Does anyone else NOT want to run a marathon?!

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17/04/2013 at 10:12

I'm going slowly, doing C25k and currently on week 5.  I enjoy it - running and cycling are the only exercise I have ever liked - I hope it helps me lose weight, but I like the brain space it gives me and I like that little slot of time that's just for me.  I am improving, I could barely run a minute 5 weeks ago and now I can go for 8 minutes!  Go me!

BUT, I have absolutely no desire to do a marathon!  Everywhere I look, it's all about the marathon, and I have huge respect for those that do them, but I just don't ever want to, it's not what I'm aiming for at all...

I don't want to compete against anyone else, I like running alone, my biggest competitor is myself.

Am I the only one who feels like this?  Am I weird?!

17/04/2013 at 10:23

Do what you enjoy, and don't feel pressured into anything. Most non runners only really know about the London Marathon because it gets a lot of media coverage. Apart from perhaps the Great North Run, I can't think of any other running events outside of the Olympics that get anywhere near the same media coverage in the UK.

So, naturally, when you say "I do a bit of running", the first thing that pops into their head is a guy dressed as SpongeBob SquarePants running down the Mall. The next time one of your friends says they played a bit of 5-a-side, ask them will they be playing the FA Cup Final at Wembley this year?

17/04/2013 at 10:51
When I do a race I find that im not competing against anyone but myself to better my time etc Only the ones with a chance of finishing in the top few compete against themselves.Im nowhere near that standard but still love running races(VLM on Sun!!)
A few years ago I thought I would never do marathons etc,now VLM will be my 4th!!So never say never!!
17/04/2013 at 10:51

Well, of course you're right Ginger, only the FA Cup final doesn't allow a few thousand other people to join in. It's a bit of a difference. But airhead is no less of a runner for not wanting to do a marathon. 

17/04/2013 at 10:56

Marathons are not compulsory BW and you never have to run one if you don't want to.

Lots of people go down the route of concentrating on improving their times over shorter distance and there's nothing wrong in that at all.

You can always change your mind though - I did.

17/04/2013 at 11:01

I think there is great merit in exploring different distances. When I started running, I pretty quickly came to the conclusion that I was always going to prefer longer races, as I felt pretty determined that I would finish a race, but never at any particularly speedy pace. So I slowly increased my mileages and did my first marathon last year, in, as predicted, not a particularly fast rate (4:32 incidentally). 

Since then, although going to do another marathon later this year, I have also started focussing more on shorter runs, particularly parkrun, and have realised that this is a really very different discipline, but no less rewarding. I'm still no speed freak, but am loving the challenge of PB hunting.

So, clearly there is no requirement to do marathons, but it might be "your distance" - you never know. Ultras, even?!

17/04/2013 at 11:07

I keep telling people I'm not particularly tempted to do a marathon (only done one half marathon), but secretly I think I could be persuaded, maybe in a couple of years.....

17/04/2013 at 11:23

I'm fairly new to running and completed the C25K in November last year, but basically been hooked since (theres still around 20 stone of me but I'm comfortably running 5k in 28 mins currently, and able to run 10K in just under 60 minutes on a good day too).

When I was running those first 1 minute intervals even running 5 minutes seemed light years ahead of me. At the moment I'm looking forward to entering a 5K event in May, and a 10K event in September, and at the back of my mind I am looking towards the possibility of a HM early next year... and then who knows. Rewind 6 months ago and to run anything more than 5K was not an aim of mine of any sort, but maybe once you get to running 5K comfortably you will then start having other thoughts and want to add distance. And if not then it does not matter at all and just do what ever you enjoy!  Seems to be the best way.

17/04/2013 at 11:33

Don't know about Stevie. He did make a comment about people naturally thinking that the next goal is to go longer rather than faster which was very pertinent I think.


Nicky McNamerson wrote (see)

I keep telling people I'm not particularly tempted to do a marathon (only done one half marathon), but secretly I think I could be persuaded, maybe in a couple of years.....


Yeah, the probelm is that at some point it starts to look like it might be fun. Never make that mistake 


Edited: 17/04/2013 at 11:34
17/04/2013 at 11:52

You're at the "cannabis" end of running right now.  It feels good.

