1. I have never run/walked competitively before, can I really train to run/walk my first marathon?
Many of our runner/walkers will have never been avid runners before. Most people even with no prior experience can finish a marathon provided they follow a structured, progressive training program start to finish, without falling off of the training program. It is a matter of future commitment more than a matter of previous experience.
2. I don’t know the first thing about running, diet, shoes etc., and don’t want to look foolish in trying this. Will any advice be given regarding these topics?
Yes! Many of our participants will be relative beginners at running/walking, so don’t feel like you are the only one. We will provide seminars on all of these topics and have experts come in to teach you all that you will need to know concerning the information regarding training for a marathon. We will teach you more than most avid runners know before the program is through.
3. I feel that I am very slow. What if I can’t keep up with the rest of the group?
Our programs are designed to teach you to finish, not to necessarily do it fast. Don’t worry about your speed. You will be in good company as many of our runners intend to walk the marathon. The goal is to finish a marathon, and that is lofty enough. You can worry about breaking world records when you attempt your second (or next) marathon!
4. I won't be able to start the program until late - can I still join and will I be able to run a marathon in the Spring?
Yes you can still join the program, but the later you join the more important it will be that you get in all of the necessary training. The key to completing a marathon (running or walking) is having the preparation/training in - without it, accomplishing your goal will be very difficult!
5. How long is the training program?
The training program is 20 to 25 weeks long depending on which marathon you decide to train for.
6. How often do we meet?
As a group we only meet once a week! We will meet every Saturday at 8am at a selected site to run/walk a distance. We start at 2 miles and work up to 20-22 miles over the course of the program. At each meeting we will have a brief seminar on a topic related to training for a marathon and then we run/walk. It will usually be over in 1 to 3 hours, depending on how far we are running/walking that day.
7. That can’t be it, what about the rest of the training?
You’re right! At the Saturday morning runs, we will give you a weekly running/walking training schedule to be run on your own. You will typically be required to run/walk 4 to 5 days per week. You can fit the training into the most hectic of schedules, because you can run anywhere and anytime you can fit it in.
8. What if I have to miss a Saturday or two due to schedule conflicts?
That's O.K., just let your coach know which meetings you can’t make and he/she will get you all the missed information you need. As long as you make up the run/walk missed on that Saturday, you will be fine. You should try to attend as many Saturday run/walks as you can, however. And remember, the long run/walks are extremely important in your training.
9. Do I have to wait to get my questions answered at the group meetings?
Are coaches only available then? No! We pride our programs on the fact that our coaches are always accessible to your questions. You can call us, fax us, e-mail us etc., throughout the week. Someone will get a hold of you as soon as possible. This is a group training program, but we are always available for individual needs and questions.
10. Why should I do this?
People run marathons for a lot of reasons. Some do it to test themselves. Some do it to get in shape. Some do it for another person or cause dear to them. Some do it as a vacation get away! Some have no idea why they are doing it, but do it nonetheless! The one common thing we can promise is that it will change your life… in a way that will make your life so much more enjoyable, regardless of the reason you started to do it in the first place. Ask someone who has done it. Don’t take our word for it! It is an accomplishment you will remember for a lifetime…!