By Alex Hutchinson (@sweatscience

http://sweatscience.com/

I did a radio interview today with Angela Kokott on QR77 in Calgary, and one of the questions we discussed was the perennial claim that lifting weights is better than aerobic exercise for burning calories. It’s a claim that isn’t totally crazy — even the most recent American College of Sports Medicine position stand on weight loss reverses earlier stands by acknowledging the possibility that resistance training could contribute to weight loss by elevating resting metabolic rate, increasing fat oxidation, and making people more active generally. Here’s the funky flowchart they use to illustrate this process:

Still, the “evidence statement” endorsed by the position stand is: “Resistance training will not promote clinically significant weight loss.” In other words, it’s a nice theory, but the studies of actual people losing weight don’t back it up.

The reason I bring this up is that James Fell has a good article in the Los Angeles Times that tackles this topic — in particular, taking on the oft-repeated whopper that every pound of muscle burns an extra 50 calories a day. He turns to Claude Bouchard of Pennington Biomedical Research Center, who offers the following breakdown of resting metabolic rate (RMR):

"Brain function makes up close to 20% of RMR. Next is the heart, which is beating all the time and accounts for another 15-20%. The liver, which also functions at rest, contributes another 15-20%. Then you have the kidneys and lungs and other tissues, so what remains is muscle, contributing only 20-25% of total resting metabolism."

The punchline, according to Bouchard: a pound of muscle burns about six calories a day while a pound of fat burns two calories a day. Don’t get me wrong: strength training is great for many reasons, and I certainly encourage everyone (including, reluctantly, myself) to do some. But it’s not a miracle weight-loss technique.

Source: http://sweatscience.com/is-strength-training-really-better-than-cardio-for-weight-loss/

 

 

 

Strength Training

Elite runners consider regular strength and conditioning work a crucial part of their training. Three-time Olympian and physiotherapist Jo Pavey shares eight exercises for improving muscle strength and preventing injury.

Complete Article: http://bit.ly/e8X1gw

 

 

Running: Preventing Overuse Injuries

What causes an overuse injury in a runner?

Overuse injury in a runner most often occurs because of a training error (running too far, too fast, too soon). With every mile that is run, the feet must absorb 110 tons of energy. Therefore, it is not surprising that up to 70% of runners develop injuries every year.

How can overuse injury be prevented?

You can decrease your risk of injury by following these recommendations: 

  • Do not increase running mileage by more than 10% per week.
  • Do not run more than 45 miles per week. There is little evidence that running more than 45 miles per week improves your performance, but a great deal of evidence shows that running more than 45 miles per week increases your risk for an overuse injury.
  • Do not run on slanted or uneven surfaces. The best running surface is soft, flat terrain.
  • Do not “run through pain.” Pain is a sign that should not be ignored, because it indicates that something is wrong.
  • If you do have pain when you run, place ice on the area and rest for 2 or 3 days. If the pain continues for 1 week, see your doctor.
  • Follow hard training or running days with easy days.
  • Change your running shoes every 500 miles. After this distance shoes lose their ability to absorb the shock of running.

What about orthotics to reduce the chance of injury?

Orthotics are inserts that are placed in shoes to correct bad alignment between the foot and the lower leg. You will probably need orthotics if the inside of your foot turns in, a problem called pronation. If you have bad alignment but no pain with running and you do not suffer from repeated injuries, you probably do not need orthotics. Many world-class athletes with bad alignment do not wear orthotics. Your doctor may suggest orthotics if you have bad alignment, become injured and do not get better with other measures, such as rest, ice application and cross training.

What exercises help prevent or treat injuries?

Before and after a run, perform specific stretching exercises. See the pictures below that show stretching exercises. These exercises may also be part of your recovery from an injury. Do not bounce with each exercise. Stretch until you feel tension but not pain. 

If you do develop an injury, your doctor may suggest particular strengthening exercises. Every day you should do 3 sets of each exercise, with 10 repetitions in each set. Be sure to exercise each leg, not just the leg that is injured. For the exercises that involve straight-leg raises, you will want to add ankle weights as the exercises become easier for you. These exercises may also be done as part of your overall exercise program.

Stretching exercises

Hamstring stretch

Hamstring stretch
Sit with your injured leg straight and your other leg bent. With your back straight and your head up, slowly lean forward at your waist. You should feel the stretch along the underside of your thigh. Hold the stretch for 10 to 15 seconds. Repeat the stretch 6 to 8 times. This stretching exercise may be helpful for
 patellofemoral syndrome (pain under and around the kneecap), patellar tendinitis (inflammation of the tendon that connects the patella and tibia) and hamstring strain (overstretching or tearing of the muscles on the back of the thigh).

Iliotibial band stretch

Iliotibial band stretch
Sit with your injured leg bent and crossed over your straightened opposite leg. Twist at your waist away from your injured leg, and slowly pull your injured leg across your chest. You should feel the stretch along the side of your hip. Hold the stretch for 10 to 15 seconds. Repeat the stretch 6 to 8 times. This stretching exercise may be helpful for iliotibial band syndrome (knee tenderness from irritation of the thigh’s iliotibial band) and adductor strain.

Groin stretch

Groin stretch
Sit with your feet together, your back straight, your head up, and your elbows on the inside of your knees. Then slowly push down on the inside of your knees with your elbows. You should feel the stretch along the inside of your thighs. Hold the stretch for 10 to 15 seconds. Repeat the stretch 6 to 8 times. This stretching exercise may be helpful for adductor strain (overstretching of the groin muscles).

