Monday, September 29, 2008

3 Marathons in 3 Days- Chuck Engle

Here is how marathoner Chuck Engle spent his Labor Day weekend

Saturday: Pocatello- 2nd overall- 2 hr 38:40

Sunday: Tupelo- 1st overall- 2 hr 47:17

Monday: Heart of American Marathon- 2 hr 54 min

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Carb Intake During a Marathon

To give their muscles a decent boost during the final, carbo-depleted miles of the race, marathoners need to take in more than 30 grams of carbs per hour DURING the race. The easiest way to accomplish that is to slurp down 12 ounces of standard sports drink just before the race begins and five to six swallows every 15 minutes thereafter -Owen Anderson,

MY COMMENTS: 30 grams equals 120 calories

2 hr 03 min 59 sec!

Hallie Gebrselassie sets world record- again!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Ron Hill's Amazing 44 Year Running Streak

photo from

Ron Hill was either born to run or has led one of the most contrary lives it is possible to imagine. He has run every day for the past 44 years - and has just reached his target of competing in 100 different countries before his 70th birthday.

MY COMMENTS: Ron Hill is amazing- Now 70 years old, Hill ran 2 hr 10 min to win Boston in 1970 and 3 months later broke 2 hr 10 at Edinburgh. He still runs 30 miles a week. Another interesting fact about Ron Hill- he has raced in 100 different countries!

Quercetin Improves Cycling Performance

Dietary Antioxidant Supplementation Combined with Quercetin Improves Cycling Time Trial Performance -Holden S. H. MacRae; Kari M. Mefferd

We investigated whether 6 wk of antioxidant supplementation (AS) would enhance 30 km time trial (TT) cycling performance. Eleven elite male cyclists completed a randomized, double-blind, cross-over study to test the effects of twice daily AS containing essential vitamins plus quercetin (FRS), and AS minus quercetin (FRS-Q) versus a baseline TT (B). MANOVA analysis showed that time to complete the 30 km TT was improved by 3.1% on FRS compared to B (P = 0.01), and by 2% over the last 5 km (P = 0.05). Absolute and relative (%HRmax) heart rates and percent VO2max were not different between trials, but average and relative power (% peak power) was higher on FRS (P = 0.01). Rates of carbohydrate and fat oxidation were not different between trials. Thus, FRS supplementation significantly improved high-intensity cycling TT performance through enhancement of power output. Further study is needed to determine the potential mechanism(s) of the antioxidant efficacy.

Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, 16:(4), 2006


Have you seen those on-line Lance Armstrong ads promoting FRS? I just got around to looking at the website - the product contains quercetin, an antioxidant found in the skin of apples and red onions. FRS stands for Free Radical Scavenger. FRS Healthy Energy

Check out this positive review at

USATODAY story about Lance and FRS

Fast Women Masters

In case you missed in, Joan Benoit Samuelson, age 51, ran a 17:24 5K at the CVS Downtown Providence 5K last weekend. Former U of Wisconsin great, 42 year old Stephanie Herbst ran 16:30. results

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Bellingham Bay Marathon

Here I go again- another marathon with no long runs under my belt other than the Skagit Flats Marathon 3 weeks ago. I am doing the Bellingham Bay Marathon Sunday.

I actually feel optimistic

- I've done more road than trail running recently, so my pace has been quicker.

- I've done a couple of decent interval workouts since Skagit Flats.

- I've felt ok on a couple of tempo runs- something that I've been neglecting recently.

- I have that marathon under my belt 3 weeks ago that I am convinced will help and not hurt.

- Temperatures should be ok.

One negative that I see is race organizers are serving something called Ultra Replenisher- a drink loaded with electrolytes but only 10 calories per 8 ounces. BIG MISTAKE! Since when do electrolytes enhance endurance performance?? As far as I know electrolytes become more concentrated in the body as you dehydrate/

This study published in the J of Applied Physiology measured "a significant rise in serum sodium and potassium immediately after the marathon run."

