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  • Writer's pictureMarcus Kowal

MMA to ultra runner?

I certainly don't consider myself an ultra runner (just like I didn't consider myself a fighter after 3 months of training) but I have a new found love for running. During my years of fighting, running was always just a part of it. It was a necessary evil that was just part of the training, to improve stamina and to help drop weight. Since the running had to be sport specific, distances were usually never longer than 3-6 miles (5-10 km). Building the body up to last 50 miles (80 km - btw, can we just skip the whole mile thing and just do km like the rest of the world?) is a lot harder than I thought. The 3 main things I've learnt from this are: - There's a lot of technique to running. When you run shorter distances, you can get away with less-than-perfect posture but when the distances increase, having good posture is vital.

- It's more mental than you'd think. It's going to hurt. You're going to want to give up. This aspect, I feel the fighting has helped me prepare for but it's still a different mental game than that of fighting.

- You need nutrition. When you sweat and and burn calories over several hours, you need to be able to replenish the loss of electrolytes (sodium, potassium, etc) and calories in order to be able to stand a chance.

One of the questions I get asked the most (especially by my wife, lol) is: Will I continue this after September 7th? The truth is, I don't know. Let's see how it goes. However, I will definitely continue running and running a lot longer distances, because it becomes almost like a physical version of meditation. It takes some time to fall in love with it but once you do, I think it's hard to turn back and why should you? Study after study show how important physical activity is and here's a very cheap way to get some great results, both for physical and mental health!

As always, I appreciate you taking the time to read this. This is my way of holding myself accountable, sharing my experience in a new territory and a way to raise funds and awareness for our work with That's why I hope you can share it, so that more people can join our fight against drunk driving!

Ps. Disclaimer: Clearly, it's not me in the pictures and I don't have any rights to the photos.

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