This weekend I continued my marathon training by running 8 miles with the Oklahoma Landrunners. It was much harder to complete this week, but I was still very motivated. The fact that I might be able to run a full marathon in a few months is what keeps me going when I run these long distances. A few of my friends have graciously decided to train with me the whole distance (given no one encounters injuries). If you ever decide to take up running long distances as a hobby, I highly recommend having a buddy. You will have someone to talk to and who can be there in case of an accident. Also having a buddy to run with will help you stay motivated to go the full distance without stopping, like greyhound races where they have to chase the bunny.
I began running in college as a way to keep off that ‘freshman 15.’ Initially I hated running, but I learned to love it as I developed a regular routine. Running soon became something I couldn’t live without. Like breathing oxygen, this was time that I needed to myself to meditate…and be in nature. Through running I developed a better self-image, better health, my stress was decreased, and I felt safer knowing I could run. Once I was running regularly, I found that there was a whole new community to be discovered: People who run 5ks, 10ks, run for breast cancer, etc. I suddenly saw new goals ahead of me and decided after my first 5k that my eventual goal would be to run a marathon.
So here we are. If running is something you’d like to get into, I’d recommend that you start with a small amount (maybe a mile). Once you can run that small amount, you can start setting goals to run further. Remember that this is something that you don’t have to do, but make this choice for you and not for anyone or anything else. If you try to run a mile and have to stop in the middle, that’s okay. The idea is that you just don’t give up. So if you have to stop to walk for a few minutes, try running again when you have caught your breath until you can work your way up to holding out for a mile or more. However you decide to get into running, just have fun!
You can also consider following a training plan if you are just starting out. Check your local running clubs or landrunners if you’d like to become a part of a community and find people to run with.