My ‘official’ 1 month weigh-in is next Friday on August 5th, to see how I’ve done in my quest to squeeze off a few poundsÂ during my 1 month transition between getting back home after the Vancouver Half Iron, and going back at a more vigorous Ironman training schedule in advance of Ironman Florida.
…alright…if it seems familiar I’ve used today’s picture before…it is a good illustration ofÂ a lean body though 🙂
It _looks_ like I’m doing really well, so we’ll see what next week brings.
It seems to beÂ a Matt Fitzgerald rollÂ for a couple of days, as he had anÂ interesting postÂ a few days ago on cnn.com, where he quotes a study that found a direct correlationÂ between body fat percentages…how lean someone was…and their race performance…the interesting part, was that it even extendsÂ to already lean elite athletes.
Among recreational runners, there tend to beÂ large differences in leanness, and itâ€™s only to beÂ expected that the leanest recreational runners will perform best in races.
Among elite-level runners itâ€™s a different story. All elite runners are very lean, and the small differences in body-fat percentages have little correlation with differences in performance.
Within the special population of eliteÂ runners, itâ€™s small differences in VO2max, maximum speed, and running economy that determine who wins and who loses.
Except that nothing I said in the previous paragraph is true.
Believe it or not, differences in body-fat percentage predict races times as well in eliteÂ runners as they do among recreational female runners. This was shownÂ in a 2009 study involving 24 elite runners in Ethiopia.
SkinfoldÂ measurements were used to estimate body fat percentage in 12 male and 12 female athletes. These estimates were then compared to the runnersâ€™ individual race performances.
The researchers found an 80% correlation between skinfold measurements and race times in the men and a 78% correspondence in the women. All of these runners were very lean and very light, but the leanest among them were the fastest.
At every level of the sport, leanness is as important as aerobic capacity, speed, and running economy. And even at the elite level, it seems, some runners could get faster by getting leaner.
Here’s the full content:
…pretty strong summary if you’re considering whether you shouldÂ drop a few pounds before your next race 🙂