U running club members compete in Twin Cities Marathon

After weeks of training, the day finally arrived for both senior Aaron Eicher and junior Greg McLain. Both students, who are members of the UniversityâÄôs running club, ran in SundayâÄôs Twin Cities Marathon . This yearâÄôs race was EicherâÄôs fifth marathon and McLainâÄôs third, and both runners beat their previous best times. They both finished the race, with unofficial times of two hours and 48 minutes and three hours and 25 minutes, respectively. They also trained extensively to compete in the 26.2-mile event. âÄúI follow a 16-week buildup training program,âÄù said Eicher, who ran 60 miles during his peak week. âÄúThat was mid-summer, and IâÄôve tapered since then.âÄù McLain, who studied abroad in Japan over the summer, didnâÄôt have time to complete his normal three-month training program. âÄúI only had one month to train for this one,âÄù McLain said. âÄúI had to jump right into what the last month would be.âÄù For McLain, that meant running 10 to 13 miles a day two or three days during the week, and around 20 miles a day on the weekends. In addition to running, a lot of other preparation was put in before the race. âÄúThe entire week I have taken in carbs,âÄù Eicher said, who had a dinner of pasta and bread the night before. âÄúIâÄôll organize all my stuff and go to bed early,âÄù he said before the race. âÄúMentally, IâÄôm just thinking positive.âÄù McLain followed a similar routine, eating spaghetti the day before the marathon and mentally focusing himself before the run. Both runners also ate breakfast the morning of the race, waking up as early as 4:30 a.m. to allow the meal to digest before they started running. Despite the training, Eicher said there is still the potential for running so far that itâÄôs harmful. âÄúThere are side effects to running such high mileages and long distances,âÄù he said. âÄúItâÄôs all about the personâÄôs body.âÄù Eicher cited running injuries and fatigue as possible effects, and said that while heâÄôs never had an injury bad enough to keep him from running, he does have some problems with his left hamstring. Neither runner experienced any issues during the marathon on Sunday. McLain said the rain and weather were his only problems during the race. âÄúWhen itâÄôs raining and cold itâÄôs harder to run,âÄù he said. McLain said the rain started pouring around mile nine for about five miles, and then sprinkled before stopping near the time he finished the race. Despite the cloudy weather, friend of both runnerâÄôs and University Running Club president Steele Lorenz thought both Eicher and McLain did a great job, he said. Eicher had the fastest time ever for a running club member in the Twin Cities Marathon, Lorenz said. Health-wise, Lorenz said he feels that running a marathon is a good way to stay healthy. âÄúA lot of people will run to stay in shape, but itâÄôs easy to stop and lose sight of your goal,âÄù he said. âÄúA marathon gives you an ultimate goal and a payoff at the end.âÄù