Competition Makes You Work Harder

Competition Makes You Work Harder Some people thrive on it while others dread competition. Whether you like to dislike one-on-one athletic challenges, a study published in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise examined the effect head to head competition had on the performance of recreational cyclists.

Researchers had 14 subjects complete a 2000 meter time trial before racing against a computer generated competitor in another 2000 meter time trial. The 'competitor' in this case was actually the subject's previous performance. On average, performance in head to head competition was about 4 seconds faster over the 2000 meter course.

True Strength Moment: This study shows how motivating a little competition can be with a unique take on beating a personal best. It turns out that we all have an anaerobic energy reserve which can be tapped into when conditions are right. Staying out front during a friendly competition is one way to create such a condition.
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