Nais Training Diary [Final]: How I Completed My First Marathon
Hi everyone, this is Nais and this is my final training diary entry. I’m happy to announce that I successfully finished my first marathon last week! It was an amazing experience and I want to share with you some of the highlights and challenges of my journey.
I started training for the marathon about six months ago, following a 16-week plan that I found online. The plan consisted of four runs per week, with one long run on the weekend. I also did some cross-training, such as cycling, swimming and yoga, to improve my overall fitness and prevent injuries.
The first few weeks were tough, as I had to adjust to the increasing mileage and intensity of the workouts. I had some soreness and fatigue, but nothing too serious. I also had to deal with some mental challenges, such as boredom, doubt and motivation. I learned to listen to my body and take rest days when needed. I also found some running buddies and podcasts to keep me company and entertained during the long runs.
As the weeks went by, I noticed some improvements in my speed, endurance and confidence. I was able to run faster and longer without feeling exhausted or out of breath. I also enjoyed the scenery and the feeling of accomplishment after each run. I ran my first half marathon in March and set a personal best of 1:55:23. I was thrilled with my progress and felt more prepared for the full marathon.
The last month of training was the hardest, as I had to run up to 20 miles on some weekends. I also had to deal with some unexpected challenges, such as bad weather, illness and injury. I caught a cold in April and had to skip a week of training. I also sprained my ankle during a trail run and had to rest for another week. I was worried that these setbacks would affect my performance and ruin my chances of finishing the marathon.
Thankfully, I recovered in time for the big day. The marathon was held on a sunny Sunday morning in May. There were thousands of runners and spectators along the course, creating a festive and supportive atmosphere. I felt nervous but excited as I lined up at the start line. I checked my watch, took a deep breath and started running.
The first half of the marathon went smoothly. I ran at a steady pace, following my planned strategy. I enjoyed the views of the city and the countryside, and cheered on other runners along the way. I reached the halfway point in 2:02:15, slightly ahead of my goal time. I felt good and confident that I could finish strong.
The second half of the marathon was more challenging. I started to feel some fatigue and pain in my legs and feet. The course also became hillier and windier, making it harder to maintain my speed. I had to dig deep and push myself mentally and physically. I reminded myself of why I was doing this and how far I had come. I also drew inspiration from the crowd and the other runners who were struggling with me.
The last few miles were the toughest. My legs felt like lead and my lungs were burning. Every step was a struggle and every mile seemed endless. I wanted to stop and walk, but I didn’t give up. I kept running, one foot in front of the other, until I saw the finish line in sight. I sprinted with all my remaining energy and crossed the line in 4:12:47.
I did it! I completed my first marathon! It was one of the most rewarding and memorable experiences of my life. I felt a mix of emotions: joy, relief, pride, gratitude, exhaustion. I received my medal, hugged my family and friends who were waiting for me, and celebrated my achievement.
I want to thank everyone who supported me along the way: my coach, my running buddies, my family, my friends, my readers. You all helped me reach this goal and made this journey possible. Thank you!
This is Nais signing off for now. Until next time, happy running!