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Athletic training and grad school


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I'm a runner thinking about doing a marathon next year.  I'm also a Ph.D. student taking quals that same summer.  


Has anyone successfully integrated Ph.D. programs and athletic training?  Marathons in particular?  How'd that work out for you?

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My university hosts a Half Marathon, which lot of PhD students I know have taken part in. 


When I did running more seriously and was in training for a Half, I went out 2-3 times per week. In most training programs (which are easy to find online) you start out doing shorter distances then gradually build up. 


It shouldn't be too difficult to fit around your PhD. You can either run first thing in the morning, at lunchtime or in the evening. Then on the weekend you can do a longer run. In fact, I'd argue that doing some exercise outside of the lab will be good for your concentration, focus and general quals prep. 

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I'm not in a PhD program, but a Master's program.  Fitness is an essential part of my life!  I am at the gym or going for a run almost every day (I take one day completely off each week).


I love running and training for marathons, although the half-marathon is my favourite distance.  Sadly I'm coming back from an injury right now, so I'm stuck with a run/walk program, but I can't wait until I can run and train for another race again!


Being active is important for both mental and physical health.  It helps with stress relief, memory, concentration, sleep, mood, ability to learn, in addition to all of the physical health benefits (lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, some cancers, osteoporosis, etc.)


Marathons can become "all consuming" depending on what training program you use and how fast a runner you are.  I personally like Hal Higdon's training programs - I find they prepare you adequately for the distance, without requiring the marathon training to "take over" your life.

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