Post Marathon Depression?

I'm 18 years old, currently at school revising for A-levels, and ( up to yesterdays london marathon) have been living, eating, dreaming etc.... about the Marathon. 

However, I woke up this morning feeling incredibly down and rather empty inside. The marathon was a huge goal for me and now it is not there anymore I feel there is nothing to strive towards.

Has anyone else had similar experiences or is this just me?


  • Yep, I've had that. It's a really shock to the system.

    Set new goals, enjoy the silverwear (that will wear off a bit slower) and have a think about what you're going to do next: improve time, new distance, different race whatever. It will pass.

    Oh and do your revision, that's important too... image

  • stutyrstutyr ✭✭✭

    As BoDuke says, take a few days (or weeks) off to recover as you've earned it, then look for another challenge to capitalise on the improved fitness you've worked hard to build during marathon prep.

    its very common to get the post-race blues, as everything builds to the event and then there's "nothing" afterwards.  So you need to find something to fill that void.

    Probably won't help now, but its never as bad after future events as you only run your first marathon once image

  • Dr.DanDr.Dan ✭✭✭

    Nothing to strive towards?You now need to be living, eating, dreaming etc.... about A-levels!! 

    (can anyone spot that father of an A level student?image)

  • I felt that too after my first half-marathon, I had no motivation what so ever to run or even work out. It takes time to get over it, but you will get over it! Set a non-running goal and eventually your accomplishment and motivation will return!

  • RicFRicF ✭✭✭

    Happens to Olympic runners. Its normal.

    'A' Levels.! My lad has given up running because of 'A' levels. The fact that he has topped his year group in Physics and Maths barely covers my disappointment.

  • 2Old2Old ✭✭✭
    You lot are depressed? How do you think I feel. I trained 4 months did 1000 miles and 10 days before injured my Achilles so had to miss the race. I'm depressed!
  • How did it go ? Book another race for a few months away ?
  • It's common - doesn't usually kick in quite that quickly though image

  • Completely the opposite (sorry to gloat) but I feel really proud of myself and can't wait to sign up for my next one!

  • Toror

    I understand, the human mind works in many different ways!


    I managed a 4hr 9mins which I was pretty happy about as I had aimed for around the 4 hour mark.

  • 2oldnever 


    Ouch. Sorry to hear that.

  • 2Old2Old ✭✭✭
    Northeastsouth- thanks ...stil p!ssed off though. Can't even do another one as compensation until I recover ....whenever that may be. Enough self pity
  • It's pretty common - as others have said book in another race. Running can be a good way to de-stress while studying for A levels.  Plus you've got uni to look forward to - and the chance to try new sports if you fancy it. I retrained late in life and took up rowing - my running fitness was very useful and enabled me to keep people half my age out of the squad image

  • You should've entered another race NES, it's the 3 peaks fell race this weekend, hope my legs have recovered by then image Although, maybe I haven't thought this through.....I'm gonna be well pissed off next Monday morning!


  • Got a bit of a downer this morning but that's only because I've got a bit of chest pain and I've got some aches stopping me from running for a few days. Soon as I'm recovered I'll be back out on the roads to train for all the other races I've got lined up.

    I'm not experienced over marathon distance so it's actually a good feeling to have it done and now I can see how much the training base has improved my performance at my better distances.

  • I did the London Marathon on Sunday (my first marathon) and feel exactly the same way (almost to the point of tears - and I am a bloke !) as I did not achieve the time I wanted.

    I really shouldnt feel so down as it is disrespectfulI to the crowds lining the route who were absolutely fantastic and incredibly generous in every respect however I suspect we are both having the huge come down after the massive high and hope that time will help put things in perspective.  All I can say was that no matter how tough I thought I was mentally nothing could have prepared me for how incredibly difficult it all became after mile 19 - I had to walk - something I had previously thought of as inconceivable !

    I know it probably doesnt help much at the moment but you should feel proud of yourself (as everyone is telling me I should be) for completing a marathon full stop.  You are in a very small percentage of the population and its an achievement to be proud of.

    I have resolved to give it as many goes as it takes to achieve my target time and that is already giving me some comfort.

    Hope it helps to know there is a least 1 other feeling as down as you.

    Phew - what a rollercoaster !



  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭

    I got this feeling after my first marathon, but now I usually have a race booked in the calendar for late summer  / autumn. It gives me a few weeks to relax after the Marathon and then get back into focussing on something.

    I think i`m going to enjoy a few weeks without any serious running though.

  • T RexT Rex ✭✭✭

    Post-marathon blues are very common, even if you did well.  As others have said the best solution is to enter another event, after A-levels - good luck with those btw.  Have another one to look forward to - doesn't have to be a marathon necessarily.

  • Yeah I got this a bit when I got back to the "real world" on Tuesday.  Sunday evening and Monday were great as I was still in London and was reminded of the marathon everywhere I went, plus saw so many people on the Tube wearing their medals all waving to each other.

    Best thing to do is set another goal (maybe not another marathon if you have exams to study for as the training will eat into your time) how about a fast 10k, an off-road race, or a triathlon.  Signing up for your next race will give you a real buzz!

    I'm not too depressed through as I have another marathon coming up in less than 3 weeks so I get to do it all over again! Eeeeek.

    Seeking out other runners who you can relate to also really helps and you can remind each other and talk non-stop without boring people.  When I got back to work I managed to chat with 4 other marathon runners which was great!

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