And what contributes to the slow down?
I took a good look at this and came up with the following conclusions simply from my own experiences and also my Facebook feed which no longer is flooded with racing results. In no particular order:
1. Running #alltheraces leads to over training and that leads to injuries. Better to wisely choose a few beloved races and train for those with happy results than hit as many as you can and end up injured with a DNF.
2. The cost of races has soared and it’s smarter to pick and choose. One little 10k can be $65 (gasp), the cost of a marathon can be unbelievable.
3. Running friends are often virtual and not IRL leading to destination races. When you factor in the cost of the travel involved, the rooms, food, etc…it becomes fairly prohibitive (money, time, training) to realistically run every race you really have your heart set on. Choose wisely, Friend.
4. There is a 5k every weekend but the half marathon appears to be the new baby. It gives you the most bang for your buck. The excitement of distance without the cost of the marathon. A happy medium. A compromise. Perhaps narrowing the field is what’s happening?
5. Burn out. Too much running and eventually it became just too much running. Orange Theory has never looked so great.
6. Everyone else was doing it. Then you figured out it wasn’t your style. Maybe it’s boring (who really wants to run 18 mile training runs?) or it’s hard (it really is) or it’s just not really giving you back what you thought it would. I personally have a hard time believing this one as I think running is the answer for everyone (sarcasm font) but there’s always the possibility someone doesn’t connect with running.
7. Ultras have led to trail running and eventually to hiking. People reached for the stars with marathons and once they got there they said…but wait…there’s the more. The ultimate. the highest mountain. Training for an ultra took them off the streets and onto the trails and the love of trail running became a reality. Hiking was a natural fit from there and really once you’re there it’s hard to go back. I like both…I’m a city runner who loves hiking. The best of both worlds.
8. People started running to lose weight and when that didn’t happen well…
and so it goes.
When you get into those longer distances you really aren’t going to lose weight, you may actually gain weight. Extra calories consumed (you may not need as many as you think), building muscle from training, storing glycogen, there are several reasons for the weight gain and it’s more common than not. Not having all the information, it can be frustrating to not get the results you thought you would get so…you stop.
These are all really valid reasons and this is a totally unscientific post. I didn’t poll anyone and I just did a little reading but mostly I took information from friends I know virtually and it’s all observations I’ve made over the last year. That’s really about all the validity I have for it.
I see friends running races but not as many. I see friends running trail races. I see friends running lower mileage. I have a friend doing a half ironman and another doing a 100 mile trail race. So some people just keep right on going and some are like…you know..I think I’m good.
Money going other places.
what do you think?
I’ve noticed I’m pretty tired. I’m not lacking energy but I want to sleep. I get off early today (4!) so I’m going to run. Then I’m going to sleep.