Well, if I ever do qualify for the Boston Marathon (long shot), now I know that I have a better chance of being saved as I attempt to run the race. I also know that my chances of actually having a heart attack are slim.
An important study is coming out in tomorrow's New England Journal of Medicine about marathon running that will help both ease peoples' minds about running a marathon and save peoples' lives who decide to run one.
The study shows that just 59 people out of 10.9 million that ran a half or full marathon (one of every 259,000) in the last ten years suffered cardiac arrest while they were running. That means that, although you always hear about runners who die after running one, it is just because the national media always covers it. If you think about it, you don't see one every day, or every month, and think about how many people probably run a marathon in that time. <Here's a MSN article about the study>
You have a way better chance of dying at work (43,500 to 1), but you go to work every day, right?
The study also found that the greatest survival rate was among people who received CPR from a bystander. The Boston Marathon race creators took that news seriously, and, this year, they will be training runners and bystanders basic CPR (not the mouth-to-mouth, just the pumping part) the day before the race, just in case, according to this Boston Globe article. Bravo to that!
<<< Me finishing my first half marathon, four years ago on Jan. 13, 2008. Don't I look happy (and absolutely exhausted)