After I completed my first half marathon in 2011, I knew I wanted to do more 13.1s in the future. Of course I was immediately asked by multiple people, “are you going to do a full?” My response was always that while I liked the idea of checking it off my bucket list, I had no desire to do a full marathon. It was too much of a time commitment to train and seemed scary. I was happy with half marathons as my maximum distance.
Something changed in me over the last year or so. I found myself toying with the idea of taking on the challenge of 26.2 miles. At least once a week I thought about marathoning, most often during a run. One minute I’d be totally ready to go for it, the next I would talk myself out of it. I annoyed myself too many times to count with my wishy-washyness.
A few months ago, a friend of mine who had recently completed her first marathon was in town. She came to my house to catch up and we inevitably talked running. She told me about her marathon experience and looked at me and said, “I really think you need to do it. Stop thinking, just do it”.
This wasn’t the only piece of advice I’d received on the matter, but for some reason I couldn’t get our conversation out of my head. I started really researching different races, thinking about timing and location issues, and reading dozens of race recaps from other runners. I dug up different training plans and looked into local training groups. I was still thinking – but at least I was thinking with more information at hand.
Yesterday morning, I finally bit the bullet. I’m proud to announce that I will running the Kiawah Island Marathon on December 13. There will be much more to come on why I chose this race, my training experiences, and ultimately my race recap on how my first (only?) 26.2 went. I’m excited. I’m terrified. I also feel some sense of peace that by the end of the year, I will be a marathoner.
Have any tips for a first timer? Comment or find me on Twitter: @AtlRnnr.