(What Doesn't Kill Us: how freezing water, extreme altitude, and environmental conditioning will renew our lost evolutionary strength) [PDF] ☆ Scott Carney


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  • What Doesn't Kill Us: how freezing water, extreme altitude, and environmental conditioning will renew our lost evolutionary strength
  • Scott Carney
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  • 15 February 2020
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What Doesn't Kill Us: how freezing water, extreme altitude, and environmental conditioning will renew our lost evolutionary strength

What Doesn't Kill Us: how freezing water, extreme altitude, and environmental conditioning will renew our lost evolutionary strength Free read À 109 Hese muscles are so strong that if someone were to cut off your leg with a sword below the knee the muscles would immediately clench shut with enough force to almost completely stem the loss of blood That luckily is not the sort of muscular reflex that we need to test on a daily basis but its nice to know its there just in case However the second our intrepid Bostonian opens the door to her house and has a brush with that near Arctic wind she feels a miniature version of that reactionClimbing a mountain in nothing but a pair of shorts seems idiotic to most but for Wim Hof and his companions its just another day When investigative journalist and anthropologist Carney heard about Hofs mind boggling methods and claims that he could hack the human body he knew he had to venture to Poland to expose this fraud But in just a few days Hof changed Carneys mind and so began a friendship and a new adventure Carney now chronicles his journey to push himself mentally and physically using Wim Hofs method of cold exposure breath holding and meditation to tap into our primal selves Our ancestors survived harsh conditions without modern technology while we live in comfortable bubbles with little to struggle against and wonder how they survived The uestion is What happens when we push our bodies to the limitCarney calls on evolutionary biology and other modern scientific disciplines to explore and explain Hofs unconventional methods Fresh and exciting this book has wide appeal for readers interested in health sports self improvement and extreme challenges BooklistAs this engaging autoethnography relates anthropologist and investigative journalist Carney was skeptical upon encountering a photo of a nearly naked Wim Hof sitting on a glacier in the Arctic Circle Hof a Dutch fitness guru who runs a training camp in Polands wilderness claims he can control his body temperature and immune system solely with his mind though Carney set out to prove Hof a charlatan he was instead won over Carney documents his interactions with Hof and the many others who have learned to control their bodies in seemingly impossible ways he learned Hofs breathing techniues for tricking the body into doing things it isnt evolutionarily designed for and underwent training to face extreme cold while barely clothed It is this training that enables Hof and Carney to summit Mt Kilimanjaro in hours while wearing shorts This is part guide and part popular science book readers will learn about how Neanderthals used the bodys brown fat to keep warm and how exposure nearly reverses the symptoms of diabetes The accomplishments Carney documents are unbelievable and fascinating this isnt a how to for those looking to perform extraordinary feats but it is an entertaining account that will appeal to the adventurous Publishers Weekly On the heels of the paleo diet comes a new claim taking on the physical challenges of the environment faced by our prehistoric ancestors can undo what easy calories and effortless comfort have done to our bodiesmade them fat lazy and weakIn his latest book investigative journalist and anthropologist Carney A Death on Diamond Mountain A True Story of Obsession Madness and the Path to Enlightenment etc expands on his Playboy piece The Iceman Cometh in which he profiled Dutch fitness guru Wim Hof and experienced Hofs strenuous training methods some of which involve exposing the near naked body to snow and icy water At first skeptical Carney became convinced by the changes he experienced in his own body The narrative is filled with personal details that will engage astonish and even repel readers Expanding on his unnerving close up account the author also examines the research being done on the role of brown adipose tissue in the body and a variety of military and sports medicine training practices He cites the anecdotal evidence of people who have placed their faith in Hof and are convinced that his techniues have changed if not saved their liveseg sufferers of Parkinsons disease Crohns disease and rheumatoid arthritis As a climax to his account Carney describes how stripped to the waist he accompanied Hof on a climb to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro Africas highest peak In the epilogue the author asserts that his experiences showed him that exposure to cold helps reconfigure the cardiovascular system combat autoimmune malfunctions and is a pretty darned good method to simply lose weight Hof provides the books forewordCouch potatoes take warning the experiences described in this testimonial are often tough to read about and the conclusions while sometimes convincing might best be taken with a touch of skepticism KirkusScott Carney is so curious