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Lee Hoedl
6155 16th St. South, Fargo, ND 58104
Cell: 701.306.1266
Email: leehoedl@yahoo.com



Imagine that you are a boxer; a very passionate boxer that has had success in your sport. This year you have been training for a major bout in Las Vegas, but taking care of your children, personal issues, health-related issues and physical injuries/setbacks have plagued your training. At the present time, you are 39 days from your Las Vegas bout... so you get into that boxing ring and set to the task of training even that much harder and longer to prepare yourself...

It doesn't mentally or physically make that much sense, does it? Would you step into that ring 39 days later? Well, my friend, you are about to do just that - only it's on the paved roads and walkways of the 2013 Disney World Marathon Weekend. It's just you and that road. True, there will be a lot of other runners, but it comes down to simply you and that road.

You've been plagued with personal issues, health-related issues and physical injuries/setbacks? So now is the time to step back on to that local road/walkway in your city and train that much harder. No, it's not. Complaints of shin splints, stress fractures, muscle cramps, etc. are the symptoms of "too much, too soon." When you push your body too hard or too far (to make up miles or missed training), you will get hurt. If you've missed two weeks of training, don't attempt to step back into your scheduled training regime and pick up where you left off. At the very least, decrease your intermediate and long runs to 1/3 of what you would be running until your legs catch up.

When you are under a time constraint (i.e. a fixed amount of days/weeks until race day), training is not something you can "make up" or "cram" for, like an exam. There will be no exam at your starting line, my friend. It will simply be a test of you against that road; a test of your own will. Train smart in these final days/weeks and let your body prepare itself. Get plenty of sleep, water and proper nutrition - don't try to cram these in the last few weeks either. Carbo-loading is not a "cramming" technique. Only you know your physical/mental aches and pains - tend to them as best you can and if you feel up to it, bring them to the starting line and offer them up. And then run/jog/walk your own race at your own pace with all you have. As the popular marathoning quote states, "Run the first third of your race with your head (be calm, pace yourself); run the second third of your race with your legs (find your comfortable pace and relax); and run the final third with your heart."

I reiterate this same advice as I continue to see a number of postings online that are related to running through serious injuries, stressing out because of missed miles and runners wanting to "hit it harder" tomorrow for missing training. We all want each other to get to the starting line at WDW, but more importantly we should and do want each other to be and remain healthy in our lives beyond WDW.

Be good to yourself. Ease back into training when you can, if you are recovering. Do what you realistically can without punishing yourself. And if you are healthy enough to toe the line, come to WDW and join us. If you can't join us, remember that we always run for another day - there will be next year's WDW Marathon Weekend.

75% of finishing a marathon is simply getting to the starting line, uninjured. Keep that in mind as you finish out your training and know that the greatest portion of your overall race/training is almost completed. There's only 25% left and that will be filled with fanfare and friendship. Stay focused and stay positive, Disney friends!