Any athletes are prone to aging and a decrease in aerobic fitness, including elite ones. This study aims to evaluate elite U.S. long-distance runners who were the best in their sport in the 1960s and 1970s. This study is also necessary to obtain data on the cardiorespiratory ability of elite aging athletes who continue to lead an active lifestyle.
Twenty-six elite male runners who participated in the 1968 Olympic Games were selected for the study. The participants entered the top 10 best runners in their kind of competition. The test was conducted three times in 1968, 1993, and 2013. The participant’s weight, age, heart rate, running economy, and lung condition were checked to obtain the most reliable data. Various types of equipment were used to control and get results.
With age, habitual activity began to decrease, and therefore the level of lung volume also declined, from 75 mL/kg/min to 55 mL/kg/min (Everman et al., 2017). The effects of aging affected the study results, but physical activity for the elderly, and even after a long sedentary lifestyle, had a positive impact on the state of the body. In addition, the results of the study showed that high physical activity in youth had a protective effect on the body (Everman et al., 2017).
High physical activity, started at an early age, allows the body to be in good condition, even when it reaches the aging period. In this regard, it is necessary to support the desire of young people to play sports.
Everman, S., Farris, J., Bay, C. and Daniels, J. (2017). Elite distance runners: A 45-year follow-up. Medicine & science in sports & exercise, 1(1), 73-78. Web.