Motivation and injury, in competition fueling strategies

This article was originally posted by Ryan at the original Blogs.

I’m feeling a little under the weather and low on energy this week so, instead of a regular weekly post, I’m going back into my archives to find some research that I never got to post in a monthly recap post. There are some good ones out there, here are a couple that jumped out at me.

Motivation and injury

You’re heading into a race. You have a goal that you set for yourself and you’re highly motivated to get that goal. Does this make you more or less likely to get injured on race day? Before reading this study, I could have guessed you might be more susceptible. If you’re motivated to get your goal, you might push through some things you wouldn’t with less motivation.

Well, it turns out I would have been wrong. Self motivated runners appear to be less likely to get injured.

In competition fueling strategies

There are so many options for in competition fueling these days. It used to be sports drinks and that was it. Now, you can get gels, energy bars, and other forms. What’s the best way to get your fuel?

This study tried to look at some options, including sports drinks, gels, bars, and a mix.

The result? Bars seemed to be the least effective in terms of performance and also seemed to be the most likely to cause gut discomfort. Other fueling options showed slight differences but not enough to be certain one was better than the other.

As usual, though, we’re all individuals. My suggestion: try your options in training and figure out what works for you individually. Personally, I prefer to try what the goal race will be offering as you then don’t have to carry things with you and it’s one more logistical issue on race day you can let someone else take care of.

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