Running Training


Testing Pep Talk
Testing is always a busy week for me, as not only do I do the testing sessions, I then have to collate and compare all the results and get them back to the runners. But I love it. I am always excited to see the results and compare it to the last testing results. However, it seems to me that many Lazy Runners do not get as excited by their results as I do, so I think I need to give a little pep talk.
I tested 80 runners over the past week...95% of those runners body fat levels are in or below the recommended range for their sex and age. That is amazing considering Aussies are now the fattest nation with 50% of the population overweight. The cardio testing I did, had 80% of my runners in the excellent group for their age and sex, 20% in the superior group, 10% in the good group and none in the poor.

Here is what you should be aiming for:

Body Composition

I do not worry about the kilo score, I'm more interested in the other three components...bodyfat, hydration and muscle mass.
Your body fat should be in the recommended range for your sex and age, and that's where it needs to stay forever and a day, for you to stay healthy. People with high body fat percentages also often suffer from many of the major health issues like high cholesterol, diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity. You do not need to be in the low range for body fat, or the lower end of the scale of the recommended, you just need to be in the recommended range and stay there. If you creep up into the high, it's just a matter of watching what you eat and exercising to try to get back into the recommended range. Sometimes a high body fat is associated with being overweight but often it's more from poor choices in your diet and lack of exercise.
Your hydration should be over 50%, if it's not drink more water
Your muscle mass should always be higher than your body fat. An ideal equation for men is to have double the muscle to body fat, and in women they should aim for a third more muscle mass than body fat. Now that doesn't mean you have to hit the gym and start pumping iron, runners usually build a lean muscle mass and that still counts in the muscle mass percentage.

Cardio Testing

The Beep test is the easiest and cheapest way to test cardio levels in groups of people and is widely used across schools and sporting clubs as a good tool to test cardio fitness. However, it is not perfect. Lazy Runners are distance runners, therefore running and turning every 20metres isn't the usual way for us to run and not natural for us. If you have been training for a half marathon or a marathon you may of noticed your beep test score slip a little, that doesn't mean you have lost fitness. It just means that your endurance running is creating a different type of fitness. You are still building your fitness and cardio, you are still burning calories, it just that the beep test is asking for speed and that is not what your training requires at the moment. Anyone who can run 10km or more has good cardio fitness. If you are in the good or excellent or superior cardio range, then you have great cardio fitness. You are not expected to keep going up and up and up to super dooper, over the top range...just know that you have a very high level of cardio fitness. Once you are in the excellent or superior range all you need to do is to maintain that level.
Most Australians are getting fatter and unfitter every year, people are always telling me how much they used to weigh and how much they weigh now, and they say it has gone up gradually over the past 10 or more years. Lazy Runners just need to stop that climb. Reverse it a little if you are overweight or have high body fat ranges, and then maintain it. The healthiest people are the ones that have maintained a good body composition level and good cardio fitness over years. Your ideal goal for good health to get to a healthy level that suits you and your lifetsyle, where you feel good and look your best...and STAY THERE!




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