Train Like a Mother: Outtake 3

If eating Luna protein bars, drinking nuun and watching Dowton Abbey qualify as training like a mother, then I've trained like a mother this week. (Promise: I'm funnier in the book. Pre-order on Amazon.)

Take It from a Mother: What is your favorite race distance?

Installment 3 of the outtakes that will not be inside the covers of Train Like a Mother, but will live, in perpetuity, on the web. (We're not sure which is better.) Need more backstory? Check here.

Some women like diamonds. We like 13.1. With a fake pearl next to it.

“So far, 5K. And actually, 10K is not too bad either. I want to love the 13.1 distance, but my half-marathon was a difficult race.”
—Danielle (ran the Portland Half Marathon on 10/10/10 in pouring rain with a flared up ITB on both sides. “Knowing I’d see my husband and kids somewhere in the last couple of miles kept me going.”)

“10 miles or a half-marathon. 5Ks are fun, but they are over in 22 or 23 minutes. I like the long stuff. It’s more rewarding.”
—Suzanne (strength trains several days a week to ward off injuries)

“Since I have only done 5k, 10k, and a half-marathon, it is hard to tell, but I really enjoyed that 13.1. I want to race each distance again.”
—Darcy (a mother of four, who went from barely able to run for two minutes to completing her first half-marathon in nine months)

“5K: short and sweet”
—Louise (worst race experience: the 2007 Chicago Marathon, which was cancelled halfway through due to heat)

“8 to 10 miles. Just long enough for me to feel good about myself, but not long enough to take up too much time.”
—Amy (first race was the Susan G Komen Race for the Cure. “I was scared I’d be last. I wasn’t!”)

Heather and marathons sitting in a tree...

“Marathons. They take a lot of mental toughness and no matter how your training goes, you still have to be mentally tough and race smart.”
—Heather ("The Tokyo Marathon was my favorite; the city was phenomenal.”)

“I don’t have one yet. I like all of the distances I’ve done for different reasons. I love that I can go all out for a 5K. I love the determination and sheer willpower required to do a half. I have not run an official 10K, but I like that distance in training and think I’d really like to race it.”
—Carol (enjoys talking to others during a race. “Cheering them on helps me go faster.”)

“Without a doubt, I would race an 8K any day of the week. I have powerful quads that are rather effective over shorter distances. If the race is too long, I start to fade. If the race is too short, I don’t find my comfort zone.”
—Tonia (always wears a skirt and knee high socks in a variety of bright colors)

That's 3.1 miles to you stodgy American folks.

“I think I’m a 10K girl. You really do have to put an effort into training, but when you’re done with the race you still feel like a million bucks.”
—Megan (went from non-runner to half-marathon in her first running season)

“5K. It’s long enough for me, and short enough the husband and kids can hang around the finish line waiting for me.”
—Audrea (loves to crosstrain with Zumba. “It’s just fun!”)

Now taking it to you mothers: What's your favorite race distance and why?

45 responses to “Train Like a Mother: Outtake 3

  1. In a million years, I never thought I’d say this, but I think the half is my new favorite! After running my second this past weekend, almost having a panic attack smack in the middle of mile 12, and finding the strength to dig deep and finish, I am on a post run high that will probably last for days. I love giving myself the opportunity to have to find that tiny piece of me that says, “YES YOU CAN.” The half is definitely that opportunity! 😉
    ~Jamie~ Running makes me feel like Super Woman.

  2. Half’s are easily my fav distance. It takes thought and effort to get properly trained for one, but yet doesn’t take the toil on my body that training for a full does. When I race 5 and 10k’s I want to hurl the entire race, because I’m running full out – I like running 5k’s slightly better, if only because I am wanting to hurl for about half the time of a 10k.

  3. The marathon for sure. Funny thing is I didn’t realize it until several months after my first when I decided to run my second. It was in training for my second that I really fell in love with it. Now that I’m training for my third I’m delighted to see how much stronger and faster I’m getting. It’s pretty cool for a 20 mile training run to not feel intimidating anymore.

  4. I’ve done half marathons, 8ks and 5ks, so I have to say that an 8 k is my fav. Long enough to feel like you can reach a decent pace, but short enough you don’t have to go for 2 hour runs. It’s hard to find 2 hours to yourself when you’re a mom and working.

  5. Although I LOVE half marathons, I think I have to go with 10k as my favorite. I can run that distance hard and still feel great the rest of the day. I have done 6 half marathons so far and I always need a little recovery time afterwards!

