A guest blog post by race ambassador, Lindsay Parsell Soter. Lindsay and her family have been involved in our race since basically, its inception. They have made a tradition of our race weekend, both running it and supporting it.
We are partnering with SEA LIFE Aquarium and LEGOLAND Discovery Center with two exciting giveaways for the whole family!
SEA LIFE Aquarium: If you are looking for the chance to win a free race registration and two tickets for you and a friend to visit SEA LIFE Aquarium, all you need to is visit our Instagram page, look for the turtle waving hello and enter now! The contest is open from 5/27-6/10 at 11:59pm ET. Two winners will be notified by 6/15.
LEGOLAND Discovery Center: We’ve all been spending a lot of time at home over the last year and a half and if you have little ones at home, you might be running out of activities to keep them occupied. We got you covered! From 5/27-6/10, anyone who registers for the Kids Fun Run will automatically be entered into winning 2 tickets to LEGOLAND Discovery Center! LEGOLAND Discovery Center is a great indoor playground for your kids with more than ten attractions available! We will be selecting 2 winners and they will be notified via email by 6/15.
A guest blog post by 2021 Race ambassador, Tanya Thornton.
Starting to run, especially starting to run when you just committed to 26.2 miles, can be daunting. If you never had a good relationship with running as a kid (maybe you did your best to get out of running the mile every year at school), starting now as an adult can seem even more overwhelming. You need to find the right shoes, hydration, find a way to eat WHILE you’re running in some cases, and we haven’t even touched upon how a person can stay motivated for that long? As a former beginner (I didn’t start running until 2017 and my children were grown), let me help you figure out where to start.
First things first:
Find Your Why
I became an empty nester in 2017. I had two children who were college graduates and my youngest was just entering college. I was still very busy though. I had an Insurance and Real Estate business where I was changing the business model. With all of that change, I was pretty overwhelmed. I had no work-life balance. On top of my work-related stress, my brother was sick with diabetes. I felt like I was about to explode.
At the time, I worked out at the gym and at home but I definitely did NOT run! Sone of my clients and friends were runners and they intrigued me. They ran 5k’s and had shiny medals to show off! I had never been interested in running before, but I was looking for something fun and productive, and running seemed like it might be a good option for me now. I liked the sense of competition and reward. I had never run a 5k but now, I was determined. And guess what? Once you run, no matter what the pace or the distance, you are a RUNNER!
I would run early in the morning. It started my day off the right way. I had a routine. My stress levels immediately decreased. Running provided clarity for me on so many different issues. I had more energy. I lost weight. I couldn’t believe it! I was having fun running!
I learned a few lessons very quickly:
VERY IMPORTANT! Invest in a great pair of running shoes to prevent injury! Most running stores will evaluate your running gait at no charge. They will recommend the best type of running shoes for you. Some stores allow a 30-day return policy after you have purchased and tried them out (You can keep track of the miles that you put on your shoes through an app by the way. Shoes to need to be replaced after a certain amount of miles are put on them so be sure to ask about that when you’re making your purchase).
Running socks are a thing. Certain socks do not work for me. Cotton is rotten!
Dress accordingly. Have you ever seen someone running outside in 40-degree weather with shorts on? Well, it’s because your body heats up approximately an additional 20 degrees when you are running. If your body overheats it can drain you and affect your running performance.
Learn how to fuel. Yes, many runners eat and drink while running! Stay hydrated. I am still learning what works for me. I use Nuun hydration tablets (started off with Gatorade) and Ucan hydration. There is run gum for an extra boost. There are lots of gels, gummies, and wafers designed specifically for running. Many runners eat oatmeal or bananas. I use peppermints and may eat an oatmeal cookie if I am going on a long run.
Start off slow
Do what is best for you! Some run outside all year round in the heat and in the snow. Others run on the treadmill. Either is fine. There are different apps that you can use to help you while on your run journey. A few that I used were Runkeeper, Map My Run and Nike Run Club. Later, I purchase a Garmin run watch that I use to keep track of my runs. There are many run programs online that map out a run schedule for 5k’s 10k’s, Half Marathons and Marathons. A few common programs are Hal Higdon, Jeff Galloway or Hanson’s. You can also ask your local running store if they have any programs that they would recommend.
