Friday Finds – 9th October

Friday Finds is a regular feature in which I collate and share interesting articles and posts on running/health/fitness which I’ve read recently. Some might be inspiring, some might be scientific, some might provoke debate. All are things I’ve found in some way thought-provoking.

By now, everyone who entered the London Marathon scrum ballot should know whether they have been accepted pr rejected (it was a rejection for me). With record numbers in the ballot, the odds of getting a place in this way have become much slimmer so there will be a lot of disappointed people out there (and a fair number of relieved ones too!). For those who enjoy digging into statistics, the following piece from the Royal Statistical Society might be of interest:

And while on the subject of statistics and marathons, Outside Online published this piece derived from some data shared by Strava. In it, some statistics from the 2014 autumn marathon majors (Berlin, Chicago and New York) are analysed. The data considers both elite and “average” times as well as taking the course profile and weather conditions into account. For those like me who can’t resist some running/marathon-related data, this makes for an interesting read.

Some further data that requires a bit more digging into concerns the news that those consuming the same calories and doing the same exercise weighed less in the 1980s than now. In fact, the research suggests that those consuming the same number of calories in 2008 were as much as 10% heavier than their 1980s counterparts. Of course, there’s much more to weight than a simple matter of calories in and calories out, other factors such as the source of those calories and lifestyle factors such as stress and sleep patterns also need to be considered. Still, perhaps an indication that the impact of modern life on our health needs to be investigated in more detail with a view to more of us making some changes in order to benefit our health.

Fans of writer Adharanand Finn may enjoy his Guardian column in which he reminisces about how he became a runner. People have varying memories of running at school – some loved it, some hated it. Personally, I wasn’t a P.E. fan and, like many others, discovered running later in life. Finn, on the other hand, had a very positive experience of running at a young age which sparked a lifelong interest in sport.

Moving away from the activity of running and into the realm of sportswear, I was intrigued this week to learn of the rise of “athleisure”. Earlier this year I read that sales of women’s sportswear are on the rise, but now it seems that sportswear is moving outside of the gym and into other areas of our lives, so much so that the omnipresent jeans of the past few decades are under threat. It’s certainly a trend I’ve noticed among many of my pupils who are more likely to be seen in leggings or tracksuit bottoms than jeans these days. I have to say, I do enjoy wearing comfortable clothes and would happily wear running kit all the time if I could get away with it. In fact, I’ll shortly be travelling by coach and plane for my annual school trip to France and plan to wear leggings in order to feel comfortable throughout the journey. Now if I could only get away with running tights in the classroom…!

And on that note, I’ll bid you farewell – I have a suitcase to pack!

Happy reading,
The Running Princess

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