Can cigarette smokers finish a marathon

You hear and read this comparison over and over and most of us should now also feel that way: The corona pandemic is more like one marathon than a sprint - despite a record-breaking pace in the development of vaccines and a society that tries every nook and cranny to avoid contact and thus reduce the number of infections. The comparison with the long haul is correct: the pandemic has been going on for a while and will be with us for a long time to come.

Corona pandemic: length of the route still uncertain

However, there is one point in the comparison: the distance of a marathon is always exactly 41.195 km. In the case of the “Corona Marathon”, however, the assessment of how long it will last varies widely. And while well-trained runners complete a marathon much faster than untrained runners, the corona pandemic is about getting through the goal together as a society as possible.

Can the mental strategies of marathon runners help us to survive the route ahead of us with the coronavirus as a constant companion as healthily and happily as possible? We have researched for you and find: Some of them are even very suitable for the Corona marathon. And the marathon strategies can also be useful for coping with smoking cessation.

Five helpful thoughts for the Corona marathon and quitting smoking:

1. "I find my own pace"

Many beginners make the mistake of a marathon that they orientate themselves on the running speed of others and therefore quickly get out of breath. The "right pace" in the corona pandemic (and also when stopping smoking) stands for the recommendation to pay attention to yourself and your needs and to ensure that your own enjoyment balance is as balanced as possible. What gives pleasure and strengthens you differs from person to person. You can find more about this, for example, in these blog posts: What's up? Changed leeway in times of Corona, it has never been as valuable as it is today: the brooding diary

2. "I think in parts"

Another beginner's mistake in the marathon: keep thinking about how long the distance is that lies ahead of you. For example after 10 kilometers: "Help, now I have to do three times as much as I have already run". Instead: plan day by day. This is also one of the most frequent tips from our smoke-free guides to help you cope with smoking cessation.

3. "I provide variety"

Experienced runners regularly change their focus while running: sometimes they look into the distance, sometimes at the people along the way or the fellow campaigners directly in front of them. This brings variety and maintains concentration.

4. "I don't get cocky"

In a marathon, the power reserves are used up too quickly if someone becomes cocky and - for example - sprints in between. In the corona pandemic, exuberance can lead to protective measures being neglected. And when you stop smoking, you have to try a cigarette again because you feel stable and think that one cigarette won't do anything. A big mistake: "Never again just one", many swear in the smoke-free forum.

5. "I accept unpleasant side effects"

A lot of things are uncomfortable in a marathon and pain can even occur in between. And then there are moments when you want to give up. But such phases are also part of it - and they pass again. The thought that better things will come after difficult phases helps in the pandemic and also when quitting smoking - for example in the case of withdrawal symptoms, which also occur in waves that become weaker and weaker over time and eventually fade away.

We wish you and us good stamina in the near future and want to close with one last marathon parallel:

Almost all runners in a marathon report how important a sense of community is. The parallels to the situation in the corona pandemic and also to the smoking cessation are almost evident in this aspect: It's easier together.