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Why barefoot isn't best for most runners
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eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F
Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 04:15:01 MDT Print View

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/the-running-blog/2013/aug/22/barefoot-isnt-best-most-runners

more at link ...

This is a paraphrased version of a conversation I had with one (particularly extreme) barefoot runner:

"I've managed to teach myself to run in Vibrams. It's taken about eight months, and I still can't run as far as I used to, but it feels much more natural."

"That's good. What sort of surface do you run on?"

"Pavements, sometimes the canal towpath."

"I see."

"I've also started the Paleo diet."

"Is that where you only eat what you can kill or find?"

"No, I still go to the shops. I just only eat raw food."

"Oh."

"We didn't evolve to run in big heavy shoes, you know."


;)

Richard May
(richardmay) - M

Locale: Swamplands.
Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 07:51:21 MDT Print View

Pop-corn time!

Jennifer Mitol
(Jenmitol) - M

Locale: In my dreams....
Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 08:23:01 MDT Print View

I thought the same thing! Let the drama begin...

Of course, in my orthopedic PT practice I get so much business from barefoot runners these days...I feel like just handing out my business cards on running paths sometimes.

I always love the comment that "we didn't evolve to wear shoes..."
Well, yeah, but YOU grew up wearing them and your bones and muscles and neurological connections and heel pads developed with shod feet. If you grew up in the Mexican highlands wearing huaraches, or running through the Kalahari barefoot, well then yeah, you're going to be good at it. But for the rest of us, maybe not so much.

I am a HUGE advocate of wearing minimal shoes or going barefoot to work muscles in your feet and lower legs, but as an exercise, not necessarily as a lifestyle. Everyone is different of course, and for some people it really is the way to go. But early research so far is not really pointing to less injury among runners overall...and that study cited in the article is one of the stronger ones to come out. I think we don't have enough long term information yet to make any good recommendations. So that means I am a strong advocate for moderation: you probably should stop putting orthotics and superfeet in every pair of shoes you own, but you should also not walk around in barefoot shoes all day every day either.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 10:48:16 MDT Print View

Meh. Talk about the other end of the spectrum. I'm heading out today for a 41-mile overnighter in PA. I'll be wearing a pair of nicely cushioned Hoka trail shoes. First time hiking in them. Should be interesting.....

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
Re: Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 11:07:24 MDT Print View

I walk around in sandals or a shoe with barefoot "technology", like Merrells. I sometimes wear Fivefingers around town or on short BP'ing trips.

I am more comfortable in them, but am I doing unnoticed harm to my feet? I dunno.

Edit: "Them" being minimal footwear.

Edited by T.L. on 09/13/2013 11:14:41 MDT.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 11:19:25 MDT Print View

Man, Eric, Why not just ask if grassy-knoll conspiracy theorists who served in Vietnam and are now Scoutmasters should vote for or against land rights for indigenous gay whales?

Sandals are documented from 10,000 years ago in Oregon (and still all my Portland friends wear Birkenstocks!).

Otzi the Iceman had his bearskin/deerskin shoes over 5,000 years ago.

Decreased toe size in human remains suggests shoe use started 40,000 year ago.

So we've actually evolved from wearing shoes.

No Iditarod sled team gets to Nome without lots of booties for the dogs.

That said, I use the lightest shoe I can for the task at hand. "Barefoot" models for 10 mile / day. Running shoes for 20+ miles on sidewalk or great trails. Low-cut hiking shoes with a stiffer sole for rough trails over 20 miles / day.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 12:28:20 MDT Print View

I don't run. Ever. But I live and hike in minimalist shoes. I've put 25 miles in my vivobarefoot neo trails on rocky terrain and my feet didn't hurt.
This is probably because I'm young and I've been wearing minimalist shoes for several years. Before that I was wear fairly flexible shoes without any arch support. I started cutting the midsoles out of sneakers for more flexibility and ground feel until I found out that some shoe makers were already making really minimal shoes.
Do your children a favor and start them off in minimalist shoes.

Bogs and Bergs
(Islandized) - F

Locale: Newfoundland
Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 15:43:58 MDT Print View

I am puzzled by runners who will argue that barefoot shoes are natural, and then go out to run on pavement or a track.

I sincerely doubt our ancestors spent much time on hard, perfectly flat surfaces. (Let's see, a fine sand beach at low tide, post-glacial bedrock, ice, dry mudflat...um...that's all I got.)

As a kid I hiked in Keds and I still prefer highly flexible shoe soles on the trail. The bumpy/even, hard/soft, up/down/sideways trail. But thin soles on pavement hurt. It sure doesn't feel 'natural'.

Edited by Islandized on 09/13/2013 15:46:07 MDT.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 15:57:33 MDT Print View

So what? You can still walk barefoot on pavement. If you do it every day your feet will toughen up and it won't be uncomfortable.

Alex H
(abhitt) - MLife

Locale: southern appalachians or desert SW
popcorn on 09/13/2013 16:09:01 MDT Print View

Buttered or nutritional yeast?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 16:16:48 MDT Print View

The oldest shoe so far discovered, in a cave in Armenia, was 7,000 years old. It is probably not THE oldest, as was pointed out in an earlier post. People have been wearing shoes for a long, long time now, doubtless with good reason. Fads come and fads go. As the orthopedic bills mount, I suspect this one's time in the limelight will be mercifully brief.

Bogs and Bergs
(Islandized) - F

Locale: Newfoundland
Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 16:29:15 MDT Print View

Justin, maybe I didn't make my point very well. Barefoot may be natural. Pavement definitely isn't.

But we are indeed adaptable creatures, and THAT is the main gift of our evolution.

Another great gift, the ability to make tools and devices to protect ourselves. Like clothes and shoes. Naked may be natural, it may be how we evolved, but it sure isn't comfortable, or even safe, in many circumstances. We made things so we wouldn't be limited by our evolution.

Edited by Islandized on 09/13/2013 16:36:23 MDT.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 16:30:11 MDT Print View

Tom, I seriously doubt those shoes had any arch support or heel rise. Not much different from the minimalist shoes available today.

BJ Clark
(bj.clark) - MLife

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 17:31:11 MDT Print View

I walk around in Merrill gloves, but run and hike in Hokas. I like the Merrill's , love my Hokas!

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 18:02:54 MDT Print View

"Tom, I seriously doubt those shoes had any arch support or heel rise. Not much different from the minimalist shoes available today."

I don't know, Justin. Maybe, maybe not. My point was that going about barefoot went out of fashion thousands of years ago, with good reason, and the feet of the vast majority of humanity have adapted to wearing shoes, to the point where any sudden reversion to going around barefoot is likely to result in a lot of injuries. This is particularly true in hard surfaced urban areas, where the majority of mankind now lives. In any case, I personally have nothing against minimalist shoes, although I am skeptical as to their efficacy on hard surfaces or for running long distances. Time will tell, as peoples' experience with them, and the corresponding orthopedic data, accumulate.

Richard May
(richardmay) - M

Locale: Swamplands.
Proper technique on 09/13/2013 18:05:24 MDT Print View

I enjoy being barefoot. I've spent the last year slowly getting out of shoes. I find, and this is my experience not scientific or what other's say, that with proper technique even granite isn't a problem. The second hardest part of going barefoot is making good technique (like in any physical activity) second nature. I think the most difficult part is getting over the belief that you need shoes. Unfortunately many don't understand that proper technique isn't come by in a few weeks.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 18:09:13 MDT Print View

>"Another great gift, the ability to make tools and devices to protect ourselves."

True that. Says the Alaskan.

>"Like clothes and shoes. Naked may be natural, it may be how we evolved. . . "

Naked was a large part of our evolution. Until 50,000-150,000 years ago (moving out of the tropics). Caucasians wouldn't have light skin if they hadn't continued to evolve. Samoans' large chests may relate to only the best rowers colonized new islands. Pima Indians survived periods of famine by packing it on during feast times (a trait that results in diabetes in today's economy).

For the most succinct response to the shoes/no-shoes debate:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-ie_aFsfb8

Richard May
(richardmay) - M

Locale: Swamplands.
Re: Re: Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 09/13/2013 18:28:45 MDT Print View

"http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-ie_aFsfb8"

Love it! Always use the right tool for the job.

Edited by richardmay on 09/13/2013 18:39:45 MDT.

Ike Jutkowitz
(Ike) - M

Locale: Central Michigan
re: barefoot on 09/13/2013 19:10:55 MDT Print View

Once I took the time to learn proper running technique (midfoot strike, high cadence), I found that I no longer needed shoe gimmicks like pronation control and lots of padding. It's not about the shoe, it's about the runner. For me less shoe is more.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 09/13/2013 19:21:01 MDT Print View

Evolution is about success in mating. With that, the best shoes for hiking and running are very expensive Italian loafers, and maybe high heels.

You minimalist shoe guys really need to read up on Darwin.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 09/13/2013 19:56:43 MDT Print View

"Evolution is about success in mating. With that, the best shoes for hiking and running are very expensive Italian loafers, and maybe high heels."

Only when paired with a Lotus or Bugati. In the modern age, it's the wheels that make the man, not the shoes.

Richard May
(richardmay) - M

Locale: Swamplands.
Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 09/13/2013 20:02:44 MDT Print View

"Only when paired with a Lotus or Bugati. In the modern age, it's the wheels that make the man, not the shoes."

http://youtu.be/i3VxuWT6Dk0

Yeah, I know this dates me. :)

Diane Pinkers
(dipink) - M

Locale: Western Washington
Re: popcorn on 09/14/2013 23:09:07 MDT Print View

"Buttered or nutritional yeast?"

