How Many Hot Dogs Can You Eat in 10 Minutes?

The competitive-eating elite will descend on New York City’s Coney Island this Fourth of July to flex their hot dog eating skills at the annual Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest. Last year, the male winner ate 62 hot dogs and the female winner ate 38 hot dogs in 10 minutes. Competitive eaters are surprisingly … Continue reading How Many Hot Dogs Can You Eat in 10 Minutes?

Looking for a New Physical Challenge? Try a Mountain Ultra-Marathon

Of all the extreme endurance races out there—such as the Ironman triathlon or 50- or 100-mile marathons—the Tor des Géants ultra-mountain marathon may be the most extreme. The course is 205 miles long on the rugged terrain of the Italian Alps with a cumulative elevation gain of 24,000 feet. Participants have 150 hours, little more … Continue reading Looking for a New Physical Challenge? Try a Mountain Ultra-Marathon

To Play Better, Skip the Post-Game Drink

Sports and alcohol are a famous pair. Whether you’re a fan or an athlete, it’s common to follow up a great game with a drink or two. But does that drink affect your recovery after your workout? Researchers at California Polytechnic State University think that it might. Rafael Jimenez, Amy Engel and a team of … Continue reading To Play Better, Skip the Post-Game Drink

Of Ice Swims and Mountain Marathons (and So Much More)

If you regularly read this blog, you may know that the research questions that physiologists ask relate to wide range of topics—cells, tissues and organs, insects and animals, and how the environment influences all of these things. Nowhere is this more apparent than at the annual Experimental Biology meeting. This year, thousands of physiology-based research … Continue reading Of Ice Swims and Mountain Marathons (and So Much More)

Ice, Ice Baby: How Being in Cold Water Can Kill You

Spring is coming, and if you like to welcome the crisp March weather with water sports such as fishing and kayaking, remember that lakes, streams and oceans can have freezing temperatures this time of year. Falling into icy water is never part of the plan, but it happens even to the best cold-water adventurers. Exposure … Continue reading Ice, Ice Baby: How Being in Cold Water Can Kill You

Running a Thousand Miles Can Be Exhausting. How Do Iditarod Sled Dogs Do It?

Have you ever had a morning where you just did not have the energy to go out for your five-mile run? What if you woke up in New York City and had to run to Miami? That is the distance Alaskan Huskies run every year at the annual Iditarod sled dog race. How these amazing … Continue reading Running a Thousand Miles Can Be Exhausting. How Do Iditarod Sled Dogs Do It?

Why Do You Gasp for Air on a Cold Winter’s Day?

I live in South Dakota where the winter days can be frigid and very dry. Many people, including me, have difficulty breathing while exercising in the winter because our airways temporarily narrow during exercise. This condition is called exercise-induced bronchoconstriction (EIB), formerly known as exercise-induced asthma, and it’s often triggered by working out in cold, … Continue reading Why Do You Gasp for Air on a Cold Winter’s Day?

How Long Can You Hold Your Breath? The Dangers of Freediving

The appeal of freediving may lie in its freedom. Freedivers, without cumbersome scuba gear and noisy regulators, easily glide through tranquil waters toward coral or rocky reefs with scenes unobstructed by bubble trails. With dives often exceeding five minutes, they get to see up close and personal the colorful marine life that typically flees from … Continue reading How Long Can You Hold Your Breath? The Dangers of Freediving

Does Exercising in Warm Weather Make You Fitter for Cooler Temperature?

Those who are active year-round know that summer workouts are more tiring than those done in cooler weather. The good news is that it’s not a sign that you’re suddenly out of shape. Exercising in warm temperatures is not the same as exercising in cooler temperatures and the body’s physiology has to adjust. How does … Continue reading Does Exercising in Warm Weather Make You Fitter for Cooler Temperature?

What Makes You Move?

The muscles in our body contract and relax to walk and move us through our day. Even when we are not in motion, our muscles are actively working to keep us upright and steady. Surprisingly, this constant action doesn’t fatigue us like running at top speed for 30 seconds does. What is the physiological basis … Continue reading What Makes You Move?