May 16, 2010
It is important to note that my skepticism with this study is related to the implied suggestion that training for and running a marathon is considered extreme exercise. Maybe it is, or maybe after having run 21 of them…the last not much more than a controlled crawl, I see the marathon as an endurance event that homo sapiens have evolved to run as a means of hunting and gathering; chasing down our prey with persistence.
As we listen to the results of this research, we need to understand the severity of the impact, and consider other factors which might invalidate the results; remember: 25,000 runners just finished the Boston Marathon a few weeks ago, not to mention the hundreds of thousands who will run such a distance this year; and yet the sample size for the test group in this study was only 49.
This isn’t to say that those 49 aren’t representative of the entire human population of marathon runners; nor does it necessarily trivialize the results of this study; but it does put this study into perspective against the media interpretation that marathon’s can kill you.
The song “Think For Yourself” was by George Hrab at http://www.geologicrecords.net