You are over halfway!
Why are we running? It is one question people ask themselves before taking part in a marathon, and what is better than knowing that running a marathon can change your life and give a whole new meaning to it? With over 800 marathons held worldwide every year, people actively participate in the event for various causes or to support the cause many times. Therefore, running a marathon is a healthy way to promote awareness about a cause or raise money. Running a marathon is a test of your endurance. It is your race against your clock more than anyone else. Let us now learn everything about marathons and how they all started.
What Is A Marathon?A long-distance foot race of 42.195 km on the road (primarily) is called Marathon. How it came into being is the next thing people wonder about. Back in around 490 BC, coming from the legends of Philippides or Pheidippides, a Greek messenger who covered the entire distance to Athens to inform the people that the Greeks had defeated the Persians at the Battle of Marathon. Learning the gravity of the situation and viewing the mission as important, Pheidippides set off on foot and ran non-stop. Based on the story, the running race was first introduced at the Olympic Games in 1896.
Types Of MarathonsMarathon requires extensive training; if you are a runner and signing up for a marathon, there are certain things to keep in mind. Factors like marathon distance, terrain, etc. Depending on the distance, there are different kinds of marathons to choose from:
1. Marathon (42.2 km)Intense training of at least 6 months is required for this race. Training your body is necessary for this race, but setting realistic time goals in mind and working accordingly will make you the real winner.
2. Half Marathon (21.1kms)Step by step, you achieve your goal. Once you are familiar with the marathon concept, you can challenge yourself and see your strength by running a half marathon. However, it will require you to train both mentally and physically with a healthy diet plan and take care of your daily routine.
3. 6.21 miles/10 km RaceIf you are a beginner and starting your marathon journey, you can start with a 6 km race, in which you can just participate and enjoy. You can also participate in a 10km race in which you must be competitive with your fellow runners. Though it will also require training, starting with a small goal and trying to achieve it will give you a feeling of accomplishment.
4. Ultramarathon (Standard distances are 50km, 100km and 161km)An ultra-marathon is a race that covers more distance than a marathon. The training here requires understanding the distance and the terrain you will cover. Building up mileage for easy and long runs should be the main focus of the first two months of the training.
5. Stage RacesTotally different beasts to a single run event, stage races take place for over several days and are more about the adventure than running. Participating in such races is a great way to meet new people who are passionate about running, have crazy experiences and have a great time.
Benefits Of Running A MarathonThe most notable benefits of running a marathon are muscular endurance and cardiovascular fitness. Other than that, while training for a marathon, you may also experience the underwritten benefits.
1. Improved Fitness
Running mainly strengthens your lower body. The muscles which are more active while you run are the quadriceps, hamstrings, calves and glutes. Running is a type of cardio that helps burn calories, contributing to fat burning and, eventually, weight loss. It also helps keep your heart health intact and reduces the chances of cardiovascular diseases.
2. New Experience
A marathon experience is overwhelming yet liberating, like any other great experience. You train so much for this one experience and put yourself out there that it surely will give your life a new meaning. Training rigorously and striving hard to reach the finish line is an accomplishment in itself and will give you a reason to be proud of yourself.
3. Increased Motivation
Running a marathon involves immense determination and willpower to reach the finish line. Moreover, training for a marathon requires discipline and focus, which includes a healthy diet plan and a stricter schedule; as you start training for a marathon, you will see this visible change in yourself and see yourself being more productive in the other areas of your life. Moreover, physical training can boost your mental health and provide an optimistic approach towards daily tasks.
4. Boost In Self-Confidence
The joy of completing a 42km marathon will boost your confidence to the level of no returning. Once you reach the finish line and the feeling of accomplishment takes over, your whole perspective towards life changes, and you feel this immense power within yourself that you can achieve anything in life if you put your mind to it.
Can A Beginner Run A Marathon?A beginner is a master once he has started the journey.
Depending on how much of a beginner you are, you will have to come up with a training schedule at least 16 weeks ahead of the marathon; you can still participate in a marathon in a minimum of 16-24 weeks of training. All you need to have is a load of determination and a strict training schedule. Consult your physician before you start the training program and set up a routine. Start small, run for shorter races and eventually increase the limit. Starting off with 10ks or even half-marathons is a great way to prepare physically and mentally for your first marathon.