Your Weekly News Roundup

Posted by Filed Under: News and Opinion

The 2007 World Championships begin on August 25 in Osaka, Japan. The current issue of ESPN the Magazine has an interview with the two favorites in the 100 meters, Jamaica’s Asafa Powell and Tyson Gay of the United States. Powell holds the world record, but Gay has run the fastest time in the world this year. Who will prevail? By the way, you can find the TV schedule for the World Championships here.

The Road to Beijing Goes Through Central Park

This year the Men’s Olympic Trials for the marathon will be held in New York. The course is not the New York City Marathon course, but rather a series of loops in Central Park. As anyone in New York can tell you, the roads in the park are not flat. The New York Times talks to Meb Keflezighi and Abdi Abdirahman about their strategies. Be sure to check out the video, too.

I Run, Therefore I Think

Some runners say they do some of their best thinking while running. Turns out there may be something to that. According to another article in the Times, “an expanding body of research shows that exercise can improve the performance of the brain by boosting memory and cognitive processing speed.”

Want to Add a Little Bounce to Your Step?

The Los Angeles Times discusses Kangoo Jumps, which are designed to increase endurance and reduce the chance of injury. The article also mentions Air Kicks, another product with the same basic function. The biggest problem with wearing them seems to be embarrassment.

Food, Glorious Food

The Los Angeles Times also has a fascinating piece on the role that carbohydrates play in athletic performance. During digestion the body produces glucose, the simple sugar we use as fuel. But the body also produces other sugars, such as galactose, fructose, and trehalose. Some studies have shown that performance is optimized when a blend of sugars is consumed at once. In another study, an antioxidant found in apples was shown to reduce muscle fatigue. As companies search for the optimal blend of carbohydrates, electrolytes, and antioxidants for their products, we may be forgetting the best source of all: real food. That sentiment was echoed earlier this year by Michael Pollan in the New York Times. Pollan, who wrote the fascinating book, The Omnivore’s Dilemma, argued that in our search for nutrients (e.g., omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, fiber), we’ve lost sight of food (vegetables, fruit, grains).

Got Milk?

Canadian researchers found that drinking fat-free milk after exercise helps you lose weight and build muscle better than sports drinks. The main factor seems to be that milk has protein, which sports drinks do not. The study focused on weightlifters, not athletes engaged in aerobic exercise.

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