Photo from Mount Royal, Frisco, Colorado.

"That is happiness; to be disolved into something complete and great. When it comes to one, it comes as naturally as sleep." - Willa Cather

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Inducing falling from treadmill, bone marrow, heat and ice (cream)

Intervals (running) were on my schedule today. Perfect since there was a thunderstorm this morning. I jogged the 2.5 miles from the Three Rivers Waldorf School to the YMCA. 

Each treadmill interval is set up like this:

Grade 1% incline. Walk .1 miles, run .27 miles at 10 min/mile pace, run .625 miles (1km) fast, repeat 7 times.

1 km times
1. 3:55
2. 3:55
3. 3:55 (it is easy to control pace on a treadmill!)
4. 3:55 (guy next to me notes my pace and turns up his treadmill speed to be slightly faster than mine. After about 1 minute he FELL OFF THE TREADMILL!! and the support staff at the Y rushed over but he was laughing in embarrassment. This has to be my crowning achievement in interval running!)
5. 3:57 (oops, was thinking about the mishap and forgot to turn up my speed at the right time)
6. 3:55
7. 3:55 (I am considering lowering the incline to 0.5%, but I fight it)
8. 3:52 (YES!!!) My last .1 mile was at 10.5 mph!

Afterwards a guy walked up to me and asked me if I was on the UW La Crosse track team. I laughed and said I was a 33 year old who loved to run. He said I was his inspiration. That made me happy.

Bone Marrow & The Paleo Diet

There has been some continuing discussion on my previous "achieving orthorexia" post about eating meat in the Paleo/Primal diet vs. going vegetarian or pesco-vegetarian (I adhere to the latter). 

There is certainly evidence that a diet higher in protein and lower in carbohydrates is better for weight loss (multiple studies in JAMA have shown this). And in myself I can see that since probably doubling my protein intake, my body looks more like a real athlete than Homer Simpson (skinny arms, big belly replaced by skinnier waste and more muscular arms). Plus I have more energy. BUT, BUT, BUT. There is no evidence that humans have evolved eating lots of meat. Followers of the paleo diet get over 55% of their daily caloric intake from animal products. This is VERY high, especially if we consider our ancient ancestors, the apes, ate essentially no meat (a cute lizard now and then, maybe) - thanks for the article, Maria!

In all of my reading about the stone age up to the days of modern agriculture, the evidence seems to suggest eating animal meat (other than fish in certain areas of the world) was a rare treat. I recently told two physicians about the Paleo diet (they had not heard of it!) and they were shocked to hear it was high in meat if it was supposed to mimic the Paleolithic era. Certainly when our ancient ancestors (rarely) ate meat they ate EVERTHING that was edible in the aninmal: heart, brain, spinal cord, tongue and bone marrow to name a few. Further evidence, meat did not come along that often. So my feeling on this subject is- if you are going to eat a paleo diet, do it right and do not waste resources. Eat and use the whole dang animal every time. 

We can not afford to cut down more rain forests to raise cattle. Period. If you eat meat, eat everything and buy from a farmer you know and trust. Pay the price that animal is worth and make it a very special treat. If you do all this, I will allow you to follow the (modified) paleo diet :).

Heat vs. Ice

I just read an article in Running Times about why ice can be "harmful" for athletes. Here is all you need to know about ice vs. heat (they make it way too complicated!):

Ice - slows normal biological processes
Heat - hastens normal biological processes

If you get injured, ice it to STOP inflammation. Ankle twisted? Ice right away. Also, ice after very vigorous exercise (for example ultras) because you have injured your muscles and will benefit from stopping the inflammation.
Heat promotes healing, msucle growth and flexibility. Use heat when you are recovering or building muscle, doing yoga or training normally. 

Ice Cream

If I actually did eat ice cream, I would have to go back to taking my acid blocking PPI meds, unfortunately, but a friend of mine suggested we go out for ice cream for Mattias' birthday. Funny thing is, he didn't like the ice cream either. He just wanted to feed it to me. Christian loved it, though.

Happy first birthday, Mattias. Thank you for filling my year with sunshine and sweetness - and for looking like a surfer when you stand and imitating my African clicking noises.


Julie said...

Interval training is something I know I really need to do but I never seem to do it.

I saw your picture in this months Ultrarunner magazine! Pretty cool.

