Mercy Spinal Surgeon and Marathoner Dr. Charles C. Edwards II Offers Tips for Runners
Charles C. Edwards, II, M.D., is Medical Director of The Spine Clinic at The Maryland Spine Center at Mercy Medical Center. Patients from the Baltimore region and from across the nation seek Dr. Edwards’ expertise in diagnosing and treating spine conditions, including scoliosis, osteoarthritis, spinal deformity (adult and pediatric) and complex degenerative spine conditions. Board Certified, Dr. Edwards offers advanced skills in minimally invasive surgery and microscopic techniques for spinal deformity correction.
Dr. Edwards is also a competitive marathoner, and has run a marathon nearly every fall for the past 16 years. After completing several US marathons (Birmingham, Greensboro, Disney, Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Boston, Baltimore, Marine Corps) he ventured into European marathons (Athens, Greece; Dublin, Ireland; Venice, Amsterdam, Budapest, and Porto). His times have all been between 2:40 and 3:05.
Here are Dr. Edwards’ tips on how to best weather a marathon run…
1. Don't let the adrenaline get the best of you - stick to your pace in the early miles. It is so tempting to go out too fast, but you will more than pay for it later when your legs turn to jelly.
2. Although a little gross, definitely apply the Vaseline to the rub spots – front and back of arm pits, groin, nipples (guys) and yes, the anus.
3. Eat a simple carb meal early the night before - nothing heavy that will take a long time for your body to digest. You want to make sure that you have fully emptied out #2 before the run.
4. Take a Motrin/Alleve with a banana and bagel 2-hours before the race. If it helps reduce the agony, it is a good thing.
5. You will be tempted to tie your shoe laces tight. Do the opposite. Your feet will swell after a few hours of funning on pavement. Blisters and a lot of foot pain is a predictable consequence of tight laces. Double tie them at a length that feels slightly loose.
6. Do not eat anything out of the ordinary on race morning. There are way too many stories of novices getting diarrhea after trying some new sports drinks, sports candies, or other supplements.
--Charles C. Edwards, II, M.D., The Maryland Spine Center, Mercy Medical Center
Founded in 1874 in downtown Baltimore by the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Medical Center is a 183-licensed bed acute care university-affiliated teaching hospital. Mercy has been recognized as a top Maryland hospital by U.S. News & World Report; a Top 100 hospital for Women’s Health & Orthopedics by Healthgrades; is currently A-rated for Hospital Safety (Leapfrog Group), and is recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center as a Magnet Hospital. Mercy Medical Center is part of Mercy Health Services (MHS), the parent of Mercy’s primary care and specialty care physician enterprise, known as Mercy Personal Physicians, which employs more than 200 providers with locations in Baltimore, Lutherville, Overlea, Glen Burnie, Columbia and Reisterstown. For more information about Mercy, visit www.mdmercy.com, MDMercyMedia on Facebook, Twitter, or call 1-800-MD-Mercy.