Running in the city, all the tips

Running in the city, all the tips

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Run around townit hurts? Research, statistics, advice, health risks, inconveniences and other information on theride to town.

For manyrunnerrun around townit is a mandatory choice: not everyone has the opportunity to reach a park, a wood or a green area. Run around town, between smog and pollution, it is not the healthiest practice, plus there are others inconvenienceto keep in mind, just think of the cars whizzing by, the scooters that invade any useful space and the dangers of using earphones.

Thereride to townit is not a safe practice so much so that it has been the subject of research by theDepartment of Health Sciencesof the University of Genoa. The researchers conducted a survey among the habitual athletes of theride to town using hydroxyproline as a marker. Hydroxyproline is an amino acid contained in the collagen protein. Why was this marker used? To correlate the damage of pollution on those who love to run in the city.

Is running around town bad for you?

It is not easy to answer the question "Does it hurt to run in the city?". Much depends on the urban environment in which we live and on the tessa dipollution. The aforementioned research from the University of Genoa has tried to give a concrete answer.

Nitrogen dioxide, one of the main pollutants of urban traffic, irritates the lung tissue, predisposing the tissues of athletes to respiratory irritation and infections. The damage suffered byrunnerwas measured by testing the amount of hydroxyproline found in the urine (hydroxyprolinuria), which indicates the degeneration of lung tissue cells due tosmog. The researchers of theDepartment of Health Sciencesthey compared the levels of hydroxyprolinuria of runners who used to run in the city (between smog and pollution) with those found in athletes who trained in the countryside. Again, a comparison was made with users who did not train at all but still moved around the city. The research found that:

  1. contact with pollutants in whom runs into town it is a hundred times higher than that of users who usually move around the city but without doing sports.
  2. The damage is significantly greater in those who are forced to run around town in fact the hydroxyproline levels in the country runners were far lower.

It must be said that the study did not consider an even higher risk factor: the impact that the fine duston who chooses torun around town. It is not difficult to find data on the damage of fine particles, just sift through the archives of the World Health Organization or the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the latter includes fine particles in the so-called "group 1", that is among the factors that considerably increase the risk of contracting cancer. The project "European Study of Cohortes for Air Pollution Effects"Involved 300,000 people and leaves no doubt about the damage caused by fine dust (PM 10 and PM 2.5), linked above all to traffic pollution, for each increase of 5 μg / m3 of PM 2.5, the relative risk of getting lung cancer increases by 18%, while it increases by 22% with each increase of 10 μg / m3 of PM 10. They are therefore the fine dustthe main causes of the carcinogenic effect. With these data we do not want to cause alarmism but only to open your eyes to the damage related to city pollution.

Advice for those who go for a run in the city

Those who love running in the city should not give it up but certainly can take precautions to mitigate potential damage. Here are some tips:

  1. Run consciously
    When the pollution in the city is red-labeled, consider going to the gym on the carpet. To find out if the day is very polluted, inquire about the PM10 bulletins of the local ARPA (Regional Agency for Environmental Protection).
  2. The right time
    Avoid rush hours. When traffic is congested, it's not just your lungs that suffer: noise pollution and speeding scooters can undermine your mental and physical health.
  3. Running around the city by day
    A city run is safer in bright sunlight. If you go out at night, remember to wear light-colored clothes and a reflective jacket. Make yourself visible to motorists.Run around townin the morning it is not only safer but it is also healthier: the air is less polluted in the early hours of the day.
  4. Anti-smog mask
    Learn to use special anti-smog masks with integrated filters.
  5. No to earphones
    For maximum safety, avoid the use of earphones. In urban traffic, it is better to be concentrated and have all 5 senses available.
  6. Run in the parks
    There's no better place to run around town than in a park. To run in Milan there is the Sempione Park, those who want to run in Naples can point to the Villa Comunale or even better to the Capodimonte Park.

Another article of ours that may interest you is Race calendar: marathons, half marathons, 10 km, 5 km and free group training.

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Video: 5 Tips for Running at Night. REI (August 2022).