  6. Any distance on the trails. So far I’ve done between 5-13.1 miles on trails. It’s just such a different atmosphere and I love it. I’m looking forward to my first marathon and first 15K later this spring, so maybe I’ll have a new favorite before too long.

  7. So far I’ve only run 5 and 10ks, but in the middle of training for my first half (see at Zooma atlanta). My fav right now is 5k. I can knock one out, and continue with my day.

  8. I love the 8K distance….it is long enough that you can’t just “go do it” without effort, yet not so long that you really have to train to do it either. That being said, I have yet to do a 10K, so time will tell. I did like the 1/2 s I ran, but the training time is hard to find.

  9. I like the 1/2 marathon
    I’m running my 4th next weekend. I still can’t believe it. My first was the Disney princess about 3 years ago, and I signed up without being able to run a mile without stopping. Next weekend, I hope to go sub- 2:30. Wish me luck!

  10. Hands down marathon! I love the sense of accomplishment I have after crossing the finish line, love the training and Ifeel like I could run forever. I’m not a short distance runner at all. Too much out of mycomfort zone to be that speedy. I can do it, just don’t like it. I can take the quote from Spirit of the Marathon,”When you cross the finish line, no matter how slow or fast, it will change your life forever”

  11. I’ve only run 5K races and will run my first 5 mile race on Sunday and am planning on running a quarter marathon in March…So I’ll let you know. I think I will max out at half marathon distance. I really have no desire to run a marathon. My guess is 10Ks will become my favorite. Just a hunch.

  12. Without having done my first HALF yet (that’s March 18th), I’m going to say that a 10K is my favorite. An hour long workout that is challenging enough without having to really train for it.

    I also liked the Gobble and Gorge I did on Thanksgiving. That one was a 8K (or 5 miles).

    I’ve gotten to the point that a 5K doesn’t even leave me “warmed up”.
    Carolyn in NC

  13. 50km. And if I do anything longer I’m sure I’ll love it more. I ran my first (and only) ultra secretly, came in dead last, and loved the whole thing. It was solely for me and I proved to myself that I could do what I put my mind to – and found that I am too stubborn to quit when my mind tells me to stop.

  14. I have a love hate relationship with all distances! I was just pondering signing up for the Marine Corps Half – a course I detest – and told my husband the worst part was not the entrance fee, but that as with all races, there will come a time when I am asking myself why did I pay for this, but if I sign up for the MC Half, I can guarantee I will say that several times (you and I both know that as the deadline for the higher price approaches, I will likely register). But feet to the fire, I love a marathon because it takes training, determination, and guts to make it through. Not that it does not for other distances, but for me, it is the distance that makes me feel proudest of the hours I put into training, proudest of the dedication I show towards my sport, and proudest of my guts in getting through the inevitable pain – AKA wall – pushing through to finish.

  15. At this point in my life…it is the half marathon…I hope to increase up to a full marathon someday. 🙂 When the kiddos are older and time is much more of a friend.

  16. I love the 10K race – not too long, not too short but just right. However, it’s followed closely by the half-marathon because it’s such an accomplishment each & every time.

  17. LOVE half marathon distance. Very manageable from a training perspective and the race itself. I swore I’d never do another marathon after my first, and I have my second in two weeks. Still think half is the way to go. From the marathon training, anything less than 5 miles feels like a “short” run, so I prefer 10K’s and longer, although will run shorter distance any day, if I can run with my friends and family.

  18. I’m obsessed with the marathon. After my 1st I said I was done, but am doing my 8th in May.

    I love the feeling of accomplishment, I love that it’s something I constantly have in the back of my mind. Now I’m getting to the point that I am planning them a year out and possibly thinking of doing three next year. I love the medals, and seeing people during mile 22. I love saying I’ve done a hard one like Big Sur, or that the coolest thing about Chicago was going to the Sears tower afterwards and seeing all that I had run. I know I won’t be doing it forever but for now I’m addicted, and there are worse things right?

  19. I *think* its 1/2 marathon. I have my second this month, so I’ll be sure after. I liked saying I’ve done a marathon, but the training is killer and with little ones, was a strain. I hate 10ks.. hate ’em.. 5ks are fun, it feels good to get out there and race your heart out and not kill yourself like in the longer distances.

  20. Half marathon. I haven’t done a marathon and probably won’t but I like halfs. I really don’t like a 5K because it is too short and I don’t get warmed up until 3 miles in.

