March 15, 2012 cburnham

Good Reads for the End of the Week

Cold Water Baths Reduce Muscle Soreness but Evidence Lacking On Safety

I have seen positive benefits from ice baths in myself and in an athletes for quite a while but there haven’t been too many studies done on this recovery method (eliminating the placebo effect is extremely hard, if not impossible). This is a good example where athletes and coaches find that a specific methodology works, even if science isn’t exactly sure why it works. Even the US Olympic Training Centers have been employing this method in their recovery centers for quite a while, and you can often see Pro athletes using this soon after races. I will definitely report back when more information comes out on the safety of the practice.

Stress Tested

While ice baths definitely help with recovery, it may be good to not over use this practice too much. New evidence has shown that constantly using ancillary recovery techniques may impair the adaptation the body makes from training, limiting performance gains. My advice would be to only use ancillary recovery methods (beyond hydration and re-fueling) at times before competition, but not during heavier periods of training.

Sleep or Die

OK, nobody has died from lack of sleep but this infographic does a good job of explaining the risks of lack of sleep. If you want to perform at your athletic best you better be getting at 7 hours a night!

Chamois Creme Potential Reason for Elevated Estrogen in Cyclists + Triathletes Have 2x More Testosterone Than Average Men and 71% More Than Active Individuals

This is a pretty interesting study done on the effects of parabens in cycling chamois creme and the potential hormonal distracting effect in men. At this point I don’t think it is conclusive but it is something I will definitely be watching for information on.