about getting to the truth of things that he is willing to endure great pain and suffering to get there While investigating the controversial methods of Wim Hof and others operating on the scientific fringe Carney entered a skeptic yet emerged a true believer InWhat Doesn t Kill Us readers get to follow him along on his transformational journey and the insights are truly fascinating Informative fun and with a healthy degree of danger this is a book for the adventurer in all of usGabrielle Reece co founder XPT Extreme Performance Training The further we get from the harsh environmental conditions that once threatened our existence thewe need them I see this every weekend at a Spartan Race somewhere in the world Millions of otherwise sane people line up to suffer and push themselves to their physical limits and it feels good What Doesn t Kill Us is a fascinating investigation into the innate urge that drives people like these and reveals how some have managed to use environmental conditioning to accomplish truly extraordinary things Joe DeSena founder Spartan RaceAs a Navy SEAL you live by the mantra what doesnt kill us only makes us stronger We would hear this phrase and repeat it but we never had any proof that it was factual Yet through comprehensive study Scott Carney has brilliantly documented how engaging in environmental conditioning breathing meditation and other techniues can actually make us physically and mentally stronger What Doesnt Kill Us is a fascinating book that will captivate all who read it and that will be of immense value to those in the military those who are active in sports and those who seek an alternate means of developing greater mental and physical strengthDon D Mann New York Times bestselling author Inside SEAL Team SIXDamn fun and extremely well researched What Doesnt Kill Us is a great addition to the canon of high performance literature Steven Kotler New York Times bestselling author of Abundance and The Rise of SupermanWhen it s cold outside do you turn the heating up Do you always put a coat on before going out Do you think your comfortable life is good for you If so you have to read Scott Carney s What Doesn t Kill Us Through some great stories which often involve Carney trudging through snow without much on and some serious research he shows us how to escape the bland shuffling gait of our centrally heated fleece jacketed molly coddled lives by diving head first into the ice cold axe sharp scary experiences that made our ancestors hearts beat faster every day If we do that we can awaken from the dull slumber of modern life and open our eyes to a better healthier dawn of crisp air better circulation and the ability to truly mean it when we say I m alive Buy this book and you ll emerge a stronger healthierhuman human James Wallman author of Stuffocatio

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What Doesn't Kill Us: how freezing water, extreme altitude, and environmental conditioning will renew our lost evolutionary strength Free read À 109 Introduction An Ode to a Jellyfish I dont like to suffer Nor do I particularly want to be cold wet or hungry If I had a spirit animal it would probably be a jellyfish floating in an ocean of perpetual comfort Every now and then Id snack on some passing phytoplankton or whatever it is that jellyfish snack on and Id use the tidal forces of the ocean to keep me at the optimal depth If I were lucky enough to have come into the world as a Turritopsis dohrnii the so called immortal jellyfish then I wouldnt even have to worry about death When my last days approached I could simply shrivel into a ball of goo and reemerge a few hours later as a freshly minted juvenile version of myself Yes it would be awesome to be a jellyfish Unfortunately as it turns out I am not an amorphous blob of seagoop As a human I am merely the most recent iteration of several hundred million years of evolutionary development from the time we were all just muck in a primordial soup Most of those previous generations had it pretty rough There were predators to outwit famines to endure species ending cataclysms to evade and an ever changing struggle to survive in outright hostile environments And lets be real most of those would be ancestors died along the way without passing on their genes Evolution is a continual battle waged through generations of minute mutations where only particularly fit or lucky creatures outperform hapless genetic dead ends The body we have today hasnt stopped evolving but I still think if we peel back all the eons of changes that brought us here today that we will still find a little bit of jellyfish at the very core of our beings This is because we have a nervous system that is almost perfectly attenuated for homeostasis the effortless state where the environment meets every physical need Our nervous system automatically responds to challenges in the world around ustriggering muscle contractions releasing hormones modulating body temperature and performing a million other tasks that give us an edge in a particular moment But barring an urgent need for survival the human body is perfectly content to simply rest and do nothing Doing things doing anything reuires a certain amount of energy and our bodies would rather save up that energy just in case they need it later The great bulk of these bodily functions lie just beneath our conscious thoughts but if whatever motivates our nervous system could express itself it would