Ryan Mayer

If you’re a person who runs consistently, you’ve likely found yourself getting into that “zone” where it feels like the workout gets easier and you can push yourself longer than you originally thought. However, you’ve likely not been in the same kind of zone this Fargo, North Dakota man was in this past Saturday when he ran a full marathon despite only signing up to do the half-marathon.

According to the Grand Forks Herald, 26-year-old Mike Kohler, a plumber and pipefitter from West Fargo, lined up at the start line of the Sanford Fargo Marathon ready to attempt his first half-marathon alongside thousands of other runners. Unfortunately for Mr. Kohler, he lined up at the start line a bit too early and ended up with the full marathon runners. From the story:

“Wearing headphones, Kohler wasn’t listening closely to the starting announcements.

“So when they said ‘go,’ I went,” he said, reminiscing about the day.

Just outside the dome, at the intersection of 19th Avenue North and University Drive, Kohler turned north, following the marathon pack. Half-marathoners were supposed to go south.

Kohler started getting suspicious after seeing course markings that said “full marathon only.”

After Kohler realized his mistake, he apparently thought about stopping after the 13.1 miles he had signed up to do. Instead, he says he was feeling pretty good and decided to continue the race to the finish line. He finished in a time of 5:54.26, but in a continued twist of irony, only received a half-marathon finisher medal because that’s what his bib indicated he was running. He didn’t seem too upset about it when talking to the paper after the race.

“This just kind of proves you can do a lot more than what you think you can sometimes,” Kohler said.

Kohler told the paper he intends to do another half-marathon and a full marathon in the future so that “he can say he “legitimately” ran each.”

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