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Wednesday 10 February 2010

Why Can Men Run Faster Than Women

Freddie 'Blue Eyes' Bluelights explains why men run faster than women.

First, Ive just heard from the hospital that my total hip replacement operation will be on Saturday 13th February. I shall be in hospital from 3-7 days depending upon how well I recover. Always the optimist I intend to make it 3 days so hopefully I will see you on Wednesday (fleetingly). I shall keep the roasts going by automatic scheduling just in case and look forward to seeing you when I return. I do apologise I have not visited many of you recently - I have felt dreadfully dragged down with this painful hip.

Now to Freddie - notice his blue eyes are beginning to sparkle. This follows on from Freddie's previous lecture entitled, "Why women can multi-task and men can't." If you missed it press HERE.
Last time I ended up by asking, "Why can men run faster than women?"
Was it so he can chase one of these?
Or to run away from one of these?
Or maybe running like hell from one of these? Imagine one of these charging at you from the forest!!Or perhaps fleeing from his mother-in-law? HELP!
The question is divided into two halves. 'How?' and 'Why?' As usual the scientists tackle the 'How' part and totally ignore the 'Why' because they just will not speculate but deal only in fact.

OK let's play along with them and the examine the 'How' part and clear the way for 'Why'.

Now is Freddie the ultimate running machine? Not necessarily but he might be if he were to become super fit, slim and trim, train, have the best coaching, and have a good cardio-vascular system. Clearly our Freddie Bluelights isn't a natural athlete but he is highly knowledgeable on the subject, having a degree at Bedrock University on Behavioural Studies of Men and Women.

In terms of the animal kingdom is any human the ultimate running machine? Evidence shouts a resounding "No!" Leaving aside the Cheetah, even a 3 ton Hippo can beat the current world record 100 metres champion over a short distance, and the 10,000 metres world record holder is utterly hopeless against wild dogs who could easily run him down.

Today in his second talk Freddie examines some recent research on this subject - some true and some wildly inaccurate. As Freddie explains, the main point to remember is a top quality woman athlete can beat 99% of all men across all distances, simply because most men are not athletes. However no woman can beat any male athlete over any distance - yet! Freddie says, yet, because some years ago a theory was put forward that women had made much greater advances than men in terms of reducing times for all events across the entire range of track and field. At the same time men were making only modest improvements because they were already near their optimum potential. Scientists supporting this idea made a fundamental error, assuming that this rapid improvement in women would continue at the same rate. So by the year 2050 women it was put about within scientific circles women would actually beat men in every event, claiming world records by the score. Freddie will explain how silly this argument is.

The answer to 'How' could be that male athletes are more muscular, have less fat and possess a larger heart, and whereas all these are true the main reason is simply the male sex hormone testosterone present in men and absent in women. This is the key because testosterone promotes the production of haemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying protein found inside red blood cells, and testosterone also increases the concentration of red cells in the blood. The key female sex hormone, oestrogen makes them more rounded and curvy but has no such effect. As a result, each litre of male blood contains about 150-160 grams of haemoglobin, compared to only 130-140 grams for females. The bottom line is that each litre of male blood can carry about 11 per cent more oxygen than a similar quantity of female blood. Strangely enough, male world records at distances from 800 metres all the way up to the marathon are also about 11 per cent faster than female world marks. Is that just a coincidence, or does the 11 per cent enhancement of blood oxygen in males produce the 11 per cent improvement in running speeds?

Since oxygen is needed to furnish most of the energy required for endurance running, some scientists have suspected that the 11 per cent oxygen difference is indeed the key factor behind male-female performance variation. So, Freddie, explains no matter how much women have improved in their performances this 11% difference will always hinder them from equalling, let alone surpassing, their male counterparts. Further, since women have the hormone oestrogen, they produce more fat and this can be regarded as dead weight. "Ah!" some people might say, "muscle is heavier than fat and therefore would require more oxygen to get this weight round the track than the extra fat in women."

"Rubbish!" Freddie would argue, "muscles are not dead weight because they aid propulsion."
Incidentally the female hormone oestrogen is responsible also for developing the 30% extra connections in ladies brains so they can multi-task.