Nutritional yeast--I'm allergic to dairy.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 09/14/2013 23:21:44 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:16:26 MDT.

Brittany W
(quasarr) - F

Locale: Southeast
Born to walk on 09/15/2013 19:23:49 MDT Print View

I just don't believe I was born to run. My ancestors weren't chasing down their food - turns out potatoes don't run very fast.

I was born to carry sacks of turnips. Any 14th century peasant would be happy to have me for a wife!!

Edited by quasarr on 09/15/2013 19:50:19 MDT.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Born to walk on 09/15/2013 20:57:34 MDT Print View

Agree with that.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Ancient Shoes on 09/15/2013 21:24:38 MDT Print View

Ancient people seem to have made shoes whenever they could. The thickness of the soles seems to have been limited by materials. Its hard to make Nike shoes with leather soles.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Minimalist Shoes on 09/15/2013 21:40:53 MDT Print View

I tried running in a variety of somewhat minimalist shoes and did okay but I was mostly getting sore muscles after 2 miles or so.

One day I went out and more for the heck of it then anything else I tried my Trail Gloves which were more minimalist then what I'd been running in. I ended up doing four miles and feeling pretty good afterwards (first time I'd done that in a while).

I'm not completely sold on "barefoot" running. I tried on a friends Five Fingers with 2 mm soles and they weren't enough for me. The Trail Gloves are barely enough. So some cushion is nice. But too much is a problem too. I tried Altra Lone Peaks once or twice on that route and thought they were a bit stiff for forefoot strike running, it was hard to get the technique right.

I can say I definately ran better in my "barefoot" Trail Gloves compared to my NB101s.

Daniel Pittman
(pitsy) - M

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/15/2013 22:37:32 MDT Print View

I was talking to my Crow Indian uncle about teepees, and I asked him why they switched from buffalo hide to canvas. He said that the hide ones lasted much longer than canvas, but were heavier and took a lot more work to make. Every couple of years, you would have to cut the bottom few feet off and sew on fresh hide, as the bottom tends to rot and wear out faster from dew, snow, tension from the stakes, etc. They would use the cut-off portion to make bags, leggings, and other items that need soft leather. I asked him if they made shoes out of it, and he said no, that they used leather from the tops of the teepee for that, when a whole teepee cover was scrapped. The upper sections would be almost black, seasoned from the small fires that warmed the teepee's interior. The smoked buffalo hide in one or two layers made an excellent moccasin sole, long-wearing and nearly waterproof. The sinew used to sew them would also swell when wet, working to seal the needle holes.

My grandma added that if an Indian girl went around with too many boys and did bad things, they would say, "Look at dat girl over derr... she's got a hole in her moccasin."

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/15/2013 23:05:19 MDT Print View

Daniel: Great story. When in Barrow, I we got tossed in the air on a walrus skin. It was easy to see that it was quite a project to stitch a walrus skin into a round of leather with hand loops for 30 people to hold.

Daniel Pittman
(pitsy) - M

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Re: Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/16/2013 00:36:32 MDT Print View

You know the Walrus has the second-largest penis in the animal kingdom?

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Re Re Re Re Ancient Shoes on 09/16/2013 05:46:40 MDT Print View

I saw a buffalo hide at Bent's Old Fort and the leather was about 1/3 inch thick in places. A pair of moccasins from that would have been pretty nice, I'd guess about as protective as Trail Gloves or thicker Five Fingers. I believe most plains tribes used separate piece of leather for the sole. Makes sense when its thicker, stiffer leather.

Sleeping on that hide would have been very comfy to. A re-enactor showed us how you could fold a buffalo hide over on itself (fur in) to make a very comfortable mattress. Not UL though.

Daniel Pittman
(pitsy) - M

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Re Re Re Re Ancient Shoes on 09/17/2013 23:01:56 MDT Print View

Teepees were originally quite small and crowded. It wasn't until the Spanish brought horses to the New World, that Plains Indians were able to make and transport large shelters. I've slept in large teepees constructed with more than a dozen poles, each 25-30' long. Slept four adults and three kids, plus all kinds of gear, no problem. To move a lodge that size would require at least two strong horses just to drag the poles. The Crow Indians, known for having the largest teepees, accordingly also had the most horses. The covers are canvas now, much lighter, but there's no getting around having to lug a bundle of lodgepole pine teepee poles. It's a shame too, because the Plains Indian teepee is the finest shelter I have ever slept in (including traditional houses). If I could live in one year-round I would. I would probably choose something smaller, with poles around 10-12', just big enough for me and my mate and our baby. Don't think she'd go for a house with no running water though....

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Ancient Shoes on 09/17/2013 23:26:24 MDT Print View

One thing that many people are failing to mention is the design of ancient shoes vs. modern footwear.

Ever see a pair of ancient 12mm+ drop woven sandals with pronation control, a narrow, pointed toebox, tons of cushioning, and generous arch support?

Neither have I.

Because ancient peoples wore some iteration of shoes does not negate much of the thinking that has come from the "barefoot" community and trickled into shoe design: zero or low drop, low center of gravity, minimal enough cushioning to still be responsive, ample room to spread the toes, and no "stability", arch support, or "motion control" gimmicks.

Most ancient footwear that I've seen serves no purpose but to protect the sole of the foot from sharps, heat, and cold. Other than that, it lets the foot behave as a foot.

That's the exact same thinking behind most of the "barefoot" and minimal inspired footwear out today.

Ike Jutkowitz
(Ike) - M

Locale: Central Michigan
re: Ancient shoes on 09/18/2013 08:17:02 MDT Print View

+1 Craig. Well stated.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/18/2013 08:25:13 MDT Print View

+1 to Craig's post.

I also feel that most of the criticism of the barefoot thinking comes from people who haven't actually tried it, and most of the support for it comes from people who have at least given it a go. Once you take some time to let your feet adjust, you'd be surprised by how much your feet adapt.

Jennifer Mitol
(Jenmitol) - M

Locale: In my dreams....
Re: Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/18/2013 09:39:00 MDT Print View

Much of my "criticism" of it comes from the notion that just because something is good for some people means it's good for everyone. Not everyone needs orthotics (and I'm talking to you, all you darned podiatrists!!), and not everyone can go pure barefoot. Yes, people should try; yes, it's a great workout; and yes, you have to work at it. But the fact is, despite all the purely anecdotal evidence that it helps people avoid injury, we really don't know that yet.

So I am simply reserving my professional judgement until I have some more randomized controlled trials to study (the few that are out there actually don't look good for the wonders of barefoot running); I show some of my patients how to train barefoot, and I put a few of them in orthotics. Most need a happy medium.

I do really get annoyed by the argument that we evolved without shoes, therefore we don't really need them. Well, YOUR bones developed with cushion under your feet, and the muscles in YOUR lower kinetic chain developed with support under your heels. Homo sapiens evolved without clothes or covering, yet if I don't cover every inch of my skin either with cloth or with chemicals, I burn like crazy.

I am not arguing against barefoot running/hiking, I just think it's not the be-all end-all some say it is, and moderation is key.

Richard May
(richardmay) - M

Locale: Swamplands.
Re: Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/18/2013 11:38:51 MDT Print View

> I am not arguing against barefoot running/hiking, I just think it's not the be-all end-all some say it is, and moderation is key.

Thank you. Panaceas have a habit of turning out not to be.

The problem with the evolution argument is that proponents on both sides feel they are being told that everybody has 'perfectly formed feet' (and your are wuss for not going barefoot) or, we have evolved to be 'congenitally deformed' (and you are stupid for trying to go barefoot). Frankly, both extremes are wrong.

The adaptation argument holds more water. It assumes that at birth your feet are 'good enough' to go barefoot (that doesn't mean you've got the mechanics of Usain Bolt) but wearing shoes can change them enough to create a dependency on shoes. Muscular deficiencies can be worked on, skeletal changes probably not. So duh, bare feet are not for everyone.

But then neither is music, painting, mathematics, literature, business management, etc. Some need warmer sleeping bags than others. Why should bare feet be any different?

edit: clarified last sentence

Edited by richardmay on 09/18/2013 11:40:20 MDT.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/18/2013 12:10:44 MDT Print View

Well put Craig, I was just about to post the exact same thing.

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/18/2013 12:20:10 MDT Print View

You are all neglecting to address the most important issue here, which is that running sucks.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/29/2013 18:43:41 MDT Print View

+1 to Craig as well.

I've been wearing minimalist shoes for several years now and I just love them. When I go hiking or backpacking I prefer a bit of cushioning but I feel best without the heel rise and narrow toebox of 99% of shoes out there. I've even found that it's not necessary to have lugs to hike and backpack. Street running shoes do just fine.

And I'll agree that running sucks. The only "running" I do is once or twice a week I do all-out 22-second sprints with 1:30 rests in between x 8. I do them on a stationary bike so I won't trip and fall. That plus weight lifting seems to be enough to keep me in better shape than I ever was jogging, walking and bike commuting.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
re: Poor Study on 09/29/2013 21:44:24 MDT Print View

I'm sorry, but this is a rather poor study. How can we tell? Most advocates of barefoot running would fully agree with the results, but from a very different perspective. Few, if any, barefoot running advocates would think that 10 weeks is enough time for one's body to recover from a lifetime of using modern shoes. In fact, the injuries described are exactly the kind that many of the more sober and realistic proponents predict for those who try to transition too quickly. They would simply say that this is evidence of how pervasive the impact of modern shoes on human abilities is. Moreover, Vibram FiveFingers represent the extreme end of the minimalist perspective in running, one that is controversial enough in its own right. (Besides, relying on Vibram's marketing spin is specious at best.) While some may regard FiveFingers as something to attain to, few would recommend it as a first step, and never in the way that the study was conducted. In other words, barefoot/minimalist advocates would agree with the study's results, but from a fundamentally different starting point and towards a fundamentally different goal.

