How I did it: I had wanted to complete a marathon for several years, but had some issues with injuries and reccuring plantar fasciitis which always put me out of training. I went to a orthopedic doctor and had special running inserts made for my shoes. It made a world of difference. I also went to The Eugene Running Company in Eugene, Oregon for good shoes. They videotape your gait from behind as you run and then play back the tape in slow motion to study how your foot hits the ground (and whether and to what degree it may pronate). Then they can recommend a good pair of shoes for you. I bought 2 pairs to get me through the 9 months of training.
I joined the LA Roadrunners to train for the 2009 Los Angeles Marathon. The Roadrunners program is the official training program for the LA Marathon, and I recommend it to anyone running the LA Marathon for the first time. The training started in August of 2008, and would generally be around 6 months, but they changed the date of the LA Marathon that year to Memorial Day, so we ended up training an extra 3 months. The training took a lot of dedication, and I had to get up a 5:30 am EVERY saturday for half the year, and run most weeknights as well.
I got an injury and stayed off my feet 6 weeks up until race day, but I successfully completed the race. My time was 5:18:33. Not bad for my first! I can't tell you how good the accomplishment feels, and how bad your body feels the next 3 days after. I could barely move! Read how I did it… 3 years ago