probably maintain that the body that it is responsible for would best tick by admirably well in a state of perpetual and stressless comfort But what is comfort Its not really a feeling as much as it is an absence of things that arent comfortable Our species might never have survived necessary but arduous treks across scorching deserts or over frigid mountain peaks if there werent the promise of some physical reward at the end of the journey We sate our thirst don layers of clothing on cold winter days and clean our bodies because that yearning for comfort is hardwired into our brains Its what Freud called the pleasure principle The programming that makes us gluttons for the easy life didnt emerge out of nowhere Aside from my jellyfish spirit animal almost every organism struggles against the environment that it inhabits Every biological adaptation that makes life incrementally easier came through the glacial progress of natural selection when two animals were able to pass favorable traits onto their descendants Yet evolution reuiresthan a biological duty that culminates in a moment of intense passion it needs the cumulative luck motivations and skill of individual creatures to use their biological abilities to the fullest Every creature whether it is an amoeba or a great ape needs motivation to overcome the challenges of the world around it Comfort and pleasure are the two most powerful and immediate rewards that exist Anatomically modern humans have lived on the planet for almostyears That means your officemate who sits on a rolling chair beneath fluorescent lights all day has pretty much the same basic body as the prehistoric caveman who made spear points out of flint to hunt antelope To get from there to here humans faced countless challenges as we fled predators froze in snowstorms sought shelter from the rain hunted and gathered our food and continued breathing despite suffocating heat Until very recently there was never a time when comfort could be taken for grantedthere was always a balance between the effort we expended and the downtime we earned For the bulk of that time we managed these feats without even a shred of what anyone today would consider modern technology Instead we had to be strong to survive If your pasty skinned officemate had the ability to travel back in time and meet one of his prehistoric ancestors it would be a very bad idea for him to challenge that caveman to a footrace or a wrestling match Over the course of hundreds of thousands of years humans invented some things that made life easierfire cooking stone tools fur skins and foot bindingsbut we were still largely at the mercy of nature Aboutyears ago at the dawn of recorded history things got a little easier still as we domesticated various animal species to do work for us built better shelters and carriedsophisticated gear As human culture advanced at least it all was getting incrementally easier Even so being a human was not exactly carefree Each age let us dependon our ingenuity and less on our basic biology until technological progress was poised to outpace evolution itself And then sometime in the early s our technological prowess became so powerful that it broke our fundamental biological links to the world around us Indoor plumbing heating systems grocery stores cars and electric lighting now let us control and fine tune our environment so thoroughly that many of us can live in what amounts to a perpetual state of homeostasis It doesnt matter what the weather is like outsidescorching heat blizzards thunderstorms or just fine summer daysa person can wake up long past when the sun rises eat a breakfast chock full of fruits flown in from a climate halfway across the globe head to work in a temperature controlled car spend the day in an office and come home without ever feeling the outside air forthan a few minutes Modern humans are the very first species since the jellyfish that can almost completely ignore their natural obstacles to survival Yet comforts golden age has a hidden dark side While we can imagine what a difficult environment might feel like very few of us routinely experience the stresses of our forebears With no challenge to overcome frontier to press or threat to flee from the humans of this millennium are overstuffed overheated and understimulated The struggles of us privileged denizens of the developed worldgetting a job funding a retirement getting kids into a good school posting the exactly right social media updatepale in comparison to the daily threats of death or deprivation that our ancestors faced Despite this apparent victory success over the natural world hasnt made our bodies stronger uite the opposite in fact Effortless comfort has made us fat lazy and increasingly in ill health The developed worldand for that matter much of the developing worldno longer suffers from diseases of deficiency Instead we get the diseases of excess This century has seen an explosion of obesity diabetes chronic pain hypertension and even a resurgence of gout Countless millions of people suffer Le livre des indésirés particularly want to be cold wet or hungry If I had a spirit animal it would L'Islam en France : Les musulmans dans la communauté nationale probably be a jellyfish floating in an ocean of Les religions africaines perpetual comfort Every now and then Id snack on some La politique musulmane de la France au XXe siècle : De l'Hexagone aux terres d'Islam - Espoirs, réussites, échecs passing Entre