Another way to say this is that this study was poorly designed enough to be entirely inconclusive, leaving those of us who make efforts to be data-driven to rely solely on anecdotal evidence. What would be far more effective would be a long-term, longitudinal study of minimalist style running that does not rely on methods even that community would regard as suspect.

In the end, all we are left with is fuel on the fire that produces smoke but little of substance.

Dean F.
(acrosome) - MLife

Locale: Back in the Front Range
Yes, running sucks. on 09/30/2013 09:04:27 MDT Print View

Speaking as one who is forced to run, I must endorse the RunningSucks position. Once I leave the Army I intend to never exceed 3mph in my LPCs again.

Regarding the rest- insufficient data.

I agree- absolutely- that minimalist isn't for everyone. If nothing else, someone who doesn't run mid-double-digits miles per week will probably never develop the physique to support it safely. If you DO run mid-digits per week well then kudos to you, but stop trying to injure those who don't by putting them in minimalist shoes.

Whether minimalist running really reduces injuries remains to be seen. The minimalist crowd will criticize this study for not being rigorous enough to truly prove higher injuries but the TRUTH is that no one has proven the converse, either, despite their shrill screeching. ALL of those benefits are just scientifically unsupported hogwash at this point. Marketing. Nothing more. Why people get fanatical about it is beyond me. Heck, I like minimalist shoes, too, but I'm smart enough not to run in them when I'm not (and never will be) properly conditioned to do it. Especially when there's no proven benefit to it.

I doubt that anyone will ever study minimalist-footwear HIKING, though, so that issue will probably always remain conjecture. Hiking a load is different than running.

EDIT-- I also agree that it is rather hilarious when the minimalist fanatics spout off about being "natural" while running 50+ miles per week on pavement...

Edited by acrosome on 09/30/2013 09:11:59 MDT.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Yes, running sucks. on 09/30/2013 09:16:12 MDT Print View

If you run for recreation/fitness for any length of time, you will get injuries (minor or more significant), no matter what footwear you use.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 09:49:16 MDT Print View

Too bad for those who think it does. I guess there's always lawn bowling, right?

If you need science to believe me:

"The science is very complex," says Dr. Ted Fenske, an Edmonton cardiologist who ran the Boston Marathon this year. "But running will improve vascular health and vascular health is necessary for a male to have proper sexual function."

"Mike Finch, editor of Runner's World's South African edition, says marathoners are "like sexual gods.""

"A 2003 study out of Harvard University found men over 50 who run at least three hours a week have a 30% lower risk of impotence than those who do little or no exercise."

"Runners are fitter, healthier and have a good self-image," says Mr. Finch. "That makes them more eager to have sex, makes them more desirable and gives them more endurance."



And there you have it. SCIENCE.
Poor non-runners.

Larry De La Briandais
(Hitech) - F

Locale: SF Bay Area
No Viagra for me! on 09/30/2013 09:58:24 MDT Print View

I'm over 50 and have been running 5+ miles for almost a year. No viagra for me! ;^)
My overweight and out of shape friends who are over 50 don't have the same "luck".

peter vacco
(fluff@inreach.com) - M

Locale: no. california
Re: Re: Re: Ancient Shoes on 09/30/2013 09:58:44 MDT Print View

real question :

is it possible to effectively run with a pack ? i know for a fact you can run with things in your hands, but how about wearing a pack ?
i have seen the Best Ranger trials on u-tube, and it looks just terrible with the rigs they use.

cheers,
v.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 09/30/2013 09:59:54 MDT Print View

"marathoners are like sexual gods". In Runners World magazine. Puhleeze. That's not science, that's marketing. You've been had.
Anyway, everyone knows that swimmers are the true sex gods.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: "Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 09/30/2013 10:04:20 MDT Print View

I swim too.
Don't even get me started on the benefits of surfing.

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Re: Re: "Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 09/30/2013 10:15:26 MDT Print View

"A 2003 study out of Harvard University found men over 50 who run at least three hours a week have a 30% lower risk of impotence than those who do little or no exercise."

So the REAL difference is likely between men over 50 who get little or no exercise and men who get three or more hours of cardio per week. Running is just one choice among many.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: Re: Yes, running sucks. on 09/30/2013 10:36:56 MDT Print View

>"If you run for recreation/fitness for any length of time, you will get injuries (minor or more significant), no matter what footwear you use."

As secretary/treasurer of the local chapter of RunningSucks(TM), I concur.

When I'm prep'ing for a Death March* it is just miles and vertical feet. And walking the dog and watching the eagles fly by. But when I read of BPL runners preparing for R2R2R or Trans-Zion, etc, it's "I had never run that distance and due to an injury", "assuming I stay healthy and avoid burnout", "minor cramping but none of this suffering I did the last couple times", etc.

(*That's between one and two marathon lengths in a day with a heel in contact with Mother Earth at all times.)

To each their own. HYOH, RYOR. For me, the injuries I see happen to others in running, alpine skiing, tennis/handball aren't worth possibly impairing my hiking, backpacking and nordic skiing.

But then, I've got mostly slow-twitch muscles - born that way and reinforced by my activities. Some of you may literally be wired differently.

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Yes, Running Sucks on 09/30/2013 10:42:43 MDT Print View

I will run if there is food, a large angry predator, or a rugby ball involved. Other than that, forget it.

Edited by spelt on 09/30/2013 10:44:52 MDT.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 11:20:25 MDT Print View

I consider marathon running an extreme sport.

Dean F.
(acrosome) - MLife

Locale: Back in the Front Range
Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 12:53:34 MDT Print View

Uh, getting defensive about something, there, Craig? :)

And you should quote those studies in a better way. How do we know which is cause and which is effect? Maybe the men who aren't impotent are just generally healthier, and thus more likely to run?

Not that I'll in any way dispute the health benefits of a regular aerobic workout, mind you. I just detest running. Thus, running sucks by definition... :)

I'd rather hike than run. I'd rather bike (for real, not an exercise bike) than run. I'd rather row than run. I'd rather walk on glass barefoot than run. Etc.

I mean- it's just so damned BORING. That's really what gets me. For instance, I detest running less when I am trail running as opposed to road or track running. A little. Because at least the scenery is more interesting and changing, and I have to actually navigate, etc. And that's why bicycling isn't as boring to me- because at the higher speeds you much pay a bit more attention, and traffic will certainly keep you on your toes. (That's why I do my biking at 02:00 on Saturday morning. The drunks add a little spice.)

Hmm. Bicycling is not a good choice regarding impotence, though... :)

Edited by acrosome on 09/30/2013 13:02:27 MDT.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 13:14:32 MDT Print View

Running is too much effort for too little ROI plus over time it may slow your metabolism, cause muscle catabolism and leave you fat (or skinny-fat) and weak. You can achieve a lot more with less with a progressive heavy lifting program and 2 or 3x a week 15 minutes of high impact intervals for conditioning.

If running is your sport of choice, though, then you have to run. But don't bet that it makes you more healthy or more virile than other forms of exercise.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 13:26:37 MDT Print View

"Running is too much effort for too little ROI plus over time it may slow your metabolism, cause muscle catabolism and leave you fat (or skinny-fat) and weak. You can achieve a lot more with less with a progressive heavy lifting program and 2 or 3x a week 15 minutes of high impact intervals for conditioning."


Seems a bit of a sweeping statement, but could be true, I have no idea.

The benefits of running outdoors would seem to outweigh those of sitting in a Gym with weights. This coming from someone who does not run but gets all their exercise outdoors.

Edited by Kat_P on 09/30/2013 18:08:12 MDT.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Lance's woes. on 09/30/2013 17:46:08 MDT Print View

>"Bicycling is not a good choice regarding impotence, though... :)"

They dangle for a reason, huh?

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 18:00:24 MDT Print View

"Running is too much effort for too little ROI plus over time it may slow your metabolism, cause muscle catabolism and leave you fat (or skinny-fat) and weak. You can achieve a lot more with less with a progressive heavy lifting program and 2 or 3x a week 15 minutes of high impact intervals for conditioning."

That depends entirely on what your goals are. If you want to move far and fast in the mountains, for instance, or far and fast anywhere for that matter, you will not achieve that goal with heavy lifting and/or 15 minute high impact interval sessions 2-3 X week nearly as well as by running, if at all. As for leaving you fat or skinny fat, slow your metabolism, etc, I'm flat out calling BS on you. I ran for 20 years. Hard. And I am none of the above, now or when I was running. Same goes for hundreds of runners I was around for years.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 18:07:28 MDT Print View

+1 Tom.
Piper's been drinking too much Paleo Crossfit Kool Aid.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 18:12:50 MDT Print View

"Piper's been drinking too much Paleo Crossfit Kool Aid."

Is that the stuff they make from dehydrated umbilical cord or placental blood?

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 19:04:13 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:17:49 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 21:13:01 MDT Print View

"I would wager Piper could out squat and deadlift both of you. You should be kinder."

