field. How male-to-female transgender athletes are impacting women’s sports
6. A spring in your step: What’s inside the new running ‘super’ shoes?
7. How to Avoid a Mid-Race Bathroom Stop 
8. How Women’s Track and Field Fought Their Way Into the Olympics—by Staging Their Own
9. Why Open Water Swimming Can Make You Smarter
10. Ten ways aging athletes can still win
11. How does sleep deprivation affect athletic performance?
12. Tokyo 2020: How many calories do Olympic athletes burn?
13. The Making of an Olympian
14. By a four-to-one margin, Canadians believe transgender athletes’ participation in women’s sport is “unfair”: New MLI poll
15. As Sifan Hassan Attempts Olympic Triple, a Look at Historic Multi-Medalists 
In regards to the IAAF ruling on limiting testosterone levels for female athletes:
*	I agree with the IAAF ruling regarding events from 800M to the Mile
*	The ruling should apply to all events
*	The ruling is wrong and there should be no limits
*	No Opinion 

Vote here

What is your all-time personal best marathon time?
1 Never run one 	94  (2%)
2 Sub 2:20 	33  (1%)
3 2:20 to 2:30 	56  (1%)
4 2:30 to 2:40 	133  (3%)
5 2:40 to 2:50 	237  (6%)
6 2:50 to 3:00 	351  (9%)
7 3:00 to 3:20 	567  (14%)
8 3:20 to 3:40 	672  (17%)
9 3:40 to 4:00 	705  (18%)
10 4:00 Plus 	1099  (28%)
Total Votes: 3947

FIVE STAR SITE OF THE MONTH AUGUST: RUNNING SCIENCE: Running Science was started in 2016 by Dylan and Jonathan, who wanted to collaborate on their joint passion for working with runners and discussing training philosophies. They wanted to create a site and a brand that could be used as a platform for not only teaching runners about the how’s and why’s of training, but also as a way of initiating discussions and debates around thought-provoking running-related topics. The name Running Science combined the focus on running while also looking at things from a more general sports science perspective. JONO is primarily a trail runner, who has been competing and coaching full-time for the past few years. However, he enjoys all varieties of running and has competed in everything from 800m to road marathons to ultra-trail races; with countless podium placings along the way over all distances and terrains. His coaching philosophy is based on creating a well-rounded athlete and building consistent, continuous improvement over a long period of time. Part of this is ensuring that despite being challenging, training must always remain enjoyable and mentally stimulating. Another key aspect of his training is communication, to ensure that an athlete can approach training with the right mentality and a good understanding of the purpose behind every run. DYLAN has a 5 year background in sport science and has worked with athletes, coaches and sports scientists across the board. He has dedicated an immense portion of his time studying the sport to understand that training is neither a science or an art, but both. He emphasises approaching training holistically, instilling confidence in an athlete as well as ensuring that there is maintainable long term growth. In his own capacity Dylan has run at a national championship level and has medalled at a senior provincial level. Visit the website at: RunningSciwence

BOOK/VIDEO/MOVIE OF THE MONTH FOR AUGUST .THE JOY OF SWEAT: THE STRANGE SCIENCE OF PERSPIRATION: By Sarah Everts (Author) A New York Times Most Anticipated Book of the Summer A taboo-busting romp through the shame, stink, and strange science of sweating. Sweating may be one of our weirdest biological functions, but it’s also one of our most vital and least understood. In The Joy of Sweat, Sarah Everts delves into its role in the body—and in human history. Why is sweat salty? Why do we sweat when stressed? Why do some people produce colorful sweat? And should you worry about Big Brother tracking the hundreds of molecules that leak out in your sweat—not just the stinky ones or alleged pheromones—but the ones that reveal secrets about your health and vices? Everts’s entertaining investigation takes readers around the world—from Moscow, where she participates in a dating event in which people sniff sweat in search of love, to New Jersey, where companies hire trained armpit sniffers to assess the efficacy of their anti-sweat products. In Finland, Everts explores the delights of the legendary smoke sauna and the purported health benefits of good sweat, while in the Netherlands she slips into the sauna theater scene, replete with costumes, special effects, and towel dancing. Along the way, Everts traces humanity’s long quest to control sweat, culminating in the multibillion-dollar industry for deodorants and antiperspirants. And she shows that while sweating can be annoying, our sophisticated temperature control strategy is one of humanity’s most powerful biological traits. Deeply researched and written with great zest, The Joy of Sweat is a fresh take on a gross but engrossing fact of human life. Biy the book from Amazon.

