Friday, May 1, 2009

How Does Ritz Prevent Cramping?

“We went out fast, and I felt very comfortable,” Ritzenhein said. “I felt great right up until 20 miles, and I started to get some cramping issues again, the same thing that plagued me in Beijing, in my calves and hamstrings.

“I went from feeling great to feeling like someone had punched me in the hamstrings.”

Dathan Ritzenhein's comments following his 2 hr 10 min effort at London. Register Guard

Ritzenhein took three salt tablets during the last 10K to help alleviate the problem. “I didn’t think I was dehydrated,” he said. “My fitness felt great. The last 10K wasn’t even hard.”

MY COMMENT: Ritz went out too fast.
5 km 0:14:37 (2:55 per km ave)
10 km 0:29:39
15 km 0:44:54
20 km 1:00:13
half 1:03:33
25 km 1:15:27
30 km 1:30:51
35 km 1:46:35
40 km 2:02:58
finish 2:10:00

14:37 through 5K is 2 hr 03 pace. Even though he felt good, he probably paid a price for that in the last 10K. Same mistake Hall made in Boston, but when your in a pack of runners with a pacer there is not much you can do.

The salt tablets probably did not help, and in fact may have contributed to more cramping. (Why Salt Tablets Are Not a Good Idea)

Read the assortment of comments about Ritz on the world famous message board.

I believe he may have been in 2 hr 07 shape, but he belonged in a group that hit that first 5K in 15 min. Hard to say what other factors contribute to his cramping. Perhaps some eccentric strength work focusing on those posterior leg muscles would do the trick. (Eccentric Hamstring Fatigue May Be a Problem for Marathoners)

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