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Question
Posted by: Comrades Runner | 2003/01/17

Vitamines & Minerals for 20 000 Comrades hopefulls!

Hi Doc!
January is the start of serious Comrades training. As we increase our mileage our greatest concern is off course possible injury. Second to this comes the concern that our bodies have a sufficient supply of vitamines and minerals. We all start the neverending search for the ultimate vitamine & supplement routine, and hoping that "this year I'll eventually get it right". We are bombarded with advise from our G.P's, fellow runners, pharmacists, adds., even samples in goody-bags! Could you please assist us with possible answers on the following questions.
1. Inflamation - we hate taking anti-inflamatories, but have heard that Traumeel S "tablet under the tongue" is a must in preventing any serious inflamation? True of False?
2. Spirulina is a must for runners, and approx. 2 weeks before any marathon, take Threshold in conjunction with Spirulina. True or False?
3. An overdose of Vit C is excellent in assisting with any internal healing - inflamation again? True or False?
4. Slow Mag is the best magnesium formula for runners, assists in not cramping and to be taken in the evening. True or False?
5. We realise that woman require additional vitamines and minerals like Zinc, Vit B, calsium, etc., etc. True or False, and if so what DO we actually require?

Please Doc, can you supply us a vitamine & mineral 'daily intake requirement recipe'. We are working people trying to fit a tight training schedule into our lives. Our diets aren't that of professional athletes, time is limited, budgets aren't that great, and through the tough training months we all have to try and stay awake at work at that dreadfull time of 11:00 in the morning!
Please give some advise to the Comrades runners!
Thank's!

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageFitnessDoc

Hi there

Sorry for the delay in answering this question.
Please note that many of these questions need to be directed to other experts. Let me go through the questions:
1) Chat to Cyberdoc - however, what I can add, is taking anti-inflammatories (AI) during your training runs or races, is ill-advised for several reasons; one being that you reduce blood flow to the kidneys. Since blood flow is already diverted substantially in an ultra - you stand the risk of organ failure due to taking AI's - so please all be extremely careful about this.
2. Chat to Cyberdoc.
3. Chat to Dietdoc and Cyberdoc - however, from what I know, stick to the required amounts of Vitamin C, since I think what you say is false.
4. Slow-mag only helps if you are magnesium deficient - which few of us are. Most sports doctors consider cramping to be a neuromuscular problem that can best be aided by stretching the cramping muscle (whilst it is cramping and daily as part of a programme).
5. Chat to Dietdoc for women's dietary requirements, which are pretty individualised anyway. i.e the best bet would be for each runner to have an individualised dietary consultation.

I hope this all helps. I am a Comrades runner and know the stresses and strains on the body!
Good luck with all your training and with the race! It's an awesome experience.

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