Quadriceps stretch

Quadriceps stretch
Stand straight with your injured leg bent. Grasp the foot of your injured leg with your hand and slowly pull your heel to your buttocks. You should feel the stretch in the front of your thigh. Hold the stretch for 10 to 15 seconds. Repeat the stretch 6 to 8 times. This stretching exercise may be helpful for
 patellofemoral syndrome, iliotibial band syndrome and patellar tendinitis.

Calf stretch

Calf stretch
Stand with your hands against a wall and your injured leg behind your other leg. With your injured leg straight, your heel flat on the floor and your foot pointed straight ahead, lean slowly forward, bending the other leg. You should feel the stretch in the middle of your calf. Hold the stretch for 10 to 15 seconds. Repeat the stretch 6 to 8 times. This stretching exercise may be helpful for Achilles tendinitis (inflammation of the Achilles tendon, the large tendon at the back of the ankle),
 plantar fasciitis (heel pain) and calcaneal apophysitis (inflammation where the Achilles tendon attaches to the heel, usually in children).

Plantar fascia stretch

Plantar fascia stretch
Stand straight with your hands against a wall and your injured leg slightly behind your other leg. Keeping your heels flat on the floor, slowly bend both knees. You should feel the stretch in the lower part of your leg. Hold the stretch for 10 to 15 seconds. Repeat the stretch 6 to 8 times. This stretching exercise may be helpful forplantar fasciitis, Achilles tendinitis and calcaneal apophysitis.

Strengthening exercises

Straight-leg raise

Straight-leg raise
Lie down with your upper body supported on your elbows. Tighten the top of the thigh muscle of your injured leg. Raise your leg on a count of 4, hold for a 2 count, and then lower the leg on a 4 count. Relax your thigh muscles. Then tighten the thigh and repeat. Do 3 sets of 10 repetitions each day. Once your leg gains strength, do the exercise with weights on your ankle. This strengthening exercise may be particularly helpful for
 patellofemoral syndromeor patellar tendinitis.

Straight-leg raise

Side leg lift
Lie on your unaffected side, tighten the thigh muscle of your injured leg, and then slowly raise the leg off the floor. Hold the leg up for a 2 count, and lower it on a 4 count. Relax your muscles. Then tighten the thigh and repeat. Do three sets of 10 repetitions each day. Once your leg gains strength, do the exercise with weights on your ankle. This strengthening exercise may be helpful for iliotibial band syndrome.

Straight-leg raise

Inner thigh lift
Lie on your affected side with the unaffected leg crossed over the knee of your injured leg. Tighten your thigh muscles and raise the injured leg about 6 to 8 inches off the floor. Hold for 2 seconds, and then slowly lower your leg. Relax the muscles. Then tighten the thigh and repeat. Do 3 sets of 10 repetitions each day. Once your leg gains strength, do the exercise with weights on your ankle. This strengthening exercise may be helpful for adductor strain.

Standing wall slide

Standing wall slide
Stand with your back against the wall and your feet 6 to 8 inches away from the wall. Slowly lower your back and hips about one-third of the way down the wall. Hold the position for about 10 seconds or until you feel that the tops of your thigh muscles are becoming tired. Straighten and repeat. Perform 10 repetitions each day. This strengthening exercise may be helpful for
 patellofemoral syndrome or patellar tendinitis.

Straight-leg raise

Lying leg raise
Lie on your stomach. Tighten your thigh muscles and slowly raise your injured leg off the floor on a 4 count. Hold the leg up for a 2 count, and then lower the leg on a 4 count. Relax your thigh muscles. Tighten the thigh and repeat. Do 3 sets of 10 repetitions each day. Once your leg gains strength, do the exercise with weights on your ankle. This strengthening exercise may be helpful for hamstring strain.

Lateral step-ups

Lateral step-ups
Stand with your injured leg on a stair or platform that is 4 to 6 inches high. Slowly lower the other leg, striking the heel on the floor. Straighten the knee of the injured leg, allowing the foot of the other leg to raise off the floor. Repeat. Do 3 sets of 10 repetitions each day. This strengthening exercise may be helpful for
 patellofemoral syndrome and patellar tendinitis.

Source

Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff.

American Academy of Family Physicians

 

 

How Strength Training Benefits Runners

Strength training is an important component in most professional sports. In distance running, however, we’re in the stone ages,” says Luke Carlson, CEO of Discover Strength and strength coach for many of the elite runners of Team USA Minnesota. Carlson believes that too many distance runners leave certain performance variables to chance when they forego regular strength training.

In the world of ancillary training, there is no other type of “extra” workout that is backed by more academic literature. “The preponderance of peer-reviewed research suggests that strength training improves running performance, whether that’s running economy or time to exhaustion,” Carlson explains.

Stephen Haas, a member of Team Indiana Elite, immediately noticed a difference in both overall performance and health since joining the elite ranks and committing to an organized weekly strength workout. “I really think it has helped us a lot. No major injuries in four years in any of the guys is pretty amazing,” he says.

Brett Gotcher of McMillan Elite in Flagstaff agrees. Over the years he has had coaches who have put less emphasis on strength, but since joining McMillan, he’s seen tangible improvements in his performances. “A lot of times people associate strength training with getting buff,” says Gotcher. “That’s not our purpose at all. I think it is one important aspect that can help make someone that ‘complete’ runner we all strive to be.

By Mackenzie Lobby
As featured in the Web Only issue of Running Times Magazine`

Complete article: http://bit.ly/hRT4K6