What to Consider When Deciding to Run a Marathon

Deciding to run a marathon is a big decision that must not be taken lightly. Training for a marathon takes a lot of time, dedication, and puts extra strain on your body. If you are on the fence about deciding to train and run a marathon then there are three things you need to take into consideration, your health, your time, and your support system.

The biggest deciding factor in whether or not you should run a marathon is your health status. There are many common medical conditions, such as diabetes, osteoporosis, arthritis, anemia, hypertension, and obesity, which can lead to health complications if you start putting strain on your body. If you have any of these conditions, it is best to consult your primary healthcare doctor before signing up for a marathon training program. You must also take into account your past medical history. If you have a history of lower extremity stress fractures, heel pain, plantar fasciitis or ankle sprains then you will want to make sure that you take all precautions to prevent any of these aliments from occurring again. It is a good idea to talk to your podiatrist to find out what the best running shoe would be for you and if you could be helped by a custom orthotic.

The second thing that you must think about when trying to decide if you should attempt to train for and run a marathon is if you have enough time to properly train for the race. In our fast-paced world most people have trouble finding time to fit in all the activities they already have on their schedule. Training for a marathon is a very time consuming task, especially in the last month of training. You must decide what time of day you are going to fit in runs that can take from 30 minutes to more than 3 hours!

The final thing that is important to consider when deciding to run a marathon is who your support system is. Who is it that most wants to see you finish your race? Most people do not think about this when deciding to run a marathon but it is very important. If you are married and your husband or wife does not support you running the race because it is too expensive or takes up to much of your time, then this is not a positive mental motivator to keep you going. You need your friends and family to be there to support you through your training and the big race day.

Deciding to run a marathon is a big decision. Your health, time, and support system should be taken into consideration when deciding if training for a marathon is right for you. Marathons are very challenging endeavors that simply aren't for everyone. Do not be disappointed if you decide running a marathon is not for you, but if you do decide to take on the challenge, the best of luck to you!
Dr. Andrew Schneider
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Dr. Andrew Schneider is a podiatrist and foot surgeon at Tanglewood Foot Specialists in Houston, TX.
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