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Old 11-14-2012, 09:06 PM   #41
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My high school phys ed teachers were very big on cooper and used the 12min run as a test. To pass you had to do 7 laps in 12 min (1.75 miles). If you couldn't do that, there was a make up qualification where you had to run 5k (not sure on this distance, might be closer to 7k) in 40 minutes or so.

The 1.75 mile threshold was actually fairly difficult for high school students. The very best runners could hit 8 laps (2 miles) in the time. Most guys who were active (i.e. on sports teams) could hit 7 with some leeway. However I remember many guys had to do the make up run, even those that were fit (such as on swim team) but not good runners.

I often thought I should go find a track and time myself to see how well I do on the 12 min run now, but I think I'd be embarassed at how slow I've become.
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Old 11-15-2012, 07:45 AM   #42
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I also do not agree that a 12 minute running test is a good measure of cardio fitness. The last time I ran at a fast(for me) pace, it was 7:12 a mile for 5k. I probably cannot do much faster than that for 12 minutes. To me, a better cardio test is hiking uphill, or better yet pushing a loaded wheelbarrow up a hill.
Not sure I get your point. No matter your age that pace would put you somewhere near the top in the fitness chart. Are you saying that you don't consider yourself to be in good cardio fitness shape? I would certainly consider anyone who can run at a 7:12 pace for 5k to be in good cardio shape.
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Old 11-15-2012, 09:30 AM   #43
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Not sure I get your point. No matter your age that pace would put you somewhere near the top in the fitness chart. Are you saying that you don't consider yourself to be in good cardio fitness shape? I would certainly consider anyone who can run at a 7:12 pace for 5k to be in good cardio shape.
The test may be a general indicator of cardio fitness, but not worthy of a chart having 21 fitness levels across 6 age brackets. The test will show if a guy can run for 12 minutes faster than other guys, but does it prove that one is "fitter" than another? No. For instance, I did a sprint triathlon 2 years ago where I ran faster than several guys, but they had faster overall times than I. They swam and biked faster, and IMO have better cardio fitness. So IMO the faster runner is not always more fit than others that get cardio fitness from other forms of exercise.

I no longer run 5k's at the pace I used to. But I maintain cardio through hiking, biking, and yard work to the point that my cardio fitness is probably not much, if any, less than when I was running. Current blood pressure/pulse is lower now than when I ran.
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Old 11-15-2012, 11:27 AM   #44
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They have the average 50-55 year old doing 9:00 min/mile. LOL. Sad truth is there is a huge percentage of the population that couldn't even run for 12 minutes. This is a case of too few data point and extrapolating data beyond it's limits.
Thank you dmpi! I agree.

Every time I jog my 10min mile pace (9:20 if motivated in a 5k fun run twice a year), or bike at my 11mph average pace, I know I have to be above average. I look around at w*rk and get scared sometimes. It is especially concerning to see some of the young people who clearly do nothing but gaming, driving, and then sitting here at w*rk.

I mean, all they have to do is start walking. Run for 12 minutes? I'm not sure some of these folks are capable of walking for 12 minutes.
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Old 11-15-2012, 12:42 PM   #45
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Before we say who is fitter, I might help if we could determine fitter for what? For living a long time? (TBD) For walking long distances carrying heavy loads at the old Roman 20 mpd pace? For covering a lot of ground on relatively little food? Or for doing some contrived task like the running task that is being discussed?

A great deal of research has established pretty well that fitness tends to be task specific. Even bicycling will not transfer very well to running, and swimming even less. Partly because the ankle flexibiity required by fast swimming makes a runner somewhat more prone to ankle injury.

The ancient Greeks devised the Pentathlon as an all around test of fitness, which was in effect fitness for battle in those days. Our modern Olympic Decathlon tried to showcase the same all around fitness.

IMO, most of the common knowledge about what fitness factors make for better health and longevity amounts to guessing, and much of it is heavily oriented toward marketing of equipment, clothing, gym memberships, etc.

An aside- I bet Paula Broadwell will sell a lot of gym memberships. Even Jon Stewart admits that he was mesmerized by her bare arms when he interviewed her.

Ha
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Old 11-16-2012, 12:11 AM   #46
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I am age 47 and in the top 1% on this chart. I run an average of 3 times per week for 20 minutes, just about all out. I think that is a good balance, not too much or too little cardio exercise. I think it has lowered my blood pressure a little, but not much. My resting heart rate is probably around 42 but I rarely check it, just see it on a blood pressure monitor.

I also go to the gym about 3 times per week on the other days for working on the muscles. No cardio there, and my whole workout takes about 40 minutes. I started going to the gym a couple of years ago and this seems to have increased my weight by about 5 pounds, all muscle.

I had read that gym work is more important than cardio as we age because one can lose a lot of muscle mass after age 50. Anyway, I hope that this fitness program has improved my health.

I had heard the problem with many general fitness tests that try to apply to everyone is that many less fit people simply cannot do them and there are also definition problems. For example, pull ups are a good strength/fitness test but a large proportion of the population cannot do even a single pull up. Plus, they are hard to define correctly (did you fully straighten your arms going down at the low point, hands facing forward or backward on the bar, etc). I used pull-ups to help track my muscle fitness, but I know how I do them so easy for me to define for my own comparison.
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Old 11-16-2012, 04:44 AM   #47
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Jim Fixx was a famous example
CBC News In Depth: Exercise and fitness

Quote:
Fixx was an overweight smoker before he took up running. His blood cholesterol levels were elevated. He had also experienced several warning symptoms, which he chose to ignore and had refused the option of undergoing an exercise stress test

As well, Fixx's father had died of a heart attack at the age of 43. Fixx was 52 when he dropped dead of a heart attack while on a seven-kilometre run in July 1984.

