Skip navigation

6298 Views 25 Replies Latest reply: May 4, 2011 12:35 AM by arlyno 1 2 Previous Next
arlyno Amateur 13 posts since
Jun 8, 2009
Currently Being Moderated

Mar 21, 2011 9:28 PM

anyone else failed attempt to be 1st time marathoner?

I have searched through the marathon forum for anyone who posted that they weren't able to finish a marathon.  Two things came to my mind, either people in this community always successfully finishes their race or many of us are too embarrassed to mention it.  I am merely posting my story in hopes I may receive some kind of input, whether positive or negative.

      On March 20, 2011, Shamrock marathon was supposed to be my first  marathon, but at about mile 9  I felt the knee pain on the right then  eventually became both.  I tried my hardest to keep pushing, but the  pain just got so bad I couldn't walk.  I trained as I was supposed to,  even with a running buddy and through the cold 20 degree weather.  My  pace was 10-11 min during my entire training and even ran as high 20  miles.  In fact I trained on the same course as the Shamrock.
       My body and emotions were at war because my knees was saying no, but my  mind was saying we can keep going.  I have had knee pains in the past,  but oddly enough none during my training.  Eventually, I had to give up  and it was one of the hardest thing I had to do.  I had to tell my  running buddy to just keep going because I did not want to hold her  back. I pretty much cried the entire time I sat waiting for transport to  pick me up till I got home.  It took transport a long time to get to  me.  When the transport dropped me off, they just literally dropped me  off.  I had to walk to medical tent by myself unsupported walk by the  finish line where all the runners happily got there medals and other  goodies for finishing the race.  I cried some more.  When I reached the  medical tent they told me that icing my knee is not serious enough for  their tent and that i needed to walk to the other tent.  I cried some  more to the thought of walking much more. I went to the tent were I can  get iced when my husband arrived. It was not even another medical tent.  it was the tent where all the finishers got their beer and food.  I  found a physical therapist booth were they gave out ice. They just gave  me ice. When I asked them about wrapping my knee with ice, they acted  like they have never heard of that practice before.  So if the race  could add more salt to my injury, they just kept pouring.
      I have only ran a half marathon prior to this, which was the dodge rock  and roll 1/2 marathon. They knew what to do when people asked to ice  their knees and they did not turn away people with minor or major  complaints. They had medical tents throughout the race, not just at the  end of the race.
       In the end, I just went home pretty much emotionally rocked by the  whole experience.  Now I know how it felt to be a quitter and how people  treat you when you are a marathon quitter. There are no consolation  medals for trying to finish a marathon. Nevermind, that I was able to  finish half of the race.  I felt like a huge embarrassment to myself,  family, friends, and to the sport. I just feel like hiding under the  rock because people couldn't console me.  They don't know what it was like to put so much time and effort into running.  This was huge  for me and it was my stupid knees that stopped me.
       I am just looking for others who went through similar experience as  me.  I know that this is probably a forum for people who do well in running  and accomplishes their goals in running. But what about the others. How  does one bounce back?  It was hard to make sense of what happened to  me.  I am not looking to complain about this race, but I also felt that I  should have made to feel this way.  I am not looking to quit running but I am pretty devasted. If you guys can, I just need some  guidance. Thank you for your time and letting me vent.

  • CHUBZ93 Rookie 1 posts since
    Mar 21, 2011

    i attempted the LA marathon on sunday march 20th 2011 and failed at mile 15. i was ill prepared i just wanted to try it and i found out if i even trained for it i might have made it. bbut for the most part though it was cold and raining i had alot of funn 

  • BOSNPM We're Not Worthy 2,482 posts since
    Nov 20, 2007

    Professional runners have it happen sometimes also!!!!!  I had a very tuff Marine Corp Marathon last year, and it took a couple of months to get my head right after.  I did keep running and just ran a amazing race on the 20th also.  It can happen to anyone, keep you head up and don't give up, make running a lifetime goal.  Find another one when you are mentally ready.  Sounds like the Shamrock need to work with the volunteers!  Take care you are not a quitter, just had some medical issues.  What I have read about the weather, that could have been a big issue for you and the medical tent.

