Physiology and Sport – Pet Peeves!!!

Posted: November 2, 2010 in Physical Fitness
Tags: , , , ,


Training Bible Coaching – Coach Jim Vance – has something important to say HERE


After you’ve read Jim’s excellent article, as an introduction to this post, I’ll be posting a few comments of my own below. I agree whole heartedly with what Jim says, and am glad that a prominent coach is making those statements. Jim is a helpful coach – I’ve attended many a seminar, clinic, and even his track and swim workouts and I thoroughly dig him!

Please Note – the statements that follow below are not from Jim Vance nor do they necessarily reflect his opinions.


There are several things (that IRK me!!) that people keep forgetting – mainly because their brains are already swimming with garbage information (usually fed to them by the media)

1. Stretching is necessary if you are going to use your body – you can’t expect your muscles to endure the lengthening and shortening that you put them through if they are not limber and pliable. The same thing is important for your joints. Joints are what allow the range of movement. If they are not being nourished, (which is done by the stretching – allowing synovial fluid to correctly and completely surround the joint cavity and bone,) they will not allow your continued use of the muscles in an efficient and progressive way.

Many running coaches disagree with me, and advise their athletes that stretching is not important.   I totally disagree and the results of not stretching are evident in the amount of people getting para-medical treatments.  Stretching before, but mainly AFTER exercise is helpful and will minimize your visits to the physio, the chiro, the ART therapist, and the massage specialists. Those practitioners are simply doing YOUR WORK for you…you should be doing it FOR YOURSELF!

2. Chewing real food is necessary because saliva produces enzymes, causing an enzyme reaction that helps with digestion. Salt tablets, Gu’s, gels, liquid drinks, and other slimy stuff does not cause one’s chewing to engage to the extent it should, in order to produce necessary enzymes in the body for digestion. Additionally, the amount of chemicals and sugar you are pouring into your body will have some eventual consequences in the long run, such as diabetes, liver disease, and possibly cancer.

3. Over-intake of food and water is a problem – you are much more capable than you think – with LESS. For example, two water bottles when doing a sprint triathlon? Unless it’s 90 degrees in the desert dry heat, leave them at home. In addition to that, our bodies were constructed with the necessary ingredients and protective materials required for recovery from activity.  If we did not recover from activity, we would all be in wheelchairs or worse. Compression materials on the market do not have ‘good science’ behind them to back their usefulness – only “studies” that the product companies commissioned. Sure it might feel nice, but it does not prevent our bodies from performing what they were built to do: displace lactic acid, rebuild muscle fiber, etc…

Anyway, the floor is all yours. I’m welcoming and posting all comments and eager to learn!!
Thanks for reading!


  1. Doron says:

    In this world, we are, unfortunately, inundated with everything from the next best gizmo to the last greatest gadget. We listen in rapture as we hear soothing synonyms illustrate every important accessory that we need, only to be us… In this complicated conundrum of choices, pitfalls, and tricky advantages to fooling the demons that whisper in our ears, we often forget that we are made of more than water, bone, and muscle. We often forget that when we were born, there was one part of us that was as fresh then as it is now and will be, as we close our eyes for the last time. Our soul is our spirit and is the engine that drives our bodies. We call it physiology to be PC, but what if we could harness that inner beast? What if we could use that strength and endurance to excel beyond our physical limitations? That is how the greats do it. That is how we can master who we are! We are designed to take charge and build ourselves… one step at a time.

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