Monday, March 5, 2012

The nature of fatigue

I've been doing some reading for an article that I am writing on the nature of fatigue and the Brain's role in exhaustion.

Once the article has been published I'll post some of it here, but for now I just wanted to point to the work of Samuele Marcora

There is a good interview with him here - Perception is everything

and his key studies are 

·      The limit to - Marcora SM, Staiano W. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2010 Jul;109(4):763-70. Epub 2010 Mar 11.
·      Mental fatigueMarcora SM, Staiano W, Manning V. J Appl Physiol. 2009 Mar;106(3):857-64. Epub 2009 Jan 8.
·      The face of fatigue de Morree HM, Marcora SM. Biol Psychol. 2010 Dec;85(3):377-82. Epub 2010 Sep 9.

In his model, fatigue is a psychological issue, not a physical one.  When the perception of effort excedes the reward from that effort we give up.  The key is in modifying our perceptions.


Anonymous said...

Central command is probably the largest limiting step in fatigue; but overcoming the hurdle of central command only brings the next hurdles closer: cardiovascular and muscular biochemical fatigue.

Random said...

A great example of strength of will versus science and genetics can be found in the 1997 sci-fi film Gattaca. In the movie, Vincent (Ethan Hawke’s character) beats his genetically enhanced brother in a game where they swim out into the ocean seeing who can go the farthest before turning back. Since Vincent has the flawed DNA of those born before genetic engineering, his brother Anton finds it inconceivable that he could be beaten, as Vincent never came close to victory in the past. He demands to know how Vincent bested him.

“You want to know how I did it? This is how I did it, Anton. I never saved anything for the swim back.” –Vincent

From this: