Sprinters vs Marathon Runners

Both are runners with different physical characteristics. Some of the best long distance runners vs sprinters in the World have the following physical characteristics:

Sprinters: height range: 5 feet 10 inches to 6 feet 3 inches; weight: 85 to 95 kg.
Distance runners: height range: 5 feet 3 inches to 5 feet 7 inches; weight: 55 to 60 kg.

Genetic Disposition

Human body has two types of muscle fibres: slow twitch, or red fibres (lean & suited for high endurance activities); white fibres, or fast twitch fibres (big & suited for short duration high intensity activities). People have a greater proportion of one or the other type of muscle fibres in their bodies. This makes them genetically better disposed for high endurance, or high explosive power type of activities.

Impact of Training

The type of exercise one does has an impact on the proportion of muscle fibres in the body. By running/cycling/swimming long distances you can become slimmer, with greater endurance. Similarly by lifting heavy weights you can become visibly muscular. The type of exercise undertaken will take at least 8 weeks to effect the muscle composition.

Genetic Disposition & Type of Exercise

Type of exercise will greatly alter the natural muscle proportion in a body. The impact is, however, not unlimited. Mo Farah could not be trained to run as fast as Usain Bolt over 100 meters & similarly nor could Usain Bolt be trained to be as fast as Mo Farah over 10,000 meters (or any of the top runners in the respective events).
Mo Farah could not be trained to look like Arnold Schwarzenegger. Usain Bolt could be trained to look like Arnold Schwarzenegger, or maybe even better!

What should you do?

If you want to be an endurance athlete, or play such sports then you have to be content with a lean body. If you want to look like Arnold, then you cannot expect to have good endurance.

To know more about my fitness routine, watch this video.

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1 Comment

  1. Very cool. But I did wonder for the long jump one if there was any miaenng to the position of the jumper figures. Would have been cool to use that to represent wind speed or running speed, but the video didn’t suggest any miaenng to them.

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