Sports drink and sneakers are not the perfomance boosters

Well, here’s a surprise, researchers cast doubt on manufacturers claim regarding the benefits of sports drinks and shoes. Oh, the horror. Read on.

Researchers at Oxford University, for instance, looked at 431 advertised claims tied to 104 different sports drink, protein shake and running shoe products.

And they found “a striking lack of evidence” for any of the performance enhancement or injury prevention benefits the products — including some of the world’s biggest brands — had touted.

In the absence of such evidence, researchers said that it was “virtually impossible for the public to make informed choices about the benefits and harms of advertised sports products.”

Read the full post at thestar.com

Photo copyright by Flickr user Andy

Do sneakers cause plantar fasciitis(heel pain)?

This may shock every runner, marathoner and athlete: with great sneakers comes great pain. But that pops up a question: do all popular sneakers design  with comfort and injury prevention? I am pointing you to this interesting column in which the writer is trying to establish that “Running shoes can be a real pain” let’s see whether you agree with him or not.

I’m convinced that the biggest benefactor when it comes to running isn’t your heart but the sneaker industry. And just to make sure and drive the point home this ailment came along that’s taken me more than three months to learn how to pronounce.

Plantar fasciitis was completely unknown to me. It isn’t anymore since that pain in my heel has a way of grabbing my attention. An inordinate number of people I’ve come into contact with say they’ve experienced it. Interesting enough, they all seem to know how to pronounce it.

Most are runners, just as I now profess to be. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that running can be tough on your feet, especially if you lack the proper support in your running shoe. Running funny doesn’t help either.

Read the full post at the Green Bay Press Gazette

Photo copyright by Flickr user Joe Strupek

Hurdler Wows with Breathtaking Warm Up Routine

I didn’t know that hurdling could get sexier.  Thanks to Youtube and  “hip wiggling” warm up.

Michelle Jenneke, a young Australian hurdler, is taking the Internet by storm with her performance during the IAAF World Junior Championship last weekend in Barcelona.

But while she completely dominated her first women’s 100-meter hurdle heat (and placed fifth in the final), it’s Jenneke’s warm up dance that’s making her famous around the Web.

So, there’s a new reason to watch out track and field!

Read the full article and watch the video at Huffington Post.

Photo copyright by Flickr  user ‘richseow’.

Runner Caster Semenya Moves On

Past is past. South African runner Caster Semenya stands by this on overcoming gender issues.

The situation spiralled out of control with Caster complaining of “unwarranted and invasive scrutiny of the most intimate and private details of my being”.

She was barred from the track for almost a year before being cleared to run again and her comeback was hampered by a lower back injury and a growing belief that coach Michael Seme had taken her as far as he could.

However, she told several British national newspapers on Wednesday that nightmare was all in the past and she wanted to go on and win the gold -something if she does achieve she will dedicate to the increasingly frail South African political icon Nelson Mandela, who celebrates his 94th birthday on Wednesday.

Here’s a lesson or two from Caster.

“That is in the past,” she said.

“You need to concentrate on the future. I don’t have to entertain those things now. I can concentrate on my running, that’s all.

“With each year I experience I become a more relaxed athlete. I also know what is important to listen to and what to ignore.

Read the full article at IOL Sport.

Photo copyright by Flickr user Sebastian Skog.

Adidas Launches Natural Running Collection

The trio is out!  I’ve been hearing raves  and rants about these shoes.  You judge!

it’s reality: adidas is releasing a three-shoe “natural running” collection that’s meant to guide runners through the transition from conventional trainers to minimalist models.

Which one will you pick?

The shoes will be available next month, with retail prices of $110 (Motion), $100 (Gazelle) and $90 (Adapt).

 

Read more about the new models at Runner’s World.

 

Photo copyright by Flickr user Jason Lanzoni of Street Market.

Ski Training at Home Now Possible

Can I now go skiing in Hawaii?

Canmore’s elite biathlon and cross-country ski athletes will be keeping their training regimen a little more local this summer.

Athletes are training indoors this week as they finalize the installation of a roller-ski treadmill that will allow close analysis of technique and form.

Read the full article at Canmore Leader.

Photo copyright by IfYouSki.com. 

Flexible training routine boosts running potential

We know that flexibility in every aspect of life is necessary to keep going and so is a running routine. Just like everyday routines make us feel fatigued in the same way, no change in your training routine is not good for your capability to run and prevent to injuries. Variety is the spice of life and all that jazz, eh. To get more proof on this read the story of Rob Levey a runner who experiences it all personally, then go out and run a 10K backwards.

