The Cost of Elite Training

Mark Sisson is a quite interesting guy, well worth reading. I'm very inspired by his look on health, food and training.

He just republished his views on the health effects of elite level sports and the use of banned drugs. Basically he's saying that with the level expected in elite level sports and the training the athletes need to do it's bordering on irresponsibility to not let them use HGH, EPO, steroids etc. It'd probably make them healthier in their post-competitive lives and avoid arthritis, heart problems and the other classic symtoms of a competitive carreer at the elite level.

Mark doesn't say that drugs should be allowed in sports, or that they shouldn't be, he's mostly just making some absolutely excellent points and observations.

The real conclusion is that elite level sports are theater for the masses, and if we want that we need to consider how we treat the actors. Do we just let them spoil their health in an effort to compete clean or let them use the currently banned drugs to help them stay healthy? That's the question.

I feel strongly that drugs should still be banned in sports, but intellectually that almost doesn't make sense. Mostly, people should just realize that there is a cost associated with the feats performed by the heroes they see on TV, and that it's not something to emulate.

I'm so glad I'm not a pro triathlete.

I just try to be healthy and get fit for an ironman in about two years' time, which is quite a conundrum. But at least I'm enjoying it.