2009 Bank of America Chicago Marathon EAS Update
Last Updated October 8, 2009
The Bank of America Chicago Marathon’s Event Alert System (EAS) is a color-coded communication system that will communicate the status of course conditions to participants in advance of the event, as well as on race day. The Alert Levels range from Low (green) to Moderate (yellow) to High (red) to Extreme (black) based primarily on weather conditions, as well as other factors.
According to the advance local weather forecast, the weather on race day is projected to be partly sunny, with low temperatures in the upper 30’s (degrees F) and high temperatures in the lower 50’s (degrees F).
Based on this forecast, the Event Alert Level is Yellow, which suggests less-than-ideal conditions for marathon running in the early morning, but progressing toward Green, or good, conditions throughout the day. Please be aware that conditions may change prior to race day. Be prepared for changing conditions and pay attention to signage and P.A. announcements at the Health & Fitness Expo and on race day.
Given the current EAS Level, Bank of America Chicago Marathon Medical Director Dr. George Chiampas offers the following preparation tips to all participants:
Layer, but do not overdress. You want to feel slightly chilly when you start running. Your body generally heats up approximately 20 degrees, so dress as if it is 20 degrees warmer than the actual temperature.
Hydration: Drink enough fluids to maintain your baseline body weight, but be aware of over-hydration. If you begin to gain weight above your baseline body weight, you are drinking too much water and depleting your sodium level. (A condition known as “Hyponatremia” can occur when there is a lower than normal concentration of sodium in the blood. Sodium is a critical electrolyte that aids nerve and muscle function, and helps to maintain blood pressure.)
Utilize both water and sports drinks (Gatorade) to stay hydrated and maintain sodium levels.
Start out at a conservative pace. An all-too-common mistake in the marathon is to start out too quickly and fade at the end. Conserve your energy for the latter stages of the race.
Study the course and be aware of the locations of Aid Stations. Each Aid Station has water, Gatorade, toilets, medical facilities and access to runner drop-out vehicles.
Do not immediately stop moving when you cross the finish line. Rather, walk or slowly jog as you move through the finish area. This will allow your muscles to relax and your body to acclimate. It is not uncommon for runners to collapse beyond the finish line due to the sudden change in activity.
For participants who require such assistance after the race, the Main Medical facility is located just beyond the finish line, as is an Ice Tent and Podiatry Tent.
Pack warm and dry clothes to change into after the race.
The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is committed to providing the safest possible race experience. Participants are advised to use their best judgment, alter their pace accordingly and pay attention to their body’s warning signals at all times.