    What was really neat was that I made it a point to turn down roads upon which I had never previously run, which I think helped me enjoy myself that much more. I guess my point is that I think it was very beneficial for me to alter my training routine. Certainly, it can be appealing to simply veer toward the ocean during the summer, but there is something to be said for running through neighborhoods in which you would normally never have a reason to frequent. Frankly, one of my favorite places to run is in industrial “parks” down roads like “Technology Drive” or “Industry Way,” especially on the weekends when no one is around.

I suppose the point behind this week’s column is to give thanks for my recent injury, which forced me to reassess how and why I was training. While I certainly did love running before, I think I was obsessed with whatever my goals were for that week — one tempo run, one speed workout, one long run, etc. I think what I forgot about — or perhaps was never even consciously aware of — was that running is really an integral component to how I think and exist. It is the actual experience of running and the thought processes that accompany it that I truly love the most.

Read the full post at Seacoastonline.com

Photo copyright by Flickr user Josh Evnin

 

Is treadmill for jogging not running?

We all know that treadmills are used for weight loss, workouts and overall fitness and it’s use varies from person to person. Apart from all it’s usefulness is it true that treadmills never help a runner to run but to jog on it? And, do pushups and weightlifting serve heart fitness and weight loss purposes better than treadmills? Read on to get to the reasons why you should avoid treadmill.

  You say you like the treadmill? You don’t like the treadmill. Nobody likes the treadmill. It’s a clackity mess. It makes you tired while also removing any sense of panache about the way you’re becoming tired. Real runners don’t even like treadmills. Real runners run outside. They only use treadmills as a last resort, like eating the dead body in the life raft to survive. If you were a real runner, you would have read the headline on this post and immediately agreed with it.

The fact is that most people out there have a limited number of hours per week to dedicate to working out, and in that context, spending that time on the god damn treadmill is a waste of time. “I go to the gym four times a week, two days of cardio and two days of weights,” they say, as I put on a Scream mask in order to better emphasize how angry I am with their life choices. Here’s a thought, genius: instead of doing two real workouts and two fake jogging treadmill quote-workouts-unquote per week, why not do four real workouts and zero fake treadmill workouts per week? That comes out to, let me just do some quick math here… twice as much real workouts in the same amount of time! Just by killing your treadmill.

Read the full post at the Gawker

Photo copyright by Flickr user Jennifer C.

Essential gears for trail running

Planning to go on a trail running adventure? Wait…. there is nothing for you to plan except your safety. Ultrarunning champion Scott Jurek has a guide for essential gear for staying safe on the trails, assuming Big Foot does not come after you.

Navigation: Unless I know the area like the back of my hand, I carry a topographic map of the area. A compass, altimeter and/or GPS watch can also be indispensible if you are lost in new territory.

Sun Protection: Use sunscreen on areas that receive direct sunlight (tops of ears, nose, shoulders, etc.) or wear a shirt, hat or visor to block direct rays.  Sunglasses are helpful for blocking sun and wind, and aid visibility in blowing rain, snow and dust.

Insulation: Packing a lightweight long-sleeve T-shirt (preferably wool) or an ultralight down vest can prevent hypothermia if you have to hunker down due to injury or fatigue. Consider packing lightweight nylon or waterproof pants on long, remote runs.

Read the full post at the Competitor

Photo copyright by Flickr user Karah Levely

Is ditching your sneakers prevent running injuries?

Barefoot running devotees claim that humans are born to run barefoot as it is a natural way to prevent injuries.  But, experts believe that it is our running style that is responsible for injuries. Which is it? Don’t ask me, I’m just here to point you to some discussion.

Running barefoot encourages the runner to cushion the impact of landing by adjusting their running style to land with their toes down. The shock of landing is transmitted largely to the muscles at the back of the leg. As a result, barefoot and minimally shod running appears to reduce the risk of injury because they generate much lower collision forces.

But don’t throw your running shoes away just yet. Barefoot runners must learn to change the way they run: landing more on the mid-foot or forefoot, rather than on the heel. Then the elastic structures within the foot will do the job they were designed to do. And the Achilles tendon and calf muscles will contract eccentrically to cushion this extra load.

Read the full post at THE CONVERSATION

 

Photo copyright by Flickr user Rene Van Belzen

Keys to Successful Vacation Training

Summer is here and  summer equals vacation.  Training while on a vacation getaway seems like daunting but this article proves us wrong. Or at least, it proves the author wrong. You can pass me a cold drink.

