Life lessons from my first marathon experience

Photo Credit goes to my friend, Sandra

Portland, OR Marathon is in the books. I’m glad to be a part of the 26.2 mile club. This was my first time running a full marathon. According to Google, less than 1% of the population have finished a marathon. So if you’ve also completed a marathon, then you’re in the 1%.

Running and training for a marathon taught me a lot about life. I was thinking about this on my drive home with friends.

Here are the lessons I felt I learned from my experience of training for a marathon.

#1) You will never at any point feel like you’re “fully” prepared — Around a month and a half out from the marathon date, I got an injury. In fact, I couldn’t run anymore than three miles without my left knee being in excruciating pain. It got to a point where I had to go see two doctors and a physical therapist. This would continue until the Wednesday before race day (around a month and a half time period).

Not a day went by without me contemplating whether I should back out of this race. I was worried that I wasn’t training enough. I was worried whether I would aggravate my injury. Those were all legitimate concerns, but I decided to go through with it anyways.

There will never be a point in your life when you will have all of your ducks lined up in a row. You can take time to methodically plan everything, but life gets in the way and it messes up your entire plan. I believe it’s important to take chances and just go for it! Things will work out. By the way, my left knee feels fantastic even after the race. :)

#2) You’re not the only one who’s experiencing pain — At around mile 18, my legs started going numb. It was a combination of this marathon being the longest continuous distance I’ve ever run and that it was pouring down rain. When I hit mile 20, I regained feeling in my legs. They were in extreme pain. In fact, I couldn’t decide which hurt more; my feet or my legs.

Well guess what, EVERYBODY around you is in some kind of pain and is pushing through it. EVERYBODY around you is dealing with some kind of problem or undesirable circumstance but they are still pushing through it. If they can push through it with a smile on their face, so can you.

#3) You are stronger as a team — For this event, I was fortunate enough to be surrounded by a great group of people who helped give me training advice, nutrition tips, and support. Running definitely seems like an individual support. But running a marathon is an entirely different animal. I couldn’t have made it through this event without them cheering me on from my sideline.

Aspire for higher my friends,

Andre

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