To want to run the London Marathon even though I am unfit and overweight?

(99 Posts)
MNBlackpoolandFylde Sun 21-Apr-13 13:17:17

I have just been watching the guy who was overweight and lost loads training/got fit.

I want to do that!

I would love to run the Marathon, I used to be very sporty and fit and have always wanted to do it.

My friends six year old has been in hospital since 26th December with serious heart and lung problems.

I want to do it for her.

Please come tell me I am mad and it is not doable to go from couch to 26 miles in a year.

blondefriend Sun 21-Apr-13 22:12:02

This thread is inspiring me too. I was thinking of doing it for a number of reasons:

1) To raise money for the Fund that saved my son's life
2) To actually get out of the house and improve my fitness
3) One of my friends completed it today after losing over 4 stone

So I will be online next Monday trying to get an individual place (as my charity isn't one of the ones listed). Maybe we should come back to inspire each other.

Cherriesarelovely Sun 21-Apr-13 22:14:16

DO IT! I did the Edinburgh marathon 2 years ago. It was something I had always wanted to do but I did spend a long time building up to it. The actual race was extremely difficult for a number of reasons but the training was fantastic. I want to do another one but have been ill most of the year so need to take it very slowly.

Same here. Need to lose four stone and started running again a couple of weeks ago when I finally got a treadmill. I would like to do a half marathon in winter/early 2014 and then a marathon next year.

duchesse Sun 21-Apr-13 22:59:30

Well, frankly, in a week in which one of my best friends has had the news that her knees are buggered and both need replacing at the age of 46- she exercised a lot from her mid 20s onwards: 4-5 high impact aerobics sessions a week, lots and lots of running and she ended up doing the London marathon about 3 years ago. Now looking at total joint replacements.

What you take up, make it low impact on your joints. Excellent running shoes, as much off tarmac as possible etc... especially if you are overweight to start with as that puts extra pressure on your joints.

dimdommilpot Sun 21-Apr-13 23:42:02

I am 2 weeks into couch to 5k (after reading about it on here) and its bloody fab. I am quite skinny but sooooo unfit so its been hard but i am going to stick to it, my aim is the great north run next year.

howdoo Mon 22-Apr-13 00:01:12

WelshWeasel that is AMAZING - well done, you must be so happy! My goal is to do a sub 4 hour in the next two years, cannot imagine managing it on your first marathon!!

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 06:59:12

Great target to have. Many say its best to have a running base of c 1 year before you start the actual 6month marathon training programme. This would be ideal and better for preventing injury etc but depends on your body/age/general health/motivation also. Helps that you were so fit and sporty before, in which case you might want a longer lead in anyway to get your v best time??
Ive also applied several time for the London ballot and gave yet to get in. Personally, would never ho for one of its charity places as so little actually gets to the charity. As others have said, there are some fab, easy to get into marathons elsewhere -i did such one and just applied, paid about £50 for a place and then contacted my chosen charity, set up a Justgiving page and raised money that way,

pizalisa Mon 22-Apr-13 07:09:42

I do not know if any of you have been reading our thread in the chatities section or have in fact helped our DD with her target at yesterdays marathon, but many of the comments above are the usual sort of things DD used to say. She completed the marathon and we were so proud of her. She is in pain today but so happy she did it.

I ran my first marathon in 3 hours 20 minutes, which is when I thought I should take this running lark seriously!! I was 35 btw. I had been running for about 8 months but I am built to run, very slight build. I should have run for another year before doing a marathon as others have said.

Agree with comments above, off road running is much easier on your legs and works the muscles in a different way, strenthens a greater variety given the uneven nature of the terrain. Plus it's much nicer than running on tarmac.

Get a gait analysis, maybe a beginners running book or two (the running magazines will be full of recovery plans at the minute), really take your nutrition seriously.

Also, the VLM is not the be all and end all of marathons. It's a very expensive option tbh and quite overwhelmingm the start and finish are miles apart so you need to consider which side of London to stay at, how to get down their, transport to the start on the day. Support is fantastic on the course. I ran Edinburgh twice and that's a super course and most of their logistical issues are now sorted I think.

