No More Marathons

Before I get into this post, I wanted to let you know my GoMacro Bar giveaway is closed. Go check it out and see if you’ve won! Anyway…


“I was hopeful I’d have a better update for you, but no such luck…” is how I started my latest e-mail to my awesome (and patient) coach, Jason of Strength Running. We’ve been working together since the fall of 2013 and he’s helped me put in the work to drop my half marathon time by nearly 10 minutes, my 5k by 3 minutes, and to just overall become a better and smarter runner. So I knew that he’d be just as disappointed to hear what I was about to tell him – I’m not going to be running a fall marathon… for the third fall season in a row.

I’m sure a lot of you saw me tweet last Friday that I was able to run 2 miles without any foot and ankle pain, which is true. However, a few hours after the run while sitting at my desk at work, I started to feel that all too familiar discomfort. It wasn’t terrible, but it definitely didn’t instill any confidence in me that I could run again the next day. With only thirteen weeks until the Chicago marathon start, I knew what I had to do. I had to pull the plug on marathon training.

If you’ve been following along, I had a killer spring and summer running season in 2014. I was pumped and ready to go for marathon training and it was well underway until ITBS came barging in at the end of September. By the middle of October I knew that my hopes for running (and crushing) the Philly marathon that November were gone. I spent the next two and a half months strengthening and going to PT and was ready to get back into it by late January. I started running again (albeit cautiously) and had a few decent workouts and longer runs. Then around the end of April/beginning of May I noticed a slight discomfort in my foot and ankle area after one of my longer runs. I didn’t think anything of it at first and was able to continue running without much issue. When it didn’t go away and started to get more noticeable, though, I realized it was time to take a little break; this was the end of May. It was at that point I realized I was dealing with the same issue I had in the summer of 2013, but I was hopeful I caught it early enough that I’d still have plenty of time to get back into marathon training. I did the take a week off, try to run, take another week off, try to run again cycle for a few weeks, and after running the Mini 10k and having my ankle swell afterwards, I went to the doctor. It’s not a stress fracture (which is great), but it’s not something I can run with, either. I can’t commit to training for a 26.2 race when I can’t get through a 2 mile run and not having pain during or after. Even if this completely clears up by next week (which I’m not holding my breath for), I don’t have a solid base to go into a rushed training cycle. With my track record, I’d wind up injuring something else either during training or on race day. It’s just not worth it.

So what does this mean? Well, it means I’ve wasted a whole lot of money [insert the flying money emoji here]! I’m obviously extremely disappointed and frustrated; this is now the the third season in a row that I’ve signed up for a marathon and will be unable to run it. And you know what they say about three strikes — you’re out. So I’ve committed to NOT signing up for any more marathons for quite some time. Once this current injury is gone, I’m planning to stick to the shorter stuff – I’m thinking 5k/10k revolution. Only after staying injury free for a while will I even entertain the idea of signing up for another marathon. At this point, my wallet and my sanity couldn’t handle it any other way.

That being said, I’m unsure if I’ll be in Chicago for the marathon or not. The hotel is already booked, I have a lot of friends running, and Chicago is one of my most favorite cities in the world. So I’m leaning towards using it as an excuse for a weekend trip and cheer session. Sure, it’ll be hard to be on the sidelines, but the deep dish pizza and beer will help make up for that.

In the meantime you can find me sweating it out at FlyWheel and Refine Method. Thank goodness for awesome cross training options.

7 thoughts on “No More Marathons

  1. That is a big bummer that you won’t be able to run the Chicago Marathon. I’m pretty sure there will be lots of fun activities in town and we will have a Oiselle cheer zone if you do decide to come and enjoy the best city in the world (my opinion may be biased).

    The good thing about waiting to run marathons is that you get older and the Boston Marathon qualifying time gets slower as well. Gotta think positive! I’m waiting to complete my next marathon until I’m done having kids. The training is just so much of a strain on time and resources and I just don’t want to commit to all of that just yet…


  2. I’m sorry to hear you’re having never-ending injuries, but sometimes the best way to fix those is to take a legit long period of time off. It sucks – I made myself take off 2014 from marathoning because I was worried about ongoing back problems. I’m knocking on wood that they stay away in 2015! As I’ve told doctors I’ve seen, “I don’t want to run just for four months, I want to run for the rest of my life.” It sometimes hard to see when all you want to do is train for that upcoming marathon (and really want to PR…), but it’ll be better in the long run (har har har…) to be smart about it now.


  3. This is all a serious bummer, but I’m glad you seem to have a good attitude about it. Chicago is such a fun city, and the marathon atmosphere, while somewhat tough to be around, could still be a great party? I hope you can get everything working with your legs/feet and rock that 5k/10k distance!!


  4. ;( that is really sad. maybe your next race should be a triathlon? you already swim, spin, and run. i’ve never run a marathon, but i workout a lot and feel that sport diversity keeps me injury-free. hang in there.


  5. I have recently decided not to run the Twin Cities Marathon, which I signed up for back in February. It would’ve been my fifth marathon and my 3rd attempt at Twin Cities. (My reasons are mostly mental burnout.) I wanted to tell you I appreciate your courage in NOT signing up for a marathon, and that I fully support a 5K/10K revolution! Bring it on!


  6. I’m so sorry to hear this, Danielle 😦 I hope you are able to get back to 100 percent soon.

    In the meantime, I’m fully in favor of a 5k/10k revolution! Marathons are wonderful but they are not the be all, end all in running. There are plenty of shorter distances that are just as much fun – if not more fun 😉


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