Can You Biohack Your Way to a Better Marathon?

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Consider the Cold

Cold temperatures are known to help with post-workout recovery; that’s why taking a short ice bath post-training can reduce muscle pain and leave you ready for your next workout. But cold temperatures are having a moment right now in the fitness world. Cryotherapy, a process in which the body is submerged in a cold air chamber, can not only aid in muscle recovery—like an ice bath, but can also improve blood oxygenation and enhance mood and focus. Some gyms even offer cryotherapy, if you’re interested in seeing how it affects your marathon training.

Is Biohacking Right for You?

All athletes rely on simple, natural biohacks, but right now there’s a huge marketplace for nootropics and other performance boosts, so it’s important to consider where biohacking fits in your training regimen.

Some athletes see themselves on the cutting edge—they’re the ones testing out products like HVMN, a drinkable ketone product premised on the popularity of the ketogenic diet. HVMN contains the compound beta-hydroxybutyrate, which is typically produced during starvation or when fasting. Its efficacy is still debatable, but since fasting is a known performance enhancer, some of those who already use this biohack have given HVMN a try.

At the far end of the biohacking world are those athletes who want to chemically simulate “runner’s high” – but these radical hackers have a long way to go. Their problem? It takes drugs like opioids and stimulants to achieve this state naturally. Unfortunately, it can be excessively expensive to put natural products through the comprehensive clinical testing necessary to prove their effects.

Biohacking can be as complicated or as simple as you want, but it’s definitely worth considering when pushing your way toward that marathon finish line. Maybe a product like HVMN is more effective than your typical energy gel, or cold water workouts could give you the push for the final sprint. It’s your body—if you want to crack open the system and experiment with newer methods, it’s your decision. While these methods should never stray into realms of real danger or illegality, they might just be your key to higher performance

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