Cigarette smoking: an underused tool in high-performance endurance training
The Article: “Cigarette smoking: an underused tool in high-performance endurance training”
Kenneth Myers, CMAJ December 14, 2010 182(18). The Idea:
Is cigarette smoking positively related to endurance performance?
The Study: This review article examines the literature on several effects of smoking and how they might apply to performance in endurance sports. The Findings: Cigarette smoking is associated with higher hemoglobin levels, larger lung volumes, and weight loss, which are all factors associated with improved performance in endurance sports. The Takeaway: Cigarette smoking should be considered as a potential method to improve endurance performance.
Think critically about what you read. Correlation and causation are easily confused, and review articles can take data out of context and create a seemingly convincing argument for a nonsensical idea.