I promised that I would write more about my marathon experience. Basically the key to running a marathon and finishing it is practice. Without getting the miles on the feet there is no way in hell to finish 26.2 miles and still be alive. I decided back in September 2006 that I would run the Boston marathon in April 2007 -- that's 7 months. Mind you, I don't think I had run more than 2 miles in 10 years, seriously. After a little research, I found a web site with a number of training regimens for beginner runners -- all of which seemed a bit, no extremely, daunting. Where was I going to find time to run 4 days a week?
The program was 18 weeks long, so I counted back 18 weeks from marathon day and found that my real training was to start in late December -- oh joy cold weather. However, before I could even start the real training, I had to get into shape. The key here is to start slow, really slow. I started by running 2 miles on the treadmill 2 times a week. Walking is ok. Walking is expected. Walking is welcome. A few weeks later, I decided to try and do 5 miles -- out to the Nahant circle and back. I got out there doing a walk run combo and came back all walk. I just kept at it until I could run the full 5 miles.
Take it slow, build on it and the next thing you know, 5 miles is nothing. However, you still dread the coming long runs. First long run was 8 miles. Then it was 10 miles. Then 15 miles.
At this point it becomes a mental game. There's not a lot to do while running except run. And think. And ignore the pain and that voice on your shoulder asking you what the hell you're doing. My longest training run was 21 miles and that was in March.
That's all for now.
Part 2 will come along in a while...