Marathon: a foot race over a course measuring 26 mi. 385 yards (42 km 195 meters).
The origin of the marathon has roots in Ancient Greece. In the 5th century B.C the Persians invaded Greece and ended in Marathon. A town 26 miles from Athens. The Athenian army, being seriously outnumbered by the Persians- sent messages all over Greece asking for help in battle. The traditional origin of the marathon comes from the story how a runner named Phidippides ran the 26 miles from Marathon to Athens to announce the Greek victory and died on the spot.
The closer I get to the day of the marathon, the longer and more grueling the training becomes.
A beginner marathon training program is generally outline by 4 runs a week, 2 rest days, and one cross training day.
Each training plan includes one long run. This is the run that is to prepare you the most for the day of the race. You are to treat it as you would treat the marathon. Respect the preparation and the distance. Go out unprepared, pay for it.
There are certain runs that make you a better runner, that make you sure of your ability to finish a marathon. Yesterday was one of those runs.
It’s important not to run in the middle of the day, in the middle of July when it’s sunny and 85 degrees outside.
It’s important to hydrate yourself or you could literally die. It’s important to fuel after an hour of running or your body depletes itself of glycogen creating the dreaded “dead legs”. You begin to feel as though your legs are 500 pounds. It’s hard to run with 500 pound legs.
Its these types of runs that stretch your capacity of willpower and endurance. When you choose to continue instead of turning back to home or the car. These runs utilize every ounce of energy you contain and leave you empty. Then you rest
Rest and recovery are vital when training for a marathon. Its not during the long runs that your body adapts and adheres to the rigorous standards you’ve set up for it. Its during your rest. When muscles heal and regenerate you come back stronger. This happens quickest in sleep. Go back to the pavement too soon and you risk injury.
As a runner, its hard to take days off. We are programed to push ourselves. We believe that somehow taking days off will diminish our return. When in fact, this is very far from the truth. Pushing too hard is to do more harm than good.
I’ve spent a lot of time alone putting in the miles. I train in solitude for therapy. Marathon training has changed my life for the better. Somehow changing me, its healing me. Its making me into the woman I never knew I could be- a woman I like.
This summer I’ve been akin to a monk. Self reflective and self indulgent. Taking care of my physical needs to create a runners physiology and complete the task ahead.
I never thought I would be a runner and I never though Id be training for a marathon, but I am.