Two More Sleeps Until the Marathon

May 4, 2007

Well, this is it.

Four solid months of training (usually four runs a week, with long ones on weekends) are about to culminate into the biggest physical challenge of our lives. Janis and I will run the full Vancouver Marathon on Sunday, the first time we’ve attempted such an insanely long distance.


The question that we get most often is, “how long is a marathon exactly?” For those who are wondering that very thing right this minute, here’s a quote from the race’s official website to answer it for us:

The Full Marathon course has been accurately measured by measurers qualified by AIMS, IAAF and Athletics Canada and has been certified by Athletics Canada as 42.195 km BC-2007-004-BDC and CAN-2007-002-BDC from IAAF. This means that we are very confident that, even considering the inherent errors and uncertainty in measuring a road race course, the course is at least 42.195 km.

If you’re more of an Imperial system type, that translates to 26.2 miles.

I’m a bit nervous, but I’m also pretty confident that we will finish without incident and perhaps even with a time that we are proud of. Either way, crossing the line on our own steam (ideally still running) and hopefully with huge smiles will feel terrific, and give us a sense of accomplishment.

If you’ve ever wondered about training for a marathon yourself, we highly recommend the Novice Training Program from Hal Higdon. It’s 19 weeks of training that slowly builds over time, balancing stress and recovery so that your body builds strength as the distances get longer. For Vancouverites wanting to do the local marathon, just remember that this 19 week program means that your first day of training is roughly the day after New Years, it will be freezing cold and probably raining, and your New Year’s resolution has to last well into May.

(Marathon legend and author Hal Higdon)

Hal is our official coach (in absentia) and any time we’ve had to reschedule or cancel a run I think of him, and how we’re letting HIM down. Hal has never heard of us before of course, but he’ll be getting a note of thanks if we cross that line alive. As will anyone who leaves us a comment of encouragement for us, either here on the blog, on Facebook, or in our email inboxes.

We would also like to wish the best of luck to Ryan Ashton and Christine Behan, who will be running their first half-marathons on Sunday. Do the math: 21.5 km, or 13.1 miles. Until just a few weeks ago, I had never dreamed that I would run a distance that long, and they too have been training very hard for the big day.

Wish us all luck!



  1. Good luck guys.
    As Australians sometimes say “Kick it in the head”
    You’ve put in the work, now enjoy the run, and make sure you have just enough energy left to smile at the finish line.

  2. Rock it!

  3. Thanks guys!

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