Ah, David, I've missed you. ;0)

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 21:39:40 MDT Print View

I concede defeat.

I have never done a deadlift in my life.

Edited by xnomanx on 09/30/2013 22:00:25 MDT.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 22:04:42 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:24:25 MDT.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 22:15:25 MDT Print View

Oh Pirates. I thought he wrote Pilates.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 09/30/2013 22:18:00 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:25:04 MDT.

just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 10/01/2013 00:04:51 MDT Print View

I think a combo of aerobic and anaerobic exercise/activity is probably generally best for most health wise.

I actually like jogging, though lately i don't do it often or far enough. For me, it's very meditative, i sort of lose a concrete/very sharply defined sense of self, and that's a feeling/space i actually kind of enjoy.

Extreme running (marathon etc type) may be hard on the body in some ways. Don't know for sure though.

Here is how i know running helps backpacking. I use to hike with my best friend somewhat regularly. Back in the day, i was working hard manual labor jobs like loading trucks at Fed ex, etc. But more importantly i think, and for longer and more consistently, i was regularly jogging every other day (no great distances though). My diet was slightly better than my friends too.

I could usually leave him in the dust hiking back in the day. He was on average more sedentary.

Fast forward, we don't hike together that often anymore since i moved from MA to VA and he still lives in MA. We planned the great White Mountain N.H. adventure last year. I had stopped jogging regularly, but walked everyday, plus did some other stuff with the occasional backpacking/hiking.

My friend, started jogging a couple of months or so before the trip , including some hills stuff (and has been doing yoga for a little longer).

My diet at this point is MUCH healthier than his (though his has definitely improved since the old days). However, he kicked my butt hiking, it was the reverse of the old days and i expect it was because he had started jogging a couple of months or so before hand. Granted, we were carrying similar amount of weight (both too much, which sort of led me here), and he is 3 to 3.5 inches taller, plus heavier than me, so that didn't help but then again i'm unusually strong for my size and always have been since little (and without working at it).

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Science Fact: Running Does Not Suck. on 10/01/2013 04:54:57 MDT Print View

Aside from getting in shape, I just run for the pure joy of it! It's human way to fly.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 07:56:53 MDT Print View

I don't do cross-fit. Cross-fit is stupid. I do a progressive barbell strength program and I suck at it. Yet I never felt stronger and more capable hiking in Glacier National Park this summer. I can squat my body weight and bench press more than half my body weight. I'm pretty mediocre. Having more strength and more muscle allows me to eat other things besides dry salads and bird-like portions of diet food. Maybe some of you men never experienced the slowed metabolism but I have. This other way of doing it is awesome. I only have to go hiking once a week. I don't have to feel guilty I'm not able to hike 4x a week.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 08:58:44 MDT Print View

Nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 02/02/2014 08:06:25 MST.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 10/01/2013 10:24:18 MDT Print View

I wish that I could run--feet issues make it impossible. Just go out the door and it's on. I do walk briskly up hills; I doubt that this can match the beauty of a runner's smooth glide over the ground.
But no worries, swimming is at least as fine as an exercise. I also do some light weight work outs in the gym, and use the elliptical/stairmaster for more intense aerobic workouts/weight loss. All of these have the advantage of not stressing my joints, which running does. Oh, and of course there's Nordic skiing, which I don't count as a workout because it's so much fun!

I agree with those who stress the importance of an aerobic workout; I certainly need this just to get ready for Nordic skiing. Weights help too--there's a lot of upper body work in Nordic skiing.

I think I heard that swimming, Nordic skiing and rowing are the only sports that utilize both the upper and lower body more or less equally. Someone will probably correct me here.

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: "Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 10/01/2013 10:56:56 MDT Print View

I think I heard that swimming, Nordic skiing and rowing are the only sports that utilize both the upper and lower body more or less equally. Someone will probably correct me here.

If true, that would explain why they are my go-to if I need cardio. You can pry my Nordic Track from my cold dead hands. :)

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: "Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 10/01/2013 11:24:08 MDT Print View

I've always preferred the Tarzan approach: mountain running, climb, swim (ocean), surf, freediving/snorkeling/spearfishing, etc.

I've always done very poorly motivating myself to do contrived workouts, swim laps, run laps, do weight lifting sets, etc. I find that sort of thing absolutely depressing. Fortunately I'm close enough to both the ocean and the mountains that i don't have to find myself stuck at home or going to gyms to do something physical.

just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
Re: Re: Re: "Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 10/01/2013 13:01:11 MDT Print View

That's my ideal place, close to both the ocean and mountains. As it is, I have about a 2 hr ride to either one.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: "Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 10/01/2013 13:33:09 MDT Print View

Nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 02/02/2014 08:05:16 MST.

Dean F.
(acrosome) - MLife

Locale: Back in the Front Range
aerobics vs weight training for hiking on 10/01/2013 13:40:13 MDT Print View

You've seriously NEVER done a deadlift, Craig? Huh. Maybe I'm suffering from selection bias but I'll admit that sounds rather odd to me.

I'll disagree with Piper that running is useless. It is clearly a good aerobic workout, and there are benefits to that. She is probably correct, though, that the quickest way to improve running performance (i.e. run faster longer) is to do interval training.

However, I will enthusiastically agree that weight training improves your hiking! I improved monstrously after starting deadlifts and squats (REAL squats- with a dumbbell with weights on my scapulae), whereas as I mentioned I'm forced to run semi-regularly and don't really find that it helps me carry a load much at all.

Aerobics isn't really what limits my hiking- it's my back and legs getting burned. So, actually, maybe that IS an endorsement of running regularly. Do others find that their aerobic fitness is what limits their hiking?

I'm also a mediocre weightlifter. I definitely cannot dead/squat/bench/anything my weight, which is prodigious. Well, except pullup, of course- by definition you are pulling up your weight- but not even very many of those unassisted. But I'm improving, slowly.

I know of nothing scientific to back any of this up- JMHO...

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 10/01/2013 15:30:24 MDT Print View

I hate running, and I hate being barefoot, so when I misplaced my Vivo Barefoot shoes for a year, I didn't miss them. I haven't tried to run since my knee surgery last year, but I sometimes think about pickup football, tennis, or basketball and miss it. Really disliked distance running, but I can get on a bicycle and do 50 miles, it's fun, and my knee doesn't hurt. Buy the right bicycle seat, and you don't have to worry about Mr. Happy going to sleep.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 15:54:28 MDT Print View

Miguel, this is how humans fly

Yeah, there's that, too. But technically it isn't flying... it's gliding. Flying is powered. Human's aren't capable of self-powered flight, except by using assisting contraptions. We don't have the upper body strength to fly on our own.

But we are very well designed to run. Long distances. Longer than any other animal in the world. Even our perspiration system is ideally designed to help us run and walk better. Our legs are disproportionately long for our bodies compared to most other mammals. And we stand upright... which means we are specifically designed to walk and run. We have heels upon which we bear weight when walking, but we also have the ability to change our gait to mid-sole and forefoot gait, which only work well for running. They work best when we run barefoot or close to barefoot. Having many of us lived out lives running a certain way in heavily shod shoes, we have to train to get the right posture and foot placement again. Do it wrong and you can badly injure your legs and feet. It takes quite a lot of time to retrain our legs to properly run barefoot.

It doesn't matter what anyone here who doesn't like running says... running for me is pure joy. When I'm in great shape it is like flying. And if you have ever seen Olympic sprinters and long distance runners in person (I went to the University of Oregon, my room mate in the dorms was a U of O champion runner, and I often met and talked to Alberto Salazar and Rudi Chapa during my runs by the Willamette River) doing their thing, you'd feel that humans are exquisite when they are running.

To whoever said that "YOU" didn't grow up barefoot... well, that is quite a big one-sided cultural assumption. I grew up in Japan and the Philippines back in the 60's and 70's, when people still spent all of their time barefoot in the house and often at work and outside, and outside it was mostly thin sandals most of the year. No one wears shoes in the house here to this day. Much of the world never wears the kinds of shoes people do in the States and Europe. Being barefoot is normal for me and most of the people I know here.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: aerobics vs weight training for hiking on 10/01/2013 16:02:02 MDT Print View

Before I tried weight lifting and intervals I would try to stay in shape with bicycle commuting, running and hiking. So we're talking as much as 2-3 hours of aerobic exercise during a weekday and 1 or 2 day hikes of 3-6 hours on weekends. All I pretty much could achieve was maybe not declining.

I've been lifting weights now for a year and doing exercise bike sprints off and on during that time. Before my big trip to Glacier this summer I was sprinting 2x a week, lifting 2x a week and hiking less than once a week. I had wanted to hike the parking garage stairs with a heavy pack on before the trip but I flaked out on that. On our 4th day of the trip we had to hike 20 miles. I felt great. I could have gone another 5 miles. (Kootenai Lake to Granite Mountain Chalet campground and my pack was 17 pounds.)

So, each week I do approximately 2 hours of lifting (where most of that is waiting to lift) and 15-30 minutes of sprinting (where most of that is resting between sprints) plus one 3-6 hour day hike. This turned out more effective than I expected.

Additionally, rather than just keeping myself at some kind of equilibrium I've actually changed my body composition. I have muscles. I can cut and toss the branches like a champ when we do trail work.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: aerobics vs weight training for hiking on 10/01/2013 16:13:56 MDT Print View

Piper, I've heard and read that, too, that putting in a significant amount of weightlifting makes a big difference in what you can do overall. May I ask what kind of weightlifting routines you do? I assume you are lifting free weights and not using exercise machines?

