ST: Minimising risks in running

This article was first published on Sunday Times on 7 July 2018.

Dr Malcolm Mahadevan – When a runner is forced out of action, more often than not, it usually involves minor issues such as muscle injuries, sprains, skin lesions such as blisters and abrasions. Acute injuries are rare. More than 8 in 10 running injuries are caused by overuse, often a mismatch between the strength and resilience of the connective and supporting tissue and the demands of running. How can we avoid them?

Follow a training plan

In my area of practice, I have seen many poorly prepared athletes suffer from swollen joints and muscle injury. I remembered a patient who was sedentary most of the time and had decided to participate in a mass run. She overstrained herself to the extent that her leg muscles swelled and broke down. The pressure resulting from the swelling of the tissues was so great that it impeded blood flow to both legs. She needed emergency surgery to relieve the swelling and save her legs. The damaged muscle had also released proteins and other by-products from the breakdown that clogged and failed her kidneys, thus necessitating dialysis treatment. While she recovered eventually, it was a traumatic experience that could have been avoided with proper training.

Thus far, research has turned up contradictory conclusions on the risk that running imposes on developing joint and muscle injuries per se. However, it has been recognized that running is one of the fastest ways to fitness and associated benefits such as health and longevity. A good gradual training plan (like #runwithmok) leading up to a race can help participants minimize their risks of running injuries. When I wanted to return to running, I too, approached my colleague, Dr. Mok Ying Ren for a training plan, so that I can ease in progressively.

Mok and Malcolm
Dr Malcolm follows the RunONE training plan himself and came back to running through a #runwithmok session. Photo credits: ONEATHLETE

Condition to dissipate heat

Heat stroke is a severe form of heat-related illness that happens under extreme and rare circumstances, usually a result of several contributing factors. The majority of us do not overheat as our bodies are able to balance and regulate heat generation through bodily dissipation, such as through skin. However, if either side of the equation is tipped over then that’s when we have a problem.

Under hot humid conditions like in Singapore, race planners generally plan races early or late in the day to mitigate the effect of heat and weather on runners.

What runners can do to help themselves, is to condition for the race through structured race preparation and training. This is just as in a car where the engine cooling system depends on coolant fluid for heat transfer and dissipation, our body depends on water to play the similar role. As we run, most of the water is lost through perspiration and respiration. Keeping ourselves well hydrated before, during and after a race is, therefore, the key to ensuring that our bodies are able to cope with the heat stress of exercising on top of the hot humid conditions we face.

Hydrate during the run

While training for my half marathon in Gold Coast, I have had the first-hand experience of the likelihood and risks amateur runners like myself face in dealing with heat-related illness.

While I was away in the Netherlands,  the chilly weather meant my long runs were comfortable affairs and I was afforded the illusion of luxury of not hydrating myself  Upon return to Singapore, the difference was apparent when my heart rate was significantly ramped up during a similar effort long run. I also quickly felt thirsty and had to stop often to rehydrate myself to prevent heat-related illness. The stark difference was a somber reminder of how easily the humidity and heat can dehydrate us while exercising under our hot tropical conditions

As most of our races in Singapore are well planned with hydration points spaced out at regular intervals, let’s make the best use of them to replenish our dehydrated and depleted bodies.

Participate in pre-race screening

While mass events such as run races are well organized with good first aid posts, emergency ambulance services and evacuation plans for contingencies, there have been unfortunate incidents where runners collapsed due to undiagnosed pre-existing cardiac conditions.

Recently a runner in his 40’s collapsed while running  While the security guards reacted quickly to start cardiopulmonary resuscitation, the paramedics arrived soon after to deliver the life-sustaining electrical shock to treat an otherwise potentially-fatal arrhythmia. He arrived in the emergency department where my colleagues and I worked to resuscitate him before sending him to the cardiac catheterization lab where our interventional cardiologist opened up his blocked coronary artery. Fortunately, he survived the whole episode. An older runner should get a proper check with their regular doctors who may refer them to a cardiologist for further evaluation.

