I recently listened to a podcast interview with Tim Noakes, the famous author, runner, doctor and scientist. I think the podcast is well worth a listen, and I agree with a lot, but not all of Dr. Noakes’ comments. Here’s some thoughts:
- Paleo diet. I don’t know enough about the Paleo diet to comment, but I’m reading a lot about ketogenic diets at the moment. I suspect that Dr. Noakes’ experience with diet are going to get a lot more attention in the future, and there is a lot of validity to his ideas. However, I also suspect that like many areas of exercise and nutrition, there will prove to be a lot more complexity than is apparent.
- Waterlogged. I agree completely with Dr. Noakes that the main cause of ‘water intoxication’ (Exercise Associated Hyponatremia or EAH) is over hydration. This is actually #1 on my list of Top 10 Marathon Racing Mistakes. However, I disagree with his evaluation of the science of hydration and sodium losses at high sweat rates, and believe it is possible to get EAH without over hydration with prolonged exercise at maximum sweat rates. I also believe that it is possible to become sodium deficient in hot conditions.
- Central Governor Theory. I believe Dr. Noakes is right about the Central Governor Theory, and I’ve found some research indicating that exercise in mild heat is not perceived as being too hot, but being fatigued. This is why marathon runners underestimate the impact of heat on marathonperformance.
- Is running bad for you? I enjoyed Dr. Noakes’ perspective on this controversial subject. His interpretation of the limited science seems well balanced and reasonable to me.