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Need opinions from experienced runners... (Read 1185 times)

    I did not know that it is so advised against running marathons at my age in fear of messing with growth. Not that it makes too much of a difference but I turn 18 next Sunday.
    Here is a link that you may want to read before making your decision. You are at the high end of the age group discussed, but you may still be growing. My older son is 19 years old and is currently experiencing growing pains in his knees. Even if that wasn't the case, I would still advise that you focus on your half for now and not try to do your first half and your first full marathon in the same year. http://www.kidsrunning.com/news/krnewsmarathonstatement.html Tom
      Injury risks aside, a good reason for not running so many marathons is because you want to improve as a runner. If you want to get faster, and even be a better marathoner, don't run so many....and especially on 30-35 mpw. That's not even enough for a good half. I harp on this all the time, but just look at the top marathoners. They don't run more than 1 or 2 a year. Show me one who runs several each year. You asked for opinons from experienced runners, well there it is. I'm 61 years old and have run 461 races during 29 years as a runner. I ran 1:26:33 for half marathon this fall and 3:09 marathon a month ago. The other 7 I've run have all been between 2:43 - 2:58. I can almost guarantee you I wouldn't have made it this far I've I'd run 3-4 marathons every year, let alone the 6-12 I see some people running. And I'll repeat on this silliness of running marathons on 30-35 mpw. There are people making money selling that crap, but that's what it is...crap. Sure, you can survive one, but you can't RUN it on that.
      Age 60 plus best times: 5k 19:00, 10k 38:35, 10m 1:05:30, HM 1:24:09, 30k 2:04:33
        Go for it. The worst that will happen is that you will get injured. That will heal, and you will have learned a lesson. The best that will happen is that you will have a great time, and be living life to the fullest.
        ??? I'm sorry, but I don't agree with this advice at all. I don't think that is the worst that can happen. I think there are two other possibilities - he is still growing and running the marathon could cause REAL damage, or he could have such a horrible experience that he decides not to run any more. What is the rush?? Even my high school sophomore runs more than 35 miles a week (all year round), and his coach would NEVER agree that was enough mileage to run a marathon.
          Thanks to all of your opinions and help, I have decided I will not be running in the San Diego Marathon. Heck, I'm not even sure if I will do the Chicago Marathon (might replace it with the 1/2 instead). I was not aware of all the risks of doing a marathon at my age, even if you are in shape. Thanks for all the help!
          keep running!


          Blaine Moore (MM#2867)

            Glad to hear that. To answer a few of the comments folks have made: What's the worst that could happen isn't necessarily an injury, although that's pretty bad (who wants to be injured?) but Teresa has the right of it - don't mess with your growth or your long term ability or desire to run. For how young people run - I read (maybe 10 or 15 years ago) that 10-12 year olds are the best physiologically for running marathons, because they don't need to expend as much energy since they haven't hit their puberty-growth-spurts yet and are light but are fairly well developed structurally. I won't be letting my 10-12 year old do it when I have kids though, because of this next reason: Yes, you can run a marathon on low mileage like 30-35 miles per week. And yes, you can run one on short training, (I did one after 9 weeks of running that followed a 9 month layoff) - you can go from completely sedentary to the Boston Marathon in 9 months (like they did on the Nova PBS broadcast) - but just because you can doesn't mean you should! As for going into it without a time goal, that's a horrible idea. How can you train for the race if you don't know what you want to run? How can you measure your progress? It's too easy to drop out when you hit the wall if you don't have any way of gaging how you are doing past what your body feels like, and guess what, when you hit the wall you are going to be hurting. I did a teleseminar this weekend (links and notes) where I answered questions on running, specifically what to do for a new runner getting into their first marathon and whether or not to use a "Just Finish" strategy - the replay is available for free right now so if you are interested in more details on what I think then you should give it a listen. There's also links to the PBS show and what not there.

            Run to Win
            24 Marathons, 17 Ultras, 16 States (Full List)



              Thanks to all of your opinions and help, I have decided I will not be running in the San Diego Marathon. Heck, I'm not even sure if I will do the Chicago Marathon (might replace it with the 1/2 instead). I was not aware of all the risks of doing a marathon at my age, even if you are in shape. Thanks for all the help!
              You're welcome! Can you tell I'm a Mom with a capital "M"? I've taken a real liking to high school runners because they have a lot of heart and work so hard. I admire their talent and want them to KEEP running as adults, because that outlet will be so helpful to them. And you play other sports, too, so it's even more impressive that you're running so much. Keep up the great work! Teresa
                Congratulations on getting into college! Here's hoping there are even more acceptance letters and a variety of other good news in your near future!
                2008 Goals
              • Run 1250 miles
              • Get down to 135!
              • Break 5 hours in the NJ Marathon
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