RJM85 wrote: »
Anyone *could* do it. But it takes a certain amount of determination / 'get up and go' to actually do it. Therein lies the achievement, and in an era of ever increasing obesity related diseases etc is that not something to be celebrated?
Oops69 wrote: »
I think this thread should be closed , it's revealing some deep rooted insecurities and low self esteem of some posters
ecoli wrote: »
@Killian I agree with your last point somewhat in the way that people should be awarded for the work they put in. Shouldn't there be some sort of distinction between the likes of those who put in the hard work and aim to improve themselves compared to someone who got away with finishing despite not training for the event or making any effort to improve their lifestyle in order to be able to fulfil their potential (not ultimate but just potential at that given time)
RunBikeThrow wrote: »
[Finishing a marathon is an achievement that deserves recognition. You can't do it with at least some level of discipline and training
Chivito550 wrote: »
What is wrong with people posting opinions that participation should not be celebrated? No other sport does such a thing.
menoscemo wrote: »
ecoli wrote: »
Does 6 months training for an event undo years of an unhealthy lifestyle though?
People seem to reel off the health benefits as a justification of the everyone is a winner mentality but for me short term changes will not undo a lifetime of unhealthy habits. This is why we need to be encouraging improved standards in the mid pack. People will be forced to make active lifestyle choices on a consistent basis to achieve these goals.
bambergbike wrote: »
I feel sympathy for ambitious runners who are stuck with doing the same events as rank amateurs like me, unlike in sports that separate mass participation events and "real" races. I cycled the Tour of Waterford in August, and anyone who asked me about it afterwards got to hear that it had been an enjoyable day out with lovely scenery and good company and nice coffee and cake. Once I tell people it wasn't a race, they stop giving me undeserved superhero kudos and I can stop being embarassed by it. I was proud of my little sister, as it was her first 100-miler, but not of myself: I know full well that most people can cycle 100 miles without any training if they don't rush, and I hadn't rushed all that much. Just as most people can walk a marathon even if they can't jog a mile.
Well, I'd say six months is a good start - 3 months is enough to change an unhealthy habit permanently - but I completely agree that you haven't done yourself any favours if you tick the marathon off your bucket list and drop out of running again after one. The risk of people dropping out after a "big" event might be even higher, though, if they really have pulled out all the stops and made very radical, short-term changes to their diet and lifestyle in order to meet a specific target time and get a reward that comes with bragging rights (however pathetic!) like a red T-shirt for sub 4:00 finishers. I think it would be the novices who would get obsessed with these status symbols.
The best "reward" I can think of that would successfully motivate MOP runners to improve their times without disheartening BOP joggers and walkers too much ("you didn't do a real marathon and get a pink T-shirt") would be using times as qualification criteria for other, select, events. Probably impractical, though, since the big marathons that people want to do are big because they are open to a wide range of abilities and not select.
I've just started training for my first marathon (a local one on 13 April, haven't registered for it yet) and this thread has given me a good opportunity to reflect on my motivation. It also prompted me to go and read a few reports from people who have done it before to see what motivated them and how they got on. This is what I've come up with so far:
1) Training towards an event will give my running structure, stop me running junk miles or missing too many miles. By extension, that sense of being in a routine will carry over to other aspects of my life and stop me wasting days (even really dreary winter ones) or losing track of my diet.
2) Running a hilly marathon in April (about 700 m total climbing) ties in well with my short term goals - three hill runs in November and December.
3) The marathon will be scenic, with panoramic views from the tops of the hills in the first half, and lots of running on gravel paths and some grass. Plus two massive Baroque churches and a little pilgrim's chapel on the two hills. In the second half, the fountains in all the villages we go through will be decorated for Easter, so there will be lots of colour everywhere even if the weather is grey.
4) With only around 300 people doing the event, it will be easy to identify faces from the start at other points through the race and at the finish. I have no idea how people chat while running up hills, but the various blog posts from people who have done the event before suggest that it's actually quite sociable. And there shouldn't be long queues for tea or toilets.
