The aim of this study was to examine the interaction between aging and 10 years of racing in endurance runners. Race-time data from 194 runners who had completed 10 consecutive 56-km ultramarathons were obtained. The runners were either 20.5 ± 0.7, 30.0 ± 1.0, 39.9 ± 0.9, or 49.4 ± 1.0 years old at their first race. Each runner’s race speed was determined for each race over the 10 years. Data were analyzed using repeated-measures ANOVA, one-way ANOVA, and independent t tests and showed that performance improved and declined at greater rates for younger runners; younger runners had a greater capacity for improvement than older runners; ≈4 years were required to reach peak racing speed, regardless of age; it was not possible to compete at peak speed for more than a few years; and the combined effects of 10 years of aging and racing neither improve nor worsen net performance. In conclusion, these data suggest that although these runners showed similar patterns of change in race speed over a 10-year period, the extent of change in performance was greater in younger than in older runners.
Dale E. Rae, Andrew N. Bosch, Malcolm Collins and Mike I. Lambert
Deryn Bath, Louise A. Turner, Andrew N. Bosch, Ross Tucker, Estelle V. Lambert, Kevin G. Thompson and Alan St. Clair Gibson
The aim of this study was to examine performance, pacing strategy and perception of effort during a 5 km time trial while running with or without the presence of another athlete.
Eleven nonelite male athletes participated in five 5 km time trials: two self-paced, maximal effort trials performed at the start and end of the study, and three trials performed in the presence of a second runner. In the three trials, the second runner ran either in front of the subject, behind the subject, or next to the subject. Performance times, heart rate, RPE, and a subjective assessment of the effect of the second runner on the athlete’s performance were recorded during each of the trials.
There was no significant difference in performance times, heart rate or RPE between any of the five trials. Running speed declined from the 1st to the 4th kilometer and then increased for the last kilometer in all five trials. Following the completion of all trials, 9 of the 11 subjects perceived it to be easier to complete the 5 km time trial with another runner in comparison with running alone.
While the athletes perceived their performance to be improved by the presence of another runner, their pacing strategy, running speed, heart rate and RPE were not significantly altered. These findings indicate that an athlete’s subconscious pacing strategy is robust and is not altered by the presence of another runner.
Amanda Claassen, Estelle V. Lambert, Andrew N. Bosch, Ian M. Rodger, Alan St. Clair Gibson and Timothy D. Noakes
The impact of altered blood glucose concentrations on exercise metabolism and performance after a low carbohydrate (CHO) diet was investigated. In random order, 1 wk apart, 9 trained men underwent euglycemic (CI) or placebo (PI) clamps, while performing up to 150 min of cycling at 70% VO2max, after 48 h on a low CHO diet. The range in improvement in endurance capacity with glucose infusion was large (28 ± 26%, P < 0.05). Fifty-six percent of subjects in CI failed to complete 150 min of exercise despite maintenance of euglycemia, while only 2 subjects in PI completed 150 min of exercise, despite being hypoglycemic. Total CHO oxidation remained similar between trials. Despite longer exercise times in CI, similar amounts of muscle glycogen were used to PI. Maintenance of euglycemia in the CHO-depleted state might have an ergogenic effect, however, the effect is highly variable between individuals and independent of changes in CHO oxidation.