The World Health Organization has officially called the coronavirus a pandemic, and as the virus spreads around the world, health officials urge everyone to practice “social isolation” and exercise extreme caution regarding handwashing and other cleanliness habits.
As runners, we spend a lot of time, potentially using public toilets or fountains, as well as during races – we hang out together in tight places, often exchanging “fives” with strangers. And today, officials at the Boston Marathon announced that the race will be delayed (not canceled).
So, here is a review of information and resources that can help maintain health during an outbreak of coronavirus, also known as COVID-19. You can scroll down the list of some major races that have been canceled or rescheduled to date.
Note. If you are registered to participate in an upcoming race (or other event), contact the organizers of the event (ideally on their website or social networks) for updates and information. No matter how big or small the event is, everything is constantly changing, and you should not make any assumptions.
Runners and Coronavirus
We all must follow best practices to avoid contracting and / or distributing COVID-19. Here is a list of key protective measures against the new coronavirus from the World Health Organization.
Protective measures through the World Health Organization:
- Wash your hands often
- Social distance – [maintain at least 3 feet between yourself & anyone coughing/sneezing]
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Practice breathing hygiene
- If you have a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, seek medical attention in advance.
Runners should be very attentive to these recommendations, because running and racing alone put us at risk of violating some of these “rules.”
Protective measures through w.h.o & Notes for runners:
- Wash your hands often – most porta pots do NOT have proper hand washing facilities [bring your own alcohol based hand sanitizers and/or avoid restrooms without proper tools]
- Social distance – we are often in close proximity with other runners [avoid groups, the gym, races & group runs]
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth – we are sweaty and naturally want to wipe our face [don’t touch your face, wear a neck gaiter to wipe your nose, wear gloves and/or sweat band too]
- Practicing respiratory hygiene – Um, 2 words = Missile snot. [No snot rockets!]
- If you have a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, seek medical attention immediately – runners may be stubborn and reluctant to seek medical help, which may result in them being prohibited from running [If you’re sick – Seek medical care, avoid contact with others]
Coronavirus Reminders for Runners:
- COVID-19 is highly contagious and often spreads through coughing or sneezing.
- Avoid contact with anyone who is sick or in close proximity to them.
- Try not to touch things (traffic lights, equipment in the gym, etc.) that the patient could touch
- Wash your hands thoroughly (and often!)
- If you are sick, seek proper medical attention, do not run or exercise in public places.
- Your immune system may be impaired after a marathon or other hard run – take care to get adequate recovery, rest and nutrition to help your body be as healthy as possible
How coronavirus affects races:
Officials announced in Boston today at the Boston Marathon, which began in 1897, will be postponed. The only time the race schedule was changed was during World War I.
This is great news for all runners, as the Boston Marathon is arguably the most prestigious marathon in the world, and many other small races are likely to receive information from the respected Boston Sports Association.
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and several other Boston Region officials made a statement on Friday. And the Boston marathon is just one of several events that change or cancel to prevent the spread of the virus. Governor Baker summed up by saying: “The metaphor is written here by itself – today we are at the first stage of our own marathon, fighting this very serious disease.”
The Boston Marathon, originally scheduled for April 20, was delayed until September 14, 2020. [ Check out the Boston Marathon website for the announcement – Boston Marathon Postponed ]
The London marathon, scheduled for April 26, was rescheduled for October 4, 2020. [ Check out Runner’s World UK for more information here – London Marathon Postponed ]
Here is a list of races that have been canceled, rescheduled or postponed (with a date) so far. Check with the authorities about your upcoming races or group races before registering or participating in any event. This is not a complete list.
Races canceled or postponed due to coronavirus:
Tokyo Marathon: Held only for marathon elite and stroller elite
Great Wall Marathon: canceled
NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships: canceled
NCAA Open Athletics Championships: canceled
USATF Masters Indoor Championships: canceled
New Balance Nationals Indoor: canceled
New York Half Marathon: canceled
Barcelona Marathon: Moved to Sunday October 25
Karlovy Vary 5000: Delayed, date to be confirmed
Roman Marathon: canceled
Half Marathon World Championship: Moved to Saturday, October 17
Paris Marathon: Moved to Sunday, October 18
Boston Marathon: Moved to September 14
London Marathon: Moved to October 4
* This list is current as of 3.13.20 15:00 Pacific time. Other races are likely to be added to this list soon.
If you are registered to participate in a race that has been canceled or postponed, contact the race organization for information on dates, refunds and more.
Outside Magazine has an interesting prospect of canceling races, suggesting that we can return to running for the sake of running.
You can read it here: Outside Magazine Online – Coronavirus puts in perspective
Here are a few sites with more information on how to prevent COVID-19, what are the symptoms, what to do if you think you have more.
Coronavirus information for runners:
Recommendations for the public on coronovirus – World Health Organization
Coronavirus Information (Prevention, Symptoms, etc.) – CDC
There is an article in Runner & # 39; s World magazine – Is it safe to work during an outbreak of Coronavirus?
Works during the coronavirus – New York Times
Your local government – Check back often for closures, canceled events, and important announcements.
Race and Group Runs – Check with the event organizers for the latest updates and information on upcoming events before appearing. This includes group and club races.
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