Monday, October 22, 2012

You are now a Marathoner.......

Sligo AC’s Marathon Brave Hearts, “Rookies or experienced”
How you should be feeling the day after you complete the Dublin City Marathon, “Walking on cloud nine”, feeling pretty good about yourself, even though you will more than likely feel like your, “Limping on cloud nine”, But that certainly will not dull the glow even the slightest for what you have just achieved.

You set a goal of running the 26.2 miles, whether as a personal goal, or a “reclamation project”, the main thing is YOU DID IT.

“So … what was your time?” is a question you will hear from some people who really would not have the faintest understanding of what a good time for a first time or experienced marathoner might be, Or a bad time, for that matter.
You can be sure that if you answer, “2:30:20” or “6:05:47,” it would be met with the same blank stare.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying time doesn't matter to a runner, or that we should all run simply for the experience. Of course it Matters. A marathoner’s time provides a way to measure improvement, or perhaps decline. But that’s personal,

The Shop Floor Worker, the Mother / Father Juggling school pick up’s rushing for athletics training after school, the office worker and their colleague sitting at the desk beside them, they’re not going to the Olympics, but the discipline they had to summon and the commitment they had to carve out of their busy lives to train enough to run 26.2 miles was positively Olympian, regardless of time.

So for those who for what ever reason will not partake in this prestigious event this year, on the day’s after Marathon Monday, when you see your relative, friend, training partner or co-worker who completed the 26.2 miles — running, walking, or crawling please just leave it at congratulation’s, or that’s a serious achievement well done, after all they are now a member of a world class elite group and for that deserve and have earned their time in the spotlight.

 Nobody succeeds alone.
While running a marathon might seem like an individual accomplishment, we rely heavily on other people throughout the process.
It starts with getting really good advice from other people who have ran marathons before.
Furthermore, our family, friends and co-workers are extremely supportive throughout the training. After long runs on Saturday / Sunday mornings you can be sure someone at work, rest or play will ask how many miles did you run the day before. “They are so supportive it felt like they were training along with you”.

 The training is the real marathon
“I firmly believe that the actual marathon is really a celebration of all of the training you have done”.
You have stayed extremely motivated throughout your months of training. You can be sure there were some very challenging times along the way, like not wanting to get up and run at 6:30 a.m. on Saturday / Sunday morning, especially when the Sligo weather was not in your favor!
And some of the 15, 17, and 20+ mile training runs were nearly as difficult as the marathon itself,
In life, people win or lose based on what and how they have prepared, while everything may appear to happen on one day during the big event, the preparation for the event is what is most important.

 Will I hit “the wall” (and if you do you will just have to find a way to make it through)
During the marathon, you may actually feel really good at certain points and you might start thinking, “This isn’t so bad, I may start speeding up so I can finish even faster.” Think long and hard, as 26.2 miles is a “Marathon” distance and with only a few meters to go it may take all of your efforts to put one foot in front of the other until you reach that finish line, this is simply the price you have to pay to accomplish big things, “so be sure you have the answer if you ask that question”, but always think positive.

 Don’t start off too fast – Consistency is key
The training the week before the marathon is very light. Therefore, by race day, your body is just begging for exercise. And you are obviously extremely excited about the event since the atmosphere is so electric.
As a result, it is extremely tempting to want to start off the race by running really fast. But keep telling yourself that “I am going to take it slow at the beginning, because I know I will need the energy later in the race. For the first 6-7 miles, you may feel like you are running really slowly, However, you will be glad you did this, because you will need that energy for the finish.

 If you do your best, you will have absolutely no regrets
There is a peace and contentment that comes from doing the best you can no matter what happens. This is all you can control and all you can ever ask of yourself, so go out run intelligently, soak up the atmosphere, be amazed by the people around you and believe in yourself, but above all enjoy yourself.

Dedicated to all Sligo AC Dublin Marathon 2012 participants…

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