Islam et Occident.: Entretiens avec G. D.Khoury. phytoplankton or whatever it is that jellyfish snack on and Id use the tidal forces of the ocean to keep me at the optimal depth If I were lucky enough to have come into the world as a Turritopsis dohrnii the so called immortal jellyfish then I wouldnt even have to worry about death When my last days approached I could simply shrivel into a ball of goo and reemerge a few hours later as a freshly minted juvenile version of myself Yes it would be awesome to be a jellyfish Unfortunately as it turns out I am not an amorphous blob of seagoop As a human I am merely the most recent iteration of several hundred million years of evolutionary development from the time we were all just muck in a Louis Massignon primordial soup Most of those L'Islam positif. La religions des jeunes musulmans de France previous generations had it XXI N° 6, PRINTEMPS 2009 : Dans le bleu de l'Islam pretty rough There were Islam, l'épreuve française predators to outwit famines to endure species ending cataclysms to evade and an ever changing struggle to survive in outright hostile environments And lets be real most of those would be ancestors died along the way without Le Droit musulman passing on their genes Evolution is a continual battle waged through generations of minute mutations where only L'Islam contemporain peel back all the eons of changes that brought us here today that we will still find a little bit of jellyfish at the very core of our beings This is because we have a nervous system that is almost L'Islam contemporain perfectly attenuated for homeostasis the effortless state where the environment meets every Cités 2003, hors série : L'Islam en France physical need Our nervous system automatically responds to challenges in the world around ustriggering muscle contractions releasing hormones modulating body temperature and Traité d'athéologie : Physique de la métaphysique performing a million other tasks that give us an edge in a La Sexualité en Islam particular moment But barring an urgent need for survival the human body is L'Islam en France perfectly content to simply rest and do nothing Doing things doing anything reuires a certain amount of energy and our bodies would rather save up that energy just in case they need it later The great bulk of these bodily functions lie just beneath our conscious thoughts but if whatever motivates our nervous system could express itself it would Marianne et le prophète : L'Islam dans la France laïque probably maintain that the body that it is responsible for would best tick by admirably well in a state of Islam et christianisme perpetual and stressless comfort But what is comfort Its not really a feeling as much as it is an absence of things that arent comfortable Our species might never have survived necessary but arduous treks across scorching deserts or over frigid mountain La France en danger d'islam : Entre Jihâd et Reconquista peaks if there werent the Imams de France promise of some Dictionnaire historique de l'islam physical reward at the end of the journey We sate our thirst don layers of clothing on cold winter days and clean our bodies because that yearning for comfort is hardwired into our brains Its what Freud called the Les Réseaux d'Allah : Les filières islamistes en France et en Europe pleasure Islam en France, Islam de France principle The L'Islam programming that makes us gluttons for the easy life didnt emerge out of nowhere Aside from my jellyfish spirit animal almost every organism struggles against the environment that it inhabits Every biological adaptation that makes life incrementally easier came through the glacial Les religions de l'Antiquité pass favorable traits onto their descendants Yet evolution reuiresthan a biological duty that culminates in a moment of intense Islam de France (Documents) passion it needs the cumulative luck motivations and skill of individual creatures to use their biological abilities to the fullest Every creature whether it is an amoeba or a great ape needs motivation to overcome the challenges of the world around it Comfort and Les musulmans en France powerful and immediate rewards that exist Anatomically modern humans have lived on the La démocratie en danger : L'enseignement islamiste saoudien planet for almostyears That means your officemate who sits on a rolling chair beneath fluorescent lights all day has L'Islam de France sera libéral : Entretiens pretty much the same basic body as the La Jeunesse iranienne : Une génération en crise prehistoric caveman who made spear Martin Bucer (1491-1551) : Un réformateur et son temps points out of flint to hunt antelope To get from there to here humans faced countless challenges as we fled Le Corps en Islam predators froze in snowstorms sought shelter from the rain hunted and gathered our food and continued breathing despite suffocating heat Until very recently there was never a time when comfort could be taken for grantedthere was always a balance between the effort we expended and the downtime we earned For the bulk of that time we managed these feats without even a shred of what anyone today would consider modern technology Instead we had to be strong to survive If your Penser l'islam dans la laïcité : Les musulmans de France et la République pasty skinned officemate had the ability to travel back in time and meet one of his L'Orient d'une vie prehistoric ancestors it would be a very bad idea for him to challenge that caveman