• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Running a marathon - the best way to get fit?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Running a marathon - the best way to get fit? What can exercise do for me? Exercise does more then reduce weight, it can improve both our health and fitness, and should involve using as much of the body as possible. Exercise has two main benefits: * Short term these are the effects that happen during the activity itself and also contribute to the long term benefits e.g. the heart rate will increase, which will increase the flow and pressure of the blood. * Long term these are the lasting effects which occur and include the following: o Heart becomes bigger, stronger and capable of pumping more blood. o Lungs get more oxygen to the muscles. o Blood volume increases, therefore more oxygen can be carried. o Muscles increase in size and strength, this is called muscle hypertrophy. The muscle energy stores are also improved. This allows the muscle to work harder and longer. ...read more.

Middle

Most people will tend to have a balance of about 50% of these two types of fibres in their muscle. Experiments have shown that long distance runners tend to have a higher percentage of slow twitch fibres (74%) in their calf muscles. One of the main limiting factors to how fast you can run is the amount of oxygen you can get to your muscles. Oxygen is needed for your muscle cells to release energy. The maximum amount of oxygen you can take in and process is known as your VO2 max. The VO2 max of marathoners is 45% higher than an untrained person. But this advantage is largely genetic and research has shown that training only increases VO2 max by 10-20%. What makes so many Kalenjin runners win marathons? As the Kalenjin runners live 7000ft above see level, their genes have adapted for them to be able to live at high altitude, as oxygen levels in the atmosphere begin to fall. ...read more.

Conclusion

With no glycogen left in their muscles, they have to get the energy to continue running from their body fat. But converting fat into energy is much less efficient than converting glycogen to energy - it requires more oxygen and takes twice as long, slowing a marathoner down to walking pace or even stopping them completely. To overcome this problem you need to put your body into a similar situation a few times before the race, i.e. do a couple of 20 mile runs. Endurance training leads to changes in your body's metabolism so that you become more efficient at using stored energy as well as encouraging your muscles to store more glycogen. Before running a race it is always best to seek medical advice and professional help when it comes to training as this will help to minimise any problems which may occur. Marathons are a great way of raising money for charities, making new friend and training towards a healthier life style. Word count 1025 ?? ?? ?? ?? Ynez Symonds ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Anatomy & Physiology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Anatomy & Physiology essays

  1. Skeletal and muscular systems

    Therefore people with more fast-twitch muscle fibres will tend to be better at sports such as sprinting. But people with more slow-twitch muscle fibres will be more talented at sports such as long distance running. Your body contains around 650 muscles in your body and make up roughly half of your body weight.

  2. Physiology Within Sport

    untrained individual their intercostal muscles have not been used to the required contraction rate therefore they contract as normal just at a quicker rate, this then has the affect of tiring out the individual much quicker. Another long-term adaptation of a trained athlete is their quicker diffusion rate of oxygen,

  1. A level Project, Personal Exercise Program on Netball.

    The coaching available has enabled her to develop her own understanding of the game and the game in a competition manner through the use of tactics and passing formations. My performer's strengths lie in her shoulder passes. These passes can be directed to the chosen player with great use of

  2. Movement within the Body and the Cardiovascular System

    The nerve impulse is then carried to the bottom of the heart where the purkinje fibres (smaller bundles of specialised fibres). The purkinje fibres are upwards and across the ventricles, causing the ventricles to push blood up and out the heart via contraction.

  1. Exercise health and lifestyle

    Unbalanced diet Weight increase Eating to much carbohydrates can be bad for us as it makes us put on weight, it makes us put on weight because it adds more calories to our diet resulting in a positive energy balance meaning we aren't burning as much calories as we are eating.

  2. A.S Personal exercise program for netball

    Coordination Harmonious functioning of muscles or groups of muscles in the execution of movements. Coordination is needed so that passes are most effective. If coordination is poor, the passes wouldn't reach the desired target. Speed The ability to put the body in motion quickly.

  1. Skeletal Systems

    Even though it is classified as a long bone, the clavicle has no medullary (bone marrow) cavity like other long bones. It is made up of spongy (cancellous) bone with a shell of compact bone. The clavicle bone is the only bone that does not have marrow.

  2. The body's response to exercise- Regular aerobic activity results in a type of cardiac ...

    Cardiac output Each litre of blood carries about 200ml of oxygen. The oxygen carrying capacity of blood normally varies only a bit because haemoglobin content varies little regardless of the exercise intensity. Approximately 5 litres of blood are circulated around the body each minute at rest for trained or untrained

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work