Anyone run a half or full Marathon?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by charlesbronsen, Oct 19, 2011.

  1. charlesbronsen macrumors 6502a

    charlesbronsen

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    #1
    I ran the Scotiabank half marathon on the weekend. It was my first time running in two years and I really should have trained for it but figured what the heck I'll wing it. Big mistake. 2k in I was getting cramps and thinking what did I sign up for. It was a lot harder on my body then I thought it would be. Plus it was a little cold out. All in all it was a good experience and the event was put on well but I'm not sure I would do it again. Anyway finished in 1:56. Anyone else? how did you train for it? Would you do it again?
     
  2. Edge100 macrumors 68000

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    #2
    I ran the Mississauga half in 2009. Trained for it and ran 1:37 (30 years old at the time)

    Then ran the Ottawa Marathon in 2010 (31 years old). Trained for 16 weeks (Running Room) and ran 3:47. I had been hoping for 3:45, so not far off. Part of the reason was that I ran WAY too fast for the first 10k. I felt so excited about the start, and spent a lot of my energy reserves much too early in the race.

    I'm going to run the Mississauga Marathon in the spring. I'm hoping for 3:30. Eventually I'd like to work down to 3:10, which is the Boston qualifying time for <40 year old men.

    The marathon is FAR harder than the half; much more than 2x the difficulty. Once you pass 30k, it's nightmarish. I walked TWICE in the last kilometre!
     
  3. charlesbronsen thread starter macrumors 6502a

    charlesbronsen

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    #3
    Wow- Good job!! Yeah when the split came for the half and full, @17k I think, I was pretty much toast. Couldn't imagine doing the full thing. I do wish I trained a bit maybe next time. Good job Edge and best of luck in the Mississauga Marathon.
     
  4. Edge100 macrumors 68000

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    #4
    It's weird, but I find that the point at which you get really exhausted is dependent on the length of the run. If you run a 10k, you'll feel exhausted at 8k. Half, and you'll feel it at 17k. Full, you'll feel it at 30k.

    Training really is key. I didn't train as hard as I know I could have for the full; I was running 5 times per week, and trying to stick as closely to the RR schedule as I could, but I know I slacked a bit. And to run a sub-3:30 full, you really need to be committed. My wife was at the finish line, and she said she could notice a distinct difference in the type of runner finishing sub-3:30 and beyond 3:30; the sub-3:30 runners were really "runner" types, whereas the 3:30-4:00 people are fit, but not in the same way. I'm fit and athletic, but it takes a whole other level of fitness to run a sub-3:30 full.
     
  5. Iscariot macrumors 68030

    Iscariot

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    #5
    Did you see the guy who died running the half?
     
  6. kellen macrumors 68020

    kellen

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    #6
    Did a half with a friend. Trained for about 3-4 months. Friend told me it was all flat, no hills. So thats what I trained.

    Raceday, lots of hills. Thanks friend.
     
  7. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #7
    Never in a million years would I do this, and I've been athletic all my life. Marathons are not good for your body. I'd like mine to be able to function reasonably well for at least another 15 years or so.
     
  8. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #8
    My only full was in 2005, but I ran three halfs in 2009 and 2010, and also two 25k races (slightly longer than a half) in 2010 and 2011. I find the half length to be much less disruptive, but running a full is something I think is totally worth doing at least once. I hugged a random stranger at the finish line. :)

    I do think it's true that where you get tired depends on the distance. I feel like I want to quit at about 80% of a 4 mile run, even when I'm trained to run 10-15 miles. :rolleyes: For my full, I was pretty well trained / over-trained at my speed at the time (although I'm much faster now than I was back then). I think I had a rough patch around 20 miles, partially because there was a big hill, and then I rebounded, and I was pretty good for the last few miles.
     
  9. charlesbronsen thread starter macrumors 6502a

    charlesbronsen

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    #9
    No, he finished after me and I didn't stick around after. Poor guy only had a few hundred meters left

    @leekohler, it's something I would do a lot as it does take a toll on you, but whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger
     
  10. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #10
    Maybe in the mental sense, but certainly not the physical. Be very careful. I understand wanting a challenge, trust me. I ruined my knees running long distance competitively- that was just 5Ks and such. Now, I'm no longer allowed to run. It didn't kill me, but it certainly did not make me stronger either. Not saying don't do it, just make sure you see your doctor regularly.
     
  11. charlesbronsen thread starter macrumors 6502a

    charlesbronsen

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    #11
    I agree with you, its a pounding on your joints and will take its toll. Just watching all the people limping after the race says it all. I don't run. IF I were to do it again i would properly train. The only reason I ran it was to support a friend who was to shy/nervous to do it by himself.
     
  12. smithrh, Oct 19, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2011

    smithrh macrumors 68020

    smithrh

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    #12
    Dunno - I've been running for fun (and health) for (gosh) more than 30 years now and besides a torn meniscus and a variety of other things which all healed pretty quickly, I've been fine.

    The meniscus wasn't necessarily running related either.

    YMWV.

