The ASB Auckland Marathon on Sunday, 20 October 2019 is an annual Festival of Events with a range of distances so everyone can participate - including the ASB Marathon, Half Marathon, 11K Traverse, Heart Foundation 5K Challenge and the Kids Marathon.
The Full and Half Marathon events start in Devonport, goes over Auckland's Harbour Bridge and finishes at Victoria Park near the CBD.
With the event drawing closer, we thought it'd be useful to list 5 fantastic reasons why you should consider running the marathon this year.
Let's start with the most obvious reason. Training to run 21.1 km (half marathon) will increase your body's endurance and fitness. It'll help strengthen your heart, improve your blood circulation, keep your cholesterol at healthy rates and make your muscles stronger.
You'll also notice yourself getting better sleep as your body craves rest - it needs to repair itself. You'll find yourself sleeping a lot more soundly and heading to bed at earlier times.
FOR YOUR MIND
Research suggests that long runs allow better control of your mental fortitude as your mind develops a coping mechanism to deal with long distance running.
It'll reduce stress as you are able to step out and clear your head. It will keep you motivated, inspired and change the way you view the world; “the person who starts a marathon is not the same person who finishes a marathon.”
Once you have completed a marathon you'll forever know that you have the mental and physical strength to dig deep and persevere; qualities that will help you succeed with every day life.
MAKE NEW FRIENDS
The running community is amazingly supportive, welcoming and diverse. Once you make the commitment to participate in this year's marathon, reach out to your local running club. Many fellow marathon runners in and around your community welcome newcomers with open arms.
Training for a marathon with friends is always an easier way to stay motivated as well as build upon existing relationships. It's not hard to bond when you're running over 20 kms together!
Click here if you'd like to connect to one of New Zealand's many running community platforms.
FOR THE FUN
Apart from physical, mental and social benefits you'll gain from running, you can't forget about the amount fun you'll experience.
The ASB Marathon takes you on one of the most scenic routes to view the beautiful city of Tāmaki Makaurau. Maybe you'll see a part of the city you've never been to or scope out new local eateries you'd like to try out. Not to mention the the amazing sunrise you'll get to see when you begin your epic 20 km journey.
There is nothing more rewarding than accomplishing your goal and crossing that finish line. You will be a marathon finisher and will always be one - a lifetime of bragging rights that no one can ever take away from you.
As well as a sense of mental accomplishment, you'll also receive a physical reward - a shiny new medal! And if you train hard enough, the top 5 runners in each category will also win a cash prize.
FOR THE CAUSE
Running for something that's bigger than you is an amazing way to stay motivated to keep training, meet others to train with, and make your race even more meaningful.
Running for Youthline means directly supporting youth mental wellness in New Zealand. Support us to support young people, and save lives.
There are 55,000 steps in a marathon and a story behind every one of them.
Among the thousands taking part in this year’s gruelling ASB Auckland Marathon is a group of extraordinary people.
Miffy is just one of the awesome Youthline Marathon team, running for us again this year to make a difference for young people all around New Zealand.
“I was a young person who struggled in silence - it’s important for people and especially young people to know that Youthline exists and is there to help young people when they need it.”
“I really want to be the person that I needed when I was struggling and be that person I really needed in my life when I was struggling at that stage of my life, I want to be that for other young people and Youthline gives me the chance to do that,” Miffy says.
She knows first-hand the work that Youthline does every day in communities across NZ as she has been a counsellor on the Helpline, which operates 24/7 and is Youthline’s flagship service, since 2014. She now has 500 hours of solo counselling under her belt.
“I know how worthy the work that Youthline does in the community is, and I want to see that to continue and that’s why I’m running for Youthline this year. I’m taking part in the half marathon, which is 21km and that scares the crap out of me."
One of the challenging things about training has been getting going, she adds. “It’s challenging physically but I see it as a mental challenge and I enjoy overcoming mental challenges.”
Running is a time to focus on myself and she enjoys the ‘high’ that comes from doing physical activity. It’s a good thing for her physical health and wellbeing and has become part of her own self care plan, she adds. Running helps me to create the time and space she needs, to be able to do the emotional work she does every day on the Helpline.
Miffy’s favourite running track at the moment is Landslide by Fleetwood Mac, "it’s quite emotional and calming at the same time," she says.
"I have been involved with Youthline for a long time and one of my learnings has been about really connecting with myself and feeling strong in my convictions and about why I doing this and my hope is by sharing my story with my friends and family."
If Miffy had the chance, she would tell every young person one simple thing: “you’re never alone, even if it feels like you are, ask for help because there are so many people who are there and want to help and are able to support you.
If you'd like to support her run for #TeamYouthline, you can do so here.