You're in control. It seems impossible that you'd ever want to progress to the cocaine and heroine end of the spectrum. And even if you did, you think you have the willpower to resist.

We've all been there.

Get back on the couch. Now.  Before it's too late.


17/04/2013 at 12:37
David Falconer 3 wrote (see)

Well the difference for me though is that almost for certain due to the completely underprepared and half arsed way Im treating this marathon, I may have just one more in me at best .


To misquote Homer Simpson: "but you're using your whole ass" 

17/04/2013 at 12:44
AgentGinger wrote (see)

So, naturally, when you say "I do a bit of running", the first thing that pops into their head is a guy dressed as SpongeBob SquarePants running down the Mall.

I remember someone telling me that if you run the VLM its mandatory fancy dress! When I started running - it was purely to de-stress and its built from there. I only started marathons last year and previously had no inclination to run one... but then I did one and then another... and another...

17/04/2013 at 12:59
Emmy H wrote (see)
I remember someone telling me that if you run the VLM its mandatory fancy dress!

It is, it's just a lot of people cheat by coming dressed as a long distance runner.

Edited: 17/04/2013 at 13:00
17/04/2013 at 12:59

I started out unable to run 1 mile - that was a couple of years ago.  I slowly built up and with encouragement from my other half (ultra runner and triathlete) I entered a few 5k races and then 10k races which seemed like a huge jump.  Gradually I got better and better and last year completed two half marathons, albeit in a slow plod, but I did them.  However, having done the two halves and realised how much they take out of you, I cannot begin to contemplate doing that distance twice in one go!  So, no desire from me to do a marathon either.

17/04/2013 at 13:14

IMHO it is much harder to get faster than to run further but there does seem to be a point of view that your running is getting 'better' the longer distance you can achieve. Love the parkruns as they are focusing some attention back on becoming a faster runner. I have run a few marathons and love the whole thing but again getting the time down is the thing for me not just crossing the finish line. I'm no athlete by a long way.

17/04/2013 at 13:42

I started out for fitness and weight loss.  Never had any desire to race any distance... then I saw a local 10k.  Had no desire to go any further than that.... then I saw a local ten mile race.  That was my lot. Except it was only a tad over three more miles to complete a half marathon, which sounded better than ten miles.  The marathon was a step too far, I thought. But I saw one that sounded picturesque. It was just a day out admiring the scenery.  I've had three scenic days so far, and my next is as good as booked.

Like you, I also only compete against myself. Mainly because I'm the only person I can beat.

17/04/2013 at 13:45

After this VLM I shall return and stay with shorter distances. I understand from training and what not that I don't particularly have the stamina or the desire to do this. But I shall enjoy it one way or another.

17/04/2013 at 13:47

I couldn't agree more about the culture of running further rather than faster being prevalent, although each to their own of course. How many times do you hear someone say, especially those newer to running, "I've done a 10K race, now I'm training to step up to a half-marathon". You hear far less often something like "I've done a 10K race in 55 minutes, now I'm training to do one in 50 minutes". 

When I started running a few years ago I had something of this attitude myself. I remember waiting to start a 10K race with a friend and saying, only half-jokingly, that 5Ks were just for wimps. A 5K race had started earlier. Having now run a few hard 5Ks myself, I know just how wrong that is! Faster is tough!

As for marathons, I sometimes think I'm the only person in my club who hasn't run one, and that's probably not far short of the truth. I may be tempted one day. I'm 64 though, so can't leave it too long. To do it justice I'd really need to run more than my average 32 miles a week, with a long run max of 13 miles, and the increased risk of picking up an injury puts me off.

17/04/2013 at 13:52

It is absolutely peak marathon time at the moment, with a race every week, the forum is bound to be full of comments and queries.

If you google any sort of running or marathon query this site is usually top hit, so people post on it.

17/04/2013 at 13:56

The OP has raised a thought provoking topic here. 

As others have picked up, someone who can do a 38 minute 10K will get less kudos than someone who trundles round a half marathon.  Makes me think.

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