3. How Painful Should Your Workout Be?
Every strenuous exercise involves some mixture of suffering and pleasure. The key to sticking with it is getting the balance right.
Katy Kennedy’s first attempt to develop a running habit was a flop. She signed up for a half-marathon, punished herself up and down the hills in her neighborhood to prepare, then struggled through the race.
“I walked the last mile, and someone shouted ‘Run!’ at me, and I was like, ‘I can’t,’” recalled Dr. Kennedy, now a lecturer at the University of Chichester in Britain. “It was horrific, actually. I thought I might die. Then I gave up running for ten years.”
The next time around she decided to do things differently. “I wanted to have a more pleasant experience,” she said. “And I thought, how can I learn to like running?”
More...from the New York Times.
4. Faster times, record numbers: the science of running marathons as an older person:
The number of veteran runners is on the up and they’re leaving the times of their predecessors for dust.
This year’s London marathon will have record numbers of veteran participants, with a near-doubling of the number of female runners aged 60 to 69 registering to run since 2018. As the number of veteran runners has steadily increased, performance has improved at a staggering rate.
In May, Jo Schoonbroodt, a 71-year-old from Maastricht nicknamed “the Grey Kenyan”, broke the over-70s record with a time of 2hr 54min 19sec. Last year, the Japanese runner, Mariko Yugeta, took the female over-60s record down to 2hr 52min 1sec, faster than the overall men’s world record in 1909.
Part of the trend is due to demographic and social shifts. The more participants, the bigger the pool of runners and the faster the times. Older people are increasingly concerned with health and fitness, have more free time and value the social element of being part of a running group. There is also increasing evidence that running is not only safe for older people, but that performance can be maintained at a far higher level than once thought possible.
More...from The Guardian.
5. Tracksmith Unveils The Eliot Runner and It’s Clean as Hell:
What You Need To Know
Weighs 9.4 oz. (266 g) for a US M9/ 8 oz. (227 g) for a US W7
First footwear release from New England-based Tracksmith
Classically simple design blended with modern components (including Pebax midsole)
Releases November 2022 for $198
They say you can’t wear white after Labor Day, but we all know “they” are liars. Because if anyone knows the rules of prep and circumstance it’s Tracksmith, and their first foray into footwear with the hash-white Eliot Runner will have a lot of people copping croquet colorways well into the fall.
We’ve known this shoe was coming for some time, but surprisingly, had yet to see any leaked images of it, nor did we hear any real information about it. We still won’t get these New England slippers on our feet until next month, but we will see them in person when we host our shakeout run in London at the Tracksmith Brand House this weekend (RSVP here if you haven’t yet).
More...from Believe in the Run.
6. Want to make a good habit stick? Get tips from this Toronto man who has run nearly 16,000 days in a row:
Rick Rayman, 75, ran when he had COVID-19 and he ran when there was 55 centimetres of snow on the ground. At 5-foot-4 and 110 pounds, Rayman, a Toronto dentist, has run every day since Dec. 10, 1978, making his streak of running 15,995 days in a row (as of Sept. 23), the 21st-longest active run streak in the world. (Just four people currently have run every day for more than 50 years, a goal Rayman thinks about, but isn’t losing sleep over). Picking at a cheese and tomato sandwich at his local Druxy’s, Rayman says that losing his ego is the secret to his long-term success.
“We all think we’re probably a little more important than we are,” says Rayman, who has never run on a treadmill and whose minimum run length is 30 minutes. “I’m sometimes almost embarrassed to let people on the street who are walking their dogs see how slow I’m running, but then I think to myself: ‘They’re not even looking at me and they couldn’t care less – you have today to yourself.’ ”
More...from Globe and Mail.
7. How Low Carbohydrates Can Increase Aerobic Capacity: The Glycogen Threshold:
We often discuss concepts like the aerobic threshold, the anaerobic threshold, the lactate threshold, etc. But have you heard of the Glycogen Threshold? To put it simply, low carbs availability in your muscles can serve as strong signals to increase your muscle’s aerobic capacity.
