HIPS DON’T LIE
Think you’re suffering from runner’s knee? The real issue likely lies in your hips. After reviewing dozens of studies on running injuries, Australian researchers concluded that runners with lower leg injuries have weaker hip flexors than other runners. Their suggestion? Strengthen the hips—with exercises like lateral squats, glute bridges or band walks—and the legs will follow!
Working out with a partner is a good motivator — but only if she says the right things. A study in the “Journal of Medical Internet Research” showed that when a gym buddy instructs you to “feel the burn,” “go faster,” or “work harder,” the chatter is often perceived as patronizing rather than inspiring. Researchers suggest keeping comments positive. “Good job!”
At the 2013 Northeastern Evolutionary Psychology Society meeting, a researcher presented a real-life tortoise-and-hare story: He had found men are three times more likely than women to bolt out of the gates at a marathon, then slow dramatically in the second half. Women, on the other hand, take a more balanced, consistent approach to competition. Slow and steady wins the race, ladies!
RISE AND SHINE
September is National Better Breakfast Month. According to the Yale Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity, 63 percent of cereals advertised to adults have a sugar content higher than 20 percent! Build a more nutritious breakfast by choosing minimally processed grains, like oatmeal, and protein-rich companions. (We love Greek yogurt, walnuts and flaxseeds.) The combination will give you plenty of energy while keeping 10 a.m. cookie cravings at bay.
If you’re in pain during your next race, keep in mind that pill-popping may do more harm than good. German researchers found that runners who used pain medication, such as ibuprofen or aspirin, during a race were four times more likely to experience cramps, bleeding in the intestines and stomach, and cardiovascular issues. Yikes! Needless to say, it’s best to skip the pre-run pills if possible.