Running a marathon is serious business. In Los Angeles, trends come and go, but marathoning always seems to be in style. Unfortunately, some do not realize the potential injuries that can be suffered as a result of pushing past the body’s limits. Even with a strategic training program, running in the LA Marathon can pose a serious health risk, and in today’s race, several runners ended up being treated for injuries, and even hospitalized. When running a long-distance race like the 26.2 mile LA Marathon course, runners should prepare with a training program in order to help avoid injuries.
With long-distance runs, there is certainly a spirit of pushing through the pain. Runners sometimes push themselves to the point where their bodies suffer to an extent that is not healthy. This is probably why more than 50 participants in the LA Marathon ended up in the marathon’s portable medical facilities to be treated for several different health issues. While it is inevitable to see minor injuries in any long-distance race, today’s marathon brought some serious consequences.
A 28-year-old man had a heart attack during the race, and had to be resuscitated by the paramedics. There was at least one seizure on course, and several runners suffered from heat-related issues. While much of this is par for the course, those who put in ample time training are at a lower risk of injury.
Many larger cities with annual marathons have several training options. For LA runners, the LA Roadrunners is the official training group. The Roadrunners meet weekly, and offer several different levels of training to meet the needs of all runners, regardless of past training experience. The group runs a 6-month training program that helps runners prepare for the LA Marathon, and be able to run long distances while avoiding injuries.
While many might watch the LA marathon or other races and think it is something they can easily accomplish, those interested in running long distances should consult with a doctor and enter a training program. Additionally, some internet and book research can be helpful in learning some tricks of the trade.
According to fitness site, Active, some of the widely-spread marathon practices are just myths. Active warns runners against the popular “carboload” dinner. Overeating the night before a marathon can mean that all of those carbs will be bouncing around in the runners gut. The key to being prepared with a solid amount of stored carbs is to consume moderate portions of carbohydrate rich foods for several days leading up to the race, rather than bingeing on a box of pasta the night before.
Another big question asked by runners is how far their training runs should be. Specifically, runners are not encouraged to go on marathon-length runs in preparation for their big race. It can be difficult for the body to recover from a full 26.2 mile run. Because of the strain that long distances can put on runner’s joints, it is important to seek the wisdom of a health and fitness professional.
For those in Los Angeles, another marathon has come and gone, and that means it’s just about time to start training for next year. Anyone interested in entering their first long-distance race will be doing themselves a big favor if they do their research on how to train safely and effectively. By working with an official training program or getting help from a health expert, runners can avoid injuries and go into their marathons prepared, and for runners in health-conscious LA, there are plenty of options.
By Bonnie Sludikoff