Scientific Research in Ultra Athletes

At the Swiss 24 Hour Championships next weekend I have volunteered to take part in a scientific field study conducted by Dr. Beat Knechtle from St. Gallen, Switzerland.  Dr Knechtle is one the few researchers to specialise in research associated with ultra endurance athletes.  He has an impressive string of publications to his name and is now focussing more on field studies.  The Swiss field study will focus on changes in body composition during a 24hr race and the influence of mineral and vitamin supplementation on race performance.  Read more about Dr Knechtle here

A couple of years ago I took part in another field study conducted at the 2005 Spartathlon race in Greece (145 mile point-to-point race from Athens to Sparta).  That study demonstrated that by taking a prophylactic dose of omeprazole/Losec (a proton pump inhibitor) prior to an ultra marathon will successfully decrease the incidence of gastrointestinal bleeding in participants in an ultramarathon.