- Researchers have shown that long-term marathon runners, those who have completed at least 25 marathons over the past 25 years, have increased coronary calcium and calcified plaque volume.
- A second group did a study which suggested that marathon runners had increased aortic stiffness compared with individuals who exercised recreationally
I would really like to stress that both of these studies do not look at patient oriented endpoints but intermediate end-points. I would hesitate to turn anyone off of exercise, which I tell my patients is the closest thing we have to a fountain of youth, until we had data containing hard end-points.
To corroborate that, the first study looked at a number of other cardiovascular risk factors, and all of these pointed to improved cardiovascular risk profiles:
- lower heart rate
- lower body weight
- lower BMI
- Higher HDL-cholesterol levels
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