Why the Marathon?

A recent post on an online message board got me thinking about this question. I have now run six marathons over the last four years and I registered for number seven a matter of hours after completing number six.

My current focus on the marathon distance does not mean that I don’t enjoy the shorter distances. In fact, at some point I know that I likely won’t be able to dedicate the time needed to train for a marathon and that focusing on going faster in the shorter distances will be a a better option for me.

Training properly for a marathon takes a big time commitment. For now I try to minimize the impact of marathon training on my life by running in the morning before I go to work, running home from work and by bringing my daughter along for my weekend runs in her Chariot.

Now that still leaves the question of why I do it. Simply, I like the challenge of preparing for a marathon over the 16 weeks leading up to race day and I enjoy the sense of accomplishment at the end of the marathon. The marathon distance is a tough distance to prepare for and even after 16 weeks of training you need a lot of elements to come together so you can reach your goal.

After running my first marathon I set myself the goal of eventually qualifying for the Boston Marathon. I have been fortunate to progressively get faster with each successive marathon while at the same time avoiding injury. Following last Sunday’s Ottawa Marathon I am more confident than ever that it is a realistic goal. That more than anything motivated me to quickly commit to a fall marathon again this year by registering for the Toronto Waterfront Marathon.

Do you enjoy training for marathons or do you prefer working on going faster at the shorter distances?

Leave a Reply