First of all, congratulations! Congratulations on being a tiny set of people who happily wake up at 6:00 am on a Sunday morning to train while most of planet earth is asleep and their bodies are working hard to recover from all the trash that was put into the system Saturday night.
Perhaps it is the runner’s high (a colloquial term used to describe the feeling of extreme euphoria experienced during running) which drives you to spring out of bed at the crack of dawn. Irrespective of where your motivation comes from, know that your decision to run the marathon is inspiring more people than you think.
Thus, for you, some guidelines as you move forward in your training:
1. Pre and post workout meals
A fruit 30-minutes pre-workout and a meal immediately post workout is imperative for improved workout performance and optimal muscle repair and recovery
2. Strengthen back, legs and weight-bearing joints (knee, hips, spine)
Let me elucidate this pointer via a quick story:
Clients after a few weeks of a good food routine are keen to take things to the next level i.e. commence workouts. They start running and within a week or so, complain of an aching back, an aching ankle, an aching knee etc. “Running isn’t good for me” is the prompt conclusion they inevitably come to. It’s not the running silly! It’s the fact that your back, legs, knees, hips etc. aren’t strong enough to take the impact of the run. Do you see where I am going with this story?
Marathon training isn’t merely confined to teaching yourself how to sprint and how to run long distances. In fact, exercises to strengthen your body parts are just as important too! Set aside one training day for these so that you don’t sustain injuries
3. If you haven’t done so already, invest in a good pair of shoes
Yes, an investment; that’s what it is. Purchase as per your arch and don’t sport a brand new pair right before the run. Ensure you have already ran in said shoes and are comfortable with them. If you already own a decent pair of shoes, check the outsole (material in contact with the ground) and the midsole (shoe cushioning) for cracks and fissures. If you spot any, maybe it’s time for a new pair
4. Hydrate and Sleep
Muscles can cramp due to dehydration which is the last thing you want. So continually sip water through the day and ensure you’re adequately hydrated at all times. Your muscles won’t recover adequately unless you get your sleep. So here’s your early to bed excuse
5. Stop obsessing over completion time
The fact that you’re training is in itself a huge accomplishment even though it may or may not seem like it to you. On the D-day, enjoy the run as opposed to obsessing over how much time it takes to complete it.
So that’s it, a smile on your face and a spring in your step (literally)! Good luck!