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I would call myself a mid-packer, having done 10 milers and a half marathon. However, my joints just aren't up to the pounding of a whole mary.

So...I'm askin'. Is there shame in walking it?

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Nope.
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I walked part of mine due to hip bursitis. So I would no shame in walking it
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No shame at all. But for crying out loud stay out of the runners way!! :D
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Ok, now lookie here. I'm WAAAAAAAAYYYYYYY WAYYYYYYYYYY back and I'm GOOOOOINNNNGGGGGG SOOOOOOOO SLOOOOOOOOW.. how could I possibly get in your way?
I mean, I don't usually bring my five dogs, six toothless children and my uncle to races. Only the Grocery Store.
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In that case, you aren't a mid-packer, join the rest of us at the back of the pack.
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Gladly!
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i dont think so at all.... seriously, people gasp at me when i tell them that i just ran {insert ANY distance here}...i think that the fact that youre getting out there is all that matters...

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Be sure the marathon you're looking at doesn't have rolling traffic control. For instance, the Twin Cities Marathon here reopens the marathon course to traffic at 13:00/miles and closes up the aid stations. There are some marathons that do cator to walkers, so do a little research and you won't get frustrated from those important aspects.

Also, you need to undertake a "walking" program, not running. If you continue your running 5x a week and throw in a long walk on the weekends, you'll not have the time on your feet you'll need.

So if you're thinking about, say a 6:30 walking marathon. You'll need some hefty 4-5+ hour walks ahead of time. And probably want at least a 2-hr one during the week and 1-hr walks most days.

Even though walking is "easier", the time commitment is greater because you need to train for being out on the course and on your feet that much longer. Not to discourage you, but that's the beauty of running..you get done quicker.

Just a thought.. but working in plenty of low impact training, soft surfaces, supplements and a long time horizon to ease up the distances can make an even questionable joint problematic runner able to run marathons. I should know.. that's me. :)
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No, there is no shame in walking, or run/walking a marathon as long as you stay within the time limits of the event you are running.

I helped a lady do a 3hr 55 minute marathon on her first try with only six months training on November 8 at Chickamauga. We ran 6 minutes, walked 45 seconds and repeated from mile 2 up to mile 20. At mile 20 she cut out the walk breaks and was very strong running the rest of the way. Her non-running husband was very proud of her. I wobbled in about 12 minutes after she finished.

We played a passing game with other runners from the time we started using the walk breaks until about mile 13. We kept putting distance between ourselves and some of the runner we were passing. From mile 13 to 20 no one passed us. And I'm pretty confident no one passed her from mile 20 to 26.2. Forty three runners did pass me from the time she took off at mile until I finally reached the finish line.

So no, there is no shame in running the race the way that helps you reach the finish line fastest, however that may be.
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