Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Marathon...Say it like you MEAN it!

I was watching a reality show yesterday and the description of this particular episode was about one of them running a marathon!  Sweet...always excited to watch someone who I didn't know run...run a marathon.  And then...as I watched the show...she was running a HALF marathon.  No offense...I hope I don't offend anyone...because I'm not trying to do that.  A half marathon is a big deal for anyone...It's a great distance and an amazing race to run, but it's not a marathon.  Why do people on TV refer to half marathons as marathons?  I was kind of frustrated watching the show.  I was excited to watch the women cross the finish line and be proud of herself...I remember crossing my first HALF MARATHON finish line and it was AMAZING to feel like I accomplished something so big. 

I do remember feeling a little bit of the same with my marathon last June.  At the expo all the clothing for sale said half and full marathon and I wanted something that just said "MARATHON" since it was my first marathon.  I think for those extra 13.1 miles that I would be running...I should have a shirt that set me apart.  I could only find a little magnet that said 26.2.  I was bummed.

What are your thoughts?  Does it bug you...or am I just in a mood? 

21 comments:

Michelle said...

I agree. Say what it is. There is no shame in it.

I have a friend who refers to her boyfriend as her "husband" and that drives me insane too.

Alanna said...

They're both huge accomplishments, but they're not the same. If I say that I've run a marathon it's because I ran 42 (freaking) kilometres. You'd think on tv they'd especially get it right. Otherwise people are going to think that they ran a full in a super speedy time, right? I'd love people to think that I could run a full in the time it takes me to run 1/2 (2:11). I'd be an Olympian!

Jen said...

Even our local 10k gets called a marathon by some people and it really bugs me. I've had people ask "how far is your marathon this weekend?" People, it's always 26.2 if it's really a marathon! I guess until you've done the full mary you really don't know what it's like. It's in a league of its own and it bugs me to no end! That being said, I think it's just ignorance so I try to not make a big deal to their face! But inside....oooh.

nrmrvrk said...

You're right. Saying "Marathon" implies 26.2 miles. Period. Modify it with "half" or "double" to refer to other distances but saying you ran a "marathon" of 13.1 miles is crap.

Next time just save everyone the trouble and enter a 50Km race and when people ask say "It's a 50K". (which you can safely call an 'Ultramarathon')

Derek said...

I usually don't let things like that bother me because if they don't know any better, then they have NO idea what the difference is between the two and how difficult the distance can be. Runners know the difference and usually respect the wording more than the nonrunner.

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

I TOTALLY agree! A marathon has a defined distance, if you run 26.2 miles, then scream it!! But, peeps should decipher between half and FULL if 13.1 is the distance! Either is a feat in itself, but 26.2 miles is 26.2 miles!!

Julie D. said...

ya, it totally bugs me. I wanted a rock n roll shirt that just said 'marathon' too!! they should know better. ;)

Pam said...

Nope, not just you. It bugs the living crap out of me, too. My stupid little redneck town had an article in their newspaper last week about a local "5K marathon."

ARE YOU FREAKIN' KIDDING ME???

Pam said...

http://29goingon29again.blogspot.com/2010/11/ignorance-abounds.html

Courtney @ I CAN DO THIS said...

Doesn't necessarily bug me, I just think it's funny. I was at the expo last year for the Marathon Festival, which included a half and a full. I overheard this conversation:
"Is this the line for the half marathon?"
"Yes."
"Where's the line for the real one."

I thought it was funny.


What DOES bug me though, is the ones that are called a mini-marathon. Like the above posts, I say be proud of the 13.1. It's no small feat. And calling it a "mini" kinda belittles it, IMO.

Kristin said...

I agree! I go out of my way to clarify when I've run the half vs full (e.g. Portland). Although I admit when I went to Canada a couple years ago for the Royal Victoria HALF I did tell the Immigrations official that I was there for the "marathon." :)

Johann said...

I think it bugs all runners. There seems to be a lot of non-runners that think race = marathon.

Katye said...

i kind of felt the same way about the Nike Women's Marathon. They have a half and a marathon option and most people run the half yet all the finishers stuff says "marathon". The necklace and finishers shirt say "marathon finishers". I'm not dismissing the achievements of those who complete the half marathon. It is a wonderful accomplishment! But they shouldn't be given a shirt or necklace that says marathon. they should get one recognizing their achievement.

Tortuga_Runner said...

Kayte, I'm with you on the NWM SF, I did the Full and all the halfers got the same necklace:(

I try not to let it bug me, a girl I know was running her first 5k and her Facebook post called it a "short marathon". I wanted to correct her, but felt too snooty and didn't. I figured if she becomes a regular runner, she'll figure it out soon enough.

5 Miles 2 Empty said...

TOTALLY BUGS!!! A few times in the last month my hubs has mentioned to people "My wife is going to Vegas to run the marathon." Their reply? "How far is that on?" As if each "marathon" is different (aside from the 26.45 or 26.6 miles). Onetime, I was snooping on a freind's husbands facebook page. On his info page he said he was training to run the Sound to Narrows Marathon...Um, 12k or 5k you mean? Really? Calling a 12k a marathon? Some people just don't understand the sport. I guess we need to educate people, huh?

FruitFly said...

I have my first 1/2 marathon in February, so I can't fully relate. BUT I did find myself feeling like I couldn't buy any merchandise at the Princess 1/2 last year since it all said 1/2 on it. I did the 5K, and that is when I realized I wanted to work toward the half marathon. But I felt like I didn't earn the privilege of wearing a shirt that mentioned a race I didn't do. So I can see why you would want a shirt specific for your race for sure! I mean you really do earn every mile, and 26.2 is nothing to laugh at!

Mel -Tall Mom on the Run said...

Julia Roberts kept talking about her Marathon..then about the 13 miles she ran.. Wrong and Wrong.. LOL!!

Tammy said...

I agree, totally bugs me too.

Last year, my friends ran the full and I ran the Half in Cinci. I even clarified to the server at the restaurant later when my friends said that we all ran the "marathon". I did not. I ran the Half.

H Love said...

I am with you! Last year after a ran a half my husband was trying to get me to buy a cute shirt that said "marathon mom". I was like NO WAY!!! I need a half marathon mom....little did I know I would one day become a marathon mom. There is a big difference and again they are both huge accomplishments in my book.

chris mcpeake said...

They say it because they have no clue what they are talking about. They are just following the teleprompter.

Stacie said...

I've had several people talk about running marathons that were a 1 mile, 5K or 10K event. And yes, it really bothers me :)

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