An autopsy showed Fixx had severe coronary artery disease. One artery was 95 per cent blocked, a second was 80 per cent blocked and a third was 50 per cent blocked.
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Old 11-16-2012, 05:36 AM   #48
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I've been cycling for years but picked up the running bug a few years ago. I'm not some ultra skinny athlete, I average around 220lbs year round, but ran my first marathon in January of this year.
Started trail running last year and I'm scheduled for my first 50k or 32mile run in 3 weeks!
I like running in the dirt because its a little slower pace and much softer than running on asphalt.
Wish me luck!

I think the key is to come up with a routine that you enjoy and you WANT to do a few times per week...
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Old 11-16-2012, 07:42 AM   #49
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Good luck doxey! Which ultra?
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Old 11-16-2012, 08:24 AM   #50
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I'm running the Tashka 50k around Tuscaloosa, AL in December
and the MS50k around Laurel, MS in March.

Both should be quite a challenge for me. I've done the 25k trail run a couple years in a row, then the Mobile, AL marathon in January. It will be a long day on the trail for me, but it will be AWESOME to call myself and Ultra-Runner!


Any suggestions for the big day...

Tashka 50k Home
Mississippi 50 Trail Run Home
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Old 11-16-2012, 08:26 AM   #51
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I'm running the Tashka 50k around Tuscaloosa, AL in December
and the MS50k around Laurel, MS in March.

Both should be quite a challenge for me. I've done the 25k trail run a couple years in a row, then the Mobile, AL marathon in January. It will be a long day on the trail for me, but it will be AWESOME to call myself and Ultra-Runner!



Home
Mississippi 50 Trail Run
Best of luck!!
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Old 11-16-2012, 09:22 AM   #52
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A great deal of research has established pretty well that fitness tends to be task specific. Even bicycling will not transfer very well to running, and swimming even less. Partly because the ankle flexibiity required by fast swimming makes a runner somewhat more prone to ankle injury.
Would definitely agree with this. I have found that even jogging on a treadmill doesn't transfer well to jogging on pavement. Having done all my cardio for about 2 years straight on a treadmill in a gym, I was able to go for 40 minutes at a 8mph pace. Decided to go out for a run one day around the local track and could barely make it 1 mile at the same pace.
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Old 11-16-2012, 12:04 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by doxeyweb
I've been cycling for years but picked up the running bug a few years ago. I'm not some ultra skinny athlete, I average around 220lbs year round, but ran my first marathon in January of this year.
Started trail running last year and I'm scheduled for my first 50k or 32mile run in 3 weeks!
I like running in the dirt because its a little slower pace and much softer than running on asphalt.
Wish me luck!

I think the key is to come up with a routine that you enjoy and you WANT to do a few times per week...
Good luck! 50k - that's crazy long - you better pack a lunch.
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Old 11-16-2012, 03:44 PM   #54
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I'm running the Tashka 50k around Tuscaloosa, AL in December
and the MS50k around Laurel, MS in March.

Both should be quite a challenge for me. I've done the 25k trail run a couple years in a row, then the Mobile, AL marathon in January. It will be a long day on the trail for me, but it will be AWESOME to call myself and Ultra-Runner!


Any suggestions for the big day...

Tashka 50k Home
Mississippi 50 Trail Run Home
Looks fun! Start slow, and keep up with your fueling, both food and drink. Whatever looks good at an aid station is probably what your body needs, so that's what you eat. The most common causes of a race going bad are poor pacing, electrolyte imbalance and stomach issues. Walk the uphills, especially if you can't see the top. You'll burn a lot of energy trying to run up a hill and won't go much faster than you can with a good power walk. Keep your salts up, either with food or salt capsules or fancier stuff like S-Caps or Endurolytes. Gatorade doesn't have enough sodium by itself. Ginger capsules work well for many to soothe the stomach.

Most of all, enjoy it!
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Old 11-16-2012, 08:43 PM   #55
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Ok, so this morning I went out and ran as far as I could go, as fast as I could go, in 12 minutes. I rated at the bottom end of good, or the top end of fair (depends on your perspective). I am not a runner, and I felt more pain in my legs than in my inability, cardiovasculary (is that a word), to complete the run.

Earlier last month, I completed a 460 mile ride across North Carolina. I averaged 70 miles per day for 7 days, at a 15 mph pace. Three of the days, sans mountains, I averaged 17 mph. I had no problems.

Seems to me, there may need to be a different test for folks that are better suited to other activities than just running.
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Old 11-23-2012, 09:00 AM   #56
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I am age 47 and in the top 1% on this chart. I run an average of 3 times per week for 20 minutes, just about all out.

I also go to the gym about 3 times per week on the other days for working on the muscles.
This routine plus dating 20 year old Ladies !!!

You'll be dead soon.

I guess its my day to pick on and be somewhat jealous of Karmer
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Old 11-23-2012, 10:06 AM   #57
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One data point - since I'm still drilling in the Navy Reserve I get the pleasure of the twice yearly physical fitness test.
10 days ago:
Age 55, 203 lbs
1.5 miles in 11:42 so upper good - but zero fun
I have found that exercise is a lot tougher over the last two years.
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Old 11-23-2012, 10:22 AM   #58
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This routine plus dating 20 year old Ladies !!!

You'll be dead soon.

I guess its my day to pick on and be somewhat jealous of Kramer
Thanks, Steve

It does keep me pretty busy

Mom still wants to visit even though she has seen the pictures.

For the most part, the other expats here don't exercise and think I am crazy.
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Old 11-23-2012, 10:30 AM   #59
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am thinking "average" at my age = dead
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Old 11-23-2012, 11:23 AM   #60
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am thinking "average" at my age = dead
So you're above ground average!
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