The first time I read that running can turn your toenails black or even make them fall off, I knew I'd found the limit to my dedication to the sport. I'll run through achey joints, sore muscles and most blisters, but toenails are sacrosanct, a permanent part of my body. Fortunately, mine have survived my handful of marathons entirely intact and properly colored.
Some, however, are being preempting the problem.
Ultramarathoners—anybody who runs more than 26.2—tend to get serious toenail issues. So the Times highlights one unorthodox solution: have them permanently removed. There are apparently no medical reasons to keep them, though they can actually grow back even after surgical removal. To me, that's sign enough that my body wants its nails and I don't intend to argue.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.