So now we come to the interesting 'Why' part of the question, "Why can men run faster than women?" In other words what led to this situation in the first place causing men to secrete more testosterone and women more oestrogen?

Was it God giving Adam and Eve a choice in the Garden Of Eden. Did he say, "Now look folks, do you want a hairy chest, speak with a deep voice, do one thing only at a time but do it well, run faster, talk less, be shy and retiring? Or do you want to speak in a high voice, have a lot less hair, possess a nice curvacious body, have a multi-tasking brain plus the ability to talk the hind leg off a donkey and flutter your eye-lashes?"
Obviously they made their appropriate choices but it was developed further by macro evolution. The full answer of 'How' goes way beyond the remit of this study but it seems to centre on how Freddie's ancestors developed and perhaps females ability to multi-task and not to specialise in just one area may have led to this, causing them to have a lower oxygen uptake and run slower. They did not need to focus on just one thing, like an ape man escaping a T. Rex whilst shouting, "Run like hell chaps - it's every man for himself!"

In a prehistoric sprint race a hairy deep voiced male, oozing testosterone, would be focused on one thing only and that is crossing the finishing line first by hook or by crook. In a prehistoric ladies race the participants might not focus entirely on winning the race. They would want to talk and compare boyfriends whilst running down the track and thinking of what colour to paint their nails, what to cook for dinner, what name to call their unborn children, Nabopolassar or Merodach Baladan or Artaxerxes Longimanus, if they might be boys, or Jezebel, Delilah or Deborah, if they might be girls. Ahh!! Deborah, the Maggie Thatcher of the ancient world with her little husband Barak (or was he Dennis?).

Anyway, had these ladies been hunting rather than just running a race they might, because of their superior multi-tasking ability, incorporate a technique called group dynamics, where they could discuss, chew over and debate how to snare a marauding Big Foot instead of running like hell like the men might.

So if they saw one of these in a forest:

A whole series of these would jump out from behind a tree.
They would say, "Boo!" and scream at the poor unsuspecting Big Foot. Then another, "Boo!", moving in a slightly different direction, then another. The Big Foot would get so mad it would not know which screaming woman to chase, particularly if it was male and could not multi-task. Then all the screaming ladies would all turn round and run away with Big Foot, puffing and snorting in hot pursuit. Then more would appear and eventually they would lead the poor thing into a trap, the floor would give way and he would fall into a deep pit. Then the women would spear it to death, complaining that their husbands seemed quite incapable of working out how to do such a simple task, remarking, "Who needs testosterone when we can do it equally well with oestrogen."

The animal kingdom has latched onto group dynamics because a pride of female lions hunt in unison with several attacking potential victims like an unsuspecting buffalo, urged on by a ravenous male lion from the bushes, who never thinks of lifting a paw to help. Always a couple of lions cover the back door just in case the quarry turns tail and runs backwards, in which case they would attack and kill from the rear. Of course the male lion would then roar madly, assisted by loads of surplus testosterone. Then he would muscle in for the first feed when all the work has been done by his wives. Typical! LOL

So there you have it.

Next time Freddie Bluelights considers the staggering fact that women talk three times as much as men. They say 20,000 words every day of their lives compared to only 7,000 for men. I say only 7,000 but I am very surprised it is as many as this, frankly, yet I am hardly surprised by the other statistic. LOL


  1. That is BRILLIANT news!
    Will be keeping all my fingers & toes crossed that it won't be cancelled.
    Saturday is a funny day to be having an operation!

    Nuts in May

  2. All the best,
    to a speedy recovery,

    Reaction to Men vs Women:
    Wow! (Sorry, have only a few words left of today's tally! *smile*)

  3. interesting and hilarious, you are a clever Eddie!!! you write so fluidly and easily it seems...a JOY!!!

    saz fab & feisty and 50

  4. very funny.
    good luck on Sat.
    see you here soon.

  5. hope all goes well saturday. prayers for a quick recovery. notice how i did not comment on the men vs women..i dont want to have to test the theory. lol.

  6. Well, I'm aure glad you cleared that up! (NOT!) lol

    Seriously--hope your surgery goes well, and you are up and running soon!

