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J Am Coll Nutr. 1985;4(2):187-94.

Physiologic changes during a marathon, with special reference to magnesium.


In a single case study of a moderately trained, healthy man, physiologic changes during a marathon are reported. Blood was drawn prior to the race, at 1 hour and 2 hours into the race, at the end of the race, and after 1 hour of recovery. By 1 hour into the race, norepinephrine, epinephrine, and dopamine had increased nearly nine-fold, two-fold and five-fold, respectively. After 1 hour of recovery, epinephrine had returned to the pre-race value but norepinephrine and dopamine were still elevated. Cortisol increased gradually and was more than doubled by the end of the race. It was still elevated after 1 hour of recovery. White blood cells gradually increased, reaching their maximum value at the end of the race; a four-to-five-fold increase. Thromboxane B2, which had an inverse relationship to serum magnesium, was below the pre-race value for the first 2 hours but increased nine-fold by the end of the race. Serum magnesium increased from 1.44 meq/l to 1.68 meq/l at 2 hours into the marathon, dropped to 1.07 meq/l by the end of the race, and returned to its pre-race value by 1 hour of recovery. The decrease in serum magnesium at the end of the race may be associated with increased plasma free fatty acid levels.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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