Marathon Series: Things They Don’t Tell You About Long Distance Running

Wednesday 9 September 2015 by

Long distance running, Running, Fitness, Marathon training, #HoBFitness,

Welcome back to week thirty three of my Marathon Series, as I blog my way to a marathon – from beginner to 26.2 miles. This week, we’re talking about what they don’t tell you about long distance running.

There are so many things you learn when training for a long distance race. And then there are a few things that no one ever warns you about…


You will develop a love-hate relationship with your feet. You will love them for carrying you so far. But you will also hate them because they will hurt like hell most of the time. Blisters, blood, black toenails, you’re going to have it all.

Weird twinges

You will be sat there minding your own business and suddenly your leg will twinge like you’ve been punched. It hurts and there is no way of predicting it. Just accept that you might accidentally kick someone every now and then.

You will hate running at one point on every single run

Whether it’s that 3km point when you’ve just started, or the point at which your legs start to fatigue, there will be a moment that you hate running with every single fibre of your being. You never want to run again. You realise that those people telling you that you’re crazy are right – you are crazy for running. Don’t worry, the feeling doesn’t last for long.

Friction wounds

Everyone knows that long distance runners get through a whole tub of Vaseline in a matter of weeks. Running gear rubs, and it rubs badly on long distance runs. But what they don’t tell you is that it’s not just nipple rub (boys only) or ankle rub you have to worry about. It’s along your back at the seam of your shorts. It’s under your arms and down your shoulders where your sports bra is (girls only). And it stings like mad when you get in the shower.

That first-meal feeling

It doesn’t matter what you eat, but trust me, the first thing you eat after a long run is like nectar from the Gods. It will be the best tasting food you’ve ever had.


You’ll cry. A lot. From the pain, from the pride, and from the sheer overwhelming emotion of doing something your body was never capable of before.

There are hundreds of other people doing it too

No matter your size, shape, gender, or political leaning, you will unite under the common interest of running. The running community is huge – and there is always someone else in exactly the same boat as you.

What have you learnt about long distance running? Anything you’ve discovered that no one told you about?

Don’t forget to let me know how you’re getting on, using the hashtag #HoBFitness. And check back in a soon when we’re talking about tapering!

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