When it comes to running longer distances, people often underestimate the importance of mental fitness and mental strength. For most people, the main focus in training is set on physical fitness but not mental fitness. But the truth is, mental strength plays equally as big of a role as physical fitness when it comes to running longer distances like for example a marathon. But how fit do you really need to be to run a marathon, both physically and mentally?
The Necessary Physical Fitness
The marathon is definitely one of the most, if not the most challenging events in endurance athletics. Running for 42,2 km straight requires a large amount of durability and aerobic strength. The necessary fitness level for a marathon always depends on the person doing the challenge. The fitter you are in general, the less marathon specific build-up training you will need to successfully cross the finish line. Generally, if you are able to comfortably run 20-25km runs in training then you should be able to complete a marathon.
The Necessary Mental Strength to Run A Marathon
Never underestimate the power of your mind and your body! No matter if you are preparing for your first, or your 10th marathon, if you visualize, block out negative thoughts and believe in yourself, then you will be much more likely to cross that finish line. Always focus on your strengths and not your weaknesses. If you are able to block out negative thoughts while you are running and believe in your strengths and the training you put in, then you have the necessary mental strength it takes to run a marathon.
For most people, it doesn’t take years of hard physical training to run a marathon. A healthy combination of mental strength and overall fitness will enable you to push your body to cross that finish line.