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#2111: Don't gargle beet juice, common-size your ass(ets)

This week I finished the CFA chapters on income statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements. I'll post the first and last once I have the practice questions finished. For now, here are my balance sheet notes and Anki questions.

Here are couple of things that I found interesting this week.

Yes, beet juice. No swallow?

Vasodilation increases the flow of nutrients and oxygen to your muscles. Nitric oxide is a potent vasodilator, and the best trigger for its production comes from beet juice. A vital part of the process happens in saliva.

So can you just gargle beet juice without swallowing that horrid blood-red slurry? Unfortunately not. Ya gotta swallow.

In Should You Gargle Beet Juice?, Alex Hutchinson details the process. After ingestion, nitrate from the beets enters the bloodstream via the digestive system;

"up to 25% of the nitrate in the bloodstream is extracted by the salivary glands and concentrated tenfold in the saliva";

... where bacteria convert the nitrate to nitrite; which is swallowed and changes to nitric oxide in the stomach; the nitric oxide then enters the bloodstream and triggers vasodilation.

P.S. There's a lot of nauseating bullshit in the "health and fitness" world. When in doubt, believe Alex Hutchinson.

How to make world-class training your own

The CFA texts describe "common-size" analysis, a method of comparing financial metrics across companies that eliminates the distortions created by measuring absolute dollars. It converts everything to a percentage to make different entities more comparable.

It has a lot in common with endurance training.

When I started skimo racing, I read everything I could find on Renato Canova. Canova coached Moses Mosop to a first-time marathon of 2h03m. But the speed Mosop can hold for two hours—20.6 kph—many people can maintain for less than 15 seconds. So what use would his training be?

Everyone, including Mosop, has only two-hours-worth of glycogen. So I converted his minutes-per-kilometer training paces to percentages of aerobic threshold (i.e. marathon pace, ~2h pace) and his interval distances to minutes.

By abstracting his training into a common-sized definition, I can now apply it to anyone:

Target Mosop Skimo Client
AeT (MP) 2m55s/km 1,340 m/h
3x 6m @ 105% (3m @ 80%) 2m47s (3m39s) 1,407 (1,072)
I'm equating Skimo Client AeT pace with a ~2 mM lactate reading on a calibrated treadmill at a 25% incline.

By using "common-size" training with event duration and threshold intensity as the denominators, you can use the same training methods of world-class athletes.