Read on for Dr May's health and safety advice...
Like the rest of the Vhi Support Team, I hope that running in the 2015 Vhi Women's Mini Marathon is a fun and enjoyable experience for all participants.
However, it is a 10km route and therefore I've a few tips which will hopefully help you to have a safe and healthy event:
• Remember, if you have pre-existing medical conditions or any health niggles, you should have seen your GP by now and received (and acted on) advice as to how you should take part
• Listen to your body -symptoms like dizziness, confusion, light-headedness, chest pain and shortness of breath during the event should be taken seriously, therefore if you have any of these symptoms during the race, you should stop running and seek immediate medical help
On the day, there will be 67 medical staff on duty, including doctors and other allied health professionals, provided by the Order of Malta with ambulances also on standby. These services are spread throughout the course from the start to finish line.
Any participants (or even spectators) picked up along the course, who need medical treatment, will be appropriately assessed and, depending on the severity of their condition, will be either transported to the medical treatment area in Fitzwilliam Square (just after the finish line) or to an appropriate hospital.
All stewards (who will be wearing race official T-shirts and/or Vhi branded hi-visibility vests) are briefed and should able to advise you of where to go or what to do.
• Please remember to fill in your personal details on the back of your race number -this information will help the medical personnel on duty to identify and treat you while also being aware of any medical conditions you might have. It is also important to include details for who to contact in the event of emergency.
Some ways you can help yourself to have a healthy, fun day are as follows:
• Keep hydrated and drink only if you are thirsty. There are water stations throughout the course but don't over-hydrate!
• Make sure that you eat a small meal of 300-500 calories of carbohydrates one hour or more before the event. This will give you the energy that you will need to complete the route cross the finish line
• Check the weather. If it's a sunny day, please wear sun protection. If the weather is more typically Irish (ie. wet) make sure you bring a change of clothes with you and get changed quickly after completing the race
• Wear your normal training shoes, not brand new ones
• Watch out for your running terrain and also other people running or walking next to you as they might need medical attention.
Finally, enjoy the day and the very best of luck on June 1.
with Vhi's Medical Support