Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Shiver those pounds away.
(+6, -6)
  [vote for,

"Welcome to Shivercise, the newest, easiest way to shed unwanted pounds, tone all your muscles, put forth no effort, and feel no pain at all. My name is Rique, I'll be your attendant. Please step into the shower room, enjoy our variety of cleansing products, and put on one of the white cotton garments you will find there."

"Welcome back. You smell divine and look so sparkly. Just hop up on the scale and let me write this down. Goodness, you are lucky to have found us. Now, if you'll kindly walk this way, we'll get you into a Shivercize tub. Yes, it looks like a small hot tub. How's the water temp? Nice and mild? Good. Here's the remote for the overhead TV, you pick a channel while I get the cycle started. Now just rest your head back in the water, cradled between these underwater speakers. Your face is still above water? Lovely! Can you hear me? Marvelous!

"The water is getting cooler, isn't it? Oh, don't speak, just bite on this mouthpiece and breath through your nose. Good. Feel the temperature dropping? Yes, keep watching Oprah--she is just divine, really.

"Ah, you are getting goosebumps. I like to see that. Now . . . now . . . you ARE starting to shiver. Feel that? You are burning calories, but you aren't moving a muscle, your muscles are moving themselves. Quite a workout, eh?

"The thermometer in the mouthpiece tells me that your body temperature is dropping. You can't feel a thing, can you? You are numb, and not even noticing your lovely workout. You chose the full treatment, so you'll lose consciousness soon, but I'll be right here beside you."

"Welcome back, again. I've raised the temperature of the water. Your shivering has stopped, and the goosebumps are fading. Your body temperature will return to normal, and we'll put in some nice-smelling bubbles in the hot water and let you relax a while. Your muscles will be a bit sore, as you've had quite a workout. I'll bring you the computer printout of calories expended, and a cup of hot tea. Afterwards, I'll help you onto the scale and we'll see how much weight you lost."

baconbrain, Aug 28 2006

An analysis. http://mb-soft.com/public2/diet007.html
[ldischler, Aug 29 2006]

Details about exercising in the cold http://www.athletes...utrition/feb_05.htm
Shivering burns 400-500 calories / hour - slightly less than just exercising would, actually. [jutta, Aug 29 2006]

NewScientist article http://www.newscien...s-to-fatsville.html
From the articel "Could air conditioning in summer and heating in winter really make a difference to our weight? Sadly, there is some evidence that it does" [xaviergisz, Nov 08 2006]


       Thanks, Autoboner.   

       After thinking about this, I recall that the body temperature has to be above a certain level to metabolize fat. It may not be possible to send the victim . . . er, client into hypothermic oblivion. They may have to stay awake and enjoy the show.
baconbrain, Aug 28 2006

       I've pondered this method a few times, myself. I figure the body will burn more calories to make up for lost body temp, but there are competing factors. Perhaps the body would rather shut down and just wait out the cold. Apparently, I have no idea.
daseva, Aug 29 2006

       You can develop some extremely sore muscles from shivering. Would this be like working out at the gym, where one day you would shiver your upper body, the next day your lower body, and then the day after get in some cardio shivering?
normzone, Aug 29 2006

       This is really out of any of my areas of expertise. I once read about a fisherman who lost fifteen pounds during a night in cold water. I also know that bit about a certain temperature to metabolize fat. Vagus nerves, diving reflexes and extremities are beyond me. Well, I know that I have shivered in my sleep a few times, as well as while staggering through the woods in winter. Shivering ain't much fun.   

       But, an exercise spa in Los Angeles could probably convince people to pay lots of money to suffer through it. Which is why I wrote this idea the way that I did.   

       Shivercise might be bad for you, but a spa could sell it.
baconbrain, Aug 29 2006

       > "Afterwards, I'll help you onto the scale
> and we'll see how much weight you lost."

       Reality check: a pound of fat stores about 3500 calories. Exercising burns around 500-1000 calories an hour. So, if you were to weigh yourself before and after an hour's worth of exercise of any kind, any difference in weight would almost certainly be due to loss of fluids, not due to direct effects of burned calories.   

       A drop in temperature makes you hungry. (If food is scarce, it's a good idea to eat more - evolutionary speaking.) So, baconbrain's client is likely to head for the next fast food store, where just about anything they eat will add more calories than they just burned.   

       As baconbrain already alludes to - different temperatures change where the metabolism gets its fuel. Low temperatures cause it to head to quickly accessible carbohydrates; when they're gone, the client will be tired and hungry. What you'd want is an increased metabolism that burns fat.   

       Inducing mild to medium hypothermia would require close watching, and I like that the idea is written to include this; but, realistically, I don't think even in LA, where people will buy anything, this Spa could afford to insure itself.
jutta, Aug 29 2006

       Thanks, jutta! I learn a lot here, including how little I know about some subjects.   

       I now recall that some of the small hibernating animals have to wake up and warm up enough to metabolize fat into something else, then go back to deep sleep.
baconbrain, Aug 29 2006

       //Low temperatures cause it to head to quickly accessible carbohydrates// Well, yes, but it also heads quickly to fats and will burn more fats than carbohydrates, even as a percentage increase due to exposure. Initially, 50% of the fuel used to shiver is from fats.   

       Oddly, your basal metabolism slows substantially as your core temperature drops. If, however, your basal metabolism (1 MET (metabolic equivalent)) were to stop (without you dying, hypothetically), this would still leave you expending 3 METs on thermogenesis by shivering. So, you're operating at somewhere between 3 and 4 METs and getting half the calories from fat by shivercising. Not bad, but no match for a real workout.   

       Fat continues to burn at this rate until you run out of carbs, then it burns at a higher rate. The problem with continuing, besides the obvious danger, is that in the advanced stages of hypothermia you feel warm and stop shivering. - No more fat loss, commence shutdown sequence, have a nice nap (coma).   

       //What you'd want is an increased metabolism that burns fat.// Amen.   

       P.S. That analysis link is BS (no offense).
Shz, Aug 30 2006

       ". . . in 0° F weather, you may use about 23 percent of those calories to warm the inspired air"   

       It looks like I forgot to chill the air for the sufferer.   

       I now seem to recall seeing pictures of football players sitting in bins of icewater. It could have been a therapy treatment, or just some sort of coach cruelty.
baconbrain, Aug 30 2006

       Probably just to prevent swelling.   

       Don't worry about the air temp. The victim, eh, client will lose heat to the water about 25 times faster than to the air anyway. They're well taken care of.
Shz, Aug 30 2006

       Interestingly, there's an article in this week's New Scientist about factors which contribute to obesity apart from eating too much and exercising too little. One of them is heating and aircon. Shivering does burn calories, of course, but so does sweating and heat also makes you less hungry than usual. If we switched off or even just turned down the central heating or air conditioning, we'd use up calories regulating our body temperature.
squeak, Nov 09 2006

       Burning calories by sweating is a myth. Almost no calories are consumed this way.
Shz, Nov 09 2006

       the appetite reduction aspect is true though. Since the weather turned cold my appetite has increased greatly. This pisses me off as I'm not keen on eating.
stilgar, Nov 11 2006


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