    I will note that I'm not competitive - I *jog*.

    Edited to add: Nova, the PBS show, had a great show on training for the marathon. They took about a dozen people who never ran (!) before and trained them to run in the Boston Marathon. As you might expect, some people don't struggle and some have a hell of a time. What was news to me was the assertion that if you can run an hour, then really all you need is toughening up mentally to make it through a marathon.
     
  13. Iscariot macrumors 68030

    Iscariot

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    #13
    It's not just joints. Take a look at the winner of the men's marathon from the 2008 olympics vs. men's 100m sprint. Or men's weightlifting. Or any of the top 10 Boston Marathon finishers. Who looks healthier?
    Funny story — my mom tore her medial and lateral menisci when a display case of Terry's Chocolate Oranges fell on her.
     
  14. Eldiablojoe macrumors 6502a

    Eldiablojoe

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    #14
    Playing devil's advocate...

    http://www.runnersworld.com/article/0,7120,s6-241-285--12232-0,00.html


    Injury Prevention: Staying Healthy
    The Benefits of Running
    The Benefits of Running
    Running makes us well-oiled machines--ankles, knees, and hips included.

    By Judi Ketteler
    PUBLISHED 10/25/2007
    Published 10/25/07

    "What about your knees? how are your knees?" chances are, you've fielded those questions more than once. Not from physicians, exercise physiologists, or physical therapists but from nonrunning friends and family members who assume that pavement pounding wreaks havoc on our bodies and that we'll all eventually need knee replacements and motorized scooters because of our arthritic joints.

    Osteoarthritis (OA), the most common form of arthritis, occurs when cartilage, the spongy tissue that cushions our joints, breaks down and deteriorates, making weight-bearing activities painful. From there, many people believe that running accelerates this process. And while most of us credit our running for keeping our heart, lungs, and soul healthy and happy, a twinge in an ankle or stiffness in a knee makes us wonder if our nonrunning buddies are right and our joints are bearing an unreasonable burden.

    The fact is if we run responsibly--wear supportive shoes and replace them when worn out, rehab injuries properly, incorporate cross-training and rest days into our schedules as needed--we're no more susceptible to OA than the general population, say medical experts. Actually, it's the doubters on the sidelines who could have a better chance of developing it.


    Weighing In on Knee Pain

    The number one risk factor for OA is excess body fat--a problem most runners don't have. Sedentary, overweight people are 45 percent more likely to develop OA than those who are active. "The more you weigh, the more pressure is placed on the joints, which seems to accelerate the breakdown of cartilage," says Patience White, M.D., chief public health officer for the Arthritis Foundation. Since losing weight is one of the best ways to prevent OA (losing 10 pounds can take about 45 pounds of pressure off the knee), and running is one of the most effective calorie burners, hopping on the treadmill for a tempo session could help you sidestep joint issues.

    But running does more than just lighten the body's load. "Aerobic exercise improves most body functions--including joint health," says James Fries, M.D., professor of medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine. When you exercise, the cartilage in your hips, knees, and ankles compresses and expands. This draws in oxygen and flushes out waste products, nourishing and keeping the cartilage healthy. "Without exercise, cartilage cells get weak and sick," he says.

    Furthermore, running strengthens the ligaments that help support joints, making them more stable and less susceptible to sprains and strains, which can damage cartilage and eventually lead to OA.

    In 2006, Dr. Fries presented research that compared rates of OA-related disabilities between 539 runners and 423 nonrunners over a 21-year period. At the follow-up exam, researchers found that the nonrunners were worse for wear--their increase in disabilities was twice that of the runners.

    The runners in Dr. Fries's study averaged about 60 minutes of running five days a week. But even higher-mileage runners don't seem to risk bad knees. A 2006 study conducted at Germany's University of Heidelberg looked at the incidence of OA among elite marathon runners. After comparing 20 former elite German marathoners with a control group of nonrunners of the same age, gender, and body mass index, the researchers found that the marathoners did not have a higher risk of OA of the knee.

    When Injury Strikes

    That said, while running itself doesn't increase the risk of developing OA, running injuries can--especially when you delay treatment or rush recovery. Ankle sprains, in particular, have been linked to the development of OA. Almost half of those who twist or turn an ankle experience additional sprains or ongoing weakness and pain. This is typically because the original injury wasn't well cared for and activity was resumed too quickly.

    A 2005 study from the University of Basel in Switzerland found that 70 to 80 percent of patients with chronic ankle instability end up with arthritic ankles within 20 years. Doctors and physical therapists had always suspected this, but this was the first study to conclusively make the link between joint instability and arthritis, says Steven L. Haddad, M.D., associate professor of clinical orthopedic surgery at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine. "Arthritis can occur because of uneven mechanics of the joint," Dr. Haddad says. "If your joint is shifted and it's even one millimeter off, it increases the stresses placed on that joint by 42 percent. This incongruity of the surfaces leads to an erosion of cartilage."

