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Old 03-31-2009, 07:38 PM   #1
Chris Salvato
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Default Another case for HIIT

I am currently reading "Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers" by the noted stress psychologist Dr. Robert Sapolsky, Ph. D. I came across this quote that seems to be just another good case for HIIT vs. long distance running...maybe I am taking it a bit out of context but I feel it still applies:

Quote:
"This brings up a broader issue important to our era of lookin' good. Obviously, if you don't exercise at all, it is not good for you. Exercise improves your health. And a lot of exercise improves your health a lot. But that doesn't mean that insanely large amounts of exercise are insanely good for your body. At some point, too much begins to damage various physiological systems. Everything in physiology follows the rules that too much can be as bad as too little. There are optimal points of allostatic balance. For example, while a moderate amount of exercise generally increases bone mass, thirty-year-old athletes who run 40 to 50 miles per week can wind up with decalcified bones, decreased bone mass, increased risk of stress fractures and scoliosis (sideways curvature of the spine) -- their skeletons look like those of seventy-year-olds."
Its something I never really thought of before -- but the increased stress of 40-50 mile runs is downright degrading to the body. It does have proven effects especially in older populations.

If the goal is not to be elite, just to be fit, I think this is another good argument for HIIT vs. ET. HIIT can give you many of the benefits of long distance endurance training (plus some other good benefits) without the negative effects. This means one can run 12-20 MPW at most and not have to worry about the problems associated with severely long run times and thousands of impacts onto the joints from each stride.

Thoughts?
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Old 03-31-2009, 11:50 PM   #2
Timothy Holmes
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Default

Agreed. I realise you are pitting HII specifically against high volume endurance, but someone here said something like the least amount of work that gets you the most benefit is the way to go as far as longevity goes. Gant's hybrid and 6 round Tabata sessions come to mind.
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Old 04-01-2009, 04:05 PM   #3
Mike Prevost
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Salvato View Post
I am currently reading "Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers" by the noted stress psychologist Dr. Robert Sapolsky, Ph. D. I came across this quote that seems to be just another good case for HIIT vs. long distance running...maybe I am taking it a bit out of context but I feel it still applies:



Its something I never really thought of before -- but the increased stress of 40-50 mile runs is downright degrading to the body. It does have proven effects especially in older populations.

If the goal is not to be elite, just to be fit, I think this is another good argument for HIIT vs. ET. HIIT can give you many of the benefits of long distance endurance training (plus some other good benefits) without the negative effects. This means one can run 12-20 MPW at most and not have to worry about the problems associated with severely long run times and thousands of impacts onto the joints from each stride.

Thoughts?
I have done the 40 mile per week run thing (I was also biking 200 and swiming a few miles) and I can achieve the same high end fitness (speed over 1.5 miles) with only 3 miles of running per week. It does not take much volume to maintain VO2 max if you keep the intensity high. I did not feel healthy doing all of that mileage. I feel much better with a more balanced fitness program.

12-20 miles per week is PLENTY of mileage for most applications. I would probably recommend more than my 3 miles per week for someone looking to shed some weight but for pure high end fitness, just a handful of miles will do it if you keep the intensity high.

Mike
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Old 04-02-2009, 10:18 AM   #4
michael blevins
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This is also where I think you need to decide on whether or not it is a sport specific applicication. I think we can all agree that kind of endurance training is only good for..well endurance. HIIT and GPP are great ways to stay in shape but running 3 miles a week is not going to win you any 50k's or ultra marathons. I honestly hate running but try to get in 10 miles a week to prep fro triathlons. And I mostly work on the bike(this early in the season and Im only hitting about 150miles a week). Where I start to get worn down is if I load too much strength training with this high capacity I still lift WAY more than the average triathlete but keep it down the closer I get to the season.
That was kind of a basic blurb about over training, although exersize is a complementary stress it can become a very harmful one if over done or not recovered from properly. Almost more important than workload, recovery and nutrition should be watched just as closely.
just my $0.02
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Old 04-02-2009, 11:06 AM   #5
Chris Salvato
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michael blevins View Post
This is also where I think you need to decide on whether or not it is a sport specific applicication. I think we can all agree that kind of endurance training is only good for..well endurance. HIIT and GPP are great ways to stay in shape but running 3 miles a week is not going to win you any 50k's or ultra marathons. I honestly hate running but try to get in 10 miles a week to prep fro triathlons. And I mostly work on the bike(this early in the season and Im only hitting about 150miles a week). Where I start to get worn down is if I load too much strength training with this high capacity I still lift WAY more than the average triathlete but keep it down the closer I get to the season.
That was kind of a basic blurb about over training, although exersize is a complementary stress it can become a very harmful one if over done or not recovered from properly. Almost more important than workload, recovery and nutrition should be watched just as closely.
just my $0.02
Most people I have dealt with don't have a goal of winning an ultramarathon though -- their goal, if it is endurance based like that, is to just COMPLETE an ultramarathon. Even for just completing an ultra marathon I would think that 6 of the 12 months leading up to the event could be mostly HIIT as opposed to long term endurance.

Maybe those last 6 months they can ramp up to the super-long-distance just as an act of pain tolerance but with very HIIT and a moderate pace during the event I think that completion of a super-long-run would be easy given enough mental conditioning with low volume for most of the time.

Agree/disagree?
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Old 04-03-2009, 12:39 AM   #6
michael blevins
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I think a year ago I would have agreed, and six months might be enough to finish, and it is true that most people dont compete at an elite level...in which case hybrid or CF would be great , again I see it as just GPP. But since I started endurance efforts over the last year Ive learned the hard way, you need to put in the miles to be able to place as a top finisher. I believe what you are talking about they refer to as "short lunch" and its been dissproven over and over, but only with elite athletes. There just doesnt seem to be a replacment for slow twitch long efforts besides actually doing them. I am an easy target for over training, and I have to be very careful about my mixture of high intensity with long pulls. when Im not focusing on races I can put down some mean HIIT work a few times a day which definatley built a good base for suffering in th long run. But everybody has their own theory and way and the only thing we can do is research and test ourselves.
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