I’ve been wondering lately: Are marathons good for you?

After intensive Google research I’ve decided they are. In moderation.

First we have to decide what we mean by “good.” Good, physically? Good, mentally? Good, socially? I’ll focus on the physical side for now (though I do wish that there were some studies on the mental benefits and drawbacks of distance running — wouldn’t that be interesting?).

Overall health: So this article, written by a runner of course, harps on the many benefits of running marathons and dispels common doubts and disagreements. “mproved cardiovascular health, stronger immune system, greater resistance to disorders of many organs, weight loss, lower blood pressure, improved metabolism…”

Knees: This article is really interesting — and, unfortunately, inconclusive when it comes to whether or not distance running is bad for your knees. On one hand, running seems to force your knees to get stronger and build up more cartilage  but for beginning runners, it may tear down cartilage and it’s unclear what happens after that. Bummer.

Cardiovascular: Looks like Death by Marathon is pretty unlikely, because heart failure during a marathon — which does happen — only happens less than once per 100,000 racers. Note, however, that when it comes to extreme endurance sports — like ultramarathons, and, possibly, multiple marathons — risk of coronary heart disease and injury goes up.

I’ve got plenty more research to do on this, but all the articles seem to be in agreement that running is good for you, but too much running is bad for you. The question is, where do you draw the line between a “normal” amount and “too much” ? 40 miles a week? 20? 65?

You know what is undoubtedly good for you, though? Milkshakes.

Catherine and I decided to meet up for an afternoon stroll around Chinatown with delicious ice-cream treats. It was like 75 degrees out yesterday which made everything perfect.

And then, ANTHONY came home! In celebration I decided to make an overly complex recipe that took super long to make and dirtied about 25 dishes in the meantime. Thank goodness it was actually good. Introducing: Paleo Pad Thai!

It was really tasty when we ate it at 9:30 pm; but the best part of the eve was seeing Anthony again! There’s a tropical storm in Jamaica which means he got to come home early.

In other news, I’m dressed like a cowgirl right now and have to transport 15 cups of orange Jello to work today.

  • Do you think running is good for you?
  • Have you tried a paleo recipe?
  • What’s your favorite flavor of ice cream?


  1. yes, I think running is good for us! yay, running! I have never tried a paleo recipe, but I definitely would. I hate when recipes use so many dishes that you have to wash later–but they usually are great tasting in the end!

  2. I agree that milkshakes are definitely good for you – LOL.

    In relation to marathons, I think moderation is the key. And waiting to do your first when you are properly trained for it. I am with a large running group and after the pressure to run marathons so many of us are now injured (at least 5 of us with stress fractures or (in my case) stress fracture-like injuries.

    I have met a man who pretty much runs 40-50 marathons a year and he loves it. He’s a more mature man and looks 10 years younger than he is. But he doesn’t run fast or train a lot. He got to a stage where he could easily complete a marathon and just maintains that level of fitness. He runs his marathons in more than 5 hours because he stops to take photographs along the way. It seems to me a healthy way to run them … a sustainable way.

    But if you are going to run for time, I think it’s important to build up to develop the musculo-skeletal fitness for it and then rest afterwards before trying again (says me – who didn’t train properly, ran a 50km and then a marathon 4 weeks apart and hasn’t been able to run for 2 months as a result with another month on the sidelines likely)

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