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Running can be good, but not too much
Old 02-03-2015, 08:29 AM   #1
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Running can be good, but not too much

A controversial topic on this forum and elsewhere, but seems like there is increasing evidence to not over do jogging/running as a means to stay in shape

BBC News - Too much jogging 'as bad as no exercise at all'
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Old 02-03-2015, 08:50 AM   #2
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I agree with the article. I used to run, but I took it too far. I ran several marathons during the 80's, slowed down a little, and started running again a few years ago. 4 miles at 8 min/mile, 5-6 days a week. Got into great cardio shape, but developed knee, hip, and back problems. For me, a long term 20+ mile per week running regimen was not sustainable. So I started hiking. And I haven't had any nagging injuries since. I weigh 5-10 lbs more, and I may not be in the cardio shape I used to be, but my joints feel better.


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Old 02-03-2015, 08:59 AM   #3
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Wait a minute -- are they actually trying to claim that moderation is a good thing? Who knew?

Seriously, the recommended routine is not much different from mine. 2-3 times a week at an easy jog (a little better than 5 mph but not much), but I also like to do one long run (at an even slower pace) each week.

YMMV, so to speak.
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Old 02-03-2015, 09:02 AM   #4
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Good...now I don't feel so lazy.

I've switched up my exercise routine lately. Instead of doing low impact aerobics five days a week, I now do two. The other three days I jog three miles in 40 minutes. When I'm really feeling energetic, I lift light weights as well.

When/if I develop knee issues, I'll scale back on the walking/jogging.
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Old 02-03-2015, 09:19 AM   #5
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How old were the runners they studied? The study only lasted 12 years. Not enough for younger runners to become older people who tend to be the ones who die of heart attacks.

Very few young people die from any cause, couch potatoes don't usually die until they're a bit older, and strenuous exercise can uncover heart issues that would otherwise go undiagnosed, and that's why we hear the occasional story of an athlete dying from heart failure. So I can believe that over a 12-year period it was a wash.

But if they followed these people into old age, I bet it would paint a much different picture. And one must also consider the mental benefits of pushing oneself to ones limits.
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Old 02-03-2015, 09:21 AM   #6
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Seems like a sensible article as it confirms my habits.

Have run for several decades. In my 60's now and probably am at the upper limit of what the article recommends. Current workout is 5 to 6 miles of hilly trail running every other day at a pace of maybe 9 min/mi.

If something hurts I stop the exercise or scale it back.

I do some hikes in between run days.
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Old 02-03-2015, 09:57 AM   #7
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According to the article, I am just right in my jogging schedule. I find 2-2.25 miles 3x/week is a good amount for health, but not so much it creates knee and joint problems. I also do a decent amount of walking in general. Guess I should just keep up my current levels. Walking does naturally increase when the weather gets nicer.
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Old 02-03-2015, 10:20 AM   #8
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This sounds like move more and exercise less.
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Old 02-03-2015, 10:34 AM   #9
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I really don't like running, although I'm religious about doing other aerobic exercises almost daily. I had a crazy boss who ran a 50-mile race a couple of years ago. Yeah, 50-mile. It started at 6 PM because the 100-mile race (!) started at 6 AM. He ran through the night, got lost in the fog and finished but ended up running a few miles extra because he had to backtrack. We really worried about him. He's in his 40s now; it will be interesting to see if he has issues later.


I've listened to discussions among marathoners. They include hints on not losing toenails (friction of toes against shoes), bleeding from the nipples, (friction of shirt against chest) and dealing with Calls of Nature en route. I'll take my bicycle any day, thanks!
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Old 02-03-2015, 11:05 AM   #10
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I'd like to run because it is a very efficient workout, but I never could, due to a minor disability.

I grew to dislike one runner intensely after having to share a small office with him. He thought being a Runner made him incredibly special. Because I had muscular legs and appeared fit, he assumed I, too, was a runner, and made a number of remarks indicative of how superior the two of us were to people who didn't run. I didn't disabuse him...I just silently despised him, especially when he would haul out a giant bag of potato chips, dump a half-pound of them onto a spread napkin, and monotonously crunch, crunch, crunch his way through them for 45 minutes. Every single day, he would remark that the reason he could eat all those potato chips was because he Ran. I kept hoping one of them would choke him. If that happened, I planned not to offer him any water.

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Old 02-03-2015, 11:07 AM   #11
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I've run for decades but never more the 10 miles and mostly under 6 miles per run.
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Old 02-03-2015, 11:11 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amethyst View Post
...he would haul out a giant bag of potato chips, dump a half-pound of them onto a spread napkin, and monotonously crunch, crunch, crunch his way through them for 45 minutes. Every single day, he would remark that the reason he could eat all those potato chips was because he Ran.
...
I suspect that arteries can still clog up with bad eating habits even if one does a lot of aerobic exercise. Probably somewhat a matter of genetic traits too.

DW has recently added fitness type dancing to her walking exercises. She uses DVD's like the Jane Fonda workout ones and says it has really helped her stay fit.
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Old 02-03-2015, 11:41 AM   #13
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Amethyst you seem like such a sweet person that I have to assume he must have done more than boast of his superb fitness to piss you off so much to wish for his demise. I think we can agree that runners are indeed fit and usually don't have to worry too much about what they eat.


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Old 02-03-2015, 11:51 AM   #14
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On "chronic cardio"...

