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How NOT to Train for a Marathon

How NOT to Train for a Marathon

| May 18, 2016
Life, Running

In the past three years, I’ve run over 2,000 miles, 7 marathons, and 50 half-marathons. I’ve never had more injuries, health issues, and fewer friends in my life. However, I do have great calves.

According to Runner’s World, there are 4 key elements of training for a marathon:

  1. Stay healthy and hydrated
  2. Build your weekly mileage slowly
  3. Do a weekly long run
  4. Get adequate rest and recovery time

According to my world, there is one key elements of training for a marathon:

  1. Run

Clearly, my logic is a little misguided.

During my most recent marathon, I decided to do the impossible; go from couch potato (I took half a year off from running) to a 26.2 miler in less than a month. In hindsight, that probably wasn’t the smartest idea.

Like all runs I have done in the past, I began my first day of training with a 7 mile run. I didn’t stretch, carry a water bottle, or eat before the run. It was about 30 degrees outside, and I got a cold the next day. In two weeks, I bumped up my daily mileage to 15 miles. My diet consisted of fast food and soda, and my running shoes saw more of me than my husband.

By week three I couldn’t run without wearing a knee brace.

I eventually finished the 26.2 miles in a whopping 8 hours. To put that into perspective, the average time for most marathoners to finish the race is about 4-5 hours. Looking back, I realized that I got so caught up with just finishing the race that I ignored crucial details like my health, speed improvement, and social life along the way. I couldn’t help but wonder in what other areas in my life I cut corners to just finish the task before me. It was eye-opening.

Could the way I run a marathon really be an indicator of the way I run my own life? I believe it is, and I don’t want to admit that.

Please allow me to cut one last corner and end this blog post with a quote

“The quality of your work, in the long run, is the deciding factor on how much your services are valued by the world.” Orison Swett Marden


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