I'm sure there will be those who don't like my anti-bleeding-heart sentiment, but if you can't complete 26.2 miles in 7 hours then get off the road. Find a marathon that encourages walkers or doesn't have a time cut-off, but please don't try to go from couch potato to "marathoner" in 9 months and enter a marathon that has a time cut-off.
The Jeans Marines philosophy of "anyone can run a marathon" is simply not true, and that there are (predominantly) sedate middle-aged women out there who believe that, is astounding. (and being a previously sedate middle aged woman, I'm allowed to say that - but it took me a couple of years of base training to be able to approach the marathon distance without embarassing myself).
I hope Jeans Marines, and other charity groups can come to terms with a) accepting that shorter distances are admirable goals b) just because a marathon sounds glamourous, doesn't mean you should use it as therapy replacement and c) sorry, but not everyone is an athlete.
I run in Toronto and have come across my share of Jeans Marines ... I've never understood the attraction. My sympathies, though, to the JMs who ran the full distance at MCM, but now have everyone questioning whether they cheated, simply by association.
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