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Pseudonym

Endurance sports and bodybuilding

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I spent a couple of days over Easter with a few people who turned out to be endurance event competitors - you know, the types of people who do an Ironman, just casually.

 

They were all talking about the events they'd done, and perhaps it was the alcohol talking, but I found their enthusiasm contagious. I actually felt a faint desire to do one of these events myself. Just so that I could say I had.

 

It was definitely the alcohol talking. Fortunately I'd come to my senses the next morning, and the urge had vanished.

 

Still, it got me wondering... For someone who never runs (I get shin splints looking at a treadmill), and whose main focus is bodybuilding, how hard would it be? I'm far from massive by bodybuilding standards, but I'm at least 20kg heavier than these guys. That's a lot to carry around a course.

 

Are there any bodybuilders who also do endurance events? Would I lose all my gains? If I didn't lose my gains, would my extra size make things extra hard?

 

It was also interesting talking to them about their diets. Two of them had recently gone low carb, high fat (their idea of low carb is <100g carbs), and were absolutely loving it. Noticeable improvements in performance, apparently. They were almost evangelical about it, and apparently more and more athletes are following this trend. Previously they'd chow down on bananas throughout the event - one banana every 20 minutes, they said! But then another guy said he just powered through without refeeding at all. :-o

 

I guess the high fat makes sense for endurance events, as it's a slower releasing energy source than carbs? Or so I confidently said. Does that sound right?

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I'm not sure of any bodybuilders that do both, but Alex Viada is a strong powerlifter (squats and pulls in the 700lbs range, so over 320kg odd) and is also an ultra marathon runner. I actually think he did something like a Squat PB and a marathon PB in the same week lol. And he's also in pretty good shape physique wise too if you look him up.

He's all about multi sport athletes and more importantly sports that most people don't think go together lol.

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Oh and also he's not a small dude, he would have 30kg odd on you Pseudo so if you do things right I think it's entirely possible to be good at both.

You just really have to be on top of everything, programming, recovery, diet, workload, outside stressors etc etc

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Yeah you could do it, be competitive probably not. I agree with you all the people are really good people, most of them are quite well off (not saying you have to be well off to be a good person) as it's an expensive sport with almost all events needing travel and accomodation, the gear you need costs a fair bit $3000 for a semi decent bike isn't uncommon upwards of $6000 for a really good one. Entry fees are high, I think the Taupo ironman is around $800. My step father has done about 12 ironmans and every year as a kid I remember going to the st heliers domain to the finish line back when it was in Auckland. Since moving down to the mount I have met a lot if people involved it the tri stuff, lots of events down here they have the Tauranga half ironman and many shorter course events, a few train at my gym and they are contagious people. Very enthusiastic about what they do. It's good to see.

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Yeah, I never imagined I'd be remotely competitive. Hell, I'm not competitive in anything now! :-p

 

The thought of outlaying that kind of cash on what would only ever be my number three sport was definitely quite a disincentive. That, and the time required for training. The problem with endurance stuff is that the longer the event, the longer your training sessions need to be.

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each of the events in iron man alone are fairly significant... and you add them together to be performed consecutively on one day its fkin mental. for anyone unware its like 4k swim, 180k bike, 40k run. even just finishing it within the timelimit of 17 hrs is an epic achievement, anyone who does it is not only physically fit but mentally strong.

 

you need upfront investment in a good tri bike .. and also probably a training bike /trainer wheels for riding locally because tri bike not the most comfortable position to be sitting in for regular training buildup. minimum $5k (2nd hand, with ok wheels), plus add in cost of maintenance (cranks, chains, tyres, servicing) its definatley one of the more expensive hobbies. runners will tell you that youre also gonna need to set aside some cash for a few sneakers over the course of your training build up too.

 

food - need to cram a crap load of this in, training for ironman will have you cycling atleast 250k a week , running and swimming im not sure about but im sure that will also require tonne of food! doubt any bodybuilder will be able to keep up their physique (especially size/conditioning) with this level of training.. not to mention how you can do it wihout the gym performance suffering.

 

time - most likely work either part time or not at all.

 

nothing stopping anyone from trying to do it all, ther are plenty people in ironman with awesome physiques (also think ive seen a couple good examples of ultra marathon runners with good physique) but they are rare exceptions.

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lol nah, i know 100% i dont have mental strength to follow through with iron man lol, you gotta be quite gusty to get through. done some training with a mate who was wanting to seriously get in to it last year, at one point was doing 400km worth of cycling per week along with some running only occasionally for me, and i didn't do  any swimming. PL performance was extremely poor by now. lost a crap load of weight, my mate who was quite muscular to start with got pretty wiry by the end of it too despite his ridiculous eating capacity. we were just two normal guys training hard based on online programs. if you had a proper coach and monitored diet quite strictly maybe results be different, but i still think it's just too hard for the average full time worker to try for an endurance sport + bodybuilding (or powerlifting) at any level higher than extreme novice.

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For you personally Pseudo you would lose a hell of a lot of muscle if you took up endurance training.  Ironically you are probably better suited to being an endurance athlete than being a bodybuilder (on a physiological level anyway).

But yes as you figured you would struggle at your current size,  cardiovascular efficiency drops by about a third for most athletes  over 90kg as opposed to when the same athlete weighs 70kg. The only way you could follow both disciplines would be via some form of periodization  where you devoted maybe half the year on endurance training and losing weight, and the other half to regaining your lost muscle mass, which would mean of course that you would  never become particularly good at either.

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3 hours ago, Pseudonym said:

Haha! I just need to find the bodybuilding class that will let me compete in a tracksuit. :-D

 

Find it? You created it :) it's the Internet class. Where we get to judge everyone and talk shit without ever having to achieve any standard ourselves. We're all winners on the net :)

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