healthy bmi

Discussion in 'General Fitness' started by anonymous, Feb 10, 2004.

  1. anonymous

    anonymous Guest

    What is a healthy BMI for an elite runner? I'm at 22.3 now and think I might want to lose some lbs.
     
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  2. Jmk

    Jmk Guest

    What's your body fat percentage? Generally speaking, the more atheletic you are, the less meaningful
    the BMI is.

    On 2/9/2004 12:04 PM, [email protected] wrote:
    > What is a healthy BMI for an elite runner? I'm at 22.3 now and think I might want to lose
    > some lbs.
    >

    --
    jmk in NC
     
  3. Lyndon

    Lyndon Guest

    >What is a healthy BMI for an elite runner? I'm at 22.3 now and think I might want to lose some lbs.

    The BMI for the American recordholders for 10K and marathon is 20. The danger
    (i.e., unhealthy) area begins at 18.5-19 (depending on which "experts" you listen to). The
    equivalent low-end value for body fat (by immersion method) is 5-6%.

    BMI does not work if you lift weights and gain mass: It sees the muscle mass as fat. When Donovan
    Bailey broke the WR in the Olympics, he had a BMI that called him "overweight." BMI does seem to
    work quite well as a warning signal for distance runners who are losing too much weight; You do not
    need to be at 19 or lower to gain maximum performance.

    Lyndon "Speed Kills...It kills those that don't have it!" --US Olympic Track Coach Brooks Johnson
     
  4. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] wrote:
    > What is a healthy BMI for an elite runner? I'm at 22.3 now and think I might want to lose
    > some lbs.

    Do you mean healthy or optimal for performance ? I'd say 20-21 is a good target for
    performance running.

    Generally speaking, taller runners are more likely to have low BMI.

    Cheers,
    --
    Donovan Rebbechi http://pegasus.rutgers.edu/~elflord/
     
  5. Keith Stone

    Keith Stone Guest

    [email protected] wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > What is a healthy BMI for an elite runner? I'm at 22.3 now and think I might want to lose
    > some lbs.

    BMI and health have nothing to do with each other. Heroin addicts and cancer patients have "great"
    BMI ratings, body builders and sprinters "poor" ones. BMI was devised to allow brain dead insurance
    agents to charge suckers more money and untrained health workers to do unguided triage.

    If you are worrying about BMI, you're wasting effort on a Bogus Meaningless Index. Sprinters
    generally have high BMI, marathoners low BMI, but they didn't get where they are by changing BMI,
    but gravitated there by natural selection.

    Go out the door, run. As you build mileage your body will find a natural size. Attempts to change it
    to an artificial index will not make you elite. Training will. Most people lose weight while
    training, some people gain weight. Don't worry about it, and count your miles not your pounds.
     
  6. In article <[email protected]>,
    Lyndon <[email protected]> wrote:
    >The BMI for the American recordholders for 10K and marathon is 20. The danger
    >(i.e., unhealthy) area begins at 18.5-19 (depending on which "experts" you listen to). The
    > equivalent low-end value for body fat (by immersion method) is 5-6%.

    The marathon WR holders have lower BMIs: Tergat is 18.7, he's quite a bit taller than Khannouchi,
    and Radcliffe is 18.0 - at least according to height/weights cited on random web pages.

    In principle when you are running more than a kg of body fat looks like a hindrance, unless its an
    ultra. Its less obvious what you need otherwise, but I haven't seen any convincing data for men that
    choosing to be very lean is unhealthy.

    U-curve comparison of BMI versus mortality for heterogenous samples are unconvincing as various
    sources of mortality correlate with low BMI but probably aren't caused by low BMI, e.g. smoking

    There might be data for women - not being female I've paid much less attention.

    Andrew Taylor
     
  7. In article <[email protected]>, Lyndon wrote:
    > Andrew Taylor wrote:
    >
    >>In article <[email protected]>, Lyndon <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>>The BMI for the American recordholders for 10K and marathon is 20. The
    >>danger
    >>>(i.e., unhealthy) area begins at 18.5-19 (depending on which "experts" you listen to). The
    >>> equivalent low-end value for body fat (by immersion method)
    >>is
    >>>5-6%.
    >>
    >>The marathon WR holders have lower BMIs: Tergat is 18.7, he's quite a bit taller than Khannouchi,
    >>and Radcliffe is 18.0 - at least according to height/weights cited on random web pages.
    >
    >
    > To claim that a recreational runner "needs" a BMI lower than Khannouchi is ridiculous and can be
    > dangerous for certain individuals, particularly young females.

    I'd agree with this, but again, note the height issue -- the taller runners tend to have extremely
    thin frames and have lower BMI. Another issue is that the Kenyan runners are typically lighter than
    American elites of the same height. I doubt that there are many American male elites with BMI under
    20 and height 6 foot or less.

