When I was a kid, there was a notorious Nike commercial starring baseball legends Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine. In the ad, they see Mark McGwire hit a towering home run, and the camera pans to Heather Locklear, who seems mightily impressed. The diminutive Maddux and Glavine realize their finesse pitching won’t cut it, so the next 45 seconds is a training montage of them getting jacked and practicing hitting. At the end, they both hit home runs, and the camera pans to Locklear gazing on admiringly. They bump arms and say the famous catchphrase: “Chicks dig the long ball.”

Now, there is a lot wrong with that commercial. One, it was 1999 and there are some gender problems that it and society needed to work through. Two, an honest montage of trying to emulate McGwire would probably involve the DEA and testifying before Congress. Three, the commercial ends with Locklear turning the tables and asking “Have you guys seen Mark?” That only makes sense if her character was a steroid dealer, which would have been a great twist.

Trail races are often dependent on hiking ability right alongside running ability, as much as that pains my strides-and-speed-loving heart to say.

But the underlying message of the catchphrase is still true: home runs are sexy. Dunks are sexy. Goals are sexy. On trails, running really fast up and down mountains is sexy, at least based on videos of Kilian Jornet on ridgelines that send tingles up my spine.

RELATED: Trail Running Involves Walking And That Is Freaking Awesome

You know what’s not sexy? Hiking. Hiking is not sexy at all.

Trail running viral videos rarely show someone walking. Training plans usually just mention hiking in passing. But trail races are often dependent on hiking ability right alongside running ability, as much as that pains my strides-and-speed-loving heart to say.

Underlying running-economy training principles

We know running-focused training can improve running economy over long time horizons, making every pace take less energy. Hiking may work similarly, but since it’s lower intensity and impact, it would likely require a ton of activity-specific workload. That may be less productive for time-limited athletes if it means that hiking training is done at the expense of the development of …….

Source: https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/power-hiking-trail-runners-083754621.html

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