November 05, 2010

The Effect Of Asthma On Runners

My Run This Morningwas cut short by an asthma attack.  Really, I have little struggles with my lifelong chronic disease, and have previously blogged about the subject of asthma , but I still have to say I remain ignorant at times about my own disease.  Partly out of forgetfulness and laziness, I do not always prepare properly even when i know that this time of year, when the weather turns colder, my chest will have problems.  I have noticed since the marathon that my times have dropped as has my energy.  This is partly asthma related, party because of a career change that has altered my daily routine so that I must go out before 530 am !  By 10 am I am dropping off to sleep!  
What I would like to hear more about is how other asthmatics handle their triggers, I will post them !
AS I have mentioned before, running has changed my disease to almost be non-existent.  I still must avoid triggers to keep it under control, but have very little need for medication since my body adapted to running so well!  For that I am thankful.

October 31, 2010

RUN FATBOY, RUN! ... and possibly die

In Recent Years, the popularity of marathons, specifically half marathons has taken the world by storm.  As more and more people are running and getting into the larger events like the city half marathons, the questions start to beg:  are marathons really good for you?  There are deaths at regular intervals each year at marathons.  It is the quintessential gauge to measure one's fitness, endurance and on many peoples' "bucket list".
In a recent article in my province's biggest paper, the article is pointing at the finds made by Laval University professor and cardiologist Dr. Eric Larose
"Those with less training experienced lower blood flow and the segments of the heart — there's 17 in the left ventricle — showed signs of greater irritation, he added.
"Without proper training, marathon running can damage your heart. Fortunately the exercise-induced injury is reversible over time," said Dr. Larose. "But it could take up to three months to completely recover."

So is marathons actually bad for your health?  Not if properly trained, with appropriate hydration, fueling and the discipline in rest and recovery.  
Run Fatboy, Run!
What have I gleaned from this information is that the marathon distance, even the half marathon distance, is not something to take lightly.  It tests your overall health in a way that most people will not and probably should not attempt.  That is, without proper preparation.  Making it a part of one's "do before I kick the bucket" list raises concern in that some individuals in their hopes to just "get it done" ( watch RUN, FAT BOY RUN) could be practicing the scenarios in which put people at risk of this heart damage, as well as injury.  This movie was an AWEFUL, but most entertaining example of what this research was pointing at.  The main character attempts to run a marathon in a few short weeks, trains inconsistently, intensely, and for questionable reasons, then... well, you should watch it to see how it ends.
So, would I discourage people from signing up?  Yes!  That is if I knew them to not properly prepare and possibly put themselves in a do-or-die setting with little realistic anticipation of what it will require.
If however, this person were already looking at a lifestyle change, was already making the necessary steps to ready themselves, and were able to look at the marathon as a long-term plan for their lives, then I say go for it!  With some places to research the right plan, they could move mountains fitness-wise!