PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA) – Ty Ballou of PLB sports talked to KDKA’s Rob Pratte to preview the Pittsburgh Marathon.
Ballou said he is thankful for the sponsorships that helped revive the Marathon after being postponed a few years due to lack of money.
It doesn’t matter if you are running competitively or just running for personal pride everyone is running the same distance, though the finishing times may be just a bit different. Ballou told Rob what it is like to actually run the 26.2 miles competitively.
He said it is a mental sport and that, “you go through so many different mind sets through the day.”
You have to also to make sure you fuel your body so you have enough energy to make it through.
“When you’re on mile nine, you don’t’ think about mile 15, you think about I want to get through the next two miles or three miles,” Ballou said.
He also said you have to pace yourself.
“I want to be able to have something left at mile 19 or 20, because that’s when you really do hit the wall. Around mile 20,” Ballou said. “You can see the city and you can visualize the finish line.”
Ballou adds that the roar of the crowd helps.
“The crowds are absolutely spectacular,” he said.
The cheer the crowds doesn’t exactly push you through the finish line without some trouble though.
“You are absolutely toast, you are done, at mile 25, your legs are absolutely destroyed and then your body gives you a little bit more. I can’t explain it, runners get it,” Ballou said.
He said that it’s an adrenaline rush and, “finishing it is the most amazing thing.” At the end of the race, the medal says finisher. “It’s a bizarre horrible, wonderful distance,” he said.
Ballou also talked about his charity that helps people with muscular dystrophy. Ballou Skies is a charity he started with his son, Ryan, who has muscular dystrophy. They are donating money to Ohio State University for heart research.
The study that they are conducting at Ohio State is to research a type of MD called Duchenne muscular dystrophy. When you have Duchenne, your muscles get weaker and that includes the heart. The study is testing medications to keep the heart stronger.