Can I Run A Marathon With Strep?

Disclaimer: I’m not a medical professional so if you take anything from this and then die as a result, it’s your own dang fault. I’m just telling my experience.

I’ve been training for the St. George, Utah marathon for 3 months. Then a week ago Friday I woke up with a terrible sore throat, swollen glands in my neck, and later in the day developed chills and a slight fever. I figured a few green smoothies would knock it out and I’d be good to go. But I did end up having to miss my last long run prior to the marathon. Saturday I felt worse. Sunday I didn’t feel any better. So Monday I finally went to the doctor, quite worried about whether or not I was going to be able to run in the marathon, which of course I had paid good money to run in, but more importantly had just dedicated three months of training to!

The bad news from the doctor was that I had strep. I should have pulled the old piano joke on him, “Doctor, will I be able to run a marathon this weekend?”


“Great! I’ve never run over a mile in my life before!”

But in all seriousness, I told him I had been training for this and didn’t want to kill myself, but wanted to run if at all possible, even if that meant not doing as well as I had hoped. He said with antiobiotics I’d be fine to run by Wednesday, let alone Saturday, the day of the marathon. He said I might be somewhat weaker than I would otherwise be, but that I wasn’t in danger of killing myself or anything like that.

So I got the prescription, and sure enough by Wednesday I felt fine enough to run a few miles, and Saturday the marathon went just fine as far as the strep was concerned. So if you get strep a week before your big event can you still do it? I did, and I felt fine. But of course consult a medical professional and don’t take my word for it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003407250710 Rochy

    Jeanne,This is awesome! You are amaizng. I have been running too. There are no marathons in my future but I did run the Seacoast half marathon last November. Not being remotely athletic that to date is my most impressive athletic achievement. I am going to check out your recipes. I am not much of a cook so I could use the inspiration. I would love to see some pics of baby boy! It would be great to see you and your little guy. Are you heading home at all this summer? I miss you!Love, Nicole