The pure mind over body experience is a big motivator for many to run a marathon.
Each year sees Fun-runners graduate to Marathon runners and complete newbies strapping on their running shoes to accomplish this feat. So what do they hope to get from the experience?
a. Crossing the line and experiencing the joy of accomplishing a huge goal.
b. Find your potential by increasing your physical and mental strength.
c. Boost your confidence with an amazing achievement born from your hard work
Running long distance has been shown to make your heart stronger, improve circulation, and strengthen your muscles. Many runners report mental benefits as well, like feeling less stress, being more upbeat, and experiencing “runner’s high”.
Raise Money and Awareness for a Charity
Many runners combine their marathon goal with the goal of helping others by raising money for charity. They use the inspiration and motivation of helping others to get through the distance. It’s difficult to quit when someone else has donated on your behalf.
Join the community and make friends
The running community around the world is huge and growing daily – information and advice abounds on nutrition, training, recovery, fluid intake – you could have a hobby for life! It’s a great idea to reach out to your local running club for support and advice.
If that’s not enough motivation then turn your attention outwards and run a marathon to inspire others to do something they thought was too tough or impossible. When others see you train and cross that finish line, someone will follow your lead and start running. They might even run their own marathon or face a different fear.
If you’re planning to run a marathon for the first time at least a 5 month preparation is required. This could be significantly reduced if you’re already running seriously and regularly. BUT! Don’t underestimate the commitment you will need and plan for the changes you will need to make in your life to accommodate this new goal. If you’re really a first timer then gradually build up with fun runs increasing in distance over time to reduce your chance of injury.
Common Injuries seen by Physios
The most frequently treated injuries in long distance runners are lower-limb overuse injuries. These includeAchilles Tendinopathy, Patello-femoral pain, Plantar-fasciitis, medial tibial stress syndrome (shin splints)and stress fracture of the foot or tibia.
Some of these injuries can be related to inappropriate training methods or to poor strength/biomechanics.
If you would like to experience the achievement of running a Marathon for yourself a check-up with your Dr and Physio would be a great start.