Mile 15 of my 12 th marathon. Slight back ache so thought I would take some Ben Gay the volunteers were offering. I took a rather large wad and wiped my hands on my back. BIG HUGE MISTAKE--- my BACK AND SPINE WAS ON FIRE that I even picked up a wet sock on the ground to try and wipe it off while running. I am a pretty fast marathoner for my age (41) and was on for a 3:12 marathon and then this burning pain was just too much. The intense burning lasted about 2.5 miles then it was more prickly heat. Instead of helping me it ruined me mentally in a critical point of a marathon I have run the last 4 years. Was this an allergic reation? possibly or that my pores were wide open and accentuated the burning menthol.