1. Cyclists: It’s Time to Rethink Your Post-Ride Beer:
Drinking culture runs deep in the cycling world. Athletic Brewing offers a new take on this post-ride tradition.
It’s no secret that alcohol has a negative effect on athletic performance. But before science started to look at how what we put into our bodies affects the output, alcohol was not only part of the post-ride cycling culture, it was also thought of as a way to enhance performance. “Alcohol was actually the first form of doping,” says Sean Conway, an endurance athlete who has cycled 16,000 miles around the world. His claims are well-documented, with plenty of photos from early Tour de France events of cyclists ducking into cafes to purchase bottles of wine for the road or sitting down for a drink with locals. “There was sort of this unwritten rule that with alcohol you still feel the pain, but you care less about it.”
These days, athletes know better, and many, including Conway, have traded in booze in favor of performance. We tapped Conway for his take on why he loves Athletic Brewing’s non-alcoholic brews as an alternative for his post-ride beer.
2. Sports-relevant physical, funtional, and performance differences between male and female bodies:
3. Plantiga Smart Insoles, Coaching Improve Performance and Understanding of Body's Movement:
After training for seven months, slowly adapting to hilly terrain, enduring a mild bout of runner’s knee and reviewing a volume of data I never fathomed possible, I won the race.
Admittedly, I was competing alone against my self-determined goal pace. My finish line was a deserted cul-de-sac. The only vocal recognition was my Apple Watch chirping a split time.
When Plantiga biomechanist Lauren Fridman onboarded me as a new member of its beta program last August, she asked me to set a training goal to strive for as I tested out the company’s insole sensors. My half-joking first thought was to dunk a basketball again, which I hadn’t consistently done since my early 20s.
The aforementioned knee soreness quickly scuttled that, but my more earnest pursuit was to improve my distance running pace. As of last summer, I had been plodding along at roughly an 8-minute mile pace for my 3-to-4 mile runs in a flat riverfront park in the city. When I moved to the hilly suburbs, that quickly became an 8:30 pace for 2-to-3 miles.
4. Here's why your smart watch isn't great at prediciting calories burned during a workout:
If you are among the majority of Americans who are overweight or just looking to stay fit, you may be counting calories (kcals) in the foods you eat and tracking the number of kcals you burn during exercise.
There are several options available for tracking kcals during exercise. High-tech devices fit comfortably on your wrist and provide information on the number of kcals you expend per minute, plus your cumulative total when finished.
That's all good, except for one question — are they accurate?
Well, it's hard to say, and I’m curious because at times when my wife, Anita, tells me how many kcals she burned that day, the number seems quite reasonable, but at other times it doesn’t. In addition, when considering kcal claims made by manufacturers of exercise equipment, at times the claims seem outrageous, like “you can burn 800 kcals in just 30-minutes of exercise with our super-deluxe turbo-charged exercise machine.”
More...from the Courier-Journal.
5. Registered Dietitian, Nutritionist, Health Coach—What’s The Difference?
When it comes to training, you consult with a coach. For medical issues, you turn to your doctor. It would make sense, then, to seek out a professional when you’re ready to get serious about fueling for your sport. But who? When it comes to nutrition, experts are easy to find—nutritionists, registered dietitians, and nutrition coaches are in abundance in the triathlon community. But though many use these professional titles interchangeably, they’re not all created equal.
“The term nutritionist isn’t regulated, so technically, anyone can call himself or herself a nutritionist, even with no formal training or with a two or three week online course in nutrition,” explains Kim Schwabenbauer, a former pro triathlete and current Registered Dietitian. Same for the title of “nutrition coach”—it’s a term that anyone can use, be it someone with a doctorate in nutrition or a vegan/paleo/keto enthusiast with no formal training.
6. Adidas Adistar CS: Fir6. Adist Look | Big Bottom Cushioned Support:
What You Need To Know
Essentially a stability version of the Adistar
Features a Repetitor + Support Frame to increase stabilization
Continental outsole provides exceptional grip
Stack height of 37mm heel, 31mm toe (6mm drop)
Available now for $160
A few months ago, we reviewed the Adidas Adistar, a chunky chip of a shoe that surprised us by running better than we thought it would and punching beneath its weight (which was fairly substantial). We loved the look of the shoe as well as it was indeed big, bold, and beautiful.
As a follow-up to that model, Adidas has just released the Adistar CS (which stands for Cushioned Support), a shoe designed with more cushion and– you guessed it– support.
The shoe features a dual-density midsole, 6mm drop from heel to toe, rocker geometry, and an internal upper support cage. This increased cushioning is purpose-built to make those long slow distance runs seem easier. Additionally, the shoe features a long, curve-shaped angle across the forefoot for a smooth, consistent rock motion.
More...from Believe in the Run.
