This year we’ll see runners from all over the world attempt to complete the 35th London Marathon, this Guinness World Record holding event is the largest annual fundraising event in the world, with over £500m raised for charity since the first marathon in 1981.
We’ve got some fun London Marathon facts to share with you, along with some advice for any of you who are planning to compete this year (or in the future) but are worried about pain and injury.
Our 5 London Marathon Facts
- 924,741 runners have completed the London Marathon since its start in 1981, with around 36,000 people running the 26 mile course every year!
- The oldest runner to complete the London Marathon was Fauja Singh, who completed the course at the age of 93, while also knocking almost a whole hour from the previous world best in the over 90s category.
- Paul Freedman (MBE) has run the London Marathon 22 times and was last year’s oldest entrant. He hopes to one day run the London Marathon with his Grandson Samuel when he turns 18.
- The fastest male runner to complete the London Marathon is Emmanuel Mutai, Kenya, who holds a course completion record of 2:04:40.
- The fastest wheelchair athlete to complete the London Marathon is Kurt Fearnly, Australia, with a course time of 1:28:57.
Tips to Help you Prepare for Race Day
Every year The London Marathon is run by professional athletes, hobby runners and complete novices alike, each with a varying degree of fitness. All the extra training for first-timers and novices can take its toll on the body, especially for overzealous runners who push their bodies in an effort to train that little bit harder.
Aches, pains and injuries from running are common for all levels of runner, even professional runners can get injured both while training and during marathon events. Ensuring you’re in top condition, even while training, is important and there are a number of ways you can support your body both during training and after an event.
Practice Hot and Cold Therapy
The application of hot and cold therapy to injuries, aches, pains and sprains can help to reduce muscle and ligament discomfort from training, and help reduce and manage swelling shortly after an injury.
Applying warming pads and creams are great as part of a post run warm down, with the heat from the pad or cream causing vasodilation, which increases blood flow and has a soothing effect which helps to reduce spasms and pain. Products such as Rubbeez Cream are great to use both pre and post run, helping to loosen up stiff joints pre run, and soothe post run aching muscles. We love Rubbeez as it’s all natural and contains no parabens, and was the official supplier to the British Ski & Snowboarding team at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.
Products such as Rubbeez Cream are great to use both pre and post run, helping to loosen up stiff joints pre run, and soothe post run aching muscles. We love Rubbeez as it’s all natural and contains no parabens, and was the official supplier to the British Ski & Snowboarding team at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.
Cold therapy should be used immediately after suffering an injury such as a twist, sprain or impact. When you apply ice also known as cold therapy to the injured area it acts as a vasoconstrictor, which narrows blood vessels, this in turn reduces internal bleeding and swelling which helps to reduce the pain and stiffness associated with soft-tissue injury or damage. A simple ice pack can be a cheap and effective way to treat the damaged area, however these aren’t always immediately at hand during training or a race. Products such as Biofreeze are perfect for cold therapy in these situations, small enough to fit in any runners kit bag but still powerful enough to provide you with relief when needed.
We have a whole blog section dedicated to Hot and Cold Therapy, so if you’d like to find out more visit the Hot or Cold? section of The Pain Guru’s blog.
Choose the right Nutrition
Running is a great cardio workout, with a 6 mile per hour pace burning upwards of 500 calories per hour. If you’re training for a marathon, ensuring you’re eating the right balance of carbohydrates, proteins and healthy fats can ensure you’ve got the energy your body needs. However, many novice runners forget to ensure they’re consuming all the vitamins and minerals (micronutrients) their body needs to help keep them training and in their best condition.
Runners need to ensure they’re consuming a good balance of vitamins and minerals to help them perform at their best and also avoid injuries and illness brought on from low micronutrient intake. While a number of these vitamins can be obtained via an extremely healthy and structured diet, many runners may not be able to follow the strict diet of professional runners such as Mo Farah. This is where supplements can really help non-professional and professional runners alike to ensure they’re getting all the micronutrients they need.
We’ve created this handy infographic to give you the low down on the micronutrients runners need and what supplements you can buy to ensure you’re getting enough, click the image below to view the full infographic:
Get a Sports Massage
Massage is a great way to help maintain a healthy body, prevent injury and restore mobility to injured muscles. Many professional sportsmen and women take regular sports massages. There are many benefits to sports massage, including physical pain reduction and relaxation of tight, overworked muscles, along with psychological benefits such as reducing race anxiety.
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