  7. best wishes. Hope you recover even quicker then hoped!!:)

  8. All the best for your op. Just be grateful that 13th February is not a friday.

  9. So glad you are finally having your surgery Eddie, I will say a special prayer for you. Please get well soon and keep us up to date with how you are doing.....used up all my words today......:-) Hugs

  10. Good luck with the Op Eddie.
    Im sure the nurses will keep you safe. Wink Wink.

  11. My sweetie must be a throw back...he talks my leg off. And anyone else's he can get to stand still long enough!!! LOL!
    Best wishes on your surgery. I hope you recovery is speedy!!

  12. Wishing you a speedy recovery Eddie! Don't give the nurses a hard time!

  13. Best wishes for the speediest of recoveries

  14. Sending best thoughts for a speedy recovery, Eddie. You'll do great!

  15. Dear Edoardo,
    I sincerely hope all goes well on Saturday. My prayers for a quick recovery. You'll do great and chasing the lasses pronto.

    Big hugs
    Lola xx

  16. OMgosh, one funny post!! and the fact that you used Saz'z avatar was hilarious. Brilliant Eddie, stress from impending surgical procedure leads to very creative posts.
    It's a lousy way to spend Valentine's Day, but I am hoping for that speedy recovery!

  17. Good luck. Had mine done five years ago. Brilliant. Mines posh, ceramic, beat that!

  18. Truly magnificent, Eddie. Lots of people say they laughed out loud at something or other, but I truly did when I got to the part about the platoon of Saz's jumping out from behind a tree.

    (She's a lovely lady, in singular, but a whole tribe of her would be formidable.)

  19. Well, I am happy to hear that your hip will be taken care of soon...that's actually a good valentine's "gift". My beloved mom felt sooooo much better when she had her hip done, then years later she had the other one done.

    I'll be sending prayers up to Heaven for a safe and speedy recovery...fool them ALL, Eddie and just hop off the operating table after it's over and go on home!

    blessings and prayers,


  20. Okay Professor!
    Wow you sounded like a historian, a doctor, and a clergyman all in one!

    I can't believe you will be confined in the hospital on Valentine's. Let's hope you get to run outta there after a day only!

    What's grandma doing? I do love her crown...

  21. Oh mon cher ami, Your wonderful imagination is only exceeded by your charm and good looks! I had to lol on this post! That Freddie is so canialle! I will be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers and hoping that all goes well with the surgery. Wishing you a speedy recovery and will be looking forward to that Cajun waltz!
    Love, Marguerite

  22. My goodness Eddie! 'ts hilarious! And a bunch of Saz to scare the gorillas, how did you come up with that?

    Do have a speedy recovery.

  23. Thank you everyone for your kind and good wishes.
    I shall certainly try my best to recover as soon as I can.
    I shall have paper and pen handy to write stuff if I can concentrate. More Freddie to come!! LOL

  24. Oooophhhhhhh!!My God Eddie!!!!Unbelievably hilarious and amazing post with so much of medical/ scientific input into it.I am completely shattered by constant laughing,enjoying each and every diction of yours with perfect and absolutely correct physiological medical figures and facts.You have an alarming know-how of medical knowledge,that is incredible but I am a bit jealous too!!you know why??.

    Anyway,so...You will have a new Head and a new Cap within 24-48 hours from now..that's so sweet and sounds like a dream...Isn't it ?.(Of course,you know,I mean....a new young and refreshing head of your Femur bone and a new glistening Acetabular (part of pelvic bone) cap to fit into your head!!(femur head!).
    The type of hilarious and humerus personality you have,I'm sure you will have a speedily fastest recovery from your surgery.A personality like You,ALWAYS has abundance of positively charged adaptive hormones (corticoids),Growth hormone,Prolactin,and IGF-I(insulin like growth factor) etc. in his/her blood which always boost one's immune system and good health.

    With deep,sincere and best wishes for your healthy and speedy recovery....dr.s.s.yadav.

  25. I'd rather be able to bat my eye lashes than run fast any day! :)

    1. I expect you could do both - after all you can multi-task lol


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