I don't think Crossfit is "stupid" (did it for three years), just that it can easily lead to over-training. Many of the serious Crossfitters I've known are some of the overall fittest and strongest people I've ever met. Though I've never hiked long-distance with any of them and don't know how well they do hiking-wise. Running-wise almost universally all of them hated running. Which continually put me at odds with them. Running comes naturally to me; weightlifting on the other hand is something that I dread.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 16:36:04 MDT Print View

nm.

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:17:18 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 17:09:22 MDT Print View

"we were, on average, not designed for long distance running."

Tell that to the Kenyans and Ethiopians. Or even a lot of Westerners. Whether or not people are predisposed to sprinting or long distance running is, to a considerable degree, a function of where their ancestors evolved.


" We were made for sprinting. We hunted in groups that would sprint after food sources and sprint away from prey. Sprinting is distinctly aneorobic. Sprinting is, in essence, an interval."

We also hunted in groups, or as individuals, that would patiently run slowly after their prey until the prey dropped from exhaustion. No human ever out sprinted a deer or antelope. Quite the opposite, we ran after them slowly and forced them to start running again before they had recovered from their last sprint. Over a day, or more, the recovery deficit accumulated until they were unable to continue.

"Long distance, hard running has shown to drastically reduce the production of testosterone in men, while at the same time increasing cortisol levels."

Run that one by my wife. ;o)

"Interval training, which is proving to provide similar if not better cardiovascular results (and endurance) than constant running does the opposite."

Actually, a well designed program of longer distance training, hill work, intervals, and REST is the best way to train, if you are a serious runner. If you are just looking for decent cardio vascular fitness with a minimum of time and effort, interval training may suffice, but if you want to get really fit cardio vascularly, and build endurance for extended efforts, you will have to make the investment in time and energy that distance training requires. There are no shortcuts, even here in America. I have yet to hear of a marathoner or ultra marathoner running a competitive time on intervals alone.

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Re: aerobics vs weight training for hiking on 10/01/2013 17:23:13 MDT Print View

I think it depends on what/where you run. If you run the trails (or similar ones at least) you'll be hiking/backpacking the latter will undoubtedly become easier. If you run flat roads all the time and then try to hike long steep grades, I doubt the running will make much difference.

I tried weight training for a year to put some weight back on and failed miserably. I'm 135 lbs and was benching about 165, squatting 195, and deadlifting 225. At the end of the year I hadn't gained any weight or strength, so I gave it up and just maintain with body weight exercises. I also recently added running back but none of my runs are flat and the long 20+ milers are on the trails I hike and backpack.

Interesting thing about Crossfit that isn't advertised, but is more common than one would think and more common to Crossfit than most any other fitness activity - Rhabdomyolysis.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 17:33:20 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:23:54 MDT.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: aerobics vs weight training for hiking on 10/01/2013 17:37:41 MDT Print View

nm.

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:25:34 MDT.

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Re: aerobics vs weight training for hiking on 10/01/2013 17:49:05 MDT Print View

I probably wasn't. I do have abs though, and look more like the sprinter than the marathoner you posted, despite doing long slowish runs on the weekends.

Interesting thing I've been trying the last month and a half - MAF HR targeting. When I started running again recently I was easily back to 7:15-730 miles over 5-8 mile runs (~!500 ft change). I found that despite that being an easy(ish) pace (I could easily carry a conversation) for me, my HR was averaging 170. Side note - I later found that's likely about 10 BPM higher than normal due to the paleo diet. I've been targeting an HR of 150 for every run the last 6 weeks and after the first 3-4 my speed dropped from 9:07 miles to 8:51 miles while maintaining the same HR. Short story - running slower (or at least at an easier rate) can make you faster. Speed work would probably accomplish similar results but require more effort. I was fast when I ran competitively back in 7th grade (4:45 mile and 16:42 5K). Now I'm more interested in running longer. YMMV of course.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 18:00:19 MDT Print View

"Last time I checked, you weren't Kenyan or Ethiopian."

Which is why I also mention "some Westerners". Quite a few, in fact.

"Aren't Kenyans and Ethiopians primarily vegetarian? That would explain why they didn't evolve to have to sprint for food."

Ever been to an Ethiopian restaurant? ;0)

See also persistence hunting. There is a lot of stuff out there on the subject.
This link will get you started.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persistence_hunting#Persistence_hunting_in_human_evolution

"Your comment about exhausting much faster and enduring animals is amusing. The problem with your statement is that running the equivalent of a marathon daily until you exhaust a food source would require levels of glycogen stores that wouldn't have been available. This is why they were hunting. In fact, depleting glycogen stores to such a significant degree would mean becoming prey rather than being prey, if you know what I mean. Not to mention the influx of cortisol and reduction in positive hormones."

Amusing, except that it is true. See persistence hunting, above. The people who practiced it didn't run a marathon every day. One kill would last a small group for
many days, when combined with the edibles gathered by non hunters in the group. Also, these people probably spent a considerable amount of time in a ketotic state, where glycogen was not the main fuel source. Not sure what you're getting at with the cortisol line of argument.

"I suspect we would not have survived as a species." Yet that type of hunting was practiced, and here we are.

"Humans aren't stupid. If they can scavenge and sprint in groups, they will. And they did."

Scavenging I can accept as a possible food source of opportunity, if the meat hadn't gone bad, but you still haven't made a case fo humans outsprinting an antelope or deer.

Successful marathoners have to train running long distance because...they run long distances. This is called specificity of training. They also "teach" their bodies to work under this type of stress (to the feet, knees, etc). You are confusing training intervals with training for a marathon. I simply said that intervals will improve your cardiovascular conditioning better than long distance running and I stand by that. Way more positives with respect to health."

I am quite familiar with specificity of training, David. As I said earlier, intervals are an integral part of training for a marathon, so I am not sure what you are getting at here. As for intervals providing better cardio vascular fitness than
distance running, I find that to be not credible. References?

"As far as reducing testosterone, you could read this recent study: Source:
Arq Bras Endocrinol Metabol. 2006 Dec;50(6):1082-7."

Mine was always normal when I had blood work done, and I was doing ~70 miles/week in the build up phase of marathon training. I doubt I was much different than all the others I ran with/competed against.

"Which body is better for health and performance?"

The one that isn't a result of anabolic steroids?

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 18:20:15 MDT Print View

Dave, that photo you posted is downright ridiculous.

Here are pictures of two of the US's fastest distance runners:

1
Kara Goucher.

2
Ryan Hall.

They look like some pretty fit and healthy humans to me.

This entire discussion is taking an idiotic turn. We might as well be arguing about how Judo doesn't prepare you to swim a record backstroke.

Edited by xnomanx on 10/01/2013 18:21:48 MDT.

Jason Elsworth
(jephoto) - M

Locale: New Zealand
running on 10/01/2013 19:07:46 MDT Print View

I do know one thing for sure and that is that Eric has hit a rich vein of form with these pot stirring threads:). The lads on fire!!!

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 19:11:22 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:26:08 MDT.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Re: aerobics vs weight training for hiking on 10/01/2013 19:35:42 MDT Print View

I do squats, overhead presses, bench presses and deadlifts. I do these all with the olympic bar and plates. I started with the Starting Strength program and now I struggle to make progress anymore so have been trying other things like Wendler's 5/3/1. I struggle with deadlift. If you aren't perfect with form you can really hurt yourself. I think there's too high a price to pay for a mistake so I quit doing them back in July so I would be safe for my backpack trip, but I started them up again last week.

I do a few other things, but not with as much effort toward progress. I am still working toward a pull-up. Right now I jump to the bar and pull myself up the rest of the way, then let myself slowly down. Then there are lunges and pushups. I was amazed the other day when I hadn't done pushups in months and did 5 sets of 10 regular pushups. When I started all this I could not do even one.

Basically, I'm focused on strength and not on body-building. I think it really helps.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Strength on 10/01/2013 19:46:26 MDT Print View

I don't work out, but I probably should . I don't run, but that seems like a healthy thing to do. I move around, work outside, ride my bike, walk a lot. I have never lifted weights, but I can do 5 pull ups.
We all have different bodies and whatever gets one moving is good, particularly if it's fun.
This "sucks"; that is "stupid"......will get you harsh replies every time,

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Strength on 10/01/2013 19:58:37 MDT Print View

"We all have different bodies and whatever gets one moving is good, particularly if it's fun.
This "sucks"; that is "stupid"......will get you harsh replies every time,"

Well said, Katharina.

+1

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Re: Re: aerobics vs weight training for hiking on 10/01/2013 20:06:56 MDT Print View

Piper, have you tried deads in sumo stance? I hated them till it I tried it that way. Much better base, better flex from my hips and a more natural motion for me. I think they're often recommended for shorter people.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 20:18:29 MDT Print View

"If you think steroids are just used by people who are exceptionally large and muscular, did you not follow the recent Tour De France biking scandal?"

It was tongue in cheek, David. They're all using at that level, or at least most of them. In just about every professional sport. Aw heck, even at the professional college level. About the only amateurs left are in high school and junior high, and apparently some of them are using, too. Sad.

"Tom and I are discussing and hopefully, he starts squatting and I start running."