To me a holiday is simply not a reason to sit in one spot and never move again. As a very active individual I thoroughly enjoy being able to exercise. So I find being on holidays a fantastic way to remain fit and active and give my body, mentally and physically a chance to repair itself.

Naturally holidays for everyone take a variety of forms from the super extreme sporting holidays to the lesser heart pumping retreats such as your ocean getaways filled with sunbathing and plenty of afternoon naps. However, whatever form your holiday may take there are plenty of options right at your fingertips that will ensure you remain active and don’t lose fitness or form whilst on your break.

 

Read the full article at Running Technique Tips. 

Photo copyright by Lisa Biffin.

What is the right running technique?

Running technique will become more important than any other aspect of your training program when you consider that the right technique can prevent injuries.  But the question is how can one define what is the right running technique? The simple answer is, someone must know. Read the article to find out.

Running technique is one of the most neglected areas of sport, at elite and local levels, according to Denis Huffer.

The Newry-based running coach, who has taken four runners to international level, said running technique is “simply something people don’t think about” but was very important in injury prevention.

“I encourage most people to have a lighter shoe rather than a heavy cushioned one, because it allows you to heel strike (in the cushioned shoe) which is not good at all,” he said.

“Every foot is different, and there are some injuries like plantar fasciitis and osgood schlatter’s disease that require more padding and orthotics usually require more support as well, so it’s different for each person,” he said.

Read the full post at Latrobe Valley Express

Photo copyright by Flickr user Bo Jorgensen

What made an Olympic runner legendary?

No hype here. If ever there was a runner deserving of over exposure, Emil Zapotek is that runner. 

Rigney doesn’t know how her father became a friend of Zatopek, but in 1991 when Zatopek was finally allowed to leave Czechoslovakia, he came to Carmel and stayed with her father for a few days. DePetra invited a few local runners and race walkers, including Nellie Wright and Kim Wilkinson.

They were told there would be a special guest for dinner and when they met the great Zatopek they were incredibly honored and surprised. Both commented with virtually the same words, “at almost age 70, he was friendly, energetic, and fiery. … I got goosebumps.”

Zatopek said, “Great is the victory, but the friendship of all is greater.” He died in 2000.

Read their heartwarming story of friendship in the Monterey Herald

Photo copyright by Athletics Ireland. 

Pre-Olympic one-on-one showdowns heats up

The Olympics are coming everyone. Yay! What a great time for the media to play rivalries, real and non-existant. This article at the IAAF gives a good summary of what the media will be hyping for the next few weeks. Here’s a quote from hurdler Liu Xiang.

“I came here to get some competition,” he said. “I’ve been training hard but training is different to competition.

“I wasn’t surprised at all [by his rivals’ times at the US Trials] because they are very, very good hurdlers. I will need to focus to get a good result. The 110m hurdles is an event where you can’t make a mistake.”

 

Read the full article in International Association of Athletics Federation. 

Women’s Running Apparel – Say Goodbye to Spandex Shorts

Running skirts? All I have to say is…what took so long.

Identical twins Cindy and Christy Baker are the force behind RunningSkirts. After logging many miles, they wanted a little more style in their workout wear. So they developed a line of running gear, anchored by the eponymous skirts. They launched their company seven years ago.

Running skirts are perfect to stick in your suitcase if you’re running a race in another city. They’re also a versatile item you can wear for post-run touring. Skirt fashions range from basic black to a wild paisley print. They fold up small in your suitcase and won’t wrinkle.

Read the full article in Idea Fitness Convention. 

Photo copyright by Flickr user Team Sparkle.

Traditional Barefoot Running Vs. Minimalist Barefoot Running

It looks like we’re finally past the point of looking at barefoot runners as crazy. Even local newspapers have sent in their intrepid reporters to dig deep and bring the scoop to readers. Now, the debate is whether or not you run barefoot with shoes on. I think it is  a showdown between “barefoot running” and “barefoot running in shoes” so, read on to see if there is an answer.

Although minimalist running shoes have gained a toehold in the marketplace and shoeless joggers aren’t as likely to draw stares, many runners have kept to traditional athletic shoes. And experts remain divided on the wisdom of running without them.

“While anecdotal evidence and testimonials proliferate on the Internet and in the media about the possible health benefits of barefoot running, research has not yet adequately shed light on the immediate and long-term effects,” the American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine wrote in a position statement. “Currently, there is a lack of well-designed studies regarding the benefits and/or risks of barefoot running.”

Read the full post at NORTHWEST HERALD

Photo copyright by Flickr user Ivan F. Irigoyen