Monthly Archives: December 2008

Challenges for Aging Runners

More older Americans are exercising regularly than ever. Officials with Running USA say seniors represent the fastest-growing segment of the sport’s participants.

The 42K marathon is hard enough for the energetic young people and for the older runners, they face bigger obstacles. Dr. Alexis Chiang Colvin, a sports-medicine expert at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, says aging affects every system the body uses in long-distance running.

An elderly heart doesn’t pump as fast or as hard, so oxygen — the body’s gasoline — doesn’t circulate as efficiently. An average 60-year-old pumps 20% less oxygenated blood than a 20-year-old, Dr. Colvin says. Like all human tissue, the lungs become stiffer and less expansive. Muscles atrophy(reduction) at an increasing rate and ligaments and tendons grow brittle making injuries far more likely. Muscle strength generally peaks at 30. After 70, it declines 30% per decade.

But I believe seniors who desire to continue running should not be discouraged by this obstacles. There  are a good number of inspiring runners at prime age who finish marathons with impressive times.

Why Elite Female runners are running faster in their thirties

Marathon record holder for runners over 90 yrs.

57 year old runner who still runs Sub three hours marathon.

The secret to running at old age is to remember this Russian quote, “May your dream be equal to your ability” if you must run push your body to it’s ability but not beyond it.

As Price of Crude falls, Bahrain Fails to Pay Imported Kenyan Athletes

Kenyan runners who have migrated to Bahrain are disparately seeking to return to Kenya.

The headline story today in Kenya  newspapers is the plight of Gregory Konchellah who has fallen on hard times as the Gulf State fails to pay his salaries. The man is now holed up in Ethiopia while negotiating to get back his Kenyan Citizenship.

It is estimated that over 40 athletes from Kenya have changed nationality and now run  for Bahrain. Bahrain government has used its petro dollars to lure Kenyan athletes to run for Bahrain.

I suspect the reason why the Bahrain government is now refusing to pay the athletes has something to do with the price of oil.  When a barrel of oil was selling at above 100 dollars this guys had plenty of cash and they bought running talent from Kenya, the price of oil has fallen and now money is tight.

Nike : Super Thin: Zoom Victory Track Spike

In Times magazine 50 best inventions of 2008, at number 43 they have Nike shoe, Zoom Victory track spike.

The shoe/spike has paper thin sole that feels like you are running barefoot. The spike  weighs in at under 100 grams, which makes it one of the lightest performance shoes on record.

Lighter shoes may cause injury.

Last year I read an article in world Soccer magazine (January 2007 issue) that focused on the rising injuries suffered by soccer players in Spanish soccer league.

There were many theories on why this injuries were happening. Sports medicine expert Ignacio Romo blamed modern boots. “These days boot manufacturers worry about only one thing – making the boot light,” he said. “But in doing so they forget some of the vital qualities needed when it comes to protecting the foot: firmness, support and stability”

Can the Nike Zoom boost performance?

The only way we can know whether this shoe makes a difference in performance is if an average sprinter breaks a world record while wearing Nike  Zoom Victory spike.

Jogger Attacked By Elephant Awarded A Million Bucks

The local dailies here in Kenya have an interesting story,

“A British woman has been awarded a near US $ 1 million by a Kenyan court in compensation following an attack by an elephant. Mrs Wendy Martin, 48, was attacked eight years ago while jogging with friends at Ngwesi Group Ranch, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy”

Lewa Wildlife Conservancy are the organizers of the World famous Lewa Marathon. A marathon held in a game park. I remember the start of the 2008 edition had to be delayed because a lion had strayed onto the route. Since the marathon begun no one has been injured during the marathon.

Eight years ago Mrs. Wendy was a guest at the lodge when she, her friends and a guide went for a morning run. The run turned tragic when an angry elephant confronted them, in the ensuing confusion the group scattered but Wendy was the unlucky one as she was cornered and pinned to the ground by the elephant. She was badly injured but survived for her day in court!!

In awarding the million bucks the High Court judge ruled “The plaintiff was a visitor at the lodge and was owed duty of care once inside the lodge. The defendants are liable, which liability is held 100%” The defendant intends to appeal the decision.