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Is marathoning safe?

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Dick Whitman, Nov 22, 2011.

  1. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    Two dead a the recent Philadelphia Marathon.


    One dead at Chicago.

    Seems like these stories accompany a lot of big city marathons these days.

    I get that, statistically, one death in however many thousand runners isn't a huge deal. But it's tough to be a cold rationalist when you are thinking about jumping back into the fray.

  2. YankeeFan

    YankeeFan Well-Known Member

    I would not let my 10-year-old run a marathon.

    And, if someone thinks that's being overprotective, too bad! [/crossthread]
  3. JC

    JC Well-Known Member

    Please don't let Rick see this thread.
  4. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    That was who I was most worried about when I posted it.
  5. John

    John Well-Known Member

    I've run three. To my knowledge nobody died during any of them.
  6. Marathon running is asinine.

    Know what happened to the first guy who ran a marathon? The first guy? He FUCKING collapsed and died.
    Who the hell thinks copying that run is a good idea?

    Rosie Ruiz had the right idea.
  7. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    I don't like to drive 26.2 miles... :D
  8. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    I've done one. Someone died about 50 yards from me BEFORE THE RACE EVEN STARTED. Covered a zillion of them in Richmond. A young guy died in one of them.
    DocTalk needs to weigh in on this one, but I'd suspect it wasn't the marathon that killed them. They had something going on that would have killed them at some point. Maybe sooner - maybe the conditioning required for a marathon kept them alive longer? Who knows?
  9. I Should Coco

    I Should Coco Well-Known Member

    In theory, the training you have to do for a marathon, triathlon, etc., should be a positive for your health.

    However, for most podunk events that don't have minimum qualifying standards, it's up to the individual to determine if they're healthy enough to complete one.

    That's why registration forms always have some statement you sign holding organizers harmless in case you drop dead of heat exhaustion, drowning, heart attack, etc.

    I guess you are at risk for accidental death in just about any sport.
  10. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    I wrote a story about this once. The University of Toronto studied marathons for 30 years, and figured out your chances of dying while running a marathon are less than 1 in 100,000, which is actually a better mortality rate than people who don't run them. Who do nothing. Far more people die playing pick-up basketball than they do running marathons. In almost all cases, the young and healthy people who die running marathons end up dead because of pre-existing conditions like heart defects. It's often stuff that wouldn't even show up on a stress test. The older people who die tend to have some kind of coronary disease. They probably shouldn't be running marathons anyway.

    Marathons are actually a lot safer than most sports because you almost always have people providing hydration along the route, you almost always have minimum qualifying standards, and there has to be medical personnel close by. If you're playing basketball in the middle of Chicago, and you collapse, the chances of having an EMT near by nowhere near as good as they are if you collapse running a marathon.

    Sorry to say, but it's a media-driven narrative. You have a greater risk of dying in childbirth. You're 15 times more likely to die in a car accident than running a marathon.


  11. Pilot

    Pilot Well-Known Member

    You can always, ya know, slow down. Or walk.
  12. Flip Wilson

    Flip Wilson Well-Known Member

    Or sit on your couch and eat Cheetos.
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