To motivate you and help you reach your goals, nothing is better than having a gym buddy. But how far would you go before ‘too much’ is really ‘too much?’ Probably to the point when there’s a risk of kidney failure. That’s what happened to two women in China.
1,000 squats in a row and a trip to the ICU
At 19 years old, Xiao Tang and her friend were admitted to intensive care after completing a huge challenge. The two women did 1,000 squats in a row.
This type of physical activity involves crouching down and flexing your muscles which particularly requires the use of your thighs and glutes. Very effective as cardio and weight training, squats are a part of lots of exercise routines.
In two-three hours, Xiao Tang and her friend completed this 1,000-squat challenge… without actually preparing for it beforehand.
That same evening, Xiao Tang naturally felt aches and sore which didn’t worry her since she knew she had done quite an intense workout. But the next day, her pain had gotten worse. She reported:
My leg was not only sore, but I couldn’t bend it. Then I went to the bathroom and found that my urine was brown.
Her urine turned brown
Because of advice from her boyfriend, the young woman was taken to hospital where tests revealed that her myoglobin readings were through the roof. This is a protein that is produced when muscle breaks down and also contributes to muscle oxygenation.
This high concentration of myoglobin was what had caused her urine to turn brown. But it can also be a symptom of a more serious condition known as rhabdomyolysis. This happens when the kidneys are no longer able to filter unwanted substances from the bloodstream and they end up becoming clogged, which can lead to kidney failure. As doctors say, lots of things can lead to rhabdomyolysis, but sometimes, exercising in a way that is too demanding physically can also cause it.
Luckily, it all turned out okay for Xiao Tang and her friend. They were both rehydrated and their myoglobin levels returned to normal, avoiding the worst and saving their organs.