  21. I’ve grown to love the 10k. I seem to be able to knock out that distance even when my training is crap. And you don’t have to push quite as hard as in a 5k or have good pacing like a half marathon. I do more 10ks than just about all the other distances combined.

  22. A year ago I would have said the marathon. Now I have to say 100 miles. I know it’s an oxymoron to call 100 miles a race, but it is, just a different kind. In short, being able to run 100 miles (I’ve done it three times now), gives me a ironclad confidence. I can do anything I set my mind to. Plus, it makes the marathons seem short. 🙂

  23. As much as I love half-marathons, I think it’s got to be 5ks. To me, they aren’t so much about running as they are about fun. I need to go back to that once in while. I can get more friends to run the short distance with me, and we usually do a race where we come in costume. I couldn’t run 13.1 miles dressed like that! Then I’m still up for a party after!

  24. Definitely the half marathon! When I first started running it was my goal distance and when I ran my 1st one it was a fantastic experience! Now I’m training for my 4th. The training is manageable with a hectic family life and it’s long enough to test both your physical and mental will – love it!

  25. I love the half!! I built up to doing a half several years ago and I’ve maintained one 12 mile run a week so that I”m always race ready. It takes me a couple miles to find my groove and so a 5K is over and I’m just getting into it. Plus I can run that in my neighborhood so it’s hard for me to pay for them. 10K is a good distance and I do those because there are more available but if I could, I’d do a half every weekend. I feel accomplished. I’ve trained for a marathon twice, didn’t run it either time and it still feels daunting to me, but I’m going for it again this December. Maybe I’ll change my mind then!!

  26. The half marathon because you have to put in the training and not just anyone can do it. I haven’t been brave enough to try a full marathon, maybe once the kids are in school. This spring I want to own the term bamr during my two races.

  27. Half marathon for me! I’ve done 3 so far and have 2 more planned for this spring. I love the training for it and with my body issues I don’t think I can go longer, so this distance is perfect for me. I do a couple 5k’s during the year with friends or my husband which are fun, but the half marathon is so much more rewarding mentally for me.

  28. 13.1 because I did it not once but twice. Once I was 180 lbs and the second time, a year later 39 lbs lighter. I left my burdens behind and so I am forever grateful to my 13.1.

  29. Half marathon. I can travel to great places to run this distance. The training is doable with my hectic life. I feel like I’ve really accomplished something at the end. AND there is always bling for a Half!!!

  30. My favorite is a 5K with my 7 year old daughter. I love getting to watch her run. Unlike me she loves every second while I more enjoy the accomplishment aspect of it. She lights up with every step she takes and actually beat me in our last 5K together. She ran it in under 29 minutes.

  31. While I am a turtle of a runner, I did one half. I loved the training, felt really strong leading up to it, but the day (hot in St Louis and hills I thought I was ready for) shook a lot of my mojo. I am a firm lover of the 5K as I can gauge well where I am at, short enough for family to watch, and caps a sprint distance tri with confidence and strength.

  32. I have only done one 10k, they aren’t very common around me. I guess I would say half marathon. It long enough that you know you’re training for something but not crazy like a full (which, to me, practcally consumes your life.)

  33. Half Marathon is my fav bc the training doesn’t cut me off from the land of the non-runners as much as the full does.

  34. I love the half marathon distance. It has so many great things about it. It’s long enough to feel like a real achievement. I actually find halfs less painful than 5Ks because in a 5k, it’s go for broke and then it’s done. Plus, a half marathon burns a ton of calories! All of this without the complications of a marathon, which I’ve yet to run. One day maybe but I suspect the half will always be my favorite distance.

  35. I absolutely loved every minute of the first half I did in the fall. Now that I am in the midst of training thru winter for a May 6 race, I am kind of wondering what the heck I was thinking-definitely not feeling the love at the moment. I have run several 5ks and loved them, but I start to get too competitive with myself and get disappointed when I don’t PR. I am have only done one 10k but that race was a great one…the training wasn’t overwhelming and the distance felt very rewarding. Maybe that’s my race! 🙂

  36. I love all these comments and totally relate and agree to most! Especially the comment about the 5K being good b/c the husband and kids don’t mind just hanging around waiting for me!
    BUT – I really think the 10K is my favorite! After my first marathon last year I think that I will only do those once a year from now on! It’s just so darn time consuming for training and recovery! BUT all the other distance underneath that are way easier to train for – and some you can even go on a whim!

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