I already do negative squats, i.e. I start out fully loaded for the eccentric motion, hold my position at the low point, drop the weight, and return to a standing position working only against body weight resistance. It's a full body exercise that has yielded consistent results for many, many years now. I give it considerable credit for my backpacking longevity. ;-0)

"I could post some pics of top cross fitters like Jason Khalipa who is remarkably strong and who trains intervals."

Yes, but what can he do with all that muscle in the real world? Can he run a respectable 10K? Surf? Swim a mile? Climb? Swing a hammer all day......? There are pictures like his plastered on the cover of every body building mag from sea to shining sea. ;)

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 20:23:52 MDT Print View

Can't believe you people are arguing about this at all. It's pretty easy really.

Movement is good. Doesn't matter much which kind.

Little to no movement is bad.

Eating healthy helps, as does getting plenty of sunshine.

It's that easy.

Example:

Walks great distances. Sometimes runs (usually out of fear). Sometimes lifts weights. Eats fairly well. Gets lots of sunshine.

.hobbit

Not much exercise at all. Only runs in fear, and then only short distances. Never lifts weights. Eats a pretty nasty diet. Gets very little sunshine.

.gollum

Choose which one you want to be!

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 20:31:29 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:26:41 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 20:32:55 MDT Print View

"Tom, it's all just for the chicks"

Now we're getting real.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 20:41:32 MDT Print View

""Tom, it's all just for the chicks"

Now we're getting real."



Chicks





Edited...no idea what it means, but it's a strong little chick

Edited by Kat_P on 10/01/2013 20:45:42 MDT.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 20:49:21 MDT Print View

Doug, bringing the truth.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/01/2013 21:03:58 MDT Print View

"...no idea what it means, but it's a strong little chick"

Oooooohh, she's a hot one.

OMG, my wife is coming into the room. If she see's me ogling this one, I'm in deep doo doo. I'm outta here.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Running does suck on 10/02/2013 06:59:33 MDT Print View

This might make your day for all of you. Great video:

Move

Edited by butuki on 10/02/2013 07:05:28 MDT.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Re: Running whatever on 10/02/2013 07:18:32 MDT Print View

All I know is that running and other kinds of slow movement were no longer working for me. Maybe it is my age. I am 48. Maybe it's my body type. I'm short and stocky and kind of surprisingly heavy for my size. Maybe I just really wrecked myself doing too much long distance hiking. I've been trying to figure out what I broke with all that and try to repair it and I seem to have found my own answers and things that are actually working for me. It was becoming unsustainable to force my body into ever more extremes of endurance. Now I know that I do not have to. Not that this other way is easy because it's not. But it does give me lots of free time to sit on my deck and read and I can take a nice walk in the sunshine during lunch rather than sweat and run.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/02/2013 08:49:30 MDT Print View

"...the type of movement is less important than moving itself, a stolen hour at the gym is just as important as a big day in the mountains, a victory over life's demands."

Great vid link Miguel.

Running and I are attached at the hip, but there are aspects to it that downright suck at times. Moments of pain, boredom, isolation, and fatigue that make it difficult to remember why I'm out there putting one foot in front of the other when I could be sleeping next to my wife in a warm bed. It only takes a stretch of perfect trail or a view after a long climb to remember and wash away those doubts. Some people overcome challenges and better themselves through strength training, others through hiking, for some it's running and cycling. Whatever the means, it's all good and should be celebrated equally.

Wasn't this thread about running barefoot?

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/02/2013 08:59:54 MDT Print View

"Wasn't this thread about running barefoot? "


It was, until the usual absolute statements that derail most good threads.
This sucks. That is stupid. One should NEVER. ALWAYS....!! And so on..

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
So true on 10/02/2013 09:29:57 MDT Print View

People who state personal preferences in a facetious manner ruin all discussions, everywhere. Always.

Jake D
(JakeDatc) - F

Locale: Bristol,RI
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/02/2013 11:44:35 MDT Print View

"If you think steroids are just used by people who are exceptionally large and muscular, did you not follow the recent Tour De France biking scandal?"

Uhh.. you know most drug use in cycling is EPO and blood doping... stuff to increase red blood cells for better oxygen use. or in the case of Contador. clenbuterol which is a broncodiolator which helps you breathe better


as far as training for hiking.. i find my cycling a 1500-3000mi /year makes my legs and core strong and increases my aerobic capacity. and hiking helps my cardio for biking. hiking my lungs max out first and my legs are fine.. biking my legs max out before i'm really breathing super hard except on steep hills.

i've met kenyan marathon runners.. they are a lot stronger looking than that pale finnish guy. obviously they won't have large upper bodies since that does nothing for you running.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/02/2013 14:03:44 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:27:42 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/02/2013 15:21:21 MDT Print View

"This might make your day for all of you."

Sums it up pretty well. It is indeed what we were born to do, as proven by the fact that we store our main energy supply as fat instead of carbs like.....vegetables.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/02/2013 15:52:22 MDT Print View

"i've met kenyan marathon runners.. they are a lot stronger looking than that pale finnish guy. obviously they won't have large upper bodies since that does nothing for you running."

I would qualify that to say it does nothing for a distance runner. Sprinters are another matter entirely.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/02/2013 16:06:55 MDT Print View

"We must have a different definition of 'strong looking.'"

There is often a difference between looking strong and actually being functionally strong. I've seen a lot of knuckle draggers who can bench 225# strut up to the pull up bar and drop off after 2-3 pull ups. I have also seen a 5' 4" 112# 60 year old woman march up to that same bar and rack off 3 sets of 12 body weight pull ups. Who would have guessed? Similarly in climbing. A lot of climbers don't have much muscle mass, but what they do have is incredibly strong, and conditioned to stay strong, pitch after pitch, with enough left over for the descent and hike back to TH, often over technical terrain. In the dark. Carrying their climbing gear. Good runners are often the same, much stronger than they look. Don't be seduced by all those sculpted, well oiled muscles you see bulging out at you from the covers of muscle mags. Functional strength is where the rubber meets the road. My 2 cents.

BJ Clark
(bj.clark) - MLife

Locale: Colorado
Functional strength on 10/02/2013 16:37:59 MDT Print View

Years ago I was doing a running clinic at a Y in NM. The question was asked about how strong a marathoner needed to be. Frank Shorter was on the panel and answered the question. Strong enough to military press your own body weight. My response was that I did among other things 500 crunches and 100 push-ups in no more than 2 sets 4 days a week on top of 100+ miles of running a week. Another on the panel (a Kenyan) preceded to press about 125 lbs. over his head a dozen times to demonstrate. I don't think he weighed more than the bar and plates he was lifting.

As to the argument about intervals vs. long distance running, it's a false dichotomy. They develop different types of fitness as well as running economy. They both have their place and can have great impact on performance. When people break down from long endurance training it usually is a result of combining two much time and too much intensity in the same workouts. Too many run too far at too high a heart rate. This guarantees they will end up overtraining and getting injured or sick.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 10/02/2013 16:57:01 MDT Print View

In the last few years research has begun to show that marathon runners in particular can develop heart issues. More than are typical; in other words, studies are indicating a correlation. Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. (Which I've found to be true in terms of Bev-mo's five cent wine sale...)(geeze, I'm starting to thread drift in my own post!)

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 17:04:41 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:30:25 MDT.

BJ Clark
(bj.clark) - MLife

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 18:09:36 MDT Print View

,Dave,
Don't assume that the "super Kenyan" was at his limit at 125 lbs. my point was that he was simply demonstrating that strength is essential even for distance runners. And I know that you think that interval training is the best. What I am saying is that it is different, not better or worse. I'm not going to get into a long argument on cardiovascular fitness here, I have no interest in that. But 40 years of coaching elite athletes has exposed me to some of the most sophisticated training methodologies in the world. Take what I have written for what you will. I am now more interested in other topics, I just dropped in on a whim.
BJ

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 18:14:23 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:31:06 MDT.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 18:20:52 MDT Print View

"Functional strength"?

As in opening garage doors, carrying groceries, taking out the trash, and walking up stairs?

What does this even mean? Some basic level of fitness required to be a "fit" human?

I can get that without squats, deadlifts, and presses.

Anything is "functional" insofar as it achieves its function.

Is it any surprise that a crossfit athlete would define functional strength in terms of performing crossfit exercises and a surfer would define functional strength in terms of the ability to surf?







What are we even talking about?

Edited by xnomanx on 10/02/2013 18:21:27 MDT.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 18:26:59 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:31:55 MDT.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 18:36:42 MDT Print View

You have it backwards Dave.

What if putting my son on the top bunk actually mimics an overhead press?

In that case, I'm good. I haven't dropped him in twelve years and counting.

You had me worried I was going to have to start overhead pressing.
Now I can surf tomorrow morning instead.


:)

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 19:25:59 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:29:29 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 19:55:15 MDT Print View

""Functional strength"?

As in opening garage doors, carrying groceries, taking out the trash, and walking up stairs?"

As in being able to climb mid 5th class over mixed terrain far from help, pitch after pitch after pitch, with 25-30# of gear on your back, and still have enough left in the tank to get back to TH in one piece day or night, or being able to run a hilly trail hour after hour, etc, as opposed to being able to squat 300# or bench 225 in the gym and not be able to use it to achieve any functional purpose beyond lifting. I guess my point is that strength for the sake of strength, without the skill set to apply it to an activity like running, climbing, swimming, whatever, doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me.