For more books on Running and Triathlon visit:,,, and


1. Transgender Women in the Female Category of Sport: Perspectives on Testosterone Suppression and Performance Advantage:
Given that biological males experience a substantial performance advantage over females in most sports, there is currently a debate whether inclusion of transgender women in the female category of sports would compromise the objective of fair and safe competition.
Here, we report that current evidence shows the biological advantage, most notably in terms of muscle mass and strength, conferred by male puberty and thus enjoyed by most transgender women is only minimally reduced when testosterone is suppressed as per current sporting guidelines for transgender athletes.
This evidence is relevant for policies regarding participation of transgender women in the female category of sport.
More...from SpringerLink.

2. New Research Highlights the Difference Between the Strides of Elite and Sub-Elite Runners:
Plus, what you can do to optimize your own running efficiency
New research highlights a difference between the strides of elite runners and highly trained sub-elite runners—Elite runners stay in the air longer because they have more bounce in their stride.
To refine your own running efficiency, researchers suggest running more hills, doing more speedwork, including more plyometrics drills and strength training in your cross training, and running on diverse surfaces.
Elite runners are rightfully lauded for their speed, but their performance comes not only from forward momentum. A new study in Scientific Reports suggests they also have much more bounce than other runners, even those who are highly trained.
Researchers had 10 sub-4 minute milers and 10 highly trained non-elite participants run on a treadmill outfitted with a pressure plate under the belt, which indicated the amount of time they spent in the air compared to in contact with the ground.
More...from Runner's World.

3. Skechers GOrun Speed Freek Performance Review:
What You Need To Know
Weighs 8.4 oz. (238 g) for a US M 9 / 5.8 oz. (164 g) for a US W 7
More Hyper Burst AND rocker geometry AND carbon-infused winglet? Sign us up.
An absolute dazzler of a shoe with a Dazzleflage colorway
Stack height: 34 mm heel/30 toe
Releases August 12 for $200
JEREMY: Skechers’ previous marathon-geared racer, the Speed Elite, was highly-anticpated as a carbon-plated racer from the performance divisions of the Joe Montana brand. (Hey, he had ‘cool’ in his nickname, that’s good enough, right?). However, the consensus among runners was that it was actually more of a 5K to 10K kind of shoe. Pretty fast, but pretty firm. The Skechers Performance team took that feedback to heart, updated that shoe with a lot more Hyper Burst (their nitrogen-infused foam) and a HyperArc rocker, put it in a new package, and called it the GOrun Speed Freek.
While previous Skechers prototypes have come out in the now famous (or infamous) ZebraFlage colorway, the Speed Freek features an abstract red and black design inspired by Dazzleflage. All that to say, we know Skechers can drop some fire colorways, but does the performance live up to their shoes’ now-lofty expectations? Belive in the Run.

4. Simplify Triathlon Training With These 4 Tips:
There’s no one-size-fits-all way to train for triathlons. Here’s how to keep things simple and manageable for your unique life.
It may seem overly complicated to train for a sport that blends three different disciplines and has several race distances. How many hours per week should you do? How many sessions? What kinds of intensities? And what about tactics and logistics?
As it goes in the training world, the answer is: “it depends.” An approach tailored to your specific needs and life commitments that doesn’t further complicate your schedule is always the best choice. Here’s what to keep in mind.
1. Remain Flexible When Your Life Presents Training Challenges “The so-called periodization should look at what the athlete does today. And that informs what they will do tomorrow. In this scenario, the importance of flexibility is key,” he says.
For example, if you had a tough day at work, or encountered stress (be it a sick child, working late or overtime, having had an argument with your partner), then going out and smashing 21×800 on the track may not be the best thing you can do. “This would still count as additional stress from a biological cellular viewpoint,” says Doyle.
More... from TRaining Peaks.

5. In search of a level playing field. How male-to-female transgender athletes are impacting women’s sports:
The challenge of transgender and intersex athletes is perceived as a contemporary issue, but it has vexed sports federations for almost 100 years.
The Summer Olympics have long been a forum for politically charged causes, and the delayed 2020 Tokyo Games will be no different. Among the athletes competing in the Games is Laurel Hubbard, who will represent New Zealand in the women’s weightlifting competition.
Once upon a time Hubbard competed in weightlifting — as a man.
As Gavin Hubbard, he set national records in junior competition (under 20). He transitioned to female in 2012 and underwent hormone therapy. Laurel Hubbard ignited protests of unfairness after winning two gold medals and a silver medal in the 2019 Pacific Games. Hubbard is 6-foot-1, 287 pounds and the oldest woman in the Olympic competition, at 43.
She is being billed as the first transgender woman to compete in the Olympics, but that isn’t quite right. The Olympics have a long history of athletes whose gender was fluid or just plain uncertain, and the International Olympic Committee went to great lengths to stop them. But we’ll get to that later.
More... fro the Deeret News.

