Marathon season is upon us, and as many head for the streets and local parks to top up that essential training it’s important that we take the crucial steps in looking after our joints.

Pounding the streets can put a lot of extra strain on our joints and our immunity, it’s essential therefore, to prepare for the big day and protect joints pre and post marathon.

Start with your feet, Wearing trainers that will give extra support will make those 26.2 miles that little bit easier. Selecting the trainers and socks for the big day in advance will allow you to give them a test run – try them out for at least a 10 mile jog to see how comfortable they are on a long run. If they bother you or cause blisters try out another pair by a different brand.

About a month before the race head out for your first half marathon to test your fitness. Many successful marathon runners say that a good practise race gives a positive mental lift.

Your diet is key and can affect your performance in a positive way and can play a lead role in taking care of your joints too. Begin with adding ginger to your diet – this natural spice helps to relieve muscle soreness as it contains an anti-inflammatory compound which is very soothing. As many athletes suffer from nausea and dizziness when training long distance, ginger also helps to aid this – from calming a queasy stomach to getting rid of vertigo this is a real multi-tasking product. Ginger can be found in the best selling LQ Liquid Health  Joint Care and this daily supplement drink will supply you with enough of your daily intake to reap the benefits of this super spice. Data from five trials, involving 593 people, show that ginger root extracts significantly reduce pain by 30% compared with placebo, and reduce disability by 22%.

The LQ Liquid Health Joint Care will also help to minimise the risk of injury during training by taking care of your joint health. Many people prefer taking a natural approach to their healthcare and this amazing daily drink contains the unique lubricating and ‘cushioning’ properties of hyluronic acid combined with high quality hydrolysed marine collagen (2000mg) offering the ‘ultimate in joint cell regeneration’ to encourage flexibility, mobility while vitamin C also contributes to the protection of cells from oxidative stress. The beneficial effect of Peptan® marine collagen on joint health1 and its ability to aid in the restoration of bone mineral density2 is scientifically proven by a growing body of studies, including a placebo controlled clinical trial. Taking this drink daily pre and post marathon will contribute to not only the repair of joint health but the prevention of deterioration and injury.

Dr Sarah Brewer, Medical Nutritionist gives her advice for marathon runners Seek individual advice from a sports nutritionist to ensure you obtain the right diet to support your training and event regime. A personalised program that includes glucosamine, chondroitin, hydrolysed collagen, hyaluronic acid, vitamins, minerals and selected extracts such as ginger root and/or turmeric is likely to pay long-term dividends. You can take different tablets to obtain these, or take a liquid formation that combines them in a drink such as LQ Liquid Health Joint Care.

LQ Liquid Health Joint Care will also help to prevent the long term us of paracetemol and ibuprofen for joint ache sufferers.

Dr Sarah Brewer, Medical Nutritionist states that: “Evidence shows that long term use of paracetemol and ibroprofen could be damaging for joint ache sufferers and that there are more natural alternative to taking tablets regularly if you suffer with muscle/joint and bone aches. Quick fix pain killers could be becoming out of favour with consumers soon due to the increased risks associated.”

Nutrition is essential for your 26.2 miles preparation and fuelling yourself by eating and drinking at the right time can be crucial when you are getting your body ready for the marathon. The best times to eat before a run is around 30 minutes before you head out. Smaller snacks are best as they digest quicker and will still give you a hit of energy, try whole wheat toast with peanut butter or a banana. Also, taking supplements which contain Vitamin C before a run will help to contribute to the production of cells from oxidative stress and contribute to normal collagen formation for the normal function of bones which means you can stay active for longer. Vitamin C is essential for healthy joints as it is needed for

the metabolism of proteoglycans in joint cartilage and without Vitamin C, collagen triple strands wouldn’t twist. Post run protein and carbohydrates are crucial to enable your body to fully recover; carbs give the main source of fuel and energy while protein helps repair the muscle. Try snacks such as yoghurt and fresh berries or tuna on whole wheat bread.

LQ Joint Care is priced at £24.99 and is available from www.boots.com