On Thursday I was given the option to run the Stockholm marathon.
The race was on Saturday.
I thought about it, but ultimately decided that running wasn’t a good idea.
I was invited out to Stockholm with Visit Sweden to watch the Stockholm City Marathon and experience the healthy side to the city. There was no obligation to run (we were only given a couple of weeks notice about the trip) but there were bibs available if we wanted them.
One of the other girls on the trip decided to run, and it made me start questioning my decision not to. I weighed up the reasons for and against running;
I should run the marathon because;
- I’ve got the opportunity for a free spot
- It’s one of Europe’s biggest marathons with over 17000 runners
- It’s a gorgeous course, snaking through the city along the water and various islands
- I’m here to cover the marathon and what better way to review it than by running it
- The weather was amazing (although maybe a little hot for this Brit)
- I’ve heard it is one of the best organised marathons in the world
- You get to finish on the track at the 1912 Olympic stadium, truly an epic finish line!
I shouldn’t run the marathon because;
- I am not trained for it
- I’m coming back from a long injury recovery and I don’t want to hurt myself again
- I haven’t run more than 7 miles since January
- I didn’t have any tried and tested running kit with me – instead I had kit that I’m testing out for future blog posts, not what you want to run a marathon in. Nor did I have any gels, Nuun or body glide.
- The course is two laps. I hate lapped courses (although at least it would mean that your spectators could see you easily multiple times)
Ultimately, I decided not to run. Partly because I go on and on about respecting the marathon distance, and felt a little hypocritical going against my own marathon beliefs, and partly because I wasn’t confident that I would be able to finish. With all challenges, I know that so much of it is mental.
‘If you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.
I didn’t think my body or self-determination would hold out for 26.2 miles, no matter how long that took. I also know that I’m very competitive and would have wanted to run a time I was proud of, which I just don’t think would have been achievable yesterday.
At least we got to spectate the race in a couple of places and watch a new course record being set! I love the atmosphere of a marathon, and got really emotional every time a runner finished. It is such an epic feeling and I can’t wait to finish the New York Marathon in November!
Debs did run it and had a great time, she’s not even that sore today despite zero training for the race.
What would you have done in my situation? Would you ever run a marathon without training for it?