7. The benefits of cold water therapy for runners:
Will Wim Hof’s philosophy make you a better runner?
Are you a runner who thinks ice baths are a world of pain and should be avoided at all costs? Recent evidence might change your mind.
Thanks in a large part to Wim Hof, whose recent BBC show Freeze The Fear introduced the concept of cold water therapy to viewers across the UK, attitudes towards cold water and its positive effects on muscle recovery and other disorders are beginning to change.
Many people who take part in cold water therapy or cold water swimming are quickly converted and become almost evangelical about spreading the word on the benefits. In his book What Doesn’t Kill Us, US journalist and Wim Hof sceptic Scott Carney investigates the Wim Hof Method and ends up becoming fully converted to cold water therapy combined with conscious breathing and its benefits. 'Exposure to cold helps reconfigure the cardiovascular system and combat autoimmune malfunctions. It is also a pretty darned good method for simply losing weight… More profound than that, however, is the intrinsic understanding that humans are not just bodies bounded by the barrier of their skin; we are part of the environment we inhabit.'
More...from Runner's World.
8. Nail a PR at Every Phase of Your Menstrual Cycle:
Your physiology changes as your hormones fluctuate, but there’s never a “bad day” to nail a personal best.
My life’s work is largely devoted to helping women work with their unique physiology to train and perform their best. That means adjusting training sessions to leverage how our bodies respond to stress according to the hormonal fluctuations of our menstrual cycle. But it’s important to bear in mind that this doesn't mean there’s a “bad time of month” for performance. You can crank out a PR at any phase of your cycle.
This is an important distinction, because sometimes people think that because I recommend tailoring training according to a female’s hormonal fluctuations that I’m also implying that performance itself will vary during the cycle. That’s not necessarily the case. Women can perform their best at every point in the menstrual cycle, because performance is different from training.
Performance is one point in time when you lay it all on the line. You may need to tweak your hydration and fueling depending on your hormonal status. Your best effort may feel harder (or easier!) depending on your hormonal status. But you can absolutely perform your best regardless of where you are in your menstrual cycle. That’s why studies that show physiological changes at different phases of the menstrual cycle, don’t necessarily show significant changes in actual performance. Even if it feels harder, the women get it done (though, of course, there are exceptions to this, such as women who suffer from heavy menstrual bleeding, which is not captured in group norms research).
More...from Dr. Stacy Sims.
9. Work-to-Rest Ratio: The Benefits of 40/20 Interval Workouts:
40/20 workouts are a great way to structure your interval training. Here's how to do them whether you're running, cycling, or strength training.
0/20 workouts are intervals designed around 40-seconds of work followed by 20-seconds of rest or active recovery. They fall under the umbrella of Tabata workouts (named after Dr. Izumi Tabata) and are often referred to as HIIT (high intensity interval training). Over the years, many different work-to-rest ratios have been used for certain workouts, such as 20-seconds of work/10-seconds of rest, 30-seconds of work/30seconds of rest, 40-seconds of work/20-seconds of rest, etc. All of these work on similar principals.
During the intense 40-seconds of work, you will be close to or at your lactate threshold, i.e. the point at which your muscles begin producing lactate as a byproduct of anaerobic respiration. When you produce lactate at a faster rate than it can be utilized, it’s pretty much game over for your performance. Your muscles’ ability to contract becomes significantly diminished and you will be forced to slow to a crawl, or even stop all together, until lactate can be cleared.
More...from TRaining Peaks.
10. Hone Your Sixth Sense to Become a More Efficient Runner:
How to train your proprioception to more effectively control body movements and improve power, speed, agility, and durability.
Years ago, on a vacation in Scotland, I ran a hill climb as part of a small-town games day in the Highlands. Competitors charged 2,100 feet up to the top of a looming peak, then came flying back down, all in about three and a half miles, much of it off-trail.
I did fine on the ascent, but I was terrible on the descent. Parts of the return cut through shin-high bracken, where I simply couldn’t see what I was stepping on. I had no idea how the others could run so confidently through that stuff without courting a nasty wipeout. At the finish, the local runners were charitable. “You have the wrong shoes,” they told me.
Today I know that these experienced hill racers didn’t just have better off-trail shoes. They also had superbly trained proprioception.
More...from Outside Online.
11. Alcohol Consumption and Exercise Performance:
Alcohol consumption is a topic that is not often discussed with respect to exercise performance. Typically, people joke about alcohol consumption, in general; and yet, alcohol abuse is a very serious subject. In addition, it has been well established that alcohol negatively affects health and exercise performance. Alcohol has been shown to result in damaging effects to the heart, metabolism and body temperature regulation.
