WEDNESDAY, Jan. 8, 2014 (HealthDay News) — As ultramarathons become more popular, researchers have launched a long-term study of the runners who participate in these extremely long races.
Keeping tabs on the runners’ health and psychological makeup could help reduce their risk of injury and reveal ways to encourage other Americans to meet minimum levels of exercise, the researchers said.
An ultramarathon is defined as an event that’s longer than the standard 26.2-mile marathon. Participation in ultramarathons in North America rose from 15,500 in 1998 to more than 63,500 in 2012, according to UltraRunning magazine.
Yet little is known about the health effects of this intense form of physical activity, the study authors said.
To learn more, they analyzed online questionnaires completed by more than 1,200 ultrarunners, who were asked about their training regimens, general health and running-related injuries during the previous 12 months. The investigators plan to follow this…
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