During summer holidays, I attended endurance athletics in Hileman Road, Atlanta. This event involved different forms of sporting competitions such as athletics, swimming, weight lifting, and cycling. I went to the ten-kilometer athletics arena, which involved male athletes from different regions competing for the Hileman Sports Award. This endurance event posed stress and challenge to athletes as evidenced by my observation and their response on being interviewed.
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During the event, there were visual differences in athletes who won the race and those who lost. The athlete who came first was sweating, looked confident, and showed power and ease in the race. While taking salt pills, he looked less fatigued, and the event seemed to have less challenge on his body, unlike other athletes.
On the other hand, the athletes who came last complained of fatigue, muscle cramping, headache, and pain. Also, they had minimal sweat production. The challenge of the competition was unbearable to their bodies because some ended fainting on completing the ten-kilometer race (1vigor, par. 4).
The above differences can be explained in physiological, exercise, and training perspectives. The athlete who came first (successful athlete) had the features above even after a challenging event because his body was able to withstand stress and challenges posed by this difficult event. His performance depended on optimum body function enhanced by proper hydration and blood flow. This was evidenced by sweating and his ability to complete the race with ease.
Moreover, his performance in this event was due to his body’s ability to optimize the internal environment under stress and challenge. Fluid-electrolyte balance contributed to the optimum function of muscles and muscle impulses, as he took salt pills after the race. The salt pills were taken to provide sodium to the athlete’s body.
This is because sweating (caused by heat stress) results in loss of sodium in sweat (1vigor, par. 2-5). According to Hatfield, challenging one’s physical ability is achieved by gradually imposing a challenge on muscles. The gradual imposition of challenge (ten-kilometer race) on the winner over the racing period and during training gave him the power to fit in the next level (successful completion of the race) (Hatfield, 2005).
On the other hand, athletes who came last complained of muscle cramping due to the accumulation of lactic acid, which irritated muscles and nerves. The fatigue, minimal sweat production, pain, and headache meant that their bodies were dehydrated due to stress and challenge. Furthermore, heat stress generated during the race negatively influenced their ability to engage in this event as the increase in the core temperature of the body caused dehydration (1vigor, par. 3).
In this event, I had an opportunity to interview the winner and some athletes in the middle pack (neither first nor last). The winner attributed his success to use of the set system, consistent exercising, focus during exercises, the gradual imposition of difficult exercises, challenges to the body, high altitude training, specialized dumbbell exercises (for athletes) and holistic, nutritional and hydration approaches in training.
He, however, expressed concern that in other competitions, he incorporated other athletes’ fitness and training routines in his own, and this attempt was futile (Fitness Wellness Center, par. 1-5).
The winner’s response was important because his approach and routine in training were exceptional. According to Hatfield, “what constitutes fitness for one person is not fitness for another,” an approach the winner used (Hatfield, 2005). Furthermore, consistent exercising and challenging one’s physical capabilities are very important in any kind of exercise.
This is because it helps the body to adjust to high levels of physical fitness. Hatfield also asserts that specialized dumbbell exercises for athletes for example clean pulls, muscle-snatches, dumbbell power clean, dumbbell power snatches and rock pile give them the power to move their muscles (Hatfield, 2005). No wonder the first athlete won this endurance event with laughable ease!
In this essay, nutritional, holistic, and hydration approaches used by athletes (for example, the first athlete) in exercise and training sessions are very important. All these are to ensure an all-round athlete in terms of lifestyle, physical, emotional, environmental, psycho-social, and spiritual health. This is because all-round health is required for the optimum body, nerve and muscle function, and other body functions (Fitness Wellness Center, par. 3-8).
The middle pack athletes, unlike the winner, used limited systems in training as most of them admitted that they only engaged in machine exercising, nutrition, and other normal flexibility exercises. Therefore, the challenge posed by the winner was inevitable.
The athletic event was an important opportunity as it provided me with knowledge applicable to my physical training practice. The approaches used to win were very important in training my clients, friends, and family. The importance of hydration and fluid-electrolyte balance in the body was a lesson I will apply in training my clients for optimum body function. This is to enhance a body which is fit before, during, and after training sessions (1vigor, par. 2-7).
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Furthermore, consistent exercising, focus during exercises, the gradual imposition of difficult exercises or challenge to the body and specialized dumbbell exercises will add to my training sessions to provide my clients with the ability to endure challenging exercises (Hatfield, 2005).
The system of training mentioned above is an important lesson to my practice as it will contribute to all-round health in my clients, family, and friends in terms of physical, emotional, Spiritual, psychosocial and lifestyle health.
Fitness Wellness Center. Web.
Hatfield, F. (2005). Fitness: The complete guide to dumbbell training. International Sports and Sciences Association.
1vigor: Hydration for Endurance Athletes. Web.