The seemingly relentless cold weather reminded me of a previous experiment with the cold and thermogenics, a concept developed by space scientist Ray Cronise
As I recall, the back story to “using cold” is outlined in the 4 hour body book.
which cites numerous reasons why you should use coldness in your struggles for weight loss and health. The reasons are these
1. Short-term cold exposure (30 minutes) in humans leads to fatty acid release to provide fuel for heat production through shivering. This same shivering could be sufficient to recruit “GLUT-4” to the surface of muscle cells, contributing to increased lean muscle gain.
2. Cold exposure (with shivering) may increase adiponectin levels and glucose uptake by muscle tissue, and the goodness may outlast the shivering
3. In the absence of shivering, it is still possible to capitalise on “fat-burning fat” through the stimulation of BAT thermogenesis
4. Cold water improves immunity (maybe it increases the levels of circulating norepinephrine)
5. Cold showers could help depression
Wow, all this for just turning the central heating down/off cooler showers and nipping outside for a fag?
The 4 hour body book ( sooo 2011!1) was based on the works of our good friend Ray Cronise who initially recommended the following protocols:
A) Place an ice pack on the back of the neck or upper trapezius area for 20–30 minutes
B) Consume 500 ml of ice water on an empty stomach when waking
C) Take 5–10-minute cold shower before breakfast and/or before bed
D) If you can tolerate more, take 20-minute baths that induce shivering
However, the death of a worker in a las vegas “cryospa” panicked “cold advisors” and so a more humane protocol is probably :
“Mild cold stress begins in water temperatures below 80F (26C) and air temperatures below 60F (15.5C). There is no reason to go below 60F(15.5C) water or 32F (0C) air. Generally speaking one can get all the benefit they need from just a 10 degrees .
Ideal temperatures are 75F (24C) water and 55F (13C) air”
So where does this leave us?
It leaves us on the verge of a whole range of exciting discoveries, and a whole lot of experiments and trials. Some of us have heard that the cold stimulates testosterone, helps recovery from physical training and has a role in first aid training.
So I kicked off this morning in a very unspectacular way, by simply turning the shower temperature down for the last minute of the shower!