Following yesterday’s 16th stage of the Tour de France, Bora-Hansgrohe rider Paweł Poljański grammed a photo of his gnarly legs. I put it below the jump because it’s legitimately gross, so consider yourself warned:
What the hell is going on here? (Also, Paweł, my man, sunblock is your friend.) Dr. Bradley Launikonis, who heads the muscle research lab at the University of Queensland, told ABC News (Australia) that’s it’s simple vascular math:
“The amount of blood that we get normally going down to our legs is five litres per minute, for anyone at rest. For an untrained athlete, their maximum exercise will have 20 litres per minute flowing through the muscles,” he said.
“One of these elite cyclists will have double that, about 40 litres per minute. They have massive volumes of blood moving through.”
“It’s not going to happen to someone who’s doing recreational exercise. It’s clearly something that’s only going to happen in elite athletes, like these guys riding in massive cycling events.”
That explains that, though it doesn’t make it any better.
Anyway, since I’m clearly here to fuck up your day before it even really begins, check these truly gruesome photos of an English ultramarathoner’s legs after she ran without sunscreen. They’re really bad, beware.
What’s for breakfast?