Thursday, May 19, 2011

View from the Back - I Respect the Marathon

“The early mornings. The countless miles…. Somewhere along the line, the marathon became less of a competitive sport and more of a line item on a bucket list… next time you're toeing the line, respect the marathon”

The above is a portion of an advertisement that ran in various running magazines. The ad made me feel like I should be ashamed of my running. I put in countless miles, but yes, I could do better. I could run harder. Did I check off completing a marathon as a line item on my bucket list? Yes, absolutely. Should I be ashamed it took me over five hours? Should faster runners look down their nose at me?

I look more like a Shotputter, than a runner. To have a runner’s build I would have to lose forty pounds. But my body serves me well for sports I love. I love to downhill ski. I love to ride my mule. I love to ride bikes.

There are many things I’m more suited for than running. Do I love running? No. So why continue? Because I believe exercise is important. I think everyone should be respected for moving. I think completing a marathon, in 5, 6 or even 7 hours, is a huge accomplishment. Most people have never walked 26 miles in a day! I believe making the decision to exercise on a regular, recurring basis should be celebrated.

I run/walk because mentally that keeps me moving. Running helps me sleep at night. Running helps keep my weight down. Running keeps me in shape for the things I do love. So why train for a marathon or half? It is motivates me. You can’t fake a marathon. Thank you every marathon that is open for 7 hours. Thanks to the marathons that encourage all runners!
~Nancy Rusho


Pam Gardiner said...

Good for you, Nancy. I know you are also a relay runner who is highly valued by your teammates. You are dependable, committed, and carry more than your share of the work. You take on the tough legs. You show up. Running may not be your favorite sport, but as a fellow runner you make me proud.

Dale said...

AMEN! I've come across an elitist attitude in online forums before - never in person thank fully.

I run because I want to lose weight - and its working for me. I'm running the marathon because it inspires me to keep running.

I hope to finish Missoula in under 6 hours - but if I don't, as long as I don't take over 6 1/2 hours, I'm still going to be proud!

Mark said...

Way to go, Nancy! I too hope to finish in under 6 1/2 . Do i respect the marathon? Hey, I respect anything that can kick my butt like that! This will be my first and I too run to keep my weight down and to just feel better about myself Will I consider myself a marathoner? You better believe it!!