Marathon running is aerobic and extremely vigorous exercise. Central blood pressure and wave reflections are independent predictors of cardiovascular risk. We investigated the acute effects of marathon and half marathon on blood pressure and wave reflections.Design and method:
We studied 17 trained male amateur marathoners (mean age; 52.3 ± 8.9 years). We measured augmentation index (AIx), flow mediated dilation (FMD), brachial ankle pulse wave velocity (ba-PWV), central and brachial blood pressure before and immediate after the Seoul international marathon (18th March 2012). And, 1 month later, we measured them again after half marathon. AIx, central and brachial blood pressure were measured using HEM-9000AI (Omron Healthcare Co., Ltd., Kyoto, Japan). Repeated measured ANOVA and post-hoc Bonferroni correction were used to compare the difference between marathon and half marathon for AIx and blood pressure.Results:
There was no significant change of brachial systolic and diastolic blood pressure before and after marathon. (p = 0.369, 0.903, respectively) However, there was a significant reduction of brachial systolic blood pressure after half marathon (127.9 ± 17.1 to 115.1 ± 10.3 mmHg; p = 0.004). Both marathon and half marathon caused a significant fall in both AIx (p < 0.001, p < 0.001, respectively) and AIx@75 (p < 0.001, p = 0.002, respectively). And, both of them caused a significant reduction of central blood pressure (p = 0.019, p < 0.001, respectively). However, there is no significant difference between marathon and half marathon in central blood pressure and AIx. There was no significant change of FMD and ba-PWV in marathon and half marathon.Conclusions:
The present study found a reduction in central systolic blood pressure and AIx in marathon and half marathon. There was significant reduction in brachial systolic blood pressure in half marathon, but, not in marathon. Both marathon and half marathon had acute beneficial effects on cardiovascular system contrary to our concerns. However, half marathon was better than marathon in post-exercise hypotension.