Are You Ready For A Marathon?

If you are a runner, running a marathon may be on your bucket list. We share some advice for you to consider before you commit to your first marathon.

It is summertime in the Twin Cities, and race events are plentiful. Runners can include the whole family in a day of fitness fun by signing up for a family run, race to raise money for worthy causes like the Stop the Trafficking run coming up on June 13th, or set their sites on the race that tests their endurance as a runner: the marathon. It is important for aspiring marathoners to understand that it is one thing to run a 5-mile course, and quite another to complete a 26.2 mile race.

The decision to run a marathon should be given serious consideration. To run a marathon safely means making a significant time commitment to months of planning and training.

We suggest that runners consider three factors before they commit to their first marathon.

Schedule. Training for a marathon means dedicated time to training; but that’s not where your time commitment ends. You’ll also need time for proper recovery between training sessions, and should also factor in a higher-than-normal level of fatigue. If you are at a point where demands on your time are high, or you may not have the support you need, you might want to consider a half marathon instead. This shorter race still requires training, and will give you more first hand experience about whether you are ready for the demands of a longer race.

Pre-Existing Injuries. If you have any knee, hip, or back issues, marathon training is going to increase the stress on problem areas. This is a factor you should discuss with a physical therapist before you commit to training for a big race.

Nutrition. Marathon training increases your body’s nutrition needs. If you aren’t a healthy eater, are you ready to make significant changes in your diet to protect your body’s performance?

Running is a wonderful way to stay fit and healthy, and every runner talks about the emotional satisfaction that goes hand-in-hand with their sport. We applaud ambitious goals like checking that first marathon off the bucket list, and we want you to be ready and able to commit the time and discipline you’ll need to safely train to achieve your goal.

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