Malcom at GCM 18
Dr Malcom’s flatlay before participating in the Half marathon at Gold Coast Marathon 2018 last sunday. Photo Credits: Dr Malcolm

Acclimatise to the race location

Proper training building up a solid base prior to a race, as well as proper acclimatization, are all essential elements for a runner’s safety. I recall having read about a young athlete who had just flown in from a temperate region and did not had enough race preparation and sleep before his race in Singapore. In the end, he overstretched himself only to collapse near the finish line. Unfortunately, he did not survive.

As runners, we need to respect the race we participate in, be mindful of our own bodies and know our limits whether we are young or not.

Practice good race discipline

IMG_7325
Dr Malcolm looking spiffy during his half marathon at Gold Coast last sunday! Photo credits: Dr Malcom

Unlike competitive cycling where cyclists are bunched up together and a tumble can easily set off a chain reaction collision, It is rare to see runners collide and sustain injuries in this manner.

However, in some of the mass runs/races that I have participated in, I did notice that slower runners tend to congregate and walk abreast, blocking up a large part of the route. As a result,  faster runners had to swerve to overtake which can lead to collisions and injuries. Sprains and strains, or even more serious injuries like a fractured bone, are also possibilities arising from such accidents. This is where participants should exercise good race discipline by moving to the side and allowing others the opportunity of clear passage.

Conclusion

Generally, mass runs/races are safe. It is encouraging to see that more Singaporeans are participating and it is in line with all our efforts to stay healthy. A healthy dose of common-sense, graduated training, and preparation, as well as adherence to race guidelines, will go a long way in ensuring safe and enjoyable races for all of us.

 

Dr Malcolm
Associate Professor Malcolm Mahadevan is a Senior Consultant and Head of Emergency Medicine Department at National University Hospital. He undertook the RunONE training plan to get back into running.

 

One Against Cancer!

FIGHT AGAINST CANCER

A true story penned by a caregiver who witnessed the last days of his cancer-stricken granny. 

“Grandmother was a feisty matriarch in her 70s who had raised her 7 children through the Japanese Occupation. Even whilst she’s in hospital garbs, beneath her quiet and unassuming features granny packs a dragon-lady punch. Ironically, and cruelly, so did her brain cancer. We never saw it coming, until it was too late. 

Within a short span, our world would turn into one almost entirely spoken in numbers and timelines (She’s 74, and will be 75 come Jan; Doc places her 1-year survival rate at 45% chance if…). As she became weaker, even these conversations soon became more form than substance.

Granny was ‘brave’ to endure through the intense treatment and its side effects. On rare occasions when she was in better spirits, granny would request to take a walk down the corridor and asked too much of her frail brittle frame. “When I’m well, bring me for a walk downstairs”, she asked of me one evening. I agreed, and she knewIt was the last time I would lie to her. 

Unlike granny, I was, and still am, a runner. Yet, for all the decades and insidious cancerous cells that separated her from me, we had shared the same thirst for freedom that speaks to what is fundamentally a human desire for movement. My runs became a convenient and my only excuse to break down, wear myself down, pump my fists, let tears mix with sweat as they drip down my chin. Most importantly, it gave me a reason, reasons, to relive and remember the courage, passion, joy, and miracle of living.” 

 

CAMPAIGN AGAINST CANCER 

“Cancer does not just hit the old. It has hit my dad when he was in his mid-30s, my sporty university mate, a newly married young girl, 4-year old cute bubbly boy, and even the teenager who was preparing for his O level exams. We need to do our part to raise awareness of our ‘heroes’ and their caregiving families, to support them through their trying times,” says Jed, Co-founder of ONE, when asked about the campaign. Jed had also lost his dad to cancer when he was 3 years old.

Have you lost anyone to cancer? Who were they, and what did they so passionately stood for before cancer veiled their world?

