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why track times are usually slower in indoor track


Ben Shelton

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An indoor track has a few advantages over an outdoor one. For one thing, a person dosen't have to worry about rain and wind that typicly slow a runner down when you run outside. Another advantage is that the air conditions are always the same: 79 deggrees and dry. But the greatest advantage of all is that you have to turn twice as much, because the track is only half as big around. Just kidding, only the first one was an advantage. The fact truth is that RIT could give death valley a run for it's money. The "cottonmouth" ( dry throat) weighs especially heavy on a sick person like me who trys to run. But the real killer is the turns. Those are the reason you add 10 to twenty seconds to your outdoor best time to get your indoor best. Its because acceleration involves not only increaseing the speed of an object, but also changeing it's direction, because acceleration is a vector. When an athelete changes directions, the energy required to lean for the turn is energy that could be used to speed up and start passing pepole twards the end of the race. The turns are long and the straightaways are short, so there is twice the acceleration, twice the energy spent on turning, as in an outdoor track race. and that is why runners almost always seem to get slower in indoor track. Personally, I long for the long straightaways, cool brezzes, cool, moist air, and sweet 60 deggree weather of outdoor track. Indoor's the best way to stay in shape thoght!

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