This week in the Facebook group the question was asked. Why do a marathon? What makes you want to run for 42.2km? What makes you get up early in the morning for many many miles over many many months and go through ALOT of hard slog to get to marathon day? Why risk the cost of injury, the cost of shoes and physio’s and massage and entry fees and everything else that comes with a marathon? The answers on the page were interesting as to who had run one or two or more and more and why they would be crazy enough to do that?!
I myself have run one full marathon and out of all of the distances I have run, this happens to be my favourite. Why is that? Well, a few reasons for me. One is that I am built for a marathon. If you had me run a 100m sprint I would struggle and I would probably come dead last. If you had me do a 10k race, I would do okay but I would spend the whole race not enjoying one moment due to the intensity required. I have run a handful of half marathons now too to know that they are a huge challenge to me given the intensity of pace and endurance required at that pace. I much rather a long slow race. Not to say that all marathon runners run slow, they don’t, and I don’t plan on running my next one as slow as my first, but they are certainly run a lot differently to a half marathon.
I also love the journey of the marathon experience. I love the preparation, the goal that is at the end that keeps getting closer and closer and I love the journey that it all entails. Only about 1% of the population can say that they have taken the challenge of a marathon and I like that I am one of those 1%. A select few crazies that actually ‘enjoy’ running 42.2km.
I will never forget my marathon experience for the first time around and now that I know what to expect, I can’t wait to run another. I love the vibe, I love the push, I love the mind that has to will the body to keep going (and believe me in those last 10k it does), I love the power of one human who dares to dream and go the distance and not give up. I love the accomplishment at the end after all of those long long lonely hours pounding the pavement for months on end. I love the medal. I love the cheering from the crowd at the end, but most of all, I love that I learn things about myself that I wouldn’t have if I hadn’t taken up the challenge of the marathon. I love what it gives to me. A sense of belonging, of worth and achievement and knowing that I won’t quit.
But most of all I love the journey, and the victory lap at the end which is the marathon.