Since the 6th grade I’ve been an avid and active runner, but I’ve never run a marathon before. I ran cross country, the 1500m, and 3000m in high school and finally participated in the Hood to Coast when I reached college. The Nike / Kaiser Permanente 5 miler, The 8K Shamrock run, and the Run Like Hell 1/2 Marathon have all been checked off my list, but I never thought of trying to tackle the 26.2 miles that is the Portland Marathon.
I was severely dehydrated and nauseous to the point I didn’t know if I was going to be able to complete the race. Last year at the Hood to Coast I gave my team a severe scare when nearly 5 hours after my leg I still had not recovered and actually started to get the chills. In the end, I sucked it up, ate some food, drank some water, and completed the event. I was extremely disappointed and frustrated with my performance at the Hood to Coast. I made a vow to myself that on January 1st of 2009 I’d start my training for the next Hood to Coast which will not take place until mid-August.
I’m currently in week 19 of 32 for my Hood to Coast training. My weekly mileage is 39 miles and my long run for the week is 12 miles. I started looking at my projected training log and saw that by August my weekly mileage would be 50 miles and my long run would be 17 miles. Listening to my body, I could also feel that my long runs, of late, were not difficult, and in fact, depending on the pace, were quite easy no matter the mileage.
This is when I started to think I could complete, my dream goal, of running the Portland Marathon. Unfortunately, I didn’t have anywhere to turn for advice or guidance on my decision. I went to the Portland Marathon website hoping they’d have a Facebook account or forum to listen to stories and ask questions for those thinking about doing their first marathon, but they had nothing.
I understand the Portland Marathon is in the business of promoting their event and training programs, but wouldn’t it cut down their costs if they knew everyone could complete the run? While I wasn’t 100% convinced I should enter the Portland Marathon, their promotions of an increase in price by May 15th was enough to motivate me towards entering the race.
By creating a forum or utilizing social media the Portland Marathon could actively communicate with potential entrants and assist them with their decision to run the race or not. More seasoned marathoners could communicate with each other, exchange training programs, and give inspiring stories to the newbies who hope to just get across the finish line. My lofty goal, besides completing the Portland Marathon, is to qualify for the Boston Marathon with a 3:10 or below marathon.