Paula's hot and cold showers


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Paula's hot and cold showers

Postby Guest » Thu Apr 17, 2003 11:28 am

I read that on the morning of London Paula was alternating hot and cold showers every 30 seconds. I have 3 questions;
1. what is the benefit of this?
2. does it matter what temperature you start and finish with?
3.How many minutes of this should one do it before a race or hard session?

Thanks.
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Re: Paula's hot and cold showers

Postby bhall » Thu Apr 17, 2003 11:40 am

You sure they were showers and not hot/cold whirlpools?

My college coach had our 400 guys soak in cold whirlpools up to their chest after every hard day. It worked for them. Logic had something to do with increased blood flow aiding recovery. But I don't recall exactly.
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Re: Paula's hot and cold showers

Postby gh » Thu Apr 17, 2003 12:01 pm

a story in the September 2002 T&FN:

Radcliffe’s Chilly Secret
After her incredible Euro Champs 10K Paula Radcliffe told the press that one of her secrets is a 10-minute ice bath after every race.

“It’s absolute agony, and I dread it,” she said, “but it allows my body to recover so much more quickly.”

Tom Fordyce of BBC Sport Online decided to check the procedure out, reasoning, “How bad could it be?”
After having the tub in his hotel room filled, he wrote, “The temperature in the bathroom dropped from summer in Bavaria to Christmas in Anchorage.”

Then came the plunge: “The immediate sensation is quite devastating. Ten minutes? Within six seconds I am doing laps of the hotel room, shouting obscenities at the ceiling and grasping my withered manhood with shaking hands…

“With a crazed shout I leap back in. Fourteen seconds and 73 swear words later I am back dancing laps of the bathroom again…

“Surely no human could sit in that for 10 minutes? Maybe I’ve got this wrong. Maybe Paula melts the ice first…

“Paula can have her gold medals. I’d rather keep my manhood.”
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Re: Paula's hot and cold showers

Postby bhall » Thu Apr 17, 2003 12:25 pm

I think Mr. Fordyce might have gotten the water a little cold and didn't have whirlpool movement, which seems ot make it much more comfortable. I am pretty sure most of the "ice baths" I been around were in the 55-60 F range.
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Re: Paula's hot and cold showers

Postby sl » Thu Apr 17, 2003 1:55 pm

Interesting. I remember it the opposite way. The whirlpool prevented a layer of body-heat-warmed water from building up around the legs and made the circulating water much LESS comfortable.

On a related note, a friend of Henry Rono's once told me that when Rono attempted his road comeback in '86 (or so), he came from Kenya to the U.S. weighing 200lbs. He immediately jumped into 100-mile training weeks in his attempt to get fit. His talent was so great that he was able to do it; barely. He survived this regimen using ice baths in the middle of the day in order to get out for his afternoon run.
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Re: Paula's hot and cold showers

Postby Guest » Thu Apr 17, 2003 2:03 pm

I already know about her post race ice baths. The article I read specifically said that on the morning of the race she was alternating hot and cold showers.
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Re: Paula's hot and cold showers

Postby Guest » Thu Apr 17, 2003 2:48 pm

In the article you read, it said its purpose was to stimulate the nervous system prior to her warmup.
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Re: Paula's hot and cold showers

Postby Guest » Thu Apr 17, 2003 5:43 pm

Will this treat compartment syndrome, knee tendinits, arthritis and plantar fascia?
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