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gahurts posted 11/4/2013 20:04 PM

Next week I turn 50. Ugh! Birthdays never bothered me. This one does. Maybe it's because I'm not where I wanted or expected to be at this stage of my life. I'm moving forward and moving on but I feel like in doing so I am wading through peanut butter.

A couple of years ago I started running. I've done 2 5K's and the Peachtree Road Race (10K). My times are not that bad. This weekend I got my first real pair of running shoes (I did those three races in some Target specials that cost $20). They feel great. My heels are bothering me a little but after running 3.8 miles Sunday I didn't hurt at all.

So I set a goal for myself. Run my first Marathon by next October or November. I have a 5K this coming up Sunday and there are a few other races that I want to do including a half marathon in March.

So to all the runners here on SI - How do I do this and succeed? I'm not looking to catch up to the Kenyans but I want to finish with a respectable time. Is a goal of 5 hours unrealistic? I am averaging a little over 12 minutes a mile now but for much shorter distances.

Tripletrouble posted 11/4/2013 20:37 PM

Awesome!! I reclaimed running at 40 and it's better than ever. I'm slower but with way more endurance. I did my first half a year after I started again.
There are many better runners here than me, but I'll throw my 2 cents in. Build miles slowly, never increase more than 10% In a week. Also to improve your speed do some interval training. Usually do one long run per week. Once you get up to and over 8 miles, you'll need to make sure you're stretching your IT band, which is a common source of trouble in endurance runners.
A goal of 5 hours or less is reasonable, provided its the right course.
In Georgia you have some options for greenway and rails to trails running. Good luck!

She11ybeanz posted 11/4/2013 21:33 PM

Totally doable! I'm not a super fast runner but just did my 3rd marathon in 4:56 at the Marine Corps Marathon with an average of 20 miles a week and the longest mileage being 25 miles. My longest run was 18 miles but a lot of people swear by the token 20 mile run. I DO recommend a few things that helped me a lot. Don't do any runs over 14 miles 3 weeks before your race.... it takes your body at least 3 weeks to "memorize" mileage. The morning of the race eat what you ALWAYS eat before a long-run...nothing new.... also stop eating and drinking (except maybe a sip or so) 3 hours before the race. Bring your own gels to the race but don't worry about gatorade or water. There will be plenty on the course! I stop drinking and eating 3 hours before the race so my stomach will do its business beforehand and in the last 2 marathons I haven't had to stop to use the bathroom in the 5 hours of running!! But in my 1st marathon, I had to stop 6 miles in to pee...because I drank WAY too much beforehand! Newbie mistake! Live and learn and you won't need luvs!

If you can enter the lottery for a BIG 1st marathon, I recommend the Marine Corps Marathon! Its in the last weekend of October and it was AMAZING!!!! Highly recommended! That one or try for New York or Las Vegas! Both in November I believe! (and both on my own personal bucket list!)

Good luck and if you ever need advice on any race distance 26.2 and under...give me a shout out!

AnnieOakley posted 11/5/2013 10:49 AM

I STRONGLY recommend reading Jeff Galloway's training book.

I have used his run/walk break method for years and usually run just over a 9 min. mile. Have done full and halves using it also.

I run a mile and then walk for a min. There are people that qualify for the NYC and Boston marathon using his method. You give your body just that quick minute, or two to recover and you will NOT hit the running wall.

Good job on the starting slow. And about the running shoes--there is A LOT of info out there about shoes that have too much support, spring, etc. and do harm to our ankles, knees, hips, etc.

I wear the Nike Free 3.0 which is supposed to be 'close' to barefoot running--which is how we are made to run! Pick up the book Born to Run for a bit of history on this. Great read.

Good Luck!

UndecidedinMA posted 11/5/2013 19:26 PM

I loved Marathoning for Mortals. It has great training programs.

Also the most time friendly marathon has to be the Disney ones. I started at 46 and completed my first Goofy at 47, 2 knees later doing the 2015 with FWSO & my DS.

tesla posted 11/6/2013 18:54 PM

Okay, first...this is awesome!

Now for the details...
Don't stress about time. Just keep running and building your 'base.' Run 5k and 10k races. Make sure you are fitted for a good pair of shoes at a running store. Replace your shoes every 300-400 miles.

I like hal higdon's marathon training programs. I started out with his novice program (starts 18 weeks before your marathon) years ago.

Also, for motivation, watch Spirit of the Marathon...I cry like a baby every time I watch it!

gahurts posted 11/10/2013 18:42 PM

Thanks for the support everyone. I had a 5K tonight. It was a race through all the Christmas lights at a resort here on Lake Lanier. I feel great. My official time was 37:52. This is better than the last 5K I ran but not as good as my first which was PR.

Tesla, I got my running shows at one of those stores that fit you. I stood on some kind of mat that measured my arch and the pressure on my feet and then they video taped me running on the treadmill and then let me run outside. I was/am bending my left ankle in a little so they added a little extra support there but generally I am keeping my feet fairly straight. These shoes really are more comfortable than those old cheap ones.

Tripletrouble posted 11/10/2013 18:51 PM

I go through a pair of running shoes about every 3-4 mos so I find it helps to write the date inside or on the sole with a sharpie. If you wait until there is wear on the sole, you've waited too long, so the date helps track when you need to replace.

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