Friday Finds – 21st December

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.

Happy Christmas! It’s the last Friday before the big Ho Ho Ho and a time of year when interesting articles can be a bit thin on the ground. But never fear, I do have some things for you to read this week, perhaps as your festive break begins…

A few weeks ago I shared an excerpt from the book The Happy Runner by David & Megan Roche, so I was interested to see this article in Outside distilling some of the key takeaways from the book. Looking at this, the book kind of appeals to me as these are a ideas I feel strongly about in my own running. One to add to my list!

Also in Outside, the latest column from Alex Hutchinson. This week the topic under consideration is Eliud Kipchoge’s marathon world record. Ever since Kipchoge was part of the Breaking2 project, there has been much debate surrounding the Nike shoes he wore and Hutchinson examines some of the data around best times to try and determine the role played by the shoes. An interesting one for the data geeks.

Speaking of Kipchoge, his achievements is 2018 have earned him a spot on ESPN’s list of the most dominant athletes this year. By taking second place Kipchoge certainly left some big sporting names in his wake, with only US gymnast Simone Biles scoring higher. It’s great to see a runner in this list as many of the others are from team sport backgrounds or sports which tend to have a bit more coverage. There’s a link to the full list in this article:

Another study being reported this week looks at the impact of various types of exercise on our cell biology. Evidence suggests that different activities have a different effect at a microscopic level, thus we may be influenced to make different decisions about how we move our bodies. Of course any kind of exercise has to be good for us, but I’m always curious about HOW different activities will affect me and what I might gain from them, so will be interested to see how this research progresses.

And finally, as the season of indulgence gets into full swing, you have perhaps seen some of the many images and articles making proclamations about how to burn off the calories from various festive treats. Yes, there is an issue around health and obesity, but personally I can’t stand these articles. The notion that a treat needs to be “offset” with something leads to the perception that exercise is some kind of punishment to be endured rather than something fun to experience. So with that in mind, I love this piece written by parkrun’s Global Head of Comms as it sets out exactly the issue I have. Well worth a read.

Happy reading,
The Running Princess

4 thoughts on “Friday Finds – 21st December

  1. That last article is brilliant and totally how I feel- exercise isn’t about burning off food and I really hate all those articles about how many miles to run for a mince pie/ chocolate and so on. Love it!
    Happy Christmas 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really heartily agree with the last link. It is SO important that people don’t see exercise as a punishment and develop negative connotations to it. It’s why I love parkrun so much – it’s never just about the run. There’s so much more to it which makes it so wonderful/

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes! It makes me so upset when people see exercise as a punishment. These are usually the same people who wave me off on a holiday with instructions not to run too much. They just don’t get that NOT running would be a punishment for me!


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