Sunday, April 15, 2012

Boston Marathon Excitement at the Museum of Science!

Hi friends!! I hope you all have been having a fantastic weekend!! I for one have been go, go, going again this weekend, with Boston Marathon excitement and a good friend's bachelorette down in Newport, RI.

I know I am usually a bit MIA on Sundays, but I just wanted to check in with you all and let you know about a neat event going on at the Boston Museum of Science in honor of this year's Boston Marathon.

In conjunction with the Boston Athletic Association, the Museum of Science is inviting you all to explore the science behind long-distance endurance, with several programs throughout the museum.  There are hands-on activities, guest presentations and some information around how the human body copes with the intense pressures of training for and running a marathon.

There is also a new display showing the changing history of women's running apparel and euquipment throughout the years, including one from the first woman to run the Boston Marathon, and the outfit Caroline Killiel won for female last year (2011).

It was pretty incredible to see the women's apparal throughout the years, and especially the kind of footwear they wore - as the debate over minimalist, supportive and barefoot seems to continue on, you can see how non-technical the shoe of the female winners have been throughout history and still produced success.

I had a little trouble finding any of the guest presentations, but I was able to have a little fun with Science in the Park, and see how many Newtons (unit of force) your body experiences when jumping, or even just swinging your arms back and forth.  It was interesting to see the science behind why swinging your arms, really does help you to propel forward when running, and might save some energy in the legs, especially in longer distance running.
getting some air on the newton calculator
As you can see, the harder and higher I jumped, the sharper the angles on the graph became, that meant I was expending more energy and my body was experiencing greater force.

Here, my friend Emma, was just flapping her arms (the first shorter angles) then squatting down suddenly (the middle spikes) and then swinging her arms again...the angles are not as rigid as the graph above of me jumping, but she is still experiencing force to the body even when her legs aren't necessarily moving.
Science in the park also has a small run-way that you can check your sprint speed.  The run-way is lined with a row of lights, that when activated will light up in order at the speed you indicate before running.
You could set the lights to change over at a speed of 1 meter/sec, to a speed of 4 meters/second

I didn't get a chance to check it out, but as you can see, this little kid really stuck it to the lights, flying past them!
We also ran into a little science on endorphins, those feel good vibes you get from a great run, spin class or weight lifting sessions.

Just boosting some endorphin activity 
 Did you know that you can also get that endorphin feeling from consuming caffeine, chocolate,  chili peppers, from getting a massage or having sex?!  There are so many ways to release those feel-good endorphins each and every day - so get out there and experiment with some spicy foods or indulge in that massage session!
I had a great time checking out all of the science behind exercising, and viewing some of the Boston Marathon display, and I suggest you try to check it out yourself this weekend or tomorrow even to get into the marathon spirit, or just check out some of this great info for yourself!!

Check out the finale of the program starting at 9 AM today (Sunday, April 15) and tomorrow (Mon. April 16th - Marathon day!).  For more information and to check out more events from the Museum of Science, Boston, go check out this link: The apparal display is located in the Green, Wing Level 2, across from the Human Body Connection).

The Museum also has a team running in the marathon tomorrow, so check out their site if you get a chance and get yourself tuned into Marathon Monday!! You can check out the museum's live race feed and see if you can spot the Museum's marathon runners!

**I was given access to this program free of charge, but the opinions and descriptions are all my own.

1 comment:

  1. Now this is a science exhibit I could really get into.... would love to see this someday.

    I am hoping to pick up a live stream in the morning of the race.


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