Join #ONEathlete and #ONEteamsg as we honor their memory and celebrate the courage and passion for life, in this #ONEagainstcancer campaign! From now till the 22nd July, you too can post your photos on social media. Post with the hashtag, #ONEagainstcancer to lend weight to our voice!

 

 

 

 

RACE AGAINST CANCER

RAC aims to raise awareness of cancer and the services which Singapore Cancer Society provides and rallies the community to join in the fight against cancer. It also aims to raise funds for cancer treatment subsidies, welfare assistance, cancer rehabilitation, hospice care, cancer screenings, research, public education and cancer support group initiatives.

In its 10th year running, RAC 2018 will be held on 22 July at East Coast Park. It will feature two competitive categories – the 10km and 15km competitive races, as well as a 5km fun run. Prizes will be awarded to the top 10 male and finishers for both the 10km and 15km competitive categories.

Sign up at www.raceagainstcancer.org.sg. Registration closes 9 July 2018.

Capture

 

AUCTION AGAINST CANCER

If you are not to keen to post or run, there are more ways the one to contribute! You could also contribute by taking part in the auction and donating! Funds raised will help to drive SCS Programmes and Services to minimize cancer and maximize life! ONEathlete Ashley Liew has also donated his SCSM2017 Finisher Medal up for auction!

He hopes to send a ‘plea-reminder’ to his potential buyer/ donor: “I sincerely thank you for your donation. It is truly a blessing not just to receive but also to give out of one’s abundance. Always stay humble while running for a bigger cause, such as for those that are unable to run due to health reasons.” 

Slide2

 


ONE is proud to partner the Singapore Cancer Society (SCS)’s Race Against Cancer (RAC) 2018, as its Official Sports Marketing Partner. 

ST: The relevance of pre-participation screening

First published on The Sunday Times on 10 June 2018

Dr Yeo Tee Joo – Last year, I explained the importance of pre-participation screening (PPS), where a combination of blood tests, physical examination, electrocardiogram (ECG) and questions on medical history can help active individuals calculate their cardiovascular risk as well as identify potentially life-threatening heart conditions.

For the masses

While PPS can be performed for anyone, it is particularly beneficial for sedentary individuals who wish to start training, as well as those with pre-existing heart disease or cardiovascular risk factors. Based on results of the PPS, a healthcare provider (ideally a sports medicine physician or cardiologist) can then advise on the suitability of the race event you have in mind, and the appropriate duration and intensity of training.

For athletic individuals

Puzzling as it may sound, fitter active individuals, Asians in particular, also face challenges, but of a different nature, with their ECGs during PPS. This is because prolonged periods of training have conditioned their body and led to changes in the electrical system and structure of their heart. As a result, their ECG may look very different from the general population and others who are generally more sedentary.

To identify normal or training-related ECG features, healthcare providers refer to international recommendations, which have taken more than a decade of research to establish and refine. Unfortunately, these recommendations are currently based on predominantly Caucasian and African-Caribbean athletes, with minimal representation from Asia.

Recent local developments

The National University Hospital and Singapore Sports Institute are working together to bridge this knowledge gap by creating a Sports Cardiology Registry of national athletes’ ECGs in Singapore. This collection of localized data will be helpful in determining  “normal” baseline indicators for our local population and improve the robustness of PPS. In the long run, these findings can potentially be applied to, and benefit a wider population of recreational athletes.

In spite of the above challenges, PPS remains an important tool for anyone participating in sports. With a greater nationwide emphasis on, and enthusiasm in, fitness and active lifestyle, as well as increased participation in endurance events, there is no better time to get yourself screened.

Dr Yeo Tee Joo

Dr Yeo Tee Joo is a consultant with the National University Heart Centre, Singapore and part of the multidisciplinary team at the NUH Sports Centre. He is also the lead investigator for the Sports Cardiology Registry project.

Mok goes Queensland!

