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Old 10-13-05, 10:02 AM   #1
telenick
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A case for blood doping

I thought this made a plausible cross-over from ski racing to bicycle racing.

Bode Miller (US Ski Team racer) offers an opinion of performance enhancing drugs.

From Ski Racing Magazine: (http://www.skiracing.com/news/news_...php/2582/ALPINE)

...Miller offered a unique argument for legalizing the use of performance-enhancing drugs.

“I’m surprised it’s illegal,” Miller said, “because in our sport, it would be pretty minimal health risks, and it would actually make it safer for the athletes, because you’d have less chance of making a mistake at the bottom and killing yourself.”

That burn you feel in your legs at the bottom of a course? That indicates anaerobic oxygen depletion of your blood. Miller reasons your brain is similarly effected.

Endurance-boosting drugs such as erythropoietin, which is very much banned in Olympic sports, would help keep oxygen flowing to the brain, allowing skiers to make safer decisions, Miller said.

“You have to make four or five decisions every second in skiing, every turn,” said the overall World Cup champion. “[These are] conscious decisions, plus there’s another hundred that are instinct. And when your brain starts to slow down, as if you’re holding your breath for two minutes, it makes it damn hard to make those decisions.”
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Old 10-13-05, 10:45 AM   #2
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Assuming you buy the line about anaerobic activity depriving the brain of oxygen (which I don't) then using EPO would only let you go further before you reached the same point again. Whether you buy into the argument or not, it's still a question of using drugs to exceed the body's normal limits of performance.
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Old 10-13-05, 12:35 PM   #3
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You seem to think that I'm promoting his point of view. I'm not.

What I find interesting is that professional level athletes are willing to throw caution to the wind with their general health for that elusive edge over their competitors.

His statement about burn is nonsense.
That burn you feel in your legs at the bottom of a course? That indicates anaerobic oxygen depletion of your blood. Miller reasons your brain is similarly effected.

I believe he's mistaking that feeling for lactic burn.

If there's evidence that an anaerobic state deprives the brain of oxygen, then the drug enhanced athlete will only be able to perform at a higher level of anaerobic state. At that point the brain will still be deprived of oxygen.
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