The Life Cycle of the Red Corpuscle

by wjw on July 4, 2012

I found out how long my mountain-boosted pulmonary system lasted.  Ten days.

During Taos Toolbox I spent two weeks at nearly 10,000 feet, which means my body was madly churning out red blood cells to carry all the extra oxygen I needed to survive.

When I came home, I figured I’d be bringing a ton of O2 with me, and I would be, like, Superman, at least till all my extra corpuscles kicked the bucket.   And in fact I was.  I blasted through my karate class the other day.  When I was running on the elliptical machine, which I do nearly every day, my heart rate stayed a good 10 points below its normal rate.  I was Super Cardio Supreme!  I was awesome!

Till yesterday, which was 10 days after I came down the mountain.  That’s when the running got just a little bit harder, and my heart jumped to its normal rate.

Did all the extra corpuscles die in just 24 hours?  It sez online that red blood cells live for 100-120 days, but that can’t be the case.  High-altitude conditioning don’t last no four months.

Dude, they last ten days!  I’ve got objective proof!

Somebody call Wikipedia.  They need to change the truth.  Again.

Urban July 4, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Not everyone agrees that it’s more red blood cells which help.

wjw July 4, 2012 at 8:05 pm

Well, there you go trusting Wikipedia again.

Ralf The Dog. July 4, 2012 at 11:51 pm

Carbon Monoxide poisoning lasts about 100 days long, unless it kills you. Then it only lasts as long as you do. Did you use up your mega red cells by huffing CO?

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