Listen to your body!
Make sure that you warm-up prior to running and stretch after a run. Dynamic stretching and warm-ups like leg swings, arm circles, arm hugs, and walking lunges are great examples. What works for others, may not work for you and vice versa! It is okay to slow down while. It is okay to run, then walk, then run again. Stretching and foam rolling after a run helps your body to recover. And remember, it is perfectly fine to take a rest day! Your body needs it! You will see runners who are fast and who run far. It takes time to get there. Enjoy the process along the way. With each run, you will learn something new about your body, willpower, and strength!
Cross-training is very important to your success as a long distance runner. Some examples of cross-training would be walking, machines like the elliptical, yoga, strength training, and biking. You need to keep your body strong in order to run. You can also find some great examples of free at-home cross-training workouts on the freepmarathon website here!
I learned this the hard way. I was a much stronger runner when I first started running because I had been lifting weights. Then, the more I ran, the less I strength trained. Running then became more of a struggle.
You can choose to run solo or groups
I love both! I love running alone. It is so peaceful. I am alone with my thoughts. I don’t listen to music but I sometimes listen to podcasts. I get to plan my day and my week. I get to refresh my soul!
Groups are also fun. They are so motivating. You can get great running tips from group members. You may meet a best friend in a group. Running with others can be easier on longer runs. You can travel to races with group members. They will show up to support you at races. You can do some serious training and get some serious miles in with group members. During my Free Press Marathon in 2018, I trained with two of my run friends for the Marathon. Then, during the marathon, one of those friends ran the first 20 miles with me. During the last mile and a half of the Free Press marathon, when I thought I had nothing left in me, someone from one of my run groups saw me on the course and ran me. A few days later I found out that she did this for several runners. And that is the benefit of belonging to a group!
Finally, don’t forget to encourage yourself!
Every day is different when running. Take it all in! Enjoy the run! At some point, you will experience a runner’s high! Throw your gear on. Step outside! Get started! Run happy! Run Free!
P.S. I also just wanted to share another motivator for me to run: my Grandson! My kids all casually run now and two of them have run some 5k’s, but I cannot wait to run with my grandson! He is going to love the kid’s fun run once he is old enough!
When Life Gives You an Inch, How Do You Take a Mile?
Guest blog post by 2019- 2021 Ambassador, Erin Dawkins I didn’t start running until after I became a mother. I started running after my son was born in an effort to battle the baby blues. I was severely overweight, unable to keep up with my two-year-old and newborn baby, and overall unhappy. Nothing helped until my husband suggested I try something completely out of my comfort zone – I went for a run. That was almost seven years ago, and I’ve never turned back.
A guest blog post by 2021 race ambassador, Robyn Childers
As a yoga teacher, marathon runner and health and wellness coach, there is no topic I find more important or fascinating than “Breath.” Breathing is living. It is a vital function of life. Breath development has been a source of interest for me since I was a young child. As someone who suffered with severe childhood asthma, I recall feeling afraid due to my breath becoming short when I began participating in high-intensity sports, erupting into coughing fits and occasional dizzy spells. (more…)
For the month of April, we are giving all rookies the chance to win! Every rookie who signs up from now until April 30, 2021, will automatically be given the chance to win one of two prize packs from us including the new book “Marathoner” by Matthew Huff and other great Detroit swag!
Already registered or looking for another way to enter? Check out our Instagram page for another way to win!
We like to think of March 13th as a day to celebrate Detroit, it is 313 Day after all. Whether you are near or far, we hope you’ll commemorate 313 Day by running, walking, or wheeling 3.13 miles and tagging us in your posts (@freepmarathon). As an added bonus, we have also created three marathon-inspired 3.13 mile loops to try out and get you excited for participating in one of our events this Fall!
I acknowledge the possibility of my inadmissibility to Canada. I acknowledge if I have been committed or been convicted of a criminal offense I may not be allowed to enter Canada. Criminal offenses include both minor and serious offenses, such as theft, assault, manslaughter, dangerous driving and driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. I acknowledge that, in order to enter Canada, I may need to obtain Approval of Rehabilitation or a Temporary Resident Permit at a Canadian Consulate or Embassy. If I am considered inadmissible to Canada, I will not be able to participate and will receive no refund.