"Electrolyte deficiency probably does not occur during marathon running"
-Run The Planet

There is little physiological basis for the presence of sodium in an oral rehydration solution for enhancing intestinal water absorption as long as sodium is sufficiently available in the gut from the previous meal or in the pancreatic secretions (84). Inclusion of sodium (<50 mmol ? l-1) in fluid replacement drinks during exercise has not shown consistent improvements in retention of ingested fluid in the vascular compartment (20,23,44,45). A primary rationale for electrolyte supplementation with fluid replacement drinks is, therefore, to replace electrolytes lost from sweating during exercise greater than 4-5 h in duration (3). Normal plasma sodium concentration is 140 mmol ? l-1, making sweat (~50 mmol ? l-1) hypotonic relative to plasma. At a sweat rate of 1.5 l ? h-1, a total sodium deficit of 75 mmol ? h-1 could occur during exercise. Drinking water can lower elevated plasma electrolyte concentrations back toward normal and restore sweating (85,86), but complete restoration of the extracellular fluid compartment cannot be sustained without replacement of lost sodium (39,70,89). In most cases, this can be accomplished by normal dietary intake (63). If sodium enhances palatability, then its presence in a replacement solution may be justified because drinking can be maximized by improving taste qualities of the ingested fluid (9,25).
-ACSM Position Statement on Exercise and Fluid Replacement

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Trail Run in Sequim, WA- approx 8 miles


10 x 400

Yesterday was a 1 hr 45 min easy trail run in the am followed up with about a 90 minute flat mountain bike ride. Today I did 10 x 400 on the road in 82 or so with about a 1 minute recovery (measured with a GPS so who knows). Felt decent.

Saturday I am running a 5K at the Port Angeles Senior Games. It's been quite a while since I've run a decent 5K- I can't count that USA Masters track race as a very good indication of fitness.

Running the Sahara

How would you like to run 4,300 miles in 111 days in boiling heat and blistering sun? Check out Running the Sahara and watch for the documentary by Matt Damon's production company LivePlanet.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Spirit of the Marathon

Spirit of the Marathon looks like a great documentary. A great addition to any runner's library. DVD will be released Oct 7.

Monday, September 15, 2008

10 x 800 with 1 min recovery

I felt very good today on these- a little slower- 3:00 was the fastest and 3:05 was the slowest but that is ok 7 days post marathon. I did an easy 5 miles yesterday and 3 x 3 min uphill repeats on the mountain bike. Tomorrow is a long easy trail run hopefully- I am camping in Sequim, WA so don't really know the area well.

I did discover the Port Angeles Senior Games (50 +) this weekend so might hang around for the 5K road race on Sat.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

14 miles Today- the dog goes 9!

Sumo on a trail run in Utah

I did 14 miles today- on roads for a change. My legs were shot by the end so I am sure there is some residual damage still lingering from the marathon last Sunday. If all goes well, I will run the Bellingham Bay Marathon Sept 28.

Unfortunately, I got lost and my faithful running companion Sumo ended up doing 9 miles before I got him home.

Lance is Coming Back!

Who won the Tour de France this year? If a sport ever needed a boost, cycling is it. Lance Armstrong has announced that he is "unretiring" from professional cycling and plans to compete in the 2009 Tour de France. I guess this means his marathoning days are going to be put on hold for a while. What an amazing athlete.

Usain Bolt-World's Fastest Human to Appear on Letterman

If you saw it, then you know that Usain Bolt just dominated the 100 and 200 meter races at the Olympics- 2 world records!

According to, Bolt will be appearing the CBS Late Show with David Letterman on Sept. 24.

Here is what Carl Lewis had to say about Bolt's performance- "I'm still working with the fact that he dropped from 10-flat to 9.6 in one year. I think there are some issues. I'm proud of America right now because we have the best random and most comprehensive drug testing program. Countries like Jamaica do not have a random program, so they can go months without being tested. I'm not saying anyone is on anything, but everyone needs to be on a level playing field."

Monday, September 8, 2008

3 hr 02 min at Skagit Flats Marathon

I am relaxing after another marathon- the Skagit Flats Marathon in Burlington WA. Don't even ask- I saw it on the internet Thursday so figured why not? I've done some decent track workouts but long runs have all been on trails- in order for me to break 3 hours again I must get out on the roads once in a while for some 17-18 mile runs. I am lucky if I get 12-13 miles on any trail run. That won't cut it when you have to run 26.2 on the roads.

I am actually grateful I was able to finish as strong as I did.

Skagit Flats Marathon Top 10

Time First Last Gender Age
2:47:33 Peter Oviatt M 38
2:50:51 Matt Krier M 26
2:56:08 Russ Tkebuchava M 27
2:57:15 Greg Ripley M 33
2:59:25 Kevin Prentiss M 45
3:00:34 Luigi Marano M 39
3:01:47 Ed Haywood M 47
3:02:31 Dave Elger M 55
3:08:48 Cliff Richards M 47
3:09:53 Robert Durrant M 43

Saturday, September 6, 2008

What do Kenyan Runners Eat?