    Yet another issue is that elite runners are at the tails of the bell curve -- these people tend to
    be naturally very light, so it's at least plausible that the optimal performance weight of most
    recreational runners is higher than that of an elite athlete.

    I think your "public health" concerns are well founded, especially for younger athletes.

    Cheers,
    --
    Donovan Rebbechi http://pegasus.rutgers.edu/~elflord/
     
  8. ahass

    ahass Guest

    jmk <[email protected]> wrote:
    > What's your body fat percentage? Generally speaking, the more atheletic you are, the less
    > meaningful the BMI is.

    > On 2/9/2004 12:04 PM, [email protected] wrote:
    >> What is a healthy BMI for an elite runner? I'm at 22.3 now and think I might want to lose
    >> some lbs.
    >>

    > --
    > jmk in NC

    ---Yes; BMI is just BS. Elite marathoners usually run around 4-6% BF. Andy Hass
     
  9. Wholovesya?

    Wholovesya? Guest

    [email protected] (Asswiper Toilet Paper) wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > I had a really healthy BM this morning myself. See it here, and be sure to vote for me, er mine.
    > http://www.ratemypoo.com/top.html

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  10. In article <[email protected]>, Lyndon <[email protected]> wrote:
    To claim that a recreational runner "needs" a BMI lower than Khannouchi is
    >ridiculous and can be dangerous for certain individuals,

    Well I didn't say any such thing - I only said that I've haven't seen convincing data that a low BMI
    is unhealthy for adult men.

    But if you want a claim, yes I think quite a few recreational marathonners, including me, will run
    their fastest at a BMI lower than Khannouchi's. One reason being many of us are taller than
    Khannouchi.

    Such a low BMI may well be unhealthy for the young and for females, but I (still) haven't seen any
    convincing data for adult men.

    >There are other factors besides mortality, namely bone loss, osteoporosis and debilitating
    >fractures.

    Where is the data for these claims (for adult men)?

    Andrew Taylor
     
  11. In article <[email protected]>,
    Donovan Rebbechi <[email protected]> wrote:
    >I'd agree with this, but again, note the height issue -- the taller runners tend to have extremely
    >thin frames and have lower BMI. Another issue is that the Kenyan runners are typically lighter than
    >American elites of the same height. I doubt that there are many American male elites with BMI under
    >20 and height 6 foot or less.

    Culpepper is just over six foot but his BMI is 17.1. A while ago I calculated BMIs of some of the
    top Australian marathonners. All have BMIs under 20 except for Andrew Letherby who is the
    shortest of them.

    Lee Troop 178cm 58kg BMI 18.3 Rod De Highden 178cm 60kg BMI 18.9 Shaun Creighton 181cm 63kg BMI 19.2
    Magnus Michelsson 167cm 55kg BMI 19.7 Andrew Letherby 165cm 55kg BMI 20.2

    >Yet another issue is that elite runners are at the tails of the bell curve -- these people tend to
    >be naturally very light, so it's at least plausible that the optimal performance weight of most
    >recreational runners is higher than that of an elite athlete.

    I'm not sure sure how you get data on elite runners "natural" weights but I can give you a counter-
    example: Naoko Takahashi says she is a naturally chubby person.

    Andrew Taylor
     
  12. In article <[email protected]>, Andrew Taylor wrote:
    > In article <[email protected]>, Lyndon <[email protected]> wrote:
    > To claim that a recreational runner "needs" a BMI lower than Khannouchi is
    >>ridiculous and can be dangerous for certain individuals,
    >
    > Well I didn't say any such thing - I only said that I've haven't seen convincing data that a low
    > BMI is unhealthy for adult men.

    I've seen such data, start here if you're interested.

    http://www.halls.md/bmi/bibliography.htm

    However, a general correlation in the general population may not necessarily apply to athletes.
    Excessively low BMI could well be associated with a number of things that are not *caused* by low
    BMI (e.g. ill-health could produce low BMI would result in an association.)

    > But if you want a claim, yes I think quite a few recreational marathonners, including me, will run
    > their fastest at a BMI lower than Khannouchi's.

    I don't think optimal for health and optimal for performance athletics are necessarily the same
    thing. If I were running purely for health, I'm not sure what sort of milage I'd do, but it would
    probably be less than half of my current training load.

    I suspect it becomes unhealthy at the point where one expends substantial effort in weight loss.
    This is likely to result in inadequate nutrition, especially when training on a demanding schedule.
    I think it would be counterproductive (and in some cases very unhealthy) for most recreational
    runners to expend a lot of effort in pursuit of a BMI of 19 or less.

    Cheers,
    --
    Donovan Rebbechi http://pegasus.rutgers.edu/~elflord/
     
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