Hello everyone, welcome to fall! I hope you had a great summer of riding and are enjoying your hard-earned fitness as the days continue to shorten. In this article, I would like to introduce a relatively new concept known as the ‘Glycogen Threshold’. I will briefly discuss the cellular mechanisms behind it, as well as discussing how & why it might help your training.
The Role of Carbohydrates in Cell Signaling
As cyclists, we tend to love our carbohydrates: pastries, pastas, and pizzas, oh my! And the principle of carb-loading before a big ride or race is well known by us all. With that in mind, the theory of deliberately training with reduced carbohydrate (CHO) availability is a heavily debated topic in sports nutrition.
Training in a fasted/carb-depleted state can significantly impact fat oxidation during steady-state cycling (Hulston, et al., 2010), as well as stimulate mitochondrial biogenesis, e.g., the creation of more mitochondria, commonly referred to as “the powerhouses of the cell” (Bartlett, et al, 2013). In fact, I have already elaborated on the concept of “training low”, or training with reduced carbohydrate availability previously.
More...from PEZ Cycling News.
8. Want to Fly Over Dirt? Meet the First Gravel Grinder Supershoe:
Craft’s CTM Ultra Carbon 2 brings bouncy, high-stack, carbon-plated responsiveness to dirt-road training and racing.
Craft CTM Ultra Carbon 2 Review
Weight: 9.8 oz M, 7.9 oz W
Stack height: 40-millimeter heel / 30-millimeter forefoot (10-millimeter drop)
I was skeptical of Craft’s new running shoe that promised to be the footwear equivalent to a top-end gravel bike, smoothly transitioning from road to dirt. Too often, I find shoes that are proficient at handling multiple surfaces to be masters of none. But after three months of testing the retooled, all-terrain CTM Ultra Carbon 2, I found it a welcome surprise, successfully packaging the elements of a supershoe—ultra-responsive foam and carbon-fiber plates—for off-road performance.
Craft is better known for making outdoor athletic apparel—especially next-to-skin Nordic and cycling wear—and the Swedish brand does that exceptionally well. They entered the U.S. running shoe market in 2020 and stepped up their game in 2021, releasing a wide array of competitive models for road and trail.
More...from Outside Online.
9. How to prepare for racing in the heat:
The IRONMAN World Championship in Hawaii always showcases epic racing. The race also features spectacular meltdowns from some of the world’s best endurance athletes. Sure, some meltdowns are caused by a “go big or go home” style of racing, but Kona’s extreme heat and humidity takes a toll on many athletes.
This article focuses on heat training to prepare for Kona or any other hot race. Keep in mind, thermoregulation is important regardless of the ambient temperature. When you work hard, your core temperature climbs. But in a hot climate, it can quickly spiral to unsustainable levels, so preparing yourself with heat training is essential...
What happens when you overheat?
When athletes overheat, their performance suffers. As your temperature climbs, the body diverts blood from the muscles toward the skin for cooling. This diversion means that less blood (and less oxygen) is delivered to the muscles, so those muscles produce less power.
This performance decline happens well before the onset of heat exhaustion, and even before many athletes feel overly hot or are aware that their performance is suffering.
More...from Precision Hydration.
10. Balancing Confusion vs. Habituation in Training:
Understanding how the body adapts to stress helps us to know when and how to change our training.
Legend has it that the ancient Greek wrestler Milo of Croton trained by carrying a newborn calf on his shoulders every day until it grew into an adult bull. This training enabled Milo to become one of the strongest men around, and to win six Olympic titles. While Milo probably didn’t articulate to the curious onlookers that carrying a growing bull on his shoulders around town was an example of progressive overload, this training theory became the basis for developing muscle strength.
Because a calf grows slowly into a bull, it wasn’t every day that Milo lifted a heavier animal than the day before. The training stress didn’t drastically change from day to day or even week to week. Milo’s muscles had time to adapt to the animal’s current weight, slowly progressing to heavier and heavier weights as the animal aged.
What Won’t Kill Me Will Make Me Stronger.
More...from Outside Online.
11. The Illusion of Progress in Sports Technology:
The unending search for a competitive edge in sports has a cost. It’s called the Red Queen effect.
