What Doesn’t Kill Us: How Freezing Water, Extreme Altitude and Environmental Conditioning Will Renew Our Lost Evolutionary Strength
Many of us are hedonists and have little incentive to undertake feats like skinny dipping into icy water, swimming underwater while holding our breath for minutes under ice, or climbing Kilimanjaro in shorts and hiking boots only. Even if you have no interest in such undertakings as author and investigating journalist Scott Carney does, his superb book What Doesn’t Kill Us is fascinating reading. The long introduction explains the basis for his assumed reckless, crazy experiments and lifestyle. Over the thousands and millions of years of evolution we lost our abilities to survive extreme conditions, which we can regain with training, starting with regular exercises in ice-cold water. Eventually we learn to love the cold. Carney delves into science, explaining the physiology, nerve, and brain functions during his feats. His book is excellent, as his writing is, and it reads like a good novel. Every chapter starts with a good story, leading into the meat of the chapter, and every one is mesmerizing. The chapters are extensive, but they are page-turners. Twenty-two inbound color photos illustrate his book. His final words to us: “Try finding comfort in the cold” while you instinctively turn up the thermostat.
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