Just wondering what all of you do for pain killers during your longer races. I usually get some aches and pains in my joints, and advil seems to take care of it fairly well. I have usually taken one or two tablets prior to, and one in the middle of my marathons. I heard alleve was good but I havent had the best results with it. Any suggestions for over the counter pain killers with no side effects? Or, do some of you feel that pain killers shouldn't be used at all during the longer races?
I believe NSAIDS are not recommended because of what Luis mentioned. They also have been shown to be pretty ineffective in double-blind scientific studies. Their benefit is mostly a placebo effect. Also, some studies have shown that they increase inflammation in muscles instead of decrease it. While there may be some pain reduction benefit there is a negative effect on inflammation and therefore recovery. The other thing to be careful of is that as you dehydrate during the race any medication you take will be more concentrated. Dosage should be considered in that light.
Unfortunately I don't have another, better recommendation for you. I'm opposed to them in general but they DO have their place and use. Some people need to use something so I'm not judging them here at all!
Do you know why you get joint aches and pains? Finding the answer to that may provide you with the best solution!
Here is an article about not taking NSAID's before or during endurance training.