To paraphrase an article which ran today on Wired’s UK website that paraphrased the results of a study conducted somewhat through the Queensland University of Technology Business School:
World class male tennis players are legally doping through increases in testosterone brought about by something called the “winner effect.”
The study, which was undertaken by two men named John Coates and Lionel Page, essentially lends credence to the validity of the highly disputed “hot hands effect.” Page and Coates looked at the outcome of roughly 400,000 pro tennis matches. They then zeroed in on matches between closely ranked players, and further reduced the scope of the survey by only analyzing matches in which the first set went down to a tie-breaker.
They found that in men, the winner of the first set in these select matches had a 60% shot at winning the second set, compared to a 51% second-set-winning-percentage for women. From this, the researchers inferred that the increase in testosterone that comes from a victory was the cause–and thus the Wired author drew the conclusion that male tennis players are legally doping.
As a retired competitive runner myself, I don’t really have the opportunity to “win” or “lose” anything, anymore, in the conventional sense. But buddy, that doesn’t mean I’m not legally doping! Here are five ways I enhance my performance daily–that wouldn’t result in a positive drug test!
- Eat a salad–I try to eat one of these bowls of leafy greens at least once a week. They’re chock-full of nutrients and vitamins which are good for the body’s various mechanisms and if you’re sick of eating using just your hands, salads can be a fun change of pace as they require the use of a fork.
- Research–One simply must stay abreast of the latest in training technique. And thanks to the recent advent of the Internet, that’s never been easier! I spend hours daily in front of the computer refreshing a Google search for “workout tips and pointers,” and it’s a crucial part of how I continually better my game.
- Push-ups–Nothing earns the respect and admiration of passersby quite like public displays of strength. When I’m about town, I make sure to capitalize on that fact. Stopping, dropping, and cranking out a quick set of 15 push-ups in the middle of a crowded sidewalk is a great way to harness the respect of others, and convert it into strength-building testosterone.
- Sleep–Most doctors recommend getting eight hours of sleep a night. So logically, by sleeping for nearly twice that amount daily, I’m getting that much better as a person, friend, and athlete. I shoot for 16 hours of nightly snoozing, and it shows.
- Outfits—Sex and the City’s Carrie Bradshaw once famously opined: “I like my money where I can see it, hanging in my closet.” I couldn’t agree more, because having lots of clothes and wearing most of them at once is a surefire way to be your best self. Layering is not just savvy from a comfort perspective, by wearing tons of shirts at once, you appear bigger than you are, which is a sign of strength in the animal kingdom.