This whole thing started out as a result of posts exalting absolute strength and sort of belittling "skinny runners". Maybe I'm just a little sensitive on the subject, as a former "skinny runner/climber" who couldn't squat "squat" or come remotely close to benching 225#, but could run pretty fast at any distance from 2 miles to 26.2 miles, climb as described above, and carry a 70# pack off trail in the mountains when the situation required it.

"I can get that without squats, deadlifts, and presses."

+1

Precisely

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 20:30:50 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:32:29 MDT.

Jake D
(JakeDatc) - F

Locale: Bristol,RI
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/02/2013 20:33:29 MDT Print View

well we were talking about endurance sports.. so big biceps don't help a marathoner.

i'm 5'7 125 and can do 25-30 pull ups with no kipping. I can also do more than most people with only a half inch edge to pull on (like door molding).

i've climbed 5.12.. done 20mi days with full pack, just did 32mi day hike a few months ago. ride 100mi.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/02/2013 20:49:15 MDT Print View

Being able to squat more is helpful for any kind of activity. General strength gains improved my bowling score of all things. I went from the 30s to the 130s.

As for big guys who can't so pull-ups. Well, you have to train pull-ups just like anything. They probably have not trained them.

All of this was an experiment for me. Someone said that 2x a week HIIT plus general strength would be enough to keep me in condition for most activities that don't require specialized training. I don't think backpacking and hiking involve specialized training. It's just walking. It surprised me. It works.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Functional strength on 10/03/2013 05:36:15 MDT Print View

All this back and forth arguing is silly. If you look at the top athletes in the world, each trains for their specific event. Aside from certain genetic dispositions, they train their bodies to develop they way they do. Someone who trains to lift enormous weights is just not going to look like someone who trains to run an ultra-marathon. The demands of each event are different. Running an ultra-marathon requires very different physiological and psychological criteria from lifting 442 kg. The training is different, too. And no matter what anyone says here, a champion weight-lifter is NOT going to be able to run a champion ultra-marthoner's time, and vice versa. And a Crossfitter, who has very good general fitness, is not going to be a champion in either event. There is no perfect one-size-fits-all way to train.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/03/2013 06:00:47 MDT Print View

Good luck with that Miguel....

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/03/2013 06:13:13 MDT Print View

"There is no perfect one-size-fits-all way to train."

+1

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/03/2013 07:44:34 MDT Print View

Piper, it sounds like you have found a "training" program that works for you and that's great. It does not have to work for anyone else. Same for running...
I don't believe that one "has to " train to be functionally strong , but I am sure it helps. Some people are active enough that they don't need to train to do a few pull ups ( which can help out if you are in a pinch and need to get yourself out of trouble), nor do they need to train to be able to "run" away from trouble.
I am not saying that it is not beneficial to have a regular exercise program, but some people live an active life which includes a little bit of everything, both for work and fun, and while they may not be able to run a race or lift x hundred pounds of weights....they can walk a bunch, run a bit, jump a bit, get out of a tricky situation, sustain some physical stress etc.
It is tempting to turn one's experience, particularly if successfull, to a formula for others; I feel like doing that often enough, but when combined with dismissing what works for others it is rarely a well accepted endeavor.


Edited for spelling

Edited by Kat_P on 10/03/2013 07:45:35 MDT.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/03/2013 08:54:04 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:33:58 MDT.

Larry De La Briandais
(Hitech) - F

Locale: SF Bay Area
Fitness and running (jogging) on 10/03/2013 11:53:50 MDT Print View

I did "extensive" weight training when I was much younger (I'm 53). I was bench pressing a max of double my body weight and dead lifting more. My legs were strong prior to the weight training so I concentrated more on upper body. None of this helped my hiking much. It certainly did help, but not much.

At 52 I started running (jogging). This has helped my hiking more than weight training did. I had never found anything that worked to increase my lung capacity (if that is what the improvement to my ability to breath when jogging is). until I started jogging. I could barely breath when I fist started and now I just breath at an increased rate. Same for heart rate.

I needed this level of fitness for other hobbies (paintball. keeping up with those young kids is harder after 50 ;^) ). I only jog for 1.5 miles 4-5 times a week. I also do inclined push ups and tried doing pull ups, but I could do so few as to be embarrassing (I could do so many more as a young adult!). And I wasn't really progressing. I now have some dumb bells and will try curls instead.

As far as running barefoot I could do that and I grew up wearing shoes all the time. In the last 13 years I go bare foot (well, with socks on) at home. However, I could only run, not jog and certainly not hike barefoot. When truly running do not land on just my heal first, and I think I could handle it barefoot. Maybe...

Edited by Hitech on 10/03/2013 14:44:33 MDT.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Stronger is better for everybody on 10/03/2013 14:40:50 MDT Print View

Being stronger is better for everyone, though. If you can do 3 pull-ups, great. But if you can do 4 pull-ups or 50 weighted pull-ups, even better. You cannot be too strong.

I also believe that as we get older, and especially women, we should all do some kind of strength training. Strength training tells the body to grow. When you tell the body to grow you are sending strong chemical signals that you are not ready to die. These are similar chemical signals your body had when you were young and growing. Long slow cardio does not do the same thing. It may do something, but it doesn't do what strength training does.

It's really not an "if it works for you" thing. The basic principles of strength training works the same in everyone because it's basic human physiology.

Larry De La Briandais
(Hitech) - F

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: Stronger is better for everybody on 10/03/2013 14:46:13 MDT Print View

"If you can do 3 pull-ups, great. But if you can do 4 pull-ups or 50 weighted pull-ups, even better."

This is why I quit doing pull ups!

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Piper on 10/03/2013 16:53:59 MDT Print View

" Being stronger is better for everyone, though. If you can do 3 pull-ups, great. But if you can do 4 pull-ups or 50 weighted pull-ups, even better. You cannot be too strong.

I also believe that as we get older, and especially women, we should all do some kind of strength training. Strength training tells the body to grow. When you tell the body to grow you are sending strong chemical signals that you are not ready to die. These are similar chemical signals your body had when you were young and growing. Long slow cardio does not do the same thing. It may do something, but it doesn't do what strength training does.

It's really not an "if it works for you" thing. The basic principles of strength training works the same in everyone because it's basic human physiology."




Piper....if you want to train do it.
I could be stronger and in better shape, no doubt.
I work, hard, every day. I stretch, do a bit of yoga. I built another stone retaining wall last week, lifting 15 to 40 pound rocks, most of the week. I dug them into the ground by shoveling into clay. I pushed the wheelbarrow full of mulch up the hill all this week. I moved 15 yards of shredded redwood bark. Yesterday I dug a "mother ..." of a hole to fix a main waterline pipe that broke and flooded a basement at work. Wet dirt is easy to dig but heavy to move.
I biked from one end of campus to another. I used the weedeater at home on a steep hillside, working my legs pretty well just to balance myself. I walk an average of 4 miles a day quite a bit of it on a steep hill. I helped my landlord get his tractor out of a deep steep hillside. I cleared my roof and gutters.
I could keep on going, believe me.
One day I will need to train, no doubt, as not to lose bone density. Right now my bone density is great for a woman my age, 46.
What I could use is more abs to do the work and relieve my back. I don't do that often enough.

So, yes, it is a personal matter.


Today, outside, doing a variety of physical things, feeling strong and having fun.


Outside

Edited by Kat_P on 10/03/2013 20:03:41 MDT.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Functional strength on 10/04/2013 05:04:42 MDT Print View

Strength training for the average person? Sure. Of course.

Aerobic training for the average person? Yes, of course.

Interval training? As long as you don't overdo it, how can it not help you somehow?

Long walks, swims in the lake, long, slow paddling along a river? Just for the peaceful feeling alone these are great for all our well-being, no?

But do any of these things make an iota of difference in winning an argument about whether we are meant to strength train or endurance train?

Hell, no one even did dedicated strength or endurance training when we first started out as a species. We just lived everyday doing everyday things. Much like Katherina is doing right now. I suspect that we did a little of everything, and that's why we can do a little of everything now. We lifted heavy things, we swung things, we bent over pulling things and digging, we sprinted, we jogged, we walked, we climbed trees and rocks, we slid down things, we balanced things, we swam, we crawled, we danced, we squatted, we jumped, we... oh I could go on forever. If we didn't rely on all the contraptions we do today in order to survive, we'd still be doing all those things everyday. And we'd be in good shape.

And we'd still have different shapes, different abilities, different strengths, different levels of endurance.

I expect someone will find something to argue about in this statement, too. Because that's something we've always done, too.

John Almond
(FLRider) - F

Locale: The Southeast
My mother-in-law... on 10/04/2013 09:05:02 MDT Print View

...who is a dietician by trade, says something to the effect of, "Move more, eat less; that'll be $200, thank you," to friends who ask how to lose weight and get more fit when they don't have serious health issues.

Seriously, yes, specificity helps with training for a specific demand (hiking helps hiking, running helps running, lifting helps lifting, etc.), but any kind of exercise helps total health (provided you don't over-train to injury levels). Do something, even if it's just mowing the lawn or going for a walk after dinner.

Personally, I run, I bike, I lift (a lot, recently, actually), I interval train, I swim, and I'm still not where I'd like to be for general fitness. That ladder is a long climb when one's spent the previous decade not doing much.

That being said, I'm in the same range of fitness as most of the folks I work with--and there are some serious athletes working in a pizza place, of all things (never figured on that, but I guess it's a byproduct of needing a personality that likes stress to last in that sort of environment). One guy is training to run a sub-three-hour marathon right now, one's body building to become a professional wrestler (and squats 140%+ of his body weight on a regular basis), one is a regular rock climber, two of 'em are martial arts instructors on the side, etc. I try to work out with one of 'em at least once a month, and it's really helpful to see all of the different ways to work a body.

