This article on nutritionist, trainer, and human pillar of muscle protein powder D.H. Kiefer's website, Dangerously Hardcore, (HAAADCOOOOOAH) is called "Why Women Should Not Run." Period. Not "Why Women Looking For a More Toned Body Should Not Run" or "Why Women Who Want To Lose Weight Should Not Run." Why? Because running is making you fat. And since being a Hottie with a Body is, after all, the only purpose that a woman really has for working out, you should stop immediately and do something that will not make frat boys woof at you during spring break in Myrtle Beach.
I watch my friend Jessica running on the treadmill—day after day, year after year—like a madwoman, and going nowhere. Her body seems to get softer with every mile, and the softer she gets, the more she runs. [...] I’m not going to sugarcoat: She’s still fat. Actually, she’s gotten fatter.
Uhh. Okay, SO. Running is known to have tons of proven benefits for women—particularly emotionally and psychologically, but there are also also physical bonuses (like the decrease of minor physical complaints) —and it's also often the most cost-efficient option of exercise out there. Not everyone can afford a gym membership or $17 yoga classes, but damn near everyone can find some sneakers and a track. But Kiefer's derisive emphasis on how much Bitches Be Eating and then Bitches Be Complaining About Their Thighs makes it pretty clear that it's all about the shallowest elements of working out. No Fatties.
I won’t name names, but I’ve seen amazing displays of gluttony from some small, trim women. Entire pizzas disappear, leaving only the flotsam of toppings that fell during the feeding frenzy. Appetizers, meals, cocktails and desserts—4000 calories worth—vanish at the Cheesecake Factory. There are no leftovers, and there are no crumbs. Some women catch this in time and stop the devastation, but others quickly swell, realizing that this supposed off-season look has become their every-season look.
Women. Eating. Without counting calories. Because food is awesome. THE DEVASTATION. JESU CHRISTO, THE DEVASTATION.
All this aside, in terms of the actual quote-unquote "science" behind this, Keifer cites a number of studies involving the potential depletion of the hormone T3, which slows down of the thyroid/metabolism in women who run. I sent the article to Dr. Jonathan Fass, a private trainer who's written for Men's Health and Men's Fitness, and asked him whether this holds any water. Not really, he said.
Just because we see two things that occur together at roughly the same time, in this case endurance exercise and a lack of fat loss or lowered thyroid hormone, we cannot actually say that the two are related through a cause (cardiovascular exercise) and an effect (reduced or halted fat loss). After all, there could be a third, truly causative factor at play, such as a poor diet for instance, that we are unaware of.
Fass also said that Keifer had cherry-picked data that helped his biased thesis. For example:
"[The study] 'Thyroidal changes associated with endurance training in women' indicated, contrary to the author's claims, that not only does thyroid hormones appear to alter throughout a training program of sufficient duration, but that some thyroid hormones will actually increase after initial decreases with increased training, which contradicts the author's statements.
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