First published on mokyingren.com in June 2018

img_6404

The University of Queensland (UQ) alumnus shared on his rare and privileged opportunity in Queensland, on his university visits, exchange with influential leaders, efforts on inspiring the youth generation, sightseeing in the beautiful autumn, and finally watching the Commonwealth Games 2018 up close! Read more about it right HERE!

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

“When I completed my Masters in Sports Medicine with the University of Queensland in 2016, it never crossed my mind that I would one day return to this town to visit some of the best universities and medical schools!”

Mok Ying Ren
Double SEA Games Gold Medallist
National Marathoner & Records Holder
Managed by ONEathlete

Special shout-out of thanks to The Government of Australia (TIQ) & our lovely ambassador host, Marion and her colleagues! 🙂

ST: Importance of a Good Training Plan!

First published on The Sunday Times on 3 June 2018

Dr Ivan Low – Have you ever signed up for an endurance running event, got overly excited and immediately headed straight into a series of hard trainings, only to eventually succumb to injuries before even toeing the starting line? Or are you one of those who tend to wait until the very last minute to begin your training and end up struggling just to complete the race, or worse still, putting yourself at risk of serious injuries and harm through over-exertion during the race?

If your answer is yes to any of the above, you are probably not alone. Many people tend to underestimate the importance of adhering to a systematic training program, and this is a particularly common mistake amongst recreational runners. A well-designed training plan is important for the safety and success of all endurance runners, and not just requirement for elite athletes only.

So, how do we know if a training plan is well-designed? Often, good training programs abide by a few key principles which can then help us gauge the suitability of one’s training plan.

1. Principle of Individuality

Individuals differ in their capacity to adapt to exercise training as a result of differences in their hereditary and physiological build. This explains why some runners may experience significant improvement after adopting a given training program while others exhibit little or no progress despite going through to the same program. A good training plan has to be specific and tailored not only to the individual’s fitness, but also to his/her’s training capacity and needs.

2. Principle of Specificity

Exercise adaptations are specific to the volume, intensity and type of training. In other words, if you wish to race fast, you have to train fast;t if you wish to race far, you have to train long!

3. Principle of Progressive Overload

A systematic increase in training demand is also necessary for the continuous improvement of one’s fitness . Good training regimes gradually condition your body towards the specific physical and mental demands of your upcoming race. It also ensures that as you edge closer towards your fitness goal, the risk of unintended injuries is minimised.

4. Principle of Variation or Periodization

A good endurance training program should not be repetitive, dull and one-dimensional. The prescribed volume, intensity and mode of training should vary systematically , so that the training stimulus remains challenging and effective over the entire training cycle, or even across multiple cycles within a training season.

5. Principle of Recovery and Reversibility

During rest, and not training, our body repairs itself and gets stronger. Therefore recovery periods or days should be periodically incorporated into training programs to afford the body sufficient recovery before the next bout of training. Training too hard or too soon is one of the most common and leading cause of overtraining or overuse injuries.

ONEathlete Mok Ying Ren sharing with participants on how their training plan may be crafted, during the ST Run’s Race Clinic in 2017 (Photo credits: Steven Teo / ONEathlete)

On the other hand, if trainings are spaced too far apart, the body may lose the stimuli and benefits gained from the previous session. Fitness gained can, and will, be lost (detraining) when one stops exercising for a prolonged period. Therefore, in order to ensure optimal training gain, an ideal training program should allow just enough time for recovery before introducing the next training stimulus. Remember, consistency is key!

So, is there a “one size fits all” solution when it comes to training prescription? Unfortunately not. One man’s meat may be another man’s poison. Athletes should never blindly adhere to a training regime just because it has worked well for others. Finding an optimal training program may also sometimes involve a certain degree of trial and error.

Nonetheless, it is always good to begin with a training program that has been tried and tested, and gradually tweak it to suit your specific needs and abilities. If you are not sure where to start, try the #RunWithMok Training Plan, by runONE above this article!

