From 5km to Sub 3:20 Marathon Debut & Overcoming the Wall: Our Founder’s First Marathon Experience
Running a marathon is an incredible accomplishment that requires consistency, discipline, and mental toughness. I, Dhil, the founder of Vulcan Fitness, want to share my personal journey of transformation, from running 5km to completing a sub 3:20 (3:19:58) marathon debut (at a pace of 4:45 per kilometre) at the Gold Coast Marathon on July 2, 2023. Join me as I take you through the challenges, my first marathon experience, my encounter with the wall, the mental strength I developed, the lessons I learned along the way, and how it has forever changed my routine!
Finding a Training Partner & Joining Your Local Run Club
It was a combination of both for me. It's easy to have moments of self-doubt or lose motivation along the way. However, when you have a training partner or are part of a run club, you gain an additional source of motivation and accountability. For me, it was my good mate Matthew Jallet (Matt). Matt and I met during my undergraduate degree, and his presence during training sessions was a powerful motivator. Additionally, I was a part of Watts Athletics, a run club led by Shiloh Watts based in Milton, Queensland. This powerful combination kept me accountable during my training block.
Consistency and Discipline
Consistency and discipline became the foundation of my training. It's all about turning up day in, day out, and completing the scheduled mileage. I incorporated a 60-minute run every Monday morning at 6am as part of my training block. These early morning runs were a game-changer for me. As you know, running a business is not an easy task and comes with numerous challenges. During these runs, I deliberately chose not to listen to music. Instead, I immersed myself in the solitude and serenity of the environment, allowing my thoughts to flow. It became a time for me to think about the week ahead and process key aspects of the business that needed attention. The 6am Monday morning runs will forever be a part of my life! I highly recommend giving it a try as you'll notice a significant increase in efficiency and productivity throughout your week.
Hitting the Wall & No One Cares About You Except For You!
Approaching my first marathon, I recognised the importance of having a well-thought-out race plan. My goal was to maintain a consistent pace of 4:40 to 4:45 minutes per kilometre throughout the entire race. However, as I reached the 39-kilometer mark, I encountered the dreaded wall that many marathoners face. The idea of walking briefly crossed my mind. It was a pivotal moment that tested my mental resilience and determination. In that moment, I had to dig deep within myself to find the strength to push through. I questioned why I was subjecting myself to such a gruelling challenge. The answer was clear: I was doing it for myself, driven by my own ambition and personal growth. This realisation became a powerful motivator as I understood that no one cared about my journey as much as I did.
Trust the Process and Enjoy the Journey ❤️🙏
This is my favourite part! Amidst the physical and mental challenges, I made a conscious decision to fully embrace the journey itself. I recognized that the path to achieving my marathon goal was never meant to be easy, but undeniably worth it. I have always believed that one can achieve anything they set their mind to. Trusting the process and finding joy in the journey became my guiding principles.
Completing a marathon has changed my life forever and has prompted me to reflect on our brand's "Why". Over the course of the next 6-12 months, I will dig deep to find answers to this.