Work hard, play hard, go home happy. Not a difficult proposition.


~~~~~~~


Back on-topic, I've run into good and bad things from minimalist shoes for running.

They've taught me proper stride and foot strike technique, improved my ground awareness (definitely helping to avoid injury on some of the trails I've run), helped with my shin splints (as a byproduct of not landing on my heels as much), and definitely toughened the muscles in my feet (I used to get pinkie toe cramps after long days on trail; I don't anymore). On the other hand, I have managed to pull muscles in my feet when over training on pavement, and I did manage to stress fracture a tarsal bone two months ago when I stepped wrong coming downhill (sprinting) onto a large root.

That's healed, now, and I've learned a few things about how to take downhills better because of it. I ran my first half-marathon in minimalist shoes, and I know I'll get back there in six to twelve weeks.

However, minimalist shoes are most definitely not for everyone, and I wouldn't recommend them without taking the time to adjust before running longer distances. About 20% of my training (one day in five) was in minimalist footwear when I started running. Every week, I would increase my mileage and reduce the amount of time I was in "traditional" (think post-Nike) footwear by a bit until I was running all of it in minimalist shoes. My feet are tougher, my stride is better, and my cardio has benefited from doing so. That doesn't mean that they don't still have challenges associated with 'em, and I try to be very aware of their limitations. Just like the limitations associated with any piece of equipment--be it issued by genetics or by greenbacks.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Personal on 10/04/2013 09:32:39 MDT Print View

The reason I say it's personal, is because what one's need are really do depend on the individual and what their lives are like.
I never said that strength training and weight lifting are not beneficial. What I am saying is that for some people, myself as an example, there are activities much further up the list, that my body would benefit from.

* Cardio. I could use some prolonged cardio ( 20 minutes++) two or three times per week. What I get now is sporadic and usually lasts no more than 10 minutes. ( be nice guys..;) ).
* More floor exercises for my abs, besides the bit of yoga I do now.
* More time spent on the floor with my ball, for my back.
* A massage..
* owning a hot tub or even just a bathtub.
*
*
*
* weight training at the gym! but ONLY if I get the other ones in, otherwise it's just out of balance for me.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/04/2013 09:41:06 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:35:54 MDT.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Functional strength on 10/04/2013 10:33:23 MDT Print View

Miguel, there is a difference between exercise and training.

Yes, I am aware of that, as are a great many of the people posting here. My impression is that a lot of the people here have, like I have, many years (many, like me, many decades) of direct personal experience with both exercising and training, and with learning about it, and with seeing the results of different forms of training and moving. I don't see anyone here as being less informed than anyone else. But it seems like there is this underlying jostling going on, as if one person wants to come out on top as the alpha male, teacher of things wise and non-refutable. Thing is each person is going to get a different experience and perspective, and will have taken on different forms of training. No one will have tried everything. So it seems silly to try to outmaneuver someone else on their findings; what works one way for one person is necessarily going to work differently for another. Some people like running over weight-lifting. Others prefer weight-lifting to running. It's not all about suffering, but also about preferences. And how fit someone is will also not come about all in only one way. It will work differently for everyone. Even perception of what constitutes fitness will vary, no?

I am not targeting anyone specifically. Just saying that it's not as simple as seems to be suggested. And I'm not arguing against anyone's preferred way of staying healthy and happy. To each their own.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/04/2013 10:45:47 MDT Print View

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Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:35:05 MDT.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/04/2013 14:19:33 MDT Print View

"Miguel, there is a difference between exercise and training. To build functional strength, one needs to train and the best way to to that is through a means of progressive resistance training. This is very difficult to do with pushing a lawn mower."

Pushing a lawn mower....

That's a low blow..ok then.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/04/2013 14:27:16 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:39:19 MDT.

Jason Elsworth
(jephoto) - M

Locale: New Zealand
Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 10/04/2013 15:02:44 MDT Print View

I hear that furious backpedalling is also good for the quads :).

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 10/04/2013 15:04:14 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:45:08 MDT.

Larry De La Briandais
(Hitech) - F

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: Why barefoot isn't best for most runners on 10/04/2013 15:20:21 MDT Print View

"I hear that furious backpedalling is also good for the quads :)."

It has always worked well for me!

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Back pedaling on 10/04/2013 15:27:04 MDT Print View

""I hear that furious backpedalling is also good for the quads :)."

Yes..pretty good quads here thanks to that!

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Back pedaling on 10/04/2013 15:29:06 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 10/30/2013 09:47:42 MDT.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Back pedaling on 10/04/2013 16:10:29 MDT Print View

"Anyone have any ideas as to how to get out of the Dog House?"

Rumor has it that everyone in your family needs an aplaca/merino wool hat this year for Festivus.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/04/2013 16:16:33 MDT Print View

"Hell, no one even did dedicated strength or endurance training when we first started out as a species. We just lived everyday doing everyday things. Much like Katherina is doing right now. I suspect that we did a little of everything, and that's why we can do a little of everything now. We lifted heavy things, we swung things, we bent over pulling things and digging, we sprinted, we jogged, we walked, we climbed trees and rocks, we slid down things, we balanced things, we swam, we crawled, we danced, we squatted, we jumped, we... oh I could go on forever. If we didn't rely on all the contraptions we do today in order to survive, we'd still be doing all those things everyday. And we'd be in good shape."

Exactly like a lot of us did when we were kids, before the "Age of the Soccer Mom", who oversees every minute of her kids' lives.

"I expect someone will find something to argue about in this statement, too. Because that's something we've always done, too."

It would be pretty hard to argue with any sincerity about what you just posted, Miguel. A thoughtful post, beautifully articulated.

I sometimes wonder if all the different ways we train and actively recreate are on some level an attempt to recapture a vital part of what we have lost as the price of climbing up out of that dark Hobbesian world of tooth and claw in which we dwelled for so many millenia.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/04/2013 16:51:09 MDT Print View

"I sometimes wonder if all the different ways we train and actively recreate are on some level an attempt to recapture a vital part of what we have lost as the price of climbing up out of that dark Hobbesian world of tooth and claw in which we dwelled for so many millenia."

Bingo. I think you’ve hit the nail on the head.

I visited a zoo in upstate NY which had a black bear exhibit. I watched the bear for a while as he paced back and forth along the fence line. I asked one of the zoo keepers why he did that. He explained to me that the bear, in its natural habitat, may roam up to 20 miles per day. This was the bear’s attempt to burn off that energy in captivity because he was naturally wired that way.

This is just my opinion but I think opposite of the bear, humans are born to be lazy. For a hunter/gatherer, it’s not a smart idea to burn more calories than you are taking in. While I doubt that many of our hunter/gatherer ancestors lived much past 25-30, I'm sure almost all of them were in much better physical condition that your average modern man. We now can survive for years on end with less than 1500 Kcal per day. I’m sure for our prehistoric ancestors, it was twice to three times that, especially in the winter.

I’m no fitness expert but the fastest I could ever run the APFT was 2 miles at 12 minutes. I thought that was fast but there were always 5-10 other guys in my platoon which were closer to 11 minutes. Before I reached 12 minutes as my personal best, I was hovering between 12:30 and 13 minutes and couldn’t find another gear even though we ran 4-5 days per week. I finally started adding leg exercises (extensions, squats, etc) to my regimen at the gym and I’m convinced gave me what I needed to drop an extra 30 seconds off of my APFT.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Why barefoot isn't best for most runners" on 10/04/2013 16:57:53 MDT Print View

Katharina, given the kinds of work that you do during the day, you have no reason to feel obliged to go lift yet more weights on your time off. The chef doesn't want to cook dinner for a wedding on his day off, etc.

That said, let me advocate swimming as a great exercise for people who are active all day but would like an aerobic workout. One great advantage is, you're weightless. You're off your feet and you're not lifting weights; yet you do exercise a large number of muscles and get a good aerobic workout to boot. But it's more like yoga or dancing except, again, you're floating. Also, it's meditative. I swim before work and it's a great way to start the day.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Back pedaling on 10/04/2013 17:56:56 MDT Print View

No dog house..Dave..
What I wrote above meant that I do my fair share of back pedaling...

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
re: Re: Re: Re: Functional strength on 10/04/2013 18:05:08 MDT Print View

"I think opposite of the bear, humans are born to be lazy. For a hunter/gatherer, it’s not a smart idea to burn more calories than you are taking in."

Ian, I think you just gave me an excuse, er, reason for my way of life!

Arapiles .
(Arapiles) - M

Locale: Melbourne
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Running does suck on 10/05/2013 04:28:10 MDT Print View

"There is often a difference between looking strong and actually being functionally strong."

Spot on. Body building and steroids have warped the perception of what a fit adult looks like. I went to school with elite runners and swimmers and they were all LEAN, with flat muscles. Steroids and body building give you a rounded look.

I saw a photo a few years ago from the 1960s in the US of a large group of 20ish guys who were in the Presidents fitness challenge (?? I may have the name wrong) and I was struck (a) by how fit they looked and (b) how unlike today's ideal body image they were.

My son is quite lean (but he's strong and not at all light) - yet quite a few people have suggested that he's skinny or underweight. He's not underweight, everyone's just forgotten what normal is. Most of his classmates would've been classed as fat when I was his age, but now it's the new normal.