Dr. Ivan Low Cherh Chiet is an Instructor and Exercise Physiologist in the Department of Physiology, NUS. He ran the Boston Marathon in 2015 and also extends his expertise to runONE’s training program for ST Run 2017 and 2018.

ST: On your Mok, set, go!

First published on The Sunday Times, 24 May 2018

Mok Ying Ren – Singaporeans are known to be a rather busy lot, with very limited time for exercise, myself included.

So this year’s #RunWithMok programme – which runONE (the official training partner) and I will helm for the second straight edition – is designed to help you build and maintain your cardiovascular health in a time-efficient manner.

Its structure will be in line with the World Health Organisation’s guidelines for physical activity (30 minutes on most days of the week) and the American College of Sports Medicine’s guidelines (150 minutes each week).

#RunWithMok

Similar to last year, runONE will be releasing weekly training programmes in the Sunday Times over the course of the next 16 weeks to guide you as you prepare for the Sept 23 ST Run.

You can also find the programme on the ST Run’s website https://runone.co/strun2018

On social media, use the #runONE and #STRun hashtags for your runs to let us be a part of your running journey.

#AskMok

Following feedback from last year’s readers, runONE will be tweaking its approach in determining the topics addressed in this column.

Instead of us choosing the content to be covered in this column, we would like to invite readers to come forward with any burning questions which you may have in relation to running and physical fitness.

We will then select a question and address your concerns to the best of our abilities.

So fire away, submit your questions to https://runone.co/askmok/ and the question featured here might just be yours!

#LearnWithMok

Learning is a lifelong journey. Together with runONE’s partners and experts from various fields, we will be revealing unique training ideas periodically to enable you to spice up your personal running journey.

I, together with fellow ONEathlete(s) and national marathoners Ashley Liew and Evan Chee, will be hosting two running clinics in the lead-up to the ST Run.

We will share with you the theories behind the different approaches to running efficiently, and take you through the practical aspects of running to help boost your speed and performance.

So what are you waiting for?

Sign up for the 2018 ST Run now and take your running to the next level as you #RunwithMok

 

Mok Ying Ren is a Double SEA Games Gold Medallist. He is also National Marathoner & Record Holder. He is currently Managed by ONEathlete, and is the ambassador for New Balance, 100PLUS and Futuro.

Run For Good

First published on NS MAN Magazine – May/June 2018 Issue

Cover Page-page-001

A line-up of notable national athletes kicked off the year’s first charity run at a launch event at SAFRA Toa Payoh’s EnergyOne gym.

Led by #ONEathlete and National Marathoner, Mok Ying Ren, these athletes marked the commencement of the 3M Team Futuro Challenge, encouraging participants to run at least a 2,000km from 20 Jan to 4 Feb. Achieving this target would help raise $30,000 worth of Futuro-brand products for under-reached individuals and community groups.

At the launch held on 19 Jan, Mok was joined by fellow ONEathlete(s), National Tennis Player, Shaheed Alam and National Badminton Player, Ren-ne Ong.

Read more via image below.

NS MAN-page-001

30 Interesting Facts About Ashley Liew That Most People Don’t Know

As a National marathoner and ONEathlete, Ashley Liew has represented Singapore twice at South East Asian Games (SEA Games), won Singapore Marathon 2012 Local category and is the 2nd-fastest all-time Singaporean for the Ironman triathlon distance (10h3m29s at Ironman Texas 2012).

 

Ashley shares with RunSociety 30 truths that most people don’t know.

It includes a vivid history of his overweight days, to his desperation to lose it, to his road to running, to his usual running companions & his lil Tiger, to his guilty pleasures,  to the lady who swopped him of his feet, to what he does in the day (and night), to who has got his back on.. phew!

Read all about the Pierre de Coubertin World Trophy Recipient, right here! Read more

ashleyrunsociety

Top 10 local fitness role models worth following on Instagram

Men’s Health Singapore – May 2018 issue covers Top 10 local fitness role models worth following on Instagram! ONEathlete Mok Ying Ren makes it to the list and shares with them what got him started, and what still keeps him going!