6. A spring in your step: What’s inside the new running ‘super’ shoes?
Nearly every road runner and some big track stars at these Olympics are wearing a new type of shoe – that have ignited debate. Why?
With little sign of strain on his face and fists beating his chest, Eliud Kipchoge redefined what many considered possible for a human to achieve when he became the first person to run a marathon in less than two hours on a chilly morning in Vienna in 2019.
Kipchoge’s time of one hour, 59 minutes and 40 seconds for the 42.195-kilometre race was stunning. As he ran the last few hundred metres, commentators compared his achievement to Neil Armstrong walking on the moon, Edmund Hillary climbing Mount Everest and Roger Bannister running the first four-minute mile.
More...from Sydney Morning Herald.

7. How to Avoid a Mid-Race Bathroom Stop:
Exercise and digestion often don’t mix well, but scientists are on the case.
I’ll spare you the poop jokes and get right to the point: endurance athletes tend to have a lot of gastrointestinal issues. The standard estimate is that 30 to 90 percent of marathoners and triathletes (i.e. somewhere between no one and everyone, much like running injuries) experience nausea, bloating, reflux, abdominal pain, flatulence, and diarrhea during their events.
None of these things are fun. But figuring out why they happen and how to avoid them has proven to be a formidable challenge. A new review in the European Journal of Applied Physiology gives a broad overview of what’s currently known about the topic, and highlights some promising areas of emerging research, like the gut-brain axis and role of hormones secreted in the gut. There’s no magic cure at the end of the article, but the authors—a team from several institutions in the United States and the United Kingdom, led by Florida State’s Michael Ormsbee—weigh the evidence on some possible countermeasures. Here’s the scoop.
More...from Sweat Science on Outside Online.

8. How Women’s Track and Field Fought Their Way Into the Olympics—by Staging Their Own:
After facing rejection after rejection, how a group of women around the world banded together to start the Women's Olympic Games.
On Aug. 20, 1922, roughly 20,000 spectators gathered at a Paris stadium to watch women break records in events from the 60 meter dash to the 1,000 meters to the shot put. Headlines called it the Olympics, but this was no ordinary Olympic Games: track was only the only sport contested, and there were no men on the starting line.
Since 1900, women had been allowed to compete in certain Olympic sports—ones deemed “appropriate for women,” such as tennis, golf, and figure skating. Track and field remained off limits into the 1920s, when women tired of waiting decided to stage their own competition.
The women-only Games were “an important catalyst for persuading Olympic organizers that women were capable and deserving athletes,” says Jaime Schultz, a professor at Penn State University’s History and Philosophy of Sport program.
More...from Women's Running.

9. Why Open Water Swimming Can Make You Smarter:
It’s no secret that aerobic exercise can help stave off some of the ravages of aging. But a growing body of research suggests that swimming might provide a unique boost to brain health.
Regular swimming has been shown to improve memory, cognitive function, immune response and mood. Swimming may also help repair damage from stress and forge new neural connections in the brain.
But scientists are still trying to unravel how and why swimming, in particular, produces these brain-enhancing effects.
More... from Adventure Journal.

10. Ten ways aging athletes can still win:
Whether you’re a runner, walker, cyclist or swimmer, a rower or weightlifter, human performance can always be improved. You can even outperform yourself! Here’s a health and fitness checklist to help you adapt well to aging by uncovering more of your human potential.
All humans are athletes until the day we die. We should not battle aging, but embrace it by being more healthy and fit.
Consider a hypothetical case of the typical athlete. He or she reaches max human potential, peaking during in their 20s. Then in their 30s, regardless of the sport, the long, slow decline begins.
Virtually all of us don’t really fit this hypothetical athlete profile. It implies we are all losers from age 30 onward, and retiring from sport is the only option. This is obviously a myth, as human performance is embraced by so many athletes of all ages in all sports.
One thing I learned from working with athletes is that there is always room for improving performance. Whether a better gait, tweaking metabolism, helping harness more mental command, or that special combination, it’s important to not give up on our natural talents.
More...from Dr. Phil Maffetone.

