Both men and women enjoy running whether it is in the marathon or a common race. No matter, where it is, they would like to run. Both train equally hard. But, it’s pretty common to see, men run faster than women do. What’s the reason behind it?
Actually, it’s because of their gender bender is multifold. It has a lot to do with hormones and body size.
In real, both boys and girls have similar bodies before they hit puberty. Testosterone plays several roles, including telling the body to create new blood cells. It keeps bones and muscles strong and promoting growth spurts.
Dr.Emily Kraus, a primary care sports medicine physician at Stanford Health Care in California said, “As compare to men, the women produce less testosterone. Thus, they are at a disadvantage in terms of muscle. Males have a greater amount of muscle bulk.”
“A man’s leg is about 80 percent muscle, compared with about 60 percent muscle in a woman’s leg. That extra muscle can help men run faster. Also, men’s muscles tend to have larger fast-twitch muscle fibers, which help with sprinting, than women do.”
Additionally, Women, on average, have smaller lungs than men do. That means they consume less oxygen as compared to men. The maximal oxygen consumption (VO2 max) for a sedentary woman is about 33 milliliters of oxygen per kilogram of body mass per minute. At the other hand, for young adult man, the maximum VO2 is 42 ml/kg/min.
The amount of oxygen produced at maximum exertion is greater in males than in females. So, females need to work harder to breathe in oxygen that they can deliver to their muscles. Women’s hearts is also smaller than men, which means they have a smaller stroke volume.
Kraus said, “Even though [women] have a higher heart rate, it’s not enough to counterbalance the lower stroke volume that [women] have. Each time the heart pumps blood, that amount of blood is less in a female than in a male. That means less blood and less oxygen are delivered to women’s muscles.”
In addition, men do have longer legs than women. So, they have more space for muscle and longer stride length. And because of women do have wider hips their running stance is not as efficient as a man.
Dr. Miho Tanaka said, “If your hips are very narrow, like a man’s, then your quads are running straight from your hips, past your knees. It’s in a straight line, so it’s acting in the same direction that you’re running.”
“For a runner with wider hips, however, the muscles almost have to turn a corner, so to speak. It’s not like the optimized function for the muscle.”