Question on running

After years of failure, I seem to be making some progress with running. Since September I am following a free couch to marathon plan (reduced to accommodate cycling), eyeing a marathon event at the end of April. I have never run or done run races before. My current FTp is 5:25ish and i am starting the build phase. I will probably land the marathon in 4:30-5:00hr range.

To be honest, I enjoy running for about first 40 minutes or so. After that it becomes a bit boring. I am not even sure I will want to keep running in the future.

I am faced with the choice: A) Hurt my ego, swallow my pride, and sign up for a half distance B) Run full marathon, and risk to have a bad day in my life. What is the forum’s opinion/experience on this? thank you.

Why not just train hard to get the marathon done and tick that box now while you are at it? Sure running can be boring. But so is riding a bike indoors. Heck, even riding a road bike can be boring at times.

I’ve only done one marathon, and I’m about done with training for my second one. At times doing the 20 milers is very boring, but the reward from completing it is well worth it :+1:

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If you don’t enjoy it why do it?

Marathons are a long day and they take a lot of recovery, it will impact any further bike training for weeks to come.

Try to find ways to make the run more fun, specially on the marathon long runs.

  • Run with others
  • Listen to music / podcasts on longer runs
  • Run different routes, maybe even take the car to some different start location
  • Do some races, doesn’t have to be as an actual race, can just use it as a training run
  • Intervals are not just great as a training, but also make it more fun & challenging
  • Join a running group / club

If you have your heart set on a marathon and you don’t carry it through you will end up disappointed in yourself.
Whilst running a marathon is not a lot of fun it is something you will remember all your life.

You will also remeber your finishing time to the second. Which is more than the senator Paul Ryan managed to do

These are great suggestions. I particularly like running different routes that are scenic/interesting. Also trail running is another option to make a long run less boring.

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I’m an oddball who can zone out for hours while running without music or other distraction, but not many people are like that. I focus on my technique and form more than anything when I’m doing my really long, slow, “boring” runs. BUT! I always run someplace interesting. During marathon and Half IM training, I’ve always run some coastal scenic route, and I very much look forward to those runs and seeing the sights. Changing up the route helps keep my on my toes, too. That’s what works for me.

As to your suggestion about the half vs. full - if a full marathon is a “bucket list” item for YOU, do it. Otherwise, don’t do a full marathon to impress others or because your friends are doing it. Half marathons are GREAT races, 10Ks are awesome. Both are probably better for you long term because they exact less physical toll, and you can get into great shape training for those shorter distances. Plus, I find the training less boring because there can be more track work involved, and your long runs aren’t so painfully long!

“We” - endurance athletes - place way, WAY too much emphasis on going longer to further our goals or impress our friends. There is nothing wrong with setting a goal to go faster at a shorter distance. In fact, I’d tell you that I probably have more fun training for and racing shorter distances than slogging through the longer ones. There is no part of me that wants to race an ultramarathon… I’d much rather try to PR another marathon, half, 10K, etc. YMMV.

I’d also add that those shorter events - 5K and 10K runs, sprint tris, Cat 4/5 crit series - indeed need us to participate to keep them viable, and those are the races that get more people involved in our sports, thus making those sports more lucrative for equipment makers and get the die hards like us better gear to play with!


Stick with it, the boredom will subside with increased running fitness. What feels like boredom is often just the first sympton of fatigue. The more exhausted you get, the more your mind looks for reasons to stop or take a break and “this is soooo boring” is oftentimes high on that list. The fitter you get, the further you’ll push that threshold.

But, and that’s the bad news, preparing for a marathion takes a lot of work and not all of it is fun. Accept this fact and start dealing with. If a slight feeling of boredom keeps you from progressing, imagine how you would react to that boredom coupled with intense fatigue and maybe some pain on race day? My best advice is learn to embrace the suck and slog though it. Believe it or not, it will always get better after a while, long distance running is full of ups and downs.


I’m the same as you. I like go into a deep trance. The problem is that I sometimes end up tripping over stuff because I’m so away in my own space that I don’t see things on the grund.

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