Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Run, Lift, Tired

Yesterday, when I ran home from work, it was raw outside. The temperature was 25F, which isn't that cold, but there was a stiff wind out of the north. My run took me south to start and I could feel the wind pushing me. I knew that when I turned to the north that things would get tough. But, overall I felt pretty good on the run and ran the long route home (9.1 miles, 780 feet of climbing) about 3.5 minutes faster than I ran it last Thursday.

This morning, when I got up to lift, my legs felt a bit sore and tired. I'm not sure if it was because of yesterday's run, Friday's run, this weekend's skiing, or all of them, but I felt tired. Nonetheless, I got through my lifting just fine. In my current lifting cycle, I alternate between two workouts and one of them is clearly more difficult than the other. Today was the more difficult workout, which is actually more fun than the easier workout.

I'll see how my legs feel later today, but I might go out for a short, fast run this evening if I feel OK. Or, I might rest.

There's a somewhat interesting debate going on right now on a listserv for ultrarunners. The subject line of the thread is "Fat Melting Secrets". I don't think there are any secrets, or at least no one on the list has given us any yet. It's the usual battle between the "calories-in-calories-out" crowd and the anti-sugar, lower-carb, pro-Paleo, be careful of insulin crowd. On the exercise side, it's the pro-Maffetone types (lots of very long slow miles) vs. the "metabolic disruption" types - weightlifting, intervals, etc.

It seems to me that it's always the skinniest people who make the calories-in-calories-out argument, assuming that everyone who is overweight is simply mentally weak and undisciplined. I think that one thing the discussion has pointed out is that being an ultrarunner is no guarantee that someone will be lean. Clearly there are enough runners on the list who aren't as lean as they'd like to be, or the conversation would have died a while ago.

If any of my 2 or 3 readers knows the "secret", please pass it on.


Harriet said...

I can say that when I've finished 100 milers, I haven't seen any fat finishers. I can also say that the "walk 100 miles in 24 hours" club consists, to the best of my knowledge, of slender people (me being the big exception; bad pun, I know :-) )

But yeah, it is "calories in, calories out" and the "calories out" goes down as we age. Sorry.

Oh yes, the point of ultra locomotion is to cover miles as EFFICIENTLY AS POSSIBLE. That means, "few calories per mile". ;-)

Tania said...

Here is my theory. Calories in, calories out is probably correct. The trick is calculating how many calories you are really burning. There are some real skinny people that do nothing and eat like crazy, clearly their metabolism is very high. I also think that your body adjusts to stress and so I burn fewer calories running than a new runner would. Just my theory, but it seems that my body has really "adjusted' to running stress. BUT, if I mix it up then things change. Metabolims I think is key and how to effectively change that?? Let me know.....