Marathon Organizers Warn Runners of Intense Heat

May 26, 2012

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

fit (adj.) 
[fit] – in good physical condition
Example: Athletes undergo regular medical check-up to make sure they are fit to play.

2. scorching (adj.) [skawr-ching] – very hot
 Example: Our family goes to the beach every summer to escape the scorching heat.

3. sit out (v.) [sit][out] – to not participate
Example: Because of her injury, she decided to sit out the dance competition.

4.  forgo (v.) [fawr-goh] – to give up something
Example: No one wanted to forgo his lunch to attend the training.

5. stamina (n.) [stam-uh-nuh] – physical strength that lasts for a long time
Example:  Soccer players train to develop stamina since a game lasts for 90 minutes.

Read the text below.

At the Boston Marathon held in April 17, more runners than usual were treated for medical reasons, after the scorching heat proved too much for the participants in the 26.2-mile course.

About 2,100 runners were given medical treatment, including 152 people who were taken to hospitals due to complications from the heat. During the race, temperatures reached above 80 degrees Fahrenheit or 30.5 degrees Celsius.

Days before the marathon, organizers encouraged only the fittest runners to run this year’s race, as high temperatures were already expected.

Runners with medical issues, such as heart and breathing problems, cough or cold or a recent stomach virus were asked to sit out this year’s marathon.  The organizers warned participants to be extra careful to avoid heat stroke.

Before the marathon, the Boston Athletic Association (BAA), which manages the race, advised those without experience in running to forgo this year’s race and join next year’s instead. Out of more than 27,000 runners registered for the marathon, around 14% no longer joined after the warnings. 

Nonetheless, organizers were prepared for the event. The BAA increased water supplies and ice along the race course. Additional ambulances and Red Cross stations were also in place. Spray hoses from fire departments were even ready to help runners cool down.

Despite the difficult situation, runners from Africa, who are used to running under high temperatures, showed they had the most stamina to finish the race. All top three runners from the men’s and women’s divisions were Kenyans.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         In your opinion, how does temperature affect the performance of athletes like marathon runners?
·         Would you join a marathon in your country if it were held in the middle of summer?  Why? / Why not?

Discussion B

·          Is there a sport or activity that you sometimes enjoy doing even though you have little experience of it?  
·         Do you think people should give up a sport or other activity they like because others advise them to stop? Why or why not?


May 26, 2012