You bought new shoes, ramped up your training and worked on your hydration. As it approaches race day, one question remains: Did you train your gut?
Surveys of marathon or distance runners indicate that approximately 25% of athletes experience some form of gastrointestinal (GI) distress during the race. Why are runners more prone to digestive problems?
Running, particularly long distances, directs blood flow away from the gut to meet the demands of running and to help rid the body of heat. Additionally, the butterflies you feel at the beginning of the race are caused by stress hormones that can also influence the rate of stomach emptying.
While part of the reason your stomach may not cooperate is the inherent physical demand of running, you can still minimize the gastric distress that can threaten race day by following these rules:
Time, preparation and practice will help your avoid these common training pitfalls.
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