Ok, I figured I’d christen this forum since I’ve been lurking for a while…
As Mike knows, I have a strong interest in further elucidating the mechanism of fatigue in the 100m dash.
I have a strong suspicion (and I believe others share it) that the etiology of the fatigue has less to do with lactate (old-school thinking) and is much more a question of “bioelectricity”. I think that the fatigue is either occuring peripherally/post-synaptically at the level of the Na+/K+ pump or centrally/pre-synaptically-decreased neural drive.
My own personal bias (with no data to support it) has been that it could be a firing rate problem. From that stance, I think that the problem could be in the refractory state of the Na+/K+ pump at the neuromuscular juntion. As maximum velocity is reached, the Na+/K+ pump is unable to maintain a bioelectrical gradient across the cell membrane and therefore unable to propagate an action potential.
If that is true (which is a HUGE if), then why are the pumps “failing”? Insufficient ATP to drive the pumps? Not enough pumps?
I’m interested to hear your thoughts. I know we have some great minds out there, so let’s have at it…
(…I know, I know…more decaf…):)