The marathon man himself, Eliud Kipchoge. Yet again, he has managed to achieve something that many of us can only dream off, shattering the current marathon world record by 78 seconds during the BMW Berlin Marathon 2018 on 16th September 2018. The Kenyan persevered on and pulled ahead of his competitors early, finished strong, and achieving an impressive time of 2:01:39.
It was definitely a great day for running and Nike. The communication team had the exclusive opportunity to speak to the man and managed to put together a transcript documenting his running journey, what it means to be a marathon runner and how he has worked with Nike to create a shoe that best suits his running needs.
Many burning questions have been asked and Kipchoge answered them humbly. He also provided advice to hobby runners, and how to best prepare for a race. Therefore, let’s dive deep into his thoughts and pick up a few points on how you can achieve your next PB (Personal Best).
Pushing Past Your Limits
Among this fame and glory, it wasn’t the record that was actually impressive, it was the fact that he had to run solo for the last 17 kilometres while embracing the loneliness after his pacemakers dropped out earlier than intended.
This was what he said:
I was alone on the last 17 kilometres, but I didn’t think at all about the fact that I was alone. I just thought that I have to keep up this pace until the very last kilometre. Pain is everywhere when you run a marathon, but you have to try to keep these thoughts out of your mind and only concentrate on the race. I don’t believe in limits. When I train, I try to listen to my body and challenge it to go beyond barriers when the moment is right.
Having a strong mentality both physically and mentally is the most important factor in completing a run. During the marathon, the body will definitely start to feel weak, joints and muscles will ache and the brain will start questioning “Why?”. From that moment on, it all comes down to the runner’s mental strength. Being able to push on despite having no strength is the greatest challenge that any runners will have to experience, and overcoming them is a sense of achievement.
The Right Training Tips
Having the right attitude during training is crucial. Practice is the hardest part of learning, but training is the essences of transformation. There are three main characteristics that a runner need when running a marathon.
Steady and consistent training, passion and self-discipline. Self-discipline is about focusing and living a simple life. Training is important. But more important is the passion you put in it. You have to strongly believe that you are able to make it and be able to run this distance. That’s the magic of a marathon.
However, physically do take note to do proper stretching before any training. If you were to stretch correctly and regularly, you will find that every movement you make will be much easier. And after training, do warm downs to prevent your body from aching for the next few days as this will affect your training schedules if you are in pain from the after effects.
The right equipment for training is also important. Kipchoge ran in a shoe that was developed with him. So how much time does he think he could shave off because of it?
Actually, the shoe is for every runner out there, not only for me. I tested it and Nike took up my feedback. I contributed in making a shoe that is faster than any shoe before. But it is still the runner that needs to run fast.
Even though Kipchoge was running in a shoe that was developed with Nike according to his personal preference, he still felt that it is up to the runners that need to run fast and ultimately falls onto the runner’s determination.
Set Future Goals
Despite having multiple Olympic Gold Medals and breaking the world marathon record, Kipchoge is still motivated to take part in the future Olympic Games and Marathons.
He feels that:
I think no Human is limited. Everything is possible, and records are there to be broken. At the beginning of the season, my trainer said, you have written history with Breaking2. I’ve also ran 2:03, 2:04 und 2:05 already, today it was 2:01. 2:02 is still missing, right? I will keep running and trying to be successful. I never thought about retiring.
It was because of his love for the sport, it kept him soaring for greater heights. In order to do well, you must learn to love the process, there is no point in running for the sake of completing. Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible. Therefore, stay focus and go after your dreams and keep moving towards them.
When the going gets tough, the tough gets going. Running away seems to be a easier option to cope, but running from the pain will never fix anything. The pride in finishing a marathon is much greater than all the pain endured during the marathon. To stay and preserve even when it is difficult is when you will prevail. Be mentally stronger than what you physically will feel.
Learn from Eliud Kipchoge. Succeed like Eliud Kipchoge.
Marathon is life. If you really want to be happy, then you have to enjoy life. That’s why I smile. I enjoy running the marathon.
Hope that these small tips will guide you to success! Did you find this article inspiring? What additional advice would you tell other marathon runners? Do check out How to Run Your First 50km and 100km or More Without Killing Yourself.