I did a small one in Scotland for my first, and then ran this twice more in later years. I preferred the lack of queues for the loos, the less crowded route, it's cooler which is better for running in, much cheaper and easier to stay there (consider for supporters).

Good luck.

msrisotto Mon 22-Apr-13 07:52:30

I always get inspired by the London Marathon. I am not sure if actually doing one is on the horizon for me but i've never been a runner bean so i'd love to crack it. I've downloaded the C25K podcast recommended so thank you for helping me take the first step! Now i've just to get a good playlist going and tighten my laces!

Chopstheduck Mon 22-Apr-13 08:17:25

I think it must be doable. I only started in January this year, 4 stone overweight and I can now run nearly 7 miles. I'm thinking of a half marathon next year, and would see from there. It is addictive, the adrenaline rush from being able to go further or faster is amazing.

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 08:20:54

Goodness, Need! What a fantastic time for a marathon, let alone your first! Is that yr PB? My marathon time
didn't come anywhere near, still proud for ever to have done it tho, still think regularly when have difficulties in life, "i gave birth, i ran a marathon, i can do this!"

Flisspaps Mon 22-Apr-13 08:31:39

I'm restarting c25k today. Did run 1 a week ago but didn't do more as lady week was so busy with family celebrations (birthday, anniversary, birthday, birthday)

I'm size 16-18, 12st something. DSil started c25k last year and ran a 1/2 marathon a few weeks ago. She looks fab. I don't want to be the fatty in the photos next to her! I want to be able to run around with my kids in the summer. It was my birthday yesterday, the ideal time to get started and to aim to be comfortably running and 3 stone smaller by my next birthday!

Salbertina, you SHOULD be proud. Having the commitment to running a marathon, putting in the miles, slogging out the last 6 miles in the real race, you have done something AMAZING!!

In answer to your question, no it's not my marathon pb - that's closer to three hours. Close, but not close enough, breaking 3 hours would be my ultimate achievment in running terms but I must stress that we are all individuals with our own level of commitment or ability. Anyone putting in the miles and running in the shitty snowy conditions during the winter, week after week is fantastic in my view.

I was never very good at sport as a kid, ok, but never good. Finding I was good at running was a revelation.

Been injured for a long while now and just picking it back up, I wouldn't step back up to the marathon for a while as I would always compare my results and feel I had let myself down as I couldn't do the times I wanted.

Note - do not neglect your core strength as I did. Having a strong core strength will prevent injury - promise, and make you a more efficient runner.

Ref life commitments, that's the thing with marathon training that you all must understand even if you plan just to get through the race. You can't miss a weeks training and pick it back up the next week. That will find you out at 16 miles - promise. You have to find a way to fit the training in round your commitments. My long runs were done at 6am on Sunday mornings to avoid missing the family time. I ran at 9pm at night, whenever really.

That's not to be critical, if you have a busy busy life or don't want the commitment, choose another distance - there's much merit in these too.

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 09:38:02

Thanks, Need but what was yr PB then? Am intrigued! For a 30-something female, anything under 4 hrs is v good going, you are seriously talented!
Agree, it is a great achievement- the commitment to training required and the sacrifice of family/social life and/or sleep is immense and is rigid. I ended up doing my longest training run in a hail storm and -1c! Not ideal and not entirely sensible but due to work/kids i only had a particular morning on which to do it regardless of weather!

EmmaBemma Mon 22-Apr-13 09:53:41

"I ran my first marathon in 3 hours 20 minutes, which is when I thought I should take this running lark seriously!! I was 35 btw."

That is INSANE! I am extremely jealous. You must be one of those naturally talented runners. Sorry to hear you've been injured - hope you do smash that three hour target one day.

Sal - I am not talented. I was good, especially at long distances as I have a natural ability to pace well, which helps, especially at said long distance but not talented. I never had the out and out speed in my legs to smash a 5k time.

