Beer and Running – in my dreams

This from – ooh I want to believe it

If you’ve ever been to a marathon, you know there’s usually a big celebration afterwards, rife with beer and other spirits. This isn’t surprising—it’s not unusual to find runners who are also avid beer drinkers, and it turns out, all their beer drinkingmay just help their athletic performance.

According to a study by researchers at the Technische Universitaet Muenchen at Klinikum rechts der Isar, the compounds found in non-alcoholic beer—alcoholic beer—play a part in recovery and illness prevention in athletes.

The Research and Results

The study titled “Be-MaGIC” (Beer, Marathons, Genetics, Inflammation and the Cardiovascular system) was led by Dr. Johannes Scherr and followed 277 participants three weeks before and two weeks after the 2009 Munich Marathon. The study was focused on the effects of the rich and varied polyphenols found in wheat beer—a type of beer popular with marathoners and tri-athletes.

The participants were separated into two groups, the beer drinkers and the abstainers. The beer drinkers drank up to 1.5 liters of the non-alcoholic wheat beer each day, while the abstainers drank an identical amount of a placebo drink. The placebo drink looked, smelled and tasted like the wheat beer, but it lacked the polyphenols found in the true non-alcoholic beverage.

Researchers found that marathon runners experience an inflammatory response after running a marathon. This is due to the increased stress placed on the body when competing in such a strenuous event.

The inflammatory response causes the immune system to be suppressed temporarily, leading to an “open window” for cold viruses and other illnesses to get through. Researchers found that the beer drinking participants experienced a less pronounced immune response, and as a result, experienced fewer illnesses and infections than the abstainers.

Overall, findings showed that:

  • Beer drinkers experienced a greater support for the immune system.
  • Beer drinkers experienced fewer colds.
  • Beer drinkers who experienced colds had shorter, more mild infections than the abstainers.


The Takeaway

If you’re training for an intense event or you regularly put your body through the courses during strenuous workouts, don’t stress about throwing back a few beers. Just keep your consumption moderate and look at your beer drinking as a training tool. If you don’t like beer, consider trying wine or grape juice instead. These drinks are also known for their healthy polyphenols.

Cycling Awareness Video – a classic of all time

Someone once criticised the video saying ‘The dancing bear experiment is clever, indeed, in showing how people can be misled, but is itself misleading. The dancing bear is slipped as an unexpected element into the midst of an orderly and societally understood pattern, the passing of the soccer ball among several players. The experiment cleverly misleads the viewer, concealing the bear, but is also misleading on another level, in suggesting that such concealment is the norm. It is also misleading in that both the viewer and the dancing bear are passive. There is no actual interaction possible between them, as, after all, the experiment is canned.’
Riding a bicycle on the road (or trail, since this is an MTB forum) according to the orderly and societally understood rules of the road is like passing the soccer ball. Riding as a ‘road sneak” is like being the dancing bear.

So, don’t be the bear. Follow the rules of the road, and ride to be visible. Test that other road users have seen you, using assertive/defensive road positioning and continued forward movement that requires a reaction from the other road users, up to the point where you would have to yield if they don’t.

Be visible. Position yourself where other road users are expecting to see traffic, and make yourself stand out from the background and other visual noise on the roadway. Be predictable… signal and communicate with other road users so that they’ll have an idea of what you’re fixing to do.

A bicyclist who violates the rules of the road and operates passively, will get into “dancing bear” situations much, much more frequently than one who obeys the rules of the road, rides to be seen and interacts with other road users to test their reactions.

The good lesson of the dancing bear experiment is that it is possible for road users to become distracted, even from things which are in their plain sight. The bad lesson, as this experiment is commonly being used in connection with traffic operation, is that it finishes with an essentially fatalistic message, “think of yourself as a victim.” It has nothing at all to say about how to avoid being one.’

I think they miss the point – the video is about being distracted and focussed on something – say for instance texting in a car and forgetting about driving or opening a door when parking without checking mirrors …Incorrect.

From the motorist’s perspective the bicycle will always be a dancing bear, an element that does not belong, and thus not something they are used to looking for and processing on the roadway. The video is not about addressing proper cycling safety and riding, but to address the actual problem, motorists’ lack of awareness to all road users. They are not trained to look for the bear.

The new video from TFL is nowhere near as good ….