Running Tips For The Affidea ExpressCare Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon

The Affidea ExpressCare Rock ‘n’ Roll Dublin Half Marathon, launched by former Irish International footballer Kevin Kilbane, and Olympic track star and Affidea Ambassador Thomas Barr, is a unique running event that returns to the streets of Dublin on Sunday the 12th of August 2018. With four distances to choose from, bespoke “must have” medals, music acts at each mile and a finish line concert it has become an annual summertime running tradition offering; Music, Moments, Medals and Miles.

Celebrating its sixth year, the event has something for runners of all abilities with a weekend of running with a half marathon, a 10K and a Family Fun Run in addition to a 5K on Saturday. The Affidea Rock ‘n’ Roll Dublin Half Marathon also acts as Athletics Ireland’s National Half Marathon Championships for the distance. Over 53,000 participants have taken part since the inaugural event in 2013, with a record number of 15,000 taking part in 2017 across the four distances.

Affidea ExpressCare Consultant David Foley has the following tips for runners to prepare for any situation.

Preparation Is Key

Ensure good hydration and eat complex carbohydrates in the days before the big race.

  • Avoid junk food!
  • Take time to warm up and stretch thoroughly before the race
  • Avoid wearing clothes with seams that could chafe and cause friction burns. Wear clothes you have run in before and know are comfortable. You can apply petroleum jelly or talc. Nipple irritation can be prevented by wearing plasters

Preventing Runners Knee

  • Gradually increase your training loads
  • Stretch your quadriceps muscles
  • Strengthen your outside hip muscles – abductors to allow better control of your femur and of your knee-cap gliding over the lower femur
  • Wear supportive shoes and make sure they’re worn in before a big race

Managing Blisters & Skin Abrasions

  • Blisters should only be drained under aseptic conditions and the skin left in place
  • Black nails (subungual haematoma) should be left to podiatrists or medical staff and may be drained through the nail painlessly with a needle (trephination)

Managing Musculoskeletal Issues

  • Cramps are common and may be severe. Single spasms respond to stretching the relevant muscle often, best achieved by assisted walking. Repeated cramps need treatment with replacement of electrolytes
  • Bone pain may indicate a stress fracture and the runner should be cautioned about continuing. Accurate diagnosis often requires imaging with MRI

Dealing With Hypothermia

  • This occurs in slow-moving runners, particularly on wet, cold and windy days. The diagnosis is made by measuring core temperature
  • Wet clothes should be removed, the runner must be dried and wrapped in blankets and warm clothes, and placed in a warm environment. Foil blankets over wet clothes are useless
  • Warm drinks, if available, are helpful

Beware of certain red flag symptoms

  • Chest pain
  • Confusion
  • Light-headedness

Any of these should cause the runner to alert the race medical teams and seek help.

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