With the 40th Annual Marine Corps Marathon quickly
approaching, Marines of Marine Barracks Washington begin to prepare for the
rigorous course. Over 30,000 runners
from across the globe participate in the MCM, making it the fourth largest
marathon in the United States and ninth in world.
Whether a first time runner or a veteran of the MCM, Marines
from the “Corps Oldest Post” all have their own unique way of readying
themselves for the courses demanding 26.2 miles.
“After working the marathon during my first year at the Barracks
and being exposed to the excitement, positivity, and very inspiring people run,
I decided I didn't want to just watch it anymore,”, said MSgt Craig Harris, operations
chief, Headquarters and Service Company. “I wanted to be a part of it.“
According to Wikipedia, the marathon was established in 1976
in order to generate goodwill in the community and to showcase the Marine Corps’
Running serves as an inspiration for my kids to stay active
and challenged, said Harris.
Spanning from Route 110 [between
the Pentagon and Arlington Memorial Drive] and finishing at the U.S. Marine
Corps War Memorial Access Rd., the route creates a challenge for its
runners. To stay motivated, some Marines suggested having music while they
trained, while other preferred running in pairs or groups in order to develop morale
and unit cohesion.
Diet is also important for preparing for the marathon.
“Just because you’re running a marathon doesn’t mean you
have to put yourself on a strict diet, you still have to have nutrients in your
body,” said Staff Sgt. Teresia Kamau, protocol chief, H&S Co.. “You just
have to watch yourself.”
She suggests individuals who plan on participating to eliminate
fatty foods and consume carbs in small portions prior to the race. She also
recommends runners consume plenty of protein and drink lots of water during the
Regardless of their level of fitness, Marines of the
Barracks who are participating in the MCM continue to train and highly
recommend others to join them whether it is for the challenge or for
“It’s always fun at the beginning, then about halfway
through [you think] this sucks and why did I do this?” said Lance Cpl. Black, administrative
clerk, H&S Co. “At the end of the day you can say [I ran a marathon],
that’s something you can be proud of and nobody can take that from you.”