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To Run....or Not to Run????

Thursday, October 02, 2008

OK.....here is my dilema. I have always wanted to run a marathon. It has actually been on my list of things that I want to do for awhile now (yes, I actually have a list!). Two of my really good friends are going to be running the Seattle Half Marathon and have invited me to join them. I really want to do it....but I'm kind of scared! Mostly because it would be my first marathon and it's 13.1 miles! Not only that, but the course is "hilly" AND it is on November 30th....which is only 9 weeks away! What if I'm not in good enough shape by the time it comes around? Is it possible to train for a half marathon in 10 weeks (I count last week because I was running...even though it wasn't with the intent to do a marathon).

My husband keeps telling me that I should just do it....since I have talked about doing a marathon before. His reasoning is that it's for me, so as long as I finish the 'race' I should be proud...even if I come in last place (let's hope THAT wouldn't happen...but I guess SOMEONE has to come in last, right?!).

Anyway, I'm not sure what exactly I'm scared of. I guess mostly it's just the thought of RUNNING 13.1 miles....or I guess, the thought of NOT being able to run 13.1 miles and having to stop and walk too much. Anyway, I just wanted to share....and maybe get some input on this decision (and advice!)!!

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    I don't know you at all, but here's what I hear you saying: (1) you are a runner, and you're in pretty great shape already, (2) a half-marathon and ultimately a full marathon are things you very much want to do in your life, and (3) I look at the last paragraph of you initial post and I see a fear of failing. I have to go back to what confoosedblonde said and say DO IT. Do it whether you walk/run or crawl across the finish line. Do it because once you do, it won't be so scary any more. Do it and know that few people ever even WALK 13.1 miles in their lives! It will be an accomplishment regardless! I think it's great that you're considering it and I hope you pull the trigger. Please let us know what you decide, and how your training progresses, and how it all turns out!
    4686 days ago
    Your dilemma is almost exactly what happen to me about two years ago. My friend and I dared each other to sign up for a half marathon just a few months before the race. (we both did not run before this). We made sure to run every other day, and to push each other to do more running every week. The days went by and the running got easier, and by the time that the race came around, we did it! Obviously with only about 3 months of training, we weren't the first ones to the finish line, but we made pretty good time. I think you should definitely try it, just make sure not to over exhaust yourself the week of the race and ALWAYS stretch! emoticon
    And tell me what you end up doing!
    4687 days ago
    Thank You all for your advice! I will definitely take it all into account when making my decision!

    I do want to elaborate a little more since I don't believe that I gave enough background information in my original blog. I actually have been consistently running/jogging/walking since the end of July (before that I would only run/jog/walk whenever I felt like it....which would be maybe once or twice a week, sometimes less, sometimes more). Whenever I do go on the treadmill (I don't really run outside....yet) I always do a minimum of 2 miles. For some reason, I just don't feel like it's worth it if I do any less. Within the last month I have started to run anywhere from 3-5 miles when I get on the treadmill. A couple of times getting up to 6 miles.

    My friend sent me the training schedule that she is following (the 10 week program that she got off MarathonRookie.com). She sent it to me at the beginning of the week (which actually would have started me in week 2 of the schedule). Because I had consistently run the whole week before, I figured following the schedule from week 2 would be ok if I decided to do this. I should also note that I figured my previous week of running would be enough to 'count as training' because I had noticed a huge improvement....meaning I was finally running more than I was walking.

    Anyway, I will definitely have to take a little time to think about this. I know for sure that I still want do a marathon, but will have to decide if this is the right one, or if I should start slower! I will let you all know what I decide soon (and until then, I'm going to keep up on my training schedule)! :)
    4687 days ago
    I personally don't think 10 weeks is enough time to train for a half marathon without risking injury unless you've been running consistently, say 3+ miles a few times a week.

    I am in a half marathon training program (currently week 5) and the whole thing is six months long. My goal is to run the whole thing without walking except through the water stops. My route isn't going to have any hills either. My last "long" run was 4 miles - this week it's going to be 5. The race isn't until the first weekend in March.

    If you aren't already "a runner," I would strongly recommend you do a Couch to 5K or even 10K program in the next 7-9 weeks and celebrate your friends' half marathon by running your 5K around the same time. Then I'd get into training for a 10K or even join a half marathon training group. But these groups usually train for 6 months, even for their participants that are doing a half or even planning on walking all or part of it.

    I'd personally plan on training carefully for a good experience at some future point than training recklessly or too quickly for a race and risk having it end up a painful DNF ("did not finish") ending on a golf cart.

    By the way, I speak from the experience of pushing myself too hard to train for a 15K race. I got up to running 8 miles for the 9-ish mile race. The week before the race I suddenly had major knee pain (IT band syndrome) and could barely walk. I was basically out of running for over a year and just now started up again...

    In 10 weeks you could definitely pull off a strong 10K - even if you haven't really done ANY running before. You'd just need a solid Couch to 10K program. Why not start there?

    emoticon = future you
    4687 days ago
  • SHADOW38
    I guess it depends on what your mileage is now and what your long run is. If you want to check out a 10 week plan, go to www.marathonrookie.com. I used their 10 week plan for my first half marathon and it worked well for me. You could also do a run/walk plan if that interests you.
    4687 days ago
    I say go for it. I used to do long distance running and would love to again. I have started light training already and am in no way ready for a 13.1 mile run, but it would be fun. Who cares what you place! Not many people can say, "I did this!" If you have to walk part of it then so be it! Nothing wrong with that. And it being your first it will give you courage and training for your NEXT one! I'd come be a newbie with you as I have not done a "marathon" if I could alas, I live in Texas -- but cross country in high school many years ago.
    4687 days ago
    do it. do it for none other than yourself.

    so what if you have to walk a little or a lot - once you cross that finish line (first or last)...you completed a goal of your own! YOU HAVE COMPLETED A 13.1 MILE MARATHON!!!!

    i think u should DEFINITELY go for it.

    & meanwhile since its only 10 weeks away...you will work your booty off even more because you have this goal of 13.1 miles to run by the end of November. It'll force you to get more into shape!!

    GO GIRL. Let me know how it turns out. :]
    4687 days ago
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