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Weighing the pros and cons of doing a marathon . . .

michelem2010-05-01 20:11:07 +0000 #1
Well, perhaps some of you remember that I did my first 1/2 marathon last November (US Half in SF) and afterward swore I'd never do another one. Well, never say never! I started running regularly again a few months ago and this morning went out and ended up doing 13.15 (plotted it out on usatf.org when I got home). Before the 1/2 last year, I had injured my knee falling off my bike during a century ride and couldn't run for several weeks before the race and the farthest I had gotten up to was about 8 miles. Needless to say I was HURTING after the race (and for days afterward). Today, I felt good after and still do this evening. Granted, I had to stop twice for at least 5 minutes each to use the restroom (have my period and this causes an uptick in motility for me -- yuck!). Also, it was probably 15 degrees warmer. Excuses, excuses . . . my time was still about the same.

Anyway, now I'm thinking marathon . . . the CIM (California International Marathon) happens in December and pretty much starts in my backyard. It is listed as one of the "fastest" races as it has a net downhill (lots of rollers, mainly in the first half, but I'm used to those from where I run anyway). I'll need to decide this week in order to get in the proper training (luckily I have a pretty good base to start from).

My only concern is that this will probably mean I'll need to stick the bike back on the trainer for the rest of the year.

My only time to cycle is on weekends, and this will be my only time for long runs unless I can get myself to do long runs on the treadmill at the gym (NOT! I can do speedwork there, but anything over an hour and I've had it on the treadmill). Sigh . . . Decisions, decisions.

Why do I even want to do a marathon? Well, to prove to myself that I can do it, of course!

I love cycling, but am supposed to be doing more weight-bearing exercise (docs orders) . . . having a goal such as a marathon will help me to keep pounding the pavement on a regular basis as I don't love running quite as much -- don't hate it, but don't love it (and yes, I do use weights at the gym for my weight-bearing stuff, but my doc is a big running advocate). I'm pushing the big 4-0 . . . need I say more?

If anyone would like to throw in their two cents, let me know! I'd love to hear your experiences.


pinkychique2010-05-01 20:16:22 +0000 #2
I say go for it!! But get a coach or talk to a local running shop guy and see what they say so that you can get the right mileage in without overdoing it. You do not want to end up with a stress fracture

and that's what could happen if you take the mileage up to quickly, and that's the opposite of what the pounding/weight bearing is supposed to do for you.

GOOD LUCK!!!
luvmypwds2010-05-01 20:36:25 +0000 #3
If you feel that doing a marathon is a goal you'd like to achieve then I say go for it. It is a lot of pounding though. I've done a couple and marathons just aren't for me. I find that I inevitably get injured while training for one! My fave distance is the 1/2 marathon.

At any rate, I don't doubt that you will be able to do it. If you can do the half I don't see why you couldn't do the full as long as you train smart.

Good luck!
michelem2010-05-01 20:55:37 +0000 #4
Thanks to your encouragement, I took the plunge and signed up for the Four Bridges Half in late October as well as the CIM in December.

pinkychique, Thanks for the advice on getting a coach. I emailed my local running shoe shop and asked for referrals. Hopefully I'll hear something soon!

Thanks to you both.
teigyr2010-05-01 21:12:29 +0000 #5
michelem, I was going to say to go for it so I'm glad you are

I signed up for a marathon that is Oct 5. I signed up WAY back in the spring but I figured I'd make it "real" and go from there.

I definitely think a coach is the way to go. I went from being perpetually tired and achy to actually seeing improvement AND I don't get hurt. I've read through training books and don't really have good comprehension in that regard. A coach that knows what she/he is doing REALLY helps. Every day I run, I thank mine mentally.

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