Fit­ness

Why women keep bet­ter time on the run; and the sim­ple (and cheap) way to test your V02 max

Runner's World (UK) - - Contents -

When sport sci­en­tists first

ob­served that women slow down less in marathons than men do, they spec­u­lated it was down to phys­i­o­log­i­cal dif­fer­ences, par­tic­u­larly bet­ter glyco­gen preser­va­tion. But a new study1 has found women are also bet­ter at pac­ing 5K and 10K races, in which the glyco­gen ad­van­tage would be irrelevant. They be­lieve that women’s su­pe­rior pac­ing is down to bet­ter de­ci­sion­mak­ing, such as be­ing less prone to over­con­fi­dence. Run­ning coach Peg Wiseman, founder of women-only marathon Women Can (wom­en­can. co.uk), of­fers th­ese tips:

PACE SEN­SI­TIVE Women know how to stay the course

Be hon­est with your­self about a re­al­is­tic goal time for a race, bas­ing it on ev­i­dence pro­vided by your train­ing and how you feel on the big day.

Start easy – five to 10 se­conds slower than your goal pace. It takes prac­tice – and courage – to run your own race and not go with the pack.

Don’t be a slave to your watch; try to ‘feel’ your pace. And ex­pect to in­crease your ef­fort in the lat­ter stages to main­tain it.

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