Sports Science Greatest Athletes


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Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby dbirds » Wed Nov 21, 2012 6:03 pm

Endurance Athletes

Candidate Bios


Mark Allen
Six-time winner of Ironman World Championship
Won 20 straight triathlons from 1988-90
Finished in the top three in 90 percent of his career races
Inducted into Ironman Triathlon Hall of Fame in 1997
Brenkus says: "Allen holds the record for the fastest marathon split ever in the Ironman World Championships, running the final leg in 2:40:04 in 1989."


Bjorn Daehlie
Won eight Olympic gold medals in cross-country skiing, the most golds for any athlete in the Winter Olympics
Won 12 Olympic medals, most by any competitor in Winter Games, while competing in three Olympics
Won 46 World Cup events while competing on the circuit from 1989-99
Won downhill event in Kicksled World Championships in 2011 at age 43
Brenkus says: "Daehlie's successes can be attributed in part to his exceptional VO2Max (his body's capacity to utilize oxygen): 96 ml/kg/min, one of the highest ever recorded and nearly 15% higher than Lance Armstrong ever achieved."


Patrick Makau
Holds world record for a marathon at 2:03:38
Winner of 11 major half marathons
Personal best in half marathon is 58:52, 29 seconds slower than the world record set by Zersenay Tadese in 2010
Member of IAAF World Half Marathon Championship teams from Kenya in 2007 and 2008
Brenkus says: "Makau has won more than 65% of the marathons in which he has raced, and never finished lower than fourth place. Over the course of each marathon, Makau produces nearly 1400 joules of energy a second, roughly equal to the pulling power of two horses."


Diana Nyad
Recorded fastest time ever swimming around Manhattan Island
Held record for longest swim in history -- 102.5 miles -- from 1979-97
Attempted Cuba to Florida swim in August 2012, at age 62, making it halfway before abandoning due to jellyfish stings
Reached the top 30 among U.S. women squash players
Brenkus says: "In her record-setting 28-mile swim around the island of Manhattan, Nyad averaged more than 3.5 miles per hour. To put this in perspective, that means she was swimming, on average, every 100 meters in about 1 minute, 4 seconds, or just 12 seconds off the women's long course world record for 100-meter freestyle."


Pam Reed
First woman to be overall winner at Badwater Ultramarathon
Owns U.S. Track & Field women's record for longest 24-hour track run
Current female American record holder in six-day marathons
American female masters record holder in 24-hour run, covering 139 miles at age 42
Brenkus says: "Competing in what's arguably the world's toughest footrace, the Badwater Ultramarathon, Pam Reed endured heat up to 130 degrees as she ran the length of more than five marathons through Death Valley. Reed also battled sleep deprivation when she ran 300 miles, nearly the distance from Boston to Philadelphia, in just over three days."
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Re: Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby dbirds » Fri Nov 23, 2012 6:48 am

I have trouble believing Makau and Reed are 2 of the best endurance athletes ever.
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Re: Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby j-a-m » Fri Nov 23, 2012 8:23 am

dbirds wrote:Endurance Athletes

The best overall athlete among these five is Daehlie. The best endurance athlete, don't know, guess depends on how exactly you define endurance.
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Re: Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby j-a-m » Fri Nov 23, 2012 8:48 am

dbirds wrote:Brenkus says: "In her record-setting 28-mile swim around the island of Manhattan, Nyad averaged more than 3.5 miles per hour. To put this in perspective, that means she was swimming, on average, every 100 meters in about 1 minute, 4 seconds, or just 12 seconds off the women's long course world record for 100-meter freestyle."

Not to take anything away from that great performance, but anyone else think those numbers don't add up? My best guess is it's less than 28 miles around Manhattan, otherwise that performance would be beyond ridiculous.
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Re: Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 23, 2012 9:31 am

j-a-m wrote:
dbirds wrote:Brenkus says: "In her record-setting 28-mile swim around the island of Manhattan, Nyad averaged more than 3.5 miles per hour. To put this in perspective, that means she was swimming, on average, every 100 meters in about 1 minute, 4 seconds, or just 12 seconds off the women's long course world record for 100-meter freestyle."

Not to take anything away from that great performance, but anyone else think those numbers don't add up? My best guess is it's less than 28 miles around Manhattan, otherwise that performance would be beyond ridiculous.


Just shows what an idiot the guy is. Those times are ridiculous.
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Re: Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby dj » Fri Nov 23, 2012 11:02 am

I think Nyad's Manhattan time is real, not just plausible, as the swim was well documented in the New York Times. The key is that the majority of the swim was done with the tide.

Nyad started and finished at an East River pier on East 89th Street. She swam north with the tide, starting at 11:35 AM and swam up the Harlem River as the tide was shifting. When she got to the Hudson, she was swimming with the outgoing tide, which, coupled with the river flow must have made for a quick trip down river.

The New York Times reported that she was so far ahead of the record pace (old record 8:56 in 1927) that she tread water for 20 minutes off the Battery (southern tip of Manhattan) while she waited for the stronger incoming tide waters to help finish the last leg north on the East River, again swimming with the tide.

The best information I can find about the speed of the Hudson River is that at the George Washington Bridge and south, the average speed at ebb tide is 2.2 knots, about 2.5mph. The women's 10k marathon swim in this year's Olympics, held in Hyde Park without tide or current, was 1:57:38.2, which is 3.17mph.

The women's WR for the 100m is 52.07 as cited above. That's 4.30mph, which means that Nyad could put in an effort considerably less than 10,000 pace and still be moving faster than the 100m WR when adding in the tidal effect.
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Re: Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 23, 2012 11:40 am

Well that makes more sense. Though if she had just floated on her back for a lot of the swim, it wouldn't have made much difference.

And as we just found out recently those tides are pretty strong.
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Re: Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby j-a-m » Fri Nov 23, 2012 11:44 am

dj wrote:I think Nyad's Manhattan time is real, not just plausible, as the swim was well documented in the New York Times. The key is that the majority of the swim was done with the tide.

Yeah, that's a good explanation.
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Re: Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby jhc68 » Fri Nov 23, 2012 1:17 pm

Zatopek
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Re: Sports Science Greatest Athletes

Postby TN1965 » Fri Nov 23, 2012 2:12 pm

j-a-m wrote:
dbirds wrote:Endurance Athletes

The best overall athlete among these five is Daehlie. The best endurance athlete, don't know, guess depends on how exactly you define endurance.


I second this...

Next category, please.
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