11. How does sleep deprivation affect athletic performance?
Having grown up in the world of competitive swimming, I’m no stranger to the pain of 5am alarm calls, early morning training sessions and the need for at least one cup of coffee to help me function.
In my mind, there’s no doubt that a few too many late night - early morning combos and the resultant lack of sleep (particularly during my university days) will have contributed to a few below-par sessions, but what would have happened to my performance if I’d endured poor sleep quality on a consistent basis?
How does a lack of sleep affect health?
Failing to enjoy the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep per night regularly is common in today’s society, with one in three of the British and American populations failing to get the recommend amount, largely due to factors such as stress, work and intense schedules.
A prime example of the effects of extreme sleep deprivation were exhibited during a TV show in 2004. ‘Shattered’ was a British reality TV series where contestants attempted to go 7 days without sleep in order to be in with a chance of winning £100,000. The show received a number of complaints from the public due to the torture faced by the contestants as they battled through long, sleep deprived days.
More...from Precision Hydration.

12. Tokyo 2020: How many calories do Olympic athletes burn?
Different events at the games have different fuel and hydration needs for competitors.
For athletes competing at Tokyo 2020, fuelling themselves precisely for optimum performance is an essential step on the path to glory.
But not every competitor in the games needs the same nutritional plan.
While champion swimmers like Great Britain’s Adam Peaty power their training and competitions with an 8,000 calorie per day diet, the same is not true for all disciplines.
It is the endurance athletes, such as cyclists, swimmers, marathon runners and rowers, who top the calories consumed list with between 3,000 and 8,000 a day, because of the distances they cover, according to US Olympic nutritionists before the London 2012 games.
More...from the Independent.

13. The Making of an Olympian:
The best world-class athletes often dabble in a range of sports when young before rising to the top of their game in one, a new analysis found.
The world’s top athletes, including Olympians, rarely start competing at a young age or specialize early in the sport that will make them champions, according to a provocative new study of the athletic backgrounds of thousands of successful athletes. Instead, the study finds, most world champions sample one sport after another as children and gain mastery in their chosen activities considerably later than other, more focused young athletes whom they eventually go on to defeat.
The study, which involved male and female competitors in a wide range of sports, offers lessons and cautions for parents, coaches and child athletes about how to understand talent, manage expectations, build an athletic career and recalibrate the long-term importance for 7- or 8-year-olds of making — or missing out on — select teams in children’s leagues.
More...from the New York Times.

.14. By a four-to-one margin, Canadians believe transgender athletes’ participation in women’s sport is “unfair”: New MLI poll:
New polling conducted on behalf of the Macdonald-Laurier Institute reveals significant findings regarding Canadians’ views on gender identity and women’s sport. By wide margins, Canadians support traditional sex-based categories for competitive sport, and they believe that allowing transgender athletes who were born male but who identify as women to compete in women’s competitive events is “unfair.”
Three times as many Canadians, or 56 percent of respondents, believe it is “right” for men and women to compete separately from each other as those who think separate gender categories are “wrong” in sport, or 18 percent of respondents.
"Sport is about bodies and bodies differ, sometimes in ways that are important for sport,” says Leslie Howe, a professor of philosophy at the University of Saskatchewan, MLI contributor, and panellist for today’s webinar. “Sex-based categories exist in sport to ensure the fairness and validity of competition, the safety of competitors, and to ensure the inclusion of women and girls in sport, providing opportunities for them that would not otherwise exist. If sport isn’t fair, it just isn’t sport."
More...from the Macdonald Laurier Institute.

15. As Sifan Hassan Attempts Olympic Triple, a Look at Historic Multi-Medalists:
No runner has ever won the 5,000-meter, 1,500-meter, and 10,000-meter treble at the same Olympics. But there have been other memorable distance triples and doubles.
Can Sifan Hassan win three golds in Tokyo? She’s officially confirmed her bid for the Olympic distance triple on the track and has won the first of the three events, the 5,000m — on the same day when she fell in the heat of the 1500m, got back up, and chased down the pack to win.
Sifan Hassan has decided to include the 1,500m in her campaign for Olympic glory. The 2019 World Champion, who doubled and won both the 1,500m and 10,000m will showcase her range again at the Tokyo Olympic Games,” said a press statement from her agency, Global Sports Communications, released Sunday evening. “She looks forward to tackling the enormous feat and wants to challenge herself in her favorite distances.”
More...from Outside Online.

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Upcoming Races, Marathons, Races, and Triathlons July 30 - August 8, 2021: Tokyo Olympics - Tokyo Japan August 6, 2021: Sir Walter Miler - Raleigh, NC August 15, 2021: Asics Falmouth Road Race - Falmouth, MA August 21, 2021: Diamond League Eugene/Prefontaine Classic - Eugene, ORE August 22, 2021: Vitality Big Half - London, UK August 25, 2021: Diamond League Lausanne - Lausanne, Switzerland For more complete race listings check out our Upcoming Races, and Calendars. Have a good week of training and/or racing. Ken Email:

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