There was an article in the NYT a while ago titled “Will Training in the Heat Improve Your Performance in the Cold?” The answer is yes — for the cyclists who participated in the “not a real-world-type situation” study. So despite the authors’ protests that they don’t have any evidence that heat training (say on a treadmill for hours at a time in a poorly ventilated garage) will benefit runners, I am going to believe it will.
I love finding small studies to pin my hopes on. Even better when they can justify my behavior. I read something years ago about how there’s no evidence stretching prevents injury; I don’t know where I read it, or how many people were involved in the study, or if the researchers had graduated middle school, but I’d site it whenever anyone gave me a hard time about my non-stretching ways. (No comments please about how stretching is actually beneficial. The PF has already brought me to my knees.)
There was a great little study a year or so ago about how beet juice improves endurance. I extolled the virtues of the beet to all my running buddies. Then I tasted unsweetened 100% beet juice. Good grief! It’s both awful and wildly expensive. And it makes vile, shockingly pink smoothies — that stain anything they come in contact with. So, ultimately, I dropped the beet juice study from my repertoire, but I still love a good small study. I’m still hoping for that one that links tortilla chip consumption to improved running speed.
OK, the morning here is devolving into something akin to the Apocalypse (and Asa’s on my lap holding onto my thumbs as I type), so I’ll leave off here.