Nutrition

Erick Johnson is an endurance athlete who trains for the 3,000 metre race.  His training schedule involves steady pace runs, anaerobic threshold training, cruise intervals, pace surge training and repetition training.  Interval training and speed endurance also form part of his weekly workouts (Rogers, 2000).  The steady pace runs are aimed at increasing running efficiency, developing the cardiovascular system and improving the process of capillarization.

For him to be able to tolerate and buffer the rise in lactic acid during running, Erick performs anaerobic threshold training.  Repetition training aims at  developing the pace consciousness of the athlete while pace-surging training involves alternating steady-pace runs with surges r bursts off speed running.  This helps him to be able to adjust to the shifts in the pace during a competition. All these components of his training are also aimed at increasing his endurance by lowering the rate at which lactate acid builds up and enhancing oxygen transportation. The exercises have the effect of increasing his metabolism to higher levels than that of the average human being.

A weekly work out for Erick would be as follows, on a Monday he performs 20 minutes of aerobic threshold training run, followed by build ups and a period of cool-down.  On Tuesday he does an easy run of the 3000 metre race.  On Wednesday he does negative split runs four times, after which he does build-ups.  When doing the negative split run, he starts with five minutes warm up that involves walking briskly and jogging lightly.

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His training schedule sometimes changes by the week especially if a competition is close but with basically the same activities though at different frequencies and intervals.

Daily Diet

Breakfast

2 slices whole wheat toast

Grape fruit

1 poached egg

1 tsp butter or vegetable margarine or honey

Lunch

1 cup clear vegetable soup sprinkled with fresh herbs

Brown rice

1 cup beans

Green salad in season

Dinner

2 slices meat steaks with vegetable

Crisp bread

25g cottage cheese with fresh herbs

75g fresh fruit salad

Snacks

1 cup apple juice, canned

½ cup raw black berries

1 piece fruit cake

3 fig bar cookies

Crackles regular wheat                                               (USDA, 2005)

The B complex vitamins are important for an endurance athlete especially because they have increased needs for vitamins due to the higher metabolism rates that are above the normal population.  The B complex vitamins are also involved in formation of red blood cells.  If deficient, red blood cells formation is compromised leading to fewer or poorly formed red blood cells resulting in decreased capacity for oxygen transportation which would compromise the endurance of the athlete (Moore, 2004)

Deficiencies of the B complex vitamin may result in decreased capacity for endurance.  Vitamin B6 takes part in different processes of metabolism involving proteins and glycogen.  A high protein diet will thus result in increased need for vitamin B6.  Vitamin B12 is necessary for the formation of red blood cells and is also important to ensure their normal functioning.  Folic acid is also a requirement for red blood cell formation and metabolism of amino acids (Moore, 2004).

References

Rogers J, 2000 USA Track and Field Coaching Manual, Human Kinetics, ISBN 0880116048

Moore J, 2004 Vitamins, USMS retrieved from http://www.usms.org/articles/articledispaly.php?a=77

USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 20

 

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