 

 

Take your time to find your strength and ultimately enjoy the journey,” Ying Ren advices. He believes that once you have found your strength, you should use it to encourage others as well. “It will not only make a difference to them, it will also make a difference to you.

 

Check out the full list of fitness role models to see who made it to the exclusive list and read their stories too!

  • Roxanne Gan @roxanne_yoga
  • Mok Ying Ren @mokyingren #runwithmok
  • Christy Chng @christychng
  • Leroy Kiang @ketobeast
  • Soh Rui Yong @runsohfast
  • Tyen Rasif @tyenstagram
  • Melissa Sarah Wee @melissasarahwee
  • Darren Stephen Lim @dslasher
  • Adrian Tan @adriantanfitness
  • Calvin Kang @frappecal

 

Read more about it in its latest issue! Digital copies can be purchased here: https://www.magzter.com/SG/SPH-Magazines-Pte-Ltd/Men’s-Health-Singapore/Lifestyle/ (Top stylised photo by Men’s Health Singapore)

 



More from Menshealth.com.sg / Weight Loss & Nutrition

Here’s What Runner Mok Ying Ren Eats To Prepare For Long-Distance Runs

Home cooked meal by 'Chef' Mok Ying Ren
Home cooked meal by ‘Chef’ Mok Ying Ren

 

Mok’s food diary

6am: Breakfast

One bowl of high-fibre cereal, one glass of low-fat milk, half cup of yogurt, one cup of coffee with milk.

Noon: Lunch

One bowl of white rice, 11/2 cup of vegetables, one palm-sized piece of steamed fish.

4pm: Pre-run snack

One slice of fruit, one snack bar.

5pm: Training

No food or fluid intake.

6 or 7pm: Post-training

Half to one litre of non-carbonated sports drink, one glass of low-fat chocolate milk.

8 or 9pm: Dinner

One bowl of brown rice, one cup of vegetables, one palm- sized piece of meat/fish (steamed/stir fried), one slice of fruit.

 

Read more here: http://www.menshealth.com.sg/weight-loss-nutrition/heres-what-runner-mok-ying-ren-eats-prepare-long-distance-runs/ 

Hawkins vied, but Shelley rises victorious!

Opinion piece by Ben Moreau, ONEathlete & Commonwealth Games Athlete

Live from Commonwealth Games 2018 @ Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

First published on BenMoreau.net


 

img_0255
The writer Ben Moreau (extreme right), running the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Image from CNN.

 

Watching the epic performances out there today has inspired me to write something as I sit at Brisbane airport about to head home. I’m not going to write an analysis of the race as others will do that better than myself, but I wanted to give my thoughts on a few debates I’ve seen flying around on Twitter and online regarding race tactics and competition ‘ethics’. Read more on the race from original news sources: https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/6064426/callum-hawkins-released-from-hospital-after-collapsing-commonwealth-games/

 

I’m in awe of what Callum Hawkins tried to do today and it was sickening to see him in such distress and clearly desperate to continue, even once his body had given up on him. I’m also in awe (although not QUITE as much) of Mike Shelley’s run today – his Games record is a massive achievement and yet again he was Mr. Consistent with a fantastic run. Mike was clearly on the edge also and for a while at 40-41km I thought he would be going the same way as Callum as he looked a little wobbly. For anyone who didn’t see the footage, Callum essentially collapsed at 39.5km, got up after a few failed efforts, struggled on for another 800m and then collapsed again at the 40km mark, losing his 2 minute advantage on Mike Shelley in 2nd. I’m sure it’s on YouTube.

 

callumhawkins2
Image from Metro

 

Debate 1: Should Mike Shelley have stopped to help when he passed Callum?