    This can also occur with patellofemoral pain syndrome, a.k.a. "runner's knee," says Dr. White. If you neglect strengthening the muscles and ligaments that support the patella (kneecap), it can become misaligned, causing pain and eventually OA (see "Preventive Steps," left, for strength-building exercises). "If the patella is tracking just a little bit off, it can rub the cartilage in an abnormal way and wear it down," Dr. White says.

    Luckily, all of this is avoidable. As Dr. White advises, "Don't run through joint pain, stick to soft surfaces when possible, wear supportive running shoes, and include strengthening exercises in your routine." Addressing joint issues sooner rather than later will not only help you avoid long-term damage, but it'll also help you run circles around your nonrunning friends for years to come.

    Copyright © 2011 Rodale Inc. All rights reserved.
     
  15. MacintoshMaster macrumors 6502

    MacintoshMaster

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    #15
    I have done loads and loads of times!.................In the matrix
     
  16. ejb190 macrumors 65816

    ejb190

    #16
    A full marathon is on my bucket list. I was on pace to start with a 5k this summer, but I got really bad shin splints, took a week off and life got in the way. I am hoping to get back outside this week before the weather forces me back on the tread mill.
     
  17. smithrh macrumors 68020

    smithrh

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    #17
    Good post. As I said before, been running for 30+ years, next to no issues.

    The body knows how to compensate for running - if you let it.
     
  18. Iscariot macrumors 68030

    Iscariot

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    #18
    The body knows how to compensate for eating glass - if you let it.
     
  19. Liquorpuki macrumors 68020

    Liquorpuki

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    #19
    I ran the LA Rock n Roll half last October and my experience was like yours. Didn't really train, I did a 5K a few months before but other than that I never ran more than 5 miles in one session. Legs started cramping but eventually went numb. At the 12th mile though my stomach cramped so I walked the rest. And I didn't have my iPod, which means I was bored out of my mind most of the run.

    1:56 is a good time for someone who didn't train btw.

    I'm running another half this Sunday. I've been training by making running a regular thing for the past year, including longer runs on the weekends. I just don't want to cramp up again.

    And maybe I'll change my mind later but I don't think I'll ever try a full. I already get bored when running a half and it's torture enough without having to deal with hitting the wall. Who knows though.
     
  20. Eldiablojoe macrumors 6502a

    Eldiablojoe

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    #20
    Who are you kidding, hahaha, I think that's a Great time for someone who didn't train. I trained for a year, and just barely got under two hours.

    My buddy didn't train At All, but is fit due to his regular road-bike riding, and he needed 2:37 to finish. CharlesBronson's time is outstanding, IMHO!! That's sub-9 minute miles for 13 miles!
     
  21. puma1552 macrumors 601

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    Nov 20, 2008
    #21
    They do say anything beyond about 2.5 hours of running does more damage to your body than good.

    That said, I ran two half marathons this year (flat course). The first one I rocked the balls out of at a mere 85 minutes which really surprised me, and the second time was a lot slower but still pretty good, about 96 minutes (not sure what happened there). I did train for it, and my regular run that I do several times a week is around 12k, which I've been doing for several years so running is pretty easy for me.

    Not bad for a guy standing 5'5" with short legs and 130 pounds. :D
     
  22. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

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    #22
    Forty years running as of next year. Twenty marathons, a couple of ultras (one a 50-miler). 2:51 best. I haven't done one since 2006, even though I still do 20 mile runs and 40+ mile walks.

    It's all about the body and training. I find that even at my age I still get stupid when I'm feeling good and try to train the way I could at 40. Never works, and this summer for the first time since 1972 I had to take a break with knee problems. All from not acknowledging that the 68 year old body can't do what it used to -- or I should say, pays a heavy price for the attempt.

    I'm not an evangelist, though. If you like to run, run. You'll learn soon enough whether longer distances suit you. If they do, then do a reasonable job of training and you'll be fine in a marathon. If you want to run fast, that's another matter.

    I ran a race timing business for 25 years, so I saw a lot of marathoners, half-marathoners, and everything else. I timed about a million runners, all told. Most of them were pretty happy with what they'd done, and rightly so.

    I've got a couple of things online about marathon-running. They might amuse the folks on this thread. They explore issues of running marathons when you're no longer fast.

    http://www.thenervousbreakdown.com/dmitchell/2009/10/looking-good/

    http://www.thenervousbreakdown.com/dmitchell/2009/10/beaten-by-a-fairy/
     
  23. smithrh macrumors 68020

    smithrh

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    #23
    Could very well be true, but I'd like a citation... "They" say a lot of things.
     
  24. ericrwalker macrumors 68030

    ericrwalker

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    #24
    Most I ever ran at one time is 10 miles. Only did that a few times and my feet didn't feel good after that.

    Usually 2 to 6 miles at a 9 to 10 minute pace is good for me.
     
  25. Eldiablojoe macrumors 6502a

    Eldiablojoe

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    #25
    Just finished 11 miles a couple hours ago. Nice easy 8:54 pace, finished in 1:38:45. Beautiful run along the Huntington Beach coastline. Gorgeous day out today in So Kal!
     

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