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  • Writer's pictureAlan Percival

It all starts with one step!

It really does.  No matter how good one is at running, it all starts with with one step followed by another and so on. For some of us, we take a few steps as we try and get to grips with this idea of running.  For others it seems to come quite naturally and as one goes off running round the local roads for hours on end. Some seem to think it be nice, as it is nice idea at times, to go off and on to the trails and lanes of this land of ours and to decide to run up a hill or several hills! Many, and I do many, meet up on Saturday mornings in many locations around the the world to take part in Park Run -  a free to enter 5k (or 3.1miles in old money). Regardless though if it is ones first Park run or the 100th - it all starts with one step.

Some just like to go out when they can and enjoy 30-60 mins of freedom - away from the screaming kids, the partners or from work.  Some are really keen and join a running club and go out with the group once or twice  a week to pound the streets where they can chat about this shoe, the latest GPS watch or even deep meaning full ideas of life, the universe and everything (and the answeer to this is 42).

Then , at some point in a runners life there is this question/idea/thought that pops in the head.  Shall I run a marathon? The intensity of this question increases at the end of April/early May as we all watch in wonder the thousands  run round the streets of London.  Some racing, others jogging or plodding, many running for charity with some in some crazy fancy dress.  That question raises its head again.....shall I enter a marathon?

Well, I have and I have done several and love running and especially about training for a marathon. So for me to talk about running and training for a marathon will be, well....boring? So I thought, as I embark on training for...yes the London Marathon, I would also ask various members of the running community I know, ask them about their ups and downs of marathon training, and in particular 2 guys: Marc and Ray.  Why these 2 -  well I am coaching them.  Marc for his second marathon (again at London with me) and Ray (he has entered Manchester) - to get them talk about it all.  I might ask other people I know to add a few comments from time to time about their experiences of training and running a marathon.  I dare say, some will be good and really positive while others might be a bit more not so positive.

As I say, Marc & I are doing London in April as he won a competition (on Strava I think) and our entry came via Lucozade Sport for the 2 places.  Well, he kindly offered me the 2nd place as a thank you for getting him round his first marathon in October at Chester. What Marc did tell me, he linked the structure of running with goals on each of the runs - the training meant a little something everyday.  It was not just, 'lets go out for a run', each run had a little purpose, a little meaning, a goal. That was part of his driving force to enter another marathon.  He now has me again trying to push him a little more, continuing his education on how to train. 

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