With the Olympics in full swing, reports abound (well, I’ve heard one) about the roll of science in elite athletics. From materials research to physiology to psychology, the sciences are producing steady and legal gains on performance. In sports where tenths or hundredths of a second divide the winner from the loser, tiny gains are important.
As I listened to the report, I was wondering how we mortals can freeload some good training advise off of the Gods without paying a red cent. Here is some information — some more, some less useful and some more, some less new news — I gleaned from the story:
- Feeling well prepared for your event improves your performance more than psyching yourself up for it at the last minute.
- Carbon fiber rocks.
- Lactic acid is not the evil it was once thought of.
- Each type of exercise has a lactic acid profile, and scientists can
- You burn more fat from low-intensity activity and more carbohydrates from high-intensity activity.
- Polyurethane swim suits scared the IOC so badly that they were banned from the competition.
- Hydration is vitally important in competition.
- Only a tiny fraction of the population can be an elite athlete.