Robyn said...

Sorbet! And coconut milk ice cream! You'll never miss the dairy.

Karen said...

I also saw your photo in Ultrarunner! I just picked up my first copy at a running store in Oregon.

It is awesome that you intimidated that guy enough that he fell off the treadmill. Made me LOL thinking about it.

I feel like for every study that they do that proves something is good, there's one saying things are bad. I just go with what makes me feel good and I ignore studies.

I occasionally eat meat and looooooooooove ice baths if my legs feel like they want one. I also have a hot tub that I use often, it makes me feel stiff if I don't stretch again right after using it though. :)

CP said...

Thank you for saying something about paleo! It's a huge fad here and it drives me insane because it's not even accurate!

sea legs girl said...

Julie & Karen

Thanks for letting me know about the picture! Which race is it from? I'll have to get a copy.

Robyn, funny thing is we actually DID get sorbet, but it's just way too sugary for me.

Agreed, CP. It's a fad, but there is certainly truth in the idea that it is healthy to eat like our ancestors and to eat whole foods. No one is probably arguing against that, though.

Julie said...

The picture is from Mad City and it's a picture of you standing with RD Tim Yanacheck. Nice little article about the race and you of course are mentioned in the article as well since you won. :)

mmmonyka said...

You are responsible for a guy falling off the treadmill. So funny.

Since you are so anal about those intervals (exactly 0.1 walking, 0.27! jog...), do them right! 0,625 mile is not 1k. 0,6215 is 1k. So you are even faster than 3:55:)

maria said...

+1 for coconut milk ice cream - I only eat it about once a year but it's AMAZING

I can't believe you kept sprinting while the guy next to you fell off the treadmill! Well, actually I can believe that YOU would keep running. I would've had to stop for fear of falling over myself.

Here's the link again to the article in case peeps are curious

I would be interested to see what your new(ish) gluten free health diet looks like, maybe you can put a few days or a week's worth of food journal up? Will it be harder to avoid gluten in Denmark? I eat criossants and get really fat in Europe. Guessing you don't have this problem. Good luck with your move.

SteveQ said...

I'm willing to bet the majority of protein in the paleolithic diet came from insects and worms. Why that never seems to get mentioned is beyond me.

Alicia Hudelson said...

I saw your picture in Ultrarunner too but I forgot to bring it (along with all your other magazines!). It looks good though:)

Your intervals are making me excited for a good track workout!

My main problem with the paleo diet people is they seem to assume that this diet must have made our ancestors healthy and well-prepped for good ultrarunning. And maybe it did, but we don't know how healthy those ancestors were (no data on disease rates from that period!), and even if we had some data, our ancestors weren't living long enough for us to know if they would have had, for example, Japanese diet levels of health or American diet levels of health... Also, how many of our ancestors were racing (not walking or jogging) ultras on a regular basis?

Maria, you totally would have kept running! Also, I need to try this coconut milk ice cream, yum.

Okay, sorry, one more thing. I always learned that icing for more than 10 mins was good for tendinitis because the vasodilation increased blood flow to the area and thus increased the rate of healing. Is that not the favored plan anymore?

sea legs girl said...

Alicia- this icing thing for tendonitis has me confused. Cold causes vasoconstriction and not vasodilation. So I am not sure what the thinking is behind this since vasoconstriction generally won't promote healing but perhaps the physiology of tendons are different. Do you have an article on this you could send me?

Alicia Hudelson said...

What I've always learned is that cold initially (for about 10 minutes) causes vasoconstriction, but after that causes vasodilation. Check out the section on cold-water immersion here:

"The initial vasoconstriction
induced by the cold exposure is followed in 5 to 15
minutes by a vasodilation of variable duration and
magnitude (cold-induced vasodilation, CIVD)."

But, one of my climber friends did mention recently that there's been new research on the use of cold water for healing of tendinitis--I don't remember exactly what because he was talking about this while pacing during the later parts of the West Highland Way race:)--so I thought maybe that's what you were getting at.

SteveQ said...

Four years late on this one, but "Middle Distance Runner" by Sea Wolf. Not the right tempo for me, though.

Alicia Hudelson said...

Ahem. It is totally unfair to have a photo from the triathlon up as your new blog photo but not to have a race report!