Running a marathon is tough. But also so rewarding! Whether you are a seasoned runner (or walker) or you’ve never seriously run in your life, you can DO a marathon. It takes dedication, hard work, and believing in yourself that you can do it.
Completing that registration for your first marathon or half marathon can be SO scary. We have prepared some tips on how to get yourself prepared to cross that finish line for the first time!
When it comes to running a marathon, you need to prepare yourself physically and mentally! This preparation begins long before the actual race itself. In this tip guide, you will see ideas on how to train right up to race day!
Well before the race
- If you are a beginner runner, you will need at least 10-12 months to prepare for your marathon. Someone with a little more running experience can take about 6 months, though the more time you give yourself, the more “wiggle room” you have in case you need it!
- Find local running clubs or even marathon training programs close to you! This can be a great way to train with experienced people and add a social aspect to your training.
- TAKE IT SLOW, STAY CONSISTENT. Rushing into training can lead to injury, which will hurt you in the short AND long run. Take your time, do the research on a plan that’s right for you, and follow it as much as you can.
- A huge part of your preparation should be all about your food. Your food is not just your pleasure or reward. It is your FUEL for your training! If you fuel yourself with bad food, you will feel bad. Fuel yourself with good food, you will feel good.
- It is so hard in today’s world, but do your best to reduce, or even get rid of as much processed food as you can! You won’t believe the difference it will make for you!
- Protein, protein, protein. Everyone’s body is different, and we all behave differently with food. Protein is one of the most important parts of your diet for running a marathon. You need to nourish and heal your muscles after such rigorous training.
- Train with a friend! This will keep you accountable and motivated! You won’t skip your training if someone is waiting on you to run!
- Create a race board: Put photos of crossing the finish line, you and your friend after a long mile day, and beautiful sunrises. Print out a calendar that you can check off each day. Write your mantra boldly!
- Rest is just as important as the training for completing a marathon. Your muscles and mind need to recoup and rebuild! Be sure to take those rest days, or you can burn yourself out.
- 8 hours of sleep a day? YEAH RIGHT. I know, in today’s world that is just so hard. But try! Try to get as much sleep as you can, especially on long mile days.
Right before the race
Training & Tapering Days
- Be sure you follow your training schedule, by pushing through to your final long mile days, as well as giving your body the rest it needs before race day!
- Pay attention to those weeks before race day that have shorter miles on the schedule. This is called the “taper” period. Don’t be tempted to add extra miles to the schedule. The taper period is there to give your body and mind a chance to rest so you can be fresh on race day. Don’t skip those easier training days close to race. Your body needs the strength to get through those miles. KEEP THAT CONSISTENCY!
- In the last days before running a marathon don’t gorge on pasta but eat plenty of starchy foods to help get your fuel storage up. Within the last hours you want to stick to easy-to-digest foods so you are able to feel light and mobile on race day!
- Make some snacks for race day! Homemade granola, or rice “cakes” made with packed sushi rice with peanut butter and jelly are easy to pack, and easy to snack.
- GET YOUR ELECTROLYTES!
- Time to PUMP yourself up! Keep saying that mantra of yours. Create a pump up playlist. You can do this.
- 8 hours of sleep…you must!
We believe in you!
Now get out there and CROSS THAT FINISH LINE!
Need some marathon gear? Zip Hers has light compression pants and shorts built for runners like you, but with a specialized design that allows you to actually keep the pants ON should you need to go to the restroom “quickly” while running a marathon.
Weird? Perhaps a little, but we have worked to bring this solution to women everywhere! Take a look to find out how you can use Zip Hers!