Why Should You Run a Marathon?

  • Blog
  • 30th March 2019

Whether it’s been on your bucket list for a while, or you have recently been inspired to enter one, here are seven why you should run a marathon. It’s exhausting, painful and time-consuming. So why do people run marathons?

Assuming you’re an average guy, you’d be looking to do a marathon in about four hours. Well, there are plenty of other sports that take that time. You could play a game of tennis for six hours – so why run? Running is the easiest sport to fit into a very busy lifestyle because you can do it anywhere, anytime and it’s free. Unlike tennis, golf or football, you don’t have to be a member of a club, and there’s relatively little risk of injury.

Once you’re into it, the desire to set yourself a meaty goal starts creeping in. Running seemingly does that. Whatever the initial motivators, the endorphins released during regular training apparently conspire to make you want to go farther and faster. Add to this the factors of looking and feeling great, and one begins to understand the attraction.

For the Body and Mind

For most people, running starts with a wish to get fit and lose weight, but turns into a fun and stress-relieving pastime. Most of the runners agree that fitness is their main reason for running, with 54% confirming it to be the most important reason to start and 63% affirming it as their reason to continue. The second most important reason to take up running is weight-loss, with 40% of all European runners claiming this as their motivation to start.

Benefits of Running Marathons

Marathon running is also associated with superior mental health. The therapeutic/remedial effects of running extend far beyond physical benefits. It rejuvenates the mind and recharges the body. Many people find running a therapy where they can push back negative emotions, get time to reflect, de-stress, plan ahead and enjoy their own company.

Marathon running offers both physical and mental health benefits. The physical benefits include losing weight, becoming fitter and eating better. Your heart beats more efficiently and in time you manage to achieve a reduction in basal heart rate that translates into less work done more efficiently by the heart. In a nutshell, with all the above benefits you will lead a longer and healthier life.

Preparing for a Marathon

If you find the above suggestions inspiring enough to ditch the couch and register for the next marathon – wait!

For, running a marathon without adequate training and preparation under the guidance of an expert may cause grave injuries to your body. Because marathon involves running 42.2 km, which is a lot, you need to have a lot of strength in the body. For building that kind of strength, you need to do weight lifting. You also need to learn how to leverage the posterior part of the body. That’s why resistance training is important. It can help you use the right muscles.

If you want to take part in a marathon, it is also important to have a recovery strategy which should be aligned with physical training. Marathon runners should also be very focused. Meditation and yoga, in addition to physical training, can help provide the mental strength that they require.

Running a marathon without proper training may lead to various injuries including those of the knees and joints; but if the training is done in a programmed way, the benefits will always outweigh the potential risks. Running is healthy for our back, joints and makes our body flexible. At the same time it gives better cardiac reserve for the heart, that is, it provides the best pumping ability, improves our agility and vital capacity.

With running added to your fitness regime, you can burn a lot of calories which can lead to weight loss. But there are two aspects to marathon running — a fit body and a strong mind, because running by itself may be mentally strenuous.

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