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Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

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Old 09-15-2006, 05:16 PM   #1
Mike ODonnell
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I've heard before that there are supposedly studies and stats that there is a high rate of cancer amoung marathon runners and long distance bikers. Anyone ever come across something similar? I would love the study numbers to show to people. Personally I am the "runner",...as in run real fast for short period of time....don't jog. I do not see the rationalle behind jogging 2-3 hours on a steady basis...as I believe that the damage that it does to the body (oxidative, stress on joints) is far more than any benefits. Plus there are way too many people who are in the "fat jogger" rut.

Anyone have any research numbers on this? I can't find any.
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Old 09-15-2006, 05:48 PM   #2
Charlie Jackson
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Running marathons doesn't increase cancer. De Vany was confused because cancer markers S100B and TNFa appear in marathon runners. It was nothing more than a simple matter of confusing association with causation. The markers appear because marathon runners break down tissue.

So far as "what is the point of running a marathon", some people like to test themselves. Not everyone is playing it safe and worried about everything.
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Old 09-16-2006, 07:55 AM   #3
Greg Battaglia
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I don't think anyone knows for 100% sure yet, but I can tell you with certainty that I've never in my life met a single marathoner/triathlete/etc that was muscular and sturdy. They all had flat muscles, poor posture, poor bodycomp., and many of them had a persistent drained look. Not to mention that they had absolutely no power, strength, or speed wahtsoever. The human body is not designed for continuous long slow endurance activity, therefore I wouldn't be a bit surpised if LSD training dramtically increased cancer risk. Charlie, whether it's markers or not we can see that there is a trend with endurance athletes. They have a suspiciously high incidence of cancer, among other diseases, and this is a cause for alarm. Their high refined carbohydrate diets also likely contribute to their poor health.

(Message edited by greg_battaglia on September 16, 2006)
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Old 09-16-2006, 10:51 AM   #4
Mike ODonnell
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Charlie,

I don't condone doing something for testing themselves...I think we all need that. For example I play competitve ice hockey, do advernture races that last anywhere from 3-12hours, but my everyday training never lasts longer than 45-60min. By using the higher intensity training I have been able to keep muscle mass, lose body fat and still excel in longer duration events. However if I try to run for 3 hours...my knees are shot....I feel terrible and usually need days to recover.

I am just concerned about the growing trend of marathons and people that train for hours a day, 5x a week...like greg said I never have met a truely fit long distance runner that solely did long distance training. I just think it's too much stress on the body and people need to train smarter...not longer.

If there was really a study on cancer rates...it might help people open their eyes to the dangers of excessive training...otherwise Reedbok and Nike will keep encouraging people to run 15 miles a day...Health should not be defined by the person with the biggest marketing budget.
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Old 09-18-2006, 08:16 AM   #5
Bob Long
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Hey I'm a fat jogger. I always like to read the criticisms of marathoners by those who have never run a marathon. I don't do martial arts or gymnastics. Guess that qualifies me to write criticisms.
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Old 09-18-2006, 08:47 AM   #6
John Seaburg
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There isn't much doubt in my mind running marathons is a serious health risk but I could say the same thing about super competitive Olympic lifting, power lifting, even Crossfit. If performance is the most important thing, health will take a backseat. As for cancer risk, I have heard of, but not seen any studies, too much biking can lead to testicular cancer.
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Old 09-18-2006, 09:41 AM   #7
Andrew Nashel
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Bob, I think it's quite clear that many long, slow distance runners don't have most of the fitness attributes that Crossfitters desire.

I would also wager that a lot of the people here criticising LSD training have indeed done a fair amount of long distance running. It's a pretty common hobby in general, and it seems quite common as a background for many crossfitters.
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Old 09-18-2006, 10:12 AM   #8
Mike ODonnell
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Bob, if you want to burn fat quicker..it's the higher interval stuff that works wonders...excessive long distance running (1-2hrs) only elevates more cortisol, creates excessive oxidative stress and is just desctructive on your joints and muscle. I just don't like seeing people believing that better health comes from the consistent long distance running vs throwing in HIT, crossfit, weight training, etc. People have to understand that diet and shorter more intense workouts will make them into a fat burning machine all day long! (vs jogging which is only burning calories during the run and then the metabolism pretty much goes back to normal right after)

I never train excessive distance (over 1 hour)....yet I place in 8-12hr adventure races (seeing how a marathon is only 4 hours) or so I must be getting endurance performance from the shorter more intense stuff....plus I am 10% BF while holding muscle at 190...where the average jogger I have ever met is about 20-25+% BF, very little muscle mass and has health conditions. (not to mention bad knees)

All in moderation...train smarter...not longer.
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Old 09-18-2006, 10:29 AM   #9
Stephen Clayman
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I'm a crossfitter and I ran my first marathon last year. You should try to run one before you start knockin' it.

Steve-O
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Old 09-18-2006, 10:37 AM   #10
Bob Long
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Sorry guys, I'm just grumpy today. I just find it amusing when the WOD posts a 5 or 10 k run and all the oh-so-tough crossfitters start the search for alternatives "Oh, I'll row how about that? No wait, I'll do tabata something OK? Or can I just lift more? I'll do anything, just don't make me run." Hey, if you don't want to run don't run. I don't like pullups (being 230 lb) but I at least try when the WOD posts them. I do agree that running alone is not the full prescription for fitness. And I've changed my views on that issue in the past year based on crossfit training, and using Ross Enamait's books. And yes I still run marathons, and yes I do Sprint 8 intervals, and Tabata sprints, and it has allowed me to run marathons on 1/3 of the suggested mileage the running-alone people say. My running friends look at me weird tho when every ten minutes during an hour long run I drop for pushups. I especially like the recent posts regarding the enduranance benefits of sprint training and the lack of a distinction between anaerobic and aerobic training.
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