When Mike passed Callum, lying prone on the floor, there was an official with him, although admittedly not doing much. Mike ran past him and has had some stick for not being ‘sportsmanlike’ and offering support. My view is he did the right thing. If Callum was in the middle of nowhere and Mike had seen him collapse then that’s a different matter but remember that Mike has no idea why he’s on the floor. He hasn’t seen the distressing scenes we all saw. Callum is also being attended to – what on earth can Mike do to help? Also, Mike looked pretty shaky himself and probably was battling on just getting the last 2km over with – stopping could have finished him and I’ve been in that state before – you barely take in what’s going on around you but to get to the finish. Just keep the strides moving. What if Mike stops and still no ambulance arrives – should Robbie Simpson in 3rd stop too? Should all Athletes just gather round until Callum has enough attention and then race the last 2km? It makes no sense.

 

callumhawkins3
Image from News@TechMasair

 

Debate 2: Did Callum go too hard too soon?

Callum was always looking to make a move and got a 41sec lead between 25-30km with a 15.20 5km split. Mike Shelley and others hung back, and Callum then extended his lead by another minute at 30-35km with a similar split. It’s very easy to say he went too hard too soon in hindsight but what’s interesting is that he never slowed (until he came to a hard stop!). He didn’t seem to be tiring – even his 35-40km split was the fastest in the field and that included nearly a minute on the floor and then 500m or so of running afterwards. His pace judgment seemed spot on, but the heat (I assume) just zapped him and must have come from nowhere. Usually when someone goes too hard or misjudges pace in a marathon you slow gradually over several kilometres, but this never happened to Callum. I think it’s fair to say he wouldn’t have suffered as much if he’d have made his move later and he probably should have been more cautious seeing as the heat was always going to be a factor – but I imagine he felt incredibly comfortable and the pace was fine for him. It’s hard to predict a massive collapse at 40km when you feel fine at 38km, and if he was to have gradually faded, then having a 2minute lead is quite a handy thing to have should he have started to slow…. Actually collapsing and being unable to move is pretty rare! I would say he made the right decisions not having the benefit of hindsight.

 

1547914_10152656121645786_1816168415355164899_o-1.jpg
The writer Ben Moreau, running the 2014 Commonwealth Games right behind Derek Hawkins (Callum Hawkin’s brother). Image from CNN.

 

Debate 3: Was the race badly organized?

There are two debates here – why did it start so late and why did it take so long for Callum to get medical attention? The first is (I suspect) due to TV broadcasting demands – the men started at 8.30am and it was 28C by 10.30am and with the heat off the road, it felt way hotter. I don’t want to see a race where conditions drive the result more than athletic ability and I do believe it should have started earlier. I don’t buy into the “it’s about being tough – make it as hard as possible” argument. It’s about who can run the fastest over 42.2km, not who can cope with heat the best.

As for the medical attention – it’s clearly very hard to monitor every athlete and be immediate when an athlete collapses over 42.2km, but Callum collapsed at 39.5km, got up, carried on for 2 more minutes and then went down again. Medics should have been flagged when he collapsed the first time and alongside. I understand an athlete will be DQ’d should he be given any assistance, but they just weren’t there fast enough to even ask the question. Given the heat, they should have anticipated issues in 30-42.2.km and it would have been pretty easy to have mobile medics ready to go and on alert in vehicles at this point. He was very lucky not to knock himself out when he went down the second time.

It was an amazing race to watch and Callum is exceptionally talented and one of the gutsiest runners I know – I’m sure he’ll be back. Huge kudos to all who ran – was a tough day out there.


(Editor’s note: RunONE spoke to a source close to Hawkins who confirms that he has been recovering well, but is unable to grant media interviews yet. )

Run ONE again Callum Hawkins! Till then, prayers and love from Singapore!

 

callumhawkins
Image from Hawkin’s Twitter

Callum Hawkins is a Marathon runner and was a hot contender for the Commonwealth Games Marathon Gold. The 2016 British Marathon Champion is also a New Balance UK Ambassador, and member of #TeamScotland!