The agony and ecstasy of a first-time marathoner
Hi, my name is Lauren and I’m an e-marketing specialist here at CDPHP and one of the brains behind The Daily Dose. I’m about to embark on the journey of a lifetime: running my first marathon in January. I officially began a grueling training regimen about a month ago and am documenting my experience on the blog. Why? Well, I’d like to start a conversation. I know many of you in the local running community are, like me, first-time marathoners. Or, perhaps you’ve ran several marathons and have some tips and guidance to share. Either way, I invite you to join me on this journey and hopefully you’ll walk, or run, away with some inspiration, knowledge, or at the very least, a good laugh at my expense.
I’ve just started my fourth week of what is by far the craziest thing I’ve done to date: training for my first marathon. Money has been spent and the hard part has begun. Running. Lots and lots of running, sprinkled with some cross-training and hopefully a little fun as well.
If it weren’t for the amazing group of friends I’m surrounded by, I would have never gotten to this point. I’ve dug my feet in multiple times, insisting on only signing up for half-marathons when they started pushing for full. I wasn’t able to stop them this time, so, like the lemming I am, I signed up. It helps that they’re all very positive and motivating people. They believe we can do this, so I believe we can do this. They’ve also promised me that this is the only time we will ever, ever run a full marathon. It’s obvious they’re lying to me, but it feels great to think that if I work really hard for this, I’ll never have to do it again. That’s the plan, anyway.
Some of my fears:
What amazes me:
It has taken me eight years to get to this point. I can personally relate to the phrase, “it’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon.” My first time running, I made it about a quarter of a mile before I started walking, then another quarter mile, with another walk. Eventually I got to a half mile, then a full mile. My first long race was 3.5 miles and my body felt like it might never recover.
If I get down about my pace time now, or how hard it is to run that last mile, I just recall those days when I first started. I know I’ve grown as a person and I know I can push myself further than I’ve ever thought. Even if I do forget, the ladies will keep me motivated.
So, here I am, starting on this grand new adventure. Do you have any tips and tricks that you use to stay motivated? Please feel free to share them in the comments section below.
Want more? Check out Part II.
Photo: The group that sweats together, stays together. This shot was taken after conquering nine miles on an 80-plus degree day back in early September. Clockwise from left: Lauren Daknis, Suzanne Huwe, Laura Cotugno, and Jenny Williams.