66 Climb it, change

Runner's World South Africa - - Spring Shoe Buyer's Guide -


Su­per­siz­ing your lunch could down­size your belly. In a study re­ported in the American Jour­nal of

Clin­i­cal Nu­tri­tion, sub­jects who ate their main meal at lunchtime ex­pe­ri­enced higher av­er­age weight loss, greater re­duc­tion in BMI and im­proved in­sulin re­sis­tance com­pared with those get­ting the ma­jor­ity of their kilo­joules at din­ner, de­spite both groups eat­ing the same to­tal num­ber of daily kilo­joules. 51 TRAIN TO THE MAX How much oxy­gen your body can take in and use per minute, per kg of your body weight – aka your VO2 max – is a key mea­sure of aer­o­bic fit­ness; it’s rou­tinely mon­i­tored in elite ath­letes. But you don’t have to be an elite to get yours mea­sured in the lab and ben­e­fit from pre­ci­sion train­ing based on your re­sults. “It doesn’t mat­ter what level you are, the test is tai­lored to you as an in­di­vid­ual,” says Vin­cent Chris­tan, head phys­i­ol­o­gist at the Nuffield Health Sports Per­for­mance Lab in Lon­don (nuffield­health.com). “Your re­sults help to iden­tify your strengths and weak­nesses, from which an ef­fec­tive train­ing pro­gramme can be cre­ated.”

A VO2-max test de­mands your all – sport sci­ence labs tra­di­tion­ally placed mat­tresses against the wall be­hind tread­mills to cush­ion the blow for those fly­ing off the back. At Nuffield, a har­ness sus­pended from the ceil­ing sweeps you off your feet if you lose con­trol. Your dig­nity may suf­fer a lit­tle. 52 SWEAT, THE DE­TAILS

If your post-run aroma is a source of con­cern, clean up your diet. In a study pub­lished in Evo­lu­tion and Hu­man

Be­hav­iour, women judged clean-eat­ing men (lots of fruit and veg) to have the most aro­matic sweat, us­ing ad­jec­tives such as ‘flo­ral’, ‘fruity’ and ‘sweet’ to de­scribe the scent. Oddly, eat­ing fat, meat, eggs and tofu also pro­duced pleas­ant-smelling per­spi­ra­tion. The bad news? Stinky sweat came from con­sum­ing carbs. 53 LOVE THE JOUR­NEY To boost long-term mo­ti­va­tion and gain max­i­mum en­joy­ment in your run­ning life, re­mem­ber that run­ning is about more than just re­sults, says Clint Wells, the top masters fin­isher at last April’s Bos­ton Marathon (he clocked 2:24.55). “En­joy the build-up to a marathon. Join a group, and make it so­cial,” says Wells. 54 PAS­SIVE GAINS Some news on the de­bate over pas­sive vs ac­tive rest in in­ter­val ses­sions: a study in the Jour­nal of Strength and Con­di­tion­ing Re­search found that in a ses­sion con­sist­ing of 10 sets of 20m sprints, pas­sive re­cov­ery (walk­ing back to the start po­si­tion and stand­ing still un­til the next sprint) be­tween ef­forts led to sig­nif­i­cantly faster splits, lower per­ceived ex­er­tion, less blood­lac­tate ac­cu­mu­la­tion and lower post-work­out heart rate than ac­tive re­cov­ery (jog­ging be­tween sprints). For short, sharp speed­work at least, then, it seems to­tal rest is best. 64 THE IM­MOR­TAL­ITY WORK­OUT

New re­search sug­gests it may be pos­si­ble stop the clock on age-re­lated mus­cle de­cline. The study, in Medicine & Sci­ence In Sports & Ex­er­cise, put older men (aged 65-83) through a 12-week weight-train­ing pro­gramme of leg presses and leg ex­ten­sions; it found this in­creased their mus­cle fi­bre size and cap­il­lary net­works to a level match­ing that of younger men. 65 FOR YOUR SHINS Take these steps from po­di­a­trist Dr Stephen Pribut to keep shin splints at bay: Limit run­ning on con­crete Don’t over­stride (aim for 160-190 steps per minute) Stretch your calves and your ham­strings post-run Run­ning up stairs is a great way to build strength and en­durance. The ply­o­met­ric mo­tion works the same mus­cles as lunges and squats, and tar­gets the glu­teus medius. A study in the Bri­tish Jour­nal of Sports Medicine found that short bouts of stair climb­ing five days a week for eight weeks im­proved VO2 max by 17 per cent.

TRY THIS stair-run­ning ses­sion from Paul Romeo, who over­sees sta­dium-step work­outs as a coach for Koko FitClub (kokofit­club.com). Af­ter a warm-up, run up a set of stairs five to 10 times at 80 per cent ef­fort. Walk down be­tween reps, and rest at the bot­tom if you’re still out of breath.

When climb­ing, run tall, step lightly and swing your arms to drive your­self up.


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