I was about 7 minutes off sub 3 but then did a 10 mile race time during marathon training which suggested sub 3 would be possible, then I broke!! I did far too much too soon, a lesson for all. I will go very very steady this time as not running for so long has nearly killed me mentally! I don't want folk thinking I am some hot shot runner lol. Just a mum, trying to escape the kids for a bit and running fitted that as you call pull on some trainers and go, then finding out I was ok at it. Then getting obsessed smile

Glad you posted your last paragraph though, far more important than my pb (personal best)!! It's very truthful and honest and very telling. Folk need to know.
Finishing a marathon is amazing and fantastic - I think a lot of this feeling is because of the reasons in your last paragraph smile

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 10:06:24

So you're less good at shorter distances, so what? You are VERY good at marathon distance! Just a mum is like me, staggering thro training, staggering thro event itself just under 5 hours, not fast Am better but still not superfast at 10-14 miles, PB for a half is 1:51 but can't do full in 3:42!!

EmmaBemma Mon 22-Apr-13 10:11:02

Yes, that's the most ass-backwards logic I've ever heard! First ever marathon after 8 months of running in 3 hours 20, but you're not talented because you're not as fast as you think you should be over 5 k! I know it's the done thing for a runner to underplay their achievements but that takes it to a new level.

Well done to you Salbertina! I'm about your pace over a half but have never done a full marathon so hats off to you. Would love to one day but not sure my legs would hold out - I'm very injury prone.

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 10:16:12

Thanks,EB. I think a half is the best distance, still a real challenge but much less knackering on my old joints.
Op, have you looked into any good half marathons to train up for?

No it's not - think of Mo Farah and Paula Radcliffe. Peak at shorter distances and take their speed up to the marathon when there's years of training in their legs to support the move up. I should have got faster at the short stuff and then converted that to longer. But tis not relevant to this discussion I agree smile

Half marathons are a very good distance agree.

Yes - OP, are you still inspired today? How about the Manchester marathon (assuming your reasonably close given your name)

Marathons are inspiring and the running community are so friendly and welcoming.

Heinz55 Mon 22-Apr-13 10:38:19

Absolutely. I was never ever sporty but took up running to do a 60k race which I did (came in average time which was better than I'd expected) in 7 months. It will be easier to train and keep it going if you have a goal (like the marathon) I would register as soon as you can because then, even if you fall off the training wagon (which I did a few times: laziness and injuries) you have to get back on again. Well done you!

Great inspiration from the VLM runners, and all you others who have done one in the past!

My advice would be - be realistic. How much spare time do you have each week? How easy is it for you get out there and run at least 4 times during the week?

I did 2 lots of 10ks last year, and am currently training for my first half-marathon in June. I run 4 times a week - a long run on Sundays (yesterday I did the Titanic Qaurter 10k in 1 hr 3 mins, and I'd run it last year in 1 hour 15 mins), a speed run on Saturdays (have to echo the support for ParkRuns, they are a brilliant idea, and a great way of improving your pace), and I also get out for at least 30 mins on Tues and Thursdays.

I'm also realistic about my times. I'm 5 foot 2 with wee short legs, and in my 50s. I daresay that I'll manage a 10k in under 1 hour some day, but it'll be hard work. For my half-marathon I'm expecting a time of about 2 hrs 30 mins. I'm not yet convinced that I want to go for a full marathon.

Oh, and JustGiving are very helpful in setting up a fundraising page.

Doyouthinktheysaurus Mon 22-Apr-13 14:51:57

I did London a couple of years ago. It was incredible and agony in equal measures. Such an amazing experience being part of something so enormous with such incredible support but come 22miles I was in my own private hell of pure pain and I wanted everyone to go awayconfused I trained so hard but you never know what's going to happen on the day and for me that was ITB problems.

I am so glad I got the opportunity, got a ballot place first time of trying, but I think my marathon career is overgrin I loved the training but it took me 6 months to get back to fitness post marathon and that's a long time out when you like running.

If anyone wants to do it, I would suggest a 2 year plan and be aware that getting a place for London is extremely difficult unless you go for a charity place and commit to a large amount of fundraising. I did run for charity it no pressure on the amount I raised because I got a ballot place.

It is an amazing experience to go through though, and many people get the bug and go on to many more marathons.

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