In addition, many athletes consume greater amounts of alcohol compared to the overall population, and may binge drink more than the overall population. The effect of alcohol on exercise performance is complex and depends on things like when a person consumes alcohol after exercising, how much time they had to recover between workouts, if they were injured, and the amount of alcohol consumed. Binge drinking is related to greater negative effects on exercise performance and recovery compared to a person who drinks a moderate amount of alcohol. In general, alcohol use can lead to calcium loss in the body, which can lead to bone loss over time.
Alcohol consumption can also lead to decreased testosterone production in men, and decreased muscle growth in women and men. It can lead to increased estrogen production, blood pressure and fat storage. Many of these effects might not be seen immediately, but can be observed over time, especially in those who binge drink.
More...from the ACSM.
12. A New Study Asks: Higher Volume or Higher Intensity?
A new study compared two weeks of higher volume training versus two weeks of higher intensity training. The findings could have important implications for how athletes think about training interventions.
If you gave me some gels for fuel and a Ludacris playlist for motivation, I could probably dive into the exercise physiology journals and find you 100 studies with this general design:
Group A introduces intensity into their training (sometimes with a Group B that sustains training levels). Athletes in Group A get faster, regrow lost hair, and have erections lasting 3 hours, 59 minutes, and 59 seconds. In these types of short-term studies, speed work can look like a magical elixir that cures all of the problems you have and most of the problems you don’t.
Meanwhile, you hear coaches like me preaching easy running as if it’s saving your athletic soul from the fiery pits of lactate hell. How do you square that circle? Usually, I’ll say that it’s a problem of time horizon, with the adaptations from low-level aerobic work accruing over months and years. Easy running builds capillaries around working muscles, improves the cellular ability to shuttle lactate during intense efforts, and enhances the expression of Type I slow twitch muscle fibers, among tons of other beneficial adaptations that power faster running.
More...from Women's Running.
13. Running Your Best Triathlon Race:
Olympic-distance triathlon comprises a sequential 1.5-km swim, 40-km cycle, and 10-km run. Although the ability to perform the 3 disciplines at a high level is critical for competitive success,1,2 it appears the run section is the main determinant in Olympic-distance triathlon.2–4 The last of the 3 disciplines, the run section, represents a relatively small portion of the overall triathlon race (~25% by duration), and despite anecdotal evidence that it has the largest influence on overall race outcome in the recent years, the question is mostly unanswered. Several factors influence running performance in triathlon, such as performance in the previous swimming and cycling sections, especially the variability in cycling power output,5 and also pacing during the run.6 Given the rapid evolution in triathlon in the last decade, early studies on pacing in triathlon pacing might be outdated, and the supporting evidence was either single-race based3,4,7 or from a simulated race in the laboratory,6 which limits their application to contemporary triathlon. Single event–based evidence also shows an inverse correlation between variability in running pace and overall simulated 10-km triathlon run time.7 Apart from single-race outcomes or simulated race conditions, it is unclear what pacing strategies elite triathletes adopt in modern Olympic-distance triathlon.
More...from Human Kinetics.
14. One Hour Workout: Two-Minute Run Intervals:
These short, punchy bursts of speed are just what you need to get out of your Zone 3 plateau.
This week’s run workout comes from USA Triathlon-certified coach Mike Portman of Portman Coaching. “Early in the triathlon training cycle, the base phase is the majority of training,” Portman says. “However, some small bits of intensity can train the body and mind to adapt more quickly for later in the season when intensity builds.”
Short intervals can also help as the season progresses, especially mid-season, when triathletes sometimes fall into a Zone 3 plateau. If you find yourself doing all your workouts at more or less the same intensity, this one-hour session can help re-introduce those punchy bursts of speed. These short sessions are just enough to get you into a different gear, but not enough to wipe you out completely.
Portman recommends to not do these two-minute hard intervals at an all-out pace, but a steady 5K effort. “Make sure that it is kept in check because, for most, the body is not in good enough shape yet for that extra gear,” he says. As you pick up speed for each interval, focus on your form. This becomes particularly important as you hit the final intervals of the day – if you discover that it’s hard to maintain good running technique as you become more fatigued, that’s a good sign you need to do a bit of strength work to bolster your running form.
More...from Outside Online.
15. The best exercise time is different for men and women, study finds:
* A new study finds there are optimal times of day for achieving specific goals with exercise.
* The research shows that for women, in particular, exercising in the morning or evening produces different results.
* The study also includes the effect of exercise times on an individual’s mood.
Not everyone exercises for the same reason. For some, exercise is a means of addressing a health issue such as hypertension. Some work out to build strength in one part of the body or another, and some to improve their mood.
A new study suggests the time of day at which a person exercises may produce different results. In addition, those results are not the same for women and men.
Professor Paul J. Arciero, lead author of the study and professor at the Health and Human Physiological Sciences Department at Skidmore College in New York, tells BBC News that the best time for exercise is when people can fit it into their schedules.