News

  • My Dog Saved Me from an Assault

    Shelby loved to sit in my office chair.  I was running with my first dog, Shelby, on a local running path. We left the car in the lot of a nice complex that has ball fields and all the gorgeous park amenities and ran west. When we were heading back towards the parking lot, I noticed two men sitting in lawn chairs beneath a big cottonwood tree. What made the situation seem unusual to me is the tree was located next to the running path in gravel and weeds. About 100 yards away is a grassy green park with several...

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  • How does Garmin calculate percent grade?

    On a recent mountain bike ride, a couple of us with Garmin devices began to wonder how percent grade is determined by the device. Through a local contact, I was able to go directly to the design source, Jared Bancroft, PhD – Sensors & Algorithms Team Leader. Here is what Jared told me: Grade is responsive to the slope of the trail or road.  It relies on the distance as determined from GPS and the barometric altimeter sensor.  Basically, it’s a ratio of the change in altitude over distance traveled. The longer the distance, the more averaged the grade is. ...

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  • Do you want to get faster?

    Do you want to be a faster triathlete, cyclist, swimmer, mountain biker or runner – or get faster or more competitive at any sport? If your answer is “yes,” let’s take a look at what it takes to compete vs complete. Can I be a competitive athlete? What defines a "competitive athlete?" For the purpose of this column, a "competitive athlete" is defined as someone looking to improve his or her performance to a new level. Examples include stepping up the speed, stepping up to a new distance and aiming for more than event completion. There is nothing wrong with...

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  • The cholesterol and calorie hypothesis are both dead – it is time to focus on the real culprit: insulin resistance

    My interest was piqued when I read the title of the column, The cholesterol and calorie hypothesis are both dead – it is time to focus on the real culprit: insulin resistance, published by a pharmaceutical journal. I thought, “Great, more advice to pop pills and ignore lifestyle changes.” I was wrong. The column is an opinion-insight piece. There are a few key points from the column that are worth summarizing here: We often assume all obese people have, or will have, diabetes and that all diabetics are obese. Obesity and diabetes often correlate, but they are not always present...

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  • What is crash training? How can you use it to your advantage?

    (Click on image to enlarge.)  Crash training is a term that I believe has cycling roots, though I can’t trace the origin. I prefer the phrase “big-block training,” but crash training is more common. Traditionally, a big-block training week is one that is high volume, relative to the athlete’s current training schedule. Training is some 50- to 100-percent above the athlete’s normal weekly volume. Often, cycling teams will have a spring training camp to focus on riding, team building exercises (formal and informal), distribute new kits and begin to plan strategy for the season. Cycling teams intend for this big-volume...

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  • Research on the best time of day to workout and get the most bang for my buck

      Q:  Hey Gale – Do you know of much research out there regarding exercise and "time of day".... for instance: like is a 6-mile, 1-hour run at *5am* the equivalent benefit to the same run done at *5pm* -  assuming all other variables are the same?  Just wondering if you had any insight on the topic. With limited time in my day I'm always curious about what can give me the best 'bang for my buck'! – TM A:  Hey TM,  I am not aware of any studies that say one time of day is "best" for fitness gains. For many, morning is good because after work it is often hot...

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  • In order to safely (and legally) pass a cyclist, a Ford F150 truck MUST cross the centerline

    Over the past week, several of us cycled some of the best spots in Colorado. For the most part, motorists were generous, passing us with well over 3-feet of clearance. It wasn’t until the last day, about 2 miles east of Georgetown, that a Ford F150 black pick-up truck passed us too close. I’m pretty sure the person intentionally buzzed us while we rode along the frontage road. This particular road has a limited shoulder, probably around 12 inches. Ron Kennedy happened to be running video of the incident and the fisheye lens on his camera seemed to make it...

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  • Don’t Get Fooled Again #6 – Whole wheat bread is healthier than white bread

    This is our sixth installment in the Don’t Get Fooled Again series. Today, it’s bread.  Here is the statement: Whole wheat bread is healthier than white bread. (True or False?) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ If you are like me, my knee-jerk answer would be “True!” After all, that’s what we’ve been told. The foundation of “healthier” was that whole wheat bread contains more fiber and has a lower glycemic index (doesn’t raise insulin as much or as fast) than white bread. In fact, white bread is one of the baseline foods to measure how much any particular food raises insulin. But…not so fast…...

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  • Don’t Get Fooled Again #5 – Athletes on a high-carb diet don’t produce ketones.

    This is our fifth installment in the Don’t Get Fooled Again series. Thanks so much for the participation and discussion! I’ve had several messages letting me know the series has been fun/good. For today, it’s ketones. One of the benefits of a low-carb, high-fat diet is the production of ketones. The body can use ketones as a supply of energy, rather than relying on using so much glucose. Here is the statement: Endurance athletes following a high-carb, low-fat diet do not produce ketones. (True or False?) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Alan Schenkel nailed this one in the Facebook group discussion. False. Ketones are...

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  • Don’t Get Fooled Again – Vegetables are not carbohydrates.

    The fourth installment in the Don’t Get Fooled Again series is a two-part statement. So you need a true or false about each statement: Vegetables are not carbohydrates. (True or False?) Bread is a carbohydrate. (True or False?)       ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Vegetables are not carbohydrates. (True) Bread is a carbohydrate. (False) A vegetable is a plant or some part of a plant. Bread is a processed product made from grains and other ingredients. That process can be done at home or by a big manufacturer. All vegetables contain carbohydrates (carbs), because carbs are produced during the photosynthesis, or the...

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