Friday, October 1, 2010

Why Run a Marathon?

"Why would anyone want to run a marathon?" asked Bob.  Good question, I thought.  Why would anyone subject themselves to running 26.2 miles?  And for what?

When I decided to sign up for my first marathon in 2006, that thought never occurred to me.  Running a marathon had always been on my bucket list.  So, when I was nearing a milestone age, I just thought it was the thing to do for myself--without question.

"But most people list African safari, publish a book, see the Great Wall of China, and other fun stuff on their bucket list; not RUN a marathon," Bob argued.

He's right.  Running a marathon is not exactly fun.  It takes a lot of time and effort to train for it.  What more, you risk injuring yourself.  So why would anyone want to run a marathon?

Well, there is something appealing about accomplishing something that few people can.  Striving for something difficult or achieving the unimaginable is an amazing accomplishment.  A marathon fits this category.

Running a marathon is definitely a challenge that requires strength, endurance, courage, and dedication.  Many run it to prove to themselves that they are capable.  Others run it in honor of those who are battling cancer, asthma, or other diseases.  In this case, they run to show support for their honorees.

I run marathons because it helps me appreciate life.  When I run 26.2 miles, I suffer.  But it reminds me that there are people in the world suffering more than me.  One thing is for sure-  you'll never know the impact finishing a marathon will have on your life until you've completed one.

What do marathoners have in common?  DRIVE!  The bottom line is that drive is why we runners run marathons.

"Anytime you're able to overcome a challenge, you come away with greater confidence, self respect, and fearlessness that never fades."  ~Dean Karnazes

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