Janett Hogen analyzed the dietary habits of KIMba team members training in Boulder for a 2 week span back in 2006. Results of her study are posted on

Here is a quick summary:

ave daily calories......................3,904
ave grams of carbohydrates............712...(2,848 cal,or 73% of total cal.)
ave grams of fat.............................72...(648 cal, or 16% of total cal.)
ave grams of protein.....................103...(412 cal or 10.5%)
ave grams of fiber..........................52!

MY COMMENTS: Wow- 52 grams of fiber- Americans ave. about 15! Interesting that protein intake is only 10.5% of total, but if these guys weighed 120 pounds, then 103 grams is plenty (.86 gm per pound body wt). Note that 73% of total calories are carbohydrates.

Friday, September 5, 2008

800 M Finish at US Masters T&F Championships (45-49)

1 Kevin Paulk..............M48 Portland, OR...........2:04.04
2 Jeff Mann................M45 Reno, NV...............2:04.73
3 McDuffrie Allen..........M47 Chula Vista, CA........2:05.12
4 Jim Watts................M46 Beverly, MA............2:07.08
5 Eric Parker..............M47 Waterford, WI..........2:09.05
6 Michael Wolfe............M48 Colorado Springs, C....2:10.53
-- Saladin Allah............M48 Piscataway, NJ.........DNF

Endorphins and Running: "Runners High Confirmed"

The data showed that, indeed, endorphins were produced during running and were attaching themselves to areas of the brain associated with emotions, in particular the limbic and prefrontal areas.

The limbic and prefrontal areas, Dr. Boecker said, are activated when people are involved in romantic love affairs or, he said, “when you hear music that gives you a chill of euphoria, like Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3.” The greater the euphoria the runners reported, the more endorphins in their brain.

“Some people have these really extreme experiences with very long or intensive training,” said Dr. Boecker, a casual runner and cyclist, who said he feels completely relaxed and his head is clearer after a run.

That was also what happened to the study subjects, he said: “You could really see the difference after two hours of running. You could see it in their faces.”

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Boston Marathon 2009 Registration Now Open!

With participation capped at 25,000 entrants, registration for April's Boston Marathon opens tomorrow at 9 a.m.

To be accepted for the 113th running of the historic race, athletes must meet the designated qualifying time for their age group or secure a number from a charity approved by the Boston Athletic Association. Registration for the most recent Marathon closed in late February, and organizers expect slots to go even quicker this time around.

Following past tradition, the race will be held on Patriots' Day on April 20 and will begin in Hopkinton.

For more information, please visit Applications can also be requested by sending an e-mail to

Qualifying standards

18-34...... 3hrs 10min..... 3hrs 40min
35-39..... .3hrs 15min..... 3hrs 45min
40-44...... 3hrs 20min..... 3hrs 50min
45-49...... 3hrs 30min..... 4hrs 00min
50-54...... 3hrs 35min..... 4hrs 05min
55-59...... 3hrs 45min..... 4hrs 15min
60-64...... 4hrs 00min..... 4hrs 30min
65-69...... 4hrs 15min..... 4hrs 45min
70-74...... 4hrs 30min..... 5hrs 00min
75-79...... 4hrs 45min..... 5hrs 15min
80+........ 5hrs........... 5hrs 30min

Carbohydrates and Recovery

"...when runners trained heavily and ate low-carbohydrate (40%), they had a day-to-day decline in muscle glycogen. When the same subjects ate high-carbohydrate diets (70%), muscle glycogen replacement was nearly complete within 22 hours..."

"When subjects eat only as much food as they desire ad libitum, they often underestimate their caloric needs and fail to consume enough carbohydrate to compensate or that used during training or competition. This discrepancy between glycogen use and carbohydrate intake may explain, in part, why some runners become chronically fatigued and need 48 hours or longer to completely restore muscle glycogen."

-Inside Running: Basics of Sports Physiology, David L Costill, PhD.

MY COMMENTS: The higher the mileage, the more important this becomes. Carbohydrate intake among runners should be higher than the average diet. I think sometimes we forget that, especially during heavy marathon training.

Monday, September 1, 2008

10 x 800 with 1 min recovery

I did the Yasso 800s today- started easy in 3:03 and progressively felt worse the next 4 (all over 3:00). Very unusual for me, but the last 5 I came on strong, running 2:57, 2:55, 2:52, 2:51, and 2:50. I think I may started the workout too soon after a bowl of cereal and my blood sugar was a little low.

This was a nice confidence booster, especially since I used a short 1 min recovery. Easy, long tomorrow!