Are You Tough Enough?
Marathon season is once again upon us, and runners everywhere are well into their fall training. In conversations with my various runner friends, certain things keep coming up that reflect the continuing need for well-researched, thoughtful information about every aspect of run training—from how to get off the couch to how to make yourself less injury-prone to how to incorporate speedwork and strength training into your routine ( which complement any running program, regardless of your goals). All of this means that our work at Canadian Running is never done! There are few things more satisfying than introducing new people to our sport and giving them reliable information on how to get started and to continue to grow as runners.
One pervasive aspect of running culture is the “no pain, no gain” approach. At the elite level, pain is inevitable—as during the second half of a 5,000m race, for example. But pain, whether physical or emotional, isn’t universally beneficial or necessary, and distinguishing between the discomfort of growth (on the one hand) and pain that just breaks us down—and responding appropriately—are things we can all learn to do better. Running can teach us a lot, but sometimes we need better knowledge about running. Sometimes more running isn’t the answer. Sometimes less running—temporarily—is the answer, and sometimes it’s learning to run differently. As with anything, a sense of curiosity and an openness to the experiences of others who bring more knowledge are never a bad thing.
These themes run throughout our marathon issue, from Madeleine Kelly’s excellent take on the subject of mental toughness (p.46) to Josh Kozelj’s revealing profile of Canadian half-marathon record holder Rory Linkletter (p.36), Brett Basbaum’s piece on training your mind as well as your body and other content. We hope the issue inspires you toward new milestones this season.