to a footrace or a wrestling match Over the course of hundreds of thousands of years humans invented some things that made life easierfire cooking stone tools fur skins and foot bindingsbut we were still largely at the mercy of nature Aboutyears ago at the dawn of recorded history things got a little easier still as we domesticated various animal species to do work for us built better shelters and carriedsophisticated gear As human culture advanced at least it all was getting incrementally easier Even so being a human was not exactly carefree Each age let us dependon our ingenuity and less on our basic biology until technological Vocabulaire de l'Islam progress was L'islam et les musulmans en France: Perceptions, craintes et réalités poised to outpace evolution itself And then sometime in the early s our technological Le patient musulman : Guide pratique prowess became so Une grenade entrouverte powerful that it broke our fundamental biological links to the world around us Indoor L'islam en France plumbing heating systems grocery stores cars and electric lighting now let us control and fine tune our environment so thoroughly that many of us can live in what amounts to a France et Islam — Je t'aime, moi non plus: Petites Chroniques, T22 perpetual state of homeostasis It doesnt matter what the weather is like outsidescorching heat blizzards thunderstorms or just fine summer daysa Chronique de France asservie person can wake up long Finance islamique et pouvoir politique past when the sun rises eat a breakfast chock full of fruits flown in from a climate halfway across the globe head to work in a temperature controlled car spend the day in an office and come home without ever feeling the outside air forthan a few minutes Modern humans are the very first species since the jellyfish that can almost completely ignore their natural obstacles to survival Yet comforts golden age has a hidden dark side While we can imagine what a difficult environment might feel like very few of us routinely experience the stresses of our forebears With no challenge to overcome frontier to La croix et le croissant: Actes de la IVe Université d'été de Renaissance catholique, Quarré les Tombes, août 1995 (à reparaître) press or threat to flee from the humans of this millennium are overstuffed overheated and understimulated The struggles of us Les Islamistes sont déjà là : Enquête sur une guerre secrète privileged denizens of the developed worldgetting a job funding a retirement getting kids into a good school CONNAISSANCE DE L'ISLAM posting the exactly right social media updatepale in comparison to the daily threats of death or deprivation that our ancestors faced Despite this apparent victory success over the natural world hasnt made our bodies stronger uite the opposite in fact Effortless comfort has made us fat lazy and increasingly in ill health The developed worldand for that matter much of the developing worldno longer suffers from diseases of deficiency Instead we get the diseases of excess This century has seen an explosion of obesity diabetes chronic La description de la priere du prophete pain hypertension and even a resurgence of gout Countless millions of Vie du Prophète Mohammad (la) Deux Tomes people suffer

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What Doesn't Kill Us: how freezing water, extreme altitude, and environmental conditioning will renew our lost evolutionary strength Free read À 109 From autoimmune ailmentsfrom arthritis to allergies and from lupus to Crohns and Parkinsons diseasewhere the body literally attacks itself It is almost as if there are so few external threats to contend with that all our stored energy instead wreaks havoc on our insides There is a growing consensus among many scientists and athletes that humans were not built for eternal and effortless homeostasis Evolution made us seek comfort because comfort was never the norm Human biology needs stressnot the sort of stress that damages muscle gets us eaten by a bear or degrades our physiuesbut the sort of environmental and physical oscillations that invigorates our nervous systems Weve been honed over millennia to adapt to an ever changing environment Those fluctuations are ingrained in our physiology in countless ways that are for the most part unconnected to our conscious minds Muscles organs nerves fat tissue and hormones all respond and change because of input they get from the outside world Critically some external signals set off a cascade of physiological responses that skip the conscious parts of our brains and connect to a place that controls a wellspring of hidden physical reactions called collectively fight or flight responses For example a plunge into ice cold water not only triggers a number of processes to warm the body but also tweaks insulin production tightens the circulatory system and heightens mental awareness A person actually has to get uncomfortable and experience that frigid cold if they want to initiate those systems But who wants to do that The bulk of us dont see environmental stress in the same light as we do say exercise There doesnt seem to be an obvious reason to leave our shells of environmental bliss Maybe thats not entirely fair In recent years a counterculture has tried to push back against technological overzealousness to reclaim some of our animal nature Theyve shucked fancy footwear for flat shoes and some cases no shoes at all Theyve turned away from climate controlled exercise