Competing in Deca Ironman to demonstrate cardiac damage from (ultra) endurance sport
Good morning, so just putting together a research proposal on a cardiac study for a Deca Ironman in June 2014. Quite an interesting study on how endurance sport damages the heart - thought cyclists might be interested. Don't worry I love this stuff, I will keep cycling no matter what I find!
I have copied the first part of my blog on it below (took a while to write) if you are interested in the 'science' scroll to end and follow link...it is quite long so not pasting it all on here! Whats you thoughts on the topic?????
'I hope to run a pilot study into the effects of a Deca Ironman triathlon on cardiac function in June 2014. My initial review of the studies published in this area have suggested that there is a strong case for a publishable report containing data from baseline and immediately post race, 24 hours post-race and 48 hours post race including cardiac MRI with late-gadolinium enhancement, blood tests: BNP, NT-proBNP, ST2, Galectin-3 & biochemistry profile. Not only will this provide a compelling dataset for the literature in endurance sport – and I would hope to move forward towards funding for a larger population study – it would be the most detailed profile of athlete cardiac output in the Deca Ironman or any ‘ultra’ endurance race format.
With the growing public interest in more extreme triathlons, there will certainly be more investment to study appropriate training plans for sports enthusiasts (not necessarily top level athletes) in order to reduce the impact of any negative health effects of intense and prolonged endurance exercise. It is clear from the studies noted below that although there is clearly cardiac damage from endurance sport – and this has been demonstrated in marathon runners for a number of years – this form of exercise can induce physiological functional and structural cardiac adaptations, which drastically reduced strain on the heart.
[Basically as expected if you have been sitting on the couch for 20 years and then run a marathon you will probably be in a little bit of trouble.]
By studying my own cardiac output over the course of a few months next year I would assess how my baseline changes as my training progresses, the impact of the Deca and review what damage could be inflicted. Of course this study is not intended to discourage athletes from taking up this sporting pursuit (there are numerous studies that demonstrate the anti-cancer, mental benefits of ‘killing’ yourself up a hill side on a Sunday morning – yes I am drifting between science ‘speak’ and casual blogging!) only to make them aware of its health impact and be best prepared for potential implications – i.e. build up the intensity of a training schedule over a matter of months.
If you are a research institute interested in this study and would like to be involved both academically and/or through financial support [both for this investigation or future projects] please drop a comment below or an email at longworn (at) tcd (dot) ie (note; email comes from my time in the Biochemistry Department in Trinity College Dublin). I have already discussed the study with some leading researchers in the field and I have been offered remote academic supervision (which I am very grateful for and if you are reading I will drop a formal proposal asap, sorry for delay). However any further assistance is always welcomed.
Right to the science……..http://decaironman-training.com/2013...durance-sport/