Welcome to the Study

"A scaling approach to the physiology of distance running"

Within this project we study correlation between heart rate data (heart rate and its variability) and running speed during exercise in runners. This shall allow us to estimate certain physiological profiles of the runners for which we have developed a theoretical model that we would like to probe with your help. Please contact us if you would like to participate in our study.

This research is funded by a "EMERGENCE2017" grant from C.N.R.S., the French National Center for Scientific Research.

The team

We are a rather small "team" of physicists, engineers and runners who combined our interests in science and long distance running to start this research project. If you share the same interest and would like to join our efforts, please contact us.

Thorsten Emig

Research Professor of Physics

Thorsten works on various projects of classical and quantum statistical physics. He received his diploma (1995) and PhD (1998) from Cologne University. From 2001-2006 he was the head of a Junior Research Group in theoretical physics at Cologne University and in 2006 he joined the statistical physics lab LPTMS at the University Paris Sud where is a CNRS research professor. He also holds a Research Scientist position at MIT within the CNRS-MIT joint lab. Thorsten enjoys long distance running and is a member of the BAA running club in Boston. This project emerged from his discussion with the running coach and physiologist J. Daniels and is partly motivated by Daniels' famous VDOT system.

Matthew Mulligan

Student Biophysics

Matt studied Biophysics at Claremont MeKenna College where he also runs for the track and fields team. He worked on this project's during his visit to MIT when he performed the research for his Senior Thesis in Physics entitled "A Computational Approach to Distance Running".

Guillaume Adam

Research Associate

Guillaume is a National French Team runner and a sub 4 minute miler (3:58 in Boston in 2017). He graduated with a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Lyon (INSA Lyon, 2015) and he has always been interested in physiology and training. From September 2016, he is his own coach and coaches some of his friends occasionally. Guillaume develops some features for the project website and uses it to analyse his own training and performances.


Please write to us if you have questions and would like to suggest modifications or new features.

  • CNRS-MIT joint lab, E19-722
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    77 Massachusetts Avenue
    Cambridge, MA 02139, USA

  • running@mit.edu