5) I get a medal if I finish - this is not really an incentive for me, because I think my time will probably be far from impressive even if I train conscientiously, so the medal will be a bit of an embarassment and will wander straight to the bottom of a drawer. Maybe I can pawn it off on my niece. However, I would be delighted to accept the other goodies:
- a cert with my time (plus I'll have a file with my HRM data for future reference)
- a longsleeved technical running top
- a souvenir beer mug (handed to me full to the brim of apple juice diluted with fizzy water)
- a bag of fruit
- free entry to the thermal baths where we finish
So before I even start thinking about a "target", I can see two things:
1. I'm stiff after jogging 15 km today, slowly. The idea of running nearly three times as far is scary.
2. I want to do it.
In my head, doing it right means training so I can run or jog all of it, but apparently the 4:15 pacer told people to walk on the steep 1 in 5 grades
RunBikeThrow wrote: »
The slowing of marathon finish times is not an example of standards being lowered. Its due to more people running them. In the end, that's good for us all.
Rantan wrote: »
sounds like a lovely race...a beer mug full of apple juice though?? its obviously not here in ireland?
bambergbike wrote: »
It's in Northern Bavaria, in what the local tourist office likes to call "God's Garden". Staffelstein is a little town with 11 000 people and 10 breweries, so that explains the brewery sponsorship. It's half an hour on a local train for me, but it's accessible enough from Ireland even though it isn't near an airport. It's on the Munich-Berlin rail axis, and the fast trains stop one stop away in Lichtenfels. You can enter here if you fancy it.
Gambas wrote: »
I don't have a problem with a medal/memento for completing a marathon. It's a serious achievement for the vast majority of competitors. However, getting medals for participation in a 10k or 10milers or even half marathons is a joke.
HelenAnne wrote: »
I think that's a bit harsh. People like different things. Some people like to do races in different places and have the medals as souvenirs - that's something the Rock,n,Roll series really plays into as you can even buy a stand to hang your medals from different cities on - and some people like to have medals from their own local race / club. People know finishers' medals aren't prizes - they're just mementos. Some people collect euro coins from different countries, some people like amassing finishers' medals, I like tasting local beers when I'm on holidays ... each to their own.
And as has been said before on many threads like this, since very few posters on A/R Boards are liked to be sent to Rio in a few years, it really is a case of people castigating other people for not doing their hobby right ...
Hannibal Smith wrote: »
I know this post doesnt count for much, given how advanced everyone here is in the running world and I'm such a newbie, but I just scanned the thread and felt the urge to reply.
I can understand why elite runners would like medals reserved for 1, 2, 3. I wouldn't even begin to understand the amount of training, nutrition, concentration and hard work went in to preparing for a marathon. The focus it takes to get your body up to perform at its personal best so you can finish quicker than as many other competitors as possible and I absolutely understand how and why you would view it as competitively as you do...because thats what it is at the end of the day.
I started running in January. I had it in my head that I was going to run the flora mini marathon. Ive never done it before. So I did my version of training. I did the couch to 5k and when I started I couldn't even run for a minute. But the mini marathon was my focus. So I kept at it. I know its not the heavy training schedule the elite runners put into it...but I slogged my guts out. I went out in rain, frost, snow and gave myself no excuses whatsoever.
When I crossed the finish line I didnt finish first lol...I finished 7692nd. I took that medal because I blooming earned it. Not everyone participates just for the craic. I didnt. Although i wasnt taking it as seriously as the elite runners, i did take it seriously and I was going out that day to do my absolute best to finish as high up as I could. I didnt care about anyone else taking part, whether the people who rocked up hungover got a medal for finishing a race I'd worked towards for months...I was just delighted to have finished.
That medal is the one and only medal I've ever received. ..note I said received and not won. I know I didn't win it, but I absolutely earned it.
Ive kept up the running and have an aim for next year to get in with the elite runners. It takes me an hour to run 9k at the moment. ..the winner finished last year in 35 mins (I think)...so I do have a focus to reduce my time as much as I can. Again I know im only new to all this and im sure the mini marathon is laughable to most and I dont mean to make it an emotive issue...but I did earn that medal!
Gambas wrote: »
However, getting medals for participation in ........even half marathons is a joke.