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  Life   Health  02 Jan 2017  Snooze talk for runners

Snooze talk for runners

Published : Jan 2, 2017, 12:19 am IST
Updated : Jan 2, 2017, 12:37 am IST

For runners, sleep is as important as food and exercise. Waking up early and working till late night can be very stressful.

Do not wait to feel thirsty to drink something; at that point, your body is already dehydrated..
 Do not wait to feel thirsty to drink something; at that point, your body is already dehydrated..

The recent incident of marathon runner and renowned gynaecologist Dr Rakesh Sinha, suffering a sudden heart attack during his morning jog has led to speculation of fitness regimes followed by those who have long and stressful working hours. The cycle of waking up early, and continuing with work and social commitments till late into the night eats into the sleep cycle of these individuals adding to the burden of both physical and mental stress. Cheating on sleep can adversely affect the body says chief arthroscopy and sports injuries specialist Dr Sunil Apsingi, who sheds some more light on the topic.

Q For those preparing for a marathon and regular runners, what are the important aspects to keep in mind?
Warming up and cooling down are essential parts of every run and should not be skipped. It prevents injuries and you get the most out of your run. Small, lingering pains must not be ignored as it is often found that stress fractures when attended help the patient from further damage. Listening or observing the body’s signals is important for marathon runners.

Q What is the damage that running or jogging for 10 to 15 years does on the knees and how must they take care of it?
Running is good and healthy for most people, and not everyone who runs will get arthritis. It is a huge misconception. If the patient has had a broken bone or a ligament injury then there is minimal chance of getting arthritis. Obesity is one of the major reasons for osteoarthritis along with genetic tendency. But if the right kind of care is taken, they can practice minimum jogging and running for good health.

Q What is ‘athlete’s heart’? How different is its functioning from a normal individual’s heart?
Athlete’s heart is where the heart-rate is slower than that of a normal individual. Athletic heart syndrome or exercise-induced cardiomegaly is a non-pathological condition commonly seen in endurance athletes who exercise regularly for more than an hour everyday. This condition is general benign but is occasionally found to hide a serious medical condition. Athlete’s heart most often does not have any physical symptoms but there is a persisting low resting heart rate. They have an enlarged and a very muscular heart. During an intensive workout, more blood and oxygen are required by the muscles of a highly trained athlete. A larger heart results in higher cardiac output, which also allows it to beat more slowly, as more blood is pumped out with each beat.
Athletes with AHS often do not realise they have the condition unless they undergo specific medical tests, becausean athlete’s heart is a normal, physiological adaptation of the body to the stresses of physical conditioning and aerobic exercise. It is important to distinguish between athlete’s heart and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a serious cardiovascular disease characterised by thickening of the heart’s walls, which produces a similar ECG pattern at rest. This genetic disorder is a leading cause of sudden cardiac death in athletes.

Q Do these patients not even have the opportunity of being revived in the golden hour?
In an emergency, the golden hour refers to a time period lasting for one hour, following traumatic injury or medical emergency, during which there is the highest likelihood that prompt medical treatment will prevent death. Any athlete who collapses on or off the field should be assessed for the presence of respiration and pulse. If these are absent, CPR should be initiated and the emergency medical care activated.

Q What are the dietary precautions that marathon runners must take when they have been running for more than a decade?
The most important aspect is to stay hydrated and fuelled up. Hydration and nutrition are very important to the success in races. During training, drink a lot of fluids all day long.

Tips for runners

  • Do not wait to feel thirsty to drink something; at that point, your body is already dehydrated.
  • Replace the energy drink with water and salts while running.
  • Losing more than 2 per cent of your body weight means you may not be replacing enough of your fluid losses.
  • Do not wait to feel thirsty to drink something; at that point, your body is already dehydrated.
  • If the urine looks concentrated (dark yellow) then you probably need a little more fluid.
  • A simple way to see how much fluid you require is to check your weight before and after a long run.
  • Energy bars, fruits and sugary snacks are good options for boosting your energy. During your training, it is useful to test what quantity and combination of food and drink works best for you.

Tags: exercise, jogging, cpr