gyms in favor of rough obstacle courses and boot camps that force muscle groups to work in unison Theyre hacking their diets eating tubers and meat and foregoing grains reminiscent of our Paleolithic ancestors At least eight million people have bought a product called the Suatty Potty a device for the toilet to help a person poop in a suatting stance like our pre toileted forebears did Millionssign up for obstacle course races that feature electrified grids pools of freezing water and grueling climbs over wooden barriers They compete until they are so bone tired that their muscles shake They puke in the mud with tears in their eyes Its not exhilaration theyre seeking its suffering Their pain is so much on the forefront of the experience that the industry of obstacle courses and boot camps are sometimes called sufferfests Think about that for a second There are companies out there that literally make fortunes by selling suffering How did pain become a luxury good Could it be that there is a specific sort of pain that might serve a hidden evolutionary function It would be wrong to call this movement a fad To some degree there have always been people who have straddled the line between biology and technology In ancient Sparta soldier scholars wore only simple red cloaks and no shoes regardless of the weather They believed exposure made them fiercer in battle and immune to the ravages of the outside world For almost a thousand years in China and Tibet mystics and monks endured months or even years on Himalayan peaks with just their robes and daily meditations to protect them Before Europeans arrived in North America the natives of what is today the city of Boston wore littlethan loin cloths to protect them during the icy winters In the s in Russia a movement born from religious fervor convinced hundreds of thousands of Siberians to pour cold water on themselves every day in order to stave off infections and illnesses Advanced technology permeates everything we do but the people who decide to abandon some of that comfort for the rawness of nature represent an indigenous ethos that has almost been wiped out by a societal desire for comfort Theyre learning that if they embrace the way their bodies respond to the natural world they can unlock a hidden wellspring of animal strength Today tens of thousands of people are discovering that the environment contains hidden tools for hacking the nervous system But no matter what they might be able to accomplish theyre not superhuman The fortitude they find comes from within the body itself When they forego a few creature comforts and delvedeeply into their own biology theyre becominghuman For at least half a century the conventional wisdom about maintaining good physical health has rested on the twin pillars of diet and exercise While those are no doubt vital theres an eually important but completely ignored third pillar And whatsBy incorporating environmental training into your daily routine you will achieve big results in very little time It only takes a matter of weeks for the human body to acclimatize to a dazzling array of conditions Once you arrive at high altitude your body automatically producesred blood cells to compensate for lower oxygen saturation Move to an oppressively hot environment and your body will sweat out fewer salts over time and produce lower volumes of urine Heat will also stimulate your cardiovascular system to becomeefficient and increase evaporation and cooling Yet no environmental extreme induces as many changes in human physiology as the cold does Imagine if you will a native Bostonians experience in the winter Though beset by ice storms sleet blizzards and constant overcast skies Boston is not the coldest city in America But the Boston winters are sufficiently miserable to motivate most of its population to head indoors and jack up the thermostat in the colder months In Boston the mean difference between the indoor temperature and the outside air in January is a shiver inducing degrees When this typical Bostonian walks out the front door of her stately brownstone she probably cringes with pain as a blast of icy air uickens her nerves and turns her face into a grimace Beneath the surface of her skin a series of nerve and muscle responses cause the blood vessels to constrict which can be painful if the underlying muscles havent been strengthened from repeated prior exposures If in a fit of uncharacteristic madness she decides to remove her shoes and plant her bare feet in the snow the almost degree swing in temperature would feel akin to walking across a hot bed of coals These unhabituated responses of the human body are not pleasant but the physiology of the process is worth examining The human circulatory system is made up of a series of spongy arteries and veins that carry our blood supply and oxygen to every tissue Arteries carry red oxygen rich blood away from the heart and lungs while blue tinged veins carry it back This vast and complex network of vessels would extendthanmiles if laid end to end In a single day the liters of blood in a human body travels a total of almostmiles through the system or almost four times the distance across the United States This great blood superhighway isthan just a series of tubes its an active and responsive system Lining most of the important veins is a similarly complex network of tiny muscles that constrict the flow of blood away from one particular area to boost the supply to another T