Chicago Marathon 2009

I’ve seen all of that, and worse. In this context, bad = slow.

I was kidding. Just trying to point out that there’s no way to actually run badly. Running is a sport you do for yourself (and by ‘you’, I mean ‘me’), so it’s all about how YOU feel about what YOU did (which was Run! A! Marathon! And not for the first time, either.)

I’ve got a half on Halloween, and another on Thanksgiving morning, with more marathons next year. I do want to improve my training though /

  • six plus hours is a loooooong time on course. The key is to finish at a pace that avoids injury and allows a reasonable recovery time.

Be warned, repeated halfs lead to full marathons.

Nooooo! If I do a full marathon, I’ll have to buy more gear, and then I’ll be one of those runners. :stuck_out_tongue: (I was really proud that I did all my training in less than $80 worth of clothing, apart from the shoes. But I have a feeling I’m going to be buying more very soon.)

Congrats! I have started running, but at this time have no plans at all for a full or even a half. I want to get to a point where I can to 5 miles or so comfortably several times a week.

Good luck on your half!

Don’t know why it took me so long to realize what a dick move my hijack was. I apologize, and thank you for responding more politely than I deserved.

Congratulations on achieving something you wanted to do - you should feel good about that.

You raised a valid perspective - there are different classes of runners, and they are thrown together in these public runs. No need to apologize.

And it is indeed a major party foul to start somewhere you have no business being. There’s a good reason to arrange runners by expected time, and people should respect that. (What, you’ve been running 14 minute miles for the past six months and you think you’re going to get so excited once the gun goes off that you’re going to run a four hour marathon?)

Man, what took you two so long to respond - are you this slow at everything? :wink:

Can you think of any athletic events other than marathons where the rankest amateur competes at the same time on the same field as the most elite pros? (I know the elite generally start in front and leave everyone else behind, but they are still running the same course at the same time.) Maybe triathalons.

I’m heading into the last week of the C25k program, and a few weeks back I went to one of the weekly runs our local running store had. They said it was a good idea for slower people/walkers to hang out in the back. Well, even then WOW what craziness it was when we all left. I indeed was at the back of the pack, but still trying to establish ‘my space’ and people were seemingly running all over me. Those first few minutes was just a bit overwhelming, but I think it’ll provide some invaluable experience when I get around to running my first 5k :slight_smile:

Trust me, I want to stay out of the way of the faster people, just please don’t run me over!

What gear do you think you need?!

On the one hand, I can understand Dinsdale’s question, but on the other hand I also realize that there is a sense of accomplishment that comes not from competing, but from completing.

In the first episode of “Biggest Loser” this year they had the contestants race in a 1 mile (maybe 1/2 mile?) competition. One of them needed to be taken to the hospital! For 1 mile! In other words, finishing a marathon is a great accomplishment regardless of your time. Setting a goal and attaining is awesome, whether that be a 5k, 10k, marathon or ultra.

Oh, body glide, a fuel belt, special moisture-wicking socks, a jacket for winter, another sports bra… :stuck_out_tongue:

Seriously, I have one of everything - one sleeveless top, one t-shirt, one pair of shorts, one bra, and washing everything nearly daily is a pain. I tried to buy ankle-length tights last year and a salesman sort of sneered at me when I said the $70 ones were too expensive, so I rode out the winter in my $20 Old Navy capri tights. I decided to run because I thought it would be nearly free, but I’m realizing I was wrong. A friend said she realized she was in deep when she needed an entire bag for her gear when she was travelling, and I laughed at the time but see that happening to me…

I’m all in favor of trying to make your runs as comfortable as possible. If getting better gear motivates you into running longer, by all means, go for it.

Since you’ve already done a 1/2 marathon you actually already have everything you need to do a marathon. It might not look that way now but it is true. Regardless of the gear you have running marathon distances will never be easy. Other than shoes, the gear probably has a small influence on how you’ll feel at the end of a long run. Mostly what you need is determination.

