Can you run a marathon without training for one? {I'll find out in 11 days!}

On November 9th I will be running my third marathon. For the first marathon I trained with a local running store - Running Wild.

pensacola marathonThe program lasted 16 weeks an included 5 days of running, with the longest run of 21 miles being a few weeks before the marathon.

The second marathon I ran was in Nashville, TN earlier this year.

Nashville marathonI just kind of winged training for that one but purposefully ran less days as I wanted to cross-train more (which I gave up entirely training for the first one.) I ran 6 miles on Tuesday and Thursdays, occasionally a 5k on Monday or Friday, and the standard long run on the weekends. I ran more on hills since I heard the Nashville course was hilly and managed to finish only 8 minutes slower than my first time.

Now - for marathon 3. I originally stated I was going to do the Hanson plan. 6 days a week of running with the longest run tapping out at 16 miles (but that's more than sufficent to train for a marathon on when you are running ALL THE MILES during the week on this plan!) Life got in the way and I ended up only doing 2 months on the Hanson plan. In the last month I've ran less than I ever have before when training and I just now entered into the standard two week taper period..

I could have looked into switching to the half but I've decided I'm still going to aim for the full. I did two 15 mile LR's that took about 3 hours.  A lot of the research I've done said running 18 or 20 miles is pretty arbitrary and as long as you run to the 3 hour threshold you should be fine. I've also read that anything after 15/16 miles is more mental than physical. So, I'm offering myself up as guinea pig to test this theory first hand. I figure if I have to walk the last 5-6 miles who cares. It should be a gorgeous day out, I am ADDICTED to race day adrenaline and crowd support, and I'm just kind of a glutton for punishment and love the feeling of not being able to walk for 3 days after.

Wish me luck!

Have you ever ran a race without training adequately for it?