We all know the facts: running is great cardiovascular exercise. It also boosts one's energy and improves the mood. In the U.S alone, more than 64 million people went jogging in 2016 and over 17 million participated in a race and reached the finish line. There are numerous running books, blogs, podcasts, and apps; we have easy access to all the guidance, gadgets, gear and gurus we need in order to get started. But it doesn't mean it's easy. While runners can tell you it's worth the effort, if you haven't yet experienced the high of running, the thought of putting on your running shoes instead of spending a few more minutes in bed may seem daunting. So how do you cross that first barrier - the fear of running, the feeling that it is beyond the last thing you want to do?
Following the death of a pedestrian in the UK this year, the debate as to whether cyclists should be required to pass some sort of proficiency test has intensified. While there seems to be a consensus around the advantages of cycling training, the area of testing is quite divisive. Proponents believe that testing would make cyclists more seriously invested in safety, but opponents fear the test would drastically decrease the number of cyclists.
2:00:25, So Close and Yet So Far
Eliud Kipchoge ran the Nike Breaking2 Marathon in two hours and 25 seconds. He made record time but failed to reach Nike’s ambitious goal - breaking the two-hour marathon mark. Kipchoge clocked 59:55 at the midpoint of the marathon and held a great pace for much of the distance, only falling slightly off pace towards the end, from the 38km mark. His time is not officially recognized by the IAAF due to the controlled conditions and the use of alternating pace runners.
It’s an exciting time of year to be a sailing fan. The 35th America’s Cup starts on June 17th, and even before that we have the Louis Vuitton Cup, which is shaping up as an equally enthralling contest for a place in the America's Cup this year. The Vuitton Cup begins May 26th, and by June 12th we should know which team will advance to the America's Cup and challenge the US Oracle's. Naturally, perennial front-runners and two-time winners Team New Zealand are among the top teams to watch, but this year they have several serious competitors to consider, which makes the whole regatta extremely exciting.
The athletics world has been stunned by the record-setting success of a 12-year-old Jamaican sprinter that has swept all before her in a recent national athletic meet in the nation's 2017 Boys and Girls Championship. Early comparisons are naturally being made with Usain Bolt, and some commentators are calling her the heir to his sprinting throne. Brianna Lyston won the 100m and 200m double, and is the first girl in her competitive age group to break the 24-second barrier at the championships.
This was not her first time breaking the record. In the semi-final, she made 23.46 seconds, but her time was deemed illegal due to the wind-assistance. The finals gave her the opportunity to prove her true abilities once more, and she didn't fail to do so. She backed up her semi-final's score with a legal 23.72 time in the final.
To the uninitiated, a cycling road race is a large cluster of indiscernible riders clattering along city and country roads towards a finish line. For cycling enthusiasts, it's a tactical game of chess coupled with team strategy and (most of the time) etiquette.
The Basics of Road Racing
Learn to ride in a pack. Before getting into road racing it’s important to become used to drafting, maneuvering in a pack and dealing with the close proximity of other riders. Forget about strategy if you’re in your first road race, just try to reach the finish line while staying attached to the peloton without getting 'dropped'. If you're wondering, the Peloton is the main group or pack of riders.
Be Predictable. Do your best not to change speed suddenly or move erratically. Try to ride foreseeable lines, especially if you’re new. Being responsible for your front wheel is a rule in cycling, much like not crashing into the person in front of you when driving a car. Erring on the side of caution and predicting what the rider in front will do can help cyclists avoid collision, instead of reacting rashly and causing a crash.
During the beginning of the 20th Century, and in fact dating back much further, experts believed that we were physically incapable of running a mile in less than four minutes. It was considered beyond the realm of what is humanly possible.
In 1861 a time just under 04:30 minutes was clocked by an Irish runner named Heaviside. 60 years later the famed Finnish runner Paavo Nurmi ran 04:10.6 before New Zealand’s Lovelock took it down to 04:07.6 in 1933. Slowly but surely, subsequent athletes lowered the mark until Sweden's Gunder Haegg set a 04:01.3 record. And then, in 1954 what no one believed to be possible happened. The dramatic moment took place on the Oxford, England running track. Roger Bannister broke the four minute barrier with a staggering time of 03:59.4.
Remarkable achievements of this sort often have an almost magical effect on fellow athletes. They seem to open their minds to new possibilities and remove the invisible barriers that had held them back in the past. Bannister's record is one of the most renowned feats in the history of running, he was even knighted in later life. Ironically, it took less than a month to break. His time was bettered three weeks later by an Australian runner, and after him breaking the four minute mile became routine.
Roughly 30% of runners experience injuries due to wrong technique. Barefoot running advocates encourage them to take of their shoes in order to improve their style and protect their body from further damage. Barefoot running, or as it is alternately called, natural running, is a relatively new trend among modern athletes and recreation runners. However, there are many doubters and skeptics that dismiss the practice as unnecessary and even more harmful than beneficial.
Team New Zealand Is Shifting from Grinding to Peddling – Is This a Wingsail Revolution?
Team New Zealand has shocked the sailing community through the introduction of pedal-powered designs to replace classic arm powered grinding. Grinders traditionally power the hydraulic systems that drive the wingsail and foils on the power-hungry 50-foot catamarans. The new theory is that as so much power is needed, pedaling could be more effective and deliver more output than using one’s arms. It seems logical; however, it is still in the testing phase and has only been tried out on the water in Auckland.
US politics is not something that we cover in this blog, but when Richard Branson and former US President Barack Obama got together for a spot of kitesurfing shortly after Obama finished his second term in office, it was something to behold.
Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group, business magnate and billionaire is equally famous for his adventurous spirit and sporting endeavors outside of the business boardroom. When he’s not holidaying on his own private island, he enjoys sailing and all forms of water sports. Barack Obama was also a keen water sports man before he became President. As Branson tells it, one of the first things Obama told him when arriving at the luxurious island was the story of his last surf, which apparently took place in Hawaii not long before he became president.