The training plans I’ve seen called for moderate runs during the week (5 or 6 miles) and 1 long run (15+ miles) on the weekend. In other words, it was essentially no different than training for a 1/2 marathon with the exception of an extra 10 miles on the weekend.

My advice is simply to stop listening to the salesmen that tell you you need $70 tights and listen to your own experiences. Lots of people will tell you you need moisture-wicking this and padded that and expensive whatever. You might, but probably not. But if $70 tights will keep you running, they are worth twice that. If body glide gets you to run an extra 10 miles/week, buy it by the gallon. If a fuel belt gives you the extra energy you need to get into marathon distances, buy one. Just don’t think you need any of that. You don’t. All you really need is a good pair of shoes (mine are under $60) and the determination to keep going.

Dude, if you need the Body Glide, you need the Body Glide.

The tights help, but the glide is essential. :slight_smile:

I’m actually surprised you could train for a half with so little gear. I have zero use for watches and garmins and doodads (oh my!), but I need good socks and a way to carry water on 13+ mile runs.

Which part of my reply implies in even the remotest sense you shouldn’t get the things you need?

I would occasionally chafe on long runs. I use vaseline. Not nearly as expensive and probably wouldn’t work for everyone. But just because you chafe doesn’t means you need body glide. Some people don’t even chafe.

People are often sold a huge bill of goods when they start a new program. From a salesman scoffing because you don’t get the $70 pair of tights to an SO who argues with you that you need above-the-knee, moisture-wicking shorts, we are surrounded by the idea that somehow if we don’t have the latest gear we won’t be able to exercise.

I’ll say it again. The right gear can help. But find out what you need to keep going and then by all means get it. If a coat, body glide, moisture-wicking socks, new fuel belt and new clothes are what you need, the $200 investment is one you won’t regret.

Congratulations! As far as running slow, I like John Bingham’s (The Penguin) take on it - he was speaking to an elite runner that was talking about finishing the marathon in 2 hours and something and he said, “You SUCK! I run for five hours. There is no way you could run for that long, therefore I am in much better shape that you!”

Just kidding.

But it’s an accomplishment nonetheless, not everyone can be elite, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t rise to the challenge anyway. I did my first half this summer and due to an injury (thank you ITB) ended up limping the whole thing afther six miles. I was last. Dead last. First aid guy was following me like a vulture.

But I made it. Who’s to say my victory is any less or more than the gol medal finisher?

Everyone is different, but what I always enjoyed most about running was the lack of equipment it needed. A pair of shoes, socks, shorts, and a shirt, and you were set.

Shoes were the most important and priciest thing. The rest I’d buy on sale, and wear until they fell apart. For cold weather (in Chicago, down to single digits) I had a long-sleeved tee and a pullover windshirt (both freebies) an old knit cap and pair of knit gloves I had found lying around the house, and the only big expenditure - a pair of lined, gore-tex pants that I asked for one Christmas. I got a Timex Iron-man watch which I also wore as my daily watch, and I was set.

For training for a marathon, I bought a single container of body glide. Not exactly a huge investment. For water on long training runs, I was generally able to run places that had water at a couple of places. Or else I would put a water bottle one spot and simply run out and back a couple of miles, taking a drink when I passed the start spot.

If you’re doing it right, the largest expenses in running involve entering events, getting there, staying somewhere while there and getting back.

The key thing is to find shoes that will protect your feet, not trip you up or otherwise impair your gait and that will not chew/blister your feet. Ditto for socks.

Bodyglide works well in preventing or reducing chafing and blistering.

Weather issues drive other items, including things like gloves. In cold weather, cover your cold points: ears, hands and the like.

Yeah - another reason I (personally) wasn’t that into races. (Well, that and after a point do you really need another t-shirt! ;)) One thing I loved most about running was the ability to do it anywhere, anytime, for free. And to the extent I was competitive, I was competitive vs myself in terms of goals and history of mileage run, frequency of runs, times for various courses/splits.