Search Results | Mark's Daily Apple
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Old 02-03-2015, 12:05 PM   #15
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I'm still competing, so I'm still running a lot at pretty high intensity. When I'm done competing, I'll shift to walks/hikes, occasional high-intensity cardio (sprints or sports) and then doing whatever I want (paddleboarding?) and lifting. Much less intense or high-impact cardio. Running a lot is not a good long-term fitness solution, IMO, and I say that as a 20-year runner and 12-year triathlete.

The link to Mark's Daily Apple is a good one. I think he's whacked on some of his stuff, but his take on fitness for longevity and quality of life is a good one:

- Move (Walk/hike/ride...) at very low intensity for hours a day (kind of the 10,000 steps mantra)
- Sprint occasionally
- Play
- Lift heavy things a couple times a week
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Old 02-03-2015, 12:26 PM   #16
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Although I am slow, I'm an avid runner. I used to do marathons and half-marathons, but cut back only because of ongoing back problems. This article didn't provide much detail. I recall seeing reports of other studies that mentioned no increased health benefit from running those longer distances, but I don't think there was a mention of harm to one's longevity.
And, I also recall seeing several reports that say it is a myth that running harms the joints. Granted, if one already has problems then running can no doubt exacerbate them, but apparently running does not create such problems.
And, for me anyway (and I'm sure other runners here) running also gives me a great emotional lift virtually every time I'm out there.
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Old 02-03-2015, 02:47 PM   #17
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I do not buy the article and reading it you see several hedges backing away from the main thrust of the headline.


Having said that, I'm not putting down light jogging or any exercise for that matter. I think it's great to do anything over nothing. But I'm not convinced there is a magic barrier when crossed throws you into hurting your overall fitness.


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Old 02-03-2015, 03:42 PM   #18
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Here is a link to an article I printed out a few years back along similar lines:
Endurance Sports: Studies on Older Endurance Athletes Suggest the Fittest Reap Few Health Benefits - WSJ

Quote:
What the new research suggests is that the benefits of running may come to a hard stop later in life. In a study involving 52,600 people followed for three decades, the runners in the group had a 19% lower death rate than nonrunners, according to the Heart editorial. But among the running cohort, those who ran a lot—more than 20 to 25 miles a week—lost that mortality advantage.

Meanwhile, according to the Heart editorial, another large study found no mortality benefit for those who ran faster than 8 miles per hour, while those who ran slower reaped significant mortality benefits.

Those two studies—presented at recent medical conferences—follow the publication in recent months and years of several other articles finding cardiac abnormalities in extreme athletes, including coronary artery calcification of a degree typically found in the utterly sedentary.
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Old 02-03-2015, 03:51 PM   #19
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http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/0...r-bodies/?_r=1 offers a somewhat different view.

I used to be a 2-5 mile runner 3-4 times a week. I was in pretty good shape. Since 2001 I have run 39 marathons or ultra marathons. I've put together a spreadsheet of all my numbers from Dr visits and blood work and virtually every number has remained stable or improved, especially some very important ones like weight, BP, and good cholesterol. Significant improvements in some of them. And I feel a LOT better.

It's not for everyone, but my doctor agrees it works for me. I've run those crazy 50 milers, and in 8 weeks, at age 53, I will run 100 miles. My doctor would rather I not do it, but he understands why I want to do it and OK'd it, and just reminds me that the goal is to continue running as long as I can, and not to burn out trying to run too much now. I have no knee problems (other than a self-inflicted ski injury), my back is better as I keep weight off and do core exercises such as planks, and my hips are stronger with other targeted exercises.

As far as eating anything I want, maybe some people who run this much can, but I eat and drink in moderation. Otherwise my weight goes up when I am between races and running less, and doesn't come off as much when I am running more.

Right now I'm running slower and longer, but I felt like I was in even better shape when I was working on lowering my marathon time by including 1 or 2 speed workouts a week.

Those of you keeping to the recommendations in the OPs article--good for you! It may be the healthiest way, and at the very least adding more probably would get you diminishing returns. I think that any exercise or physical activity you enjoy and maintain is good, and running is too high impact for some. But don't worry about me running 50-60+ miles a week. I'm a whole lot healthier than a couch potato. At 58 my dad's heart needed to be restarted 5 times after a major heart attack and he was mostly inactive. Maybe I'm wrong and will keel over sometime in the next 10 years, but I'll take my chances on my lifestyle over what his was.

I think people can manipulate a running study to make it say about anything they want, and the media is happy to twist the study to make it worse. Time Magazine a few years ago had a cover story that said (something like) "Why Running Won't Make You Lose Weight". Turns out it was a bunch of anecdotal evidence like people who run often treat themselves to eating junk food and don't lose wait. If they had said "Why Running Might Not Help You Lose Weight" it would've been very accurate, but that doesn't sound nearly as appealing to their couch potato audience, does it?

:rant off
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Old 02-03-2015, 04:07 PM   #20
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Quote:
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I think people can manipulate a running study to make it say about anything they want, and the media is happy to twist the study to make it worse.
It's true that this study (and most others) have lots of caveats built in to ensure the need for further research, so I don't pay a lot of attention to them either. As for doing it when you're older, I agree with you, and my doc thinks I'm nuts.

I was a casual runner (just 4-5 runs a week (a few miles each) and nothing but the very occasional 10K) until I suddenly got a wild hair and decided to try my first marathon at the age of 58. After a couple more of them, I dropped back to just a few half-marathons a year.

Since we all get a little forgetful as we age, I seem to have forgotten the discomfort and signed up for another full marathon this Spring at 69 years old. I'll never learn.
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