  • mananakbo Amateur 7 posts since
    Dec 5, 2010

    I ran the Virginia Beach Shamrock Marathon.  The day before the marathon, my quads/calves hurt so bad (I over trained it on wednesday)that it was so hard for me to walk-I walked around the house like a robot.  Some friends from facebook adviced me to use foam roller and take an ice soak which i both did.  I went to bed that night feeling a lot better (still painfulll though). I woke up at 5am and I was still feeling the same pain but I am decided...I said to myself "I gotta at least try"  even if I only cross the 1 mile mark....I gotta try.  I tried and finished the whole marathon in 5:30 something....GOD was there with me.


    I don't know if you'll take my story as a rub-off, but please don't.  What I'm telling you is that "you are not an embarassment to yourself or to anyone".  You went out there and tried might have failed, but failings is what makes us strong, it is on a small bump along the way.  Just as we have prepared our victory speech, we should also be prepared to take a step back either on our own term or by others' term.  The step back to make us re-think and re-plan and recover.


    Now my advice to you is while deciding your next marathon, work on your quads, calves, hams and your core...your knees and your ankles are only as strong as those muscles.  GOODLUCK on your training.  GOD BLESS.

  • lenzlaw Community Moderator 10,539 posts since
    Jan 18, 2008

    I DNF'd the Marine Corps Marathon a couple years ago.  But I had issues going into it and I knew I might not finish.  In fact I made it less than a mile.  You were smart to stop.  You could have caused injury that might keep you from running for weeks or months    It doesn't make you a quitter.  One of the hardest things for most of us is realizing when to back off so we can come back to run another day.  You will get back and you will run again, and you definitely should plan on your next marathon.




  • shawnmilar Rookie 7 posts since
    Mar 18, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    9. Mar 22, 2011 10:37 AM (in response to arlyno)
    Re: anyone else failed attempt to be 1st time marathoner?

    It's not called a marathon because it's easy. Depending on how bad you want it, you'll get there. Keep going for new best distances and you will condition your body to be able to take it. It will feel unbelievable when you do.

  • juniordo1 Amateur 31 posts since
    Feb 2, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    10. Mar 22, 2011 11:19 AM (in response to arlyno)
    Re: anyone else failed attempt to be 1st time marathoner?

    I would like to commend you on an effort that just didn't work out. I admire your dedication in preparing for this effort.


    I would just like to say that YOU own all of the successes that led up to this attempt. Nothing anyone else says or doesn't say can take them away.


    You completed training for a marathon!


    You ran a 20 mile training run!


    You ran outside in weather most people wouldn't venture out in!


    You stopped in a race for a good reason. You could have quit training for no reason.




    Keep your head up and celebrate the smaller accomplishments along the way.

    2012 Minneapolis Polar Dash 1/2 Marathon 2:06:56

    2012 Brainerd Jaycess Run for the Lakes Marathon 4:48:10

  • robens Rookie 2 posts since
    Oct 28, 2007

    You seem to be dwelling on the disappointment of not finishing rather than focusing on why you had to stop.  There should be an answer for what happened to you.  If you went through the training and tapered properly you should have been able to run a lot futher than 10 miles.  Did you run enough mileage during your training, building gradually?  Did you tweak your knee in training and ignore it?  Did you switch to different shoes over the last couple weeks?  Did you have the same pain throughout your training and never addressed it? How about now, are you injured and have pain while walking around?  Injury and pain are two different things.  Everyone has pain in a marathon, but usually it begins at 15+ miles (assuming you have trained for the race).  Think about the weeks leading up to the race and try to find a reason behind your knee pain.

1 2 Previous Next

More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...


  • Correct Answers - 10 points
  • Helpful Answers - 7 points