A few years ago, I spent a week cycling through the Italian and French Alps with a deluxe tour group whose selling point was a pre- and post-ride dose of electric brain stimulation. Protocols were based on what the Bahrain Merida cycling team was trying at the time, zapping neurons to enhance performance and recovery. I wanted to know whether the technology worked, but I was also wrestling with a more nebulous question: Would reaching each day’s summit a few minutes sooner actually make my trip better?
If I was one of the Bahrain Merida riders in that summer’s Tour de France, the answer would be obvious. Winning races is a lot more fun than the alternative. But any competitive edge is short-lived. “Once an effective technology gets adopted in a sport, it becomes tyrannical,” Thomas Murray, a philosopher who studies the ethics of sport, told me after the trip. “You have to use it.” What, then, would be the point of electric brain stimulation if everyone else had it, too? You’d be right back where you started—until the next hot performance booster emerged and the cycle began again.
This, in a nutshell, is the Red Queen effect. The idea originated in evolutionary biology, in a 1973 paper by Leigh Van Valen about competition among species, and its name comes from a scene in Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking-Glass: “Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place,” the Red Queen tells Alice. If rabbits get faster, foxes follow suit; if some redwoods grow to 300 feet tall, they all have to. And according to a paper by anthropologist Thomas Hyland Eriksen, published last year in the journal Frontiers in Sports and Active Living, this is the logic that increasingly colors our relationship with performance.
More...from Sweat Science on Outside Online.
12. Trans women hold physical edge 14 years after hormone therapy:
New data shows people who have transitioned maintain a better heart and lung capacity.
Transgender women are stronger and have better heart and lung capacity than women, even 14 years after taking hormone therapy, a study suggests.
New research from Brazilian scientists is likely to increase pressure for transwomen to be excluded from female sports because they have an unfair advantage.
The study found transgender women were around 20 per cent stronger, and their ability to use oxygen during exercise was 20 per cent greater than women who exercised at the same levels.
Researchers concluded that even long-term oestrogen exposure and testosterone suppression were not enough to shift male bodies to those of females.
Writing in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, Prof Leonardo Alvares, of the University of Sao Paulo Hospital Clinics, said: “These findings add new insights to the sparse information available on a highly controversial topic about the participation of transgender women in physical activities.
More...from The Telegraph.
13. An Athlete’s Guide to Managing COVID Risks:
Famed 80/20 Coach Matt Fitzgerald shares his experience with COVID as well as risk management and post-infection protocols.
It’s possible that I was already infected with the coronavirus when I ran the Atlanta Marathon on February 29, 2020. What I know for sure is that, infected or not, I wasn’t symptomatic yet, and, in fact, I performed quite well, finishing 15th overall and winning the men’s 45-49 division. But a few days after I returned home to California, I developed a tickle in my throat, which soon evolved into a full-blown respiratory illness. Never before had I been so sick for so long. My most bothersome complaint was an incessant dry cough that, at its worst, was so violent I frequently hacked up bile and blood and even tore cartilage in my ribs during one particularly awful barking fit.
It took me a full month to feel ready to try a cautious test run. It went okay, and within a few weeks, I was back to full fitness — alas, not for long. On October 6 I had an unexpectedly bad workout, abandoning a set of 600-meter intervals when I couldn’t hit my target times. In hindsight, I see this aborted training session as the first indication that I had developed long COVID, a chronic condition affecting an unlucky fraction of individuals who contract the coronavirus. Symptoms vary from person to person, but among the most common and debilitating are fatigue, shortness of breath, and brain fog, all of which I have to this day.
More...from Training Peaks.
14. Study offers insight into why some people overestimate their abilities while others underestimate:
Findings by U of A business professor could give leaders a tool to counter self-doubt.
A lack of confidence in our abilities on a given task or activity seems to stem from overestimating the abilities of others, according to a University of Alberta study.
The finding could offer leaders insights into how to counter self-doubt in the face of a difficult task.
Previous research has shown that for many tasks and activities, the majority of people tend to predict that they will outperform others, especially when tasks are easy. A classic example comes from a 1981 study of U.S. drivers in which 93 per cent claimed they were better than average.
On difficult tasks, however, most people tend to predict that others will do better than they will.
In making sense of these seemingly contradictory findings, the study surveyed runners before a timed race about how they expected to do.
More...from University of Alberta