Anthropometric Characteristics of Ultramarathoners
ABSTRACT Little is known about the anthropometric characteristics of ultramarathon runners. The present work reports on the physical characteristics of the 392 (310 males, 82 females) starters and 270 (216 males, 54 females) finishers of the 2007 Western States Endurance Run, one of the largest 161-km trail runs in North America. Among the starters, mean (and 25th to 75th percentiles) body mass index (BMI) values were 23.2 (21.6 - 24.6) and 20.6 (19.4 - 21.9) kg . m (-2) for the men and women, respectively. Men were significantly taller, heavier and had greater BMI's across all age groups compared with the women. Among the top-5 overall finishers, mean BMI values were 23.2 (range 22.4 - 24.7) for the men and 19.8 (range 17.3 - 21.1) for the women. Average running speed and BMI were negatively correlated for both men (r (2) = 0.11, p < 0.0001) and women (r (2) = 0.10, p = 0.02). From this analysis, it is concluded that those participating in ultramarathon runs can vary widely in physical characteristics with BMI values that would classify some individuals as underweight and others as overweight. BMI varied considerably even among the top finishers, but lower BMI values were associated with faster running times.
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ABSTRACT: We sought to determine the degree to which age, sex, calendar year, previous event experience and ambient race day temperature were associated with finishing a 100-mile (161-km) trail running race and with finish time in that race. We computed separate generalized linear mixed-effects regression models for (1) odds of finishing and (2) finish times of finishers. Every starter from 1986 to 2007 was used in computing the models for odds of finishing (8,282 starts by 3,956 individuals) and every finisher in the same period was included in the models for finish time (5,276 finishes). Factors associated with improved odds of finishing included being a first-time starter and advancing calendar year. Factors associated with reduced odds of finishing included advancing age above 38 years and warmer weather. Beyond 38 years of age, women had worse odds of finishing than men. Warmer weather had a similar effect on finish rates for men and women. Finish times were slower with advancing age, slower for women than men, and less affected by warm weather for women than for men. Calendar year was not associated with finish time after adjustment for other variables.Arbeitsphysiologie 01/2011; 111(1):145-53. DOI:10.1007/s00421-010-1633-1 · 2.30 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Recent studies showed in high level runners both an association between selected skin-fold thicknesses at the lower limb and running performance and between thickness of skin-fold and training. We investigated the association of skin-fold thicknesses with total race time in 25 male mountain ultra-marathoners with 44.5 (7.0) years, 73.0 (7.8) kg body mass, 1.78 (0.07) m body height and a BMI of 22.9 (1.8) kg/m2 in a 7-day mountain ultra-marathon over 350 km with 11,000 m of altitude. The relationship of skin-fold thickness and both intensity and volume during training with total race time as the dependent variable was investigated using multiple linear regression analysis. A significant association of the calf skin-fold with total race time was found (r2 = 0.19, p < 0.05). No relationship between skin-fold thickness and both average running speed and volume in training could be demonstrated. We concluded that the calf skin-fold showed a small to moderate association with total race time, however, the thickness of calf skin-fold was not related to training parameters.Journal of Human Sport and Exercise 01/2009; 4. DOI:10.4100/jhse.2009.43.03
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ABSTRACT: Examine changes in demographics of participants and performance trends at the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run (WSER) since its inception in 1974. Name, age, sex, and finish information was obtained on runners in the WSER from 1974 to 2007. Linear regression analyses, ANOVA, and t-tests were used to examine participation and performance trends. The mean age of participants increased (P < 0.001) to around 45 yr, with men being an average of 3 yr older (P < 0.001) than women. The increase in average age of starters was accounted for by the growth in participation among women >or=40 yr and men >or=50 yr, and by the decreasing participation among men <50 yr. Between 1986 and 2007, there was an increasing participation among women to around 20% of all starters. With this came improved (P < 0.01) finish times for the top 5 overall women and the top 5 women in the 30-39 and 40-49 yr age groups, whereas performances among the men did not improve over this time span. Average ages of the top performers increased (P <or= 0.002) since 1990 to the upper 30s for both sexes, but the fastest times among men were comparable across the 30-39 and 40-49 yr age groups. Participation in the WSER has increased among women and older athletes, and the ages of the fastest runners at the WSER have gradually risen to the extent that these runners are older than the ages at which the fastest marathons are run. In contrast to what has been observed for men, finish times have improved for the top women across the last two decades at the WSER.Medicine and science in sports and exercise 11/2009; 41(12):2191-8. DOI:10.1249/MSS.0b013e3181a8d553 · 4.46 Impact Factor