Welcome back to another edition of Runner’s High. I’m your host, Jesse Funk. And today, I have brought you four of the weirdest facts I can find about running. I have gone through hundreds of facts I could find, anything from records to things about cheetahs. We’re not going to talk about the cheetahs, you know they’re fast. But I am going to bring you four weird facts here in a minute.
You made it past the intro, so welcome to the show. If you haven’t been with me here before, hit that subscribe button, stick around for more videos about running every Tuesday and Thursday, anything from like we’re doing today, weird facts, to things that can help you with your training, and more.
Now, let’s talk about the weird facts I found and there are some doozies in this list. But the first one is something that kind of stuck out in me because we’re always trying to look at what’s the best way we can be better, right? How do we be a faster runner? How do we be more efficient? Well, one of the things we do is we take energy gels, right?
You’re going to go out for a really long run, you’re going to do your half-marathon/marathon, whatever you’re going to have to eat during it. So, we eat these energy gels of all varying kinds. And this has been going on for a long, long time. Much longer than the energy gel industry has been around.
Back in Victorian times, it was actually common or not uncommon for people to drink champagne as an energy drink. Now, this is, to me, ridiculous. First, champagne’s for winners, not at the starting line. But we didn’t know that then apparently, that alcohol is a diuretic, so it actually makes you dehydrated and does the opposite of performing well.
So, my guess, if I had to make one is that it was probably more of the placebo effect where it’s like, champagne is for winners. So, I’m going to drink champagne, this is going to make me go fast, and that’s the rationale.
Now, I could be completely off base here, I didn’t live in Victorian times, clearly, as I’m alive right now. But this kind of idea and tradition is thought to go back to even Ancient Greece or China, where people have used things like cocaine and heroin as stimulants to improve their performance.
So, know that we’ve been trying all kinds of different pills, potions, and powders for ages and ages to enhance our performance. So, if you do this, don’t take cocaine before a race, for multiple reasons. But know that you’re not alone if you’re trying to modify your performance. This is kind of a natural human tendency.
Number two, and this is going to feel at home with me because this is something I deal with every single day on every single run, pretty much regardless of the weather, but you are with me, if you’re in this fact. 56% of people when they run outside, getting runny noses. Now, I have allergies that affect me all the time, so I just happen to be one of those people that pretty much gets it nearly 100% of the time.
So much that it was a running joke in college that if I accidentally spat on one of my teammates while I was out on a run, that it would give them magical powers to run faster. I appreciated their humor, I certainly didn’t do it on purpose. And it didn’t happen that often. But if you are with me, and you deal with sinus issues, it is terrible, terrible, terrible. And I know because of this fact that at least half of you or if we split you down the half, half of you are going to be in this group dealing with this from time to time.
So, it just amazes me that over half, 56% of people deal with this. It kind of makes me wonder about evolution a little bit. How do we continue forward? Why aren’t we better than that? It makes me wonder if we could figure out how to get rid of the weakest and make the stronger people stronger. I don’t know. There’s some kind of joking here about the strong survive and the weak don’t, and how mucus is going to attract people.
I’m not quite sure what it is. I’ll get back to you on my career as a stand-up comedian. Or you can just hit subscribe and watch me fail at terrible jokes in real-time. In any case, if you’re with me, leave me a comment below. Let me know what do you do to deal with that? Or are you just doing the old snot rocket when you’re out on the run?
Number three. Okay. This one, guys. Okay. This one stuck out to me because I’m just imagining a bunch of guys sitting around in a lab trying to envision how do they take their passions and combine them into their job. And what they ended up with is, hey, let’s study the movement of women’s breasts while they’re running.
How did this get approved by an IRB? How did this happen? Now, obviously, colloquially, culturally, we think about women’s breasts bouncing up and down when they run. Try not to stare. It’s not polite, even if it’s also been shown that it’s almost an unconscious tendency to look. So, maybe you’re off the hook a little bit, but don’t stare. It’s not right.
But at the University of Portsmouth, they actually found in this study, that women’s breasts don’t do an up and down movement, they make a figure-eight movement while they’re running. It still astounds me that this is a fact I get to present to you. How? Why? Why was this a thing? How does it help us? Does it help us? I don’t know.
I talk to a lot of academic researchers on the Smart Athlete Podcast also here on this channel. So, again, hit that subscribe button, comes out on Fridays. I just can’t imagine any of the people that I speak to, that are doing these very important projects that do things to affect us, both in athletics and beyond working on something of this nature. So, maybe I’m not lowbrow enough. But that is a weird fact. So, we’ll get on to number four.
My fourth and final fact for you today has to do with your heart. Now, we obviously know your heart is very important when we go run. But did you know that when you’re running, the amount of pressure that your heart is creating, if pierced, would have the ability to squirt your blood 30 feet? That’s a lot of pressure.
That’s a lot of pressure. I’m just imagining something going horrifically wrong in a comics -- kind of a comics scene of Monty Python-type style episode. Somebody’s out running, and their heart bursting and squirting all over their companions as they’re running a marathon.
Obviously, the reality of that would be horrific. But at least in my mind, it’s more of a comedic scene. In any case, it’s a weird fact. Why do we know that? Again, who decided to calculate that? It’s these weird facts I want to know about. So, if you have more weird facts, like these, leave them down in the comments below. Share them with me, share them with your fellow runners. We want to know what weird facts about running can you find. As always, I’ll see you next time on the next episode of Runner’s High.